The face of the Pokemon franchise, Pikachu, can surprisingly run a very effective set in Pokemon Sword and Shield.
Even though Pikachu can always evolve into Raichu, it doesn’t have to. Pikachu has a high base Speed stat (90), and it can make up for its low Attack/Special Attack with a Light Ball. It’s pretty vital for Pikachu to get this item, if it’s going to play a large role on a Pokemon team. Thankfully, it can be made using the Cram-o-matic from the Isle of Armor DLC. Pikachu also has a Gigantimax form that can use G-Max Volt Crash, which will paralyze both opponents. Pikachu can be a fast and powerful Pokemon with this moveset.
Note: This article is subjective and reflects the opinion of the writer.
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The best moveset for Pikachu in Pokemon Sword and Shield
Pikachu is somewhat limited in movepool, but it learns enough moves to be effective in many of the battles in Pokemon Sword and Shield. A physical set is viable with Volt Tackle, but that requires breeding Pikachu with a Light Ball, which might take a while. This is a good moveset that can work on any Pikachu right away, even though it really works better with the Light Ball. If possible, it’s also better to get a Pikachu with the Static ability, since it can paralyze Pokemon on contact:
- Rising Voltage
- Nasty Plot
Thunderbolt serves as Pikachu’s most damaging move in most cases. Especially with a Light Ball equipped, Thunderbolt is going to bruise all Pokemon that aren’t Ground-type. For those who catch Gigantimax Pikachu, Thunderbolt will make G-Max Volt Crash very powerful as well.
Rising Voltage pairs with Thunderbolt excellently. When Pikachu goes into normal Dynamax form, Max Lightning will bring up Electric Terrain. Rising Voltage’s power actually doubles in Electric Terrain. This would give Rising Voltage a 140 base power move that also gets boosted since it’s an electric-type move. This becomes one of the strongest moves in terrain, and any Pokemon that can find a way to use this strategy should do so. It is acquired through a move tutor on the Isle of Armor.
Surf is always a fun move to throw on Pikachu, but it also has a strategic purpose. Ground-type Pokemon beat Pikachu, so a Water-type move does the electric mouse a world of good. Surf is also generally a good move with 90 base power. It isn’t the worst option for most Pokemon to have.
Nasty Plot serves as a way to get Pikachu to where it can inflict enough damage to roll over teams. If Pikachu does not have a Light Ball, then Nasty Plot becomes essential since it’s the only way Pikachu is doing significant damage. Even with Light Ball, however, Pikachu still benefits from the Special Attack boost, since it could then break through specially defensive Pokemon. If you can get a Nasty Plot off before using Dynamax, then Pikachu is capable of unleashing a fury on opposing teams.