How Do You Track In "Pokemon Go"?

by Mary Grace Garis

By now you've no doubt embarked on your first steps to becoming a Pokémon master with a full-blown obsession with "Pokemon Go." Likewise, by now you've probably almost receiving some vehicular injury gluing your eyes to the screen, struggling to figure out how to track Pokémon. That's because tracking Pokemon in "Pokemon Go" is in theory simple, but in practice a little tricky; there are bugs everywhere, and they're not just limited to Venonats.

The first thing you want to do is click on the bottom righthand gray box that's filled with little Poké friends (or not, if you live in the middle of nowhere). A box will pop up that should show you all the Pokémon nearby, and underneath you're likely to see little footprints. If you don't see footprints, that means the Pokémon should be super close and will plausibly pop up soon (although no guarantees). Beyond that, one footprint means it's nearby, two means you're probably going towards it, and three means it's somewhere near the area. Simple, right?

Except... it doesn't overtly tell you if you're going in the right direction. How in the world are you supposed to figure out where they are if you don’t know if you should go right or left?

You can tap on a specific Pokémon and try to go on the hunt for that one independently, or you can keep the window open and keep an eye one the shuffling that may go on. A general rule of thumb is that the Pokémon near the top are the ones you're closest too, and the one at the top left corner is your closest pick. So it's not a perfect method, to say the least: what that's ultimately going to lead to is you walking in different directions in hot pursuit of a Scyther.

The other problem is that right now, the game is susceptible to glitches, and not the fun, rare candy-bolstering Missingno kind. Sometime around Sunday, a glitch in the game occurred in which is seemed that all Pokémon in the area are three steps away. Those steps won't diminish if you get closer to the Pokémon, which adds another layer of frustration to tracking. If you come across this glitch, the first thing you want to do is close and re-open the game to see if it'll straighten itself out. Failing that, though, there is a method to work around the three step glitch in the meantime.

Ideally, you won't have to use it and future patches will be straightening it out very soon. However, I think it's safe to say that trying to track Pokémon is an arduous test at best. If you see that Scyther out of the corner of your eye, yeah, hunt it down. Otherwise, maybe wait out for the next update before you attempt heavy tracking. It's not worth the injury.

Images: 4Kids Entertainment; "Pokemon Go"/Niantic (2)