Pokemon GO: How to Beat Giovanni — Counters and Weaknesses (June 2023)

Take out the Boss of Team GO Rocket in Pokemon GO with this guide.

Giovanni is back in Pokemon GO with a new lineup. As part of the June 2023 Team GO Rocket Takeover and A Shadowy Disturbance Special Research, you’ll need to defeat the big boss himself. In return, you’ll get the chance to catch Shadow Regirock. Here’s how to find and defeat Giovanni in Pokemon GO, including his weaknesses and the best counters.

How to Find Giovanni in Pokemon GO

To face off against Giovanni, there are a few enemies you’ll need to beat first: three Grunts, a Leader, three more Grunts, a Leader, three more Grunts, and the last Leader. If you have the Rocket Radar, you can leave combat scenarios against a Team GO Rocket Leader you’ve already faced. Next time you have a Rocket encounter, it may be a different Leader, such as the one you need.

Once you defeat all three leaders, Cliff, Sierra, and Arlo, you’ll get the Super Rocket Radar, which triggers Giovanni. He’ll seek you out, but you’ll need to wade through decoy Grunts until you reach him. This will also get you through the various tasks associated with A Shadowy Disturbance.

Team GO Rocket Boss Giovanni’s Team Composition

Unlike those fore the Leaders, Giovanni’s team composition is a bit more reliable. We know for sure his first Pokemon, as well as his last. The only variable I found while playing is the second Pokemon, which pulls from a pool of three. His team overall looks like this:

  • Shadow Persian
  • Shadow Nidoking, Shadow Garchomp, or Shadow Rhyperior
  • Shadow Regirock
Image via Niantic

How to Beat Giovanni: Weaknesses and Best Counters

What would Giovanni be without his Persian? His team starts off with the majestic cat Pokemon, who’s only weak to Fighting moves. Lucario, Machamp, and Terrakion are heavy-hitting counters that can take it out quickly.

When it comes to the mystery Pokemon that’s sent out second, it can be Shadow Nidoking, Shadow Garchomp, or Shadow Rhyperior.

  • Shadow Nidoking is a Poison/Ground Pokemon, making it weak to Ground, Ice, Psychic, and Water attacks. Mewtwo, Mamoswine, and Primarina are good to counter this king.
  • Shadow Garchomp is extremely weak to Ice as a Ground/Dragon Pokemon. In addition to that, it’s weak to Fairy and Dragon moves. Mamoswine, Alolan Ninetails, and Galarian Darmanitan are the best counters.
  • Shadow Rhyperior is easy to take down with Water and Grass moves, but it’s also weak to Fighting, Ground, Steel, and Ice. I’d suggest using Primarina, Swampert, and Mamoswine here.

For the finale, Giovanni will send out Shadow Regirock. Weak to Fighting, Grass, Ground, Steel, and Water attacks, you’ll want to avoid taking Normal, Flying, Fire, and Poison Pokemon into the battle. Terrakion, Kyogre, and Metagross are all good options.

The biggest weakness Giovanni’s team has is to Water and Fighting Pokemon. Taking a strong Fighting Pokemon like Machamp for the Shadow Persian, Shadow Regirock, and a Water Pokemon like Primarina or Kyogre will ensure victory against Giovanni. Round out the composition with an Ice or Ground Pokemon like Mamoswine to hit the rest of the weaknesses Giovanni’s Pokemon may have.

Rewards for Beating Giovanni in Pokemon GO

When you defeat the big boss of Team GO Rocket, you’ll receive 5,000 Stardust, as well as three of the following:

  • Revive x4
  • Max Revive x4
  • Hyper Potion x4
  • Max Potion x4
  • Unova Stone x1

You’ll also be able to encounter Shadow Regirock with a chance to catch it. These rewards are in addition to any rewards you may get for completing tasks during A Shadowy Disturbance.

That’s how to find and beat Giovanni in Pokemon GO during the latest Team GO Rocket Takeover. If you need help defeating Cliff, Sierra, or Arlo, check out the rest of our PoGO guides for assistance.

About the author

Ashley Erickson

Ashley, otherwise known as Glitchiee, is an avid gamer of RPGs, TTRPGS, farming sims, The Sims, and a variety of games in between. Playing on the NES and SNES, collecting 1st gen Pokemon cards, and playing on her Gameboy color are some of her favorite memories from early childhood. Combined with a passion for writing, Ashley is focused on bringing the best news, guides, reviews and lists the industry has to offer.