How to Beat Giovanni in Pokémon GO – All Giovanni Counters (October 2023)

We've found a list of the best counters to use against Giovanni's Pokemon! Check them out below.

In Pokémon GOyou'll find that to get specific Pokémon, you have to defeat the Team GO Rocket grunts and bosses. The leaders — Cliff, Arlo, Sierra, and Giovanni — are often the most difficult but provide the greatest rewards. In this guide, I will focus on how to defeat Giovanni in Pokémon GO and which counters are best to use against his new Pokémon.

Where to find Giovanni in Pokémon GO

To find and battle Giovanni, players must get their hands on a Super Rocket Radar. To do so, you must first defeat the three Team GO Rocket leaders Arlo, Cliff, and Sierra. To find these three leaders, you must battle Team GO Rocket grunts and pick up a Mysterious Component after their victory. Combining six of these Mysterious Components leads you to one of the leaders.

How Do I Defeat Giovanni in Pokémon GO?

Quick Notes

  • The counters I include aren't synonymous with weaknesses. Sometimes these counters will be mentioned because of their movesets or natural resistance to the opponent.
  • These lists are not ranked from best to worst. While I can provide the best counters to use in any match, there is no guarantee in which order they should fall. The effectiveness of each Pokémon largely depends on your play style and battle technique. This being the case, I have instead opted to list the counters alphabetically.

Best Team Setup Against Giovanni in Pokémon GO

Listed below are the potential Pokémon that players can be up against when fighting Giovanni. Based on these potential options, one of the best team setups is a team made up of a strong Fighting-type Pokémon (covers Persian, Cloyster, and Shadow Registeel), and a strong Ice-Type Pokémon (covers Garchomp and Nidoking).

  • Round 1: Persian
  • Round 2: Cloyster, Garchomp, or Nidoking
  • Round 3: Shadow Registeel

Round 1 of Giovanni's battle

Giovanni can bring a few different Pokémon into battle, but he almost always starts with a Persian.


  • Type: Normal-type
  • Weak Against: Fighting
  • Resistant Against: Ghost
  • Notes: If you don't have any of the Pokémon listed below, I recommend using a Fighting-type Pokémon against Persian as the safest bet to a quick victory.

Best Pokémon and moves to use against Giovanni's Persian in Round 1

PokémonFast AttackCharge Attack
ConkeldurrCounterDynamic Punch
LucarioCounterAura Sphere
MachampCounterCross Chop
HariyamaCounterDynamic Punch
BlazikenCounterFocus Blast

Giovanni always starts out with his signature Persian in Round 1, which is a Normal-type Pokemon. This means you’ll want to use Fighting-type moves to take it out easily.

Related: Pokémon Go: 41-50 Leveling Guide

Round 2 of Giovanni's battle

The Pokémon listed below for Round two are all of the Pokémon that Giovanni can have as his second battler. The Pokémon are Cloyster, Garchomp, and Nidoking.


  • Type: Water and Ice-type
  • Weak Against: Rock, Electric, Grass, and Fighting-type
  • Resistant Against: Ice and Water-type
  • Notes: Cloyster shares a Fighting weakness with Persian and Registeel. This means a Fighting-type like Terrakion can potentially solo this battle.

Best Pokémon and moves to use against Giovanni's Cloyster in Round 2

PokémonFast AttackCharge Attack
Mega BlazikenCounterFocus Blast
TerrakionDouble KickSacred Sword
KartanaRazor LeafLeaf Blade
Shadow RaikouVolt SwitchWild Charge
XurkitreeThunder ShockDischarge

As a Water and Ice-type, Cloyster is weak to Rock, Electric, Grass, and Fighting-type moves. While all of these can be effective, it's recommended to stick with Fighting-types like Terrakion, since they also do well against Persian and Shadow Registeel.


  • Type: Dragon and Ground-type
  • Weak Against: Ice, Dragon, and Fairy-type
  • Resistant Against: Fire, Poison, Rock, and Electric-type
  • Notes: Garchomp has a double weakness to Ice with its Dragon and Ground typing, so the easiest way to beat it will always be strong Ice-type moves.

Best Pokémon and moves to use against Giovanni's Garchomp in Round 2

PokémonFast AttackCharge Attack
Shadow MamoswinePowder SnowAvalanche
Shadow MewtwoPsycho CutIce Beam
Shadow WeavileIce ShardAvalanche
Galarian DarmanitanIce FangAvalanche
MamoswinePowder SnowAvalanche

Fortunately, Nidoking is also weak to Ice. This makes Pokémon like Mamoswine great options to bring to this battle.


  • Type: Ground and Poison-type
  • Weak Against: Water, Ground, Psychic, and Ice-Type
  • Resistant Against: Electric, Fighting, Bug, Poison, Rock, and Fairy-type
  • Notes: Since both Nidoking and Garchomp are weak to Ice, it's a good idea to bring Pokemon like Mamoswine or Galarian Darmanitan, even though they aren't the fastest counters in terms of Nidoking.

Best Pokémon and moves to use against Giovanni's Nidoking in Round 2

PokémonFast AttackCharge Attack
Shadow MewtwoConfusionPsystrike
Primal KyogreWaterfallOrigin Pulse
Mega AlakazamConfusionPsychic
Primal GroudonMud ShotPrecipice Blades
Mega SwampertWater GunHydro Cannon

The Poison type that Nidoking has makes it really susceptible to the strong Psychic Pokémon on many teams. Shadow Mewtwo and Mega Alakazam are chief among these, but even more common options like Espeon do well against Nidoking.

Related: Rarest Pokémon in Pokémon GO

Round 3 of Giovanni's battle

Giovanni's current Round 3 Pokémon is Shadow Registeel, a tough opponent with quite a few resistances.

Shadow Registeel

  • Type: Steel-type
  • Weak Against: Ground, Fire, and Fighting-type
  • Resistant Against: Rock, Grass, Poison, Psychic, Flying, Bug, Normal, Steel, Ice, Dragon, and Fairy-type
  • Notes: Despite using Blast Burn, trainers could opt to use Focus Blast on Mega Blaziken to give it a good match up against Persian as well as Shadow Registeel.

Best Pokémon and moves to use against Giovanni's Shadow Registeel in Round 3

PokémonFast AttackCharge Attack
Primal GroudonMud ShotPrecipice Blades
Mega BlazikenCounterBlast Burn
Mega CharizardFire SpinBlast Burn
ReshiramFire FangFusion Flare
Shadow MoltresFire SpinOverheat

Despite having several weaknesses, the quickest way to deal with Registeel is with strong Fire-types, like Mega Charizard and Mega Blaziken. Fighting-types only have added utility here since they also beat Persian and Cloyster.

Once you've found Giovanni (which is no easy task), you'll now be equipped to handle his Pokémon in battle! Check back with this page for occasional updates when Giovanni's lineup changes.

Want to see how to counter Pokémon of each type? Check out our lists of Water Pokémon Weaknesses!

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About the Author

Freelance writer and jack-of-all-hobbyist-tech-development-trades (website, game, and program). My passion is to create content that entertains and makes people think critically.

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How to Beat Giovanni in Pokémon GO – All Giovanni Counters (October 2023)

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