In an update on the Pokémon website, the company said it has detected a number of users playing Pokémon Sword and Shield and Pokémon Home “using illegally modified data”.
Depending on the situation, The Pokémon Company said it may consider issuing temporary or permanent bans.
Pokémon Sword and Shield players could be banned from accessing online features, while Pokémon Home users could be restricted from trading creatures or have their accounts suspended entirely.
“In the future, we will continue to take similar measures on a regular basis and may implement further restriction measures without prior notice,” it said (via Google Translate).
“We will regularly monitor and respond to fraudulent and annoying acts so that our users can enjoy themselves with peace of mind.”
Sword and Shield was the first main entry in the series not to include every Pokémon, a decision that was unpopular with fans, especially after the discovery that many of its character models are identical to those used in 2016 3DS entry Sun and Moon, and 2018 Switch release Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee.
A pre-release development build of Pokémon Sword leaked online in October 2020. The playable Switch prototype includes unfinished features and environments plus Pokémon that didn’t make the final game.
It was recently claimed that The Pokémon Company is planning to release Switch remakes of Nintendo DS games Diamond and Pearl in 2021, with an official announcement planned in February to coincide with the franchise’s 25th anniversary.