The first new adventure unlocked by the Pokémon Sword Expansion Pass and Pokémon Shield Expansion Pass—featuring Kubfu, Mustard, and the Isle of Armor—is the talk of Trainers in Galar. Gym Challengers and Champions alike are setting off to enjoy new environments, catch Pokémon that aren't found in the mainland of the Galar region, and bond with new friends and rivals.
With all the fun of proving you and Kubfu have the will of a warrior, it's easy to miss some of the helpful characters and features on the Isle of Armor. Whether you're still planning your first trip to the Isle of Armor or you're already a veteran, keep an eye out for these fantastic attractions on your next visit.
Get Rare Items with the Cram-o-Matic (Hopefully)
While you'll spend most of your time on the Isle of Armor working with dojo master Mustard and his wife, it's their son who may keep you coming back thanks to his bizarre item-combining contraption. You'll have to give him some Watts just to get it started, and as you might expect from a device that isn't even functional when you arrive, it's a bit unreliable. But with a little luck, the Cram-o-Matic can churn out some rare items you can otherwise only get in limited quantities.
To use the Cram-o-Matic, insert four items and cross your fingers as the strange device combines them, and hope that the item you get is rarer than what you put in. This process can create some cool items, such as combining Rare Candies to make Ability Capsules or Bottle Caps to create Gold Bottle Caps. But what may be most interesting here is the ability to make rare Poké Balls like Heavy Balls, Love Balls, or even Safari or Sport Balls. To make these items, you'll have to find appropriately colored Apricorns on the Isle of Armor and hope that combining them gives you the desired result. Making Poké Balls this way is not quite as reliable as the process Kurt used in the Johto region's Azalea Town, but with some persistence, you'll still be able to snag some rare Poké Balls.
Teach Your Pokémon Incredible New Moves
After you get to a certain point of your adventure on the Isle of Armor, you'll find one of Mustard's students is willing to teach your Pokémon some never-before-seen moves…as long as you're willing to cough up five pieces of Armorite Ore per move! This might seem like a high price if you haven't spent a lot of time doing Max Raid battles on the Isle of Armor yet, but the moves are worth it.
Unlike the Move Tutors of most past Pokémon adventures, this fellow teaches moves that no Pokémon has been able to learn before. Each of these moves are very impactful, especially for use in battles against your friends or online against other players. Most of the moves fall under two categories—multi-hit attacks like Dual Wingbeat and Triple Axel that seem to fit the martial arts theme of the dojo, and trickier attacks like Grassy Glide, Expanding Force, and Burning Jealousy that have their full effect in battle only when certain conditions are in effect. If only Avery were around to create some Psychic Terrain for you…
If you're looking to earn some more Armorite Ore from doing well in Ranked Battles, you'll probably want to invest some into teaching your Pokémon new attacks. You've gotta spend Armorite Ore to make Armorite Ore!
Collect Non-Native Forms of Pokémon from Galar
Some Pokémon native to Galar have different forms that can only be found in other regions. If you don't have a huge backlog of Pokémon in Pokémon HOME, you might be wondering how to get some of these on your team. Worry not—there are two different ways to add these Pokémon to your collection in the Isle of Armor.
As you journey across the Isle of Armor, you might meet a Trainer looking to trade for the Galarian regional forms of Meowth, Ponyta, Mr. Mime, and others in exchange for the forms of these Pokémon not found in Galar. And it isn't just the Pokémon with Galarian forms that you can trade this way—you might also be able to trade Exeggutor or Marowak for its Alolan regional variant.
If you're looking for even more regional variants, you'll quickly meet a man who is just crazy about Alolan Diglett as you start your adventure on the Isle of Armor. As you help him seek out his 151(!) missing Alolan Diglett, he'll help you fill out your collection with many rare Pokémon in return, including Alolan Vulpix, Slowpoke as found outside the Isle of Armor, and other regional variants. Plus, these Pokémon will have their Hidden Abilities and better than normal individual strengths, too! If you're really determined to track down lots of Diglett, he'll also give you a first partner Pokémon from the Alola region for finding 100. Find all 151, and you'll get an Alolan Diglett of your very own that is excellent in battle. Just…don't get as obsessed with it as that guy.
Get Digging with Digging Ma and Digging Pa
If you explored the Wild Area during your initial journey in the Galar region, you probably met the Digging Duo, a pair of brothers who would dig up rare items for Watts. On the Isle of Armor, you can encounter some new digging experts—or perhaps some older ones. Digging Pa and Digging Ma are on the job, but they'll want a currency more valuable than Watts to start digging—Armorite Ore!
You'll have an easier time finding Digging Pa, who is hanging out in the Training Lowlands. In exchange for Armorite Ore, he'll dig up some Watts. If you find yourself with a surplus of Armorite Ore, he can help you turn it into Watts to spend on other activities. Digging Ma is a little trickier to find, as you'll have to hunt her down at new locations on the Isle of Armor each time you want her to dig. She'll offer to give you a single piece of Armorite Ore, or you can tell her to hold onto it and start digging. Choose the latter, and she'll dig for more Armorite Ore until you tell her to stop. Be careful—her shovel could break at any time, and you'll lose all the Armorite Ore she found. Get lucky and you could wind up with buckets of Armorite Ore, but you could also get nothing!
Prove Your Older Pokémon Are Still Battle-Ready
If you've transferred Pokémon from a game other than Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield through Pokémon HOME, you may have noticed they may not be eligible for use in Ranked Battles in Victory Stadium or for most official competitions. While in the past you would have had to catch new Pokémon for these battles, a helpful character in the back of the Battle Tower in Wyndon can now give your imported Pokémon the battle-ready symbol, allowing them to be used in any battle that was previously restricted to Pokémon caught or hatched in the Galar region.
Pokémon given the battle-ready symbol will forget all of their current moves and learn a new set. It's possible some forgotten moves can't be relearned, so be careful!
Give Your Pokémon the Gigantamax Factor with Max Soup
You'll get the chance to sample Max Soup during your adventure in the Isle of Armor. You can ladle out some to add the Gigantamax Factor to any Pokémon capable of Gigantamaxing. If you're attached to a particular Pokémon—perhaps your first partner Pokémon, an old favorite transferred from Pokémon HOME, or a Shiny Pokémon—you can use Max Soup to get them on an even playing field with the rarest Pokémon in Galar. The only Pokémon you have to assist further for this process is the picky Urshifu.
To create more Max Soup, you'll need to venture back out into the Courageous Cavern, Brawler's Cave, Forest of Focus, or the Warm-up Tunnel to find more Max Mushrooms. If you can't find Max Mushrooms in these locations, try completing some Max Raid Battles before you look again.
Reset Your Pokémon's Base Points
As your Pokémon defeats other Pokémon and consumes vitamins, it'll start to excel at certain stats, which is represented by its base points. If you find that you'd like your Pokémon to have different statistical expertise, it normally requires feeding them an extravagant smorgasbord of special Berries to wipe the slate clean. In the Isle of Armor on a small island in the Workout Sea, you'll find a girl named Lady Clear who can help you erase your Pokémon's base points much more easily. For 10 Armorite Ore, she'll clear all of them instantly, removing the headache entirely and letting you get right back to training.
Make Your Mark Charm on The Isle of Armor
Finally, it wouldn't be a new Pokémon adventure without a new Pokédex to complete. The Isle of Armor is home to over 200 Pokémon, many of which are not found on the mainland of Galar. Track down all of these Pokémon and return to the Isle of Armor Station to talk to a scientist there. When you do, she'll reward you with a very special new item—the Mark Charm, which will increase the odds of the wild Pokémon you catch having a mark. You can find a Pokémon's mark (if it has one) in its summary on the Ribbons tab. A Pokémon with a mark also has a special message when it's sent into battle.
Whether you're looking to train your Pokémon or just taking in the sights in a new area, we hope you're enjoying your time in the Isle of Armor! Keep an eye out for some other neat features on the Isle of Armor, like a helpful woman who can change the color of your Rotom Bike. Don't get tripped up by the island's speedy Slowpoke and tricky Trainers, and look forward to the second part of the Expansion Pass in the fall of 2020.