Update: According to the Pokemon website, the Pikachu Wild Area event has been extended by a week. It will now end on August 16 at 4:59PM PT.
Original story: If you're playing Pokemon Sword & Shield, chances are that you already have a Pikachu. You might have more than one Pikachu, in fact. You might even have the full Pikachu line. But The Pokemon Company is banking on trainers not having these kinds of Pikachu. On Wednesday night, Nintendo and The Pokemon Company launched a new Wild Area event for Pokemon Sword & Shield and it's one that focuses on the full Pikachu lineage, including its Alolan cousin.
According to the Nintendo Switch newshub (confirmed by Serebii.net), players running through the Wild Area across Pokemon Sword & Shield will find an increased frequency of the Pikachu family appearing in Max Raid Battles. This includes the standard Pikachu, its tinier predecessor Pichu, its evolved form Raichu, and a special appearance by the Alolan-form Raichu from Pokemon Sun and Moon. The Alolan Raichu variant is a special Electric/Psychic dual type, one that uses its tail to ride the waves. Electric/Psychic-type Pokemon as a whole are a rarity in Sword & Shield, so you might want to seize this rare opportunity to catch this guy.
On top of the frequent appearances of Pikachu family members, players will also have a chance to encounter a Shiny Pikachu. Shiny Pikachu appearances are rare, but players will have until the end of this event to try and add one of these rare Pokemon to their collection.
As has been noted in our previous Gigantamax Raid guides (August is coming soon, by the way), Gigantamax Pokemon only show up in 5-Star Max Raid Battles. Anything less than that will have a common Dynamax Pokemon. Gigantamax Max Raid encounters are easily found by spotting a beaming purple light emanating from a Pokemon Den. To take part in any 5-Star Max Raid Battles, players must have the Dragon Badge, which is the eighth and final gym badge owned by Raihan in the Hammerlocke Gym. They must then make sure they're connected to the internet to trigger the event.
This Pikachu, Pichu, Raichu, and Alolan Raichu Wild Area event will only last for a few days. Pokemon Sword & Shield players only have until August 9 at 4:59PM PT to catch these Pokemon. We'll have our eye on more Wild Area events, so be sure to follow out continuing Pokemon Sword & Shield coverage, as well as the Pokemon website.