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#1 BEST Darmanitan Moveset – Pokemon Sword & Shield

If you’re planning you use Darmanitan in Pokemon Sword & Shield, you’ll want to know the best Darmanitan moveset. This guide will teach you just that.

Darmanitan is among the most powerful and dangerous pokemon in the game, boasting an enormous 140 base attack stat, as well as respectable speed.

This pokemon is very capable of plowing through entire enemy teams by itself, outspeeding and OHKOing every single pokemon that comes in its path.

pokemon sword and shield best darmanitan build moveset

Best Nature

Because Darmanitan’s attack power is already ridiculous, you’re going to want to focus on its speed, which is just above average.

Therefore, you should give it the Jolly nature (+Speed, -Special Attack) in order to maximize its capacity to move first.

Best Ability

Although its Zen Mode ability is certainly unique, its other ability, Gorilla Tactics, is a free Choice Band, which is extremely powerful.

You should definitely go with Gorilla Tactics, as having a free Choice Band (which also stacks with an actual Choice Band) is what makes this pokemon especially dangerous.

Best Held Item

There are two options here. The first is a Choice Band which, when paired with Gorilla Tactics, basically ensures that every pokemon who comes in contact with Darmanitan, no matter the bulk, gets knocked out in one hit.

The other option is a Choice Scarf, which ensures that Darmanitan almost always moves first, so it doesn’t give opponents the opportunity to deal damage.

The Choice Scarf tends to be the preferred option for this Darmanitan moveset since, thanks to Darmanitan’s intense attack power and built-in Choice Band, it already OHKOs pretty much every opposing pokemon it encounters.

Darmanitan Build Moveset

The Darmanitan moveset is pretty easy, as it only really utilizes one move: Darmanitan’s signature move, Icicle Crash.

The remaining moves in the Darmanitan moveset simply provide some coverage and utility but honestly… you will almost never use them, especially since Gorilla Tactics locks you into the first move you choose (which will be Icicle Crash).

  • Icicle Crash
  • Flare Blitz
  • Superpower
  • U-Turn

As I mentioned, Icicle Crash is basically all you need for this Darmanitan moveset. Flare Blitz and Superpower are only on there for things that are resistant to Ice, and U-Turn theoretically helps Darmanitan escape if it gets into a sticky situation.

Let’s be honest though: the way a Darmanitan fight goes is that it uses Icicle Crash, which kills the opposing pokemon, then it uses Icicle Crash again and so on and so forth until all the opposing pokemon are dead.

If anything survives Icicle Crash to damage Darmanitan, it Icicle Crashes again. Should it ever actually faint, you have 5 more pokemon to bring out against the remaining members of your opponent’s severely crippled team.

Darmanitan Moveset Conclusion

Darmanitan is considered to be one of the most powerful pokemon in the Sword and Shield generation for a reason. And that reason is that its stats are extremely high and it’s, overall, just plain stupidly powerful.

It’s capable of outputting more damage than any other pokemon (arguably including legendaries), and it’s capable of outspeeding most pokemon.

Overall Darmanitan is a tremendous threat in Pokemon Sword and Shield and you should definitely consider adding it to your team in any context in which it’s not banned.

That about covers it when it comes to the best Darmanitan build in Pokemon Sword and Shield. Be sure to check out the Games Section for more articles like this and click here for more game guides for Pokemon Sword and Shield.


  • Ryan Night

    Ryan Night is an ex-game industry producer with over a decade of experience writing guides for RPGs. Previously an early contributor at gamefaqs.com, Ryan has been serving the RPG community with video game guides since 2001. As the owner of Bright Rock Media, Ryan has written over 600 guides for RPGs of all kinds, from Final Fantasy Tactics to Tales of Arise.

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