As Pokemon Go hits its first birthday, more than 65 million players a month are still trying to catch ‘em all
Yes, people are still playing Pokemon Go.
If you thought interest in catching ‘em all was flagging, guess again. Tickets to the inaugural Pokemon Go Festival in Chicago sold out in less than half an hour on Monday, a spokesperson confirmed to Moneyish. And some frustrated players complained on Twitter that the $20 tix were snapped up in less than 10 minutes.
Pokemon GO Fest tickets were reportedly available for purchase for approximately 6 minutes before selling out!
— The Silph Road (@TheSilphRoad) June 19, 2017
I literally was on in the first minute and couldn't get one 🙁
— Famous (@FLWvideos) June 19, 2017
— ScarlettGeneCosplay (@ScarlettGene) June 19, 2017
The first-ever Poke fest scheduled for July 22 in Grant Park will celebrate the one-year anniversary of the Niantic gaming app’s record-breaking debut last summer, when it raked in $206.5 million and was downloaded 130 million times in just its first month. The location-based, augmented reality game let players – or trainers – appear to hunt and catch the colorful little critters from the 90s cartoon in the real world, and the game was an overnight sensation.
While the number of active players soon plummeted from that initial peak, a gaming community of dedicated Pokemon trainers has continued catching, hatching and evolving the virtual pocket monsters since then. Pokemon Go has been downloaded 750 million times to date, a Niantic spokesman told Moneyish, and in April 2017 there are more than 65 million people playing Pokemon Go each month. A recent comScore report puts that number at closer to 5 million players logging in a day, but that’s still a lot of people tapping their screens to flick striped Pokeballs at imaginary monsters.
Reps declined to share how many Pokemon Go Festival tix were made available on Monday, but the sprawling 319-acre Grant Park, comparable to Central Park, can hold huge crowds. An estimated 240,000 people showed up there when Barack Obama was first elected president in 2008.
But even players lucky enough to snag tickets didn’t catch much in the way of details about what they’re getting. Attendees have been promised the chance to catch rare Pokemon never seen in Grant Park before, and opportunities to unlock in-game rewards and medals, as well as photo-ops with costumed Pokemon characters. And players around the world will also be able to participate in virtual challenges, with more details to come at a later date. But specifics won’t be made clear until closer to the festival.
For those unable to schlep to Chicago for the fest, there will also be Pokemon Go celebrations held in Unibail-Rodamco shopping centers in Europe from June to September. And the Pokemon Go company is also organizing a “Pikachu Outbreak” event in Yokohama, Japan in August starring the titular yellow Pokemon.
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