It seems kind of crazy but it's already been a year since the release of Pokemon Go and Niantic Labs wants to celebrate the first anniversary of the game's release with a number of activities and festivities that gamers will be able to participate in starting July 22nd in Chicago. The event will be referred to as the "Pokemon Go Fest" and will see trainers from around the world converge on Chicago's Grant Park for the celebration.
The press release sent out indicates that the festivities for Pokemon Go will get underway on July 22nd. Specifically, Niantic will be hosting an event in the United States, in Chicago, Illinois. While Pokemon Go may be a global phenomenon, Niantic is limiting some of the bigger events to select locations through North America. It makes sense given that Pokemon Go's prime target audience is in North America. Tickets for the event will go on sale starting June 19th from the official Pokemon Go Live website.
The whole thing is being treated like some sort of huge concert event, with the website displaying a countdown timer leading up to the tickets going on sale. You'll have nine days as of the writing of this article before the tickets are available for purchase for the general public.
Not only that, but there are also suggestions on the hotels that you can visit while in the area, including the Fairmont Chicago hotel and the Swissotel Chicago. It's explained in the press release that the "fun-filled" day will be filled with activities and events where trainers from all over the globe will meet for the very first time. It's almost identical to how Nintendo portrayed Pokemon Go in the original trailer where all those people from around the world came together to catch a MewTwo.
In addition to setting up a play-date for Pokemon Go on July 22nd, there will also be events leading up to the anniversary festival, including the first summer Solstice Event that starts on June 13th and will run up until June 20th. The event will see an increased encounter rate for fire-type and ice-type Pokemon, including popular Pokemon such as Charmander, Cyndaquil, Swinub, Sneasel and Houndour.
But, increased encounter rates aren't the only thing trainers can expect during the Solstice Event. Niantic also revealed that there will be increased XP earned during this time, especially when using Curveballs, getting nice throws, great throws and excellent throws, along with being able to purchase Lucky Eggs by up to 50% off the normal cash shop price.
Despite some of the hiccups during the early goings of the launch of Pokemon Go, the team managed to recover the project after server issues prohibited a lot of gamers from being able to enjoy themselves when it first launched due to the massive load they encountered upon release. Eventually Niantic upgraded to Google's cloud services to help compensate for all the people wanting to get in and play the game.
One of the last reports on user stats showed that more than 60 million people actively play Pokemon Go each month, and Niantic has managed more than 750 million downloads. We'll see if that number rises even further during the real-world special event set to take place on July 22nd.