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Pokémon Center plagued by queues despite pre-booking system

Fans told to arrive an hour early and join line.

Queues today at the Pokémon Center, London.
Image credit: Chris Tapsell/Eurogamer

London's latest Pokémon Center pop-up shop has been plagued by queues on its opening day - mirroring the messy situation faced by fans the last time round.

Advice given to fans this afternoon - even those who previously pre-booked their slot to go shopping - is reportedly to now arrive and start queuing an hour before your expected entrance timing, Eurogamer has been told.

The pop-up shop is open for four more days at London's ExCeL Centre, where Pokémon's World Championships are taking place. Eurogamer's Chris Tapsell is in attendance, and described it to me as "very busy". The queue itself to get in was "gigantic, but not static", he said.

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The pop-up Pokémon Center shop is the only place you can get your hands on the exclusive London Beefeater Pikachu and Roserade plush toys, alongside all manner of other merchandise you can also find online.

Once again, it has proven extremely popular - just as it did back in 2018, when a pop-up shop at the Westfield centre resulted in queues around the block and Pokéfans camping out over night.

As well as watching some of the world's best Pokémon players in action, Pokémon Go fans report the area is spawning regional species from special tasks. Writing on top PoGo reddit Silph Road, fans say species such as the New York-exclusive Bouffalant are available via this method.

But it is the footage of the event's queues which are blowing up on social media, rather than discussion of the Worlds themselves.

Social media is full of photos and footage of the queues. Here's a sample, including a video of the queue as it stood earlier this afternoon: