How To Get Squirtle Into Pokémon Sword & Shield

Rejoice, first generation Pokémon fans, Squirtle has finally joined the roster of Sword & Shield. When Game Freak announced that the eighth generation games would be cutting out half the known Pokédex, many fans were outraged. One of the major reasons for this outburst was that Squirtle and Bulbasaur were kicked out while Charizard got yet another starring role. But finally the “other two” Kanto starters are back, reuniting the trio that started it all.

That said, Squirtle isn’t just walking around the Galar region. Putting it on your Sword or Shield team requires you to work with another product: Pokémon Home.

Pokémon Home is an app that provides cloud-based storage for all of your Pokémon. When you first download it and sign in on your smartphone or Switch, you’ll be greeted by Professor Grand Oak. This oddly-dressed new Pokémon professor is as generous as his contemporaries, and he’ll offer you a free Pokémon to prove it. You’ll get to choose between Squirtle, Bulbasaur, and Charmander just like in the good ol’ days.

After you make your choice, your freebie turtle will be sitting in your Pokémon Home box. Just activate Home on your Switch, connect your copy of Sword or Shield to the app, and bring Squirtle to the modern age of Pokémon.

Transfer Squirtle From Pokémon Let’s Go

You can get an easy Squirtle in Pokémon Let’s Go, Pikachu and Eevee from Officer Jenny in Vermillion City. She gives it to you if you’ve caught at least 60 Pokémon. You can transfer this Squirtle, and any other Pokémon caught in Let’s Go, to Pokémon Home. Then take the Squirtle from Pokémon Home and move it to Sword or Shield.

There is one important thing to remember about this method – Pokémon that travel from Let’s Go to Home cannot be moved back. Once Squirtle leaves, it’s a one-way trip.

Transfer Squirtle From An Older Game

Veteran players likely have at least one Squirtle sitting in an older game. It could’ve been caught in Ultra Sun, picked up in X, or got from the Virtual Console version of Yellow. Whatever the case, if you can get it into Pokémon Bank, you can get it into Pokémon Home.

You’ll need both a working 3DS and Switch on hand to initiate a transfer from Bank to Home. Follow the instructions given by both apps, then transfer Squirtle from Home to Sword or Shield once it’s all over. Just remember that this method requires a paid Premium Plan to Pokémon Home.

Trade With Someone Who Did One Of These Things

There are some people who did one of the above transfer methods as soon as Pokémon Home came out. If they have a Squirtle to spare, the easiest way to get it is to trade with them. Surprise Trade and GTS can also get you a Squirtle, just be careful about those hacked ‘mons going around.

Transfer Squirtle From Pokémon GO

Pokémon Home is supposed to work with Pokémon GO at some point. This will make it the easiest way to get shiny or high IV Squirtle into Sword & Shield. We’ll update when this info is available.

Squirtle’s Evolutions & Gigantamax Forms

As it’s been since Red and Blue, Squirtle evolves into Wartortle at level 16 then Blastoise at level 36. Blastoise’s Mega Evolution is not available in Sword & Shield.

A Gigantamax form for Blastoise was announced for the Sword & Shield expansion pass. The conditions for achieving it are unknown at this time.

What Blastoise Does In Battle

Despite those giant cannons on its back, Blastoise’s best stats are Defense and Special Defense. This makes it more suited to being a stall/support Pokémon. Rapid Spin is a great move for it; the attack clears away nasty moves like Stealth Rock or Leech Seed. Of course, you’ll still want to give it a powerful Water-type move. Just also consider giving it an Ice-type attack and something like the new Body Press to surprise opponents.

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