Niantic’s first attempt at a live Pokemon Go gathering in Chicago last week went so badly that attendees are organizing a class-action lawsuit after shoddy cell reception prevented most of the 20,000 attendees from playing the game during the paid event. In the wake of that fiasco, the Pokemon Go developers are postponing long-planned similar events in Copenhagen, Prague, Stockholm, and Amsterdam that were set for the coming weeks.
In a statement, Niantic said the European “Safari Zone” events originally scheduled for August 5 and 12 would be pushed back to some time in the fall “in order to guarantee the best possible gameplay experience for European Trainers.” Other events planned for France, Spain, and Germany will still take place in September, however, and a “Pikachu Outbreak” planned for Yokohama, Japan will still take place in August.
The Safari Zone events were billed as a chance for European players to catch Pokemon that rarely or never show up in the region and to team up for multiplayer battles against Raid Bosses. “As a special surprise, we understand that some Pokemon that are rarely seen in Europe will be appearing soon in certain European cities for a brief time,” Niantic writes by way of apology. “We apologize for any inconvenience and hope you understand that our priority is to ensure a great experience for Pokemon Go Trainers in Europe and around the world.
Niantic’s focus on live special events is part of the first anniversary celebration for Pokemon Go, which also included special global experience bonuses, rare Pokemon appearances, and the introduction of Legendary Pokemon in recent days. While the game is far off its peak of 45 million daily users just after launch, about five million people still play the game every day, according to Niantic.