Now that trackers, scanners, and maps that access Niantic servers are all disabled in Pokemon GO, what options does that leave trainers for finding rare Pokemon? With the “nearby” panel still not working correctly, this question is on the top of Pokemon GO players’ minds. Here are the top tips from other players on what you can do to still track Pokemon who show up in your nearby list.
Here’s what you need to know.
Find Nearby Pokemon By Combining Ingress with Restarting
First, the “nearby” pane in Pokemon GO still doesn’t work correctly, and many trainers are questioning whether the closest Pokemon are even showing up in the right order when you look at what is nearby. One big issues is that Pokemon who have despawned will still appear in your nearby window until you restart the app. So you’ll want to completely shut down and restart your app periodically, to make sure the list of nearby Pokemon that you’re seeing isn’t producing false positives. What is still on the list is located within 200 meters of you. (Note: If you’re hatching eggs, restarting the app might hurt that process and cause you to lose some of the distance you’ve accumulated. Just to be on the safe side, make sure the distance for your eggs has updated before restarting.)
Next, install Ingress on your mobile device. (Install from Android here or from iOS here.) When you’re playing, pull up Ingress and look at the Ingress map for XM concentrations (white dots) that are near you. XM fields that are tightly packed, or XM fields that are loose but widespread, will be most likely to have Pokemon in them. Redditor @usernameisalie mentions that the denser the collection of XM, the more likely you are to find a rarer Pokemon. XM areas that are sparser or more spread out are more likely to have common Pokemon like Pidgey.
Here’s what the Ingress map with XM dots looks like:
Here are a few more tips for using Ingress. Once you pull up the Ingress map, ignore the orange and blue rings. They won’t help with Pokemon GO. Zoom all the way out and look for white energy dots instead. Those are XM. The denser the white dots, the more likely you are to find Pokemon spawn. The green, grey, and blue big lights were portals in Ingress, which were later turned into gyms and Pokestops in Pokemon GO. But they have no relation to finding Pokemon and, as Pokemon GO updates its Pokestops, they may not be super helpful for finding gyms and Pokestops in the future. Green and blue swirls also don’t relate to finding Pokemon. Just concentrate on the white XM lights. Also, you’re more likely to find good Pokemon in dense XM areas that are not near portals.
As an interesting note, some players on Reddit have noticed that in Ingress, the concentration of XM might change over time, depending on how many people were using the Google services or the game itself. The change is slow, but it’s possible that if a lot of people are using Pokemon GO in your area, you might see more spawning locations in the future.
Some Map Websites and Apps that Use User-Submitted Data Still Work
If you live in a bigger city, you still have some options available to you. Sites like Skiplagged utilize crowdsourced data for their maps, rather than Niantic servers. Skiplagged utilizes information from real people who are using the app, using their phones to gather data. You can visit Skiplagged’s map here.
Note that Skiplagged is only useful in big cities who have a lot of players using the app. So, for example, it will be especially helpful in New York City around the Central Park area.
Some Redditors are reporting that the app Go Radar on the iOS store also still works and lets you filter through Pokemon. Scanning takes five to 10 seconds. You can download the iOS version of the app at this link. All the data is user-submitted and doesn’t interact with Niantic servers, so it still works. Note that this map works best in areas with a lot of trainers, because the data is user-submitted.
Create Your Own Map in Neighborhoods You Visit Frequently
If you want to go through the trouble for areas that you visit frequently, you can also create your own guide for finding Pokemon spawns. Redditor JTobcat created a guide, which you can read here, for creating your own intermediate tracker without violating TOS. Here’s what the tracker looks like:
In short, here’s what JTobcat recommends. You should first document all Pokemon spawns and spawn times in your neighborhood by creating a Google My Map and adding markers. Pokemon spawn sites produce one Pokemon at the same time, every hour, and they despawn after 15 minutes. Walk around your neighborhood and drop a pin every time you see a Pokemon, and label the pin with the minute you found it and the type of Pokemon. Do this every few hours, on different days, using different paths. Revisit the locations until you eventually figure out the exact spawn times.
After you’ve finished this stage, create a custom minute map so you can know exactly where to find Pokemon in your neighborhood at specific times, along with how long until it despawns. JTobcat recommends making 12 total maps in five-minute increments. Do this by duplicating the Google My Maps spawn map and then delete all points that don’t fall in a specific five-minute increment. After you complete this step, create a 200-meter radius to scale that can act as a range.
Use a Protractor to Locate Pokemon
Another trick you can still use to track Pokemon is a radius-based tracking method developed by Redditor u/Rkey_. This method is especially good for tracking rare Pokemon that appear on your tracker. When used in conjunction with Ingress, this may be the best solution so far. Try checking clusters of Pokestops first for the best success. Here’s his video explanation:
To learn more about Pokemon GO, please read: