In the first open world addition to the popular series of Pokémon games, Pokémon Legends: Arceus, players are treated to an abundance of new and exciting features. One of these features is the change on Pokémon Evolution since they do not automatically transform after reaching a certain level.
Now, you must meet some requirements and make the Pokémon evolve yourself. Those requirements might be a minimum level, time of the day, an item, or a combination of those.
If you’re new to Pokémon or haven’t played anything Pokémon-related in a long time like myself, you might feel a bit lost about how evolution works. There are also plenty of special cases that might be harder to understand for those unfamiliar with these games.
Don’t worry, though. I’m here to help! This guide has everything you need to know about how to evolve in Pokémon Legends: Arceus, when you should or shouldn’t do it, and why.
How Does Evolution Work in Pokémon Legends: Arceus?
If you catch a Wurmple, it can be evolved as soon as it reaches level 7. However, unlike previous titles of the franchise, this won’t happen automatically.
If you are distracted like me, you might have missed the message that briefly shows up on the top right of the screen the first time it appeared. In my case, I missed the fact that shaking trees granted Pokémon experience, and I certainly wasn’t expecting my Wurmple to evolve from gathering berries for me.
Anyway, once a Pokémon levels up and meets the required level to evolve, you should get a message. However, it disappears quickly. So, if you missed it, you can always check the menu to find out what is going on with your little monsters.
If your Pokémon is ready to evolve, you will see its Pokéball icon shining right next to its name. Once you check the Pokémon with the shining icon, the game will let you know that the Pokémon is ready to evolve. Then, it’ll ask you if you want to evolve it, and you can click ‘Do it!’ or ‘Not now’.
You can just deny the evolution if you wish or if you prompted the question by accident. In fact, this might have been done because you would need to hit a button during the evolution to prevent a Pokémon from changing forms.
In previous games, you’d have to do that every time a Pokémon level up past its minimum required level to evolve. On top of that, if you had 6 Pokémon beyond their evolution level, you’d have to do it way too frequently, and it could be super annoying.
In Arceus, you can develop methods to level up Pokémon quickly, so your whole team will become stronger, and evolve much faster, instead of just the Pokémon you use the most.
Why You Should or Shouldn’t Evolve Your Pokémon
Pokémon learn different attacks when they evolve, and sometimes they take a little longer to learn the special moves that you want. For instance, back in my old Pokémon days, Charmander used to learn Flamethrower at level 37 while Charizard did it at level 47.
However, you miss out on other attacks and stats bonuses when you prevent an evolution from happening. In the case of Pokémon Legends: Arceus, not evolving your Pokémon as soon as possible, instead of preventing it, has the same effect.
For that reason, I don’t recommend delaying a Pokémon’s evolution if you don’t know exactly why you’re doing it. Honestly, it won’t change anything for you if you are playing casually.
Note that evolution doesn’t happen automatically in this game, so you might accidentally delay a Pokémon’s evolution. If you were not aware of this, check how to evolve Pokémon before you start leveling them up.
Not All Evolutions Are That Simple
Note that evolutions that require an item still work the same way.
Sometimes you must have the item that makes a Pokémon evolve with you, and the Pokémon that can be evolved with that item must be in your team. Then it is just a matter of using the item to force the creature to transform into something else, just like if you expose Pikachu to the Thunder Stone, it turns into Raichu.
There are often Pokemon in titles that can’t evolve without certain items, or other tougher tasks like being traded.
This change in how to make a Pokémon evolve seems to be more of a quality of life change than anything else. Honestly, I genuinely appreciate the implementation since I remember being annoyed that my Bulbasaur became an Ivysaur — not because I wanted to get an attack sooner, but because Bulbasaur was much cuter.
On the other hand, if you didn’t know how to evolve your started Pokémon, now you know how everything works.
Either way, this is not that big of a change, and it aligns with how you evolve other Pokémon in a way. I mean, you do have to go to the menu and use an item to evolve some Pokémon, and others need more complex steps that end in you going to the menu anyway.
Consider constantly evolving your Pokémon during gameplay. By doing so, you’ll gain a stronger ally and be able to tackle much tougher challenges as you continue to explore! This can be especially helpful if you have a low-leveled Pokémon. The stats boost gained from reaching a more advanced form is usually significant.
So now you know that you should check your menu from time to time in case you missed that one of your Pokémon is ready to evolve. It is also helpful to check in case members of your team have a weird evolution condition.