Pokémon Sword and Shield Expansion Pass Explained

In a Pokémon-themed Nintendo Direct, developer Game Freak announced two upcoming expansions for Pokémon Sword and Shield, which recently broke the record for the fastest-selling games in the series.

Scheduled to release later this year, The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra expansions will see players journeying to new lands where they’ll meet a host of new characters and Pokémon.

Additionally, the expansions will mark the return of 200+ Pokémon from previous generations. Here, we’ll be explaining everything you need to know about the expansion pass, including release dates, pricing, and features.

If you would like to receive more information about Pokémon Sword and Shield, check out one of our many guides for valuable tips and tricks to get you started:

Related:Pokémon Sword and Shield Beginners GuidePokémon Sword and Shield Guide: Max Raid BattlesPokémon Sword and Shield Guide: How to Catch and Breed Shiny Pokémon

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Pokémon Sword and Shield Expansion Pass Release Date and Price

The Sword and Shield expansion pass will be releasing in two parts, with The Isle of Armor dropping on June 17th and The Crown Tundra later in Fall 2020. The DLC is currently available for pre-purchase from the Nintendo eShop for $29.99/£26.99, which includes a copy of both expansions.

Note: The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra expansions come bundled together and cannot be purchased separately.

The Isle of Armor Expansion

The Isle of Armor Expansion

The Isle of Armor expansion will carry you to a new tropical-themed island where you’ll take on an apprenticeship under Mustard, a Pokémon dojo master. Additionally, you’ll gain a new rival depending on which version of the game you’re playing.

In Pokémon Sword, your new rival will be Klara, a trainer specializing in Poison-type. If you’re playing Pokémon Shield, your opponent will be Avery, a Psychic-type trainer.

While on the Isle of Armor, you’ll be introduced to a new Legendary Pokémon named Kubfu, a fighting-type that later evolves into Urshifu. Upon evolving, your Kubfu will turn into either Single Strike Form Urshifu (Fighting/Dark-type) or Rapid Strike Urshifu (Fighting/Water-type) depending on the choices you make during the story. 

The Isle of Armor has a separate Pokédex which can be completed by battling wild Pokémon in the open-world and participating in Max Raid Battles.

Included are a host of new Pokémon and regional variants as well as some familiar faces from earlier games. Below you’ll find a list of all the features included with this expansion.

Pokémon Sword and Shield Expansion Pass Release Date

Features

  • New tropical-themed Wild Area consisting of sandy beaches and dunes, damp caves and bogs, and lush forests.
  • New storyline focused on training under Mustard, a Pokémon dojo master.
  • New Legendary Pokémon Kubfu and its evolution Urshifu.
  • 100+ returning Pokémon, including new regional variants like Galarian Slowpoke.
  • New rival characters depending on your version – Klara, a Poison-type trainer (Pokémon Sword), and Avery, a Psychic-type trainer (Pokémon Shield).
  • New Restricted Sparring Battles – a new battle type that limits which kinds of Pokémon players can use and forces them to battle under set conditions.
  • New Exp. Charm for training Pokémon
  • New cosmetic items: hairstyles, clothing, and accessories.
  • New move tutors
  • Apricorn that can be made into Poké Balls
  • New Gigantamax forms for Cinderace, Rillaboom, and Inteleon.
The Isle of Armor Expansion Features

New Pokémon

  • Kubfu – a Fighting-type Pokémon that can be obtained on the Isle of Armor.
  • Urshifu – evolves from Kubfu into one of two different forms: Single Strike Form (Fighting/Dark-type) or Rapid Strike Form (Fighting/Water-type) depending on how it’s trained.
  • Galarian Slowpoke – a new regional variant included with The Isle of Armor Evolves into Galarian Slowbro by using an exclusive item from the Isle of Armor and then into Galarian Slowking with an exclusive item from the Cloud Tundra.
The Isle of Armor Expansion Features New Pokemon

Returning Pokémon

Game Freak plans to deal with fan criticism of Sword and Shield’s limited PokéDex by adding in creatures from older games. On the Isle of Armor, players will be able to encounter the following Pokémon from previous generations:

  • Magnemite
  • Magneton
  • Magnezone
  • Horsea
  • Seadra
  • Kingdra
  • Happiny
  • Chansey
  • Blissey
  • Azurill
  • Marill
  • Azumarill
  • Zorua
  • Zoroark
  • Larvesta
  • Dedenne
  • Volcarona
  • Rockruff
  • Lycanroc

Note: You can only encounter these Pokémon if you have purchased the expansion pass. However, they can still be obtained for free through trading.  

The Crown Tundra Expansion

The Crown Tundra Expansion

The second DLC being released is The Crown Tundra, which sees you traveling to a hazardous, snow-swept mountainous region with freezing-cold temperature.

Here, you’ll be recruited to join an expedition team and explore uncharted territories and mountains as you make your way across the region’s landscape and encounter small communities of trainers.

The expansion will also introduce a new co-op mode that sees players teaming up for challenging Max Raid Dungeons, where Legendary Pokémon may appear.

Similar to the previous expansion, The Crown Tundra will feature its Pokédex, which can be completed by battling wild Pokémon in the open-world and participating in Max Raid Battles.

Included are a host of new Pokémon and regional variants as well as some returning Pokémon earlier games. Below you’ll find a list of all the features included with this expansion.

The Crown Tundra Expansion New Features

Features

  • New Winter-themed Wild Area consisting of snowy mountains, frozen forests, and icy plains.
  • New storyline that sees you recruited by a ‘certain someone’ to explore the Crown Tundra’s uncharted mountains.
  • New Legendary Pokémon Calyrex.
  • 100+ returning Pokémon from previous generations, including Legendaries and regional variants.
  • New Max Raid Dungeon co-op mode
  • New cosmetic items: hairstyles, clothing, and accessories.
The Crown Tundra Expansion New Pokemon

New Pokémon

  • Calyrex – a Legendary Psychic/Grass-type Pokémon believed to have ruled the entire Galar region at one point in history.
  • More Legendary Pokémon to be announced.
The Crown Tundra Expansion Returning Pokemon

Returning Pokémon

Like the first expansion, The Crown Tundra will add even more existing Pokémon from previous generations. There’s a chance some of them will appear out in the overworld while others may be restricted to the new co-op Max Raid Dungeons.

  • Nidoran (Male)
  • Nidorino
  • Nidoking
  • Zubat
  • Golbat
  • Crobat
  • Elekid
  • Electabuzz
  • Electivire
  • Spheal
  • Sealeo
  • Walrein
  • Beldum
  • Metang
  • Metagross
  • Gible
  • Gabite
  • Garchomp
  • Cryogonal
  • Amaura
  • Aurorus
  • Bulbasaur
  • Ivysaur
  • Venusaur
  • Squirtle
  • Wartortle
  • Blastoise
  • Regirock
  • Regice
  • Registeel

Note: You can only encounter these Pokémon if you have purchased the expansion pass. However, they can still be obtained for free through trading. 

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Justin Fernandez
Justin Fernandez

As a fan of both indie and triple-A games, Justin finds joy in discovering and sharing hidden gems with other passionate gamers. In addition to reporting on the latest and greatest titles, he manages GamingScan’s social media channels.

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