Xerneas

Xerneas is a Tier 5 legendary raid boss in Pokémon Go and is the first Fairy type legendary Pokémon in the game.

Xerneas can be caught with the following CP values:

  • 2073- 2160 CP at Level 20, no weather boost
  • 2591- 2701 CP at Level 25 with Cloudy weather boost

It has a mono typing of Fairy and as such, it is boosted by Cloudy weather and its counters include strong Steel and Poison type Pokémon such as Metagross, Dialga, Roserade and mega evolutions like Mega Gengar and Mega Beedrill.

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As you will soon find out, Xerneas is quite bulky and as such, it would require 5-7 trainers to be on the safe side.

Xerneas Raid Counters

Since Shadow Pokémon are extremely expensive to power up and require specific events to remove Frustration with a Charge TM, they will NOT be listed as raid counters in this article. That being said, if you have the shadow form of a listed raid counter Pokémon powered up and TMed, use it.

The best counters for Xerneas, based on the time required to win, are the following:

# Pokemon Fast Move Charge Move Time to win Deaths
1. Gengar (Mega) Lick Sludge Bomb 495.11s 15.10
2. Metagross Bullet Punch Meteor Mash 557.18s 15.30
3. Beedrill (Mega) Poison Jab Sludge Bomb 520.77s 27.70
4. Dialga Metal Claw Iron Head 618.45s 18.40
5. Genesect (Normal) Metal Claw Magnet Bomb 652.82s 19.90
6. Roserade Poison Jab Sludge Bomb 628.31s 26.78
7. Excadrill Metal Claw Iron Head 653.26s 20.80
8. Gengar Lick Sludge Bomb 654.00s 24.00
9. Jirachi Charge Beam Doom Desire 693.01s 16.80
10. Venusaur (Mega) Vine Whip Sludge Bomb 692.44s 19.40
11. Charizard (Mega Y) Fire Spin Blast Burn 704.09s 20.50
12. Deoxys (Attack) Poison Jab Zap Cannon 625.70s 45.57
13. Heatran Fire Spin Iron Head 803.25s 17.44
14. Ho-Oh Steel Wing Brave Bird 779.65s 18.80
15. Pidgeot (Mega) Steel Wing Brave Bird 712.79s 27.30
16. Mewtwo Psycho Cut Psystrike 739.65s 23.40
17. Toxicroak Poison Jab Sludge Bomb 714.94s 36.22
18. Victreebel Acid Sludge Bomb 730.78s 31.22
19. Aggron Iron Tail Heavy Slam 804.84s 19.70
20. Bisharp Metal Claw Iron Head 740.11s 29.00
21. Vileplume Acid Sludge Bomb 753.72s 29.00
22. Scolipede Poison Jab Sludge Bomb 749.61s 30.33
23. Kingler Metal Claw Crabhammer 833.63s 44.20
24. Skuntank Poison Jab Sludge Bomb 792.36s 31.43
25. Durant Metal Claw Iron Head 804.59s 26.25
26. Empoleon Metal Claw Flash Cannon 824.02s 24.38
27. Dragonite Steel Wing Hurricane 804.72s 24.89
28. Dodrio Steel Wing Brave Bird 865.25s 36.00
29. Lucario Bullet Punch Flash Cannon 799.34s 29.40
30. Scizor Bullet Punch Iron Head 767.61s 25.90
31. Blastoise (Mega) Water Gun Hydro Cannon 774.59s 25.30
32. Regigigas Hidden Power Giga Impact 810.97s 25.00
33. Muk Poison Jab Gunk Shot 817.14s 24.60
34. Unfezant Steel Wing Sky Attack 883.93s 36.00
35. Ursaring Metal Claw Hyper Beam 888.09s 36.00

Stats and Max CP

Xerneas Fairy
Max CP at Level 40 3781| Max CP at Level 50 4275
ATK 250 DEF 185 HP 246
Weak to Strong Against
Steel Poison  Dark Dragon Fighting

Moveset Analysis

Xerneas learns the following moves in Pokémon Go:

Fast Moves Charge Moves
  • Tackle Normal
  • Zen Headbutt Psychic
  • Moonblast Fairy
  • Megahorn Bug
  • Close Combat Fighting
  • Thunder Electric
  • Giga Impact Normal

Aw, this is depressing. Niantic has ruined the gorgeous Xerneas with really bad fast moves. Like, really bad!

Tackle is a bad Normal type move that doesn’t deal super-effective damage to any type. The top counter, Mega Gengar, heavily resists Tackle. In fact, Mega Gengar is grinning because it reads ‘Tackle’ as ‘Tickle’. Tch!

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Zen Headbutt is again a bad move. However, it deals super-effective damage to Mega Gengar. For Zen Headbutt, Metagross is your go-to Pokémon.

Coming to the charged moves, Moonblast gains STAB and hits quite hard.

Close Combat can take off a chunk of HP from your Steel types. The Poison types are more effective here.

Thunder is kind of difficult to dodge and does quite a number, so be wary of this one.

Megahorn is decent but not too much of a threat.

Giga Impact can do a lot of damage but can be dodged.

Oh! So Xerneas is all about hard-hitting charged moves and underwhelming fast moves. It is bulky and as such, would take a while to be defeated. Otherwise, with numbers on your side, Xerneas can be taken down with relative ease.


Conclusion

We have had many opportunities to get Pokémon like Meteor Mash Metagross, Mega Gengar and Mega Beedrill with free mega energy. So, stacking up your counters to beat Xerneas shouldn’t be too much of a problem. It’s all about having numbers on your side!

Xerneas at the moment is bad. As simple as that. It has the stats but it desperately needs a Fairy type charged move to make an impact on the meta. Do note that Xerneas doesn’t learn Charm in the main series games. So the only way to go would be for Niantic to implement Xerneas’ signature move, Geomancy, as an exclusive fast move.

Only time will tell if Niantic decides to save Xerneas from staying in the dirt. But at the end of the day, it doesn’t hurt to dex this absolutely beautiful legendary Pokémon. Who knows what the future will bring? We have had Pokémon becoming tremendously meta relevant due to a new move in the past. 

Till then, stay safe and happy raiding!

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