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Pokémon Unite - Pikachu build: Best items and moves for Pikachu explained

Our recommended Pikachu build for Pokémon Unite.

A strong Pikachu build in Pokémon Unite, the MOBA Pokémon game, can help your team win the match.

Pikachu is currently one of the best Attacker Pokémon in the game, so, to take advantage of that fact, you need to ensure you know the best items and moves for Pikachu.

Below you'll find our recommendations for the best Pikachu build, but, if you'd prefer to use a different Pokémon, check out our Pokémon Unite tier list.

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Pokémon UNITE Launches on Nintendo Switch on July 21!

Pikachu build: Our recommendations for the best Pikachu moveset in Pokémon Unite

Pikachu is classified as an Attacker in Pokémon Unite, which means, while it can cause a lot of damage, it has low endurance. For this reason, when selecting Pikachu's moveset it's a good idea to focus on moves that cause both damage and utilises Pikachu's ability to paralyze opponents.

Thanks to Pikachu's ability - Static - and basic attack, you'll benefit from Pikachu's paralyzing effect from the start of the match; static paralyzes all of the opponents near to you for a short amount of time and the basic attack will briefly paralyze your enemy on the third hit. These effects will allow to give deal some crucial damage before your opponents can retaliate.

At the beginning of the match, you'll have the choice between Thunder Shock or Electroweb.

We recommend choosing Thunder Shock for your first move, because it both deals damage and briefly paralyzes them. These combined effects will allow you to easily gather EXP early on in the match by giving you an advantage over both wild Pokémon and your foes.

You'll select either Thunder Shock or Electroweb at the beginning of the match.

Upon reaching Level 4, you'll be given the choice between Electro Ball and Thunder.

Here we recommend selecting Electro Ball, due to how the damage dealt by this attack increases the lower your opponent's health is. This means, if used at the right time, Electro Ball can allow you to knock out your opponents, because, not only will it cause significant damage, but it will stun them. You will then be able to use Pikachu's basic attack or another move to end your foe.

As the battle progresses, you'll be given the chance to upgrade Electro Ball and, in doing so, increase the amount of damage it deals.

Your next move selection occurs when you reach Level 7, where you'll be given the choice between Volt Tackle and Thunderbolt.

In our opinion, the best choice here is Thunderbolt, because it, again, utilises Pikachu's ability to both deal damage and stun it's opponents. These qualities make it the perfect move to use before Electro Ball, because it allows you to knock down your enemy's health so Electro Ball can finish them off.

When upgraded, the damage dealt by Thunderbolt will be increased.

You'll unlock Pikachu's Unite Move - Thunderstorm - at Level 9. This move is best used when surrounded by opponents or wild Pokémon, because it will allow you to hit them all at once.

Try to use Pikachu's Unite Move surrounded by enemies.

Best held items for Pikachu in Pokémon Unite explained

When it comes to selecting held items for Pikachu in Pokémon Unite, we first recommend selecting an item which increases its attack power in some form. This could be the Wise Glasses, which increases Special Attack, or the Muscle Band, which increases basic attack damage.

Depending on your playstyle, you might also want to try using the Scope Lens, which increases critical-hit damage.

Once you've selected your attack boost, we highly suggest giving Pikachu a Float Stone, which will increase its movement speed when not in combat. This will help you escape dangerous situations, especially when your health is low, or race across the pitch to assist a team mate.

You will have to purchase some items.

For the final item slot, we recommend the Shell Bell, because it will restore some of Pikachu's health every time you successfully land a move. Considering Pikachu's low endurance, this item will help you survive dangerous encounters on the pitch so you can cause even more damage.

Leftovers is a good alternative to the Shell Bell, but, to benefit from its healing factor, you need to be out of combat.

Remember - you'll unlock the additional held item slots at Trainer Level 7 and 10. You'll also be able to upgrade your items using Item Enhancers upon reaching Trainer Level 9.

Some held item slots require unlocking.

Best battle items for Pikachu in Pokémon Unite explained

Battle items are gradually unlocked as you increase your Trainer Level in Pokémon Unite, due to this you will find yourself changing your selection for Pikachu.

To begin with, you'll want to choose Potion once you've unlocked it at Trainer Level NN. This item restores some of Pikachu's health, which is very useful considering Pikachu's low endurance level. Just remember that it has a cool down period of 30 seconds.

When you reach Trainer Level 7, we recommend changing Pikachu's battle item to the X-Attack, which has a 40 second cooldown. This will boost both Pikachu's Attack and Special Attack, allowing you to cause even more damage. The perfect time to use this item is just before you unleash Pikachu's Unite Move.

You may want to try using the Eject Button, which is unlocked at Trainer Level 11 and has a cooldown of 55 seconds. This item moves you to a specific direction immediately and, when used correctly, can assist you in scoring points or escaping enemy attacks.

Need help deciding which Pokémon to choose? Check out our Pokémon Unite tier list and build guides for - Pikachu, Snorlax, Gardevoir, Cinderace, Greninja, Gengar, Blissey, Lucario, Espeon, Delphox, Glaceon, Buzzwole and Absol. You can also learn more about the Ranked system, Fair-Play Points and how to surrender a match.

How to unlock Pikachu in Pokémon Unite

There are two ways to unlock Pikachu in Pokémon Unite - the first being to choose Pikachu's license after completing the tutorial.

If you'd prefer to choose a different Pokémon, however, you can purchase Pikachu from the Unite Battle Committee for 6000 Aoes Coins or 345 Aeos gems.

Have fun using Pikachu in Pokémon Unite!

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Lottie Lynn

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Lottie Lynn is Eurogamer's Guides Editor. She likes exploring new games and still has nightmares about the moon from Majora's Mask.