With the move to Nintendo Switch, there are some changes to the way that Pokémon Video Game Championship tournaments will be carried out.

Connection settings for LAN Events

For Regional Championships, Switch consoles will connect to each other using a Wired LAN Cable, which ensures that the connection will be faster and more stable than the usual wireless communication. 

The connectors will be provided by the Organizers so players will not need to provide anything extra, however there are some network settings which will need to be changed on your console before you can participate. 

If you haven’t already, check out the guide on setting up wired LAN mode before the event.

What to Bring

  • Your Switch – this can be an original Switch, or the Switch Lite. Please make sure that you have all available updates, and an active Nintendo Switch Online subscription. If you’ve already been trading, raiding or battling online, then you’re ready to go!
  • Pokémon Sword Version or Pokémon Shield Version
  • Your Nintendo Switch AC Adapter
  • A team sheet showing your Pokémon’s stats, moves and abilities. These sheets will be available in limited quantities at the event, or can be downloaded to print at home here


  • An officially licensed, wired USB controller. This must be made by Nintendo or by a licensed company – check for the gold Nintendo seal on the packaging.
    If you have a wireless Nintendo Switch Pro controller, this can also be connected as a wired controller using a USB-C cable – make sure you go to the Nintendo Switch Settings and enable USB Controllers!
  • Wired Headphones
  • Pen & Paper


Match IDs

In Pokémon Sword and Shield tournaments, you will need to enter a “Match ID” before every game.

This will be a three-digit number. The first two digits will be the last two digits of your table number. The final digit will be 1 or 2 – decide with your opponent who will be 1 and who will be 2

For instance, if Ash and Gary are playing at table 327, then Ash will enter 271 and Gary will enter 272.

If Brendan is playing May at table 3, then Brendan will enter 031 and May will enter 032

It will not work if both players enter the same number – for instance, if Jesse is playing James at table 56, and they both enter 561, the two will not connect.

Time Limits

  • Team Preview: 90 seconds, after which the first four Pokémon in your team will automatically be chosen
  • Move time limit: 45 seconds per turn, after which the first move your Pokémon knows will be chosen
  • “Your Time”: 7 minutes, after which you will lose at the end of your current turn. This is like a chess timer, which counts down across all of your turns
  • Game time: 15 minutes, after which tiebreakers will be applied

Unlike previous years, there is no overall round time limit (previously 50 minutes)


Legal Gigantamax Pokémon

Any of your Pokémon can Dynamax, however only certain Gigantamax Pokémon are allowed.

Gigantamax Pokémon have a special “X” on their summary screen. When filling in your team sheet, make sure that you tick the “Gigantamax” box if your Pokémon has this special trait.


Current Legal Gigantamaxes:

  • Butterfree
  • Corviknight
  • Drednaw
  • Centiskorch
  • Meowth
  • Pikachu
  • Eevee
  • Snorlax
  • Sandaconda


Special case: Gigantamax Charizard may be used, but only if it has the “Blaze” ability!

The Tournament Screen

When you arrive at the tournament, talk to a member of staff to register/check in – come early as there will often be a queue!

They will collect your team sheet and guide you through the process of locking your battle box and entering the tournament.

Afterwards, you’ll be left on the screen shown below:

If you need to get back to this screen later, go:

Main Menu → VS → Live Competition → Participate in a Live Competition


If you want to go out of this screen to another part of the game, press the B button.

When staff instruct you to start your round, choose “Battle” and enter your Match ID

Do not choose Quit Competition until after the tournament – doing this will prevent you from being able to play any more matches in the tournament!


Using LAN mode

Ensure you are in LAN Mode before starting your Battle:

While on the main tournament screen, hold down L + R + Press in the Left Joystick for about 3 seconds, until the text changes to “Battle in LAN mode”.

If you need help, raise your hand to call a judge.

You can also find this instructions as PDF download.

Thanks to Niall C. for helping setting up these instructions.