Watch 'Pokemon Go' Creator Explain April Fool's Prank Behind the Game

Thanks to years of crowd-sourcing street data via its first game, Niantic's John Hanke was ready when the Pokemon Company came calling

Watch 'Pokemon Go' Creator Explain April Fool's Prank Behind the Game
Watch Niantic CEO John Hanke explain prehistory of 'Pokemon Go'. Credit: Watch "Pokémon Go" Creator John Hanke explain how an April fools joke created the most popular mobile game ever

Pokémon Go is inescapable. It has been downloaded more than 75 million times, mentioned on every newscast looking for something other than Trump to talk about and is pretty much a shoo-in for the leading cause of Darwin Award deaths come December 31st.

Not bad for a game that's only been around for a few weeks.

If you're at all curious as to the origins of the thing that's destroying your life right now, we captured creator John Hanke in a rare on-camera interview following the U.S. launch of the game, where – despite Pokémon Go experiencing repeated server meltdowns from the sheer number of concurrent players that day – he happily explained how we got to now, by way of the world's first multiplayer online role playing game, a Google Maps April Fool's gag and his company's first shot at getting us off our butts and onto the streets – Ingress.

Part 2: Pokémon Go: From Ingress to Pokémon

Part 3: Pokémon Go: Creating a Real-World Game