Nidoking has returned to wreak havoc in a new generation. Before, it was a decent wallbreaker in the lower tiers. However, in this generation Nidoking received a blessing with its Dream World ability, Sheer Force, which gives the equivalent of a Life Orb boost to moves with secondary effects. In addition, when such a move is used with Sheer Force, Life Orb damage is actually negated, meaning Nidoking hits like a truck and retains the freedom of attacking with whichever move it likes, at the cost of secondary effects. Nidoking takes great advantage of this, as it has a massive movepool of special attacks with secondary effects. In addition, the array of Fighting-type Pokemon this generation makes Nidoking's Poison typing an advantage, as it can take Fighting moves and hit back with a souped up STAB Earth Power. Its Poison / Ground typing is unique, in that it can come in on most status moves and entry hazards, taking little to no damage at all.
Hitting like a truck doesn't mean lasting like a truck though. Nidoking's defenses are average at best, and even though Sheer Force helps it utilize its decidedly average Attack and Special Attack, its Speed is still a detriment to its sweeping potential. Weaknesses to Water-, Ground-, and Psychic-type attacks do not help its case either. Regardless, Nidoking received an ability many Pokemon would drool over, and that may be enough for many trainers to once again fear the horned one.
The Sheer Force and Life Orb boosts mean Nidoking will be punching plenty of holes with the given moveset. Earth Power is the STAB move of choice, providing good coverage against common foes such as Heatran and Terrakion. With Nidoking's massive movepool of special attacks to take advantage of Sheer Force and Life Orb boosts, Nidoking can attain near perfect neutral coverage with the remaining moveslots. Thunderbolt and Ice Beam form the BoltBeam combo, hitting a great number of types for super effective damage. The final moveslot is reserved for a Fire-type attack, with the choice of Flamethrower or Fire Blast.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Slap a Choice Scarf on the king and watch him perform a great job as a revenge killer. Essentially a slightly weaker but faster Heatran with a different typing, Nidoking has some advantages over it. For one, its Ground-typing means no Electric-type attacks will potentially neuter it with paralysis. Secondly, Earth Power has a STAB boost, and finally, Nidoking doesn't need to resort to Hidden Power to gain an additional coverage move. Nidoking fires off attacks from 349 Special Attack at a blistering 442 Speed, outspeeding everything up to positive natured base 150s. From there, go to town with Earth Power as STAB, Thunderbolt to battle Water-types, Ice Beam to pound Dragon- and Ground-type foes, and Fire Blast to combat Steel-types that are neutral or immune to Earth Power.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Though Nidoking finally has a boosting move in Hone Claws, there are very few physical moves Nidoking can take advantage of with the boost of Sheer Force and +1 Attack. It can take advantage of the +1 Accuracy to wield Blizzard and Thunder, but this makes the set too dependent on setting up before attacking. The elemental punches can be taught via BW2 move tutors and can work well with Hone Claws.
Sucker Punch is Nidoking's only form of priority but is useful to get the jump on faster Psychic- and Ghost- types. Nidoking may also lay down Stealth Rock if you need a Pokemon to fill this important role.
Checks and Counters
Very little can come in to stop Nidoking; Sheer Force and Life Orb ensure almost anything that switches in will be getting severely hurt. However, Rotom-H serves as the greatest counter, only fearing Nidoking if he carries a Rock-type attack or if the effects of Gravity are on the field. Eviolite Chansey and Blissey also serve as decent checks to Nidoking, easily sponging their special attacks even after the Sheer Force boost.
The best way to beat Nidoking outside of Rotom-H is to prey on its low Speed. 295 is not blazing fast so the best way to deal with Nidoking is to revenge kill it. Choice Scarf Nidoking is weaker than Life Orb Nidoking, but it still packs a punch; still, the fastest Choice Scarf Nidoking will cap off at 442 Speed. Choice Scarf users faster than Base 85 Speed will be able to outrun it.