Apparently, it’s the late ’90s again because the Pokémon franchise has once again become one of the biggest trends in the world. Only now, instead of the six generations of tiles on Nintendo’s handhelds, (with a seventh on the way) it’s on mobile devices via the new Pokémon Go game app. This app has made the creatures bigger than ever, as Pokémon Go surpasses Facebook and Twitter in trends in the United States—or at least, it’s almost there.
Pokémon Go is an augmented reality game developed by Niantic, Inc., at the behest of Nintendo, for iOS and Android devices. Players use their phone and its camera and GPS to find Pokémon, who are displayed as if they are in the real world. What’s more, players are encouraged to visit specific locations in their area—usually famous buildings or landmarks—to acquire items and opponents not available in other locations. The fact that it’s about to surpass Twitter and Facebook in daily users and peak on Google Trends is astonishing considering that, it’s only available in the U.S., Australia and New Zealand right now. Other countries, including Canada, will hopefully have it available soon, as right now Niantic is focused on addressing the strain on the servers from having to many users.
Celebrities Love Pokémon, Too!
While the app has made for some interesting player experiences—one player even found a corpse using the app—and gotten people outside, it is most of all a big deal because of how many people have jumped back on the Pokémon bandwagon, revitalizing a franchise that in truth, was never lacking popularity to begin with. In fact, over the years many big names have been spotted sharing their love of Pokémon, including UFC star Ronda Rousey and actress Drew Barrymore. Rousey admits that she was once the admin for a Pokémon web forum, and Barrymore was at the launch party for the Pokémon fashion line earlier this year to show her support—and her love for Pikachu!