Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll have noticed that the Generation 2 Pokemon for Pokemon GO have finally released this week, and new information is flowing in. One question has been coming up frequently: which new Pokemon are the strongest?
According to a report from Forbes, there are several contenders for new gym battlers and defenders, and in spite of a relatively lackluster set of Pokemon, the new update is sure to shake up gym power structures after it’s had some time to settle.
Right up at the top of the list – at the top of every list – is Tyranitar, Pokemon Generation 2’s rock/dark dinosaur. Tyranitar tops out at a whopping 3,670 CP, easily surpassing even the previous best non-legendary, Dragonite, with a max of 3,581. That being said, Dragonite still has a slightly stronger attack than Tyranitar – 263 to 251 – with Tyranitar making up the difference in defensive stats.
Tyranitar is also likely to be just as much of a grind as Dragonite was, unless you’re lucky enough to encounter one in the wild; expect another 125-candy evolution chain, starting with Larvitar, through Pupitar. As for where it spawns, RankedBoost has updated their eminently useful Pokemon spawn location charts for Gen 2, and currently, Rock appears to be the only influence on where you’ll find a Tyranitar; the best odds seem to be on farmland, in quarries, and in parking lots and garages large enough to be marked on a map.
It might take a little while but expect to see Tyranitar starting to pop up in gyms everywhere. With those better defensive stats and huge CP, it’s a powerful Pokemon on attack or defense.
Gen 2 has thrown some other surprises. Blissey, unlike its predecessor Chansey, actually comes in at number six on the CP chart, maxing out at 3,219, ahead of the most popular Pokemon, Vaporeon. Blissey’s strength is primarily in its unprecedented HP, nearly an order of magnitude beyond Snorlax; Blissey can win fights just by sitting, and its excellent 229 defense stat (compared to Snorlax’s 190) only helps. And as a purely normal type, it’s only vulnerable to fighting. At minimum, if you see a Blissey, might be best to throw in the towel; at worst, its power will be game-breaking. Fortunately, they’re not going to be common: Chansey is already rare and Blissey requires a special evolution item on top of 50 candies.
Other strong new editions are ground-type Donphan at 3,022 max CP, featuring matched high attack and defense stats, psychic Espeon (another Eevee evolution) with 3,000 and nearly beating out Pokemon GO‘s highest attack power, Alakazam, and Heracross, the 2,938 CP bug/fighting type – one of the few strong fighters (in fact, presently the strongest,) which counter normal types, in the game.
Some of Gen 2’s Pokemon are also worth a look when taking the metagame into account; one worth noting, in particular, is electric-type Ampharos, at 2,695 max. It gives up some attack and defense (and max CP) to Jolteon in exchange for HP, but given the current metagame’s bent toward Pokemon which are weak to electric, another strong electric type (Jolteon is the only decent Gen 1 electric by a very wide margin) is welcome. Another Gen 2 Pokemon worth a look is steel/ground Onix evolution Steelix. While its max CP is only 2,439, it tops the charts on defense and as a steel type has few major vulnerabilities – although water is one of them. It’s still a strong defender, especially if facing an opponent who doesn’t like to switch out.
As an interesting aside, Typhlosion, the Gen 2 fire starter, precisely matches its counterpart Charizard in strength, but lacks Charizard’s flying type; possibly something to consider if Charizard’s vulnerabilities have proven troublesome.
As a final note, if you’re looking for those new evolution items to get Blissey, Steelix, or one of the other new evolutions, you’re probably not going to have much luck unless you keep up your daily streaks: while instances of random drops have been reported, an evolution item is a near-guarantee as part of the 7-day PokeStop streak reward. What you get is random, though, so it might still take a while.
Best of luck, trainers – forewarned is forearmed!
[Featured Image by The Pokemon Company/Niantic Labs]