| Games |

Pokemon Go Infests Denver With Japanese Monsters

Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

Tiny Japanese monsters have suddenly invaded Denver. If you download the free Pokémon Go app, you'll see them popping up all over town: high-tech versions of the characters introduced to America on Pokémon cards two decades ago.

While the app leaves something to be desired on a technological level (the augmented-reality game has had server failure since its launch last week), it's worth the glitches to see a Diglet dig its way through the fountains at Union Station. This blurring of reality and animation feels like magic; it's so compelling that you might find yourself holding your phone up high as you head to a public bathrooms, just in case you run into another Pokémon. 
Don't overthink it: The point of Pokémon Go is simply to catch 'em all. A "incense" will lure the Pokémon to you, and your phone will buzz when a Pokémon pops up. When you click on it, the app takes you to a Pokéball that you flick forward (your index finger is most effective for aiming). The Pokéstops are cubes floating in the air, often in front of recognizable schools, statues, murals and storefronts. They may contain extra Pokéballs and other necessities, and if they are glowing pink with little petals surrounding them, that means the Pokéstop has the Lure Module in action for the next thirty minutes. Running into one of those stops will pretty much guarantee a Pokémon frenzy.

Otherwise, you simply stand on a 3-D map of Denver and wait to see what mysterious creature next crosses your path. 

Pokémon Go at your own risk, though. Passersby may think you're insane when they see you holding up your phone, trying to catch monsters that are invisible to them. You must also be careful not to walk into traffic. When you first log in, the app warns: "Remember to be alert at all times. Stay aware of your surroundings." And never Pokémon Go and drive. (Texting is bad enough.) A recent hoax reported that a driver had  caused a pile-up on the highway while he was attempting to catch a rogue Pikachu. 

It's all pointless and hilarious and addictive. There are training stations randomly placed around town where you can practice once you've reached level five. Called "Gyms," they often are located at cool Denver landmarks, such as the one in the center of Union Station. 

For more Pokémon Go action, mark your calendars for a Pokémon Go Meet-up on July 17 as well as a Pokémon Go Bar Crawl set for August 20.

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.