There’s a heap of legendary Pokemon to catch in Pokemon Legends: Arceus, each with their own unique skills and fighting styles.

You can get some legendary Pokemon through specific requests, and some via the main storyline. Others need a more specific requirement to be met, like a weather condition or save data from other games.

If you’ve finished the main campaign already, chances are that there’s still a few Pokemon missing off your list of legendary catches, as some can be a bit of a pain to get.

I’ve gathered up my top tips and tricks on how to catch every legendary Pokemon in Pokemon Legends: Arceus, complete with spawn locations and methods.

If you’ve not finished the main storyline yet, please note that this article contains spoilers.

How to Catch Dialga and Palkia

Dialga and Palkia are arguably the most important legendary Pokemon in the game if you’re following through on the main storyline. This means that they’re pretty easy to track down and catch for your team.

To start, you’ll need to get to the point in the game where you’ve calmed all of the frenzied noble Pokemon around the map. This means that you’ll be pretty far through the main storyline, with a decently powerful team to match.

Once you’ve got the main storyline mission ‘ Disaster Looming ‘ in your quest log (it automatically appears overnight after speaking to the Commander) you’ll have to leave the village and end up with the NPC Cogita.

Soon, you’ll have to complete the trials of the three lakes, which are simple enough to follow through once you arrive at each lake. We’ll go over the locations and fights for each lake Pokemon in a later section, but the general premise for these trials is;

  • Mesprit’s trial. You’ll have to fight an alpha Goodra before the trial, which is a steel and dragon type Pokemon. I would recommend bringing a fire or dragon type Pokemon to make the fight easier. You’ll then have a conversation with the Pokemon Mesprit, and the only thing you need to do is answer honestly.
  • Uxie’s trial. Before the trial, you’ll have to fight an alpha Zoroak. This Pokemon is a normal and ghost type Pokemon, and it cannot be harmed by physical attacks. Bring a fighting or dark type Pokemon with you for this. After the fight, you’ll have to answer a riddle about Pokemon eyes. If you need it, the answer is 60131.
  • Azelf’s trial. In the cavern, you’ll need to battle an alpha Overqwil, which is a dark and poison type Pokemon. You can use Pokemon that are fighting, bug, ground, fairy or psychic types in this fight. Azelf’s trial is a test of perseverance with throwing balms at a seemingly impossible target. The important thing is not to give up and to keep going with the task.

During the setup for the trials, you’ll have to choose between Adaman and Irida. Notably, this will directly impact how you catch Dialga and Palkia, as it will determine which one you encounter first.

Picking Irida will mean that you encounter Palkia first, and vice versa for Adaman.

After you’ve tackled the lake trials, you’ll get the main storyline mission ‘Atop Mount Coronet’ and will be able to encounter the legendary that you picked in a regular boss battle. It’s a standard fight, but can be pretty tough if you haven’t levelled your team.

Remember, Dialga is weak against ground and fighting Pokemon, and Palkia is weak against fairy and dragon Pokemon. You can use this to your advantage during the fight.

This isn’t the fight where you will catch the legendary Pokemon, though. You’ll automatically flee and start the next mission (number 18), which will set you on a task of creating an origin ball to help catch the legendary Pokemon in question.

During mission 18 ‘ The Counterpart ‘ you’ll have to battle the Miss Fortune sisters in the cave that contains the ore needed for an origin ball. It’s not too challenging of a battle, presenting you with a fight against a level 61 Rhydon and level 62 Gengar.

After this, you’ll be able to craft the required Pokeball, and complete the task of capturing your first legendary Pokemon of the pair on Mount Coronet.

Once one of the legendary Pokemon is in your possession, you’ll learn that the other Pokemon is frenzied and that you need to quell it. Keep following the main quest line, as it’ll take you to where you need to go for the second legendary in this iconic pair.

In a similar fashion to the Noble Pokemon, you’ll need to calm down the legendary Pokemon and ward off its attacks before you can catch it. This fight can be tricky, so stock up on useful items like potions and revives wherever possible.

How to Catch the Genie Pokemon

There are 4 genie Pokemon to catch in Pokemon Legends: Arceus, and they can be a bit of a pain to track down and capture if you don’t know where to look.

If you’ve got time to kill and you’re looking for some mighty additions to your team, it is absolutely worth tracking them down and catching them.

To unlock the required quests and encounters needed for these legendary Pokemon, you’ll need to have completed the main quest line, started the Deified Pokemon quest and have spoken to Cogita in Galaxy Hall, Jubilife Village.

Upon speaking to Cogita, you’ll learn about three powerful Pokemon that you will need in order to complete your Pokedex. This trio includes Thundorous, Landorous and Tornadus, with Enamorus coming in as an additional legendary after the initial catches.

How to Catch Tornadus

Tornadus is a mighty flying Pokemon, which has very specific weather requirements to spawn. You’ll need to head to Alabaster Icelands in order to track it down and catch it.

The weather needs to be a snow storm in order for Tornadus to spawn, which means that it’s both snowy and windy at the same time.

I found resting at the camp a few times did the trick for spawning this weather condition, and helped to keep my Pokemon topped up and healthy.

If you need a reminder, you can head to your nearest camp and select the rest option at the tent. This allows you to essentially time travel, making it easier to meet time-based or weather-based requirements. It also heals up your Pokemon, too.

I personally found the most luck resting until morning, but this could be just random chance. Try it out a few times to see which time of day works for you the best.

Once you’ve got a snowstorm sorted, it’s time to head over to Bonechill Wastes. You’ll want to prepare the area for this fight by getting rid of all the nearby Glalie, as they can be a pain during the fight. There’s an alpha Glalie here, so watch out for that.

After this, you’re good to go.

You’ll see Tornadus roaming around, and it will start flinging gusts of wind at you to knock you over. It’s pretty hard to guess when the attacks will happen, so try to dodge and get as close as possible so you can start throwing Pokeballs in order to stun it.

It’ll take a few hits for the Pokemon to be properly stunned, but once it is, you can send in a Pokemon to start the fight. Remember, Tornadus is a flying Pokemon so rock, electric and ice Pokemon are ideal for wearing it down in a fight.

If you end up defeating it by mistake, don’t worry as it can respawn. Just head back to Jubilife Village to reset, then rinse and repeat the earlier steps.

How to Catch Thundurus

As the name might suggest, this legendary is a powerful electric and flying Pokemon. You can catch it for your team in a very similar way to the previous Pokemon, as it comes with weather requirements and an annoying gust of wind mechanic.

The area that you’ll need to be in for this Pokemon is Cobalt Coastlands, in the Sand’s Reach area specifically. It’s going to need to be stormy for Thundurus to spawn, so keep resting at your nearest camp until this requirement is met.

Thundurus will spawn in the nearby ocean, so you’ll need Basculegion for this particular legendary encounter. This does make it a little trickier.

In a similar vein to the previous Pokemon, I would really recommend clearing the area of other Pokemon before attempting to battle Thundurus. The nearby Gyarados can be a nightmare during the encounter, and there’s an alpha one on the loose too.

Once the area is clear, start stunning Thundurus with Pokeballs and dodging the incoming gusts of wind. Doing this while mounted can be tricky, but be patient and focus on your timing. It’ll eventually give you an opening to start a battle, in which you can simply wear it down and capture it.

Thundurus is an electric and flying type Pokemon, so there are lots of options to pick from for the best type match-ups here. Electric types are weak against ground Pokemon, and flying types are weak against rock, ice and electric type Pokemon.

How to Catch Landorus

Landorus is the third genie Pokemon to catch, and it’s a ground and flying type.

Out of the first three genie Pokemon, I found Landorus to be the easiest to track down and capture. It doesn’t have any weather based requirements, so you can find it a lot faster than the other two listed above.

Landorus can be found in Obsidian Fieldlands, in the Ramanus Island area at the bottom of the map. The only nearby Pokemon that’s worth taking out before you start this encounter is the alpha Infernape, as it can really get in the way.

Once the nearby area is clear, this fight follows exactly the same format as the other two so far. Landorus will throw gusts of wind at you which you’ll need to dodge and then you’ll need to stun it. A regular battle will then start up, where you can catch it.

Landorus being a ground and flying type means that you can use a lot of different Pokemon in your team to your advantage. Ground types are weak against water, grass and ice Pokemon, and flying types are weak against electric, ice and rock type Pokemon.

How to Catch Enamorous

Enamorus is the fourth genie Pokemon, and it takes a little longer to unlock the ability to catch it. It’s a fairy and flying type Pokemon, and is incredibly useful in a fight.

To unlock Enamorus, you’ll need to raise the research levels for the three existing genie Pokemon in your Pokedex to 10.

Simply check out their Pokedex entries and see what tasks you need to finish up. It shouldn’t take too long, as there’s no limit on the level of the wild Pokemon that you need to battle when completing research tasks.

Once completed, head to the Ancient Retreat and visit Cogita. She’ll inform you about Enamorus, and give you details on what you’ll need to do to catch it. Enamorus will appear in front of you, and you’ll learn that you need to go to Crimson Mirelands to capture it.

There’s no time or weather requirements for this encounter, so head over to Crimson Mirelands and find the Scarlet Bog. This is where you’ll see Enamorus flying around.

You’ll want to clear out the nearby area before starting the encounter as there’s lots of annoying extra mobs. I found the alpha Skuntanks to be a bit of a pain, and think it’s definitely worth the extra time to get rid of them before starting the fight.

Then, it’s simply a case of dodging the usual gust attacks and trying to stun Enamorus in order to start the fight. This is a fairy and flying type Pokemon, so bring either poison and steel Pokemon to counteract the fairy type or rock, ice and electric Pokemon to counteract the flying type.

How to Catch Darkrai and Shaymin

Darkrai and Shaymin are the two legendaries in Pokemon Legends: Arceus that need other game save files. Luckily, neither one of these Pokemon counts towards the Pokedex completion task in the game, so don’t worry too much if you don’t have the save data.

How to Catch Shaymin

In order to catch Shaymin, you’ll need save data from Pokemon Sword and Shield on the Nintendo Switch that you’re playing Pokemon Legends: Arceus on. It doesn’t have to be a completed game, just an active save file.

Finish the main storyline up, and then head to the Professor’s office in Galaxy Hall, Jubilife Village. Select the request board, and find request number 92 ‘ A Token of Gratitude’ to start.

You’ll need to speak to an NPC called Medi to kickstart this request. She will give you a Gracidea flower, and tell you about a mysterious Pokemon that she saw in the Obsidian Fieldlands zone.

Travel to Obsidian Fieldlands and hunt for the correct flower patch that matches the Gracidea flower. I’ve marked it on the screenshot of the map below to help you find it quicker.

You’ll then see Shaymin appear in its land form, and Medi will thank you. Here, you’ll be able to battle and capture the Pokemon. It does have the tendency to run away, so you’ll need to reset by going back to Jubilife Village if this happens.

Shaymin is level 70 and a grass type, so I’d recommend bringing a sturdy fire type with you. Grass Pokemon are also weak to poison, bug, flying and ice types, so you’ve got a lot of options available for this match-up.

If you’d like to change Shaymin into its alternate Sky form, simply select the Gracidea flower from Medi and use it on the Pokemon during the day. This will switch up the form for you.

How to Catch Darkrai

Catching Darkrai in Pokemon Legends: Arceus is very similar to catching Shaymin, as it happens via a simple request that is opened up by save data on the Nintendo Switch in use. The game that you’ll need save data for here is Brilliant Diamond or Shining Pearl.

Once you’ve completed the main storyline, go to Galaxy Hall in Jubilife Village. In the Professor’s office, request number 93 ‘ The Darksome Nightmare ‘ will be on the board for you to pick up. It’ll start off with a cutscene featuring a Pearl Clan NPC named Cael.

Cael will tell you about a fearsome Pokemon that he saw on the Clamberclaw Cliffs in Coronet Highlands, and ask you to go and check it out. Follow his directions, and head to the correct zone to start the encounter. I’ve marked it on the map below.

The encounter starts with a small cutscene as Darkrai flies in, and then progresses into a unique scenario where you’ll need to hide from the Pokemon. Use the huge rocks around the area to your advantage, and try to sneak up on Darkrai to stun it.

Once stunned, you’ll be able to start the fight with Darkrai. Darkrai is a dark type Pokemon, so bring along some fairy, bug or fighting type Pokemon to give yourself an advantage.

How to Catch Cresselia

To catch Cresselia, you will need to have finished up the main campaign and spoken to Cogita in the Ancient Retreat to pick up the initial plate quests. The specific quest that you’ll need to find Cresselia is mission number 23 ‘ The Plate of Moonview Arena’ and it takes place in the Coronet Highlands zone.

Head over to Coronet Highlands, and travel to the Moonview Arena. Here, you’ll start a cutscene with the endearingly annoying Warden Melli. After the cutscene, you’ll be able to go into the arena and start the encounter with Cresselia.

Cresselia’s powers took me an embarrassingly long amount of time to figure out when I played through this part, but essentially it can completely flip your game controls whenever you get close enough to break the shield.

If you’re struggling with this function, you can try turning your console round and playing upside down for a moment. It sounds silly, but it could help you make the process go quicker.

Once you’ve broken through Cresselia’s barrier, you’ll be able to initiate a fight where you can wear down the Pokemon and catch it.

Cresselia is level 70, and is a psychic type Pokemon. Make sure to have a bug, dark or ghost Pokemon to hand in order to speed up the catching process.

It’s important to note that Cresselia has both a powerful healing ability and a cloaking ability, so bring Pokemon that have moves with a 100% hit rate.

How to Catch Heatran

Several of the legendary Pokemon up for grabs in Pokemon Legends: Arceus are part of the same quest chain to find all of the plates in the region, and require you to have completed the quest ‘ Researcher of Myths ‘ beforehand.

Catching Heatran is part of mission 23 ‘ Plate of Firepit Island ‘ and starts with you heading to Cobalt Coastlands to meet up with Irida and Palina. They’ll tell you that something is wrong on the island, and that you need to investigate.

You’ll need to head to the Molten Arena on Firepit Island to find Irida and Iscan, and then head into the Lava Dome Sanctum to find Heatran.

This encounter is a relatively simple one, as the items you need to initiate the fight are right there in the cave with you. Heatran will push a large wall of flames at you, which you’ll need to break through with the nearby mud balls. Once you break the barrier, you can start the encounter properly.

The fight itself is fairly standard, with Heatran being a fire and steel type. Make sure to add plenty of fighting, water and ground types into your party to counteract these types and make the fight a lot easier for yourself.

How to Catch Regigigas

Regigigas is another Pokemon that you’ll need a plate quest for.

This iconic legendary Pokemon is available during the mission ‘ The Plate of Snowpoint Temple’ , which requires you to have completed the main storyline and ‘ The Researcher of Myths’ quest beforehand. You’ll also need to have obtained the icicle plate, the stone plate and the steel plate from the previous missions, too.

The mission originates from Cogita, who will inform you about a ‘temple giant’ and describe the encounter in more depth. After you’ve got the mission in your log, head directly to Snowpoint Temple to catch Regigigas.

Here, you’ll need to open the great door inside the temple and follow the path inwards. You’ll find Regigigas pretty easily and be able to start the encounter.

Regigigas is a normal type Pokemon, so I’d recommend bringing along a fighting type Pokemon to make the fight go quicker.

How to Catch the Lake Pokemon

If you’ve not heard the term ‘the lake trio’ before, it simply refers to Uxie, Mesprit and Azelf.

These legendaries are each associated with a particular lake, and can be found one by one in Pokemon Legends: Arceus. Catching them is important to open up requests that you’ll need for other legendary catches later on in the game, so this is worth getting done quickly.

You’ll need to have completed the game’s main storyline to be able to catch the lake Pokemon, and will need to speak to Cogita in order to get mission number 21 ‘The Plate of the Lakes’ for this series of trials.

How to Catch Uxie

Each of the lake Pokemon has a lake that they’re associated with, and these lakes are the places that you meet them for the first time in the main storyline. You will need to have completed all three of the lake Pokemon’s trials and progressed with the story before you can go back and catch them.

Unlike the trial stages where you will have had to do quizzes, perseverance tests and a heart-to-heart with a psychic Pokemon, catching the lake trio is relatively straightforward.

Uxie’s lake is Lake Acuity, and you’ll find the Pokemon inside the cavern. This lake is in the Alabaster Islands area, and I’ve marked it on the map for you below.

Uxie is level 70, and a psychic type Pokemon. I would recommend adding some ghost, bug and psychic type Pokemon to your team to counteract this.

How to Catch Mesprit

You can find Mesprit in Lake Verity’s cavern, and will be able to approach it immediately to kickstart a battle with it. Lake Verity is in the western area of Obsidian Fieldlands, which I’ve marked on the map for you below.

Mesprit is also a psychic type Pokemon and level 70. Bring some bug, ghost and psychic types along to make the fight much easier.

How to Catch Azelf

Azelf’s lake is Lake Valor, which is in the Crimson Mirelands zone. You’ll find Azelf in the cavern, and be able to battle it immediately like the other two lake Pokemon. I’ve put a screenshot below to help you find the right location.

Azelf is very similar to the other lake Pokemon, in that it’s level 70 and a psychic Pokemon. Keep the bug, ghost and psychic types in your team from earlier, as they’ll still be incredibly useful in the battle against Azelf.

How to Catch Manaphy and Phione

This duo of legendaries is a bit of a nightmare to catch if you don’t know where to start, as the quest and requirements are very lore-based.

If you’ve played through Pokemon Brilliant Diamond/ Shining Pearl and paid close attention to the literature in the game, you may be familiar with the story that this quest references. The requirements that you’ll need to meet come directly from a fictional book.

The quest that you need to capture these two legendaries is request number 66 ‘The Sea’s Legend’ and you can get it from the request board in the Professor’s office in Galaxy Hall, Jubilife Village.

Before you set out to capture these legendaries, you’ll need to make sure that you have a Buizel, Mantyke and an Overqwil in your party. This isn’t a step that you can skip, as the legendary Pokemon will not spawn if you don’t have these Pokemon in your party.

Next up, head to Cobalt Coastlands. You’ll need to make sure that it’s the evening when you get to the area, so rest up at the nearest camp and jump to the correct time if needed.

After this, head to the shoreline and look for the two big pincer shaped rocks sticking out of the ocean. I’ve marked the right location on the map for you below.

You’ll need to surf through the middle of these rocks with Basculegion, which will prompt a text box that lets you know that you’re on the right path.

After you see the text box, head over to the Seaside Hollow (a cave that’s suddenly opened nearby, it’s visible from where you are) and go inside.

When inside, you’ll find a Manaphy and three Phiones running around. It can take a little while to initiate a battle with them as they’re very aggressive, but just be patient and dodge their attacks. Eventually, you’ll be able to enter the 1 vs 4 battle, where you can catch all 4.

Both Pokemon are water types, so bring along some electric or grass type Pokemon to make sure that the fight goes as quickly as possible.

How to Catch Giratina

Out of all the legendary Pokemon that you can catch in Pokemon Legends: Arceus, Giratina is one of the most complicated to track down and capture, as there’s a lot of prep work to do.

You’ll need to have finished the main storyline in order to access the Giratina encounter, collected all of the plates, caught all of the lake Pokemon and caught Regigigas, too.

Once all of this is finished, you’ll need to head back to Cogita at the Ancient Retreat. She’ll inform you that you need to collect three pieces of wood. These can be found all over the map, underneath trees as random spawns.

I personally have the most luck finding pieces of wood in Obsidian Fieldlands, near the Aspiration Hill area. This might just be a coincidental thing from my gameplay, but it’s worth checking out. I’ve marked it on the map below.

Aspiration hill map

Pieces of wood can be a little hard to spot, so I’d suggest looking for them in the daytime.

After you’ve collected three, return to Cogita and give them to her. She will give you a pixie plate in return for these items.

You’ll then need to head to Coronet Highlands for the next stage in this quest chain, to the Celestica Ruins area in particular. Then, head up to Mount Coronet where you previously battled with Dialga and Palkia.

Here, you’ll have to battle with Volo, as he’s obsessed with Arceus and Giratina. This can be a tough fight. I would really recommend stocking up on max potions and max revives, and saving before you head into the battle.

The Pokemon that he has on his team are Spiritomb, Roserade, Arcanine, Lucario, Garchomp and Togekiss. It’s a powerful team, but they do share some weaknesses. Two of them are weak to fairy types, three of them to ice, two to rock and two to fighting types. They’re all level 68 too, which means you can plan accordingly.

After tackling Volo’s team, you’ll be able to fight Giratina. It’s important to note that this first encounter is not where you can catch it, so just focus on wearing it down.

Giratina starts off the fight in its altered form, and will switch over to its origin form once you’ve almost beaten it for the first time. The type weaknesses remain the same for both forms though, so bring Pokemon that are dragon, ice, fairy, ghost or dark types.

After this battle, you’ll be able to encounter Arceus, but we’ll cover that in a moment.

Now that you’ve completed the necessary encounter with Giratina, you’ll be able to access the request that lets you catch it for your team.

Head back to Jubilife Village, and speak to the Professor near the gate. You’ll be able to get request number 91 ‘On the Trail of Giratina’ here, as the Professor will tell you about a spooky shadow that he saw in the Cobalt Coastlands area.

Head to this zone, and find the Spring Path area on the map. Here, you’ll be able to find Turnback Cave, where Giratina is hanging out. This is a decently tough battle, so I would suggest saving before you head in.

Giratina is level 70, and is a ghost and dragon type Pokemon. As noted earlier, it’s weak to dragon, ice, fairy, ghost and dark types, so bring some of these Pokemon along with you to weaken it before you capture it.

How to Catch Arceus

When I first started playing this game, I did not expect to get the option to catch what is essentially God in the Pokemon world, but here we are. You can catch Arceus in Pokemon Legends: Arceus, but it takes a fair bit of work to get there.

To catch Arceus, you’ll need to have completed the main storyline and caught every Pokemon in the game, completing the Pokedex. It’s important to note that Shaymin and Darkrai do not count towards the final Pokedex.

Once you’ve finished the main storyline (completing mission 26), speak to the Professor and turn in your research. You’ll then be able to start mission number 27 ‘ The Deified Pokemon’ which will allow you to access the encounter needed to capture Arceus.

Next up, head to the Temple of Sinnoh at the top of Mount Coronet, in the Coronet Highlands. I’ve marked it on the map for you below. You can use the nearby stone portal to access it.

Here, you’ll have a tricky Noble-style boss fight against Arceus, where you’ll have to use balms to defeat it. Arceus is a normal type Pokemon, but has an ability to change types throughout the match to throw off your type match-ups. Bring a versatile team.

This is a tricky fight, and I would highly recommend both stocking up on max potions and max revives, and saving before you go in.

Once you do beat Arceus, it will give you a part of itself, allowing you to store it in a Pokeball and have it on your team. After this, you can officially say that you’ve beaten Pokemon Legends: Arceus.

Unless you want to go back and finish every request and max out every Pokedex entry research level, of course.