Pokémon GO leads gamers to church

"Pokémon GO" created various poke stops at neighborhood landmarks and sent its hooked gamers to hunt for the virtual Pokémon in the most unsuspecting place of all – the church.

The latest transformation of the fictional character's Pokémon franchise made use of the platforms of Global Positioning System (GPS) and augmented reality (AR) and turned its young adult fans to Pokémaster hopefuls following the mantra "Gotta catch 'em all!"

(REUTERS/MARK KAUZLARICH)A virtual map of Bryant Park is displayed on the screen as a man plays the augmented reality mobile game ''Pokemon Go'' by Nintendo in New York City, U.S. July 11, 2016.

The viral video game "Pokémon GO" gives gamers creative and fun-filled reasons to go out of the four corners of their homes and hunt for virtual Pokémon characters around the neighborhood by following a map guide which sends them to landmarks, such as parks, museums and churches.

Using the trending hashtag #PokemonGo, captivated gamers took to social media to report surprised experiences when they found themselves standing on the grounds of a neighborhood church.

"When your church has three different poke stops and is also a gym you attract a lot of people to your parking lot," tweeted Janessa Smith.

Some Twitter users like Jared Smith took a humorous approach and wrote, "My first two pokestops on Pokemon Go were at a church and thought God was telling me something. Then my 3rd was KFC and I knew he was right."

Another user observed with a snapshot of a church, "This game is trying to make me go to church."

"How do you get six 20-something guys to sit on the steps of your church?" asked Twitter user Chris Martin in an accompanying snapshot. He then answered his own question, "Your church is a gym in #PokemonGo."

Developed by Niantic Labs, "Pokémon GO" is a free app downloadable for both Android and iPhone mobile devices and is an offshoot of the Japanese executive director Satoshi Tajiri's creation, "Pokemon," which has spawned into popular anime, manga, colorful card games and video games.

Released only on July 7 in the U.S., Australia and New Zealand, "Pokémon GO" is already poised to replace Twitter in terms of the most number of Android users, Digital Vision reported.

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