I’m going to be blunt here. I’ve always been bad at receiving gifts. While I can make and send pretty nice presents, my ability to receive a gift is kinda crap. And, for some reason, this trait has followed me into Pokemon GO. A place where gifts are a pretty large part of the game. But, for some reason, even for normal people, receiving gifts in Pokemon GO is a massive pain. And so is sending gifts.
So. Much. Tapping.
Sending and receiving gifts takes ages. Just like everything else in Pokemon GO, you need to tap through various animations. Many of these animations can be partly skipped. For example, you can tap through seeing what you get from a gift, but that’s not the only thing that slows you down. You still need to wait for the gift animation to appear, then a second animation showing where the gift is from, THEN an animation showing your friendship level increase.
It’s even more of a pain if you just want to send a gift, because you have to close the gift menu to be able to send your own.
But the worst part is that the whole Friends List can be incredibly laggy at times. During GO Fest last year, during the “Friendship Hour”, the friends list died completely, which meant we got a make-up event a week later. But even during normal play, the friends list can be hellish. Scrolling up and down it too much will make the game eventually slow down to a crawl. For some reason, loading other players’ avatars is just too much work.
And that’s on top of the potential network errors from just, well, daring to open a gift during busy events like Raid Hours and the like.
Your Item Bag Is Full.
Then there’s having the backpack space required. A gift can give you anything from 300 stardust to 15 Pokeballs. Meaning that you need between 0 and 15 free backpack slots. And depending on how many gifts you’re opening, that number can vary HUGELY! Think about it, if you open 4 gifts, you can need anywhere from 0 slots to 60 slots. Most of the time though, you’ll get 5 Pokeballs, 3 Great Balls and maybe some stardust. Thankfully, stardust and stickers don’t count towards your backpack space.
Another side-issue though are eggs. 7km eggs are incredibly hit and miss. They can either contain cool stuff (like Riolu) or absolute trash (like Alolan Diglett). But you might not want a 7km egg at all, so you need to make sure that you’re at 12/12 egg capacity before you start opening.
Other people need to open your gifts.
Of course, there’s a catch to all this gift sending and receiving. When you send a gift, you have to wait for the other person to open it to be able to send another. The problem is, you have no idea when the other person will open that gift. Or whether they’ll ever open it at all. If you’re close to a milestone (Ultra or Best Friends), you can sometimes end up in a stand-off. People really want that experience, even more so now that we have 50 levels to climb. So if people can’t get in touch, you might not ever see that gift being opened.
I’ll be honest, I’m not the best at opening gifts. That’s mostly for two reasons: firstly, my item bag is always full. But secondly, it’s such a chore scrolling through my friends list that I just… can’t get to the gifts. Even if I am opening gifts, at some point the game just lags out.
Oh, also, there’s a limit to how many gifts you can open a day. It’s currently 40. But you can send 100 gifts in a day. It… doesn’t quite add up.
The 151 Gifts task just accentuates the problem.
Normally, sending and receiving gifts doesn’t take THAT long if you only do a few at a time. Most of the time, you’ll only do a few at a time anyway. Or one will open some gifts and then send some later. But having to send 151 gifts as part of the Shiny Mew research just makes the whole process feel far worse.
What Pokemon GO really needs is a way to skip some animations. Not all of them, just some of them. While I am normally quite a patient person, even I can grow tired of the same laggy animations over and over.