‘Isle of Armor’ and ‘The Crown Tundra’ Revealed
Slowpoke has always been one of those pokémon I feel sorry for; it’s a bit dopey, lethargy in buckets, and finishes life with a Shellder clamped to some part of its body. Pokémon Gold and Silver only cemented that sympathy with their tails being harvested by Team Rocket, a delicacy you can try yourself in Restaurant Le Yeah in Luminose City, Pokémon X and Y. With that in mind, Slowpoke sums up Pokémon Sword and Shield nicely. Lazy story writing and painful new gimmicks, the only reason to stick around was to fill the pokédex. So when the DLCs Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra were announced, it came as no shock that a Galarian form Slowpoke had also been announced, the perfect caricature of the weakest Pokémon games to date.
Surprisingly, there might actually be a lot more to look forward to in the DLC than there was in the vanilla game. While you can already snap up a Galarian form Slowpoke by heading to Wedgehurst Station, you won’t be able to evolve it into Slowbro or Slowking until the Isle of Armor expansion launches in June and the Crown Tundra in November. It should prove worth the wait though, as several new legendaries will be released, as well as new Galarian forms for Moltres, Zapdos, and Articuno.
It is the latter that fascinates me the most. The new Galarian designs for the Legendary Birds are gorgeous, and judging by the artwork, it wouldn’t be a bad guess to assume they all Dark-type in addition to their previous typing. With legendary, and possibly even mythical, pokémon now assuming regional variations, it does open up to the possibility that more legendary pokémon will be subject to new forms; Dark-type Mewtwo inbound…
Likewise, it does appear, judging by some of the images, that the Legendary Titans will have two new additions. By appearance alone, one will likely be an Electric-type while the other a Dragon-type, with the latter certainly a unique twist on the Titan family. How all this will be interwoven into the new story arc will be interesting, but something to look forward to after the bitter disappointment of the narrative that wasn’t in Pokémon Sword and Shield.
The Isle of Armor expansion focuses on the player becoming the apprentice to veteran Mustard (not Colonel Mustard) and trains alongside a new legendary Fighting-type, Kubfu. Kubfu evolves into Urshifu who has two possible fighting styles, Single Strike and Rapid Strike, which is probably dependent on whether the player has Sword or Shield but that hasn’t been confirmed. This seems like a change of pace for Pokémon games which is actually welcomed as the same format had become stale. Kubfu is a genuinely good design too, although it doesn’t look like a legendary to me, rather a pokémon you would encounter on route 9.
The Crown Tundra expansion releases another legendary pokémon called Calyrex, which is a Psychic/Grass-type. It would seem this legendary has more to offer than the images suggest, as the giant bulb on its head is closed which I suspect does open, whether that’s through environment or form or another ability hasn’t been revealed. The player can encounter many different legendaries in the Crown Tundra, with this DLC much more of an expansion of the Wild Area rather than the story-driven focus of its predecessor.
And for those that have sadly enjoy Dynamaxing, there will be new Gigantamax forms for all three of the Pokémon Sword and Shield starter pokémon. The three designs are actually not too bad, Inteleon particularly seems to have quite an interesting Gigantamax form. Blastoise and Venusaur will also be able to Gigantamax once they’ve been added to the game, along with 200 others joining the Galar the region. One day, we might even be able to get all 895, we will just have to wait for all the possible expansions!