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Pokémon Go PvP guide: best Ultra League Pokémon, movesets, and costs

A higher CP cap means more Pokémon can be used

A hand holds up an iPhone displaying Altered Forme Giratina’s stat screen in Pokémon Go Photo: James Bareham/Polygon

Pokémon Go’s PvP system now allows players to use higher CP Pokémon in the Ultra League.

With the help of GamePress and PvPoke, we’ve put together a list of strong Pokémon to use in the Ultra League, what moves they should know, how much it costs to unlock their secondary move, and their strengths and weaknesses.

There may be overlap with some of our Great League picks, so if you accidentally powered up your Pokémon beyond the Great League limits, you now have a new Ultra League companion. Ultra League Pokémon can only have CP up to 2,500.

For PvP, you should also spend candy and Stardust to unlock a second move for your Pokémon to get more type coverage in.

We recommend any of the following:

Altered Forme Giratina

  • Quick move: Shadow Claw
  • Charge moves: Dragon Claw and Ancient Power
  • Second charge move cost: 100,000 Stardust and 100 Giratina candy
  • Best against: Ghost-, psychic-, dragon-, flying-, bug-, fire-, and ice-types
  • Worst enemy: Ghost-, ice-, dragon-, dark-, and fairy-types

Altered Forme Giratina is tanky and its variety of strong moves in various typing make it pretty well-rounded.

Origin Forme Giratina

  • Quick move: Shadow Claw
  • Charge moves: Shadow Ball and Ominous Wind
  • Second charge move cost: 100,000 Stardust and 100 Giratina candy
  • Best against: Ghost- and psychic-type
  • Worst enemy: Ghost-, ice-, dragon-, dark-, and fairy-types

Origin Forme Giratina isn’t as good as its cousin, but it hits pretty hard while still being able to take a lot of damage.

Registeel

  • Quick move: Lock-On (Legacy)
  • Charge moves: Flash Cannon and Focus Blast
  • Second charge move cost: 100,000 Stardust and 100 Registeel candy
  • Best against: Rock-, ice-, fairy-, normal-, steel-, and dark-types
  • Worst enemy: Fighting-, ground-, and fire-types

If you had no use for the Registeel you got from raids, now you do. It doesn’t do much damage, but it can take a ton of damage and its steel-typing gives it a good amount of resistances.

Swampert

  • Quick move: Mud Shot
  • Charge moves: Hydro Cannon (Legacy) and Earthquake
  • Second charge move cost: 10,000 Stardust and 25 Mudkip candy
  • Best against: Poison-, rock-, steel-, fire-, electric-, and ground-types
  • Worst enemy: Grass-types

Swampert also has a great variety of moves and it’s only weak against grass-types. Be careful, though. Grass-type moves will be four times more effective against it.

Togekiss

  • Quick move: Charm
  • Charge moves: Ancient Power and Flamethrower
  • Second charge move cost: 50,000 Stardust and 50 Togepi candy
  • Best against: Fighting-, dragon-, dark-, flying-, bug-, fire-, ice-, steel-, and grass-types
  • Worst enemy: Poison-, rock-, steel-, electric-, and ice-types

Togekiss is a monster in Ultra League and you’ll likely see it around a lot. It covers its own weaknesses with the wide variety of move types it can learn and it can certainly take a few hits.

Snorlax

  • Quick move: Lick
  • Charge moves: Body Slam and Earthquake
  • Second charge move cost: 75,000 Stardust and 75 Snorlax candy
  • Best against: Ghost-, psychic-, dark-, poison-, rock-, steel-, fire-, and electric-types
  • Worst enemy: Fighting-types

Just like in gyms, Snorlax is annoying to deal with due to it only having one weakness and a super-high defense stat.

Clefable

  • Quick move: Charm
  • Charge moves: Meteor Mash and Psychic
  • Second charge move cost: 10,000 Stardust and 25 Clefairy candy
  • Best against: Fighting-, dragon-, dark-, rock-, ice-, fairy-, and poison-types
  • Worst enemy: Poison- and steel-types

Just like Togekiss, Clefable manages to cover its weaknesses by learning powerful counter moves.

Armored Mewtwo

  • Quick move: Confusion
  • Charge moves: Rock Slide and Dynamic Punch
  • Second charge move cost: 100,000 Stardust and 100 Mewtwo candy
  • Best against: Fighting-, poison-, flying-, bug-, fire-, ice-, normal-, rock-, steel-, and dark-types
  • Worst enemy: Bug-, ghost-, and dark-types

If you somehow have the Mewtwo candy (or Rare Candy) to spare, Armored Mewtwo is a strong contender for PvP. Its moveset has a lot of variety and, as expected from its name, it can take a hit or two.

Venusaur

  • Quick move: Vine Whip
  • Charge moves: Frenzy Plant (Legacy) and Sludge Bomb
  • Second charge move cost: 10,000 Stardust and 25 Bulbasaur candy
  • Best against: Ground-, rock-, water-, grass-, and fairy-types
  • Worst enemy: Flying-, fire-, psychic-, and ice-types

If you are seeing too many fairy-types in PvP, give your Venusaur Sludge Bomb and give them a run for their money. It’s affordable with a cheap secondary move unlock, and even if you don’t have Frenzy Plant, it’ll get the job done.

Poliwrath

  • Quick move: Mud Shot
  • Charge moves: Ice Punch and Dynamic Punch
  • Second charge move cost: 50,000 Stardust and 50 Poliwag candy
  • Best against: Poison-, rock-, steel-, fire-, electric-, flying-, ground-, grass-, dragon-, normal-, and dark-types
  • Worst enemy: Flying-, grass-, electric-, psychic-, and fairy-types

The bad thing about Poliwrath is how many weaknesses it has. The great thing is that it’ll help you get through Snorlax and Registeel fairly quickly.