Pokemon Go underscores Nintendo's rich characters, vision

The augmented reality game, in which players walk around real-life neighbourhoods to hunt and catch virtual cartoon characters on their smartphone screens, has been blamed in the United States for several robberies of distracted mobile phone users and auto crashes.

City Spirit Go was launched four months ago, few weeks after Japanese video game company Nintendo released a provisional version of Pokemon Go only in Japan, which was later launched officially on Wednesday with limited availability in the US, Australia, New Zealand and Germany.

"Don't play Pokemon GO!" said user Pitaorenzhe on Chinese microblogging site Weibo.

South Korea is the world's fourth-biggest gaming market after China, the United States and Japan, according to Amsterdam-based research firm Newzoo.

Other safety concerns have also been raised after at least one attempted armed robbery was reported in the US and a woman discovered a dead body while searching for Pokemon with the app. As the mapping system is powered by Google, it is unclear if the game would even be allowed to launch in the region as Chinese Google services are blocked by the Great Firewall. For example, a chain of malls might pay to bring Pokemon to their locations, which will in turn bring Pokemon Go players from the surrounding areas to their malls as they search for Pokemon to catch. He gave no further details.

Other government ministries did not respond to faxed questions about the game.

In just over a week, the smartphone game "Pokemon Go" has become a giant hit, turning millions of people around the world into monster hunters. "I really liked Pokemon as a kid", said Gan Tian, a 22-year-old student at Tsinghua University.

But for many others in the country, playing is proving a challenge. The coins can be obtained by playing the game but can also be purchased at an in-app store with credit cards or gift cards.

Nintendo has given no indication as to when or whether Pokemon Go will be released in China.

Following the launch of Pokémon GO in the United Kingdom and Germany yesterday and the day before-Italy, Spain, and Portual are joining in on the craze that has swept the world.

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