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Niantic Settles Lawsuit With Pokémon Go Fest Attendees

The software development company behind the popular mobile game has agreed to pay over $1.5 million to disgruntled attendees.

Flickr / Jim Trottier

Last summer, tens of thousands of Pokémon fanatics excitedly gathered in Chicago for the inaugural Pokémon Go Fest only to discover an unplanned, underfunded mess. Now, almost a year later, Niantic Labs, the software development company behind the popular mobile game, is reimbursing attendees.  The repayment will come from a $1,575,000 settlement of a class action lawsuit and will go to attendees who shelled out for flights, hotel rooms, car rentals, gas mileage, and other fees paid to attend the festival.

In accordance with the settlement, Niantic will be required to put up a website by May 25 that will help attendees of the Pokemon Go Fest receive their due portion of the money. In order to qualify for receiving a portion of the settlement, users will need to verify that they checked into the festival through the Pokémon Go game. Then, users can list the expenses that they believe should be covered by Niantic. That said, anyone who has expenses that add up to more than $107 will be required to provide receipts.

Niantic already agreed to refund any of the $20 tickets of unsatisfied attendees but many complained that they had to pay additional money to travel in order to reach the festival. Thanks to this settlement, those attendees will now be able to receive at least part of the compensation that they deserve.

The Pokémon Go Fest was organized to celebrate the game at the peak of its popularity, allowing fans from all over the world to gather together and play the mobile game with other die-hard fans. However, it quickly became apparent that Niantic was not prepared for the magnitude of the event, as there were massive lines to get food and most players found they could not connect to the servers in order to play the game.