Japanese Name: コジョンド(Kojondo)
Classification: Martial Arts Pokémon
Weight: 78.3 lbs
Gender Ratios: Male 50% – Female 50%
Base Stats: HP 65 / Atk 125 / Def 60 / SpAtk 95 / SpDef 60 / Spd 105
Abilities: Inner Focus / Regenerator / Reckless (Hidden Ability)
Mienshao is a fragile, but incredibly versatile, Pokemon. While his defenses make one cringe, his 105 base Speed, 125 base Attack and surprisingly high 95 base Special Attack make him incredibly valuable and incredibly tricky. Combine that with a wide and varied movepool and the sublime ability Regenerator, and you’ve got a Pokemon that will very rarely, if ever, let you down, especially in a pinch.
The first thing to really discuss when it comes to Mienshao is his stats. Mienshao is all about the offense. Do not bother wasting points in his defenses, because they’re all so low that he’ll likely not survive a strong neutral hit, and never a supereffective hit. Mienshao is the Lucario without the weakness to Fire, Ground and Fighting, so use him as such. 65/60/60 gets Mienshao nowhere fast defensively, but 125/95/105 offense and speed gives him all the get-up-and-go to not ever rely on his defenses to survive. Max investment in Speed is crucial, and the base 95 Special Attack is just effective enough that one could run a straight physical or mixed build.
Attacks also put Mienshao in a class all his own. Fake Out is Mienshao’s only offensive Priority move, and he uses it to the extreme in efficiency, breaking Focus Sashes and Sturdy abilities (particularly as your lead Pokemon). Hi Jump Kick is Mienshao’s most powerful STAB option, with a base power of 140, but it has only 90% accuracy and, upon missing, reduces your HP by up to half your maximum, which can be a fairly scary thing to think about in battle. For less base power but more reliability, Drain Punch is also an option. As odd as it sounds, Knock Off is a very effective move on Mienshao for the sake of crippling an enemy that will be giving you grief later on. It won’t do much damage, but the ability to rid a Jellicent or Porygon2 of their Leftovers or Eviolite is well worth it, softening up their walling power tremendously. Rock Slide and Stone Edge punish Flying, Fire and Ice types, and Acrobatics helps round out Mienshao’s coverage with Hi Jump Kick, but U-Turn is where Mienshao shines. Combined with Regenerator, Mienshao is able to quickly pivot out after dealing some damage and possibly taking some himself, and then heal off up to half his maximum HP upon leaving the field. If you happened to miss a Hi Jump Kick, this is Mienshao’s re-roll and salvation all in one. Aerial Ace and Poison Jab give Mienshao some additional type coverage, but are usually lesser options used to counter specific threats.
In terms of special offense, Mienshao has some notable entries. Aura Sphere never misses, and has a base power of 90, which can dent a lot of Pokemon pretty severely. Focus Blast has 70% accuracy, but 120 base power, so use at your discretion. Grass Knot is nice for heavy Water, Rock and Ground types, and taken together, Mienshao has at least some bite to back up his bark when coming up on some opponents who try to wall him. If running one of these attacks, though, it would be in one’s best interest to take a nature that lowers one of Mienshao’s defenses, rather than his speed, because speed is pretty much what separates Mienshao from Lucario.
Partners for Mienshao will be the kind who appreciate his high-power offense and speed. Bulkier walls will pair well with Mienshao, as Mienshao can hit hard and U-Turn out on a predicted hit to bring in potent walls like Blissey for special defense or Milotic for physical hits or absorbing status conditions. Dark-types like Tyranitar or Weavile are nice for blasting apart bulky Psychic-types like Reuniclus that would otherwise cause Mienshao problems, and Tyranitar in particular can use Pursuit and Crunch to trap Psychic-types. In general, though, Mienshao appreciates Pokemon that can handle faster threats than he, such as Gengar and Jolteon, because their sheer potency of attacks can either severely damage or OHKO him before he has a chance to move, and Jolteon has Thunder Wave, which, along with Burns, Mienshao would very poorly handle in the long run.