Pokémon Sword (Japanese: ポケットモンスター ソード Pocket Monsters Sword) and Pokémon Shield (Japanese: ポケットモンスター シールド Pocket Monsters Shield) are the primary paired versions of Generation VIII. The games were released on the Nintendo Switch worldwide on November 15, 2019 for both retail sale and download. All copies of the game are playable in nine languages: Japanese, English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese.
During E3 2017, Tsunekazu Ishihara announced that the next core series titles would be available on the Nintendo Switch, but they were not prepared to release any more information at the time. On May 30, 2018, The Pokémon Company gave a press conference and announced that the new core games would have more traditional gameplay, as opposed to that found in Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!.
The games were formally announced on Pokémon Day, February 27, 2019 at 11 pm JST during a worldwide announcement through Nintendo Direct hosted by Tsunekazu Ishihara, Junichi Masuda, and Shigeru Ohmori. An official trailer was shown, giving information on the region and the starter Pokémon players can choose from.