What’s telling about Pokemon Go’s international success is that the game is only officially available in Australia, New Zealand, US, and recently, UK and Germany. Eager fans have resorted to sideloading the game on Android or creating an iTunes account for the aforementioned countries to play the game on iOS. And while an international rollout for Pokemon Go is reportedly in the works, it may not happen as quickly as everyone thinks.
If fortyseven communications, the agency which represents Pokemon Go developer Niantic is to be believed, don’t expect it in your country any time soon.
“The team is currently heads down working on the game. We do not have any announced plans for countries beyond New Zealand, Australia, US and Germany at the moment,” wrote Chris Kramer, Vice President of fortyseven communications in an email to IGN Asia.
What appears odd with this response is that Kramer fails to mention the UK which got the game yesterday. Nonetheless “we do not have any announced plans” doesn’t mean the game will not be made available at all, it could very well mean what it says, there are simply no plans to talk of at this time.
It doesn’t help matters that Pokemon Go’s servers haven’t gotten much better post-launch.
The impact of players who have sideloaded the game, in addition to those in countries where Pokemon Go is available, is that the game has been unplayable for a vast number of people due to its servers unable to deal with the load. So much so that developer Niantic who made Pokemon Go along with Nintendo and The Pokemon Company is delaying its release in other markets till this is fixed.
“We thought the game would be popular, but it obviously struck a nerve,” Niantic CEO John Hanke said, stating that the launch in other countries has been “paused until we’re comfortable”. Despite the rabid interest the franchise has generated over the years, something Niantic is aware of, it’s safe to say Pokemon Go’s success has caught everyone by surprise.