Pokemon Sword and Shield pre-loads are live two weeks ahead of the full game

(Image credit: Nintendo)

Pokemon Sword and Shield pre-loads are live now, and if you want to start catching monsters and cooking curry the moment the game comes out on November 15, you should start downloading soon. If you pre-order Pokemon Sword and Shield on the Nintendo eShop, you should now see the option to begin pre-loading the game on the store page.

If you're going for the digital option, you'll need about 9.5GB of storage free to fully install Pokemon Sword and Shield. Don't worry if you're already out of space! You've still got two weeks until the game comes out - and we happen to have an up-to-date guide to Nintendo Switch SD card deals ready to show you some upgrades.

Aside from giving you the chance at a Pokemon Sword and Shield pre-load, buying the games on the eShop will also give you a special in-game bonus: a code for 12 Quick Balls. These are special variants of Poke Balls that are extra effective at catching Pokemon if you throw them as soon as a battle begins. They could save you a lot of headaches if you're trying to capture a weaker Pokemon and don't want to risk softening it up first. Man, talking about capturing Pokemon outside of the grander context of Pokemon sounds kinda rough, doesn't it?

If you need further encouragement to start playing Pokemon Sword and Shield ASAP, logging into the game by January 15, 2020, will unlock a special Gigantamax Meowth. It's huge, it looks like Longcat, and it's the best.

Want a new system to capture monsters on? You won't have to wait long for the Nintendo Switch Black Friday deals to arrive.

Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.