Pokemon Go: How to defeat Sierra (October 2020)

Paul Cot

Sierra is back, causing trouble in Pokemon Go. You’ll need to go through the formidable Team GO Rocket leader to get your opportunity to catch Shadow Mewtwo. Here are the best counters to combat Sierra’s October 2020 lineup.

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Team GO Rocket leaders are difficult to beat and Sierra has been particularly tough historically. Preparation is key if you are to defeat the leaders with relative ease.

Sierra October 2020 counters

Here’s the Pokemon Sierra can send out as part of his October 2020 lineup:

  • 1st Pokemon:
    • Drowzee
  • 2nd Pokemon:
    • Exeggutor
    • Lapras
    • Sharpedo
  • 3rd Pokemon:
    • Alakazam
    • Houndoom
    • Shiftry
Drowzee Sierra
Drowzee is Sierra’s lowest rated Pokemon but isn’t a pushover…

Drowzee

Sierra’s first choice Pokemon is guaranteed to be Drowzee. On paper this may look like easy pickings but in the hands of a Team GO Rocket leader it is anything but.

The Hypnosis Pokemon will primarily use psychic-type moves but can use Pound (a normal-type attack) as its Fast Move. All of these are weak against steel.

Drowzee itself is weak against bug, dark and ghost attacks. That means any of Alola Muk, Darkrai, Giratina and Tyranitar should comfortably dispatch of it. Giratina’s Dragon Claw, as long as you’re using Shadow Claw for the Fast Move, will enable you to get Sierra to waste her Protect Shields too.

Exeggutor

There’s a one in three chance Sierra’s second choice will be Exeggutor. It is doubly weak to bug attacks, which provides additional incentive to select a Pokemon with bug-type moves for Drowzee as well.

When considering Exeggutor’s move set it uses grass and psychic-type attacks. This makes the absolute best counter for Exeggutor, and an excellent one for Drowzee too for that matter, Scizor.

Its dual bug and steel typing makes it only weak against fire. It also has the bonus of having fast charging Charge Moves. However, it is on the brittle side so don’t expect it to last too long against Sierra’s powerful Shadow ‘mons.

Lapras Sierra
Lapras may look friendly but in the hands of Sierra it is super tough…

Lapras

Lapras has very understated bulk, making it a really tough Pokemon to get past. It may not look incredible on paper but a combination of high stamina and high CP means typing advantage is essential here.

The Transport Pokemon is weak against electric, fighting, grass, and rock. Unfortunately, grass-type counters are all but ruled out due to Lapras’ ice moves. Grass is weak to ice and in the case of Torterra, doubly so. The same can be said for rock-type counters Golem and Rhyperior, ruling them out too.

That brings us to electric. The likes of Zekrom, Zapdos, Electivire and Jolteon are ideally positioned but too weak. Magnezone is the only electric-type that really stands up to Lapras’ power.

Melmetal is another option, and a good one at that, due to its typing (steel) and moveset. It will resist ice attacks and remains indifferent to the preferred water attacks. If you have the Hex Nut Pokemon it will have Thunder Shock as a Fast Move which is perfect.

Elsewhere, there is Dialga, which is seemingly strong against everything (which isn’t far from the truth). You may also be lucky enough to have one that uses Thunder.

Finally, fighting-types can also work here. Lucario will get the job done but beware of its fragility, it will accrue damage a little too easily.

Sharpedo

Sharpedo is another Pokemon Scizor that is effective against. It is neutral to dark and water attacks Sharpedo uses. Make sure it is utilizing its bug attacks, though.

While Scizor overlaps with Drowzee and Exeggutor, Lucario overlaps with Lapras and Sharpedo because of its resistance to dark-type moves. The same applies to Machamp.

Elsewhere, being a water-type Pokemon it is weak to electric types such as Raikou and Zapdos will also work. Then there are the formidable fairy-type options. Clefable, Togekiss, and Wigglytuff all provide that favorable typing and bulk. If Sharpedo uses dark moves then it stands no chance against any of them.

Alakazam

The following are Sierra’s potential third choice Pokemon. Alakazam will use a psychic-type Fast Move making a dark-type ‘mon the perfect foil for it. It only receives 51% of the damage.

Its Charge Moves are more unpredictable and if it uses the powerful Focus Blast you could be in trouble should you not shield. However, if you have those Protect Shields saved, a good dark-type Pokemon will make easy work of it.

Naturally, dark-types don’t come any better than Darkrai. Another option is Tyranitar which utilizes Bite and Crunch.

Alternative choices include Hydreigon and Metagross. The best of all though is maybe Houndoom with its Snarl and Dark Pulse combination. There are plenty of choices when it comes to taking on Alakazam.

Houndoom

Houndoom has an obvious weakness in water. However, water-types don’t cover themselves in glory when it comes to Sierra’s other selections.

Fighting types are one way to get through Houndoom but you’ll need it to be fresh which is no guarantee. If you are going down this route then the obvious candidates are Lucario and Machamp. Rhyperior and Terrakion will also work as rock-types but again, don’t match well elsewhere.

Therefore, it may be better to prepare accordingly for Sierra’s other choices and beat Houndoom by brute force. Maybe one of those species you have to hope to beat by brute force rather than having a dedicated counter. One of the aforementioned bulky fairy Pokemon may just do the job because of how well rounded they are.

Shiftry

Bug and fairy attacks are Shiftry’s most accessible weaknesses, at least in terms of Sierra’s other choices.

Scizor is once again a prime candidate due to Shiftry’s double weakness to bug. At this point it is a must-have for defeating the Team GO Rocket leader. Other bug options include Volcarona and Yanmega.

Should you not have a suitable bug-type at your disposal then versatile fairy-types should also work here. Ideally, that fairy Pokemon would be Togekiss which seems to work well against everything. Ho-Oh is more of a left-field choice but only works for Shiftry so it is a risk.


Looking at Sierra as a whole, Scizor is the key. Combine this with a strong fairy-type, a Darkrai or Giratina for balance, a fighting-type and the battle should be a lot easier than many trainers are finding it.

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