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Pokemon Go has everyone trying to "catch 'em all."
Thanks to nostalgia for the '90s Nintendo game, excitement over its mass introduction to augmented reality and a summertime launch amid a time when players could use a distraction from the current news cycle, it only took one weekend of playing for the Nintendo-owned gaming app to become an overnight sensation — even boosting Nintendo's stock in the wake of its July 6 launch. On Wednesday, it became the biggest mobile game in U.S. history.
But with its popularity comes another price.
The augmented reality (AR) app, which uses GPS-tracking and technology that superimposes a digital facade on the real world, is sending players out into their cities to capture Pokemon characters. The hunt to catch Pikachu and other virtual creatures has already lured gamers into the hands of armed robbers and has turned private residences and sacred sites into "Pokestops," or virtual magnets for gamers. The game has even helped to uncover a dead body.
As THR explained, AR games raise legal concerns over trespassing, players stumbling across crime scenes, personal injuries and risks to minors. (The major upside? Getting couch potatoes to exercise.)
Here are the latest real-world hazards to come out of the Pokemon Go craze, with more sure to pop up as the phenomenon continues to gain traction in the U.S., Australia and New Zealand.
(Hint: Don't play and drive — and remember to look up.)
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