Pokemon GO: How to Beat Giovanni (April 2024)

Here's the full lineup for Giovanni's Pokemon in Pokemon GO, and some of the best potential counters for each of them.

Here’s what you need to know about how to beat Giovanni in Pokemon GO. Team GO Rocket is Pokemon GO’s version of Team Rocket from the mainline Pokemon games. In this game, the crime syndicate has a chance to appear at PokeStops randomly throughout the day. A PokeStop with a dark blue color and a spinning cube indicates that a Team GO Rocket member has taken it over. Team GO Rocket balloons may also appear overhead, offering more battles and Rocket Radars.

The Team GO Rocket balloons appear once every six hours. Your first battles will be against grunts, which reward you with a chance to capture their Shadow Pokemon and a Radar Components. If you combine your six Components to make the Rocket Radar and equip it, the balloons will make you battle Leaders instead of grunts. You can combine these Rocket Radars into Super Rocket Radars, which will cause Giovanni or his decoys to battle you instead. 

Here are the possible Team GO Rocket Members you can face:

What is Giovanni’s Lineup of Pokemon in Pokemon GO?

Giovanni’s lineup of Pokemon is currently:

  1. Persian
  2. Nidoking, Machamp, Rhyperior
  3. Latios

How to beat Giovanni in Pokemon GO

Defeating Giovanni in Pokemon GO can be a tough battle, but it’s doable if you know the right counters. You will also want to swap Pokemon a lot and spam charge moves to “freeze” Giovanni as often as possible. Let’s take a look at the counters for each possible Pokemon.


A Fighting-type Pokemon makes quick work of the Persian, and there are lots of good options. You may want to swap Pokemon often so to prevent Giovanni from attacking you for one to two seconds. A good option here is Machamp with Cross Chop so you can spam the move, or alternatively Lucario with Power-Up Punch. The best counters against Giovanni’s Persian in Pokemon GO are:

  • Lucario: Counter, Power-Up Punch
  • Machamp: Counter, Cross Chop
  • Urshifu: Counter, Close Combat/Dynamic Punch
  • Breloom: Counter, Dynamic Punch
  • Blaziken: Counter, Focus Blast
  • Conkeldurr: Counter, Dynamic Punch/Focus Blast


Shadow Nidoking is a newcomer to Giovanni’s Pokemon lineup this quarter, and there are several good counters to potentially use to win the battle. Your top options are Giratina, Mega Gengar, Solgaleo, Mega Streelix, Mega Scizor, and Jirachi.

  • Giratina: Shadow Claw, Dragon Claw
  • Mega Gengar: Shadow Claw, Shadow Punch
  • Solgaleo: Fire Spin, Psychic Fangs
  • Mega Steelix: Dragon Tail, Psychic Fangs
  • Mega Scizor: Bullet Punch, Night Slash
  • Jirachi: Confusion, Doom Desire
  • Giratina Origin: Shadow Claw, Ominous Wind
  • Mega Slowbro: Confusion, Psychic
  • Swampert: Mud Shot, Hydro Cannon
  • Shadow Swampert: Mud Shot, Hydro Cannon
  • Mega Gyarados: Waterfall Aqua Tail


Shadow Machamp is another newcomer to Giovanni’s lineup this quarter. Some good counters against Machamp are Lugia, Giratina, Mega Slowbro, Mega Latias, Mega Charizard, Victini, Zapdos, and Hoopa. The best counters against Giovanni’s Machamp in Pokemon GO are:

  • Lugia: Extrasensory, Sky Attack
  • Giratina: Shadow Claw, Dragon Claw
  • Slowbro: Confusion, Psychic
  • Latias: Charm, Mist Ball
  • Mega Charizard: Air Slash, Dragon Claw
  • Victini: Confusion, Psychic
  • Zapdos: Thunder Shock, Drill Peck
  • Hoopa: Confusion, Psychic
  • Articuno: Confusion, Ancient Power
  • Mega Gengar: Shadow Claw, Shadow Punch


If Giovanni throws out Rhyperior, a Grass type or Water type Pokemon is your best bet. Consider something like Kyogre, Venusaur, or Swampert. The best counters against Giovanni’s Rhyperior in Pokemon GO are:

  • Inteleon: Water Gun, Surf
  • Swampert: Water Gun, Hydro Cannon
  • Rillaboom: Razor Leaf, Grass Knot
  • Roserade: Razor Leaf, Grass Knot
  • Kingler: Bubble, Crabhammer
  • Venusaur: Vine Whip, Frenzy Plant
  • Blastoise: Water Gun, Hydro Cannon
  • Kyogre: Waterfall, Surf/Hydro Pump
  • Tapu Bulu: Bullet Seed, Grass Knot
  • Zarude: Vine Whip, Power Whip


Finally, Latias will always be the third Pokemon up for Giovanni. A Fairy type does well in this situation, especially someone like Togekiss with Charm. The best counters against Giovanni’s Latias in Pokemon GO are:

  • Togekiss: Charm, Dazzling Gleam
  • Gardevoir: Charm, Dazzling Gleam
  • Zacian (Crowned Sword): Snarl, Play Rough
  • Dragapult: Dragon Tail, Shadow Ball
  • Kyurem: Dragon Breath, Blizzard
  • Rayquaza: Dragon Tail, Outrage
  • Darmanitan (Galarian Zen): Ice Fang, Avalanche
  • Salamence: Dragon Tail, Draco Meteor
  • Palkia: Dragon Tail, Draco Meteor

What do I get for beating Giovanni in Pokemon GO?

Team GO Rocket leaders give you a chance to capture the shadow version of their first summoned Pokemon. For beating Giovanni, players can catch Shadow Latias. Make sure to use raspberries when trying

For more related content, guides, lists, and Pokemon, check out our Pokemon GO section. You may also like our Pokemon GO effectiveness and weakness chart.