What is your fondest school memory?
Whether it’s how you impressed your terror teacher or how you stood up to some bullies from the other class, we all had our moments both good and bad. School isn’t just a place for us to learn about the world around us, it’s a place where you learn about yourself and the people who will matter to you in your life’s journey.
It’s true that perhaps we all were students at one point or another. Even then, maybe we’re all students still and this world is just one big school where the subjects are taught differently. Older students are given more advanced subjects, and we never stop learning as long as we live. Even if you’re a member of the school faculty, you’re still a student in your own right.
Faculty members have plenty to do on their shoulders. For one, they ensure that the students are fulfilling their purpose in school: to learn and socialize. Sometimes, they may contribute to the growth of the school by making it a more inviting and hospitable place. Do you want to know more about how you, too, can make a difference in academia? Have you wondered what it’s like to run a school in a nutshell? Take a gander at Kairosoft’s Pocket Academy 3.
Kairosoft, the folks behind titles such as Kingdom Adventurers, Jumbo Airport Story, and Forest Camp Story, come to you with yet another fun and easy-to-play simulator: Pocket Academy 3. The goal of this game is to make your young students flourish and grow in a wonderful and enjoyable environment whilst going up the national rankings of the school board. You will need to make sure your students attain high grades as well as chase their dreams when they graduate, but doing all these is hard when there are a lot of nuances that affect your progress.
Have you opened your school and started your school year? Is it a little overwhelming or do you not know what to do? Worry no more, for we at Level Winner have come up with a comprehensive Pocket Academy 3 guide for beginners! Read on and prepare to make your school the best place to learn, grow, and play!
Pocket Academy 3 at a Glance
Much like many games under Kairosoft’s belt, Pocket Academy 3 is a management simulator. Funnily enough, it may seem that Pocket Academy 3 has skipped the second installment, but let us briefly shed light on that.
When the very first Pocket Academy was released in Kairosoft’s native country, Japan, it was never translated and released outside of Japan. They decided to make the second installment, Pocket Academy 2, which was the first iteration of Pocket Academy that was ever translated.
So, outside of Japan, Pocket Academy 2 was released as Pocket Academy which can be downloaded from the App Store and the PlayStore today. The original Pocket Academy has been translated nearly 8 years later and re-released in the West as Pocket Academy ZERO. Thus, here we are with the latest iteration of the Pocket Academy series, the third one.
For many avid Kairosoft players, this game would easily be understood with the following goals in mind (NOTE: this applies to most Kairosoft games, not all):
● Raise your popularity
● Gain more visitors or employees
● Send your denizens on adventures and earn prizes
● Manage your upkeep with expenses and maintenance fees
It’s easier said than done, especially because Kairosoft’s growing popularity has garnered itself an entirely new set of players possibly unfamiliar with how most of their games play. But don’t worry, if you’re completely new to anything Kairosoft, Pocket Academy is a great place to start, and this is an excellent way for us to introduce to you how it plays.
Let’s first start with it being a management simulation.
You have this project, in this case, a school. The school will only start with a few students and 1 or 2 teachers at first. As you continue to play the game, the school will rapidly grow in population, and because of that, you will need to make the school bigger.
Expansions and more Facilities within the school will have to be implemented to attract more potential students and teachers. Aesthetics are just as important, since having these things known as Combo Spots (which we will discuss later) will help improve school popularity. Your overall goal is to be a prestigious place for students to be in, after all.
You will also face challenges along the way since running a school is no walk in the park. You may have students that would like to chase their dreams but also need career advice. This isn’t your problem, per se, but the student goes to your school so it most certainly is because the environment the student has been soaked in influenced their choices thus far.
You may even need to make hard decisions like dismissing teachers if your school needs to cut costs. It’s harsh, but you won’t be able to advance if you can’t afford the upkeep. This is where most players would need help especially since money is a tricky, tricky thing just like it is in real life.
Winning the game is a matter of reaching a certain point in time in-game by having the most amount of points at the end of it. Your points are rated by the overall performance of your school: winning competitions, successfully holding festivals and making your students pass for their dream jobs, etc. Going for gold is one thing, but you must first push your students in the right direction for them to succeed.
Make no mistake, though. Unlike most games in the PlayStore and App Store these days, Pocket Academy 3 is not an idle game. This means that when you leave the game, there are no bonuses to come back to. The game’s pace, despite being a management game, is very quick but it’s this quickness that keeps players on their toes.
You can earn money as quickly as lose it, so there’s no need for any idle rewards. At the end of each school day, you receive a stipend of funds that you should use in improving your school. Occasionally, you will also receive stipends as gifts from the government or the Vice Principal.
Immediately upon hopping into the game, one could wonder what Pocket Academy 3’s different menus can do since they stand out a lot from the side when the game is paused. These pop out when you press the Menu button on the lower right portion of the screen. In fact, upon knowing what each of these can do, you will already know all that you need to get a high score in-game.
Pocket Academy 3’s Menus
The menus of Pocket Academy 3 are powerful tools and essentials needed for any school admin. Each button has a function that allows the player to take full control of what happens to the school. Mastering these will allow you to master the school and its personnel completely. But because this can get confusing for the player initially, allow us to discuss these in brief.
This menu is where you reshape and completely remodel the school as a whole. Imagine, boring and dull one day to completely vibrant and lively the next. Would you want to study in a mostly gray school? This is also where you can change the layout of the school by rearranging rooms, Facilities, and even bits of nature. The best time to use this option is during the afternoon when all the students and teachers are leaving for home and when it’s nighttime.
If you’d like to add halls, grass, etc., tap on what you’d like to add and the game will commence the editing mode. The tiles highlighted in blue are where they will be placed, dragging the screen around will extend the reach of the tiles but at a higher cost of money. Don’t spend too much, as you’ll need these to install Facilities. Just always keep in mind that some Facilities might be bigger than others.
If you ever notice that some of the items on your campus say “No Path” this means that they cannot be interacted with. The item will only become interactive when it is placed along a path. Tiles that count as paths are Wood Halls, Sidewalks, Dirt Paths, Grass, and Stone Paths. Placing anything on Dirt will not allow passage for anyone.
Requests are wishes, both big and small, from students and school faculty alike. Many of them cost a pretty penny, so be sure to pick the ones that you think will benefit the school. Like say, fulfilling this one request will allow the school to finally have a proper restroom. We don’t know how the personnel within the school perimeter answer the call of nature, but we’ll let you figure that out!
Small Requests are those that can be accomplished immediately whereas big Requests require some time to complete. For instance, a big Request may take an entire in-game day to complete. More often than not, big Requests reward you with new facilities while small Requests solely focus on student improvement. You may use this to further boost your students’ performance.
Another neat thing you can do with this menu is you can unlock special Requests from students in particular by tapping the Locked button on the lower left of this menu. Clicking any student here will allow you to give them specific seeds that will help boost their needed stat for them to send you a Request. Try prodding around and maybe your students’ requests will make your school an even better place. This is the best way to find new Facilities and rooms!
The Education menu is quite an interesting one since it focuses mainly on student improvement. The submenus are as follows:
● Sp. Class
This submenu is to hold Special Classes for students within a particular classroom. Special Classes greatly affect and boost the different grades of a student in particular subjects, depending on what’s chosen. For example, picking “How to Take Notes” as a class will greatly boost the students’ performance in Social Studies. Beware that you will be using up Research Points for this.
Research Points come in the following icons: Humanities (Pencil), Sciences (Flask), and Culture (Book). These can be obtained solely from students being in class as well as their interactions outside of the classroom. Most notably, Research Points come from different Facilities. For example, the Bulletin Board provides points for Humanities.
● Use Item
Much like what you can do from the Request menu, you can manually see what a student needs here. Giving a student a Seed of their need will increase their rate of passing tests and even getting better results at contests. In other words, giving your students these different Seeds helps them reach their dreams.
● Stu. Counseling
Student Counseling is a way you can steer your students in a better direction in their life. Each student requires a different way of counseling and bringing out the best in them is how they can strive for their dream jobs even better. This means that it goes hand-in-hand with the Use Item menu that we discussed above.
Student Counseling has two options: Do Student Counseling and Do Career Counseling. The first one will help students feel better about being in their own skin, so to speak. Each student has their own set of personalities and an indicator of how compatible they are with their current Career Path. A blue X means that they are completely incompatible with their Career Path, a yellow circle means that they are all right with it, and a red bullseye means that they’re completely compatible with it.
When you start counseling, you are normally given 2 options as pictured in the primary image of this bullet. The one on top which costs more points than the one below often sets the student toward a better outlook in school whereas the one below that costs fewer points is a more unorthodox means of counseling that brings out a student’s more rebellious spirit.
Some students prefer to be Punks while some would want to be Angelic, but this is fine as it shows that we all truly are different people. Go for the bullseye and don’t worry too much if your student wants to be a Punk. They won’t want to stick around clubs anymore or earn you Research Points during School Events, but at least they’re more comfortable being who they are. It might even be a great thing since it’ll help them get the job of their dreams.
The other Student Counseling option, Do Career Counseling, will help students strive for a different Career Path. This will especially come in handy if they have a blue, frustrated emoji over their Pass Rate stat. Upon tapping them, you should be able to see a list of what jobs they plan to land after going to school.
If there’s anything that they’re more suited to doing, tap that and hope they pursue it instead. It might not pay as much as their first intended Career Path, but at least they’ll be more successful. Money coming from the success of a student’s graduation is an important source of income, so always try to give your students more realistic goals.
● Career Path List
This contains a list of the available Career Paths that you have unlocked thus far. Unlocking new Career Paths happens completely at random around the campus. For instance, the Tennis Court may unlock the Paparazzi path, the Vending Machine Room may unlock the Student of an Elite University path, and so on and so forth.
Try unlocking as many of these as possible so you don’t have to keep your students to such limited career choices. The best way to unlock these is to just keep building all that you can while fulfilling big Requests. Make sure you have the money for it, though, some Requests can be expensive!
Clubs are a way for students to get together and focus on a common interest together. You may attempt to send students out on Practice Matches for their club so they can compete and win prizes (like Seeds). Depending on the Club, the kind of Seed rewarded may change. For example, sending the Baseball Club out on Practice Matches will reward you with Exercise Seeds.
Much like the Education menu, the Admin menu comes with a couple of submenus as well. These mostly focus on the school as a whole as well as letting students compete in national Contests, arranging for potential students to Tour the school, how to rank the school up, and a Spot Guide which we will tackle in a few. The submenus under the Admin menu are as follows:
● Rank Up
This is where you’ll see what you need to do to increase the rank of your school. If anything, this is where you should be most focused since ranking up opens more possibilities to making your school an even better place through additional School Events, Contests, etc. Apart from that, this expands the amount of land that your school has so it can have more classrooms, more Facilities, and more people to have inside it. The hard part here is achieving the goals as well as paying the rank-up fee.
● Hire Staff
This submenu involves who teaches in your school and what. This is also where you may assign each teacher to advise a Club as well as raise a teacher’s class. By tapping on a teacher, you may choose what you may do with them (you can even rename them if you’d like that).
Leveling up their classes will allow them to provide better education, but beware, higher levels require more money. If you have the money for it, raise their levels high and maximize their point distribution. You may also choose to raise each of your different teachers’ levels equally and slowly to save money.
Naturally, if you have lots of classrooms, you will have to have more teachers. You can only have more teachers if you have the space for it, so before you hit that Hire button, be sure that you can afford them. Their Growth also denotes how effectively they impart their knowledge to students. An expensive teacher may have better stats but their bloated salary might be detrimental to the improvement of your school.
If you feel that a teacher might be too expensive for your school and you cannot keep up with their teaching fees, you may choose to Dismiss them by pressing the Dismissal button that appears on the lower left of the main page of the Hire Staff menu. Simply tap the teacher you want to Dismiss and then Dismiss them. Always remember that more teachers will mean more Teacher Rooms. Make space for these if you need to!
Contests are where you can send various students out to compete against other schools and these can only be done twice a month in-game. Each of these Contests has required stats that only your best students can fit (e.g. Athletics and Flair). Thankfully, upon choosing a Contest, the game automatically highlights the best student for the job.
More difficult Contests will also require more Research Points to participate. The best thing that Contests do is that they reward you with a specific kind of Seed. Aside from Seeds, besting another school in a Contest might inspire the other student to enroll in your school the next year. Enter Contests to farm for Seeds and get more students. Got it? Good!
The Tour option only works if you have a potential student coming to your school. The potential student will pay a fee and then proceed to wander about your school grounds, filling up a happiness meter. If they are satisfied with your school, they will most likely enroll next year. We’ll tell you how you can make your school more attractive in the next few bullets.
● Spot Guide
The Spot Guide is a fun way to put certain Facilities and landmarks together. If you happen to have the three Facilities listed on any page of the Spot Guide, building and assembling them within proximity of each other will trigger special bonuses. These will also help generate Research Points over time.
Any student that happens to visit a Spot will also increase some of their stats. Having more Spots around the school will help students perform better overall as it makes the school’s environment more than “just a school” to them. Make it memorable!
The Data menu is where you can view various statistics that involve your school. These include potential applicants to your school, the list of students currently enrolled, teachers who are currently teaching here, a list of your Facilities, and your school’s general info. We’d like to draw your attention most importantly to the Facility List.
Here, you can view which of your Facilities are the most expensive as well as what might be affecting your upkeep apart from expensive teachers’ salaries. If you feel like some of these might be too expensive for your funds to keep up with, try removing them under the Build menu using the Remove function. You will put these away for a later time, but at least you can focus your funds on more important matters. It might sound like only a cheapskate would do this, but hey, education ain’t cheap!
The many menus of Pocket Academy are great powers to wield. So powerful that time stops when you press the Menu button. Make sure that you know what you want to do before taking action since some Facilities can be quite expensive. You wouldn’t want to build more of the same facility by mistake and accidentally throw your school into debt.
This part of the game is quite important since most of your actions will come from here. Now with that all covered, let’s now talk about how you can make your academy the best one that the world has ever seen!
Best is a subjective term, but hey, let’s make your academy the best for you anyway. Follow these small steps and you’ll have a school that nobody would want to leave! … Rather, a school that will help kids chase their dreams (much better)!
1. Remove Unnecessary Areas for Maximum Space (at First)
At the beginning of the game, you will notice that you have a limited amount of space. Where do you put all the things you wanna build?
This may sound a little cruel, but you might first want to fill the pond with dirt (as seen in the picture). That’s right, go to Build and tap the Remove tool to delete the pond from the school grounds as you won’t be needing it yet. You don’t have to worry about this either since you’ll be unlocking the lake tiles later on, so you can build an even better pond. Why stop at a pond when you can have a river in the school?
If there are any trees or plants that you don’t want anywhere, rearrange them instead. Trust us, trees and plants are important as we’ll explain very soon. Keep these close to the school instead. Rocks are also worthy of relocation, so follow this in the same vein as you would with trees and plants.
That said, it’s important to lay your school out in a way that’s accessible for all. Pathing matters, but even more so with the school’s overall layout!
2. Layout Matters
Do you have your Principal’s Office in an odd area? Is your Arcade within the school premises? Is the Basketball Court indoors but awkwardly placed? We’re here to give you ideas!
The most obvious decision when it comes to setting a layout for your school is having all the classrooms together. This will keep students from being too far apart from their classes and it also ties everything so neatly together. It also lets you pick out classrooms with students who have their Auras activated more easily. You’ll be able to hold Special Classes in the blink of an eye (more on this later).
If there are facilities that require an outdoor setting such as the Track, be sure to surround them with some foliage to inspire the students while they are there. Place rest spots like Benches and Restrooms nearby as well. The more that the school has decorative parts of the environment nearby certain rooms, the more that they generate Research Points over time. They might even put the students so much at ease that they’ll excel in their studies.
Did you know that combining certain facilities and nature will form what’s called a Spot?
3. Make as Many Spots as Possible
Was there ever a favorite spot you had in your school days? Was it a place beneath a tree, a water cooler next to a vending machine? You can recreate these, too.
As we’ve discussed earlier, the Spot Guide under the Admin menu is a means for you to combine certain facilities and nature. This means that these three items should be touching one another in no particular order. They have to be within each others’ immediate vicinity. Having multiple Spots of the same kind is nice, but strive to have different Spots every time since each Spot generates a different set of Research Points. You’re gonna need all sorts of flavors.
For example, there is a Spot called the Spooky Spot. This requires the Famous Scholar Statue, a Cherry Tree, and a Water Pump all nearby. By nearby, we mean at least 1 square apart from each other. They may also be stuck together if you fancy that. The Spooky Spot generates bonuses for Humanities and Science, but not Culture. You will need something like a Shopping Spot, a Courtyard Spot, or a Science Spot if you’d like to generate some Culture points.
Some of these Spots may also foster an affinity between students. Couples are a great thing!
4. Support Student Couples
What’s school life without a little romance?
Love and infatuation are unstoppable especially when it buds among the youth. Instead of getting distracted from their studies, Couples in Pocket Academy 3 inspire and help them succeed. Having love bloom in your academy is a sign of a great environment, so don’t be too surprised if your school has a lot of Couples in it. You could see a bigger difference in the grades of students that way. Of course, this doesn’t mean that every confession goes well.
Occasionally, when a confession happens, you witness it unfold with the nervous student letting their crush know how they feel. If the latter responds with “Let’s be friends,” the former may have the chance of trying a new way to earn the latter’s affection. Usually, there are only 2 ways they can try, but if you’re lucky, there will be a 3rd, special technique that they can use to win their crush over and it works more often than not.
Love blooms normally in places with high Spirit stats. Facilities will gain a higher Spirit stat if you put certain plants nearby. Much like Spots, these have to be stuck to each other or at most, 1 square apart. The following plants give a boost to Spirit:
It isn’t possible to increase the Spirit rating of a Facility by putting more of these plants surrounding them, but the rating will increase naturally as more and more people make use of it. Make these Facilities look attractive and you’re sure to have more people coming by. It’s just like in real life!
At one point or another, students, especially those as Couples, will activate each other’s Auras and they can get better bonuses when they take special classes. We’ll explain this further in the next bullet. Read on!
5. Run Special Classes with Student Auras
Inspiration: it’s what can drive us forward into doing something ordinarily into doing something great. While we couldn’t exactly tell when one is inspired, everyone else could certainly feel it. That’s what Auras do!
Auras are indicators of inspiration that emanate from every student in the school. Having a student with an Aura will allow them to study better and even gain better scores at what they do. What you should do when a student has an Aura is give them Special Classes.
Once you’ve selected the classroom with the inspired student(s), be sure to pay attention to the grades of their subjects. Whatever they might be lagging behind in, try running them through some Special Classes that will cover up for these weaknesses. When the Special Class is over, and if the inspired students have attended, their grades will shoot up depending on the strength of their Aura. Thus, it’s wise to take advantage of these Special Classes when your students are aglow with their Auras. Be warned that after taking a Special Class, the student’s Aura will disappear.
The ranking of Auras is as follows, in descending order:
With this in mind, a student with a Yellow Aura will not perform as well as a student with Auras of colors above it. Seeing a student with a Rainbow Aura is rare but this means you shouldn’t squander your chance to make them improve through a Special Class. If an Aura isn’t used in time, it, too, will disappear.
It can get tough when you start losing your Research Points. That’s why School Events happen!
6. Low on Points? Pick Your School Events Wisely!
Every now and then, a School Event will pop up. Usually, this only occurs during Summer and Autumn, so you’ll have the chance to choose a different event each time.
A School Event requires a large amount of money to launch but the payoff involves getting a ton of Research Points depending on your chosen event. Later on, you might be so lucky as to earn more than two types of Research Points but at the cost of a greater amount of money needed to launch the event.
This Event will require a student to lead it and usually, the game will suggest a student that might be able to spearhead it. If you feel like someone else might be suited, go ahead and pick them, but we strongly recommend choosing who the game suggests.
When the School Event happens, some students will have their Auras activated, and that will help increase your Research Point earnings better. Conversely, if a student isn’t wearing the appropriate outfit for the Event, they won’t earn as many Research Points. As we mentioned earlier, Punk students won’t earn you any Research Points whenever they attend the Event.
By the end of this, you might be broke or you might still be low on Research Points. There’s one last thing you can do actively.
7. Look Around the School for Presents
Christmas comes early every year and that’s because presents are hidden all around the school!
Whenever a present is left in a room, this signifies that the room has been leveled up. A leveled-up room or Facility will give a present that rewards your school with Research Points, Seeds, or even wads of money. Whenever a school day ends, be sure to scroll around and start clicking any present you see. Naturally, this will happen more the more people you have wandering the school, so attract more students and hire more teachers. As we said a lot of times in this guide, try not to go overboard on the expenses.
There are a ton of other factors that you need to consider when playing Pocket Academy 3, but we suggest you enjoy these at your own pace. Much like a teacher bestowing their knowledge onto a student, we’ll give you enough skills needed to survive out in the world, but it’s only up to you to explore how the world works and learn things the best way you can. Regardless, you would’ve learned the following things after reading this guide:
● How to build/rearrange/remove structures on the school premises
● How fulfilling Requests works and how this is the best way to unlock new Facilities
● How Special Classes work alongside Student Counseling and using Seeds on students
● That more Facilities inspire more Career Paths
● That entering Practice Matches with Clubs earns you important prizes
● How to Rank Up your School and that Ranking Up earns you more space and more things to do
● How to hire more teachers and increase the levels of their classes as well as how to dismiss them if you feel like they’re too expensive for your school
● How to enter Contests and win Seeds as prizes
● How to introduce new students to your school through Tours
● How to make Spots for students to make memories at
● How to account for all of your ongoing expenses at school
● How to maximize your space in the beginning
● That the overall layout of your school affects its efficiency in fostering an environment for learning and inspiration
● That making all kinds of Spots around the school will generate different Research Points
● That Student Couples have to be supported for both students to be successful
● That Student Auras are best used during Special Classes to maximize their learning
● That picking the right School Event will earn you the best amounts of Research Points when you need them
● That there are presents hidden all over the school, each of them containing different prizes
And that’s the end of that for Pocket Academy 3! Make your school the best place to be and have your students sing praises of it even until they have kids of their own. Maybe they’ll send their children to your school, too! Who knows?
Did you play Pocket Academy 3 several times? Do you know its ins and outs? Are you a huge Kairosoft fan? Would you like to give us tips of your own or point out things that we might’ve gotten wrong in this guide? Let us know in the comments down below!