Pokémon Go mania has players armed with smartphones hunting streets, parks, rivers, landmarks and other sites to capture monsters and gather supplies.
The free app, based on a Nintendo title that debuted 20 years ago, has been adapted to the mobile internet age by Niantic Labs, a company spun out of Google last year.
Pokémon Go uses smartphone satellite location, graphics and camera capabilities to overlay cartoon monsters on real world settings, challenging players to capture and train the creatures for battles.
Here are monster-hunting basics for those interested in trying Pokémon Go.
1. Capture and train monsters to battle for control of virtual “gyms” displayed on smartphone maps of real-world settings.
2. Players win by controlling gyms and collecting Pokemon.
Now, let's get started:
- Download a free Android or Apple smartphone Pokémon Go app.
- Choose an avatar.
-Walk to a “PokeStop” icon pictured on the map and tap on it to reveal photos of the real-world location you are standing in front of.
- Spin the image to get supplies such as balls for capturing monsters.
- Progress to the next level by visiting PokeStops and capturing Pokemon.
- While walking, watch the smartphone map for what appear to be bursts of leaves or grass.
- Get closer.
- When a Pokemon image appears on screen tap it.
- Switch to camera mode and scan your surroundings to see Pokemon.
- At the start, hold back from chasing the first Pokemon you see if you want a chance to get the coveted Pikachu later on.
- Hold your finger on the Pokeball at the bottom of your smartphone screen, then swipe to toss a ball and hit the target to capture the Pokemon.
- Increase a Pokemon’s power using stardust and creature-specific candy found in the game.
- Reach Level 5.
- Walk to a gym, represented on a map as a tower.
- Once you’re close enough, tap on the icon to enter the gym and choose which team to join: red, blue or yellow.
- If a gym is controlled by a rival team, challenge the ruling Pokemon for dominance.
- After defeating a rival Pokemon, leave your own Pokemon to rule the gym.
- Carry backup power.
- Use teamwork to keep control of gyms.
- Don’t venture where it is not safe or you are not wanted and will be trespassing.
- Look where you’re going!
- Remember your location is being tracked so others might find you. Stay safe.