pokemon go gym coins explained
I’m level 30 and I live in a large metropolitan area with many pockets of high and low population density. The following tips are what I’ve found to be helpful for me in my city, so your mileage may vary.
Ever since hitting level 27, my goal shifted from grinding EXP to redeeming max gym rewards (100 coins and 5000 stardust) every 21 hours. This was for several reasons:
- Grinding EXP is boring.
- Grinding EXP becomes nonsensical at higher levels. It takes progressively more EXP to level up and it becomes progressively harder to catch basic Pokemon. It is downright ridiculous that higher CP Pidgeys, Rattatas, Weedles, and Caterpies can break out of Great and Excellent throws on a regular basis. This gameplay mechanic discourages higher level players from trying to level up by catching all the Pokemon they see and it should be changed.
- Grinding EXP at higher levels bring very marginal returns as wild Pokemon levels get capped at 30.
- I want to complete my Pokedex by hatching more eggs while not spending any money on this game. I’m missing Porygon and Snorlax; they are rare but are obtainable from eggs. The coins I redeem are used solely to buy incubators.
- The ideal gym is inaccessible by car and has low foot traffic. Being able to comfortably take down a gym from inside the car is nice; if you take that away, you detract a lot of potential attackers.
- The ideal gym is in a neighborhood where your team dominates. Good luck holding a gym for more than a few minutes/hours if you wander into a neighborhood where you are on the minority team.
- Avoid setting up a gym where there is high population density. Try to avoid neighborhoods around colleges and schools a gym turnover rates are higher there.
- The ideal gym is located where GPS signal is spotty. This will frustrate attackers as they will invariably experience GPS drift. I cannot count how many times I’ve given up taking down a gym because I got locked out for GPS drift. If you want to establish a gym at these locations, make sure you go to the top floor of the building where the GPS signal is less obstructed.
II. Taking over and leveling up gyms
- Take advantage of weaknesses and STAB to maximize prestige gain.
- Keep an arsenal of powerful low CP Pokemon in your arsenal to help you level up gyms efficiently. I often employ Golduck/Omanyte/Starmie (against fire types), Wigglytuff (against Dragonite and Snorlax), Flareon/Arcanine (against Exeggcutor and Lapras), and Jolteon (against Vaporeon, Gyarados). This is by no means an exhaustive list, so don’t be afraid to experiment with your Pokemon to find what works for you.
- Only do the bubble-strat if you are leveling up the gym with other players. It’s nice to be selfless and prestige a gym up for your fellow teammates, but doing the bubble-strat by yourself is boring and you leave a CP20 Pokemon in the gym that will be knocked out easily.
- If you can’t add more than 350 prestige to lower tier gyms or 700 prestige to higher tier gyms, then strongly reconsider adding your Pokemon to this gym. You are not training efficiently and depending on how far you are away from the next tier, you may be spending too much time on this gym.
III. Adding Pokemon
- Ideally, you want to add a solid defender Pokemon with high CP and a good defensive move-set. These are Lapras, Snorlax, Slowbro, Exeggutor, Vaporoeon, and Dragonite, depending on your locale.
- If you don’t have the above listed Pokemon, you should add Pokemon with high enough CP to allow you to sit at the top of the gym.
- Add your Pokemon to high level gyms. High level gyms detract potential attackers because they take a lot of time and resources to take down.
- In high level gyms with high CP Pokemon, you should aim to not be in the bottom 3. For example, in a level 10 gym, you want to make sure you are at least the 4th from the bottom. This is because attackers will need to remove 30000 prestige before you are removed.
- If you add a high CP Pokemon that is a suboptimal defender to a gym, then train the gym to give it more prestige than what is needed to add your Pokemon. This is specifically for those who add Arcanines and Gyarados to gyms. These Pokemon have high CPs and sit in the higher echelons of the gym, but they are terrible gym defenders. As a rule of thumb, if I add an Arcanine, I train the gym 3 more times to add at least 1500 extra prestige.
- If you find yourself taking down a gym that you know you can’t hold for more than a few hours (but you need the gym to redeem max coins and stardust), then add a filler Pokemon that you would have transferred out of your inventory anyway. This way, when that Pokemon is defeated, you can just transfer it without wasting revives or potions.
- Take a screenshot of the Pokemon you add to a gym to help you track where your defending Pokemon are.
- Don’t add Snorlax, Lapras, Slowbro, or Chansey if it’s going to be the lowest Pokemon. These Pokemon are difficult to train against and your teammates will have a bad time.
- Look at the current defenders before adding your Pokemon. If it’s a tower made completely of Arcanines, then prioritize adding an Exeggutor to counter against attacking Vaporeons.
- Be judicious about leveling up Pokemon prior to adding them to gyms. This investment of stardust should pay itself back— if you invested 4500 stardust, then that Pokemon should defend a gym for at least 10 days (5000 stardust reward) for the initial investment to be worth it.
- Try to catch Growlithes, Eevees, and Exeggcutes as they have high CP growth rates. Growlithes with CP>1050 evolve into CP2400 Arcanines, Eevees with CP>900 evolve into CP2400 Vaporeons. These are the ones you want to evolve for gym placement as you won’t have to spend any extra stardust on them.
IV. Turf control
- Take down any new opposing gyms in your dominant neighborhood swiftly. You don’t want members of the other team to see budding gyms on your turf and level it up.
- If you want to establish a gym outside your team’s dominant neighborhood, start slowly by expanding at the borders. This way, your nearby team members can see a new budding gym and help level it up.
- Every now and then, if you have the time and/or a few friends who are willing to help, go to another team’s dominant neighborhood and knock down all of their level 10 gyms. This essentially “resets” that neighborhood and allows another team (hopefully yours) to take over it. Plus, it’s always good to send a message to that neighborhood’s dominant team to not to get too comfortable. It keeps the game fun.
- In highly contested gyms that get quickly trained up by an opposing team, take the gym down to the last 1 or 2 defenders and leave it. I like to do this to demoralize the other teams’ members because the last 1 or 2 defenders tend to be high level Snorlaxes that are impossible to train against.
V. Redeeming your reward
- Before you redeem your coins and stardust, manually count the number of defending Pokemon you have. There is a short lag between when a gym is taken down and when that is reflected on the shop page, so you want to make sure you are redeeming the max amount.
- Set up an alarm for 21 hours every time you redeem coins and stardust. Over the course of a week, you can get 800 coins and 40000 stardust.
- On the weekends, re-establish your hold in high level gyms in your team’s dominant neighborhood. On the weekend, I make sure I’m holding around 20 gyms and at the end of the week, I’m holding 12-14 gyms without having to add any new Pokemon over the week.