Biggest Changes in Pokemon Legends Arceus Compared to Old Games

With Pokemon Legends: Arceus, Game Freak has completely changed up the tried and true Pokemon formula in new and interesting ways. In this guide, we have pointed out the biggest changes between Pokemon Legends: Arceus and other Pokemon games.

Biggest Changes in Pokemon Legends Arceus

While the environment is obviously different — as it is with most Pokémon games — traditional Pokemon gameplay has been revamped in Pokemon Legends Arceus, with alterations that might be crucial to the franchise’s future.

Catching Pokemon

When it comes to catching Pokemon in Pokemon Legends, things works a little differently in Pokémon Legends: Arceus than it does in other games.

You control your trainer in Legends: Arceus like a third-person shooter. Movement is in 3D,  you crouch for stealth and even dodge-roll! You also have a range of objects you can throw at Pokemon, such as Poké Balls.

By holding the left trigger (ZL on the Switch), aiming with the right stick, then pushing the right trigger (ZR) once you’re lined up, you can throw a Poké Ball directly at a Pokémon.

You’ll have a better chance of catching the Pokémon if you catch it off guard or strike it in the back. You can also throw food towards Pokémon to have them drop their defences.

In Pokemon Legends: Arceus, however, Pokémon can become enraged if you go too near to their area. You can’t catch an angry Pokemon with a regular Poké Ball, so you’ll have to either throw things at it to stun it or run until it forgets about you.

Different World

Pokemon Legends: Arceus is set in a Pokemon-themed feudal Japan. People talk in a significantly more formal tone than in the original series, and very few people are familiar with Pokémon.

Your main goal in this ancient world is to acquire and battle Pokémon in order to learn everything there is to know about them and therefore create the first Pokédex.


The option to ride Pokemon isn’t entirely new in Pokemon Legends: Arceus, although it has been significantly enhanced. You’ll be travelling across the world on the back of Pokémon since the world is so big.

Wyrdeer is your first ground ride and has the ability to dash and jump. Basculegion, a new Basculin evolution, is your water conveyance. It can double jump and rush across the waves. In Pokémon Legends: Arceus, the Hisuian Braviary is a flying mount. It is more of a glider than a full-fledged analogue flight.

Pokemon Battles

You can toss your Pokemon party members out at any moment, you can throw items, just like you can throw anything else. Using the X button, you can swap between items and Pokemon. Pokémon uses an item wheel-style selection system that allows you to quickly select the best monster for the fight. Simply toss your favorite Pokemon at another Pokemon in the wild to start a turn-based battle.

The main difference in real-life battle is that it is based on speed rather than direction. Pokemon who are fast enough can attack many times in a row, while Pokemon that aren’t fast enough will have trouble moving until their opponent has attacked more than once.

A useful move order list can be seen on the right side of the screen to help you keep track of who’s coming next. However, when you switch Pokemon, the sheet disappears, which might create a lot of confusion.

However, the move order is more than just a numbers game. When Pokémon level up or see a particular trainer, they will be able to attack with agility and power.

Agile moves are significantly faster but cause less damage, possibly enabling you to travel twice as fast as the opponent Pokémon. Strong style movements are more powerful than standard style moves, but they take longer to perform. You won’t be able to overuse style moves because they cost approximately twice amount of Power Points (PP).

You can still catch Pokemon while battling, and it functions in the same way as it did in previous games. Simply, instead of attacking, use your turn to release a Poké Ball.

Battling Trainers

While fighting is an important part of Pokemon Legends: Arceus, facing off against other trainers is rare. If you walk in front of another trainer in the wild, they will not stare you down and force you to fight. Trainer battles are typically saved for story-relevant situations in which you’re pushing yourself against a partner or facing the main enemy.

Learning Moves

Learning moves in Pokémon Legends: Arceus is a little different. New moves are simply added to a Pokemon’s reserve move list, eliminating the need to choose whether or not to learn a move after levelling up. Outside of battles, each Pokemon in Pokemon Arceus can only have four active moves at a time, although you can switch them out at any moment.

There’s also the option to modify your Pokemon Moves in Pokemon Legends through the Move Style System, which adds a new layer of depth to battles.

Pokemon Evolution

In Pokemon Legends: Arceus, Pokemon can still evolve, although it isn’t done automatically. You’ll get a notification on their XP metre after you’ve levelled up a Pokémon to the point where they can evolve. To initiate the evolution, go into your Pokémon menu and press the X button on the Pokémon you wish to evolve.

Crafting Items

Another important aspect of Pokemon Legends: Arceus is crafting. While Poke Balls and potions can be purchased in stores, the ingredients to manufacture them can also be found across the world. You can harvest some of these items by hand, while others will need you to toss your Pokémon at rocks or trees.

Back in camp, there are crafting kits that enable you to utilise all of the supplies in your storage locker, as well as a more limited crafting kit that can be used anywhere but just uses inventory space.

New Story

In terms of story, Pokémon Legends: Arceus takes the franchise in a new path. We can’t go into detail about how the story starts, but there are no gyms and no Elite Four. With such a young environment where no one has heard of Pokémon, the tale focuses on teaching others around you how to live in harmony with the monsters rather than fighting them for fun.

Missions and Quests

You get a quest journal for main and side quests in Pokemon Legends: Arceus. You’ll be given clear instructions on where to travel next, as well as a brief explanation of why you’re going there.

In Pokemon games, side quests are frequent, but most of the time you just have to remember where that random person who wanted a Pidgey was. People still want you to bring them Pokemon in Legends: Arceus, but the task log will give you your reward and point you in the right route. In Arceus, there are a number of side quest activities, such as chasing a Mr. Mime around Jubilife Village while avoiding his invisible walls.

A Computer Scientist who thinks the real world is too boring and found solace in the gaming universe to fulfil his cravings for unlimited possibilities. I am a gaming enthusiast since Vice City, IGI, Cricket ...