PKMN of the Week: Latias and Latios

Happy Mother's Day!  Hopefully you remembered to do something nice for your mother today . . . if you haven't by the time PKMN of the Week is posted you may be in trouble.  Why don't you stop reading for a minute and give mom a call.  Don't worry, we'll be here when you get back.

Which Pokémon are better to discuss on Mother's day than the family oriented Latias and Latios, the brother and sister Dragon/Psychic-type Pokémon?

The Latii (lah-tee-ai), as I shall call them here, have the highest base speed of all Dragon Pokémon  - possibly because they look like a cross between a bird and a jet plane?  They also share the same base HP stat at 80.  Latios puts a little more weight behind attacking stats - 90 for base Attack and 130 for base Special Attack, while Latias puts the same under defending stats - 90 for base Defense and 130 for base Special Defense.  Their lower base stats are 80 and 110 defense stats for Latios and attack stats for Latias.  I would go into Natures and EV training for each, but the number of permutations could be mind blowing.  Just like mom - do right by your kids!

Comparatively, some things to think about - Latios has higher Special Attack and Speed than Garchomp, as well as a much higher Special Defense.  On the other side, Latias has higher Special Defense and Speed than Cresselia.  Given knowledge of your opponent you may want to select off between these options.

The saddest thing about the Latii are their comparatively large number of weaknesses - Bug, Ghost, Ice, Dragon, and Dark - more than you would expect from a Dragon-type.  Also, their sole immunity, to Ground-types, only comes about from their Levitate ability.  Given that I was recently knocked about by an opponent using an Iron Ball, I have less faith in the value of Levitate.  Levitate can also be taken away by a bunch of other moves and abilities, please be careful when planning a team around it.

If I were building a team with Latios, I'd build up an attack focused team - but not with Garchomp.  I'm too afraid of having a double Dragon-type weakness pool.  Also stay away from Metagross, you would have a double Psychic-type weakness pool.  Maybe pair up with Tyranitar or Landorus for some good times.  If you want to build a team with Latias then you really need to get someone who is going to do the attacking.  Landorus has the nice base Attack and base Special Attack stats to cover that (as an aside, PKMN of the Week thinks the new Kami Trio formes are wicked cool!).

If you need to fight one of the Latii, put your dollar on an Articuno (or, of course, Cloyster, but then I might start to sound repetitive).  Of course, Genesect will also do horrible damage to the Latii, but that dude is just a figment of my imagination.

Rather than trying to go through a huge move pool consideration for the Latii, I'll just point out the unique features.  Level up moves that only Latios learns - Heal Block, Protect, Luster Purge, Dragon Dance, Telekinesis, Power Split, and Memento.  Latias has - Wish, Water Sport, Mist Ball, Charm, Reflect Type, Guard Split, and Healing Wish.  On some examination, you'll see that the Latios move set focuses on damage while Latias focuses on healing.  Latios's signature move is Luster Purge, which does damage and can potentially lower the opponent's Special Defense.  Latias has Mist Ball which would lower the opponent's Special Attack.  OK, on a whim, let's say since those are Psychic-type moves, also outfit them both with Dragon Pulse.  Give Latios Dragon Dance and Latias Light Screen.  Finally, maybe Latios can carry Giga Impact and Latias can try Reflect.  To be honest, I really like moves like Memento and Healing Wish in competition, I'm just not very good at using them.

There is only one hold item for the Latii - Soul Dew.  I'm kidding.  Soul Dew is banned in competition.  Also, if you say it out loud it sounds really, really weird.  If you train up your Latios for Speed you can outfit him with Choice Specs and get the Special Attack boost (Luster Purge, besides having a really weird name, is a Psychic-type special attack).  I like the idea of having Latias hold a Red Card which can mess up your opponent's strategy.

Well, if you haven't done anything for mom yet, I have one last idea for you - go grab a copy of Pokémon the Movie 5:  Pokémon Heroes.  It features the Latii and is something along the lines of Pokémon in Venice.  Moms love Venice!  It's the next best thing to taking her there!  If you are a mom who loves Pokémon, then, enough said, you're the best!