Pokémon GO: everything you need to know to start out as a trainer


Feels like the 90s all over again with the arrival of Pokemon GO on Android and iOS. People are excited for Pokemon like they haven't been in a long, long time. We already explained how to get Pokemon GO on your device, no matter where you live, and now we are going to go over the basics of the latest AR gaming hit.

First off, the world of Pokemon GO is nothing like what you'd expect from a game from the series, because, well, it takes place in the real world. Much like Ingress, Pokemon GO is a location-based AR game that uses your real location, and that changes everything. There are no random encounters for example, which means that you can freely walk around in tall grass while glued to your phone's screen.

Entering a patch of tall grass won't result in a wild Pokemon ambushing you this time around, but you'd still better watch your step

Wild monsters won't be jumping at you in Pokemon GO, as you don't need to battle them in order to capture them. This time around, creatures in the wild can be caught by simply tossing Pokeballs at them. Things are not that simple, of course, as you have to manually fling the Pokeballs and your inventory is limited. Fortunately, special Razz Berries can be used to increase your chances of nabbing the little fellows before they escape. There are also no other trainers to humiliate around every corner, which we think is a good decision for this type of game, as otherwise you would be forced to stop every five steps. Battles in Pokemon GO are instead contained only to special gyms.

Once you customize your trainer and choose a starter Pokemon, take a look around your map. Any blue icons that you might see around you are called PokeStops. They are often located near real world landmarks, important buildings or other noteworthy places. If you don't see any, it might be a good idea to get up and walk around a bit. That's the point of this game, after all. Getting close to a PokeStop and swiping on it will yield some free items and even experience points some times. This will turn the PokeStop icon purple, which means that it has been depleted for the time being, but it will revert back to blue after some time. That's how you get items for free.

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As any free-to-play game, Pokemon GO also lets you buy items with your hard-earned cash

Items in the game can be obtained for free but, naturally, this takes more time than buying them with real money. Purchases are made with an in-game currency called PokeCoins (PC), which can be obtained by playing the game, albeit rarely, or bought with real money.

Items are an integral part of Pokemon GO, as they've always been in the main RPG series

Now that you know where to find the items you need, let's see what kinds of items there are in the game and how much they cost.


Pokeballs are the most essential item in the Pokemon universe and you will be given 50 from the beginning of the game. More can be obtained by either scavenging PokeStops or buying them from the shop. They are sold in packs of 20 (100 PC), 100 (460 PC) and 200 (800 PC).


Pokemon Eggs can be found in the wild and hatched with an Egg Incubator. Eggs hatch once the player travels a certain distance and yield a new Pokemon.

Lucky Eggs

Unlike regular Eggs, Lucky Eggs are consumables that double the experience points you gain for a period of 30 minutes. They can be purchased as a single item for 80 PC or in batches of 8 (500 PC) and 25 (1250 PC).

Egg Incubator

You start out with only one Egg Incubator, which is limited to only one Egg at a time, but has unlimited uses. You can purchase additional Incubators in the shop, for 150 PC a piece, which hold up to three Eggs at a time, but are good for only three uses.


Incense is used to lure in hiding Pokemon. It increases the rate at you which find creatures in the wild for a period 30 minutes. Incense is sold in the shop as a single item (80 PC) and in packs of 8 (500 PC) and 25 (1250 PC).

Lure Module

Lure Modules attracts Pokemon to a certain PokeStop. They are more effective than Incense and affect all players around a certain PokeStop for a period of 30 minutes. They can be purchased from the shop as a single item (100 CP) or in a pack of 8 (680 PC).

Pokemon Storage

Your initial Pokemon Storage allows you to keep up to 250 Pokemon and 9 Pokemon eggs. The storage can be upgraded with 50 extra slots for 50 PC.

Bag Upgrade

As an essential accessory for every Pokemon trainer, your Bag allows you to store all the different items you obtain during your travels. It has 350 free slots from the start and can be upgraded with increments of 50 slots for 50 PC each. 

Teams, Gyms, protecting your Prestige and more

Once you make enough progress in Pokemon GO, you will be asked to join one of three available teams: Red, Blue and Yellow. Once you join а team, you will then be able to run your own Gym and assign a Pokemon to protect it. Each Gym has a prestige level, based on the experience of the team which holds it, and you can challenge enemy Gyms.

After you defeat all trainers in an enemy Gym, you will be kicked out, but keep challenging the Gym in order to drain its Prestige entirely. Once you do this, you will take over the place and become a Gym Leader. You can then assign a Pokemon to guard the Gym. Just make sure that you use a Pokemon with enough Combat Points (CP) to fight off enemy challengers.

This time around, Pokemon are not ranked by level, but rather by CP. CP can be increased by giving your Pokemon Stardust and Candy, which you acquire by catching creatures in the wild, hatching new ones or transferring them. Candy is specific to each Pokemon family, so it can't just be used on any of your monsters, while Stardust is universal and can be used to power up any of your Pokemon.

That's it from us for now, hope you liked our quick beginner's guide to Pokemon GO! Now, GO out and start filling that Pokedex!

Download Pokemon GO:

Google Play StoreApple App Store

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