Skip to main content

Pokémon Sword and Shield: How to delete your game and start over

Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch Lite with Pokemon Sword and Shield
Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch Lite with Pokemon Sword and Shield (Image credit: Rebecca Spear / iMore)

Now that Pokémon Sword and Shield have been out for a while and have proven to be some of the best Nintendo Switch games out there, you might have run through the game and beaten it already. Or, maybe life has just been so busy that you put the game aside for a while and finally have time to play again. If you want to start over from the beginning, you'll have to delete your game data. Since the game automatically launches into your file instead of going to a menu, it isn't immediately obvious how to delete your save data, but it is possible. Here's how you delete your Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield game data and start over.

How to delete your game Pokémon Sword and Shield

  1. From your Nintendo Switch's home screen, select System Settings.
  2. Scroll down to Data Management.Source: iMore

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)
  1. On the right side of the screen, scroll down to Delete Save Data.
  2. A list of your save files will appear. Click on Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield.Source: iMore

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)
  1. This screen will appear. Click Delete Save Data for (your user name).
  2. Your Switch will remind you that deleted save data cannot be recovered. Click Delete Save Data.Source: iMore

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)
  1. Your save data will be deleted. When the process is done, select OK.
  2. To get back to the Home menu, press the Home button on your right Joy-Con.Source: iMore

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)
  1. To start a new game, simply select Pokémon Sword or Shield from the main menu.
  2. Enjoy your game!Source: iMore

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)

Pokemon Sword and Shield how to delete a game (Image credit: iMore)

Now that you've successfully deleted your save data, you can experience the story of the Galar region all over again. Good luck catching your favorite Pokémon and becoming the Champion. Maybe you'll see creatures you didn't see last time you played.

How to delete your game Pokémon Sword and Shield

If you haven't already experienced the Pokémon Sword and Shield Expansion Pass, then this might be the perfect opportunity to do so. There are additional Pokémon to catch and new locations to discover, including a tropical island with a dojo and a snowy mountaintop filled with Legendary Pokémon.

Additional Equipment

I use all of the following accessories with my Switch, and they make my gaming experience a lot easier. See if any of them catch your eye.

Nintendo Switch Pro Controller

(opens in new tab)

Pro Controller (opens in new tab) ($70 at Amazon)

I love the way this controller feels in my hands. It uses HD rumble, has NFC functionality, and features motion controls. What's more, there's a D-pad. While Pokémon games aren't controller intensive, it's still nice to play with this quality option.

Hori compact playstand for Nintendo Switch

(opens in new tab)

Hori Compact Playstand (opens in new tab) ($13 at Amazon)

I use this stand all the time. It's perfect for when you're playing multiplayer games in tabletop mode or if you're watching Hulu on your Switch. I also just use it when I'm tired of holding my Switch.

SanDisk 128GB microSD card

(opens in new tab)

128GB MicroSD Card (opens in new tab) ($22 at Amazon)

This adorable little microSD card is not only Nintendo-themed, but it also holds a decent amount of space at a low cost. It's great for anyone who plays multiple games on their Switch or games that eat up a lot of space, like Pokémon Sword and Shield.

Rebecca Spear
Rebecca Spear

Rebecca Spear is the dedicated gaming editor for iMore who loves playing games on Switch and iOS. She is a Zelda nut through and through and can also talk for hours about her favorite Pokémon games. She’s written hundreds of guides and reviews over the last six years to the point that if you get stuck in a game somewhere, she can help you out. On any given day, you’ll find her following the latest tech, digitally drawing with her iPad Air and Apple Pencil, reading a good book, or - you guessed it - playing video games. Follow her on Twitter @rrspear (opens in new tab) to see her post about her corgi, foster kitties, art, and favorite video game characters.