Day 6·Should I Play It?

Father-daughter gaming duo review Pokemon Sword and Shield

Ben Shannon and his 10-year-old daughter, Coco Watanabe-Shannon, tested out Pokemon Sword. But should you play it?

'It is like the cartoon come to life, and you are playing it,' says Ben Shannon

Players are given a choice between three new starter Pokemon — Grookey, Sobble and Scorbunny, pictured — at the beginning of Pokémon Sword and Shield. (Game Freak/Nintendo)

Ben Shannon has loved Pokemon games since the first release in the series, Pokemon Blue and Red, hit Game Boy handheld systems in 1998 — but his 10-year-old daughter wasn't convinced.

"He said Pokemon was really fun, but I wasn't really sure because I've never played it," said Coco Watanabe-Shannon.

Pokemon Sword and Shield are the latest additions to the Pokemon canon. They're also the first mainline games from the series to hit a home console, landing on the Nintendo Switch.

In Sword and Shield, players take on the story of a young, aspiring Pokemon trainer in the region of Galar. Their task is simple: collect, train and battle Pokemon in order to go up against the region's champion, Leon. 

Ben Shannon and his 10-year-old daughter, Coco, tested out Pokemon Sword. (Jason Vermes/CBC)

While Sword and Shield bring back some features fans of the series remember from older instalments, it introduces some new features as well.

For the first time, Pokemon travel the world alongside players — no longer are surprise battles the only way to encounter the pocket monsters.

Some Pokemon also have new Dynamax forms, taking on massive proportions and strength in super-sized matches.

"It is like the cartoon come to life, and you are playing it," said Shannon, art director for CBC Radio.

But should you — and your kids — play it? Click Listen above, or download our podcast, to hear from our father-daughter gaming duo.


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