Pokémon Go tricks: Recover Poké Balls that don't hit their target!

UPDATE: It turns out this doesn't work anymore! Our suspicion is this was a bug that has since been resolved in the game, but it's clear this trick no longer works.

In the first few hours of playing Pokémon Go, you're going to waste a lot of Poké Balls. Learning to get that flick just right, watching as the ball bounced off of your critter while it tries to attack you, or missing in an attempt to rock a perfect curveball are high on the list. The failed attempt slowly rolls off screen, leaving you ready to grab another Poké Ball and give it another good toss. Actually, it turns out you can recover most of those lost Poké Balls, as long as you're fast enough!

This couldn't be more simple. Tap the Poké Ball before it rolls off the screen after a failed throw, and that Poké Ball will be returned to your inventory. It doesn't work every single time, but it works most of the time and it makes a huge difference when forced to rely on a limited inventory to catch a Pokémon that is being particularly difficult.

Don't let those Poké Balls go to waste. Get out there and have some fun!

Russell Holly

Russell is a Contributing Editor at Android Central. He's a former server admin who has been using Android since the HTC G1, and quite literally wrote the book on Android tablets. You can usually find him chasing the next tech trend, much to the pain of his wallet. Find him on Facebook and Twitter

  • Is this a Pokemon site now? Posted via the Android Central App
  • No joke
  • There have been 22 posts about Pokemon Go!
    Are you kidding me? Sent from my ATT Note 5 paired with a 42mm Asus Zenwatch 2
  • I'm guessing there is some sort of partnership between mobile nations and the game publisher. But tbh, let them. This site barely has any ads, and I'm sure a lot of people are interested in it as well, so why not? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Not on topic of this comment thread, but this article is a TOTAL lie. You CANNOT tap the pokeball before it disappears and have it returned to your inventory. Once you've missed, you've missed and that pokeball is gone. I cannot that believe anyone at this "news" site even attempted to verify if this was true or not. Great journalism there android central....
  • True that. This article's complete BS.
  • They wouldn't post it...if someone(s) wasn't reading it... Posted via the Android Central App
  • People are not reading these articles, they are "clicking" to get to the comments section. It's all about the clicks. Rodeo time, time to get er on down the road
  • Sure, keep telling yourself that. Even if that were true, a click is a click. Everyone who has popped in to whine in the comments section is making sure they post more. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yup, that's exactly what I said. Rodeo time, time to get er on down the road
  • You couldn't be more wrong. Its embarrassing how wrong you are. Be embarrassed.
  • Shame shame shame Posted via the Android Central App
  • What's embarrassing is a grown manchild blubbering on about about pokemon go and trolling the comments section of articles he has (poorly) written.
  • Oh that's right, anytime someone has a different opinion then you it's called trolling. Rodeo time, time to get er on down the road
  • No. It's actual trolling in this case.
  • Trigglypuff much? Rodeo time, time to get er on down the road
  • Explain then.
  • Pokemoncentral
  • Guess I'll go somewhere else to get my Android news
  • Later! Don't let the door hit you on the way out! Posted via the Android Central App
  • Android Police is awesome. Posted via LG G5
  • I don't like Android polices Android app Sent from my ATT Note 5 paired with a 42mm Asus Zenwatch 2
  • They don't have one. You're probably looking at a third party one. Posted via LG G5
  • But you won't... Posted via the Android Central App
  • Nice! That's good info to have! Posted via the Android Central App
  • BS
  • If you play the game it genuinely is good information. Like, very good information. Posted via the Pokémon Central App
  • The state of Android (Android Central) is getting kinda sad anyway. Things really changed when things got political around here and we got to see how people really feel about issues. The insults went to a whole other level and people still bash each other's political affiliation even if the article isn't political. I guess nothing stays the same so oh well, I'm just happy I got to enjoy Android Central when it was fun. It was fun while it lasted. I been spending more time messing with my Windows 10 machine............. "on to the next one" Rodeo time, time to get er on down the road
  • I agree, Android Central use to be much more enjoyable. It used to be the go to spot for all my android news and reviews. But, Android Central and Android in general are feeling really stale. It's very telling when a mindless, shallow game like pokemon go can garner so much attention. Three weeks ago i built a new Windows 10 gaming pc after not having one capable of playing the latest and greatest games for nearly 3 years. I felt like android was all i needed for my gaming needs. i gotta tell you there is no comparison to playing games like Fallout 4 or the Witcher 3 at max settings with a keyboard and mouse and the current state of Android gaming which has been gutted by f2p and in app purchases. I hope Android can comeback from the scurge of micro-payments but there's just much more entertaining things going on in the tech world than anything that's going on at Android Central. Time to move on for awhile.
  • I never play mobile games myself and I'll probably never install this game, but, I can still understand why all these gadget sites fill their feeds with Pokemon. It's apparently the fastest adopted game or app ever. There will be gazillions of Google searches about the game and the only way to get some of those new ad clicks is by writing about everything you can think of concerning pokemon.
    The site is after all free, even though I bet they do have a bill or two to pay. :D
  • Yes, and it shows how click bait and SEO spam is corrupting journalism.
  • There is no comparison of those games to go. Go is already doing wonderful things for many people. It is getting people out of their homes and exercising, it is getting large groups of people gathered and socializing, it is even helping people with depression (not even kidding). The microtransactions are not even required, you successfully play the game without them and most importantly the game is just fun. So be bitter and superior but don't kid yourself. This app is great and it is no wonder the adoption is record breaking.
  • Check out this article that's actually about Android! http://www.androidpolice.com/2016/07/11/exclusive-these-could-be-googles... Posted via LG G5
  • Do me a favour and lemme know when "could be" changes to "are". Posted via the Pokémon Central App
  • lol @ the sig You mind if I steal that? Posted via LG G5
  • Sure, render yourself unconscious mate! Posted via the Pokémon Central App
  • Wow, didn't know that! I've thrown away so many pokeballs.
  • I know, right? Posted via the Pokémon Central App
  • Seven mentions of Poke balls in a two paragraph article is impressive Posted via the Android Central App
  • Russell, if I didn't read Android Central, I never would've known that. I don't read any other Android site. So, thank you. Now I can tell my son how to recover his pokeballs so he's not asking me to spend real money... which I already did...ssshhhh... :) Posted via the Android Central App
  • Thanks! Glad I could help.
  • I did not know this trick either. I tried it this morning and it works. This helps a lot. Moving past all the hate comments... this is the reason I like having all this coverage.
  • Holy crap I've wasted so many Poke Balls! Posted via the Android Central App
  • I love these articles. I'm a 49 year old father who plays this game with my kids and don't have time to follow every Pokemon forum. It is a huge Android phenomenon right now, and if you don't like it, don't read it. Just like i skip articles about WhatsApp or Snapchat.
  • Ding ding ding ding!!!!! Yes. Exactly this. Stop crying and let the people who are interested enjoy this much needed coverage! Posted via the Android Central App
  • Or you could go to an Pokemon forum instead of an Android forum. Crazy how that works, isn't it? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Bingo
  • Ding ding ding!!! Winner! Posted via the Android Central App
  • exactly!!
  • Thanks for the tips and enjoy my page views! Posted via the Android Central App
  • A friend told me about this earlier today. She's my new hero. Posted via the Pokémon Central App
  • This game is super aggravating. All the press it's getting is making me angry! (I kid, but I'm just not the target demographic I suppose) If it gets little overweight tubbies off the couch and out IRL, then it's a good thing I guess. But seriously editors, you started a different site dedicated to virtual reality stuff. Yes, I realize this game isn't played with a proper VR device, but c'mon man, put all of this crap there (and expand your hits, which you want to anyhow). All these Pokemon articles really do belong there, not here. It's super aggravating to see the main page flooded with this kind of kid contetnt. But I'm not gonna armchair editor, so carry on I suppose.
  • Just walking around my neighborhood today, I saw 15 adults playing this game. Not a child in sight. One couple, I swear to Glob, was 51 years old. Its incredible.
  • Cool. Guess that warrants wall to wall coverage. Carry on, everyone loves it and we just can't get enough! :)
  • To the people that said don't read it move on to the next article it's kinda hard when 7 of 10 articles are Pokemon articles. Posted via the Android Central App
  • So true. I just finished dinner and fired up AC. Clicked on the first article, posted the above comment. Went back and scrolled. Scrolled. Scrolled some more. Yeah, Pokemon central. It's lunacy. We get it, the game is the best thing ever. Can we return to actual content about Android and not one social media frenzy app?
  • Pokémon GO is good, I’m really happy for you, Imma let you finish but ANDROIDcentral WAS one of the best sites of all time…
  • I have like 330 pokeballs lying around...doesn't really matter to waste them LOL Posted via the Android Central App
  • Send me a few hundred, will ya? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Thanks for covering pokemon GO, keep up the good job android central. No sarcasm needed Posted via the Android Central App
  • to all the people complaining/whining about Pokemon central (me included) we need to understand this is a blog is a business and they need their money by writing articles of all kind related to Android. we actually make them write more if we keep whining as they are gonna have clicks in the article even though some of us just comment. I don't think it tracks how long you are on the page but how many clicks it gets. It's getting more clicks from us whiners than the people who do appreciate this articles. so the only way to have them stop posting this is if it doesn't get any clicks. so don't even click to comment. Just skip it. or even skip AC for couple weeks. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Go ahead and excuse their whoring. ******* off your fans is never a good idea.
  • Time spent on a page can be tracked as well Posted via the Android Central App
  • This is actually something I didn't know already and I really wish I had known it before.
  • So people are complaining about AC creating content around one of most anticipated and fast growing game on Android ever? How is this not Android news? I personally really appreciate the content and I'm sure it's helping people a lot who enjoy the game but will probably not spend the time trolling the comment thread. Jerry's post about the security issue will probably save most people a lot of anxiety. And a lot of these guide help people enjoy the game even more since its in beta like state and doesn't have a very thorough in game tutorial. Posted via the Android Central App
  • An article or two: understandable. Spamming for SEO proposes: disgusting.
  • This is really helpful. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Pokeball Central 0_0
  • The takeover... don't worry though this game will die out soon.... Posted via the Android Central App
  • Dang, good to know! Nexus 6P
    Chevy Spark - Android Auto
  • Please an article on how to install Pokémon Go Posted via the Android Central App
  • Mind blown! I wish I had known this for every time I try and catch a Zubat, they take all my pokeballs.
  • Too bad this article is complete and utter BS! You cant recover poke balls. Don't believe me? Go in game and before you throw look at that little number next to your ball about to be thrown. It represents your remaining balls. Throw one watch the number go down. Now throw 10 more and try to recover one. Too bad you won't be able to. You CAN click on the ball though. So don't get confused. If you click on a ball thrown it will disappear but only to allow you to throw another one quicker
  • This article should have been one sentence, "Tap the ball before it disappears, usually works."
  • I wish I would of known this before I wasted 12 balls on a zubat and I gave up.... Posted via Android Central App on Galaxy s7 Edge