Pokemon Legends: Arceus Is Missing Several Big Game Features

Pokemon Legends: Arceus is missing several key features used in most other Pokemon games. Pokemon Legends: Arceus is out today, bringing a new kind of Pokemon game experience to fans. The game uses a radically redesigned catching and battling system that emphasizes stealth and speed over monotonous grinding. However, while the game still features many of the classic Pokemon we've come to know and love over the past 25 years, it is missing several features that fans are used to seeing in Pokemon games. Most notably, Pokemon Legends: Arceus has scrapped the Ability and Held Items features seen in other Pokemon games. 

Abilities are passive powers that most Pokemon species have by default. Some abilities provide buffs to certain stats or moves, while others prevent certain attacks from hitting or affect other Pokemon. Typically, a Pokemon species has one to two Abilities and a "Hidden Ability" – a rare ability that can only be obtained in certain ways. Held items similarly provide either passive buffs or another benefit of some kind. Some items are always on, while other items like Berries provide a one-time benefit that is automatically spent while in battle. Both features have been a part of the Pokemon franchise for a long time – Abilities were introduced in Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire, while Held Items were introduced in Pokemon Gold and Silver. However, both Abilities and Held Items were missing from Pokemon: Let's Go, Pikachu and Let's Go, Eevee, so it's not the first time that Game Freak has dropped the features during a re-imagining of the Pokemon game experience.

Fans suspected that both Abilities and Held Items wouldn't be presented in Pokemon Legends: Arceus, as previews for the game didn't show either feature present in Pokemon screens. We should note, however, that many wild Pokemon still drop items when caught, which is somewhat equivalent to how some wild Pokemon have held items. 

In some ways, the removal of both Abilities and Held Items makes sense for Pokemon Legends: Arceus, as many of them are tied to a battle system that's not used in the game. Given that battles are drastically simplified in Pokemon Legends: Arceus, it makes sense that items and Abilities are not part of this game. Assuming that Game Freak makes more games in the vein of Pokemon Legends: Arceus, let's hope that they find a way to incorporate both features back into the series.