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How difficult have these games been for you?

How difficult has SwSh been for you so far?

  • It's REALLY hard; I'm having lots of trouble.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • It's giving me a pretty good workout!

    Votes: 7 9.1%
  • It's meh, I suppose. Not too easy, but not too hard, either.

    Votes: 14 18.2%
  • It's pretty easy most of the time, but there's SOME difficulty here and there.

    Votes: 33 42.9%
  • It's SUPER easy; I'm not feeling challenged at all.

    Votes: 23 29.9%

  • Total voters


#1 Pokémon Anime Fan!
I've been hearing varying opinions about Sword & Shield's difficulty level, especially concerning the forced EXP Share. Some say that the games is balanced well around it and that they're actually being challenged, while others say that they're having too easy of a time and basically wiping the floor with everything. So, I want to know: how difficult has YOUR experience with SwSh been thus far?


We are so back Zygardebros
I've found it to be very easy. The baked in EXP doesn't seem balanced properly. Granted I just beat the first gym with 2 evolved Pokémon with type advantages so maybe my opinion/experiences will change (hopefully).


Honestly even with the EXP Share some of these trainers are giving me a hard time. I lost a 'mon to one little girls's fricking Pancham of all things.

It's not overly difficult but it's not too easy either. I've been able to keep my team just on the cusp of the required gym levels or just a tad higher even with the EXP Share. And when I'm needing to train up a lower leveled teammate, I'll look for raids to give me the candies I need to do so.
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Well-Known Member
Honestly might have to say they're the easiest games yet?
It's stupidly easy to become overleveled, which then becomes a choice between "play how you want to play" and "take utmost care not to battle too much so as to ruin the challenge". I've got 5 badges, and I daresay if I used all my exp candy and my rare candies I could get one of my 'mons to level 100, or all of them to the 60s. Furthermore the EXP share discourages individual grinding, so I really feel I just don't get as much out of my Pokemon as in prior games.

Hell, you can easily catch something from a raid which then becomes your strongest Pokemon and already completely viable, as my G-Yamask was when I got it.


Praying for the holy relics
My team was pretty much on the same level as the gym leaders up until Alister.
If the EXP system was the same as before, then I would call the game pretty challenging. I also don't witnessed the overleveling issue yet.

Random wild Pokemon are too strong though.

Gym leader teams starting from Kabu and onward are all pretty good imo (spoiled them for me). IMO they just need to give each leader 2-3 more levels for each Pokemon and then I would say the difficulty is pretty decent.

SwSh are definitely not as easy as games like XY or ORAS.
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Divine Retribution

Conquistador de pan
I do a lot of Raids, and use the experience candies as I get them. As a result I ended up massively overleveled and none of the gyms were particularly challenging (also Gyarados is just a broken Pokemon with Dynamax). If you don't over level and you save the candies from Raids, I think these gyms might be the most challenging yet. The move sets are a lot better than they have been in previous generations.


Well-Known Member
Im on my 5th gym and the 2nd gym was the hardest so far. Along with the wild area. But then kabu caused some problems too. But even though my pokemon are like level 40 it is difficult to keep them all balanced


Well-Known Member
Well, i haven't blacked out once so far, so i guess it is on the easier side.

You can still have a few pokémon fainting every now and then in the gym battles. Some of them are very easy (like Milo and Nessa), some of them are a bit more hard (like Kabu and Allister) and some of them are easy but annoying (Opal).

I should probably mention that i am actively trying not to be overleveled by constantly switching out my team and skipping a bunch of trainers.

It would probably be ridiculously easy if you didn't rotate teams and didn't skip any trainers.

The game is overall harder than Gen 6 but easier than Gen 7. There are a lot of mechanics and features that you can abuse to get overleveled. So you have to avoid them as much as you can in order to get a better experience, similar to how i avoided mega evolving my pokémon, using OP pokémon, keeping a pokémon for too long in my party and going to the Battle restaurants and the Battle Chateau too much in the XY games (which resulted in me having a lot more challenge).
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Professor Ilex

Forever Breeding
The only real challenge I found through the game was when I got to the Champion battle. Because I rushed the latter half of the game, just trying to get to the end to unlock the rest of the Pokemon, I was actually 5-10 levels under leveled for it and their Dynamax Pokemon was very good at one shotting my team.


Well-Known Member
Not that challenging. The raid battles make it very easy with the candy (if you use it) but also with the TRs you get. The exp. share makes sure you don't have to individually grind.

deep sea master

Active Member
I found out about how easy it is to get overlevelled so in the early routes I didnt do many wild battles. It got to a point where I needed to grind a bit and now the game's pretty balanced for me, just because I took those early precautions. :)


Well-Known Member
The most difficult thing for me so far has been that I keep getting distracted with things to do in the game. The first day I played I got to the Wild Area I ran around trying to catch every different Pokemon that I could. Between that and the raids I spent about 7 or so hours in the Wild Area just messing around. I did finally get to and beat the first gym and then I got surprised traded a Ponyta and now am determined to breed a shiny one before I restart my game. My Pokemon so far aren't very over leveled but I have been switching different Pokemon in and out to evolve them and keep them from getting to strong. The only one that I think is a little over leveled is my Raboot which is about 3-5 levels higher than everything else.


Ghost-Type Master
I've been playing these games for so many years, I eventually figure out how things work.

Like that guy in Hulbury who gives you the Focus Sash. The moment I saw his pokemon was Lv. 2, I knew what was going down. I just switched gears.

Satoshi & Touko

Peanuts aren't just a nut.
If it wasn't for strategizing and knowing ahead of time what I'd be facing, the games would likely be near impossible for me.

Captain Jigglypuff

Leader of Jigglypuff Army
The Gym Leader I had the most difficulty with was Raihan but only because of the Sandstorm weather effects. I eventually found a female Snorunt and immediately evolved her into Froslass because I found a Dawn Stone rather early in the game and used the Move Rememberer to teach her Hail which took care of the Sandstorm Gigalith created while Runeagius used Sand Tomb on it. Then Flygon hit Runeagius and they switched Abilities so I then used Sand Tomb to caused chip damage after every turn. Sandaconda was taken out mainly by Runeagius with a few decoys as I restored my Cinderace back to health after it was taken out. Then I sent out Cinderace and Dynamaxed it immediately to use the Fighting Max Move to destroy Dualdon in two turns. Then I used my strongest Max Fire move on Sandaconda. The other Gym Leaders I didn’t defeat the first time I was able to win the second time.


Alolan (and soon to be Galarian) trainer
Not hard, but definitely not too easy either. To spice things up a bit, I’m only using as many Pokémon as the gym leaders use when facing them, which actually did give me some trouble when facing Nessa.

I also have yet to become over-leveled. If anything, since the third gym it seems I’ve become a bit under-leveled.


Well-Known Member
For the most part its been pretty easy. Kabu the third gym leader gave me a bit of trouble but aside from that I've been ok.

I think it might be a little more difficult than Sun & Moon, but not by much.


Not your average eevee
Overall it is a bit easy with occasionally difficult trainers, gym battles and raids. I like using nuzlocke rules to give myself the extra challenge anyway and while its a tad easier than m other run-throughs, there are still unexpected areas that got me.