Pokémon Sword And Shield Expansion Adds Over 200 Existing Pokémon

Pokémon Sword And Shield Expansion Adds Over 200 Existing Pokémon
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Unlike previous games in the series, Pokémon Sword and Shield won’t be getting a new version of the game a year later with an extra adjective. Instead, Pokémon Sword Expansion Pass and Shield Expansion Pass, DLC for Pokémon Sword and Shield, will allow you to play new stories in Galar using the save data—and pocket monsters—you already have. They’ll also be bringing over 200 existing Pokémon to the games.

The first of these new stories are called The Isle Of Armour, coming in June 2020, and Crown Tundra, coming in Spring 2020. The Isle Of Armour will feature new clothes, rivals, and Pokémon previously unseen in the Galar region as well, like the legendary Pokémon Kubfu. And your starter will be able to Gigantimax.

The Crown Tundra takes place in a remote, frozen outpost and is focused on exploration. It’s further out than The Isle Of Armour, but we do know that it also comes with a legendary Pokémon, Calyrex, and a new form of co-op play, where players can explore Pokémon dens with other players.

Both these new stories will be on seamless maps, like the Wild Area in Pokémon Sword and Shield, though Game Freak said on today’s NIntendo Direct that they’ll be bigger, with “more to do.”

I could not be more happy about not having to buy a new game, and getting to play more Pokémon with the monsters that I’ve already caught. Hopefully when players that were pissed about Dexit get their hands on Isle Of Armour and Crown Tundra, they’ll be able to chill a little.


    • So you’d rather them release a separate game with this same kind of content for a higher price like they’ve done before, then?

      • Isn’t that literally what we get now? I guess if the pass is some how priced reasonably then maybe its a “good” idea, but like I stated below my personal opinion is that I do not like expansion passes. Just voicing my clearly wrong opinion. lol

        • That was my point. In the past, they’ve released a new game that uses the same content with a different campaign, eg Black and White 2, Ultra Sun and Moon. This is that kind of content except as DLC. And yes, the pass is priced cheaper than a full game.

          You also don’t even need to purchase the DLC to get the 200 pokemon additions, as you’re able to trade them or transfer them through pokemon home.

          • Uh right, I guess I have been spoilt with free content updates from Monster Hunter games on the DS. Side note that is great the extra 200 Pokemon is free to everyone.

      • Come on.

        Nothing stopped you from waiting for the third entry, and only getting that.

        Plus, older Pokemon games were $60 a piece. Sword and Shield are $80. The expansion pass is $30 USD so it’s at least $40 (although probably closer to $50 AUD). That’s $120-130 for one game.

        Which is the same price as buying both an initial release and the third entry in a generation, or double of what it would be to just buy the third entry.

      • Personally I would have preferred they delayed the game, put the expansion stuff in the full game and then release it. At least then the game probably would have an end-game on release (something it severely lacked).

        Hell, they should have delayed it until they knew what kind of story they were going for in the game, because let’s be honest. Sw/Sh’s story is pretty weak and feels like filler/padding near the end.

      • Yes, actually I would. at least a new version of the game would be a physical investment that is re-sellable at later date and be able to be played on more than one switch if you have 2 or more consoles. I hve both games so it will be $90 to expand both to get all the content. A third game would have been cheaper and more flexible.

    • Yeah, I’d rather buy a whole new game, that’s mostly the same with a handful of new things. Keep things the way they are.


      • I would rather them focus on full games and not expansion pass content. Seems like a no brainer to me, it seems obvious my opinion is wrong.

      • I remember when the game came with all the Pokemon and post game content as part of the original price.

        One day when they are selling shinie’s 10 years from now there will be people saying we should be grateful that its “Just Cosmetic”.

        • That was when there wasn’t close to 1000 pokemon/variants/formes. Also, those 200 are being added to the base game free too, they just require a trade. As in, in almost exactly the same manner Dexit players are saying the full national dex should’ve been implemented in the first place through game transfers.

          And a more personal point, the idea of “post game content” has always baffled me. The player finishes the game and expects there to be more? This is not to say players are wrong for wanting it or that it shouldn’t exist. I just don’t understand it.

      • Personally I’m not a fan of expansion passes. I think it is poor design. What I would rather is for a company to release a game with a decent amount of content, then if later down the track an expansion is warranted sure release an expansion or a whole stand alone game. But that is just my opinion just like everyone else here has theirs.

        • Having played Pokemon Sword all the way through I’m satisfied that it was worth what I paid for it. Would probably rate it 7/10…the story felt a bit unfinished and the motivations behind the main bad guy were really odd/not well explained but the raids add a lot more to the game than I would have thought before doing it.

          It inspired me to complete the pokedex for the first time ever and do some shiny hunting and create a half decent PvP team. So yeah, on the whole the game as-is is worth the price tag. The additional content for another $45 (AUD) seems like a fair ask to me.

          • Yeah that is a fair way of looking at it, Just hope that the content is worth the $45 only time will tell.

      • Nah not trying to be edgy just posting my opinion, just like everyone else here. I mean I understand the idea behind the pass just have to wait and see if it delivers.

      • Far from out of touch, have played every single release, even when they dicked us all with Black & White 2 and with Ultra Sun & Moon. I play the games with my daughter, so we progress through the game together, So every release we purchase both versions of the game and we trade, battle and have a great time bonding over the game. Sorry that my comment left you with needing justification of my worth to be able to voice my opinion.

  • I’m waiting to see how the “players pissed about Dexit” handle this news. Will they be happy that pokemon are getting put back in? Or will they see this as vindication that they were right all along and adding those pokemon wasn’t that hard and the point of Dexit was to milk money out of DLC, etc, etc…

    • Or will they see this as vindication that they were right all along and adding those pokemon wasn’t that hard and the point of Dexit was to milk money out of DLC

      Almost certainly this, and I mean, could you really blame them?

    • This is clearly cut content. in post game interviews, they mentioned the game would have minor league gyms. that didnt happen in the game, but this expansion includes those new gyms.

      just wish game freak was honest about it. just come out and say, we have never made a pokemon game for a console before. we had ideas of putting in every pokemon and all these new features, but we ran out of time. our team has been working on some of this stuff, and added in more features. its here if you want it.

      they could have held off for the annual release, but i now assume that will be DPP remake or Lets go Jhoto.

    • Why not both? I’d be happy to have the Pokemon back, but it also does prove that they released it without them due to time constraints, but decided to lie about why several times. This is honestly how I wish Ultra Sun/Moon was handled because that game was almost identical to Sun/Moon.

      • I don’t think it was a lie at all. I think it was a matter of scope and game balance.

        where do you physically locate that extra 200? How do you keep the content fresh to DLC buyers a year in unless you’re adding a hundred new ones in? Are they expected to make another 200 new ones? The pokedex is already so huge that the size of it alone makes me not want to play. How do you rebalance all of the extras when adding hundreds more adds billions of balance variables? How hard would the need to ramp up or crunch to get everything ready for launch?

        This works for long term health of the multiplayer, for maximising the tail on sales, for providing content that the fans will enjoy and for creating milestones that are appropriately scoped, funded, and deadlined.

        • They didn’t need to physically locate any of the Pokemon, there has never been a Pokemon game where you could actually catch every single one of the blighters. Allowing people to transfer them over, even without a National Dex (which is what was done for Sun/Moon) is what people have asked for.

          As far as memory serves, they’ve also never done DLC for a main Pokemon game before either. So this hasn’t been a priority, ever. But they have done events for getting codes to get legendaries etc.

          Why would they have to make another brand new 200? That’s more than they add each game, that’d be an unacceptable ask of them.

          Rebalancing hasn’t really been a priority for them either with how often the Meta of competitive battling revolves around a select few. But if it’s any consolation, they’ve removed 144 Moves from Sword/Shield.

          I wouldn’t know how much work it would require to add the Pokemon they left out, but a single modder added Omastar in an hour (with only about half of the animations working). That’s without all the resources and software that Game Freak would have.

          Thing is, I’m not mad or raging about the cuts, I’m disappointed by it. I’m quite happy that many are returning, but will wait and see if the DLC packs are worth the cost, it looks like they’re going to be 2/3 of the base cost for the whole game.

          • So what would be the point of doing the work to add 400 pokemon that they will never use as in game content? Where’s the business case for that? Where’s the consumer case for that? The whole point of the ones they are adding in is that they are in the game. As actual things to do in the game. Where’s the value you get from the game of connecting it to a server and watching the bar fill? Hooray! I got 400 things i will never use and never look at ever again.

            One modder adding one pokemon that kinda works and claiming it took him X minutes isn’t the same as inserting and testing 400 completely new characters. that’s literally billions of new variables to balance for competitive play. And of course balance is an issue. Of course balance also hasn’t been easy to come by for the last few games. They’ve had rabid “fans” who would fly off the damn handle if their gyarados couldn’t learn bounce anymore. This is a big opportunity to fix things they could only slap band-aids on before now.

            On top of that, I really want to reiterate that many of the pokemon are just filler at this point. The ludicrous size of the pokedex increasingly filled with useless guff was at least part of the reason I stopped playing pokemon games in the first place. I’m not the only one.

            The old system was to rerelease the same game with a very tiny amount of new content and force the player to restart the story in order to get to the scraps of new content eventually. And you’d be paying full price for the privilege. The amount of new content they’ve shown for half the price of a new version is a much better value proposition.

          • “Half the price of a new version”

            It’s nearly as much as each of the older Pokemon games cost.

            Sword and Shield still has less content than the last few generations, but now costs ~$120 for the privilege.

            You always had the option of waiting for the third entry too.

            In no way is this better value. A Pokemon game costing over $100 is just theft at this point.

          • Yes. The game company will sneak into your bedroom at night and steal your money from the shoebox under your bed.

    • The 200 extra Pokemon are available through trade or Pokemon Home, supposedly. So the Dexit protesters should be fine, shouldn’t impact their ability to get their Pokes in game.

    • In my case, no. It makes me wish they delayed the game so that the expansion stuff comes with the base game (at least then it would justify the price). Though that’s assuming the expansion actually has endgame content like Battle Frontier or something along those lines.

      Hell, there should have been more legendary Pokemon to begin with in the base game :/

  • Lmfao at all the Nintendo fans defending this garbage. Sword and Shield are rushed, garbage games with tonnes of cut features and zero innovation. Let’s milk them for more money to put in some of the cut content.

    • Absoloutely agree. Got the game over XMAS.

      Low B Grade game at best.

      I was really annoyed by some things I had hope would have changed:

      – Forced trainer battles on routes. (On one route in the snow I tried to go around and they had placed a trainer on both paths so you HAD to fight at least one of them!)

      If I want trainer battles I want them on my terms not be forced into them.

      – Crap animations that appear straight out of the hand held versions

      – No voice acting at all. (Maybe I am just spolied but other modern games and jrpg style games)

      – No real desire to catch more pokemon. Got an ideal set early on and just slammed trough all the gyms. (Easily caought some strong pokemon in the open field area) First real issue were a couple bosses near end of game.

      – Map is horrible. (Plus no town maps. Unless I somehow completely missed it in my play through)

      – Could not work out what the hell the message popup were. Eg some random player is over on route x etc. Just seemed like spam.

      – Some gyms came one after the other with basically no content in between. (Except the route/path which is quite short)

      – Lots of plot details were like ‘Just focus on the gyms and let the adults handle it’

      – Just wanted to get game over and done with by the end.

      There were some nice touches. I like the gigamax concept. I like the trainer cards with bios on the back. The battle interface/gui was nice and clean.

      Overall though it felt more like a test project rather than a real new entry.

      Now to find out they are doing DLC? Is that planned or reaction to people outrage over missing pokemon?

      I didn’t mind the missing pokemon myself. There was a large enough roster. Though at this point some of the pokemon and looking so stupid.

      It may have been better to have less new pokemon and just used some from Gen1 or something.

      I mean they are cleary runing out of ideas when they are making regional varients of existing pokemon.

      — Rant over.

      • Oh… and there were no ‘dungeons’ either.

        eg like the previous games had the TeamRocket/X base, ghost tower, etc.

        We had some mines but they are kind of just on the route and not exactly hard to navigate.

        Why was this game ONLY gym battles.

        Oh Oh… and no need for TMS like SURF and FLY in the game world. That may have been removed in previous games but it was something I kind of missed. (I havnt played a Pokemon game in a while.)

  • How is this a good thing? Why do Kotaku writers and readers/commenters seem SO inclined to cozy up to Gamefreak/Nintendo over these terrible decisions? Pokemon games USED TO just COME with all of this incredible content. Take a look at How Long to Beat dot com. Sword/Shield is the shortest, shittiest Pokemon to ever be released. There is so much obviously cut content so that it could be released as DLC. The game is MORE expensive than the LONGER, BETTER previous versions, and now they are going to milk us for more content. The new content will almost DEFINITELY cost as much, or almost as much as a new game. The people supporting this decision are deluded. Kotaku STILL hasn’t commented (or have they, I don’t follow y’all as much since your massive amount of snarkiness over these games) on the entirely useless online capabilities and performance issues in the game. How about Nintendo’s “amazing”, paid online service that has massive slow down / performance issues in Mario Maker? The company is making some terrible decisions that affect consumers in integral ways, but people (at Kotaku) just applaud. It’s like that scene in the Star Wars prequels. Y’all dumb yo.

    • Exactly, this kind of bull has been going on since the launch of the Switch, and no matter how much I want to play a few of the games on it, I’m not buying one.

  • I think this is an amazing change. More content for less money, always a win in my books.
    I am curious how they will handle the fact that my Pokemon are already level 100 when going on this new journey though 😛

    • You’d prefer to buy Bastard Sword and Kite Shield for full price? You’d have to restart the story and get maybe 5% new content. The multiplayer would be split across two games, too.

      But you would get a new hat.

        • Ahhhh what? No, I am angry because we were given a bs reason for half the pokedex being ripped out. 10/10 there will be an abundance of non-Gallah Pokemon with models straight from Sun & Moon.

          Only a shill would accept Gamefreaks excuse for losing the national dex and then be ok about Pokemon with slight modifications being added later in the form of dlc.

          • No, you are angry and completely irrational because you want to pay for a full price game with extra pokemon instead of a much cheaper expansion.

          • Look you are clearly struggling with a really simple concept, so I will put it as plainly as possible.

            I dislike that we were told it was basically too hard to have them all in one game, but then within a year we happen to get them so long as we either;
            -Shell out for a dlc that includes mostly old models and animations
            -Have a friend who has already bought in for the dlc
            -Pay for both Bank and then Home to transfer old Pokemon forward.

            All because the company in control of the most financially viable ip in the world needs to strain a few more pennies from its customer base.

            So go take your snarky comments and blow them out your rear end.

          • Problem 1 with your statements – the game came out a few months ago already.
            Problem 2 with your statements – the DLC doesn’t come out for a few more months.
            Problem 3 with your statements – you are still way irrationally angry about a video game.

          • Wtf does 1 or 2 have to do with anything? I am saying we got sold a purposely incomplete title with them clearly having the intention of selling what should have been in the core game. It is anti consumer and they keep doing it because of shills like you.

      • Id prefer the 60 dollar game have at least the same amount of pokemon in it as the last one.

        I mean I can’t tell where the supposed extra time and money saved on this new one went other than right in to the companies pocket.

        • I don’t get this logic at all. More doesn’t always equal better than.

          How can you justify them adding to the total every game. At what point dose it become unmanageable as a player? A thousand? Two thousand? At what point do you end up catching more useless ones than not? God knows the balance needed a rework after all of those editions. Also, a lot of them are just kinda shit. I’ve caught 30,000 Pidgies. i don’t need to ever see another one as long as i live. There’s no novelty in finding another. This endless thirst for “content” doesn’t seem to have any consideration for quality.

          The game had 8 gyms, a semi-open world, a bunch of cool new features, a complete rework to the multiplayer, enough quality of life improvements that i went from “I’m done with Pokemon forever” on announcement to “We’d better get Pokemon on the day we buy a Switch”. The story was a welcome change to yet another one where an 11 year old saves the universe with the power of enslaved rat friendship. The gyms were all fun and new. the visual upgrade was huge. The post story content was really solid and the after sales support is looking really damn good.

          After all of that, all you can talk about is that you can’t pick up a few hundred shitty things you’ll never ever use. Hell, they’re even putting half of them back in. For free. With a year to tweak balance under their belts.

          Honestly. Where is the justification for this other than you’re mad at things being different?

          • Nowhere in the above article does it say that the pokemon were free, the way it was written made it seem like you got the extra 200 pokemon if you bought the season pass.

            If the pokemon are indeed free then thats different.

          • Can we get a source on this, the trailer does not allude to this, but instead makes it seem like they are native to the new areas.

          • The trailer explicitly says that the 200+ will be added to the existing games in that they can be transferred from previous games via Pokémon Home or via trade from other players.
            So you will not need to buy the pass to bring them in from other games or to trade for them from other players.

          • They are free if you have a friend that has the DLC and is willing to trade you their pokemon, but you will not be able to catch them in the vanilla map.

  • This definitely seems to vindicate Dexit. Gamefreak stated they had no plans to add to add in old Pokemon, yet now after the game has been out for a bit and the sales numbers are not as high as past games they backpedal and put in more? If this was the plan all along then why was it not mentioned? It could’ve helped quell the outrage a bit…

        • Why would it be free? Two major content updates. New areas, stories, art, NPCs, clothing… Nobody dislikes getting a 20 hour RPG for free. But it makes sense that they would need to actually buy it.

          The multiplayer will work exactly the same. Everyone has access to all pokemon. The only difference is access to single player story content and a bunch of haircuts and clothes.

          • I’ve essentially finished the main story in 25hrs. I know it’s a decent amount but feels low for an RPG.
            Playing Shield I did get about nostalgic about playing Gold. There seemed to be much more to do and have more content. Shield felt empty in parts and the villain felt shoehorned in.

      • Article is a tad misleading. It is basing the success on amount made rather than units sold.

        I remember following this to see if Dexit had any sizeable impact, and despite articles like the one you linked trying to sell a success, the numbers do not completely reflect that.
        Going by Japan’s sale numbers for the first 3 days of X & Y, Sun & Moon, and Sword and Shield, their numbers (respectively) are as follows:

        X & Y sales (First 3 days – Japan)
        ~2,096,000 units

        Sun & Moon sales (First 3 days – Japan)
        1,905,107 units

        Sword & Shield sales (First 3 days – Japan)
        1,364,544 units

        Other countries individual sales seems harder to find, but worldwide sales for each game for the first week is available on Wikipedia. X & Y are lowest with over 4 million, Sword & Shield are next with 6 million, and then Sun & Moon topping them both with over 10 million.

        The stats would indicate that Sword & Shield have not sold as well as past games in the series, but due to its increased cost as a Switch game (~$80AU) compared to a 3DS title (~$60AU), it was able to earn a higher amount due to that increased price.

        Dexit has had an impact, going by the numbers. And whilst this DLC was most definitely planned from the beginning, I am doubtful that they were originally planning to bring more Pokemon back in. They stated and reiterated that point multiple times to their own detriment and backlash.

        • The numbers are trending down long term by your count and Sun/Moon was sold on one of the best selling systems of all time at the mature end of the platform’s lifecycle. The switch is selling very well, but there isn’t the same user install base to begin with. I’m not saying that somehow makes the numbers any different, but that’s not an apples to apples comparison.

          It’s impossible to know what they had planned, but if they are bringing in new areas and stories, they are going to have to bring new pokemon to populate it or it would have been a very sparse content update. So one way or another more were coming. It made no sense to create 200 or so more. Why not use the extension on dev time to port a large chunk of the existing ones over? It appeases the irrationally angry people, pleases the people who were rationally disappointed, saves an incredible amount of R&D by utilising existing designs… I mean we don’t know for sure, but I really can’t see a business case that works any other way.

          • As you say, there are definitely factors that could be attributed to a lower number of sales.

            Take for instance your comparing Pokemon sales on the 3DS and the Switch based on console sales and lifecycle. The Switch has currently sold 41.67 million across both its standard & Lite variants. This is almost half of the 3DS sales which are 75.45 million as of the end of last year. The issue with that number is that it contains all variants of the 3DS, from the OG, the XL, the New, the 2DS, and all variants in-between. Most individuals have owned multiple 3DS. All of my friends have owned a minimum of 2 with some even having 4. On top of that, the Switch’s sale numbers are ridiculously impressive. It has already outsold the lifetime sales of the N64, the Gamecube, and the WiiU.
            Another does involve the cost. Being able to get a cheap second-hand 3DS variant and then buying a $60 release title is definitely a very different thing to buying a new console that at almost 3 years of age isn’t seeing a large discount. Combining that factor with the $80 new release cost could hinder lower-income entry. To me though, the easiest answer for the drop when taking into account the console’s performance is purely the backlash of Dexit.

            As for if this did influence their plan, it’s as you said; it’s impossible to know for sure. It is merely the facts that they previously stated no intent to bring them back, yet instantly go back on that during the DLC announcement.

          • I think you’re grossly over estimating how much anyone other than a very vocal minority care about the Dex being lowered. In fact a lot of people – myself included – are happy that the game had a lot of the fat trimmed.

          • It is definitely possible that I am overestimating the extent of Dexit. I do have a bit of a bias as I did not get the game due to Dexit being one of the factors (alongside having too big of a backlog of other games to justify another purchase). But on the same note, it is possible you are underestimating how many the “vocal minority” contained. Heck, if anything recent year events have taught me to assume that alongside a “vocal minority” is a larger silent group that has led to some betterment, but also a lot of detriment to society. That’s why I do not simply want to brush off or ignore it as a potential.

  • As great as it is to see the Pokemon brought back, it does show that they cut or segmented content due to time or other reasons, and that’s ok. I think its fair to cut content to avoid compromising the quality of existing completed and near completed content. They were most likely put under the pump by Nintendo and wanted a degree of quality with what was released. But at least they aren’t selling ‘Pokemon Packs’ and spoon feeding us Pokemon as paid DLC or in loot boxes. This is a step in the right direction at least for me. I am all for paid expansion packs making a come back to take its place over smaller, over-priced DLC. Also, its clear they’ve done some redesigns, which takes time, and that’s great to see too!

    As for the ‘more isn’t better’ arguments I’m seeing, I didn’t complete the latest Pokemon cause I just couldn’t find the same dynamic with the new Pokemon as my old squad from X/Y. I want to bring them in, but cant cause some of them don’t exist in S/S. Now I might actually have a chance to bring ‘The Ladyboiz’ back together with this expansion. If it can hinder my ability to play and diminish the experience for me, then it’s a valid point that people would have liked the option to use them from the start.

  • Yo new Expansion Pass DLC for Pokemon Sword and Shield The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra as well as 200+ Pokemon and some Legendary Pokemon who are not in the Galar region making a return.
    I knew we would get DLC for Pokemon Sword and Shield and not to mention we’re also getting Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Rescue Team DX on Nintendo Switch.
    15 years after Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Team Red was released for Game Boy Advance and Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Team Blue for Nintendo DS and now 15 years later we’re into 2020 and we’re getting Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Rescue Team DX starring yourself who’s been transformed into a Pokemon.
    Maybe I was wrong about Pokemon Sword and Shield but Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Rescue Team DX coming out on March 6 2020 I’m in and Pokemon Home coming out next month for Nintendo Switch as well I’m also in.

  • I am unsure of my stance. I mean, yay for more mons, but if they had just come out from the get go and said “Hey, launch game will feature half Pokedex, but more Pokemon will be coming in batches with DLC. The Pokemon themselves will be part of a free update, and can be traded from someone who buys the DLC, brought in from Pokemon Home, but will also be catchable in the new areas”, I’d have dug it. I would have been on board so hard from the start if that was the plan, and that is what was presented to us, instead of half truths, and misdirection, and blatant lies. I would gotten SwSh day one, and played the fuck out of it. But this whole “Nah, fuck you guys. Galar dex only. lol jk we kid plz buy game” thing shits me.

    I mean, fuck, I was ok with it during Ruby/Sapphire when I couldn’t get a bunch of the old mons, but knew they were coming in some way, and those ways involved purchasing multiple new titles.

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