Pokémon Go hit the app scene last week and folks in the Valley are already going crazy for it, and they aren’t alone. The release of the app caused Nintendo’s stocks to rise a whopping 25% and generated more than $14 million in revenue.

Want in? It doesn’t matter if you’ve been catching them all since 1996 or don’t know a Weedle from a Caterpie, we here at the New KMLE have got you covered with tips for both beginners and veterans alike.

  1. Pokeballs are plentiful

Like many mobile games, Pokémon Go is free-to-play, but that doesn’t mean its without fees. One, if so inclined can restock their items with real world money. However, this is rarely necessary, the game tags real world landmarks as “Pokestops” and visiting those locations rewards you with free items, usually 3-5 Pokeballs. These locations refresh every 4 or so minutes, meaning if you live near, or work inside one of these landmarks, its easy to get a lot of items without paying a cent.

Furthermore, if you whiff that shot at that prized Nidoking, a fleet fingered player can tap the ball you just threw to pick it back up, avoiding any wasted shots.

2. You can get Pikachu really, really early

In true Pokémon fashion, you begin your Pokémon Go adventure by picking a starter Pokémon from a preset group of three. But what if none of them pique your interest? If you’d rather adventure with the series’ iconic mascot, Pikachu, simply walk away from the location with the three starters, eventually, you’ll run into a Pikachu instead.

3. Battery Saver mode is important

Pokémon Go is harsh on a phone’s battery, that’s just a fact. Its made even worse by the toll the Phoenix summer takes on the phone. Thankfully, you can lessen the impact a bit by turning on battery saver in the settings menu. When battery saver is on, simply turn the phone upside and the screen will go dark, making the battery drain slower. And don’t worry about missing any critters along the way, the phone will still vibrate when a Pokémon is nearby.

4. Location  doesn’t matter so much as your level

When Pokemon Go was announced, the idea seemed limitless. Travel the world for Pokemon? Sign me up cowboy! However, there was the question of how to get rarer Pokemon, would they be like in the games and hidden in some long lost corner of our world? Thankfully, you won’t have to brave a lava flow in Hawaii to catch a Magmar anytime soon. In Pokémon Go the chances of you running into rarer, and stronger, Pokémon is wholly dependent on your level. The more Pokémon you catch, the better Pokémon you meet. Simple!

As for the crème de la crème, the Legendary Pokemon, Nintendo has announced that they’ll be available only during special events. So don’t believe your cousin’s rumor that his friend totally found a Zapdos at Disney World or a Mew underneath that truck on the pier.

5. Evolution is a completely different game

Unlike in pervious Pokémon games, your monsters don’t evolve through experience points, instead, they need to eat specialized candy to both power up and evolve. Because of this, catching duplicates is important, as that is how you get more candy for that type of Pokémon. You can also convert any Pokémon into candy of its type by selecting the convert “option” on their stats screen.

A Pokémon’s strength will increase after evolution so its best, if the Pokémon can evolve, so hold up on powering them up until after evolution if they can evolve.

6. Egg Time Matters

Much like in the original Pokémon games, in Go you can hatch eggs depending on steps taken. However, in Go its your own walking that gets the job done. The eggs come in three categories 2, 5 and 10km. The higher the km requirement, the more steps it’ll take to hatch once placed in a handy dandy incubator. But, as a payoff the Pokémon that hatches from the 10km egg will be rarer than the 2km. So get out there and burns some carbs, and maybe you’ll be the lucky chap to walk home with a shiny new Dratini and be the envy of all your friends.

Obviously, which such a huge success as Pokemon Go. People are taking notice, from huge crowds chasing down rare Pokemon…

… to businesses and venues using the appearance of rare Pokémon or a Gym as way to get people to stop by…

…although some Pokestops are definitely not as easily accessible as others, and law enforcement is quick to mention that no, we don’t care if you want a Pinsir, trespassing is still trespassing…

…and that hunting down a Chansey is no reason to inadvertently cause a six lane pileup on the I-10…

Photo Cred: Laura Banish

Photo Cred: Laura Petracca

Not everything stumbled upon during the hunt for Pokémon is as common as a Pokestop either. Just ask the Wyoming woman who found a body while on the hunt. Or a bunch of other oddities from the humorous, such as a man’s house becoming a focal point for would be trainers after being designated as a Pokémon Gym, to the not so quaint stories of robberies surrounding the app.

Either way, it’s a Pokémon world now, we’re just living in it. Thankfully, with all the odds stories and photos coming out of Pokémon Go, these little critters will be entertaining us for a long time to come. 

Keep on catching them all!

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