Pokemon Go Zapdos raid counters, moveset, and how to beat them

Pokemon Go zapdos
(Image credit: Niantic)

These Pokemon Go Zapdos counters will help you beat this Legendary Bird in raids. The pokemon from the Kanto region has returns for Pokemon Go trainers to battle and capture.

This powerful Pokemon has seen a lot of success on teams in the mainline Pokemon games, but it has a lot of use in Pokemon Go as well, especially against the myriad of Flying and Water-type Pokemon trainers will encounter.

However, capturing Zapdos in Pokemon Go isn’t so easy. In fact, trainers will need to have particular types of Pokemon with specific moves to get around its unique Electric and Flying typing. And that’s where we come in. This time around, Zapdos will appear in Raids starting Thursday, July 7 at 10 a.m. local time until Thursday, July 14 at 10 a.m. local time.

This guide will help trainers learn everything there is to know about Zapdos in Pokemon Go and which Pokemon are the best counters for it.

Pokemon Go Zapdos moveset

Pokemon Go Zapdos counters

(Image credit: Niantic)
Zapdos Key Info

Type: Electric/Flying
Weaknesses: Ice/Rock
Resistances: Ground/Fighting/Steel/Grass/Bug/Flying
Boosted Weather: Windy/Rainy
100% IVs: 2015 CP (L20) / 2519 CP (L25)

Zapdos is a dual Electric/Flying-type and as such it has moves of both types in addition to some others.

Charge Beam is its only Fast Attack - although trainers can teach it Thunder Shock with an Elite Fast TM - and it’s an Electric-type attack. That means trainers should bring Ground, Dragon and Grass types into battle against it as they’ll resist this move.

As for Zapdos’ Charged Attacks, the Legendary has three different Electric-type moves in Zap Cannon, Thunderbolt, and Thunder. Again, Ground, Dragon, Grass and other Electric types would do well to resist these moves.

Drill Peck is Zapdos’ lone Flying-type attack, which makes Grass types less than ideal to use while Ancient Power is a Rock move that give Ice types a problem. 

Here are all the moves Zapdos can use in Pokemon Go.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Pokemon Go Zapdos moveset
Fast MovesCharged Moves
Charge BeamZap Cannon
Row 1 - Cell 0 Thunderbolt
Row 2 - Cell 0 Thunder
Row 3 - Cell 0 Ancient Power
Row 4 - Cell 0 Drill Peck

Pokemon Go Zapdos counters

Pokemon Go zapdos

(Image credit: Niantic)

Being an Electric and Flying-type gives Zapdos a weakness to just Ice and Rock-type attacks. While Ice types could have a lot of success against Zapdos, they usually have a secondary typing, like Water, that’s weak to Electric moves. However, sometimes that is a risk trainers should consider especially if they have powerful ones like Mega Abomasnow, Weavile and Mamoswine.

Mega Abomasnow should be the foundation for an Ice team going up against Zapdos. Its secondary Grass typing gives it resistance to Zapdos’ Electric moves. However, it is weak to Ancient Power and Drill Peck so be wary of those attacks.

Mamoswine’s secondary Ground typing gives it resistance to Electric attacks and it isn’t weak to any of Zapdos’ moves. Weavile, on the other hand, is weak to Ancient Power so be wary when going into battle against Zapdos using the Ice and Dark-type.

If you’re a trainer going into battle with a Rock team, Mega Aerodactyl is an interesting choice. While its secondary Flying typing makes it weak to Electric moves, its ability to power up your team’s Rock moves is a bit too good to pass up. 

Rhyperior, Rampardos, Gigalith and Alolan Golem all have the Rock moves to deal a ton of damage and not have any weaknesses to Zapdos’ moves. 

Here’s a list of great options for Zapdos counters in Pokemon Go.

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Best Pokemon Go Zapdos counters
Mega AbomasnowPowder Snow and Weather Ball (Ice)
Mega AerodactylRock Throw and Rock Slide
RhyperiorSmack Down and Rock Wrecker
MamoswinePowder Snow and Avalanche
RampardosSmack Down and Stone Edge
TyranitarRock Throw
GigalithSmack Down and Rock Slide
Alolan GolemRollout and Stone Edge
TyrantrumRock Throw and Stone Edge
WeavileIce Shard and Avalanche

How to get shiny Zapdos in Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go shiny Zapdos

(Image credit: Niantic)

Shiny Zapdos is available for those lucky trainers who encounter one after defeating a Zapdos Raid. The coloring isn’t much different, in fact, Shiny Zapdos has a little more orange tint to it but trainers will likely have to refer to the Shiny mark that’s next to its name to make sure what they are encountering is a Shiny.

There’s no way to guarantee a Shiny Zapdos, but trainers can enjoy a special Raid Hour on July 13 from 6 pm to 7 pm local time which would give them a good chance. During that hour, all Raids in Pokemon Go will be filled with Zapdos. Trainers will be able to battle as many as they can -- as long as they have a Raid Pass - and each battle won gives a chance to encounter a Shiny Zapdos.

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Phillip Martinez

I'm currently a GamesRadar guide contributor with a specialty in everything Pokemon GO. If you've wanted to know the best way to take down a Rayquaza, there's a good chance you read one of my guides. I previously have written for IBT Media, Newsweek and Screen Rant. I'm a huge fighting game fan and everything Pokemon, but I've grown to love RPGs.