Pokémon Sword and Shield Unveil New Game Features

New features revealed.
New features revealed. Pokemon Company

Pokémon Sword and Shield revealed new game features that are sure to excite both long-time fans of the franchise as well as new players. Pokémon Sword and Shield are slated to be released November 15 and are exclusive to the Nintendo Switch. In addition to the announcement of the new features, Pokémon Sword and Shield are also going to be the official video games to be used for competitive play at the 2020 Play! Pokémon Season.

New Battle Mechanics

In Pokémon Sword and Shield, Trainers are now able to connect to the internet and do battle in the Battle Stadium in either Single or Double Battle formats.

There are also two kinds of main battles:

  • Ranked Battles
    • In Ranked Battles, Trainers face other Trainers and their Battle Teams from around the world.
    • Trainers battle other Trainers having a similar rank and earn points depending on the results of said battles.
    • Each rank belongs to a specific tier with Trainers getting the chance to increase their rank when they earn enough points.
    • Trainers can use the smartphone version of Pokémon HOME to check their own rank and also those of other participants in the competition.
  • Casual Battles
    • Casual Battles is not about winning or losing, but focuses more on becoming a better Trainer.
    • One reason why you should try out Casual Battles is that in this mode, you can use some of the Legendary and Mythical Pokémon that are otherwise not allowed in Rank Battles.

Features like Online Competitions and Rental Teams also allow players to connect with other Trainers in different ways.

That’s not all, as Trainers who participate in Online Competitions have the option to fight either Official fights or Friendly ones. In Official Competitions, Trainers take part in special battles that have a variety of rules and restrictions. Meanwhile for Friendly Competitions, Trainers can join those hosted by other players or even host ones themselves. The rules are determined by the player hosting the Competition.

Another new concept introduced is the use of Rental Teams. Trainers can borrow these teams by inputting IDs that are available online. If you want, you can even put together your own Battle Team and make them available as Rental Teams. Up a maximum of five teams can be rented at one time.

Dynamaxing and Max Moves

New as well is the idea of Dynamax. This is a phenomenon that not only makes Pokémon huge, but also increases their power. In addition, Dynamax Pokémon have Max Moves that are powerful while also adding additional impressive effects. The Water-type Max Move Max Geyser, for instance, triggers the rain weather condition.

In the game, a Pokémon owned by a Trainer can only Dynamax when that Trainer has the Dynamax Band. The Pokémon does not need to have any special item. Thus it is the Trainers that have the ability to determine which Pokémon to Dynamax.

New Abilities

Pokémon Sword and Shield are giving players the chance to discover new abilities. One example is the Neutralizing Gas of Galarian Weezing. What this ability does is to neutralize the ongoing effects of Abilities from other Pokémon and even prevent Abilities from being triggered. However, once the Pokémon with Neutralizing Gas leaves the battlefield, the Abilities of the other Pokémon are activated again.

There are also Hidden Abilities that Trainers can encounter in a Pokémon caught in Max Raid. Corviknight’s Mirror Armor is a hidden ability that bounces back any stat-lowering effects from an opposing Pokémon’s Abilities or moves.

New Items

The games are also introducing new items. These items can be combined with specific moves and give Trainers an edge in battle. There is the Room Service and Eject Pack, for instance. When held by a Pokémon, Room Service lowers that Pokémon’s Speed when the move Trick Room is successfully used. When a Pokémon holding Eject Pack has any of its stats lowered, it immediately switches out so another Pokémon can be sent in.

There’s no question there are a lot of new things coming to Pokémon Sword and Shield. For those who can’t wait for the game to be released, they can play the Pokémon Trading Card Game, Sword & Shield, which is based on the video games and introduces the Pokémon V type.

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