When Pokémon Go finally made its way to Asia late last month, most attention was turned to Japan and the McDonald’s deal the developers struck. But, a handful of other countries in southern and southeast Asia also got the game, and that includes Taiwan. If you think that a month gone by has seen enthusiasm for the game drop off, be assured that you are mistaken.
Snorlax made an appearance in Beitou District, Taipei over the weekend, and Snorlax is no easy find in Pokémon Go. The result? Thousands of people flocking to the location loaded up with Poké Balls in the hopes of catching the big guy. It was a crowd of the size we think Snorlax would appreciate.
You might have already seen this video of a sea of people crowded around a 7-Eleven. Sucks for the workers of that 7-Eleven, but Taiwan has the most convenience stores per capita, so at least the non-Pokémon Go players had options if they needed to make a quick food run. People unfortunate enough to already be at ground zero when Snorlax appeared were not so lucky. Some reports referenced people who were stuck in their cars while the wild Pokémon Go players that appeared swarmed around them. A friend of mine from Taiwan tells me this is not uncommon.
The incredible part about this is that it took place in Beitou District, apparently around Xinbeitou park. That’s not central Taipei. It’s up in the northern end of the city, so this wasn’t just a bunch of people walking out of their houses and apartments in the hopes of nabbing a convenient rare. They had to be flocking there from all over the city, making around 20- to 30-minute trips. The crowds in the streets look bad, but I can only imagine how full-to-bursting the subway cars headed to that station were during that madness. There’s only one line that goes out there, too! I feel worse for the subway riders than the stuck drivers, to be honest.
Oh, and lest you think Taiwan is a special case, please see this video of a Dragonite appearing in Santa Monica. Or this one of a Snorlax in Central Park in New York City. Or a Vaporeon in Central Park. A Porygon in Sydney (in the now-infamous Rhodes suburb). Gyarados in Toronto. If you happen to be around when an Articuno, Moltres, Zapdos, or, I shudder to think, a Mew or Mewtwo shows up, I recommend the fetal position. I mean, after you catch it, of course.
Via Market Watch