Nihilego Raid Duo Guide

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Tier 5 Raid Boss Guides

Easy at trainer level 30 with optimized counters or weather boost

HP15,000 ATK196.78 DEF189.67
CP Range
Lvl 20 2167 - 2256 Lvl 25 2709 - 2821

Notable Weather

Boosts Boss's Moves Boosts Counters' Moves
Partly Cloudy, Cloudy Snow, Sunny / Clear, Rain, Windy

Fast Move Difficulty

Move Difficulty
Acid Easy
Pound Easy

Charge Move Difficulty

Move Difficulty
Sludge Bomb Intermediate
Gunk Shot Easy
Rock Slide Intermediate
Power Gem Intermediate


Nihilego is the first of the Ultra Beasts, and in performance it's as odd as its borderline alien appearance. It's a Tier 5 raid, but its typing and less than ideal moveset leave it in a rather awkward position. It's honestly not a very threatening Pokemon given even decent counters, and is a very doable duo. 


Team composition

  • Ground Type Pokemon are the name of the game. That double-weakness combined with a resistance to all but one of Nihilego's attacks gives them a huge edge.

  • Mega Evolutions are of more limited utility here due to our lack of Ground Type Mega Evolutions. In the future, this will change.

Battling strategy

  • The vast majority of Nihilego's attacks are resisted by the vast majority of Nihilego's top counters, so dodging shouldn't be a huge deal. The main exception is Gunk Shot, which deals decent damage to its counters and is pretty easy to dodge, so a few well-timed dodges here can put a huge dent in Nihilego.

Best Raid Boss Counters

Mega Evolution Counters

Mega Aerodactyl Mega Aerodactyl
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Not taking into account any boosts, Mega Aerodactyl is the strongest Mega Evolution counter to Nihilego. However, that's pretty much only because it's the strongest Mega Evolution that we have with any note-worthy Ground coverage at the moment. It doesn't have many note-worthy advantages, but it's definitely a usable option.

Mega Latios Mega Latios
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This is easily the most viable choice for the Mega-only-duo as of right now. Mega Latios deals high, duo-worthy damage despite the lack of Ground Type coverage, and can bring Shadow Mewtwo to new heights when on the field at the same time. That said, the advantages here aren't huge, so it's generally not worth going out of the way for.

Mega Latias Mega Latias
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This is basically Mega Latios but with more bulk/less HP. The same points that were made above apply here too.

Supreme Counters

ShadowSwine Shadow Mamoswine
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If you're lucky enough to have a good Shadow Mamoswine, TM it to Ground Type moves and turn it loose here. It doesn't actually resist Rock Type moves due to its Ice sub-typing, but it's still a huge DPS option to say the least. 

Excadrill Excadrill
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This humble little mole is definitely one of the VIPs of this fight. It resists literally every move that Nihilego can throw at it, even going so far as to double resist Rock and triple resist Poison. Add to that high DPS, and this is definitely a whole-package Pokemon that's worth having on any Nihilego raid team!

Landorus (Therian Forme) Landorus (Therian Forme)
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A power-house of a Pokemon that can easily keep up with the shadows, Landorus' Therian form will definitely put in the work here. It doesn't handle Rock Type moves as well as most other Ground Types, but it's still an absolute top counter.

Shadow Mewtwo Shadow Mewtwo
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The fact that Shadow Mewtwo appears this high on a counter list to a Pokemon with a type that is not Psychic really tells you just how strong it is... and/or just how below-average Ground Type is. Either way, Shadow Mewtwo can cause some serious pain! If you're in the battle with someone who has Mega Latios/Mega Latias, try to have Shadow Mewtwo take the field at the same time in order to score a substantial damage boost!

Garchomp Garchomp
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One of the overall power-house Ground Types, Garchomp definitely puts in some great work here! It has a solid mix of survivability and DPS to make it a great all-around option.

Good Counters

Landorus (Incarnate Forme) Landorus (Incarnate Forme)
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The other Landorus. Often overlooked as it flies in the shadow of its more bestial self, but it's still a very good Pokemon in its own right that can put in the work for this raid!

ShadowFlygon Shadow Flygon
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No offense to any Flygon fans out there, but this is basically diet Garchomp. It's still a great option, but it's a bit behind the premier Dragon/Ground Type.

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The OG big-name Ground Type, Groundon is still lumbering around the meta, ready to shake up any raid that calls for its skills. It's an all-around great option here that can definitely put in the work!

Rhyperior Rhyperior
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While primarily famed for its overtly powerful Rock Type damage, Rhyperior is a traditional Ground Type attacker as well with DPS similar to Groudon, and TDO that takes it a step farther. Having a full set of resistances to Nihilego's attacks, including a double resistance to Poison Type moves, is a pretty huge boon for the bulldozer rhino, and makes it an outstanding counter for this raid.

ShadowSwampert Shadow Swampert
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Have a good Shadow Swampert? Well, now's it's time to shine! Its Water sub-typing doesn't hurt or hinder it, but it's an all-around solid choice nonetheless! 

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Lurking in the shadows, Golurk is pretty easy to overlook. However, it's a pretty nice Pokemon when Ground is a major focus. In this raid in particular, its Ghost sub-typing turns its Poison Type resistance into a double-resistance, and also grants a double-resistance to Normal Type for an added bonus.

Krookodile Krookodile
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A shifty Pokemon, but a doubtlessly effective one nonetheless. Its Dark sub-typing does it no harm or favors in this raid.

Shadow Nidoking Shadow Nidoking
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Shadow Nidoking's performance here is entirely contingent on it having its Elite Fast Move, Fury Cutter. It's still okay without it, but the fast energy building makes up for the otherwise lack of a Ground Type fast-move fairly well. That aside, it's a pretty solid counter with the advantage of double-resisting Poison Type moves.

Mamoswine Mamoswine
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One of the classic raiders, Mamoswine will be a staple for many long-time players for this raid. It's a simple matter of switching them to Ground Type moves and tearing into Nihilego with abandon.

ShadowMetagross Shadow Metagross
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One of the absolute strongest Pokemon in the game, and it's all the way down here. This really says something for just how strong that 2x weakness really is! Shadow Metagross can put in the work with its 2x Poison resist and resistance to Normal Type moves, but most Ground Types do a better job.

Shadow-Alakazam Shadow Alakazam
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Pretty glassy when compared to most of the other counters, but still a solid DPS counter.

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The old classic "good" Pokemon, Mewtwo can definitely show up to this raid. It's ultimately inferior to the small ocean of Ground Types listed above, but it's still very duo-viable!

Raid Graph