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Pokemon Go: How to defeat the toughest Pokemon in GO Battle League

by Paul Cot

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Some Pokemon are frequently seen across GO Battle League, and for good reason: they're difficult to beat. However, all Pokemon can be defeated and we're going to explain the best way to do it for each of these species.

The likes of Altaria in Great League, Giratina in Ultra League and Dialga in Master League are as close to must have picks as there are in GO Battle League. That means inevitably you are going to come across them.

Having counters ready for them are therefore imperative. Here are the Pokemon you need to defeat the likes of the above and other pesky species that a lot of trainers dread facing.

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PvP counters

Defeat Altered Forme Giratina Pokemon Go
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Giratina might be a beast but it's actually vulnerable to quite a few different types...

Giratina Altered Forme

Is Giratina the best Pokemon in all of GO Battle League? Some would certainly argue it is.

The Legendary Pokemon will often appear in both Ultra and Master League, but it is more prevalent in the former. While it is super-powerful and will roll through Protect Shields at an infuriating pace, there are several Pokemon that can take care of it.

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It's weak to five different types: dark, dragon, fairy, ghost and ice. Now, Giratina is two of those types itself - dragon and ghost - so they will balance each other out.

There are no real ice-types that warrant inclusion in your Ultra or Master League teams, so that leaves us with dark and fairy-types. Darkrai and Tyranitar are excellent counters to both forms of Giratina and in a straight battle will come out on top, providing you are utilizing dark-type moves.

However, fairy is absolutely the way to go. Trainers using Giratina-A will almost certainly be using either of Dragon Breath or Dragon Claw (or both) and these are doubly ineffective against fairy-types.

This means not only is the Renegade Pokemon weak to fairy but has poor attacks for it, too. With this said, there is no better counter to Giratina in GBL than Togekiss. Other fairy-types you can use are Clefable and Granbull.

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Defeat Togekiss Pokemon Go
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Togekiss is a nightmare for many popular Pokemon in GBL but there is a clear path to defeat it...

Togekiss

Speaking of Togekiss, the Jubilee Pokemon is another frustrating species to encounter. While it will beat a lot of Pokemon with ease - it will decimate bug, dragon, fighting and ground types - there is a clear route to beat it.

Much like Giratina, there are five types it is weak to. They are: electric, ice, poison, rock and steel. Again, there is a standout candidate out of those - steel.

Togekiss' moves are primarily made up of fairy and flying attacks, which are weak against steel. This, combined with its weakness to steel makes it a nightmare for Togekiss to face.

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The obvious contender here would be Dialga - because it's excellent in both of GBL's top leagues. However, most trainers will be utilizing Dragon Breath for its Fast Move (which is ineffective against Togekiss) and then Draco Meteor for its Charge Move. So, unless you're using Metal Claw and Iron Head, which would be very strange, Dialga isn't as good as it seems.

That brings us to Metagross. The Iron Leg Pokemon will most likely be using a steel-type Fast Move because, well, Zen Headbutt is a terrible option. Psychic tends to be its Charge Move of choice but Flash Cannon and its Elite Move, Meteor Mash, are obviously Togekiss kryptonite.

Elsewhere, you can look for poison-types but there aren't too many options that are good in GO Battle League. Muk is one option but it's pretty limited otherwise. Venusaur may be the best bet and will ideally have Sludge Bomb at its disposal.

Defeat Dialga Pokemon Go
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Dialga's typing gives it very few weaknesses...

Dialga

That provides a good segue to move on to Dialga. The Temporal Pokemon is currently the undisputed king of Master League, so you will come up against it.

Usually with any form of dragon-type you could just throw a fairy in there and be done with it. However, Dialga has that annoying dual type of dragon and steel, negating its fairy-type weakness.

So, we have to look toward fighting and ground-types. Lucario and Machamp are the best fighting Pokemon to use as long as they are using Counter as a Fast Move.

Of course, it is ideal if they are using fighting-type Charge Moves as well. Both are on the weak side defensively so they will take their fair share of damage to get the win.

As a result, a top of the range ground-type might be a preferable option. Excadrill and Rhyperior using Mud Slap are the best choices here. Obviously Earthquake is a fantastic move to be able to hit Dialga with but that is dependent on it having no Protect Shields remaining. Rock Wrecker with a DPE of 2.2 is also a great option.

Defeat Azumarill Pokemon Go
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Azumarill is shockingly difficult to beat in GBL Great League...

Azumarill

For those who haven't played Pokemon Go GO Battle League before, it will come as a big shock that Azumarill is one of, and if not the best Great League choices. Its max CP fits just inside the 1,500 CP limit and its bulk is perfect for GBL.

It has the upper hand on a variety of types, none more so than dragon. However, like any Pokemon it does have weaknesses and the best of those are grass-types.

It is also weak to electric and poison but grass remains the choice here because Azumarill's water-types moves are weak against it. Any of Ivysaur, Venusaur, Meganium, Torterra and Shiftry will comfortably beat it with their array of grass attacks. It should be noted that Shiftry does have a weakness to fairy-type moves, so beware of the Aqua Rabbit's Play Rough attack.

Elsewhere, Croagunk, Raikou and Zapdos all utilizing the right type of moves will also get the better of Azumarill.

Defeat Altaria Pokemon Go
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Altaria has it all when it comes to GO Battle Great League...

Altaria

If Azumarill isn't the boss of the Great League, then Altaria certainly is. The Humming Pokemon obliterates some of the more 'traditional' types in Pokemon Go but while it has a lot of fights it will definitely win, there are plenty of options to defeat it with - despite its impressive stats at the Great League level.

Its dual dragon and flying typing mean it's doubly weak to ice-type attacks. Other weaknesses include dragon, fairy and rock attacks but we're going to stick with ice here.

One option that may fly under the radar but that is supremely effective is Mawile. Its dual fairy and steel typing means it is resistant to all of Altaria's attacks.

On top of this if you have a Mawile with Ice Fang then you're in for an easy fight. It becomes even better if you're using Play Rough for one of its Charge Moves.

Other ice-type attackers include Weavile although this does lack defensive prowess. Other options are Piloswine/Mamoswine but we'd look no further than Mawile if you want to go the ice route.

Clefable, Granbull and Wigglytuff are arguably even better choices, despite not being doubly effective, due to their impressive bulk. These seem to be more readily available for trainers as well due to their advantages elsewhere.


With Pokemon Go's GO Battle League being so popular, knowing certain PvP counters is essential. If you can handle all of the above, or at least have some form of plan in place, there's no reason why your win ratio in GBL can't immediately shoot up.

GO Battle League is currently down due to a rather large exploit. We will let you know when it is back up.