Almost every Pokémon in the franchise has multiple abilities along with a Hidden Ability. However, players cannot find Pokémon with their Hidden Abilities in the wild or through breeding (unless the parent has the ability), including in Sword and Shield.
These are basically an extra ability that a Pokémon can have. They were introduced in Pokémon Black and White where Pokémon with them could only be obtained in the Dream World. They have been available through various different methods in every generation since then.
Most Pokémon have one or two abilities along with their Hidden Ability. For example, Eevee has the abilities Run Away and Adaptability, and its hidden is Anticipation. This ability doesn’t necessarily have to be unique or rare, and it isn’t always the strongest ability either.
These hiddens can be very useful in competitive play. For example, an Eevee with Anticipation will evolve into a Sylveon with Pixilate. Pixilate makes all Normal-type attacks Fairy-type. This means that Sylveon can use powerful moves like Hyper Voice and Hyper Beam as Fairy-type STAB (same-type attack bonus) attacks.
How to find Pokémon with their Hidden Abilities in Sword and Shield
Max Raid Battles
Certain Pokémon caught in Max Raid Battles will have their Hidden Abilities. Only four or five-star Max Raid Battles will have them, and it is not a guarantee that they will. Be sure to check and make sure the desired ability can be found this way before spending time and resources trying to find it.
The Pokémon Home app was released earlier this month, and certain Hidden Abilities can be obtained in Sword and Shield via transfer with the app. To do this, simply transfer the Pokémon with the desired ability into the Home app from a previous game and then move it into Sword or Shield from there.
There are plenty of community Discords, forums, and subreddits out there where players can trade. Pokémon with their Hidden Abilities have a 60% chance of passing it down through breeding. This means that it is easy for these players to breed and pass these abilities on.
When planning out a competitive team, be sure to check out each ability and make sure it’s the best one. Having certain abilities can be the difference between winning and losing battles.