The Element Cup is the latest special league occurring in the Go Battle League of Pokémon Go.
To ensure you're suitably challenged, your team selection will need to follow a number of Element Cup restrictions.
Below you can find our Element Cup recommendations which will help you create an interesting Element Cup team.
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Element Cup restrictions in Pokémon Go explained
There are three restrictions you need to keep in mind when choosing your team for the Element Cup in Pokémon Go.
The first is that the CP limit is 500, so make sure your choices either meet this limit or are beneath it.
Secondly, the Pokémon you can enter must have either fire, grass or water as their only or secondary types.
Vulpix, for example, is eligible for the Element Cup as it's a pure fire-type Pokémon and so is Oddish, because, while one of its types is poison, the other is grass.
Finally, only Pokémon which have the ability to evolve and are the first in their evolutionary line are eligible for the Element Cup. This means, for example, Charmander is eligible for the Element Cup, but not Charmeleon.
Our Pokémon Go Element Cup recommendations from Bulbasaur to Ducklett
Just like with every league or special cup in the Go Battle League, there is no true 'best' team for the Element Cup, because you'll never know which Pokémon are in your opponent's team.
The restriction does mean, however, that there is a limited pool of Pokémon for you to choose from, which does help you choose your team.
Before making your selection though, it's a good idea to review the restriction for the Element Cup, so you know exactly which Pokémon are available to you.
You should also ensure you have a selection of Pokémon types and have one Pokémon who's Charged attack can be built up quickly, so you force your opponent to use one of their shields early on.
Our Pokémon Go Element Cup recommendations in National Pokédex order:
Type: Grass and poison-type
Recommended moves: Vine Whip (Fast) / Seed Bomb or Sludge Bomb (Charged)
Bulbasaur weaknesses: Fire, flying, ice and psychic-types
When it comes to Bulbasaur, the obvious main advantage is that it's part poison-type. This makes Bulbasaur an excellent counter for its fellow grass-type Pokémon and others like Cottonee.
By ensuring your Bulbasaur knows both Seed Bomb and Sludge Bomb as its Charged moves will allow you to utilise both of these advantages.
You will still need to protect Bulbasaur from fire-type Pokémon, but, overall, it's a bit of a powerhouse in the Element Cup.
Recommended moves: Quick Attack (Fast) / Body Slam or Weather Ball (Charged)
Vulpix weaknesses: Ground, rock and water-types
Vulpix is an excellent choice for tackling both grass-type Pokémon and ice-types, like Seel and Snover.
To do this, you'll want to ensure your Vulpix at least knows Quick Attack as it's Fast move and Weather Balls, which will transform itself in a fire-type attack, as it's Charged move.
Weather Ball will obviously cause a substantial amount of fire-type damage, while Quick Attack will help you wear down your opponents.
Type: Water and psychic-type
Recommended moves: Confusion (Fast) / Psychic or Psyshock (Charged)
Slowpoke weaknesses: Bug, dark, electric, ghost and grass-types
When it comes to Slowpoke in the Element Cup, you'll be actually using it for it's psychic-type attacks and not it's water-type moves.
These psychic-type moves will help you deal with any troublesome poison-type, like Oddish, which your opponents will send your way and help you defeat other Pokémon which are weak to psychic-types, such as Tepig.
Since Slowpoke is part water-type, it will also enjoy a strong resistance against fire-type Pokémon even though you'll most likely be playing it with a full psychic-moveset. This means you can use it to take care of any troublesome fire-type which comes your way.
Type: Water and electric-type
Recommended moves: Bubble or Spark (Fast) / Bubble Beam or Thunderbolt (Charged)
Chinchou weaknesses: Grass and ground-types
Chinchou is the only electric-type Pokémon eligible for the Element Cup, which makes it a perfect selection for your team.
If you are going to include it in your selection, then you must ensure it knows attacks from both types, which can be ideally achieved by utilizing the double Charged attack threat of Bubble Beam and Thunderbolt.
With these moves at your disposal, Chinchou has the ability to deal a great amount of damage to both water, flying and fire-types. This also means it's an excellent defence against Ducklett.
Recommended moves: Rock Throw (Fast) / Flame Charge or Rock Slide (Charged)
Slugma weaknesses: Ground, rock and water-types
Slugma is a useful choice for the Element Cup not because of its fire-type moves, but because of its rock-type moves.
Both Rock Throw and Rock Slide will deal a good amount of damage to any fire-type Pokémon which comes your way and, even if it's a close fight, Ducklett can also easily fall prey to these moves.
The downside of focusing Slugma's moveset on rock-type attacks is that it won't be as useful to defeating grass-types, so you will need to factor this into your strategy.
Type: Water and grass-type
Recommended moves: Razor Leaf or Water Gun (Fast) / Bubble Beam or Energy Ball (Charged)
Lotad weaknesses: Bug, flying and poison-types
Thanks to being both a water and grass-type Pokémon, Lotad has an advantage over fire and water-type Pokémon.
For this reason, we recommend ensuring that your chosen Lotad knows at least one water attack and one grass attack. This way you'll be able to use Lotad for a wider variety of opponents, rather than just one specific type.
An easy way to do this is through Lotad's Fast move - Water Gun is perfect for fire-types, while Razor Leaf can help you quickly destroy a water-type Pokémon.
Type: Grass and fairy-type
Recommended moves: Charm (Fast) / Grass Knot or Seed Bomb (Charged)
Cottonee weaknesses: Fire, flying, ice, poison and steel-types
It's important to note that Cottonee is the only fairy-type available for the Element Cup, so, if you like to factor fairy-types in your team, this Pokémon is your only choice.
When building your Cottonee, you'll want to ensure you have Charm as the Fast move, because this can cause a good amount of damage to a wide selection of Pokémon. You may find that Cottonee knocks them out before you're even able to use a Charged move.
Meanwhile, for Charged moves, it's a good idea to focus on grass-type attacks as this will make Cottonee an excellent counter for any water-type Pokémon.
Type: Water and flying-type
Recommended moves: Wing Attack (Fast) / Aerial Ace, Brave Bird or Bubble Beam (Charged)
Ducklett weaknesses: Electric and rock-type
If there's one Pokémon you're going to see a lot of during the Element Cup, it's Ducklett.
With the combined power of Bubble Beam, which is excellent for forcing your opponent to use their shield, and Brave Bird, which deals a significant amount of damage, Ducklett is a considerable force to deal with.
If you do find yourself often running afoul of Ducklett, then a Chinchou with an electric-type Charged attack is an excellent counter.
Element Cup dates and times in Pokémon Go explained
The Element Cup is running during the first Master League and Master League Classic of Season 8 of the Go Battle League, which means it will be available until Monday, 12th July, with the following end times depending on your region:
- UK - 9pm (GMT)
- Europe - 10pm (CEST)
- East Coast USA - 4pm (EDT)
- West Coast USA - 1pm (PDT)
Have fun competing in the Element Cup!