Pokemon

GO Battle League analysis: Lapras tougher than it looks

by Paul Cot

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Lapras is overlooked by many trainers as an option for there Pokemon Go GO Battle League team. Here's why you should reconsider that stance.

The popular Kantonian has incredible stamina stats which are among the best of all Pokemon. Its attack may be comparatively poor but with the name of the game in GO Battle League being bulk, Lapras fits in well.

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This stamina stat is only bolstered by Lapras' maximum CP of 2,641. This means its stamina can be almost maxed out at the Ultra League limit. It also makes it an excellent option at Great League.

Of course, this does all but rule it out of Master League as any Pokemon with a max CP of less than 3,000 is going to struggle. It also costs a lot of Stardust to have a Lapras at the Ultra League limit of 2,500 CP.

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Typing

There's more to GO Battle League selection than pure stats, though. If this were the case we'd be seeing far more Slaking in Master League.

Lapras is a dual ice and water-type. While this particular typing is far from special it does give some ice coverage which isn't found too easily.

This makes the Transport Pokemon weak against electric, fighting, grass and rock-type attacks. It is resistant to water and doubly resistant to ice.

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On paper this doesn't sound that good, and it isn't. However, the benefit of Lapras comes with the types its ice attacks are effective against.

Lapras Pokemon Go
Bulbapedia
Lapras has an incredible stamina stat...

Ice moves always useful to have

Firstly, let's take a look at Lapras' Fast Moves. Those of you that took advantage of the Pokemon Go January Research Breakthrough reward may have a few Lapras sitting around with two Elite moves already.

  • Frost Breath - 3.5 DPT, 2.5 EPT
  • Water Gun - 3 DPT, 3 EPT
  • Ice Shard (Elite) - 3 DPT, 3.33 EPT

Ice Shard is unquestionably the strongest of these but if you don't already have it the difference between that and Frost Breath may not warrant the use of an Elite Fast TM. The choice between the non-Elite moves is largely preference.

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Here are the Charge Moves Lapras has available:

  • Blizzard - 130 damage, 75 energy
  • Hydro Pump - 130 damage, 75 energy
  • Skull Bash - 130 damage, 75 energy
  • Surf - 65 damage, 40 energy
  • Dragon Pulse (Elite) - 90 damage, 60 energy
  • Ice Beam (Elite) - 90 damage, 55 energy

Experienced GO Battle League trainers will know low-energy Charge Moves are vital. This is because it is important to get rid of your opponent's Protect Shields and by using as many Charge Moves as possible this gives them a tough decision to make - take the damage or waste the Protect Shield.

Surf will be most frequently used for those who aren't used a Research Breakthrough Lapras. However, Ice Beam largely serves the same purpose with more damage and favourable type advantages.

One of these would most ideally be paired with Blizzard or Hydro Pump - whatever is the opposite type to your low-energy Charge Move.

Ice beats popular choices

What do Altaria, Dragonite, Rayquaza and Salamence all have in common? They're all dual dragon and flying-types, which means they are doubly weak to ice.

Altaria is one of the most common sightings in Great League and having a counter as strong as Lapras is ready is a huge advantage. Any of its ice-type moves will deal 256% damage.

The others may not be seen quite as much but it is good to be ready for them, too. Bear in mind water and ice attacks are both weak against water, although Lapras is resistant to both.


Lapras may require a couple of Elite TMs and a lot of Stardust to get it to the top of GO Battle League but even with Surf/Blizzard combination it can be effective.

It will cost 75,000 Stardust and 75 Lapras Candy to unlock a second move, though. Without this it does a lose a lot of its appeal.