The big announcement of the new augmented reality game from Niantic made most Pokémon fans go crazy, but it did leave a lot of questions that need to be answered. In this guide, you will find the very basics you need to know about how Pokémon GO gyms work.

Pokémon GO matches some of the aspects of the traditional Pokémon games, but it really introduces a lot of unique gameplay features and mechanics, and the Pokémon gyms aren’t an exception.

The Pokémon GO gyms have a real world location where you need to travel to in order to battle the gym’s defending Pokémon. Although, this is where the similarities end for the classic game, as the gyms in Pokémon GO are a lot more involved than just battling the leader and leaving with a new badge.

Pokémon GO gyms basics

You will be able to access gyms once your trainer reaches Level 5. In Pokémon GO, you have an opportunity to join one of three Pokémon trainer teams before you find a gym. Choose your team wisely:

  • Red = Valor
  • Blue = Mystic
  • Yellow = Instinct

Guide How Pokémon GO Gyms Work basics: choose a team

Once you found a rival gym, you can fight the Pokémon defending that gym in an effort to take it over for your team. If you managed to be successful, you will be able to leave a captured Pokémon there to defend it from other attackers.

In the event you have a Pokémon in a gym that is taken over, your Pokémon will be returned to you. However, it’s Hit Points will be reduced and will need healing prior to using again.

You can use Healing Sprays and Potions to heal Pokémon – you can get them from PokéStops and leveling up. If your Pokémon faints in battle, you will have to use a Revive item – also obtained from leveling up and PokéStops.

Pokémon GO gym’s prestige

Basic Guide How Pokémon GO Gyms Work: gym prestige

Another basic feature of Pokémon GO gyms is gym’s prestige.

If the gym belongs to your team, you can still battle the Pokémon there to help raise your level and increase your gym prestige, which will boost your resistance to attacking teams. You can also train using a team member’s gym, this boosts the gym’s prestige too.

Gym’s that are taken by another team can be battled. If you win the battle, you will decrease the gym’s prestige. You can lower the prestige to zero, meaning that team loses the gym and you can then take it over for your team.

Adding Pokémon to gyms for reward

Basic Guide How Pokémon GO Gyms Work: reward

When you assign your Pokémon to a gym, it does not simply improve the gym, you also get additional benefits!

Go to the Shop screen and look at the top right corner. You’ll find a shield icon. Now, depending on the amount of Pokémon you have placed in gyms, you are able to obtain coins, even Stardust as a reward.

That’s right, you can earn in-game currency by having more Pokémon in gyms. But you could easily miss this great opportunity if you didn’t learn Pokémon GO gyms basics. So never underestimate the beginner’s guides.

Pokémon GO’s unique gym concept

As you have probably noticed, Pokémon GO gyms gameplay is a big move from the regular Pokémon formula. Normally you would be able to battle in order to become an Elite Four champion. However, those who play Pokémon GO will be battling to overtake various gym locations that are scattered around the world. Trainers will have to take them from their opposing teams.

Pokémon GO no longer has the gym badge system, so it may not have the Elite Four either, but the creation of the Pokémon PvP turf battles seem to be an interesting addition to the long-standing mechanics.

We hope this basic guide on how gyms in Pokémon GO work was helpful to you. Don’t forget to share it with friends and leave a comment below to let us know what you think about all this Pokémon GO craze.