It’s always frustrating when you get outmatched by a more powerful Pokemon, especially for new trainers. The introduction of some incredibly strong physical attackers in Pokemon Scarlet & Violet has made that frustration all the more common. Terrastalization further compounds this problem, as you never know exactly what you’re attacking into.
While physical attackers are the most common, they also have the biggest spectrum for potential viability. With the introduction of Terrastalization, the best attackers aren’t always limited by their stats. Whether it’s through abilities or raw power, the physical Pokemon of Paldea can throw some pretty powerful punches.
Since Generation One, Dragonite and its 135 base Attack has always been one of the strongest physical attackers, even among other Pseudo-Legendaries. However, it has a particular advantage in Generation Nine.
With access to extreme speed and a +3 priority move, it can ensure it always attacks first. By adding a Choice Band and a normal Terrastalization, Dragonite can hit first and hit hard — even in a Trick Room. Who says you can’t teach an old dragon new tricks?
As a physical attacker, Meowsarada has more than a few tricks up its sleeve. As the fastest of the Paldean starters, it has the potential to make opponents magically disappear before they even know what hit them. Its signature move, Flower Trick, may only have a base power of 70, but since it never misses and always lands a critical hit, it can one-shot almost anything it’s effective against.
Its hidden ability, Protean, not only allows it to take advantage of its diverse move pool, but also further complicates things for your opponent with Terrastalization. With its speed, offensive pressure, and type versatility, this sage mage is tricky for any opponent to play around.
If you thought Garchomp’s reign of terror ended in Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl, you would be sorely mistaken. Garchomp is an incredible physical threat in Generation Nine for more reasons than one. As one of the fastest Pseudo-Legendaries, it can completely bury its opponents before they even know what hit them.
An Earthquake from Garchomp has always been one of the strongest physical threats in Pokemon, and now with the boost of Terastalization that threat becomes even greater. Unlike Dynamax, Terastalization can augment spread moves, and Garchomp has one of the best. It’s a common threat on the competitive ladder, and one that’s sure to give its opponents their least favorite Gen Four flashbacks.
Dondozo is one of the most interesting and unique Pokemon we’ve ever seen, particularly in double battles. This considerable catfish has a hefty 150 base HP, and a modest Attack stat of 115, but it can really serve some chaos with Tatsurgi on the field. When thrown out together, Tatsurgi hops into Dondozo's mouth and raises all of its stats by two stages, and it can increase one of those stats again using its signature move.
Order Up can be used to increase its Attack, Speed, or Defense — based on Tatsurgi's color. Dondozo also keeps Tatsurgi from being attacked while in its mouth, and anything targeting Tatsurgi will automatically miss. While things like Haze and Clear Smog pose a big threat to this lake-dwelling legend, it has the potential to counter them with select Held Items or Terrastalization. Dondozo and Tatsugiri create intense mind games for their opponents, so it’s no wonder that these two have become an absolute menace in Battle Stadium doubles.
6/10 Iron Hands
If you’ve ever wondered what a Doctor Eggman robot would look like as a Pokemon, Iron Hands is your answer. However, as a physical attacker, this Pokemon is no joke. This upgraded Hariyama can be handy for any team needing extra attack power. It carries an impressive 140 base Attack and can increase it further on Electric terrain with Quark Drive.
The extra STAB boost from its typing, the terrain, and Quark Drive — combined with the potential Electric Terrastalization — sets Iron Hands up as one of the hardest-hitting Pokemon in all of Paldea. If that wasn't enough, it's also among the Pokemon with the highest HP at 154. This means that Iron Hands can stay in the fight and serve up seismic slaps repeatedly without going down.
5/10 Roaring Moon
Salamence's primordial predecessor isn't just one of the best designs of all the past Paradox Pokemon, it's also one of the strongest physical attackers. This lunar-shaped terror’s 139 base Attack stat gets a boost in the sun or with Booster Energy through its ability Protosynthesis. Combined with its 119 base Speed, this makes it one of the hardest threats for any trainer to eliminate.
Its Dark/Dragon typing is great offensively, but has a massive weakness to Fairy-type. However, with a Steel, Poison, Fire, or even Fairy-type Terastalization, it can keep its offensive strength and even counter its most common threats. It’s fast, it’s scary, and it’s by far one of the best physical attackers Paldea has to offer.
Paldea's ill-spirited evolution of Primeape packs quite a punch. While it may only have a base Attack of 115, its Rage Fist move makes it an ominous threat on the battlefield. Each time Annihilape is attacked, it increases the power of Rage Fist by 50 points. This stacks up to six times for a move with a massive 350 base power.
This causes a devastating blow that will send any enemy to the afterlife, and knowing this means enemies tend to avoid it. Annihilape also has a base HP of 110 and access to the move Final Gambit. This allows it to easily trade its life for that of one of its opponents, which can be a really good trade in certain scenarios — here's looking at you, Dondozo.
This sword-wielding snow leopard is a force to be reckoned with on the battlefield. Its signature ability, Sword of Ruin, cuts down the Defense of all Pokemon on the field other than itself, allowing it to hit even harder with its 120 base Attack and lightning-fast 135 base Speed.
It’s an ability that can also be super useful for its physically attacking allies, especially those with priority moves. While its Dark/Ice typing makes it a bit frail, its ability to cut through opposing defenses will leave opponents with nothing but chills.
Baxcaliber may look like a discount Godzilla, but its offensive potential is top-tier. This powerful Pseudo-Legendary boasts a whopping base Attack stat of 145 and the most powerful physical Dragon-Type move, Gleave Rush, as its signature attack. Outside the Legendaries it’s typing is one of a kind, and gives it an edge over the other Pseudo-Legendary dragons.
What it lacks in Speed, it makes up for in raw power, and since one priority Ice Shard from this icy, overgrown iguana can take out almost anything it is super effective against, it doesn't always need to be fast. It also has a unique Ability that increases its Attack when hit by Fire-type moves, making it an excellent pivot for snowy teams. While it may not be as big as its kaiju inspiration, as a physical attacker Baxcaliber towers over the competition.
When you need a physical attacker, Palafin really does come to your rescue. Generation Nine didn’t just give us the long-overdue dolphin Pokemon that we’ve been asking for, but also gave it an incredible new Ability as well. Palafin changes from an adorable dolphin to an aquatic All Might when you return it to its Poke Ball and send it out again. The transformation is more than just appearance, as it’s stats go through a pretty heroic transformation as well.
It gets the strongest base Attack stat of any non-Legendary Pokemon at 160, making it just as powerful as Slaking but without its hindering Ability. It also gets a signature priority move with a base power of 60 called Jet Punch, allowing it to attack first when needed. Palafin is a super powerful physical attacker, and has the potential to save the day just when you need it most!
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