Pokémon Sword and Shield are finally here, which means the start of a brand new adventure! Given the limited area you have to explore early in Pokémon games, it can be a little hard to start filling out your Pokédex right away. However, Sword and Shield offer a few bonus Pokémon you can get practically right away, giving you an early boost to get those Dex numbers up. Here’s how you can get them:
One of the earliest Pokémon you can obtain is a special Meowth, which turns into a longcat when Gigantamaxed. Its special move is G-Max Gold Rush, which confuses enemies and provides you a cash bonus, much like Pay Day. To obtain this Meowth, follow these instructions:
- Open the X menu.
- Go to Mystery Gift.
- Choose “Get Mystery Gift.”
- Choose “Get via Internet.”
- Connect to your network and claim your Meowth!
You can do this surprisingly early on in the game. In fact, I was able to claim mine pretty much right after obtaining my starter. You only have until January 15th to claim your free Meowth though, so don’t delay!
For trainers who have save data from either Let’s Go, Pikachu or Let’s Go, Eevee, you can get a special Pikachu or Eevee, respectively. After progressing a bit through the story, you’ll wind up in the Wild Area train station, labeled “Meetup Spot” on the town map. In the upper corner near the tracks, you’ll find a pair of children who want to know if you’ve had a “Let’s Go experience.” If you’ve played Let’s Go, Eevee, talking to the guy will net you a special Gigantamax-able Eevee. Likewise, talking to the girl if you’ve played Let’s Go, Pikachu will earn you a free Gigantamax-able Pikachu.
While these Pokémon can’t evolve, they do have access to unique special moves while Gigantamaxed. Pikachu’s special is called G-Max Volt Attack and can leave opponents paralyzed. Eevee, on the other hand, can use G-Max Cuddle, which can attract opponent of the opposite gender.
Lastly, if you have a brand new Poké Ball Plus, you can connect it to Sword or Shield to obtain the mythical Pokémon Mew. The steps are as follows:
- Open the X menu.
- Select Mystery Gift
- Choose “Take a Stroll with Poké Ball Plus.”
- Follow the steps to connect your controller.
After connecting, you should receive your Mew. It’s important to note that once you claim your Mew, you cannot claim it in any other game, or even a new save if you choose to restart. It’s a one-time bonus, so make sure you want to claim it before doing so.
This also means that if you’ve already claimed Mew in Let’s Go, Pikachu or Let’s Go, Eevee, you won’t be able to obtain Mew in this fashion with Sword or Shield without a second accessory. Given the price of the Poké Ball Plus and the fact that you can’t use it as an actual controller in Sword and Shield, you might be better off trying to trade for it, however.