Recently, GameFreak announced that Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield will be receiving two DLC expansions in 2020 including two new areas of the Galar region. These will include new Pokémon, new Gigantamax and Galarian forms, and over 200 Pokémon from past generations previously not included in the eighth generation games. One feature for these expansions that was only briefly glanced over is the return of Apricorns.

For those not aware, Apricorns were introduced in the second (read: best) generation of Pokémon games: Gold, Silver, and Crystal versions respectively, as well as their fourth generation remakes, HeartGold and SoulSilver. Seven differently colored Apricorns could be collected from various trees — similar to berries — and could be given to Kurt in Azalea Town who would then make them into seven distinct types of Poké Balls: the Fast Ball, Heavy Ball, Lure Ball, Moon Ball, Friend Ball, Love Ball, and Level Ball, all for different purposes. In the fourth generation remakes, a box specifically for Apricorns was added, and the ability to blend them into special drinks you could give to your Pokémon to boost their Pokéathlon stats.

Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield already contain some of these special Poké Balls, as the often written about Ball Guy gives them to you when you talk to him in various areas. Unfortunately, he only gives you one, so if you use it then that’s it. Adding these Apricorns back in means that trainers will now (hopefully) be able to make as many of these Poké Balls as they can as long as they have collected enough of the appropriate Apricorns. Not only that, but this will also make it easier to capture plenty of different types of Pokémon, including those both old and new brought to the games by the expansions. Although the low encounter rate and weather conditions needed for some encounters will still provide a challenge.

What we don’t yet know is the limit to how many Apricorns you can turn into Poké Balls at once, where and who they will be made by, or how long the process will take. It’s possible they’ll be made by someone related to Kurt and hopefully the process will be instantaneous and allow for multiple types of Poké Balls to be made per day, further improving and streamlining the process from the second and fourth generations.

Will these expansions also provide brand new Apricorns for different types of Poké Balls we haven’t seen before? How about a Poké Ball with a higher catch rate for Dynamax and Gigantamax Pokémon encountered in raids or a golden Apricorn and Poké Ball to help boost the catch rate of reintroduced legendary Pokémon? While it’s definitely a possibility and would be a worthwhile addition, I wouldn’t get my hopes up just yet.

The expansion passes for Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield are available for pre-order on the eShop for $29.99 each, and a newly released free update lets players meet their new rival and gives them the chance to catch a Galarian Slowpoke, which won’t be able to evolve into Galarian Slowbro or Galarian Slowking until one of the expansions is released.

What types of Poké Balls would you like to see added to the DLC expansions? Let us know in the comments!

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Erroll Maas
Erroll is a writer with an enthusiastic love of Japanese monsters and the games which feature them, from Pokemon to Power Rangers to Pacific Rim and everything in between. You can learn more about this and plenty of other games and nerdy things by following @errollm

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