It seems that everyone has been obsessed with catching Pokémon since the release of Niantic Labs’ Pokémon Go in the US. The mobile app has been noted for being one of the first widely adopted augmented reality implementations, shooting to the top of the app store — even causing a few injuries and motor accidents due to the immersive nature of the game. For those who are either just starting out, or for those looking for some useful hints, we’ve compiled a few of our best tips and tricks to help you become the ultimate Pokémon trainer.
1. Wait for smaller circles to appear.
In order to maximize your chances of catching a Pokémon and avoid wasting your Pokéballs, look at the size and color. The color of the circles indicates how strong they are — green is weak, yellow is medium and red is strong. Waiting for the circles to shrink will increase your chance at stronger Pokemon staying within a Pokeball.
2. Gather eggs at Pokéstops for another way to catch Pokémon.
In order for the eggs to hatch, you need to hit a number of steps in your pedometer, so be sure to walk — or even skateboard or rollerblade — as the app won’t count if you’re driving.
3. Figure out which Pokémon are close to you.
Paw prints indicate how close they are: 1 is closest and 3 is the farthest. The lower bar will also pulse when you’re nearby — and be on the lookout for any rustling leaves.
4. Go to Pokéstops with active Lure Modules to attract wild Pokémon.
These can be spotted by flowing, falling pink leaves and last for 30 minutes. It will cost 100 coins to use of your own at your nearest Pokéstop, but you can also mooch off of others who set up an existing module for yourself.
5. Head toward landmark Pokéstops as they give better items. Common ones include post offices, monuments and sculptures, while national landmarks are noted for giving revives or potions more frequently.
6. Catch certain Pokémon by going to their natural habitats.
For instance, grassland and forest Pokémon will be near parks, while sea ones will be close to lakes and other bodies of water. Gastly will also only appear at night.
7. Turn off the AR function when trying to catch more tame Pokémon.
Keep them in your view for as long as you can, otherwise they’ll run away. Turning off this mode also allows you to view and control them more easily.
8. Fully utilize the Battery Saver function in the options menu by turning the phone upside down.
The screen will turn into a Pokémon logo and consume the minimal amount of power while still counting steps and vibrating when a Pokémon is near.
9. Take advantage of special attacks in gyms.
When battling in a gym, charge up your Pokémon and unleash a special attack by long pressing on the screen. However, be warned that most battles usually won’t last long enough to use this type of attack.
10. Start off with Pikachu.
At the beginning of the game, reject others like Charmander, Bulbasaur and Squirtle when initially starting out and eventually Pikachu will appear in the wild.