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Sword & Shield Confirmed Information Thread (updated August 17th)

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Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield are the first games of the 8th generation, announced at a Pokémon Direct on February 27th, 2019.

Platform: Nintendo Switch
Release Date: November 15th 2019 (worldwide)
English Website: Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield
Japanese Website: トップページ|『ポケットモンスター ソード・シールド』公式サイト
Videos:
Announcement trailer (Feb 27th) (Japanese version)
Get ready for Dynamax! (June 5th) (Japanese version)
Pokémon Direct (June 5th)
E3 trailer (June 11th)
E3 interview and gameplay (June 11th)
Gigantimaxing Changes the Game (July 8th) (Japanese version)
A New Team and New Rivals (August 8th) (Japanese version)
Prepare for battle! (August 16th) (Japanese version)

Timeline:
Feb 27th - Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield are officially announced via a Pokémon Direct.
June 5th - A lot of new info is revealed via a Pokémon Direct, including Dynamax, Max Raid Battles, the Wild Area, new Pokémon (Zacian, Zamazenta, Gossifleur, Eldegoss, Wooloo, Corviknight, and Drednaw), and new characters (Gym Leader Milo, Champion Leon, rival Hop, Professor Magnolia and Sonia). On the official website the Rotom Phone is introduced, which is also your Pokédex.
June 11th - During the Nintendo presentation at E3, a new Gym Leader called Nessa was shown. Furthermore, during Nintendo Treehouse, gameplay was shown of the Wild Area and Max Raid Battles. It was shown you can interact with other online players in the Wild Area. Furthermore, it was announced that you won't be able to transfer Pokemon from outside the Galar regional Pokédex to these games.
June 11th - The playable demo of the game at E3 shows two new Pokémon: Yamper and Impidimp.
July 8th - A new trailer shows the new Pokémon Alcremie, Yamper, Rolycoly, and Duraludon. It also introduces the new characters Chairman Rose and Oleana, and two new Gym Leaders by the name of Bea and Allister. Furthermore, Gigantimaxing is introduced.
August 8th - A new trailer introduces Galarian forms, including Galarian Weezing, Zigzagoon and Linoone. It also reveals Galarian Linoone gets an evolution, named Obstagoon. A new Pokémon is also introduced, named Morpeko. New characters were also shown: two new rivals named Bede and Marnie, and Team Yell.
August 16th - New information was revealed during the opening ceremony of the Pokemon World Championships in Washington D.C., including Dynamax moves, new Abilities and information about online battling.

Thread Index:
First Post - General Information
Second Post - The Galar Region
Third Post - New and Returning Pokémon
Fourth Post - New Characters
Fifth Post - In-Game Features
Sixth Post - Online Features
Seventh Post - New Moves and Abilities
Eight Post - Other Info
 
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The Galar Region
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The Galar Region


(
Bigger version)

Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield will be set in a region called Galar. It’s said that you’ll visit various Gyms in this region and that you will be aiming to become the Champion.



Locations

Screenshots of various locations in Galar can be found under the spoiler tag.

In this picture you can see where these locations can be found on the map.


The Wild Area



There is a vast expanse of land in the Galar region which is known as the Wild Area. The Wild Area is full of nature as far as the eye can see, and it connects several different towns and cities. Here you'll find a great variety of Pokémon that elsewhere in the region, and the Pokémon you'll run into will change depending on things like the weather or location. There's also a chance you'll run into powerful wild Pokémon that are a lot higher in level than you are. These can also be evolved Pokémon, like Machoke or Vespiquen. Even if you can defeat them, you won't always be able to throw a Poké Ball at them.

While in the Wild Area, you’ll be able to control the camera in order to explore and search for Pokémon and items. The weather in the Wild Area can change depending on where you are or what time of day it is. There will also be new weather patterns such as thunderstorms, during which you'll find many Electric-type Pokémon. You can also see friends who are online walking in the Wild Area and can interact with them to trade or battle.
 
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New and Returning Pokémon
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New and Returning Pokémon

Starter Pokémon



Grookey is the Grass-type starter, it has the Ablity Overgrow.

Scorbunny is a Fire-type Pokémon, it has the Ability Blaze.

Sobble is the Water-type starter, with the Ability Torrent.

New Pokémon in the wild


Gossifleur, the Flowering Pokémon, is a Grass-type Pokémon with the Ability Cotton Down or Regenerator. It evolves into Eldegoss, the Cotton Bloom Pokémon, also a Grass-type.


Corviknight, the Raven Pokémon, is a Flying/Steel type with the Ability Pressure or Unnerve. Corvik can also be used as a Flying Taxi in the game to travel from town to town.

Wooloo, the Sheep Pokémon, is a Normal-type Pokémon with the Ability Fluffy or Run Away.

Drednaw, the Bite Pokémon, is a Water/Rock type, who can have the Ability Strong Jaw or Shell Armor.

Rolycoly is the Rock-type Coal Pokémon, which has the Ability Steam Engine or Heat Proof.

Duradulon
is the Alloy Pokémon, a Steel/Dragon type. It has the Ability Light Metal or Heavy Metal.

Alcremie, the Cream Pokémon, is a Fairy-type Pokémon, with the Ability Sweet Veil.

Yamper
, the Puppy Pokémon, is an Electric type. It has the Ability Ball Fetch.


Morpeko is the Electric/Dark type Two-Sided Pokémon. Its Ability, Hunger Switch, allows it to change forms. It causes it to change form each turn, from Full Belly Mode to Hangry Mode. Its signature move is a new move called Aura Wheel. This move's type is Electric in Fully Belly Mode, and Dark in Hangry Mode.

Legendary Pokémon


The legendary Pokémon of this game are Zacian (left) and Zamazenta (right). Their types are unknown.

Galarian Forms
Some Pokémon from other regions adapted to the unique environment of Galar and therefore have a different appearance and type, in Galar.


Galarian Form Weezing is a Poison/Fairy type Pokémon. It has the Ability Levitate.


Galarian Form Zigzagoon is a Dark/Normal-type with the Ability Pick-up or Gluttony. It evolves into Galarian Form Linoone, also a Dark/Normal-type with the same Abilities. Unlike in other regions, the Linoone in Galar evolves further, into Obstagoon. It keeps the same type, but its Ability becomes Reckless or Guts.

Returning Pokémon

Some Pokémon from previous games are returning in Sword and Shield. Under the spoiler tag is a list of returning Pokémon shown so far.
Axew - Fraxure - Haxorus
Bergmite - Avalugg
Bounsweet - Steenee - Tsareena
Bronzor - Bronzong
Budew - Roselia - Roserade
Bunnelby - Diggersby
Caterpie - Metapod - Butterfree
Charmander - Charmeleon - Charizard (unsure, only shown as Leon's Pokémon)
Chinchou - Lanturn
Cleffa - Clefairy - Clefable
Combee - Vespiquen
Cottonee - Whimsicott
Croagunk - Toxicroak
Deino – Zweilous – Hydreigon
Diglett - Dugtrio
Duskull - Dusclops - Dusknoir
Eevee - Flareon/Vaporeon/Jolteon/Espeon/Umbreon/Glaceon/Leafeon/Sylveon
Electrike - Manectric
Espurr – Meowstic
Feebas - Milotic
Ferroseed - Ferrothorn
Frillish - Jellicent
Gastly - Haunter - Gengar
Goldeen - Seaking
Golett - Golurk
Goomy - Sliggoo - Goodra
Growlithe - Arcanine
Grubbin – Charjabug – Vikavolt
Hawlucha
Helioptile - Heliolisk
Hippopotas - Hippowdon
Hoothoot – Noctowl
Inkay - Malamar
Jangmo'o - Hakomo'o - Kommo'o
Joltik - Galvantula
Onix - Steelix
Pancham - Pangoro
Pichu – Pikachu – Raichu
Pumpkaboo - Gourgeist
Purrloin - Liepard
Lapras
Larvitar – Pupitar – Tyranitar
Lotad - Lombre - Ludicolo
Machop - Machoke - Machamp
Magikarp - Gyarados
Mantyke - Mantine
Maractus
Mareanie - Toxapex
Mawile
Mimikyu
Minccino – Cinccino
Mudbray - Mudsdale
Munchlax Snorlax
Noibat - Noivern
Larvitar - Pupitar - Tyranitar
Qwilfish
Ralts - Kirlia - Gardevoir / Gallade
Remoraid - Octillery (assumed since you need one to evolve Mantyke)
Rhyhorn - Rhydon - Rhyperior
Riolu – Lucario
Roggenrola - Boldore - Gigalith
Rotom
Rufflet – Braviary
Sawk
Shellos - Gastrodon
Sneasel - Weavile
Snover - Abomasnow
Solosis - Duosion - Reuniclus
Stufful - Bewear
Swirlix - Slurpuff
Timburr - Hurdurr - Conkeldurr
Togepi - Togetic - Togekiss
Trapinch – Vibrava – Flygon
Trubbish - Garbodor
Tympole - Palpitoad - Seismitoad
Tyrogue - Hitmonchan/Hitmonlee/Hitmontop
Vanillite - Vanillish - Vanilluxe
Vulpix - Ninetales
Wailmer – Wailord
Wingull - Pelipper
Wishiwashi
Woobat - Swoobat
Wooper - Quagsire
Wimpod - Golisopod
Wynaut - Wobbuffet

Finding and catching Pokémon



There are multiple ways to find wild Pokémon. The first one is to go into tall grass or caves, where wild Pokémon can jump out at you. The second way is to run into wild Pokémon that you can see wandering about. Some Pokémon will pursue you once they see you, while others will run away. Furthermore, some Pokémon can only be caught in Max Raid Battles (see Features below). Sometimes you can also see a ! mark appear above tall grass, which shows where a wild Pokémon is hiding.

An important thing to note is that you won't be able to transfer Pokémon from older games to this game that are not in the Galar regional Pokédex. So you will only be able to use the Pokémon that are available in the regional dex.


Version Exclusives

The following Pokémon only appear in Pokémon Sword: Deino line, Jangmo'o line.

While these Pokémon only appear in Pokémon Shield: Tyranitar line, Goomy line.
 
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New Characters
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New Characters

Player Characters



Before starting your adventure you can choose one of two characters to play as, who can be seen in the image above.



You can change how you want to look at the beginning of your adventure and can change this look further throughout the game.

Friends/Rivals


Hop is the younger brother of the Champion of Galar and will become one of your rivals. He aims to become Champion, just like his older brother did.


Two other rivals appear during your journey: Bede and Marnie.

Bede received his endorsement from Rose, the chairman of the Galar Pokémon League.
He aims to become Champion but seems to have other objectives as well. Bede is seen using a Duosion as one of his Pokémon partners.

Marnie also aims to become the Champion and has many passionate fans, thanks to her sense of style and calm, calculated battle strategies. One of her Pokémon partners is Morpeko.


Sonia is the granddaughter of Professor Magnolia, and Leon’s childhood friend. As a young researcher, she serves as an assistant to the Professor.

Professor Magnolia is the Pokémon Professor of the Galar region. Her main focus of research has been the Dynamax phenomenon. She shares her home with Sonia and has given her a certain research task...

Team Yell


Team Yell is a group of passionate fans of Marnie, who want nothing more than for her to become Champion. They will take over hotel lobbies, prevent other challengers from accessing transportation and even shout and distract opponents during battle. They attempt to get in your way at every opportunity.

The Pokémon League

Milo is a Gym Leader that specializes in Grass-type Pokémon. He has a kind heart and is well liked by the Trainers of his Gym. His credo is to always enjoy battles. He's been shown using a Eldegoss.

Nessa is a Gym Leader that uses Water-type Pokémon. Her calm and collected attitude hides a competitive spirit and indomitable will. She's shown using a Drednaw.


Bea is a Fighting-type specialist Gym Leader. Bea is a prodigy in Galar karate and known for her stoicism, very rarely showing her emotions. Bea can only be challenged in Pokémon Sword.

Allister is a Gym Leader who uses Ghost-type Pokémon. He always hides behind a mask around other people as he is extremely shy and fearful. He spends most of his time around ruins or in cemeteries, rarely showing up in public. Allister can only be challenged in Pokémon Sword.


Leon is the current Champion of the Galar region. His personality, together with his peerless skill, has made him extremely popular. Leon has not been defeated in battle a single time, and won the Championship in his first-ever Gym Challenge.


Chairman Rose Rose is the chairman of the Galar Pokémon League, making it famous by implementing Gym Battles featuring the Dynamax phenomenon. He is also the president of a large business conglomerate, and the one who first endorsed Leon for the Gym Challenge.

Oleana is Rose’s secretary and also serves as the vice president of his company, largely in charge of the day-to-day running. She's known for her calm and collected personality.
 
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In-Game Features
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In-Game Features

The Gym Challenge




The main goal in the game is to become the Champion of the Galar region. In order to achieve that you need take on the top trainers of the Pokémon Gyms found in stadiums around the region. Each Gym has Pokémon Trainers that are experts in specific types. The Gym Leaders you face differ depending on which version you play. For example, you can only battle Bea in Pokémon Sword, and Allister only in Pokémon Shield.

During the Gym Challenge, your trainer wears a special uniform for the occasion, and you can choose the combination of three numbers on your own uniform.

Once a year, the Champion Cup is help. This is the tournament to decide who will be able to challenge the reigning Champion for their seat.


Rotom Phone

In this game your Pokédex is part of a Rotom Phone. The Rotom Phone is also home to an actual Rotom.



If you attach your Rotom Phone to your bike, you can make it move faster on land, or even make it move over water.

Poké Jobs



Many corporations and universities in Galar request the help of Pokémon through what are known as Poké Jobs. You can check available Poké Jobs at the Rotomi in Pokémon Centers, and send Pokémon from your Boxes directly to any job you accept. The Pokémon helping out with the job will get experience to help them grow, and you can also receive rare items.

There are many different Poké Jobs available. Certain Pokémon types are suited for specific jobs, too.

Dynamax



Dynamax is a phenomenon where Pokémon are able to take on gigantic appearances, while getting a boost in power as well. This becomes possible if you possess a special item known as the Dynamax Band. You can only Dynamax your Pokémon once per battle and they will return to normal after three turns. Furthermore, you can only use Dynamax in specific locations, like in the stadiums of Pokémon Gyms. Pokémon do not have to hold a special item to Dynamax, so they can Dynamax while using their hold items to make them even more powerful.



All the moves of a Dynamax Pokémon will turn into special Max Moves. Some of these moves can even trigger powerful additional effects, for example the Normal-type Max Move called Max Strike also lowers the Speed stats of opponents it hits. The Max Moves your Pokémon knows are determined by what kind and types of moves they knew before Dynamaxing.

Max Raid Battles



Max Raid Battles are a new battle format where you team up with three other Trainers in order to take on a wild Dynamax Pokémon. While in the Wide Area you'll come across many Pokémon Dens. If you approach one when it's releasing a red pillar of light, you'll be able to attempt a Max Raid battle. The wild Dynamax Pokémon you'll face in these battles varies depending on where you are in the Wild Area and what the weather is like. For example, you can face Steenee when it's sunny and Lantern when it's raining. Some Pokémon can only be caught in Max Raid Battles.

Using the Y-Comm feature, you can join up with people near you or online to participate in a Max Raid Battle. If three other trainers aren't available to participate, support trainers will automatically be added to your side to help. Before the battle starts, you'll be able to choose one Pokémon from your party or from your Pokémon boxes to participate in the battle. During Max Raid Battles, only one member of your group of Trainers can Dynamax a Pokémon and only once per battle, so close teamwork is key.

The wild Dynamax Pokémon will remain in their giant form for the entire battle, use Max Moves, and are able to do multiple attacks in one turn. Some Dynamax Pokémon will neutrilize the Abilities of each player's Pokémon or reset stat changes before attacking. Others can create a barrier that prevents almost all damage, which you will need to break down by attacking it a certain number of times.

If you manage to defeat a Dynamax Pokémon, each participant in the battle will be able to throw one Poké Ball to try and catch it for their team. Pokémon caught in Max Raid Battles have a chance to have their Hidden Ability. There's also a chance this Pokémon will be able to Gigantimax. You'll be rewarded with useful items too.

Gigantimax

Next to Dynamaxing, some Pokémon are able to Gigantimax. Pokémon who Gigantimax not only get bigger, they also change appearance. And next to having the power of their moves boosted, they can also use an unique move known as a G-Max Move. Each G-Max Move is particular to a specific species of Gigantamax Pokémon.

You can catch Gigantamax Pokémon by participating in Max Raid Battles, but it seems they're very rare.

Pokémon species that are able to Gigantimax are:


Gigantamax Alcremie - When Gigantimaxing, Alcremie gains an impressive resistance to physical attacks. Fairy-type moves used by Gigantamax Alcremie will change to G-Max Finale, which heals all Pokémon on Alcremie’s side while dealing damage to an opponent. It also launches high-calorie cream missiles around itself to attack its opponents, which leaves them confused when they touch it.

Gigantimax Drednaw - Water-type moves used by Gigantamax Drednaw will change to G-Max Stonesurge, which deals damage to an opponent but also scatters sharp rocks to cause Pokémon entering battle to take damage.

Gigantamax Corviknight - Corviknight's body armor reinforces when Gigantimaxing, making attacks from Pokémon on the ground less effective. It also creates blade birds from the armor on its wings, which it launches at opponents to slash them. Flying-type moves used by Gigantamax Corviknight will change to G-Max Wind Rage. This deals damage to an opponent, but also removes any effectsof moves like Reflect, Light Screen, Spikes, and Electric Terrain that the opponents might have.
 
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Online Features
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Online Features

Note: To be able to participate in activities that require online gameplay, you will have to enroll in the Nintendo Switch Online (paid) service.

Y-Comm



A new feature called Y-Comm can be used to do things like trade Pokémon and have Link Battles via the internet or local communication. It shows you stamps on the left side of your screen if someone wants to trade or battle with you, or if someone is looking for participants in a Max Raid Battle.

Battle Stadium



In the Battle Stadium, players can connect to the internet and battle against each other in Single or Double Battle formats. You can battle in Ranked Battles, Casual Battles, Official Competitions or Friendly Competitions .

In Ranked Battles you face other trainers from around the world. You battle those with a similar rank and earn points depending on the results of those battles. Each rank belongs to a specific tier and you can increase your rank by earning enough points. Your rank will go down a certain amount at the end of each season before being carried over to a new season. You can check your own ranking in the Battle Stadium and you can also your results and those of all other participants in a competition on the smartphone version of Pokémon Home. Using Legendary and Mythical Pokémon is not allowed in Ranked Battles.

In Casual Battles you just battle to become a better trainer without points involved. Casual Battles also allow you to use Legendary and Mythical Pokémon.

In Official Competitions, you will take part in special battles with a variety of different rules and restrictions.

In Friendly Competitions, you can join competitions hosted by other players or even host your own competitions. Regulations in Friendly Competitions are determined by the host.

You are also able to use Rental Teams, which are Battle Teams borrowed from other players all over the world. You can rent up to five teams at once and they can even be used in Ranked Battles.

Pokémon Home

Pokémon Home
is a cloud-based service, like Pokémon Bank, for the Switch. You'll be able to transfer Pokémon from all current Pokemon games (including Pokémon GO) to the cloud. A big change from Pokémon Bank is that previously you were able to transfer all Pokémon to the newest games. But with Pokémon Sword and Shield you'll only be able to transfer Pokémon that are present in the Galar regional dex to the games.​
 
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New Moves and Abilities
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New Moves and Abilities

New moves



Branch Poke is a new Grass-type move known by Grookey. Specifics are yet unknown.

Breaking Swipe is a new attack that can hit multiple Pokémon at once while lowering their attack. It is not known what type this move is, but Flygon is shown using it.

Max Moves
Dynamax Pokémon are able to use Max Moves. If an opponent uses a move like Protect, a Max Move will still be able to deal some damage.

Max Geyser is the Water-type Max Move, which triggers the rain weather condition.

The Max Move Max Knuckle increases the attack of all allied Pokémon.

All status moves used by Dynamax Pokémon become Max Guard, which can even protect against other Max Moves.

Gigantimax Moves

G-Max Stonesurge
deals damage to an opponent but also scatters sharp rocks to cause Pokémon entering battle to take damage. Water-type moves used by Gigantamax Drednaw will change to G-Max Stonesurge.

G-Max Wind Rage deals damage to an opponent, but also removes any effectsof moves like Reflect, Light Screen, Spikes, and Electric Terrain that the opponents might have. Flying-type moves used by Gigantamax Corviknight will change to G-Max Wind Rage.


New abilities



Cotton Down is an Ability known by Gossifleur and Eldegoss. When the Pokémon is hit by an attack, it lowers the Speed stat of the attacking Pokémon.

Ball Fetch is known by Yamper. When you throw a Poké Ball at a wild Pokémon but it fails to catch it, Yamper will fetch that Poké Ball, as long as it isn't holding an item.

Steam Engine is an Ability known by Rolycoly. It gets a Speed stat boost when hit by Fire- or Water-type moves during battle.

Neutralizing Gas, an Ablility known by Galarian Wheezing, neutralizes the ongoing effects of other Pokémon’s Abilities and even prevents Abilities from being triggered. Once the Pokémon with Neutralizing Gas leaves the battlefield, the Abilities of the other Pokémon will be activated again.

Mirror Armor, Corviknight's Hidden Ability, bounces back any stat-lowering effects from an opposing Pokémon’s Abilities or moves.​
 
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Other Info
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Other Info

New items



It's been shown that you can find food-like items, such as Pungent Root and Pack of Potatoes. It is not yet known what you can do with these items.

Room Service is a held item that lowers a Pokémon's Speed when the move Trick Room is successfully used.

Eject Pack is also a new held item. When a Pokémon holding this has any of its stats lowered, it will immediately switch out so another Pokémon can be sent in.

New weather type



In these games you can encounter a new kind of weather, namely thunderstorms. If there's a thunderstorm in the Wide Area, Electric-type Pokémon will show up. When you enter battle during a thunderstorm, the battlefield will have the effects of both the rain weather condition and Electric Terrain, increasing the power of Water- and Electric-type moves.

Poké Ball Plus

You can link up the Pokémon Sword and Shield games with a Poké Ball Plus, to transfer a Pokémon to it, and take them for a stroll in the real world. The Poké Ball Plus will light up and vibrate, and sometimes lets you hear the Pokémon's cry.

When purchased new, the Poké Ball Plus will contain a Mew, which you can transfer to the Pokémon Sword and Shield games.

The Poké Ball Plus will be sold seperately from the actual games, and unlike in the Let's Go games, you won't be able to use the Poké Ball Plus as a controller in Pokémon Sword and Shield. If you've already received Mew in the Let's Go games, you won't be able to receive Mew from the same Poké Ball Plus in Pokémon Sword and Shield. Furthermore, you will only be able to receive Mew once per Poké Ball Plus. If you received Mew in a separate save file, or deleted the save data in which you received Mew, you will not be able to receive it a second time.​
 
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