RIO DE JANEIRO – Great news for Pokémon trainers at the Rio Olympics: Pokémon GO is a go at the Summer Games.
Athletes and fans were bummed to discover the mega-popular game wasn’t playable in Brazil. “I wish I could run around in the [athletes’] village catching Pokémon,” New Zealand soccer player Anna Green told the Associated Press. Joe Clarke, a kayaker, lamented the fact that there were no Pokestops in Rio:
— Joe Clarke (@joeclarkek1) July 26, 2016
But on Wednesday evening, the game became active, with Rio Olympic Park officially a Pokestop:
Niantic, the maker of the game, vowed it was working on getting it to Brazil in time for the games. And lo, it is here. (But please don’t tell that Chinese gymnast who already had over $5,000 in roaming charges playing the game before it was released in Rio.)
Now, before hordes of athletes leave their village dorms in search of Dodrios and Tentacools, please note that the Olympic Park area isn’t exactly … plentiful when it comes to Pokémon. The only ones we saw were basic, common ones like Pidgey and Rattata, a.k.a. a flying rat and a rat. But again, the game just arrived. Give those eggs time to hatch.
No word if the game will contain Rio Games specific Pokémon, although we think Zikachu would be an obvious choice.
Also no word if the Christ the Redeemer statue will in fact be a Pokestop. Hey, we’ve seen more blasphemous ones.
Happy hunting, trainers! But you may not want to actually, you know, walk around completed distracted with your phone out in some areas of the city. You don’t have enough combat points for what Rio’s going to throw at you.