Pokémon Go has just became available in most Asian countries. One advantage of this is that we can learn a few tips and tricks so that we can get the most of our experience in becoming Pokémon masters and avoid making mistakes. We compiled this Pokémon Go Beginners Guide so we can all be extra-prepared when the game finally becomes available in our country.
What is Pokémon Go?
Pokémon or pocket monsters are small, fictional creatures popularized by Nintendo. Each Pokémon have their own set of strengths and weaknesses. They are collected by humans or Pokémon trainers who capture them and train them up to use in battle against other trainers.
Pokémon Go is an augmented reality app which allows users to travel between the real world and the virtual world of Pokemon on your phone or tablet.
Pokemon Go uses real locations to encourage players to search in the real world to discover and catch more than a hundred different Pokémon as they explore their surroundings.
How does Pokémon Go work?
Pokemon Go allows you to use the GPS on your smartphone to find Pokemon in the real world. When a Pokémon is nearby, your phone vibrates to alert you.. Then you use your smartphone’s touch screen and throw a Poke Ball to capture the wild Pokemon.
You can also look for PokeStops located mostly in tourist attractions such as parks, historical markers, and monuments, where you can collect more Poke Balls and other items. Big landmarks like train stations, police stations, churches, and shopping malls act as Pokemon Gyms, but users must get to a certain level before they can enter these. Some wild Pokemon only live in certain locations. You may need to go near a lake or ocean to find water-type Pokemon, or to a local park to find grass-type Pokemon.
How much does Pokémon Go cost?
The app is a free to play and download but in-app purchases of PokeCoins are available to exchange for power-ups and extra items. If your kids are using your phone or tablet to play, make sure your App Store or Google Play account is password-protected so they will not make unnecessary purchases and you don’t end up paying a huge credit card debt.
How to make Pokémon Go safe for kids to play?
The age recommendation on the AppStore and Google Play for Pokémon Go players is nine years and above because of “Infrequent/Mild Cartoon or Fantasy Violence”.
Pokémon Go is great to get kids to go outdoors, but the real danger is when kids explore the real world unattended by adults. Here are some of the things that we can do in order to make playing Pokémon Go more enjoyable and safe for kids.
- Make it a family activity. Accompany your kids when they play the game in order to keep them safe. This will avoid getting them into accidents, trespassing into private properties, and taken advantage by strangers.
- Set boundaries for your kids. Establish a safe area where you allow your kids to play make sure they stick to it. Tell the kids to pay attention to their surroundings, whether they are crossing a busy road or going to a place they are not familiar with. If you have a GPS tracker, set a Geo-leash so you will be alerted if kids go beyond your agreed boundary.
- Keep their identity private. Create a secondary, dummy Google account for them which doesn’t link to their school or personal data. Instead of using their real names in Pokémon Go, have them create a really cool nickname.
- Use the buddy system. Pokemon are best caught in pairs or groups. Not only is it more fun for everyone involved, it’s safer too especially for kids. If you can’t be with them, make sure you have someone you trust go with them.
- Watch out for signs of addiction. Just like any game, players who win feel like they need to keep playing. Watch your kids after they play Pokemon Go if they become aggressive, they might be playing too much or they might be having trouble controlling themselves.
Pokémon Go Tips and Tricks
Now that you already have some idea on how to make Pokémon Go safe for kids, here are a few tips and tricks from players from other countries.
Choosing The Best Starter Pokémon and getting Pikachu as your Starter
At the start of the game you’ll be presented with three Pokémon to choose from as your starter – Bulbasaur, Charmander, and Squirtle. But which one should you choose?
If we consider Combat Power (CP), Charmander has the highest potential since when it evolve into Charizard, it has the highest CP of 2,602 among the three. Venusaur is next with CP of 2,580 and Blastoise with CP of 2,542. However, there’s a hidden trick to get Pikachu as your starter by running away from the three original starters four times until Pikachu appears as one of the options. In terms of CP, Pikachu is not as competitive as the other three, but it would be a great starter option since it’s one of the cutest and you will surely not find a lot of Pikachu in the wild.
Where to Find Wild Pokémons
All in all there are 18 different Types of Pokémon with different strengths and weaknesses. It makes sense that these Pokémons would appear in areas where their Type will survive. Water-type Pokémon may be found near bodies of water, grass-types to be found in grassy areas. But where do you find the types like Poison, Fairy, Fighting, Psychic, and Dragon?
Poison-types allegedly can be found in marshes, wetlands, and ponds. Fairy and Dragon types may be found in landmarks. Fighting Types maybe found in stadiums and sports centers while Psychic Pokémons may be found near hospitals and residential areas at night. Be careful when hunting at night since there are reports of people luring Pokémon hunters to a spot so they can rob them.
You can use an Incense to attract Pokémon to your location. But instead of just waiting for Pokémon to come to your location, players discovered that walking around will attract more Pokémons.
There’s also an accessory called a Pokémon Go Plus bluetooth wristband, which alerts players that aren’t on their smartphones when a Pokémon is nearby with a flash of LED lights and vibration.
How to Catch a Pokémon
When a wild Pokemon is nearby, your device will vibrate and the Pokémon will appear on the map. Tap the Pokémon so that it will appear in front of you. When catching a Pokémon, tap and hold the Poké Ball until a target ring appears. 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. There’s a higher chance for you to capture the Pokémon when the ring is green, and smaller. If you turn off the augmented reality, it’s also easier to aim and catch a Pokémon.
PokéStops: Lures and Items
PokéStops are places where you’ll get items such as Poké Balls without spending too much real-life money in the game. When you visit a PokéStop, you’ll have to spin the disc with the image of the specific PokéStop, which will then give you valuable items. After a single spin, the disc would then become unusable. PokéStops refresh every five minutes and you get another spin to get more items.
Here are some of the items you can get at PokéStops
- Poké Ball: Used to catch Pokémon.
- Egg: These contain Pokémon. You will need to put an egg in an incubator and walk a certain distance for it to hatch. Each egg will tell you how far you need to walk in order for it to hatch. The longer the distance, the more powerful the Pokémon
- Potion: Restore 20 Hit Points (HP) to Pokémon injured in gym battles. This will only work if Pokémon have not fainted.
- Super Potion: Restore 50HP to Pokémon injured in gym battles. Just like the Potion, this will only work if Pokémon have not fainted.
- Revive: Revives a fainted Pokémon and restores half of its HP.
- Great Ball: Unlocks at level 12. You will have a higher chance of catching hard-to-get Pokémon when you use this balls.
- Ultra Ball: Unlocks at level 20. Has a higher rate of capture than a Great Ball.
- Master Ball: Unlocks at a higher (currently unknown) level. Will always catch a Pokémon.
- Incense: Attracts Pokémon to your location for 30 minutes. Works best if you are walking. Incense only works for you.
- Lure Module: Can be pinned to a PokéStop to attract Pokémon to that location for 30 minutes. Works for everyone near the PokéStop.
- Incubators: Can be used to incubate and hatch eggs. You can use multiple incubators at once to incubate and hatch multiple eggs
- Lucky Egg: Doubles your XP for 30 minutes. To rack up XP quickly, use a Lucky Egg in an area where you are likely to meet a lot of Pokémon (near a lure module or while using incense), or right before you are about to evolve several Pokémon (evolving nets you 500XP).
How to be a Pokémon Go Gym Leader
A Gym gains Prestige when it wins battles, and loses them when the leaders lose a battle. To claim a Gym, you’ll have to fight and defeat the leaders until you reduce the Gym’s Prestige Points to zero. Gym leaders would certainly use their most powerful Pokémon so it helps if you team up with other players to take over a Gym. If take over the Gym, make sure to leave one of your strongest Pokémon to guard the Gym, otherwise other players can easily take over. Remember though that you won’t be able to use the Pokémon you leave in Gyms, so be sure you still have other strong Pokémons.
Now, I think you are better equipped to become Pokémon Masters. Have a safe and happy hunting!