Gaming Tips and Tricks 1: Pokemon Go as of 7/29/16

Hello, dear reader, I hope you’re doing well. In my sixth Heart and Business blog post I talked a bit about Pokémon Go. This latest craze in mobile gaming hearkens back to my childhood. It also reaches quite a few new people who aren’t as familiar with the franchise. Most importantly, the designers don’t do a very good job of explaining the mechanics within the game. I want to clarify some of the mechanics.There is an update coming soon so some of this information may become useless in the near future. Note that I’m not being paid by anyone to promote their YouTube channel, apps or websites. I have not verified the truths of their statements other than through experience playing the game. They seem very accurate. Without further ado, here is a list of some of the most useful information I found.

  1. The CP of wild Pokémon will increase with your trainer’s rank. CP represents your Pokémon’s Combat Power. Increasing your rank is like having a water bottle that you slowly upgrade to be able to hold more water. Sometimes you can find a Pokémon that completely fills the bottle at a very high CP, but most of the time you will see weaker Pokémon.
  2. Your starting Pokémon is pretty much useless. You can use it to make candies for future starter Pokémon you find in 2 km eggs or in the wild. Also, when selecting your first Pokémon, you can get Pikachu by walking away from the starter Pokémon you see on the screen. Walk away until they reset about 4 times, and Pikachu should appear as an option.
  3. Turning off AR mode means you can walk around after tapping on a Pokémon and it will remain at the same place on your screen. Once you have entered the capture screen, with your Pokéball at the bottom and the wild Pokémon jumping in the center, turning off AR mode means you can walk wherever you want and the Pokémon will always be in the center of your screen. It can be close to you, or farther away, but it will always be within a central line.
  4. Do not power up any of your Pokémon when you start. A Pokémon has a maximum CP available depending on the CP it had when you caught it. So if you have a 14 CP Pidgey it will never be as powerful at its maximum as a 200 CP Pidgey you catch later on. Stardust is very limited as a resource and will be hard to build up in the future.
  5. If you’re going to buy anything buy lucky eggs and egg incubators. If I’d been willing to spend $20 at the outset, I’d buy lucky eggs. Why? Every new Pokémon you catch gives you an additional 600 experience, or XP, and the beginning of the game is the best time for catching and finding new Pokémon. Lucky eggs double the XP you receive. Thus every new Pokémon you catch will give you an extra 600 XP. When eggs hatch they give you 100 XP/km walked to hatch the egg (if I remember correctly). If you can time a lucky egg well, 10 km eggs can give you approximately 2000 experience.
  6. You can level up quickly by saving up weaker Pokémon and lucky eggs. Every time you evolve a Pokémon you receive 500 experience, or XP. With a lucky egg 500 XP is doubled to 1000 XP. If you have 15 Pidgeys and evolve them all you will have 15,000 XP with a lucky egg. Evolving does not cost Stardust, only candies. Also, note that evolving Pidgey to Pidgeotto costs 12 Pidgey candies. Evolving Pidgeotto to Pidgeot costs 50 and will give you the same amount of experience unless it is a new Pokémon. The math makes it so that just evolving Pidgey gives more XP/candy. Honestly, I’ve had enough trouble with the glitches that I think evolution is the best way to farm XP. The game seems to be more stable when evolving Pokémon than when looking for new Pokémon. Also, catching a Pokémon you have already caught before only gives you 100 experience.
  7. You can throw curve balls by making a circle with your finger, and then releasing the Pokéball from the side. It seems to obey physics. It might only add 10 XP to your capture.
  8. Stronger Pokémon (usually Pokémon surrounded by an orange or red circle) can cause your throws to curve even if you throw perfectly straight. I have found that it’s harder to aim curve balls when the Pokémon are further away. You’ll most likely want to turn on augmented reality (AR mode) to ensure you can move the phone to the side so your Pokéball can curve better.
  9. The circle which appears when you throw a Pokéball can allow you to get extra XP if you get the Pokéball to hit inside the circle. When the colored circle first appears within the white targeting circle, getting a Pokéball to hit within that boundary will reward you with an extra 10 XP. A “Good” will appear. I believe when the circle is approximately halfway to its smallest size you can receive a “Great” which rewards 50 XP. When the circle is at its smallest, in the center of the Pokémon, you can get an extra 100 XP. I don’t have any statistics to back me up, yet I feel that throwing the Pokéball when the circle is smaller rewards you with a higher chance of capturing the Pokémon.
  10. Any level of Pokémon may attempt to jump, knock away the ball, or run away.
  11. The app measures your distance traveled every 1 minute down a straight line. This means taking any curved sidewalks, or routes, will decrease the distance you actually travel according to the game. If you want to focus on simply hatching your eggs then travel in a straight line as much as possible.
  12. There is a 3 footprint glitch for Nearby Pokémon. Currently, it’s almost impossible to track down a Pokémon to its exact location. People are making maps of Pokémon nests which should help. When they fix the glitch the footprint should decrease as you approach the Pokémon. This feature did work at launch.
  13. Incense attracts one Pokémon every 5 minutes if you’re standing still, and if you’re going over 9 mph (I think) it will attract one Pokémon every minute. This tip comes courtesy to you from the YouTube channel “Trainer Tips”. The guy behind it does a pretty good job of including gameplay and explanation in his videos.
  14. An egg Pokémon’s CP is based off of your rank when you received the egg. An egg you hatch at level I will be weaker than an egg you hatch at level 20.
  15. Egg Pokémon will have a higher statistical chance of hatching with good IVs, or stats. Individual values, or IVs, represent how good a Pokémon’s stats actually are. These are hidden behind the game and I’m sure you can find more information at the YouTube channels I’ll list below.
  16. You may be able to control what Eevee evolves into. You can name your Eevees Rainer, Pyro, and Sparky to make them evolve into Vaporeon, Flareon, and Jolteon. Apparently, after nicknaming the Eevee you should restart the app before evolving. AliA on YouTube can tell you the details on his channel. Note that Vaporeon has the highest CP multiplier out of the evolutions.
  17. Pokémon have nests. Some places spawn certain rare Pokémon more frequently.
  18. In a gym battle you can tap to do a quick attack, swipe left or right to dodge, and your Pokémon should have a major attack that you tap and hold the screen to charge. The mega attack will automatically launch after a certain period of time and you can release your finger then. Mega attacks have different energy needs. Some mega attacks require fewer quick attacks to charge.
  19. If your team owns a gym there will be an icon on the bottom left of the gym screen if you can defend it with your Pokémon. To train at your team’s gym you will attack the gym as normal, but with only one Pokémon. Training at your team’s gym increases the gym’s prestige and gives you a small amount of XP. Increasing prestige allows more Pokémon to defend the gym. If you have any Pokémon defending any gym you can collect from the shield icon at the top right of the shop screen every day (21 hours or so). This will give you more Stardust and coins.
  20.  To attack another team’s gym you will press the icon at the bottom right when you have selected their gym. You will have 6 Pokémon to attack the opposing gym with. Defeating a gym gives you XP and decreases that gym’s prestige by approximately 2000.
  21. Pokémon can have different attack moves.
  22. The 3 teams appear to have some impact on which legendary bird you may be able to acquire.
  23. Pokéstops recharge every 5 minutes, give you a small amount of XP, and give you items based on what you’ve unlocked by your rank. You cannot receive great balls until you have reached the rank of 12. Once you have hit rank 12 you can find great balls occasionally at any stop.

The resources that helped make this article possible are:
https://www.youtube.com/user/MoreAliA
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYyl-r6TvV7CnXxgYAJqCtQ = Pokémon Go Gameplay
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrtyNMe3xtv3CLg5QR78HzQ = Trainer Tips
http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2016-07-28-pokemon-go-level-up-items-rewards-level-cap = More Item info
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClmnnYSMPw43g6VmKgXoShQ = The Silph Road
http://serebii.net/pokemongo/

Maps to Find Pokémon:
PokéVision: https://pokevision.com/
World Map (Kangaskhan and others): https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?…
London Map (Mr. Mime and others): https://www.google.com/maps/d/viewer?…

I haven’t tried this but apparently you can get Pokémon coins using this app:
Earn Free Pokémon Go Coins: http://mistplay.co/POKEMONGO

I am currently rank 16 and a part of Team Mystic. Blue team! Please comment if you have any more information to share with people and help with their Pokémon journey. I hope this has been helpful, dear reader. Have a good day.