20 Rare And Strong Pokémon (And How Trainers Can Find Them)

In one of the most significant events in the Pokémon community as of late, the mythical Pokémon Meltan unexpectedly appeared in the Pokémon GO mobile game. The Hex Nut monster spawned in the game without any kind of formal announcement and it was left to players to report the discovery of the new monster. Although any captured Meltan would transform into a Ditto upon capture, this discovery still sent ripples through the longstanding fandom. This development reminded many longtime Pokémon fans of the early days of the franchise when you’d learn how to catch a rare Pokémon or defeat a difficult stretch of the game from your friends on the playground.

In the days following Meltan’s appearance, the Pokémon Company did clarify that the new Pokémon was an official monster and that players could transfer the mythical creature to the upcoming Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu! And Let’s Go Eevee games. Catching the new pocket monster may prove a bit difficult, though. Trainers will first have to send a monster to a Let’s Go game and then use a special Mystery Box item to make Meltan spawn in the mobile game. Although the Mystery Box will only make Meltan appear in Pokémon GO for a limited time before entering a cooldown period, once captured a trainer can easily send it to a copy of the upcoming Nintendo Switch games. Of course, this struggle to find and capture a rare and powerful monster is pretty common in Pokémon games. These are the 20 Rare And Strong Pokémon (And How Trainers Can Find Them).

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20 Mew

Mew In Pokemon Anime

The original mythical Pokémon inspired more rumors and generated more interest in the games than perhaps any other creature. Supposedly the genetic origin of all other Pokémon, Mew wasn’t even supposed to be in the original series and was only added when the development team realized they had just enough space to fit one more monster into the first games. In the original games, a player could only obtain a Mew by attending an official give away event or by utilizing glitches. As the series went on, Mew would remain an event only Pokémon, and there still isn’t any way to natively find the mythical monster in any mainline game. Today the best chance you have at catching this adorable monster is to keep an eye on Pokémon related news and capitalize on the next online distribution of the creature.

19 Volcarona

The fifth generation of Pokémon games consisted of some experimental entries in the series. Pokémon Black and White contained only new monsters during the main game and experimented with different ways to catch these never before seen pocket monsters. Volcarona is one of the most difficult to find and capture monsters in these odd games.

To obtain a Volcarona in Black and White, you either need to hatch and raise a Larvesta to level 59 – the latest evolution level of any Pokémon – or catch Volcarona in the Relic Castle. This post-game dungeon is extremely tough to navigate and contains numerous high level, wild encounters. If a trainer does manage to navigate the maze-like castle and its hazards and then battle and capture Volcarona, they will earn the power of the holy Sun Pokémon.

18 Zoroark

The Illusion Fox Pokémon is as tricky to capture as it is deceptive in battle. Both Zoroark and its pre-evolution Zorua only appear in Pokémon Black and White if a player transfers an event monster to their copy of the game. Using the unique Relocator feature, players can transfer legendary Pokémon given away as part of a promotion for the thirteenth Pokémon movie to their game and use them to make the fox monsters appear.

These monsters are definitely worth the hassle, though, as their one of a kind Illusion ability makes them a massive threat in battle. This ability allows the fox Pokémon to disguise themselves as a different creature when they first appear in battle. Between this ability and Zoroark’s impressive offensive stats, it’s easily one of the strongest Dark type monsters in the games.

17 Tyranitar

Premiering in Pokémon Gold and Silver, Tyranitar is so powerful that some players refer to it as a pseudo-legendary monster. Considering how difficult it is to actually capture a Tyranitar, the creature certainly deserves this moniker.

To obtain a Tyranitar, a player needs to catch its pre-evolution Larvitar at Mt. Silver, the absolute last area in these games. A trainer then needs to grind it to level 55, where the creature will finally evolve into its final form. Of course, by this point in the game, most players already have a thoughtfully composed team that will only marginally improve if Tyranitar subs in. It takes plenty of dedication to catch Tyranitar, and even more planning to build a team involving the rare monster.

16 Jirachi

The mythical Pokémon Jirachi is extremely rare because it’s only available through special events or through purchasing other games. The wish Pokémon is obtainable in Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire, but only if a player bought the Pokémon Colosseum GameCube game and transferred the monster to the Game Boy Advance games. In later games, though, the only way to catch this monster is through online distributions or other promotions.

The focus of the sixth Pokémon movie, Jirachi is said to grant the deepest wish of whomever it befriends. While this magical ability only appears in side-games like Pokémon Mystery Dungeon, Jirachi’s well-rounded stats and signature move, Doom Desire, make it a powerful addition to any team. Too bad it can’t be used in most competitive or post-game challenges, however.

15 Deoxys

Previously, you could only catch the DNA Pokémon Deoxys through special events or distributions. There used to be no way of obtaining the alien pocket monster natively in any mainline Pokémon game. That all changed, though, with the introduction of Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire’s Delta Chapter. In this stretch of the game, players could ride the legendary dragon Rayquaza into space to destroy a meteor, and then battle and capture a Deoxys that emerges from the space debris.

This was genuinely one of the coolest events in these remakes and catching Deoxys is well worth the hard-fought battle. Deoxys’ ability to change between different forms with different stat distributions makes it incredibly versatile and able to fill just about any shortcoming in any party combination.

14 Manaphy

There are a lot of odd, and surprisingly good, spin-off titles in the Pokémon franchise. However, the original Pokémon Ranger game stands out from the other ancillary titles, as it allowed players to transfer the mythical Manaphy to Pokémon Diamond and Pearl. To do this, players would have to beat Pokémon Ranger, get the Manaphy egg in the post-game, borrow another Nintendo DS, transfer the egg, and then hatch it in a mainline game.

While this process was a phenomenal pain for a young Pokémon player to complete, the payout was exceptional. Manaphy is one of the few legendary Pokémon that’s able to breed, so placing it in a daycare with a Ditto also grants the legendary Pokémon Phione. It’s hard to complain about getting two mythical monsters for the price of one.

13 Mewtwo

The original post-game challenge, Mewtwo was nearly impossible to catch back in Pokémon Red and Blue. After defeating the Elite Four players could enter the Cerulean Cave if they thought to backtrack to the early area and check out a previously inaccessible part of the map. Trainers would then have to battle against the strongest wild monsters in the game before facing off against a level 70 Mewtwo.

If this journey were not already enough of a trial for a child, Mewtwo is a powerhouse. Only the relatively weak Bug-type moves inflicted super effective damage, and Mewtwo’s Special stat dwarfed most other monsters’. Unless you saved your Master Ball for what was literally the last major encounter in the game, a trainer could easily spend hours trying to nab the Genetic Pokémon.

12 Vespiquen

The fourth generation of Pokémon games introduced a new method of catching wild monsters. By slathering honey on certain trees, a pocket monster would appear on the tree after a bit of time. One of the Pokémon that could be drawn in by the honey was Combee; which evolved into one of the most powerful Bug-type monsters in the game, Vespiquen. However, only female Combee can evolve and there’s only a 12.5 percent chance that any given Combee will be female.

Depending on the game and tree, a Combee has either a 22 or 32 percent chance of appearing on a honey tree and then only a 1 in 8 chance of being able to evolve into a Vespiquen. While those are still better odds than finding a shiny Pokémon, they still aren’t great.

11 Salamence

Like other pseudo-legendary Pokémon, it’s incredibly difficult to obtain a Salamence but well worth the effort. Salamence’s first form, Bargon, is only found in the deepest cavern within Meteor Falls, in the third generation Pokémon games. Once you manage to catch this little dragon, you’ll have to raise it all the way up to level 55 before it becomes one of the strongest monsters to soar through the skies.

Salamence’s power is magnified by its mega-evolution that focuses on its aerial superiority, by increasing the power of Flying-type attacks and giving the dragon a more aerodynamic design. To those that invest the time in finding, leveling up, and equipping Salamence with a variety of powerful physical attacks, will have a versatile monster with boundless potential.

10 Zygarde

Catching Zygarde is a weird process, even compared to the other entries on this list. Despite debuting in the sixth generation of Pokémon games, Zygarde’s final form is only available in the seventh generation of games. Players obtain Zygarde in Pokémon Sun and Moon by collecting Zygarde cubes and cores scattered across the map. Once you have enough cubes and cores, Zygarde will enter its dog-like form, and eventually its snake shaped appearance.

However, Zygarde will only enter its complete form, a colossal Gundam inspired designed, once the HP of either form falls below half. So not only can a player only capture Zygarde by traveling across the entire Alola region, its true form is only available to trainers that use it in battle.

9 Milotic

One of the most beautiful Pokémon, and one of the strongest Water-type monsters, Milotic requires an incredible amount of patience to earn. In the third generation of games, Milotic’s pre-evolution Feebas is only found on Route 119 by fishing. However, the six tiles where Feebas can appear change depending on what Trendy Phrase you select at an earlier part of the game. This ensures that the six tiles where Feebas spawns in one player’s game are different from the six tiles where the Fish Pokémon appears in another copy of the game.

After a player actually catches a Feebas, they’ll have to maximize its beauty stat to evolve it into a Milotic. After all this work, a trainer will possess one of the prettiest and strongest Water-type creatures in the game.

8 Regigigas

Regigigas is the master of the legendary titan trio of Regirock, Regice, and Registeel. This trio premiered in the third generation of games, but the Colossal Pokémon would not appear until the fourth generation of games. A trainer will need both generations of games to capture the titanic legendary master, however.

First, a player will need to capture each of the smaller Regis in the third generation of games by solving various braille puzzles. Then, they’ll need to transfer the trio to the fourth generation of games and take them to Snowpoint Temple. Here the petrified Regigigas comes to life and attacks the trainer. If a player manages complete all of these steps and captures the continent towing monster, they’ll now possess one of the hardest hitting Pokémon in the entire franchise.

7 Porygon-Z

Porygon Z from Pokemon

The Virtual Pokémon Porygon-Z consists of corrupted data following a failed effort to modify Porygon2 to travel through dimensions. These modifications gave Porygon-Z both a jumbled up body and an incredibly high special attack stat. Although, it also made evolving a Porygon to its final form an even more convoluted process.

The most reliable way to obtain a Porygon is to win enough coins in Game Corners to buy one. From there, a player will need to trade Porygon while it’s holding an Upgrade item to another game, so it evolves into a Porygon2. Then, a player will need to trade Porygon2 to another game while it’s holding a Dubious Disk, to trigger the final evolution. While this process is a bit repetitive, having the jack of all trades Porygon-Z on hand is more than worth the time and energy.

6 Golisopod

The Hard Scale Pokémon is exceptionally powerful, durable, and its ability Emergency Exit lets trainers swap it out of battle without wasting a turn when its HP dips below half. It’s both a tricky monster to battle against and one of the coolest looking Pokémon introduced in the seventh generation of games. However, much work goes into adding this pocket monster to a roster.

Golisopod’s pre-evolution Wimpod is, unsurprisingly, pretty wimpy. To catch the weaker monster, players need to corner it in the overworld as it tries to run away from them. Once captured, it won’t evolve until level 30, and it’s difficult to raise the Turn Tail Pokémon to that point because of its measly 230 total base stats. Although, with how devastating Golisopod is in battle, it’s more of a labor of love.

5 Vikavolt

Vikavolt is a strong special attacker with few weaknesses and one of the best electric type Pokémon introduced in the seventh generation of games. Sadly, though, most players will not utilize the Stag Beetle Pokémon while playing Pokémon Sun and Moon.

Vikavolt’s first form, Grubbin, is easy to catch at the start of the game. Likewise, a trainer can easily evolve Grubbin into Charjabug by raising it to level 20. However, Charjabug only evolves into Vikavolt when exposed to a special magnetic field found in an area near the end of the game. This means that most players will make the wise decision to swap out Charjabug for a more effective Electric or Bug-type monster well before they reach the end of the game and have little reason to pursue this electric insect.

4 Landorus

Landorus is the master of the Forces of Nature tiro, whose members personify the earth, wind, and thunder. Landorus is only available when the other members of the trio, Tornadus and Thundurus, are taken to the Abundant Shrine in Pokémon Black and White. Their presence will trigger the arrival of the Abundance Pokémon and players can catch him here.

However, Landorus will only appear in its Incarnate form in Pokémon Black and White. To obtain its Therian Form, a trainer will need to transfer the monster to either Pokémon Black 2 or White 2 and expose it to the Reveal Glass. This will transform the pocket monster into its more bestial state and further boost its physical offensive abilities.

3 Keldeo

Keldeo is the fourth member of the Swords of Justice collection of Pokémon, which are heavily inspired by Alexandre Dumas' The Three Musketeers. Keldeo represents d’Artagnan, the youngest and de’facto fourth Musketeer. Just as D’Artagnan isn’t technically one of the Musketeers, Kaledo isn’t technically in the fifth generation of games with his companions.

The Colt Pokémon is an event exclusive monster that a player can only own if they obtain him in an online distribution. However, players can transform Keldeo into its resolute form by taking it to either the Mirror of Icirrus or Pledge Grove and have it learn its signature attack, Secret Sword. While this form change doesn’t come with any stat boosts, this sword horse is a well-rounded monster with access to several powerful Water and Fighting-type attacks.

2 Aerodactyl

Aerodactyl Pokemon

Aerodactyl is one of the first ancient Pokémon to appear in the series and is still one of the strongest. The Fossil Pokémon is incredibly fast and can devastate most enemies with its substantial physical attack stat. It’s Mega Evolution further enhances these strengths and adds an ability that increases the power of all moves that make contact by 30 percent.

This monster is tough to get in the original Pokémon games due to a hefty amount of backtracking. To transform an Old Amber into an Aerodactyl, a player will need to go back to a hidden area in the Pewter City Museum. As players cannot turn fossils into Pokémon until they’ve beaten the majority of the game, most trainers will have forgotten all about this earlier area.

1 Spiritomb

The Forbidden Pokémon Spiritomb was a troublesome creature to catch in the fourth generation of games. To make Spiritomb appear a player would have to place the Odd Keystone within the Hallowed Tower and then talk to other players at least 32 times in the Underground. This area was a social feature of the game and allowed gamers to interact and play minigames together.

However, if you didn’t know anyone else who played Pokémon, there was no way for you to catch this rare monster. This is a shame because at the time Spiritomb didn’t have any elemental weaknesses and could use several extremely damaging Ghost and Dark-type moves. As if playing Pokémon alone wasn’t already sad enough, you literally could not catch this powerful monster if you didn’t have any friends who also played the terrific games.


Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu! And Let's Go Eevee release on November 16th, 2018.

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