Pokemon Stadium gives you a wide option of critters to rent, and here we look at the best ones.
In Pokemon Stadium‘s various battle modes, like the Gym Leader Castle, you will be provided with a pool of “rental” Pokemon to use throughout. You can select up to six rentals from the pool of all original 151, save for Mew and Mewtwo. Stadium has several themed Cups to compete in, offering you Pokemon who are un-evolved or capped at a lower level to test out against their peers.
However, the Gym Leader Castle presents the premier challenge where you will be able to select from the full roster of rental Pokemon. Selecting the perfect team is harder than it may seem as some Pokemon come with moves that may not be very useful. You will need the right balance of strong Pokemon and movesets in order to conquer this gauntlet of Gyms.
In Pokemon’s debut generation, Slowbro shines as one of the bulkier options due to the way the Special stat functioned giving Slowbro respectable offensive and defensive potential. Despite its slow 58 Speed, Slowbro can tank heavy hits and strike back against rivals like Rhydon and Golem with Surf — a potential one-hit knockout.
Slowbro’s moves also include Disable and Dig for dealing with Electric-types who threaten to make quick work of Slowbro. Headbutt offers one last piece of tech, but won’t come into play except in desperate situations where you need two turns of attacks without being hit in order to win.
While not as bulky as its fellow Water-type, Slowbro, Starmie outperforms it in every other way, especially in offensive potency. Starmie’s superior 128 Special stat helps make up for the weaker move choice in Bubblebeam, though it can sometimes lower the target’s Speed. Once Starmie gains a Speed advantage, the battle is almost won as your hard-hitting attacks will overwhelm opponents.
Unfortunately, the rest of Starmie’s moveset is rarely used, save for the rare instance where Thunder may be helpful in breaking the tie with other Water-types, like Slowbro, which might otherwise slow down Starmie’s sweeping ability.
Zapdos has always been one of the best competitive Pokemon throughout the years, and its exceptional 153 Special in Pokemon Stadium makes it an excellent choice to face Gyms in the Castle. Zapdos can strike out for massive damage with Thunder — provided its attack hits.
Zapdos is a high-risk, high-reward option as missing a Thunder or Sky Attack can leave it open for devastating counter-attacks. However, Zapdos comes equipped with Substitute to mitigate this weakness, allowing it to trade a small bit of health for protection from an attack.
Among Ice-types, which are rather weak among other Pokemon, Lapras stands out as one of the premier choices. In addition to an Ice-type prowess, Lapras brings Water coverage in addition to both Sing and Confuse Ray, two great options to create openings and exploit subdued foes.
Lapras’ great set-up via Confuse Ray will allow Ice Beam to reliably finish off most enemies weak to it. Bubblebeam may require a second or third hit to knock a Pokemon out, but luckily the chance at dropping Speed should help Lapras to gain a much-needed leg up while snowballing before your opponents can react to the situation. Lapras is an excellent choice for either of its main typings, but keep potential matchups in mind as Lapras can sometimes be caught out against fast sweepers.
Exeggutor benefits from one of the best combinations of high stats and synergizing moves among its rental Pokemon peers. Exeggutor can set up a health-sapping gauntlet that can rout its opposition without losing much health of its own. Using Leech Seed combined with Hypnosis will incapacitate your opponent while draining their health. Attack with Mega Drain to finish off the fight and top off your HP bar.
Exeggutor’s impressive 153 Special is exceptional and should provide Mega Drain the power needed to dispatch Rock, Water, and Ground-types alike. While its fourth move, Egg Bomb does not benefit from Same Type Attack Bonus (STAB), it can still provide some surprising power if your opponent resists Grass attacks.
Alakazam tops fellow Special Attacker, Exeggutor with exceptionally high 163 Special to go along with its 148 Speed. While Kinesis and Dig provide niche usage that will mostly go unnoticed, the keys to Alakazam are Confusion and Reflect, the latter of which will halve all Physical damage that Alakazam receives, a life-saver for this Physically frail Pokemon.
Confusion’s base power leaves something to be desired, but being able to Confuse opponents from time to time does make it occasionally crucial to victory. Alakazam’s massive Special stat carries Confusion’s low damage, but it does present the argument that Kadabra may have a leg up on its evolved form due to access to the potent combination of Psybeam and Recover.
Cloyster provides the best combination of excellent Defensive bulk with crushing, high-damage offense to make it one of the game’s best Rental Pokemon. Its 208 Defense and respectable 113 Special make Cloyster a tough shell to crack for any opponents who don’t possess an attack to exploit one of Cloyster’s weaknesses.
Aurora Beam provides reliable Ice damage along with the emergency-use Selfdestruct for when Cloyster can’t feasibly live the rest of the battle. However, Clamp can prove to be useful as well, if you have the patience to deal minimal damage to your opponent over several turns while they are immobilized — so long as you keep using Clamp. While this strategy is usually frowned upon, it is a possible use for Cloyster, if you deem necessary.
Snorlax’s stats may seem average, all hovering around 100 and Attack at 139, but its high HP and access to Headbutt ensure that Snorlax can defend its title as one of the best sweeper Pokemon with flying colors. In addition to Headbutt, Snorlax can surprise Water and Flying-type enemies with Thunder — a very useful move against common powerful foes, like Articuno and Lapras.
Snorlax also boasts its signature move, Rest, allowing it to exploit its high HP stat and force opponents to stay on the offensive or risk losing all of their progress while Snorlax sleeps off any damage it may have endured. Round off his set with Bide, and you should be prepared to face most situations that the game will throw at you.
In Generation 1, Speed’s correlation with Critical-Hit-Rate means that being fast is the name of the game. Fortunately, Jolteon has Speed to burn, clocking in at 158 to augment an already impressive stat pool that includes a 138 Special. While risky, a Critical on Thunder will almost always knock out your foe, but Double Kick and Pin Missile also provide coverage in the form of multi-hit moves.
If your opponent resists your other attacking moves, Jolteon can also catch them off guard with Toxic, putting your opposing trainer on a timer to knock you out or risk losing the match in a flash. Only being weak to Ground ensures that Jolteon will frequently have the type advantage, making it an excellent choice for the later Gym Leaders.
One of the most frighteningly powerful parts of your journey across Kanto, Gengar makes short work of most Gym Leaders you will face, and can be a clutch part of the final matches. Despite only having access to Thunderbolt, Gengar is able to capitalize on its mammoth 158 Special stat to make excellent use of its sole attack.
The balance of Gengar’s moves include Confuse Ray, Hypnosis and Dream Eater; the latter two can be combined to exceptional effectiveness as Gengar safely devours the dreams and HP of its enemies. Gengar’s Hypnosis does pose a risk, but the reward is an all-but-guaranteed victory as few foes have the HP, Speed, and offensive power to counter this immensely potent poltergeist.
NEXT: Pokemon Masters EX Tips To Extend Your Legendary Gauntlet Streak
Andrew is a writer for The Gamer currently based in sunny LA after previously studying Screenwriting at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. He has previously worked with Games for Change, promoting games for social impact. He is a massive fan of Pokemon and loves cooking, but not both together.