Jul 12 2016 13618 1

Dated: 07/12/2016

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Seven tips for playing 'Pokémon Go'

, USA TODAY8:49 a.m. EDT July 12, 2016

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Pokemon Go has taken over the world. Here is everything you need to know about the app and why people are going nuts over it. USA TODAY, Collin Brennan


Corrections and clarifications: Our story has been updated to note there are 151 Pokemon characters available to collect in the game.

Before you "catch 'em all," you should at least be prepared.

Since Thursday, the mobile game Pokémon Go has consumed the lives of many smartphone owners, pushing them to explore their surroundings in search of the charming yet tough creatures.

Pokémon Go is an augmented reality experience based on the classic video game series from Nintendo. Players head outdoors using a GPS map in search of Pokémon, using their camera to view creatures "in the wild" and capture them. There are 151 Pokémon to collect in Go.

Here are some tips to make the most out of your Pokémon Go adventure:

1. Wear comfortable shoes. Sounds ridiculous, right? Why do my shoes matter? Because you will walk a lot playing this game. It requires you to explore your surroundings, whether it's your neighborhood, a park or the mall. Want a lot of Pokémon? Start moving.

2. Don't worry about catching duplicate Pokémon. Whenever you snag a new Pokémon, you may notice you will also earn candy and stardust. Both items will help level up your characters to make them stronger. With enough candy, you can also evolve your Pokémon into something bigger and more powerful. Any duplicates you transfer to the professor net more candy. So those extra Pidgeys will come in handy.

3. Eggs are a good way to snag more Pokémon. When you visit a Poké Stop, you can earn Balls to capture more creatures or Eggs. Players can stick an Egg in an incubator and birth their own Pokémon. All you need to do is once the Egg is inside the incubator, you must walk to complete the process. Now those comfortable shoes don't sound so absurd.

4. Incense and Lure Modules are your friends. Incense attracts Pokémon to your space for 30 minutes. If you're walking around and want to collect lots of Pokémon, this is a great way to do it. Even better are Lure Modules, which perform the same effect at a Poké Stop. Bonus: the Lure Module works for any player at the targeted Poké Stop.

5. Be ready to charge your smartphone often. Pokémon Go is a battery hog. It's not a big surprise since your screen is lit up all the time. This is where your battery case or external charger become invaluable. Get ready to break them out.

6. The way you toss the Poké Ball is important. When you capture a Pokémon, you flick the Poké Ball from the lower end of the screen toward the Pokémon to catch it. The better the toss, the more experience points you earn. You can even toss a curveball to catch them with flair. A green circle expands and shrinks when you hold down on the Poké Ball before the toss. The wider the circle, the greater the odds of making a catch.

7. Stay safe out there. Yes, it's really tempting to keep your face down as you seek out Pokémon. Look up once in a while. You don't want to bump into someone, or trip and fall and possibly break your smartphone. Because a broken smartphone definitely won't help you get that Charmander.

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Ryan Machay (left) searches for Pokemon on his smartphone

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