Pokemon Scarlet & Violet: Multiplayer Guide

Quick Links

  • Poke Portal Overview
  • Union Circle
  • Tera Raid Battles
  • Link Trades And Battles
  • Surprise Trade
  • Battle Stadium
  • Mystery Gift

Of all the unique features introduced in Pokemon Scarlet & Violet, the revamped and expanded multiplayer system promises a wealth of opportunity for those seeking to complete their Pokedex and encounter new challenges with friends. While features like trades and battles over linked and internet connections have been available in previous generations for some time now, Paldea offers the unique ability to run alongside your friends across the vast region in person.

Similar to how the underground system in Sinnoh and Join Avenue in Unova operated, you'll now be able to see and interact with your friends in many ways as you uncover the secrets of Paldea's past and future. From picnicking and sharing sandwiches with your pals to taking that flashy selfie in your silliest Saturday 'best,' Scarlet & Violet's multiplayer features promise immense potential when it comes to creating a journey you can share with others.

Poke Portal Overview

To access any of these features, you'll have to use the Poke Portal option. This is accessible by pressing Y when in the overworld, just like you would when trying to access your party, bag, or boxes. Available on the righthand menu, selecting Poke Portal will bring you to a unique area where you can engage with a variety of multiplayer options. These options include:

  • Union Circle – Adventure with your friends across Paldea.
  • Tera Raid Battle – Join raid battles with others.
  • Link Trade – Trade with a nearby friend.
  • Surprise Trade – Trade with a random stranger online for a surprise pokemon.
  • Link Battle – Battle a nearby friend.
  • Battle Stadium – Join the online battle circuit in a variety of battle formats.
  • Mystery Gift – Receive a mystery gift through online giveaways and special codes as well as check Portal News.

It is not necessary to connect to the internet immediately upon entering the Poke Portal, and some of these features – such as the Link Trade and Link Battle options – only require a friend nearby with their own Switch device to enjoy.

To use any of the online multiplayer features of Pokemon Scarlet & Violet, you must have an active Nintendo Switch Online membership. Using local linked features does not require one.

Union Circle

The most unique feature of Scarlet & Violet has to be the introduction of the Union Circle mechanic. By using this feature, you'll be able to engage with up to four members in a group and adventure across Paldea in real time.

Keep in mind that you may only access this feature after playing through the tutorial area of Scarlet & Violet up until you reach your first Pokemon Center.

To access Union Circle mechanics, you can either enter through the Poke Portal menu or venture to a Pokemon Center to interact with the yellow board found at the end of the building. Once the Union Circle menu is reached, you'll be prompted to either "Form a group" or "Join a group."

  • If you "Form a group," you'll need to set a link code. Give that link code to your friends, and they should use that code after selecting "Join a group" and receiving the prompt to enter the link code.
  • If you "Join a group," you'll need your leader to tell you the correct link code. Enter it and wait for them to start your adventure.

Online users will need to press the L button before joining or forming a group to turn on internet capabilities. Ensure your Switch is properly connected to the wifi on the home menu if this does not work. Your link code should be six digits long.

Link users only need a four-digit code and may press join or form a group as they wish. This type of mode should only be used while in the same or nearby room.

Once done, the leader must select the "Set Out Together" option to teleport the group into the Paldea region for adventuring.

While you're in Union Circle, your activities are based on the host's world and not yours. As a result, here are the things you can and cannot do in a Union Circle:

  • You can challenge Tera Raids together. To do this, you must select a crystal in your own world. Doing so in your host's world will only offer you LP and charges for your Tera Orb.
    • To invite friends in your Union Circle, interact with your crystal and select "Challenge As a Group" to send them an invitation.
  • You can see your friends' current activities in the top corners of your screen when you're not occupied.
  • You can battle or trade your friends in the Circle. Pressing Link Battle or Link Trade while in a Union Circle will send out a notification to all your joined friends without needing to send them a code for the link.
  • You can picnic together to make sandwiches and breed pokemon.
  • You can catch version exclusive pokemon not available in your world.
    • You cannot find version-exclusive items (e.g., Charcadet's armor).
    • You can catch pokemon from mass outbreaks together.
      • You cannot see mass outbreaks from any world except the host's.
      • You can battle Gym Leaders, Team Star bosses, and Titan pokemon.
        • You cannot progress the story as a group.
        • Your friends cannot see you fighting in these battles and vice versa.
        • You can take pictures with each other and with your pokemon.
          • You can take pictures of other players doing emotes you cannot do yourself while taking pictures.
          • Tera Raid Battles

            As mentioned above, you can complete Tera Raid Battles with friends in your Union Circle. However, you can also complete them by using online functions to join with strangers or link codes to join with friends you're not in a Union Circle with currently.

            You will want to make use of this feature often as five-star raid battles and above can prove extremely challenging – and sometimes completely impossible – without real human beings assisting you.

            For online multiplayer, once connected, you'll be able to see a board of pokemon silhouettes, their difficulty star rating, and the choices to either use a Link Code or join a Random battle. You can choose to select one of the silhouettes for a specific battle, use the Link Code function to join one with friends not in a Union Circle already, or select Random to be randomly assigned to a raid online.

            To create your own group for a raid, approach a Tera Crystal in your game, select "Challenge as a group" and select your preferences as to whether you'd like anyone to join or use a link code.

            Again, to start a Tera Raid with friends in your Union Circle, you must interact with a crystal from your own world, select "Challenge as a group," and wait for the rest of your group to accept the automatic invitation to join.

            Link Trades And Battles

            As always, the opportunity to trade and battle with people via a link is available. You may do this by offering a six-digit code to friends online or entering a four-digit code to a friend standing in the same room.

            It should be noted that there is a persisting problem with in-person Link Trades (as well as Link Battles) supported by various tests. If a link code is created by a player and then redeemed in the same short period of time (generally within one minute), the link search has a tendency to become stuck and result in a never-ending search loop. This loop has been confirmed to take a period of up to ten minutes before timing out.

            To fix this issue, wait at least one minute after redeeming the code, have the redeemer exit, and then have the redeemer re-enter. The Link Trade/Battle almost always immediately starts thereafter. This was not fixed in the most recent patch but may be in future updates.

            Surprise Trade

            The Surprise Trade is a renamed feature once known as the "Wonder Trade" in previous generations. It allows you to offer one random pokemon of your choosing from your boxes in return for another mystery pokemon.

            This feature is strictly an online feature, so ensure your Switch is connected to the internet and the Poke Portal is as well before entering Surprise Trade. Once you enter, you'll be prompted to select one pokemon to trade from your boxes. Select it, confirm your choice, and watch as it is traded for another pokemon from the "Poke-Purgatory" of unwanted pokemon and the occasional rarity from a truly generous soul.

            Battle Stadium

            Battle Stadium features are the same as they have always been in previous games with a few minor cosmetic alterations, allowing battle online between players in a variety of formats. The combat formats include:

            • Casual Battle: Battle without concern for rankings or restrictions.
            • Ranked Battle: Battle to raise or lower your global ranking.
            • Online Competition (Friendly): Create or join unofficial competitions.
            • Online Competition (Official): Compete in ranked official matches with specific rules run by GameFreak/Nintendo.
            • Rental Teams: Rent a premade team or submit a team of your own for other players to use.

            Mystery Gift

            Although the Mystery Gift feature is a minor addition to Poke Portal, it is still technically a multiplayer and online function. While online, you can:

            • Receive a gift via Internet events.
            • Redeem a code to receive a gift.
            • Check your previous redeemed gifts.
            • Check Poke Portal news to see the latest events.

            These are the past and current codes for Pokemon Scarlet & Violet:

            All Mystery Gift Codes

            Code

            Gift

            Expiration Date

            HAMCHEESE

            Sandwich ingredients

            December 18, 2022

            SALTV1NEGAR

            Sandwich ingredients

            December 18, 2022

            PEANUTBUTTER

            Sandwich Ingredients

            December 18, 2022

            T0MAT0SL1CE

            Sandwich Ingredients

            December 18, 2022

            LETTUCEBAC0N

            Sandwich Ingredients

            December 18, 2022

            READY4RA1D

            20,000 League Points (LP)

            January 31, 2023

            HAJ1ME0R1G1NAL

            Sandwich Ingredients: 10 Peanut Butter, 10 Prosciutto, 10 Hamburger, 10 Cream Cheese, 10 Noodles, and 10 Rice

            January 31, 2023

            N/A (Free via "Get via Internet")

            Flying-Tera-Type Pikachu

            February 28, 2023

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