I understand that I'm late to the party when it comes going to a Pokémon GO meetup, but going outside is a challenge for me even with the game spurring me on. However, the perfect storm of opportunity and good people came together so I decided to go to my very first one.
Last Saturday, July 30th, the Little Tokyo Anime Club put together a Pokémon GO event that drew in a mass of trainers into the heart of Los Angeles. Despite recent rage-inducing updates, the event proved that the little app is still still going very strong.
Everyone looked rather prepared with all the necessary Pokémon GO gear you would need to keep catching them all despite the heat and strained phone batteries. Unlike my previous adventures out in the wild world, I didn't have to go it alone. The fine gentlemen from Sneaky Zebra found time to accompany me and that made the whole day that much more epic.
So what made the whole event such a success? The people, of course. So, as a continuing part of my personal photo documentary series involving me trying to do sh*t with my life and take pictures as I go, here's a few photos from the event!
All Teams Represent!
True to form, almost everyone came to the event wearing something emblematic of their team. Even I bought into the hype with my very stylish and absolutely on point Team Valor snapback. Even Team Rocket was there for reasons I can't explain, but then again no one ever expects Team Rocket.
To my absolute relief, everyone got along really well. The bursts of bad apples coming from every team is what put me off from events like this, but everyone was genuinely friendly and got along regardless of what legendary bird they raised their flag to.
At the end of the day, we were all there for one thing, Pokémon. Also themed Starbucks drinks and various team related paraphernalia. There was also karaoke, but let's not talk about that part.
Phones Up, Chargers Out
You know what's a sure fire way of spotting a trainer outside of someone with their phone out randomly stopping in the middle of a busy walkway? Seeing a cord sticking out of their pocket and connecting directly to their phone.
I couldn't help but think about the sudden surge of sales that battery pack manufacturers experienced when this app came out. I imagine it was a little shocking to everyone involved. Those were electricity puns, by the way. Also, I apologize for my poor electricity puns.
Hotter Out Than A Charizard In The Desert
You know what I failed to account for? The heat. I went to the event in jeans and a dark, long sleeved shirt for some reason. Shorts would have been the better idea, but I'm not a smart man.
Despite the heat, however, people came to Weller Court in droves which probably exacerbated the whole temperature situation. On the bright side, Starbucks was extremely busy with trainers coming in to escape the heat and buy something to cool down with.
So, that's two businesses benefiting from the Poke-boom, cafes and the fine folks who make external battery packs. The real world effects of this game, once you stop and think about it, are utterly fascinating. People are figuring out all sorts of ways to cash in.
Catch Some Pokémon, Make New Friends
At the end of the day, the heart of the event lay in bringing people together. The fact that a simple app like Pokémon GO got a bunch of nerds to step out in the sunlight is a feat in and of itself. That it's bringing people together who otherwise never would have met is just another bonus of this mobile endeavor by Nintendo and Niantic.
With everything that's going on in the world, it's just nice to have something to get our minds off of things even if it's just for a few hours. That camaraderie and memories Pokémon GO has helped forge can't be denied even if recent updates have made the game that much more frustrating.