We've seen some pretty big updates to Pokémon GO since it launched back in 2016, but the recent introduction of the Buddy Adventure feature has to rank as one of the most significant. Using this new feature, you can now interact with your Buddy Pokémon to gain rewards and build a friendship level with the creature (just like you can with other players) – something which was only hinted at previously, as buddy Pokémon were more passive and would only earn you candy.
How Does Buddy Adventure Work In Pokémon GO?
The previous Buddy system simply allowed you to assign a Pokémon as your buddy and you would earn candy for distances walked in the game, both with the app open and using the 'Adventure Sync' feature.
Now, you can earn more rewards and build a bond with your Pokémon – although walking a set distance will still earn you candy, as before.
To trigger the Buddy mode, you'll need to be at least a level 2 trainer. Once you select your Buddy Pokémon, they will follow you on the map. You can feed them berries using the game's AR mode to keep them contented.
It might all sound like yet another element of the game which will soak up too much of your time, but the Buddy system offers some neat rewards. Boosting your Buddy level will increase your chances of catching other Pokémon, and you'll also get a CP boost. Finding rare items will also be easier.
Playing And Feeding Your Buddy In Pokémon Go
Playing with your Buddy Pokémon will help you to keep it happy and contented, thereby building your friendship level.
You can do this using the game's AR mode. Tap your Buddy icon (the one next to your trainer image on the main screen) and then select 'Play'. You'll then need to find a flat surface so the AR mode can work properly – you'll know it's ready when you see yellow footprints on the floor. You can, if you wish, disable AR mode entirely to make things easier.
Once your Buddy is on-screen, you can play with it by rubbing it with your finger. To feed it, tap the Berry icon and then throw it at your Buddy. Once their belly is full, you can move onto the Adventure portion of the experience.
Walking With Your Buddy In Adventure Mode in Pokémon Go
As is the case with the Friendship system, you can earn hearts by walking and battling with your Buddy Pokémon. This is done on the main map, in what is known as 'Adventure Mode'.
Once your Buddy is fully fed, they will appear on the map with you. They will remain on the map for a few hours. You can see their hunger level on their icon – you can feed them more berries during this mode, if you wish.
Switching Buddies will empty the hunger meter, which means you'll have to fill it up again from scratch. This means you can switch between Buddies and refill their hunger right away, which makes it easier to boost your heart level.
You might notice that your Buddy has a 'mood' icon which appears over their head. This denotes how happy they are at any given time, and getting them to the level of being 'excited', you can earn additional benefits. An excited Buddy means Candy distances are halved, and your daily 'Heart cap' is increased to 20.
You can use a Poffin item to make your Buddy excited right away – these cost 100 coins from the in-game shop. You can also make them excited by earning 10 hearts with a Buddy and then performing a large number of favoured activities.
Earning Hearts And Increasing Buddy level In Pokémon Go
Just like sharing gifts with friends in Pokémon GO, there are daily tasks you can undertake which boost your heart level. You can earn up to 10 hearts in a day, or 20 when your Buddy is excited.
- Walking Together: Walk 2km with your Buddy on the map screen (Heart limit per day: 3)
- Giving a treat: Feed your Buddy from empty to full (Heart limit per day: 3)
- Playing with them: Rub your Buddy (Heart limit per day: 1)
- Battling: Take part in a Gym, Raid, Team Rocket, or Trainer with your Buddy in your team while they're on the map (Heart limit per day: 1)
- Take a photo: Take a photo using the Buddy screen while in Adventure mode (Heart limit per day: 1)
- Visit a new location: Spin a new PokeStop or Gym (Heart limit per day: 1)
Pokémon Go Buddy Level Guide
Just like with the game's Friendship system, you can boost your Buddy level through 'Good', 'Great', 'Ultra' and 'Best' levels.
|Buddy Level||Hearts required||Bonus|
|Good Buddy||1||Adventuring Buddy: Your buddy can appear on the map screen
Readable Mood: You can see how excited your Buddy is
|Great Buddy||70||Catch Assist: Buddies can help during the catching phase
Find Presents: Buddy can now bring you items as you play
|Ultra Buddy||150||Find Locations: Buddies can now help you find "interesting places" nearby
Find Souvenirs: These finds will be tracked in your Buddy page
|Best Buddy||300||CP Boost: Will be improved in battle while it's assigned as your Buddy
Best Buddy Ribbon: Special badge worn by your Buddy