Pokemon

Rayquaza in the Pokémon GO meta game


Rayquaza


Trainers. Rayquaza, the king of the dragons, is coming back, and it’s learned a new move. Hurricane. Is Hurricane useful for Rayquaza? Where will Hurricane put Rayquaza in the Flying-type meta?

Let’s get into it!

Type, Weaknesses and Resistances

Rayquaza is a dual Dragon and Flying type:

  • weak to Dragon Fairy and Rock
  • double weak to Ice
  • resists Bug Fighting Fire and Water
  • double resists Grass and Ground

Rayquaza’s Stats

First of all, let’s take a look at Rayquaza’s stats in Pokémon GO:

Look at that attack stat! Its defence and Stamina aren’t all that bad either. Not great, but not bad. As a Dragon, it’s only eclipsed by Kyurem stat-wise. For flying types? It falls below Ho-Oh and Charizard Mega Y. It truly is a beast!


Moveset Analysis

Rayquaza can learn the following moves in Pokémon Go:

Fast Moves Charge Moves
  • Dragon Tail Dragon
  • Air Slash Flying
  • Outrage Dragon
  • Aerial Ace Flying
  • Hurricane Flying
  • Ancient Power Rock

Quick Moves

Dragon tail is the best Dragon fast type move in the game dealing 13.64 Damage per Second and generating 8.18 Energy per Second.

Unfortunately, it didn’t get so lucky on the Flying side of things. Air Slash is less than ideal as a Flying type fast move. Dealing 11.67 Damage per Second and generating 8.33 energy per second.

The small energy gain you get from Air Slash doesn’t outweigh the drop in damage output.

Charge Moves

Outrage is the best Dragon type charge move in the game, dealing 110 damage for 50 energy (2 bar) which equates to 28.21 Damage per Second, and an amazing 2.2 damage per energy.

Again, unfortunately, the Flying side of things doesn’t end up so hot.

  • Aerial Ace deals 55 damage for 33 energy (3 bar) which equates to 22.92 Damage per Second, and 1.67 damage per energy.
  • Hurricane isn’t much better, dealing 110 damage for 100 energy (1 bar) which equates to 40.74 Damage, but only 1.1 damage per energy.

Ancient Power – the odd Rock one out – deals 70 damage for 33 energy (3 bar) which equates to 20 Damage per Second, and 2.12 damage per energy.

Unlocking a second charge move for Rayquaza is prohibitively expensive, and given the options there doesn’t seem to really be a need for one. Flying Rayquaza isn’t outflown by Mega Pidgeot, Moltres, Honchkrow, and Ho-Oh. Ancient Power doesn’t seem to serve many purposes to be honest, so our suggestion is to go with Outrage.

Best moveset for Rayquaza?

The best moveset for Rayquaza in Pokémon GO is Dragon Tail / Outrage. Movesets that feature other charge moves don’t come close in terms of raw DPS and damage output.

As you can see, Dragon Tail / Outrage is the best moveset. Air Slash with Outrage isn’t far behind, but there is a drop-off. Once you move past having Outrage as the charge move the DPS and TDO drop off significantly, at least for Raiding.


Performance in Raids and Gyms

Rayquaza will likely always have a place near the top of the Dragon meta. It’s DPS is tied for the highest in the game with Salamence for the type when you exclude Shadow Pokémon, and even then is only eclipsed by Shadow Salamence and Shadow Dragonite.

Rayquaza falls further down the Flying type meta, being outclassed by a few Pokémon. Even with the slight upgrade that Hurricane provides.

Our recommendation, Rayquaza is a Dragon type first and foremost and should be geared as such.


Performance in PVP

To say Rayquaza is outclassed by other dragons in PVP would be an understatement. Its heavy attack stat does not lend itself well to either the Great League or the Ultra League, and it’s a bit too glassy to be viable in the Master League.

Here are the ranks as scored by PvPoke:

  • In the Great League, Rayquaza is 495th overall
  • In the Ultra League, Rayquaza is 306th overall
  • In the Master League, Rayquaza is 90th overall

What’s the problem with Rayquaza in PvP?

  • Easily exploitable typing – Rayquaza’s weaknesses leave a lot of space to be defeated by Pokémon that are easy to acquire and cheap to power up. A simple Clefable will run Ray Ray into ground in the Great League
  • Inferior coverage in higher Leagues – the typing problems persist in Ultra and Master League, where Giratina has better type and move coverage, while Dragonite simply blows it out of the water with more HP.
  • In the Master League, Dragonite, Dialga and Palkia are in the first 10 ranking spots, making Ray Ray a costly – and unnecessary – Stardust investment

If you’re looking for a strong Dragon-type for PVP, Rayquaza is not the answer. Dragonite, Dialga, Palkia and Giratina are.


Parting Words

At the end of the day, Rayquaza is a fan favorite Pokémon.

It always have a special place in the Pokémon GO meta and players’ hearts. Rayquaza has  a great moveset, it’s strong, and it looks amazing. Not to mention the Shiny Variant of Rayquaza is one of the best looking shiny variants in all of Pokémon.

If you get the chance to get your hands on a good one, it’s well worth the investment of powering up – but only for Raids and Gym battles.

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