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Catching All Legendary Pokemon - General Tips
When it comes time to actually capture the legendary Pokemon, you can use one of two methods: the Master Ball method or the battle method. The Master Ball method simply involves throwing a Master Ball at the legendary Pokemon and catching it, since Master Balls have a 100 percent capture rate. You normally only get one Master Ball in the course of the game, but there are ways of getting more Master Balls in Pokemon Diamond and Pearl.
Master Balls are available as a reward for the lottery in Jubilife City. Of course, this is completely random. You could play every day for two weeks and wind up with 14 Master Balls, or you could wind up with absolutely nothing. You can also trade or import Master Balls. Attach your Master Ball to a Pokemon from one of the Game Boy Advance Pokemon games and then import it through the Pal Park. Alternatively, trade a valuable item or Pokemon for a Master Ball with another player over the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection.
The battle method involves catching all legendary Pokemon just like you would any other Pokemon: weaken it in battle, inflict it with a status like sleep or paralysis, and throw Poke Balls and hope for the best. Use Ultra Balls for this method. Make sure you always save your game before battling the legendary Pokemon, so that you won't miss out on catching it if you accidentally knock it out.
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Dialga and Palkia
Pokemon Gold and Silver had Ho-Oh and Lugia, Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire had Kyogre and Groudon and now Pokemon Diamond and Pearl have Dialga and Palkia. These are the two main legendary Pokemon printed on the game box and you'll only have the chance to capture one depending on which version you're playing. Dialga appears in Pokemon Diamond while Palkia shows up in Pokemon Pearl.
You'll encounter Dialga or Palkia at the top of Mt. Coronet after battling your way through countless Team Galactic Grunts and shutting down their leader, Cyrus, once and for all. Dialga or Palkia will appear immediately after beating Cyrus, but you'll have to actually walk up to either legendary Pokemon and press "A" before the battle starts. Save your game and heal first if you're going to use the battle method, and then go take care of business. Dialga, a steel and dragon type, can best be weakened with ground and fighting attacks. Palkia, a water and dragon type, should succumb to dragon attacks.
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Lake Guardians: Uxie, Azelf, and Mesprit
The lake guardians are a trio of legendary Pokemon who appear after you defeat Team Galactic and capture either Dialga or Palkia. These three psychic legendary Pokemon can be found in Sinnoh's three lakes, Lake Acuity, Lake Verity, and Lake Valor. You'll find catching Uxie and Azelf to be fairly straight foward. For Uxie, head to the cavern at Lake Acuity and initiate battle. Head to the cavern in Lake Valor to find Azelf.
Mesprit decides it wants to be more of a nuisance than its siblings. When you approach Mesprit, it will run away rather than battle you. Just like the three legendary beasts in Pokemon Gold and Silver or Latios and Latias in Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire, Mesprit is a roaming legendary Pokemon and it will now appear in a random location in Sinnoh. Your best bet is to put a level 50 Pokemon in the front of your party, apply some Max Repel, and wander through areas of tall grass until you track Mesprit down.
All three Pokemon are at level 50 and are weak against bug, ghost, and dark type attacks.
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Post-National Pokedex Legendary Pokemon
To finish catching all legendary Pokemon in Pokemon Diamond and Pearl you'll need to obtain the National Pokedex by talking to Professor Rowen aftering seeing at least 150 different Sinnoh Pokemon. Doing so gives you the opportunity to catch three new legendary Pokemon.
Activate the roaming legendary Pokemon Cresselia by going to Canalave City. Go to the southernmost house on the west side of the city and you'll find that Sailor Eldritch's son is sick. Talk to Eldritch outside the house and he'll give you a ride to Fullmoon Island to obtain the Lunar Wing item to cure his son. Follow the straightforward path to the center of the island, and you'll see the legendary Pokemon Cresselia lying in wait. Approach it and press "A," and it will flee, leaving the Lunar Wing behind. Give the item to the sailor. Cresselia will now appear randomly somewhere in Sinnoh, so track it down just like Mesprit. Cresselia is level 50 and weak to bug, dark, and ghost attacks.
Head to Stark Mountain (take the ferry from Snowpoint City) to catch the legendary Pokemon Heatran. You'll meet a trainer named Buck and help him defeat the remnants of Team Galactic to recover an item called the Magma Stone. Afterwards, follow Buck to his grandfather's house in Fight Area to the west. At his grandfather's instructions, Buck returns the Magma Stone to its rightful place in Stark Mountain. Once he does, you can return to the mountain and battle the fire and steel type Heatran. It will be at level 70 and weak against fighting, ground, and water attacks.
Capture Giratina in Turnback Cave (located in Sendoff Spring, to the east of Route 214). We unfortunately can't give you exact directions here since Turnback Cave's layout is randomized in every game. In general, though, try to follow the odd patterns on the floor. When you reach Giratina, note that it's level 70 and of the ghost and dragon types. Weaken it with ghost, dragon, dark, or ice attacks.
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Import Legendary Pokemon
Import Registeel, Regirock, and Regice from your copy of Pokemon Ruby, Sapphire, or Emerald in order to awaken Regigigas in Snowpoint Temple. Regigigas appears at level 70 and is only weak against fighting type attacks.
Import the water-type Manaphy from your copy of Pokemon Ranger. It will come in the form of an egg, which you can hatch by carrying the egg in your party and walking around until it eventually hatches. You'll then have to breed Manaphy with a Pokemon such as a Ditto in order to obtain another egg. This egg will hatch a second legendary Pokemon, Phione.
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Event Legendary Pokemon
At this point you'll only need three Pokemon before you can say you've captured all legendary Pokemon in Pokemon Diamond and Pearl, but unfortunately the final three can only be obtained with the aid of an event item. These items are given out on set dates over the Wi-Fi network. You could also trade with a friend willing to give up the item or use an Action Replay to obtain the Pokemon with a cheat code, but note that Pokemon obtained by cheat codes are not considered legitimate.
You'll need the Member Card to encounter Darkrai, Oak's Letter to find Shaymin, and Azure Flute to obtain Arceus. The Member Card hasn't been available since September 2009. Oak's Letter went out of distribution in November 2009. The Azure Flute, however, has yet to be distributed so you'll still have a chance to obtain a legitimate Arceus when Nintendo decides to release the item. We'll update this section as soon as we hear news about its release date.