Pokémon GO Giovanni counters September 2022 - best Pokémon and rewards

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Giovanni in Pokémon GO.
August 31, 2022: Found your way to Giovanni in Pokémon GO? Here are the counters you'll want to prepare.

Do you have the best Pokémon GO Giovanni counters on hand? Defeating the top dog of the game's evil organization will depend on it. He's a tough cookie, but at least investing in something to take on his staple first Pokémon can make a big difference in one of the hardest fights in the entire game.

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Persian, your first hurdle in this rare Pokémon GO battle, is a major point of trouble for most players. If you can push through its incredibly powerful scratches, you'll have a solid chance of taking home the prize. It's worth the effort.

For more on Pokémon GO, check out our Team GO Rocket Leaders like Arlo, Cliff, and Sierra for the counters you'll need to take them on., you'll be able to track down Giovanni using the Super Rocket Radar once you do.


What Is the Pokémon GO Giovanni Team for September 2022?

First Slot Second Slot Third Slot
PersianNidoking, Machamp, RhyperiorShadow Latios

Giovanni will always use Persian as his first Pokémon. For Giovanni's second Pokémon, he will either use Honchkrow, Gyarados or Rhyperior. For his third Pokémon in September 2022, Giovanni will have Shadow Latias.

Giovanni as seen in Pokémon GO.

What are the best Pokémon GO Giovanni counters for September 2022?

Now you know which Pokémon Giovanni will use, you just need to know how to beat them. The best way to do that is to use specific Pokémon to counter, so below you'll find a list of the best Pokémon to counter Giovanni and the most effective moves against each of his possible Pokémon, as of September 2022.

First Giovanni Pokémon counters


Persian Counters

Pokémon Fast Move Charged Move
TyranitarSmack DownCrunch, Stone Edge
TerrakionSmack DownRock Slide, Cross Combat
MachampCounterCross Chop, Rock Slide
LucarioCounterAura Sphere, Power-Up Punch
ConkeldurrCounterDynamic Punch, Stone Edge
HeracrossCounterClose Combat, Megahorn

Persian is only weak to Fighting-types. Here's a list of Pokémon and their moves that counter Persian. We love leading with Lucario in this encounter.

While Persian can really pack a punch, once you've charged up a Power-Up Punch you can nearly stun-lock it and take out Giovanni's shields nice and early. Make sure not to use any Ghost moves, as they are resistant to Ghost-type moves.

Second Giovanni Pokémon counters


Nidoking Counters

Pokémon Fast Move Charged Move
MewtwoPsycho CutPsystrike
GarchompMud ShotEarth Power
GlaceonIce ShardAvalanche

Replacing Honchcrow, Nidoking can be bested the same one of the leader's Nidoqueen can with this round of changes. It's primarily bested by Psychic-type Pokémon, so Mewtwo - the classic - truly stands out here. Ice, Water, and Ground works as well, so consider Glaceon and Garchomp for fast counters, or Kyogre if you need a bulky option.


Rhyperior Counters

Pokémon Fast Move Charged Move
TorterraRazor LeafFrenzy Plant
ExcadrillMud ShotDrill Run
SwampertMud ShotHydro Cannon
CobalionMetal ClawSacred Sword

Shadow Rhyperior is double weak to Grass and Water, so will buckle easily under the weight of those moves. They are also weak to Ground, Fighting, Ice, and Steel-type moves. It is good to be careful when fighting Rhyperior, as they have a pretty wide moveset. It is best to use your own shields in this situation and just try and get them down as fast as possible.

Machamp Counters

Pokémon Fast Move Charged Move
ZekromCharge BeamWild Charge
Thundurus (Therian)Volt SwitchThunderbolt
ElectivireThunder ShockWild Charge
RaikouVolt SwitchWild Charge
ZapdosThunder ShockThunderbolt

Gyarados is double weak to Electric-type moves and is also weak to Rock-type moves. This makes it easy to punish Gyarados with Electric-type Pokémon, especially the ones listed above.

They will be able to punish Gyarados with ease and with high damage output. However, keep in mind that Gyarados has their own high damage output Water-type attacks, and can make this fight difficult.


How Do I Fight Giovanni in Pokémon GO?

Fighting Giovanni means battling your way to the top by tracking down (and winning against) Rocket Grunts and Rocket Leaders. Beating Grunts cause the leaders to show up, and beating them builds up your Rocket Radar. Repeat this enough and you'll track down the head honcho himself.

It's not quite as easy as it sounds, though. Some Rocket Grunts will disguise themselves as Giovanni, which will obviously stop you from claiming the real prize.

When you do eventually find the real big cheese, you'll want to have your best Pokémon GO Giovanni counters all leveled up and ready to go. Even if you're not gunning for a legendary Shadow Pokémon, you'll want to take him on for the rare 12km Strange Eggs or to complete the Inter-Egg-Sting Development Quest.

Shadow Lugia is coming soon to Pokémon GO. Here's how to counter it.

What Are the Best Shadow Latios Counters?

Pokémon Fast Move Charged Move
DialgaDragon BreathDraco Meteor
ZacianSnarlPlay Rough
GengarShadow ClawShadow Ball
Darmanitan (Galarian Standard)Ice FangAvalanche
MamoswinePowder SnowAvalanche

Shadow Latios is a fun dual Psychic Dragon-type Pokémon. They have a multitude of weaknesses, including Bug, Dark, Dragon, Ice, Fairy, and Ghost. This gives you a wide range of Pokémon to counter Shadow Latias with.


We don't recommend using Dragon counters that often in these fights, as Latios also has access to Dragon moves themselves, and that can knock-out your Dragon-type Pokémon, so it may be better to use some of the other types as backup.

Basically, if you fought Giovanni when he had a Latias, you can beat him while he has Latios. They're essentially the same Pokémon, but Latios is a little stronger on the offense side and weaker on defense.

For more mobile gaming guides, check out what we know about Peridot - Niantic's latest creature game. You can learn how to get your Peridot pre-register sorted, and how to walk in Peridot when you're eventually able to download it.

An earlier version of this guide was written by James Wright.