Pokemon Go ace comes to town

By Alexandra Newlove

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GO TOM GO: The country's most avid Pokemon Go fan, Tom Currie, checks out the action at the popular Pokemon-hunting spot at the Whangarei Town Basin. PHOTO/MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM
GO TOM GO: The country's most avid Pokemon Go fan, Tom Currie, checks out the action at the popular Pokemon-hunting spot at the Whangarei Town Basin. PHOTO/MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM

He's on track to catch 'em all and has a good feeling about Paihia.

The country's biggest Pokemon Go fan is in Northland. Tom Currie quit his job as an Auckland barista in mid-July to spend two months travelling the country in search of every creature available on the smartphone game.

His mission earned him international press attention, with a gaming company in the US offering him a paid gig as a Pokemon Go instructor.

Mr Currie, 24, was in Whangarei yesterday kicking off the Northland leg of his tour and said the Pokemon hunting scene seemed quiet compared to other towns.

"That's what I got told on the [Whangarei] Facebook page as well. It's very hit and miss with the various towns. The best town I've found in NZ was Thames. People said not to worry about going there (but) I ended up rearranging my schedule to stay longer."

But he had a good feeling about Paihia and had reason to believe the town might harbour a Charizard, his final capture.

He had caught 140 of the 141 Pokemon available in New Zealand, with four only up for grabs overseas, and another six yet to be released. He would spend several days in Kerikeri and a day at Cape Reinga. The adventurer had largely relied on sponsors, including InterCity and companies from America and Finland, as well as Kiwi hospitality.

"I had money for the first month and because it was such an impromptu trip I ran out of money four weeks ago. I've been relying on other Pokemon trainers, media and local businesses."

Contact Mr Currie through the "Pokemon Trainer Tom" Facebook page if you would like to meet him.

- Northern Advocate

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