How to Evolve Riolu in Pokémon Legends: Arceus

A Riolu and Lucario standing next to each other with a red arrow pointing from Riolu to Lucario. They are in a snowy area.

Key Takeaway

You need to increase your Friendship Level with Riolu during the day to the second-highest tier before it can evolve. Thankfully, you'll get a prompt on the left of your screen the moment a Riolu in your party reaches this Friendship Level threshold.

Like in past main series Pokémon games, you’ll need to become BFFs with your Riolu before it can evolve. In Pokémon Legends: Arceus, there are convenient ways to do so—as well as quick ways to check your Friendship Level.

Table Of Contents

    How to Raise Your Friendship Level to Evolve Riolu Quickly

    A Riolu standing in the snow.

    There are quite a few ways through which you can raise your Friendship Level. Here’s a list of all the ways you can increase your Friendship Level with your Pokémon:

    • Keeping a Pokémon in your party
    • Keeping a party Pokémon at max HP
    • Using a Pokémon in battles
    • Winning battles
    • Using a Pokémon to harvest resources
    • Feeding a Pokémon candies

    The fastest (albeit expensive) way to increase your Friendship Level quickly is to feed Riolu tons of Candies. Specifically, Small Candies (Candy S) give you the most friendship for the lowest cost.

    Besides forcing Riolu into a sugar rush, the next fastest method is harvesting resources with it. Simply have Riolu collect every possible item you come across and you’ll have their Friendship Level high enough to evolve in around half an hour (if done efficiently).

    Note that you’ll need to wait until daytime before you can evolve Riolu.

    How to Check Riolu’s Friendship Level

    To check a Pokémon’s Friendship Level, you’ll need to speak with Belamy near the Pokémon Pastures in Jubilife Village. When you ask Belamy to check one of your Pokémon, he’ll have one of five responses to give you.

    The response that you want to hear is “You and Riolu seem to be fast friends. You must be quite good companions!” This represents the second-highest Friendship Level you can reach with a Pokémon and the stage at which friendship evolutions can happen.

    However, at this point, your Riolu’s Poké Ball should already be glowing yellow due to it being ready to evolve. In fact, this will happen the moment you reach the second-highest Friendship Level. You’ll even get a little prompt on the left of your screen the moment Riolu is ready to evolve.

    Reasons to Use Lucario on Your Team

    Lucario standing on a snowy hill.

    Lucario is a very well-balanced Pokémon and can be a valuable member of any team that needs a Fighting or Steel-type pocket monster. It possesses great offensive stats, has many favorable type matchups, and comes with an excellent move pool.

    Lucario’s Stats

    This Pokémon is fairly unique in that its Attack and Special Attack stats are pretty much the same. This means that Lucario is equally viable as a physical or special attacker. What’s more, both its Attack and Special Attack stats are high enough to let it hit foes hard.

    Backing up the great offensive stats is a sufficient Speed stat that will let Lucario move first against many opponents. This allows it to not only out-speed plenty of foes but also to take advantage of the action order when using certain moves.

    While Lucario’s HP, Defense, and Special Defense stats are its weakest traits, they aren’t that bad. These three stats are about equal and none of them are that low in value, meaning that Lucario should be able to tank a hit or two in most cases.

    Lucario’s Weaknesses and Resistances

    Thanks to great typing, Lucario resists eight types and is immune to one. Overall, this results in Lucario having good type matchups against half of all known types in the game.

    Furthermore, Lucario only has three weaknesses: Fire, Ground, and Fighting-type moves. While such types are pretty common for damage-dealing moves, having only three weaknesses compared to nine resistances and immunities isn’t bad at all.

    The Best Learnset Moves for Lucario in Pokémon Legends: Arceus

    Lucario has arguably one of the best movepools in the game. Not only does it learn plenty of strong physical and special attacks, but also a few great status moves as well.

    You can’t really go wrong when deciding how to specialize Lucario’s offense. Making it physically-oriented, specially-oriented, or mixed are all viable in this game. However, just keep in mind that you should increase Lucario’s offensive effort values to make it as strong as possible.

    Through leveling up, Lucario can learn Bulk Up at level 37, which is its best buff. Starting each battle by using Bulk Up will let Lucario lay waste to many foes easily as it increases both Attack and Special Attack for a few turns.

    If you’re after the best physical moves, you should let Lucario learn Crunch at level 29 and Close Combat at level 47, as those will cover your type matchups pretty well.

    In regards to special moves, Aura Sphere (learned at level 21) and Dragon Pulse (learned at level 40) are both solid choices. However, don’t forget about all of the moves that can be learned from the move tutor.

    The Best Move Tutor Moves for Lucario in Pokémon Legends: Arceus

    Overall, Lucario can learn damage-dealing moves from 12 different types. This will let you put together a moveset that can deal with almost any threat.

    Here’s a list of the best physical damage-dealing moves for Lucario:

    • Shadow Claw [Ghost-type] (70 base power)
    • Thunder Punch [Electric-type] (75 base power)
    • Ice Punch [Ice-type] (75 base power)
    • Drain Punch [Fighting-type] (75 base power)
    • Poison Jab [Poison-type] (80 base power)
    • Zen Headbutt [Psychic-type] (80 base power)
    • Iron Tail [Steel-type] (100 base power)
    • Stone Edge [Rock-type] (100 base power)
    • Giga Impact [Normal-type] (120 base power)

    Furthermore, here’s a list of the best special damage-dealing moves for Lucario:

    • Shadow Ball [Ghost-type] (80 base power)
    • Flash Cannon [Steel-type] (80 base power)
    • Psychic [Psychic-type] (80 base power)
    • Dark Pulse [Dark-type] (80 base power)
    • Hyper Beam [Normal-type] (120 base power)
    • Steel Beam [Steel-type] (120 base power)

    When deciding on the best moveset for your Lucario, you should consider your team composition. In addition to giving Lucario STAB (same type attack bonus) moves, you should also give it attacks that help to cover what types your team is missing.

    For example, if you don’t have an Ice-type Pokémon on your team, maybe give Lucario Ice Punch in addition to some STAB moves. An ideal moveset for Lucario will usually be Bulk Up, two STAB moves, and one coverage move.