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Though every generation of Pokemon games has its own unique story, the overall goal for players always remains the same. As well as attempting to catch as many different Pokemon as possible, they must defeat eight powerful gym leaders, before then heading off to the Pokemon League with the hopes of becoming a Pokemon Champion. Standing in their way, however, is a quartet of incredibly powerful trainers who are fittingly known as the Elite Four.

RELATED: Pokemon Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl: How to Get Through Victory Road

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Pokemon Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl are no different in this regard, with Aaron, Bertha, Flint, and Lucian each specializing in a different type of Pokemon. Building a team capable of defeating all four as well as the reigning Pokemon Champion can be incredibly difficult, as players will need to account and plan for 26 different Pokemon in total. Thankfully, healing items are allowed between battles, though even with them, players really are in for a tough old slog.

Updated December 4, 2021 by Tom Bowen: As is something of a tradition for Pokemon games, players will be able to battle the Elite Four as many times as they like after beating Cynthia. Much like the gym leaders before them, they'll even update their teams between battles, with each one having access to three different lineups for players to battle and overcome. This guide has been updated to include information about each member of the Elite Four's updated teams for both the first and second rematches, as well as some ideas as to how players can set up their own teams in order to beat them.

How to Prepare for the Elite Four

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Preparing for the Elite Four in Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl is considerably more difficult than setting up for a gym battle, as players will need to take on all four of the powerful trainers in a row without being able to fully heal their Pokemon in between (though they can and should use items to replenish HP before each battle). Worse still, they'll have to face off with the Sinnoh Pokemon League's defending champion straight after, meaning that players will need to defeat 26 different Pokemon in total. Needless to say, it's far from easy.

pokemon-brilliant-diamond-shining-pearl-elite-four-guide-elite-four-entrance

Though it is possible to defeat the Elite Four with a team of Pokemon around level 50, it becomes a far more manageable task with a team in the mid-sixties, so those who'd rather avoid having to use countless curative items during and between the four battles may want to spend some time leveling up on Victory Road before challenging Aaron. Even if players do have a well-leveled team, it's still worth stocking up on every variety of healing item at the Pokemart inside.

pokemon-brilliant-diamond-shining-pearl-elite-four-guide-gastrodon

When it comes to which Pokemon to actually take in with them, players should try to ensure that they have coverage for every element, as they're definitely going to need each one at some point. Gastrodon is a great pick in this regard, as it can cover rock (Ancient Powder), ground (Earthquake), water (Scald), and poison (Sludge Bomb) surprisingly well and is also very easy to find. For those who don't have one, they can be found on Route 224 at Level 52 or 53.

pokemon-brilliant-diamond-shining-pearl-palkia-dialga-cutscene-merge

Naturally, players will also want to take their starter Pokemon along with them, as it will probably be their strongest Pokemon having been with them since the very beginning of their journey. Palkia / Dialga can also be incredibly useful against the Elite Four, particularly if players have maxed out the friendship stat and had the Move Tutor on Route 210 teach it Draco Meteor. Aura Sphere can also come in handy, as too can Flash Cannon (Dialga) and Surf (Palkia).

pokemon-brilliant-diamond-shining-pearl-elite-four-guide-gengar

Depending on their starter Pokemon, players may want to bring Pokemon that cover the other two types along with them, though providing they have grass, fire, and water-type moves somewhere within their team, this isn't really essential. Any remaining spaces should be taken up by the likes of Kadabra and Haunter, while a strong flying-type like Togekiss can make defeating Aaron a lot easier. Obviously, if players have somebody they can trade with, the evolved forms of the first two would be better. It's also a good idea to have one Pokemon with access to Charm, as this can make Earthquake users a lot more manageable.

How to Beat Aaron

pokemon-brilliant-diamond-shining-pearl-elite-four-guide-aaron
Elite Four Aaron (7,068)
Dustox (Lv. 53)
Bug / Poison
Bug Buzz
Light Screen
Moonlight
Toxic
Beautifly (Lv. 53)
Bug / Flying
Bug Buzz
Psychic
Shadow Ball
Quiver Dance
Vespiquen (Lv. 54)
Bug / Flying
Acrobatics
Aerial Ace
Attack Order
Defend Order
Heracross (Lvl. 54)
Bug / Fighting
Brick Break
Earthquake
Facade
Rock Slide
Drapion (Lv. 57)
Poison / Dark
Cross Poison
Earthquake
Night Slash
X-Scissor

Aaron specializes in bug-type Pokemon, but also has decent coverage for poison and flying-types as well. Infernape can therefore come in pretty useful during this fight, though, like other fire-type Pokemon, may come unstuck against the two Earthquake users. If and when this happens, players can switch out to their flying-type or have their Charm user nerf Aaron's Pokemon's Attack stat, allowing players to heal up their fire-type attacker and throw them back in the ring. A Draco Meteor from a well-leveled Palkia or Dialga can also be pretty effective against all of Aaron's Pokemon if push really comes to shove.

How to Beat Bertha

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Elite Four Bertha (7,316)
Quagsire (Lv. 55)
Water / Ground
Earthquake
Recover
Surf
Toxic
Sudowoodo (Lv. 56)
Rock
Double-Edge
Head Smash
Low Kick
Sucker Punch
Golem (Lvl. 56)
Rock / Ground
Earthquake
Heavy Slam
Rock Polish
Stone Edge
Whiscash (Lvl. 55)
Water / Ground
Belch
Bulldoze
Hydro Pump
Ice Beam
Hippowdon (Lvl. 59)
Ground
Crunch
Earthquake
Ice Beam
Rest

Bertha specializes in rock and ground-type Pokemon, meaning she also has several Earthquake users in her team. This is bad news for Infernape users, although if they're able to have another Pokemon lower their opponent's Attack stat with Charm, Infernape's fighting-type moves should make quick work of most of Bertha's team. To a certain extent, players can just rely on out-speeding them for the most part, but Golem's Sturdy ability all but guarantees that players will be facing at least one Earthquake. Torterra and Empoleon are perhaps better suited for the task for this reason, so those who chose Turtwig or Piplup at the start of the game should have a slightly easier time of things.

How to Beat Flint

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Elite Four Flint (7,564)
Rapidash (Lvl. 58)
Fire
Flame Charge
Hypnosis
Iron Tail
Poison Jab
Steelix (Lvl. 57)
Steel / Ground
Crunch
Fire Fang
Iron Tail
Thunder Fang
Drifblim (Lvl. 58)
Ghost / Flying
Baton Pass
Minimize
Strength Sap
Will-O-Wisp
Lopunny (Lvl. 57)
Normal
Fire Punch
High Jump Kick
Mirror Coat
Quick Attack
Infernape (Lvl. 61)
Fire / Fighting
Close Combat
Fire Punch
Mach Punch
Thunder Punch

Despite supposedly being a fire-type specialist, only two of Flint's team are actually fire-type Pokemon. The rest are a complete mishmash of different types, meaning that players will need to switch things up quite a bit throughout the battle. If they have one, players can use a water-type Pokemon to take care of Rapidash and Infernape, and should be sure to give it a Chesto berry to hold to counter Rapidash's Hypnosis. A strong fighting-type Pokemon should be able to take care of Lopunny and Steelix, while Driflim can be countered with Haunter / Gengar if players brought one along with them. If not, players can deal with Drifblim using brute force, though this will take a while due to Flint having two Full Restores and Drifblim constantly using Strength Sap.

How to Beat Lucian

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Elite Four Lucian (7,812)
Mr. Mime (Lvl. 59)
Psychic / Fairy
Dazzling Gleam
Light Screen
Psychic
Reflect
Girafarig (Lvl. 59)
Normal / Psychic
Light Screen
Psychic
Thunderbolt
Trick Room
Medicham (Lvl. 60)
Fighting / Psychic
High Jump Kick
Ice Punch
Thunder Punch
Zen Headbutt
Alakazam (Lvl. 60)
Psychic
Future Sight
Nasty Plot
Psychic
Shock Wave
Bronzong (Lvl. 63)
Steel / Psychic
Earthquake
Gyro Ball
Payback
Trick Room

Lucian specializes in psychic-type Pokemon, so players should lead with their Haunter / Gengar if they brought one along. Alternatively, Palkia or Dialga isn't a bad shout either, as neither is too badly affected by psychic-type attacks. The biggest threat in Lucian's team is undoubtedly Alakazam, which will repeatedly use Nasty Plot to increase its Special Attack stat if left unchecked. This can make surviving a Psychic cast incredibly difficult, so players should hit it hard straight away, even if this means using something like Roar of Time and missing the next turn. Bronzong can also be a little tricky due to its high level and its high defenses, though its added weakness to fire-type attacks does open up a few additional options for players to exploit. After taking it down, players can move on to the final battle with the Champion.

How to Prepare for the Elite Four Rematches

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Though their teams grow stronger with each rematch, the underlying strategy for defeating the Elite Four remains very much the same. If anything, things are a little easier the second time around due to players having access to a much wider pool of powerful Pokemon; both in terms of Legendaries and those found in the Grand Underground after unlocking the National Dex. The second rematch will almost certainly push players to their absolute limits, however, especially as they'll still need to defeat Cynthia straight after using the same six Pokemon.

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A team of Legendary and Mythical Pokemon should be able to get away with using brute force, but those looking to take a more strategic approach should once again focus on type-coverage. An electric/flying-type like Rotom (Fan form) will come in handy against quite a few of the Pokemon that players will come up against, while Garchomp (evolve Gible) provides an excellent dragon/ground-type option.

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Bringing the final evolutions of all 3 gen 4 starter Pokemon (catch in the grand underground) isn't a bad idea, but Charizard (evolve Charmander), Poliwrath (evolve Poliwhirl using a Water Stone), and Abomasnow (catch in Mt. Coronet) arguably provide more useful type combinations for the battles ahead. For the final slot, players should bring a strong psychic-type like Alakazam (evolve Abra) or a powerful ghost-type like Gengar (evolve through trading) to round out the team.

Elite Four Rematch Teams

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Elite Four Aaron Rematch #1 (8,556)
Yanmega (Lv. 65)
Bug / Flying
Air Slash
Ancient Power
Bug Buzz
Detect
Vespiquen (Lv. 66)
Bug / Flying
Aerial Ace
Attack Order
Defend Order
Power Gem
Heracross (Lvl. 67)
Bug / Fighting
Close Combat
Earthquake
Facade
Rock Slide
Scizor (Lv. 65)
Bug / Steel
Bullet Punch
Night Slash
Swords Dance
X-Scissor
Drapion (Lv. 69)
Poison / Dark
Cross Poison
Earthquake
Night Slash
X-Scissor
Elite Four Bertha Rematch #1 (17,608)
Whiscash (Lv. 66)
Water / Ground
Earthquake
Ice Beam
Scald
Zen Headbutt
Gliscor (Lv. 69)
Ground / Flying
Earthquake
Guillotine
Thunder Fang
X-Scissor
Golem (Lv. 68)
Rock / Ground
Earthquake
Heavy Slam
Rock Polish
Stone Edge
Hippowdon (Lv. 68)
Ground
Crunch
Earthquake
Ice Fang
Rest
Rhyperior (Lv. 71)
Ground / Rock
Earthquake
Megahorn
Rock Wrecker
Thunder Fang
Elite Four Flint Rematch #1 (₱18,104)
Houndoom (Lv. 68)
Dark / Fire
Dark Pulse
Destiny Bond
Flamethrower
Nasty Plot
Infernape (Lv. 71)
Fire / Fighting
Close Combat
Fire Punch
Mach Punch
Thunder Punch
Flareon (Lv. 71)
Fire
Flail
Flare Blitz
Quick Attack
Will-O-Wisp
Rapidash (Lv. 69)
Fire
Flare Blitz
Hypnosis
Iron Tail
Poison Jab
Magmortar (Lv. 73)
Fire
Fire Blast
Focus Blast
Psychic
Thunderbolt
Elite Four Lucian Rematch #1 (₱18,600)
Mr. Mime (Lv. 69)
Psychic / Fairy
Dazzling Gleam
Light Screen
Psychic
Reflect
Bronzong (Lv. 70)
Steel / Psychic
Earthquake
Gyro Ball
Payback
Rock Slide
Espeon (Lv. 71)
Psychic
Dazzling Gleam
Light Screen
Psychic
Shadow Ball
Alakazam (Lv. 72)
Psychic
Dazzling Gleam
Nasty Plot
Psychic
Shock Wave
Gallade (Lv. 75)
Psychic / Fighting
Close Combat
Poison Jab
Psycho Cut
Shadow Sneak
Elite Four Aaron Rematch #2 (19,592)
Yanmega (Lv. 75)
Bug / Flying
Air Slash
Ancient Power
Bug Buzz
Detect
Vespiquen (Lv. 77)
Bug / Flying
Aerial Ace
Attack Order
Defend Order
Power Gem
Heracross (Lvl. 77)
Bug / Fighting
Close Combat
Earthquake
Facade
Rock Slide
Scizor (Lv. 75)
Bug / Steel
Bullet Punch
Night Slash
Swords Dance
X-Scissor
Flygon (Lv. 75)
Ground / Dragon
Boomburst
Bug Buzz
Dragon Pulse
Earth Power
Drapion (Lv. 79)
Poison / Dark
Cross Poison
Earthquake
Night Slash
X-Scissor
Elite Four Bertha Rematch #2 (20,088)
Whiscash (Lv. 76)
Water / Ground
Earthquake
Ice Beam
Scald
Zen Headbutt
Gliscor (Lv. 79)
Ground / Flying
Earthquake
Guillotine
Thunder Fang
X-Scissor
Mamoswine (Lv. 78)
Ice / Ground
Double Edge
Earthquake
Ice Shard
Icicle Spear
Hippowdon (Lv. 78)
Ground
Crunch
Earthquake
Ice Fang
Rest
Nidoking (Lv. 78)
Poison / Ground
Earth Power
Ice Beam
Sludge Bomb
Thunderbolt
Rhyperior (Lv. 81)
Ground / Rock
Earthquake
Megahorn
Rock Wrecker
Thunder Fang
Elite Four Flint Rematch #2 (₱20,584)
Ninetales (Lv. 78)
Fire
Flamethrower
Hypnosis
Nasty Plot
Solar Beam
Houndoom (Lv. 78)
Dark / Fire
Dark Pulse
Destiny Bond
Flamethrower
Nasty Plot
Infernape (Lv. 81)
Fire / Fighting
Close Combat
Fire Punch
Mach Punch
Thunder Punch
Rapidash (Lv. 79)
Fire
Flare Blitz
Hypnosis
Iron Tail
Poison Jab
Arcanine (Lv. 81)
Fire
Close Combat
Extreme Speed
Flare Blitz
Play Rough
Magmortar (Lv. 83)
Fire
Fire Blast
Focus Blast
Psychic
Thunderbolt
Elite Four Lucian Rematch #2 (₱21,080)
Mr. Mime (Lv. 79)
Psychic / Fairy
Dazzling Gleam
Light Screen
Psychic
Reflect
Bronzong (Lv. 80)
Steel / Psychic
Earthquake
Gyro Ball
Payback
Rock Slide
Espeon (Lv. 81)
Psychic
Dazzling Gleam
Light Screen
Psychic
Shadow Ball
Alakazam (Lv. 82)
Psychic
Dazzling Gleam
Nasty Plot
Psychic
Shock Wave
Slowbro (Lv. 82)
Water / Psychic
Flamethrower
Psychic
Scald
Slack Off
Gallade (Lv. 85)
Psychic / Fighting
Close Combat
Poison Jab
Psycho Cut
Shadow Sneak

MORE: Pokemon Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl: Complete Guide & Walkthrough

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