Pokémon Scarlet and Violet introduced Tera Raid Battles as an endgame activity. Tera Raid Battles are similar to Max Raid Dens from Pokémon Sword and Shield and are one of the best ways to obtain Tera Shards alongside other useful items like Bottlecaps, and XP crystals.
To get the best items you need to do 6-star Tera Raid Battles. 6-star Tera Raid Battles can give items like ability patches, which let you change a Pokémon’s ability to its hidden ability, and Herba Mystica which can be used to make the most effective sandwiches. However these rewards aren’t free. 6-star Tera Raid Battles require some preparation to succeed in. This guide will tell you how to build the best all around Pokémon for Tera Raid Battles – Iron Hands.
Iron Hands: The Best All-Rounder Pokémon for Tera Raid Battles
When you are doing Tera Raid Battles online, Iron Hands is probably the most common Pokémon you will see other trainers using. There is a simple reason for this. Iron Hands is the best and most versatile Pokémon for Tera Raid Battles.
I will break down exactly how to set up your Iron Hands for a great performance in almost all Tera Raid Battles. With this build you will be able to solo 6-star Tera Raid Battles that are weak to fighting, and will have no trouble contributing to 6-star raid battles of other types.
Fighting and Electric typing gives Iron Hands a weakness to only ground, fairy and psychic, while also giving it a STAB move that is at least neutral on every type. Iron Hands also gets access to Belly Drum and Drain Punch, which makes the Pokémon near unkillable as long as drain punch is hitting for neutral damage. For this reason the best move set to run on Iron Hands is:
- Thunder Punch
- Drain Punch
- Belly Drum
By starting off every fight with Belly Drum, Iron Hands becomes very difficult to kill since drain punch is hitting so hard and healing for so much. This makes pretty much all Tera Raid battles below 6-star just a matter of waiting and hitting Drain Punch every turn. Thunder Punch and Earthquake provide coverage so that you can super-effectively hit a wide range of types. Remember that Tera Raid Battle Pokémon are always monotype, so there isn’t a single type that you can’t hit for at least neutral damage. This may not sound particularly special, but when you have a +6 stage attack boost with Belly Drum, even a neutral hit will do a huge amount of damage.
Choosing the correct item is key to maximising your performance in Tera Raid Battles. There are hundreds of items in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, but for this build there are really only two options which I will break down here.
Since Belly Drum uses 50% of your HP, Sitrus Berry is the obvious choice for an item. Sitrus Berry restores 25% of a Pokémon’s maximum HP whenever it goes below 50% HP for the first time. Fortunately this activates off of Belly Drum, meaning you will have +6 attack and 75% HP remaining, usually more than enough to survive a few hits and start healing up with Drain Punch.
The other option is to run Booster Energy and take advantage of Iron Hands’ Quark Drive ability. This ability boosts the Pokémon’s highest stat if it is holding a Booster Energy, which in the case of Iron Hands is its attack. This is independent from the Belly Drum boost, so the two can stack.
While running Booster Energy does give you more raw power, it leaves you very vulnerable to being killed after Belly Drum. Iron Hands is slow, so it will often be taking 2 hits before it lands its first Drain Punch, meaning you have to survive until then. The difference between 50% and 75% HP is massive in making sure that Iron Hands can survive to start using Drain Punch. For this reason I recommend Sitrus Berry unless you are in a coordinated raid where you can rely on your teammates to use the heal cheer while you set up.
EV Spread and Nature
- 252 Attack
- 252 Special Defence
- 4 HP
- Adamant nature
For Effort Values (EVs) you want to maximise Iron Hands’ attack and bulk. Iron Hands is slow, so there is no point in putting investment into speed as you still won’t be able to outrun anything.
Instead you want to make sure that you can survive to start using drain punch. Iron Hands already has a decent 108 defence stat, so I like to focus on shoring up its relatively weak 68 special defence stat. With the full 252 EVs in special defence, your defence and special defence should be about the same. This will allow you to tank a wide variety of Pokémon.
You should also put 252 EVs into attack to maximise your damage on all of your moves.
The leftover 4 EVs are best put in HP.
In line with this, Adamant is the best nature to use. You won’t be doing any special attacking at all, so a decrease in special attack for an increase in attack is an absolute win.
Picking the correct Tera Type is key in maximising the potential of any Pokémon in Scarlet and Violet. There are a few options that you can consider for Iron Hands, but one stands clearly above the rest.
The fighting Tera Type is what makes Iron Hands the best Pokémon for Tera Raid Battles. Most often you will be spamming drain punch and fighting Tera Type will give a huge boost to that playstyle. The extra damage on drain punch keeps your HP high and lets you break down the opponent’s barrier more easily, even if you are only hitting for neutral damage.
Fighting Terastallized Iron Hands with a Belly Drum boost is pretty much impossible to kill unless it gets 1 shot. You will heal to full health every single turn, even if you are only doing neutral damage.
Other Tera Types
You can argue for other Tera Types like electric or ground for this set, but those are only really useful in very niche situations. This guide is focusing on building one Pokémon that is useful in as many Tera Raid Battles as possible, and for that purpose fighting is definitely the best choice.
Thanks for Reading
I hope this guide has been helpful! If you need to change your Iron Hands’ Tera type why not check out our guide on how to change Tera Type.
Have you found a Pokémon more effective than Iron Hands for Tera Raid Battles? Let us know in the comments.