App developer says he has 'caught 'em all'
Less than two weeks after the release of Pokemon Go in Singapore, a 39-year-old app developer says he has "caught 'em all".
But his claim has got other players of the mobile game here up in arms, saying he "cheated".
Mr Terence Ho took 10 days to catch all 145 available Pokemon, including the rarest and most powerful ones.
He started playing when the game was launched here on Aug 6 and got his last Pokemon on Tuesday at 12.05am.
He said he spent about $150 on in-app purchases by buying "coins" for lures and incense in order to progress at a faster rate.
Mr Ho told The New Paper on Tuesday: "It's always been the goal of every Pokemon trainer to catch all the Pokemon... I'm no different."
Mr Ho also "caught" region-exclusive Pokemon that are only available in other parts of the world, such as the US, Asia, Europe and Australia.
Mr Ho got friends living in these areas to log in to the game using his account and catch them for him.
This method, known as sharing an account, is frowned upon by the game's developer Niantic Labs,which considers it cheating, as it makes the game an unfair one. Those caught doing it may be suspended or have their account terminated.
PRECIOUS: Among the rare Pokemon that Mr Ho caught is Ninetales.PHOTOS COURTESY OF TERENCE HO
But Mr Ho insisted: "Every one of us uses our own unique and creative ways to solve each problem. All players have this problem of catching region-exclusive Pokemon."
Not everyone agrees with him.
Student Timothy Lee, 19, said he "didn't like Mr Ho's methods, because the game was not played the way it was intended to be".
Others wondered if he had used third-party applications that allow buyers to spoof their location, or whether he had also asked friends to catch non-region-exclusive Pokemon for him.
To this, Mr Ho replied: "I caught all the local Pokemon with my own blood, sweat and tears. No friends helped me locally because they were busy with the game too."
Mr Ho said he spent hours after work at the park near his home in Ang Mo Kio, catching Pokemon till nearly 2am.
He also walked 10km to 20km each day, but later switched to cycling to cover more distance.
"I went to over 10 locations in Singapore. The farthest would probably be Punggol."
Other players have been more supportive of Mr Ho's efforts.
One of them, who wanted only to be known as H.J., said: "I don't believe that what Mr Ho did affected the integrity of the game, he is clearly passionate and dedicated."
Student Joshua Goh, 19, said Mr Ho has "supported the game through his many in-app purchases, so this is not as big a deal as others perceive it to be".
Mr Ho said he is now looking forward to catching the rest of the Pokemon which have not been released (there are 720 in total).
To do this, he is planning for "more sophisticated teamwork".
And after that? Mr Ho said with a laugh: "It's time for me to get back to proper work."
Every one of us uses our own unique and creative ways to solve each problem.
- Mr Terence Ho, on allegations that he cheated by getting friends overseas to catch region-specific Pokemon for him