Tera raids in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet are a team-based affair, and part of that teamwork comes from using cheers, a set of commands exclusive to these four-player boss battles scattered across the games’ Paldea region. However, in my experience grouping up with randos online, I’ve often found myself being the sole cheerleader in the group, while my teammates only continue to put out damage; this has lead to some crushing wipes in high-level raids. Though extremely common, this type of damage-only playstyle isn’t sustainable. Let’s talk about why cheers are important, and why even the most offense-based player should be using them.
Tera raids give you three different cheer abilities, and each player can only cheer three times per raid. Since raid teams have four players, that’s 12 cheer uses max.. The three cheer types are “Go all out!,” which raises attack and special attack for the team, “Hang tough!,” which boosts defense and special defense, and “Heal up!,” which gives everyone a respectable health restoration. Tera raids are built around a push and pull of stat changes and your enemy building defenses, all of which happens as a timer slowly counts down to the moment your team will be ejected from the tera raid boss’ den. Understanding how cheers help you make the most of the short time you have while also being a limited resource is paramount to success in difficult battles like the Charizard event happening later this week.
“Go all out!” and “Hang tough!” are good to use right out of the gate, as they’ll allow your team to hit harder and defend against a raid boss’ more powerful attacks. That survivability opens more windows for players to use “Heal up!,” as tera raids don’t allow healing items. While some specific Pokémon can also use attacks like Heal Pulse to heal teammates during these fights, “Heal up!” is your primary healing method in raids, and has a teamwide effect that can give everyone a turn or two before they’re in danger again.
The stat-based tug-of-war come from tera raid bosses’ ability to periodically wipe away everyone’s stat buffs. As such, that one initial use of “Go all out!” and “Hang tough!” will only offer you a brief window of increased offense and defense. But tera raids are all about soft resets and reapplying those perks, which is why cheers can’t be relegated to just one player. A coordinated team of four has to rotate the cheering responsibility, since each player only gets three uses across the fight. That’s not three of each cheer, it’s three cheers, period.
This has been the biggest issue I’ve come across when grouping up online for high-level raids. If I’m not on a Discord call with friends, I often end up with three people unwilling to move from their attack menu to the cheer one, which saddles me with the support role, even if my Pokémon of choice is dealing the most damage of the group. I’m more than happy to throw out a heal and a buff, but since the boss raises more powerful defenses as a raid progresses, I often find myself having to cease offense and dump all three of my cheers into healing all at once just to keep my teammates on the field because they’re unwilling to do it themselves.
On top of being a waste of resources, any one person having to spend a chunk of their turns using cheers is a waste of precious time. Coordinating attacks and team composition is important, but using your limited time wisely during a tera raid is probably the most important key to success. Each time a team member falls in battle, a sizable chunk of time gets docked from the raid clock, and if one single player is stuck doing all the healing it will be limited by their cooldowns and three total uses. When the raid boss unleashes powerful attacks during these time gaps between healing turns, it can (and inevitably will) snowball into a team member fainting, a penalty to raid time, and waiting several more precious seconds for them to respawn.
Smart teams can avoid this cascade of failures by maintaining awareness of each party member’s health and topping folks off accordingly. Healing will be more readily available throughout a fight if cheer buffing responsibility doesn’t fall to a single person. Everyone chipping in at opportune times to contribute cheers themselves will avoid the cooldown problem and result in more optimal cheer timing throughout the raid.
A lot of tera raids are about thinking on your feet and under pressure, and knowing when cheering would be the best use of your turn is a good club to have in your bag. In a pinch, cheers can also act as good alternatives to trying to attack when your Pokémon has been afflicted with a status effect like sleep or confusion. In standard battles, powering through these debilitating conditions can sometimes be worth it, as a Pokémon can wake up or snap out of their confusion and attack normally.
But in a tera raid, time is money, and if you can get more value out of every turn, your team’s standing in the battle will be better for it. When my Pokémon’s been confused, I’ve taken that time to use a cheer or two, rather than risk doing damage to myself and losing out on valuable time. Doing so has helped turn the tide of fights by saving precious seconds that would’ve been wasted had my Pokémon inflicted damage on themselves.
Ultimately, using your cheers is never quite as exciting as dealing a super-effective attack, but they’re so fundamental to success in high-level tera raids that it makes it near impossible to win if applying them isn’t a teamwide effort. So if you’re signing on to Pokémon Scarlet and Violet and joining raids online, start using your cheers, and you’ll quickly see how they can help your team weather the storm and come out triumphant on the other side. You and your team will be glad you did.