Niantic postpones its Pokémon Go events in Europe after its Chicago festival ended in disaster

Niantic postpones its Pokémon Go events in Europe after its Chicago festival ended in disaster
From TechCrunch - July 31, 2017

Following the disastrous outcome of the first-ever Pokmon Go Fest in Chicago this month, Niantic has decided to delay its upcoming European events,previously scheduled for August. These events were meant to further stoke interest in the still popular mobile game, which encourages people to venture out in the real world to catch Pokmon, and compete in battles and raids. But the Chicago event was an epic failureroughly 20,000 attendees faced long lines to both enter and exit the festival and, while there, they found they couldnt even play.

The large numbers of attendees had crashed the games servers and the cell towers became overloaded. Players couldnt get online, leading Niantic to announce refunds at 2 PM on the day of the event.

In addition to the refunds, Niantic said it wouldcredit attendees accounts with $100 of its in-game currency called Pokcoins.

But for some attendees, Niantics refund and its dole-out of virtual currency didnt go far enough. The company is now facing a class-action lawsuit which claims the festival did not live up to the hype. Some game players had booked travel to Chicago, they saidsomething they wouldnt have done had they known they wouldnt be able to play the game as advertised.

Niantic had said attendees could catch new Pokmon that would appear at the Chicago event for the first time. If the players there defeated these Legendary Pokmon, the Pokmon would start appearing in Raid battles worldwide, the company had alsopromised.

These real-world Pokmon Go events were not expected to be this large. Neither the company nor the cell towers were able to handle this many people all at once.

Now, Niantic needs to regroup and figure out its strategy for the events ahead.

This weekend, the companyannounced its plans to push back its planned real-world events in Europe as a result of the Chicago disaster.


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