Clefable returns this generation with an incredible ability, an almost unsurpassed movepool, and that ever-so-darling grin. Unfortunately for her, the new generation has not been so nice. She no longer has a niche with Magic Guard; Sigilyph and Reuniclus have usurped her throne as the queen of "who cares about residual damage?" Throw a UU-cast Mew into the mix with an impossibly incomparable movepool, and Clefable finds it harder and harder to stand out among the crowd.
Things aren't all bad for the pink pixy, however; she still manages to put together a very useful support set, and she loves the new Wish mechanics of the fifth generation. She is still a very solid user of Magic Guard, despite not having exclusive access anymore. She also has a reasonable amount of bulk for support and just enough offense to make a Life Orb set plausible.
Clefable didn't change very much with the new generation, but things certainly did all around her; despite these changes, Clefable is still a great Pokemon who can succeed on any team if played to her advantages.
Clefable is an excellent choice for providing support for the team. She has more balanced defenses than Alomomola, and she can support in ways they cannot with access to Knock Off and Magic Guard. She also has Heal Bell, which Alomomola would die for. Heal Bell and Wish turn Clefable into a cleric for the team, healing off status and passing 197 HP per Wish. Seismic Toss is Clefable's most reliable option to deal damage, allowing her to hit with consistency against most opponents. Knock Off rids opponents of their Leftovers or Eviolites, drastically diminishing their effectiveness and giving your team an advantage. Encore is there to lock an opponent into a move, providing an excellent opportunity to switch to a counter and set up, while Heal Bell lets Clefable rid her team of status.
Considering the great support Clefable offers with this set, she fits into practically any team with ease. She is particularly useful for sweepers who lack a reliable source of recovery and who appreciate Wish support. Encore and Knock Off make it easier for teammates to switch in and set up with a boosting move or Substitute. Clefable works best when paired with Ghost-, Psychic-, or Flying-type teammates who can handle the Fighting-type attacks that are going to be aimed at her.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
A Life Orb set might seem odd on a Pokemon with 70 Atk / 85 SpA offense stats, but thanks to Magic Guard, good bulk, a versatile movepool, and no recoil from Life Orb, Clefable is capable of dishing out a respectable amount of damage.
The first slot gives Clefable her best STAB option. Double-Edge is very dangerous and powerful, effectively reaching 234 base power with STAB and the Life Orb boost. A Fire-type move fills the second slot to give coverage against Steel types; Fire Blast is much more powerful, but Flamethrower is an option if one fears low accuracy. The third slot provides Clefable with well-rounded coverage and should be chosen depending on the needs of the team. Softboiled is an obvious choice in the final slot for reliable recovery.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Clefable has a ridiculous number of moves at her disposal. Body Slam provides paralysis support and still hits reasonably hard with a Life Orb. Clefable has a great selection of special attacks to choose from, but the only other options worth mentioning are Shadow Ball and Focus Blast, the latter of which is very situational, but the former can prove to be useful in the face of Ghost-types that attempt to set up on her.
Snatch can steal opposing healing or boosts, setting Clefable up while preventing your foe from doing so. Magic Coat can bounce back nasty things such as status, entry hazards, and Taunt. Sing can put opponents to sleep, but its very shaky accuracy makes it hardly worth using. Clefable can set up Gravity or Stealth Rock, but the former is gimmicky and the latter is best left to sturdier Pokemon. She can also run dual screens, but others do this more effectively, since Clefable is decidedly lacking in speed.
Clefable has a few kamikaze options in Counter, level 2 Endeavor, and Healing Wish. Counter can net a surprise KO against your opponent's Fighting-types, especially if paired with Focus Sash. Level 2 Endeavor is best used with sandstorm or Toxic Spikes, and almost guarantees Clefable will take at least one Pokemon down, but it sacrifices Clefable's effectiveness along the way. Healing Wish gives Clefable up to cleanse a teammate of any damage or status, but she is typically too slow to use it effectively.
Finally, Stored Power can be combined with Cosmic Power, Work Up, or Calm Mind to slowly turn Clefable into a powerhouse, but Stored Power is often walled even at max power, and is extremely difficult to effectively set up.
Checks and Counters
Clefable's biggest weapon is her vast movepool, and until it's figured out, she poses an immense threat to her opponent. Scouts using U-turn and Volt Switch can help figure out which set Clefable is carrying, at which point she is much more easily handled. Strong Fighting-type moves hurt Clefable a lot, despite her natural bulk. Taunt messes up a lot of what Clefable can do; without access to her support moves or recovery, Clefable is dead-weight in most scenarios.