One of the best parts of Pokémon is the ability to use your team to battle with your friends. Ever since Pokémon made the jump to online service, this ability has been expanded to players worldwide. Pokémon Sword and Shield are no different, and new details reveal just how this process will work.
The online battling system in Pokémon Sword and Shield is known as the Battle Stadium, in keeping with the games’ theme. The primary mode for competitive play will be the Ranked Battles. In this mode, you’ll have a ranking, which serves as an indicator of your skill in battle. This rank will go up or down at the end of a battle, depending on the outcome. It will also drop by a set amount at the end of a season, allowing you to carry over the remainder.
If you want to play without worrying about rankings, there is a Casual Battle mode as well. In addition to not having to worry about a ranking, Casual Battles also allow Legendaries and Mythical Pokémon that aren’t able to be used in Ranked Battles, adding some variety to team compositions. You can also take part in either Official or Friendly Competitions, using a variety of regulations.
If you don’t have a competitive team, you can still take part in online battles. The Battle Stadium features Rental Teams you can use in all types of battles, even ranked! You can have five Rental Teams out at one time. And if you think your team has what it takes to make it in the big leagues, you can make it publicly available for use around the world!
There are a few other cool features to the Battle Stadium as well. Pokémon Sword and Shield‘s new Dynamaxing mechanic makes the leap to online battles, and can even be used in double battles! The Battle Stadium also has a number of criteria you can meet to earn items, such as the Pearl String.
Of course, a Nintendo Switch Online subscription is required to take part in the Battle Stadium.
Are you ready to take on the world in the Battle Stadium in Pokémon Sword and Shield? With the new abilities (especially Galarian Weezing’s Neutralizing Gas) and Rental Teams, I might actually have a chance!