Pokemon Go: What Is It? Plus, Everything You Need To Know To Play
Pokémon are taking over the world, and millions of smartphone and tablet users are letting it happen! Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last several weeks, you are probably aware that a new mobile game called Pokémon Go has become a global craze. By combining mobile game play with augmented reality and a highly-celebrated 20-year old franchise, the game’s creator, Niantic, has created the ultimate scavenger hunt for adults and children. The game has become popular so quickly that servers all over the United States have been crashing as Niantic has attempted to keep up with unprecedented mobile gameplay demand. If you’ve downloaded Pokémon Go and you’re struggling to move forward with the game, we’re here to help with some simple but effective tips and tricks. These tips will turn you into a Pokemon Go pro in just a few short minutes, so read through all of them and get started.
Let’s start by understanding how the game works
As players walk through their neighborhood, their mobile device’s GPS creates a cartoon-like map of their neighborhood. Think of it like a Google Street View map with a cartoon layer. Players walk, drive, or bike around in search of Pokémon, which appear on their mobile devices. As you approach a Pokémon, your phone’s camera is turned on and the Pokémon is “augmented” or added as a layer to your camera. This gives the impression that the Pokémon is actually standing in front of you in your real-world environment.
Pokémon Go Terms You Need To Know
It’s important that you know the basic terms for the game. A Pokémon is what you are capturing and you use a PokeBall to grab them with a flick of your finger. Users travel to PokéStops in order to collect PokeBalls and other various items. At Pokémon gyms you can battle your Pokémon with other Pokémon to earn control over different gyms and also to win various prizes. The gyms are also geotagged like PokéStops. Users collect eggs which are unhatched Pokémon that incubate by walking around while the game is loaded. If you work hard to improve your Pokémon they will evolve which means they become more powerful and morph into different versions of their characters. You will also find extras in the game such as candies, stardust and potions. And finally there is the Pokémon trainer and that’s you — the player.
A Warning About The Dangers Of Pokémon Go
In terms of the actual game – don’t worry — there are no Pokémon that will jump out of the screen and attack you. However, some criminals have lured players to remote areas so they can rob them. In the game, users can find rare Pokémon in some specific locations. Even police have warned Pokémon Go players to avoid remote areas and to use their best judgement when playing. It’s also important to keep your eyes open and remain aware of your surroundings. Several players have nearly been hit by cars and others have reported walking into objects — such as walls. The problem is so pronounced that Niantic even warns about it at the start of the game. One girl was wandering near a pond in search of water-based Pokémon and she found a dead body — we’re hoping that last discovery was a one-time occurrence.
Is The Game Tricking Me Into Working Out?
The simple answer is YES! Hatching your Pokémon requires you to travel between 2km to 10km or more. That means the more you walk around and play the game, the more Pokemon you hatch and the faster you can increase your power in the game.
Are There Pokémon Near Me?
When you first play the game you will notice a box in the bottom corner of the screen. If you click on that box all Pokémon in your area will be displayed. Based on their “paw rating” you can determine their distances from your location. If you see a zero just look around on your phone because a Pokémon is right near you. If there is one paw it means the Pokemon is very close. Two paws is moderately close and three paws mean you will be walking for a little while to find a Pokemon.
Spots To Find Pokémon
There are a few ways to find Pokémon. The first way is simply to walk or drive around. Keep an eye out for the paw ratings in your area and look at your map to find Pokémon that pop up. You can also head to a PokéStop, they are marked on your map with floating blue boxes. PokéStop tend to be fairly popular locations. We tend to find a lot of the creatures at parks, libraries, churches, and other places with large gatherings. In my small town there are about 50 to 100 people walking around looking for Pokémon,so you can often simply ask another player and receive some good leads on Pokémon locations.
Locations And Times For Certain Pokémon
Night Pokémon can be found when the sun goes down. That’s a simple Pokémon to find based on the time of day. Water types are found near local ponds, lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water. Grass type Pokémon are typically found around wooded areas. You’ll need to really look around for special location-based Pokémon.
How You Really Catch A Pokémon
A lot of users think you just flick your finger and hit the Pokémon. That approach will work to a certain extent. However, if you actually hold down on the screen you will notice that the green circle goes from big to small and back to big. Make the circle as small as possible before throwing your PokeBall and you will catch the more rare Pokemon.
Your Aim Matters
Land your PokeBall INSIDE that colored circle. The PokeBall will “activate” any time you land it inside of the outer white circle. Per the last tip, the smaller the circle, the better your odds are of actually catching a Pokémon. However, the smaller the circle, the harder it is to hit.
Get Quick Extra Points For A Capture
When you find a Pokémon don’t just flip your PokeBall at it. Instead, put your finger on the ball and draw a small circle on your screen a few times. This will cause the ball to start spinning at which point you will receive a curve ball bonus. Simple points for something you were already doing anyways.
Once you reach level 8 you will start to receive Razz Berries at PokéStops. Razz Berries occupy the Pokémon you are catching for a few seconds. This means they are less like to bust out of the PokeBall you throw on your next attempt. You can use the Razz Berries you collect by tapping on the backpack icon and then choosing one of the items.
Try Different Locations
I live in a small town so I make sure to play when I go into the city or visit another town. The more locations you play in, the more likely you are to find rare Pokémon and build up your collection. Visiting popular locations in each city is very smart, as you are more likely to find Pokémon stomping grounds. Play wherever you go and you will be on level 10 in no time.
Use Incense And Lure Modules
Incense attracts Pokémon to your vicinity for 30 minutes. I typically catch 5 to 6 Pokémon just using any available incense I have. Lure Modules are even better they basically work like a PokéStop. They also work for any player at the PokéStop.
The Fastest Way To Evolve Your Pokémon
You evolve your Pokémon by picking up more of the same type. Yes that means you might hunt 20 Pidgeys. Keep the highest CP of that particular Pokémon and transfer the rest to get 1+ candy for that Pokémon over the period of one hour. Hunt and nurture, rinse and repeat, that’s the secret of evolving in Pokémon Go.
Hatch Your Eggs But Not By Driving
Common Pokémon will hatch after you travel 2km. Rare Pokémon will hatch after 5km. Very rare specimens will hatch after 10km. You can’t drive to reach this goal. The game uses a GPS and speedometer so users can’t cheat. You can drive around slowly, or you can just walk around. Walking also allows you to catch new Pokémon which is an added bonus to go along with the exercise you are receiving.
Play With Friends And Track Pokémon On Social
You can’t possibly find all of the Pokémon on your own, so join up with friends and family and find rare Pokémon on social media. We do have a warning — some people have been lured to remote locations and robbed in real life. Make sure you stick to well-lit and non-remote areas if you are invited by strangers.
Use Lucky Eggs At The Right Time
If you are fortunate enough to receive Lucky Eggs at a PokéStop or if you buy them with your real hard-earned money, you should use them at the right time. Lucky Eggs double all of your XP points for 30 minutes. If you know tat you are about to have any Pokémon evolve, use the Lucky Eggs at that time. Instead of 500 XP points for a Pidgey, you will now receive 1000 points. With your Lucky Eggs activated, visit the local Pokémon Gym and find Pokémon in area hotspots.
Buy An Extra Battery For Your Phone. I Use A Mophie for My iPhone
If you will be hunting for Pokémon all day just keep in mind that your GPS will be on and your screen will be lit up most of the time. Carrying an extra battery is a smart move. I use a Mophie charging case for my iPhone and it allows for hours of extra play.
Join The Right Pokémon Go Team
You can join the Yellow, Blue, or Red team at Level 5. The easiest way to choose the team you want to join is to team up with friends. I took a different approach, some very active players told me to join their team. They were literally driving around town looking for Pokémon. I realized that having a strong team of heavy Pokémon Go players would be to my benefit, so I joined the red team. I have seen entire families on a team and I’ve watched strangers talk about strategy in front of churches and at parks. Find a team you get along with and stick with them.
I know this sounds like a funny tip, but while walking around a local park in search of Pokémon I heard a mom complaining about how her son got sunburned by spending hours outside playing the game. It’s not something we usually think about while gaming, but with so many fair-skinned players out there, this is worth mentioning. Stay safe and have fun!