If you’re reading this, you’re probably just as hopelessly lost in Pokémon GO addiction as I am. I’m sure I’m not alone in saying that I’ve probably never been this obsessed with a free-to-play mobile game before and although it could all end up being one giant fad that we all tire of in a month; right now, Pokémon GO is a downright cultural obsession.
If you’ve spent even a little time with the game over the past week or so, you know that it’s far from perfect. In addition to intense server issues that continue to delay its release in multiple territories around the globe, Pokémon GO also does a poor job of explaining vital information to players. It’s easy enough to discover the basics of catching Pokémon and figuring out how PokéStops and Gyms work, but one area that many players are likely puzzled by is how tracking “nearby” Pokémon works. Fortunately, Paul Tassi over at Forbes has been playing the game religiously and has written some extremely helpful tips about this very issue (I also encourage you to read some of his other work because it’s stellar.)
Here are the most important things you need to know about tracking Pokémon in Pokémon GO.
5. Lures And Incenses Don’t Attract “Nearby” Pokemon
In Pokémon GO, you can get Pokemon to come to you by placing lures and incenses, which is especially handy if you really don’t feel like partaking in the “GO” aspect of the game’s design. You would think that the Pokémon that show up on the Nearby list would be the ones that come closer to you when you use these items, but it turns out that this is not the case. For whatever reason, lures and incense hardly ever attract these specific Pokémon; instead, these items seem to spawn their own Pokémon separate from the ones on the Nearby list.
This means that you can end up getting different Pokémon from the ones you keep seeing pop up near you (which can be a really good thing if you’re stuck in a sea of Pidgeys and Rattatas) but it also means that if you see something rare pop-up on your Nearby list, you’re going to have to go track them yourself because chances are, those lures and incenses aren’t bringing them any closer to you.