Grimmsnarl - Moveset & Best Build for Ranked Battle | Pokemon Sword and Shield

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Grimmsnarl.png

This is a strategy guide for using Grimmsnarl in competitive play for the games Pokemon Sword and Shield. Read on for tips on the best Nature, EV spreads, Movesets, Builds, and Held Items to use with Grimmsnarl, as well as its strengths and weak points.

Grimmsnarl - Related Articles
Pokeball Icon.pngEvolution and Learnset VS Battle Icon.pngBuild for Ranked Battle Gigantamax GrimmsnarlGigantamax Grimmsnarl

Basic Information for Grimmsnarl

Types and Abilities

Pokemon Type 1 Type 2
Dark Type Fairy Type
Abilities
Prankster Gives priority to a status move.
Frisk The Pokemon can check a foe's held item.
Pickpocket (Hidden) Steals an item when hit by another Pokemon.

Type Defenses

Type
Takes 4x damage
-
Takes 2x damage
Pokemon Poison Image Pokemon Steel Image Pokemon Fairy Image
Takes 0.5x damage
Pokemon Ghost Image
Takes 1/4x damage
Pokemon Dark Image
Takes 0x damage
Pokemon Psychic Image Pokemon Dragon Image

What is Type Effectiveness?

Base Stats

HP Attack Defense Sp. Atk Sp. Def Speed
95 120 65 95 75 60

Best Nature for Grimmsnarl

Best Natures
Jolly
+Spd, -SpAtk
Adamant
+Atk, -SpAtk
Impish
+Def, -SpAtk

What are Natures?

Moveset & Best Build for Grimmsnarl

Wall Builder Moveset & Best Build

Nature Bold (+Def, -Atk)
EVs HP 232 / Def. 252 / SpDef. 12 / Spd. 12
Final Stat Values HP 199 / Def. 128 / Sp.Def. 97 / Spd. 82
Ability Prankster
Held Item Light Clay
Moveset Reflect
Light Screen
Taunt
Foul Play

This is the most common Wall Builder set for Grimmsnarl currently found in the metagame. With its Prankster Ability, Grimmsnarl gets priority for status moves, allowing it to set up Reflect or Light Screen before its opponent can attack. Foul Play is primarily used to handle Excadrill, which can use Brick Break to destroy Reflect and Light Screen.

The 12 EVs in Speed are used here to allow it to outspeed a similar Prankster Grimmsnarl with only 4 EVs in Speed.

Other Viable Moves

Thunder Wave After you've set up Reflect and Light Screen, add this on top to weaken fast opponents and support teammates who switch in.

Lagging Tail Moveset & Best Build

Nature Impish (+Def, -SpAtk)
EVs HP 244 / Atk. 4 / Def. 124 / Sp.Def. 116 / Spd. 20
Final Stat Values HP 201 / Atk. 141 / Def. 111 / Sp.Def. 110 / Spd. 83
Ability Prankster
Held Item Lagging Tail
Moveset Foul Play
Spirit Break
Thunder Wave
Trick

Grimmsnarl's Ability Prankster allows it to use Trick right off the bat, and switch its item with the opponent's. This will force the opponent to hold Lagging Tail, an item which causes its holder to move last every turn. This technique can be used to stifle a fast attacker.

Defensively, this set is built to be able to survive 2 Iron Tails from Excadrill. It can also take out an Excadrill with max EVs in Attack and Speed, so it can generally handle that matchup without a problem.

It can even survive a Max Steelspike from Hydreigon at the highest possible random value, so use Spirit Break against it twice to definitively take it down.

Its 20 EVs in Speed are placed to allow it to outspeed a similar Prankster Grimmsnarl with 12 EVs in Speed.

Other Viable Moves

Sucker Punch If the opponent chooses an attacking move, it will hit first without fail.

Attacker Moveset & Best Build

Nature Jolly (+Spd, -SpAtk)
EVs HP 4 / Atk. 252 / Spd. 252
Final Stat Values HP 171 / Atk. 172 / Def. 85 / Sp.Def. 95 / Spd. 123
Ability Prankster
Held Item Life Orb
Moveset Sucker Punch
Play Rough
Taunt
Substitute

Can be used to corner Pokemon such as Toxapex and Galarian Corsola who rely on Status moves. It can also use Substitute to wear down and waste the opponent's Dynamax turns.

Other Viable Moves

Thunder Wave After you force something to switch with Taunt, throw this to hit the Pokemon that switches in. It's also effective for slowing down fast Pokemon and limiting their effectiveness.
Bulk Up For raising your own stats to knock out the opponent. Takes advantage of Grimmsnarl's already high Attack, while covering for its low Defense.
Superpower A Fighting-type option for using Grimmsnarl as a straight-up hard hitter without the fuss.

Moveset & Best Build for Gigantamax Grimmsnarl

Bulk Up Moveset and Best Build

Gigantamax Grimmsnarl

Nature Adamant (+Atk, -SpAtk)
EV Spread HP 244 / Atk. 252 / Def. 4 / Sp.Def. 4 / Spd. 4
Final Stat Values HP 201 / Atk. 189 / Def. 86 / Sp.Atk. 103 / Sp.Def. 96 / Spd. 81
Ability Prankster
Held Item Leftovers
Moveset Sucker Punch
Spirit Break
Bulk Up
Substitute

These values are from base stats and ideal EVs, excluding external factors.

In its Gigantamax form and with its HP set to an odd number, this build is designed to maximize HP and Attack. With Bulk Up, Attack and Defense will remain high, even when not in Gigantamax form.

HP is adjusted to an odd number to yield the highest possible value when Dynamaxing. EVs are placed primarily in HP and Attack, with an emphasis on fighting while Dynamaxed. By using Bulk Up, it can boost its Attack and Defense, allowing it to remain useful even after its Dynamax ends.

How to Get Gigantamax Grimmsnarl

Gigantamax Grimmsnarl's G-Max Move

Move Type Effect
G-Max Snooze Pokemon Dark Image A Dark-type attack that Gigantamax Grimmsnarl use. The user lets loose a huge yawn that lulls the targets into falling asleep on the next turn.

To use G-Max Snooze, place at least one Dark-type Move on Grimmsnarl, and it will change into G-Max Snooze when Dynamaxed.

Other Viable Moves

Fire Punch Allows it to hold its own against an increased range of foes.
Power Whip Helps take down defensive foes like Gastrodon and Quagsire.

How to Use Grimmsnarl Effectively

Take advantage of Prankster

The Ability Prankster allows non-attacking moves to become priority moves, allowing Grimmsnarl to act first to prevent its opponents from doing what they want. It can use Taunt to prevent the use of Status Moves, as well as Trick to switch away its Choice Item and force its limitation on its opponent. To play effectively with Grimmsnarl, you will need to read and control your opponent's movements.

Bulk Up and Fight!

In addition to using status moves to limit your opponent's options, Grimmsnarl can use Bulk Up to power up its Attack and Defense, which Prankster allows it to accomplish before the opponent makes a move. With its already high base stats, Grimmsnarl can build up quickly and take its foes down.

Best Pokemon to Use With Grimmsnarl

Take Advantage of Grimmsnarl's Setup Potential

Take advantage of Grimmsnarl's Thunder Wave, Taunt, and Trick moves to give these Pokemon optimal opportunities to build up and attack. With the opponent's potential crippled, switch out to these Pokemon who can use moves to boost their own stats, then Dynamax and rip through opponents before they're able to recover.

Remember that Grimmsnarl is also a powerful attacker, so it's also viable to attack with Grimmsnarl first and wear down the opponent's HP before switching in one of these Pokemon to finish the job.

Having a Pokemon hold Weakness Policy while under the effects of Grimmsnarl's Light Screen or Reflect is another way to up the ante, as it can allow them to survive a super-effective hit without fainting and gain the coveted Weakness Policy boost.

Pokemon Description
Togekiss ImageTogekiss ・Increase Sp.Atk. with Nasty Plot.
・When Dynamaxed, increase Spd. with Max Airstream.
Best Ranked Battle Build for Togekiss
Dracozolt ImageDracozolt Hustle boosts its Attack, with its repercussions removed by Dynamaxing.
・Attack first with Bolt Beak to deal double damage.
Best Ranked Battle Build for Dracozolt
Dragapult ImageDragapult ・Easy to attack first with its high Spd.
・When Dynamaxed, lower your opponent's Atk. with Max Wyrmwind's and their Def. with Max Phantasm.
Best Ranked Battle Build for Dragapult
Excadrill ImageExcadrill ・When Dynamaxed, Increase Def. with Max SteeIspike and increase Sp.Def. with Max Quake.
Best Ranked Battle Build for Excadrill
Clefable ImageClefable ・Attack while increasing Def. with Calm Mind and Cosmic Power.
・Wide range of move types to counter against any opponent.
Snorlax ImageSnorlax ・Increase Atk. and Def. with Curse.
・Attack while recovering HP with G-Max Replenish.
Best Ranked Battle Build for Snorlax

Counters for Grimmsnarl

Wall with a defensive Steel-type

Grimmsnarl's primary attacking moves are Sucker Punch and Play Rough, which Steel-type Pokemon can resist. A defensive Steel-type can put Grimmsnarl at a loss for Moves.

Best Pokemon to Use

Pokemon Description
Ferrothorn ImageFerrothorn Ranking: ★★★★★
・Since Grimmsnarl uses priority moves, its slow Speed doesn't make a difference
・Can be useful against most foes even if Grimmsnarl switches out
Best Ranked Battle Build for Ferrothorn
Duraludon ImageDuraludon Ranking: ★★★★☆
・Can field Grimmsnarl's attacks with high Defense
・As a Special Attacker, it's not bothered by Bulk Up's Defense boosts

Counter with Incineroar

With its Dark typing, Incineroar nullifies the effects of status moves boosted by Prankster, like Thunder Wave. Gain an Atk. stat advantage by lowering Grimmsnarl's Atk. with Intimidate, and force it to drop its usual status move runaround and resort to an all-out brawl.

This information assumes that Grimmsnarl is using its Prankster Ability.

Incineroar

Pokemon Description
Incineroar ImageIncineroar Ranking: ★★★★★
・Fairy-types are not threats, due to the perfect Fire/Dark-type combination.
Brick Break destroys Light Screen and Reflect from Grimmsnarl's Wall Builder moveset.
Best Ranked Battle Build for Incineroar

Best Teams Featuring Grimmsnarl

All our Best Teams are available for free rental, and usable in Ranked Battle with no EV Training necessary.
All Best Teams for Ranked Battle

Best Durant Team for Ranked Battle

Best Durant Team for Ranked Battle
Grimmsnarl ImageGrimmsnarl Durant ImageDurant Ditto ImageDitto
Hydreigon ImageHydreigon Mimikyu ImageMimikyu Snorlax ImageSnorlax

This is the team that made Durant, a minor Pokemon unseen in the metagame, into a superstar. Even ignoring all the trends, it's notable for its highly aggressive attacking style.

You can try out this team to get a feel for using Grimmsnarl together with Durant, or even use it as your go-to team if it fits your play style.
Best Durant Team for Ranked Battle

Best Team for Ranked Battle from a World Top 3 Player

Best Team for Ranked Battle from a World Top 3 Player
Dragapult ImageDragapult Excadrill ImageExcadrill Grimmsnarl ImageGrimmsnarl
Togekiss ImageTogekiss Snorlax ImageSnorlax Cloyster ImageCloyster

This is the primary set used by a former World Top 3 from a previous game in the series. Despite that daunting promise, it's an easy set to use for beginners, as the order to use Pokemon and which moves should be used are readily apparent. Not only that, but the set is carefully sculpted to be highly effective and dangerous even in the upper echelons of the Master Ball tier.
Best Team for Ranked Battle from a World Top 3 Player

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