The Pokemon Go Element Cup will let trainers will let enjoy one of the more unique formats as the latest Go Battle League season continues. The Element Cup in Pokemon Go allows Pokemon below 500CP to thrive, but with an extra caveat. Pokemon who have at least one type that is Water, Fire or Grass and can evolve are the only ones that can participate.
With the Element Cup having a few runs already over the years there are some clear winners for best Pokemon in this format. Whether they are Gen 1 favorites or Pokemon that you’d never think of, the Pokemon that excel in the Element Cup are very unique and Pokemon Go trainers will have a fun time battling with them.
In this guide, we break down some of the best Pokemon to consider when battling in the Element Cup including which Pokemon to look out for and the moves that will have you be the best like no one ever was.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Salandit
Weaknesses: Water, Ground, Rock, Psychic
Salandit may be difficult to obtain in Pokemon Go, but it’s use in the Element Cup is invaluable. Not only is its typing unique, but it completely walls Grass-type and Fire-type moves. Couple that with STAB Poison-type attacks, and there aren’t a lot of Pokemon that can take hits from this small lizard.
As for moves, Poison Jab is a great neutral hit to most Pokemon while also dealing super effective damage to Grass and Fairy types. Poison Fang is a must as a Charged Attack as it does the same job as Poison Jab but with the guaranteed effect of lowering a Pokemon’s defense. Trainers can use this to set up a Pokemon for the next one in your party or to slowly chip away at a ‘mon that is giving you trouble.
Of course, trainers looking for a Fire-type on their team may want to go with Ember as a Fast attack while Flamethrower is great for a second Charged Attack.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Skrelp
Weakness: Psychic, Ground, Electric
Skrelp is an interesting Pokemon as it’s a hard counter to Salandit while also being one of the few Water types that can go toe-to-toe with Grass types thanks to its Poison typing.
Of course, Water Gun is a premiere Fast Attack when using Water moves, which can be devastating against Fire types and any Rock/Ground types you may encounter.
As for its Charged Attacks, Aqua Tail is a great, and quick, Water-type move that can take advantage of STAB while Sludge Bomb is a powerful Poison-type attack that will hit other Water types neutrally and deal super effective damage against Grass types.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Binacle
Weakness: Grass, Fighting, Ground
Binacle may not look like it can be a force in the Element Cup, but its secondary Rock typing will help trainers take on one of the Pokemon they are bound to see when battling.
Ducklett, the Water and Flying-type, will be a popular choice in the Element Cup and Binacle can resist its Flying moves and has the requisite Rock attacks that can take it out as well as Bug and Fire types.
Binacle is four times weak to Grass moves so trainers will have to switch out when going up against them, but with its variety of moves trainers should consider using it.
Scratch is a Normal-type attack and while it isn’t super effective against any type, it will deal neutral damage to anything outside of Steel, Rock and Ghost types. It also charges up energy much faster than Mud Slap, its other option.
As for its Charged Attack, Ancient Power is a must to take advantage of Binacle’s Rock typing. For a second move, Cross Chop is great for dealing neutral damage to Grass types that aren’t Fairy, Poison or Flying-type.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Ducklett
Weaknesses: Electric, Rock
Ducklett is one of the most common Pokemon picks in the Element Cup meta because despite being a Water-type Pokemon, it has no weakness to Grass thanks to being a dual-type with Flying. It is also strong against both other types in the cup – Water moves being strong against Fire and Flying against Grass – so there are no direct counters to it. With that said, the Flying-type moves are the best picks here, mainly Wing Attack and Aerial Ace. Alternatively, you can pick Water Gun for the fast move if you need the Water-type advantage.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Cottonee
Weaknesses: Poison, Fire, Flying, Ice, Steel
Cottonee will struggle against Fire-types but excels against any Water-types, thanks to the plethora of Grass-type moves available at its disposal. Other than Ducklett, all of the Water-type Pokemon on this list will buckle to Cottonee's Grass-type moves. You can pick either Razor Leaf or Charm for the fast move – the latter being the only Fairy-type move available – while Grass Knot is the recommended charge move.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Vulpix
Weaknesses: Ground, Rock, Water
Fire-types are a little underrepresented in this list, but Vulpix is the best pick of the bunch, defeating any Grass-types but losing to all the Water-types, as you'd expect. Ember is the only viable option for the fast move, while Weather Ball is the best charge move. Both Quick Attack and Body Slam are decent, but since they're Normal-type, they're not particularly useful in this cup.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Bulbasaur
Weaknesses: Fire, Flying, Ice, Psychic
Everyone's favorite Grass-type starter, Bulbasaur is the second Grass-type pick of the bunch in this list. And believe it or not, in a head-to-head with one shield apiece, Bulbasaur defeats Ducklett despite the type disadvantage. You absolutely want Vine Whip for the fast move, and both Seed Bomb and Sludge Bomb for two charge moves. The latter is great spam to waste your opponent's shields, while the latter does more damage to finish them off.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Chinchou
Weaknesses: Grass, Ground
Welcome to your main Ducklett counter; another Water-type! Since Chinchou is blessed with excellent Electric-type moves, it's your best bet at taking down Ducklett, which is super weak to Electric. For this reason, Spark is the best fast move, then use both Thunderbolt and Bubble Beam as the charged moves. The former for other Water-types, while the latter is great for Fire-types.
Pokemon Go Element Cup best team: Chikorita
Weaknesses: Bug, Fire, Flying, Ice, Poison
Finishing off our list of the Pokemon Go Element Cup best team for the meta is Chikorita, another Grass-type starter. Chikorita fills similar shoes to Bulbasaur in that it is a very good counter for Water-type Pokemon – you don't want both a Bulbasaur and a Chikorita in your team simultaneously. Vine Whip is the best fast move, while Grass Knot is the best charge move.