Pokemon Sword & Shield players discover adorable “secret” feature

Brent Koepp
Pokemon Sword & Shield camp interactions
Game Freak / The Pokemon Company

Pokemon Sword & Shield players were stunned after discovering a feature in the Nintendo Switch title almost two years after release. Some Trainers are only now learning about it after dataminers uncovered new information about the adorable game mechanic.

Although making its debut in 2019, Pokemon fans are still learning about new secrets about Sword & Shield. A Max Raid feature, for example, was discovered in November 2020, nearly a year after its release.

Players of the Gen 8 RPG were floored again in May 2021 when new details were uncovered about a feature that has largely gone under the radar. Some Trainers were floored as they didn’t even know the adorable mechanic existed!

Pokemon Sword & Shield camp interaction
Game Freak / The Pokemon Company
The adorable Sword & Shield interactions have a lot more going on behind the scenes.

Adorable Pokemon Sword & Shield feature discovered

While many players are familiar with Sword & Shield’s camping feature, it appears those adorable moments when your Pokemon interact with each other are more complex than many first thought. According to a tweet by Pokemon expert Anubis, the Gen 8 RPG actually has a social system between each monster that is being tracked.

“Sword & Shield tracks the “sociability” of a Pokémon. Some believe it increases currymons. Sociability is tied to a Pokémon, ranges from 0-255 and increases with making curry or playing with other mons in camp. Trading doesn’t affect it,” the May 22 tweet read.

Based on the social number each Pokemon has, they will trigger various interactions with other characters. Anubis included three images to show the stark difference between the game’s lowest, middle, and highest social ratings.

The game having a social feature isn’t new, although many didn’t know about the levels and the details of how the system works.

In a post on May 23, the Poke expert added, “If you gain some sociability & leave camp open, the party’s sociability will increase via natural interactions. If your Pokémon fight in camp, their sociability decreases. If all Pokémon in camp have 0 sociability, they ignore each other.”

Pokemon expert explains how Sword & Shield sociability mechanic works

Players were shocked to learn about the depth of the “sociability” mechanic and how the game tracks it.

“That’s crazy I did not know about this!!!” one user wrote. Another exclaimed, “Sounds like very useful thing, thanks gamefreak. And discovered after what, 2 + years after game release? C’mon.”

Pokemon players react to social Sword & Shield

It should be pointed out, however, that even the game’s Strategy Guide makes mention of the sociability mechanic. “A really high sociability level also gives your Pokémon a chance of drawing the attention of wild Pokémon” Bulbapedia writer abcboy tweeted out. Despite this, the feature has largely flown under the radar for many players.

Sword & Shield fans often post videos or screenshots of the adorable interactions they’ve seen from their Pokemon while in camp. It’s nice to finally get a clearer picture of how that system works. Even more interesting to think about is how many gameplay elements are out there that some Trainers simply don’t know about.