Will Pokémon Sword and Shield have Exp. Share?

Will Pokémon Sword and Shield have Exp. Share?

Best answer: There won't be a specific item called Exp. Share in Pokémon Sword and Shield. However, Pokémon within your party will automatically receive an equal amount of experience during battle whether or not they participated in the fight.Blue Sword: Pokémon Sword ($60 pre-order at Amazon)Red Shield: Pokémon Shield ($60 pre-order at Amazon)

What is Exp. Share?

In the very first generation of Pokémon games, the only way for a Pokémon to receive any experience points was for them to participate in a battle. Old school players had to spend a lot of time battling with each Pokémon if they wanted them to level up. It also made it very hard to keep all your Pokémon equally leveled up as you journeyed.

Starting with Gen 2, we finally got the Exp. Share item. This was a held item; when held by a specific Pokémon, it allowed the six Pokémon within your party to share the experience points obtained through a battle, regardless if they fought at all. In Gen 6 and Gen 7, Exp. Share turned into a Key Item, which meant that it applied to the Pokémon in your party without anyone needing to hold it. Players could turn Exp. Share on or off within the game menu.

Now in Gen 8, Exp. Share will no longer be a Key Item. Players will have the benefit of equally shared experience points distributed among any members of their party whether or not that Pokémon participated in the battle.

How do we know Exp. Share isn't in Gen 8?

During an interview with Game Informer, Pokémon Sword and Shield's director, Shigeru Ohmori, confirmed that Gen 8 does away with this item and instead automatically allows every Pokémon in your party to get equal experience as you progress through the game.

We're unsure at present if you can turn this feature off as you could with Exp. Share in previous games. Undoubtedly, there will be some players who want a more intense gaming experience and would prefer to play without it. We'll keep checking up on this and will update this article when we learn more.

Rebecca Spear
Gaming Editor

Gaming aficionado Rebecca Spear is iMore's dedicated gaming editor with a focus on Nintendo Switch and iOS gaming. You’ll never catch her without her Switch or her iPad Air handy. If you’ve got a question about Pokémon, The Legend of Zelda, or just about any other Nintendo series check out her guides to help you out. Rebecca has written thousands of articles in the last six years including hundreds of extensive gaming guides, previews, and reviews for both Switch and Apple Arcade. She also loves checking out new gaming accessories like iPhone controllers and has her ear to the ground when it comes to covering the next big trend.