The best moveset for Salamence in Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire

Image via The Pokemon Company
Image via The Pokemon Company

A pseudo legendaries from Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire, Salamence is one of the most beloved Pokemon in the game, and with good reason.

Salamence evolves from Bagon, a Pokemon so rare that there is only one place where it can be caught (in Meteor Falls above a Waterfall). Game Freak clearly knew this Pokemon was going to be highly sought-after.

Salamence gets some seriously good offensive stats, with 135 Attack and 110 Special Attack. This makes this Dragon and Flying-type one of the few fortunate ones to be able to run a mixed set. Here are the best moves on Salamence.

Note: This article is subjective and reflects the opinion of the writer.

The best moveset for Salamence in Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire

Image via The Pokemon Company
Image via The Pokemon Company

This moveset simply exploits Salamence’s great offensive prowess. Some people might be surprised Dragon Dance isn’t on here. This is because Dragon Dance is an egg move for Salamence in this game. That being said, it is well worth it to breed Bagon with a Kingdra or Gyarados to get one with Dragon Dance. Otherwise, though, this is its best moveset.

  • Dragon Claw
  • Fly
  • Earthquake
  • Crunch/Flamethrower

Since Salamence doesn’t learn Outrage in Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire, Dragon Claw is the next alternative. With 80 base power, it can still deal a decent amount of damage. While it hits nothing for super effective damage, trainers might be surprised at how much neutral damage this does simply because Salamence is so powerful. This move should finish off any Pokemon that has been weakened a bit.

Salamence is, surprisingly, the only Pokemon in Ruby and Sapphire who can learn Fly naturally. Of course, this move is great for flying around the map, but by that time in the game, most trainers would probably have another Pokemon with the Fly HM.

That doesn’t mean Salamance can’t make use of the move in battle, though. The other good Flying-type move that Salamence learns is Aerial Ace, which is great for Pokemon that lower accuracy or boost their evasiveness. It lacks the power that Fly has, though.

Needless to say, Earthquake is one of the best moves in the game (perhaps the best unequivocally). Not only is it great with Salamence’s high Attack stat, but it also counters Steel-type Pokemon that normally resist Salamence. Having an answer for Steel is almost a necessity in Generation III since the Champion, Steven, uses a Steel team.

Crunch is a good option for the last move because Dark-type coverage can be hard to come by. Other than Sharpedo, there aren’t too many good Dark-types in the game (Mightyena isn’t too good and, sadly, neither is Absol in that Generation). Considering that Salamence is only available in the late game, it really only gets used for the Elite Four. This makes Crunch extremely valuable, since it deals with Phoebe’s Ghost-type team.

Flamethrower is more of a good move to use on Salamence in general. It can take care of Ice-types who normally destroy this Pokemon. The issue is that, if Flamethrower doesn’t KO in one hit, any Ice-type would likely knock out Salamence in return. In terms of the Elite Four, Salamence won’t sweep through Glacia’s team. Crunch is better for the Elite Four, but Flamethrower is perhaps better overall.

Edited by Nikhil Vinod
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