Six years after its first in-game event, Pokémon Go is still a relevant title for millions of people. It generates experiences both virtual and in the physical world and in Mexico, after organizing a face-to-face event at the beginning of the year, the development company is appealing to the Day of the Dead to attract more audiences.
In October 2016, having generated an internet phenomenon, Niantic, the company behind Pokémon Go, announced its first in-game event. Halloween was the holiday chosen to attract more players and now the Mexican tradition will become a channel for people, especially from Latin America.
Within the game, on November 1 and 2, users will be able to catch the skull Pokémon Duskull with a special costume: a crown of cempasúchil flowers, as well as a catrina mask for their avatars and a special Day of the Dead t-shirt.
Pokémon Go on the Day of the Dead
Alan Mandujano, manager of emerging markets development at Niantic, points out that these types of events provide value to players because they allow them to feel represented through their culture.
“We are very pleased that Mexican culture is shown in such a respectful way and it is also a dynamic that extends to the whole world,” says Mandujano. In addition to the Day of the Dead festivity, the title has an event related to the Festival of Lights, of India, or the Chinese New Year.
The spokesperson explained that the name of the costume (Corona de cempasúchil) will remain in Spanish and will not be translated into any other language, with the aim that players from other parts of the world learn about traditions and cultures from other places.
On the other hand, and for the physical world, Pokémon Go also unveiled a giant skull on Paseo de la Reforma, Mexico City, which is part of the Mexicráneos exhibition and whose design is inspired by Duskull.
In that same place, within the application there will be a gym where users can meet. “We have seen a great reception of these types of events because of the feeling they generate and they help us attract users who had stopped playing. They pique their interest, and they realize that the game has changed a lot since the last time they entered.”
Although in 2016 this application broke as a viral phenomenon to the point of breaking monthly download records, over the years the number of users decreased, but it maintained a solid base of loyal players who continue to maintain it as the Augmented Reality game until now more popular.
According to figures from Sensor Tower, in its first year in operation, the application reached a maximum of 232 million active players, while by 2021 the figure dropped to 71 million users.
In this last period, Pokémon Go obtained revenues of 1,210 million dollars and that was the second consecutive year in which it exceeded the barrier of 1,000 million dollars, while until August of this year it had generated 430 million dollars, according to information from Statistical.
The key to this success after the initial rush, Mandujano concludes, is due to its impact in the physical world, where it has prioritized community building. “People have made real friendships through the app and that’s very meaningful to Niantic, because the bonds go beyond the virtual world.”