How To Beat Cynthia In Pokémon Brilliant Diamond/Shining Pearl

You’re now on the cusp of taking your rightful place of being the Sinnoh League champion! Only one last trainer standing in your way. Here’s everything you need to know about the current champion, Cynthia. 


Champion Cynthia

The current champion of the Pokemon League is the strongest champion in all of Sinnoh. If you thought the Elite Four was hard to beat, wait till you go against the Sinnoh League champion. Cynthia is a far cry from everyone you’ve faced up to this point. Her team is very powerful and is definitely built competitively. She definitely earned her reputation as one of the hardest trainers you’ll face in any Pokemon game. With that said, let’s dive right into her team and see why she is so strong.

Spiritomb Lv. 61

Type: Ghost/Dark

Ability: Pressure

Item: Sitrus Berry


  • Shadow Ball
  • Dark Pulse
  • Psychic 
  • Sucker Punch

Right off the bat, Cynthia will throw one of the most difficult Pokemon to deal with, Spiritomb. Its unique typing and absurd stats make it a very tough matchup. Almost all of its moves will have STAB (same type attack bonus) so you better watch out when your strategy involves using a Pokemon weak to Ghost or Dark type moves. Being a Ghost/Dark type, Spiritomb is only weak to Fairy types so it is recommended to have a Fairy type Pokemon on your team. At the very least, get a Pokemon that can learn a powerful Fairy move like Dazzling Gleam whose type is neutral to Ghost and Dark type moves.

Roserade Lv. 60

Type: Grass/Poison

Ability: Poison Point

Item: Expert Belt


  • Dazzling Gleam
  • Shadow Ball
  • Sludge Bomb
  • Energy Ball

Roserade is one of the best Grass types in the entire game so it makes sense that it’s on Cynthia’s team for that added coverage. It has a very high Special Attack stat and a bunch of Special moves that can deal massive damage. Energy Ball and Sludge Bomb, in particular, are moves to watch out for. Cynthia’s Roserade also has the ability Poison Point which can poison an attacking Pokemon using a Physical move. While it’s a trong Pokemon, you can easily knock Roserade out with a strong Fire type. Just be careful of her ability and you should be good. 

Gastrodon Lv. 60

Type: Water/Ground

Ability: Storm Drain

Item: Leftovers


  • Scald
  • Earthquake
  • Sludge Bomb
  • Rock Tomb

Gastrodon may look like an easy target, being vulnerable to Grass type moves, it’s a competitively built tank with amazing coverage. The logical choice her would be to use a Grass type Pokemon, but since it knows the move Sludge Bomb, it might not be the ideal option. Your best bet here would be to use a Pokemon like Roserade. It’s a Grass/Poison type so it would be safe from the only coverage move in Gastrodon’s moveset. You can go all out and use offensive Grass moves or you can play the long game and stall by inflicting Poison on Cynthia’s Gastrodon. Either strategy will work out fine and will be effective.

Lucario Lv. 63

Type: Fighting/Steel

Ability: Inner Focus

Item: Wise Glasses


  • Aura Sphere
  • Dragon Pulse
  • Flash Cannon
  • Nasty Plot

Lucario is a very powerful hybrid sweeper with absurdly high Attack, Special Attack, and Speed. Based on the move set, Cynthia’s Lucario is more of a Special Sweeper with access to a bunch of Special moves like Aura Sphere and Flash Cannon. These two moves have STAB and can be lethal if you’re unprepared or underleveled. The Wise Glasses and Nasty Plot combo will ensure Lucario’s Special moves will hit like a truck. The best Pokemon to use here are Fire, Fighting, or Ground types. Ideally, you’d use a Pokemon that knows moves of these types and has a high Speed stat to ensure that it will attack first so you can hopefully knock Lucario out in one hit.

Milotic Lv. 63

Type: Water

Ability: Marvel Scale

Item: Flame Orb


  • Recover
  • Mirror Coat
  • Ice Beam
  • Scald

We’re down to Cynthia’s second to the last Pokemon and things are getting heated up. Milotic is a very strong Pokemon with excellent coverage to boot. Despite being a pure Water type, it can easily take down Grass types using Ice Beam. It also has the ability Marvel Scale which raises the ability bearer’s Defense stat whenever it has a status ailment. Couple that ability with an item like Flame Orb, which inflicts a burn on any Pokemon holding it, and you get a Milotic that has impenetrable defense against Physical moves. It can simply use Recover to heal back the damage dealt by the burn and it can continue to have raised Defense. Not only that, it also has a countermeasure for Special moves in Mirror Coat, which is a move that reflects the damage of any special move that hits Milotic. Overall, this Pokemon will be very challenging to beat and your best course of action is to get a strong, fast Electric type with a bunch of Physical Electric moves like Luxray or Electivire.

Garchomp Lv. 66

Type: Dragon/Ground

Ability: Rough Skin

Item: Yache Berry


  • Dragon Claw
  • Earthquake
  • Dragon Dance
  • Poison Jab

Cynthia’s ace in the hole. Garchomp is not only the Sinnoh League Champion’s best Pokemon, it is hands down one of the best Pokemon of all time. And that’s not only because it looks super cool. Garchomp has a whopping stat total of 600 which easily puts it in the same league as some Legendary Pokemon. With a very deep move pool and access to powerful STAB moves, Garchomp can easily wipe out what remains of your team at this point in the Pokemon League. Being a Dragon/Ground type, this Pokemon is very vulnerable to Ice type moves. However, it does have a Yache Berry with it which will drastically reduce the damage received from the first super effective attack it receives. Once it’s gone, it’ll be easy for you to clobber Cynthia’s Garchomp with a strong Ice type. A good option would be to use an Abomasnow which is a Grass/Ice type but it would be vulnerable to Garchomp’s Poison Jab. 

Which Pokemon should I use?

Unlike the Elite Four, Cynthia doesn’t specialize nor stick to a single type of Pokemon. She has a very diverse team with excellent coverage so, you’ll find it hard to poke holes in her tactics. So, it’s best to prepare beforehand with certain Pokemon that hold an advantage over Cynthia’s lineup. Weirdly enough, having your own Garchomp can go a long way against the Pokemon League challenge and can even hold its own against most of the Elite Four members. Magnezone is a solid Electric/Steel type that can actually be strong against Milotic. Roserade is also a solid Grass type that can fit most lineups. While some hardcore players may look down on you, using the Legendary Pokemon Dialga or Palkia can actually be of great use against Cynthia. If you don’t mind what other players may think about you, don’t hesitate using Legendary Pokemon to help you beat Cynthia.

So there you have it! That’s everything you need to know about how you can beat Cynthia in Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl. Be sure to check back with us again for more awesome guides on your favorite games. Have fun!