Mudbray can be found on Routes 4 and 6 in the wild, as well as the Paniola Ranch and Blush Mountain, in both games.
Great bulk starting at the first evolutionary stage, only two weaknesses to really account for (with the substantial lack of Ice coverage), the equivalent of a slightly less powerful Earthquake at level 24, and an almost-fixed BP 120 Heavy Slam not many levels after that. On top of that, a 50% chance of getting an ability that boosts Defense nearly every turn. Mudsdale offers all of this and more: an outstanding physical offensive, excellent physical bulk, and special bulk that is good enough to take even STAB super effective moves from most Pokémon. There are very few threats in the game that Mudsdale - or even Mudbray - is incapable of facing, and it almost completely rules the mid-game, single-handedly sweeping several Totem Pokémon, half of the rival's team and even the Ultra Beast.
Hau (Paniola Town): Mudbray's Bulldoze destroys Pikachu and Torracat, but Mudbray must avoid Dartrix's Razor Leaf and Brionne's Aqua Jet.
Gladion (Route 5): Mudbray can 2-3HKO Zubat with Stomp. Type: Null is, on average, KOed in three turns with Double Kick; its Tackle is weaker, but it outspeeds, so Mudbray may need to be healed once to solo Gladion. All-Out Pummeling gives Mudbray a small 2HKO chance.
Totem Wishiwashi (Brooklet Hill): No. Totem Wishiwashi's Water Gun is an OHKO under the rain.
Battle Royal (Royal Park): The presence of Dartrix or Brionne in Hau's team introduces risks that Mudbray cannot afford to take. If Hau has Torracat instead, Mudbray can easily win by OHKOing Rockruff with Bulldoze. Even if Rockruff uses Protect on the first turn, Type: Null and Torracat are unable to kill Mudbray from full health.
Totem Salazzle (Wela Volcano Park): Bulldoze is guaranteed to OHKO Totem Salazzle, which cannot do the same even with a critical Flame Burst.
Totem Lurantis (Lush Jungle): Totem Lurantis holds a Power Herb and knows Solar Blade. Probably not wise to let Mudbray take it on.
Plumeria (Akala Outskirts): A Mudbray with the Eviolite attached can outdamage Golbat with Stomp, but using it against the bat is not recommended, since Golbat is faster and can make the fight painful with Confuse Ray. This does not apply to Own Tempo Mudbray, which can beat Golbat with a simple exercise of patience. Mudbray does much better against Salandit, OHKOing it even just with Bulldoze.
Olivia (Ruins of Life, Rock-type): Mudbray destroys Olivia, 2HKOing all her Pokémon with High Horsepower; it even has an OHKO chance against her ace, Lycanroc. It is recommended to have Mudbray hold the Eviolite, so that even the damage taken from all three of her Pokémon will make healing likely superfluous; regardless, a small stock of healing items or a backup Pokémon are good to have.
Lana (Konikoni City, Water-type, optional): High Horsepower OHKOs Chinchou, but both Shellder and Araquanid have strong super effective moves that Mudbray should stay very far away from.
Kiawe (Royal Avenue, Fire-type, optional, Sun only): Mudbray can OHKO Growlithe with High Horsepower only after negating Intimidate, but a 2HKO even under Intimidate is perfectly possible. However, Mudbray will find the matchup against Fletchinder hard if it does not switch out or otherwise negate the effect of the ability; the best move Mudbray can use against Fletchinder is Stomp, which is a 3HKO in the best case scenario. This changes if Mudbray knows Rock Tomb, which destroys Fletchinder. The Eviolite is recommended to win against Marowak; High Horsepower is a 2HKO and Marowak's moves are not very strong, but its combination of Will-O-Wisp and Hex, jointed with its higher Speed, do not make Mudbray the best candidate to fight against it.
Mallow (Lush Jungle, Grass-type, optional, Moon only): Mudbray can technically beat Phantump, which knows no offensive Grass moves, but its combination of Confuse Ray and Leech Seed backed by the Ground resistance make this option unfavourable; Own Tempo Mudbray do not have this problem, but will still struggle against Phantump. Shiinotic and Steenee both put Mudbray at a disadvantage.
Nihilego (Aether Paradise): High Horsepower OHKOs Nihilego, even with the +2 Defense boost.
Hau (Malie City): Mudbray needs the Eviolite to survive a critical Psychic from Raichu if it comes to be, but can then OHKO it with High Horsepower. Flareon and Torracat are also OHKOed, but the other two starters and Eeveelutions sport super effective STAB moves that Mudbray cannot take.
Totem Vikavolt (Hokulani Observatory): With the Eviolite attached, Mudbray deals as much damage with Rock Tomb as Totem Vikavolt does with Bug Bite, though the Totem will be faster; an unevolved Mudbray may manage to win, but only over time and with healing, since both moves 4HKO at best. Iron Defense can help Mudbray gain better resilience against the enemy attacks, giving it an edge. An already evolved Mudsdale can 3-4HKO with Rock Tomb instead, but should nevertheless open with Iron Defense, as the jointed work of Totem Vikavolt and its ally Charjabug may otherwise still outdamage Rock Tomb. Mudsdale may also use Continental Crush paired with Rock Tomb, which gives it good 2HKO chances against the Totem.
Guzma (Malie Garden): Mudsdale should avoid Golisopod and its STAB Razor Shell, but can easily 2HKO Ariados with High Horsepower, or OHKO with Continental Crush.
Totem Mimikyu (Thrifty Megamart): It is recommended to have Mudsdale learn Heavy Slam before taking on Totem Mimikyu since, unlike High Horsepower, Heavy Slam manages to 2HKO despite the Totem's aura boosts. In any case, Play Rough from Mimikyu amounts to a 3HKO nearing the 2HKO range, which becomes a KO in two turns with Haunter's Night Shade or Gengar's Shadow Ball in the mix; Mudsdale may only be completely safe by stalling out the Play Rough PP, and even in that case, a combined critical Play Rough and Night Shade may still terminate a Mudsdale with a poor nature or low defensive IVs. Stamina specimens will find this matchup easier, as they take progressively less damage from Mimikyu's moves; Corkscrew Crash can also be used after Mimikyu's Disguise is busted, since it has small chances to OHKO.
Plumeria (Route 15): Heavy Slam 2HKOs Golbat and High Horsepower OHKOs Salazzle. Golbat may also be OHKOed by Continental Crush.
Guzma (Shady House): Golisopod's Razor Shell is too strong for Mudsdale to handle, though Ariados can be 2HKOed with High Horsepower, or OHKOed by Continental Crush.
Gladion (Aether House): Mudsdale shrugs off Acrobatics and 2HKOs Golbat with Rock Slide or Heavy Slam, or OHKOs with Continental Crush, then OHKOs Sneasel with Heavy Slam - Sneasel's only Ice STAB is the weak Icy Wind - and can also 3HKO Type: Null with Low Sweep or High Horsepower. Mudsdale needs to be at its regular Defense or have positive modifiers, since a Defense drop from Crush Claw can subvert the matchup, allowing Type: Null to 3HKO instead. Own Tempo specimens can use Iron Defense to pre-emptively compensate for possible Defense drops, or resort to Low Sweep and All-Out Pummeling to KO Type: Null in two hits.
Nanu (Malie City, Dark-type): Both High Horsepower and Heavy Slam 2HKO Sableye, as well as Krokorok, even after Intimidate takes effect; without Intimidate, High Horsepower is a guaranteed OHKO against Krokorok. Mudsdale can 3HKO Persian too, with High Horsepower, but only after its Z move has been used; otherwise, Persian would achieve the 3HKO first. Mudsdale has chances of 2HKOing by combining All-Out Pummeling running off Low Sweep and then High Horsepower, but the probability is low. In addition, Mudsdale's Attack needs to be restored in order to do this, as it would take more turns to beat Persian if still under the effects of Krokorok's Intimidate.
Faba (Aether Paradise): High Horsepower 2HKOs Hypno.
Faba (Aether Paradise, tag battle with Hau): Mudsdale needs to OHKO Ledian with Rock Slide first, to prevent it from setting up Reflect and/or Light Screen. It should then switch out against Slowbro, as Psychic outdamages Mudsdale's moves by a decisive amount, due to Slowbro's fully EV trained HP stat. Bruxish 2HKOs with Psychic Fangs before Mudsdale can do so with High Horsepower, so it should be avoided. Hypno can be 2HKOed safely instead.
Guzma (Aether Paradise): There is nothing Mudsdale can do against Golisopod's Razor Shell, though it can 2HKO Ariados and OHKO Masquerain with Rock Slide; Continental Crush OHKOs Ariados. Pinsir is 2HKOed by Rock Slide as well, if Mudsdale's health is still high enough to take two X-Scissor, which requires up to 90% of its HP; Stamina specimens will find this easier, as they are likely to build up resilience as the battle progresses. Unlike Ariados, Pinsir is not OHKOed by Continental Crush.
Lusamine (Aether Paradise): Clefable is 2HKOed by Heavy Slam; the move can 2HKO Mismagius as well, if Mudsdale's Special Defense is good enough to take two Shadow Balls (which will generally be the case), though a Special Defense drop after the first hit will force Mudsdale to switch out. Mudsdale must avoid both Lilligant and Milotic, whose Petal Dance and Hydro Pump are both guaranteed OHKOs. It also loses against Bewear, which 2HKOs for certain with Hammer Arm and has a 2HKO chance even against Stamina specimens after the Defense boost.
Hapu (Vast Poni Canyon, Ground-type): Earthquake offs Dugtrio, and Heavy Slam is a 2-3HKO against Flygon; however, if the 2HKO is not attained, Flygon will 3HKO with Earth Power, so Mudsdale needs to be healed or switch out in that case. A certain 2HKO can be achieved through Corkscrew Crash and Heavy Slam in succession. Mudsdale should not fight Gastrodon, which can 2HKO with Muddy Water and is too physically durable to even be 3HKOed with certainty. It is necessary for Mudsdale to also avoid the mirror match against Hapu's ace, whose Tectonic Rage can even OHKO, unless Stamina has already activated at least twice; counting the third boost given by Tectonic Rage, Mudsdale will win by spamming Earthquake and healing on occasion. Own Tempo specimens may attempt this only at +6 in Defense if they still know Iron Defense, because the enemy Mudsdale's Stamina will otherwise outlive their Defense boosts in the long run.
Totem Kommo-o (Vast Poni Canyon): The Totem can 2HKO with Clanging Scales, though Mudsdale can win by stalling; if its Defense drops twice, Totem Kommo-o can be OHKOed by Tectonic Rage.
Lusamine (Ultra Space): Clefable is easily 2HKOed by Heavy Slam, as is Mismagius. Lilligant and Milotic both OHKO Mudsdale with Petal Dance and Hydro Pump respectively, and must be avoided; Mudsdale also cannot win against Bewear, which 2HKOs with Hammer Arm even if Mudsdale's ability is Stamina.
Solgaleo (Altar of the Sunne, Sun only): Mudsdale's Tectonic Rage is a highly likely OHKO against Solgaleo, though if the move fails to KO, a switch-in will be needed; Solgaleo's Sunsteel Strike is highly likely to 2HKO, and Solgaleo is faster.
Lunala (Altar of the Moone, Moon only): Mudsdale cannot win against Lunala, since it gets 2HKOed by Moongeist Beam and its ability prevents Mudsdale from netting a 2HKO in turn.
Gladion (Mount Lanakila): Rock Slide 2HKOs Crobat, while Earthquake OHKOs Lucario and Heavy Slam OHKOs Weavile. The latter only has Ice Shard as its Ice STAB, which deals a fairly low amount of damage, especially if Mudsdale's Defense has already been boosted by Stamina. Silvally must be avoided if it has the Grass or Water Memory, as it would 2HKO Mudsdale with Multi-Attack, while Fire Memory Silvally can be 1-2HKOed with Earthquake; the OHKO becomes certain with the Expert Belt. Water Memory Silvally may be beaten only by a Mudsdale that has had its Defense boosted to at least +2 before fighting if at full health, otherwise at +3 or higher; Earthquake is a 3HKO, and Multi-Attack is guaranteed to be a 4HKO or worse only at +3 Defense. Grass Memory Silvally require a Defense boost of +4 or higher, since they can at best be 3HKOed by Heavy Slam due to their Ground resistance. If Mudsdale holds the Rockium Z instead, it can OHKO Crobat with Continental Crush.
Hau (Mount Lanakila): Earthquake is an OHKO against Raichu; Komala knows Wood Hammer, and Mudsdale can beat it only by OHKOing with Tectonic Rage. Flareon is OHKOed by Earthquake as well, though Tectonic Rage is once again needed against Incineroar; Earthquake fails to OHKO even with the Expert Belt (possible, but not highly likely), and a combination of Inferno Overdrive and any other move coming from Incineroar will annihilate Mudsdale. Only a Mudsdale already at +2 in Defense or higher can counter Incineroar with Earthquake instead, since it would be at worst 3HKOed by Incineroar's moves; this can be achieved with Stamina or Iron Defense. Leafeon might be beaten by Mudsdale at +3 in Defense or higher, preferably with Stamina, but attempting this is not wise, as Leaf Blade's likely critical hits pierce right through Defense boosts; Vaporeon, Decidueye and Primarina will win against Mudsdale regardless of other factors.
Elite Four Hala (Pokémon League, Fighting-type): Mudsdale needs some healing to get through this matchup, even if its ability is Stamina. Hariyama's Close Combat 2HKOs, and even if it hits first and its Defense drops before Mudsdale attacks, Earthquake will only 2HKO. With Iron Defense, Mudsdale can tank enemy hits much better, especially if Stamina boosts stack with it. At +2 in Defense or higher, Mudsdale is sturdy enough to take hits from all of Hala's Pokémon and can 2HKO them all; use Earthquake for Primeape and Poliwrath, Heavy Slam for Crabominable (Mudsdale's health must be above half to survive Ice Hammer at +2), and a combination of Tectonic Rage and Earthquake against Bewear, if Mudsdale's Z-Crystal has not been Knocked Off by Hariyama beforehand.
Elite Four Olivia (Pokémon League, Rock-type): Mudsdale cannot be in the lead; Relicanth outspeeds and 2HKOs with Hydro Pump, Mudsdale can only OHKO with Tectonic Rage, and wasting the Z-move on an otherwise easy to beat lead is not the best option. Carbink is OHKOed by Heavy Slam, unless it puts up Reflect beforehand; this would mess with Mudsdale's sweeping plans in general, so Reflect is better off stalled out through Iron Defense spam if it does happen, even though the Defense boosts are not necessary to win the fight. Earthquake 2HKOs Golem and Probopass, or OHKOs if their Sturdy is somehow broken. Tectonic Rage is best saved to OHKO Lycanroc, since Earthquake cannot but it deals massive damage, deadly if redoubled by Lycanroc's Counter.
Elite Four Acerola (Pokémon League, Ghost-type): Earthquake is a 2HKO against Sableye, though Stamina specimens may find it more difficult to beat than Own Tempo specimens, due to their vulnerability to Confuse Ray. Heavy Slam or Rock Slide can 3HKO Drifblim, but the Pokémon is best left to teammates that can beat it faster, as it has a plethora of moves that can boost its stats and be Baton Passed, making it dangerous. Mudsdale loses against Dhelmise, but can win against Froslass if its health is still full, surviving a Blizzard and OHKOing back with Heavy Slam. Palossand cannot be beaten: even if Mudsdale outspeeds it, only Tectonic Rage and Earthquake combined can KO it, and this is easily prevented with a single Giga Drain use; Giga Drain and Never-Ending Nightmare are guaranteed to KO Mudsdale.
Elite Four Kahili (Pokémon League, Flying-type): Mudsdale can win against Skarmory, but only with patience, as Steel Wing and Rock Slide are exactly as powerful; it is, at any rate, not recommended to have Mudsdale fight Skarmory, as this would easily lead to multiple Spikes layers, dangerous for switch-ins. Crobat is 2HKOed by Rock Slide or OHKOed by Continental Crush; Oricorio is OHKOed even just by Rock Slide. Mandibuzz is only 3HKOed by Rock Slide, though even its Brave Bird does not do much, sitting at an average 4HKO; Flatter may be more annoying, for specimens without Own Tempo. On the other hand, Stamina specimens are largely advantaged against Toucannon, as their ability activates with each Bullet Seed hit; Own Tempo specimens may also win, but only with a prior Iron Defense, as Bullet Seed is otherwise likely to 2HKO before Mudsdale can do so with Rock Slide. Alternatively, Continental Crush OHKOs.
Professor Kukui (Pokémon League): Earthquake is a flat OHKO against Lycanroc; a fully healthy Mudsdale with average or above-average Special Defense can even OHKO Ninetales with Heavy Slam, after withstanding a Blizzard. Mudsdale can win against Braviary only with Stamina or Iron Defense, as it needs to eventually outdamage Brave Bird by a fair amount; in their natural state, both Brave Bird and Rock Slide are 2-3HKOs, but Braviary outspeeds and thus has an advantage. Holding the Expert Belt secures the 2HKO, but prevents Mudsdale from using Z-moves. Snorlax is 3HKOed by Earthquake, and can also be 2HKOed with Tectonic Rage and Earthquake combined; again, Stamina specimens have an easier matchup, though others can also use Iron Defense to reduce the damage. Magnezone's ability is Sturdy, and it is hard to KO, since its Flash Cannon nearly 2HKOs Mudsdale. Incineroar must be OHKOed with Tectonic Rage, since it will otherwise outmatch Mudsdale; specimens at +2 in Defense or higher can take its hits better, and beat it even just by 2HKOing with Earthquake instead. Mudsdale must steer clear from Decidueye and Primarina; the former is highly likely to pierce through Defense boosts with Leaf Blade critical hits, and the latter can OHKO from full health even with non-Z Sparkling Aria.
Tapu Koko (Ruins of Conflict): Mudsdale is immune to Tapu Koko's moves and OHKOs it with Earthquake.
Post-Game: Mudsdale's matchups against the Ultra Beasts are mixed, but the League matchups are a strong redeeming factor.
Mudbray's initial moveset at its earliest possible level consists solely of Ground-type moves: Mud Slap, Mud Sport, Rototiller and Bulldoze. Mud Sport is entirely disposable, and Rototiller will harm more than do good, since Grass-types are among Mudbray's enemies; both moves can be replaced easily, and so can the weak and specially-based Mud Slap. The first opportunity to get rid of one of them is at level 15, when Mudbray learns Double Kick, useful for coverage and with good typing. At level 17, the line gets Stomp; while not entirely necessary, it will usually be better than most other readily available options for a time. Bide comes around at level 22, but should never be learned, as it is very dangerous to use. High Horsepower comes at level 24 instead, and is nearly broken in the middle game, being almost as powerful and accurate as Earthquake. Right before evolving, Mudbray gets Iron Defense at level 29, a good move to have for more defensive sets. Mudsdale then gets Heavy Slam at level 34, which is actually a very useful move, because Mudsdale is so heavy that it will almost always hit with a base power of 120. If Mudbray is not in a rush to evolve, it can hold off until level 31 to learn Heavy Slam earlier. Counter, at level 42, can be strategic to use, but only with caution. A must have is Earthquake, the best Ground STAB of all time, which comes at level 47. Mega Kick at level 55 is bad, but the last move the line learns by level is much better: Superpower, at level 60, if Mudsdale ever reaches that level during the game.
TMs add very little to Mudsdale's available coverage, but that is because its level up moveset is already excellent. Bulldoze can be retaught by TM, though High Horsepower will almost always outclass it, and Low Sweep is a good, slightly more powerful alternative to Double Kick before Superpower is learned. Rock Slide is also a valid option, helping Mudsdale hit Flying-types for proper damage.
Mudsdale's Tectonic Rage is extremely powerful, but not available until the very late game. Corkscrew Crash, based on Heavy Slam, will generally do only a little more damage than the regular move, since Mudsdale is so heavy that it will be hitting for a BP of 120 most of the time. Continental Crush is the only one likely to provide a tangible upgrade to the regular alternative, usually Rock Tomb or Rock Slide.
Recommended moveset: Iron Defense, Earthquake, Heavy Slam, Rock Slide / Superpower
Steel-types: Steel-types are the ones that cover Mudsdale's weaknesses best, aside from being a very good type to have in Alola in general. Dual Steel-types should be chosen with caution, attempting to preserve the relevant resistances (Grass and Ice).
Fast hitters: Mudsdale is highly unlikely to ever hit first, considering its abysmal Speed. Almost any Pokémon can do the fast hitter job better, though if one is to be designed for the spot, making it one of the fastest Pokémon available in Alola is the best decision.
Minimum stats are calculated with 0 EVs, IVs of 0, and a hindering nature, if applicable.
Maximum stats are calculated with 252 EVs, IVs of 31, and a helpful nature, if applicable.
Mudbray Line Ratings
What Nature do I want? Adamant and Impish are great, since Mudsdale will mostly be relying on its Attack and Defense, and it will never use its Special Attack. Speed is also fairly unnecessary, so Brave and Relaxed are essentially just as good. Careful and Sassy are not the absolute best, but will still give Mudsdale a welcome boost in bulk.
Which Ability do I want? Stamina, without a doubt. It is by far the superior ability, even though Own Tempo specimens can compensate for it through a more frequent use of Iron Defense.
At what point in the game should I be evolved? Mudbray should be evolved either right before or right after the battle against Totem Vikavolt. Delaying the evolution by one level is acceptable, in order to have Mudbray learn Heavy Slam early.
How good is the Mudbray line in a Nuzlocke? Excellent. Mudsdale is as close as can be to completely broken. Without its Grass and Water weaknesses, which play a part in some of the difficult matchups - notably against Hau and Lusamine - there would be almost nothing for Mudsdale to fear at all. It is a great asset, both offensively and defensively, and highly unlikely to not find a place in any given team.