Pokemon has always had its debates with what constitutes a strong Pokemon. Many fans will find success with their classic Charizard in Pokemon Red & Blue and a wave of diverse damage attacks, but competitive battlers can use others like Ferrothorn with strange stats and moves to be just as powerful. Either way, it’s clear there’s a huge amount of diversity in terms of what makes a Pokemon strong.

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On the other end of things, recognizing the weakest Pokemon ever is astonishingly easier. Many are outclassed by newer Pokemon in each game, making many of the worst Pokemon more obsolete in every game. Some of these poor souls can be quite cute, but they’ll never hold their own against any Pokemon outside of this list.

Updated March 25th, 2021 by Gene Cole: Many classic Pokemon fans were recently quite upset over their favorites not making it into the shrunken Pokedex of Pokemon Sword & Shield, but many are even more furious over the weakest Pokemon that made the cut. There are tons of things that can make a Pokemon weak in battle from its stats to its moves, and whether you’re playing a mainline game or Pokemon Go, there will always be a few of the worst Pokemon in the series hiding in the tall grass.

20 Abra

Abra in the Isle of Armor of Pokemon Sword & Shield

Now, sure, we all know what an indisputable boss Alakazam is. The original Psychic-type powerhouse has been crushing souls and shattering dreams into soggy tear-stained pieces for two decades now. You don’t mess with Alakazam and its glorious mustache. Sadly, when you first encounter the species in the wild, it’s usually in the form of the pitiful Abra.

Feeble and defenseless, it knows just one move: Teleport. All this achieves is a real annoyance for the trainers trying to catch it. It has high Special Attack and Speed stats for a first-form, but you can't make much use of them because it won’t learn any attacks until it evolves into Kadabra. What’s worse is that it only becomes Alakazam when traded, so if you don’t have a friend to play with you won’t reach Abra’s full potential.

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19 Shedinja

Shedinja as it appears in Pokemon Sword & Shield

Now, lots of fans like Shedinja. If players dig all things a little macabre and out there, a husk of dead skin that can steal your soul will be right up their alley. Seven thumbs up for your horrifying concept, Shedinja. As most Pokémon go, we’re scraping right through the bottom of the barrel into the muddy ground, with its Maximum HP stat of 1 being simply abysmal.

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The gimmick with Shedinja, of course, is its Wonder Guard ability, which makes it immune to all non-super-effective attacks. This is cool in theory, but is very tough to use consistently and practically in battle since so many types are Super Effective against a Ghost and Bug-type, making it mostly useless without an absurd amount of planning.

18 Luvdisc

Luvdisc as it appears in Pokemon Colosseum

The Pokemon world has had its share of strife, but the franchise still tries to stay true to its cutesy, friendly, trade-with-your-buddies beginnings. Hence the existence of Luvdisc, a marine Pokemon whose sole purpose is to bring joy and lifelong happiness to couples who encounter it. You can’t say fairer than that, and it’s certainly appealing to look at

The disappointment comes after you look at its moves and stats, and realize it’s almost impossible to deal damage and learns hardly any moves that aren’t Normal or Water-type. People thought that Alomomola in Pokemon Black & White would be its much-needed evolution, but was never connected to this new Pokemon and remained utterly pointless, besides farming its signature Heart Scale items for the Move Relearner.

17 Snom

Snom flailing its arms in the air from The Crown Tundra in Pokemon Sword & Shield

Snom and its evolution Frosmoth are also Sword & Shield newcomers. Prior to the game’s release, there was hope that Frosmoth would prove to be an Ice-type Volcarona equivalent, a fearsome special attacker and major setup threat. While there’s a little truth to that, it takes a whole lot of work to set up a sweep with Frosmoth.

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This isn’t surprising at all if you simply look at Frosmoth. It doesn’t have a base stat above 45 (Special Attack), with its Speed as low as 20. It has only two moves in its learnset, Struggle Bug and Powder Snow. Frosmoth can do some heavy lifting with its Hidden Ability, which halves all special attack damage it takes, but its pre-evolution is sub-par even by baby Pokémon standards.

16 Eevee

A Shiny Eevee being hatched in Pokemon Sword & Shield

There are tons of Pokemon you’ll see later in this list that are only good when they evolve, but Eevee has been one of the most popular Pokemon to never be good despite all the boosts it receives. Everything from a unique Z-Move to a Gigantamax Form have tried to make the original Normal-type form useful, but nothing has done the trick in a mainline game and it’s always just been better to evolve it.

The only exception to this is in Pokemon Let’s Go Eevee, where it was finally given a variety of unique move tutor attacks with overpowered abilities, but even then it’s not usable in most other Pokemon appearances and gets by on some buffed stats in this spinoff, making it feel just as empty as any other attempted boost to the neutral beginnings of Pokemon’s biggest evolution line.

15 Bidoof

Chimchar facing off against Bidoof in Pokemon Diamond and Pearl

In the early stages of any Pokemon adventure, players have some pretty simple foes to cut their teeth against. These are the ‘early route trash’ of Pokémon like Pidgeys, Rattatas, and Lilipups that teach you the fundamentals of catching and battling. Of all of these Pokemon, none have seemed as hopeless as Bidoof.

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The derpy expression on its face told you, at a glance, this thing wasn’t Elite Four caliber. If it appeared in a player’s party at all, it was as an HM user, fulfilling the role pretty well thanks to its convenient Normal and Water-type body. Outside of manual labor, Bidoof has never received any moves, abilities, or stat boosts to make it worth using, and that includes its equally dopey evolution Bibarel.

14 Plusle & Minun

A horde of Plusle and Minun against a Gallade in Pokemon X and Y

Of the several Pika-clones to be released in each generation of Pokemon game, Plusle & Minun are surely the weakest by a huge margin. They were introduced to be complimentary tag team partners, with abilities that boosted each other’s stats to give them an edge in Pokemon Ruby & Sapphire’s new Double Battle system.

The problem is that this ability is attached to a pair of embarrassingly weak Cheering Pokemon that don’t have many attacks outside of Electric-type moves, and even then a lot of fairly weak ones like Spark for most of the game. In theory, these should be as strong as they are adorable, but instead they end up being utterly pointless and have never gotten a sufficient buff to be effective.

13 Farfetch'd

Farfetchd as it appears in Pokemon Lets Go

Even the biggest fans of Flying-type Pokémon, those who consider the in-game Bird Keepers their spirit animals, have their limitations. You can try to find spots in teams for even the most overlooked and underappreciated Flying Pokemon, but Farfetch'd is one of the toughest sells of all thanks to poor stats and no evolutions to pursue.

When base stats, usefulness, charm and charisma were being handed out to the original 151, Farfetch’d found itself at the back of the line. Its saving grace is that it now has a Galarian form and an evolution, Sirfetch'd, but its base Kanto form is still one of the memes of the Pokemon series due to this inability to battle against even the simplest of foes.

12 Zubat

Zubat as it appears with Team Rocket in Pokemon Lets Go

This poisonous little bat craves attention, or at least that’s the only explanation most people can think to explain why it shows up nearly every five steps in any given Pokemon cave. It’s useless for grinding experience, its evolution Golbat is hardly an improvement, and maximizing its Friendship stat to evolve it into Crobat takes years off your life.

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This Pokemon has essentially become more meme than monster, becoming a symbol of irritation in the Pokemon world rather than a lovable member of the original Pokedex. When most players are asked who is the weakest Pokemon, Zubat is almost always going to pop into their heads while they consider an answer.

11 Wobbufett

Wobbuffet in Pokemon Sword & Shield waiting to be striked

Remember the Super Smash Bros Sandbag? The poor little guy’s only purpose was to be beaten on. It looked happy enough doing it, granted, and its trophy in the game promised that it actually was, but the Pokemon world’s equivalent doesn’t seem anywhere as capable of taking a punch with a smile.

This sad beast is completely unable to deal any damage at all by itself. Its only joy in life is to absorb attacks, then use Counter or Mirror Coat to hit back for twice the damage it took. If it had great defense stats, this could be pretty impressive, but instead it lacks much besides a high HP stat, meaning most powerful attacks will still probably kill it in a single shot and not give you the opportunity to counter.

10 Unown

The W Unown in the Pokemon Go Pokedex

This terrible Psychic type is perhaps the hardest of all to make work in battle. It learns a grand total of one move, which is Hidden Power, making it incredibly hard to stand up against nearly any opponent that outmatches its terrible arsenal. It’s not often thought of for its weakness since it’s tied into lots of Pokemon lore, but it’s otherwise been useless in any appearance it’s made.

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Since they are living hieroglyphs, after all, and I suppose that’s a party trick worthy of note if you want to spell out funny or inappropriate words. Its signature move Hidden Power doesn't even exist in the later games, so they’ve now become even more irrelevant.

9 Pumpkaboo

Pumpkaboo from Pokemon Sword & Shield

Many of the worst Pokemon in the game are also the oldest, but one of the biggest exceptions is Kalos’s own Pumpkaboo, an adorable haunted jack-o-lantern that feats a growingly popular combination of Ghost and Grass-types. In theory, this Pokemon is quite neat due to each one having a different size, which takes the form of different HP and Speed stats.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t lead to high enough stats to particularly matter, and even when this Grass-type evolves into Gourgeist there aren’t high enough stats for any size besides the biggest and smallest to be relevant. Even then, they aren’t anything spectacular compared to other Pokemon, making it somewhat of a lost cause.

8 Slakoth

Slakoth as it appears in Pokemon Go

Many Pokemon will get better when they evolve, but few of them lag behind the others as much as Slakoth. This two-toed sloth is famous for its lively evolution of Vigoroth and its titanic ape evolution of Slaking, but getting to either of these means somehow getting a Slakoth to Level 18.

This is almost impossible without long and exhausting swaps with other Pokemon, as it learns hardly any moves that deal damage and will rest every other turn due to its semi-unique Truant ability. If you can evolve it to Slaking, its strength and defense are able to make Truant slightly less useless, but this is a huge ask for such a pitiful creature.

7 Igglybuff

Igglybuff after being freshly caught in Pokemon Sword & Shield

There are all kinds of baby Pokemon introduced in Pokemon Gold & Silver, and most of them are surprisingly effective in battle. Elekid and Magby ended up being great version exclusives in Pokemon Black 2 & White 2, while Pichu has a place in many different player’s hearts for its cuteness and Volt Tackle attack.

RELATED: 10 Pokémon That Take The Most Leveling Up To Evolve

Igglybuff falls much further behind than most others, having some of the weakest stats among any of these Gen 2 baby Pokemon. Its HP stat is substantially higher, but with one of the lowest Defense and Special Defense stats in the game, it might as well not be there.

6 Metapod

Metapod versus Metapod in Pokemon Lets Go Pikachu

It’s hard to list off weak Pokemon without just gravitating to the Bug-types of the series, but Metapod and its sister species Kakuna are undoubtedly the most incapable of the bunch. There’s an entire episode of the anime dedicated to their usefulness, as Ash battles another Metapod trainer while the two face-off underwhelmingly.

If you evolve it from a Caterpie, this can mean it’s able to learn Tackle, but it doesn’t have any worthwhile stats besides Defense and will still be a terrible user of this vanilla strike. It’s a truly fundamental example of the weakest Pokemon in the series, and is nothing but a roadblock on your way to the infinitely superior Butterfree.

5 Magikarp

Magikarp flailing in Pokemon Sword Shield

Here it is. Magikarp, the terrible Pokémon all other terrible Pokémon aspire to be. Now, the series does love hammering home to the old ‘effort pays off’ thing. Since the first generation of games, the true powerhouses have taken a lot of work to evolve. The Dragonites and such of the world take a lot of experience to reach their final forms, evolving much later.

Magikarp doesn’t take all that long, becoming the almighty Gyarados at level 20, but it’s a pain to raise to that point. Magikarp is the ultimate Joke Pokémon, even armed with its own signature comedymove in the form of Splash. Making Z-Splash actually relevant in Sun & Moon was a nice touch, as it could raise Magikarp's Attack stat to hilarious heights, but with no Z-Moves in later games its power has returned to oblivion.

4 Delibird

Game Pokemon Sword Shield Delibird Present Move

Delibird is yet another sorry specimen from the depths of the base stats basement. Like some others we’ve come across in the course of this list, Delibird manages to combine just about every awful trait a Pokemon can have into one horrible raging failure of a creature, highlighted by a vulnerable type combination of Flying and Ice-type.

With its low defenses, offenses and everything else, it’s completely outclassed at everything it could possibly try to do. Finally, just to set itself apart, it has another special trait: Its signature move, Present, deals either damage or healing towards the opponent instead, meaning it’s one of the only Pokemon that will actively benefit your opponent.

3 Wimpod

Wimpod Battle Sprite Pokemon Sun Moon

When it comes to the seventh generation, there’s nothing more feeble than Wimpod. You probably came across this poor soul during the water trial, shuffling around on the beach trying not to draw attention to itself. To catch the teeny shrimp, you had to be a little crafty, as it tries to flee from you on sight.

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Appropriately enough, Wimpod’s ability is Wimp Out, which will automatically switch it out of battle on taking a hit. It’s an all-round pitiful little thing. That’s not the end of the story, as Guzma and his beastly-looking evolved Golisopod will tell you, but still. Golispod’s own ability, Emergency Exit, is just a fancier phrasing to try and hide its weak roots.

2 Smeargle

Smeargle in a wild battle in Pokemon Sun and Moon

Smeargle deserves at least one mention because, at its core, it’s exceptionally weak compared to nearly every Pokemon. Its stats are some of the worst for its size, and with no evolution to obtain it can easily feel like a waste of time for most trainers.

The only way for it to be powerful is through its unique move Sketch, which can let it permanently learn any move in the game so long as it’s used before Sketch is activated. This means you can teach Smeargle some powerful signature moves from powerful banned legendaries like Darkrai, but you still need to hope it won’t faint before it slowly uses one of these attacks on a much sturdier opponent.

1 Geodude

Geodude being caught in Pokemon Lets Go

There are all kinds of candidates and descriptors for the weakest Pokemon. Having bad moves to choose from, large numbers of weaknesses, and irritating appearances can leave a horrible impression, and there are few Pokemon in the entire series that accomplish all three of these as effectively as the armed pebble Geodude.

This is one of the only Pokemon that has absolutely no hope in winning against nearly any opponent. Its physical defense is quite high, but this doesn’t make up for a depressingly high six different weaknesses, a tragic Special Defense stat, and one of the lowest speeds in the entire series. Nearly every common move in the game can take down a Geodude from Kanto with ease, making it undoubtedly the biggest waste of a trainer’s time and the worst Pokemon you could add to your team.

Next: The 10 Weakest Hoenn Pokémon, Ranked

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