Best team for the Ultra League in Pokemon GO
The Ultra League is the mid-tier format of the Pokemon GO Battle League, where Legendaries and classic powerhouse Pokemon start to get more usability - so here are some of the best teams you can use to help you win.
Taking part in the Pokemon GO Battle League is a great way to put your best Pokemon to good use and earn some excellent rewards. If you’re looking for something more challenging than the Great League but not quite as lawless as the Master League, then look towards the Ultra League.
With a cap of 2,500 CP and a good mix of standard Pokemon and Legendaries being viable, you’ll get the thrill of a difficult battle without having to invest too many resources. In order to win, though, you will need to know the best teams and the top-ranking Pokemon to enter.
Best team for the Ultra League in Pokemon GO
One of the best teams you can use in Pokemon GO is Registeel, Cresselia, and Swampert. As well as being three of the best-performing Pokemon in this meta, they’ll be able to offer coverage against most opponents you’ll come up against.
Another great team to use in the Ultra League would be Cobalion, Giratina (Altered), and Tapu Fini. Similar to the previous team, these three Pokemon have plenty of key wins between them and a good range of coverage.
While these are two of the best teams you can use in Pokemon GO's Ultra League, there are so many other possibilities out there, so it’s definitely worth experimenting with different teams and seeing what works for you. It's also likely that you won't have every Pokemon we've recommended.
One of the most important things to remember when forming a team is to make sure you've got a wide range of coverage options. For example, Registeel might be a champion in the Ultra League, but it's always going to be vulnerable to Fire-type attacks. In this case, having a strong Water-type on your team to switch to would be great to help balance things out.
Other than this, you'll want to get your Pokemon as close to the 2,500 CP limit as possible and teach them their optimal moves, which are usually moves that take advantage of Same-Type Attack Boost (STAB). All of these things are essential to make sure your team reaches its full potential.
Best Pokemon to use in the Ultra League
Here are some of the best Pokemon you can use according to PvPoke's rankings as well as our own experience using them in the Pokemon GO Battle League:
Registeel has long been considered a champion in the Pokemon GO Ultra League, and that remains the same to this day. This Steel-type Legendary titan has an excellent moveset, plenty of bulk, and a tonne of resistances, which makes it ideal for this format.
In terms of attacks, you’ll want Lock On as a Fast Move, combined with Focus Blast and Zap Cannon as Charged Moves. This moveset will let you bust out Charged Moves at a rapid pace and dish out some huge damage to opponents like Cresselia and Giratina.
Swampert is another longtime favourite in the Ultra League, with a brilliant moveset and only one weakness (Grass-type attacks) to watch out for. It’s also fairly easy to get hold of when compared to Legendaries which are often only available to encounter once or twice a year.
Mud Shot is Swampert’s optimal Fast Move for quick energy generation, while the combination of Hydro Cannon and Earthquake will let you target different opponents. Even better, this entire moveset has STAB damage, which means you’ll be taking down opponents in no time.
Swampert has been my go-to Pokemon when battling in the Ultra League and the Great League for months now. I wholeheartedly recommend building one for both leagues.
Cresselia might not be much use in the Great League or Master League, but it finds a place in the Ultra League where it can reign supreme over popular opponents like Giratina, Swampert, Cobalion, and Walrein - three of which are included on this best list!
Go with Psycho Cut as a Fast Move for quick energy generation, then round it off with Grass Knot and Moonblast as Charged Moves. Neither of these have STAB, but they're both excellent attacks that give Cresselia the coverage it needs to rise to the top ranks.
If you can't get the legacy attack Grass Knot, Future Sight is a good alternative for Cresselia.
The addition of Icy Wind to Poliwrath's moveset in Season 17 of the Pokemon GO Battle League has given this Kanto favourite the edge it needs to become a top threat in the Ultra League meta, with key wins over the likes of Swampert, Cobalion, and Steelix.
With a moveset consisting of Counter, Icy Wind, and Scald, you've got three different attack types and two of them have STAB damage. It's a costly investment as you'll need XL Candy to get it close to the 2,500 CP limit, but Poliwrath is already looking like the one to watch this season.
If, like me, one of your earliest Pokemon memories is dodging annoying weak Pidgeys along Route 1, then you might not expect its final evolution Pidgeot to be worth a look in Pokemon GO - but this classic bird is actually one of the biggest threats in the Ultra League meta.
Pidgeot has two viable Fast Move options: I'd recommend Wing Attack, although I know some Trainers prefer Gust. When it comes to Charged Moves, you'll want Feather Dance as its guaranteed Attack debuff can really give you the edge. Round things off with Brave Bird as a last resort for dishing out huge damage.
Since getting access to the excellent attack Double Kick in Pokemon GO, Cobalion has shot right up the Ultra League rankings. With only three weaknesses and key wins against the likes of Galarian Stunfisk, Walrein, and Obstagoon, it’s a brilliant choice for any team.
The combination of Double Kick as a Fast Move and Sacred Sword as a Charged Move makes for an excellent Fighting-type moveset, so it’s definitely worth using an Elite Charged TM if you don’t have access to that. Finally, throw in Stone Edge for some extra coverage.
Giratina (Altered Forme)
The fearsome Giratina is a powerful Pokemon in either of its forms, but Altered Forme Giratina is generally considered to be the superior version in the Ultra League. This is largely because of its higher Defense stat, allowing it to stick around for longer and vanquish even more of its foes.
When it comes to movesets, the Fast Move Shadow Claw is your best option for energy generation. This will give you quicker access to Giratina’s optimal Charged Moves, the Dragon-type Dragon Claw and the Ghost-type Shadow Sneak.
The Water/Fairy-type guardian of the Alola region, Tapu Fini, might not be the most popular Pokemon in the Ultra League, but don’t let that put you off - this Legendary creature has good bulk and an excellent typing, serving a similar purpose as Azumarill does in the Great League.
In order to get the most out of Tapu Fini, you’ll need the right moveset: Water Gun as a Fast Move, with Surf and Moonblast as Charged Moves. These moves all have STAB and can take down huge threats like Charizard, Swampert, Cobalion, and even Giratina.
While it's not quite as dominating as its Steel-type counterpart Registeel, the Rock-type titan Regirock still puts on an incredible show in the Ultra League. It's very sturdy and has impressive wins over pretty much any Flying-type opponent - we're looking at you, Pidgeot and Charizard.
You'll want Lock On, Stone Edge, and Focus Blast for optimal performance. While there are a lot of threats to watch out for when using Regirock in the Ultra League, it's still a great Legendary to have on your team, especially if you don't have a Registeel that's powered up enough.
Pokemon GO Ultra League rules & restrictions
The main (and only) rule of the Ultra League in Pokemon GO is that only Pokemon under 2,500 CP are eligible to enter.
Aside from this key restriction, it's pretty much fair game, so feel free to use Legendaries or Mythicals and power up your Pokemon with XL Candy if needed - just get them as close to that CP limit as possible.
When does the Ultra League run in Pokemon GO?
The Ultra League will appear in the Pokemon GO Battle League from Friday, January 5, 2024, until Friday, January 12, 2024. If you've missed out, don't worry, as it rotates back into play every few weeks.
During this time, it will appear alongside the Great League Remix, and we've got a best team guide for that one too.
Now that you know how to put together the best team for the Ultra League, check out our Pokemon GO events schedule, the Raid Boss schedule, and our Spotlight Hour lineup to keep track of everything coming up in the game.