Pokemon Sword and Shield

As with all main series Pokémon games before them, Pokémon Sword and Shield each have minor differences which you should know about before jumping in. You'll notice different Pokémon and even Gym Leaders appearing in your game depending on the version you buy, so we've gathered all of the version-exclusive characters for you below to help you decide which Pokémon game you should buy - Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield.

If you're eager for a full list of the 400 Pokémon available in the Galar Pokédex, check out our snazzy Galar Pokédex database tool. You can also find out more about the three Pokémon Sword and Shield starters and their evolutions, check out our Pokémon type chart for info on strengths and weaknesses, hunt out Easter Eggs in Pokémon Sword and Shield, and find out how to find and evolve Galar region Pokémon from Sirfetch'd to Frosmoth, Alcremie and many more.

What's The Difference Between Pokémon Sword And Shield? - Version Exclusive Pokémon

We'll kick things off with the Pokémon themselves. The main difference between Pokémon Sword and Shield is the exclusive Pokémon that you can only to catch in one or the other of the games.

Here are all of the Pokémon exclusive to each version:

Pokémon Sword Exclusive Pokémon

Name Galar Pokédex No.
1Seedot
Seedot 39
2Nuzleaf
Nuzleaf 40
3Shiftry
Shiftry 41
4Machamp
Machamp (Gigantamax) 140
5Basculin
Basculin (red) 154
SwordTemp
Coalossal (Gigantamax) 163
SwordTemp
Flapple 206
6Swirlix
Swirlix 210
7Slurpuff
Slurpuff 211
Farfetchd
Farfetch'd (Galarian) 218
Sirfetchd
Sirfetch'd 219
8Scraggy
Scraggy 224
9Scrafty
Scrafty 225
Gothita
Gothita 267
Gothorita
Gothorita 268
Gothitelle
Gothitelle 269
10Rufflet
Rufflet 281
11Braviary
Braviary 282
12Mawile
Mawile 295
SwordTemp
Indeedee (Male) 337
13Passimian
Passimian 343
776Turtonator
Turtonator 347
14Solrock
Solrock 363
SwordTemp
Darumaka (Galarian) 367
SwordTemp
Darmanitan (Galarian) 368
SwordTemp
Stonjourner 369
Deino
Deino 386
Zweilous
Zweilous 387
Hydreigon
Hydreigon 388
Jangmo-o
Jangmo-o 392
Hakamo-o
Hakamo-o 393
Kommo-o
Kommo-o 394
15Zacian
Zacian 398

Pokémon Shield Exclusive Pokémon

Name Galar Pokédex No.
1Lotad
Lotad 36
2Lombre
Lombre 37
3Ludicolo
Ludicolo 38
4Gengar
Gengar (Gigantamax) 143
5Basculin
Basculin (blue) 154
ShieldTemp
Appletun 207
5Spritzee
Spritzee 212
6Aromatisse
Aromatisse 213
7Croagunk
Croagunk 222
ShieldTemp
Corsola (Galarian) 236
ShieldTemp
Cursola 237
Solosis
Solosis 270
Duosion
Duosion 271
Reuniclus
Reuniclus 272
Vullaby
Vullaby 283
Mandibuzz
Mandibuzz 284
8Sableye
Sableye 294
Ponyta
Ponyta (Galarian) 333
ShieldTemp
Rapidash (Galarian) 334
ShieldTemp
Indeedee (Female) 337
9Oranguru
Oranguru 342
Drampa
Drampa 346
10Lapras
Lapras (Gigantamax) 361
11Lunatone
Lunatone 362
ShieldTemp
Eiscue 370
Larvitar
Larvitar 383
Pupitar
Pupitar 384
Tyranitar
Tyranitar 385
Goomy
Goomy 389
Sliggoo
Sliggoo 390
Goodra
Goodra 391
12Zamazenta
Zamazenta 399

Pokémon Sword and Shield - Version-Exclusive Gym Leaders

Pokémon Sword and Shield also feature version-exclusive Gym Leaders. Here they are:

Pokémon Sword Exclusive Gym Leaders

- Gym Leader Bea, Fighting-type Pokémon user, Stow-On-Side

Bea is a prodigy in Galar karate, carrying on its century-old traditions and techniques. Known for her stoicism and rarely showing her emotions, Bea is also an expert on Fighting-type Pokémon. Her battle style remains very precise even when she’s backed into a corner.

Bea

- Gym Leader Gordie, Rock-type Pokémon user, Circhester

Rock-lover Gordie will stand between you and victory in Circhester if you chose Sword over Shield.

Pokémon Shield Exclusive Gym Leaders

- Gym Leader Allister, Ghost-type Pokémon user, Stow-On-Side

Allister is a talented Trainer of Ghost-type Pokémon who has taken on the mantle of the Ghost-type Gym Leader at a young age. He’s extremely shy and fearful, and he always hides his face with a mask when around other people. Allister rarely makes public appearances and apparently spends most of his time around ruins or in cemeteries.

Allister

- Gym Leader Melony, Ice-type Pokémon user, Circhester

As cold as ice, and willing to sacrifice (her Pokémon), you'd do well to turn up the heat when you encounter Melony in the Circhester Stadium.


If you're on the fence about which version you'd like to pick up, hopefully this list will help to make your mind up.

SwordShieldTemp

Which version are you going for? Sword or Shield? Or are you eyeing up both? Tell us below.