Pokémon Sword and Shield does not include an option to switch off Exp. Share, therefore all of a player’s Pokémon will earn experience even when they are not in battle. This feature was implemented because the majority of players used Exp. Share in previous games (via Nintendo Everything).
Pokémon Sword and Shield is considered to be the first core Pokémon game on a console, and with new hardware came new challenges and opportunities. Game Freak’s innovations in Sword and Shield have been met with a mixed reception; an autosave prevents progress from being erased if the Switch runs flat, and assures that Special Trade outcomes are final. However, the developer’s decision to leave some of the legacy Pokémon behind has been criticised, with the move being termed ‘Dexit’ to riff off the British themes of Galar and the diminished Poké Dex.
Speaking to InsideGamer, Pokémon Sword and Shield director Shigeru Ohmori explained why the Exp. Share is permanently active. Analysing the previous games in the series, Game Freak found that most players keep the Exp. Share item in their party. To create a shortcut, the developer decided to implement the item’s mechanics as a core feature of Pokémon Sword and Shield. ‘Those who have it turned off want to train one specific Pokémon. We thought: is there a way to achieve that? There is, simply by putting the rest of your Pokémon in the PC,’ Ohmori reassured players who may feel lukewarm toward the perma-Exp. Share.
Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield will launch on November 15 for the Nintendo Switch.
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