Lugia is returning to Legendary raids in Pokémon Go. Fortunately, we here at iMore have everything you need to know to win this fight and add Lugia to your roster!
Who is Lugia in Pokémon Go?
The Mascot of Pokémon Silver and Ho-Oh's polar opposite, Lugia is the Master of the Seas, as well as the Legendary Bird Trio. It is a Psychic and Flying type Legendary Pokémon that is so incredibly powerful, it usually isolates itself to the bottom of the oceans to keep from accidentally inflicting harm. It is incredibly intelligent and can communicate with Pokémon and humans alike through telepathy.
When it comes to Pokémon Go, Lugia is the bulkiest Psychic type out there, and with the addition of its Signature Move, Aeroblast, it's a fantastic Flying type as well. It's especially great in the Go Battle League, so you won't want to miss this chance to add it to your roster!
Also, be sure to check out our Best Pokémon Go Accessories, so you can be fully equipped for all the Lugia raids!
There are a number of options for Mega Evolution when countering Lugia. It has five weaknesses: Rock, Ghost, Electric, Ice, and Dark, so you'll want to coordinate with the rest of your team to make the most of the Mega Boost.
Best of the best, Mega Gengar outperforms every other Pokémon in this raid. A Ghost and Poison type, it takes super effective damage from Psychic type moves, so you'll want to have lots of potions and revives on hand to keep it in battle. You will need to coordinate with your party to make the most of it's Ghost type Mega Boost and be sure your Gengar knows Lick and Shadow Ball to deal the most damage.
If you don't have the Mega Energy for Gengar, Mega Banette is a close second. It's a pure Ghost type, so it brings no useful resistances to this raid, but it's not weak to any of Lugia's attacks either. Shadow Claw and Shadow Ball are the best moves for Mega Banette here.
For an Electric based offensive, Mega Manectric is the best Mega for the job. This pure Electric type has no weaknesses Lugia can exploit and it resists Flying type damage. Thunder Fang and Wild Charge are the best moves for Manectric, and be sure to coordinate with your raid party to make the most of its same type Mega Boost.
If you want to mount a Dark type offensive, Mega Houndoom is the Mega for the job. It's a Dark and Fire type so it is super resistant to Psychic type damage, but it takes reduced damage from Water type moves. Snarl and Foul Play is the ideal moveset for Houndoom against Lugia and be sure to coordinate with your raid party to focus on Dark types.
Another option is Mega Aerodactyl. As a Rock and Flying type, it does take super effective damage from Water type moves, but it resists Flying type damage. Its best moves for this raid are Rock Throw and Rock Slide, and make sure you coordinate with your party to make the most of it's Rock type Mega Boost.
Although Mega Manectric is a better option, Mega Ampharos can also boost your Electric type counters. It's an Electric and Dragon type, so Lugia's Dragon type move will hit for super effective damage, but it resists both Flying and Water type moves. Your Ampharos should know Volt Switch and Brutal Swing to deal the most damage in this raid.
Another option for a Dark based offensive is Mega Absol. It's a pure Dark type, so it's super resistant to Psychic type damage. Snarl and Dark Pulse are the moves you're looking for and be sure to coordinate with the rest of your raid party to make the most of its Dark type Mega Boost.
While they will not perform as well, the following Mega Evolved Pokémon can also work for this raid:
- Mega Gyarados with Bite and Crunch
- Mega Alakazam with Psycho Cut and Shadow Ball
- Mega Gardevoir with Charge Beam and Shadow Ball
- Mega Glalie with Ice Shard and Avalanche
- Mega Abomasnow with Powder Snow and Weather Ball
Lugia is a Psychic and Flying type with access to Psychic, Flying, Dragon, and Water type moves. Its weaknesses include Ghost, Dark, Ice, Rock, and Electric type damage, leaving room for multiple winning strategies.
The best standard counter for Lugia is Legendary Ultra Beast, Xurkitree. This pure Electric type resists Flying type damage and has no weaknesses relevant to this raid. Unfortunately, Xurkitree has has extremely limited availability so many trainers haven't even seen one, much less added it to their roster. Still, if you have it, your Xurkitree should know Thunder Shock and Discharge.
A Legendary Pokémon first discovered in the Unova region of Gen V, Zekrom is our next top counter. This Electric and Dragon type takes reduced damage from both Water and Flying type moves, but super effective damage from Dragon type moves. Zekrom has had a few runs in raids, so there's a good chance you have at least one. You'll want your Zekrom to know Charge Beam and Fusion Bolt in this fight.
Gen V pseudo-Legendary, Hydreigon is another great choice here. This Dark and Dragon type resists Psychic and Water type damage, but Dragon type moves deal super effective damage. Most active players have have had the chance to add Hydreigon to their roster thanks to it being featured in several events, including Community Day. Bite and Brutal Swing are the ideal moves for Hydreigon in this fight.
Originally encountered in the Sinnoh Region of Gen IV, Giratina (Origin) is another great counter for Lugia. As a Ghost and Dragon type, it resists Water type damage, but is weak against Dragon type. This forme of Giratina hasn't had as many runs in raids as its Altered forme, but they share candy so it should be easy to power up. If you are bringing Giratina to this fight, you'll want it to know Shadow Claw and Shadow Force.
One of the Legendary Forces of Nature, Thundurus (Therian) performs very well against Lugia. Although the Therian formes haven't been available as often, both formes use the same Candy, so most active players have the resources to power it up. As an Electric and Flying type, Thundurus resists Flying type moves and it has no weaknesses Lugia can exploit. Volt Switch and Thunderbolt are the moves you'll want your Thundurus to know in this fight.
Fairly new to Pokémon Go, Gholdengo is next on our top counters list. This Steel and Ghost type resists Flying, Psychic, and Dragon type damage, and it has no weaknesses Lugia can exploit. Unfortunately, it can only be obtained through evolving Gimmighoul with a whopping 999 Gimmighoul Coins. If you have one, your Gholdengo should know Hex and Shadow Ball.
The Mythical Dark type Pokémon, Darkrai performs very well against Lugia. As a pure Dark type, it has no weaknesses Lugia can exploit and takes reduced damage from Psychic type moves. Darkrai has also had several runs in raids, so most active players have a couple. You'll want Snarl for your Darkrai's Fast Attack, and either Shadow Ball or Dark Pulse for the Charged Attack. Generally, Shadow Ball does more damage, especially with a Ghost type Mega Boost, but a Dark type Mega Boost may push Dark Pulse ahead.
The Sinnoh Stone evolution of Gen I's Rhydon, Rhyperior is a great counter for Lugia. It's a Rock and Ground type, so it resists Flying type damage, but Water type moves hit for super effective damage. Rhyperior has had the Community Day treatment, among other events, so most players have a few. Smack Down and Rock Wrecker are the ideal moves for this raid.
Another Sinnoh Stone evolution, Weavile is an excellent choice for this raid. As a Dark and Ice type, it's super resistant to Psychic type damage and it has no weaknesses Lugia can exploit. The Weavile line has been featured in many, many events, so there's really no good reason not to have at least one powered up at this point. The best moves for Weavile in this fight are Snarl and Avalanche.
Last but not least is the Sinnoh fossil Pokémon, Rampardos. Rampardos is a pure Rock type, so it's weak against Water type damage, but it resists Flying type moves. It's been featured in many events and eggs, so most active players have a few by now. If you're adding Rampardos to your team, it should know Smack Down and Rock Slide.
Back up counters
Although most players will be able to make a team of the best counters, if you're finding a gap in your team, there are plenty of back ups who work well in larger groups. Just make sure you're dodging and any of the following could be a decent back up:
- Galarian Darmanitan with Ice Fang and Avalanche
- Hoopa (Confined) with Astonish and Shadow Ball
- Chandelure with Hex and Shadow Ball
- Magnezone with Spark and Wild Charge
- Raikou with Volt Switch and Wild Charge
- Hoopa (Unbound) with Astonish and Shadow Ball
- Terrakion with Smack Down and Rock Slide
- Tyrantrum with rock Throw and Meteor Beam
- Electivire with Thunder Shock and Wild Charge
- Yveltal with Snarl and Dark Pulse
- Gengar with Lick and Shadow Ball
- Zapdos with Thunder Shock and Thunderbolt
- Mamoswine with Powder Snow and Avalanche
- Guzzlord with Snarl and Brutal Swing
- Luxray with Spark and Wild Charge
- Gigalith with Smack Down and Meteor Beam
- Tyranitar with Smack Down and Stone Edge
- Giratina (Altered) with Shadow Claw and Shadow Force
- Mewtwo with Psycho Cut and Shadow Ball
- Alolan Golem with Rock Throw and Wild Charge
The rebalance of Shadow Pokémon rescued from Team GO Rocket make them excellent glass cannons. Not only are their stats boosted, but during special events or with Elite TMs, it's possible to change their moves. If you happen to have any of the following Pokémon with the right moveset, they will work very well in this raid:
- Shadow Raikou with Thunder Shock and Wild Charge
- Shadow Weavile with Snarl and Avalanche
- Shadow Electivire with Thunder Shock and Wild Charge
- Shadow Magnezone with Spark and Wild Charge
- Shadow Zapdos with Thunder Shock and Thunderbolt
- Shadow Tyranitar with Smack Down and Stone Edge
- Shadow Mamoswine with Powder Snow and Avalanche
- Shadow Luxray with Spark and Wild Charge
- Shadow Mewtwo with Psycho Cut and Shadow Ball
- Shadow Honchkrow with Snarl and Dark Pulse
- Shadow Aerodactyl with Rock Throw and Rock Slide
Note: This is an excellent raid for Shadow Pokémon. Shadow Aerodactyl is the only counter on this list that doesn't perform on par with other top counters.
Lugia is a tough raid because its defense is just so high. Beating the clock is the real challenge here. Even with top level Trainers and the best circumstances, you'll still need at least three, but for lower level Trainers or those without Mega or Shadow counters, you'll want at least four or five.
Weather Conditions that could impact this raid include:
- Wind will boost Lugia's Dragon, Psychic, and Flying type moves
- Rain will boost Lugia's Water type move, as well as your Electric type counters
- Fog will boost your Ghost and Dark type counters
- Snow will boost your Ice type counters
- Partly Cloudy Weather will boost your Rock type counters
Don't miss your chance to catch Lugia in Pokémon Go!
Lugia is back for a limited time only so you don't want to miss this chance to battle and catch one. Also, be sure to check out our other Pokémon Go Guides so you too can become a Pokémon Master!
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Casian Holly has been writing about gaming at iMore since 2019, but their real passion is Pokémon. From the games to the anime, cards and toys, they eat, sleep, and breathe all things Pokémon. You can check out their many Pokémon Go and Pokémon Sword and Shield guides and coverage here on iMore.