How Surprise Trade works in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet

Pokemon Scarlet Violet surprise trade

Take a Pokémon, leave a Pokémon

Trading and building a small Pokemon army is key to any Pokemon Trainer’s journey. And in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet the Surprise Trade returns to help shake up your Pokedex.

Surprise Trade is back for Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, adding an additional method for trading aside from the usual Link Trade. In a normal trade, you might lock in a Pokemon to trade directly with another player.

The Surprise Trade, meanwhile, is what it says: a surprise. Originally called the Wonder Trade, the Surprise Trade in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet lets you offer up a Pokemon to the whims of Surprise Trade, and get one from some other player in return.

How Surprise Trade works

When you want to chance upon a new Pokemon, head over to the Poké Portal and boot up Surprise Trade. There, you’ll be able to trade with a random Trainer somewhere else in the world.

What could you get? No one really knows, and that’s the appeal of Surprise Trade. For some people, it’s a gimmick. Others, potential for trolling or ribbing. And hey, maybe a charitable soul is dumping a huge number of rare Pokemon, or trade evolution Pokemon, into the system.

You’ll never really know until you try, so it might be worth tossing around a bit in the Surprise Trade and seeing for yourself. And if you’d rather get up to other multiplayer activities, there are still plenty of things to do in that regard too.

Eric Van Allen