By now, most of us have figured out the basics of Pokemon Go, even with the game seemingly going out of its way to not tell players anything about how its systems work. Overall, Pokemon Go isn’t an incredibly deep experience, but it has enough intricacies that make it quite a bit more complex than simply throwing Pokeballs and walking around with your head down. I’ve already gone over some starter tips for new players, so if you’ve just downloaded the app, make sure to check that list out first, but here are some more advanced tips for the more dedicated Pokemon trainers out there.
10. Evolving Unconscious Pokemon Returns Them To Full Health
Here’s a neat little trick that will spare you some revive potions on occasion. Unlike previous Pokemon games, your Pokemon cannot simply be taken to a Pokecenter to be revived after fainting in combat. As you get deeper into the gym battling scene, your Pokemon will reach zero health on the regular, which means you’ll be using a lot of revive potions to bring them back up to speed.
Unfortunately, revives only restore half of your Pokemon’s health, which means you’ll also need to use a potion to bring them back to full strength. However, if your Pokemon has yet to evolve and you have enough candies to do so, you can evolve it from an unconscious state to restore them to full health. This isn’t a situation that will happen very frequently, but it’s a good thing to know all the same.
9. You Can Train At Friendly Gyms
The Gym system in Pokemon Go is probably the game’s most under-explained and complicated feature, but when it comes to attacking rival gyms, the process is relatively straightforward. What some players may not realize is that you can battle gyms that are controlled by your own team and that this benefits not only the Pokemon you battle with, but the Gym’s prestige rating too.
Simply walk to a friendly gym and pick a team of Pokemon to send into combat. For each opponent you face, win or lose, you’ll gain experience and prestige for the gym. If the gym gets enough prestige points, it will level up up and allow you to leave a Pokemon there to defend, which nets you daily bonuses in the store as long as that Pokemon remains stationed there. Unfortunately, these rewards do not include gym badges, but at least there are tangible benefits to seeking out both friendly and rival gyms.
8. Don’t Even Bother With 2KM Eggs
As you’re probably aware of by now, eggs in Pokemon Go are separated into three categories based on the distance it takes to walk and hatch them: 2 kilometers, 5 kilometers, and 10 kilometers. What it boils down to is that common Pokemon can be hatched from 2 km eggs, uncommon from 5 km, and rare Pokemon from 10 km. Given that you only start out with a few egg incubators and additional ones cost money in the shop, the best course of action is to ignore 2 km eggs almost entirely and focus on hatching your other eggs first. You’re much more likely to get something you actually want from the rarer eggs, so it doesn’t make any sense to waste precious incubator space on garbage 2 km eggs unless those are the only ones in your possession. You can check out which Pokemon hatch from what eggs in the chart below. On the other hand, the three starters are rarely found in the wild but do come from 2 km eggs.
7. There’s No Truly Effective Cheat For Egg Hatching
Unfortunately, while it pays to focus more on the long distance eggs, there’s really no way to make them hatch quicker other than simply walking a lot. Pokemon Go only registers distance at very low speeds, so you can’t just hop in a car, drive 10 km and suddenly have a newly-hatched Scyther in your possession. That being said, there are ways to expedite the process a bit.
Riding a bike with the app open is a great way to attain distance quickly, as you’ll still be travelling slow enough for the app to track it. Distance is also accrued while travelling at low speeds (under 30 mph or so) in a car, so it might be worth it to see if someone wants to drive you around in low speed areas such as a residential neighborhood. Of course, it goes without saying that you shouldn’t interact with Pokemon Go while riding a bike or driving a car so, you know, please don’t do that.
6. Turn Off AR
Pokemon Go’s big claim to fame is that it makes it look like Pokemon can be found in the real world, thanks to the app’s clever use of augmented reality technology. If you’re really serious about catching Pokemon though, you may want to consider turning AR off altogether. The actual process of catching Pokemon is a bit easier to do without AR on and it also nets you a boost to battery efficiency in the process! Pokemon Go also seems to crash a bit less with AR off, which can be really helpful if you don’t want the app to crash in the middle of trying to catch a particularly elusive Pokemon.
5. Your Pokemon Has A Special Meter In Combat
Unlike most other Pokemon games, battles in Pokemon Go are not turn-based. Instead, everything is tap-based, but combat actually involves a little more than simply hitting the screen as rapidly as possible. In addition to being able to dodge left and right, your Pokemon also has a special attack that can be unleashed by holding down on the screen and releasing. Before you can use a special attack though, you need to make sure that your Pokemon’s special meter is full (the meter is located under the health bar). For clarity’s sake, your Pokemon’s basic attack is the first one in its move listing and the special attack is the second.
4. Look Out For Lures On Pokestops
Although Pokemon Go is getting a lot of media attention for the sheer stupidity of some of its players (on the brightside, most of the more ridiculous stories are turning out to be hoaxes), it’s also being touted as a game about surprising social interaction and bringing people together. These qualities are perhaps best represented by the game’s lure item, which can be dropped by players at Pokestops to attract Pokemon to that location.
What many may not realize is that these lures show up on the map whenever someone has used them, represented by pink confetti around a Pokestop. It can be tempting to fall into the habit of venturing out on your own to hit a familiar circuit of Pokestops in your area, but if you see a location with an active lure, get over there pronto. You’ll have a higher chance of finding better Pokemon than you would alone and who knows, you may even make a few friends in the process.
3. Earning Coins
Buying items in the shop is essential for advanced play in Pokemon Go, but unfortunately, the game’s currency is locked behind a paywall. This issue is amplified even more by the fact that the game is stingy with actually giving coins away, as you won’t get any if you’re just wandering around catching Pokemon. The key to getting coins for free all lies with defending gyms, so if you want coins without having to actually pay, you’ll need to focus heavily in these areas of the game’s design.
Coins can’t be attained by visiting Pokestops. The only way to earn coins for free is definitely through defending gyms, as you’ll get a ‘Defense Bonus’ for doing so, a bonus that rewards you with 10 gold and 500 stardust daily for each stationed Pokemon, with a cap of 100 coins per every 21 hours. You can collect this reward by tapping the ‘Shield’ icon in the shop menu.
2. Be Conservative With Leveling Up Your Pokemon
Past Pokemon games have taught players to find a favorite group of Pokemon early on and stick with that team over the long haul, as it just takes way too much time and micromanagement to try and level up all your Pokemon equally. Unfortunately, this is much harder to do in Go, as even when you land on a coveted Pokemon with a high CP rating, there’s a good chance that you’ll end up a better one before long.
The act of managing your team in Pokemon Go is a constant balancing act, as you don’t want to dump precious resources into one of your monsters early on, only to catch a much better one not long after. At the same time, you have to level up some of them if you want to stay competitive in the gym scene, so just try to be conservative with using your stardust and candies until you know you have some good Pokemon in your stable that are truly worth investing in.
1. Evolve Your Low Level Duplicates For Big XP
If you want a better chance of finding rare and legendary Pokemon, you need to keep increasing your overall player level. Although it can be quite a grind trying to get this number up, there’s already a pretty reliable way to earn XP quickly. Essentially, you want to capture as many common, low level Pokemon as possible. For our purposes, Pidgey, Weedle, and Caterpie are probably the best bet, as they can be found anywhere and everywhere. The reason for this is that they only require 12 candy to evolve and every time you evolve one, you get 500 XP.
If you have a Lucky Egg in your possession, this exploit becomes even more lucrative, as cracking one of those nets you double XP for a 30 minutes. Once you have a good number of crap Pokemon and candies saved up, pop a lucky egg and start evolving them like mad. You can easily net yourself anywhere between 50,000 and 90,000 XP, which means that it actually pays to keep catching those garbage Pokemon.