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Pokemon Sword and Shield Expansion Passes Revealed: A Breakdown of The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra

During the latest Nintendo Direct, two new Pokemon Sword and Shield expansions were revealed. The Isle of Armor will be coming out in June 2020 and The Crown Tundra will be coming out Fall of 2020. Fans can buy both with an Expansion Pass on the Nintendo Store for $29.99. Along with this came plenty of reveals for new content so buckle-up.

The Isle of Armor

Pokemon The Isle of Armor

The first part of the expansion, Isle of Armor, will be a more tropical place with a brand new adventure that seems to continue the storyline of the original games. During this part of the game players will meet Mustard, an old gentleman who was a former Pokemon Champion. He helped to train Leon so that he could also one day become champion. As the head of the Dojo in this area he will take the time to teach the trainer all they need to know and more. Mustard will also give the player the newest legendary Pokemon, a Fighting-Type named Kubfu.

Mentor Mustard

Legendary Pokemon Kubfu

Kubfu will have an evolution, Urshifu, with two forms based on Sword and Shield. The Shield version will add Dark typing while the Sword will add Water.

Shield Urshifu

Sword Urshifu

Also during this time on The Isle of Armor, players will be introduced to their newest rival. In Sword, players will meet Klara. The only thing known about this rival is that she is a Poison-Type trainer that is working to earn her own Gym. In Shield, players will be introduced to Avery. They are a Psychic-Type trainer who like Klara is working on earning their own Gym. This is the first time a Pokemon game has had completely separate rivals so it will be interesting to see if they have their own storylines as well.

New Pokemon Rivals

Cosmetics and Other Additions

Marnie Costume

While they will likely add even more cosmetics come Fall of this year for The Crown Tundra, there was already a lot revealed in the trailer for The Isle of Armor. This includes new hairstyles, hair colors, backpacks and even full costumes. Players will be able to look like everyone’s favorite rival, Marnie and even Chairman Rose. In addition to these cosmetics, for the first time in any Pokemon game, there will be cosmetics for the trainer’s bike.

New and Old Pokemon

Former Pokemon will be making their way back including Blastoise and Venusaur. Both of the original starter lines were missing from the newest games even though Charizard was not. Along with them will be Pokemon from the old games that did not make the original cut. Across both games, they said 200+ Pokemon would be returning. This would bring the number in the game to a little above 600 of the nearly 900 overall.

Blastoise and Venusaur are back

With these will come new Galarian forms and Giagantimax forms. The Galarian starters will specifically be getting new forms and Slowpoke will as well. From the trailer, it seemed as though Slowpoke would be a Poison-Type with its new form.

Galarian Starters Gigantimax Forms

Quality of Life Changes and Competitive Support?

Pokemon Apricorns

While quickly mentioned, the game will be adding three new things. New moves for the Tutor, Apricorns return and an Exp. Charm. None of the moves were revealed but one can imagine they will be specifically for the purpose of competitive play. Apricorns will finally be back in a Pokemon game and should help trainers make extremely rare Pokeballs. The Exp. Charm seems as though it is yet another way for trainers to quickly get their Pokemon ready for competitive play. How this is earned is unknown as the Shiny Charm already requires players to finish the Pokedex.

Official Competitions were mentioned for possibly the first time. This was also something mentioned in passing but it shows the continued support for the competitive scene that was never seen before this part of the Pokemon series. It will be interesting to see what else they try to do in order to bring about a new generation of Pokemon Esports professionals.

The Crown Tundra

The Crown Tundra

The second part of the expansion will see the players head to the arctic region of The Crown Tundra. The story will have players getting hired to explore the natural caves and underground parts of this region. Along the way, they will encounter their rivals again along with mysteriously large trees and scattered temples.

Legendary Pokemon Galar

Legendary Bird Galar Forms

This leads into what seemingly will be the point of this part of the expansion, legendary everything. For starters, the Legendary birds from the original games will be getting Galarian forms. This is the first time a legendary Pokemon has gotten a completely new form. From the looks of it, they will have dual typing for the first time. Articuno looks like Ice and Steel, Zapdos as Electric and Dark and then Moltres as Fire and Psychic. This is total speculation though as their new forms have only been revealed in art form.

Legendary Pokemon Calyrex

Along with the new forms for the Legendary Birds comes Calyrex. While Kubfu is a legendary, it seems Calyrex is the compliment to the Sword and Shield legendaries. This Psychic and Grass Pokemon exudes a regal aura as the bulb on top of its head looks like a crown, thus The Crown Tundra, and the bulbs around its neck look like the fluff in old paintings of Queen Elizabeth. It will be interesting to see how this legendary Pokemon plays into the story.

Last but not least, all of the legendary Pokemon are making their way back in The Crown Tundra. It does not seem like any of them will be getting new forms like the legendary birds. That said, their return does signify that the Pokemon team was listening to fans. Of the hundreds of Pokemon left out of Sword and Shield, many were upset to see that none of the old legendaries were in the game. This should hopefully help along with the addition of at least another 150 Pokemon to alleviate some of the tension between the fans and developers.


With this announcement came two more. Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Rescue Team DX was announced to be coming in March. Pokemon Home was also officially given a release date for February of this year.

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