My Pokemon Gym: Ice

A couple of months ago, I wrote a blog post where I shared what my Pokemon gym would be if I were the gym leader of a Fighting type gym. As I mentioned in that post, Fighting isn’t a type that’s particularly high on my list of types I like, though I did want to write the post at the request of one of my blog followers. With my birthday coming up later this month, I wanted to take the opportunity to revisit this gym concept, only this time looking at my favorite Pokemon type. That type would be Ice type Pokemon.

Ice type Pokemon are a much maligned type in the Pokemon universe. While it’s a great attacking type, dealing super effective damage to some of the most frightening offensive types, Ice types are defensive liabilities. Defensively, Ice types are weak to Fire, Fighting, Rock, and Steel Pokemon, nearly all of which feature on most common Pokemon teams in some capacity. This is what makes trainers like Lorelei, Wulfric, and Candice much easier to battle than other gym leaders or Elite Four members. Even with that in mind, my goal is to do my best to represent my favorite Pokemon typing well as a gym leader for it.

As I’ve done on previous Pokemon team/gym style posts, I’ll be sharing the six Pokemon on my team, along with their held items and moves. I’ll also be giving a little additional background into why I’ve chosen each of these Pokemon. I won’t be using legendary Pokemon on my team, despite the fact that the very first Ice type I loved is the original Ice type legendary, Articuno. I’ve tried to limit the number of Pokemon I’ve taken from any single generation, however, since Ice types have a fairly limited pool to pull from — and many of those Pokemon get evolutions in later generations randomly — I have a team that’s largely comprised of Gen I and Gen IV Pokemon.

Alolan Ninetales

Alolan Ninetales courtesy Bulbapedia

One of the critical components of getting any Ice type team to work is setting up Hail for sake of Aurora Veil and residual damage. Enter Alolan Ninetales, which combines both of these into one easy package. I chose to make Alolan Ninetales my lead Pokemon rather than my ace for this reason, as its primary purpose is to protect the rest of my team the best it can. I really wish I had five move slots on this set, as I’d love to run the Toxic/Hex combo that amuses me so much. But alas, that’s not Alolan Ninetales’ job with this set.

Ability: Snow Warning
Item: Icy Rock
Moves: Aurora Veil, Mist, Blizzard, Toxic

Lapras

Lapras courtesy Bulbapedia

Because Ice types have so many weaknesses, part of my strategy as a leader is that I need to have specific counters to those weaknesses. This means that as much as I wanted to bring Cloyster on the team, Lapras is the much smarter choice as my anti-Fire counter. Lapras can be a shockingly good mixed attacker with the right moveset, though I’ve chosen to boost its survivability over attacking power, as it is one of the bulkier creatures on my team.

Ability: Shell Armor
Item: Assault Vest
Moves: Whirlpool, Perish Song, Curse, Protect

Froslass

Froslass courtesy Bulbapedia

Can you tell I like troll-y Ice type Pokemon? Between a screen setting Ninetales, a trapping Perish Song Lapras, and now the queen of Destiny Bond in Froslass, my first three Pokemon on this list are meant to take out major threats to the three Pokemon that end this list. I’ve used Froslass as a lead when I’ve battled online, however her purpose on this team is to cripple the other team’s hard hitters, as well as to take them out with self-sacrifice if needed.

Ability: Cursed Body
Item: Focus Sash
Moves: Destiny Bond, Confuse Ray, Will-O-Wisp, Ominous Wind

Weavile

Weavile courtesy Bulbapedia

And thus begins the hard hitters of my team. Weavile hopes that any Fighting Pokemon are dealt with before it comes in, however it’s set up to start wrecking the other team if that’s the case. As much as I want to justify using Pickpocket on Weavile, there’s no good reason to do so when Pressure exists. Not that anything will live long enough for Pressure to truly matter if all goes well.

Ability: Pressure
Item: Darkium-Z
Moves: Snatch, Icicle Crash, Bite, Dark Pulse

Mamoswine

Mamoswine courtesy Bulbapedia

While Weavile is meant to take advantage of its speed and flinching capabilities, Mamoswine is my glacier. Sure, it doesn’t move as fast as my other Pokemon1Though Mamoswine has shockingly good speed., but it’s going to hit like a truck when it does. I considered putting Mega Glalie in this spot to give me a mega Pokemon, but then I remembered how much I detest Glalie. So no.

Ability: Thick Fat
Item: Muscle Band
Moves: Thrash, Earthquake, Superpower, Avalanche

Jynx

Jynx courtesy Bulbapedia

My ace for this team is a much-maligned Pokemon that I’ve found I’m one of the few people who loves. Jynx is one of my favorite Pokemon to use, both in the mainline games and in Pokemon Go. Yes, it has horribly frail defenses, but the hope is that most of its threats are taken out early by the first few Pokemon on my team — or by Weavile and Mamoswine if not. While I was tempted to do a full kiss moves team with Jynx2As it can learn Draining Kiss, Lovely Kiss, and Sweet Kiss., only one of those made my final moveset. Jynx is oblivious to your team’s wiles, and is the anchor of my Ice type gym because of it.

Ability: Oblivious
Item: Wide Lens
Moves: Lovely Kiss, Blizzard, Dream Eater, Hyper Voice