Giovanni in Pokémon GO is the leader pulling all of the strings behind Team GO Rocket. You can only fight Giovanni after completing the monthly research event for Professor Willow. You need to have done any of the previous research events to encounter him. With the new update for the An Inter-egg-sting Development Team Rocket event, Giovanni now has Mewtwo as a partner.
How to find Giovanni
To work on your journey to encounter him, you’ll need to progress through the Special Research event called A Shadowy Threat Grows. Before you can access this special research event, you need to have gone through Troubling Situation Special Research and A Professor’s Work is Never Done. You will battle multiple Team Go Rocket grunts and the three different leaders.
After you beat them, you’ll receive a Super Rocket Radar, similar to the Rocket Radar you used to locate the Team GO Rocket leaders. To use the device, you need to go into your bag to equip it. It should point you in the direction of Giovanni. However, a handful of Rocket Grunts have disguised themselves as fake Giovannis. You need to visit captured PokéStops to find out which one is the real Giovanni. If you have the Super Radar equipped, you can potentially encounter him in a Team Rocket balloon.
Giovanni weaknesses and Pokémon counters
Giovanni is a tough fight and is far more difficult than the other Team GO Rocket leaders. Prepare yourself accordingly for this encounter. Giovanni’s first Pokémon remains the same every month. However, his second and third options consistently change.
The first Pokémon Giovanni always uses is Persian, a Normal-type Pokémon. The best Pokémon to use against it are durable Fighting-types, such as Conkeldurr, Heracross, Gallade, Machamp, And Passimian.
The next Pokémon choice for Giovanni can be one of several options.
- Kangaskhan a Normal-type
- Garchomp a Ground and Dragon-type
- Nidoking a Ground and Poison-type
While Kangaskhan is only weak to Fighting-type Pokémon, Garchomp is weak to Dragon and Fairy-type attacks, and it’s especially weak to Ice-type moves. Nidoking is weak to Ground, Ice, Psychic, and Water-type moves. Your best bet is to lean into Garchomp and Nidoking’s weaknesses and try to use an Ice-type Pokémon. You want to try and use Galarian Darmanitan, Mewtwo, Articuno, Weavile, Mamoswine, Glaceon, Mega Blastoise, Regice, Salamence, or Dragonite.
After beating whichever the second option is that Giovanni uses, it’s time for you to face the legendary Pokémon, Mewtwo. It’s a Psychic-type Pokémon, making them weak to Bug, Dark, and Ghost-type Pokémon. Your best chances to take it down in the final fight is to use Mega Houndoom, Origin Giratina, Gengar, Chandelure, Darkrai, Hydreigon, Tyranitar, Weavile, or Mega Beedrill.
The general strategy for battling Giovanni is taking your time and relying on defensive Pokémon. Yes, you want to take down his roster quickly, but relying on straight damage won’t win the day. It’s a battle of attrition. You need Pokémon capable of withstanding a substantial amount of damage and dealing enough back to put a dent in Giovanni’s options.