Niantic Labs' hit AR-based mobile game Pokemon Go has seen its share of ups and downs. The game itself has proven to be a phenomenal success in terms of both popularity and profit, but those good vibrations stand in polar opposition to the events of last year's Pokemon Go Fest, an event so tragically mishandled that the team was eventually confronted with a class-action lawsuit from fans demanding recompense for wasted time and travel funds. This sad chapter of Pokemon Go's history is set to close soon, however, as Niantic has reached a settlement that will see fans reimbursed for expenses related to the Pokemon Go Fest blunder.
According to a report from TechCrunch, Niantic will pay out as much as $1.575 million for Pokemon Go Fest attendees who felt that their time and money was wasted on an event that did not live up to expectations. At the time, Niantic had scrambled to issue special rewards and perks for players who remained on-site despite massive server outages; the team would later issue refunds for attendees who desired them, and went so far as to offer $100 worth of Pokecoins to players as an apology of sorts for their troubles.
lol, people booing at Niantic CEO John Hanke on stage at Pokemon Go Fest because the game is unplayable for many attendees pic.twitter.com/QFZQTiMRxr— Wario64 (@Wario64) July 22, 2017
Still, it wasn't enough. Some fans had traveled across the nation and even across the globe to attend the massively hyped event, spending potentially thousands of dollars on airfare, car rentals, hotel rooms, parking expenses, fuel costs, food, and more. Fortunately for displeased players, the new settlement should entitle Pokemon Go fans to proper compensation, assuming they checked in to Pokemon Go Fest through the game and can provide receipts for all expenses that amount to $107 or more in travel-related costs.
Considering how poorly the first Pokemon Go Fest turned out, and especially considering the high cost of the class-action lawsuit settlement, it's unlikely that Niantic will be arranging any similar festivals in the future. With that said, the developer has since provided similar thrills for Pokemon Go players without any need to be in a specific location; various in-game events have been implemented over the following months that offered players across the globe a chance to catch rare and powerful new creatures, some of which rely on region-based teamwork, as was main supposed to be the main event within Pokemon Go Fest.