Pokemon Legends: Arceus: Alpha Pokemon Explained

Alpha Pokemon stand above the rest in more than one way


Pokemon come in many shapes and sizes, especially in Pokemon Legends: Arceus. This open-world Pokemon spinoff incorporates a variety of Pokemon ranging from teeny-tiny to elephantine. Alpha Pokemon just happen to be the largest of them all, and the game recognizes them as such with the special name. Naturally, because alphas are new to the series, even long-time fans have plenty of questions. Here are the basics of what you need to know about alphas in Pokemon Legends: Arceus.

What are Alpha Pokemon?

A domesticated alpha Floatzel cries out in might
A domesticated alpha Floatzel cries out in might

Alpha Pokemon are the largest possible Pokemon in the game for their respective species. Just in case you don't realize it, they remind you with their unique traits and looks; they're red-eyed, aggressive creatures that attack you on sight. Thankfully, they lose that aggression and their eyes fade to a normal color once you catch them.

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Where to find alpha Pokemon

An alpha Shinx ponders its next move from faraway
An alpha Shinx ponders its next move from faraway

Each region tends to house at least one fixed alpha Pokemon spawn per subsection, which you can mark on your map. For example, Obsidian Fieldlands has an alpha Rapidash in Horseshoe Plains, an alpha Magikarp in Obsidian Falls, and so on. Players discover them as they explore, though you may not be ready to face them right away.

The first alpha Pokemon players should meet is alpha Kriketune. This Kriketune is special because it's the only alpha Pokemon that will remotely be close to your level at this stage of the game. It won't respawn if you kill it.

How to catch alpha Pokemon

Drifblim uses Hypnosis on alpha Snorlax to lull it to sleep
Drifblim uses Hypnosis on alpha Snorlax to lull it to sleep

Catching alpha Pokemon works basically the same as catching a regular Pokemon. The highest hurdle will be staying alive, considering many of them appear when players are still underleveled for the particular area they inhabit.

It's relatively easy to catch a normal wild Pokemon with any combination of low HP or status effects. Heck, even just throwing a Poke Ball can work. However, alphas are harder to capture than their average-sized counterparts. Like with regular Pokemon, the safest way to catch alphas involves whittling down their HP as much as possible, inflicting a status effect, and then throwing your most powerful Poke Ball at them.

In the beginning, you will almost always need to engage with alphas to capture them. However, as you raise your star rank, it'll be easier to catch alphas by just throwing a Poke Ball like it is with other Pokemon. Pro tip: If you still can't seem to catch alphas, try raising your star rank. The higher the star rank, the higher the capture rate.

Oh, and of course, save before encounters. I've admittedly killed more alphas than I wish were true, and I'm glad I saved beforehand so I didn't need to deal with the consequences of my actions. Many of them respawn after a full day but resetting means you can try again right away. If it isn't an alpha that respawns, it saves some heartache too.

Will alpha Pokemon respawn if I KO them?

Luxray and alpha Floatzel have a staredown
Luxray and alpha Floatzel have a staredown

There are two types of alphas: those that respawn and those that appear at random. Only the first type consistently respawns in the same area, even if you already capture or KO it. However, it can be difficult to tell which type of alpha it is if it’s your first time seeing it. Alphas that respawn tend to be evolved forms or uncommon Pokemon in the area.

Alpha versions of commonly found Pokemon in the area tend to be random encounters that won’t necessarily respawn if you defeat or capture them. Using Obsidian Fieldlands as an example:

  • Alphas that respawn: Floatzel, Rapidash, Magikarp, Bibarel, Snorlax
  • Alphas that pop up as a random encounter: Bidoof, Shinx, Buizel

This isn’t a comprehensive list, but just a few examples from one area. You won’t find regular-sized Floatzels, Bibarel, or Rapidash roaming around Obsidian Fieldlands. Magikarp is an exception to the rule. Many Magikarp appear upstream, even when a resident alpha respawns with the school every day.

Don't stop at alpha Pokemon, though! Also learn how to catch Shiny Pokemon, how to catch legendary Pokemon Dialga and Palkia, and how to capture the mythical Manaphy to round out your Pokedex.

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