Team Rocket (specifically Jesse and James) were more comic relief characters than an actual threat to Ash and his friends in the anime. Even in Pokemon games, Team Rocket and the other deviant teams weren’t much of a danger to players. But, Team Rocket in Pokemon GO isn’t as easy to shrug off as with previous titles. The main reason is that Team Rocket uses Shadow Pokemon, which have unique abilities not present in “normal” Pokemon.
Shadow Pokemon are among the strongest Pokemon in Pokemon GO (aside from Mega Pokemon) and are quite valuable for battles, especially Raids. But with so many Shadow Pokemon available to choose from in Pokemon GO, players may find it challenging to pick the ones that will help them beat Pokemon Raids easily.
8 Shadow Tyranitar
Shadow Tyranitar is hardly worth using for Raids, and even less for the GO Battle League without the right attack moves. But players that manage to get a decent Shadow Larvitar and teach it the right moves will have a force to be reckoned with in Raids.
There are two combinations players should use with their Shadow Tyranitar. The first is using Smack Down (Fast Move) and Stone Edge (Charged Move), creating a pure Rock-type damage dealer that can topple most Bug-, Fire-, Flying-, and Ice-type Raid Pokemon. The second combination is Bite (Fast Move) and Crunch (Charged Move), some of the best Dark-type moves in Pokemon GO.
7 Shadow Hariyama
Even though Shadow Hariyama isn’t the best Fighting-type Shadow Pokemon on this list, it still boasts one of the highest Stamina (HP) stats in Pokemon GO, 302 at maxed CP. With that much HP, Shadow Hariyama can take a heavy beating against 5-Star or Mega Raid Pokemon before being K.O’d.
The ideal moves for Shadow Hariyama are Counter (Fast Move) and Dynamic Punch (Charged Move). Players use Counter over the other Fast Moves because it’s one of the fastest DPS moves in Pokemon GO, meaning players can use their Charged Moves more often.
6 Shadow Entei
Entei is one of the three Legendary Beasts (affectionately known as the Legendary Dogs) and has always been a worthy contender in the competitive scene in Pokemon GO. So, as players can expect, Shadow Entei is among the best Legendary Shadow Pokemon players can include in their Raid team. Shadow Entei’s stats are also well-balanced (235 Attack, 171 Defense, and 251 Stamina), so it won’t go down as quickly as other Shadow Pokemon or its “cleansed” counterpart.
The best move setup players should have on their Shadow Entei are Fire Fang (Fast Move) and Overheat (Charged Move). But, if players don’t have enough TMs or Stardust to change its moves, then they can make do with Fire Spin (Fast Move) and Flamethrower (Charged Move).
5 Shadow Moltres
Shadow Moltres is a slightly better Raid Pokemon than Shadow Entei, mainly because it has a better Attack stat (Attack 251). Moreover, Shadow Moltres is a dual-type Pokemon (Fire/Flying), meaning it has better chances of countering a Raid Pokemon than a monotype like Entei.
Shadow Moltres has several move combinations that work well for Raids, but the best moves are Fire Spin (Fast Move) and Sky Attack (Charged Move). But, if a player already has a decent Shadow Entei, then they can teach their Shadow Moltres Wing Attack (Fast Move) since it’s a powerful counter against Fighting-type Raid Pokemon.
4 Shadow Machamp
Fighting-type is one of the best offensive types in Pokemon GO as it can counter Dark-, Ice-, Normal-, Rock-, and Steel-type Pokemon with ease. And Shadow Machamp is the best Fighting-type Shadow Pokemon in the game, not to mention it has a decent set of stats (234 Attack, 159 Defense, and 207 Stamina).
Counter (Fast Move) is the most optimal move for Shadow Machamp coupled with Dynamic Punch (Charged Move). Players can change their Shadow Machamp’s heavy attacker role to a more DPS by teaching it Bullet Punch (Fast Move) and Heavy Slam (Charged Move), making it viable as a Gym Defender.
3 Shadow Weavile
Weavile is one of the few Dark- and Ice-type Shadow Pokemon in Pokemon GO that can solo a low-tier (maybe higher with perfect stats) Raid Pokemon. But, due to its low Stamina stat (172), Shadow Weavile is something of a glass cannon, meaning players must pick their Raid fights carefully.
Shadow Weavile can fulfill two different types of roles in Pokemon GO, but for the most part, a full Dark-type role is best. Players will want to teach their Shadow Weavile Snarl (Fast Charge) and Foul Play (Charged Move). For the Ice-type role, Shadow Weavile should learn Ice Shard (Fast Move) and Avalanche (Charged Move).
2 Shadow Mamoswine
Despite being an unpopular Gen 2 Pokemon, Shadow Mamoswine is the top gun of Ice-type Pokemon in Pokemon GO. Shadow Mamoswine not only plays the role of a tank due to its high Stamina stat (242), but it also can be a powerful attacker since it has a 247 base Attack. On top of that, Mamoswine is a dual-type Pokemon (Ground/Ice), and it can counter Electric, Fire, Poison, Rock, Steel, Dragon, Flying, Grass, and Ground.
The best moves for Shadow Mamoswine are Powder Snow (Fast Move) and Avalanche (Charged Move). Although slow, Powder Snow has a high charge rate, so players can use Avalanche more often. Bulldoze (Charged Move) is a good second choice for Charged Moves if a player is low on Stardust and can’t change it.
1 Shadow Mewtwo
Undoubtedly, Shadow Mewtwo is the single best Shadow Pokemon to use in Raids as it has the strongest Attack stat (300), and that’s after Niantic nerfed it. But, more than that, Shadow Mewtwo can learn almost any move of any type-specific move, from Thunderbolt to Hyper Beam. From all the possibilities of Fast Moves Mewtwo can learn, Confusion remains the best as it has a high DPS. As for Charged Moves, players can choose from the following:
Hyper Beam (Legacy Move)
Players should choose a Charged Move that best fits or that their Raid team otherwise lacks. In terms of power, Hyper Beam is the hardest-hitting one, but it also takes longer to charge.
Pokemon GO is available now on iOS and Android.
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