Tracking in Pokémon Go has been a bit of a mess since the game launched at the start of July. While the popular app may have earned the developers more than $200 million, that cash didn’t help to keep an eye on Pokémon, as the three-step system disappeared and was replaced with just about nothing for weeks. Now, however, we have a hint of a new system, and it seems to have gone down well enough so far.
The three-step tracking system in place when Pokémon Go first debuted at the start of July involved showing Pokémon in the nearby area, with either one, two, or three paw prints under them to indicate their relative distance from the player. However, that system bugged out shortly after launch, and developer Niantic eventually removed it to thwart third-party tracking sites.
That left users with aimless wandering as their only technique for finding Pokémon and endless frustration as their main emotion. Fortunately, Niantic didn’t wait too long to fix it, as we already have the workings of a new tracking system. It’s not quite what we had before, but it shows some promise.
The new tracking system shows you nearby Pokémon as before, but lets you know whether you need to hang out at a Pokéstop to find them. If you don’t, it gives you a rough idea of their distance from you, with a grass symbol behind them to let you know that they’re a little off the beaten track.
— Jackson Palmer (@ummjackson) August 9, 2016
Niantic has also made the list update more often, so while there’s not quite the same accuracy as there was with the steps system, the new one definitely brings advantages.
Along with the tracking improvement, the latest Pokémon Go patch also introduced new artwork for the various team leaders and a fix for the bug that had prevented well-thrown Pokéballs from giving extra EXP. Curveballs should now be more accurate and there’s also an option for trainers to change their nickname one time if they choose.