How to Play Pokemon Go:Beginner’s Guide
Pokémon Go has taken the world by storm in just one week. It is the world’s hottest mobile games right now.
WHAT IS POKEMON GO?
DOWNLOAD POKÉMON GO
Before you start catching Pokémon, you need to make sure you can actually download the game. If you’re in the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, or Germany, you should also be able to download direct from the app stores. But if you’re unfortunate enough to live elsewhere our full ‘Download Pokémon Go for regions which are not covered yet‘ guide will tell you all you need to know.
SIGN UP FOR POKÉMON GO
After successfully installing Pokémon Go on your device, you will need to sign up for the game, here enter your date of birth and you will be presented with a couple ways of signing up; through Google or the game’s own Pokémon Trainer Club system.
After signing up and logging into the app for the first time, you will need to create your avatar. Choose your method and get started creating your character. You can customize your digital avatar and choose the avatar’s style like hair, skin, and eye color, and can choose from a limited number of outfits. Once your avatar is finished, go on to choose your starter Pokémon. You can pick between the classics: Bulbasaur, Charmander and Squirtle.
After your avatar is created, it is displayed at the player’s current location along with a map of the player’s immediate surroundings. Features on the map may include a number of PokéStops and Pokémon gyms. These are typically located at popular meeting places, such as memorials, places of worship, parks, and tourist attractions.
(Pokémon GO lets you chose your Pokémon master’s look before you start your journey)
USING THE POKÉMON GO MAP
Essentially, the main area of the game is a brightly-animated version of Google Maps. You’ll see roads, rustling grass, marking Pokémon in the area, and local landmarks disguised as PokéStops and Pokémon Gyms. As you move in the real world, your avatar does too. Pokémon will pop up on the map with a small vibration as you walk along, and if you tap on them, you can try to capture them.
The map is your main view while playing Pokémon GO, and it is based on the actual real-world map of the streets and pathways where you’re standing. The map contains lots of information that’s useful when you’re exploring. You’ll always be in the center of the map. Use it to find PokéStops, Gyms, the location of nearby Pokémon, and more. PokéStops usually exist at easily identifiable landmarks, such as public art installations or other points of interest.
The Map View displays the locations of Pokémon, PokéStops, and Gyms in the real world. Here’s what you need to know:
- Compass: Toggles the viewing direction in Map View. You can switch between a north-viewing direction and auto-rotation, which follows your viewing direction. You can also rotate using touch gestures.
- Gyms: It indicates the locations where teams train and battle Pokémon.
- PokéStops: Locations where Trainers can acquire items such as Poké Balls, Potions, and/or Eggs.
- Trainer: Your avatar. That’s you.
- Profile Icon: It shows your progress and achievements.
- Main Menu: To access settings, items, Pokédex, the shop, and Pokémon menu options.
- Nearby Pokémon: It displays wild Pokémon located nearby.
HOW TO CATCH POKÉMON
Catching Pokémon is the main thing you’ll be doing in this game. After the initial set up is done, the app will use GPS data to pinpoint your location in what looks like a customized version of Google Maps. A ring will appear around your character, showcasing your range. Your device will vibrate to alert you when a wild Pokémon is nearby. If you don’t see any Pokémon nearby, take a walk! Pokémon love places like parks, so try visiting a local recreational area. You can attract more Pokémon to your location by using an item known as Incense.
Some wild Pokémon appear only in certain environments and climates. For example, some Pokémon may appear only near lakes, oceans, or other bodies of water.
When you’re in position to catch a Pokémon, the screen will switch to a first-person view with the Pokémon in front of you. Use your touch screen to throw PokéBalls to try to catch the Pokémon. Be careful because Pokémon will sometimes move around, making it tricky to catch them! Several factors affect your chances of catching a Pokémon. The Pokémon’s CP level, the type of PokéBall you used, your throwing technique, and other factors come into play when determining whether the Pokémon can be successfully caught. And some Pokémon will run away!
When in this catching screen, you can activate AR to be able to move around and see where the Pokémon is in real life. Otherwise, it can be deactivated to keep the Pokémon centered in the screen.
To catch a Pokémon:
- When a wild Pokémon is nearby, your device will vibrate, and the Pokémon will appear on the map. Touch the Pokémon to begin your attempt to catch it.
- The Pokémon will appear in front of you. You may need to orient your device or switch out of camera mode.
- Touch and hold your PokéBall.
- A target ring will appear around the Pokémon. The ring’s color indicates the difficulty level of capturing the Pokémon. A green ring indicates the capture is low difficulty, orange indicates intermediate difficulty, and red indicates extreme difficulty.
- You have the greatest chance of capturing the Pokémon while the colored ring is at its smallest diameter. At the opportune moment, fling the PokéBall toward the Pokémon.
- If you are successful, the PokéBall will capture the Pokémon. Watch out, though – Pokémon can escape from the PokéBall.
Catching Pokemon is what the game is all about. Your Pokémon will be used to fight battles and conquer enemies in your name. Every time you catch a Pokémon you earn stardust, candy, and XP points.
When you encounter a wild Pokémon, you may have multiple attempts to capture it before it runs away. You can use items from your Bag to increase your chance of successfully catching a wild Pokémon. Razz Berries make the wild Pokémon easier to capture.
High performance Poké Balls like Great Balls, Ultra Balls, and Master Balls increase your ability to catch wild Pokémon. Touch the Bag icon during the encounter to access these items. You can also snap photos of your Pokémon encounters using the camera.
VISIT POKÉSTOPS AND GATHER BALLS, POTIONS & EGGS
PokéStops are the blue towers usually found in key places within your city. Think of PokeStops as places to get free items, as that is really their main purpose. PokéStops are important landmarks, marked on the map at significant (usually) local locations. You can obtain items, such as Poké Balls, potions, revives, and eggs (which can be hatched by walking around).
You can also activate lure modules at Pokéstops, which are marked by a swarm of hearts on the map, increasing the likelihood of Pokémon appearing there. Some items, however, can only be purchased with Pokécoins, which can be earned by fighting in gym battles or bought as in-app purchases
Now after you’ve caught a Pokémon, you’ll need some items. Look for PokéStops located at interesting places, such as public art installations, historical markers, and monuments. You can collect more PokéBalls and other items at PokéStops, which show up on your map as blue squares. When you’re close enough to a PokéStop to search it, the box on top of the blue square will open. That’s the time to gather items from the PokéStop!
On your Map View, PokéStops are represented by blue squares. When you’re close enough to a PokéStop to search it, the box on top of the blue square will open. Swipe the disc to spin it, and you’ll be rewarded with a variety of items. Items can include Poké Eggs, Poké Balls, healing potions, and more. As you increase in levels, you unlock new items to collect. After you visit a PokéStop, the blue pole will change to purple, and you’ll be unable to visit for at least 10 minutes.
AVAILABLE ITEMS AND YOUR BAG
Access your Bag in the Map view by touching the PokéBall icon. The kinds of items you’ll keep in your Bag include PokéBalls, medicines, Berries, and more. (Pokémon Eggs will not appear in your Bag.) You can also access your Bag during Pokémon encounters.
With the exception of Eggs, all items you’ve collected from leveling up and gathered from PokéStops will appear in your Bag.
The following are the Available items:
- Poké Balls, for catching Pokémon. As you earn more XP, you’ll find more powerful Poké Balls.
- Potions, for healing Pokémon that have taken damage.
- As you earn XP and become a higher level Trainer, you may also find Berries, which can be used on Pokémon during encounters to make them easier to catch.
Your Bag can hold an inventory of 500 items. You will not be able to gather new items from PokéStops when your Bag is over the 500 item limit. You can lower your item inventory by discarding or using items.
When gathering items at PokéStops, you may find Eggs that will eventually hatch into Pokémon! To hatch an Egg, you’ll need to walk around a certain distance. In general, the farther you have to walk, the rarer the Pokémon you’ll find inside when it finally hatches. Most eggs require you to walk between 2-5K before they hatch. Steps are only counted when the screen is on. An incubator can only hold one Egg at a time. To incubate and hatch multiple Eggs at the same time, you can purchase additional incubators in the shop. To hatch an Egg follow the steps below:
- In the Map View, touch the Main Menu
- Touch Pokémon
- At the top of the screen, tap the word Eggs.
- Select one of your Eggs
- Tap Start Incubation
- Select an incubator to use on your Egg
- Finally Walk to hatch the Egg. A notification will appear when the Egg has hatched.
POWER UP AND EVOLVING POKÉMON
Try to catch as many Pokémon as you can to earn Experience Points (XP) and increase your Trainer level. Each capture awards XP based on the kind of Pokémon you’ve caught, whether you’ve caught the Pokémon before, and the accuracy of your throw. Once you have gathered enough of a single type of Pokémon, you’ll be able to use the Candies to evolve it.
Every Pokémon has a Combat Power (CP) number. Some will be very low, others will be high. It all depends on your XP level and the abilities of the Pokémon. You’ll need a high CP number if you want to have a chance to win gym battles. At higher levels, you’ll have access to stronger items, such as Great Balls, to give you a better shot at catching Pokémon. Keep exploring and encountering Pokémon to raise your level!
As you acquire Stardust and Candy, you’ll gain the ability to Power Up the Pokémon you’ve caught, increasing their CP and HP. You acquire Stardust and Candy by catching Pokémon, hatching Eggs, or transferring a Pokémon to the Professor. Candy is Pokémon-specific, and can be used to level up any Pokémon in that evolutionary chain.
For example, you obtain Bulbasaur Candy by catching, hatching, or transferring any Pokémon in the Bulbasaur family (Bulbasaur, Ivysaur, and Venusaur). You need Bulbasaur Candy to Power Up a Bulbasaur, Ivysaur, or Venusaur.
Stardust can be used to Power Up any Pokémon in your collection. For example, you can Power Up a Rattata using Stardust acquired by catching a Meowth. You obtain Stardust whenever you catch, hatch, or transfer Pokémon of any species. To Power Up a Pokémon follow the steps below;
- In the Map View, tap the Main Menu.
- Tap Pokémon
- Select a Pokémon to Power Up from the list of Pokémon
- On the Pokémon summary, tap the Power Up
Please note that you won’t be able to Power Up your Pokémon until you have enough Candy and Stardust.
Another important tactic for getting powerful Pokémon is Evolving them. Evolving a Pokémon changes it to a more powerful form. Most Pokémon can be evolved two times. If you catch Pokémon of the same species often enough, one of them can evolve. This is useful for catching Pokémon you’re having a tough time finding in the wild. For example, Squirtle evolves to Wartortle, Wartortle then evolves to Blastoise. To evolve a Pokémon, follow the above steps, instead of Power Up tap Evolve button.
A wide variety of challenges are available that highlight many different accomplishments, such as the number of Pokémon you’ve caught and the distance you’ve traveled. By completing these challenges, you’ll unlock achievement medals that will appear in your player profile. Try your best to unlock as many medals as you can. Touch your avatar in the lower left corner of the Map View to see your level, and scroll down to see your achievements.
JOIN GYMS TEAM AND GYM BATTLES
After reaching level 5, you’ll be asked to join a team. Pick the same team as your friends to work together, or join different teams and play as rivals. Gyms are special points of interest found throughout the world. You can capture a Gym for your Team and battle the Pokémon of rival Teams there. Gyms can be challenged by multiple Trainers at the same time. A Gym’s level is determined by its prestige. As a Gym earns prestige, it increases in level. The higher a Gym’s level, the more Pokémon can be assigned to it, which makes it harder for rival Teams to capture. Gyms appear as towering structures in the Map View.
Once you join a team, he Professor will describe the three teams and ask you to pick one – red (Valor), blue (Mystic) or yellow (Instinct). Each player can place only one Pokémon at a particular Gym, so you’re encouraged to work with others on the team to build up a strong defense. Remember that team members may not be your real-life friends, so be careful with what you tell them about yourself.
There are four types of Gyms-
Neutral Gym– A neutral gym is not controlled by any team. It will be gray on the map. Anyone can claim it.
Friendly Gym– A friendly gym is any gym controlled by your team. At these gyms, you can practice battle amongst teammates to raise the gym’s level.
Enemy Gym– As you may have guessed, an enemy gym is controlled by other teams. In these battles, you can use up to six Pokémon to go up against the other team. Every time you defeat the enemies it knocks the gym down one level.
Defending a Gym– If you’re lucky enough to defeat an enemy and claim a gym as your own, there are a few things to know. The Pokémon you choose to defend the gym will be unavailable to you until it’s defeated. You’ll know when your Pokémon has been defeated when it’s back in your list of Pokémon and has only 1 HP.
You can use your own Pokémon to challenge Gyms claimed by other teams. With the Pokémon you’ve caught, engage in battle against the defending Pokémon at the Gym to claim control. If the Gym’s Prestige is reduced to zero, the defending team loses control of the Gym, and you or another player can then take control of it by assigning a Pokémon to protect it. When you occupy a gym, you not only help your team – but you earn PokéCoins, too. Every 20 hours, you can visit the Shop and redeem your coins, based on how many gyms you currently occupy.
To battle Pokémon at rival Gyms follow the steps-by-steps instructions from below:
- Walk up to a Gym controlled by an opposing team.
- Tap the Gym to enter it.
- Select up to six Pokémon to use in battle. There are two ways of making your selections.
Tap the icon of an individual Pokémon to swap it out for a different Pokémon.
Tap the Shuffle to get a completely different set of six Pokémon to use in battle.
- To start the battle, tap the Glove.
During the battle, you can perform one of three different actions:
- For fast attack, tap your Pokémon to perform a fast attack
- Fast attacks charge your special attack meter.
For Dodge attacks Swipe left or right to dodge attacks.
Once your Special Attack meter is charged, long-press your Pokémon to perform a special attack. Special Attacks cause large amounts of damage.
REVIVE FAINTED POKÉMON
To revive a Pokémon that has fainted in battle, you can revive or heal Pokémon using Potion. To use a Potion to revive Pokémon follow the steps below;
- From the Map View, tap the Main Menu.
- Tap Items
- Select a Potion from your Bag of items, and then select the Pokémon to be healed. You can use Revives and Max Revives to revive Pokémon that have fainted.