• A screengrab of the PokéVision map showing Pokémon available around downtown Ottawa

    A screengrab of the PokéVision map shows dozens of Pokémon available around downtown Ottawa.

Love it or hate it, most would admit that the "augmented reality" sensation that is Pokémon Go has completely changed the nature of video gaming in just a few short weeks. Kids (and adults) are getting outside, exploring their neighbourhoods, and discovering local landmarks, improving their geographic literacy as they search the physical world for virtual monsters.

Now, in a move that's sure to further win over geography geeks, a group of developers has created an interactive map that allows players to track where Pokémon are "spawning" in relation to the user's location. 

The PokéVision map uses game developer Niantic's own API to populate a map with the exact location of all the Pokémon currently available to be caught. Users can simply drop a pin on the map or search their current location to view all the nearby Pokémon. Most Pokémon "live" for at least 10 minutes; a handy timer next to each character counts down its remaining lifespan, so the user knows exactly how fast they need to run to catch that Snorlax eight blocks away. 

Unfortunately, the map is powered by the game's own servers, which are frequently overwhelmed by demand, so don't be surprised if PokéVision appears to be down for maintenance. 

Related: Seven Pokémon that would be right at home in the Canadian Arctic