"We were just trying out the new Japanese server, and some in the group spotted Yasukuni Shrine by accident," said a main group member, a 26-year-old Shanghai-based player named Yang. (Yang was only willing to be identified with his surname.) He went on to deny that taking over the gym was a patriotic act, saying it was a spur of the moment decision.
"We just wanted to play, we didn't imagine the result" Yang said, referring to the explosion on social meadia, as thousands of Chinese people commented on Weibo. "You know what Yasukuni Shrine means to China," added Yang, a foreign company post-sales representative, during the interview conducted in Mandarin over voice chat.