Level 100 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
At first sight, Basculin might seem like a run of the mill Water-type, outclassed by the likes of Qwilfish and even Whiscash. However, Basculin holds one key trait that seperates it from the rest: Adaptability. Adaptability alters Basculin's STAB multiplier to 2 instead of 1.5, making its Water-type moves pretty deadly. Basculin also has a couple of niche moves in Taunt and Aqua Jet, which allow it to break stall teams and act as an effective revenge killer, respectively. However, not all is good for the hostile Pokemon; besides having mediocre stats, Basculin also suffers having an extremely narrow movepool, consisting of only Water-, Normal- and Dark-type moves, limiting Basculin's effectiveness.
The idea behind this set is to switch in, deal as much damage as possible in a single turn, and switch out. Basculin's powerful STAB moves, combined with Adaptability, make it an excellent hit-and-run sweeper. Waterfall and Aqua Jet are excellent STAB moves, and have Base Powers of 160 and 80, respectively. Aqua Jet gives Basculin a way to attack Choice Scarf and Speed-boosted Pokemon before they can land a hit. Double-Edge provides excellent type coverage along with Water-type moves, and it has a high Base Power. Unfortunately, Double-Edge isn't boosted by Adaptability, and it also causes recoil damage. Crunch is listed in the final slot to deal more damage to Psychic-types, such as Uxie, and Ghost-types who attempt to switch into Double-Edge freely. Toxic is an alternative to cripple bulkier opponents, although it isn't great on a Choice set, as Pokemon can easily to set up on a Choice locked status move.
Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
This set utilizes Taunt to shut down walls, and stop them from recovering after Basculin's assaults. This set doesn't offer much in terms of coverage, but it has enough power to dent the whole RU tier. Adaptability means that the Base Power of Basculin's STAB moves is essentially doubled, making them extremely powerful. Waterfall is used as a powerful STAB move, while Aqua Jet allows Basculin to check some Speed-boosters and Choice Scarf users. Crunch hits Ghost- and Psychic-types, such as Uxie and Dusknoir, super effectively, and it hits other Water-types who resist Waterfall. Double-Edge can be used over Crunch if you prefer the Normal- + Water-type coverage, but the recoil damage is off-putting.
Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Unfortunately, Basculin's movepool isn't very good, making its options limited. Agility can be used to raise Basculin's Speed, and it gives it more sweeping potential, but it lacks the raw power to sweep. Return is an option if you dislike Double-Edge's recoil damage, but it's weaker. Substitute is great if you can predict a switch or a non-damaging move. Final Gambit is an interesting option to consider, but it's unreliable due to the presence of entry hazards. Hidden Power Electric or Grass can be used to hit opposing Water-types, though Basculin's Special Attack is decidely average, so it won't KO most of them. Scald is another option as it has a chance to burn the target, though again, Basculin's Special Attack isn't great.
Checks and Counters
Most Pokemon with reasonable Defense can take on Basculin. Ferroseed can take just about anything Basculin can dish out, and it can set up entry hazards in Basculin's face. Tangrowth resists Basculin's STAB moves, and its massive Defense means it will survive even Choice Band-boosted hits. Poliwrath is immune to Water-type moves, resists Crunch, and can smash Basculin with STAB Focus Punch. Uxie has high Defense, useful support moves, and it doesn't take a lot of damage from Crunch; however, it has to be careful of Taunt, because it will render Uxie useless. If all else fails, paralyzing Basculin will ruin its sweeping potential, and burning it will instantly cripple it.