As of July 7, 2020 Team Go Rocket balloons started hitting Pokemon GO, spawning randomly on the map and allowing the players to safely challenge the grunts and leaders, including Giovanni. For this they created a system of collecting “mysterious components” which when combined grants you a “Rocket Radar”. Once you have this Rocket Radar equipped, you can encounter one of the three Team Go Rocket leaders: Sierra, Arlo and Cliff. This works the same way as in PokeStops; only you cannot choose which Leader you will encounter in Balloons. In this article, we will focus on beating the three Team Go Rocket leaders.

The battles with the leaders are similar to battling the grunts, with the exception that they have the ability to use Protect Shields. Also, their Pokemons are much more powerful and varied- they don’t use Pokemons of a single typing, unlike the grunts. So, you will need to have a varied team and a good strategy beforehand, otherwise the battle might become tricky.

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How to find Sierra In Pokemon Go

How To Beat Team Go Rocket Leader Sierra In Pokemon Go IrisGuardian

To find any of the three Team Leaders, you would need a Rocket Radar. Once you defeat a Team Go Rocket grunt, they drop a mysterious component. Once you defeat six grunts, you will have six of these mysterious components- provided you have enough item storage. Combine these six mysterious components to assemble a Rocket Radar, and equip it. This Radar gives you the location of the Leaders in your vicinity, if any.

Once you have the Rocket Radar equipped, you can find any of the three Team Leaders, including Sierra, near various Pokestops. If you are in a location with less or distant Pokestops, you can find a Team Go Rocket ballon with a random leader. Since the Leader in balloons are completely random, your best option would be visting nearby Pokestops marked by the Rocket Radar. Although you cannot know which Go Rocket Leader you shall find, you can find plenty of Pokestops with the leaders. Therefore, look around for a bit, and you can easily spot Sierra.

Pokemon Lineup

First PokemonSecond PokemonThird Pokemon
Hippowdon (Ground)Flygon (Dragon, Ground)
Carvanha (Dark, Water)Porygon-Z (Normal)Houndoom (Fire, Dark)
Migmagius (Ghost, Dark)Walrein (Water, Ice)

Counters of Sierra’s Pokemon

Carvanha

Carvanha Pokemon Go Irisguardian
Weakness: Fairy, Bug, Electric, Grass, Fighting

Shadow Carvanha is a Water and Dark-type Pokemon which has access to Dark fast moves and Water, Poison or Dark charge moves. It is vulnerable to Fairy, Bug, Electric, Grass, Fighting type attacks. As Sierra’s First Pokemon, Carvanha is common for all the players, and you get a chance to catch a Shadow Carvanha if you defeat her. Below are the list of counters for Sierra’s Shadow Carvanha, including the ideal Fast and Charged moves.

  • Roserade
    • Fast move: Razor Leaf
    • Charged Move: Grass Knot
  • Torterra
    • Fast Move: Razor Leaf
    • Charged Move: Frenzy Plant
  • Hydregion
    • Fast Move: Dragon Breath
    • Charged Move:  Dark Pulse / Dragon Pulse
  • Darkari
    • Fast Move: Snarl
    • Charged Move: Dark Pulse
  • Togekiss
    • Fast Move: Charm
    • Charged Move: Ancient Power

Hippowdon

Hippowdon Pokemon Go Irisguardian
Weakness: Grass, Ice, Water

Shadow Hippowdon can use a wide variety of moves such as Fire, Electric, Ice or Dark; and Ground, Normal and Rock type Charged moves. It is vulnerable to Grass, Ice, Water type attacks. Below are the list of counters for Sierra’s Shadow Hippowdon, including the ideal Fast and Charged moves.

  • Torterra
    • Fast Move: Razor Leaf
    • Charged Move: Frenzy Plant
  • Kyogre
    • Fast Move: Waterfall
    • Charged Move: Surf
  • Mamoswine
    • Fast Move: Powder Snow
    • Charged Move: Avalanche
  • Empoleon
    • Fast Move: Waterfall
    • Charged Move: Hydro Cannon
  • Roserade
    • Fast Move: Razor Leaf
    • Charged Move: Grass Knot

Porygon-Z

Porygon-Z Pokemon Go Irisguardian
Weakness: Fighting

Shadow Porygon-Z is a Normal type Pokemon and has access to Normal and Electric type fast moves, and Normal, Ice, Grass or Electric type charge moves. It’s only weakness comes as Fighting types. Below are the list of counters for Sierra’s Shadow Porygon-Z, including the ideal Fast and Charged moves.

  • Lucario
    • Fast Move: Counter
    • Charged Move: Aura Sphere
  • Escavalier
    • Fast Move: Counter
    • Charged Move: Drill Run
  • Conkeldurr
    • Fast Move: Counter
    • Charged Move: Dynamic Punch
  • Magnezone
    • Fast Move: Spark
    • Charged Move: Wild Charge
  • Machamp
    • Fast Move: Counter
    • Charged Move: Cross Chop

Also Read: Pokemon Go Shadow Pokemon: Benefits, PvP usage, Purification

Mismagius

Mismagius Pokemon Go Irisguardian
Weakness: Dark, Ghost

Being a Ghost type Pokemon, Shadow Mismagius is vulnerable to Dark and Ghost-type attacks. It can have only Ghost-type attacks, thus can be easily countered by a strong Dark-type. Ghost-types are not recommended here, because of their weakness to Ghost. Below are the list of counters for Sierra’s Shadow Mismagius, including the ideal Fast and Charged moves.

  • Tyranitar
    • Fast Move: Bite
    • Charged Move: Crunch
  • Darkrai
    • Fast Move: Snarl
    • Charged Move: Dark Pulse
  • Muk
    • Fast Move: Snarl
    • Charged Move: Dark Pulse
  • Scrafty
    • Fast Move: Counter
    • Charged Move: Foul Play
  • Sharpedo
  • Fast Attack: Bite
  • Charged Attack: Crunch

Flygon

Flygon Pokemon Go Irisguardian
Weakness: Ice, Fairy, Dragon

Shadow Flygon is a Ground and Dragon type Pokemon with weaknesses in the form of Ice, fairy, Dragon. Its fast moves can be Dragon or Ground, and Rock, Ground or Dragon type charge moves. Below are the list of counters for Sierra’s Shadow Flygon, including the ideal Fast and Charged moves.

  • Togekiss
    • Fast Move: Charm
    • Charged Move: Ancient Power / Flamethrower
  • Gardevoir
    • Fast Move: Charm
    • Charged Move: Shadow Ball / Synchronoise
  • Mamoswine
    • Fast Move: Powder Snow
    • Charged Move: Avalanche
  • Clefable
    • Fast Move: Charm
    • Charged Move: Moonblast / Meteor Mash
  • Weavile
    • Fast Move: Ice Shard
    • Charged Move: Avalanche

Houndoom

Houndoom Pokemon Go Irisguardian
Weakness: Water, Fighting, Rock, Ground

Houndoom is a Fire and Dark type Pokemon which uses only Dark and Fire type moves, making it easy to counter. It is vulnerable to Water, Fighting, Rock and Ground type moves. Below are the list of counters for Sierra’s Shadow Drowzee, including the ideal Fast and Charged moves.

  • Swampert
    • Fast Move: Mud Shot
    • Charged Move: Hydro Cannon
  • Machamp
    • Fast Move: Counter
    • Charged Move: Cross Chop
  • Tyranitar
    • Fast Move: Smack Down
    • Charged Move: Crunch / Stone Edge
  • Terrakion
    • Fast Move: Smack Down
    • Charged Move: Close Combat / Rock Slide
  • Other Houndoom Counters: Kyogre, Rhyperior, Conkeldurr, Poliwrath

Walrein

Walrein Pokemon Go Irisguardian
Weakness: Fighting, Rock, Electric, Grass

The dual Water and Ice-type Pokemon Wailren can use Water and Ice-type Fast moves, and the same types Charged Moves. You can use Fire or Steel-types for Ice-typed Fast moves; while Grass-types are excellent when you’re being hit with Water. Below are the list of counters for Sierra’s Shadow Walrein, including the ideal Fast and Charged moves.

  • Roserade
    • Fast Move: Smack Down
    • Charged Move: Crunch / Stone Edge
  • Tangrowth
    • Fast Move: Charm
    • Charged Move: Shadow Ball / Synchronise
  • Torterra
    • Fast Move: Snarl
    • Charged Move: Dark Pulse
  • Giratina Altered Forme
    • Fast Move: Shadow Claw
    • Charged Move: Dragon Claw
  • Metagross
    • Fast Move: Bullet Punch
    • Charged Move: Meteor Mash
  • Heatran
    • Fast Move: Fire Spin
    • Charged Move: Flamethrower
  • Melmetal
    • Fast Move: Thundershock
    • Charged Move: Superpower

Tips and Tricks To Fight Team Go Rocket Leaders

  • The Team Go Rocket leaders use Protect Shields, unlike standard Grunts. So, your first Pokemon should ideally be one having a fast move with low energy requirement. This will ensure that they will exhaust their shields quickly, and you can safely attack with your Charge moves of higher energy.
  • If you are not able to beat the leaders in the first go, your Rocket Radar will remain intact, and the balloon will continue hovering over you. You can revive your Pokemons, and try again until you win. The team composition and movesets won’t chanhge, therefore it might be easier for you to counter them this time.
  • The Go Rocket Leaders or any NPC in game including Team Leaders and Grunts will stop attacking for short intervals in some situation. These pauses are quite viable, for you can overcharge your Charged move, to use on the next Pokemon. This not only saves shields, but also your HP by preventing them from attacking. These are-
    • After any shield is used (either yours or theirs)
    • After any Charged attack is used (can be used by either you, or them)
    • After switching of any Pokemon (by you or them)