There’s lots of things that video game developer Niantic Labs got right with Pokémon GO. Forcing users to roam around their neighborhood to find Pokémon, for example, is definitely one of them. Millions of smartphone owners are walkinig the streets as we speak, trying to capture digital recreations from the line of video games, television shows and movies. The game would be perfect, if it weren’t for those same people struggling to understand how Pokémon Go Nearby Tracking works.
Niantic, it seems, opted for community discoverability, with their game. Rather than teach users how to play the game with some sort of reading, the developer is letting users figure things out for themselves. Pokémon GO Nearby Tracking is meant to give players some general idea of where they are in relation to creatures they have yet to encounter. But you only pick up on the system’s tricks after hours of play.
Luckily, Reddit communities, news articles and time with the game are revealing the secrets behind how Pokémon Go Nearby Tracking works.
How Pokémon GO Nearby Tracking Works: The Tracker Itself
The Pokémon GO Nearby Tracker is pretty simple, on a fundamental level. With the whole world open for you to explore, the tracker is designed to give you a good idea of what interesting creatures are around you. Armed with this information, you can continue to explore or keep walking.
Every creature relatively near to your physical location shows up on the tracker. If they are creatures you’ve already added to your Pokedex, you get their full image. If they are creatures you’ve never encountered before, they’re grayed out.
The feet just blow each of the Pokémon in your Pokémon GO Tracker are indicators of how far they are from your current location. That’s where the lack of information from Niantic becomes a problem.
How Pokémon GO Nearby Tracking Works: Judging Distance
It’s Forbes assertion that Pokémon Go Nearby Tracker isn’t particularly concise. According to the outlet, the creatures that are at the top-left of the tracker are the closest too you. Moving to the right means they are father away. The creatures listed in the tracker on the bottom row are the farthest away from you.
If there aren’t any footprints, those creatures should be visible on the map. Two feet are close, but three feet are relatively far away.
Read: How Pokémon GO Gyms Work
How Pokémon GO Nearby Tracking Works: Tracking
With the Nearby Tracking device open, tap on the specific creature that you’re trying to find. As you’re walking with the tracker open, the creature that you’re tracking should move up and down the list of Nearby creatures. Surfacing on the Nearby Tracking grid means that a Pokémon is no more than a few blocks away from your current location, reportedly.
Theoretically, you can use this method to track specific creatures reliably.
Good luck with Pokemon Go.
PokeStops & Gym Locations
A recent question and answer session on the Silph Road confirms that Pokémon Go currently uses 30% to 50% of portals that were present in Niantic’s last game, Ingress. Pokémon Go maps these over real-world landmarks that players have to walk to.
PokeStops and Gyms are real-world locations that players go to pick up items and battle the creatures left behind by other trainers. Police departments are already warning players of the game to stay away from their stations, according to VG247.