December Community Day 2022: Guide for Raid Attackers

Contents

December Community Day 2022 is upon us, and here’s your quick guide to all of the Raid Attackers that you must/should have this event, and to those who are not worth spending time on.

TL;DR

  • Must have: Hydreigon
  • Great, but don’t be stressed if you can’t get more than 1: Garchomp, (Shadow Swampert). To clarify, anyone who has enough resources to get >1 Garchomp should. I’m just saying it’s not worth going all in if you don’t have the resources or time (rare candies, raiding T1s etc).
  • Great, but not must-have and slightly outclassed: Chandelure (no CD move), Dragonite (no CD move), Swampert/Samurott, (Shadow Venusaur)
  • Not too good, but you may want a cheap team for specific uses: Staraptor
  • For new players: Gigalith, Venusaur
  • (Mega evolution to run for raid attacker XLs: Charizard X or Houndoom on Sunday, for both Deino and Litwick)

Keep reading for:

  • Details for each Pokémon, including some that I didn’t mention above (Roserade, Emboar, Ursaluna, Mega Altaria lol)
  • Ground and Dragon-type charts, shown for the first time
  • Why you may want to save your Oshawott for Hisuian Samurott
  • My thoughts on Earth Power Garchomp: Yes, I still think it was overhyped in 2021
  • List of my previous analyses (in Appendix 2)

You can now follow me (@teban54) on Twitter!

Introduction

The annual December Community Day (CD) is almost here! On Saturday, December 17 and Sunday, December 18, from 9am to 9pm local time:

  • On Saturday from 2-5pm, Spheal, Hoppip, Sandshrew, Alolan Sandshrew, Stufful and Alolan Geodude will be primarily featured in the wild.
  • On Sunday from 2-5pm, Deino, Starly, Galarian Zigzagoon, Roggenrola, Litwick and Teddiursa will be primarily featured in the wild.
  • All Pokémon above, as well as Venusaur, Mudkip and Dratini, will be in the wild from 9am-2pm and 5pm-9pm.
  • All 2021 CD Pokémon will only be in raids and eggs. These include: Machop, Roselia, Fletchling, Snivy, Swablu, Gible, Tepig, Eevee, Oshawott, Duskull and Shinx.
  • All Pokémon mentioned above will have their CD moves available upon evolution from 9am to 9pm only on both days. (Time pending confirmation)

Coincidentally, the schedule splits nicely into a PvP day on Saturday and a raid attackers’ day on Sunday (except Obstagoon and ML Ursaluna). All 2022 non-Classic CD Pokémon on Saturday have more relevance in PvP than other formats, and the reverse is mostly true on Sunday.

In this article, I will go through all 2021 and 2022 CD Pokémon that have at least some relevance as raid attackers. They may range from top-tier options that I think everyone should have a few of, to budget picks that new players will find helpful, even if veterans may not care.

Regardless of which case applies to you, I hope the article still ends up being an interesting read (including charts for types that I’ve never shown before), and a good recap of what we’ve had this year!

What’s being covered

Given the 23 Pokémon being featured, I will show charts for 8 types of attackers: Dark/Ghost, Ground, Dragon, Fire, Water, Flying, Grass and Rock. This list is roughly ordered by both relevance and accessibility.

  • Shadows: Given that most of their shadows are not obtainable at the moment, I’ll only highlight those that require a CD move, so that you can evolve them. This means yes for Shadow Swampert, but no for Shadow Dragonite.
  • Only simulation plots (ASE, ASE dodge, sometimes ASTTW). No DPS or ER (DPS3*TDO) due to time constraints.

Frustration?

A gentle reminder when evolving a Shadow Pokémon: If the CD move is a charged move, make sure it does NOT have Frustration before evolving! Otherwise, Frustration will always override the CD move.

  • This applies to: Venusaur, Swampert, Dragonite, Walrein, Jumpluff, Kantonian Sandslash, Ursaluna, Machamp, Dusknoir, Luxray.

If the CD move is a fast move, it doesn’t matter. Evolve it now and TM away Frustration later.

  • This applies to: Alolan Sandslash, Staraptor.

Dark and Ghost types: Hydreigon and Chandelure

Dark and Ghost attackers ranked by their average in-raid performance, using ASE, ASE with dodging, and ASTTW.

See Appendix 1 (at the end of this article) for technical details and how to read the charts. The Chandelure analysis also contains explanations on ASE vs ASTTW.

Note: This chart is missing Guzzlord. It should be near Tyranitar level.

Hydreigon, as a Dark attacker (2022 – wild Sunday, CD move: Brutal Swing)

Hydreigon DarkDragon
  • Strength: ★★★★★
  • Utility: ★★★★★
  • CD move necessity: Yes
  • Verdict: Evolve and power up 6 if possible. They’ll probably be among your most frequently used raid teams.
  • Moveset: Bite/Brutal Swing*

Yes, I personally think Deino was the most impactful CD to date for raid attackers. Arguably even edges out Beldum, and more relevant than Gible. Here’s why:

  1. It’s strong. Brutal Swing is OP enough that as a non-shadow non-legendary, CD Hydreigon can be on par with shadow Dark types (Shadow Weavile, Shadow Tyranitar) and a hair better than legendaries (Darkrai, Shadow Force Giratina Origin). Not the way-better-than-everything kind like MM Metagross was, but that’s an impressive feat in itself!
  2. It’s extremely useful. Dark and Ghost-type attackers are often the best counters against the bajillion Psychic-type raid bosses. I consider a combined Dark/Ghost team as a must-have (the others being Rock, Ice and Fighting).

FWIW, Metagross misses out on point 2, while Garchomp is a bit underwhelming in both (more on that later).

Chandelure, as a Ghost attacker (2022 – wild Sunday, CD move: Poltergeist)

Chandelure GhostFire
  • Strength: ★★★★☆
  • Utility: ★★★★★
  • CD move necessity: No
  • Verdict: Focus on building it as a Fire type, double move for Shadow Ball if you have the dust. Hydreigon is better, but keep a few Ghost types around for Mega Mewtwo X raids.
  • Moveset: Hex/Shadow Ball
  • Detailed analysis here (October 2022)

First of all, Chandelure’s CD move Poltergeist is absolute garbage. If you’re concerned that it may be buffed in the future, keep one for the FOMO, but otherwise, evolve after the weekend is over.

Chandelure with the non-legacy Shadow Ball was already one of the best non-shadow non-mega Ghost attackers. It’s now totally surpassed by Shadow Force Giratina-Origin (ETM when????), but still great.

The problem is that it suffers from the “#2 syndrome” in raids: Hydreigon is generally better. Chandelure’s typing differences still allows it to shine sometimes, but still, Hydreigon is a better use of resources.

There are two saving graces for Chandelure, however:

  1. It can double duty as an excellent Fire attacker (more later). So if you’re already powering them up for fire, you can unlock Shadow Ball as a second charged move, then Fast TM as you need.
  2. A few Mega (and Elite?) bosses are only weak to Ghost, not Dark: Mega Mewtwo X, Mega Gallade, Mega Medicham, Mega Gardevoir, Marshadow (mythical). Chandelure, together with Giratina-O, are the top non-mega counters against the first three.

For those with dozens of good Litwicks lying around: There’s a legitimate reason to keep them unevolved, if you’re not short of good Fire and Ghost types, and want to wait just in case Chandelure gets a better Fire move. Not a priority at all.

Ground types: Garchomp and Ursaluna

Ground attackers ranked by their average in-raid performance, using ASE, ASE with dodging, and ASTTW.

Garchomp, as a Ground attacker (2021 – raids/eggs, CD move: Earth Power)

Garchomp DragonGround
  • Strength: ★★★★☆
  • Utility: ★★★★☆
  • CD move necessity: Yes
  • Verdict: Evolve any good Gibles you have (at least 1), but don’t freak out if you can’t get more than one. Other options do almost as well, and Garchomp will only be the best counter against a small number of raids anyway.
  • Moveset: Mud Shot/Earth Power*
  • Ancient analysis here (June 2021)

Edit: To clarify, anyone who has enough resources to get >1 Garchomp should. I’m just saying it’s not worth going all in if you don’t (rare candies, raiding T1s etc).

Gible CD in June 2021 was probably the most hyped CD in the history of the game. But here’s an unpopular opinion: It was a huge overreaction, at least for PvE. It’s great and useful, but I don’t see it as a must-have – it was no Meteor Mash Metagross, and it was no Brutal Swing Hydreigon.

First, here are the good things about Earth Power Garchomp.

  • It’s generally the best non-shadow non-mega ground attacker. Not top DPS, but its better bulk and typing compared to Landorus-Therian are in its favor.
  • In setups where you actually need a Ground type (electrics and double weakness), it’s usually the top non-shadow non-mega counter. Note this includes Xurkitree, a desirable raid boss.
  • It also double duties as a top-tier Dragon attacker (more later).

But…

  • It doesn’t set itself apart from other Ground types enough. Shadow Mamoswine now outclasses it. Every other Ground attacker on the chart has its own merits and perform very similarly to Garchomp. Having a mix of them will serve you well – you don’t need 6 Garchomp.
    • The difference between Garchomp and Landorus-T on this chart is heavily dependent on methodology and the specific raid bosses. Prior to Shadow Mamoswine being added, Landorus-T edged out Garchomp in ASE at L40.
  • Ground types are usually not competitive, aside from a few raids where you have to use them (Electrics, Heatran, Nihilego, Tapu Koko). Despite Ground being super effective against many types (Electric, Fire, Poison, Rock, Steel), in neutral weather, Garchomp is only comparable to second-tier options from other types:
    • Against Rock and Steel, Garchomp is only comparable to Machamp. Not even shadow.
    • Against Fire, Garchomp is only comparable to Rhyperior, Meteor Beam Gigalith, and Swampert.
    • Against Poison… Mewtwo rules.

In 2021, the good thing was that Gible CD gave everyone a top-tier Ground attacker for free, but it had never been a “6*L50 RIGHT NOW” attacker, nor should it be.

In 2022, Gible is back to being very rare, and some players may even need rare candies this CD to get their first Earth Power Garchomp. On the other hand, hardcore PvEers have shifted to the new king, Shadow Mamoswine.

While I think getting one single Earth Power Garchomp is necessary – even if only for the eventual Mega Garchomp – nobody should be stressed out about getting more than one (aside from maybe PvP purposes). It’s great, but not a topmost priority – not even close.

Ursaluna (2022 – wild Sunday, CD move: High Horsepower)

Ursaluna NormalGround
  • Strength: Shadow ★★★☆☆, Regular ★☆☆☆☆
  • Utility: ★☆☆☆☆
  • CD move necessity: Yes
  • Verdict: Irrelevant. Murdered by lack of fast move. If you have one, might as well evolve it.
  • Moveset: Tackle or Rock Smash/High Horsepower*
  • Somewhat detailed analysis here (November 2022)

Do you care about Rhydon, Donphan and Golem as Ground attackers? If not, Ursaluna is an easy skip.

Shadow Ursaluna is barely usable and falls behind all good Ground attackers (up to Landorus-I, Groudon and Rhyperior) by some margin. If you have a good shadow, sure, but it’s not worth the dust – especially with Shadow Mamoswine in the picture.

  • Much of the hype before Ursaluna CD was from speculations that it may get Mud-Slap or Mud Shot in Scarlet/Violet. Neither happened.
  • Is there any hope? Ursaluna can theoretically get Counter in Gen 9, but it still doesn’t change much. Otherwise, maybe wait for 2025 to see if GameFreak gives it a new move in Gen 10? My bet: Nope.

As a result, another option for dealing with Shadow Ursaluna is to purify, evolve outside of CD for Return, then ETM High Horsepower if needed. I gave a few considerations here, though it’s still not relevant for raids.

Dragon types: Garchomp, Dragonite and Mega Altaria (and Hydreigon?)

Dragon attackers ranked by their average in-raid performance, using ASE, ASE with dodging, and ASTTW.

Garchomp, as a Dragon attacker (2021 – raids/eggs, CD move: Earth Power)

Garchomp DragonGround
  • Strength: ★★★★★
  • Utility: ★★★★☆
  • CD move necessity: No
  • Verdict: Double move any Earth Power Garchomps as you need, to round out your Dragon team. But others are equally viable.
  • Moveset: Dragon Tail/Outrage

Aside from shadows and megas, there are way too many Dragon attackers nowadays, which are all viable and almost equally good. Gone are the old days of Rayquaza dominating everything. Now Ray still generally leads the pack by a small amount, but Salamence (with Outrage), Palkia, Zekrom, Garchomp and Dialga are pretty much equivalent, with each having its own pros, cons, and often alternative uses.

The main issue, again, is lack of accessibility in 2022. Garchomp will always be a valuable addition to your Dragon team, but there’s still no need to make 6 Dragon Garchomps here, especially with all these other options available.

And even if you don’t, you can always make a team of…

Dragonite (2022 Classic – wild but rare, CD move: Draco Meteor)

Dragonite DragonFlying
  • Strength: Shadow ★★★★★★, Regular ★★★★☆
  • Utility: ★★★★☆
  • CD move necessity: No, unless you’re a nerd
  • Verdict: A tiny bit behind the other options, but easy to build this CD. Shadow is top tier.
  • Moveset: Dragon Tail/Outrage (maybe + Draco Meteor*)

In case you thought Dragonite as a raid attacker is a thing of the past, no! It has been outclassed by everything I listed above, but just barely. Still perfectly great, especially if you can’t bring the other options to high levels.

Also don’t forget:

  • Level 50 Dragonite is better than L40 other dragons, and by far the easiest to get XLs of after CD.
  • For new players who lack Dragon teams, even six Level 30 Dragonite is functional.

Draco Meteor vs Outrage? This has been a hot topic since forever. If you don’t want to spend 75k dust on a second charged move, ignore the CD move and go for Outrage after CD. In case you really want to achieve the best possible performance, having both DM and Outrage can in theory help it further, but it’s situational and hard to quantify. Also, only do so on a Dragonite that you don’t plan to use for PvP.

  • I’ve been using DM+Outrage on one of my Shadow Dragonites. It’s very fun, but also hard to use.

Shadow Dragonite is irrelevant to the CD discussion, but it’s a top-tier option, miles better than all the non-shadows. The only thing that currently surpasses it is Shadow Salamence with its CD move Outrage, but it’s hard to get for at least a few more weeks.

Mega Altaria (2021 – raids/eggs, CD move: Moonblast)

Altaria (Mega) DragonFairy
  • Strength: ★☆☆☆☆
  • Utility: ★★★☆☆
  • CD move necessity: No, but doesn’t matter
  • Verdict: More of an intellectual curiosity than anything practical. You don’t need its CD move for PvE – but you also don’t expect it to do damage, do you?
  • Moveset: Dragon Breath/Dragon Pulse or Dazzling Gleam

Mega Altaria has laughable individual power and isn’t even on my chart. The only reason why it may even be worth consideration is because of this article, which highlighted the role of “support megas”.

In practice, that ain’t gonna happen. For one thing, the conclusions are debatable, as noted here. For another, how often do you face a boss with double Dragon moveset, know it beforehand, and coordinate with other raiders to all use dragons?

Even if you do want to use it, you don’t need Moonblast. It’s fine, but Dazzling Gleam is a lot better, or Dragon Pulse if the boss isn’t weak to Fairy (e.g. Reshiram). Either way, since damage is not what you use Mega Altaria for, using a Moonblast/Sky Attack Altaria for both Ultra League and raids should be perfectly OK.

Hydreigon, as a Dragon attacker (2022 – wild Sunday, CD move: Brutal Swing)

Hydreigon DarkDragon
  • Strength: ★☆☆☆☆
  • Utility: ★★☆☆☆
  • CD move necessity: No
  • Verdict: Nope.
  • Moveset: Dragon Breath/Dragon Pulse

It… Exists. But even L30 Dragonite outclasses it at L40-45, and even L50 Hydreigon can’t catch up with L40 others. Not even worth the 75k cost to unlock a second charged move.

FWIW, even if it gets a double Dragon moveset, Hydreigon will still trail behind existing options due to lower base attack.

Fire types: Chandelure and Emboar

Fire attackers ranked by their average in-raid performance, using ASE, ASE with dodging, and ASTTW.

Chandelure, as a Fire attacker (2022 – wild Sunday, CD move: Poltergeist)

Chandelure GhostFire
  • Strength: ★★★★☆
  • Utility: ★★★★☆
  • CD move necessity: No
  • Verdict: Great, only behind Reshiram and shadows. Get as many as needed for a fire team, but evolve after CD.
  • Moveset: Fire Spin/Overheat
  • Detailed analysis here (October 2022)

Chandelure has always been a great Fire attacker, both before and after CD. Essentially tied with Darmanitan, they’re the best non-shadow non-mega non-legendary, even though significantly behind Reshiram and most shadows. Not to forget that L50 Chandelure will be easier to build than L40 Reshiram.

Fire is not the most useful attacking type, and often faces competition from Fighting (Chandelure is slightly worse than Conkeldurr, for example). However, there has been a number of raid bosses with a double weakness to Fire (Genesect, Kartana, Mega Abomasnow), and bosses that are weak to Fire but not Fighting (Celesteela, Solgaleo, Mega Metagross). Overall, Fire is still a valuable type to have.

Emboar (2021 – raids/eggs, CD move: Blast Burn)

Emboar FireFighting
  • Strength: ★★★☆☆
  • Utility: ★★★☆☆
  • CD move necessity: Yes
  • Verdict: Usable budget option, but outclassed by Chandelure.
  • Moveset: Ember/Blast Burn*

In 2021, I would have called Emboar a good budget option, being above average among Blast Burn users – so it was not a trash or PvP CD by any means. But this time, it’s worse and less accessible than Chandelure. It’s also slightly worse than Blaziken, which now gets a mega evolution.

Evolve a hundo Tepig if you have one, but otherwise don’t stress on it.

Water types: Swampert in all forms, and Samurott

Water attackers ranked by their average in-raid performance, using ASE, ASE with dodging, and ASTTW.

Swampert, as a Water attacker (2022 Classic – wild but rare, CD move: Hydro Cannon)

Swampert WaterGround
  • Strength: Mega ★★★★★★, Shadow ★★★★★, Regular ★★★★☆
  • Utility: ★★★☆☆
  • CD move necessity: Yes
  • Verdict: Get it for the mega and shadow. Regular Swampert will still be a great budget option until Froakie CD. Water is not too useful, but will be against (Primal) Groudon.
  • Moveset: Water Gun or Mud Shot/Hydro Cannon*
  • Detailed analysis here (December 2022)

I’ve covered Mega Swampert and mentioned all three forms there very recently, but to reiterate:

  • Mega Swampert (which can still be obtained from wild catches during December CD) is the best Water attacker, until Primal Kyogre with Origin Pulse arrives, and only if Origin Pulse is an actual improvement.
  • Shadow Swampert is the best Water-type shadow, and aside from Shadow Kyogre (limited quantity), is also a very future-proof shadow.
  • Regular Swampert is still a great option, only behind megas, shadows and legendaries. Good for people who don’t have 6 powered up Kyogre and shadows. However, this may not last long as Greninja with Hydro Cannon will outclass it.
Water is actually one of the less useful attacking types in raids (despite not having a reputation for so), it’s particularly relevant against Primal Groudon, which will be in raids during the upcoming Hoenn Tour. Be prepared!

Samurott (2021 – raids/eggs, CD move: Hydro Cannon)

Samurott Water
  • Strength: ★★★★☆
  • Utility: ★★★☆☆
  • CD move necessity: Yes
  • Verdict: Essentially same as Swampert, but without a shadow or mega. If you have good Oshawott and are patient, may consider saving them for Hisuian Samurott to make the best use of it.
  • Moveset: Waterfall/Hydro Cannon*

I still think Oshawott CD is the most underrated PvE CD of 2021. Samurott is actually good, tied with Swampert (and Kingler) as the best non-shadow non-mega non-legendary water attackers.

The problem is that not only did it arrive after Swampert, and is less accessible than Swampert during this December CD, but it also doesn’t have a mega evolution nor a shadow yet. Poor Samurott.

If you still have a good Oshawott unevolved, you might want to wait for Hisuian Samurott. It has 6 more base attack than its Unovan counterpart, which should make it a slightly better raid attacker if also given Hydro Cannon. Not notable in the long run, but it would be the best use of an Oshawott.

  • It will probably take a long time for Hisuian Samurott to be released, and for us to evolve Oshawott into it (maybe same fashion as Exeggcute and Cubone earlier this year). So if you can’t wait, evolving right now is fine too.

Flying types: Staraptor

Flying attackers ranked by their average in-raid performance, using ASE and ASE with dodging.

Staraptor (2022 – wild Sunday, CD move: Gust)

Staraptor NormalFlying
  • Strength: Shadow ★★★★☆, Regular ★★★☆☆
  • Utility: ★★☆☆☆
  • CD move necessity: Yes, but not significant
  • Verdict: Great budget option, main problem is lack of usage. Good specialist for Pheromosa, Buzzwole, Virizion and Mega Heracross raids. Consider a cheap zero-dust team of 6 high level Staraptors if you want to raid them in future.
  • Moveset: Gust*/Brave Bird
  • Detailed analysis here (July 2022)

While Starly CD was understandably underwhelming, I still think CD Staraptor has a few things going for it. For one, Its CD move Gust is an improvement in raids, even though a minor one from non-legacy Wing Attack. It pulls Staraptor up to Honchkrow levels, and so are their shadows.

For another, it’s a cheap way to get a Flying team, a type that people typically don’t care about. The biggest issue with Flying types is not that they’re weak (although Staraptor kind of is), but that there’s not much to use Flying attackers for. However, 4 major bosses are double weak to Flying, and 3 of them should be familiar names recently: Pheromosa, Buzzwole, Virizion and Mega Heracross.

I myself made good use of my Shadow Staraptors when beating them, mixed with some Sky Attack Moltres. You don’t have to use a shadow, but even a team of Level 30-35 Staraptors with zero stardust investment is helpful, should you raid them again (e.g. when they can be shiny).

Grass types: Venusaur in all forms, and Roserade

Grass attackers ranked by their average in-raid performance, using ASE, ASE with dodging, and ASTTW.

Venusaur (2022 Classic – wild but rare, CD move: Frenzy Plant)

Venusaur GrassPoison
  • Strength: Mega ★★★★☆, Shadow ★★★★☆, Regular ★★☆☆☆
  • Utility: ★★★☆☆
  • CD move necessity: Yes
  • Verdict: All three forms are outclassed by Kartana and Mega Sceptile. Still a great shadow, and a great budget option if you missed everything, but even building Level 30 Kartana is better.
  • Moveset: Vine Whip/Frenzy Plant*

The tone here is very different from when I first analyzed Venusaur for its CD Classic (the first article with the ASE metric). Back then, Mega Venusaur was the best Grass, and Shadow Venusaur was a top-tier shadow.

Now… Kartana rules everything. Even if you don’t have too many rare candies, only 66 candies for a Level 30 Kartana that outclasses L45-50 everything else is too good to overlook. Even in the megas world, Mega Venusaur is still miles behind the freshly introduced Mega Sceptile.

If you have a good Bulbasaur (shadow or regular), definitely evolve it, but it’s no longer a priority now.

Roserade, as a Grass attacker (2021 – raids/eggs, CD move: Bullet Seed & Weather Ball Fire)

Roserade GrassPoison
  • Strength: ★★★☆☆
  • Utility: ★★★☆☆
  • CD move necessity: No
  • Verdict: Still good and one of the best cheap Grass attackers, but again, Level 30 Kartana is better. Definitely not worth raiding and hatching.
  • Moveset: Razor Leaf/Grass Knot

Roserade shares the same fate as Venusaur. Even though it largely survived Tapu Bulu (which is only marginally better, if at all), it also got totally dethroned by L30 Kartana.

Roserade is still the best non-shadow non-mega non-legendary Grass attacker – that hasn’t changed. But not only does it face stiff competition from Water and Electric attackers, like it always did, the pressure from its own type (particularly Kartana) is now too much for it to shine.

Still, this would have been a lot better if Roselia was in the wild, especially for new players. But it’s not, leaving Venusaur as the best budget option this CD.

In case you do have a good Roselia, you don’t need the CD move for raids. Bullet Seed is inferior to Razor Leaf here, and it’s not Weather Ball Grass (that’s not a thing).

Rock types: Gigalith (and Alolan Golem?)

Rock attackers ranked by their average in-raid performance, using ASE, ASE with dodging, and ASTTW.

Gigalith (2022 – wild Sunday, CD move: Meteor Beam)

Gigalith Rock
  • Strength: ★★★☆☆
  • Utility: ★★★★☆
  • CD move necessity: Yes
  • Verdict: Not exciting for long-term players with enough Rampardos and Rhyperior, but if you don’t, time to get a cheap team of Rock attackers – which are very useful!
  • Moveset: Smack Down/Meteor Beam*
  • Detailed analysis here (September 2022)

Gigalith doesn’t have the power to knock down the top-tier Rock types, not even close. But the best part of it: accessibility.

Rock is an extremely useful attacking type and one of the must-have types in my book. Unfortunately, everything better than Gigalith are either rare, expensive (legendaries or shadows), or require their own CD moves. So from the perspective of a new player who missed all these events, Gigalith will be the best option they have, and they’ll probably make good use of it.

  • There are hints of a possible Larvitar CD Classic in January. Note that Meteor Beam Gigalith is still better than Smack Down Tyranitar at equal level. However, Tyranitar does get a mega evolution (though limited to one copy), or may overtake Gigalith if given a better move like Rock Slide down the road.

Alolan Golem, as a Rock attacker (2022 – wild Saturday, CD move: Rollout)

Golem (Alola) RockElectric
  • Strength: ★☆☆☆☆
  • Utility: ★☆☆☆☆
  • CD move necessity: No
  • Verdict: Exists, but outclassed by Gigalith.
  • Moveset: Rock Throw/Stone Edge

I just wanted to point out that, yes, there’s something on Saturday that’s usable… Technically. And should you ever want to use Alolan Golem for raids, you don’t even need its CD move, as Rock Throw is better when paired with the underwhelming Stone Edge.

What about the rest?

Machamp and Luxray are omitted since they’re only in raids and eggs. While both are relevant (especially Machamp), neither are worth chasing behind paywalls, and neither require CD moves as raid attackers. The same applies to Roserade as a Poison attacker (which is still one of the best, only behind Nihilego).

Many Eeveelutions are viable as budget raid attackers, namely Glaceon, Espeon, Flareon, Leafeon, Jolteon and Sylveon (in this order). I didn’t cover them because 1) none of their CD moves are relevant for raids, not even Bullet Seed Leafeon; 2) many are outclassed by options already mentioned above; and 3) who wants to raid Eevee when you can catch so many of them in the wild?

Shadow Walrein with Icicle Spear does appear in my Ice-type charts, between Mewtwo and Avalugg, lol. A far cry from even regular Mamoswine, not to mention shadow.

The others are irrelevant in raids: Talonflame, Serperior, Vaporeon, Umbreon, Dusknoir, Jumpluff, Sandslash, Alolan Sandslash, Bewear, Obstagoon.

Articles coming up next

When my IRL schedule permits, I plan to analyze the following:

  • Ice: Mega Glalie. Hopefully before it leaves raids, but no guarantee.
  • Ground: Mega Swampert, Shadow Mamoswine and Shadow Golurk.
  • Fighting again with future and speculative attackers. At some time…?
  • Shadow Mewtwo and other shadow legendaries: I was working on this during most of November, but the workload is absolutely huge, so I diverted my attention to the more urgent articles instead. It will definitely come at some point, but no ETA.
  • Dragon: Probably when Mega Salamence comes, since its mega portrait is being hinted at in the datamines.
  • Potential Larvitar CD Classic: A rehash of rock and dark/ghost analyses, but with more focus on Mega Tyranitar and/or how to improve Tyranitar’s moveset. Also comes with the long-overdue dark/ghost future attackers.
  • Fairy: Probably when Mega Gardevoir comes, if the speculations come true.

Appendix 1: Guide on how to read the charts & Technical details

Don’t know how to read the charts?

If you’re totally lost, just look at the first two plots, or just the first one if you don’t dodge in raids. These two plots are based on my Average Scaled Estimator (ASE) metric, which approximates in-raid performance using Pokebattler Estimator, best suited for realistic shortmanning (2-5 raiders).

The Average Scaled Time to Win (ASTTW) plots are similar, but best suited for medium or large lobbies (6+ raiders). This metric assumes no re-lobbying (i.e. re-entering the raid after all Pokémon fainted).

The ER (aka DPS3*TDO scaled) and DPS plots are for experienced players who want to check these metrics.

In all six plots, the higher, the better. Example: Mega Gengar is generally better than Hydreigon, which is better than Yveltal, if they’re all at the same Pokémon level. But everything listed is perfectly usable and will let you pull your weight in raids.

You can also compare different attackers at different levels: points on the same horizontal line mean they’re equally as good. Example: Looking at the “ASE no dodging” plot, A Level 30 Hydreigon performs similarly to Level 40 Yveltal and Level 50 Tyranitar.

Reminder: All plots show average performance against many raid bosses. Against a specific raid boss, the rankings can be different.

Technical details:

  • The first two plots are based on my in-house Average Scaled Estimator (ASE) metric, which estimates in-raid performance by automatically computing the average Pokebattler estimators against a variety of T5, Mega and T3 raid bosses, scaled so that the best attacker at L40 gets 1.0. The smaller, the better. For more details, refer to my Venusaur analysis in January and the comments.
  • The middle two plots using Average Scaled Time to Win (ASTTW) follow the same methodology, but replaces Pokebattler estimator with TTW.
  • “ASE Dodge” uses simulations with the “Dodge Specials” + “Realistic Dodging” options on Pokebattler. You can compare it to ASE without dodging to see how much dodging helps an attacker.
    • For example, Gengar’s ASE at Level 40 drops from 1.446 without dodging to 1.260 with dodging, so dodging generally helps Gengar’s performance.
    • However, Hydreigon’s L40 ASE rises from 1.179 to 1.199 with dodging, so dodging may hurt Hydreigon more than it helps.

Appendix 2: Past analyses on other types

Missing types: Fairy (planned – Mega Gardevoir), Ice (planned – Mega Glalie), Poison

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