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Pokemon Go Guide for Absolute Beginners

Pokemon Go Guide for Absolute Beginners

It doesn’t matter if you are a Pokémon fan or not. You need to try Pokémon Go- the latest trend in the mobile industry. If you are following the news you already know how popular Pokémon Go has become in the last month or so.

Millions of players are playing Pokémon Go daily and it has already beaten the likes of Twitter and Tinder in terms of daily active users and number of app installations respectively. It has also gone past the average time spent in an app beating the likes of WhatsApp.

Its popularity has already been answered around the web, but that’s not the point of the article. The point of the article is to guide you through the amazing world of Pokémon Go.

This guide is aimed at the beginner who is about to play Pokémon Go for the first time.  A beginner will have many questions including what is Pokémon? Not everyone is familiar with Pokémon and how it works, and that’s why we take a dig at the topic.

If you are a developer and wondering about Pokémon Go’s development, check out live development videos about Pokémon Go Trading Marketplace development here.

So without any further waiting, let’s get started with Pokémon Go Guide for Absolute Beginners.

Pokémon and Pokémon Go? What is it all about?

Pokémon Go is an augmented reality (AR) game developed by Niantic. Niantic has been in the business of making AR games for the past three years. They developed Ingress, a similar game to Pokémon, but one that is inherently complex in nature. Pokémon Go has been installed in more than 5% of the Android devices and is going strong. In the game, you need to catch Pokémon using balls known as Pokéballs. There are other game mechanics including gym battles, PokéStops, etc., which we will cover in the rest of the guide.

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Before we move further, let’s understand augmented reality. Augmented reality is all about using your surroundings to enhance the game experience. In more technical terms it superimposes computer-generated video, audio, or image to the real world and makes your experience in a completely different way.

The Pokémon brand has been there for the past 20 years. It has made millions of fans until now, and the brand name has helped Pokémon Go reach millions of players already!

From the Wikipedia article, “Pokémon is a media franchise managed by The Pokémon Company, a Japanese consortium between Nintendo, Game Freak, and Creatures. While the franchise copyright is shared by all three companies, Nintendo is the sole owner of the trademark. The franchise was created by Satoshi Tajiri in 1995, and is centered on fictional creatures called “Pokémon”, which humans, known as Pokémon Trainers, catch and train to battle each other for sport.”

In Pokémon Go, you become the Pokémontrainer and try to capture all the available Pokémon.

Getting Started

If you are new and don’t know where to start.,the first thing you need to know about Pokémon Go is that it is not released worldwide, but is seeing incremental release cycles around the world. To find out if it has already been released in your country just go to this link. If you see a green sign(i.e. released), you can proceed to your mobile OS app store, iPhone or Android and download it from there. Oh yes, it is free, and you don’t have to pay to download the app.

Once installed, you can proceed to the game and start playing.

Note: App not available in your country? You can either wait for the release or go to 3rd party websites to download the .apk(for Android) or .ipa(for iOS) and install it on your device. Niantic, for now, is not doing any regional checks, which means that the app will work without any limitation.

Caution: Downloading .apk or IPA file from 3rd party websites can lead to problems. Please check thoroughly before downloading as there are reports of the installation files being infected. If you are worried about security, then it is better to wait for the official release.

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Creating Avatar and GPS

When you start up the app for the first time, it will ask you to create your avatar. Avatar creation is straightforward as you need to select the sex, the hair color, and other avatar attributes. Once done, you can now proceed to the main game screen!

The game will showcase a map. If you are not able to see the map instantly, wait for a few seconds before it gets updated with all the information. If the map is not loaded with your avatar, double-check whether or not your smartphone GPS is working. Try to switch it off and on and that should do the trick.

Getting Your First Pokémon

If everything worked fine until now, you would be able to see three Pokémon on your screen. The three Pokémon are Squirtle, Charmander, and Bulbasaur. Choosing one of them will start your journey. Before you choose one, it is a good idea to understand the types of Pokémon.

Currently, there are many types of Pokémon in the game. They are water, grass, steel, ghost, bug, rock, poison, flying, fighting, normal, ground, psychic, dark, fairy, dragon, and ice. Among all the types, the three available Pokémon are water (Squirtle), Fire (Charmander), and poison/grass (Bulbasaur).

Wait, you can still get a Pikachu, an electric-type Pokémon as your first Pokémon. All you need to do is walk away from the initial place then come back to the same location. On third or fourth try, you will be able to see Pikachu on your map. Go catch it!

Capturing Pokémon With Pokéballs

The core mechanics of the game revolve around capturing Pokémon. You can catch them using the in-game element, Pokéball. When a Pokémon alert arrives on your mobile, you need to walk the avatar to the location and point your phone camera at the location. The Pokémon should appear jumping wildly. Point your Pokéball to the circle surrounding the Pokémon and throw the ball with the right curve. If you did everything right, you would be able to capture the Pokémon.

Note 1: Higher-level Pokémon have higher chances of fleeing the scene. Don’t get disappointed and try capturing it again! It is just part of the game!

Note 2: To make sure you don’t miss any nearby Pokémon in the future, turn vibration on. By turning the vibration on, you will be able to do other tasks and still not miss a single Pokémon!

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Improve your chances

You can improve your chances of capturing a Pokémon by using in-game items such as Lure Modules and Razz Berry. Razz Berry improves your chances of catching a particular Pokémon. Lure module, on the other hand, attracts Pokémon toward a PokéStop.

Tip: Turn off your phone camera if you don’t want to get distracted by the background and save battery at the same time.

Leveling Up

Leveling up is all about progressing in the game. You need to do different activities within the game such as capturing a Pokémon, winning Gym matches, evolve Pokémon, etc. Each level has its own rewards, and you can check the full list here. As you gradually progress through the game, you will unlock different items and other key aspects of the game. For example, when you hit level 5, you will unlock Gym battles where you can battle other Pokémon. Potions and Revives are also unlocked at level 5.

You can gain experience points (XP) in the following ways:

  • Capture Pokémon
  • Evolve Pokémon
  • Hatch Pokémon eggs
  • Doing Gym battles
  • Get free items at PokéStop.

Progressing through the game from level 1 to 20 is easy and less time consuming. But, after you hit level 20, leveling up becomes harder due to high XP requirements. The steep curve has already been seen as a drawback to the game progression system, and many players have already started leaving the game at high levels.

Evolving Pokémon

Another cool part of the game is evolving Pokémon. You make your Pokémon more powerful by using candies on them. The power of a Pokémon is gauged by Combat Points (CP) points. The higher the CP points, the better the Pokémon.

To get started, you need to capture as many Pokémon as you want. But don’t just evolve them yet! The idea here is to save your candies for the higher level CPs that you will later capture. To get candies, you need to capture tons of Pokémon and exchange the low CP ones with Professor Willow for candy.

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PokéStops

Want to receive free items and capture Pokémon? Then, you need to go to PokéStops. PokéStop is a marked place on the map where you can get free items and also increase chances of capturing Pokémon by using Lure modules. To get free items, you need to walk to the landmark and swipe left to right. Once done, free items will flow. You now need to tap on them to take them! If you are feeling lucky and want to capture Pokémon, you can use Lure Module to increase the Pokémon’s activity in that zone. Other players can also take the advantage of the Lure Module and capture Pokémon!

Gym Battles

Even though the game revolves around capturing and evolving Pokémon, you can still battle Pokémon in Gyms. Gyms are special places where you can fight other players’ Pokémon and engage in healthy competition. Also, it should be noted that Gyms are colored according to red, blue or yellow. The color signifies different teams in Pokémon Go. Grey color means the Gym is empty, and you can capture it. Once captured, you can defend the Gym against other players from different teams.

Fighting another Pokémon is rewarding even though most of the combat is automatic in nature. To ensure that you have better chances, use higher CP Pokémon. During the battle, your Pokémon will lose health, and you need to use in-game items to replenish its health.

 

That’s all for now. Pokémon Go is great for casual players who want to engage in social interactivity, exploration, and also want to feel nostalgic.

Featured photo credit: depositphotos via depositphotos.com

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Published on September 25, 2020

10 Best VPNs to Browse the Internet More Securely

10 Best VPNs to Browse the Internet More Securely

When it comes to digital security, public Wi-Fi networks aren’t safe enough, making it much easier for hackers to access your personal data. Whether you are studying in a library or scrolling through Facebook in a coffeehouse, it is vital to have a VPN installed on your device.

VPNs work wonders when it comes to securing your internet connection. By creating an encrypted tunnel between a remote server run by the VPN service, they protect your personal data from prying eyes. There is a variety of VPNs available on the web, and we have collated a list of the best VPNs that stand out from the rest.

How to Choose a VPN

  • Free trial period – Free trials allow you to try the product risk-free. The same idea technically applies to those with 30-day full refunds as well.
  • Speed – You want your VPN to be just as fast as the internet speed at home. Good quality VPNs are ones where you see little difference between those speeds.
  • Device connection – Of course, the more devices that can connect to VPNs, the better. It increases the customers’ coverage and the product’s value. You also want to consider compatibility since fewer VPNs may work for Mac or Windows only.
  • Number of servers – The number of servers determines how much capacity a VPN can handle while you are connected. The more servers there are, the more users it can handle without running into potential disconnections or slow speeds.
  • Kill switch feature – Having this feature means that your IP address isn’t exposed if the VPN disconnects for some reason. A lack of this feature is a big deal since the whole reason why you’re paying for a VPN is to hide your IP address, among other things. (Find out how to avoid getting tracked online here: Big Brother Is Watching You Online: How To Avoid Being Tracked)

Why You Should Trust Us

Our hand-picked VPNs are incredibly efficient and offer such distinctive features that grant you safe browsing. They outperform many VPNs in terms of both speed and security. Their primary aim is to provide you the utmost security, thus enabling you to surf the web safely and prevent any potential threat from causing harm.

Among the best VPNs’ many unique features include split tunneling, strict logging policies, high encryption level, and availability of international servers. We have gathered them in this article to enlighten our readers and offer the best pieces of advice before you get one. Therefore, take our word for it, and if you go for a VPN mentioned below, you’d be fully appeased.

1. NordVPN

The most popular VPN on the market these days is NordVPN, and it’s easy to see why. It has widespread coverage, offering a selection of over 5,000 servers spanning across 59 countries.[1] Due to the high number of servers, its speed is similar to your Wi-Fi at home.

Lifehack’s CEO, Leon, has been using NordVPN for many years and wants to recommend it for its remarkable server count in different locations with no-logs policy. The VPN perfectly works with Netflix and Fire TV stick, too.

NordVPN is also compatible with Mac, Windows, and Linux. You can download the app onto Chrome, Firefox, Android, and Mac OS. Thanks to its massive coverage, it’s easy to connect multiple devices onto these servers.

In terms of pricing, while NordVPN doesn’t have a free trial period, they argue that their plans are considerably cheaper than those of their competitors. For example, a one-year plan for ExpressVPN costs $8.32 per month, but NordVPN only charges $6.99 monthly.

NordVPN has a new protocol called NordLynx that is based on WireGuard with speed benefits, though it’s still under development.[2] If you’re looking for general quality and affordability, this is one of the best VPNs around.

Buy this VPN.

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2. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is the second-best option out there for keeping your privacy while browsing the internet. Like many other VPNs here, they will encrypt your IP address, offer vast coverage, and can have multiple devices connected to their servers.

Compared to NordVPN, while the pricing point is higher, ExpressVPN’s biggest selling point is the number of countries that their connection covers. Depending on where you are in the world, this may be the only option you have. They have fewer servers — 160, to be precise — but they make up for the low server count by covering 94 countries.[3]

Cost-wise, your best bet is to go with the yearly plan where they charge $8.32 a month. They also have one- and six-month plans.

Buy this VPN.

3. Surf Shark

With regards to Surf Shark, you can connect multiple devices to its servers, and it’s compatible with Windows, Linux, and Mac. It is also available on Android, iOS, Chrome, Firefox, and FireTV.

Furthermore, Surf Shark can whitelist apps and sites, letting them bypass the VPN. This, along with the lines of split-tunneling, is another feature that many VPNs offer. The difference is that Surf Shark allows you to whitelist specific apps or any website, while most VPNs will whitelist all sites or none at all.

The other consideration for this app is the price. While lower-tier plans are more expensive compared to others, Surf Shark’s 24-month plan is priced at $2.69 a month, so it’s cheaper than even NordVPN’s equivalent plan!

Buy this VPN.

4. CyberGhost

Another top-reviewed VPN is CyberGhost. They’ve been around for 15 years and have fine-tuned their offers and features to stay competitive. They provide the standard package of browsing the web and logging into accounts safely and give you access to regionally blocked content.

The network also maintains security from hackers, malware, and phishing. Aside from that, you can connect multiple devices, and it’s compatible with all kinds of platforms.

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What separates CyberGhost from the others is their extensive coverage. They have multiple servers, and the pricing point is still very low. It covers over 88 countries and has roughly 6200 servers for you to choose from, all while charging $2.75 for their 18-month plan.

Buy this VPN.

5. IPVanish

IPVanish’s prime purpose is to give users online freedom by providing fast speeds and private connections. It’s clear that they can meet that promise as they provide many of the features that have been listed previously from their competitors.

IPVanish is a part of SugarSync now. What is that, you may ask? It’s a cloud-based service that syncs files across devices and computers for sharing, backup, and many more. What this means is that other devices can access various files and videos so long as they are connected to your specific VPN. Furthermore, it can serve as a backup plan if you get hacked or lose your device for some reason.

Buy this VPN.

6. Private Internet Access

Private Internet Access (PIA) is a remarkably generous company in many ways. Aside from the obvious features, they offer great incentives and discounts for people to try out their products. They claim to be the most trustworthy and reliable VPN around, and we believe that.

One notable thing is that PIA offers a free two-month trial. Compared to other VPNs to this point, none have provided free trials (though all come with a 30-day money-back guarantee). On top of that, small businesses can avail of their VPN at a discounted rate. There is also the fact that their pricing plans go as low as $2.69 a month for two years, and they let you pay with gift cards.

In terms of specs, PIA has over 2695 servers that cover 47 countries right now.

These particular aspects make PIA unique and one of the best VPNs to consider.

Buy this VPN.

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7. Hotspot Shield

Hotspot Shield is all about offering protection while you’re browsing the internet or using streaming services like Netflix. The encryption is military-grade, and its speed is ultra-fast. In truth, it is even marketed as one of the fastest VPNs.

Hotspot Shield offers a plan that only costs  $7.99 a month; however, it’s one of the few in this list to provide its services for free. Like other Freemium apps, the free version comes with limited features. That said, it gives you a much better feel for the VPN.

Also, take note that the encryption feature is still there, though the limitations in the free plan include connecting to one location in the US and having limited streaming options and speed.

Buy this VPN.

8. TunnelBear

As unusual as a name choice for an online security protection service can be, TunnelBear is nothing short of incredible. It makes our list of the best VPNs for various reasons.

The biggest one is that the company goes through a yearly security audit. This is notable because many VPNs don’t bother about independent audits to ensure their systems are secure and safe from any issues. This is critical as VPNs have gotten some bad reputation over the years, as TunnelBear has noted in their post about their security audit.[4] The fact that they are doing this annually ensures that nothing is being compromised.

Furthermore, TunnelBear offers limited services for free, but even their paid plans are pretty cheap. For individuals, you’re merely paying $3.33 per month. The only catch is that you can connect five devices regardless of which paid plan you pick.

Buy this VPN.

9. Norton

Norton has been on the security scene for some time, and it’s actually one of the founders of the internet security industry. It started with virus and malware protection in 1991 and has since branched off to other sectors as the industry has shifted.

As you might expect from a company that’s been around for a long time, Norton provides excellent services, and a few of their other services have gone into the VPN package. In reality, Norton is the only one thus far to offer a password manager with their VPN services. They provide 50GB of cloud storage as well.

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Norton has one of the cheapest VPNs, considering you can get their deluxe plan at $49.99 per year. That comes up to roughly $4.17 a month. It might be slightly higher than other equivalent plans, but you get a lot of extra value that makes it worth the price.

Buy this VPN.

10. StrongVPN

The final VPN we want to cover is StrongVPN. Like many others, it’s great at blocking unnecessary web traffic and providing a fast and simple solution to navigating the internet without any hindrance.

StrongVPN has over 900 servers. It is available in more than 30 countries and compatible with all devices. Beyond that, the only notable selling point it has compared to others is that it also offers Sugarsync services and 250GB of storage, irrespective of your chosen plan.

As for the pricing, their year-long plan costs $5.83 a month, while their month-long one is $10.

Buy this VPN.

Bottom Line

Getting online protection is important these days, and companies recognize this.

With more hacks and breaches occurring every single day, the best VPNs can provide an excellent haven for many people who value their security and privacy.

We hope that by putting together this list, you’ll be able to find the best VPN that you can trust and enjoy using. As you can see, there are several great options with no real wrong one out there. Pick the VPN that’s best for you.

Featured photo credit: Petter Lagson via unsplash.com

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