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

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

Galarian Articuno - Related Articles
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Basic Information for Galarian Articuno

Types and Abilities

Pokemon Type 1 Type 2
Psychic Type Flying Type
Competitive Raises Special Attack when the Pokemon's stats are lowered.

Type Defenses

Takes 4x damage
Takes 2x damage
Pokemon Electric Image Pokemon Ice Image Pokemon Rock Image Pokemon Ghost Image Pokemon Dark Image
Takes 0.5x damage
Pokemon Grass Image Pokemon Psychic Image
Takes 1/4x damage
Pokemon Fighting Image
Takes 0x damage
Pokemon Ground Image

What is Type Effectiveness?

Base Stats

HP Attack Defense Sp. Atk Sp. Def Speed
90 85 85 125 100 95

Best Nature for Galarian Articuno

Best Natures
(+Spd, -Atk)

Singles Movesets for Galarian Articuno

Rain Special Sweeper Moveset & Best Build

Rain Special Sweeper Galarian Articuno.png

Nature Timid (+Spd, -Atk)
EV Spread Def 4 / Sp.Atk 252 / Spd 252
Final Stat Values HP 165 / Def 106 / Sp.Atk 177 / Sp.Def 120 / Spd 161
Ability Competitive
Held Item Life Orb
Choice Specs
Moveset Freezing Glare
Shadow Ball
Ancient Power

Galarian Articuna has a niche as a sweeper for dedicated Rain Teams, firing off powerful Hurricanes that hit bulky Grass-types, as well as serving as a great check to Toxapex.

About Galarian Articuno's Moves

Freezing Glare is Galarian Articuno's main STAB move, and has a 10% chance to freeze the target. Hurricane is its secondary STAB move and has perfect accuracy in Rain. It also has a 30% chance to confuse the target.

The remaining moves are for coverage. Shadow Ball hits Ghost-types and opposing Psychic-types like Cresselia, while Ancient Power hits opposing Flying-types. The latter also has a 10% chance to raise all of Galarian Articuno's stats by 10%.

About Galarian Articuno's EV Spread

We're using a simple special attacking EV spread with full investment in Special Attack and Speed, with the remaining EVs placed in Defese to round off its bulk.

About Galarian Articuno's Ability

Competitive is Galarian Articuno's only ability, raising its Special Attack by two stages when one of its stats is lowered. This makes it a great check to Intimidate users such as Landorus and Gyarados, as well as Defog users such as Tapu Fini.

About Galarian Articuno's Held Item

Galarian Articuno has two options for held items.

Life Orb boosts the power of its moves by 30% at the cost of some recoil damage. This is the better choice if using Articuno as the main Dynamax sweeper.

Choice Specs is a stronger held item that boosts the power of Galarian Articuno's special moves by 50%, but prevents it from switching moves.

Other Viable Moves

Air Slash An alternative to Hurricane if not using Galarian Articuno in a rain team.
Recover Can replace Articuno on Life Orb sets so that Galarian Articuno can heal off recoil damage.
Psycho Shift Another alternative to Ancient Power if facing against stall teams that rely on status.

How to Use Galarian Articuno Effectively

A Lead Dynamax Sweeper

Galarian Articuno is a great candidate for lead sweeper and Dynamax user for teams. Since most teams lead with Intimidiate users, Galarian Articuno can get a +2 Special Attack boost off the bat thanks to its Competitive Ability and then Dynamax afterwards.

Access to Max Airstream is another reason why it's a good choice to lead with Galarian Articuno as it instantly boost it and its team's speed by one stage.

How to Build a Team with Galarian Articuno

Galarian Articuno is easy to fit in many teams, especially if used as a lead or Dynamax user. It's also a powerful Expanding Force user in Doubles and its Competitive Ability almost guarantees it gets a +2 Special Attack boost.

Team Options for Galarian Articuno

Doubles Team
Pokemon Indeedee (female).png
Galarian Articuno ImageGalarian Articuno
Ability Psychic Surge Competitive
Held Item Focus Sash Life Orb
Nature Sassy Timid
EV Spread HP 252 / Def 212 / Sp.Def 44 Def 4 / Sp.Atk 252 / Spd 252
Moveset Follow Me
Helping Hand
Expanding Force
Expanding Force
Freezing Glare

Indeedee (Female) is a great partner for Galarian Articuno. Apart from setting up Psychic Terrain automatically with its Ability, it also provides vital redirection support with Follow Me. It also provides Helping Hand support, further boosting the power of Galarian Articuno's moves.

Counters for Galarian Articuno

Counter it with Dark-type Pokemon

Galarian Articuno struggles against Dark-type Pokemon as it doesn't have a reliable way to check them. Some Dark-types even resist Galarian Articuno's secondary Flying STAB and doesn't care much about confusion.

Best Pokemon to Use

Pokemon Description
Tyranitar ImageTyranitar Ranking: ★★★★★
・Immune to Freezing Glare and resists Hurricane
Sand Stream boosts Tyranitar's Special Defense and lowers Hurricane's accuracy

Moveset & Best Build for Tyranitar
Bisharp ImageBisharp Ranking: ★★★★★
・Immune to Freezing Glare and resists Hurricane
・Threatens Galarian Articuno with Sucker Punch

Moveset & Best Build for Bisharp

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1 Anonymous6 months

Btw, Psychic terrain only affects grounded pokemon, so Articuno's Expanding Force and psychic moves aren't affected in any way, making it's expanding force set not viable.

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