[Update] Pokémon Sword and Shield Features Include Auto-Save, Exp Share

Published: October 1, 2019 2:01 PM /


Pokemon Sword and Shield Logos

Update: One little bit of information that was overlooked is the game's gyms have been given a minor upgrade too. Sword and Shield will have a total of 18 gyms - one for each elemental type - as major and minor gyms. This is to reflect major and minor league sporting events, according to Shigeru Ohmori, with the gyms in competition with each other for major league spots. 

This also helps to explain away differences in gyms being prominent in the games promotional work, such as the (possibly formerly) exclusive fighting-type gym for Sword and ghost-type gym for Shield. Now, the fighting-type gym is in the major leagues for Sword, with the ghost-type gym being the major leagues for Shield

Original Story: A slew of features, old and new, have been given away for Pokémon Sword and Shield

Website Game Informer has detailed a ton of little features for Sword and Shield, some of which were speculated by the fanbase, others confirming tweaks from previous game mechanics. Their series of articles regarding the next Pokémon game talk about features such as the Max Raid Battles, which was revealed to be influenced heavily by the raids found in Pokémon Go, according to director Shigeru Ohmori. The battles are also designed to be difficult for players, even with a team of players. Good strategy is key to winning a Max Raid Battle.

Pokémon planning director Kazumasa Iwao also talked about some changes to the games fundamental mechanics, though he was cagey on the details. Iwao hints at the possibility to use Pokémon competitively from the onset of the games adventure, right down to your original starter.

"This time around, we really wanted to introduce some systems that help the player be able to take those Pokémon they caught in the beginning, and the first one they chose, and actually take them straight into competitive battle. There’s a lot of hidden parameters to Pokémon that aren’t surfaced to the player. We're doing a lot of stuff in the back end introducing systems that allow players to make sure that Pokémon they want to use in competitive battles are viable."

Iwao doesn't go into too many details but does note that a status such as a Pokémon's personality can be changed without the need for breeding, which is the older method for creating competitively viable Pokémon. This personality is likely referencing a pokemon's nature that can influence their stats. Breeding still exists in the game as a major mechanic, of course, but Iwao states that it is now more optional to use breeding for competitively viable Pokémon in Sword and Shield. "We do think there’s value in that effort that players put into it," said Iwao. "But at the same time, I think with Sword and Shield we wanted to also have a system that makes it a little bit more accessible."

Outside of Max Raid Battles and vague references to creating viable competitive Pokémon, the rest of the articles highlighted several changes to the game, some of which were previously hinted at. Auto-Save is now a confirmed feature; one which can be toggled on and off for players. HM's are confirmed to not be returning to the game, but the Exp Share is, this time not as an item, but as an automatic part of the games mechanics. There is no word as to whether the Exp Share will be able to be shut off at this time either, however. Finally, Game Freak also confirms that the Pokémon that do not make the cut in Sword and Shield will return in the future, hoping to once again assuage the concerns of those who have been vocal over the loss of the National Pokédex. 

No major Pokémon or in-game details were revealed, though that likely will be for this Fridays 24 hour livestream covering new mechanics, Pokémon and more from Sword and Shield, which is scheduled for release on November 15th.

What are your thoughts on all of these features? Looking forward to seeing the changes to Sword and Shield yourself? Leave your comments below. 

Have a tip, or want to point out something we missed? Leave a Comment or e-mail us at tips@techraptor.net

Me smiling
| Staff Writer

A longtime player of games, creator of worlds, and teacher of minds. Robert has worked many positions over the years, from college professor to education… More about Robert

More Info About This Game
Learn More About Pokémon Sword and Shield
Game Freak
Nintendo Switch
Release Date
November 15, 2019 (Calendar)
Open World, RPG
Purchase (Some links may be affiliated)