Back in the halcyon days of 2017, Pokémon Go fever had taken over the world, and there was a renewed interest in the Pokémon franchise and millions of eager gamers hoping to go on even more adventures. Well, they were in luck, as Game Freak delivered Pokémon Sun and Moon for the Nintendo 3DS, a holiday vacation in the gorgeous region of Alola, and a Pokédex filled with some interesting new twists on classic Pokémon.
So if you’re looking to go back and experience Sun and Moon all over again, or just want to see some of the great Pokémon from the games, you’ve come to the right place with our guide to the best gen 7 Pokémon. The tropical region of Alola harbours some fascinating Pokémon soaking up the sun, and the extreme weather even allows some old favourites to take on some wild new forms…
Before we set off to the holiday destination of Alola, why not look back with us at our many other Pokémon articles, including our guides covering the best gen 1 Pokémon, starter Pokémon, gen 3 Pokémon, gen 5 Pokémon, and dog Pokémon.
Let’s get on a boat and sail over to the tropical island known as our best gen 7 Pokémon guide.
Gen 7 Pokémon
A tiny ghost that conceals itself under a rag, Mimikyu has decorated its look to look like the ever-popular Pikachu in an attempt to get people to love it. Isn’t that just the saddest thing you’ve ever heard? Poor little Mimikyu is an interesting pokemon though, sporting a dual ghost/fairy type that makes it tricky to hit, as it’s immune to normal, fighting, and dragon Pokémon moves.
To make Mimikyu even tougher to land a blow on, it has the unique ability called disguise which acts like a free substitute, allowing Mimikyu to take one hit with its disguise before opponents can actually hit the real Mimikyu. This is just as well, as apart from a respectable special defence of 105, most of Mimikyu’s stats are pretty disappointing, making it somewhat of a glass cannon, or a chance to stall and set up defensive boosts for the whole party. Still, it looks adorable, and nobody can take that away.
Speaking of adorable, Pokémon Sun and Moon delivered another fan-favourite with the gigantic teddy known as Bewear. The preposterous pink pal towers over trainers and is fiercely protective of its baby, the pre-evolution known as Stufful (also adorable). With a chunky base 125 attack stat and a mixed normal/fighting typing, this physical attacker is actually a pretty good threat and is also immune to ghost Pokémon moves.
Bewear can be quite a nuisance with a great type spread over its physical attacks, as it can learn brutal swing, hammer arm, earthquake, and even zen headbutt. It’s not going to win any races thanks to a measly 60 speed, but if used properly, this powerful creature is as deadly as it is adorable. It also has an amazing orange shiny alongside Stufful that is just delightful.
A thorn in the side of many a trainer, Toxapex has been making waves in the meta ever since it was introduced. A dual poison and water type, Toxapex features a frankly disgusting base defence of 152, and a special defence of 142. Essentially, this is a stalling Pokémon, and it has plenty of poison-tinged tricks up its sleeve to aggravate trainers while they chip away at its health.
Toxapex can learn plenty of moves to poison Pokémon like poison jab or venoshock, and one of its abilities – merciless – makes every attack on a poisoned opponent a critical hit. This is one nasty piece of work, and while it doesn’t have any immunities, it is resistant to eight different types, only weak to ground, electric, and psychic. If you are building a defensive team, you have to think about including Toxapex.
Another poison type, Salazzle is known as the toxic lizard, and it shares something in common with the bee Pokémon Vespiqueen. Salazzle can only evolve from a female Salandit, much like how only a female Combee can evolve into the queen bee. Salazzle is joint fire/poison, so get ready to get burned and poisoned, a really fun combination.
To make it even trickier, Salazzle has the ability corrosion, which allows it to poison Pokémon regardless of their type. This means it can even poison other poison types like Toxapex, an interesting twist to the meta. Sadly, while it has a nippy speed stat of 117 and a decent special attack of 111, its defence lets it down with both stats being a measly 60. So get in, do your damage, and get out quick.
It’s always nice when the Pokémon designs incorporate something unique about the games they’re in, and Pokémon Sun and Moon took the day and night influence very seriously, with the games taking place at different times of the day, and focusing – naturally – on the sun and the moon respectively. Well if you discover the adorable little Rockruff early on in your travels, the version of the game you own will decide what its evolution looks like.
Based on myths of the werewolf, the awesome Lycanroc is a rock-type dog Pokémon, and it has two distinct forms. The more cuddly midday form is exclusive to Pokémon Sun and Ultra Sun, but if you’re playing Pokémon Moon or Ultra Moon, instead you’re treated to the terrifying midnight form of Lycanroc, with dark fur and glowing red eyes. We love either version of the ‘mon, but come on, sometimes Pokémon just look better when they’re a little bit scary.
We tend not to include mythical or legendary Pokémon in these lists, but we’re making an exception here. Known as the thunderclap Pokémon, Zeraora is a feline-like electric type with jagged fur and a bright yellow mane, with streaks of blue coming from different parts of its paws and face. It’s got a great balance of adorable and edgy, and its attitude in the anime has endeared many fans to this mythical monster.
Being a pure electric type means it is only weak to ground Pokémon, so keep any earthquake users away. It does, however, have a ridiculous base 143 speed and a respectable 112 physical attack, with a total stat spread of 600 like many other mythical Pokémon. It even has the ability volt absorb, so if it gets hit with any electric moves it will turn the attack into HP. This is one Pokémon that Toxapex certainly doesn’t want to face.
Another rule for these lists has been to not mention regional variants, but I guess I’m feeling rebellious today. Pokémon Sun and Moon introduced the concept of regional variants, using the extreme climate of the Hawaii-inspired Alola to explain some big changes to a few existing Pokémon. For me, Pokémon Sun and Moon is currently still the best example of the regional variant method, giving us some absolutely incredible redesigns of beloved creatures of old.
While Alolan Raichu is right up there (it surfs on its tail for goodness sake), the crown jewel of the Alola islands is the big boy known as Alolan Exeggutor. This multi-headed palm tree was very few people’s favourite Pokémon, but the gorgeous sunshine and temperate weather of Alola allowed this triumphant tree to grow to levels that go beyond ridiculous and into comedy genius. Alolan Exeggutor is hilariously long, and the game knows it, poking fun of the overgrown beast whenever it can, but it somehow makes this Pokémon one of the most endearing introduced in this generation. In my head, I have the image of Don Draper in front of a whiteboard with the words “LONG EXEGGUTOR” scrawled on it haphazardly. I will buy all the Alolan Exeggutor merch, I’ll put it on my team, I’ll talk about it to friends, and I’ll defend it to my last breath. It’s massive, it is goofy, and I love it.
Alright, trainers, that’s all we have for today, but we hope you enjoyed this tour of Alola and its many amazing denizens. For even more great recommendations and arguments, check out our other Pokémon guides covering the best gen 6 Pokémon, and the best fairy Pokémon. Or for Go-specific guides, take a look at our Pokémon Go Eevee evolution, Pokémon Go raids, Pokémon Go community days, and Pokémon Go events pages.