A new Legendary Pokemon has arrived in Pokemon Go for a very limited time.
Players have the opportunity to battle and capture Ho-Oh, a powerful Fire/Flying type that could give headaches to a lot of trainers. While we mentioned that Ho-Oh's moveset meant that it wouldn't be great in battles, the Pokemon is still a difficult raid boss. After all, with tons of HP and some good defensive stats, Ho-Oh can absorb a lot of damage while wiping out your team.
Like all raids, your best bet of beating Ho-Oh is to find a large group of trainers and simply overwhelm Ho-Oh with brute numbers. However, you might want to try some of these strategies if you're part of a smaller raid group.
It's been a few months since Golem was the god-king of the Pokemon Go raid scene, but these sturdy Rock/Ground-Type Pokemon will be super useful against Ho-Oh. Stone Edge and Rock Blast will both do double damage against Ho-Oh as both Fire and Flying types are weak against Rock-Type moves.
Water-Type Pokemon are also strong against Ho-Oh, with Vaporeon, Omastar, and Gyarados also having type advantages (provided they have Hydro Pump as a charge move) over Fire-Type attacks.
It's tempting to use some combination of these four Pokemon as your primary raid team, but players should be warned to not overly rely on Rock and Water-Type Pokemon when battling Ho-Oh. Ho-Oh has a one in three chance of having Solar Beam as its charge move, which will definitely knock out Golem, Vaporeon, or Omastar out in just one hit.
It's not a guarantee that Ho-Oh will be armed with Solar Beam, but it's a risk that players need to consider when building their raid team.
Since Rock and Water-Type Pokemon both have a potential vulnerability to one of Ho-Oh's attacks, that means it's time to pull out those Electric-Type Legendary Pokemon you picked up earlier this year.
While neither Zapdos or Raikou can deal out double damage to Ho-Oh like a Rock-Type Pokemon, they're much safer bets as they should be able to absorb at least one attack from Ho-Oh.
There's only one problem with using Zapdos or Raikou in a Ho-Oh raid: you'll probably need to power them up beforehand. Since Zapdos and Raikou can only be caught at Level 20, players will need to invest a lot of Stardust and Rare Candies in order to get just one of these Pokemon up to the power levels needed to make much of an impact against Ho-Oh.
Dragonite and Tyranitar remain solid options against Ho-Oh, although Tyranitar has the same weakness to Solar Beam as Golem or Vaporeon. Jolteon doesn't have the bulkiness of Zapdos or Raikou, but he should still be able to do a bit of damage before getting knocked out of battle.
One other option is Sudowoodo, who has some strong Rock-Type moves but won't last in battle long enough to get more than one or two charge moves off in battle.
We recommend bringing at least five high level trainers into a Ho-Oh raid. We've seen teams of three or four trainers beat Ho-Oh with maxed out Pokemon with optimized moves, but most players will need at least a few more trainers to contribute in battle.