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How Autospin Works on a Pokeball Plus August 24, 2020

Posted by Maniac in Reviews.
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A while ago, we did a video for people interested in using the PokéBall Plus accessory or how it stacks up against the Pokémon Go Plus. If you haven’t seen it, you can watch that video below.

One of the major selling points of the PokéBall Plus is its ability to connect to a Nintendo Switch game, transfer a captured Pokémon into it, and using it to earn (depending on the game) items or experience points. It also works with Pokémon Go, and has the ability to catch Pokémon, hatch eggs and collect in-game goodies from PokéStops while your smart device is in standby. Since we released that video, we’ve gotten several questions about the accessory’s “autospin” feature, designed to automatically collect goodies from a passing PokéStop without the need for user interaction. We didn’t have much experience with that feature, but we have since worked a bit with the functionality and can report on how it works. So here is what needs to happen.

First off, the autospin feature only works with a PokéBall Plus, you will not be able to use it with a Pokémon Go Plus. To enable autospin, there needs to be a Pokémon inside the controller. If you bought a PokéBall Plus brand new from a retail establishment the mythical Pokémon Mew that ships with brand-new units will automatically enable the autospin functionality. However, if your PokéBall Plus is used or you transferred your Mew into a game, you’ll need to transfer a Pokémon from a Generation 8 Switch game back into the PokéBall Plus. If you don’t know how to do that, this video should help you out.

Now that you have a Pokémon inside the PokéBall Plus, autospin will be enabled. However, I must warn you it is temperamental. In the time I’ve used any of these Pokémon Go accessories, I can tell you the game has a mind of its own on what it prioritizes. It will not autospin a PokéStop, even one it is in range of, unless the game has “chosen” the PokéStop. Keep in mind under normal circumstances when using a Pokémon Go Plus or an empty PokéBall Plus, the game only focuses on one object at a time. While Pokémon Go can notify you through your accessory if it is targeting a Pokémon of a species you’ve already captured (green), a Pokémon of a species you haven’t previously captured (yellow), or a PokéStop (blue), you have no say in what it focuses on first. If the game chooses to randomly offer you the chance to capture a wild Pokémon while in range of a PokéStop, it will not autospin the stop until it has exhausted capturing all the wild Pokémon in range. Since wild Pokémon frequently congregate around PokéStops, this can be frustrating. I have occasionally spent huge amounts of PokéBalls trying to clear an area well enough for the game to set a priority to the one PokéStop in range. Even with autospin enabled, this behavior will not change.

Now, Niantic is constantly tinkering with how Pokémon Go functions with its optional accessories. From what I remember, accessories are supposed to prioritize previously uncaptured Pokémon first, and its supposed to prioritize focusing on PokéStops in the event you are out of PokéBalls but I haven’t witnessed that behavior firsthand. It is very possible Niantic could release an update that will change the game’s behavior to prioritize wild Pokémon over PokéStops, but it is just as likely if they do they could change it back to random in the update they release after that.

One final note I would like to make clear from my testing. According to official documentation, autospin only re-enables if you transfer in a Pokémon from a Let’s Go game. I can confirm autospin will function even if a Pokémon is transferred from Sword or Shield. My guess is that documentation is out of date.

Pokémon Go is out now for Android and iOS smart devices.

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