Pokémon Legends: Arceus has rewritten the rules of the Pokémon franchise, smashing together both real-time and turn-based combat to give players new ways of fighting and catching the collectable creatures. This new combat system has refreshed the franchise, but it also makes fighting powerful Pokémon a bit more of a challenge. With both Noble and Alpha Pokémon calling the Hisui region home, players will have to think on their feet in order to survive. Here’s how to safely beat Noble and Alpha Pokémon in Pokémon Legends: Arceus.
Noble Pokémon Battles Have Two Phases
The first frenzied Noble Pokémon you will come across is the Pearl Clan’s revered Kleavor. This Kleavor is a powerful fighter, and your Pokéballs will simply bounce off him if you attempt to throw out a Pokémon to battle him. You’ll have to throw the balms you received at the beginning of the battle at him in order to bring his Frenzy level down.
With every Noble Pokémon, there is a way to stun them so that you can throw out a Pokémon to battle them. Battling them and winning creates a brief window where the Pokémon is stunned and where your balms do far more damage against their Frenzy level. In the case of Kleavor, you’ll need to watch for his charge animation. Once he throws one scythe back and looks as though he’s about to run, hide behind the tree in the middle of the arena. Kleavor will then run directly into the tree, stunning himself — that’s the perfect opening for a battle.
Throwing Balms Versus Battling Noble Pokémon
While battling Noble Pokémon causes your balms to deal more damage against their Frenzy level, it also puts your team directly in harm’s way. Remember, this isn’t your standard Pokémon game — these Noble Pokémon pack a serious punch. Even with a high-level team, engaging Noble Pokémon like Kleavor in combat can lead to many of your team fainting before the fight ends. Noble Pokémon are easily able to one-shot Pokémon, even when performing non-super effective moves.
Before you go into a Noble fight, practice your dodging mechanic against wild Pokémon to get a feel for how the system works. Kleavor is very generous in his timing for his initial moveset, which largely consists of his charge. He gears up for quite a bit before his eye glints. Once you spot that signal, dodge directly perpendicular to him and you should be fine. After that, throw a few balms before backing away and putting some distance between you. For other later Noble Pokémon, the timing becomes tighter but still very doable.
If you have experience battling bosses in other action games, you’ll likely find dodging and throwing balms a far more efficient way to take out Noble Pokémon than battling them. If you go down the battling route, keep in mind that one battle won’t cut it — you’ll have to battle them at least three to four times. Relying on your own ability to dodge can save your team from fainting, while still allowing you to resort to a battle if your own health gets low.
Of course, if you’ve found that the dodge mechanic is a bit cumbersome for you, fear not: battling Noble Pokémon is still completely doable. You can pause and craft during the non-battle parts of a Noble fight, allowing you to create revives and potions on the fly. Gather a stock of Vivichokes, Medicinal Leeks, and Oran Berries before you start a Noble fight. Craft Revives and Potions after each battle to bring your team back up to fighting shape.
If you’re still having trouble, try using status effect moves during battle. It’s easy to skip over them, but status effects like poison or drowsy are vital in Pokémon Legends: Arceus. For Kleavor, try capturing one or two Driftloons in the Obsidian Fieldlands at night and getting them leveled up. Once high enough, they will learn Hypnosis. This causes enemy Pokémon to fall asleep. Having two ensures that if one misses their Hypnosis and subsequently gets one-shot, you can still use the other. An asleep Noble Pokémon can’t hurt you for a few turns, giving you enough wiggle room to eke out a win.
Alpha Pokémon: What You Need To Know
Alpha Pokémon dot the landscape in Pokémon Legends: Arceus, often found in secluded pockets of the map surrounded by their unevolved variants. They have glowing red eyes and are far more powerful than others of their species. Once captured, however, they make for high-stat team members.
Before you go out rushing into battle with one, however, there are some bases you’ll want to cover. Firstly, Alpha Pokémon can often be extremely overleveled for the area they are in. An Alpha Rapidash, for example, roams part of the Obsidian Fieldlands. Upon close inspection, you’ll find that it’s level 50.
It’s best, before even considering engaging an Alpha Pokémon, to crouch and sneak up behind them. You can then use ZL to scan them and see what level they are. If they are more than 10 levels above your best Pokémon, it’s probably too soon to fight them.
If you are within their range, however, then a battle is in order.
How To Beat Alpha Pokémon
Beating Alpha Pokémon in battle is a lot like fighting Noble ones, except at a much faster pace. You won’t be able to craft items midway through battle, and using them will take up your turn. Also, Alpha Pokémon can use moves from other types, meaning that you may see a fire type whip out Razor Leaf just to wipe the floor with your water type. Alpha Pokémon, like Nobles, can typically one or two-shot any member of your team. To fight them and win, you’ll need to utilize status effects again.
Putting Alphas to sleep with Hypnosis is a great strategy early in Arceus. Again, you can get yourself a Driftloon during night-time at the Obsidian Fieldlands to add Hypnosis to your arsenal. Once asleep, Alpha Pokémon are far less of a threat. After they are asleep or otherwise afflicted by a status, simply wail on them until they faint.
If you’re looking to capture them, however, you’ll want to keep them alive, just. Because they are so enraged, Alpha Pokémon are hard to catch even at low health. To bring them as low as possible, you can teach one of your Pokémon the move False Swipe at the training center. This is guaranteed to never faint a Pokémon, instead always leaving them on 1 HP. Once an Alpha Pokémon is relatively low, hit them with a False Swipe, then try to put them to sleep. At that point, you’ll have a few good turns to throw Poké Balls at them, and hopefully catch them.
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Nicolas Perez is a journalist who has played way too much Civilization 5. He’s rambling on Twitter @Nic_Perez_..