So, after some delays, Pokemon Go has finally come to Japan. And…
Being completely out of it and knowing next to nothing about Pokemon Go, my suspicions were first aroused when walking into Yoyogi park. There, congregating under a tree was a crowd of mostly young guys with backpacks, staring at their phones, the kind of guys you could tell hadn’t been outside or in a park in a long time.
Slightly confused as to what they were doing, I decided to think nothing of it and head to the main fountain area in the middle of the park. But there was no escape. There they were, a huge army of backpacking, nerdy t-shirt wearing Japanese Pokemon hunters. I counted at least 100 but I wouldn’t be surprised if over the course of the day more than 1000 people turned up.
In all my years living in Japan, I have never seen anything like it before. The only time I have seen crowds like this were at festivals or large outdoor gigs.
Is this a new digital-social phenomenon, or just a tamagochi flash in the pan? It will be interesting to see.
Check out my video to see the madness.