By now you’ve probably heard about the disaster that was Pokmon GO Fest. Actually seeing it all go down in a less-than-10-minute supercut, however, is a whole other level of cringe-worthiness.
I don’t want to keep picking on Niantic for the technical difficulties they experienced during their first-ever live event in Chicago last weekend. Especially because they’ve actually done a good job of owning up to their errors. But, damn, if this video doesn’t display what words couldn’t: just how much anger was floating around what supposed to be a joyous event.
Attendees couldn’t contain themselves as they shouted and chanted about not being able to play, demanding the team do something to fix the issues. The stage performers and hosts did what anyone is supposed to do in situations like these smile and allow the show to go on. But, ultimately, considering just how (literally) loud everyone was being in the audience, it wasn’t something that could go on completely ignored. The hosts’ enthusiasm was just too awkward a pairing with the audience’s fervent booing.
To be fair, a ton of the awkwardness in the above supercut can be attributed to what normally happens with these kind of live-produced events: a few awkward silences and cuts, some jokes not landing, passersby making comments and thereby putting hosts on the spot. That happens. And while booing and expressing your outrage may be OK, throwing water bottles at people is not.
Thankfully, they finally brought out Mike Quigley, CMO of Niantic, to acknowledge players’ difficulties. Attendees were offered full ticket refunds, as well as in-game gifts and extensions.
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