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Pokémon Go

Pokémon Go Guide: 15 Tips & Tricks

Follow these simple pointers to become the best Pokémon Go trainer.

  • Text: Juan A. Fonseca
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The Pocket Monsters have taken over the planet it would seem, having jumped from handheld screens out into the real world via Pokémon Go. In the last few days the whole world has been trembling before the invasion of these virtual creatures. And now, as more regions come online, players from around the globe are beginning their careers as Pokémon trainers. If you want to start training to be among the best, then we've got you covered!

We must admit it, the battery in the back of our mobile phone has been heating up ever since Pokémon Go premiered in Australia and New Zealand (and soft launched elsewhere). During our time as a trainer we've learned a lot, and so we thought we'd offer up some help to those just getting started or still waiting to join the fun and games. Let the Pokémon adventure begin!

1. Follow that Pokémon: In the lower right corner of the screen where your character moves is a bar indicating where a nearby Pokémon is. Tapping it gives access to a list of all the pocket monsters in the vicinity, with signs indicating proximity (the less footprints, the closer it is). Choose anyone that appears in the menu, return to the map and you'll see that the bar indicates whether you can approach it. This is the best way to catch a monster you weren't able to find.

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2. Remove the Augmented Reality: Seeing the Pokémon on a pavement on the side of the street, or on the couch at home, is great, but it makes things a little bit more difficult when it's time to capture it. If you turn off the Augmented Reality after finding a Pokémon you won't have to aim with your smartphone camera, so it will be easier to throw the Pokéball at the right place. Your battery will thank you too.

3. Spin those Balls: Pokémon Go tells you that Poké Balls are released by sliding your finger across the screen of the phone. What nobody explains is that this can be done with spin which makes it more likely to capture the Pokémon, as well as granting an experience (XP) bonus. Keep your finger on the Poké Ball, circle around it until sparkles appear, and then send it spinning into a curve ball.

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4. Bullseye: When you are about to throw a Poké Ball you'll see two circles around the Pokémon: one white and stable, and another one coloured and shrinking. Get the ball into the shrinking circle and get more experience and more chances to catch it. The smaller the circle, the bigger the bonus if you succeed.

5. Stick with Red Pokémons: There are different colours for shrinking circles: green, yellow, orange and red. This colour indicates the power and the difficulty of the Pokémon capture. Is it Green? It has low CP (combat power) and will be easy to catch. Is it Red? Be ready to utilise all your skills with the Poké Ball because it's going to be a challenge. Don't swap the latter with Professor Willow for candy because they actually require less stardust to become good fighters and are useful for fighting in gyms.

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6. Catch 'em all: Yes, you have come across a Zubat 300 times by now, but you should still catch it. Every time you catch a Pokémon you get experience, stardust and candy to enhance and evolve to any of its kind. If you swap them with Professor Willow, you'll receive extra candy, and who doesn't like extra candy!?

7. Never skip a PokéStop: Always look out for your nearest PokéStop. Once you've replenished your supplies it only takes about five minutes to regenerate rewards, and often you'll find lots of Pokémon nearby. Move between them to replenish your inventory and capture while regenerating. Use a Lure module near a PokéStop to keep capturing while you wait, and never run out of Poké Balls.

8. How to get more items: Until you hit level 5 you'll only find Poké Balls and Eggs at a PokéStop. Items such as Potions, Revives, berries, lucky eggs and even different types of Poké Balls will appear after you've reached that milestone. Just keep on levelling up your trainer, because there are more surprises waiting for you as you progress.

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9. Great monuments hide surprises: Although offices, fountains, statues, and other points of interest act as PokéStops, not all of them reward you with special objects. Places of global interest, those that tourists tend to visit, hold more rare and useful items. Is there an important cathedral in your city? A famous landmark? Head over there because there just might be a poké-tastic prize waiting for you.

10. Evolve your Pokémon: We know you want to convert your Pidgey in Pidgeotto as soon as possible, but capture several first and wait. Pokémon such as Pidgey, Caterpie or Weedle appear often and only need 12 candies to evolve. When you have a Lucky Egg, use it and start evolving everything in your Pokédex, your trainer will gain a lot of XP. Each evolution gives you 500 XP, doubled thanks to the influence of this egg. Levelling will be rather quick and with no stardust will be wasted.

11. Join the gym and work on your finances: Look for gyms that has recently been conquered, maybe there is only one coach there. You can fight rival Pokémon with up to six of yours and potentially destroy an enemy with ease. Also, if you leave one of your monsters in it, you will win stardust and Pokécoins to spend on the store for every 21 hours they spend there. And, you know, more gyms, equals more money.

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12. More miles, better Pokémon: The eggs you get at the PokéStops can crack open after travelling 2, 5 or 10 km. The greater the distance, the more rare the Pokémon that will hatch out, and it's said that Dratini and Snorlax are often some of the rarest... Every time an egg hatches you get 200XP, so think about incubating several 2K eggs before heading off somewhere far away (and then activate a Lucky Egg when they go to hatch), and remember that the app uses your phone's pedometer to work out how far you've walked, so driving there won't do the trick.

13. Experience: We've explained many things, but now it's time to list how much XP every action gets you in Pokémon Go:

· Visit a PokéStop- 50 XP
· Curve Ball - 10 XP
· Good Throw - 10 XP
· Great Throw - 50 XP
· Excellent Throw - 100 XP
· Pokémon trapped - 100 XP
· New Pokémon - 500 XP
· Evolve a Pokémon - 500 XP
· Hatch an egg - 200 XP
· Fight against a rival Pokémon in a gym - 100 XP
· Beat a rival camp trainer in a gym - 150 XP
· Beat a Pokémon in a gym on your computer - 50 XP

14. Eevee evolution: Neither Digging, Body Slam or Speed ​​make your Eevee evolve to Flareon, Jolteon or Vaporeon. These three alternative forms of Eevee come out randomly. But don't worry, they appear quite frequently. You won't have problems catching these three.

15. Trainer level means rarer Pokémon: You don't have to go to the ends of the Earth to find the most elusive Pokémon, instead your fortunes when searching for lesser-seen varieties is linked to your individual level. The higher your climb up the ranks, the more likely you are to find the rarest Pokémon or those with higher CP.