Here’s What We Know So Far About Pokemon Sword and Shield’s Expansions

Here’s What We Know So Far About Pokemon Sword and Shield’s Expansions

This is what we know about Pokemon Sword and Shield's Expansion Pass, The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra so far.

During today’s Pokemon-focused Direct, we learned that instead of publishing a full-on sequel or updated entry set in Galar, Game Freak will release expansions for Pokemon Sword and Shield over the course of 2020. A lot of information was dropped about this pair of expansions today, so we have rounded it all up for you here!

Names, Settings and Release Windows

Two Pokemon expansions are on the way, and they are named after their respective settings. The first part of this expansion pass is The Isle of Armor, and Game Freak intends to release it in June. Considering E3 takes place that month, I would expect it sometime around then. The Isle of Armor takes place on the titular isle and seems to have a more tropical feel to it with beaches, bogs, and sand dunes. Then, sometime during Fall 2020, we can expect The Crown Tundra to drop. As the area and expansion’s title suggest, this is a snow-ridden desolate area populated with small communities. This locale will also feature a variety of legendary Pokemon.

New Pokemon

These expansions will actually bring some brand new Pokemon with them. The first is Kubfu, a fighting type mythical Pokemon gifted to the player in The Isle of Armor by a new character called Mustard. Kubfu is a Fighting-type with the ability Inner Focus. It apparently has an organ that creates “fighting energy” for battles and was historically a Pokemon that traveled with people as they set out for new regions or areas.

Kubfu can evolve into Urshifu, which actually has two forms. The first form is Single Strike style Urshifu, which is Fighting and Dark Type that is more head-on and straightforward in its attacks. Meanwhile, the Fighting and Water Type Rapid Strike Style Urshifu is more smooth and precise in battle but attacks with a flurry of strikes. It has yet to be seen how this impacts their stats, but both Urshifu forms have the ability Unseen Fist.

Finally, Calyrex is a Psychic and Grass legendary from The Crown Tundra. It is said to be very intelligent and all-seeing, and it has the ability Unnerve. The Direct also had glimpses of what may be new Pokemon or just Galarian forms of old ones, but none of those have been confirmed as of yet.

Returning Pokemon

A lot of people were disappointed that not every Pokemon was included in the base version of Pokemon Sword and Shield. These expansions are taking steps to increase the number of Pokemon included by over 200. This number will include every major legendary Pokemon as well as many returning Pokemon, some of which are seeing Galarian forms.

The most notable of these currently is Galarian Slowpoke, which will actually be available in the game after an update today. It is pure Psychic Type and can have the ability Gluttony or Own Tempo. It can evolve into a Galarian Slowbro in The Isle of Armor and a Galarian Slowking in The Crown Tundra.

The base versions of Pokemon Sword and Shield will also be updated to support the new Pokemon added in these expansions.

New Gigantamax Forms

Of course, these expansions will bring many new Gigantamax forms. During the trailer, you can spot Gigantamax forms of Venasaur and Blastoise, though Game Freak has not delved into these. That being said, they have highlighted Gigantamax Rillaboom, Cinderace, and Intellion.

New Characters

The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra will bring many new main characters into the fold. The first is the aforementioned Mustard, who used to be a champion and trained Leon. He gifts players with Kubfu. Meanwhile, the expansions also introduce version-exclusive rivals. Pokemon Sword players can face off against Klara, a Poison-type user who craves attention and trains at Mustard’s dojo. Pokemon Shield players can fight Avery, a Psychic-type trailer is supposed to be gentlemanly but a little cocky.

Other New Additions

The expansions for Pokemon Sword and Shield also contain other odds and ends. To start, over 100 new articles of clothing are being added to the games that fit both settings. Players will even finally be able to customize their bikes. New items and moves are also joining the fray, including and Exp. Charm to assist with leveling.

The Crown Tundra is poised to introduce den exploration to the game, allowing for what seems to be a co-op dungeon raiding experience that has not been seen in Pokemon up until this point. Game Freak also revealed that both new areas will be one wide-open Wild Area littered with dens for players to explore. Finally, those who pre-order the expansion pass will be able to wear new Pikachu and Eevee uniforms.


It’s certainly a lot of new information to take in, but these expansions should be exciting for Pokemon fans. Pokemon Sword and Shield’s Expansion Pass is currently available for pre-order for $29.99. The base versions of the game can be picked up on Amazon.


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