How to catch Pokemon in Pokemon GO

If you’re having trouble filling out your Pokédex and have questions about the process of catching Pokémon in Pokémon GO, this guide has all the answers.

How to catch Pokemon in Pokemon GO

The main mechanic of Pokémon GO is capturing Pokémon. At first it seems like an easy task, but there are a number of factors and details that are not so clear and not exactly explained by the game. Check out in this guide all the peculiarities of the system and how to increase your chances of success.

How to catch a pokemon

When you’re facing a Pokémon, it’s time to focus. The capture difficulty depends on each species, after all, a Zubat that moves constantly is much harder to hit than a Caterpie, for example. Also, a very strong Dragonite will require more attempts than a weak Rattata.

The basic premise is target shooting – hold the Poké Ball and shoot it towards the target using your finger. Ideally, angle the throw so that it hits more towards the center of the colored circle, as you get bonus capture chances and also XP at the end of the encounter. The very color of this circle already indicates the probability of capturing the Pokémon in question. See the table below:




Probability of Capture


















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There are several factors that can interfere with the chances of catching a Pokémon:

  • The species of pokemon
  • Pokemon’s level
  • The type of Poké Ball used — the Big Ball  and the Ultra Ball  increase the odds of a successful capture
  • The use (or not) of a Fruit
  • Use of the Curve Ball technique
  • Throw accuracy — the smaller the circle, the bigger the bonus


To throw a Curved Ball, simply rotate the Poké Ball with your finger and then throw it towards one of the Pokémon’s sides, depending on the rotation you used when rotating your finger.

Note that even if the capture is unsuccessful and the Pokémon flees, you still receive 25 bonus XP. It’s still far from the 100 XP given for a successful capture, but it’s a nice consolation prize.


There are many other factors present in the game, but these do not affect the chances of catching a Pokémon:

  • The Trainer level
  • The number of captures you have already made
  • The Pokémon’s type, stats, or IV
  • If the Poké Ball hits the Pokémon outside the colored circle
  • The number of attempts
  • The launch time or speed
  • The time of day or weather


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