Defending a gym is a little different from attacking as the attacker can choose up to 6 Pokémon to bring into the battle. The defending Pokémon will be controlled by AI, so what you can do to defend a gym is to choose which Pokémon to be placed there.
What to Know About Defense
- Defender will start the battle with 2 quick attacks, pausing for a 1 second interval in between. Then it will start its cycle of attacks with 2 seconds interval in between. These attacks could be either quick or special attack depending whether the enemy Pokémon has filled up the bar for special attack or not.
- The cooldown for dodge is 0.5 seconds.
- All quick attacks have a damage window of 0.2 seconds.
- Special attacks have varying damage window from 0 seconds (Blizzard, which is undodgeable) to 2.1 seconds.
How to Choose a Good Defender
A Pokémon with higher health will be able to stand longer and defend better given that the defence AI will just cycle through quick attacks with a 2 seconds cooldown and occasional special attacks. Since the defense AI is not intelligent enough for other actions like dodging, a higher HP Pokémon will be able to stand longer and dish out more damage.
- Choose quick attacks with higher damage and remember that STAB will give bonus damage.
- Special attack like Blizzard has 0 seconds dodge window is undodgeable.
- For detailed explanation on dodging, damage window, and gym combat, refer to the Gym Combat section.
Since attacker gets to choose which 6 Pokémon to bring into the battle, the defender will always be at a disadvantage. The aim is to choose a Pokémon with less weaknesses compared to the others like Snorlax which is under Normal type. Having a Pokémon with moves which counter their counters will surprise the attacker as their Pokémon will be taking more damage than expected.