The Gen 2 Meta

Using the February 21, 2017 moveset update.

Check out the cheat sheets:


Defenders, and their highest DPS moveset

Tyranitar: Bite / Crunch


Dragonite: Dragon Tail / Outrage

Note: Legacy movesets are not taken into consideration. So hang onto them.


Snorlax: Lick / Hyper Beam (Lick’s EPS makes up for its lower DPS)
Note how the DoT for Hyper Beam changes when you switch between Zen Headbutt and Lick.


Rhydon: Mud Slap / Earthquake


Gyarados: Dragon Tail / Outrage


Blissey: Pound / Hyper Beam


Vaporeon: Water Gun / Aqua Tail
(Hydro Pump is a very close second)


Donphan: Tackle / Play Rough
(Tackle and Counter have same DPS and EPS. But Tackle is slightly better in fending off attackers)


Espeon: Confusion / Futuresight


Heracross: Counter / Close Combat
(Counter is the same DPS and EPS as Struggle Bug. But Counter gives you two moves of the same type)


Golem: Rock Throw / Rock Blast
(Mud Slap has higher EPS, but not enough to bridge the DPS gap)


Exeggutor: Extrasensory / Solar Beam
(Bullet Seed has higher EPS, but not enough to bridge the DPS gap. But Bullet Seed is situational against Vaporeon)



Versus Tyranitar:


Machamp: Counter / Dynamic Punch
Fighting has stacked effectiveness against Tyranitar. And, Fighting resists Dark moves.

Hitmonlee: Low Kick / Close Combat
Not as good as Machamp, but close.

Poliwrath: Rock Smash / Dynamic Punch
Probably the most accessible Fighting type.

Versus Dragonite:


Cloyster: Frost Breath/Avalanche
Your only option is Cloyster. That crazy 323 defense pretty much negates Dragonite’s 263 attack. That, and Ice does stacked super effective damage against Dragon/Flying.

Versus Snorlax:


Dragonite: DT/O
This is your strongest option. Snorlax is pretty type-resistant. So go with raw damage.

Tyranitar: Bite/Crunch
Not as good as Dragonite, but it’s up there.

Flareon: Fire Spin / Overheat
This is your stepping stone counter. Flareon ranks in the top 6 for every Snorlax moveset combo (even the earthquake ones!).

Alakazam: Confusion / Focus Blast
Performs somewhere between Dragonite and Flareon, when you consider all of Snorlax’s movesets. Especially against Zen Headbutt.
Focus Blast is Alakazam’s the worst DPS charge move. But it’s listed because of type advantage (against Normal, Fighting is good, Ghost is bad).

Note: Machamp with Counter and Dynamic punch is situational. As long as Snorlax doesn’t have Zen Headbutt.

Versus Rhydon:


Exeggutor: Bullet Seed / Solar Beam
Finally, grass moves!

Venusaur: Vine Whip / Solar Beam
You can still use your Venusaur from before.

Kingler: Bubble / Water Pulse
What is Kingler doing here? Bubble is high DPS, high EPS.

Versus Gyarados:


Jolteon: Thunder Shock / Discharge
You want Thunder Shock, because its EPS significantly boosts your overall DPS.
Discharge is only slightly better than Thunderbolt. Thunder is the worst. Now I need to re-do all my Jolteons…

Magneton: Spark / Zap Cannon
Another option, but harder to get and not as good. But if you live in a beach biome, you can put these little robots to good use.

Versus Blissey:


Dragonite: DT/O
Go for raw damage.

Tyranitar: Bite/Crunch
Not as good as Dragonite, but makes the top 6 in every moveset.

Alakazam: Confusion/Focus Blast
Good damage. Exact same explanation as with Snorlax (see above). Except that four of Blissey’s movesets contain Psychic moves, which Alakazam resists.

Espeon: Confusion/Futuresight
Not as good as Alakazam. But it ranks in every moveset. Could be a stepping stone if you have a hard time catching Abra.

Flareon: Fire Spin / Overheat
Another stepping stone counter. Ranks in every moveset.

Note: as with Snorlax, Machamp is situational. But Blissey can have four out of six movesets containing Psychic moves.

Versus Vaporeon:


Dragonite: DT/O
Raw damage ftw.

Venusaur: Vine Whip / Solar Beam
Hopefully you have one of these by now.

Versus Donphan:


Cloyster: Frost Breath / Avalanche
Ice is good against Ground

Dragonite: DT/O
Raw damage

Cloyster and Dragonite both perform well against all of Donphan’s movesets. But which one depends on Donphan’s move types, which are all over the place.

Versus Espeon:


Tyranitar: Bite/Crunch
Dark is good versus Psychic

Alakazam: Confusion/Shadow Ball
A good example of a same-type counter. Psychic resists itself. But Alakazam can punk Espeon with a high DPS Ghost move that is super effective.

Scizor: Fury Cutter/X-Scissor
Bug is good versus Psychic

Versus Heracross:

Scyther: Air Slash / Aerial Ace
Not sure how often you’ll run into Heracross. Looks like Scyther is trying to redefine himself as a strong Flying type.


Versus Golem:

Use Kingler and Venusaur (see Rhydon section above).

Versus Exeggutor:


Scizor: Fury Cutter / X-Scissor
Scizor is your new Scyther.

Pinsir: Bug Bite / X-Scissor
Finally, a use for Pinsir in the meta. Not as good as Scizor, but close.

Flareon: Fire Spin / Overheat.
Not as good as Pinsir and Scizor. But still pretty good.


Get Flareon with Fire Spin / Overheat. This is probably the easiest to get. And you can use it against Snorlax, Blissey, and Exeggutor.

Get Cloyster if you don’t have one already. It’s no longer a one-trick pony against Dragonite — you can use it when people start putting in Donphan.

Get Machamp. It’s your Tyranitar counter. And it’s useful against Snorlax and Blissey (for the non-Psychic movesets at least)

Re-do your Jolteons. You’re looking for Thunder Shock and Discharge (Thunderbolt is just as good). Thunder has been dethroned.

Eventually work toward getting a Dragonite with DT/O. This is both your most versatile and ideal moveset.


Websites usually give you DPS, based on damage divided by the animation duration. This works great for quick moves, but not for charge moves.

For example: in generation one, I recommended Tangela with Power Whip over Solar Beam. Power Whip had a super fast animation, which artificially inflated its DPS value. But in practice, its damage fell flat.

With generation two, the animation durations are all over the place. And this throws off the charge moves’ DPS. So the way to go is to factor in the charge time. An analogy is adding the time it takes to fill the water balloon to the time it takes to throw it.

The charge move “damage over time” is based on the amount of damage from one full bar. Divide this by: (a) the time it takes to charge the bar, and (b) the time it takes to cast the charge move(s).

In order to get the time it takes to charge the bar, you have to use the EPS of the quick move. So, charge move damage is influenced by the quick move.

For determining ideal counters, you have to factor in the following:

  • The ratio of the attacker’s attack stat compared to the defender’s defense stat.
  • STAB
  • Type effectiveness. This includes:
    • Dual types
    • Effectiveness and resistance
  • The opponent moveset’s DPS, relative to yours.

When you look at moves in the context of all these factors, some interesting things start to emerge:

  • A mon with great moves might not be that great because of low base attack and defense stats.
  • The EPS of a quick move sometimes outweighs its lack of DPS.
  • Type resistance (Omastar) and defense (Cloyster) are sometimes overlooked, but advantages nonetheless.

Damage over time is calculated as:

(charge move damage  x  number of bars) / ((charge move duration  x  number of bars)   +   (100 / quick move EPS))

Basically, it’s the charge move’s damage from one bar, divided by the time it takes to both charge and cast the charge moves.

The Gen 2 Meta

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