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The first full generation of Pokémon on Nintendo Switch makes all manner of improvements to this now 20-year-old JRPG series. Pokémon Sword features Zacian as its legendary Pokémon and cover star, taking place within the UK-inspired Galar region and doing away with mega evolutions to instead replace them with dynamaxing. This manoeuvre now enables players to temporarily increase the size of their Pokémon, improving the effectiveness of moves to add an extra layer of depth to both online and story battles.
Catching them all has never looked better thanks to Pokémon Sword being the first true entry to be rendered in full HD. Buildings tower over your player-character to offer an improved sense of scale, as does how sprawling the new open-world Wild Area sections feel. It’s here where you’ll come up against Pokémon of all levels of types, letting you capture those that you mightn’t otherwise see until much later in the campaign. Pokémon Sword ultimately follows the same structure of working your way through the Pokémon league, but new additions like this take full advantage of the new hardware.
Pokémon Sword also represents a first for the series in that it continues to be supported by way of DLC added after the fact. The available Expansion Pass offers up all-new Pokémon to battle and catch either in The Isle of Armor or The Crown Tundra, ensuring that the Pokémon party you’ve built can be put to good use long after the main Sword campaign has ended.