Pokémon Sword & Shield: The Wild Area Doesn't Need A Mini-Map

Pokémon Sword & Shield'd Wild Area might be overwhelming for some players, but a mini-map is the last thing we need.

The Wild Area is a new feature of Pokémon Sword & Shield and for some, its layout is wildly overwhelming. It is an area akin to the Safari Zone, though it's not separate from the rest of the map and players must venture through it to progress. There are no set paths herding players to the next town- though there are paths to follow in a pinch.

To make the journey a little more trying, there are environmental hurdles, such as disorienting sand-storms. Tribulations such as these have led some players to suggest that a mini-map be implemented for the Wild Area, but we here at TheGamer would have to disagree.

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In actuality, the Wild Area is pretty small and isn't hard to navigate after a while. There are tons of landmarks, the largest being Motostoke, Hammerlocke, and the overhead bridge of Route 5. Furthermore, the Wild Area is broken down into smaller regions that are announced every time the trainer enters them. Active Dynamax dens give off vibrant beacons of light, which may double as location markers when farming Watts. After looping the area a few times, the layout becomes pretty clear.

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Not having a mini-map adds to the "wild" experience. It allows players to completely immerse themselves in the adventure. With the application of a mini-map, there's a good chance that players would be so busy navigating the map that they would miss valuable items scattered throughout the Wild Area. This area serves as a daily grind, where players can level up, catch a wide array of new Pokémon, gather the new Watt currency, and collect countless items to either use or sell. Fast-tracking through it would defeat the purpose.


Losing your sense of direction during a sandstorm is part of the wild area experience. With an emphasis on both level and resource grinding, there need to be mechanics put in place to break up the monotony, if not to keep players out there longer. Getting turned around in a sandstorm has even been proven beneficial. Quite often, disoriented trainers will run into needed items or Pokémon while trying to regain their bearings. Though sandstorms do cut down visibility, players can still make out nearby active Dynamax dens and sometimes even the lights of Motostoke or Hammerlocke. If trainers really get in a pinch, there's always the option to immediately evacuate to a Pokécenter by way of the Corviknight taxi service.

The Wild Area might be overwhelming at first, but after patrolling it for daily resources, it's really not all that expansive. The environmental challenges are all part of the fun, as mindlessly racking up currency or XP can get pretty dull. Don't be too discouraged when getting turned around in a sandstorm. It's all too easy to stumble upon an unknown treasure that'll make up for the trials and tribulations. And, when players have truly had enough, there's always the option of calling a Corviknight Taxi.

A Mini-map is hardly necessary, as taking a wrong turn or two only enriches the adventure.

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