DOWNTOWN — A California man who flew to Chicago for last weekend's Pokémon Go Festival is suing the festival, saying the botched event didn't have "the special Pokémon and other rewards" that were promised to players.
Jonathon Norton filed a class action lawsuit Thursday in Cook County Circuit Court against the mobile game's developer, Niantic Inc., according to a press release by his lawyer. The festival in Grant Park offered refunds after disappointing attendees, but Norton wants his travel expenses covered too, according to the complaint.
"Had my client known that he would spend the majority of the event waiting in lines and unable to play the Pokémon Go game, he would have stayed in California instead of paying money to fly to Chicago to attend the fest,” Chicago lawyer Tom Zimmerman said in a statement.
The festival promised special Pokéstops with increased Pokémon encounters, special challenges and rewards, as well as an exclusive game medal.
Tickets to the festival quickly sold out last month, with some scalpers asking four figures for resold tickets.
But the festival was fraught with long lines and technical issues that coerced Niantic into offering refunds and issuing an apology.
A mobile game, Pokémon Go challenges users to "catch" all the virtual Pokémon they can.
The app overlays digital Pokémon creatures over users' real-life environment using geolocation, prompting players to take to the streets and scan their surroundings with their phones.
The game exploded in popularity last summer, and was notable for being a rare, if not unprecedented, video game that encouraged users to explore the outdoors instead of sitting inside.
A Niantic spokesman declined to comment.
Read the lawsuit below: