Tired of playing Pokémon GO after all those months? If so, then you may be interested in the Pokémon Company’s new mobile game for Android and iOS devices, Pokémon Duel. And it’s a completely different kind of game from Niantic’s huge hit of a game from 2016. This new title is a strategy board game that “uses Pokémon figures,” and it’s very similar in many ways to a trading card/deck building game, where you can collect various figures and test your deck out in League Matches. You can compete against players from all over the world as you try to make it to the top of the league rankings, as you face real competition in real-time, win new figures and items, and improve your deck.
Thanks to Pokémon GO, the cute pocket-sized monsters became relevant in pop culture once again. Combining last year’s big phenomenon with the rise in popularity of TCGs/CCGs, the timing of this new game appears to be perfect. So why not hunker down and check out our Pokémon Duel ultimate guide? Before playing the game, we would advise you to read this complete list of tips and tricks, but if you’ve been one of the game’s first players and are looking for some advice on how to beat more opponents, you’ll still want to read our guide and maybe learn a new thing or two.
1. Try The Different Modes Out
Of course, the first thing you’ll want to do is to compete against some real players and test the waters out for yourself. That, after all, is the main come-on of CCGs and similar titles – the opportunity to build your own deck and beat some real-life opponents instead of predictable AI foes. But if you’re playing Pokémon Duel for the first time, you may want to explore around a bit and try the various game modes out for yourself. We won’t go deep into the 1 vs. 1 mode just yet, but since this is the first tip, allow us to give you an overview of the other game modes.
Quests are a great way to get yourself more rewards right off the bat, as you can win new Pokémon, earn yourself more XP for the Pokémon you use in 1 vs. 1 battles, and get a variety of other rewards. We’ll talk more about those rewards in depth later on in this guide. Look for the six-square design near the Play button, and check out the list of quests and the requirements for each.
Training mode might sound like a drag, considering that you’ll be competing against AI opponents – pretty predictable and dopey ones, might we add. But there are some rewards to be had in this mode, such as Gems that you can earn if you complete each challenge in the mode. Not only can you gain some premium currency, you can also get a better understanding of the game’s mechanics and test strategies out with zero stakes whatsoever.
Finally, Room Match is the mode you want to play if you really want to maximize the social element of Pokémon Duel. In here, you can challenge specific opponents, and this would be great if you’ve got friends who also play the game. But if you don’t, you can try challenging better opponents in lower-stakes circumstances. You will need to play Room Matches anyway, as there are some daily missions that would require you to play this mode.
2. Complete All Three Daily Missions And Special Missions Once Available
The game will give you three daily missions which can be completed organically, meaning by playing the game like you normally would. We would advise you to complete these missions as soon as possible, so you can get some nice rewards and move forward quickly as you seek to improve your deck. And once you’re done with ten Daily Missions, you will unlock even more missions, which will then give you a chance to earn even better rewards. These are Special Missions, though you will have to be quick in completing them, as they will only be live for 24 hours.
What are the things you can get if you complete the Daily Missions and Special Missions? Well, one of the free things you can get are free gems, so it’s really important you complete both daily and Special Missions.
3. Log In To The Game Every Day
So far, we’re seeing that Pokémon Duel is very generous in rewarding committed players by giving them freebies for logging in each day. And since this is now a common occurrence in mobile games, we’re willing to wager that this is going to be a permanent set of rewards for regular players. You can get various freebies by logging in daily, and the rewards include a ton of free gems. Now this may turn into “some gems” over time, but in any case, simply logging in a few seconds per day (even if you don’t play) can add to your premium currency.
4. Make Sure Your Pokémon Are Leveled Up
In order to improve your chances of winning, you will need to level up your Pokémon. Doing this will, of course, improve their stats as your own stats go up. And that’s also going to improve their chances of connecting on their attacks. More accurate attacks means better odds of winning your duels against opponents, so with that in mind, you should be leveling up your better Pokémon ahead of the others. While the old slogan “gotta catch ‘em all” may apply here, that doesn’t necessarily translate to “gotta upgrade ‘em all” – you don’t need to upgrade any Pokémon that you won’t be using regularly. Still, you should try to get all the Pokémon in your deck to level 2 or better, then upgrade your top Pokémon one level at a time.
5. Try To Keep A Pokémon Close To, Or On Your Play Button
Next, we’re going to move on to some of those all-important tips for winning duels. That’s the heart of the game – facing real players in card/puzzle duels and trying your best to beat them. And the simplest way to improve your chances of winning is to make sure there’s one Pokémon close to the Play button, or better yet, on the Play button itself. This is a great way to ensure yourself of more wins in the lower leagues, as you can beat many opponents that way.
6. What Pokémon Should You Use In Duels?
There are many schools of thought when it comes to choosing the right Pokémon to use in Pokémon Duel. But the best ones to use in duels are oftentimes the faster ones. This may sound counterintuitive, as Pokémon that have two moves are usually better off stats-wise than those that are capable of moving extra squares. But it’s the faster ones that often work better, as they give you more wiggle room in terms of strategy, and allow for a wider range of movement.
You can also use Pokémon that have lower miss chances. It’s quite obvious if you come to think about it – lower miss chances mean better chances to connect. And once a Pokémon misses on an attack, it’s going to be removed from play. Likewise, it’s a good idea to have some powerful Pokémon that can dish out tons of damage. Those that have special abilities may sound more interesting and exciting to use, but we recommend keeping things simpler and focusing on damage, speed, and miss chances rather than fancy stuff like freezing opponent Pokémon and whatnot.
7. Use The Cards To Your Advantage
Pokémon Duel is a similar game to CCGs and TCGs, but it is not a true CCG or TCG, as you can see. But there are cards that you can collect, and you should focus as well on this aspect of the game. Don’t restrict yourself to playing the Pokémon themselves, but play the cards as well. Be familiar with the capabilities of your cards, and know when to use them, because they can be game-changers that could give you the upper hand.
8. Don’t Rush Into New Battles
It sounds like a good idea to initiate battles whenever possible, but the truth is you should bide your time and plan your moves carefully. If you lose a battle during one of your turns, you might allow your opponent to make a good move and leave you more vulnerable than you were the turn before. So what should you do then? We suggest keeping it cool and not initiating a new battle unless you are perfectly sure that you can win it, unless you know you won’t be allowing your opponent a chance to catch one on you.
9. Crowd The Board
Crowding is a good way to get an advantage over your opponent. This would entail having as many Pokémon as possible on the board. That’s going to surround your opponent with a ton of creatures and effectively help get their Pokémon off the board. That’s also going to increase your odds of making it to their Play button and winning the match. So if you’ve got the chance, then go for it – crowd your opponent, but make sure you don’t neglect tactical strategy while using your strength in numbers.
10. Open Boosters For More Pokémon
Once again, you gotta catch ‘em all. The game will only allow you to play a maximum of six Pokémon per deck, and that’s really not much if you keep in mind how many Pokémon there are all in all. So how can you add to your collection of Pokémon? For sure, it won’t be a case of stepping out of your house and walking around in hopes of catching more of them – this is NOT Pokémon GO!
The first way to get more Pokémon is to collect more boosters. There are free boosters, and if you don’t know what they are, these are small boxes that you can get each time you win battles, but can only be opened a given time after you claim them. These boosters come with at least one Pokémon inside, with more available if you open a rarer-tier box. Next, you’ve got Play Boosters, which are different from the free ones, and they can typically give you more Pokémon once you open them. You can get them by challenging players and beating them in duels. For each battle you win, you get three points, and if you lose, you’ll still get one point as a form of consolation. Pokémon Duel will allow you to open a Play Booster once you reach the ten-point mark.
11. How To Game The Booster System
We wouldn’t really call this a cheat, but rather a way of taking advantage of the game’s matchmaking system and how it works. You can try challenging players four times in a row and deliberately losing, as that’s going to get you four points, one for each loss. Make it quick and easy and play to lose, not to win. And once you’ve lost four matches and seen your rating drop down, you can then play seriously and face some opponents who may likely be weaker than the ones you lost to.
12. Complete The Quests
We mentioned Quest mode several tips ago, and here’s why you should complete as many of them as possible. For completing quests, you’ll normally get boxes with two Pokémon inside for completing quests, and aside from the new Pokémon, you can get a variety of other freebies. But unlike quests in other games, you can replay them as often as possible, and the good thing about quests is that you’ll be facing AI opponents. Once again, don’t worry about the AI – more often than not, it’s easy to beat these predictable computer opponents.
We’re going to talk about other ways to earn coins later on, but while we’re still on the topic of quests, we should add that these single-player battles against the AI are also a way for you to earn coins. The AI battles are of increasing difficulty as you make your way to the top floor of the different hotels and try to beat the owner and claim their emblem as yours. Aside from the Pokémon and XP you can earn, you’ll also get some coins, and you can spin a wheel after the duel for a bonus prize. You’ll get a free Pokémon if the wheel stops on blue, and coins if it stops on red.
The quests can also earn you some gems as a reward once you complete the requirements, and we’ve heard that the box drops after each game can also give you some free gems.
13. Should You Buy Pokémon At The Shop?
The strategies we mentioned above are all good ways of getting new Pokémon for free. But if you’ve got some real money to spend on a mobile game, then you might as well try spending a few bucks at the in-game Shop. The Shop offers Pokémon packs available for real-life money, and the advantage of buying Pokémon packs is that you’ve got your choice of pack types. This will also allow you to get Materials – think of them like the crafting materials you often get in RPGs. If you’ve got enough Materials, you can choose your own specific Pokémon to buy, provided you can afford it.
14. What Are Ingots, And How Can They Earn You Coins?
The game won’t make it clear straight away, but there are items in Pokémon Duel called Ingots that serve multiple purposes. You can use them to level your Pokémon up via the Fusion process, and that’s mostly what you’ll be using them for. But you also have the option to sell them for coins, with rarer Ingots fetching higher values than the more common ones – these are tiered in rarity from Common to EX. And if you’re not sure how and where to find those Ingots, you can get them via the Time Boosters in the League duels.
15. How To Sell Items
Selling Ingots and other items is easy. The first thing to do is to tap on the Shop icon on the bottom part of the main menu, and go to the Exchange Coins options on the right. You will be shown the contents of your inventory, as well as the amount of coins you can get if you sell the items. The game also makes it easy for you to sell multiple items on one go – tap on each item you want to sell, but make sure you’re getting good value before you hit the Exchange button. You can also sell Pokémon figures this way, and that’s what we shall be talking about in our next tip.
16. When Should You Sell Pokémon?
Now you may be wondering why you should be selling Pokémon figures, when one of the most intriguing aspects of this game is the fact that you will be collecting Pokémon. But Pokémon figures can also be sold for coins via the Exchange Coins screen we told you about in the last tip. Should you go ahead and sell your duplicates to make a few quick bucks?
Most of the time, the answer would be no. Duplicates are just as valuable in Pokémon Duel as they are in Pokémon GO – you will need them as Fusion material so that you can level up your Pokémon. But the only time they’ll earn you a pretty penny is you’re selling Rare or EX Pokémon, and you wouldn’t want to sell those figures because they’ll do you more good in battles/duels than they would as fodder for coins.
17. Other Ways To Get Gems
We mentioned a couple ways to get free gems in the game, but we haven’t mentioned Special Events. We haven’t confirmed this yet, but the Poikemon Company is likely to launch a good number of Special Events in the coming weeks and months. While the events in Pokémon GO may have offered perks such as double candy, double XP, etc., the events in Pokémon Duel may reward players with new Pokémon figures, coins, and maybe some free gems. Keep your eyes peeled and always be monitoring the latest updates from the developers by clicking on the “I” in the main menu.
But if you really want to get gems quickly, you can buy them if you’ve got some real-world cash to burn. The Shop may launch special offers from time to time, but even without offers, there are ways to maximize your purchases, such as buying the right gem packs. For example, it’s not really a good idea to spend 99 cents a week on a gem pack that only comes with 12 inside. Instead, you might want to spend $4 each month and get 57 gems. Compared to 12 gems each week for four weeks getting you a total of 48, that’s effectively nine gems as a free bonus.