'Pokémon Sword and Shield' Dynamax: Everything We Know So Far

pokemon sword shield dynamax
Pokemon Company

The biggest surprise from the Pokémon Sword and Shield Direct was the introduction of Dynamax, a new feature that makes Pokémon battles massive and more dynamic.

Every new generation of Pokémon games introduces some change to the battle system ,whether it be the introduction of Mega Evolutions in Gen 6 or Z-Moves in Gen 7. For Gen 8 and Sword and Shield, it's Dynamax.

What is Dynamax? How does it work? Here's everything we know about Dynamax in Pokémon Sword and Shield.


According to the Direct, Dynamax is a "phenomenon unique to specific locations in the Galar region, where Pokémon are able to take on gigantic appearances."

Professor Magnolia is the Pokémon Professor of the Galar region and her main focus of research is Dynamax. You'll learn from her what the new Dynamax feature is in Sword and Shield. She will also give - or at least point to - where trainers can get the Dynamax Band. Similar to the bands used for Mega Evolution and Z-Moves, trainers will need to wear this item to have their Pokémon Dynamax.

Pokémon who Dynamax will become colossal and their attacks become more powerful. However, Dynamax only lasts for three turns before the Pokémon reverts to its normal size so trainers will need to use it wisely.

Right now it's unclear whether the Pokémon who Dynamaxes will need a special hold item similar to the Mega Stone or Z-Crystal to undergo the process, but early indications are that they won't.


Once a trainer has their Dynamax Band they can perform Dynamax. Again, like using a Z-Move or Mega Evolving players need to select the Dynamax function in the attack selection screen.

When Dynamaxed, the Pokémon's moves will change to Dynamax forms called Max Moves. Normal attacks become Max Strike while Grass-type attacks become Max Overgrowth.

pokemon sword shield dynamax max moves
Pokemon Company/NewsGeek

Non-attack moves like Growl and Taunt become Max Guard, which is likely what that huge shield is in the trailer that we see protecting the Pokémon. It also doesn't seem to matter what type the non-attack move is, it'll always be Max Guard.

Speaking of Max Strike, The Pokémon Company confirmed that it will lower the Speed stats of opponents when it hits. It's likely that other Max Moves will have special effects.

pokemon sword shield dynamax raid battles
Pokemon Company


There will be red beacons shown on the map while you're traveling in the Wild Areas of Sword and Shield,. These are Max Raid Battles, and are a new battle format in which the player will team up with three other trainers to take on a wild Dynamax Pokémon.

Trainers will have a chance to battle and catch these Dynamax Pokémon but unlike regular battles where Dynamaxing occurs, these wild Dynamax Pokémon are tougher to take down.

In these battles, only one of the four trainers can use Dynamax so cooperation is key to taking down these Pokémon. Trainers will be able to connect with friends over local wi-fi or through the internet using Nintendo Switch Online. If you can't find three trainers to team-up with, NPC support trainers will join you.

Some Pokémon can only be found and captured through Max Raid Battles so you're encouraged to try them out to complete your PokeDex.

Pokémon Sword and Shield is scheduled to release November 15 for Nintendo Switch.

What do you think of the new Dynamax feature? Let us know in the comments section below.