In Pokemon Legends Arceus, Ursaring finally gets an evolution in Ursaluna. As one of the Ride Pokemon in the game, you’ll be spending a lot of time with this Hisui exclusive. Unfortunately, he’s also one of the trickier Pokemon to evolve in the game, thanks to needing an excessively rare item in Peat Block. Not only can’t you purchase it with Merit Points like most items, you can only find it at random by digging for treasure with Ursaluna as a Ride mon, finding it in shaking ores, or completing a long series of quests where you have to find someone’s lost sister. Naturally, I chose the quest route, one of the few quest lines that actually serves an important purpose in the game.
The question then becomes, is Ursaluna good outside of its obvious utility in digging up evolution items? Fortunately, the answer is yes; Ursaluna has a few things working for it that Ursaring didn’t. First, Ursaluna adds the Ground type to the Normal type of Ursaring, which is a great offensive typing. Ursaluna has base stats of 140 HP, which is 50 points higher than Ursaring, an attack of 140 (10 points higher), a special defense of 80 (5 points higher), and a physical defense of 105 (30 points higher). To make up for its higher HP, attack, and defense, however, it does lose a lot of special attack (not a big deal), and a little bit of speed.
Stats wise, you’re not expecting Ursaluna to be fast anyway, so a base speed of 50, while slow, is fine considering how hard it hits and how beefy it is. Unfortunately, Ursaluna has a very shallow move pool to work from, although High Horsepower is a great same-type attack bonus move, as is Double-Edge. Ursaluna can also learn the physical Fairy-type move Play Rough, plus a new signature move in Headlong Rush, which lowers your defense much like Close Combat.
On the good side, the Training Grounds in Legends Arceus open up a ton of potential options for Ursaluna’s moveset. These include a couple of special attack moves we can ignore, but most are fortunately physical options to take advantage of that massive 140 attack stat. Feast your eyes on this list of physical moves Ursaluna can learn by tutor:
- Rock Smash (Fighting)
- Aerial Ace (Flying)
- Focus Energy (Normal)
- Bulk Up (Fighting)
- Rest (Psychic)
- Baby-Doll Eyes (Fairy)
- Fire Punch (Fire)
- Thunder Punch (Electric)
- Ice Punch (Ice)
- Rock Slide (Rock)
- Shadow Claw (Ghost)
- Giga Impact (Normal)
- Stone Edge (Rock)
It’s without a doubt you’ll want to run Rest in Ursaluna’s moveset in Legends Arceus, thanks to Rest making you drowsy instead of asleep. With that massive HP stat, Rest becomes unbelievable recovery that may still let you attack. Giga Impact and High Horsepower are probably your best STAB moves, and the fourth slot likely will go to Play Rough, Shadow Claw, or Rock Slide depending on how you want to build out your team. Notably, there is a lack of Dark-type coverage in moves like Crunch, but that could change when Ursaluna eventually makes its way into Scarlet and Violet. Essentially, Ursaluna is beginning to look like a better version of Slaking, although the Truant Pokemon has 160 base attack, but skips attacking every other turn.
On defense, Ursaluna does pick up some weaknesses by picking up the Ground type. Continuing to be a Normal type, it keeps the Ghost immunity, and gains the Electric immunity with the Ground typing. But, on top of being weak to Fighting as a Normal type, it now also gains Water, Grass, and Ice weaknesses. However, having High Horsepower or Headlong Rush gives Ursaluna super effective damage against Electric, Fire, Poison, and Rock types, plus the same-type attack bonus.
Overall, Ursaluna is probably a borderline competitive Pokemon. Ursaring hasn’t seen much competitive play since Diamond and Pearl. When it did, that was only because of its ability, Guts. If he had a status affliction, such as poison, paralysis, or burn, his attack would be raised by 50 percent; burn doesn’t halve his attack, either, thanks to Guts. With a held item like Toxic Orb or Flame Orb, he could hit extremely hard. Fortunately for Ursaluna, while abilities are inactive and hidden in Legends Arceus, it still gets Guts as one of its abilities.
The best nature for Ursaluna in competitive play is likely Brave, which boosts Attack and decreases Speed. This is the same nature that most Ursaring have used. If Ursaluna can still learn Facade when transitioning to Generation 9, that Normal-type move hits for 140 base power if the user is burned, poisoned, or paralyzed. Trading Close Combat for Headlong Rush could be the right move, unless the signature move doesn’t come over – which is likely. The best moveset for Ursaluna will likely look like Swords Dance / Bulk Up, Facade, Crunch, Close Combat / High Horsepower. Whether that is good enough to put Ursaluna in a position to regain its place among the highly competitive Underused tier is hard to say, but the tools are there.
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