Rattata can be found in the following areas in Gold/Silver/Crystal: Routes 1, 3, 4, 7, 9, 11, 22, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 38 (Gold/Crystal only), 39 (Gold/Crystal only) and 46, in Bell Tower, Mt. Mortar, Union Cave, Tohjo Falls, Sprout Tower and the Burned Tower. Raticate can be found in the following areas in Gold/Silver/Crystal: Routes 1 (Crystal only), 3 (Crystal only), 3 (Crystal only), 4 (Crystal only), 6 (Crystal only), 7, 9, 10, 11 (Crystal only), 21 (Crystal only), 26, 27, 38, 39, 42 (Crystal only), and 43 (Crystal only), in Mt. Mortar, Union Cave, Tohjo Falls, Burned Tower.
Known as a "Derpius Rattius" scientifically, this little rodent is actually very valuable up until around Morty, after which it loses it's power. However, a 80 Base Power move coming from something with 81 Attack is nothing to scoff at, especially early game. The line also boasts nice speed, very powerful attacks at early levels and coverage TMs up to Ice and Steel (?). Too bad other mons can do its job twice as well, but Rattata is one of the only options almost guaranteed to happen. Rattata is not a bad Mon, but you can live without one very easily.
Gym #1 - Falkner (Violet City, Flying-type): Pidgey is not scary if you're properly leveled. Pidgeotto, however, would require a bit of overgrinding to get Hyper Fang. And even then, you can still get Mud-Slap Hax. Switch out to a reliable tank if that happens.
Gym #2 - Bugsy (Azalea Town, Bug-type): Taking out Metapod and Kakuna will be easy, since you should have Hyper Fang for now. Scyther's a very different story. Fury Cutter can decimate your entire team, and Quick Attack makes him laugh at attempts to outspeed him. If you believe you can only rely on Rattata , then you should probably level to 16 and Hyper Fang Scyther ASAP to win. But it's always better to use somebody else to counter.
Rival (Azalea Town): If you used Mud-Slap on the line, then you only need to stall through boring Hypnohax with Gastly. Zubat can also confuse it with Supersonic, Bite it for damage then heal itself a little with Leech Life, so be careful around him. Croconaw shits on the line's currently terrible defense, and Quilava will mainly Ember and Smokescreen Hax it. Bayleef can slowly decrease your health off with Poison Powder and Razor Leaf and take little to no damage with Reflect and Growl. Abuse Hyper Fang and be properly leveled.
Gym #3 - Whitney (Goldenrod City, Normal-type): Clefairy will mostly try to use Metronome, with the rare chance to get a Fighting-type attack or self destruct/explode to OHKO. Take her out as quick as possible. Miltank's Rollout chains have a chance to be stopped if you use Dig at the right moment, and Mud-Slap Hax has a chance to stop it at random moments, but it's very risky. To attack, use Hyper Fang, or Return if you're really desperate to win and have enough friendship with Raticate. Evolve into Raticate before this fight, or else gather around to tell tales of the Murdercow.
Rival (Burned Tower): Haunter can't even Hypnohax you, but he can use the dangerous Mean Look-Curse combo. If Raticate knows Dig or Mud-Slap it already won against Magnemite, otherwise use somebody else or abuse Hyper Fang and prepare for Supersonic and Sonic Boom. Zubat has more accuracy now with Confuse Ray, so if you couldn't stand against it before, you won't now (Unless you somehow went and got Thunder or Blizzard from the Goldenrod Game Corner). With the starters, the only difference is that now you can have the option to get Blizzard or Thunder at the Goldenrod Game Corner and pray it hits Bayleef or Croconaw, but then again, there are much better counters to every starter, and Bayleef can take a few hits, while Croconaw/Quilava will take care of Raticate short defense..
Gym #4 - Morty (Ecruteak City, Ghost-type): Now it's Raticate time to shine! Just teach it Mud-Slap/Dig and keep some backup ready for quick switching, and you are pretty good to go. Watch out for Curse, and make it hold a Mint Berry (With various Awakenings) to escape the Gengar Hypnosis-Dream Eater combo. Beware the mimicking Haunter, and save some Ethers to laugh in the face of Spite.
Eusine (Cianwood City, Crystal only): Almost the same that was said for Gengar can be said for Drowzee, except that Drowzee can also attack directly with Confusion and Disable. Teach Raticate Shadow Ball or level up to 30 for Pursuit to attack Drowzee. Eusine's Haunter is similar to the Rival's one, in that it can only Hypnohax and use the Mean Look-Curse combo on you. Only take on Electrode if Raticate knows a Ground-type attack, and take care of it quickly before it starts to use a Rollout-chain (Sonic-Boom isn't that dangerous now).
Gym #5 - Chuck (Cianwood City, Fighting-type): Primeape has a dangerously extreme chance to OHKO Raticate with a Critical STAB Super Effective Karate Chop right off the bat, and he's not even the Gym's powerhouse. Instead, Poliwrath will Hypnohax Raticate, STAB Surf will HURT, and worst of all, a brick-shitting STAB Supereffective 100 Base Power Dynamic Punch which, in the very rare case of Raticate surviving, will confuse it. Low accuracy means nothing when it becomes a game of Russian Roulette with your defenseless Raticate (And Mind Reader can even make it unavoidable). To top it off, the only way to even do Super Effective damage on Poliwrath is to pray to Thunder to hit, or to make one of your teammates set up Rain Dance (And if you have can have a teammate that can safely set up Rain Dance, why use Raticate at all?) to raise Thunder accuracy. Only use Raticate here if you feel like killing one of your teammates or overleveled Raticate like crazy.
Gym #6 - Jasmine (Olivine City, Steel-type): If you learned a Ground-type attack (And you should have if you wanted Raticate as a long-time party member), kill the Magnemites as fast as possible before STAB Thunderbolt or Thunder Wave/Supersonic-related hax happens. If you pass by Steelix, don't forget to bring your puny Ground-type attack and say hi to Steelix's 200 Defense, his Iron Tail and his Defense-dropping Screech).
Rocket Executive battle #1 (Team Rocket HQ): The exact same thing than the Rival's Zubat in Burned Tower, with even the same level too. You can win through sheer level, but watch out for Confuse Ray. Koffing can either try to use a dangerous attack to poison Raticate, Tackle weakly or Self-Destruct. You obviously don't want the last one to happen, so finish it off as quickly as possible with a Ground-type move, and pray to the RNG that you can OHKO/it won't Kamikaze. After the nerve wracking experience that was Koffing, you have a mirror match with a Raticate. You can win through Hyper Fang and level difference, but if you are at the same level, do not underestimate Scary Face speed loss, as it quickly becomes a race to the finish with Hyper Fang.
Rocket Executive battle #2 (Team Rocket HQ): Arbok's a joke, just use Mud-Slap/Dig and you can OHKO if you have a significant level difference. Gloom will Sleephax and spam Absorb and Acid, very annoying, Hyper Fang it to death. If Raticate's hurt, never switch out of Murkrow, as it has Pursuit, just heal it right there.
Gym #7 - Pryce (Mahogany Town, Ice-type): Seel and Dewgong will stall with Rest, Hyper Fang them and ignore Rock Smash/Thunder, as they are too weak/inaccurate. The worst Piloswine can do is STAB Blizzard with terrible accuracy, so just try to Iron Tail/Hyper Fang him before anything bad happens.
Rocket Executive battle #3 (Goldenrod Radio Tower): It's Raticate against 5 Koffings and a Weezing, all with the ability to Self-Destruct. Hyper Fang/Dig them as fast as possible, or even better, switch to something that can resist them, like your trusty Rock, Steel or Ghost-type teammate.
Rival (Goldenrod Underground): STAB Wing Attack coming from his Golbat it's not something your Raticate's puny Defense likes, otherwise it's like the last battle against his Zubat, only stronger. Mud-Slap/Dig is boss against Magnemite, who hasn't had a moveset change apart from Thunder Wave taking Supersonic's place since last time. Haunter is still only able to Mean Look-Curse Raticate. His new addition, a Sneasel can be taken out with Iron Tail, but beware his Defense-lowering Screech, which can set you up for a quick death at hands of his starter. Talking about his starter, Meganium is annoying as always, Feraligatr is a beast and Quilava hasn't evolved yet, which gives you a slight advantage over it.
Rocket Executive battle #4 (Goldenrod Radio Tower): Arbok can Paraflinch with Glare+Bite, while you can take short care of it with Hyper Fang/Dig. Vileplume's moveset is the exact same than the Rocket Hideout's Gloom, so do the same you did there. Murkrow can now deal a fixed 32HP damage with Night Shade, remember to not switch out if you're hurt as it has Pursuit.
Rocket Executive battle #5 (Goldenrod Radio Tower): Hyper Fang/Dig will take care of Houndour easily if you're not underleveled. Koffing lacks the means to Self-Destruct, so relax. You should be able to outspeed Houndour and place a quick KO with Hyper Fang/Dig.
Suicune (Bell Tower, Crystal only): Suicune will boost its Bubblebeam with Rain Dance, but Raticate can Hyper Fang it right off the bat. Be aware, however, that Suicune is very bulky, and can stall for ages.
From this point onwards, you can fight the gyms in any order, though you will need to retrieve the Machine Parts from the Cerulean City gym before you have access to the earlier portion of Kanto. Feel free to anticipate or postpone any battles as needed.
Gym #9 - Brock (Pewter City, Rock-type):
Rival (Mt. Moon, optional):
Gym #10 - Misty (Cerulean City, Water-type):
Gym #11 - Lt. Surge (Vermilion City, Electric-type):
Rattata starts out with the average Tackle and Tail Whip, not something you would want to carry to the end game. At level 7 it gets Quick Attack, somewhat useful if you need priority, but Rattata and Raticate have nice Speed, so why bother? Then, at the not-so-unlucky level 13, it gets Arceus' Blessing: Hyper Fang, a 80 Base Power move with a small chance to flinch at a point where Headbutt (70 Base Power) is very powerful, which should be carried around to the endgame. The rest of it's movepool pales in comparison, Focus Energy right at level 20 can be useful if you need critical hits, but the line was never meant to set up anything.
Pursuit coverage can be taken by Shadow Ball, which runs off the better Attack stat instead off the weaker Special Attack, has more Base Power, and nothing switches out in-game enough to justify Pursuit. Super Fang helps catch new mons, but at level 34 you'll already have something to catch better, and the line gets absolutely no other support whatsoever.
In term of TMs, the line is notorious for having nonsensical coverage moves, but unless you're in a Notepadlocke, you can catch things with better Special Attack and STAB. Mud-Slap and Dig cover everything that resists Hyper Fang and run off the better Attack stat, but while Mud-Slap gets very weak very fast and has accuracy hax, Dig does way more damage and enables the line to cover from any direct attack that's not Magnitude or Earthquake. Shadow Ball covers against Psychic and Ghost, two types very annoying to fight. Iron Tail is extremely strong against Rock and Ice-types, and a very useful coverage move. If, as already said, you're doing a Notepadlocke, or have absolutely nothing that can use
it, Thunder/Blizzard are kind of useful, as the line is extremely common, both types are very strong against a lot of types and are renewable, but the line's terrible Special Attack means it will never use them to their best potential. STAB Return can be BEAST coming from the line, but remember it requires quite a bit of time to renew the TM again. Curse, Protect and Double Team can be VERY useful for the line... If they weren't Post-Game. Headbutt, Cut and Strength can make the line team players, Strength can even take Hyper Fang's place if you don't mind losing the flinch rate.
Recommended moveset: Hyper Fang / Return / Strength / Headbutt, and any of the following three: Mud-Slap / Dig, Thunder, Blizzard, Shadow Ball, Iron Tail, Curse (Postgame), Protect (Postgame), Double Team (Postgame)
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.
Rattata Line Ratings
At what point in the game should I be evolved? If you plan on using it against Whitney, then Raticate is your best bet. Otherwise, evolve around Ecruteak City.
How good is the Rattata line in a Nuzlocke? Extremely average. The line can destroy just about everything early game using Hyper Fang if properly leveled except for Whitney and possibly Bugsy's Scyther. It gets some neat coverage moves, and it's utterly helpful in a Notepadlocke, but otherwise, it can be done much better.
Neutralities: Normal, Flying, Poison, Ground, Rock, Bug, Steel, Fire, Water, Grass, Electric, Psychic, Ice, Dragon, Dark