Pokémon Sword/Shield: How to Gigantamax



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The release of Pokémon Sword and Shield introduced two new mechanics to the world of Pokémon called Dynamax and Gigantamax. Dynamax is a phenomenon wherein a Pokémon increases in size and stats becoming more powerful. A Dynamaxed Pokémon’s moves will become Max Moves which are stronger than normal attacks and have guaranteed effects. Gigantamax, on the other hand, is also a phenomenon wherein a Pokémon increases in size and stats but the Pokémon will also have a change in appearance. Gigantamaxed Pokémon, aside from having Max Moves, will also gain access to a G-Max Move which is particular to a specific species of Pokémon. Gigantamax and Dynamax both last for three turns.

I Choose You

Every Pokémon can Dynamax (only in Gym Challenges, the Champion’s Cup, Max Raid Battles, or Online Matches) but only certain species of Pokémon can Gigantamax. Not every Pokémon of these species, however, can Gigantamax. A certain Pokémon must have a Gigantamax “gene” in order to do this ability. For example, Pikachu can have the ability to Gigantamax but not every Pikachu can Gigantamax. These are the Pokémon that can Gigantamax in Sword and Shield:

  • Charizard
  • Butterfree
  • Pikachu
  • Meowth
  • Machamp
  • Gengar
  • Kingler
  • Lapras
  • Eevee
  • Snorlax
  • Garbodor
  • Melmetal
  • Corviknight
  • Orbeetle
  • Drednaw
  • Coalossal
  • Flapple
  • Appletun
  • Sandaconda
  • Toxtricity
  • Centiskorch
  • Hatterene
  • Grimmsnarl
  • Alcremie
  • Copperajah
  • Duraludon

After the release of the Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra, these Pokémon can gain the ability to Gigantamax as well:

  • Venusaur
  • Blastoise
  • Rillaboom
  • Cinderace
  • Inteleon
  • Urshifu

To check whether your current Pokémon can Gigantamax, check the summary of your Pokémon and look for a Gigantamax icon (big red X) beside your Pokémon’s name.

Gotta Catch ‘Em All

Pokémon that can Gigantamax are very rare. They are only obtainable through Special Events, Trading, Mystery Gifts, and, perhaps the most common, Max Raid Battles. Only a few dens feature Gigantamax Pokémon battles and are activated by using a Wishing Piece.

You can obtain a Pikachu or Eevee that can Gigantamax if you have a save data from Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu or Eevee respectively. You can get them by talking to the kids in the corner inside the station in the Meetup Spot. These special Pikachu and Eevee are unable to evolve.

It is important to note that breeding Gigantamax-capable Pokémon won’t result in Pokémon that can Gigantamax.

Expand Your Horizons

Thanks to the Isle of Armor expansion, there is another way of giving your Pokémon the ability to Gigantamax. There is a potent stew known as Max Soup that is made using ingredients found only on the Isle of Armor. Giving Max Soup to a Pokémon mentioned above will enable their ability to Gigantamax. You will be able to use Max Soup after completing dojo master Mustard’s second trial. He’ll task you with finding Max Mushrooms, the main ingredient in Max Soup. Max Mushrooms can be found in Brawlers’ Cave, Courageous Cavern, Warm-up Tunnel, and Forest of Focus on the Isle of Armor. The Max Mushroom will spawn in one of these areas every time you complete three Max Raid Battles. You’ll need three Max Mushrooms per batch of soup and the chef who prepares it is located in the dojo kitchen.

Time to Battle

As mentioned above, Gigantamax only lasts three turns unless switched out, and is only possible to use Gigantamax (and Dynamax) in areas that are known power spots like Battle Dens, the Battle Tower, and the Galar Stadiums. The Pokémon’s moves will turn into Max Moves along with if the Pokémon has a damaging move of a certain type of species-exclusive G-Max Move. During these turns, the Gigantamaxed (or Dynamaxed) Pokémon cannot be hit with a one-hit KO move, flinch, and be affected by Destiny Bond, Disable, or Cursed Body.

A Gigantamax-capable Pokémon is indeed a must-have in your party as not only are they strong but they are cool looking too. Which Gigantamax Pokémon is your favorite and why? Tell us in the comments!

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