The Teal Mask DLC for Pokemon Scarlet & Violet was released roughly a year after the launch of the base game, but does that mean you need to have finished the story first, or can you jump into the new content from a fresh save? The reason could be an issue due to the levels of the enemy trainers and Wild Pokemon, as no amount of wanting to be the very best like no one ever was is going to help your level 5 Quaxly when it faces a level 60 Chansey.
You can start The Teal Mask DLC as soon as you accept the Treasure Hunt quest in Pokemon Scarlet & Violet, which takes roughly three hours to reach on a normal playthrough, though you can speed this up by disabling cutscenes. This is in stark contrast to the upcoming The Indigo Disk DLC, which requires you to finish both the base game and The Teal Mask to complete.
Does Pokemon Scarlet & Violet’s The Teal Mask DLC Have Level Scaling?
Surprisingly, The Teal Mask DLC does have level scaling. If you have finished the base game and jump into the DLC, the wild Pokemon and enemy trainers will start in the level 50-60 range. If you begin the Teal Mask as soon as possible, then your opponents will be in the level 12 range, which is about what your party will be after completing the mandatory battles.
This approach to leveling is refreshing, as it means there’s now an incentive to start a fresh save file, as you can travel between the DLC and base game areas whenever you want. This means you can bring new teams to bear against your old opponents.
The new approach definitely won’t be in The Indigo Disk due to how it requires the player to finish the base game to continue. You’re not just restricted to one save file, however, as you can create a new account on your Nintendo Switch and play a new game on it, as the DLC will be unlocked across all of your accounts, allowing you to do a dual Teal Mask & base game run.
It’s surprising that The Pokemon Company went to the effort of including level scaling for the DLC, considering it’s absent in the base game. Fans had hoped that they would be allowed to tackle the Gym Leaders in any order, but they’re level-gated, restricting your approach. Hopefully, The Teal Mask’s approach to level scaling is a sign of better things to come.