5 Things to Consider BEFORE Downloading Pokemon Sleep

The Pokemon Company
The Pokemon Company /

After years of mystery, Pokemon Sleep has finally released and it is…definitely an app. As I can only make progress in it when I sleep and I have two kids who haven’t let me do that in about nine years my progress will be slow but I’m trying to see what this game actually offers over time. But going in, it’s easy to know absolutely nothing about what you’re getting into, especially since the game doesn’t fully show you it’s options until after your first night of rest. Which I can see why because oof are there some things I wish I knew going in that might have given me second guesses about downloading this thing.

Note that I regularly use sleep apps so I have experience using these and I know what they’re supposed to achieve. So when I compare this to other sleep apps I’m making a stern comparison.

1. You can’t do ANYTHING with the app the first day you download it.

I’m not playing. You get on here, set up your account, and Professor Neroli, your guide to this game, says, “well, that’s it until you get some sleep. Have a good night!” And then you can do absolutely nothing in here but add friends and adjust sound levels.

Screenshot-2023-07-21-at-12-13-15-PM /

Oh, and they give you a Pikachu, because of course they do.

2. Don’t expect a detailed analysis to why you’re catching what.

Last night I slept really well because of a storm. 7 hours and up is rare for me. When I woke up I found out I had attracted five Pokemon. A Charmander, two different Meowths, a Mareep, and a Slakoth. Professor Neroli then explained to me that based off how I sleep I’ll attract Pokemon with different “sleep types”.

The two Meowths, for example, one had “Curled-Up Sleep” and the other had “Seated Sleep”.

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I wondered “‘Seated Sleep’? That’s worrisome. I wonder why it felt I had that.” It won’t tell you. It will never tell you a correlation between what you earned and why. I found a Charmander with Crackling Sleep, and a Mareep with Wooly Sleep, and I’m just left to wonder what I did to cause that. Though, I suspect that every single person is going to get one of the three Kanto starters when they first play because it only lets you catch one of the ones you discovered and it HAS to be the starter Pokemon. A friend of mine caught Squirtle his first day.

I will say this though. The app recorded me fart last night and I found a Slakoth who’s sleep style involved it occasionally laying still for a minute before lifting its leg for a second. That’s either intentional or a hilarious coincidence.

3. You don’t keep Snorlaxes.

Don’t get too attached to your Snorlax. You get a Snorlax for one week which the game defines as Monday thru Sunday and then your Snorlax goes away and you start fresh with a new one.

As the game officially launched on a Thursday, I’m pretty sure that my first Snorlax is going to be malnourished when I release it back into the wild.

4. There’s no game here.

A lot of people are going into Pokemon Sleep thinking it’s a Pokemon game that has a sleep theme, but it’s important to remember that, instead, it’s a sleep app with a Pokemon theme. Outside of a small slow moving bit of collectathon stuff, you’re not going to be playing the game outside of the three times a day it asks you to put food in your Snorlax.

That being said…

5. This game is CRAZY with microtransactions.

I figured there would be microtransactions but I feel like the several year wait for this game was just them figuring out how to fit as many transactions as possible.

Want to make people think you’re sleeping better than you are? You can buy a premium pass for the game for either $9.99 a month or $49.99 for six months that allows you to earn more experience and points than you normally do.

And to get an Ice Stone so you can evolve your Eevee into a Glaceon? It costs 1,400 of the game’s premium currency. But don’t worry, the game is nice and starts you off with…100.

The weird part of all this is that it feels like you won’t accurately get a good view of your progress and your sleep health if you’re boosting your points and stats but at the same time, from a gaming standpoint and as a long time Pokemon player, the game desperately makes me want to purchase the premium items so that I can see what all I carry.

Oh, and yes, the game took a page from Niantic’s other game, Pokemon Go and asks you to pay to increase the amount of Pokemon or items you can connect. It’s expensive and weird.

In closing, the game is pretty disappointing. I figured there would be something closer to a sleep app, but instead it feels more like a burden. Asking me to make sure I feed my Snorlax at certain times of day and hitting me with reasons to need microtransactions right when I’m going to bed. It feels bad.

I’m going to try it for a few more days but honestly, this is disappointing.