The 40 Best Pokémon to Use in Pokémon Go

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The 40 Best Pokémon to Use in Pokémon Go

Everyone has their favorite Pokémon, but which Pokémon are the best in Pokémon Go?

Pokémon Go is now bigger than The Beatles and Jesus and Hamilton, all rolled into one. You’ve downloaded it and caught hundreds of Pidgeys and Rattatas and evolved a handful of Pokemon, and taken over the local gym for whatever team you now hold dearer than your alma mater. The question now is: What’s the best Pokemon to use your precious Stardust on to power up?

With help from all the Pokémon Go stats floating around the Internet, we’ve ranked which Pokemon are most effective in attacking and holding gyms. We’ve prioritized attack and defense, while still taking stamina and match-ups into account. Of course, there are multiple factors in every gym battle beyond a Pokémon’s attack, defense and stamina: CP, move effectiveness, move types (and how effective they are against your opponent) and Same Type Attack Bonus (or STAB, when your moves match your Pokémon type).

Of course, most of the fun of this game is capturing new Pokémon that you like. But the following guide is a good place to start when looking at leveling up for gyms.

We’ve left out Legendary Pokémon, like Mewtwo, Mew, Articuno, Moltres and Zapdos, but if you can find one, let us know. And finally, note that the “Most effective against” assumes that your moves match your Pokémon type. You can also check out the 100 Best Pokemon of All Time.

Here are the Best Pokémon in Pokémon Go:

Gengar.jpg 40. Gengar
#94
Type: Ghost/Poison
Most effective against: Fighting, Grass and Psychic Pokémon
More than any other Pokémon in Pokémon Go, Gengar looks like it’s out for trouble. And why not? It’s a poisonous ghost. Gengar evolves from Haunter, which evolves from Gastly, making it relatively rare in the game so far (at least around Atlanta).

Electabuzz.jpg 39. Electabuzz
#125
Type: Electric
Most effective against: Flying and Water Pokémon
This feline humanoid has no evolutions in Pokémon Go, but is ready to fight as soon as it’s captured with high attack value making up for its low stamina.

Aerodactyl.jpg 38. Aerodactyl
#142
Type: Rock/Flying
Most effective against: Flying, Bug, Fire, Grass and Ice Pokémon
Aerodactyl has a big attack, but it’s stamina and defense keep it from being further up our list of best Pokémon. Of course, on looks alone, it’s hard to beat this flying fossil.

Sccyther.jpg 37. Scyther
#123
Type: Bug/Flying
Most effective against: Grass, Psychic, Bug and Dark Pokémon
If you’re already afraid of bugs, Scyther is your new nightmare. A reptilian head on an insectoid body with razor-sharp scythes for forearms which can slice through logs like an infomercial knife through a tomato. In Pokémon Go, Scyther’s defense is slightly better than its still-potent attack.

Rhydon.jpg 36. Rhydon
#112
Type: Ground/Rock
Most effective against: Poison, Rock, Fire, Electric and Ice Pokémon
Part rhinoceros, part dinosaur, Rhydon is a high-stamina, versatile Pokémon who can crush diamonds and knock over buildings. He evolves from Rhyhorn.

Jolteon.jpg 35. Jolteon
#135
Type: Electric
Most effective against: Flying and Water Pokémon
While it may be the least powerful of the Eevee evolutions, Jolteon still packs a charge. To ensure that your Eevee turns into a Jolteon, just name it “Sparky” before it evolves.

Rapidash.jpg 34. Rapidash
#78
Type: Fire
Most effective against: Bug, Steel, Grass and Ice Pokémon
Ponyta evolves into Rapidash, a high-attack fiery unicorn Pokémon that will have anyone visiting your gym jealous they don’t have it.

Pinsir.jpg 33. Pinsir
#127
Type: Bug
Most effective against: Grass, Psychic and Dark Pokémon
Pinsir doesn’t evolve from or into anything else, so capturing him can give you an instant gym-worthy Pokémon with solid attack and defense numbers.

Magmar.jpg 32. Magmar
#126
Type: Fire
Most effective against: Bug, Steel, Grass and Ice Pokémon
One of the many Fire-type Pokémon, the volcano-dwelling Magmar has become a popular choice for gyms with its huge attack bonus.

Dewgong.jpg 31. Dewgong
#87
Type: Water/Ice
Most effective against: Flying, Ground and Rock Pokémon
The sea-lion-like Dewgong doesn’t have the most powerful attack, but it’s a solid defender.

Hypno.jpg 30. Hypno
#97
Type: Psychic
Most effective against: Fighting and Poison Pokémon
This psychedelic, sleep-inducing Pokémon will eat your dreams. Seriously, what else do you need to know?

Weezing.jpg 29. Weezing
#110
Type: Poison
Most effective against: Grass and Fairy Pokémon
This two-headed, foul-smelling toxic Pokémon has solid attack and defense numbers but is weak against Steel, Ground, Rock and Ghost types.

Kabutops.jpg 28. Kabutops
#141
Type: Rock/Water
Most effective against: Flying, Bug, Fire and Ice Pokémon
This fossilized shellfish has very good attack and defense numbers and is versatile against several types of opponents.

Ninetales.jpg 27. Ninetales
#38
Type: Fire
Most effective against: Bug, Steel, Grass and Ice Pokémon
Ninetales’ longevity translates into high defense. It also probably looks cooler than whatever else you were going to leave in the gym.

Cloyster.jpg 26. Cloyster
#91
Type: Water/Ice
Most effective against: Flying, Ground and Rock Pokémon
Low stamina is Cloyster’s big weakness, but attack and defense are both high, so with a good primary move, Cloyster can be surprisingly effective.

Victreebel.jpg 25. Victreebel
#71
Type: Grass/Poison
Most effective against: Fairy Pokémon
Victreebel has a huge attack, but depending on its move types, it can be mismatched against many of the most common Pokémon you’ll encounter.

Tentacruel.jpg 24. Tentacruel
#73
Type: Water/Poison
Most effective against: Fire and Fairy Pokémon
Tentacool looks so chill and then evolves into this bad boy with super-high defensive capabilities.

Starmie.jpg 23. Starmie
#121
Type: Water/Psychic
Most effective against: Fighting, Poison, Rock and Fire Pokémon
This deep-water sea-star-like Pokémon communicates telepathically and has high offense, high defense and low stamina.

Golduck.jpg 22. Golduck
#55
Type: Water
Most effective against: Ground, Rock and Fire Pokémon
With its powerful attack, Golduck is a solid, versatile fighter in the gym, so keep catching those Psyducks.

Omastar.jpg 21. Omastar
#139
Type: Rock/Water
Most effective against: Fire, Bug, Flying and Ice Pokémon
This fossil Pokémon is based on the extinct ammonite group of cephalopods and evolves from Omanyte. It’s defensive power and favorable match-ups against Fire Pokémon make it a good choice to leave in the gym.

Vileplume.jpg 20. Vileplume
#45
Type: Grass/Poison
Most effective against: Fairy Pokémon
The initial evolution of Oddish, Gloom, looks so sad. But Gloom becomes Vileplume who looks impishly happy as it emits its paralyzing toxins.

Clefable.jpg 19. Clefable
#36
Type: Fairy
Most effective against: Fighting, Dragon and Dark Pokémon
The most powerful Fairy Pokémon in the game is especially handy to have when you’re facing fighting, dragon or dark Pokémon, especially with Play Rough as its special move.

Golem.jpg 18. Golem
#76
Type: Rock/Ground
Most effective against: Fire, Poison, Rock, Electric and Ice Pokémon
No matter if your attacking moves are Rock or Ground types, the rolling, geological, turtle-like Golem is super-effective against the many Fire Pokémon you’ll encounter in gyms.

Nidoking.jpg 17. Nidoking
#34
Type: Poinson/Ground
Most effective against: Fire, Electric and Fairy Pokémon
This giant reptilian Pokémon likes to smash things with his tail with an expectedly high attack power.

Nidoqueen.jpg 16. Nidoqueen
#31
Type: Poison/Ground
Most effective against: Fire and Fairy Pokémon
The female Nidoran evolves into Nidorina before becoming Nidoqueen. She has higher defense and stamina but lower attack than Nidoking.

Machamp.jpg 15. Machamp
#68
Type: Fighting
Most effective against: Normal, Ice, Rock, Dark and Steel Pokémon
Machop is another of the coolest-looking Pokémon, whose evolutions just bulk it up into a formidable force in the gym. It’s weak against Poison, Flying, Psychic, Bug and Fairy Pokémon, but unstoppable with the right match-up.

Poliwrath.jpg 14. Poliwrath
#62
Type: Water/Fighting
Most effective against: Fire, Ground, Rock, Normal, Ice, Dark and Steel Pokémon
Those Poliwags may look adorable, but eventually they’ll evolve into this versatile fighting machine.

Charizard.jpg 13. Charizard
#6
Type: Fire
Most effective against: Grass, Ice, Bug and Steel Pokémon
The final form of Charmander is a giant, flaming, flying lizard with huge attack and low stamina. A powerful standard move is key to its success.

Muk.jpg 12. Muk
#89
Type: Poison
Most effective against: Grass and Fairy Pokémon
If you like your Pokémon to be sludgy, amorphous blobs, Muk is the one for you. The EPA’s nightmare can be a Pokémon trainer’s dream

Slowbro.jpg 11. Slowbro
#80
Type: Water/Psychic
Most effective against: Pokémon
Slowpoke evolves by attaching a Shelldor to its tail to create Slowbro. It has solid statistics across the board, stamina, attack and defense.

Venusaur.jpg 10. Venusaur
#3
Type: Grass/Poison
Most effective against: Water and Fairy Pokémon
Bulbasaur may be a starter Pokémon, but it’ll take a while to evolve him to Ivysaur and then Venusaur. The flowering animal has a very high defense.

Flareon.jpg 9. Flareon
#136
Type: Fire
Most effective against: Grass, Ice, Bug and Steel Pokémon
Eevee is definitely a key to Pokémon Go, as a fairly common Pokémon with three different powerful evolutions. To get Flareon, change its name to “Pyro” before evolving.

Gyarados.jpg 8. Gyrados
#130
Type: Water/Flying
Most effective against: Fire, Ground, Fighting and Bug Pokémon
The 400 candies it takes to evolve Magicarp means that most trainers will only see Gyarados on their loading screens. It’s worth the grind, though, if you can unlock this dragon-like water creature.

Vaporeon.jpg 7. Vaporeon
#134
Type: Water
Most effective against: Pokémon
One of the surest ways to getting a Pokémon that will do its trainer proud in gyms is catching enough Eevees to evolve into a Vaporeon. An Easter egg in the game lets you choose which path your Eevee will follow. For Vaporeon, name it “Rainer” before you evolve.

Blastoise.jpg 6. Blastoise
#9
Type: Water
Most effective against: Fire, Ground and Rock Pokémon
Your Squirtle is a long ways off from evolving into a Blastoise (first it must become a Wartortle), but when it finally does, watch out.

pokemon_go_exeggutor.jpg 5. Exeggutor
#103
Type: Grass/Psychic
Most effective against: Water, Ground and Rock Pokémon
Hatch your Exeggcute into this walking multi-headed palm tree and finally knock that Vaporean out of your local gym. Exeggutor’s biggest weakness is on defense.

Arcanine.jpg 4. Arcanine
#59
Type: Fire
Most effective against: Pokémon
Keep catching those Growlithes, because they evolve into an absolute beast. Arcanine’s attack power is almost unmatched.

Lapras.jpg 3. Lapras
#131
Type: Water/Ice
Most effective against: Flying, Ground and Rock Pokémon
The peace-loving Lapras is one of the coolest-looking Pokémon, as well as being extremely tough in a fight. High stamina means that its special attack is key.

Snorlax.jpg 2. Snorlax
#143
Type: Normal
Most effective against: Anything except Rock or Steel Pokémon
There’s a reason you keep seeing Snorlax sitting atop gyms. The sleeping giant has massive stamina, and if it happens to have Body Slam, it’s nearly impossible to defeat without going deep into your roster.

Dragonite.jpg 1. Dragonite
#149
Type: Dragon/Flying
Most effective against: Anything except Steel or Fairy Pokémon
Unless you’ve somehow unlocked Mew or Mewtwo, it’s hard to beat everyone’s favorite dragon. It’s attack power dwarfs any other Pokémon.

To learn more, see our guide to Tips and Tricks for Pokemon Go.

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