So you just downloaded Pokemon Go to your Android or iOS device and you want to be the very best, like no one ever was? You came to the right place. We at The Grid Daily are here to make your journey to being a Pokemon Master as painless (and hopefully as fun) as possible. Note that all these tips and tricks were gleaned from playing in the beta, so some of this information may be different at launch.
Pokemon Go Beginner’s Guide:
First things first, to learn to play the game, make sure you watch the quick start guide. It wasn’t required in beta, and I didn’t know it existed, so my first day with the game was very confusing.
When picking your team, it may not be in your best interest to select the same team as all your friends playing the game. The only battles in the game currently are at gyms, and if your team already controls all the gyms in your area, you won’t be able to control that gym until someone from another team defeats whoever is currently holding it.
You start out with the ability to catch one of the 3 starters, so make sure when they all pop up you tap the one you want the most, the other two will be gone when you capture it.
This is the screen you will see after tapping a Pokemon on your overhead map. The button in the upper left corner lets you run from a Pokemon if you can’t capture it for some reason, or if you just don’t want to capture it. The backpack icon in the lower right hand corner lets you select different types of pokeballs or items to use in battle. The camera icon above it allows you to take photos of the Pokemon you see in the wild. The “camera” slider in the upper right changes the background to a fake world behind the Pokemon instead of using the actual world around you. This will save battery life if you are having issues with that. The CP number is the relative strength of the Pokemon. You will be able to capture higher CP wild Pokemon the higher level you are.
As for actually capturing wild Pokemon, on paper, it seems very simple and easy. However, it definitely takes practice. The goal is to swipe the pokeball up to throw it at the Pokemon, and hit it with the ball. The Pokemon doesn’t want to be captured, and will do things like jump out of the way and swat away the ball. Once you hit the Pokemon, that is the first step. Just like in the previous Nintendo Pokemon games, it will attempt to escape the ball. The circle that comes up around the Pokemon when you are about to throw generally signifies the difficulty of the capture. Green is easy. The closer it is to a red color, the more difficult it is.
The Pokemon can run away too, so make sure you do what you have to do to capture them!
The blue posts on your map are “Pokestops”. These give you free items to use on your journey, and are the only way to get higher capture-rate great, ultra, and master balls, so make sure you hit every one you can! They reset after five minutes, so take a bit of a walk and come back and grab it again.
The larger towers you run into are Pokemon Go’s version of gyms. The color of the symbol shows you what team currently controls the gym. If it is the same as the team you are on, you will not be able to take over the gym by defeating the leader. You can still get EXP, but that is all. If it is controlled by a different team, and you defeat the Pokemon, your team will now control the gym and you will be able to place your own Pokemon there to defend it.
Battling at the gym is fairly easy. Tap on your enemy to attack it, swipe left and right to dodge attacks, and long press the screen to activate a skill once you fill up your ability bars.
Pokemon Go General Game Play Tips:
Once you have mastered the basics, here are some general game play tips for you.
Use lucky eggs and incense whenever possible while traveling. Lucky eggs double your EXP gained from catching Pokemon, and in the early levels, that means leveling up MUCH faster. Incense increases your chances of having wild Pokemon show up around you and is very handy.
Whenever you catch a duplicate Pokemon, make sure to hit the “transfer” button to send it to the professor. This will give you items that you need for evolving your Pokemon.
While at a pokestop, you can use a lure patch, which will increase spawn chances of Pokemon around the stop for a short time. This bonus can be shared by all players at a stop, so make sure to use these when you have some friends around for maximum effect.
If your Pokemon are hurt during a gym battle, make sure to use potions to bring it back to health. They will not heal over time, and there is currently no such thing as a Pokemon center in this game.
Throughout your Pokemon Go journey, you will find eggs, which hatch into Pokemon as well as giving items necessary for evolution. Make sure you begin incubating these eggs as soon as you find them, as some of them can take up to 10 km of walking to hatch.
Speaking of walking, your distance isn’t registered in steps, the distance is tracked by GPS. So if you walk around a lot at work, but stay in the same relative area, you won’t get any credit towards your egg incubation progress. Also, any speed over 10 MPH isn’t counted towards your total, so car trips don’t help.
You can increase your Pokemon CP by evolving it or by using the “power up” function. The items you get from controlling gyms and transferring Pokemon to the Professor are what you need to power up your Pokemon.
If you plan on playing this game a lot, INVEST IN A POWER BANK! This game will chew up your battery and spit it out, so having some extra juice will be a good idea.
Also, look at your carriers data plan. This game averages around 10mb/hr of data used up, so if you have a very low data plan, you may want to change that.
And with that, you are well on your way to becoming a Pokemon Master. Good luck to you, and may your journey be full of Flareons and Mewtwos.
Let us know your thoughts on Pokemon Go by commenting below! Which team did you pick? Did you catch any cool Pokemon? We want to know!