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You can catch different Pokémon depending on if you play Sword or Shield

Best answer: There are a handful of exclusive Pokémon and legendaries to each, along with version exclusive gym battles.

Why do Pokémon games release as two separate versions?

Pokémon’s tagline may be “catch ’em all,” but historically, it was impossible to do so with only one version of the game. Ever since it’s inception, Game Freak usually releases two main Pokémon RPGs alongside each other. From Red and Blue, Ruby and Sapphire, Diamond, and Pearl, the series has stuck with these dynamic duos. For the most part, you’re getting the same experience. However, each tends to have its own handful of exclusive Pokémon and a unique legendary that can only be caught in that version of the game. In Pokémon Let’s Go players even had unique starter Pokémon between Eevee and Pikachu. Ruby and Sapphire, in particular, featured two separate villainous teams with Team Magma and Team Aqua, which were the region equivalent of Team Rocket.

What are the differences between them?

There are several Pokemon exclusive to Sword or Shield. You’ll need to trade with friends to collect them all. Here’s a collection of all of the Pokemon exclusive to either game:

Pokémon exclusive to Sword

  • Seedot
  • Nuzleaf
  • Shiftry
  • Swirlix
  • Slurpuff
  • Scraggy
  • Scrafty
  • Gothita
  • Gothorita
  • Gothitelle
  • Rufflet
  • Braviary
  • Mawile
  • Passimian
  • Turtonator
  • Solrock
  • Galarian Darumaka
  • Galarian Darmanitan
  • Deino
  • Zweilous
  • Hydreigon
  • Jangmo-o
  • Hakamo-o
  • Kommo-o
  • Farfetch’d
  • Sirfetch’d
  • Zacian (Legendary)

Pokémon exclusive to Shield

  • Lotad
  • Lombre
  • Ludicolo
  • Spritzee
  • Aromatisse
  • Croagunk
  • Toxicroak
  • Solosis
  • Duosion
  • Reuniclus
  • Vullaby
  • Mandibuzz
  • Sableye
  • Oranguru
  • Drampa
  • Galarian Corsola
  • Cursola
  • Larvitar
  • Pupitar
  • Tyranitar
  • Goomy
  • Sliggoo
  • Goodra
  • Galarian Ponyta
  • Galarian Rapidash
  • Zamazenta (Legendary)

Version exclusive evolutions

You’ll find Applin in both Sword and Shield. However, it will evolve into a different Pokemon depending on which version of the game you have.


  • Applin ⟶ Flapple


  • Applin ⟶ Appletun.

Max Raid Battle encounters

During specific periods, players will be more likely to discover rare Gigantamax Pokémon in Max Raid Battles.

From November 15th through early January 2020, Pokémon Shield players are more likely to encounter Gigantamax Corviknight, while Pokémon Sword players will be more likely to encounter Gigantamax Drednaw.

Version exclusive gyms

Pokémon Sword and Shield also have two gyms that are exclusive to either version. Here are the gym exclusives for either game:

Pokémon Sword

  • Bea – Fighting gym leader
  • Gordie – Rock gym leader

Pokémon Shield

  • Allister – Ghost gym leader
  • Melony – Ice gym leader

Unsheathe your sword

Pokémon Sword

$60 at Amazon

Jump into the Galar Region

This is it, trainers. Generation 8 has brought us the Galar Region, full of new Pokémon to catch and challenges to overcome in Pokémon Sword for Nintendo Switch.

Pick up your shield

Pokémon Shield

$60 at Amazon

New challenges await

Trainers can also explore the Galar Region in Pokémon Shield for Nintendo Switch, giving you another way to make your dreams of becoming a Pokémon master come true.

Source of the article – iMore