More than a week ahead of its release, numerous details pertaining to Pokémon Legends: Arceus have leaked due to certain players allegedly receiving physical copies of the game early. One piece of unofficial gameplay footage indicated that evolution — a staple of the Pokémon franchise — might have to be performed manually, rather than automatically, in Pokémon Legends: Arceus.
The footage, uploaded by Twitter user JohnPoryIsYes, shows the player viewing the Pokémon in their party. Upon selecting Starly, the player then selects an option that reads “evolve” from a sub-menu, after which a cutscene plays that sees Starly evolve into Staravia. The implication here seems to be that Pokémon will now have to be evolved manually, something that prominent Pokémon leaker CentroLeaks further claimed on Twitter. In previous games, Pokémon would evolve automatically upon reaching a certain level or once equipped with a certain item.
It’s worth noting that none of this information has been confirmed by official sources from Nintendo or The Pokémon Company. We cannot independently confirm the validity of the leaker’s post, as we do not yet have our hands on the game.
In previous Pokémon games, you could prevent evolutions by either hitting the “B” button during the evolution process or by equipping your Pokémon with an Everstone. Legends: Arceus’ alleged new evolution method looks to streamline the process for those who wish to avert evolving their Pokémon.
Pokémon Legends: Arceus is set to launch on January 28, but it seems likely the full game’s contents could leak prior to that. A new first-person mode, as well as Hisuian forms for Legendary Pokémon, were reportedly discovered by dataminers following the game’s initial leak.