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Pika fight… Pokémon Go just put prices up 1300% in Turkey

The move comes as a counter measure, ending months of location spoofing, robbing Niantic from earnings elsewhere… But at what cost?
Pika fight… Pokémon Go just put prices up 1300% in Turkey
  • Turkish players are concerned about inflated costs, with some paying the equivalent of $40 for 100 coins.
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Looks like the cheap Pokémon Go goodies party is over as Niantic have taken a very heavy handed approach to closing a simple loophole that has seen many players spoofing their locations in order to take advantage of Turkey's lower Go store prices.

Their solution? To put up the price of items on the Turkish store to match a 'European Standard', meaning that some items just increased 1300% as noted by countless Twitter (formerly X) users within Turkey.

The price is… Whatever you're willing to pay 

Of course, charging prices based on affordability in different countries is not a new concept. As earnings and disposable income increase and decrease by territory, so to do local prices. And goodies within the Pokémon Go store are no exception.

What's also not surprising is that given the lower prices in regions such as Turkey and India, players would try to find a way around the game's geo-location in order to access the cheaper stores abroad. There are countless tuition and advice articles, videos and TikToks explaining how to do just that. And now, it seems, Niantic have had enough of players finding a backdoor and want everyone to pay the full price they've carefully designed for each territory of the famously international game.

The significant increase in Pokécoin prices mirrors adjustments made to coin bundles, echoing changes already seen in territories such as Brazil. However, even then, despite the exchange rate being 33 Turkish Lira to 1 USD, the cost in Lira for 1 USD becoming 39.99 indicates a disparity.

Repercussions arise

Two reasons may explain this phenomenon: recent local conversion price changes (and a need for Niantic to pass on costs) and that unauthorized access by individuals outside Turkey to purchase cheaper coins. And so - as the simplest fix - in-game prices now reflect the US dollar rate rather than that of Turkey's economy.

Job done.

And it all sounds perfectly fair… Until you realise that Turkish players have suddenly been hit by hugely inflated costs with some paying the equivalent of $40 for 100 coins. Similar issues have been reported in other countries too, sparking concerns about potential repercussions for innocent nations due to the actions by nefarious Pokémon Go players in the west seeking discounts.

“We have economic crisis in here. People barely buy food. It all happened because of [illegitimate] player[s] who buy coins from Turkish stores," Buğra Sarı wrote on X (formerly Twitter). Adding that Turkish players are being punished over the greedy and “[illegitimate] behaviour" of non Turkish players.

“If I want to do 5 remotes per day it equals to my monthly rent lol R u fucking kidding me???" they added in response to a comment.

The average salary in Turkey is 18000 tlr. Niantic... how do you expect anyone in my country to buy anymore coins?!

Rest of the world look out…

One Reddit user r/TheSilphRoad made a post on the increase saying, “The average salary in Turkey is 18000 tlr. Niantic... how do you expect anyone in my country to buy anymore coins?! With my salary of 20000 tlr, how should I ever be able to buy the 3999 tlr bundle? For comparison the average US salary is about 6000 usd (google search), the largest pokecoin bundle is about 110 usd."

The user went on to add that the “price change seems to be true to Pakistan and India too, w[h]ere prices have been adjusted to European rates."

The decision to adjust prices, whether due to cheap coin purchases or local conversion, is one that Niantic are yet to comment on or address directly. However, penalizing an entire country of users seems heavy-handed when the obvious solution would be to more accurately prevent foreign users from spoofing locations.

And the news that the world's biggest geolocation game company can't accurately work out its players locations isn't exactly a good look.

We've reached out to Niantic for comment and clarification.