Pokemon Go Rocket Grunt guide: Counters and lineups (January 2022) - Dexerto
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Pokemon Go Rocket Grunt guide: Counters and lineups (January 2022)

Published: 30/Dec/2021 15:54 Updated: 30/Dec/2021 15:55

by Daniel Megarry

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In order to get Shadow ‘mon in Pokemon Go, Trainers will need to defeat Team Go Rocket Grunts. Each of these villains has its own unique lineup, which means you’ll need to know the right counters to take into battle in January 2022.

Ever since they debuted back in 2019, Team Go Rocket Grunts have been taking over Pokestops to steal items and battle Trainers who talk to them. You’ll sometimes even see them flying across the sky in Team Go Rocket hot air balloons.

Grunts might be the lowest ranking members of the nefarious Team Go Rocket, but they can still prove a difficult battle. The key to success is knowing what types they use and preparing a team that takes advantage of their weaknesses.

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Fortunately, each Team Go Rocket Grunt in the game will taunt you with a line of dialogue ahead of each battle, and this dialogue will give you a hint as to which type of Pokemon they’ll use, as well as the potential pool of Pokemon they’ll choose from.


Contents


Team GO Rocket in Pokemon GO
Niantic
Team GO Rocket are taking over Pokemon GO.

Pokemon Go Grunt counters (January 2022)

There are plenty of reasons to defeat these Grunts in Pokemon Go. As well as providing you a chance to catch and purify a Shadow Pokemon, you’ll also get a Mysterious Component part that lets you battle one of the Team Go Rocket Leaders: Arlo, Cliff, or Sierra.

In November 2021, as part of the Festival of Lights, all of the Grunt lineups changed, and there are now 20 different Grunts to encounter. The latest addition is the Fairy-type Grunt, who will deliver the taunt, ‘Check out my cute Pokemon!’.

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Below, you’ll find every type of Team Go Rocket Grunt based on their taunts, as well as information on what their lineup will be and the best counters you can use to defeat them.

Are you scared of psychics that use unseen power?

This Grunt will use Psychic-type Pokemon, so the best counters are strong Ghost, Dark, and Bug-types such as Tyranitar, Weavile, Houndoom, and Haunter.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Abra Metang Alakazam
Ralts Hypno
Metang

Battle against my Flying-type Pokemon!

As the taunt suggests, this Grunt will use Flying-type Pokemon, so the best counters are strong Rock, Electric, or Ice-types such as Tyranitar, Electivire, and Abomasnow.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Murkrow Golbat Crobat
Starly Staravia Staraptor
Zubat

Check out my cute Pokemon!

If you find yourself against this Grunt, they’ll be using Fairy-type Pokemon, so the best counters are Poison and Steel-types like Metagross, Roserade, Gengar, and Victreebel.

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Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Ralts Kirlia Granbull
Snubbull Snubbull Kirlia

Coiled and ready to strike!

This Grunt will use Poison-type Pokemon, so the best counters are strong Psychic and Ground-types such as Espeon, Mewtwo, Tyranitar, and Groudon.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Nidoran ♂ Nidorino Muk
Nidorina Weezing Weezing
Zubat

Don’t tangle with us!

This Grunt will use Grass-type Pokemon, which means the best counters are strong Fire-types like Charizard, Moltres, Entei, or Pyroar. Bug, Ice, Flying, and Poison-types are solid backups.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Cacnea Ivysaur Bellossom
Turtwig Tangela Vileplume

Do you know how hot Pokemon fire breath can get?

As you may have guessed, this Grunt will use Fire-type Pokemon. This means the best counters will be strong Water, Rock, and Ground-types like Tyranitar, Blastoise, Vaporeon, and Rhydon.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Charmander Charmeleon Arcanine
Vulpix Magmar Ninetails

Get ready to be shocked!

This Grunt will use Electric-type Pokemon, so the best counters are definitely strong Ground-types like Groudon, Rhyperior, Hippowdon, and Golem.

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Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Electrike Electabuzz Ampharos
Magnemite Magneton Magneton

Go, my super bug Pokemon!

As their taunt hints, this Grunt will use Bug-type Pokemon. The best counters here are strong Fire-types including Charizard, Moltres, Entei, or Pyroar. Flying and Rock-types are decent backups.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Venomoth Beedril Forretress
Weedle Skorupi Pinsir
Scizor

Ke… ke… ke… ke… ke… ke…

This Grunt will use Ghost-type Pokemon, so the best counters are strong Dark and Ghost-types such as Weavile, Gengar, Haunter, and Darkrai.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Misdreavus Sableye Banette
Sableye Shuppet Sableye

Let’s rock and roll!

This Grunt will use a series of Rock-type Pokemon, which means the best counters are strong Fighting-types like Machamp. Water, Grass, Ground, and Steel-types can be used as a backup.

Here are the possible encounters:

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Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Larvitar Anorith Pupitar
Lileep Tyranitar

Normal doesn’t mean weak

It goes without saying that this Grunt will use Normal-type Pokemon. The best counters are strong Fighting-types like Machamp, Conkeldurr, Sirfetch’d, and Sawk.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Bidoof Bibarel Bibarel
Rattata Raticate Raticate
Teddiursa Ursaring

ROAR! … How’d that sound?

This Grunt will use Dragon-type Pokemon, so the best counters are strong Ice-types such as Weavile or Glaceon. Fairy-types like Sylveon are good backups too.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Dratini Dragonair Dragonair
Flygon Dragonite
Flygon

These waters are treacherous (Female)

The female version of this Grunt will use Water-type Pokemon. The best counters you can use are strong Grass or Electric-types such as Sceptile, Leafeon, Raikou, and Magnezone.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Mudkip Shellder Slowbro
Psyduck Wartortle Slowking

These waters are treacherous (Male)

The male version of this Water-based grunt will only use Magikarp, but there’s a very small chance he could send out Gyarados as his final Pokemon. Electric-types are the best counters here.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Magikarp Magikarp Magikarp
Gyarados

This buff physique isn’t just for show!

This Grunt will use Fighting-type Pokemon, so the best counters you can use are strong Psychic, Flying, and Fairy-types like Alakazam, Gardevoir, Togekiss, and Lugia.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Hitmonchan Machop Hariyama
Hitmonlee Makuhita Hitmonchan
Hitmonlee

You’ll be defeated into the ground!

This Grunt will use Ground-type Pokemon, which means the best counters are strong Water, Grass, and Ice-types like Gyarados, Venusaur, Mamoswine, and Weavile.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Cubone Dugtrio Flygon
Sandshrew Sandslash Gliscor
Marowak

You’re gonna be frozen in your tracks

This Grunt will use Ice-type Pokemon. The best counters are strong Fighting and Rock-types such as Aggron, Machamp, and Tyranitar. Keep a Fire-type on your team for Snover and Abomansow, too.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Spheal Cloyster Abomasnow
Swinub Snover Lapras

Wherever there is light, there is also shadow

This Grunt will use Dark-type Pokemon, all of which are weak to Fairy-type attacks, so the best counters are strong Fairy-types such as Sylveon, Togekiss, and Gardevoir.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Houndour Cacturne Sharpedo
Poochyena Nuzleaf Shiftry
Sableye

Don’t bother, I’ve already won / Get ready to be defeated! / Winning is for winners

This Grunt is more difficult to predict, as it uses a mix of Pokemon types. We recommend a team with a Fighting-type like Machamp, an Electric-type like Raikou, and an Ice-type like Abomasnow.

Here are the possible encounters:

Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3
Snorlax Gardevoir Dragonite
Poliwrath Gyarados
Snorlax Snorlax

That’s all of the Team Go Rocket Grunt lineups as of January 2022. If there are any changes made by Niantic in future Go updates, we’ll update this page with the latest information.

If you become familiar with each taunt, you’ll be able to defeat any Team Go Rocket Grunt and rack up loads of Shadow Pokemon before you know it.


For more tips and tricks covering all things Pokemon Go, make sure to check out our guides:

Spotlight Hour guide | Current Raid Bosses | Best attackers and defenders in Go | Pokemon Go Spotlight Hour | Arlo counters guide | Cliff counters guide | How to get free Remote Raid Passes | Sierra counters guide | How to catch Ditto | Shop: Items list, prices, box changes