A complete list of Best Pokémon for Lucky Trades is finally available on the Hub! The list covers all Gen 1 through Gen 4 Pokémon you should be spending your Lucky trade on. We will update the article with valuable Gen 5 additions when they become available.
This guide was a highly requested one, and you know the drill: you ask, we deliver. If you have some lucky trades pending and you don’t know what to prioritize, don’t worry, as in this article we’ll go over Pokémon worth trading. Legacy moves will be written in italics.
Three types of trainers come to mind: battlers, raiders and collectors (or shiny hunters). We’ll try to cover most targets no matter what type of trainer you are, but if we forget something do not hesitate to let us know! So let’s get right into it.
Keep in mind that only those Pokémon that have been officially released in the Game are included in this analysis! It will be updated as soon as more Generation 5 Pokémon are released.
Rampardos is the best rock type attacker in the game by far. It has one of the best attack stats in the game (295) combined with the best rock type moveset. It is the #1 counter to plenty of raid bosses in the past and it will most likely be the best counter against some legendary raid bosses in Gen 5. Rampardos is a must-have attacker.
Giratina-O is one of the best counters to plenty of legendary raid bosses due to the amount of psychic-type legendaries out there. It may not have the highest attack stat among all ghost type attackers, but its amazing moveset and TDO make up for it and make it the best ghost type attacker in the game in most situations.
Rayquaza is the best dragon type attacker in the game as of now. Wonderful attacker and generalist (although those aren’t used as much nowadays). Outrage Salamence is not too far in performance and Gen 5 dragons could be great contenders depending on what movesets they get, so keep that in mind…
Metagross needs Meteor Mash (a legacy CD move) to be a relevant attacker. MM Metagross is a wonderful attacker that hasn’t had much use in raid battles yet, but it will soon shine as some Gen 5 legendary Pokémon are weak to steel types. It is also a great generalist.
Shadow Ball Mewtwo used to be the best ghost type attacker, but the changes in type effectiveness have been rough to one of our favourite attackers. Regardless of those changes, SB Mewtwo is a great attacker that can be used in almost any situation if it has a second charge move.
Psystrike Mewtwo is probably the best attacker in the game and it is now also considered the best generalist, outclassing very powerful Pokémon such as Rayquaza. If you want to read a full analysis to check out Psystrike Mewtwo’s potential, we’ve got you covered!
Sky Attack Moltres is a great attacker in Pokémon GO, as it is arguably the best fire AND flying type attacker as of now. Fire Spin (or Wing Attack) + Sky Attack and Overheat Moltres is a wonderful raider/gym sweeper. Whether Pokémon coming in future generations will dethrone it or not is still unknown as it really depends on what movesets they get.
The Garchomp family is one of the rarest ones to find in Pokémon GO. Hatching a Gible is almost impossible due to the absurdly low odds and finding Gible/Gabite in the wild is not easy either. Garchomp is a very powerful dragon type attacker (not the best though), but where it really shines is as a ground type attacker because of its typing (3x resistance to electric type moves). It might get Earth Power or a better dragon type move in a future CD, so keep that in mind before evolving!
Kyogre is arguably still the best water type attacker in the game. While it is outperformed in terms of DPS by Crabhammer Kingler, its bulk & TDO make it outperform Kingler in the long run. Whether or not it is still worth investing in a Kyogre when you have a non-legendary alternative is debatable. Keep in mind that it will most likely be able to learn its signature move (Origin Pulse) in the future, though!
Let’s be clear: Earthquake is a disappointing move in PvE. Groudon is the best ground type attacker in the game (or the close #2 if Garchomp triple resists incoming moves), but ground type moves are not that useful in raids and gyms nowadays. And when they are, ground type attackers are usually outperformed by other attackers that also deal super effective damage but have significantly better movesets. It will most likely learn its signature move (Precipice Blades) in the future, so keep that in mind.
Chandelure is an amazing attacker. Its performance as a ghost type attacker is comparable to Giratina Origin Forme’s. It deals more DPS but has lower bulk. Litwick is a difficult Pokémon to get, but if you get one and you need a ghost type attacker, you should definitely consider saving it for a lucky trade.
Shadow Claw or Lick Gengar (both legacy fast moves) has the highest ghost-type DPS in the game as of now. If you want to see how it compares to Giratina-O in battle, you can check out this article.
Outrage Salamence’s performance is excellent. It’s so good that it can compete with Rayquaza (and you won’t need rare candies to power it up). Full analysis here.
Smack Down Tyranitar has been the best rock type attacker for a while. Now, it has been outperformed by Rampardos in terms of DPS. However, SD Tyranitar is still very useful as a rock type attacker, and it is in fact one of the best (if not the best) Pokémon for Team Rocket Battles, so keep that in mind!
Raikou is the best electric type Pokémon as of now, but it will most likely be outperformed as soon as Thundurus is released in Pokémon GO. Furthermore, Electivire is almost as good as Raikou (in fact, it deals a bit more DPS) and you don’t need to spend rare candies to power it up.
Dialga is a very interesting pick. Its dragon type moveset is not the best, but its typing is amazing. In PvP, Dialga is a very powerful Pokémon to use in Master League. Regarding PvE, its TDO is amazing vs. dragon type raid bosses with dragon type moves, but fairy types such as Togekiss (that now have access to Charm) can also do the job.
Palkia is a very powerful dragon type attacker (not 4x weak to ice type moves), but it does not have access to Outrage. Great dragon type attacker, but not really worth the investment due to the amount of great dragon type attackers out there (similar performance to the non-legendary alternative Outrage Salamence)
Drillbur and Excadrill are easier to get, but that does not make them useless at all. In fact, thanks to Drill Run, Excadrill deals more DPS than Groudon as a ground type attacker. However, Groudon is a better overall attacker, as it has much better TDO. Don’t forget that Landorus-T will outclass them both as soon as it is released, though!
Lower tier alternatives
And finally, some other alternatives you could consider if none of those convince you or if you have plenty of them already:
Some of them are legacy Pokémon and some of them are still obtainable. My advice would be to seek out those that are legacy because they cannot be obtained anymore unless you trade or a special event comes out in the future. Best of luck with the IV rerolls!
Best PvP IV spreads you can get from lucky trades and the most optimal ones:
The Sinister PvP Cup was announced, and Dusclops is now a viable option too! The best IV spread you can get from a lucky trade is 12/13/12 (@L38.5), whose overall rank #98. The best one you could get without lucky trading is 8/15/15 (@L39.5). Regarding its moveset, you could go with either Hex or Faint Attack (matchup dependant) as fast moves and Shadow Punch + Fire Punch as charge moves.
Best Pokémon for collectors or shiny hunters
Some trainers want to complete the lucky dex (each entry as a lucky Pokémon with the exception of those that cannot be traded such as mythical Pokémon). Those trainers should primarily focus on obtaining regional Pokémon through trades because of the limited availability they have. Furthermore, other interesting Pokémon to seek out are legendary Pokémon (because you cannot mass trade them). And once those are already in the dex, the remaining trades can just be regular lucky trades until the lucky dex is filled.
Regarding shiny hunters, things get a bit more difficult. Some shiny Pokémon are really easy to get (either because they had a Community Day where their shiny odds were boosted or because they have been featured in several events and thus the amount of them you could catch is significantly higher), whereas some others are very difficult to get (e.g. – shiny regionals, shiny babies, special forms such as flower crown Eevee or Pikachu, and many others whose shiny or spawn rate was very limited). In my opinion, the most difficult ones should be the main target for this kind of trainers. But be prepared, because you’ll probably need to give a very rare Pokémon in return too!
And finally, legacy move collectors. To be honest, out of the huge amount of legacy Pokémon obtainable in the game, just a few deserve to be powered up. For example, Brine Omanyte is almost useless in this game, whereas Shadow Claw Gengar is a very useful attacker. In my opinion, meta-relevant Pokémon should be prioritized if you want to obtain them through lucky trades. Why? Because the main point of lucky Pokémon is to save resources when powering up. If you don’t plan to spend stardust on them, you might as well do a regular trade to get them.