Dragalge Meta Analysis

Dragalge Pokémon GO
Dragalge Pokémon GO
Dragalge PoisonDragon

The Kalos Pokédex is swinging out at full throttle and the tiny Skrelp marks its debut in Pokémon GO during the Rivals Week event. What’s really interesting about Skrelp is that this Poison Water Pokémon evolves into Dragalge, the pioneering Poison Dragon type in the game. 

As good news, Dragalge would no longer need 400 candies for evolution. Instead, it will only need 50 candies. So does this discount mean it is worse than Noivern? Or actually better?

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So let’s dive into the seas and see just how good this toxic dragon is in the meta!


Typing and Match-ups

Dragalge is a Poison and Dragon type and as such is weak to the Dragon Ground Ice and Psychic types 

Defensively, it has a really impressive set of resistances that include the Grass Bug Electric Fighting Fire Poison and Water types. It is worth noting that these types are pretty relevant in PvP and Dragalge does gain a few brownie points here!

Another really noteworthy point is the fact that this dragon is not weak to the Fairy type. In fact, due to the Poison typing, it deals STAB super-effective damage against those pesky fairies. 

In fact, Dragalge is only the 3rd Dragon type after Dialga and Reshiram to take neutral damage from Fairy types

This clearly shows that Dragalge does potentially hold a reasonable standing in the meta. But how do the stats complement that? Let’s find out!

Stats

Dragalge has the following stats in Pokémon Go:

Dragalge PoisonDragon
Max CP at Level 50 2695 | Max CP at Level 40 2383
ATK 177 DEF 207 HP 163
Weak to Strong Against
Dragon Ground Ice Psychic Dragon Fairy Grass

 

Does this stat distribution look familiar to you?

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Yes, Dragalge’s stats are close to Altaria’s and this does bring up the interest in this dragon.

Will it occupy Altaria’s dominating position in the lower PvP leagues?

Its stats are too underwhelming to give it a slot in the Master League but it does stand the chance to make an impact in the Great and Ultra Leagues. 

There’s only one way to find out: Moveset

Moveset Analysis

Dragalge can learn the following moves in Pokémon Go:

Fast Moves Charged Moves
  • Dragon Tail Dragon
  • Acid Poison
  • Water Gun Water
  • Outrage Dragon
  • Gunk Shot Poison
  • Aqua Tail Water
  • Hydro Pump Water

 

Dragalge seems to have a good set of moves for PvE but the catch is that its stats are too low to make a mark. In addition, there’s just too much competition from the Dragon department. And other types do the job of Poison types better anyday. 

From the PvP side, Dragalge honestly got the best it could. Unlike Kingdra, Dragalge does not learn Dragon Breath (and it never will because Dragalge doesn’t learn the move even in the main series games). 

Its fast moves aren’t exactly the best ones for PvP. Acid charges slowly and the fact that Dragalge has expensive charge moves doesn’t help its cause. 

Water Gun is a good move and has its uses in the UL but it lacks STAB. 

Dragon Tail does neutral damage to much of the meta and possesses the highest energy gain of all its fast moves. In addition, it has STAB. 

Aqua Tail costs the least amount of energy and is mandatory on Dragalge. It also gives Dragalge the potential to bait shields. 

Hydro Pump is too expensive and lacks STAB. Using Aqua Tail is more viable and energy efficient. 

Gunk Shot costs a lot of energy but it has STAB, hits incredibly hard and can KO any Fairy type

One can even go for Outrage instead as it costs less energy than Gunk Shot or Hydro Pump and gains STAB. However, Kingdra does the same job better. That said, Outrage is undoubtedly a viable option and can give Dragalge some key wins.

So what is Dragalge’s ideal moveset? 

Putting all factors into perspective, Dragalge’s ideal moveset is Dragon Tail paired with Aqua Tail and Outrage/Gunk Shot

Performance in PvP

Great League

While Dragalge won’t surpass its Dragon type colleague Altaria in any way whatsoever, it still delivers a good performance in the GL meta. 

It can pose as a threat to GL heavyweights like Azumarill, Galarian Farfetch’d, Alolan Marowak, Galvantula, Obstagoon, Scrafty, Shadow Victreebel and Alolan Raichu. 

In the 1 shield scenario:

With Dragon Tail paired with Aqua Tail and Outrage

Source: pvpoke.com

An impressive 69.6% win rate!

With Dragon Tail paired with Aqua Tail and Gunk Shot

Source: pvpoke.com

Not bad!


Ultra League

While Dragalge reaches level 40 below 2500 CP, Dragalge XL is the cherry on the top.

Dragalge XL picks up some key wins in the UL meta against the likes of Venusaur, Machamp, Giratina (Origin), Talonflame, Blastoise, Toxicroak, Mandibuzz, Zapdos and Blaziken. 

However, do note that it won’t be beating Giratina (Altered)

In the 1 shield scenario with Dragon Tail paired with Aqua Tail and Outrage:

Source: pvpoke.com

In the Ultra Premier League:

Source: pvpoke.com

What problems does Dragalge face in GL and UL?

Note: Dragalge is too underwhelming for the Master League and PvE. So I have kept that aside.

Before anything else, there are two main issues with Dragalge: Confusion users and the Mud Bois 

While Dragalge does have good resistances, it does have some exploitable weaknesses, namely the Psychic and Ground types. It actually struggles against the rampant Steel types out there. And yes, it won’t beat Altaria. 

As such, Dragalge thrives in specific niches and doesn’t make it the most reliable Pokémon out there. 

But is it better than Noivern?

Absolutely! 

So if you have managed to evolve a Noibat into a Noivern because it looks amazing (I know I have!), you should absolutely evolve a Skrelp into a Dragalge. It might not look as cool as Noivern but it would undoubtedly service you better.


So Dragalge actually fares better than Noivern at the moment. Urgh, doesn’t this make the 400 candy requirement for Noivern all the more frustrating?

Anyway, we will focus on the positives and celebrate the new Dragon Pokémon in the game.

Let’s catch this sea dragon for its unorthodox design that is honestly quite badass, currently unique typing in Pokémon Go (until Eternatus arrives) and the Pokédex. And yes, for the love of dragons! 🐉

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My name is Niladri Sarkar. A Team Valor Trainer, I'm a Pokémon Battle Mechanics Specialist & an Ace Dragon Trainer on Smogon's Pokémon Showdown, where I particularly excel with Dragon types, Sandstorm and Rain teams. I love to apply my knowledge and experience of the competitive scene to the ever changing meta of Pokémon Go. Garchomp is my best Pokémon pal through and through.