Empoleon

Torrent
Boosts power of Water-type moves by 50% when at 1/3 HP or less.
Defiant
Boosts Attack by two stages for every stat drop.
Type Tier
Water / Steel UU
Level 100 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
Min- Min Max Max+
HP
84
- 309 372 -
Atk
86
187 208 271 298
Def
88
190 212 275 302
SpA
111
232 258 321 353
SpD
101
214 238 301 331
Spe
60
140 156 219 240

Overview

At first Empoleon might receive an icy reception from new UU battlers due to its rather lackluster stats; while it possesses a respectable base 111 Special Attack, its Speed is much lower than that of common offensive juggernauts. Defensively, Empoleon faces competition from both Suicune and Milotic, who both boast better specially defensive stats. Although it might seem that Empoleon is outclassed in both offensive and defensive roles, Empoleon has all the right tools to pull off a variety of sets in the competitive UU environment. Thanks to its unique defensive typing, Empoleon can easily wall common UU threats such as Roserade; its tailor-made movepool also allows it to run a powerful sweeping set which can wash away the opponent late game. In terms of pure numerical power, Empoleon cannot hope to beat the powerhouses and bulky behemoths in the UU tier; but if given correct team support, Empoleon can become a huge thorn in your opponents side.

Name Item Ability Nature

SubPetaya

Petaya Berry Torrent Modest
Moveset IVs
~ Agility
~ Substitute
~ Surf / Hydro Pump
~ Ice Beam / Grass Knot
30 HP
EVs
252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

With the Petaya Berry finally released in BW2, Empoleon can once again use its signature sweeping set from the fourth generation. Although Empoleon might appear to be outclassed by a whole host of UU attackers in terms of sweeping, the combination of Agility, Substitute, and Petaya Berry quickly turns Empoleon into a terrifying foe to face. Agility lets it double its lackluster Speed in one turn, meaning only priority attackers and the fastest Choice Scarf users will be able to move before Empoleon. After boosting its Speed, Empoleon can then proceed to safely use Substitute. After doing this a few times, Empoleon will be able to lower itself below 25% health and activate Petaya Berry to boost its Special Attack. Coincidentally, Empoleon's health will also be hovering in Torrent range, which further boosts its damage output. After all this has been accomplished, Empoleon will be ready to sweep. Surf is Empoleon's staple attack; after being boosted by STAB, Petaya Berry and Torrent, only dedicated special walls and resists will be able to avoid the OHKO. However, Hydro Pump can be used for its superior damage output at the cost of accuracy. With Hydro Pump, Empoleon can now OHKO Togekiss, specially defensive Zapdos, and specially defensive Escavalier after Stealth Rock while having a chance to OHKO Porygon2 and Cresselia after Stealth Rock! The remaining slot goes to a coverage move to use against Pokemon that resist Water-type attacks. Ice Beam covers Grass-types such as Shaymin and Roserade while Grass Knot takes care of Water-types such as Suicune and Swampert.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Ability Nature

Specially Defensive

Leftovers Torrent Calm
Moveset EVs
~ Stealth Rock
~ Scald
~ Ice Beam
~ Roar / Toxic
252 HP / 4 SpA / 252 SpD

A specially defensive set makes the most out of Empoleon's unique defensive typing which lets it wall dangerous threats such as Shaymin, Tornadus, and Kingdra. Stealth Rock is a metagame staple that Empoleon can find multiple opportunities to use thanks to the number of switches it forces. Scald is Empoleon's STAB move that scares out Fire-, Rock-, and Ground-types. Even when uninvested, it hits hard coming off a base 111 Special Attack stat. It also has a great 30% chance to burn the target, which makes physical attackers think twice before switching into Empoleon. Ice Beam allows Empoleon to severely dent common switch-ins such as Shaymin, Roserade, and Zapdos. Although it isn't likely to OHKO any of them, it will bring them down low enough so that another teammate can finish the job. Lastly, Roar is used to shuffle the opponents team and to remove greedy stat boosters such as Raikou hoping to set up on Empoleon, while also racking up entry hazard damage on your opponents team. However, Toxic can be used instead to let Empoleon beat opposing walls and win stall wars. Due to Empoleon's Steel typing, the opponent will not be able to poison Empoleon in return.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Ability Nature

Choice Specs

Choice Specs Torrent Modest
Moveset EVs
~ Hydro Pump
~ Ice Beam
~ Grass Knot
~ Scald / Surf
252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

With Choice Specs, Empoleon eschews the opportunity to sweep for sheer wall breaking power. With its perfect neutral coverage, Empoleon can annihilate common switch-ins. Hydro Pump is Empoleon's STAB attack and hits extremely hard with Choice Specs and a potential Torrent boost; with Torrent activated, Empoleon's Hydro Pump OHKOes Pokemon such as specially defensive Zapdos and Escavalier, and can even 2HKO defensive Roserade after Stealth Rock! Ice Beam pins down common Roserade and Shaymin switch ins, 2HKOing both. It also deals with Flygon, while being a more accurate option against the likes of Rhyperior and Gligar. Grass Knot deals with the many Water-types in the tier, comfortably 2HKOing Slowbro, Suicune, and Kingdra. As Empoleon has perfect coverage in just three moves, the last slot is used for a more reliable STAB move. Scald is useful for its 30% burn chance while Surf has slightly more power. Both have perfect accuracy and should be used when Empoleon can't afford a miss from Hydro Pump. Other offensive Empoleon sets aim to sweep through the opposition late game, but Choice Specs Empoleon seeks to punch holes in the opponents team and clear a path for late-game sweepers such as Raikou and Kingdra.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Ability Nature

Offensive Stealth Rock

Leftovers Torrent Modest
Moveset EVs
~ Stealth Rock
~ Hydro Pump
~ Ice Beam
~ Grass Knot
172 HP / 252 SpA / 84 Spe

This set blends Empoleon's decent defensive typing and high Special Attack stat to make it a formidable Stealth Rock setter, as well as allow it to maintain a great amount of offensive presence. Unlike other Stealth Rock setters, Empoleon is able to keep Stealth Rock on the field due to its ability to defeat every common Rapid Spin and Magic Bounce user. Because of this, this set functions better on offensive teams that don't have room for a spinblocker. Hydro Pump functions as Empoleon's main STAB move, as due to its high Base Power and a Modest nature, it is guaranteed to 2HKO relatively bulky Pokemon such as Cofagrigus and Hitmontop. Ice Beam accomplishes two roles on this set: eliminating Grass- and Dragon-types that resist Empoleon's STAB and defeating Xatu. Grass Knot rounds this set off by hitting bulky Water-types, such as Blastoise and Swampert, for super effective damage.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Ability Nature

Agility

Life Orb Torrent Modest
Moveset EVs
~ Agility
~ Hydro Pump
~ Ice Beam
~ Grass Knot
252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

Although this set appears to be outclassed by an Empoleon that uses Petaya Berry and Substitute, it makes up for the lack of power with an extra coverage move and less reliance on Pinch Berries. Agility doubles Empoleon's Speed letting it outspeed all of the unboosted metagame and slower Choice Scarf holders. Hydro Pump is Empoleon's main STAB move and is used over Surf as Empoleon needs the extra power when trying to sweep. As Empoleon forgoes Substitute for an extra coverage move, it is no longer walled by certain types and has perfect neutral coverage on the whole tier. Ice Beam chills the Grass- and Dragon-types that resist Hydro Pump, and also serves as another way to take out Flygon. Grass Knot trips up Water-types such as Suicune and Slowbro while also reliably OHKOing Rhyperior. Agility Life Orb Empoleon is an extremely capable sweeper and can be used over the Substitute Petaya Berry set if you do not want to eliminate only either Grass- or Water-types. It also has the benefit of not requiring Empoleon to be below 25% of its HP to sweep.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>

Other Options

Empoleon doesn't have much else in its movepool. A physical attacking set is plausible thanks to Swords Dance and a STAB priority move in Aqua Jet. However, base 86 Attack isn't very high, and Empoleon will struggle against common threats and walls. ResTalk is Empoleon's only method of recovery, and can be used on the specially defensive set. However, it eats away two of Empoleon's moveslots, meaning that Empoleon will be less useful to your team. Protect lets Empoleon scout common Choice-locked users such as Darmanitan, removing the need for prediction.

Checks and Counters

In general, the best counters to Empoleon are Electric-types, as most of them do not mind Scald burns and can hit Empoleon hard with a STAB attack. Lanturn is probably the best Empoleon counter. It resists Empoleon's Water-type attacks and takes little from Grass Knot thanks to its light weight. In return, Lanturn can fry Empoleon with an Electric-type attack and even gain momentum against your team with Volt Switch. Grass-types such as Roserade and Shaymin resist Empoleon's powerful Water-type STAB and can even stomach a Choice Specs Ice Beam at full health. Roserade can put Empoleon to sleep, while Shaymin can Leech Seed Empoleon or hit it with Earth Power. Keep in mind though that Empoleon is only neutral to Grass-type attacks and has an excellent Special Defense stat, even without investment. Standard special walls such as Snorlax are generally good switch-ins to Empoleon as well; however they take a hefty chunk from Torrent boosted Hydro Pumps and can normally do little back to Empoleon bar phazing it out. Bulky Water-types such as Suicune and Slowking can wall Empoleon that do not carry Grass Knot but cannot usually do much to Empoleon aside from phazing in Suicune's case. Opposing defensive Empoleon also counter Empoleon and can Roar it away. Fast Choice Scarf users such as Flygon and Raikou can outspeed a +2 Empoleon and hit it hard with powerful super effective STAB attacks. Priority users such as Hitmonchan will always be able to outspeed Empoleon and finish off weakened ones with Fake Out and Mach Punch.