One of the many different mechanics introduced in the Pokemon franchise over the years, Mega Evolution is one of the most notable aspects of the modern games. Though it was prevalent throughout Gens VI & VII, Mega Evolution was seemingly dropped from the series with the arrival of the Gen VII games. Despite its popularity, nothing has been shown or said to suggest that fans will see the temporary transformation make it back into the fold any time soon.
The majority of Mega Evolutions are comprised of Pokemon from the first four gens. But even at that, the mechanic is limited to a select group of Pokemon. Of the first three generations, Gen II stands as the most underrepresented. While Gens I & II saw their regional starters receive Mega Evolutiuon buffs, the Johto trio has yet to get such treatment. With only six Mega Evolutions in the Gen II pool, finding the best option available is an easier task compared to the Gen I & III group. This is how all the Gen II Mega Evolutions compare and rank.
6 Mega Heracross
Heracross getting a Mega Evolution certainly makes sense, as it’s one of the more often recognized and fondly remembered Pokemon of its generation. One of the better Bug-types at the time of its introduction, Heracross stands as a decent but not great option in battle that ultimately wasn’t improved upon all that much by its Mega Evolution.
Mega Heracross maintains its base HP and Special Attack while gaining a boost in Attack, Defense and Special Defense. The Attack and Defense stat boosts are its most significant (125 to 185 & 75 to 115 respectively); with the Special Defense boost being fairly minimal at best and coming at the cost of even lower Speed than normal.
Though trainers can easily take advantage of the plethora of Physical moves in its learnset, Mega Heracross retains all of Heracross’ weaknesses. With no immunities alongside a quadruple weakness to Flying moves and weaknesses to Fire, Fairy and Psychic moves, Mega Heracross stands out as the least viable of the bunch.
5 Mega Houndoom
At the time of its introduction, Houndoom was one of only a handful of Dark-types in the series. Serving as a great counter to ghost and Psychic Pokemon, Houndoom certainly has its uses in battle. While its Mega Evolution improves on some things, the changes aren’t all that impressive.
Speed and Special Attack have always been Houndoom’s strongest traits. Mega Houndoom expands on this by raising its Special attack from 110 to 140 and its Speed from 95 to 115 respectively. The most significant improvement however stands as its Defense buff, going from 50 to a much better rounded 90.
Mega Houndoom is still every bit the effective glass cannon its counterpart is, but the reason why it finds itself so low in the rankings has to do with its learnset. Most of the moves Houndour can learn by leveling up are Physical, and while it possesses a base Attack stat of 90, trainers would be better off taking advantage of its superior Special Attack.
4 Mega Scizor
Like Houndoom, Scizor’s unique typing made it a standout in its time. Though, it has ultimately fared slightly better than Houndoom has over the years. While it has its weaknesses, Mega Scizor is a perfectly viable option in battle, save for some very specific situations.
HP, Speed and Special Attack aren’t Mega Scizor’s strong points. But it more than makes up for its shortcomings with Attack, Defense and Special Defense stats of 100 or more. With a learnset that takes advantage of its 150 base Attack, trainers won’t have any problem figuring out how to use the Bug/Steel-type.
The biggest issue with Scizor is its quadruple weakness to Fire-type moves. It’s effectively useless against any Pokemon that can use them and its subpar Speed – true of both its Mega Evolution and normal form – likely make it so that it’s getting hit first in battle. The good news is that Scizor has all kinds of type resistances and boasts a pretty useful immunity to Poison-types.
3 Mega Steelix
The difference between Steelix and its Mega Evolution is certainly the most drastic seen on this list thus far. In its base form Steelix is fairly one dimensional, standing out due to its 200 base Defense. However, its Mega Evolution helps make it more of a well rounded Pokemon.
Steelix’s mediocre HP (75) & atrociously low Speed (30) and Special Attack (55) stats remain intact with its Mega Evolution. Its two highest stats, Attack (85) and Defense (200) get boosted to 125 & 230 respectively, but what helps it out the most is an increase in Special Defense, going from 65 to 95. The boost in Special Defense gets rid of Steelix’s most glaring weakness and makes for a better rounded Pokemon overall.
Steelix has quite a few weaknesses trainers have to be aware of and though that’s certainly not doing it any favors, it carries with it a myriad of resistances that will more than likely come to use at one point of another in battle.
2 Mega Ampharos
Mega Ampharos has a lot going for it, but also comes with considerable risks. It’s a useful Pokemon if you know how to get the most out of it, and has the distinction of being the only Gen II Mega Evolution that gains a dual type with its transformation.
Mega Ampharos gains Attack, Defense and Special Attack & Defense but it comes at the cost of its Speed stat which was mediocre regardless. Due to it being Electric/Dragon-type in its Mega Evolved form, Ampharos gains three additional weaknesses (Dragon, Fairy and Ice) to go alongside its initial Ground-type weakness. While it does gain an additional three resistances (Fire, Water and Grass) to go alongside its initial resistances to Flying, Steel & Electric, it might not be a fair enough tradeoff for some players. Utilized properly though, Mega Ampharos can be a real headache in battle for opposing trainers.
1 Mega Tyranitar
The only pseudo-legendary of the Gen II Mega Evolutions, Mega Tyranitar’s spot was all but guaranteed from the beginning. As with all pseudo-legendaries, it has an additional 100 total base stat which puts it at 700 overall. Aside from its middling Speed stats, Tyranitar is a fairly well balanced Pokemon. Its Mega Evolution only expands on that.
Possessing 150 plus Attack and Defense alongside a Special Defense of 120, Mega Tyranitar can dish out a good amount of Physical damage and absorb a fair amount of punishment at the same time. The big issue lies in its weaknesses. Though it’s immune to Psychic-types and resistant to Normal, Flying, Poison, Ghost, Fire and Dark-types, Mega Tyranitar carries over Tyranitar’s seven type disadvantages. This includes a quadruple weakness to Fighting-types alongside Bug, Ground, Steel, Water, Grass and most discouragingly Fairy-type weaknesses. It’s a solid Mega Evolution, but the risk might not always be worth the reward.