Student. Loves comic books, Dota 2, movies, political science & history.
The illustration of Pokemon GO. (Shutterstock/Wachiwit)
If you are new to Pokémon Go or not yet familiar with how the game works, read on for tips and tricks on how play and to get ahead among your friends.
Always be prepared
Being prepared is probably the most important tip for playing Pokémon Go. Before I started playing, I made sure to change my phone package to a bigger quota that supports 4G because the GPS needs a strong connection to play the game; I have had so many missed PokéStops or Pokémon because of a weak connection. As an alternative, portable Wi-Fi is also fine.
Always bring a power bank as the game will drain your battery a lot. Finally, always know where you are going and dress appropriately. If it is a place with lots of sand and heat, wear something that gives you more room to breathe. Personally, I find that a water bottle, hat and a good pair of running shoes are essential for the Pokémon Go starter kit!
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As you know by now, the main way to move forward in the game is to evolve your Pokémon and gain experience. How do you do that, you ask? It’s simple: catch everything! When you start out in the game, you have lots of Pokéball, and if you're lucky enough to live near a PokéStop, you can refill those Pokéballs every five minutes, so don’t be stingy.
Take advantage of the transfer system that allows you to gain one extra candy of your choice, which helps in evolving your Pokémon, because even evolving your tiny ratata into a raticate can net you 1000 experience points, which is substantial to gain levels and therefore find stronger Pokémon in the wild.
Another tip is to take advantage of Lure Modules that are put above PokéStops to increase encounter rates in that area. The great thing about the modules is that one person can place it and allow as many players as they want to take advantage of it. After getting to a high enough level, you can place a Lure Module and incense to increase your chances of catching Pokémon dramatically. Add a Lucky Egg into the mix, which doubles the experience you gain, and you will soar high above most people.
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Hatch your eggs
When you visit a PokéStop, you might have the luck of an egg dropping into your inventory. These eggs will hatch into new Pokémon, which come with a large amount of that Pokémon’s candies. Once you receive one, immediately incubate it and allow Pokémon Go to run in the background as you go about your daily activities. You will find yourself with a new Pokémon just by walking!
Keep in mind, however, that if you are moving at more than 20 kilometers per hour the game will not recognize it as walking. You must also keep in mind that the game runs on a GPS system and not on a pedometer, so you have to move distances to hatch your egg — you can't just run on a treadmill!
Also, shaking your phone, despite people saying it works, does not. You will only end up with a sore arm and no progress.
Go to the gyms — it’s easier than you think!
Many players are terrified by the gyms in their area because the Combat Power of the Pokémon stationed there is very high. What you should know is that most times these Pokémon are controlled by the computer and not by another player so you can take your time to constantly dodge and attack to slowly whittle down the Pokémon. Not to mention that if it doesn’t work on your first try, any Pokémon that you defeated on your previous attempt will remain defeated until you win or give up, and if you are an active player you will have plenty of revives and potions to heal your Pokémon and try again.
The gyms not only give a sense of satisfaction but also lots of experience and defender prizes!
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The game asks you to go outside and explore. Why not use the game as a social tool and meet new people at the same time? I have made many new friends just by asking if another person was playing the game. Many times a PokéStop with Lure Modules on it will have a crowd of people on their phones trying to catch Pokémon – talking to these people might make the wait more bearable.
Not to mention that you can share in the excitement of finding a new rare Pokémon together.
Kenneth is a 17-year-old high school student who loves comic books, Dota 2, movies, political science and history. He is currently living in Jakarta and working toward his IB diploma. You can reach him at @kenneth2098 on Twitter.
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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.