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Shadow Alolan Sandslash

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#28
GO
177
ATK
195
DEF
181
STA
Lvl 50Max CP
2750
Lvl 40
2432
Lvl 25Weather Boost
1737
Lvl 20Raids/Eggs
1390
Lvl 15Research
1042

PvE Analysis

The Shadow boost still doesn't quite put Alolan Sandslash on a par with its competition. It's sadly still not really worth the high investment needed to raise one.

Best PvE Offensive Moveset

Powder Snow + BlizzardBest
Metal Claw + Gyro BallGood
  • You really want Powder Snow in tandem with Blizzard.
  • Shadow Claw has no use for offense. 
  • Ice Punch is inferior, but at least it gets STAB. 
  • Metal Claw with Gyro Ball is a Steel moveset, but why?
  • With no STAB, don't even think about Bulldoze or Drill Run for offense.

Best PvE Defensive Moveset

Shadow Claw* + Ice Punch or Drill RunBest
  • Shadow Claw* is recommended for defense since it's less likely to be resisted by attackers. 
  • Powder Snow's high energy gain gives Shadow Alolan Sandslash better odds to use a charged move.
  • Metal Claw doesn't have a valuable typing against attackers. 
  • Ice Punch sports the earliest damage window and is also the most accessible as a 3-bar move. 
  • Drill Run has great counter-coverage and comes out reasonably often
  • Bulldoze and Gyro Ball are ridiculously slow
  • With double weaknesses to Fire and Fighting, good luck using Blizzard before fainting.

PvP Analysis

Shadow Claw* + Ice Punch and Drill Run

Powder Snow and Shadow Claw* are identical in performance against neutral opponents, and thus both are viable. The latter is less likely to be resisted and provides coverage, so it is often the preferred choice.. It is recommended to have multiple Alolan Sandslash with both Fast Moves to avoid using rare Elite TMs. 

The move rebalance on September 27, 2019 gave Alolan Sandslash the much needed Ice Punch, which is mandatory due to its low energy cost compared to A-Sandslash's other options. Benefiting from STAB, this is its main charge move and also acts as a shield bait.

Starting in June 1 2023, Alolan Sandslash gained access to Drill Run. It provides nearly perfect coverage when combined with Ice Punch, and is a much better move than Bulldoze.

Gyro Ball is amongst one of the worst moves in PvP, and Alolan Sandslash should not use it despite receiving STAB. Blizzard can pull off surprise KOes, but is far less consistent than Ice Punch due to its extreme cost.

Great League4 / 5

Alolan Sandslash is somewhat of a specialized corebreaker in the Great League thanks to its wide coverage and solid resistances. Out of all the meta Ice-type options with Ground coverage (Dewgong, Walrein, and itself), Alolan Sandslash fares the best against tanks such as Lanturn, Bastiodon, and Registeel. However, it is also the least safe option due to possessing two double weaknesses. The omnipresent Medicham gives Alolan Sandslash a run for its money.

Ultra League 3/ 5

XL Candy is required to optimize IVs for Ultra League. While it doesn't have the best matchups compared to other options, it can still beat down major threats like Giratina and Cresselia. Two double weaknesses and a lack of coverage against popular Water-types such as Swampert are still major issues. The addition of Drill Run gives Alolan Sandslash a much better matchup against Steel-type Pokemon, but it now has to contend with Cobalion, who can effortlessly dispatch Alolan Sandslash with its Fighting-type Attacks.

Master League0 / 5

Alolan Sandslash doesn't have the stats compete well in Master League. Whatever it can do here, other Ice-type pokemon can do better.

Purification Cost
Flee Rate
6 %
Buddy Distance
Catch Rate
20 %
Female Ratio
50 %
Male Ratio
50 %
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