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James's week at Top Left Design catching Pokémon in Soho!

Editor’s Note (from Keren) This Poképost was written by James Ross – he has just done a week’s internship, and I set him the project of going out and experiencing Pokémon Go in Soho! Over to James:

So, if you have been living under a rock lately and don’t know why everyone has actually started going outside, then you don’t know about the latest craze; Pokémon Go!
Hello! my name is James and I’m an intern at Top Left Design, my week here has been so interesting and fun.
James Ross at TLD
During my work time here I have learnt so many things and picked up so many skills.
My lunch break however is just as fun now with the latest and hottest smartphone game yet. This smartphone game is the most played game in U.S. history as well as the breaker of stock market records, and is all the craze in the U.K. Especially since its release on the 14th of July. Soho in particular has been extremely lively lately with crowds  gathering in Soho Square yesterday.
Pokemon Go soho square gardens gathering
(Pokemon Go in Soho – a gathering of people playing Pokemon Go in Soho Square gardens)
One of the reasons for this is that Soho has an abundance of Pokéstops and Pokémon Gyms, these are places to stock up on digital items and to battle other players’ Pokémon. Since this App is what every person on their lunchbreak is playing right now in Soho (including myself at TLD!), I think that it would be nice to show you, dear reader, the most popular places and hot-spots.

5 things you should know

  1. Heed the advice of the game and “Remember to be alert at all times. Stay aware of your surroundings.” Some weird occurrences have happened since the game came out: there was a girl who discovered a dead body while trying to find Pokémon in Wyoming, two men who fell off a cliff looking at the app on their phones and 3 teens stopped at a nuclear plant. This game is taking people to weird locations. So make sure to know where you are at all times.
  2. Choose your team wisely. Once you reach Level 5 in the game, you will be given the opportunity to join one of three teams: Instinct, Mystic and Valor. Some people in these teams are highly competitive. You might want to make sure you and your friends are on the same team so you can work together.
  3. Go to Lures! Lures that have been placed onto nearby Pokéstops bring Pokémon out of hiding, take note to go there and catch em’ all! I’ll go through the several Pokéstops near here in a second.
  4. Prepare for gyms. Pokémon gyms can be especially tough if there are a high level enemies. So make sure to train your Pokémon, and stock up on healing items. Once you’ve won you will have to set your own Pokémon to defend the gym, make sure to choose one of your stronger ones. Good luck!
  5. Go to different environments in the real world. Certain Pokémon live in certain areas. So if you want that grass-type Pokémon, make a trip to go to gardens or parks. Soho has quite a few so you should be fine here.

I personally am level 7 and my team is Team Mystic. Keren – my boss- went with Team Valor, which was a bit awkward since it’s known that these two teams are sworn enemies…
Pokemon Go - James's avatar profile
(Pokemon Go in Soho – My middle name is Alexander and JR is my initials, James Ross. 25 is my birthday: 25th of May. This is my avatar profile.)
Soho really is the best place to be. There are so many notable areas in such a small space. This area in the game is buzzing! Since our offices are close to Old Compton St, we can access a Pokéstop from here. Also Soho Square Gardens is not far from here, a popular spot for people who are playing the game to meet up and hang around due to the plethora of Poké-stops.
Today I went on my lunch break to start my own adventure of touring around Soho to visit the more interesting Pokéstops, I went to Pret a Manger for lunch (food is so good there).
James's Selfie
(Pokemon Go in Soho – James out for lunch at the start of his Pokemon outing)
On my way there, I stopped in the Soho Square gardens, I was sitting on a bench where I was ambushed! Only by a Drowzee though (a Pokémon), but at least I caught it! This was due to the lure placed on the Pokéstops in the Square.
Pokemon Go Drowzee encounter
(Pokemon Go in Soho – James is attempting to catch this Pokemon: Drowzee)


Lures are things which can be placed on a Pokéstop to lure Pokémon to that location, and since people want to catch Pokémon, there are always a lot of people playing Pokémon Go around these places.
Pokemon go avatar in Soho Square gardens next to used Pokestop with lure
(Pokemon go in Soho – James’ Avatar next to a Pokestop with a Lure)
Anyway, after that little event, I stopped by the first notable Pokéstop. This was the Gosh! Comic Book Store. It was great hanging out there since there was a small market right opposite the store so it had a great and lively atmosphere. The store looked cool as well with all of the comics on display. You don’t get to see many comic book stores in London so this was a real treat!
Gosh! comic book store
(Pokemon Go in Soho – The Comic book Store called “Gosh!” is James’ first destination)

Now that’s impressive

But what was even more impressive was the Soho mural which was the last Pokéstop that I had visited. It was a bit hard for me to find at first because I haven’t had been to that area before, I accidentally stumbled into the atrium called “Kingly Court”. After I had found my way again I saw the colossal mural. It was so huge and colourful, I liked it so much! No wonder it’s an iconic landmark for Soho.
Pokemon Go Soho mural
(Pokemon Go in Soho – the Soho Mural was the last stop but was the most impressive)
My journey through Soho was so exciting, and I hope that yours will be just as awesome! Let’s go through some of the best places in Soho, to help you along.

Top 15 Pokéstops in Soho

  1. Admiral Duncan Pub – 54 Old Compton St, Soho, London
  2. Sir Joseph Banks plaque – 31-32 Soho Square, London
  3. Conversion of St Paul Statue – Soho Square, London
  4. St Patrick’s Catholic Church – 21a Soho Square, Soho, London
  5. Gosh comic book store – 1, Berwick St, Soho, London
  6. Golden Lion Pub – 51 Dean St, Soho, London
  7. 2i’s Coffee Bar green plaque– 59 Old Compton St, London
  8. Mozart Plaque– 19 Frith St, London
  9. L’Escargot Restaurant– 48 Greek St, Soho, London
  10. Sounds of the Universe record store – 7 Broadwick St, Soho, London
  11. The Nadler (Thorned Angel) – 10 Carlisle St, London
  12. The Soho Mural – 9 Carnaby Street, Soho, London
  13. Permanent exhibition by Brian Clarke, “spitfires and primroses”- Lexington St, London
  14. Apollo Theatre – 31 Shaftesbury Ave, Soho, London
  15. “The Ship” pub – 116 Wardour St, Soho, London

Nearby gyms – and what you need to know

Gyms in Pokémon go allow payers to battle each other’s Pokémon and to capture that gym for your team. One of the Pokémon Gyms in Soho is the Arch on Air Street. Gyms that are controlled by your team you can battle to gain “prestige” to your team and for gyms that are not you can battle to decrease their “prestige”.
Pokemon Go Soho gym
(Pokemon Go in Soho – what a gym looks like on the game… controlled by Team Mystic)
If you win then your avatar is shown to indicate that you have caught the gym for your team. Taking control of gyms is also a great way to get in-game money for virtual items.
Now that I have guided you about playing Pokémon Go in Soho, you should be able to have tons of fun in Soho while visiting us at TLD. Enjoy!
Pokemon Go Soho gyms
(Pokemon Go in Soho – GO TEAM MYSTIC, we control all of the Pokemon Gyms in Soho now!)

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