During today’s Pokemon Direct, Nintendo officially revealed what is coming next for mainline Pokemon games in 2020. An Expansion Pass! Taking the place of an “Ultra Sun” or “Yellow” versions of Pokemon games that we used to get in between new generations, this Expansion Pass is going to add two new story content updates later in 2020 for Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield.
The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra will be two separate adventures that will enable fans to meet new characters, catch newly discovered Pokemon, and explore new areas in the Galar region.
We have included a plethora of information released about the Expansion Pass, straight from a press release from The Pokemon Company:
THE POKÉMON SWORD EXPANSION PASS AND POKÉMON SHIELD EXPANSION PASS
Trainers will be able to jump right into their new adventures with the same save data they have been using to play Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield. They will also be able to begin exploring the Isle of Armor and the Crown Tundra at almost any point in the main games. Whether a Trainer has just started their adventure in the Galar region or is well along the path to becoming Champion, they will be able to enjoy the new content as soon as it’s released.
The Isle of Armor is scheduled to be released by the end of June 2020, and The Crown Tundra in the autumn of 2020. The Pokémon Sword Expansion Pass and Pokémon Shield Expansion Pass, which include both sets of content, will be available for prepurchase for £26.99 starting later today, January 9, 2020. Both expansions will include a new area to explore, newly discoverable Pokémon, clothing items, handy features, and more. In addition, fans can receive special bonuses when purchasing the Expansion Pass: a Pikachu Uniform and an Eevee Uniform. Fans will be able to receive the Pikachu and Eevee Uniforms in Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield by using codes that they will receive after they purchase the Expansion Pass.
The Isle of Armor
In this expansion, Trainers will head to the Isle of Armor, the stage of a new adventure in the Galar region. The Isle of Armor is a giant island full of environments not seen in Galar before. There players will find wave-swept beaches, forests, bogs, caves, and sand dunes. There are also plenty of Pokémon that make this island their home, living freely amid the lush natural surroundings. There’s even a dojo here that specializes in some very particular training styles. Trainers and their Pokémon will take up an apprenticeship under the master of this dojo and train hard to become even stronger.
The Crown Tundra
This expansion is set in the snow-swept realm of the Crown Tundra. The Crown Tundra features a beautiful shining, silvery landscape. In this frigid area, with its jagged winter mountains, people live in small communities where they support and rely on one another. A certain person will appoint the player as the leader of their exploration team in the Crown Tundra, where Trainers will be tasked with investigating the reaches of this frozen land. Here, Trainers will be able to explore the full depth of Pokémon Dens, which they’ve so far only been able to glimpse in Max Raid Battles.
MORE PAST POKÉMON AVAILABLE TO OBTAIN IN POKÉMON SWORD AND POKÉMON SHIELD
Many Pokémon that didn’t originally appear in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield make their homes on the Isle of Armor and the Crown Tundra. Trainers will meet a lively array of diverse Pokémon, from newly discovered Legendary Pokémon and new regional forms to familiar Pokémon that have been seen living in other regions. Free updates are also planned for Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield to coincide with the release of these expansions. Updates are scheduled for the same days that The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra expansions are released. Each of these updates will enable players who haven’t purchased an Expansion Pass to receive Pokémon that will be added via The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra expansions through means such as trading. Players will also be able to bring over past Pokémon to their games from the cloud service Pokémon HOME, scheduled to launch in February 2020, as long as the Pokémon appear in The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra expansions.
Fans will be able to obtain a special training uniform in The Isle of Armor. They will be ready to face any challenge thanks to their new outfit, and it will be sure to get them ready in both body and mind for their upcoming training. In The Crown Tundra, Trainers can don exploration gear to prepare themselves for researching the many intriguing destinations the tundra holds. They might find a strange temple where they least expect it or a mysterious giant tree growing in a place it doesn’t seem to belong.
During their adventure, Trainers will run into many interesting characters.
A man named Mustard will appear in The Isle of Armor and will be responsible for the player’s training. He’s a legendary Trainer who held the seat of Champion for an astounding 18 years, back before Dynamaxing was incorporated into the battles of the Pokémon League. His record has yet to be beaten. In fact, Champion Leon himself trained under Mustard, and Mustard was the first one to recognize Leon’s latent talent.
There are two new rivals that can appear in The Isle of Armor: Klara and Avery. They’re skilled Trainers of Poison-type Pokémon and Psychic-type Pokémon, respectively, and they’re training hard so that they can someday set up a Gym and stadium for their own type. Trainers will face a different rival depending on which game they’re playing. Klara specializes in Poison-type Pokémon and is training hard at Mustard’s dojo. She’ll do just about anything to appear adorable and cute, as popularity is what she admires most of all. She goes about her days with a smile on her face, but hiding behind it is a calculating nature that she puts to very good use. Avery is one of the Trainers who strive to become stronger at Mustard’s dojo, and he is a proficient user of Psychic-type Pokémon. He is gentlemanly and well-mannered but also very proud.
NEW FEATURES ADDED IN THE ISLE OF ARMOR AND THE CROWN TUNDRA
There will be over one hundred new clothing items added in The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra. In The Isle of Armor, Trainers will also find new items that will help them along their journey, like an Exp. Charm that’ll come in handy when leveling up their Pokémon. New tutor moves that have never been available in past Pokémon core series games will appear in The Isle of Armor expansion along with Restricted Sparring, where Trainers will be limited in what types of Pokémon they can use and forced to battle under set conditions. In The Crown Tundra expansion, Trainers and their friends will be able to enter and explore Pokémon Dens in a new gameplay feature. Deep inside these dens, they’ll have a chance to encounter Legendary Pokémon from previous Pokémon core series games.
Many Pokémon not found in Galar’s Wild Area make their home on the Isle of Armor and the Crown Tundra. Trainers will have their Galar Pokédexes updated so that they can register even more Pokémon as they discover them. In The Isle of Armor, players will aim to complete the Isle of Armor Pokédex, while in The Crown Tundra, they’ll be working on the Crown Tundra Pokédex.
There are Pokémon Dens on the Isle of Armor and the Crown Tundra, just like in the Wild Area. When Trainers check out a Pokémon Den that has a pillar of red light coming out of it, they’ll be able to participate in a Max Raid Battle. These are battles where the player will team up with three other Trainers to take on a Dynamax Pokémon. In the Pokémon Dens on the Isle of Armor and the Crown Tundra, Trainers will be able to encounter Pokémon that aren’t found in the Wild Area. They’ll be able to invite friends to join these Max Raid Battles—and not just friends who are playing using the Pokémon Sword Expansion Pass or Pokémon Shield Expansion Pass. Players will be able to have even friends who are playing Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield without an Expansion Pass come and join them.
SNEAK PEEK AT POKÉMON SWORD AND POKÉMON SHIELD EXPANSION PASS AVAILABLE VIA UPDATE
Starting later today, January 9, 2020, an update will be distributed for Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield players that will allow them to experience a small slice of the Expansion Pass’s new content. Once they’ve received the update, players will need to head to Wedgehurst Station. There, they’ll meet a Trainer who will appear in the Expansion Pass content. In Pokémon Sword, Trainers will encounter Klara, while in Pokémon Shield, they’ll run into Avery. Players can even add a Galarian Slowpoke to their team. It doesn’t matter whether players have purchased the Expansion Pass or not—anyone who’s playing Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield will be able to experience the beginning of the Expansion Pass’s story.
SPECIAL POKÉMON SWORD AND POKÉMON SHIELD EXPANSION PASS PURCHASE BONUS
If Trainers purchase the Expansion Pass, they’ll be able to receive a Pikachu Uniform and an Eevee Uniform as a special purchase bonus. They’ll be able to wear these outfits in the expansions but also in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield.
We’ll have more coverage on The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra and the Expansion Pass, in general, leading up to the first content drop in June.