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

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

Blastoise - Related Articles
Pokeball Icon.pngEvolution and Learnset VS Battle Icon.pngBuild for Ranked Battle Gigantamax BlastoiseGigantamax Blastoise

Basic Information for Blastoise

Types and Abilities

Pokemon Type 1 Type 2
Water Type
Torrent Powers up Water-type moves in a pinch.
Rain Dish (Hidden) The Pokemon gradually regains HP in rain.

Type Defenses

Takes 4x damage
Takes 2x damage
Pokemon Grass Image Pokemon Electric Image
Takes 0.5x damage
Pokemon Fire Image Pokemon Water Image Pokemon Ice Image Pokemon Steel Image
Takes 1/4x damage
Takes 0x damage

What is Type Effectiveness?

Base Stats

HP Attack Defense Sp. Atk Sp. Def Speed
79 83 100 85 105 78

Best Nature for Blastoise

Best Natures
(+Sp.Atk, -Atk)
(+Spd, -Atk)

Strategies for Blastoise

Dynamax Shell Smash Special Attacker Moveset & Best Build

Nature Modest (+Sp.Atk, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 4 / Sp.Atk 252 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 155 / Def 120 / Sp.Atk 150 / Sp.Def 125 / Spd 130
Ability Torrent
Held Item White Herb
Life Orb
Focus Sash
Moveset Shell Smash
Ice Beam
Hydro Cannon
Flash Cannon

Blastoise makes an effective Dynamax sweeper thanks to access to one of the best boosting moves in the game, as well great Max Moves courtest of its high base power attacks.

About Blastoise's Moves

Shell Smash is the crux of this set, boosting Blastoise' Attack, Special Attack, and Speed by 2 stages at the cost of lowering both of its Defense and Sp.Defense by 2 stages.This move also becomes Max Guard during Dynamax.

Ice Beam is its main coverage moves and allows Blastoise to hit Grass, Flying, and Dragon-types that are very common in the current metagame.

Hydro Cannon is its main STAB move and is best used during Dynamax to remove the recharge after successfully using the move, becoming Max Geyser.

Alternatively, you can Gigantamax Blastoise instead, with its Hydro Cannon becoming G-Max Cannonade. While this move doesn't generate Rain, it damages non Water-type Pokemon for 4 turns at the end of every turn instead.

Rounding off its coverage is Flash Cannon, which allows Blastoise to hit Fairy-types for super effective damage. It also has a 10% chance to lower the opponent's Special Defense stat.

About Blastoise's EV Spread

We're using a simple EV spread with full investment in Sp.Atk and Speed so that Blastoise can hit as hard and as fast as possible. The remaining 4 EVs are placed in HP to round off its bulk.

About Blastoise's Ability

Torrent is the preferred Ability for this Blastoise build. When Blastoise's HP drops to 1/3 of its maximum HP, it's Physical and Special Water-type moves increase in power by 50%.

About Blastoise's Held Item

Blastoise has several options for held item.

White Herb reverses Blastoise's negative stat stages, essentially removing the Defense and Sp.Defense drop from Shell Smash while still getting the Attack and Sp.Atk Boost.

Life Orb boosts the power of Blastoise's moves by 30% at the cost of recoil damage.

Focus Sash lets Blastoise survive a super effective hit and guarantees that it can get a Shell Smash boost on its turn.

Other Viable Moves

Hydro Pump A weaker but more reliable Water-type STAB that Blastoise can use outside of Dynamax.
Dark Pulse Becomes Max Darkness during Dynamax, which lowers the opposing team's Special Defense by 1 stage.
Hyper Beam Becomes Max Strike during Dynamax, which lowers the opposing team's Speed by 1 stage.
Blizzard A stronger Ice-type coverage move. When used during Dynamax, it becomes Max Hailstorm and generates Hail for 5 turns.
Focus Blast A very powerful special Fighting-type move but has low accuracy. Useful for hitting Steel-types like Ferrothorn.
Terrain Pulse A niche move that gets a power boost and changes type depending on the current terrain on the field.
Surf A weaker but more reliable Water-type STAB with 100% accuracy.
Scald A weaker Water-type STAB but has a 30% chance to inflict a burn.

Choice Scarf Moveset & Best Build

Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 4 / Sp.Atk 252 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 155 / Def 120 / Sp.Atk 137 / Sp.Def 125 / Spd 143
Ability Torrent
Held Item Choice Scarf
Moveset Water Spout
Ice Beam
Dark Pulse

Blastoise makes an effective Choice Scarf and is capable of using high-powered Water Spouts to heavily damage or outright KO frailer opponents.

About Blastoise's Moves

Water Spout is its strongest move, boasting a 150 Base Power when Blastoise is at full health. Thanks to the Speed boost it gets from Choice Scarf, it can outrun even Timid or Jolly Dragapult!

Surf is a weaker but more reliable Water-type STAB for late-game matches and if Blastoise has already suffered some damage. Ice Beam is its main coverage move, hitting Grass, Flying, and Dragon-types for super effective damage.

Dark Pulse is its last coverage move, hitting Psychic and Ghost-types for super effecitve damage. It also has a 20% chance to cause flinching, which works well in conjunction with Choice Scarf.

About Blastoise's EV Spread

We're using a simple EV spread with full investment in Sp.Atk and Speed so that Blastoise can hit as hard and as fast as possible. The remaining 4 EVs are placed in HP to round off its bulk.

About Blastoise's Ability

Torrent is the preferred Ability for this Blastoise build. When Blastoise's HP drops to 1/3 of its maximum HP, it's Physical and Special Water-type moves increase in power by 50%.

About Blastoise's Held Item

This build relies on Choice Scarf to ensure Blastoise can fire off strong Water Spouts. This item boosts Blastoise's Speed by 50% at the cost of being restricted to using only the initial move it used.

Other Viable Moves

Dragpn Pulse A niche move that's best used during Dynamax where it becomes Max Wyrmwind, lowering the opposing team's Attack by 1 stage.
Aura Sphere A Fighting-type special move that can hits Ferrothorn for super effective damage. Becomes Max Knuckle during Dynamax, boosting the team's Attack by 1 stage.
Flash Cannon A Steel-type special move that hits Fairy-types for super effective damage. Becomes Max Steelspike during Dynamax, boosting the team's Defense by 1 stage.

How to Use Blastoise Effectively

Use Shell Smash at the Start of the Battle

Blastoise is one of the few bulky attackers that have Shell Smash, so it's important that you use this boosting move at the start of the battle so that you can deal as much damage as possible to the opposing team.

Since this boosting move also increases Attack, your opponent may second guess your Blastoise and may struggle to switch into the right defensive Pokemon.

A Bulky Attacker

Blastoise has great mixed bulk and its Mono Water-typing gives it only two weakness - Grass and Electric.

Even with little to no defensive EV investment, Blastoise can withstand weaker attacks and stay in matches between opponents longer. It can also run defensive and supportive sets, allowing it to fill multiple roles in a party.

How to Build a Team with Blastoise

Blastoise great bulk and ability to run offensive and support builds make it a versatile Pokemon. While it faces stiff competition from stronger Water-types, it has a niche in more balanced teams - especially those that make use of a Grass-Fire-Water Core.

A Dynamax Lead for Hyper Offense Teams

Access to Shell Smash and great natural bulk make Blastoise a great Dynamax or Gigantamax Lead for offensive teams. It's best used with Grass and Fire-types as these three cover each others weaknesses and gaps in coverage.

Example Grass-Fire-Water Offensive Team

Lead Dynamax Offensive Pivot Physical Attacker
Blastoise ImageBlastoise Incineroar ImageIncineroar Rillaboom ImageRillaboom

Blastoise fills the role of both lead and special attacked for this Grass-Fire-Water Team, with Incineroar filling the role of an Offensive Pivot while Rillaboom is a straightforward physical attacker.

Since it's partnered with a Fire-type Pokemon, it's best to Gigantamax Blastoise so that its Water-type moves becomes G-Max Cannonade and doesn't set up rain that can lower Incineroar's Fire-type moves.

Incineroar functions as an offensive pivot and deters Grass-types that can easily switch into Blastoise's moves.

Rillaboom on the other hand helps round off the gaps in coverage by providing strong, physical Grass-type moves. It also sets up Grassy Terrain with its Grassy Surge Ability, which is very useful for pure offensive teams since it recovers the team's HP at the end of every turn.

Check out our article below to learn more about building an offensive-oriented team.
How to Build an Offensive Team | Best Hyper Offense Team

A Special Attacker for Rain Teams

Blastoise is also a great choice for special attacker in Rain Teams since it can heavily damage the opposing team with high-powered Water Spouts.

Example Rain Team

Lead Weather Setter Choice Scarf Offensive Pivot
Pelipper ImagePelipper Blastoise ImageBlastoise Tornadus (Therian Forme) ImageTornadus (Therian Forme)

This balanced Rain Team relies on Pelipper to set up Rain Dance with its Drizzle Ability, with Blastoise filling the role of a Special Sweeper while Tornadus functions as an offensive pivot.

Blastoise works well with Tornadus as the latter helps deter Grass-types that can withstand even boosted Water Spouts.

Both Pokemon benefit from Pelipper's Rain, with Blastoise's Water Spouts getting a power boost while Tornadus' Hurricane gets 100% accuracy.

Check out our article below to learn more about building a Weather team.
How to Build a Weather Team

Counters for Blastoise

Overpower it With Super Effective Attacks

Although Blastoise has natural bulk, Pokemon that have a type advantage against it can easily force it out of the battle or even outright KO it if it tries to switch in.

Fortunately (and unfortunately for Blastoise), many top-ranking Pokemon in the current metagame are Grass and Electric-types.

Best Pokemon to Use

Pokemon Description
Rillaboom ImageRillaboom Ranking: ★★★★★
・Easily KO's Blastoise with Grassy Glide
Grassy Glide gets an accuracy boost in Grassy Terrain, allowing Rillaboom to outrun boosted or Choice Scarf Blastoise

Moveset & Best Build for Rillaboom
Kartana ImageKartana Ranking: ★★★★★
・Easily KOs Blastoise with Max Overgrowth using Leaf Blade
・Can force Blastoise to switch out, allowing it to set up with Swords Dance

Moveset & Best Build for Kartana
Zapdos ImageZapdos Ranking: ★★★★
・Faster than Blastoise and can threaten with Thunderbolt or Discharge
・Can pivot out of the battle using Volt Switch

Moveset & Best Build for Zapdos
Ferrothorn ImageFerrothorn Ranking: ★★★★
・Boasts great mixed bulk
・Can threaten and heavily damage Blastoise with Power Whip

Moveset & Best Build for Ferrothorn
Wash Rotom ImageWash Rotom Ranking: ★★★★
・Faster than Blastoise and can threaten it with its Thunderbolt
・Immune to Earthquake thanks to its Levitate Ability

Moveset & Best Build for Wash Rotom

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1 Anonymous5 months

I think on first build they meant to write focus sash instead of focus band cause band potentially can survive a lethal blow at any health but that’s a chance. A focus sash only works if your full health but it’s a guarantee safety net for 1HKO

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