February 5

Milotic The “Tender” Pokemon a Competitive Analysis

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Milotic is a powerful Flex Pokemon. If you want to play this incredibly strong Pokemon, our guide will help you understand what the best EVs, Nature, and Movesets!

Why Play Milotic?

Competitive players will always be looking to use “the best of the best” in Pokemon. Offensive, defensive, utility; it makes no difference. It’s incredibly clear that some Pokemon excel at these roles a lot more than others- but that doesn’t mean that the outshined are incapable of making their mark. Toxapex, Slowbro, Ferrothorn; we all know these names in the competitive field- but today, we are going to cover another underdog (or snake) that likes to flex attacks: the “Tender” Pokemon, Milotic.

An obvious gloat for Milotic is its typing of mono-water, meaning it only has two weaknesses, electric and grass. Its ability, Marvel Scale, also increases its defense stat by 50% once inflicted with a status ailment, which will greatly aid its tanking abilities since Milotic’s defense is subpar. Milotic’s move library, while limited, allows the Pokemon to learn necessary movesets. It should be noted that Milotic’s other ability, Competitive, could be utilized to make a nice offensive set for Milotic, but this would be easier to pull off in double battles instead of single battles. I will include a build for this as well but should readers have feedback or different movesets, please engage in the comments section below!

Best Competitive Defensive Build

Effort Values

  • 252 HP
  • 252 Defense
  • 4 Special Attack 

(Bold Nature)


The user restores 1/2 of its maximum HP, rounded half up.


Has a 30% chance to burn the target. The target thaws out if it is frozen.


Badly poisons the target.


Resets the stat stages of all active Pokemon to 0.

A “bold” nature is used to boost Milotic’s defense as high as possible with Marvel Scale ability. A “calm” nature is another possible option to ensure Milotic’s special defense is as high as possible but may hinder its capability to flex at physical attack type moves. “Recover” will keep Milotic healthy should its health get low and is needed on this set because of the suggested held item. “Aqua Ring” is another possible option to consider but isn’t as effective as “Recover”. “Scald” is decent STAB for Milotic and has the possibility to apply a burn on the target- halving their attack stat and making them useless for the remainder of the game. “Toxic” compliments this set perfectly, as any wall and stall set, by dwindling down the opponent’s health as they attempt to break through the wall. “Haze” prevents an offensive Pokemon from attempting to set up on Milotic and ensures they do not become a “wall breaker.” This also assists Milotic in establishing a solid foundation on the field. Other move possibilities to consider are Attract, Hydro Pump, Light Screen, Protect, and Ice Beam.

Best Competitive Offensive Build

Effort Values

  •  252 Special Attack
  • 252 Special Defense
  • 4 HP 

(Calm Nature)

Hydro Pump

No additional effects.

Ice Beam

Has a 10% chance to freeze the target.

Dragon Pulse

No additional effects.

Mirror Coat

Deals damage to the last opposing Pokemon to hit the user with a special attack this turn equal to twice the HP lost by the user from that attack.

For this build, the Competitive ability is what we are taking advantage of. When a stat is lowered on a Pokemon with Competitive, the special attack is raised by two stages. This can turn Milotic into a huge threat on the field and is ideal in double battles over single battles. Milotic’s partner can simply use any move to lower Milotic’s stat(s) and, in return, Milotic will increase its offensive capabilities. 

A “modest” nature is another solid possibility if you want Milotic to pack as much power as possible; However, with a “calm” nature, it can tank special attacks better and abuse Mirror Coat more often. Hydro Pump is an extremely powerful move but since it lacks in accuracy, it becomes a gamble. If this isn’t your cup of tea, “Surf” or “Scald” is viable as well. “Ice Beam” hits dragons and grass types for super effective damage and, while Dragon Pulse may cover dragon types, it also offers an outlet for neutral damage against various types.

There are various held items that would work with this moveset; However, Choice Specs is ideal because it increases the power of Milotic and will also help it break through walls while its partner boosts its Special Attack stat. Life Orb is another possibility if you don’t want to be locked into a single move.

Life Orb

Holder's attacks do 1.3x damage, and it loses 1/10 its max HP after the attack

Choice Specs

Holder's Sp. Atk is 1.5x, but it can only select the first move it executes.

Possible Moves

  • Attract- Causes the target to become infatuated, making it unable to attack 50% of the time. Fails if both the user and the target are the same gender, if either is genderless, or if the target is already infatuated. The effect ends when either the user or the target is no longer active. Pokemon with the Oblivious Ability or protected by the Aroma Veil Ability are immune. 
  • Light Screen-For 5 turns, the user and its party members take 0.5x damage from special attacks, or 0.66x damage if in a Double Battle. Damage is not reduced further with Aurora Veil. Critical hits ignore this effect. It is removed from the user's side if the user or an ally is successfully hit by Brick Break, Psychic Fangs, or Defog. Lasts for 8 turns if the user is holding Light Clay. Fails if the effect is already active on the user's side.
  • Protect- The user is protected from most attacks made by other Pokemon during this turn. This move has a 1/X chance of being successful, where X starts at 1 and triples each time this move is successfully used. X resets to 1 if this move fails, if the user's last move used is not Baneful Bunker, Detect, Endure, King's Shield, Obstruct, Protect, Quick Guard, Spiky Shield, or Wide Guard, or if it was one of those moves and the user's protection was broken. Fails if the user moves last this turn. 
  • Ice Beam-Has a 10% chance to freeze the target. 
  • Surf- Damage doubles if the target is using Dive.
  • Hydro Pump

Tips and Tricks

Teammates that can check Milotic’s weaknesses are greatly appreciated and not hard to build around, as there are only two. While able to tank, it’s not wise to keep Milotic in on super effective hits unless you are attempting to haze away stat changes. It’s a perfectly viable strategy to Dynamax Milotic against an offensive sweeper to counter their momentum. Be wary of Trick and Switcharoo users trying to infiltrate a defensive build.


In conclusion, Milotic is a strong Flex pick and can stomp heavy momentum based teams. The meta doesn't call for her but if properly built properly, she can fill many rolls. If you have any other recommendations for items and moves then please engage in the comment section below! We love to see unique builds and strategies!

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Spartan Alphazulu

About the author

Hello my fellow readers! I am Spartan Alphazulu and I am a 32 year old Air Force veteran that loves to nerd out over Pokemon, World of Warcraft, and Magic: the Gathering. I have always enjoyed competitive play in gaming since I was a child and am hoping to assist my readers with strategies and ideas that they can apply to their hobbies like many have done for me. I am married with five children who, like me, are showing interests in the many hobbies of gaming and nerd culture that I enjoy and am looking to set the example for everyone that doing what you love is not always a “waste of time” like many have told me growing up. Sometimes fate extends a hand and it is up to you to recognize and take the risk.

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