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Every Pokemon Legends: Arceus Spoiler Revealed So Far

January tends to be a slow month for video game releases, usually giving fans a bit of time to catch up on missed titles from the previous year and dip into the backlog. January 2022 is not an exception, as most of the month's releases are ports or re-releases of older titles. However, January 2022 also marks the release of an all-new "Pokemon" game.

"Pokemon Legends: Arceus," out January 28, is the first big game of 2022. "Pokemon" fans are getting a semi-open-world RPG that is equivalent in length and breadth of content to a mainline title in the series. Yes, this is more than another spin-off. Tying into 2021's "Diamond" and "Pearl" remakes, "Arceus' will return players to the Sinnoh region where those games took place. Set centuries before the mainline "Pokemon" games, the region in "Arceus" is known by its ancient name, the Hisui region.

In the months leading to the game's release, plenty of details have come out about "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" from unofficial sources. Here are all the rumors and spoilers that have leaked from the upcoming "Pokemon" RPG.

Beware of spoilers ahead for mechanics and story elements from "Pokemon Legends: Arceus."

A great deal of the Pokedex was recently leaked

One of the biggest "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" leaks snuck out in early December 2021. Thanks to a tweet from known "Pokemon" insider and leaker Riddler Khu, fans got to see a large (if not complete) portion of the Pokedex from the upcoming game.

The image in question was tweeted by Khu on December 4 (via Dexerto) and shows a list of numbers arranged by background color. The figures refer to the Pokedex numbers of the Pokemon rumored to appear in "Arceus," while the colors correspond to their type. If this turns out to be true, a vast number of Pokemon from "Brilliant Diamond" and "Shining Pearl" will be appearing in the game's prequel — which makes sense as those Pokemon are native to the Sinnoh region that once was Hisui, the setting of "Arceus."

Khu followed up in the Tweet thread by saying "[The] baby Pokemon line all make it," which some fans have taken to mean that all the adorable baby versions of Pokemon from the Gen 4 remakes will be making it into "Arceus."

Returning starters have been rumored to have new Hisuian evolutions

In an unprecedented move (at least a first for the series), "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" will put starters from a previous "Pokemon" generation front and center. As in the past, players have the choice of a Water, Fire, or Grass type, but "Arceus" offers options from multiple older titles. The starter Pokemon are Rowlet, the Grass type owl from "Sun" and "Moon," Oshawott, the Water starter from "Pokemon Black" and "White," and Cyndaquil, the fan favorite Fire type starter dating all the way back to 1999's "Silver" and "Gold."

These three have been confirmed as the starters, but what is still heavily rumored are the changes to their evolutionary paths. According to Pokemon expert Centro Leaks, the final evolved forms of these starting Pokemon will become different types from their classic counterparts. If these rumors are true, Typhlosion will become a Fire/Ghost-type, Samurott will be Water/Dark-type, and Decidueye will be a Grass/Fighting-type. 

For the first two, this is a complete departure from their single-type evolutions of the past, which stuck to the same element as their unevolved forms. For Decidueye, which became a Grass/Ghost type in "Sun" and "Moon," this is also a notable change. It may be interesting to see which Fighting moves Decidueye could learn in "Arceus."

New variants of Legendaries have been leaked

As you can probably gather from the title, Arceus is the prominent Legendary beast featured in the upcoming "Pokemon Legends” game. However, the Gen 4 Legendary isn't the only one making a return, at least according to "Pokemon" leaker Centro Leaks

For starters, there are rumored to be new Legendary Pokemon, which is a given for pretty much any new "Pokemon" title. More interesting is the return of a fan favorite, as newer leaks point to Mewtwo getting their its exclusive Hisuian form. This would make sense, given Mewtwo's widespread popularity. However, it may end up breaking the character's canon backstory of being experimented upon in a modern lab, which hardcore fans may not expect.

Furthermore, Centro says that the game (or potential DLC sometime down the road) will include Primal forms of Gen 4 Legendaries. Introduced in "Omega Ruby" and "Alpha Sapphire," Primal Pokemon are stronger, ancient forms of the Legendaries seen in those titles.  Pokemon getting the Primal treatment in "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" are said to include Giritana, Dialga, and Palkia. 

Old favorites are also getting variants

In addition to new variants of familiar Legendaries, a handful Hisuian forms of regular Pokemon have been announced, while some others have been leaked. Each new variation has a different visual style from their regular counterparts, not to mention an additional type on top of the elements players are used to. According to leakers Eclipse and Ball Guy, there are going to be 17 Hisuian variants of returning Pokemon, including alternate versions of the three starters previously mentioned, Rowlet, Oshawott, and Cyndaquil.

By the end of 2021, only five variants had been officially announced (per Eurogamer), including the Hisuian Voltorb glimpsed in a recent trailer, who is both Electric and Grass type. The others announced are Hisuian Growlithe (Fire/Rock type), Hisuian Braviary (Flying/Psychic). Finally, players will see Hisuian variations of Zorua and its evolved form Zoroak, which will be Ghost/Normal type, rather than the Dark type seen in Generation 5's "Pokemon Black" and "Pokemon White."

Arceus is more Monster Hunter than Breath of the Wild

Early trailers gave fans an overwhelming "Breath of the Wild" vibe. Like the ground-breaking "Zelda" game, "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" is taking its franchise in a more open-ended direction. However, it now seems the comparison to 2017's open world "Zelda" are a bit off the mark. "Arceus" will be open-ended, but not fully a sandbox game.

In October, "Pokemon" insider Joe Merrick tweeted that "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" may not be fully open world, at least not in the way gamers know the phrase. Instead, the game will have a segmented world, more akin to a "Monster Hunter" title or fellow Nintendo Switch exclusive "Xenoblade Chronicles 2." Merrick compared the structure to the "Sword" and "Shield" expansion "The Crown Tundra" or those games' Wild Areas, which were wide open (but separate) segments sprinkled throughout a more traditional "Pokemon" overworld.

This information was later confirmed by Nintendo in a statement to Kotaku. In this statement, it was confirmed that the structure of "Arceus" is more similar to "Monster Hunter" than first blush may have made it seem. Players must prepare for each outing at a base camp before setting off for each individual foray into the world. This is one minor spoiler that fans may be thankful for, since it allows them to set proper expectations before diving into all that "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" has to offer.

Pokemon Legends: Arceus might be the longest Pokemon game released yet

In addition to having a larger map, "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" is rumored to be quite an investment in other areas. Riddler Khu tweeted out a thread of details on the upcoming game (via Dexerto), including that it will have the longest gameplay time in the series. This seems to be due to the lack of a linear gym structure seen in other games. Rather than taking on the Pokemon League, the game's main objective this time around will be filling out the Pokedex and capturing the eponymous Arceus.

On average, the longest "Pokemon" games top out at around 35 to 40 hours for a typical first playthrough (per HowLongToBeat). Riddler Khu's claim would point to "Arceus" being at least a 40-hour game, if not longer.

Khu also alluded to the idea that, in addition to being the longest "Pokemon" game ever released, "Arceus" might also be one of the most difficult. The game may place a heavier emphasis on the more "hardcore" elements of the series, like inventory management, as well as increased attention on item drops. This could add to the time spent with the title, as well. Again, this is a minor spoiler, but fans may be surprised to discover that the game just keep going past the point they'd expect.

Shiny hunting may be more difficult than in previous games

Another leak that comes from Riddler Khu could be a bit of a bummer — or a challenge, depending on how you take it. According to Khu via ComicBook), Shiny hunting will be more difficult in "Pokemon Legends: Arceus" than in the mainline games. First appearing in Gen 2, Shiny Pokemon are extremely rare Pokemon variants with special visual characteristics, albeit no statistical advantages. 

As in the "Pokemon: Let's Go" games, Shiny Pokemon in "Arceus" are expected to appear in the overworld and be identifiable from outside encounters. However, there is another wrinkle that Khu revealed.

According to the leaker, wild Pokemon in the Hisui region can run away from trainers trying to capture them. This means that Shiny hunting isn't as easy as just spotting them in the wild. It's unknown whether or not Shinies are more likely to flee than regular Pokemon, but it is certainly a possibility. This added mechanic might make Shiny hunting particularly frustrating, but it goes hand in hand with the Khu's description of "Arceus" as a longer, more grind-heavy game than most "Pokemon" veterans are used to.