Champion Geeta looking forward

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6 best Pokémon to take down the Elite Four in Scarlet and Violet

Defeat the Elite Four to become a Pokémon Champion.

Nintendo

Like its predecessors, Pokémon Scarlet and Violet encourages the player to become a Pokémon Champion. The only way to do this is to defeat the Elite Four, the four strongest trainers in the country, and their head honcho, the Champion. They’re tough — they don’t Growl at you until you have enough time to steamroll their Pokémon. They have a higher chance of having moves to counter your type matchups, so they hit where it hurts. If you don’t take advantage of your strongest Pokémon and counter their weaknesses, you might need to return later in the game for a rematch. Here are six Pokémon that should make your Elite Four challenge a painless one.

Note: You have to battle the Elite Four back-to-back to complete the challenge, so you can’t leave to buy more Potions, Revives, and status-healing items once you start. You can still access your box, so you can swap your team out as you go, but they won’t heal by taking them in and out of boxes.

What level is the Elite Four?

I recommend tackling the Elite Four around Level 55 or later. The Elite Four has Pokémon that range from the late 50s to early 60s. Rika, the first of the Elite Four, starts with Pokemon around Level 57 and Geeta, the Champion, has hers at about Level 61. Your level matters less if you take advantage of type weaknesses.

Who are the members of the Elite Four?

Poppy, the youngest member of the Elite Four.Nintendo

Each member of the Elite Four specializes in one type of Pokémon, but they will often be dual types with moves to counter their weaknesses. These are the specializations for each:

  • Rika (Ground)
  • Poppy (Steel)
  • Larry (Flying)
  • Hassel (Dragon)

At the end of the Elite Four gauntlet, the player fights the Champion. Geeta, a.k.a. La Primera, doesn’t focus on one type of Pokémon. She has a more well-rounded team, which includes:

  • Espartha (Psychic)
  • Avalugg (Ice)
  • Kingambit (Dark/Steel)
  • Gogoat (Grass)
  • Veluza (Water/Psychic)
  • Glimmora (Poison/Rock)

Best team comp for the Elite Four

There’s no one Pokémon to use. Many matchups and Pokémon will work, so keep these picks in mind as suggestions and focus on the type advantages. These are just some of the most popular.

6. Gyarados

Gyarados can easily be found swimming in Paldea’s coasts. However, the highest level ones should be in Casseroya Lake or the coast farthest from Mesagoza.Nintendo

Gyarados, one of the Pokemon recommended in our mid- and late-game tier lists, is an excellent choice to fight Rika. In one video, the trainer uses a combination of Rain Dance and Dragon Dance to make sure their Gyarados can knock out any of Rika’s Pokémon without any issues. However, a Stone Edge or Rock Slide attack can wipe out an under-leveled Gyarados in one hit. At the very least, swap in another Pokémon for Donphan, whose Study ability will survive any attack from Gyarados.

5. Pyroar

Pyroar appear in packs in the mountainous area surrounding Glaseado Mountain.Nintendo

Pyroar isn’t typically a “meta” pick for a team, but it’s an easy fully-evolved Fire-type Pokemon that you can add to your team before taking on the Elite Four. Pyroar specializes in Special Attack and can learn Hyper Beam, Flamethrower, and Overheat — moves that will come in handy for either plowing through enemies with neutral advantages or Steel types. I’ve used the Hyper Beam for neutral-type matchups. Replacements for Pyroar include Arcanine (if you raised a Growlithe) or Skeleridge if you chose Fuecoco at the beginning of your journey.

4. Tinkaton

You can’t catch Tinkaton at its highest evolution. Instead, capture its pre-evolved form Tinkatuff in the area surrounding Glaseado Mountain.Nintendo

Hassel, the last member of the Elite Four, carries the tradition of an all-Dragon team. Tinkaton, a Fairy/Steel-type hybrid with a hefty Attack stat, can take out some of these fellas with a strong Fairy-type physical move like Play Rough. Alternatively, you can use Fairy-type Pokemon with Moonblast like Gardevoir or Sylveon. Tinkaton is weak to Ground moves because it’s part Steel-type, so that’s one reason you might want to look into alternatives.

3. Lycanroc

Lycanroc shifts between different forms depending on the time of day. Nintendo

Lycanroc is an easy fully evolved Pokémon to catch late-game. It can counter Poppy’s Steel types with Ground-type moves and ground Larry’s Flying types with Rock ones. Plus, it’s cute! Note: It doesn’t learn many Ground-type moves it can learn on its own, so you’ll need to teach it with TMs.

Ground types are helpful too, but not as much because many of Poppy’s Steel types can escape them with abilities or dual-type advantages. Garchomp is especially handy for combating Steel types because of its wicked Attack stat and ability to use Ground-type moves like Bulldoze. It can also go head-to-head with Dragon-types in Hassel’s battle, but that’s less safe. It’s weak to other Dragon moves and the Ice-type moves that Hassel uses.

2. Luxray

Luxray prowls the area outside the Team Star Fighting Crew base. It’s also relatively easy to find Shinx and Luxio before then.Nintendo

Electric types might not directly counter many of the main categories like Ground, Steel, or Dragon. However, many of the Elite Four members use dual types that make them relevant. They can be used against Flying types — just be careful for those that know Earthquake and similar Ground moves! Luxray stands out as a fully evolved Electric-type Pokemon with sturdier defenses than other choices. I also played around with Raichu and Pawmo, but they were too squishy in comparison.

Alternatively, you can replace an Electric-type with a Pokemon that knows Electric moves like Discharge, Thunderbolt, Thunder Fang, and Wild Charge. Dragonite, Pyroar, Arcanine, and a few others can learn one or more of these attacks.

1. Your Starter

All three starter Pokémon evolve into strong dual-types: Meowscarada (Grass/Dark), Quaquaval (Water/Fighting), and Skeledirge (Fire/Ghost). For example, Meowscarada can Seed Bomb the hell out of Rika’s Ground-types. Skeledirge can melt through Poppy’s Steel-types. Quaquaval also has a place in either Rika or Poppy’s battles, considering its unique Water/Fighting dual type. Just be careful of specific counter moves, like a Crunch attack against Skeledirge or a Psychic attack against Quaquaval.

One more tip: Keep a backup for each type advantage so that you have another “savior” Pokémon to rely on in case the Elite Four KO’s your main threat with an unexpected counter move. I’m still thinking about the Donphan with the Sturdy Ability that did my Gyarados dirty.

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