Suicune - Movesets & Best Build for Ranked Battle | Pokemon Sword and Shield

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

Basic Information for Suicune

Types and Abilities

Pokemon Type 1 Type 2
Water Type
Abilities
Pressure The Pokemon raises the foe's PP usage.
Inner Focus (Hidden) The Pokemon is protected from flinching.

Type Defenses

Type
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
100 75 115 90 115 85

Best Nature for Suicune

Best Natures
Timid
(+Spd, -Atk)
Bold
(+Def, -Atk)
Calm
(+Sp.Def, -Atk)

Strategies for Suicune

Substitute + Calm Mind Moveset & Best Build

Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Sp.Def 40 / 216
Final Stat Values HP 207 /Def 135 / Sp.Atk 110 / Sp.Def 140 / Spd 145
Ability Pressure
Held Item Leftovers
Moveset Substitute
Calm Mind
Scald
Ice Beam

Suicune has a niche as a Calm Mind sweeper in Singles. Although it doesn't have an immediate offensive presence, it can clean up teams pretty well in the late game.

About Suicune's Moves

Substitute protects Suicune from status moves like Toxic and Yawn. Unlike other Substitute users, it's good HP stat means its substitutes won't break in one hit. Calm Mind boosts Suicune's Special Defense and Special Attack. The goal of this build is to get at least two or three Calm Mind boosts to effectively clean up the opposing team afterwards.

Scald is Suicune's main STAB move, and deals good damage after several Calm Mind boosts. It also has a 30% chance to burn the opponent, which conveniently patches up Suicune's great but uninvested defense stat.

Ice Beam is its main coverage moves and ensures Suicune can threaten Grass-types that will otherwise wall it.

About Suicune's EV Spread

We're using a modified EV spread with full investment in HP and 216 EVs into Speed. The remaining EVs are placed in Sp.Def since Suicune's Water typing attracts more special attacks.

Suicune's naturally high mixed defenses means it boasts great bulk even with little to no investment. This build ultimately relies on Calm Mind boosts and the attack cut from Scald's burn to improve its bulk.

About Suicune's Ability

We're using Pressure for this build. The opposing Pokemon loses 2 PP instead of 1 when facing off against Suicune.

About Suicune's Held Item

This Suicune build requires Leftovers to stay healthy throuhgout the late game, especially if it needs to use Substitute again.

Other Viable Moves

Protect You can replace Ice Beam with Protect, allowing Suicune to stall opposing Pokemon with Pressure.
Mirror Coat A niche move that you can use if you predict a special attack that Suicune can survive, potentially KOing the attacker afterwards.

CroCune Moveset & Best Build

Nature Bold (+Def, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Def 160 / Spd 96
Final Stat Values HP 207 / 170 / Sp.Atk 110 / Sp.Def 135 / Spd 117
Ability Pressure
Held Item Leftovers
Moveset Calm Mind
Rest
Sleep Talk
Scald

This build is based on a build popularized and made famous by Cromat, a prolific competitive player during Pokemon's Advance (Generation III) competitive battling scene who popularized Rest+Sleep Talk builds.

Although Cromat's legendary "CroCune" is no longer the unkillable Stallmon as it was in Generation III, it can still hold up against the current metagame's attackers.

About Suicune's Moves

Calm Mind boosts Suicune's Special Defense and Special Attack by one stage. Rest puts Suicune to sleep but restores all of its health and cures status, while Sleep Talk ensures it can still attack or boost with Calm Mind even when it's asleep.

It's main and only attacking move is Scald. This move has a nice 30% burn rate that can further boost Suicune's defense.

About Suicune's EV Spread

We're using a modified physicall defensive EV spread with full investment in HP and 160 EVs in Defense. The remaining EVs are placed in Speed so that it can outrun slower walls, such as Hippowdon and Toxapex.

About Suicune's Ability

We're using Pressure for this build. The opposing Pokemon loses 2 PP instead of 1 when facing off against Suicune.

About Suicune's Held Item

This Suicune build requires Leftovers to stay healthy throuhgout the late game, especially if it needs to use Substitute again.

Other Viable Moves

Surf A good alternative to Scald and was the original move used in the classic CroCune set. While stronger, it lacks the 30% burn chance, which is ultimately more useful.

Doubles Support Moveset & Best Build

Nature Calm (+Sp.Def, -Atk)
EV Spread HP 252 / Def 40 / Sp.Atk 52 / Sp.Def 108 / Spd 56
Final Stat Values HP 207 / Def 140 / Sp.Atk 117 / Sp.Def 108 / Spd 112
Ability Inner Focus
Held Item Sitrus Berry
Wiki Berry
Moveset Tailwind
Scald
Ice Beam
Helping Hand

Suicune sets itself apart from other Tailwind Leads with its better HP and mixed bulk, as well as access to other moves that can support its teammates.

About Suicune's Moves

Tailwind is Suicune's main support move, doubling the speed stat of it and its teammates for three turns. Scald and Ice Beam are its main attacking moves, with the former potentially burning threats while the latter hits Grass, Dragon, and Flying-types for super effective damage.

It's last move is Helping Hand, boosting its partner's next move by 50%. Since this move has +5 priority, even teammates that are naturally faster than Suicune will get the power boost!

About Suicune's EV Spread

Since Suicune needs to withstand both physical and special attacks (often during the same turn) in Doubles, we're using a mixed defensive EV spread.

Full HP investment, as well as 40 Defense EVs and 108 Special Defense EVs, make Suicune as bulky as possible.

We're also putting 52 Special Attack EVs to boost Suicune's great Special Attack stat. Finally, 56 Speed Evs ensure it can outrun slower walls. The Speed EVs also ensure that it has Suicune has an immediate 224 Speed after a Tailwind, which makes it significantly faster than most walls and even some sweepers.

About Suicune's Ability

We're using Inner Focus for this Suicune. This ability prevents it from flinching, which is very useful when it's facing off against an opposing lead with Fake Out.

About Suicune's Held Item

We're giving Suicune Sitrus Berry this time around as it provides immediate healing whereas Leftovers needs more turns to provide the same amount of healing. Wiki Berry is an alternative if you already have another Pokemon using Sitrus Berry.

To learn more about Sitrus Berries vs Leftovers in Doubles, check out our guide below.
Sitrus Berry vs Leftovers

Other Viable Moves

Icy Wind A good alternative to Ice Beam. Although weaker, it lowers the opposing speed by one stage.
Roar An alternative to Helping Hand that allows Suicune to phase opposing setup sweepers.

How to Use Suicune Effectively

Use it as a Rest Talker

Suicune is arguably the most famous "Bulky Water", and saw dominance in Generation III as an unbreakable and unstoppable wall that had the potential to sweep teams in the late game.

While it's no longer the best Bulky Water in the metagame, it still has a niche as one of the few effective "Rest Talkers" as popularized by Cromat's "CroCune" set. Despite this, it's best used in the late stages of the battle as a cleaner or a status absorber.

A Bulky Setup Sweeper

In the current metagame, Suicune functions more as a bulky late-game sweeper than an actual defensive Pokemon. To separate it from other and more effective Bulky Waters, it's best played as a setup sweeper that can withstand attacks instead of as an outright defensive wall.

How to Build a Team with Suicune

Suicune's niche as the metagame's Bulky Water has been overtaken by the likes of Toxapex and Jellicent, but it still has a niche as a support Pokemon in Doubles!

Lead Tailwind Support in Doubles

Suicune differs from other Tailwind supporters by being slower and bulkier. Although it may not always set up Tailwind first, it's not a one-trick pony either! Unlike other Tailwind setters, it can further support its team either with Helping Hand, Icy Wind, or as a phaser with Roar - forcing setup sweepers to switch out and lose their boosts.

Counters for Suicune

Counter it With an Opposing Water-Type

Suicune's limited movepool means it's easily countered by Water-type Pokemon, especially those with the Water Absorb ability.

Best Pokemon to Use

Pokemon Description
Tapu Fini ImageTapu Fini Ranking: ★★★★★
Misty Surge Ability sets up Misty Terrain, completely shutting down CroCune sets since it prevents Suicune from using Rest
・Can trap Suicune with Whirlpool and essentially outstall it with Scald and Nature's Madness

Moveset & Best Build for Tapu Fini
Poliwrath ImagePoliwrath Ranking: ★★★★★
・Absorbs Scald with Water Absorb and takes little damage from Ice Beam, turning the Suicune into setup fodder
・Can whittle down Suicune's Defense with Liquidation, and potentially KO it after enough Defense drops

Moveset & Best Build for Poliwrath

Check it With a Pokemon that can use Taunt

Suicune is reliant on setting up with Calm Mind or using Rest and Sleep Talk to stall teams. Even the Doubles Support build primarily uses Status moves. All of these strategies are easily shut down by using Taunt, forcing Suicune to switch or risk becoming setup fodder.

Best Pokemon to Use

Pokemon Description
Grimmsnarl ImageGrimmsnarl Ranking: ★★★★★
・Shuts down Suicune with Prankster boosted Taunt
・Can set up Light Screen, which further lowers the damage of Suicune's weak Scald

Moveset & Best Build for Grimmsnarl
Whimsicott ImageWhimsicott Ranking: ★★★★★
・Shuts down Suicune with Prankster boosted Taunt
・Can outstall Suicune by using a combination of Substitute and Leech Seed

Moveset & Best Build for Whimsicott

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