Pokémon Sword and Shield has officially released their second DLC expansion, and The Crown Tundra has brought with it the new powerful legendary known as Calyrex.
Often referred to in The Crown Tundra’s story mode as The King of Bountiful Harvests, Calyrex is the primary legendary in The Crown Tundra. The core story revolves around Calyrex, and finally culminates in an opportunity to battle and capture them.
If you head into that battle with a Master Ball, the catch shouldn’t give you much trouble. However, many players will want to save that Master Ball for another time, in which case it’ll be a hard battle.
For most players who have had Pokémon Sword and Shield since before the release of The Crown Tundra DLC, you’ll likely be through the main story and past the Pokémon League. For newcomers or anyone starting a new game, here’s exactly when you’re able to catch Calyrex.
How soon can you catch Calyrex
Like the Isle of Armor DLC, you gain access to Crown Tundra pretty soon in the game. Before you’ve even challenged the first gym leader, you can take the train to Crown Tundra.
Upon arrival, you may realize you’re incredibly outmatched. The first battle is with Peony, and he has two Pokémon on his team that are Level 70. Basically all the wild Pokémon in Crown Tundra are Level 60 and above.
Despite this, you can actually start to progress the Calyrex story without doing any of the core story. Even if Peony defeats you, the story will progress.
You can get all the way to moments before the final showdown with Calyrex, but when you try to initiate the encounter it won’t happen.
After warning you that Calyrex is so powerful you can’t even hold on to your Poké Balls, you’ll get a prompt to return “when you’re as strong as the Champion.”
While you can reach Calyrex, you’ll unfortunately have to finish the core game and become the Pokémon League Champion before you get the opportunity to battle and capture them.
How to get the Master Ball from Peony
If you start The Crown Tundra DLC after becoming Pokémon League Champion and receiving the game’s first Master Ball as part of the core story, you’ll be gifted one very soon after arriving in Crown Tundra.
After you speak to Peony in your base camp and get information about his legendary adventures, you’ll be gifted the Master Ball. However, if you start Crown Tundra before becoming Pokémon League Champion, that won’t happen.
Rest assured you haven’t lost that Master Ball if you’re already ahead of that moment. I noticed in a new game that I was heading into the potential clash with Calyrex without a Master Ball, but all hope is not lost.
Reddit user corallina noted that all you need to do is talk to Peony again after getting the first one in the main story from Magnolia. Once you’ve done that, you’ll have that Master Ball should you want to use it when you challenge Calyrex after becoming Champion.
The Sacred Bonds of Sovereign and Steed
The story beats that carry you forward in The Crown Tundra aren’t difficult to decipher. There are no elaborate riddles like with the Regis, but you will have to go through quite a few steps to arrive at your final encounter with Calyrex.
While most of the story with Calyrex is going to be explained as the game progresses, you will need to take a little initiative to get it started. At your base camp with Peony, interact with what looks like a large rock on his table, which Peony will call his pillow.
If you ask for it, Peony will oblige and then you’ll need to head outside and interact with the statue in the center of Freezington. Place the Wooden Crown on the statue, and you’ll notice Calyrex in the background.
After talking to Calyrex, you’ll essentially be off to the races. You’ll need to do some tasks, which Calyrex explains, and report back once you’ve looked into things.
At one point you’ll have the opportunity to look at the Mayor’s bookshelf, and you should take the chance to read each book on it. You’ll learn information about carrots, which are favorites of Calyrex’s fabled horse.
You’ll need some Carrot Seeds, which can be acquired by talking to the old man in the blue jacket by the fields in Freezington. He’ll offer you some Carrot Seeds in exchange for 8 pieces of Dynite Ore, which you’ll earn from Max Lair runs.
Once you have the seeds and speak to Calyrex, you’ll be given a choice. Calyrex will outline two spots that the seeds can be planted, and which one you choose will make a big impact.
Should you choose Spectrier or Glastrier?
Ultimately, when you’re choosing a spot to plant those seeds, you’re deciding if you want the fabled steed to be Spectrier or Glastrier. These similar legendary horse-like Pokémon are both available whether you’ve got Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield, but you only get one of them.
If you choose to plant your Carrot Seeds in the icy field on Snowslide Slope, you’ll be choosing Glastrier, a pure Ice Type Pokémon. If you choose to plant your Carrot Seeds in the field at the Old Cemetery, you’ll be choosing Spectrier, a pure Ghost Type Pokémon.
Glastrier, because it is Ice Type, has significantly more type weaknesses than Spectrier, and doesn’t have the two type immunities Ghost Type Pokémon benefit from.
When it comes to their stats, Glastrier has a significant edge in Defense and Special Defense. Glastrier also has a high Attack stat, whereas Spectrier’s highest stat is Special Attack. Spectrier also trades lower Defense and Special Defense for far superior Speed.
Both can fuse with Calyrex after you’ve caught it. The fusion with Glastrier creates Ice Rider Calyrex, which has superior Attack and learns the powerful Ice Type move Glacial Lance.
The fusion with Spectrier creates Shadow Rider Calyrex, which has superior Special Attack and learns the powerful Ghost Type move Astral Barrage. Both are extremely powerful Pokémon, and as such neither is a bad choice.
Each fusion also learns a similar ability that boosts Special Attack (for Shadow Rider Calyrex) or Attack (for Ice Rider Calyrex) after fainting an opposing Pokémon in battle. This means either one will get progressively stronger as a battle goes on.
If you’re looking to catch Calyrex the hard way, without the Master Ball, you may want to know choosing Spectrier will give you a more challenging battle, which will be explained in more detail later.
Preparing to catch Calyrex
As mentioned before, the game won’t let you catch Calyrex until you’ve defeated the Champion. That means you’ll have to complete the main story and the Pokémon League before even attempting to take on Calyrex.
The good thing about that is you’re more likely to be closer to fully prepared. When you battle Calyrex, it’ll be Level 80 and extremely powerful.
You’ll want to head in with a team of Pokémon that are at least Level 80, but chances are even a Level 100 team is going to have a challenge against the monstrously strong Ice Rider Calyrex or Shadow Rider Calyrex.
You’ll want to stock up on Ultra Balls and Timer Balls. Ultra Balls can be bought just about anywhere, while Timer Balls are most easily purchased in bulk at the Hammerlocke Pokémon Center.
Also be sure to stock up on supplies, mainly healing potions (Max Potion or Full Restore) and Revives. Calyrex is probably going to faint some of your Pokémon during the battle, and you want to have the option to bring them back.
No matter which form you face, you’ll want to bring a fully prepared and outfitted Gallade to the fight in order to increase your odds and reduce the risk of fainting Calyrex by accident. You can follow our guide to catch and prepare a Gallade, if you don’t already have one.
The other Pokémon you bring are less important, but ideally you’ll want them to be sturdy. This way they can take a few hits if you need to heal up Gallade to send it back out into battle.
Extra preparation for Shadow Rider Calyrex
If you’re going to be taking on Shadow Rider Calyrex, there’s an extra step that will help make the battle much more manageable. The method using a Gallade has one flaw, and that’s False Swipe being a Normal Type move.
This means that False Swipe will have no effect on Shadow Rider Calyrex, as it is Ghost and Psychic Type. This can make lowering its health without fainting it very frustrating, especially as Shadow Rider Calyrex is likely to knock most of your Pokémon out with ease.
There is a way around this type issue, though. You want a Pokémon in your team that knows the Water Type move Soak.
When you hit an opponent with Soak, it changes them into a pure Water Type Pokémon. This type change allows you to use False Swipe, even on Shadow Rider Calyrex.
The following Pokémon can learn the move Soak in Sword and Shield: Psyduck, Golduck, Goldeen, Seaking, Remoraid, Octillery, Pelipper, Wailord, Basculin, Wishiwashi, Dewpider, Araquanid, Pyukumuku, Tapu Fini, Sobble, Drizzle, and Inteleon.
The levels at which they’ll learn Soak will vary, but you’ll want whichever Pokémon you choose to be Level 80 or higher to contend with Shadow Rider Calyrex. You can use the man on the left side of any Pokémon Center to help a Pokémon remember the move Soak if it has forgotten it.
Once you’ve chosen a Pokémon to be your designated Soak user, try to boost their defenses and speed as much as you can. You may even want to have them hold a Quick Claw. They don’t have to survive the battle, just get one move off before you switch to Gallade.
Tips for the battle with Calyrex
When you’re fully prepared, you need only walk up to Calyrex after completing the story and interact with it to start the fight. You probably want to save before the battle begins, just in case it doesn’t like you want it to.
Shadow Rider Calyrex is probably going to unload on you with Astral Barrage fairly often, while Ice Rider Calyrex is going to hit you with Glacial Lance. Both moves are huge damage dealers, and might cause your Pokémon to faint right off the bat.
Don’t get discouraged, that’s what the supplies you brought are for. If you’re facing Shadow Rider Calyrex, use your chosen Pokémon to hit it with Soak and set up Gallade for the rest of the battle.
You can skip that if you’re facing Ice Rider Calyrex. Either way, you’ll end up using Gallade’s Hypnosis to put Calyrex to sleep and False Swipe to chip away at their health.
This is likely going to take you a while, which is where the Timer Ball comes into play. Once you’ve gotten Calyrex down to 1 HP and put it to sleep, you’ll want to throw an Ultra Ball or a Timer Ball.
Ultra Balls can work, but the Timer Ball is especially handy in this situation because it becomes increasingly more effective with each passing turn. In a battle like this, that’s a huge boost.
If you throw a few and Calyrex breaks free, just keep at it. If Calyrex wakes up, use Hypnosis to put it back to sleep. If Calyrex knocks out Gallade, bring it back with a Revive and some potions.
Keep at it, and eventually it’ll finally happen. You’ll toss a Poké Ball that will stay closed, and Calyrex will be yours. Enjoy one of the strongest Pokémon in the game, you earned it.
Once you’ve caught Calyrex, you can separate it from either Spectrier or Glastrier by using the Reins of Unity, a Key Item in your pack. You’ll need to have at least one free slot in your party to do that, as they’ll separate in your party.
After separating them, if you ever wanna put them back together again, follow the same method. Use the Reins of Unity on Calyrex and then Glastrier or Spectrier to unite them and head back into battle with Shadow Rider or Ice Rider Calyrex.
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