Families were out in full force, many heartbroken by the game outage is on it.” Amping up meant companies like Verizon offering an extra cellular tower, and others bringing in cell trucks to boost signals. I didn’t want to fear-monger the night before the event, so, given the information I was provided, I decided to squash the story. Chicago was hit by hard rains and thunder in the early hours of the next day, but the storm front moved out of the area, producing clear skies, sunshine, and a muggy heat for the convention. My family arrived at the Fest gates an hour before it opened, and I noticed the game performance was in no better shape now than it was the previ-ous night. The one thing that gave me hope: There were already thousands of people standing in line, and I was still able to play the game in the area. That hope wilted quickly, as people started en-tering the park. I couldn’t stay logged in for more than 20 seconds at a time, preventing me from spinning a stop or catching a Pokémon. With no way to play the game we decided to pocket our phones to check out what else the Fest had in store for us. Grant Park offered plenty of space, even for 20,000 people. Most of the area was wide open, consisting of just walking paths and wet, puddle-stricken grassy areas – a space that should have served players well. On the pe rimeter of the “playing area” were three huge tents, a red one for Team Valor, a blue one for Team Mystic, and a yellow one for Team Instinct. These tents offered shade from the sun, areas to lounge and charge phones, as well as concession stands. Tucked in-between two of these tents was a merchandising booth, which oddly didn’t have much to sell other than a t-shirt for each team, the Pokémon Go Plus accessory, and a few other little connect things. No plush toys or col lectibles were for sale. A small row of food trucks, a little wooded area, and an oddly placed “wear a Velcro vest and jump onto a Velcro wall” attraction rounded out the park. Basically, there wasn’t much to do other than play the game. As more trainers poured into Grant Park, the game became even more unplayable, not even booting up for stretches at a time. The opening ceremony kicked off about an hour into the Fest, and tried to carry a fun atmosphere. The host at-tempted to pump up the crowd, and Niantic’s CEO John Hanke looked upbeat as ever, but the crowd was already stressing over the game not working. Some players were getting online long enough to see that a Pokémon called Unown was spawning in the area. It’s the rarest Pokémon in the game, and people wanted to catch it, but couldn’t log in.