33 Hidden Secrets of Pokemon Go

The Pokemon Go is still conquering new cities and countries worldwide and at the time of writing it has become the biggest mobile game ever in the United States. And the game is not popular just in the US, every new country had the game hitting the #1 spot in App Stores.

Whether you are new to the game or a seasoned veteran, we have put together a big list of tips and tricks. These are divided tips for beginners, intermediate and advanced.

Beginner tips


Pokestops are the places on your map from where you will receive all the items required to play the game. Just walk over to the Pokestop, click on it and flip the image. You will receive usually Pokeballs and occasionally some other goodies too.


You need Pokeballs to catch Pokemon. If you are familiar with the Pokemon cartoon, Pokeballs are the red and white spheres that are used to catch the wild Pokemon.


While Pokestops are all around the map, gyms are rarer and usually located in some well-known spot or landmark. If the gym belongs to your team, you can leave some of your Pokemon to defend, or you can have a training match against others to have your Pokemon gain experience. If the gym is owned by another team, you can try to battle and take over the spot. If you are able to defend the gym for a long period of time, you will receive in-game coins which can be used in the Pokemon shop to purchase upgrades.

Pokemon teams

There are three teams in Pokemon Go. Team Mystic, Team Valor and Team Instinct. Each team is represented by their color and symbol. The choice between teams comes up when your Pokemon trainer reaches level 5. There is no actual difference between the teams, but you might want to consider what teams your friends are playing for. Another thing to consider is the local neighborhood gyms which might be falling under a certain team.

Pokemon at busy areas

In general, there are more chances catching Pokemon around busy urban areas. It seems that Pokemon appears in similar locations where people already are. Good hunting locations might be the areas near shopping malls or metro station entrances.

Times of the day

Try to play at different hours of the day. Certain Pokemon are more likely to be seen during daylight hours and vice versa.

Rustling grass

Sometimes you will notice on your map green leaves on the ground. This means there are Pokemon very close by and the chance of one appearing is very high. However, rustling grass is not a guarantee of Pokemon.

Pokemon Radar

Your trainer emits a type of radar circle which is the area for detecting hiding Pokemon. The radar is very useful especially when you are not able to enter a building or get close enough to some area with Pokemon sightings.

Get Pikachu as a starter

When a new account is created, you are asked to choose your starting Pokemon. The choice is between Charmander, Squirtle or Bulbasaur. If you want to have the iconic Pikachu as your starting Pokemon, you will need to walk away from the 3 options presented at first. They will appear again, but keep walking away from them several times and you should be able to get Pikachu popping up on your screen.


Intermediate Pokemon Go tips

The "sightings" screen

At the bottom right corner of your mobile screen there is a small window featuring three wild Pokemon. Tapping the icon opens a bigger screen showing all the wild Pokemon that are somewhere nearby. As of now, there is no indicator how far they might be. If you see only a silhouette, it means you have not captured or seen that particular Pokemon before.

Catching Pokemon without walking

The idea in Pokemon Go is to walk around finding wild Pokemon to catch. You can use the incense to attract to your location even if you are not moving. Incense is a personal item, which means it will benefit only you but not others in your immediate location. Incense lasts 30 minutes and typically will get you at least a few wild Pokemon appearing.

Use the power saving mode

Clicking the Pokeball icon at the bottom of your screen and then choosing settings, you are able to turn the battery saver option on. The battery saver works by turning your screen upside down. The screen will dim but the game is still running and you will be notified of any wild Pokemon around you.

Turn off AR

When you have found a wild Pokemon and are in the "catching mode" you will see an AR slider button at the top right corner. Disabling the AR will turn off the mobile camera and save battery. Catching Pokemon is harder in the AR mode since the positioning of the mobile affect location of Pokemon on screen. It might be cute to see the Pokemon on your table or room, but serious Pokemon hunters will turn this feature off.

Renaming Pokemon

Opening up your collection of Pokemon and choosing one will give you the option to rename. Just click on the gray "pen" symbol next to the original name and you are able to write anything you want.

Renaming your Pokemon Trainer

It is possible to rename your trainer, but this cannot be done within the game app itself. Instead, you have to head over to the game developers website at Niantic and submit a ticket. Try to name your trainer correctly the first time because it might take several weeks for the change request to be processed.

Get more experience throwing Pokeballs

Every time you catch a Pokemon you will receive experience. Each wild Pokemon has CP which stands for Combat Power. The higher the number, the harder it is to catch. In addition, rare, ultra rare and epic Pokemon will be even more hard to catch. Try throwing a curveball while the targeting circle is at it's smallest. You will receive an extra bonus for doing that plus it has higher chances of catching the Pokemon.

Match location with Pokemon type

Every single Pokemon in the game can be classified according to their type. In total, there are eighteen types ranging from the common "normal" to the more exotic "ghost" type. Matching the location according to the type is easy. Water type Pokemon are more commonly found near water features such are lakes, rivers or even fountains in a city.

Pink Petals

Sometimes you will see a Pokestop with pink petals falling off from it. This means that someone has placed a "lure" on the stop. The lure will attract Pokemon to the area for 30 minutes. The big difference is that Lure will benefit everyone in the area, as Incense only benefits the trainer who used the item. Using Lures is another reason who it makes sense to go Pokemon hunting with a friend or group of friends.

Portable Power

Even if you are using the battery saving function in Pokemon Go, it will drain your battery pretty fast since the GPS is running constantly. Investing into a decent sized battery pack enables you to continue Pokemon hunting till the late hours of the day. There is nothing worse than having the battery run out in the middle of an epic Pokemon hunt on the other side of town.

Buying Pokeballs

While you can use your hard earned Pokecoins to buy more Pokeballs, you really should not waste them into something so trivial. After all, you receive new Pokeballs from every Pokestop you encounter and it should not take long to gather enough to catch even the hardest of Pokemon.

Sort by CP

If you are planning to go and battle at a rival gym, it makes sense to sort your Pokemon according to their CP which stands for Combat Power. This is a combination of attack, defense and hit point values and represents the overall power of the Pokemon.

Pokemon catch ring color

When you are trying to catch a wild Pokemon, the circle around it has a specific meaning. Green means the Pokemon is very common and therefore an easy catch. Orange means that it is more difficult to catch and red stands for very rare Pokemon which are equally difficult to catch.


Advanced Pokemon Go tips

Maps to find the Pokemon

There are several third party Pokemon finding apps and services already in the market. Most of them are free to use and typically enable a Pokemon player leave a note about catching Pokemon in a certain spot. Some of them might have chat systems as well for more real-time communication. Be advised that the developers of Pokemon Go will not allow any apps that are considered cheating, such as falsifying your GPS location. Using such apps might result in account deleted.

Find Pokestops with Ingress

A lot of people do not know about a game called Ingress which was developed by the same Niantic company years before Pokemon Go. While the game is quite different in terms of style and "story", it shares the idea of virtual "stops" that are attached to a real life location. Pokemon Go makes use of the pre-existing virtual stops of Ingress, so by playing the game, you are able to map out the Pokestops around your area. In Ingress you are able to log into your account and it will show the stops in your neighborhood, city, country and even worldwide.

Pokemon hunting with a friend

When a Pokemon appears in a certain location it is available for everyone in the area. Despite that, it makes sense to go out hunting with a friend or even a bigger group. Two pairs of eyes are always better than one, plus you might be able to borrow a power bank if your mobile is running low. In some areas safety or pickpockets might be a concern as well, so a group of Pokemon hunters are able to watch each others back.

Razz Barries, Super Balls and High CP Pokemon

Certain Pokemon are very rare, powerful and hard to catch. You will need a combination of skill and luck to capture them. First use Razz Berries to make friends with the wild Pokemon and then throw a Super Ball, preferably as a curveball. This will increase your chances to capture the Pokemon.

Pokestop time saver

You need to visit Pokestops to gain more Pokeballs and other items in the game. The process is simple; just tap on the Pokestop on your map and flip the image to get the items. You do not have to click on the individual items gained or wait until they float to the top of the screen. Instead, just click on the X close button and you will receive all items immediately and will be returned to the map screen.

Access Pokemon Menu faster

Typically you would click on the Pokeball at the bottom of the screen to access Pokedex and other features. You can save a little time just by placing finger on top of the Pokeball and swipe. Swiping left will give you instant access to Pokemon and eggs. Swiping right will bring you the Items screen. Swiping up opens the Pokemon Shop and further up the Pokedex.

Catch duplicate Pokemon

The idea of the game is to collect every single available Pokemon out there. Currently, there are about 150 unique Pokemon. By catching duplicates of your existing Pokemon you will receive candy that is specific to that character. You will need enough of Pokemon candy to evolve them into a stronger version. You are able to see on Pokedex how every Pokemon will evolve. For example, the common Pidgey evolves first into Pidgeotto and finally into Pidgeot.

How to throw a curveball?

To catch a rare Pokemon is often much more difficult. You can increase your chances by throwing a curve ball. Place your finger on top of the Pokeball and move it in circles. Once the ball is rolling, throw on either side of the Pokemon, not straight. The ball should curve according to the rotational direction. Throwing a curveballs requires some practice.

Use Lucky Eggs

Lucky eggs will double your experience points (XP) for 30 minutes at a time. Use them wisely if you want to level up your trainer fast. Initially, you will climb the levels very fast, but after a while, it will take a lot more to training to go to the next level. Lucky Eggs are more useful at a later stage of the game.


Just for Fun

iPhone Siri and Pokemon questions

If you are an iPhone user, you can ask Siri a few things about Pokemon. For example asking "what kind of Pokemon is Bulbasaur?" should give you all the basic properties and the type. Pronouncing the names of different Pokemon might be a little a bit challenging though. Other things you can ask Siri about Pokemon:


"Do you like Pokemon Go?"

"What is your favorite Pokemon"?

Pikachu sound effects

If you are going through your Pokemon and tap on the icon, each of them have some kind of attack growl or sound effect. Pikachu is an exception and it will just say "Pikachu" with the same voice as it does in the cartoon show.


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