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Top 50 Best Pokémon Attacks

In between "Pokémon" journeys, Jeremy enjoys working as a pharmaceutical chemist and campus manager.

What Makes a Good Pokémon Attack?

Throughout the years, the list of Pokémon attacks has greatly expanded. Each type specializes in different areas, from Electric's paralysis to Ice's freezing and slowing, but offers a variety of awesome moves that makes picking just four on each unit a daunting task. When choosing a Pokémon's move-list, you'll want to consider type coverage, STAB (same-type attack bonus), defenses, and more.

But with hundreds of great techniques to choose from, which strikes reign supreme? Disregarding the potent Z-moves (we'll tackle those in another countdown), these are the 50 strongest moves in Pokémon!

Articuno using Ice Beam

Articuno using Ice Beam

50. Ice Beam

Type: Ice
Power: 90
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Articuno, Lapras, Alolan Ninetails

Many trainers including myself consider Ice the worst type defensively, but it's unarguably one of the best on offense, able to strike Ground, Grass, Flying, and Dragon Pokémon for double pain. Luckily, TM (Technical Machine) 13 offers the powerful Ice Beam move to many non-Ice types, letting you employ Ice with better-fortified Water Pokémon. The high accuracy and 10% freeze chance make it even more alluring, and Ice Beam was even better prior to generation 6 when it bore 95 power.

Alakazam using Light Screen

Alakazam using Light Screen

49. Reflect/Light Screen

Type: Psychic
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Alakazam, Mr. Mime, Starmie

Reflect and Light Screen don't inflict damage, but shield your entire team with a barrier that nullifies 50% of the damage opponents deal to them. Reflect works on contact moves while Light Screen shields against indirect techniques.

In Multi Battles, Reflect and Light Screen shield your entire team, albeit only blocking 33% of the damage dealt, a hefty guard that covers your entire squad at once. Since each move lasts for five turns, you should have plenty of time before needing to set them again, and both can be taught through TMs to many creatures.

Palkia using Spacial Rend

Palkia using Spacial Rend

48. Spacial Rend

Type: Dragon
Power: 100
Accuracy: 95
Seen on: Palkia

Spacial Rend works similarly to Lugia's famed Aeroblast except that it's Dragon type. On top of great power and good accuracy, it has an increased critical hit ratio, often dealing extra-damage criticals. Since it's a Dragon move, Palkia will receive the coveted STAB (same-type attack bonus) when using it, but unfortunately, Dragon is one of the worst elements on offense in the game, slightly hindering its prowess.

Mega Charizard Y using Heat Wave

Mega Charizard Y using Heat Wave

47. Heat Wave

Type: Fire
Power: 95
Accuracy: 90
Seen on: Charizard, Moltres, Torkoal

Heat Wave deals nice damage for decent accuracy and has a 10% chance to burn. It used to have 100 power prior to generation 6, but it has stood the test of time as it now hits all adjacent foes in double and triple battles without hurting your allies. Overall, a decent move in Single Battles, and a great trick for Multi.

Zygarde uses Core Enforcer

Zygarde uses Core Enforcer

46. Core Enforcer

Type: Dragon
Power: 100
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Zygarde

One of Zygarde's many signature moves, Core Enforcer hits for fantastic damage and accuracy, and if the target has used a move or been healed by its trainer in the same turn, Enforcer also handily suppresses their ability. Just like Spacial Rend, this move will always receive a boost thanks to Zygarde's partial Dragon type, but Dragon just isn't the best offensive element.

Mewtwo using Psystrike

Mewtwo using Psystrike

45. Psystrike

Type: Psychic
Power: 100
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Mewtwo

Original legendary Mewtwo's best stat is Special Attack, letting it use indirect moves like Psystrike to great effect (not to mention the bonus STAB). Not only does this telekinetic move wield impressive power and accuracy, but it's also actually calculated using the foe's Defense rather than Special Defense stat, letting you hammer against either Defense or Special Defense while always utilizing Mewtwo's best stat.

This swiftly breaks through Special Defense tanks like Blissey, and note that Psystrike is interestingly reduced by Light Screen (not Reflect) despite its effect.

Solgaleo using Sunsteel Strike

Solgaleo using Sunsteel Strike

44. Sunsteel Strike

Type: Steel
Power: 100
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Solgaleo, Dusk Mane Necrozma

With the standard 100/100 we see on most legendaries' signature attacks, Sunsteel Strike inflicts great damage with near-perfect accuracy. It also ignores any ability on the target that would alter the attack, breaking through several potential guards. Sunsteel's Steel type earns an STAB from Solgaleo, but like Dragon, Steel is a much better defensive than offensive element, meaning Sunsteel can only type-trump a few foes.

Lunala using Moongeist Beam

Lunala using Moongeist Beam

43. Moongeist Beam

Type: Ghost
Power: 100
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Lunala, Dawn Wings Necrozma

Lunala's Moongeist Beam works exactly like Sunsteel Strike, inflicting heavy damage with great accuracy and ignoring opposing abilities. However, Moongeist takes the advantage thanks to its Ghost type, a generally more useful attribute for assaulting enemies than Steel.

Necrozma using Photon Geyser

Necrozma using Photon Geyser

42. Photon Geyser

Type: Psychic
Power: 100
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Necrozma

Created in Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, Photon Geyser nets the standard legendary 100/100 with a sweet bonus effect: Necrozma can utilize its Attack or Special Attack, automatically calculating whichever is currently higher. This counters foes intent on reducing one of your offensive stats, although it only takes Necrozma's state into account, so keep an eye on your opponent's two defenses to know what you'll want to hit with.

Lugia using Aeroblast

Lugia using Aeroblast

41. Aeroblast

Type: Flying
Power: 100
Accuracy: 95
Seen on: Lugia

Just like Palkia's Spacial Rend, Aeroblast deals nice damage with good accuracy and has an increased chance of landing a critical hit. Flying type moves prove useful against common Grass/Bug/Fighting weaknesses, and since Aeroblast has been with us since generation 2, we've been reveling in its aerial superiority for decades.

Bulbasaur using Leech Seed

Bulbasaur using Leech Seed

40. Leech Seed

Type: Grass
Power: N/A
Accuracy: 90
Seen on: Bulbasaur, Torterra, Sawsbuck

The disadvantage of volatile status conditions like Leech Seed is that they're removed if the opponent switches out, but to balance this, you can stack as many as you like. Leech Seed plants a seed on a foe that drains their health by 1/8 at the end of every turn, simultaneously recovering the same amount on you. A handy and fairly-accurate attack than hits all adjacent creatures (sadly including allies) in Multi Battles.

Dedenne using Nuzzle

Dedenne using Nuzzle

39. Nuzzle

Type: Electric
Power: 20
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Dedenne, Pikachu, Emolga

Although Nuzzle deals negligible damage, it guarantees an infliction of the paralyze condition, lowering an adversary's speed and potentially negating their moves every turn. All Pokémon who can learn Nuzzle are Electric, granting STAB, and even a little damage goes a long way when accompanied by an automatic status. Nuzzle is extra appreciated since Thunder Wave, which paralyzes foes for no damage, had its accuracy reduced from 100 to 90 in generation 7.

Alolan Ninetails using Aurora Veil

Alolan Ninetails using Aurora Veil

38. Aurora Veil

Type: Ice
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Alolan Ninetails, Jynx, Mew

As we've mentioned, Ice Pokémon suffer defensively with several weaknesses yet only one resistance. Aurora Veil (helpfully available as a TM) helps by protecting the user and all allies from 50% of damage (33% in Multi Battles). Basically, you're getting Reflect and Light Screen in one potent package that lasts five turns.

Aurora Veil can boost the defenses even of non-Ice Pokémon, but you must use it during the hailstorm weather condition, of which only Ice types will be unaffected. Luckily, your Veil will linger even if the hail ends, so don't worry about immediately reactivating the ice barrage if you still have several protected turns left.

Deoxys hit by Stored Power

Deoxys hit by Stored Power

37. Stored Power/Power Trip

Type: Psychic/Dark
Power: 20
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Clefairy, Latias, Krookodile

Stored Power and Power Trip function the same, except Stored is Psychic and indirect while Trip is Dark and direct. Both attacks begin with a weak base strength of 20, but gain 20 power for every positive stat change the user bears. Luckily, negative stats don't decrease this value, and these moves are potentially the strongest in the game if you max out every stat (Baton Pass can help here), wielding an unholy attack score of 860!

Yveltal using Oblivion Wing

Yveltal using Oblivion Wing

36. Oblivion Wing

Type: Flying
Power: 80
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Yveltal

Many HP-restoring damaging moves, like Giga Drain or Leech Life, only restore half the damage dealt. Oblivion Wing instead regains up to 75% of the amount inflicted, simultaneously landing solid damage (and STAB) while replenishing Yveltal's lost hit points at a better rate than you'll find just about anywhere.

Necrozma using Prismatic Laser

Necrozma using Prismatic Laser

35. Prismatic Laser

Type: Psychic
Power: 160
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Necrozma

Since Pokemon's beginnings, we've enjoyed the undeniable strength of moves like Hyper Beam that bear extra power but force a recharge on the next turn. As great as Giga Impact, Frenzy Plant, and the like are, their values of 150/90 can't compete with Prismatic Laser's 160/100. This makes for a great final attack, as you'll avoid the recharge time if you simply deal enough damage to win the battle.

Shiinotic using Strength Sap

Shiinotic using Strength Sap

34. Strength Sap

Type: Grass
Power: N/A
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Shiinotic, Bellossom, Jumpluff

Strength Sap combines offense and defense into one potent package. First, the target's Attack stat is lowered be one stage, weakening their direct moves. Then, Sap restores your health equal to the foe's Attack before it was reduced! An awesome mix of attacking and defending, Sap still lowers Attack even if you're at full health, meaning it's not entirely wasted if you expect to go second but actually strike first.

Not exactly what I meant, Google

Not exactly what I meant, Google

33. Shift Gear

Type: Steel
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Klinklang, Magearna, Genesect

For years, the best status-raising moves would harshly raise one of your stats, like Swords Dance, or boost two stats at once, like Calm Mind. However, we've recently been treated to a few status moves that provide a net boost of three stat stages! In Shift Gear's case, the user's Speed is advanced by two and their Attack by one, letting you hit hard and hit fast with subsequent blows.

Prinplup using Mist

Prinplup using Mist

32. Mist

Type: Ice
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Empoleon, Articuno, Wailord

For five turns, Mist covers your entire team (useful in Multi Battles) with a fog that prevents them from having their stats lowered. This amazing trait not only defends against opposing debuffs, but also self-inflicted ones! Thus, you're free to abuse high-power moves like Close Combat and Overheat without having to worry about their now-negated stat deductions. Mist also counters the Attack-lowering from Intimidate, one of the best abilities in the game.

Hoopa's ultimate attack demands a worthy foe, like this level 17 Swablu.

Hoopa's ultimate attack demands a worthy foe, like this level 17 Swablu.

31. Hyperspace Fury

Type: Dark
Power: 100
Accuracy: Perfect
Seen on: Hoopa Unbound

Hyperspace Fury's one drawback is that your Defense will decrease after using it (employ Mist to avoid this). However, not only does it bear 100 power, it hits without fail (barring semi-invulnerable states like Dig or Fly). 100 accuracy is nice, but perfect is better in case your opponent raises their evasiveness or lower your accuracy.

As if that weren't enough, Hyperspace also breaks through guards like Protect and Detect, dealing regular damage and shattering that barrier for the rest of the turn. Due to its infallible accuracy, you can't run from Hyperspace, and thanks to its shield-breaking, you can't hide.

30. Fusion Bolt/Fusion Flare

Type: Fire/Electric
Power: 100
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Zekrom, Reshiram, Kyurem

Zekrom and Reshiram's individual attacks both hit for 100/100 and bear the same effect. If another Pokémon uses the counterpart move right before Bolt or Flame, the second strike's power will double to 200! Legendary Pokémon aren't typically allowed in official tournaments, but if they were, Zekrom and Reshiram would clean house with this combo.

Primal Kyogre using Origin Pulse

Primal Kyogre using Origin Pulse

29. Origin Pulse

Type: Water
Power: 110
Accuracy: 85
Seen on: Kyogre

The Hoenn region's aquatic legendary bears a fierce Water move that's basically a better Hydro Pump (in itself an impressive blow). Origin Pulse offers the same power as Hydro, but with five more accuracy and the ability to attack all adjacent foes in Multi Battles—without hitting allies. No additional effects here beyond damage, but Water's a nice offensive type, and you'll see that hitting multiple foes for this much pain can really turn the tide. Okay, I'll stop.

Primal Groudon using Precipice Blades

Primal Groudon using Precipice Blades

28. Precipice Blades

Type: Ground
Power: 120
Accuracy: 85
Seen on: Groudon

Just like Kyogre, generation 3's Groudon gets its own signature move. Precipe Blades offers the same moderate accuracy but ups the power to 120 (sorry, Kyogre). This provides an incredible strength value, activates STAB, and attacks all adjacent foes in Multi while leaving allies unscathed. Additionally, Ground is one of the best types when ramming enemies, dealing extra hurt to Electric, Fire, Poison, Rock, and Steel types.

Dhelmise's Anchor Shot

Dhelmise's Anchor Shot

27. Anchor Shot

Type: Steel
Power: 80
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Dhelmise

While Steel admittedly lags on offense, Anchor Shot offers a great bonus effect to its solid damage and terrific accuracy: any foe struck can't flee or switch out as long as Dhelmise remains in battle. Despite costing a turn, switching out is a key strategy that removes stat debuffs and type disadvantages; denying your opponent that option while landing respectable damage will ravage their chances of victory.

Marshadow's Spectral Thief

Marshadow's Spectral Thief

26. Spectral Thief

Type: Ghost
Power: 90
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Marshadow

In addition to the hearty base strength and accuracy, Spectral Thief bears two benefits. Most notably, Marshadow's staple attack steals any positive stat changes on the foe, not only reducing their buffs to standard values but also gaining them for itself. And since the boosts are pilfered before the damage, you can potentially raise your offensive traits before hitting!

Spectral Thief also handily bypasses the popular Substitute gimmick, letting you k.o. opponents without having to vanquish their imitations first.

Phermosa using Quiver Dance

Phermosa using Quiver Dance

25. Quiver Dance

Type: Bug
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Phermosa, Butterfree, Dustox

Most often used by Bugs but seen on a few Grass creatures like Lilligant, Quiver Dance offers another valued three-stat gain. This time, you boost your Special Attack, Special Defense, and Speed by one stage each, readying your indirect strikes and defenses while increasing your agility to let you strike first.

It's as simple as that; Quiver Dance hones your monster's talents in three separate and useful areas.

Serperior using Wrap (close enough)

Serperior using Wrap (close enough)

24. Coil

Type: Poison
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Serperior, Arbok, Eelektross

As helpful as Speed is, I'd call it the generally least-needed stat, making the fact that Coil raises three non-Speed stats all the more tempting. While Coil is Poison, many non-venomous creatures can learn it, and it boosts the user's Attack, Defense, and accuracy by one stage each. Accuracy gains are quite rare, especially when combined with the two stat boosts that accompany a Bulk Up. When it comes to self-improvement, you won't find much better than Coil.

Toucannon using Beak Blast

Toucannon using Beak Blast

23. Beak Blast

Type: Flying
Power: 100
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Toucannon

Toucannon offers a powerful move and rare method of inflicting the burn status outside of Fire attacks. Toucannon first charges up at the beginning of the turn, then attacks with -3 priority, practically guaranteeing you'll strike last. However, any opponent who makes physical contact in the meantime automatically suffers a burn, reducing their Attack and providing ongoing end of turn damage.

Even if your opponent craftily avoids striking your birdbrain directly, you're still landing a STAB 100/100 every turn and forcing them to choose between either taking a status condition that switching out can't heal or being limited to only indirect attacks. Either way, you win.

Scolipede using Toxic

Scolipede using Toxic

22. Toxic

Type: Poison
Power: N/A
Accuracy: 90
Seen on: Scolipede, Skuntank, Salazzle

Toxic's one-time accuracy of 85 was boosted to 90 in generation 5, and since it's offered as a TM in every generation, it's a versatile technique available to many creatures. Toxic inflicts the badly poisoned condition, a variant of regular poison that doubles the poison damage suffered at the end of every turn. Many strategies revolve around badly poisoning foes, then stalling as their disease does the work for you.

Plus, as of generation 6, Toxic never misses when used by Poison Pokémon, even when foes are in semi-invincible Dig, Fly, Bounce, or Dive states!

Trubbish using Toxic Spikes

Trubbish using Toxic Spikes

21. Toxic Spikes

Type: Poison
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Trubbish, Beedrill, Qwilfish

One of the dreaded entry hazards that punishes swapping Pokémon in and out, a single layer of Toxic Spikes automatically poisons any foes who enter the field. That's worthwhile on its own, but using Toxic Spikes twice (or more) instead induces the badly poisoned condition on switch-happy foes, granting numerous Toxics without having to inflict them individually! This move helpfully offers two layers of power to suit the amount of time you can spare, but remember that opposing Poison types will remove your traps when entering the field.

Vespiquen using Infestation

Vespiquen using Infestation

20. Infestation

Type: Bug
Power: 20
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Vespiquen, Drapion, Ariados

Available to a whopping number of creatures through TM, Infestation offers one of the game's best trapping moves. It deals a weak 20 damage but with full accuracy, and it scores 1/8 of an enemy's HP at the end of every turn for 4–5 turns. Additionally, that foe will be prevented from switching out, so they can't run from their continuous damage or type weaknesses.

Like a few other video game moves, Infestation was actually inspired by an attack originally stemming from one of the TCG's trading cards.

Parasect using Spore

Parasect using Spore

19. Spore

Type: Grass
Power: N/A
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Parasect, Shroomish, Amoonguss

Although Grass Pokémon have since become immune to their own status conditions. Spore remains a daunting attack that's been with us since the start. Many moves induce the dreaded sleep condition, but only Spore hits with perfect accuracy, causing foes to waste turns waking up. Spore hits all adjacent monsters in Multi Battles; use Protect on your other creature to guard yourself as you simultaneously take two foes out of the action.

Spore was particularly deadly in generation 1, where it was capable of bypassing Substitutes and sleeping took longer to awaken from.

Volbeat using Tail Glow

Volbeat using Tail Glow

18. Tail Glow

Type: Bug
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Volbeat, Manaphy, Xurkitree

Tail Glow was daunting enough in generations 3–4, where it rose the user's Special Attack by two stages. However, since then, Tail Glow now ups your Special Attack by three stages, preparing you for some incredible indirect moves and forming a great Baton Pass combo.

Genesect using Techno Blast

Genesect using Techno Blast

17. Techno Blast

Type: Normal
Power: 120
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Genesect

Genesect's specialized attack bears no side effects but lands a huge 120 damage with 100% accuracy! The only drawback is that Genesect isn't a Normal type, so you won't gain STAB under normal (ba-da-cha) circumstances. That said, Techno Blast can change its type to Electric, Fire, Water, or the particularly useful Ice depending on the type of Drive item Genesect holds, keeping foes on edge until they know just what element they're facing.

Aegislash using King's Shield

Aegislash using King's Shield

16. King's Shield

Type: Steel
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Aegislas

King's Shield operates similarly to the famed Protect and Detect moves. With a +4 priority, you'll move at the start of the turn and defend yourself against all moves except for status attacks. Plus, if a foe makes contact with you during this time, their Attack will drop two stages!

King's Shield works best when you have a firm understanding of your opponent's team and can predict when they will and won't use status or direct attacks. If you analyze correctly, you'll simultaneously shield yourself and drastically lower their power.

Toxapex's Baneful Bunker

Toxapex's Baneful Bunker

15. Baneful Bunker

Type: Poison
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Toxapex

As great as King's Shield is, it still fails to block status moves and your opponent can reset their stats by switching out; Toxapex offers a similar attack that can avoid both drawbacks. Baneful Bunker moves first and guards against all attacks, both damage and status, poisoning foes who make contact in the meantime. Switch out or not, that poison will remain and will start sapping away life as long as that creature remains in battle.

It's as simple as that. Baneful Bunker offers the already-sweet barriers of Protect while throwing in a potential status condition. Just remember that Poison and Steel types will be immune to the venom.

Spiky Shield

Spiky Shield

14. Spiky Shield

Type: Grass
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Cacturne, Chesnaught, Togedemaru

Similar to Baneful Bunker, Spiky Shield lets you move first and fortifies yourself against all attacks for that round. This time, if an opponent makes contact, they'll suffer 1/8 of their max health as damage, yet another awesome added effect.

Baneful Bunker's poisoning is often more useful since it's ongoing, but Spiky Shield is harder to predict because it can be learned by more Pokémon. It also functions better than Bunker if your foe already has a status ailment.

Glaceon using Blizzard

Glaceon using Blizzard

13. Blizzard

Type: Ice
Power: 110
Accuracy: 70
Seen on: Glaceon, Articuno, Avalugg

Blizzard's power has fluctuated throughout the years, but it's always been a worthy move available to many Pokémon, thanks to its TM status. Bearing the feared Ice type, Blizzard lands heavy damage with a 10% chance to freeze. It helpfully attacks adjacent opponents (and not allies) in Multi Battles, and will automatically hit during the hailstorm weather condition.

Prior to gen 6, Blizzard was even stronger at 120 power, and in the original Japanese generation 1 games, it had 90% accuracy and a 30% freeze chance!

Shuckle using Stealth Rock

Shuckle using Stealth Rock

12. Stealth Rock

Type: Rock
Power: N/A
Accuracy: N/A
Seen on: Golem, Steelix, Nihilego

An infamous competitive entry hazard, Stealth Rock sets the field with jagged stones to hit any foe who switches in. The damage is normally 1/8 of their health, but increases or decreases based on their weakness or resistance to the Rock type.

Thankfully, Rock offers one of the best offensive elements, and many common Flying, Fire, Ice, and Bug Pokémon will suffer extra pain. If a Pokémon switches in with two corresponding weaknesses, like Charizard's Fire/Flying duo, Stealth Rock automatically lands 50% of their total health!

Noivern using Boomburst

Noivern using Boomburst

11. Boomburst

Type: Normal
Power: 140
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Noivern, Exploud, Vibrava

140 damage with a full 100 accuracy and no drawbacks? That's an impressive resume for Boomburst, and if Exploud wields it, you'll further increase its power thanks to STAB.

An impressive force, but note a few minuscule disadvantages. As a Normal move, Boomburst won't ever land super-effective hits, and since it's sound-based, foes with the Soundproof ability will be unaffected.

Zekrom using Bolt Strike

Zekrom using Bolt Strike

10. Bolt Strike

Type: Electric
Power: 130
Accuracy: 85
Seen on: Zekrom

130 power definitely impresses, especially with Zekrom's STAB and a decent 85 accuracy. Plus, unlike most high-damage Electric moves such as Thunderbolt and Thunder, Bolt Strike has not 10% but 20% chances of paralyzing foes, further cementing its electrical dominance.

Reshiram using Blue Flare

Reshiram using Blue Flare

9. Blue Flare

Type: Fire
Power: 130
Accuracy: 85
Seen on: Reshiram

Take Bolt Strike, make it Fire, change its paralyze condition to burn instead, and bam, you've got Blue Flare. The same awesome attack strength with respectable accuracy and a surprisingly decent chance of inflicting a status simply makes for one of the game's best moves and serves as a great way to burn through Steel types when Fighting or Ground aren't available.

Solrock using Sunny Day

Solrock using Sunny Day

Move/TypeEffect

Sunny Day/Fire

Strengthens Fire moves and enables one-turn Solar Beams

Rain Dance/Water

Strengthens Water moves and gives Thunder 100% accuracy

Sandstorm/Ground

Damage per turn for non-Steel/Rock/Ground types and boosts Rock's Special Defense by 50%

Hail/Ice

Damage per turn for non-Ice types and gives Blizzard 100% accuracy

Grassy Terrain/Grass

Strengthens Grass moves and heals Pokémon by 1/16 each round

Electric Terrain/Electric

Strengthens Electric moves and prevents sleep

Psychic Terrain/Psychic

Strengthens Psychic moves and negates increased priority moves

Misty Terrain/Fairy

Weakens Dragon moves and prevents non-volatile status conditions

8. Weather/Terrain Moves

One day, we'll likely countdown each weather status to determine the best of the best, but in general, they're all excellent. From boosting the power of your preferred Fire moves with Sunny Day to battering foes at the end of the turn with Hail, weather conditions have long dominated competitive fields. They're especially appreciated in Multi Battles where they can aid multiple team members at once, but remember they can potentially boost your opponent's army as well.

Victini using Searing Shot

Victini using Searing Shot

7. Searing Shot

Type: Fire
Power: 100
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Victini

Victini bears vast power for its diminutive size. Searing Shot hits foes with the standard legendary 100/100 but offers a great 30% to burn. Using this twice means you've landed 200 damage (plus STAB) and have more than half a chance to land a burn debuff as well—all with full accuracy.

Volcanion using Steam Eruption

Volcanion using Steam Eruption

6. Steam Eruption

Type: Water
Power: 110
Accuracy: 95
Seen on: Volcanion

If you liked Searing Shot, you'll love Steam Eruption. For just five less accuracy, you gain an extra ten power and retain the superb 30% burn chance, a rare and valued possible side effect on a Water move. As if that weren't enough, Steam Eruption will also thaw the user if frozen (just like a Fire move), letting you instantly melt your chilling prison if needed.

Ho-Oh using Sacred Fire

Ho-Oh using Sacred Fire

5. Sacred Fire

Type: Fire
Power: 100
Accuracy: 95
Seen on: Ho-Oh

Sacred Fire also works similarly to Searing Shot, this time taking away five accuracy but upping the burn chance to a daunting 50%. Great power, near-perfect accuracy, and stupendous status-inflicting prowess on top of STAB lend Ho-Oh the game's second-best Fire move, a force that's been boosting our teams since the Gold and Silver era.

Diancie using Diamond Storm

Diancie using Diamond Storm

4. Diamond Storm

Type: Rock
Power: 100
Accuracy: 95
Seen on: Diancie

Rock offers one of the game's best offensive elements, but many Rock moves fall short in accuracy. Luckily, Diancie's signature attack bears great power and a high hit-rate, also granting a 50% chance to boost your Defense by two stages! In short, great type, great stats, great side effect, and a great chance to activate said side effect.

Shaymin using Seed Flare

Shaymin using Seed Flare

3. Seed Flare

Type: Grass
Power: 120
Accuracy: 85
Seen on: Shaymin

Both Shaymin's Sky and Land Forme bear the ultimate Grass move. Not only does it hit for 120 pain with a decent 85 accuracy, it bears an impressive 40% chance of reducing the foe's Special Defense. And since Flare is indirect, lowering that stat will let Flare hit even harder next turn, piling on extra damage to an already awesome move.

As more of a status-focused element, Grass doesn't contain many high-damage attacks without charge times (like Solar Beam and Solar Blade), but Seed Flare more than compensates.

Zygarde using Thousand Waves

Zygarde using Thousand Waves

2. Thousand Waves

Type: Ground
Power: 90
Accuracy: 100
Seen on: Zygarde

Yet another Zygarde specialty, Thousand Waves attacks with the excellent Ground element and lands solid damage with great accuracy. Even better, it traps foes, preventing them from switching as long as Zygarde remains in battle.

Good power, great accuracy, great element, and a guaranteed side effect. If you're still not convinced, note that Thousand Waves hits all adjacent foes in Multi Battles while leaving allies unscathed, making it arguably the best double and triple battle attack yet.

Victini using V-create

Victini using V-create

1. V-create

Type: Fire
Power: 180
Accuracy: 95
Seen on: Victini, Rayquaza

Available only on certain legendaries through events, V-create offers an unholy 180 base power with 95 accuracy. That said, it lowers the user's Defense, Special Defense, and Speed stats upon use. Losing three stats is a significant decrease, but you'll hardly mind as you knockout foes left and right.

Plus, you can counteract the stat decreases by using Mist, certain held items, or simply switching out. But even without these loopholes, V-create stands on its own as the deadliest Pokémon move yet.

Future of Pokémon Moves

As Pokémon adds new types and mechanics, like the once-per-battle Z-moves, it constantly increases our pool of attacks to choose from. With hundreds of awesome options (seriously, you should see my notes for this article), narrowing the list to just 50 wasn't easy, and we'll undoubtedly return to explore more tantalizing moves.

But for now, as we eagerly await Pokémon's next batch of exciting techniques, vote for your favorite attacking type and I'll see you at our next Pokémon countdown!

Questions & Answers

Question: How good is "Sheer Cold"?

Answer: Not great--amazing if it lands, but too low of accuracy for competitive battling. Plus, it's getting worse with age; now, it never works on Ice-types, has lower accuracy when used by a non-Ice type, and won't work on Dynamax opponents (it can damage their barriers in Max Raids, though).

© 2018 Jeremy Gill

Comments

Jeremy Gill (author) from Louisiana on June 04, 2020:

@Dylarceus

Both good moves, but Water and Normal aren't the best offensive elements. Also, Hydro Pump isn't as strong as it once was (110 power now instead of 120), and Hyper Beam's recharge period requires careful timing.

Dylarceus on June 03, 2020:

Where in the world is Hyper Beam and Hydro Pump!?

Jeremy Gill (author) from Louisiana on March 12, 2019:

@anonymous

Zap Cannon is definitely useful, although I prefer similarly-risky Dynamic Punch for its better type and debuff (since confusion can be combined with other status conditions).

anonymous on March 12, 2019:

Where would zap cannon be? I know it has terrible accuracy, but it has 120 power and guaranteed paralization.

Anonymous on November 11, 2018:

You're all wrong......the best move is without a doubt, splash

Cheeky Kid from Milky Way on August 17, 2018:

Isn't Harden the best Pokémon move? LOL