Cinderace is arguably among the top 10 offensive Pokemon in Pokemon Sword and Shield, but its capabilities can really be enhanced with the right IVs.
It may not be as fast as Dragapult, but Cinderace’s base 119 Speed stat is still enough to outspeed most Pokemon in the Galar Region. This is great for a Pokemon with a tremendous movepool like Cinderace. It can use great attacks like Hi Jump Kick, Zen Headbutt, Flare Blitz, and its own signature more Pyro Ball. With the Isle of Armor DLC, Cinderace got even stronger with its Gigantamax form. G-Max Fireball will hit opponents regardless of ability, so it would ignore Flash Fire on Pokemon like Centiskortch and Heatran. With these tools, the only thing necessary to make sure Cinderace throttles opposing Pokemon is the right stats. Here are Cinderace’s best IVs:
Note: This article is subjective and reflects the opinion of the writer.
The best IVs for Cinderace in Pokemon Sword and Shield
The big stat that Cinderace needs a good amount of IVs in is Attack. For any Pokemon with that kind of speed, it needs to have as much attacking power as possible behind it. Its base Attack stat, at 116, isn’t really going to break the game, even though it’s definitely good. A trainer who wanted real attacking power might be better off using Tyranitar or Garchomp.
The reason why Cinderace typically doesn’t mind a lower base Attack is because Pyro Ball is so powerful (base 120), most of the time Cinderace is still doing loads of damage anyways. Without the attack IVs, however, its other attacks won’t be hitting as hard as they should. Trainers with Cinderace might be stuck in a position where they need Zen Headbutt to KO a Nidoking or a Sucker Punch to KO a Gengar. It better hope it has enough Attack to take down these Pokemon, or Cinderace is likely going to survive.
One stat that is also important to check, though it might be surprising to some trainers, is Defense. The big reason for this is for Bulk Up sets for Cinderace. Granted, Bulk Up isn’t really run for the Defense boost. Its run to that Cinderace gets to a ridiculously strong Attack and can then obliterate any Pokemon in its way. The Defense boost is just a consolation at that point. It’s possible, however, that it might help Cinderace take a move from a strong Pokemon that threatens it. This is where Defense IVs come in handy.
Also, in Cinderace’s case, of course having lots of Speed IVs is going to help it tremendously. Base 119 Speed is great, but there are several Pokemon that are close to that speed tier. Quite a number of Pokemon have 115 base Speed, like Raikou, Sneasel, and Starmie, which specifically can definitely threaten Cinderace very much. All of the Pokemon with 110 Speed (Gengar, Espeon, etc.) aren’t too far behind either. Cinderace definitely doesn’t want to lose the speed battle with these threats. Does it need 31 Speed IVs? No. Does it need more than 10? Probably.