Zapdos Counters Raid Guide: best counters, catch rate, weather boost

Pokemon GO Zapdos Raid

Zapdos raid is a Tier 5 Legendary Raid Bosses in Pokemon GO. Zapdos Boss CP is 42961 (33068 if it is a Tier 4 as Articuno was) and it has only two weaknesses due to its Electric and Flying type: Rock and Ice

  • 1820 – 1902 CP catch range (Level 20, no weather boost)
  • 2275 – 2378 CP catch range (Level 25, boosted by Windy or Rainy weather)

Ambitious players, with the introdution of friendship, weather, and Smack Down Tyranitar may attempt a duo, however realistically a group of four or more is a safe bet. A shiny Zapdos is available from raids (Introduced on Zapdos day, July 21 2018).

Zapdos counters

Zapdos raid countersZapdos
Weakness Rock Ice Boosted by Rainy Windy
Best Zapdos counters
Supreme Zapdos raid counters
TyranitarTyranitar Smack Down Rock Stone Edge Rock
Smack Down Tyranitar is a beast against any avian Legendary, and Zapdos is no exception. As stated in the intro, with the right conditions it is now possible for the skilled players to duo a Zapdos with this Community Day exclusive.
RayquazaRayquaza Dragon Tail Dragon Outrage Dragon
This dragon is a beast in almost any situation, and based on Time to Win, it is actually one of the lowest times out there in neutral weather, even outclassing Smack Down Tyranitar in Windy.
GolemGolem Rock Throw Rock Stone Edge Rock
Golem is a budget Smack Down Tyranitar, having less deaths overall but with a severe hit of around 90 seconds to Time to Win. Still, between it and its Alola variant that is set to come out at Go Fest, Golem is one of the best counters to this bird.
Good Zapdos raid counters
Time to win rises considerably from here, and these Pokémon are best kept to B-teams or used when a large group is active.
MewtwoMewtwo Psycho Cut Psychic Shadow Ball Ghost
JynxJynx Frost Breath Ice Avalanche Ice
KyogreKyogre Waterfall Water Blizzard Ice
DragoniteDragonite Dragon Tail Dragon Outrage Dragon
SalamenceSalamence Dragon Tail Dragon Draco Meteor Dragon
PiloswinePiloswine Ice Shard Ice Avalanche Ice

Zapdos Raid Counters Explained

Zapdos counters are strongly based around Rock type attackers and follow a similar pattern as other Legendary bird counters. Smack Down Tyranitar leads the charge as the best counter, followed by Rayquaza (surprising DPS!) and Golem. Be aware that Zapdos takes 1.4x increased damage from Rock-type attacks, unlike Articuno and Moltres who take 1.96x. As a result, Zapdos is a bit harder opponent.

A important consideration is that the Flying type removes electric’s weakness to ground, so do not attempt to hit a Zapdos with your Groudon or non-rock Golem. If anything, just stick to Community Day Tyranitar, Rock golem, and Generalists, and remember to almost always avoid the default recommendations.

In addition to Ground, Zapdos takes reduced damage from the following move types: buggrassflying, fighting and steel.

Smack Down Tyranitar vs Zapdos Break Points are kinda high, but here are they regardless:

Attack IV Breakpoint level
(neutral weather)
Breakpoint level
(partly cloudy)
Damage 18 22
15 35.5 39.5
14 36 40
13 36.5
12 37
11 37.5
10 38
Damage 19 22
15 39 35.5
14 39.5 36
13 40 36.5
12 37
11 37.5
10 38

Zapdos Movesets and Stats

Zapdos does pack quite a punch, which is an added concern considering that Zapdos Day was announced with it packing a much better fast move: Thundershock. Stat wise, it has:

  • 253 Attack
  • 188 Defense
  • 180 Stamina

As well, despite having a flying type, it has no flying type moves and has only electric attacks, which makes it easy to predict, like all the Legendary Birds. Besides its only fast move Charge Beam, and the Zapdos Day exclusive Thundershock, it has:

  • Zap Cannon Electric
  • Thunder Electric
  • Thunderbolt Electric

The easiest time you will have is against Charge Beam / Thunder, with your worst case being Thundershock / Zap Cannon. With the addition of it receiving a better fast move, the time to win will rise on Zapdos Day assuming it will have the move in raid battles, however it should not be terribly worse than the previous worst-case moveset, Charge Beam / Zap Cannon that clocked in around 16 seconds worse than Charge Beam / Thunder.


Rainy weather is not going to be your friend with Zapdos, but thankfully its the only concern. Otherwise on the positive end, Windy will merely allow it to be a higher level when caught, and Partly Cloudy and Snow will provide the extra benefits needed to take it down faster.

Weather Pro Con
Windy Allows a Level 25 Encounter from Weather Boost
Partly Cloudy Boosts Super Effective Rock attacks
Snow Boosts Super Effective Ice attacks
Rainy Boosts Zapdos’ Electric moves

Additional Counters

These Pokemon are weaker than the counters mentioned above, but they are still viable, especially in large raid groups: