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Pokemon Sword & Shield: 10 Unpopular Opinions (According To Reddit)

By Callum Archer


Pokemon Sword & Shield were met with as much criticism as praise. These are some of Reddit's most unpopular opinions on the games.

Unpopular opinions are a great way for people to really sit down and think critically about something they are passionate about, though more often than not they will, instead, just point out that not everyone likes the same things. One of the most recent games that seems to be full of unpopular opinions is the generation eight Pokémon games, Sword & Shield.

Related: Genshin Impact: 10 Unpopular Opinions (According To Reddit)

Easily the most divisive games in the series since Black & White, Sword & Shield's many failings, as well as its high points, are the subject of debate even a year after its release, with many people taking to Reddit to discuss how they feel about the latest Pokémon adventure.

10 The Game Is Too Easy

A hotly debated aspect of Pokémon games is that, as they are generally aimed at a younger audience, their difficulty level is nonexistent. While the argument about whether grinding and difficulty are one and the same, user LiveLikeAnime is on the side that believes that Sword & Shield are too easy even without taking this into account. According to them, they were able to be easily overleveled by doing nothing but catch Pokémon and defeated Milo with a their Sobble by just mashing the A button.

9 There Isn't Anywhere To Explore

LiveLikeAnime returns once again with another unpopular opinion on Sword & Shield, stating that, despite the vast open spaces of the Wild Area, aside from the main linear map, there is nowhere to explore. This gripe also expanded to how the characters direct you in cutscenes, as they will often hold your hand to direct you to a building right next to where you were standing before they rudely interrupted your adventure. While it's understandable how LiveLikeAnime reached this conclusion, since Pokémon games tend to be fairly linear from the fourth generation onward, it can also be seen as something of an unpopular opinion considering the addition of the Wild Area and both the Isle of Armor and Crown Tundra expansions.

8 Fans Are The Reason For The Series' Stagnant Nature

This is an unpopular opinion that isn't just limited to the Pokémon series, but it is definitely one of the more prominent. Anthrolologist, along with many other long-time Pokémon players, believe that players who will buy the games every time, regardless of their actual quality, are the reason why the series has become stale in the eyes of some.

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Pokémon is a series that is constantly evolving, with many new additions in each new release as well as subtle changes to old mechanics alongside the new ones. That being said, it's easy to see where this opinion comes from, as, even after 20 years, nothing much has changed in the series in the grand scheme of things.

7 The Game Looks Great

One of the biggest issues many players have with Sword & Shield, aside from the many missing Pokémon, is how dated the game looks, even compared to the Let's Go games that were released just a year beforehand. User Vanillafrogman, on the other hand, doesn't agree with this opinion and thinks that the games look great just as is. While it's hard to agree with this opinion overall, as several assets in the game look like they would be right at home on the Nintendo 64, there are some parts of the game that look amazing in comparison.

6 Missing Pokemon Isn't A Big Deal

When Game Freak revealed that previous Pokémon not only wouldn't be available to catch in Sword & Shield, but that some Pokémon couldn't even be transferred in via Pokémon Home, it struck a nerve with many people who were hoping they could explore Galar using their favorites. Veldin461, on the other hand, thinks that these missing Pokémon isn't such a big deal and has been blown out of proportion. This isn't as easy an opinion to relate too, since the complete absence of certain Pokémon means that the tag line of "Gotta Catch 'em All!" is essentially gone, but considering there are over 900 Pokémon, this seems like it was going to happen eventually.

5 No National Dex Has Been A Long Time Coming

Alongside the lack of ability to move older Pokémon into Galar via Pokémon Home, the complete lack of a National Dex rubbed most players the wrong way, as it once against flies in the face of the tagline of the whole series. Certain players, such as Reddit user Xinrick, thinks that the lack of National Dex has been a long time coming and is something that players should have expected considering how many Pokémon there are now. This is definitely an unpopular opinion, as many Pokémon found in the Galar region, particularly the legendaries in The Crown Tundra, aren't in the Pokémon at all. This isn't an unjustified opinion, however, as it once again comes back to the sheer number of Pokémon available to players after eight generations.

4 Raid Battles Are Good

While the Wild Area was a great new addition to the Pokémon series, Max Raid battles are one of the highlights to come out of the new game mechanics. Taking cues from Pokémon Go, these battles not only allow gameplay to be mixed up but also give players something fun to do once the game is over.

Related: 10 Best Video Game Quotes, According to Reddit

However, there is a serious problem with end-game Raid battles, specifically the AI companions, as they not only have terrible Pokémon, but they tend to make stupid choices in battle. TheBlackLuffy, on the other hand, thinks that the Raid Battles are fine, even when attempted in offline mode, something that many players would disagree with wholeheartedly.

3 Those Who Dislike The Games Are A Vocal Minority

Once again, this is something that isn't limited to just the Pokémon series, as it is something that could be said about just about every kind of media that hasn't been as well-received as many would have liked, with the MCU's Captain Marvel being a particularly well-known example in recent years. Reddit user Heilschwein believes that this is also the case for Sword & Shield and that those who dislike the game are simply much louder in their complaints than those who enjoyed the game. While this is an understandable opinion, it's also hard to ignore the many issues Sword & Shield have in spite of how fun the game is.

2 Disliking The Game Is An Unpopular Opinion

As one of the biggest multimedia franchise in the world, it's safe to say the many people in the world enjoy Pokémon in some way or form, whether it be the anime, TCG, manga, or video games. Many users on Reddit believe that, because of its general popularity, that disliking Sword & Shield is an unpopular opinion and that the majority of players accept the game as fun despite its flaws. This is similar to the "vocal minority" argument, but it also cuts in the opposite direction.

1 Liking The Game Is An Unpopular Opinion

Just as many users believe that disliking Sword & Shield is an unpopular opinion, there are many who also believe that liking the games is equally unpopular. Considering how much backlash there was from fans following various trailers and announcements, it's easy to see where this opinion is coming from, though this could also come back to the "vocal minority" argument in that those who like the game are simply not saying so as loud as others.

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About The Author
Callum Archer (266 Articles Published)

Callum Archer is a freelance writer based in Perth, Western Australia. He is an avid gamer, Nintendo fanboy, and lover of weird sci-fi novels, who also dabbles in manga from time to time, usually dark and twisted work like Uzumaki and Death Note.

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Pokemon Sword and Shield Player Has the Most Unexpected Shiny Encounter

Pokemon Sword and Shield players will know that catching shiny Pokemon is not easy. In fact, many players on Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Switch Lite will never catch a shiny Pokemon. That said, while the odds are against players, there are many hardcore players who dedicate hours and hours to hunting down Shiny Pokemon. That said, sometimes players will spend dozens and dozens of hours tracking down specific shinies, and other times, shinies come looking for them.

Taking to Reddit, one player revealed that after spending 90 minutes hunting down the Galarian form of Zapdos, a square shiny of Tyrogue immediately charged them. As you may know, there's a 1/4096 chance for a wild star shiny. That said, this is a square shiny, which are rarer when breeding, but more common in the wild. Despite this, they are still very rare, and for one to charge you immediately upon catching a legendary is not an everyday occurrence.

Below, you can check out the sequence of events for yourself:

As you would expect, this video shot straight to the top of the game's Reddit page, which is largely dominated by shiny-catching moments. This isn't the luckiest shiny moment to pop up on the Reddit page, but it's up there. It's not often you catch a legendary and a shiny so close to each other. That said, we don't know whether or not the player actually went on to catch the shiny. Whatever the case, hopefully, they bought a few lottery tickets after this.

For more coverage on all things Pokemon -- including the latest Pokemon Sword and Shield news, rumors, and leaks -- click here or check out the relevant links listed right below:


As always, feel free to leave a comment or two letting us know what you think or, alternatively, hit me up on Twitter @Tyler Fischer_ and let me know over there. Are you still playing Sword and Shield? Have you caught any shinies lately?

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10 Unpopular Opinions About Pokémon Sword & Shield, According To Reddit

The eighth generation of Pokémon debuted in 2019 with the arrival of Sword & Shield. The games, set in the UK-inspired Galar region, introduced several gimmicks, including the Gym Challenge and the Dynamax and Gigantamax forms. Still, they mainly felt like two safe and expected entries to the Pokémon canon.

RELATED: 10 Things To Do In Pokémon Sword & Shield Most Players Never Discover

Reception to the games was divisive, and it didn't take long for fans to voice their concerns and complaints. Reddit is the perfect place to express their divisive and sometimes outright unpopular opinions about the games. Not all the takes are necessarily critical, but they are all controversial among the community.

10 Sword & Shield Have A Good Story

The Pokémon franchise mostly stays away from heavy or overly complex subjects. Still, previous entries in the franchise tried to experiment with the classic formula. However, Sword & Shield's story is safe and unsurprising, demonstrating a lack of interest in evolving.

Redditor SpagEddie8113 has a different opinion. The game's simple storyline is an asset in the user's mind because it makes the Pokémon League feel essential. "There doesn't need to be a complicated story because the basis that the story revolves around is so much more interesting now." The user has a point, but previous games definitely hyped the Pokémon League and the Champion while introducing a few surprising elements to the plot.

9 Dynamaxing Is Better Than Megas Or Z Moves

Later Pokémon generations introduced changes to keep battles exciting. Generation VI had Mega Evolutions, which most fans consider the best gimmick so far. Gen VII had Z Moves, which turned out to be rather forgettable. Gen VIII came with Dynamaxing, and while most fans enjoyed it, almost everyone considered it inferior to Megas.

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Yet according to LordEspurr, Dynamaxing is a better gimmick than Megas or Z Moves. "Dynamaxing is much more balanced than Mega Evolutions and more game-changing than Z Moves." To each their own, but there is nothing game-changing about either Dynamaxing or Z Moves; they're only available in battle and for a limited period. As for being "more balanced" than Megas, that's an entirely subjective claim, and the consensus is the opposite.

8 The Towns And Cities Are Too Big

The best video games in the Pokémon franchise always have compelling and colorful cities bustling with life and joy. After all, fans enjoy becoming immersed in this world, so much so that they spend hours playing these games. Players continually ask for more detail to go into the games' cities, towns, and landmarks.

Still, not every fan enjoys exploring these settlements. Redditor SelTar3, for instance, disliked how "big" the towns in Galar were. The user describes the cities as "huge, complicated, and filled with way too many NPCs." Pokémon cities used to be minuscule, so the current ones would seem large in comparison. However, calling them "huge" is an overstatement considering some of the expansive open worlds of such games as Assassin's Creed Valhalla and Fallout 4.

7 The Experience Share Is An Asset

Long-time Pokémon fans were not pleased when the Experience Share became a permanent fixture in the Let's Go Games. Things didn't change in Sword & Shield, which made them even more upset. Casual or returning fans don't mind the Experience Share. On the contrary, they appreciate and welcome it with open arms. Users like Barl0we appreciate not having to go through the tedious process of grinding. "There's nothing quite as annoying as having to stop progress to a screeching halt because I have to go back to the first areas to level up." The user makes a compelling argument, but the solution is simple: the Experience Share should be optional, not a mandate.  Making it a permanent fixture is an insult to veteran players.

6 Pokémon Should Have One Game Per Generation

Since the franchise's beginning, every Pokémon generation has debuted with two games. It's one of the series' many traditions, one that introduces some complexity to the games and the decision-making process. Some fans don't appreciate the separation, though. Redditor MrCanzine wholeheartedly disagrees, claiming the decision is "annoying and stupid," as well as a "consumer-unfriendly approach." However, the games are not dependent on each other and exist separately. Furthermore, the exclusive Pokémon on each can always be traded between games, rendering the point moot.

5 Story Isn't Important To Pokémon Games

Most Pokémon games feature a straightforward story without handling overly complex issues. However, the franchise itself isn't plain or barren. Plenty of Legendary and Mythical Pokémon have exceptional and intriguing lore, enhancing the gaming experience and the world's overall depth.

Still, some fans don't seem to appreciate or even acknowledge the franchise's mythos. For example, Redditor the_imagesmith believes that Pokémon has never been about the story. "Who cares massively about the story? I just wanna fight Pokémon and be the best." Battling is a cornerstone of the franchise; that is indeed true. However, lore is also crucial in Pokémon, being a significant part of many players' enjoyment. If lore is absent from a Pokémon game, it would alienate a lot of fans and dilute the brand.

4 Pokémon Is For Kids

Many fans have legitimate complaints about how safe the Gen VIII games are. As long-time fans of the franchise, they have a right to voice their concerns, especially when many of their suggestions would result in making Sword & Shield substantially more difficult for players.

Some fans don't agree with these complaints, which is understandable. However, many of them discard them under the pretext that Pokémon games are so easy because they are for kids. Commenting on a post where a fan expressed several frustrations with S&S, Reddit user ZeusiQ snarkily remarks that "another Pokémon fan grew up and realized their favorite games were meant for kids!" Most commenters fired back, saying that other franchises like Mario and The Legend of Zelda are also "for kids," yet put more effort into their games.

3 Team Yell Was Interesting

Regional evil teams are a pillar of Pokémon. From Team Rocket to Team Flare, these criminal organizations add plenty of excitement to the games. Their plots are always silly and contrived, but they are still a beloved and necessary part of the franchise.

Sword & Shield featured a new take on the evil team, and while fans appreciated the intent, they disliked the execution. Team Yell felt unnecessary and lamer than usual, which is saying much. Even so, some fans liked Team Yell, and a few even considered them intriguing. "It was a very interesting spin on the evil team dynamic," said Redditor RigatoniPasta. Well, at least someone found them entertaining!

2 Leon Is Better Than Cynthia

The Pokémon League Champion represents the best the region has to offer. Champions are unforgiving, brilliant tacticians who aren't afraid to heal, mix and match during their battles. Their teams are surprising and include some of their regions' best Pokémon. So far, the consensus is that Cynthia, Sinnoh's Champion, is the best in the franchise, thanks to her impressive and balanced team.

RELATED: Each Rival's Best & Worst Team Member In Pokémon Sword & Shield

Leon, Galar's Champion, is no pushover by any means. However, he's also not the best or most challenging opponent in the games. His team has some heavy hitters, but his battle is somewhat disappointing, especially after the previous hype. However, Redditor Kerosene_kerosensei believes Leon is "on Cynthia's level, if not higher." That's undoubtedly a bold statement, and the user is entitled to their own opinion. However, in this case, they might be alone in that front.

1 Galar Is A Boring Region

Generation VIII is the most divisive in Pokémon history. Most fans don't appreciate it and consider it outright dull and rushed. The Galar region becomes collateral damage to the criticism. Its routes are very linear and somewhat barren, but its cities are some of the most visually impressive in the franchise.

Reddit user Chemical-Cat severely dislike Galar, calling it "boring" and criticizing all the "wasted space." Galar may not be the most extensive or detailed region in the games, but it is far from being boring. It has some ambitious and dazzling locations, and cities like Ballonlea and Wyndon rank as some of the franchise's best. As for all the "wasted space," it's not like previous Pokémon regions were intricately detailed.

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About The Author
David Caballero (555 Articles Published)

David is a twenty-eight-year-old Mexican writer and reader. Having studied Marketing in school, he spent three years working a nine-to-five desk job before deciding to pursue a writing career. He now works as a Senior Writer in ScreenRant and does some more freelancing job, talking about the entertainment business he so loves. Currently, he's also writing his second novel while actively working to get his first one published.

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