It’s not fair to blame it on Pokémon, really. They weren’t the worst of it by far, though the limited edition Pikajew did echo the unfortunate spirit of the times.
The Pure Tribe had their own apps, monsters and backends. Variations. Innovations. Memes and games catch on and evolve. The whole time they were annotating and mapping. Highlighting targets in bold colours: signs, shrines, grandmothers, foxes. Sharing high scores on the day. Trading in parts. People and drones had got in plenty of practice beforehand. “Gotta catch ‘em all!”
Fads come and go.