The earth-shattering Pokémon GO rumors are true—the Legendary Pokémon Groudon is now surfacing around the globe in Raid Battles at Gyms. The Continent Pokémon is the first Legendary Pokémon originally discovered in the Hoenn region to appear at Gyms. This titanic Ground-type Pokémon is a challenging foe—and a powerful ally, if you catch one. It'll only appear in Gyms until January 15, 2018, so make sure to get up and go into battle.
Groudon can be caught only with the Premier Balls you earn from defeating it, so you'll need your Pokémon to perform well in battle to maximize your chances. You can take on Groudon even if you're not high level or your Pokémon aren't quite world-beaters, but you will have an easier time if you prepare. Check out our guide to training Pokémon in Pokémon GO to get your team up to speed, and then read on for some tips.
Groudon is exceptionally powerful—even among Legendary Pokémon—so you should make sure you're prepared for a tough fight.
The Ground-type Groudon is weak against Water-, Ice-, and Grass-type attacks. It may know either Mud Shot or Dragon Tail as its Fast Attack and any of Earthquake, Fire Blast, or Solar Beam as its Charged Attack. Grass-type Pokémon are weak against Fire Blast and Water-type Pokémon are weak against Solar Beam, so you may have to adjust your strategy once you've seen which attacks the Groudon you're facing knows. Avoid using Electric-, Rock-, or Poison-type attacks because they will deal reduced damage against Groudon.
Groudon's most powerful attacks are Ground-type, and any Groudon you encounter is likely to know at least one of them. Flying-type Pokémon aren't immune to Ground-type attacks in Pokémon GO like they are in Pokémon Ultra Sun or Pokémon Ultra Moon, but they'll still take reduced damage compared to other types of Pokémon.
Articuno's mix of Flying- and Ice-types makes it one of the best choices for this encounter. The Legendary Pokémon will take little damage from most of Groudon's attacks, and it'll deal plenty of damage in return with its Ice-type attacks. Lugia and Gyarados each resist three of Groudon's potential attacks, and they can reply with supereffective damage if they know Hydro Pump. Dragonite will only deal neutral damage to Groudon—and it will take increased damage from the Dragon Tail attack some Groudon know—but it remains one of the safest combatants overall with several resistances and great stats.
Grass-type Pokémon are theoretically the next best fit for this encounter. Grass-type Pokémon resist Ground-type attacks, and Grass-type attacks are supereffective against Groudon, too. But many Grass-type Pokémon lack a resistance to Ground-type attacks due to being both Grass- and Poison-type Pokémon, so you may not want to deploy Venusaur, Victreebel, or Vileplume in this encounter. Instead, try Exeggutor, Meganium, and Tangela—but beware of Fire Blast. The recently discovered Breloom, Sceptile, and Shiftry are also strong choices against Groudon.
Water-type Pokémon are also solid choices against Groudon that aren't wielding Solar Beam. Vaporeon has a natural stoutness that helps it overcome its lack of a resistance to most of Groudon's moves. Feraligatr, Suicune, Politoed, and Starmie trail a bit behind Vaporeon among Water-types, but they're solid contenders for your team. Stay away from Omastar this time—any combination of moves other than Dragon Tail and Fire Blast will leave the Water- and Rock-type Pokémon receiving supereffective damage.
A few Pokémon stand out for their ability to dish out damage despite a comparatively vulnerable defense. Mewtwo's attacks are as devastating as ever, and a Jynx that knows Ice-type attacks is a great choice to leave Groudon out in the cold. Espeon and Alakazam also deal plenty of damage while they're on the field, but don't expect any of them to stick around for long.
Land Yourself a Groudon
You won't get many Premier Balls to catch Groudon once you've defeated it, so make each one count. Use a Golden Razz Berry before each throw, being sure to stock up on them beforehand by defeating other Raid Bosses.
The odds of capturing Groudon are greatest while the target ring is at a small enough diameter to score Nice, Great, or Excellent Throws, and throwing Curveballs can improve your chances further. But work within your abilities—if you don't think you can hit Excellent Curveballs reliably, aim for Nice or Great Throws rather than risk missing the target ring completely.
You may waste your Premier Balls if your target is moving around when you throw them. Wait for Groudon to start acting up and for the target ring to disappear while it's a size you're comfortable throwing into, then time your throw so that the Premier Ball lands as the target ring reappears.
Legendary Pokémon are tough to catch, so don't be discouraged if Groudon gets away the first time you defeat it. Stock up on useful items like Max Potions and Max Revives and try again later. Good luck with your Legendary Pokémon adventures, and remember to check back at Pokemon.co.uk/Strategy for more Pokémon GO, video game, and Pokémon TCG tips.