Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl came out on the Nintendo Switch a few days ago and already they’re one of the best selling games on the eShop. Veterans of the Pokémon series will already be familiar with the 2006 Pokémon Diamond and Pearl version. But let’s just say we’ve come a long way from there.
If you’ve just started playing the game you may already have an idea of who you think are some of the best Pokémon in Sinnoh. But things have changed since the days of the original Diamond and Pearl. The Underground provides access to Pokémon that aren’t in the regional Pokédex, Fairy types are a thing now, and much more.
Type: Dragon / Dark
Location: You can find the unevolved form Gible in the Wayward Cave. This cave can be found underneath the Cycling Road on Route 206. When you arrive in the area, head to the left and go under the overpass and into the cave.
Garchomp is a heavy hitter that veterans of Sinnoh games will recognize. In battle, Garchomp is an absolute threat by using its quickness and strength to take out enemies. Having the means to use powerful moves like Earthquake and Dragon Rush, and useful abilities such as Rough Skin or Sand Veil, there’s plenty of ways to build around this destructive dragon.
Garchomp is a fast physical powerhouse that requires no set-up. Given that chance though, Garchomp can use Swords Dance to become a sweeper that can bring even Bold Lugia to its knees, single-handedly crumpling the Uber metagame with its mighty STAB Outrage. Give Garchomp the chance to sweep, and it will respond quickly with devastation, leaving only dust in its wake.
Type: Fighting / Steel
Location: Team up with Riley in the cave on Iron Island and once you leave he’ll give you a Riolu egg. From there you’ll need to raise Riolu’s friendship level before he can evolve to Lucario.
Lucario is one of the top offensive threats in the game, boasting high Attack and Special Attack stats, decent Speed, great STAB attacks in Close Combat and Aura Sphere, and many other useful attacking options. Its immunity to Toxic Spikes and numerous 4x and 2x resistances (most notably to Rock-, Dark-, and Dragon-type attacks) give Lucario many opportunities to switch in and wreak havoc on the opposing team. While it does have auspicious typing, Lucario’s defensive stats leave much to be desired, and its relative frailty remains its largest weakness.
With one turn of setup, a 120 Base Power and one of the strongest priority moves available, Swords Dance Lucario is arguably the best late-game sweeper.
Location: Electivire is a Brilliant Diamond exclusive Pokémon.
You’ll only be able to find Elekid by exploring the Grand Underground in the Dazzling Cave. You’ll gain access to this area once you reach Eterna City, where you can battle the second Gym Leader.
Electivire is the new evolution of Gen 1’s Electabuzz, seemingly created to give them more individuality in battle, as they have extremely similar stats when not fully evolved. He has a base stat total of 540, with Electivire being more physically focused. Other than that he has good HP and Speed, as well as some interesting type coverage options. Thanks to Electivire’s usable attacking stats, it can perform the role of a mixed sweeper well. It is capable of doing lots of damage to teams with its vast move pool, which grants it excellent type coverage. In fact, Electivire can frequently hit every Pokemon on the opposing team for super effective damage.
Location: Magmortar is a Brilliant Pearl exclusive Pokémon.
You’ll only be able to find Magby by exploring the Grand Underground. More specifically, to either Volcanic Cave, Typhlo Cavern, or Sandsear Cave.
Magmortar is the new evolution of Gen 1’s Magmar, and is an extremely dangerous Pokemon with strong special attacks. They have the second strongest special attack in the tier (behind only Typhlosion’s fully-powered Eruption). He has solid base stacks that make him quite a bruiser but he does lack in Speed and is weak to Stealth Rock so make sure to get him out of there for that. His ability to lean Thunderbolt as well make him double trouble for water types.
Type: Ground / Rock
Location: You can find the unevolved form of Rhyhorn, within the Big Bluff Cavern.
Rhyperior is one of the most terrifying Pokemon in the metagame due to its excellent coverage and monstrous Attack stat. Rhyperior also boasts one of the most impressive HP stats, as well as excellent physical Defense, making it a great physical check. Rhyperior’s ability (Solid Rock) is also quite impressive, as it allows Rhyperior to take some super effective attacks that other Pokemon could only dream of taking, such as Blaziken’s Superpower.
Rhyperior’s main problem is that it has very low Special Defense and two very common 4x weaknesses. Furthermore, these attacks are common on the more defensive Pokemon with whom Rhyperior already has trouble. However, when you give Rhyperior the needed support, it can be a huge asset to your team. If you’re looking for a bulky Pokemon who can sweep late game, set up Stealth Rock, or simply just hit hard, try Rhyperior.
Location: Tangrowth’s unevolved form, Tangela, can be caught in Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl’s Grand Underground. The Tangela will evolve once it has learned the move – Ancient Power.
Tangrowth has enormous stats across the board, with its only real downfall being its 50 Speed and Special Defense. With a stat total of 535, Tangrowth has stats nearly as high as some legendaries and mythical Pokemon available in Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl.
Tangrowth is undisputedly a great Pokemon, it has high HP, good overall defensive stats, and useful offensive stats both physical and special. It has access to Sleep Powder, Stun Spore, Knock Off, and a great physical and special movepool as well. The threat from special sweepers is in general, much greater than that from physical sweepers, and the physical sweepers that are still considered threats can often beat Tangrowth anyway.
Type: Water / Dragon
Location: Palkia is a Shining Pearl exclusive Pokémon.
You’ll encounter Palkia in the main quest story at Spear Pillar, located at the top of Mt. Coronet.
With a devastating 150 base Special Attack, Palkia can do huge amounts of damage even without a boosting item. Palkia is an absolute menace its dual STABs have great coverage with its excellent Special Attack, Attack, and Speed stats backing them up. To further elaborate, Palkia’s Speed stat is unique in Ubers as max Speed Palkia outpaces many threats in the metagame, such as Groudon, Kyogre, Ho-Oh, Dialga, Giratina-O, Rayquaza, and the standard Lugia.
Palkia is a type of Pokemon who works in both rain and sunshine, and that alone makes handling Palkia difficult. Defensively, Palkia is one of the very few Pokemon who can take a Choice Specs Water Spout from Kyogre, which is proclaimed as the most powerful special attack. The typing gives Palkia resistances to Water-, Fire-, and Steel-type moves while leaving Dragon-type moves as its lone weakness.
Overall, Palkia is a powerful Pokemon and it’s difficult to say that it even has counters, as it easily KOes most Pokemon who attempt to switch into it.
Type: Steel / Dragon
Location: Dialga is a Brilliant Diamond exclusive Pokémon.
You’ll encounter Dialga in the main quest story at Spear Pillar, located at the top of Mt. Coronet.
Dialga’s unique typing and well-distributed stats make it both an excellent offensive and defensive Pokemon. Offensively, Dialga has a stunning base 120 Attack and base 150 Special Attack that’s backed by the ever-dominant Dragon-type.
Dialga’s vast offensive movepool allows it to pick off a variety of Pokemon. Defensively, Dialga’s typing offers it a whopping total of nine resistances and immunity, as well as neutrality to Ice- and Dragon-type attacks, something other Dragon-type Pokemon would kill for. With its stellar base defences combined with the aforementioned resistances, Dialga is a difficult Pokemon to take down unless you target its weaknesses. Dialga has also been revered as an excellent utility Pokemon thanks to its equally-vast support movepool. With its plethora of options, Dialga is, in a word, unpredictable.
Type: Ghost / Dragon
Location: Giratina can be found in Turnback Cave. Make your way through Spring Path and follow the route to Sendoff Spring. Run through the grass and Climb down the north-facing wall with Rock Climb.
Available to catch during the endgame of Diamond and Pearl. Giratina is arguably one of the best physical walls in the game. With a colossal base of 150 HP and massive base 120 Defense, Giratina can easily wall some of the most dangerous threats in such as Groudon, Metagross, Scizor, and Ho-Oh, with little effort.
Giratina’s viability is a tossup. It does have higher defence and special defence while in Altered Forme than the other two, but the rest really comes down to whether you need Giratina’s type on the team. Shadow Force is a strong point in its favour. This is a Ghost-type signature attack that can hit foes even when using shielding moves such as Protect and Mirror Coat. In team battles, Shadow Force will also hit every member of an opposing team if they happen to be protected.
When given an item called a Griseous Orb, Giratina can remain in Origin Forme outside of the Distortion World without reverting to its Altered Forme like it normally would.
Location: You’ll find the Lv. 80 Arceus, within the Hall of Origin, simply interact with it.
It’s not going to be a complete endgame list without the god of Pokemon themselves – Arceus. Definitely a post-game Pokemon but well worth the battle for the best and most versatile Pokemon in the game.
Arceus is a terror to behold on the battlefield. With its amazing bulk, good Attack stat, excellent type coverage, as well as STAB Extreme Speed, one would be wise to make ample preparations for this set. This set may appear to be outclassed by Rayquaza due to Rayquaza’s higher Attack stat and STAB Dragon-type attacks, but STAB ExtemeSpeed, more bulk, and lack of weakness to Stealth Rock all serve to differentiate Swords Dance Arceus from Swords Dance Rayquaza.