Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl Elite Four Guide

The Sinnoh Elite Four is tough in Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and SHining Pearl, but here's how to get a competitive edge.

Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl’s Elite Four pose a different kind of challenge. As with the region’s Gym Leaders, Sinnoh’s ultimate Pokemon trainers march to the beat of their own Belly Drum.

The remakes remain faithful to the originals in that the Elite Four don’t necessarily stick to one type, and when they do, there’s at least one ‘mon in the mix to destroy your strategy.

We recommend going in with a team that’s at least level 55 or higher, which, thanks to the remakes’ party-wide EXP Share, shouldn’t require too much grinding.

Pokemon BDSP Elite Four Aaron Tips

Aaron is a bug master, but each of his Pokemon has a dual typing that makes approaching this battle more complicated than it might initially seem. Fighting, Flying, Rock, and Fire Pokemon are all solid choices for this battle, and you’ll want to prioritize speed to take down Beautifly and Heracross before they wreck your party.

  • Dustox (lv. 53, Bug/Poison) — This is a simple fight and one you can easily win with a Flying type or strong Flying move, such as Aerial Ace.
  • Beautifly (lv. 53, Bug/Flying) — Beautifly’s typing leaves it open to several weaknesses, including Electric and Flying. Whatever your choice, take it down fast. Shadow Ball and Psychic can rip through your team if you take too long.
  • Vespiquen (lv. 54, Bug/Flying) — A strong Rock type or Flying type, such as Staraptor, is a must for Vespiquen. Defeat it quickly before Defense Order turns it into a buggy fortress.
  • Heracross (lv. 54, Bug/Fighting) — Heracross is Aaron’s hidden prize fighter. Rock Slide and Earthquake mean you’ll have poor luck with Flying and Fire types, respectively, unless they move fast. This is a fight you might want to get creative for, for example, using a Ghost type such as Gengar or Dusclops, to negate its Normal and Fighting attacks.
  • Drapion (lv. 57, Poison/Dark) — Drapion isn’t a bug, and your usual fallbacks for Dark types won’t work as well here. Exploiting Drapion’s weakness to Ground is a good idea, or you can just push through with whatever your strongest Pokemon is.

Elite Four Bertha Tips

Poor Bertha. Whoever her training mentor was that told her to stick with Ground Pokemon was cruel. Ground Pokemon are weak to common types such as Grass and Water and lack the means to properly counter them in most cases. Add slow speed and unfavorable dual typings to the mix, and you have a team that’s open to exploitation. 

  • Quagsire (lv. 55, Water/Ground) — Quagsire has a 4x weakness to Grass. You should be able to fire off a Giga Drain and end this battle in one turn.
  • Sudowoodo (lv. 56, Rock) — Not a Ground type. It’s still weak to Grass and Water, but you might want to use an X Defense to bolster your team against its high attack.
  • Golem (lv. 56, Rock/Ground) — Same here as with Quagsire. One powerful Grass move, or even a Water move, will end this.
  • Whiscash (lv. 55, Water/Ground) — Whiscash is the team troublemaker. It also has a 4x weakness to Grass, but it knows Ice Beam and will make quick work of any pure Grass type on your team. Swapping a fast Psychic type who knows a Drain move is one way around this issue, though.
  • Hippowdon (lv. 59, Ground) — Bertha’s finale also knows an Ice move, but it’s so slow that you should be able to take it down in one turn anyway. If you’d rather not risk it, use a Water type instead. Hippowdon doesn’t know any moves dangerous to Water types.

Elite Four Flint Tips

Flint is the odd one in Sinnoh’s Pokemon League. He’s a Fire master in theory and only has two Fire Pokemon (this is Sinnoh, after all). Electric and Fighting are two good choices to deal with his wild cards, and a Ground type would come in handy too. Don’t bother with Rock. Both of Flint’s Fire types know Rock shattering moves.

  • Rapidash (lv. 58, Fire) — Flint’s Rapidash has quite the stable of moves, including Poison Jab and Iron Tail. A sturdy Water type or a Ground type is your best bet for this one.
  • Steelix (lv.57, Steel/Ground) — Steelix is, ironically, weak to Fire and doesn’t know Ground moves, so you could use your own Fire type to deal with this one. If not, a Ground Pokemon or move is the next best choice. Steelix’s Thunder Fang is not healthy for your Water types.
  • Drifblim (lv. 58, Ghost/Flying) — Defeat Drifblim quickly before it uses Minimize and makes your life miserable. It has low defense, so a strong physical Electric move or Crunch are good choices.
  • Lopunny (lv. 57, Normal) — Use a strong physical attacker for Lopunny as well to avoid facing trouble from its Mirror Coat move. A Fighting move or Pokemon is ideal, since that’s Lopunny’s only weakness.
  • Infernape (lv. 61, Fire/Fighting) — Infernape is one of the more difficult challenges in the Elite Four so far. High speed and attack means it’ll almost always attack first, and Thunder Punch puts your Water types at a significant disadvantage. Bring out the Ground Pokemon again for this one or a fast Psychic type.

Elite Four Lucan Tips

Lucian’s team is formidable unless you come prepared. Pokemon with high special defense are a must, as is at least one Dark or Ghost Pokemon. Despite him being the last of the Elite Four, he’s actually less complex to deal with than Flint.

  • Mr. Mime (lv 59, Psychic/Fairy) — Bench the Dark ‘mon for this fight. Now that Mr. Mime has a Fairy move, you’ll want to rely on a Ghost type or just brute force to finish this battle.
  • Girafarig (lv. 59, Normal/Psychic) — Crunch should take this one down quickly. 
  • Medicham (lv. 60, Fighting/Psychic) — A Ghost type will make quick work of Medicham or, better yet, a sturdier Pokemon with a Ghost move. Medicham hits hard, and most Ghost types are rather frail.
  • Alakazam (lv. 60, Psychic) — Alakazam is pretty straightforward. Use a strong Dark Pokemon or move to defeat it quickly before it uses Nasty Plot and becomes nearly unstoppable.
  • Bronzong (lv. 63, Psychic/Steel) — Ghost or Dark is your best bet for Bronzong as well. It knows Earthquake, so don’t bother with a Fire type.

Champion Cynthia Tips

Cynthia is, obviously, the toughest trainer in Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl. There’s no one or two Pokemon that can take her team down — though an Ice type is a good idea — since she has a varied roster with even more varied movesets.

  • Spiritomb (lv. 61, Ghost/Dark) — Spiritomb’s sole weakness is Fairy. If you don’t have a Fairy type or moves in your party, you’ll just have to push through with your best Pokemon, ideally one with high special defense. Outside Sucker Punch, Spiritomb’s moves are all special based.
  • Roserade (lv. 60, Grass/Poison) — Roserade is fast and strong, but a good Fire or Ice Pokemon can exploit its Grass weaknesses. Avoid Psychic, as Cynthia’s Roserade knows Shadow Ball.
  • Gastrodon (lv. 60, Water/Ground) — Gastrodon is fairly straightforward, but Sludge Bomb means it poses a threat to Grass Pokemon. It’s very slow, though, so you should be able to pull off a devastating Grass move before it has a chance to react.
  • Lucario (lv. 63, Fighting/Steel) — Lucario’s Steel typing means you’ll want Fire or Ground to defeat it. Its signature Aura Sphere move and the surprise Dragon Pulse mean it’ll likely do some heavy damage no matter what type you bring in, though.
  • Milotic (lv. 63, Water) — A physical Electric move is the top option for dealing with Milotic. Mirror Coat will knock your special attackers out, and Ice Beam makes it too dangerous for Grass types to take the field.
  • Garchomp (lv. 66, Dragon/Ground) — Leave the Fairy types out of this one, as her Garchomp knows Poison Jab. Ice is the best choice, as Garchomp’s dual typing means it has a 4x weakness to it. As a backup option, make sure you’ve got one Pokemon that can lower attack. If Garchomp starts using Swords Dance more than once, you’ll need an option to reduce its attack to manageable levels again.

And that’s it for Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl’s Elite Four. You’re now the Champion of Sinnoh, but there are still some secrets left to uncover. Check out our other Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl guides for more tips.


Josh Broadwell started gaming in the early '90s. But it wasn't until 2017 he started writing about them, after finishing two history degrees and deciding a career in academia just wasn't the best way forward. You'll usually find him playing RPGs, strategy games, or platformers, but he's up for almost anything that seems interesting.

Published Nov. 29th 2021

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