A whole new subset of players are facing off against Giovanni for the first time in Pokémon GO thanks to the new balloon system — you don’t have to leave your house anymore, because now Team Rocket GO comes to you. Four times a day, you’ll be able to tap balloons on your map screen to battle incoming Team Rocket Grunts — fight enough of them to battle the leaders, then you’ll be able to take on Giovanni himself and earn yourself a Legendary Shadow Pokémon.
Giovanni is a challenging foe, and lots of players are struggling to take him down. With the right Pokémon, it is possible to take this opponent down — and you’re free to fight him multiple times once he appears. We’ll share all the tips we can to help you win below and help you claim your first Legendary Shadow Pokémon. Anyone can do it, you just need the right strategy.
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How To Fight Giovanni
Before you can battle Giovanni, you’ll need to summon him. Summoning Giovanni is a complicated process, so let’s break it down to make the steps as simple as possible. Team Rocket Balloons will only appear for players that are level 35+.
- Defeat Team Rocket Grunts in Balloons or in Invaded Pokestops to gain Mysterious Components. Use 6 Mysterious Components to craft 1 Rocket Radar.
- Use Rocket Radar to summon Team Rocket Leaders in balloons. Repeat the process to fight all three Team Rocket Leaders and complete the ‘Looming In The Shadows’ special research and gain the Super Rocket Radar.
- Use the Super Rocket Radar to summon Giovanni in a balloon.
Once you summon Giovanni by equipping and activating the Super Rocket Radar, you’ll be able to fight his Pokémon team. You can only summon Giovanni once per month. He’s a tough opponent, so here’s my recommendations for battling him.
Giovanni Battle Tips
Giovanni only has slight variation in his Pokémon line-up. He will always send out Persian first and Raikou last, and may have either Cloyster, Hippowdon, or Steelix as his second Pokémon.
To counter Persian, I recommend Machamp (CP 2500-3000) for a quick Persian defeat. Giovanni will raise shields early, so Machamp’s Cross-Chop is great to wipe out those shields with multiple hits. A strong Machamp will end the first round quickly.
The second round is when things get tricky. Giovanni will summon either Rhyperior, Steelix, or Kingler — fight Giovanni once as a test to see what his second Pokémon is, then adjust your team accordingly. Rhyperior is weak to Fighting, so you can continue to use Machamp, or switch to a Water or Grass type. Steelix is also weak to Fighting / Ground / Water, and Kingler is weak to Grass / Electric. With the right team, you can cover multiple match-ups.
The final fight is always against the monthly legendary Pokémon — it changes every month. For now, the opponent is Entei so a Pokemon with strong Water / Rock / Ground type attacks will win.
To make your life easier, you can start each round with a tough Pokémon that can absorb damage, then Quick Swap to a new Pokémon for dishing out damage. Giovanni has to pause after a Quick Swap, so you can get in a few attacks right away.
With the right match-ups, anyone can beat Giovanni and claim the monthly legendary Shadow Pokémon. Goodluck out there, trainers!
More Pokemon GO tips, tricks, and FAQs:
Perfect Pokeball Throws With AssistiveTouch | How to Become A Gym Leader | How to Earn Coins (Fast) & What They’re Used For | Where to Find (And Catch) Pokemon | Spawn Locations | iOS & Android Compatibility – Which Versions Work | Easy Ways to Earn XP & Level Up Fast | How to Take In-Game Screenshots | Is It Out In Your Country? | Availability List | All the Moves, Ranked Best to Worst | Complete List | 6 Essential Facts You Need to Know About the Buddy System