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Don’t be afraid to release Pokémon, either

The other side of the coin, naturally, is seeing how much room you’re given to collect Pokémon and being wary of releasing them at all. That’s also a bad idea!


Every time you release Pokémon, whether solo or in a group, they leave behind little presents for you. I don’t know if these gifts change further into Pokémon Legends: Arceus, but over the first few hours of my adventure, I’ve collected a buttload of grit dust, gravel, pebbles, and rocks, all of which are used to improve secondary Pokémon stats known as effort levels.

Like EVs (effort values) and IVs (individual values) before them, effort levels aren’t something you need to concern yourself with if you’re just playing Pokémon Legends: Arceus casually. But those of you who prefer to min-max your role-playing experience, you can read more about the process on wonderful Pokémon info repositories like Serebii and Bulbapedia. Then again, with even normal enemies being pretty tough, it might be smart to think about utilizing effort levels sooner rather than later.


You can turn off the HUD

Do you feel like the Pokémon Legends: Arceus screen is too cluttered? Well, you’re in luck, because nestled within the settings menu is an option to enable HUD toggling.


After turning this feature on, all it takes is a simple click of the right thumbstick to get rid of all the UI elements clogging up the screen, perfect for taking pictures of the game’s lush countryside and wild Pokémon.

Another photography tip: holding the left trigger puts you in first-person mode, another great way to get up close and personal with your Pokémon. For example, here are two alpha Bidoof that I caught one after the other last night. They are my large sons.

Two fluffy, beaver-like Pokémon stare at the camera.
Screenshot: The Pokémon Company / Kotaku


You’ve probably noticed already, but Pokémon Legends: Arceus is huge. There’s no reason to rush through it.


My last tip for this wonderful game is to savor it. Enjoy the adventure. Spend an hour here or there between story missions to wander through one of the game’s many areas, watching how wild Pokémon interact with their environment. Take out your favorite Pokémon in town and snap a few photos of their interactions. Before you know it, the adventure will be over, you’ll have collected a full Pokédex of shiny, alpha Pokémon, and there won’t be anything new to see until the next game.

Pokémon Legends: Arceus is a game decades in the making. It really does feel like the culmination of everything the developers have learned since the series debuted in 1996, not to mention something of a love letter to fans who have long asked for a more open-ended, organic Pokémon experience. Sadly, we’ll only get to see it for the first time just once, so do everything you can to cherish these moments of unknowing.