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Game Freak announces two expansions for Pokémon Sword and Shield

Pokémon Sword and Shield's first expansion, The Isle of Armor, will be available in June 2020, developer Game Freak announced Thursday. Provided by Nintendo of America

Pokémon Sword and Shield will receive two expansions in 2020, developer Game Freak announced Thursday during a Pokémon-focused Nintendo Direct.

The developer also revealed Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX, a remake of the popular 2006's Pokémon Mystery Dungeon. Rescue Team DX will launch March 6, but a demo of the dungeon-crawler is available on Nintendo Switch now.

The first of the Sword and Shield expansions, The Isle of Armor, will be available June 2020. The second, The Crown Tundra, is scheduled for fall 2020. Both releases will include new areas for players to explore, new Pokémon to capture, and other monsters returning to the franchise after being left out of the original cast for Sword and Shield.

The Isle of Armor will take place in a lush landscape and appears to include a vast wild area as well as a dojo for training and battling under a new mentor, Mustard. The Crown Tundra, meanwhile, is steeped in snow and pockmarked with remote towns, and its trailer showcased some previous legendary Pokémon in Regice, Registeel and Regirock. Galarian forms of legendary birds Articuno, Zapdos and Moltres also appear during the Crown Tundra montage.

Both expansions will feature new legendaries of their own as well. The Isle of Armor's is Kufbu, a fighting-type Pokémon that is fashioned after a martial artist. Trainers will get Kubfu from Mustard and be able to get its evolved form, Urshifu, later in the island's story.

The Crown Tundra's marquee mon will be Calyrex, a psychic and grass type antelope that stands on two feet and has what looks like a very big brain. The DLC will also feature the addition of a new co-op Pokémon Den activity that will allow trainers to try and capture other previous legendary Pokémon.

This will be the first-ever DLC available for a main franchise Pokémon game. Sword and Shield, which were the first full Pokémon RPGs to hit the Nintendo Switch, broke more than 6 million units sold during their launch week, and esports competition in the game has kicked into gear with online tournaments hosted by Nintendo and official competition beginning in early 2020.

Pokémon Sword and Shield fans have some early content available, too. Players that download today's patch for the games will be able to meet two of the new DLC characters at Wedgehurst Station. Sword players will meet Klara there, while Shield players will run into Avery. Galarian Slowpoke is also included in this patch and catchable when you meet the new characters.

More than 200 Pokémon from previous titles will make their return to the game for these expansions, Game Freak confirmed. Some previous Pokémon featured in the video include:

  • Talonflame

  • Slowpoke

  • Slowbro

  • Slowking

  • Kingdra

  • Vulcarona

  • Seaking

  • Dedenne

  • Rockruff

  • Lycanroc

  • Regice

  • Regirock

  • Registeel

  • Aurorus

  • Nidorino

  • Sealeo

  • Garchomp

  • Happiny

  • Chansey

  • Psyduck

  • Golduck

  • Zorua

  • Articuno

  • Zapdos

  • Moltres

  • Mewtwo

  • Ho-Oh

  • Lugia

  • Entei

  • Suicune

  • Raikou

  • Groudon

  • Kyogre

  • Rayquaxa

  • Uxie

  • Mespirit

  • Azelf

  • Dialga

  • Palkia

  • Tornadus

  • Thundurus

  • Landorus

  • Reshiram

  • Zekrom

  • Xerneas

  • Yveltal

  • Zygarde

  • Tapu Bulu

  • Tapu Lele

  • Tapu Koko

  • Tapu Fini

  • Solgaleo

  • Lunala

  • Latios

  • Latias

  • Heatran

  • Cresselia

  • Giratina

The expansions are $30 apiece and need to be bought for the individual titles.