As is dictated by the series’ universal appeal, Pokémon Sword and Shield‘s main campaign, like its predecessors, is devoid of any meaningful challenge.
No matter how strong or weak your preferred team is, completing the Gym Challenge and becoming champion of the Galar region is possible with anything (excluding one consisting entirely of Magikarp, perhaps) and will see you right through to post-game. This, as is tradition, is where Game Freak starts ramping up difficulty and where min-maxing a team of perfectly-trained ‘Mons becomes critical to ensuring success in both endgame PvE and PvP.
As to how one goes about making any individual Pokémon the best it can be, there are several key ingredients, one being Natures. Any Pokémon caught or bred will be given a random Nature – Calm, Lonely, Adamant, etc. – each of which provides a hidden boost to certain stats. Some of these are more ideal and rarer than others and, until now, have been largely chance-based.
As of Sword and Shield, however, Trainers can not only target a specific Nature but change one on an already existing ‘Mon. To do so, you’ll need Mints.
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As shown above, these items can only be obtained by reaching the post-game, upon which they’ll be purchasable for Battle Points (BP). This currency can only be obtained by participating in the Battle Tower – a gauntlet of battles against NPCs that make Galar’s Gym Leaders look laughable by comparison. Each individual Mint costs 50 BP to purchase and appears to cover every single currently available Nature.
It’s worth noting that feeding your Pokémon a Mint won’t cause its listed Nature to change. The stat bonuses associated with each will still take effect, however. Furthermore, Pokémon with different forms or evolutions – like Toxtricity – depending on their Nature will not change when fed a Mint.
And that’s a wrap. For those of you not at all interested in the competitive side of Pokémon Sword and Shield, you can check out our Shiny hunting and post-game guides by hitting the respective links. Enjoy!