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

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This is a strategy guide for using Tapu Bulu 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 Tapu Bulu, as well as its strengths and weak points.

Tapu Bulu - Related Guides
Pokemon SWSH - Tapu Bulu Evolution and LearnsetEvolution and Learnset Pokemon SWSH - Tapu Bulu Best BuildBuild for Ranked Battle

Basic Information for Tapu Bulu

Types and Abilities

Pokemon Type 1 Type 2
Pokemon Sword and Shield - Grass Type Pokemon Sword and Shield - Fairy Type
Abilities
Grassy Surge The Pokemon creates a Grassy Terrain when it enters a battle.
Telepathy (Hidden) Anticipates an ally's attack and dodges it.

Type Defenses

Type
Takes 4x damage
Pokemon Poison Image
Takes 2x damage
Pokemon Fire Image Pokemon Ice Image Pokemon Flying Image Pokemon Steel Image
Takes 0.5x damage
Pokemon Water Image Pokemon Grass Image Pokemon Electric Image Pokemon Fighting Image Pokemon Ground Image Pokemon Dark Image
Takes 1/4x damage
-
Takes 0x damage
Pokemon Dragon Image

What is Type Effectiveness?

Base Stats

HP Attack Defense Sp. Atk Sp. Def Speed
70 130 115 85 95 75

Best Nature for Tapu Bulu

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

Singles Movesets for Tapu Bulu

Swords Dance Bulky Sweeper Moveset & Best Build

Nature Adamant (+Atk, -Sp.Atk)
EV Spread HP 236 / Atk 144 / Sp.Def 32 /Spd 96
Final Stat Values HP 175 / Atk 184 / Def 135 / Sp.Def 119 / Spd 107
Ability Grassy Surge
Held Item Lum Berry
Moveset Swords Dance
Horn Leech
Earthquake
Stone Edge

Tapu Bulu's great natural bulk and access to Swords Dance make it a powerful, bulky sweeper that can surprise its usual checks and counters with priority boosted Grassy Glide.

About Tapu Bulu's Moves

Swords Dance boosts Tapu Bulu's naturally high attack stat to dangerous levels, dealing significant damage to opposing Pokemon that don't resist its STAB. Horn Leech is its main STAB move and also recovers HP. It also gets a 30% boost in power as long as there's Grassy Terrain active.

Earthquake is a good coverage move, allowing Tapu Bulu to hit Poison and Steel-type Pokemon for super effective damage.

Stone Edge is its last move, and provides some much-needed coverage against Fire and Flying-type Pokemon.

About Tapu Bulu's EV Spread

We're using a modified EV spread for this build that rounds off Tapu Bulu's bulk, while still providing him a boost in attack. 236 HP EVs and 32 Sp.Def EVs give it great overall bulk, while 144 ATK EVs puts its Attack stat at 184 at Level 50.

The remaining 96 EVs are placed in Speed. Although Tapu Bulu outspeeds most threats with Grassy Glide, some speed EVs are still useful - especially if it needs to use Play Rough or Stone Edge.

About Tapu Bulu's Ability

Grassy Surge is the preferred ability for this build. This causes Grassy Terrain to appear as soon as Tapu Buly switches in.

About Tapu Bulu's Held Item

We're giving Tapu Bulu Lum Berry for this build. This protects it from status effects, such as Burn, which will otherwise put a stop to Tapu Bulu's sweep.

Other Viable Moves

Wood Hammer Stronger than Horn Leech but deals recoil damage to Tapu Bulu.
Megahorn A niche alternative to Stone Edge that allows Tapu Bulu to threaten bulky Grass-types that can easily withstand its other attacks.
Superpower An alternative to Stone Edge, but requires Tapu Bulu to switch out due to the attack and defense drop.

Choice Scarf Sweeper Moveset & Best Build

Nature Jolly (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread Atk 252 / Sp.Def 4 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 145 / Atk 182 / Def 135 / Sp.Def 116 / Spd 139
Ability Grassy Surge
Held Item Choice Scarf
Moveset Wood Hammer
Horn Leech
Earthquake
Stone Edge

Although better known as a bulky setup sweeper, Tapu Bulu can surprise its usual counters with a Choice Scarf set - outspeeding its usual threats and even revenge killing some with its high-powered STAB moves!

About Tapu Bulu's Moves

Wood Hammer is its main STAB move, and is a very powerful move coming off from Tapu Bulu's high attack stat. Horn Leech is its secondary Grass STAB and provides reliable healing.

Earthquake is a good coverage move, allowing Tapu Bulu to hit Poison and Steel-type Pokemon for super effective damage. It's last move is Stone Edge, providing great neutral coverage and hitting Fire and Flying-types for super effective damage.

About Tapu Bulu's EV Spread

We're using a straightforward EV spread with full investment in Attack and Speed so that Tapu Bulu can hit hard and as fast as possible. The remaining EVs are placed in Special Defense to round off its natural bulk.

About Tapu Bulu's Ability

Grassy Surge is the preferred ability for this build. This causes Grassy Terrain to appear as soon as Tapu Buly switches in.

About Tapu Bulu's Held Item

We're giving Tapu Bulu Choice Scarf. This item boosts its speed but restricts it to using only the initial move it used for that turn.

Other Viable Moves

Zen Headbutt An alternative to Stone Edge and is the only way for Tapu Bulu to hit Poison-type Pokemon for super effective damage.
Megahorn A niche alternative to Stone Edge that allows Tapu Bulu to threaten bulky Grass-types that can easily withstand its other attacks.
Superpower An alternative to Stone Edge, but requires Tapu Bulu to switch out due to the attack and defense drop.

Assault Vest Moveset & Best Build

Nature Adamant (+Atk, - Sp. Atk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Atk 252 / Spd 4
Final Stat Values HP 177 / Atk 200 / Def 135 / Sp.Def 115 / Spd 96
Ability Grassy Surge
Held Item Assault Vest
Moveset Wood Hammer
Horn Leech
Nature's Madness
Rock Tomb

This is a bulky Tapu Bulu build with Adamant nature and Assault Vest. Horn Leech and Grassy Surge allows Tapu Bulu to heal up its HP as well making it tough to take out.

Other Viable Moves

High Horsepower A coverage move against Poison-type Pokemon as Tapu BUlu is x4 weak to them.
Close Combat Coverage move against Normal and Steel-type Pokemon.
Stone Edge Alternative choice for Rock Tomb. Use this if you value power a bit more.

How to Use Tapu Bulu Effectively

A Bulky Offensive Pivot

Much like Rillaboom, Tapu Bulu works best as part of a Fire/Water/Grass offensive core, or as one of the main Pokemon U-Turn or Volt Switch users pivot into. It's great bulk and excellent matchup against common Pokemon in the metagame means it's easy to switch in, although it still needs to be careful due to its quadruple weakness to Poison-type moves.

How to Build a Team with Tapu Bulu

As one of the two Grassy Terrain setters in the metagame, Tapu Bulu is easy to fit into many teams - especially those in need of a powerful Grass-type for their Fire/Water/Grass core.

A Bulky Sweeper for Balanced Teams

Although it faces competition from Rillaboom, Tapu Bulu's secondary Fairy-typing make it a good choice for balanced teams - especially if the team in question is in need of a Fighting, Dark, or Dragon check.

Tapu Bulu is also a good choice for lead in the Doubles Metagame, especially the Choice Scarf set. Check out our guide below to learn how to build a Doubles Team with Rillaboom.
How to Build a Doubles Team

Counters for Tapu Bulu

Tapu Bulu
Weakness Pokemon Poison Image Pokemon Fire Image Pokemon Ice Image Pokemon Flying Image Pokemon Steel Image

Check it with a Poison-type Pokemon!

Despite its great natural bulk, Tapu Bulu can't do much against Poison-type Pokemon. Both defensive and offensive Poison-types can freely switch into any of Tapu Bulu's attacks and potentially knock them out with their STAB moves.

Best Pokemon to Use

Pokemon Description
Pokemon SWSH - Toxapex ImageToxapex Ranking: ★★★★★
・Takes neutral damage from Tapu Bulu's Grass moves and resists its Fairy moves
・Can threaten Tapu Bulu with a burn from Scald or poison it with Toxic

Moveset & Best Build for Toxapex
Pokemon SWSH - Amoonguss ImageAmoonguss Ranking: ★★★★★
・Boasts quadruple resistance to Tapu Bulu's Grass-type moves
・Resists Tapu Bulu's Fairy-type moves
・Can threaten Tapu Bulu with Toxic or remove its Swords Dance boosts with Clear Smog

Moveset & Best Build for Amoonguss
Pokemon SWSH - Toxtricity ImageToxtricity Ranking: ★★★★★
・Resists both of Tapu Bulu's main STAB moves
・Can easily knock it out with STAB Sludge Wave

Moveset & Best Build for Toxtricity

Related Links

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