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Top 10 Fossil Pokémon

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

What are Fossil Pokémon?

Fossil Pokémon are prehistoric monsters you can revive in the Pokémon video games by bringing corresponding items to certain scientists. All fossil Pokémon are partially Rock-type, many also being Water, and they tend to evolve once and bear a 495 stat total.

But some ancient creatures break these trends, offering certain typings, abilities, or stats that stand above the rest—which reign supreme? These are the ten best fossil Pokémon!

Kabutops

Kabutops

10. Kabutops

Type: Rock/Water

Fossil: Dome Fossil

One of the original fossil creatures, Kabutops carries the classic Rock/Water typing, which in all honesty isn't the best pair; it's weak to common Fighting and Ground attacks and suffers a quadruple weakness to Grass.

Still, Kabutops has a clear role as a physical tank, preferring attack and defense. For abilities, you can either double his speed in rain with Swift Swim or prevent critical hits with Battle Armor, a choice that depends on how much weather effects you use.

Carracosta

Carracosta

9. Carracosta

Type: Water/Rock

Fossil: Cover Fossil

From his types to his stats, Carracosta highly resembles Kabutops. However, he lowers speed even further to buff defense, making him a superior fighter when you're willing to attack second, and his Solid Rock ability reduces the damage he takes from super-effective attacks by ¼.

Cradily

Cradily

8. Cradily

Type: Rock/Grass

Fossil: Root Fossil

Rock and Grass are generally considered poor defensive types, but they actually pair okay—no double weaknesses, although watch out for Fighting and Ice. For stats, Cradily is obnoxiously slow but spreads his other points pretty evenly, letting him strike from either range and withstand most attacks.

You'll probably want his hidden Storm Drain ability, which makes him immune to Water moves, raises his special attack when hit by one, and draws them in multi-battles, making him a great teammate for Water-weak allies.

Bastiodon

Bastiodon

7. Bastiodon

Type: Rock/Steel

Fossil: Armor Fossil

Here's an incredibly fortified tank who excels when you can avoid his Achilles heels. Bastiodon is pitifully slow and rather weak, but his defenses are through the roof. Even his two abilities are both shields; Sturdy prevents him from being one-hit-KOed while Soundproof makes him immune to sound-based attacks.

Then we come to his typing. Steel is undoubtedly one of the game's best defensive elements, and mixing with Rock gives eight resistances plus an immunity to Poison, but it carries quad weaknesses to Fighting and Ground. Both are common offensive types, so despite all his barricades, Bastiodon goes down quick with the wrong matchups, but if you can avoid them, few will outlast him.

Aurorus

Aurorus

6. Aurorus

Type: Rock/Ice

Fossil: Sail Fossil

Aurorus gets so many things right, but has a glaring flaw. While slow like most fossils, she favors her special stats over physical and has an unusually high HP. She's also got the great Snow Warning hidden ability, automatically summoning a hailstorm weather condition on entrance.

Rock and Ice are both excellent offensive types, so getting their STABs is useful—they just don't work together. After all, Ice is the worst defensive element; six overall weaknesses (including quads to Fighting and Steel) make Aurorus regrettably frail.

Armaldo

Armaldo

5. Armaldo

Type: Rock/Bug

Fossil: Claw Fossil

Armaldo has arguably the best typing today, with only three weaknesses, two of which (Steel and Water) aren't especially common on offense. Armaldo's stats resemble Carracosta's, meaning you're almost certainly going to attack second, but he favors attack over defense (though both are good).

Getting STAB (same-type attack bonus) for Rock and Bug is also nice, as the elements offer solid coverage when attacking. My biggest complaint here is a lack of useful abilities, with critical-preventing Battle Armor being the best option.

Archeops

Archeops

4. Archeops

Type: Rock/Flying

Fossil: Plume Fossil

Flying makes a decent pairing for Rock since it renders Archeops immune to Ground, but he really stands out for his incredible 567 stat total, emphasizing attack, special attack, and speed. The catch is Archeops's terrible Defeatist ability, which halves his attack and special attack once his HP gets down to half or below.

With only mediocre defenses, this probably won't take long, but thanks to Archeops's speed, you should at least get one or two attacks at full power.

Aerodactyl

Aerodactyl

3. Aerodactyl

Type: Rock/Flying

Fossil: Old Amber

For a less-risky version of Archeops, classic Aerodactyl has you covered. With strong attack and excellent speed, he's by far today's fastest Pokémon, and his 515 stat total outperforms most fossils.

You've also got some interesting abilities; Rock Head negates recoil damage and Unnerve prevents foes from eating berries. Aerodactyl is also the only fossil who can mega evolve; Mega Aerodactyl gains even more attack and speed plus the powerful Tough Claws ability, increasing contact damage by 30%.

Tyrantrum

Tyrantrum

2. Tyrantrum

Type: Rock/Dragon

Fossil: Jaw Fossil

Tyrantrum offers a powerhouse with questionable endurance. Physical attack and defense both impress, and he's not as slow as most fossils. Better yet, his Strong Jaw ability increases biting moves by 50%, drastically buffing attacks like Ice Fang and Crunch. Unfortunately, no current bite moves are Rock or Dragon, so this can't yet stack with STAB.

While Tyrantrum has good defense and no quad weaknesses, he's weak to a wide variety of common aggressive types, including Fighting, Ground, Ice, and Fairy. This makes him easy to type-trump, and if opponents are smart enough to attack indirectly, he won't be able to take many hits.

Rampardos

Rampardos

1. Rampardos

Type: Rock

Fossil: Skull Fossil

Compared to most fossils, Rampardos evolves from Cranidos earlier than usual at just level 30, but his real threat comes from his ridiculously high attack of 165—35 points above Mega Charizard X!

Sure, his other stats are poor, but you're looking at some insane damage, especially if you get the hidden ability Sheer Force (which sacrifices secondary attack effects for an extra 30% damage). Since Rampardos is only one type, he doesn't have any quad weaknesses, but quit thinking defense and just get to plowing through foes.

Rock Teams in Pokémon

Since all fossil Pokémon are at least partially Rock, consider its advantages when building your team. For instance, not only do Rock-types ignore sandstorm damage, they boost their special defense 50% during one, heavily increasing their longevity.

You can also invert sluggish combatants with Trick Room to let them attack first, and you can turn their damage into HP with held items like the Shell Bell. But for now, as we await Nintendo's next set of prehistoric creatures, vote for your favorite and I'll see you at our next Pokémon countdown!

© 2019 Jeremy Gill