Pokémon GO is out now, and if you want to get into it, you’d best get into it prepared. Here we’ve assembled some of the best tips and ideas about the game we know so far, and if you’re looking to make a name for yourself as a trainer, you’d do well to read through.

Pokémon GO

Once you’re out there in the field, look for rustling leaves in the Map view of the game. That’s your indication that there’s a Pokémon nearby. In the lower-right corner of the screen, you can see a silhouette of what that Pokémon is. If you’re familiar with the original 151, you should even be able to guess what Pokémon you’re looking at.

Next to that icon, you’ll see footprints. These indicate how far you’ll have to walk before encountering that Pokémon in Pokémon GO. One footprint means that the Pokémon is nearby, while multiple footprints mean that it’s at a bit of a distance.

So what do you do once you encounter a Pokémon? You’ll enter an augmented reality view, where you’ll see the Pokémon in real life. You’ll notice that there’s a ring around the Pokémon you’re looking at: the smaller this ring is, the better your chances of catching that Pokémon. Pay careful attention to this ring as you go up in rank, as you don’t want to waste your balls.

Another thing you should keep in mind is the colour of the ring. This tells you how easy the Pokémon is to catch, in general. Green is easy, Yellow is medium and Red is difficult. The harder a Pokémon is to catch, the better a PokéBall you’ll have to use in order to catch it.

Keep in mind that you can turn the AR camera off. To do this, flip the AR switch in the top-right corner of the screen. This way, your Pokémon will remain centred in the screen, making it much easier to capture them. If you’re having trouble catching Pokémon, this is a good idea.

If you’re tired of finding the same kind of Pokémon over and over again, go out at night. That’s when nocturnal Pokémon will roam about your neighbourhood. You can also try having a walk elsewhere: water Pokémon, for example, will appear near water bodies such as rivers or lakes.

pokemon go

If, for some reason, you can’t hit the streets, you can use the incense in your Items inventory to attract Pokémon towards you. When you do this, a purple circle will appear around your trainer in the Map view, and you’ll have Pokémon getting attracted to your location like you were spraying Axe body spray.

Remember to visit PokéStops! This is where you get your PokéBalls and items. As you might know at this point, PokéStops are located at real-world landmarks. The more well-known the landmark is, the better the PokéStop will be. You can also get “Modules” and install them on PokéStops, which is what creates a ‘raining’ effect on PokéStop. These PokéStops will give you even more stuff than they would have otherwise.

If you take a break at a PokéStop, you can also get a bunch of eggs. If you check the Eggs menu (click on the PokéBall icon, then select the Pokémon bubble and swipe right), you’ll find all the eggs you’ve collected. Tap on one of them, and “Start Incubation”. Then, walk around for a while – make sure the Pokémon GO app is running while you do this, and make sure you’re going to be walking only. The game tracks your speed, so you can’t cheat it by travelling in a vehicle.

If you catch a duplicate Pokémon, send that Pokémon over to Professor Willow. He’ll give you candy, which can be used to evolve that Pokémon, as well as some XP. This is a good way to level up, especially in the early phase of the game. Other good ways to level up are catching as many Pokémon as possible, and buying Lucky Eggs, which double the experience you gain for 30 minutes. Of course, that costs real-world money, however.

When you’ve just started out your game, your objective is to get to Level 5. This is when you’ll be able to join one of the teams in the game and start fighting in gyms. Once you reach this state, you can be sure that the game is really on.

Any other piece of advice you think every Pokémon GO player should know? Let us know in the comments section below. Meanwhile, check out the Pokemon GO errors and issues.

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