Best Pokemon Tier List For Ranked Battle: May 2021 | Pokemon Sword and Shield

We're updating with new information for both newly revealed Pokemon games!
Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl
Pokemon Legends: Arceus

Ranked Battle Series 9 Begins!

Our Tier List has been updated with the latest rules for Ranked Battle Series 9!

Tier List for Ranked Battle.png
This is our tier list for the strongest Pokemon for Ranked Battle in the games Pokemon Sword and Shield. If you're planning on getting into Ranked Battle, but don't know what Pokemon to start with, this list will get you started in the right direction. Read on for details about which Pokemon the strongest trainers are using in online play.

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Legendary Pokemon Excluded in Series 9

With the start of Ranked Battle Series 9, Legendary Pokemon are once again excluded from competitive play!

Ranked Battle Series 9 | Rules and Legal Pokemon

All Excluded Legendary Pokemon

Tier List Updates as of 2021/5/10

Tier Changes
Tier 1 Cinderace
Tier 2 Garchomp
Dracovish
Tier 3 Hippowdon ↓
Tier 4 Rhyperior
Tapu Koko New
Delisted Swampert ↓

Best Pokemon Tier List For Ranked Battle

This tier list is based on the Pokemon HOME Pokemon Rankings for Series 9, beginning on May 1st.

Click a Pokemon to jump to their explanation.

Tier 1
Zapdos.pngZapdos Cinderace.pngCinderace Mimikyu.pngMimikyu
Tier 2
Porygon2.pngPorygon2 Tapu Fini.pngTapu Fini Landorus Therian.pngLandorus (Therian Forme)
Urshifu Single Strike Style.pngUrshifu Single-Strike Style Urshifu Rapid Strike Style.pngUrshifu Rapid-Strike Style Dragapult.pngDragapult
Garchomp.pngGarchomp Dracovish.pngDracovish Dragonite.pngDragonite
Tier 3
Hippowdon.pngHippowdon Toxapex Icon.pngToxapex Ferrothorn Icon.pngFerrothorn
Celesteela.pngCelesteela Rillaboom.pngRillaboom Tyranitar Icon.pngTyranitar
Nihilego.pngNihilego Rhyperior Icon.pngRhyperior Excadrill Icon.pngExcadrill
Tier 4
Lapras Icon.pngLapras Kartana.pngKartana Regieleki.pngRegieleki
Glastrier.pngGlastrier Pheromosa.pngPheromosa Galarian Moltres.pngGalarian Moltres
Naganadel.pngNagandel Aegislash Icon.pngAegislash Tapu Koko.pngTapu Koko

Best Pokemon - Tier 1

Ranked Battle Series 8's metagame continues the previous trend of hyper offense and quick matches, with a greater focus on utilizing Dynamax Leads to set up favorable terrains, stat changes, as well as establish early-game offensive momentum.

Zapdos

Moveset & Best Build for Zapdos
Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread Sp.Atk 252 / Sp.Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 165 / Def 105 / Sp.Atk 177 / Sp.Def 111 / Spd 167
Ability Static
Held Item Life Orb
Moveset Rising Voltage
Hurricane
Heat Wave
Roost

Zapdos' Strong Points

Zapdos' flagship defensive set makes a return in Sword & Shield. A combination of good dual typing, excellent support moves, and great abilities make it an excellent check to Fighting-type Pokemon and physical sweepers in general. It's also the best answer to its Galarian counterpart, who can't do much against it with its STAB moves.

Cinderace

Moveset & Best Build for Cinderace
Nature Jolly (+Spd, -SpAtk)
EV Spread HP 4 / Atk 252 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 156 / Atk 168 / Def 95 / Sp.Def 95 / Spd 188
Ability Libero
Held Item Life Orb
Moveset Pyro Ball
High Jump Kick
Sucker Punch
Bounce

Cinderace's Strong Points

With its new Hidden Ability Libero, Cinderace is now able to use every attack with STAB, giving 1.5x boost to all its attacks. In essence, this liberates it from STAB, as per its name - Cinderace has no incentive to use Fire-type moves over other types, as it can gain the same bonus with any type. This makes Cinderace equally threatening no matter what type of move throws out.

On top of that, it benefits from a wide movepool to counter a variety of potential opponents.

Its exclusive attack Pyro Ball is also a potent threat that's kept it in the metagame since before Libero. A 120-power Physical Fire move, it's a perfect fit for Cinderace's stat makeup to form a highly threatening fast attacker.

Mimikyu

Moveset & Best Build for Mimikyu
Nature Jolly (+Spd, -SpAtk)
EV Spread HP 4 / Atk. 252 / Spd. 252
Final Stat Values HP 130 / Atk 142 / Def 100 / Sp.Def 126 / Spd 162
Ability Disguise
Held Item Life Orb
Moveset Swords Dance
Play Rough
Shadow Sneak
Shadow Claw

Mimikyu's Strong Points

With its Ability Disguise, Mimikyu is able to take one attack with damage equal to just 10% of its maximum HP. This ensures that Mimikyu can use at least one move in any situation, allowing it to pull off a Swords Dance without fail. With its Attack boosted by 2 stages for free at the onset, there's few and far between a foe that can take its Dynamax attacks head on.

Mimikyu remains at the top of the metagame despite the reintroduction of several powerhouses in previous generations. The reintroduction of several pseudo-legendary Dragon-types mean that Mimikyu can now fill the role of Dragon counter - switching into a predicted Outrage or Draco Meteor and setting up with Swords Dance..

Best Pokemon - Tier 2

Although they can't top the Tier 1 Pokemon's elite status, the Pokemon in Tier 2 are essential to Ranked Battle

Porygon2

Moveset & Best Build for Porygon2
Nature Bold
EV Spread HP 244 / Def 252 / Spd 12
Final Stat Values HP 191 / Def 156 / Sp.Atk 125 / Sp.Def 115 / Spd 82
Ability Trace
Held Item Eviolite
Moveset Recover
Ice Beam
Tri-Attack
Discharge

Porygon2's Strong Points

Porygon2's great natural bulk that's further boosted by Eviolite makes it a great defensive Pokemon in the current metagame. It's Trace Ability further boosts its defensive prowess, as it's able to copy an opposing Pokemon's Ability such as Heatran's Flash Fire.

Tapu Fini

Moveset & Best Build for Tapu Fini
Nature Bold (+Def, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Def. 252 / Spd. 4
Final Stat Values HP 177 / Def. 183 / Sp.Atk. 115 / Sp.Def. 150 / Spd. 106
Ability Misty Surge
Held Item Sitrus Berry
Leftovers
Moveset Surf
Moonblast
Nature's Madness
Taunt

Tapu Fini's Strong Points

Tapu Fini is shaping up to be the most ubiquitious Bulky Water in the new metagame. Apart from providing Misty Terrain support with its Ability, it's also an excellent defensive Pokemon that can Taunt opposing walls or cut down their HP with Nature's Madness.

Landorus (Therian Forme)

Moveset & Best Build for Landorus (Therian Forme)
Nature Impish (+Def, -Sp Atk)
EV Spread HP 244 / Def 252 / Spd 12
Final Stat Value HP 195 / Atk 165 / Def 156 / Sp.Def 100 / Spd 113
Ability Intimidate
Held Item Figy Berry
Sitrus Berry
Rocky Helmet
Moveset Earthquake
Rock Tomb
U-turn
Stealth Rock

Landorus (Therian Forme)'s Strong Points

Landorus Therian Forme's flagship offensive pivot set remains its most effective set, and its reintroduction pushed several weaker physical sweepers off the Metagame. As the all-in-one check to physical sweepers, Landorus also fills the role of a hazard setter with Stealth Rock.

It can also go on the offensive, eschewing it's usually defensive set for a Swords Dance physical sweeper set. Landorus' versatiltiy means teams must always have a check or counter for Landorus.

Urshifu Single-Strike Style

Moveset & Best Build for Urshifu Single-Strike Style
Nature Jolly (+Spd, -SpAtk)
EV Spread HP 4 / Atk 252 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 175 / Atk 182 / Def 120 / Sp.Def 80 / Spd 163
Ability Unseen Fist
Held Item Life Orb
Moveset Wicked Blow
Close Combat
Iron Head
Aerial Ace

Urshifu Single-Strike Style's Strong Points

Single-Strike Style Urshifu has great neutral coverage with its dual STAB, allowing it to hit the Ghost-type Pokemon common in the current metagame.

Like its Rapid-Strike counterpart, it's also a popular choice for lead Dynamax. Access to Aerial Ace allows it to boost its team speed with Max Airstream, while Max Knuckle further boosts its physical attack.

Urshifu Rapid-Strike Style

Moveset & Best Build for Urshifu Rapid-Strike Style
Nature Jolly
EV Spread Atk 252 / Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 175 / Atk 182 / Def 121 / SpDef 80 / Spd 163
Ability Unseen Fist
Held Item Choice Band
Moveset Surging Strikes
Close Combat
Aerial Ace
U-turn

Urshifu Rapid-Strike Style's Strong Points

Urshifu in its Rapid-Strike Style can break through Focus Sash and Mimikyu's Disguise with its multi-hit Surging Strikes, a hugely powerful move in its own right.

When Gigantamaxed, its G-Max Rapid Flow can hit through Max Guard and Protect, giving it an advantage in a Dynamax showdown.

Dragapult

Moveset & Best Build for Dragapult
Nature Naive (+Spd, -Sp.Def)
EV Spread HP 4 / Atk 252 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 164 / Atk 172 / Def 95 / Sp.Atk 120 / Sp.Def 86 / Spd 213
Ability Clear Body
Infiltrator
Held Item Focus Sash / Choice Scarf / Choice Band / Weakness Policy
Moveset Dragon Darts
Phantom Force
Fire Blast
Steel Wing / U-turn

Dragapult's Strong Points

Dragapult is one of the few Pokemon appearing in Sword and Shield with total Base Stats in the 600+ range. As one of the fastest Pokemon in the metagame, few opponents can outspeed it without a Choice Scarf.

In addition to the recommended Moves above, it's also capable of Thunderbolt, Shadow Ball, Will-o-Wisp, and other moves to trip up your opponent. Dragapult's strength is found in its unpredictability.

Garchomp

Moveset & Best Build for Garchomp
Nature Jolly(+Spd, -Sp.Atk)
EV Spread Atk 252 / Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 183 / Atk 182 / Def 116 / Sp.Def 105 / Spd 169
Ability Rough Skin
Held Item Choice Scarf
Moveset Outrage
Earthquake
Stone Edge
Fire Fang

Garchomp's Strong Points

Although it's no longer the fastest Dragon-type in the metagame, Garchomp is still a powerful threat that teams need to have an answer for. It's one of the few attackers that can overpower Toxapex with its Swords Dance set, and there are even variants that make use of Scale Shot to surprise its checks and counters!

Dracovish

Moveset & Best Build for Dracovish
Nature Jolly(+Spd, -Sp.Atk)
EV Spread Atk 252 / Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 165 / Atk 142 / Def 121 / Sp.Def 100 / Spd 139
Ability Strong Jaw or Sand Rush
Held Item Choice Scarf
Choice Band
Moveset Fishious Rend
Outrage
Low Kick
Sleep Talk

Dracovish's Strong Points

Although no longer the offensive titan as it was when the game was first released, Dracovish remains a threat that all teams should take into consideration. It's a powerful wallbreaker that can power through defensive Pokemon with a combination of Choice Scarf and Fishious Rend.

Dragonite

Moveset & Best Build for Galarian Darmanitan
Nature Jolly (+Spd, -Sp.Atk)
EV Spread HP 4 / Atk 252 /Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 167 / Atk 186 / Def 115 / Sp.Def 120 / Spd 145
Ability Multiscale
Held Item Lum Berry
Life Orb
Weakness Policy
Moveset Outrage
Dual Wingbeat
Fire Punch
Dragon Dance

Dragonite's Strong Points

Dragonite's bulk makes it a great setup sweeper with Dragon Dance, letting it fill the role of a lead sweeper or late-game sweeper.

Dragon Dance boosts Dragonite's Attack and Speed by one stage, and thanks to its ability, it will always get a chance to set up using this move. Outrage is Dragonite strongest move and can outright KO Pokemon that don't resist or are immune to Dragon-type moves. Dual Wingbeat is its secondary STAB and becomes Max Airstream during Dynamax.

It's last attacking move is Fire Punch, providing great neutral coverage and hits Steel-type Pokemon for super effective damage.

Best Pokemon - Tier 3

The Pokemon in Tier 3 are used frequently as counters to those in Tiers 1 and 2.

Hippowdon

Moveset & Best Build for Hippowdon
Nature Impish (+Def, -SpAtk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Def. 252 / Sp.Def. 4
Final Stat Values HP 215 / Atk 132 / Def 152 / Sp.Def 124 / Spd 67
Ability Sand Stream
Held Item Rocky Helmet
Moveset Slack Off
Yawn
Earthquake
Rock Tomb

Hippowdon's Strong Points

Hippowdon can use Yawn to force a switch, which can be an opportunity to set up Stealth Rock.

With its high Defense, it's also capable of taking hits from the variety of Physical attackers in the metagame.

Toxapex

Moveset & Best Build for Toxapex
Nature Bold (+Def, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Def. 252 / Sp.Atk. 4
Final Stat Values HP 157 / Def. 224 / Sp.Atk. 74 / Sp.Def. 162 / Spd. 55
Ability Regenerator
Held Item Black Sludge
Moveset Recover
Baneful Bunker
Scald
Haze

Toxapex's Strong Points

Toxapex remains one of the best all-round defensive Pokemon in the current metagame. Great mixed stats, access to reliable recovery, and support moves such as Toxic and Scald make it a formidable wall that can stand against the strongest physical attackers.

Ferrothorn

Moveset & Best Build for Ferrothorn
Nature Relaxed (+Def, -Spd)
EV Spread HP 252 / Def 252 / Sp.Def 4
Final Stat Values HP 181 / Atk 114 / Def 201 / Sp.Def 137 / Spd 36
Ability Iron Barbs
Held Item Leftovers
Rocky Helmet
Moveset Gyro Ball
Leech Seed
Bullet Seed
Protect

Ferrothorn's Strong Points

Ferrothorn's strongest suit lies in its ability to absorb physical hits. Combined with Leech Seed, it can stack up massive total damage, so in a switch-heavy battle, Ferrothorn proves to be an invaluable asset.

With only two weaknesses in Fire and Fighting, Ferrothorn's excellent Grass/Steel typing goes a long way in making it a defensive powerhouse.

Celesteela

Moveset & Best Build for Celesteela
Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 244 / Def 4 / Sp.Atk 4 / Sp.Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 203 / Def 123 / Sp.Atk 127 / Sp.Def 121 / Spd 124
Ability Beast Boost
Held Item Leftovers
Moveset Air Slash
Protect
Substitute
Leech Seed

Celesteela's Strong Points

Access to speed boost via Max Airstream makes Celesteela's Leech Seed stall even more difficult to overcome and allows it to stall even more Pokemon.

Rillaboom

Moveset & Best Build for Rillaboom
Nature Jolly (+Spd, -SpAtk)
EV Spread HP 4 / Atk 252 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 176 / Atk 177 / Def 110 / Sp.Def 90 / Spd 150
Ability Grassy Surge
Held Item Choice Scarf / Choice Band
Moveset U-turn
Drum Beating
Knock Off
Superpower

Rillaboom's Strong Points

Rillaboom has both a high Attack as well as formidable Defense, making it able to hold its own in all-out brawls with Physical attackers.

With its new Hidden Ability, Grassy Surge, and a new Tutor Move Grassy Glide from The Isle of Armor, Rillaboom is able to set up Grassy Terrain and attack with priority from the first turn.

Although its low Speed has often been its downside, this combination allows it to bypass Speed altogether to hit fast attackers first with STAB and the damage boost from Grassy Terrain.

Tyranitar

Moveset & Best Build for Tyranitar
Nature Adamant
EV Spread HP 252 / Atk 204 / Def 20 / Sp.Def 20 / Spd 12
Final Stat Values HP 207 / Atk 198 / Def 133 / Sp.Def 123 / Spd 83
Ability Sand Stream
Held Item Weakness Policy
Moveset Stone Edge
Crunch
Iron Head
Rock Blast

Tyranitar's Strong Points

Thanks to the Special Defense boost it gets from Sandstream, Tyranitar is an effective user of Weakness Policy - surviving a super effective special attack and getting the attack boost.

Tyranitar's natural bulk also makes it a good Dynamax Lead, especially in dedicated Sand teams. While it has to contend with stronger Pokemon reintroduced in the current metagame, The Armor Pokemon is still a competent sweeper if used in the right team.

Nihilego

Moveset & Best Build for Nihilego
Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 84 / Sp.Atk 172 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 195 / Def 67 / Sp.Atk 169 / Sp.Def 151 / Spd 170
Ability Beast Boost
Held Item Power Herb
Moveset Meteor Beam
Sludge Wave
Thunderbolt
Grass Knot

Nihilego's Strong Points

Nihilego is a glass cannon that boasts unique coverage with its Rock/Poison dual STAB. Access to Meteor Beam now gives it a way to boost its Special Attack, as well as a stronger Rock-type STAB.

Rhyperior

Moveset & Best Build for Rhyperior
Nature Adamant (+Atk, -Sp.Atk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Atk 252 / Def 4
Final Stat Values HP 222 / Ark 211 / Def 151 / Sp. Def 75 / Spd 60
Ability Solid Rock
Held Item Weakness Policy
Moveset Earthquake
Rock Blast
Fire Punch
Superpower

Rhyperior's Strong Points

With great defenses and Solid Rock, Rhyperior is an excellent choice for a Weakness Policy set. It can further boost its bulkiness by Dynamaxing on a predicted super effective attack, and then sweep the next turn with its boosted Max Moves.

Excadrill

Moveset & Best Build for Excadrill
Nature Jolly (+Spd, -SpAtk)
EV Spread 252 Atk. / 212 Spd. / 40 HP
Final Stat Values HP 190 / Atk. 187 / Def. 80 / Sp.Def. 85 / Spd. 148
Ability Mold Breaker
Held Item Choice Scarf
Moveset Iron Head
Earthquake
Rock Slide
Fissure

Excadrill's Strong Points

By making it hold a Choice Scarf, it can outspeed most Pokemon who are not holding one, and often finish its opponent off before taking major damage.

Best Pokemon - Tier 4

When Tier 4 Pokemon come out, we can start to see a bit of individuality in each team. The presence of these Pokemon shows what Tier 1 or 2 Pokemon the user is afraid of. Tier 4 boasts Pokemon who are strong on their own, those who are strong against those in Tiers 1 to 3, and those who are a pain to deal with for all other Pokemon.

Lapras

Moveset & Best Build for Lapras
Nature Modest (+Sp.Atk, -Atk)
EV Spread Def 236 / Sp.Atk 252 / Spd 20
Final Stat Values HP 205 / Def 130 / Sp.Atk 150 / Sp.Def 115 / Spd 83
Ability Shell Armor
Held Item Weakness Policy
Moveset Freeze-Dry
Sparkling Aria
Sheer Cold
Thunder

Lapras' Strong Points

By switching in on a super-effective move, this set gets offensive boosts thanks to Weakness Policy. When partnered with Lapras' generous bulk, this Pokemon becomes a great all-rounder who can take damage and deal it back.

Kartana

Moveset & Best Build for Kartana
EV Spread Atk 252 / Sp.Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 134 / Atk 233 / Def 151 / Sp.Def 52 / Spd 177
Ability Beast Boost
Held Item Focus Sash
Moveset Leaf Blade
Smart Strike
Sacred Sword
Aerial Ace

Kartana's Strong Points

Access to Max Airstream when it uses Dynamax makes Kartana a powerful lead sweeper, with its Ability making it stronger the more Pokemon it KOs.

Regieleki

Moveset & Best Build for Regieleki
Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread Def. 172 / Sp.Atk 252 / Spd. 84
Final Stat Values HP 155 / Def 92 / Sp.Atk 152 / Sp.Def 70 / Spd 254
Ability Transistor
Held Item Light Clay
Moveset Thunder Cage
Volt Switch
Reflect
Light Screen

Regieleki's Strong Points

Regieleki is the fastest Pokemon in the metagame, with Ninjask requiring a Choice Scarf to outspeed it. Although it's most commonly used as a mono Electric sweeper, it can also fill the role of a support Pokemon by setting up dual screens, Reflect and Light Screen, for the team.

Glastrier

Moveset & Best Build for Glastrier
Nature Adamanat (+Atk, -Sp.Atk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Atk 252 / Def 4
Final Stat Values HP 207 / Atk 216 / Def 151 / Sp.Def 130 / Spd 50
Ability Chilling Neigh
Held Item Sitrus Berry
Lum Berry
Moveset Swords Dance
Avalanche
High Horsepower
Body Press

Glastrier's Strong Points

Glastrier's low speed makes it a great user of Avalanche, surprising its usual checks and counters by surviving a blow and retaliating with a powerful Ice-type Move.

Pheromosa

Moveset & Best Build for Pheromosa
Nature Jolly (+Spd, -Sp.Atk)
EV Spread HP 4 / Atk. 252 / Spd. 252
Final Stat Values HP 147 / Atk 189 / Def 57 / Sp.Def 57 / Spd 223
Ability Beast Boost
Held Item Focus Sash
Life Orb
Moveset Close Combat
U-Turn
Poison Jab
Triple Axel

Pheromosa's Strong Points

Pheromosa remains the most effective mixed attacker in the metagame, and is one of the few physical attackers that don't fear Landorus. Although it's a glass cannon at best, it's a Pokemon that can easily sweep teams if left unchecked.

Galarian Moltres

Moveset & Best Build for Galarian Moltres
Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread Def 4 / Sp.Atk 252 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 165 / Def 111 / Sp.Atk 152 / Sp.Def 145 / Spd 156
Ability Berserk
Held Item Weakness Policy
Sitrus Berry
Moveset Nasty Plot
Fiery Wrath
Hurricane
Taunt

Galarian Moltres' Strong Points

Thanks to its great special bulk, Galarian Moltres has plenty of chances to switch in and set up with Nasty Plot and overpower opposing teams with flinch-inducing Fiery Wrath.

Aegislash

Moveset & Best Build for Aegislash
Nature Quiet
EV Spread HP 252 / Sp.Atk. 252 / Sp.Def. 4
Final Stat Values HP 167 / Atk. 70 / Def. 160 / Sp.Atk. 112 / Sp.Def. 161 / Spd. 72
Ability Stance Change
Held Item Weakness Policy
Moveset Shadow Ball
Sacred Sword
Shadow Sneak
King's Shield

Aegislash's Strong Points

With its effective type combination of Steel and Ghost, and its Stance Change ability, Aegislash is versatile as an attacker or defender. In its Shield Form, it can survive even super effective hits, activating its Weakness Policy and giving it even greater firepower.

Naganadel

Moveset & Best Build for Naganadel
Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread Sp.Atk 252 / Sp.Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 148 / Def 93 / Sp.Atk 179 / Sp.Def 94 / Spd 190
Ability Beast Boost
Held Item Life Orb
Moveset Draco Meteor
Sludge Wave
Fire Blast
Nasty Plot

Naganadel's Strong Points

Naganadel is a fearsome setup sweeper in both Singles and Doubles. High speed and special attack, as well as a speed boosting ability, make it a great Dynamax lead that that's difficult to revenge kill once it gets enough boosts.

Tapu Koko

Moveset & Best Build for Tapu Koko
Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread Sp.Atk 252 / Sp.Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 145 / Def 105 / Sp.Atk 147 / Sp.Def 96 / Spd 200
Ability Electric Surge
Held Item Focus Sash
Life Orb
Choice Specs
Choice Scarf
Moveset Thunderbolt
Dazzling Gleam
Volt Switch
Grass Knot

Tapu Koko's Strong Points

While not as ubiquitous as it is in Doubles, Tapu Koko carves a niche in the Singles Metagame as the only Electric Terrain setter that doesn't need to Dynamax. With its respectable Special Attack stat and great speed, it can also threaten some of the most common threats in the current metagame such as Urshifu's Single-Strike and Rapid-Strike Style, Garchomp, and Tapu Fini.

How to Make the Best Team

There is no unbeatable team

CinderacePyroBall.jpeg
Unlike in previous Pokemon metagames, there is no party or Pokemon that can defeat anything used against it. However, there are teams which can win consistently, as long as the right Pokemon are chosen for the battle.

Party composition is key

GalarianDarmanitan.jpeg
Battles are not won by individual Pokemon. The team as a whole must be constructed to balance type strengths and weaknesses, and have built-in strategies to defeat opponents. In the current metagame, crafting a party that works together is more essential than ever.

Start off with a Rental Party

It's no easy feat to make a killer team from scratch. It can be a good idea to start off with rental teams, which any player can download and use in Ranked Battle. This can help to understand how a team is built, how to select which Pokemon to use in a battle, and how to use the party's built-in strategies in battle to rack up wins.

Our Best Teams guide has all teams available for rental, so you can try out your favorites to get a feel for some of the most popular Pokemon and strategies in the metagame!
Best Teams for Ranked Battle

Trends of the Current Metagame

Most teams take advantage of Dynamax

Take advantage of Dynamax.png

The boost which Dynamaxing provides to HP, as well as the effects of each Max Move are taken heavily into consideration when planning teams for Ranked Battle. The Move Max Airstream, with its effects increasing Speed, is particularly popular, and Pokemon who can use it effectively, such as Gyarados and Corviknight, gain popularity as a result.

Weakness Policy has become increasingly useful

The advent of Dynamax has allowed Pokemon who normally would faint in one hit from moves to survive, thanks to the HP boost it provides. This grants new potential for the item Weakness Policy, which activates when a Pokemon is hit by a super effective move and grants a two-stage Attack and Special Attack boost. Pokemon who otherwise would not have been able to survive a super effective hit now have the potential to hit back harder than ever.

Weakness Policy Effects and How to Obtain It

Teams Need a Landorus Check

Landorus is ever-present in most teams, which means your team needs a powerful and fast special sweeper that can threaten the Abudance Pokemon. Some physical sweepers, like Pheromosa and Salamence, have no problem facing Landorus as they have coverage moves like Ice Beam and Hydro Pump respectively.

Prepare for Dynamax Legendary Leads

With Series 8 now allowing Legendary Pokemon, many players will often use these as Dynamax Leads to quickly establish an offensive presence at the very start of the battle.

Dynamax Leads such as Xerneas and Calyrex (Shadow Rider) have the ability to steamroll through entire teams, so it's important to have a check and counter for these!

A Focus on Hyper Offense

With so many powerful legendaries now available to use, there's a shift to a more aggressive playstyle. Even defensive teams need a powerful and fast sweeper in the team to keep up in this increasingly hyper offensive metagame!

Summary

And that's our latest Tier List of the current Best Pokemon for Ranked Battle. With new Pokemon from the Crown Tundra DLC having just been released for Ranked Battle, we're excited to see how the metagame continues to reshape in the weeks to come.

If you're thinking of getting into competitive play, or if you're having trouble winning online, some of the Pokemon in this article might be just what your team needs.

Here's hoping you can have as much fun playing online as we have. Check back soon as we continue updating with tier upsets, new additions and more individual Build pages!

Related Links

Best Builds for Ranked Battle Partial.pngAll Competitive Builds for Ranked Battle
Movesets & Best Builds for The Crown Tundra Pokemon
Galarian ArticunoGalarian Articuno Galarian ZapdosGalarian Zapdos Galarian MoltresGalarian Moltres
RaikouRaikou EnteiEntei SuicuneSuicune
ArticunoArticuno ZapdosZapdos MoltresMoltres
TornadusTornadus ThundurusThundurus LandorusLandorus
Tapu KokoTapu Koko Tapu LeleTapu Lele Tapu BuluTapu Bulu
Tapu FiniTapu Fini RegielekiRegieleki RegidragoRegidrago
LatiosLatios LatiasLatias HeatranHeatran
CresseliaCresselia GlastrierGlastrier SpectrierSpectrier
NidokingNidoking SwampertSwampert DragoniteDragonite
SalamenceSalamence GarchompGarchomp MetagrossMetagross
Galarian SlowkingGalarian Slowking NihilegoNihilego NaganadelNaganadel
PheromosaPheromosa BuzzwoleBuzzwole CelesteelaCelesteela
KartanaKartana StakatakaStakataka BlazikenBlaziken
KyogreKyogre YveltalYveltal XerneasXerneas
Necrozma (Dusk Mane)Necrozma (Dusk Mane) Calyrex (Shadow Rider)Calyrex (Shadow Rider) MewtwoMewtwo
Calyrex (Ice Rider)Calyrex (Ice Rider) DialgaDialga LugiaLugia
Black KyuremBlack Kyurem ZekromZekrom Ho-OhHo-Oh
RayquazaRayquaza ZygardeZygarde ReshiramReshiram
White KyuremWhite Kyurem GroudonGroudon
Movesets & Best Builds for Isle of Armor Pokemon
ScizorScizor KingdraKingdra MagnezoneMagnezone
VolcaronaVolcarona ChanseyChansey BlisseyBlissey
TalonflameTalonflame AzumarillAzumarill Galarian SlowbroGalarian Slowbro
Porygon2Porygon2 Urshifu Single-Strike StyleUrshifu Single-Strike Style Urshifu Rapid-Strike StyleUrshifu Rapid-Strike Style
SlowbroSlowbro Alolan MarowakAlolan Marowak DragalgeDragalge
KlefkiKlefki LycanrocLycanroc AmoongussAmoonguss
PoliwrathPoliwrath PalossandPalossand MienshaoMienshao
StarmieStarmie HeracrossHeracross ComfeyComfey
Porygon-ZPorygon-Z AlakazamAlakazam
Movesets & Best Builds for New Pokemon
DragapultDragapult Galarian CorsolaGalarian Corsola ToxtricityToxtricity
Galarian DarmanitanGalarian Darmanitan CorviknightCorviknight DracovishDracovish
GrimmsnarlGrimmsnarl RillaboomRillaboom DuraludonDuraludon
CinderaceCinderace AlcremieAlcremie DracozoltDracozolt
HattereneHatterene EiscueEiscue InteleonInteleon
PincurchinPincurchin FrosmothFrosmoth ZacianZacian
SirfetchSirfetch'd FlappleFlapple CoalossalCoalossal
CentiskorchCentiskorch ArctozoltArctozolt ZarudeZarude
Galarian WeezingGalarian Weezing EternatusEternatus Indeedee (Female)Indeedee (Female)
Movesets & Best Builds for Returning Pokemon
MimikyuMimikyu Wash RotomWash Rotom GyaradosGyarados
FerrothornFerrothorn AegislashAegislash ExcadrillExcadrill
TyranitarTyranitar HydreigonHydreigon Heat RotomHeat Rotom
ArcanineArcanine MamoswineMamoswine ToxapexToxapex
TogekissTogekiss CloysterCloyster DurantDurant
SnorlaxSnorlax CharizardCharizard SylveonSylveon
LucarioLucario HippowdonHippowdon UmbreonUmbreon
ConkeldurrConkeldurr QuagsireQuagsire GastrodonGastrodon
LaprasLapras WhimsicottWhimsicott RhyperiorRhyperior
GoodraGoodra HaxorusHaxorus GlaceonGlaceon
Mow RotomMow Rotom Type: NullType: Null GengarGengar
MiloticMilotic GardevoirGardevoir FlygonFlygon
ChandelureChandelure LanturnLanturn TorkoalTorkoal
BisharpBisharp SeismitoadSeismitoad SilvallySilvally
Butterfree Butterfree PrimarinaPrimarina IncineroarIncineroar
BlastoiseBlastoise DecidueyeDecidueye VenusaurVenusaur
DarmanitanDarmanitan Alolan NinetalesAlolan Ninetales GothitelleGothitelle
CrawdauntCrawdaunt ClefableClefable ReuniclusReuniclus
Kommo-oKommo-o TerrakionTerrakion CobalionCobalion
VirizionVirizion NoivernNoivern Fan RotomFan Rotom
ToxicroakToxicroak PelipperPelipper JellicentJellicent
CelebiCelebi ClefairyClefairy HitmontopHitmontop
DiggersbyDiggersby DittoDitto RaichuRaichu
Movesets & Best Builds for Gigantamax Pokemon
Gigantamax GrimmsnarlGigantamax Grimmsnarl Gigantamax SnorlaxGigantamax Snorlax Gigantamax CharizardGigantamax Charizard
Competitive Pokemon Battle Guides
Tier List.pngTier List Best Builds.pngBest Builds Series 8 Tier List Contenders Icon.pngSeries 8 Tier List Contenders
Doubles Tier List Icon.pngDoubles Tier List Competitive Team Building Icon.pngTeam Building Rental team.pngRental Teams

Comment

23 pokemon player2021about 2 months

>>22 -shudder bug -solar beam (TM) -confuse ray -magic coat (this is just my godly orbeetle moveset pls use it)

22 pokemon player2021about 2 months

>>13 i have made a moveset for orbeetle

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