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The Pokémon Company International announced that Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield will be the official video games used for competitive play during the 2020 Play! Pokémon Season and shared new game features that fans can look forward to in the highly anticipated titles. Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield will launch November 15, 2019, exclusively on the Nintendo Switch™ system. In addition, The Pokémon Company International debuted the next series in the Pokémon Trading Card Game, Sword & Shield, based on the upcoming video games as well as a new type of card, Pokémon V.

Battling in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield

In Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield, Trainers can connect to the internet and battle against each other in either Single or Double Battle formats in the Battle Stadium.*

In the Battle Stadium, Pokémon Trainers can engage in Ranked Battles where they will face other Trainers and their Battle Teams from across the globe.

Trainers will battle those with a similar rank and will earn points depending on the results of those battles.

Each rank in Ranked Battles belongs to a specific tier, and Trainers can increase their rank by earning enough points.

Trainers can check their own ranking in the Battle Stadium. They can also see how all of the participants placed in a competition on the smartphone version of Pokémon HOME.

In Casual Battles, it’s not about who wins or loses—it’s about becoming a better Trainer.

One exciting aspect of Casual Battles is the ability to use certain Legendary Pokémon and Mythical Pokémon that are not eligible for Ranked Battles.

Features like Online Competitions and Rental Teams will also allow players to connect with other Trainers in different ways.

Trainers who participate in Online Competitions can battle in either Official Competitions or Friendly Competitions.

In Official Competitions, participants will take part in special battles with a variety of different rules and restrictions.

In Friendly Competitions, Trainers can join competitions hosted by other players or even host their own competitions. Regulations in Friendly Competitions are determined by the host.

Rental Teams enable Trainers to borrow Battle Teams by inputting IDs available online—or to make Battle Teams that they’ve put together available as Rental Teams to other Trainers all over the world. Up to five teams can be rented at once, and they can even be used in Ranked Battles.

Dynamaxing and Max Moves

The Dynamax phenomenon not only makes Pokémon huge—it can also give them a boost in power and sway the course of a battle. The Max Moves that only Dynamax Pokémon can use aren’t just powerful but also have impressive additional effects. For example, the Water-type Max Move, Max Geyser, will trigger the rain weather condition, and the Fighting-type Max Move, Max Knuckle, will increase the Attack of all allied Pokémon.

In Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield, a Trainer’s Pokémon can Dynamax if that Trainer has the Dynamax Band. Pokémon do not have to hold a special item to Dynamax. This means Trainers can choose which one of their Pokémon to Dynamax depending on what’s happening in the battle, and they can even have their Pokémon hold items that boost their strength so they can unleash Max Moves that are even more powerful.

New Abilities and Items

Many new Abilities have been discovered in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield. One such Ability is Galarian Weezing’s Neutralizing Gas. This Ability neutralizes the ongoing effects of other Pokémon’s Abilities and even prevents Abilities from being triggered. Once the Pokémon with Neutralizing Gas leaves the battlefield, the Abilities of the other Pokémon will be activated again.

Some Pokémon have rare Abilities known as Hidden Abilities. In Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield, Pokémon caught in Max Raid Battles might have these Hidden Abilities. There is also a very small chance that Trainers will encounter a special Pokémon capable of Gigantamaxing in Max Raid Battles. While extremely rare, by attempting many different battles, there’s a chance they could even encounter a Pokémon that can Gigantamax and has a Hidden Ability. One such Hidden Ability is Corviknight’s Mirror Armor, which will bounce back any stat-lowering effects from an opposing Pokémon’s Abilities or moves.

New items that can be combined with specific moves to give Trainers an edge in battle will also be available in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield. These items include Room Service and Eject Pack. When held by a Pokémon, Room Service will lower that Pokémon’s Speed when the move Trick Room is successfully used. When a Pokémon holding Eject Pack has any of its stats lowered, it will immediately switch out so another Pokémon can be sent in.

Pokémon TCG: Sword & Shield and Pokémon V

Also during the 2019 Pokémon World Championships, Tsunekazu Ishihara, president and CEO of The Pokémon Company, unveiled Sword & Shield, a new series coming to the Pokémon Trading Card Game. Included in the series are Pokémon V, powerful new cards that will play an important role in players’ strategies. Event attendees also received a preview of Zacian V and Zamazenta V, which will be available in the series’ upcoming first expansion. More details about the Pokémon TCG: Sword & Shield Series will be announced soon.

Check out the videos from the 2019 opening ceremonies here:

eVolve with Pokémon V: https://youtu.be/WFq4yn8DLRI.

Prepare for battle in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield: https://youtu.be/uaF9iJ9bzUM.



The 2019 Pokémon World Championships, the premier competitive Pokémon event of the year, kicks off Friday, August 16. Fans around the world can tune in to all the action with four live broadcasts from The Pokémon Company International on Twitch. The live streams from Washington, DC, will feature intense match-up's and expert commentary from all three days of the event.

The 2019 Pokémon World Championships are an international event where the world’s most elite Pokémon video game and Pokémon Trading Card Game (TCG) players will come together to compete to be the very best. Competitors from over 45 countries across three age divisions will do battle for the title of Pokémon World Champion and more than $500,000 in scholarships and prizes.

The live stream is headlined by a main stage stream that will broadcast the opening ceremony and the first Pokémon GO Invitational on Friday morning, followed by rotating video game and TCG match-up's throughout the weekend, and the final matches and closing ceremony on Sunday. The weekend’s four streams are:

Main Stage Stream (ceremonies and alternating matches): Twitch.tv/Pokemon

Pokémon Video Game Championships Stream: Twitch.tv/PokemonVGC

Pokémon TCG Championships Stream: Twitch.tv/PokemonTCG

Pokkén Tournament DX Stream: Twitch.tv/PokkenTournament

Streaming Schedule: All times EDT

Friday, August 16:

Opening Ceremony on all four streams at 9 a.m.

Main Stage Stream:

9 a.m. – 9 p.m.:

9 a.m.: Opening Ceremony

9:30 a.m.: Preshow

9:45 a.m.: Pokémon GO Invitational

11:45 a.m.: VG & TCG Swiss Rounds

Pokémon VG Stream:

9 a.m. – 8 p.m.: VG Swiss Rounds

Pokémon TCG Stream:

9 a.m. – 8 p.m.: TCG Swiss Rounds

Pokkén Tournament DX Stream:

9 a.m. – 4 p.m.: Last Chance Qualifier

Saturday, August 17:

Main Stage Stream:

8:45 a.m. – 9 p.m.:

9 a.m.: VG & TCG Swiss Rounds

3 p.m.: Pokkén Tournament DX Senior and Masters Division Finals

6 p.m.: VG Top Cut

Pokémon VG Stream:

8:45 a.m. – 7 p.m.: Swiss Rounds and Top Cut

Pokémon TCG Stream:

11:15 a.m. – 10 p.m.: Swiss Rounds and Top Cut

Pokkén Tournament DX Stream:

8:45 a.m. – 3 p.m.: Championship Bracket (moves to Main Stage Stream at 3 p.m.)

Sunday, August 18:

Main Stage Stream:

Starting at 9 a.m., the following matches will be played in order, with an estimated finish of 4 p.m.:

TCG Junior Finals

TCG Senior Finals

TCG Masters Finals

VG Junior Finals

VG Senior Finals

VG Masters Finals

4 p.m.: Closing Ceremony

All times approximate and subject to change.


Hasbro released another fun episode from their series, "My Little Pony: The Retro Show" titled "PONIFIED Pop Up Music Video! 🌈 My Little Pony: The Retro Show | #TBT".

Travel back to a time of scrunchies and slap bracelets with My Little Pony: The Retro Show! Tapping into our heritage with 80s and 90s-inspired videos, Pop Up Pony gives fans a peek behind the curtain of music videos from the original series, Behind the Magic takes a retrospective look at iconic My Little Pony characters from the 80s, and some special surprise episodes will pay homage to totally tubular friends.

Tune in to the My Little Pony YouTube Channel for new episodes of the wonderfully wacky My Little Pony: The Retro Show and see this new episode right HERE.


Toxic Holocaust have released a new track titled "Chemical Warlords". Check out the pre-order links of their upcoming full-length album "Primal Future: 2019", expected October 4th 2019 from the links below!

Pre-Order Now:

Vinyl/CD/Merch: https://ffm.to/primalfuture2019
Apple Music: https://apple.co/33wcKnR
Spotify: https://spoti.fi/2TAYaat

Check out the "Chemical Warlords" lyrical video right HERE.


Poland's progressive rock and metalhead's ARTYFICTION have a couple of shows to be played til the end of this year wraps itself up. But aside from that happening, they are working on all new material with some changes of them always being on the move of sorts. With that said, the band goes on more or less to say a lot of their history and how much their music means to them.


1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

Beginnings are pretty common, group of friends that share passion to music and looking for some kind of springboard from everyday life start a band Laszlo Taxi. It was a progressive project and band was fully concentrated on composing. Troubles start when ambitions and amount of work start to grew up. First left vocalist, then bass player. Miroslaw Berg become a new bass man and start to organizing concerts and recording sessions. Playing in a band start to be more and more demanding and you know how it looks like, you have to earn for living, pick up kids from kindergarten/school and be able to handle hundreds of others everyday live challenges. Life, no more no less. Soon Pavel Kardis became a new drummer in a place of Tomasz Sok (main composer of Moment of Revelation). Few moments after Jacek Ziora join as a vocalist and the Wojciech Bator as a guitarist. After so many personal rotations we need to change the name of a band, cause the old one was no more relevant. Dariusz Kawa was the only one that left from the “old crew”. First we shortly switch name to “Lost in Motion” and then to "Artyfiction". Debut album "Preliminaries" was released and intensity of concerts arise. Jacek is not able to handle it in 100% and left. Artyfiction redo all compositions to instrumentals. Few months later Michal Balon restores vocal to our music. But he also was not able to actively cooperate and left. We made a decision to become an instrumental band. Second album "Firing Line" was recorded in Perlazza Studio during may 2019. Shortly after Pavel Kardis have to left the band. Jakub Dabrowski join few weeks after and till that moment we intensively prepare to premiere and concerts.

2. What’s the origin of the band’s name?

We worked around the word "Arfiticial". This term perfectly fits the world we live in. Fake friends, fake news. Bended reality. We have put two words together – "arty" and "fiction". "Arty" is the irony part. We are surrounded by repetitive tunes made for money that has nothing to do with art. We also have a lot of so-called artists that tend to produce tracks that only show off their skills or techniques. I our humble opinion that has nothing to do with art as well. We want to create music. Above genres, types or general moods. That’s what we call "art". "Fiction" element points out that music is not necessarily connected to the real world. Terry Pratchett has created his Discworld. A lot of science-fiction writers imagined their own idea of the future. We are imagining music. And that’s what we give out to the world. We even thought about using the same way of writing our name as in "science-fiction"  - "Arty-Fiction". But we’re loosing the relation to "artificial" word then.

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

We are from Wroclaw, Poland - close to the west border and beautiful Karkonosze mountains. City has strong cultural background in a really diverse way.  When it comes to Progressive part, we’re aware of and can recommend Katedra, ATME, My Secret Haven and Halucynacje. Stronger music - Vader. Blues folks have Hoodoo Band. And Leszek Mozdzer is a common jazzing guest. Of course, there are plenty of scenes and bands focused on punk/hard rock/electronic and hip-hop. By the way – we have noticed that Wroclaw has always biggest number of submittions on any Polish band competition. Few years ago, city invested in National Forum of Music with one of the most sophisticated acoustic hall for classical music. We have a lot of festivals; some of them may be even known world-wide, like Avant Art Festival or Jazz nad Odra. A lot of street arts performers and independent theatres. Guess that city is pretty inspiring place to live in.

4. How would you describe your style?

Style of a band is ingrained in progressive rock, that for us means experimenting with structure, tempo, role of particular instruments etc. But Wojtek Bator, for instance, has a strong classical and metal background. Keyboardist despite of his progressive bands has few romances with black metal bands, our drummer Pavlo Kardis (the one who record all drums tracks in "Firing Line") was playing in metal bands for whole of his live and bass player was playing on guitar in a kind of experimental rock in previous bands. All of that have a strong influence on final sound of a band. Since we stopped to think about the style and started to figure out how to put all these diversified pieces together in a best possible way our music; creativity got a strong boost and we’re able to compose track after track.

5. What have you released so far and what can someone expect from your works?

Our debut album "Preliminaries" was released on 21.03.2018. It contains 5 tracks, 3 with vocals and 2 instrumentals. That was first time when we had a chance to record in professional studio and we learned a lot from it. All our work after that was based on this experience. That’s why compositions from "Firing Line" are much more mature. It’s an instrumental music this time and we do all we can to create interesting and diversified narrations. First - each one from seven tracks has a different vibe. From fast "battle-like" compositions to soothing, gentle sounds. Everyone will find something for themselves, we guess. 

6. Do you have any new music in the works?

Of course! We’re always working on something new. Even the "old" compositions get a bit of changes with every concert. Music is a living thing and in this band it’s always in the move.

7. How about playing shows and touring, have anything planned out?

 Till the end of 2019 we’ll play couple of gigs around the Poland.

8. What plans do you have for the future as a band?

 Play as many gigs as we can. Composing better and better music. We want to have a background effects on our shows and that’s one thing we started to focus our attention on at the moment.

9. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

Premiere of our new album will be on September 6th. After that it will available on all our music channels:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6MBY3uPCScWwuM1UYgU-Yg
https://artyfiction.bandcamp.com/
https://soundcloud.com/artyfiction/

And probably also on Spotify, Tidal, Deezer etc.

10. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

Just unleash your imagination and try to let the music guide you. ;)


Metal go getters DOG TIRED have been hard at work upon their fourth full-length album titled "The Electric Abyss", set for release this fall! Set to follow this album release will launch an array of tour dates and other showcases to get the word out and about as much as possible! The band goes on further more to say lots about themselves and the future set-up for them.


1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

Dog Tired are an Edinburgh based metal band, which started in late 2004 from a mutual unhealthy obsession with riffs. Luke (Guitar), Chris (vocals) and Keith (Drums) have been in the band since the very beginning, and Barry (Bass) joined not long after. The current lineup has been going strong since the release of the first EP, and this constant has allowed us to hone our sound and performance. We’ve gone from playing in a garage in Penicuik in the early days to playing some amazing gigs, such as Bloodstock, Thrashersaurus and Nottingham Rock City. We’ve also managed to get further afield recently, playing shows in Ireland and the Netherlands. We pride ourselves on bringing a show that is relentless, heavy and crammed with energy, and this is what people have come to expect from us!

2. What’s the origin of the band’s name?

The band name was thought up by our drummer’s brother, when he used to be a second guitarist around the time of the initial EP.  I’m not sure why he came up with Dog Tired, a lot of people assume it was due to the Down song,  although he has always said it wasn’t taken from that. Either way, the name stuck. Initially this suited the band as we had more of a Southern (Down-esque) sound to us. As our band grew gradually heavier, faster and more intense, the name became  separated from the connotations and became our own. As Dog Tired is not a name you would expect from a band as heavy as we have become, it does a good job of standing out! 

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

We all live in Penicuik, a town just outside of Edinburgh, so we have played quite a lot of gigs around the Edinburgh area. There’s a few great venues in Edinburgh, mainly La Belle Angele for the bigger gigs, The Banshee Labyrinth for the smaller gigs and Bannermans/Opium for those inbetween.  There are loads of amazing metal bands from the Edinburgh area (a surprising amount of which have members from Penicuik!). We’d highly recommend you listen to King Witch, Iron Altar, Sapien, Tommy Concrete and the Werewolves, Lucifer’s Corpus, Disposable, Perpetua, Solar Sons, Razor Sharp Death Blizzard, Scumpulse, Somaesthesia, Anaxor, Hammer, God Damn Brewery, Juniper Grave, Black Talon, Kingpin, Runemaster, Burning The Dream, Firebrand Super Rock, Certain Death, Ifreann, Centrilia, Bacchus Baracus, Catalysis, Robot Death Monkey, Dolour, Cultmaster and many, many more! The Scottish scene is currently rammed with talent and loads of the bands are putting on performances well worthy of main stage festival slots!

4. How would you describe your style?

Riff laden cosmic beef. It’s hard to pick a genre with there being so many sub-genres nowadays, but riff laden cosmic beef about covers it. We’ve merged our favorite parts from many different influences to create a unique style that is both heavy and memorable. There’s hints of Gojira, Strapping Young Lad, Metallica, Pantera, Sepultura, Testament etc, as these are the bands we grew up listening to. We definitely have a distinct Dog Tired sound, which comes through whether we’re playing a three minute thrash tune or a seven minute open instrumental epic. 

5. What have you released so far and what can someone expect from your works?

To date we’ve had three full albums and the initial EP.

Dead Head Rebel came out in 2010, and it’s quite rare now. We recorded it in Studio 24 in Edinburgh, which was a great venue that unfortunately closed down not too long ago. This album was recorded with Matt Justice, who is currently the touring guitarist for the Exploited.

This was then followed up by 2013’s Titan. This album felt like we were starting to find our sound. It’s definitely centered around the chunk, with songs like Iron Sky and Mad Jack providing slabs of power and songs like Cronos giving the album the epic feel we hadn’t quite reached with Dead Head Rebel. It was while touring this album that we got onto Bloodstock festival in 2014. We have several music videos from Titan that are on YouTube. The video for the first full track on the album, “God Disease”, is probably a good example of what to expect from Titan. The cover for this album was done by the legendary Christian Sloan Hall, who has done artwork for loads of bands, including Amon Amarth and Testament. 

We then released “It Came From The Sun” in 2016. We recorded this in Chamber Studio in Edinburgh and it was mastered by Adam Douche of West West Side studio in New York. This album has been a commercial success and helped us to reach mainland Europe and Ireland, as well as all over the UK. This also gained us a supporting tour with Evil Scarecrow, as well as support slots with the likes of Raging Speedhorn, Gama Bomb and Black Bomb A. This album has a faster pace than Titan overall, but also has a foreboding, ominous feel to it. There’s a lyric video on YouTube for the song Outpost 31, an homage to John Carpenter’s “the Thing”, which was done by Andy Pilkington of Very Metal Art.

6. Do you have any new music in the works?

We have just recorded our 4th full length album, entitled "The Electric Abyss". This will be released on 07 September 2019, and will be accompanied by a launch show in Edinburgh. This is definitely our most dynamic, intricate and ferocious album to date. With eight tracks of unapologetic, monstrous metal and an atmospheric and haunting interlude, this is definitely going to be our best offering to date. We are really proud of the album and feel we have finally got the sound and production we have been striving for on this one. We’ve released details of the launch already, and will shortly be releasing a video for the first single.

7. How about playing shows and touring, have anything planned out?

The launch is going to be at La Belle Angele on 07 September 2019, and we’re going to be joined by some awesome bands for it! King Witch, Disposable, Perpetua, Lethal Injury and Solar Sons are all on board, so expect it to be a messy, heavy night! We’ll be announcing a tour this week, including dates in England, Ireland and some overseas. For the time being, we have Rabidfest in Oxford on 18 August 2019, Hordes X in Dundee on 28 September 2019, Rock The Foundry in Newcastle on 6 October 2019 and Unearthed in Birmingham on 19 October 2019.

8. What plans do you have for the future as a band?

Once The Electric Abyss is released, we’ll be touring it as extensively as possible! We’ll be trying to get shows in new places to promote the album far and wide. We just want to play as many different places as possible, and hopefully arrange a few festival slots for next year.

9. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

Both Titan and It Came From the Sun are available on Spotify and Amazon music. Dead Head Rebel is very rare now, so if you don’t have a copy it’ll be hard for you to get one! We have loads of videos on YouTube, and will be adding a single from the new album soon. The Electric Abyss will be available on Spotify, however, to get it on release date you’ll have to buy a copy on our big cartel page (once pre-orders are available) or at the gig! Our Big Cartel merch store, as well as our videos, are available on www.dogtiredmetal.com.

10. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

At least one of the extremely fat riffs that are on offer.

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