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Pokémon Scarlet and Violet Academy Ace Tournament guide

Time to take down some school faculty

Hassel, a blonde man with long hair and a green coat, holds up a Poké Ball to battle Image: Game Freak/The Pokémon Company, Nintendo via Polygon
Julia Lee (she/her) is a guides producer, writing guides for games like The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom and Genshin Impact. She helped launch the Rift Herald in 2016.

After rematching the gym leaders in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, you’ll be able to participate in the Academy Ace Tournament, which pits you against the students and faculty of your school.

This serves as a bit of a replacement for being able to rematch the Elite Four, as you historically could in previous Pokémon games. Since you can’t rematch against Scarlet and Violet’s Elite Four, you will instead battle four random trainers from your school. You can start the tournament by talking to man on the left at the front desk of your school.

The tournament is worth completing, as you’ll get decent EXP and money from beating these high-level trainers (as they are currently some of the highest level trainers you can repeatedly battle in the game). Notably, you also get rare items like mints and Apricorn Balls are random rewards from the tournament. If you’re super lucky, you can even get a Gold Bottle Cap, which is used in Hyper Training.

Most of the trainers in the tournament do not use one specific type and have a diverse team. You should bring in a team of Pokémon, roughly around level 65-70, that can take down lots of different types.

The first time you take on the Academy Ace Tournament, you will have a set group of trainers that is the same for everyone. In order, you’ll will fight: Arven, Jacq, Dendra, and then Geeta. Geeta only shows up the first time and is not in the pool of trainers after this.

After your first run, you’ll get a random assortment of four trainers from the school.

Unlike the Elite Four, your Pokémon are healed between matches, similarly to the tournament in Sword and Shield.

We list each trainer, along with their Pokémon, in alphabetical order by name and title below.

Champion Nemona

  1. Lycanroc, level 71 (rock)
  2. Goodra, level 71 (dragon)
  3. Dudunsparce, level 71 (normal)
  4. Orthworm, level 71 (steel)
  5. Pawmot, level 71 (electric/fighting)
  6. Meowscarada, level 72 (grass/dark with grass Tera Type)
    Quaquaval, level 72 (water/fighting with water Tera Type)
    Skeledirge, level 72 (fire/ghost with fire Tera Type)

Nemona’s final Pokémon is different based on what starter you picked. Her Pokémon is whatever was weak against your starter choice. (So if you picked Sprigatito, she has Quaquaval. If you picked Quaxly, she has Skeledirge. If you picked Fuecoco, she has Meowscarada.)

Dendra the Instructor

  1. Falinks, level 65 (fighting)
  2. Tauros, level 65 (fighting/fire)
  3. Tauros, level 65 (fighting/water)
  4. Medicham, level 65 (fighting/psychic)
  5. Hawlucha, level 65 (fighting/flying)
  6. Hariyama, level 66 (fighting with fighting Tera Type)

Dendra utilizes fighting-type Pokémon, so you can use fairy-, flying-, and psychic-type moves to take her down quickly.

Director Clavell

  1. Oranguru, level 60 (normal/psychic)
  2. Abomasnow, level 60 (grass/ice)
  3. Polteageist, level 60 (ghost)
  4. Gyarados, level 60 (water/flying)
  5. Houndoom, level 60 (dark/fire)
  6. Meowscarada, level 61 (grass/dark with grass Tera Type)
    Quaquaval, level 61 (water/fighting with water Tera Type)
    Skeledirge, level 61 (fire/ghost with fire Tera Type)

Clavell’s last Pokémon also depends on which starter you picked. He will have whatever is stronger against your chosen starter. (So if you picked Sprigatito, he has Skeledirge. If you picked Quaxly, he has Meowscarada. If you picked Fuecoco, he has Quaquaval.)

Hassel the Instructor

  1. Noivern, level 67 (flying/dragon)
  2. Haxorus, level 67 (dragon)
  3. Dragalge, level 67 (poison/dragon)
  4. Flapple, level 67 (grass/dragon)
  5. Dragonite, level 67 (dragon/flying)
  6. Baxcalibur, level 68 (dragon/ice with dragon Tera Type)

You already battled and beat Hassel as part of the Elite Four, but if you need a refresher, you can use ice-, fairy-, and dragon-type moves to take down his dragon-type team. Note that dragon-typing is a double-edged sword, so you might want to stay away from using them unless you have the speed and power to K.O. his Pokémon in one hit.

Jacq the Instructor

  1. Arcanine, level 65 (fire)
  2. Lurantis, level 65 (grass)
  3. Swalot, level 65 (poison)
  4. Mudsdale, level 65 (ground)
  5. Slowbro, level 65 (water/psychic)
  6. Farigiraf, level 66 (normal/psychic with psychic Tera Type)

Jacq doesn’t have any specific weaknesses, but using water- and dark-type moves will help get rid of a lot of his Pokémon.

Miriam the Instructor

  1. Hypno, level 65 (psychic)
  2. Pincurchin, level 65 (electric)
  3. Sawsbuck, level 65 (normal/grass)
  4. Glalie, level 65 (ice)
  5. Eelektross, level 65 (electric)
  6. Toxapex, level 66 (poison/water with poison Tera Type)

There aren’t really any specific weaknesses to take down Miriam, but you can use ground-type Pokémon to get rid of her two electric-types quickly.

Pokémon Trainer Arven

  1. Greedent, level 67 (normal)
  2. Cloyster, level 67 (water/ice)
  3. Scovillain, level 67 (grass/fire)
  4. Toedscruel, level 67 (ground/grass)
  5. Garganacl, level 67 (rock)
  6. Mabosstiff, level 68 (dark with dark Tera Type)

Not much has changed since your first fight against Arven; his team is largely weak against fighting-type moves.

Pokémon Trainer Penny

  1. Umbreon, level 69 (dark)
  2. Vaporeon, level 69 (water)
  3. Jolteon, level 69 (electric)
  4. Flareon, level 69 (fire)
  5. Leafeon, level 69 (grass)
  6. Sylveon, level 70 (fairy with fairy Tera Type)

Just like when you battled her before, Penny is a pushover. Utilize her Pokémon’s low defense and weaknesses to sweep her team easily.

Raifort the Instructor

  1. Zoroark, level 65 (dark)
  2. Seviper, level 65 (poison)
  3. Grumpig, level 65 (psychic)
  4. Lumineon, level 65 (water)
  5. Scizor, level 65 (bug/steel)
  6. Gengar, level 66 (ghost/poison with ghost Tera Type)

Yet another teacher with no specific type specialty, Raifort doesn’t have any direct counters. Her spread of Pokémon is actually among the most diverse in the tournament. You can use dark- and fighting-type moves on a good number of her party to take them down.

Saguaro the Instructor

  1. Pachirisu, level 65 (electric)
  2. Froslass, level 65 (ice/ghost)
  3. Alomomola, level 65 (water)
  4. Vespiquen, level 65 (bug/flying)
  5. Goodra, level 65 (dragon)
  6. Hatterene, level 66 (psychic/fairy with fairy Tera Type)

Saguaro is another instructor with a diverse team. You can use fire-type moves to take down his Froslass and Vespiquen, but the other Pokémon will require more specific counters.

Salvatore the Instructor

  1. Honchkrow, level 65 (dark/flying)
  2. Persian, level 65 (normal)
  3. Palossand, level 65 (ghost/ground)
  4. Glaceon, level 65 (ice)
  5. Gothitelle, level 65 (psychic)
  6. Raichu, level 66 (electric with electric Tera Type)

You can beat out Salvatore’s party with some fighting- and dark-type Pokémon, but it shouldn’t pose too much of a problem, as most of his team is pretty weak defensively.

Top Champion Geeta

  1. Esparthra, level 69 (psychic)
  2. Gogoat, level 69 (grass)
  3. Veluza, level 69 (water/psychic)
  4. Avalugg, level 69 (ice)
  5. Kingambit, level 69 (dark/steel)
  6. Glimmora, level 70 (rock/poison with rock Tera Type)

Tyme the Instructor

  1. Lycanroc (Midday), level 65 (rock)
  2. Lycanroc (Midnight), level 65 (rock)
  3. Drednaw, level 65 (water/rock)
  4. Stonjourner, level 65 (rock)
  5. Coalossal, level 65 (rock/fire)
  6. Garganacl, level 66 (rock with rock Tera Type)

Because Tyme uses all rock-type Pokémon (since she used to be a rock-type gym leader), you can easily sweep her team with a fighting-type Pokémon. You can also use water-, steel-, ground-, and grass-type Pokémon, but you’ll need to swap out accordingly against Drednaw and Coalossal.

Correction (Jan. 26, 2023): A previous version of this guide noted that you can only get Geeta as an opponent the first time. We’ve updated this guide to address this error.