Game News

Pokémon Sword and Shield Introduces New Mechanic, Dynamax

Raid Battles come to the main series games.

by Dylan Siegler


Every new Generation of Pokémon brings their own new mechanics to the franchise. In more recent entries, Generation VI’s and introduced Mega Evolution and Generation VII’s Sun and Moon introduced Z-Moves. This time, Generation VIII’s Sword and Shield will be introducing a new mechanic called Dynamaxing.

As explained in the recent Sword and Shield Direct presentation, a Pokémon that has Dynamaxed is enormous in size and all their moves become stronger Max Moves. Some examples of moves turning into Max Moves include Thunderbolt turning into Max Lightning, Light Screen becoming Max Guard, Brick Break becoming Max Knuckle, and Quick Attack becoming Max Strike. Like with Mega Evolutions and Z-Moves, using the Dynamax mechanic is as easy as pressing the Dynamax button on the move selection screen during battle, but it has its limitations. Only one Pokémon in your party can use Dynamax per battle, and it will only remain Dynamaxed for three turns, so you’ll have to be strategic in how you use it.

You’ll also be able to find and catch wild Dynamaxed Pokémon in these new games. In these games’ more open-world-like areas Wild Areas, you’ll sometimes find a beam of red light shining down from the sky. You can approach these beams of light with up to three other players in co-op to take on a Dynamaxed Pokémon in a Max Raid Battle, where all four players will team up against the Dynamaxed enemy in a fashion similar to Raid Battles from Pokémon GO. During these battles, the Dynamaxed Pokémon will stay Dynamaxed for the entire battle. Meanwhile, only one trainer on the team of four will be able to Dynamax one of their own party members, so some coordination between teammates will be necessary. Once the Dynamaxed Pokémon is defeated, each of the four players who participated in the battle will be given the opportunity to catch it.

What Pokémon appear in the wild Dynamaxed will depend on where in the Wild Area you are as well as what the weather conditions are. Additionally, some Pokémon will only appear in the game in Dynamaxed form, so you’ll want to keep an eye out.

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