No, Snorlax isn't spawning in Pokémon Go right now — except for Japan!
If you're not too distracted by Pokémon Go Gen 2 and catching 'em all, again, you may have noticed Snorlax, the sleepy giant of Gen 1, has all but stopped spawning in most parts of the world. No, it's not just you. It's Pokémon Go and it's due to a special event happening in Japan's Kumamoto region from March 4 to March 13, 2017.
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Where have all the Snorlax gone in Pokémon Go?
Similar to last fall's Lapras event, Japan's Kumamoto region is currently hosting an exclusive Snorlax event to help bolster tourism and speed economic recovery following the earthquake of 2016.
Here's how Pokémon Go's Japanese Twitter account described it:
熊本県全域、及び大分県由布市、別府市で、カビゴンが現れやすくなるとの情報が届きました。ポケモンのふえに起こされたのでしょうか？この現象は3/4から3/13まで続くようです！現地は復興作業が続いている地域、場所がございます。危険な場所には立ち入らず、熊本、大分を楽しんでくださいね！ pic.twitter.com/24SbqeLuOI熊本県全域、及び大分県由布市、別府市で、カビゴンが現れやすくなるとの情報が届きました。ポケモンのふえに起こされたのでしょうか？この現象は3/4から3/13まで続くようです！現地は復興作業が続いている地域、場所がございます。危険な場所には立ち入らず、熊本、大分を楽しんでくださいね！ pic.twitter.com/24SbqeLuOI— Pokémon GO Japan (@PokemonGOAppJP) March 2, 2017March 2, 2017
And an approximate translation:
Didn't Pokémon Go do this with Lapras late last year as well?
Indeed. From November 11 to November 23, 2016, Pokémon Go made Lapras easier to find in the Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima Prefectures of Japan. It was an attempt to help bring tourism back to the region following the earthquake earlier in the year.
皆さんにお知らせです。岩手県、宮城県、福島県の沿岸部でラプラスが出現しやすくなっていることが確認されました。この現象は11/23まで続くようです。東北の今を感じる旅に是非おでかけください！きっとPokémon GO以外でも素敵な発見がたくさんあると思います。 pic.twitter.com/1VPBngRU6v皆さんにお知らせです。岩手県、宮城県、福島県の沿岸部でラプラスが出現しやすくなっていることが確認されました。この現象は11/23まで続くようです。東北の今を感じる旅に是非おでかけください！きっとPokémon GO以外でも素敵な発見がたくさんあると思います。 pic.twitter.com/1VPBngRU6v— Pokémon GO Japan (@PokemonGOAppJP) November 11, 2016November 11, 2016
If you're in Japan or have wanted to go to Japan, and Snorlax is still on your must-get list, now's the time to go!
So what can you do to complete your Pokédex and power up your Snorlax army in the meantime?
Go to the Kumamoto region of Japan, help restore their tourism industry, and bask in Snorlax glory all week! If that's not in the cards though, then you'll simply have to wait out the week.
(It's also possible the spawn rate hasn't dropped to absolute zero, just incredibly low. If that's the case, you might still find Snorlax in the wild, it'll just be incredibly, stupefyingly rare for the next week.)
If you have any 10 KM eggs that you picked up prior to March 4, they could still contain a Snorlax, so walk on! Otherwise, some March 13, you should be able to go right back to catching and hatching as usual.
And for now? Concentrate on those Dratini and Dragonite, Larvitar and Tyranitar, Chansey and Blissey, and all the other really rare Pokémon still out there!
Any Snorlax questions?
If you have any questions about Snorlax, the Japan events, or Pokémon Go in general, drop them in the comments below!
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Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.
By Daryl Baxter