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Max Raid Battles Guide - What Are Dens?
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Max Raid Battles Guide - What Are Dens?

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Read this Pokemon Sword and Shield guide on Max Raid Battles. Including max raid battle locations, stars, how to catch Dynamax and Gigantamax Pokemon, reset, & online!!!

Table of Contents

Check Out Max Raid Battle Events!

What Are Max Raid Battles?

Face Off Against Dynamax Pokemon

Dynamax Clefable Battle

Max Raid Battles are a new feature in Pokemon Sword and Shield. These battles will allow players to face off and catch wild Dynamax Pokemon in a group with 3 other players.

Check Out Battle System Guide Here!

You Can Also Face Gigantamax Pokemon

You Can Also Face Gigantamax Pokemon

Aside from facing Dynamaxed Pokemon, there are some special cases where you will do battle against a Pokemon in Gigantamax form!

Check Out the Gigantamax Pokemon List Here!

Make A Team With Friends

Max Raid Battle Group of 4

During Max Raid Battles, a maximum of 4 players can work together to defeat a Pokemon. You will be able to play with people on the internet or locally invite friends.

Join A Max Raid Battle - Dens & Map Locations

Max Raid Battle Flowchart

1Find a Den with a pillar of light
2Create a Lobby and select a Pokemon.
3Find players to play with (Optional)
4Battle the Dynamax Pokemon
5After defeating it, attempt to catch it

Find A Pokemon Den In The Wild Area

Pokemon Den Red Light Wild Area

To join a Max Raid Battle, you will need to find a red beam of light indicating the location of a Pokemon Den in the Wild Area. Approach and interact with it to start the battle!

Dens and Pokemon Locations Are Covered In Our Article

Map Sample

Our Wild Area map guide provides den locations including which Pokemon appears from specific dens. Check them out to collect strong Pokemon!

Check Out Wild Area Guide Here!

Two Types Of Pillars - Purple Beam

Purple Pillar

There are two types of Pokemon Den pillars of light. One with a faint, red color, while the other is thick and purple. Purple pillars will have a chance of containing rarer and stronger Pokemon, as well as ones with Hidden Abilities.

Check Out What Hidden Abilities Are Here!

Different Dens Have Different Pokemon

Dens Can Respawn & Differ Every Time

Every Pokemon Den will have a certain pool of Pokemon which could potentially spawn. The Pokemon that spawn in Dens can differ, even within the same Wild Area Subzone!

Use Wishing Pieces to Spawn Raid Battles

Wishing Piece

The Dens can also be spawned manually by using a rare item called the Wishing Pieces. These Wishing Pieces can be purchased from Watt upon unlocking the raid.

Learn More About Wishing Piece From Here

Use Best Pokemon For Efficient Max Raid Battles

Best Pokemon For Efficient Battles

There are Pokemon suitable for Max Raid Battle to efficiently repeat the battles. Check out the below article to know which Pokemon to bring.

Check out Best Pokemon For Max Raid Battles Guide here!

How Raid Dens Reset And Respawn

Reset After 24 Hours

Your max raids reset at 0:00 of each day, resetting Pokemon in dens and respawning watts for empty dens. That means all unfinished den collection and raids will be lost when the timer is up, so pick up the pace!

Watts - How To Farm Them And Their Uses

Complete All Raids For Random New Raids

If you are able to complete all raid battles in all dens for that day, new raids may randomly respawn for the player to challenge. Go through all Den raids for a chance for another batch of raids!

Wild Area - Map & Pokemon List Today

What Are Raid Den Stars

Stars Shows The Raid Pokemon's Max IVs Potential

Dubwool Max IVs

Depending on the number of stars in a Max Raid Battle, the stats of a Pokemon may differ. The more stars, the better the stats. Fight 5-star battles in order to get Pokemon with high Individual Strengths (IVs). These Pokemon can be extremely useful for breeding purposes!

StarsMax IVs
1 (or more)
★★ 2 (or more)
★★★3 (or more)
4 (or more)
What Are Individual Strengths (IVs)? Find Out Here!

Online And Offline Raid

Form Groups With Other Players Online

Looking For Max Raid Battle

A party of up to 4 people can be formed when you opt to join raids online. You can create your own online raids or join the raids of other people. The online & offline battles are the same, except with real players the party can coordinate better.

Nintendo Switch Online Required

Players will sometimes look for people to do Max Raid Battles with online. A Nintendo Switch Online Membership is required to play with people over the Internet.

Check Out Pokemon Camp Features!

Opt to Play Solo When Offline

You can fight Dynamax Pokemon with your friends locally or online. If you don't have 3 other people to play with, or does not have an online subscription, then up to three computer trainers will be added to your team automatically in your offline battles.

Random Computer Trainer Behavior

Computer Trainer teammates assigned to your team may have erratic behavior when raiding that does not reflect the best course of action. Try raiding with real players if possible.

Catch The Pokemon


Once you've defeated a Dynamaxed or Gigantamaxed Pokemon, you can try to catch it! Some of these Pokemon even have rare hidden abilities, or are able to Gigantamax.

Check Out The Gigantamax Guide!

Earn Various Rewards After the Fight

 Earn Rare Items Only Obtainable in Raids

Aside from getting the chance to catch the Pokemon, you will also be able to earn various rewards from Max Raid Battles.

Items You Can Get
EXP Candy
Rare Candy
Dynamax Candy
Valuable items (Nuggets, etc)
Check Out How To Level Up Fast!!

Pokemon Dens Will Become Inactive Afterward

After the Max Raid Battle, the Pokemon Den will lose its shining light and become inactive for a while. You will need to head to other Dens or use an item called a Wishing Piece if you want to participate in another Max Raid Battle.

Wishing Piece - How To Get

Battle And Catch Dynamax Pokemon - Tips

Cooperate To Take Down The Enemy Pokemon

Hydreigon Dynamax Battle

You must work together with your team to defeat the Dynamax Pokemon. It may have special attacks that you need to overcome, such as resetting stat changes or cancelling the Abilities of your Pokemon.

Check Out Best Pokemon For Max Raid Battles!

Only One Pokemon Can Be Used

When doing a Max Raid Battle, each player can only bring one Pokemon, so choose wisely! Also, only one of the four players can Dynamax their own Pokemon, so be careful!

Take Down the Barrier Protecting the Dynamax Pokemon

After chipping away it's HP, the Dynamax Pokemon will create a barrier that boosts its Def and SP.Def. These barriers can be taken down after multiple attacks, and each barrier's durability differs with the Dynamax Pokemon.

If You Fail, Try Again!

If you fail to defeat a Dynamax Pokemon, you can keep trying over and over again until you finally win. However, be careful, as the Pokemon will disappear when the date changes at midnight!

Throw A Pokeball To Catch It

Catch a Dynamax Pokemon

Once you've defeated the Dynamax Pokemon, each player can take turns throwing a Pokeball to try to catch it! Remember, you will only get one chance to catch them per Raid, choose your Pokeballs carefully!

Check Out All New Pokemon In The Game!

Can Catch Pokemon With Higher Dynamax Levels

Can Catch Pokemon With Higher Dynamax Levels

Most Pokemon caught in Max Raid Battles will have a chance to have higher Dynamax Levels than Pokemon caught in the wild. Make sure to check the Dynamax Levels of all Pokemon you've captured in Raids!

Check Out How To Increase Dynamax Levels!

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