Pokémon Go has received a number of updates that make catching 'em all during the coronavirus pandemic safer and more compatible with being stuck at home.
Anyone who plays Pokémon Go knows the game is best enjoyed outdoors. Getting to catch Pokémon, visit Pokéstops and dominate gyms in the real world helped Pokémon Go be as popular as it is today.
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But with a great deal of players self-isolating and practicing social distancing, it might be worth knowing how to play Pokémon Go from home.
Niantic, the developer behind Pokémon Go (and other mobile AR games like Harry Potter Wizards Unite) took a number of measures to make the transition easier for players.
It already cancelled events that encourage large gatherings of players such as Community Days, Safari Zone and Raid Hour. Niantic also rolled out several changes that make playing Pokémon Go from home more worthwhile.
Here's a deeper look at the game's latest updates and tips on how to play Pokémon Go from home.
How to play Pokémon Go from home: Quarantine-friendly changes
Niantic doesn't want its players taking unsafe measures to catch Pokémon while several parts of the globe are on quarantine orders. In a March 12 update, it announced these changes to Pokémon Go:
- A one-time purchase bundle of 30 Incense for 1 PokéCoin. Incense will also last for one hour.
- 1/2 Hatch Distance when Eggs are placed into Incubators during this time period
- PokéStops will now drop Gifts more frequently
- Pokémon habitats will increase and more Pokémon will be appearing in the wild
On March 20, Niantic announced two more changes to Go Battle League game play:
- "We are removing the walking and PokéCoin requirements to unlock sets of battles in the GO Battle League."
- "For Trainer Battles with friends, we’ve lowered the Friendship level requirement so you can send battle invites to Trainers who are your Good Friends or Great Friends."
Each of these alternations makes playing Pokémon Go from home more plausible. It may sound like Pokemon Go is simply getting easier, but it offsets players being outside less.
Tips for playing Pokémon Go at home
There are a couple of ways you can still enjoy Pokémon Go while you're stuck at home.
If your quarantine orders allow for outdoor exercise, see if there are gyms or Pokéstops within walking distance of your home. As long as you can get there safely and within the limits of your area's social distancing guidelines, walking to Pokémon Go landmarks is a good way to get some exercise and keep up with gameplay.
Keep Pokémon Go running as you go about your daily routine. You'll walk enough around your home to hatch eggs, and should even encounter some wild Pokémon thanks to Niantic's update. You can also use incense to lure Pokémon to you.
Now would be the perfect time to get in on Pokémon Go's online communities and local groups, too. You can add new players as friends, which lets you battle them and share supplies like Pokéballs and eggs.
And if you've decided to take a break from Pokémon Go until the lockdown is over, you could always pick up Pokemon Sword and Shield for Nintendo Switch or check out the best mobile RPGs for your smartphone.
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