HKFP Buzz Science & Technology

Ten tales and absurdities from the launch of Pokémon Go in Hong Kong

Pokémon Go, the popular augmented reality game, was released on Tuesday for the city and Hongkongers have already flocked to embrace it in their daily lives. Here is our round-up of Pokemon tales from the first few days of its launch.

1. Zombie nation?

An immediate change was spotted in the streets after the game was released. Office goers were spotted playing the game up and down the escalators and around the office building, as public spaces filled with Pokemon hunters.

Things were no different at the park, where everybody was glued to their phones. No one even appeared to notice they were being filmed.

2. Good deeds

Gamers were jumping to help each other find rare Pokemons, both in real life and on social media:

Journalist Kevin Cureau met several players who asked if he was looking for Pokemon and helped him with hunting.

3. Police warning

However, Apple Daily reported that the police and the Hospital Authority have banned the game within their buildings. The police even made a video warning trainers to “stay alert at all times and be aware of [their] personal safety.”

4.Walking tours

But the news did not dampen the excitement of fans. A walking tour of the city has already been set up for Hong Kong’s Pokemon trainers. The tour is scheduled to go through the Central and Sheung Wan game zones on August 6, and more than 200 have already said that they will attending on the Facebook event page as of Tuesday afternoon.

pokewalk hong kong pokemon go

A Pokewalk in Hong Kong. Photo: Hong Kong’s 1st Pokewalk via Facebook.

5. Hail corporate

Stores and malls are also jumping on the trend to attract customers, including Kowloon’s Harbour City, which asked players to share information on which Pokemon they caught.

6. Time off

Notices are put up telling workers not to play, but one company let their staff off for half a day to play the game.

7. Poke-danger

Construction companies, however, warned their workers not to play on their phones in case of accidents. In a Facebook group called “The Blood and Sweat of the Construction Site,” there was a photograph of a notice posted telling staff that if they played the game, they will become full time Pokemon trainers.

Pokemon go warning

Pokemon Go staff warning. Photo: The Blood and Sweat of the Construction Site via Facebook.

8. Trainer job ad

But no worries, there is now an open position for a Pokemon trainer at Quarry Bay.

Pokemon trainer ad

Pokemon trainer ad. Photo: Jobable screencap.

Unfortunately, it only offers 1000 Pokedollars (or HK$1,000) as salary.

8. Political pokestops

Meanwhile, District Councillors Au Nok-hin, of the Southern District and Kwong Po-yin, of Whampoa West have joined in the trend. Au published a post with helpful information on Pokestops and Pokemons for Ap Lei Chau residents, while Kwong invited everybody to play the game with her on Saturday night at 9pm. Pokestops are where players can receive Pokeballs and other items helpful in their quest to become a great Pokemon trainer.

9. Reporting grinds to a halt

As the app was launched, Stand News joked that reporting had ground to a halt.

10. Occupy Pikachu

Finally, Apple Daily reported that curious names had been spotted for Pokestops, including “Vindicate June 4th [the 1989 Tiananmen Massacre],” as well as the “Lennon Wall,” a landmark during the pro-democracy Occupy protests in 2014.

umbrella first anniversary

The “Lennon Wall” during the Umbrella Movement. File photo: Wikipedia Commons

Ten tales and absurdities from the launch of Pokémon Go in Hong Kong