In sharp contrast to last generation, Spikes (along with other entry hazards) now has a major effect on the way that teams are built and played, and Dwebble is a big part of the reason why this is the case. Dwebble almost seems to be designed specifically to be the perfect entry hazard user in Little Cup, as its reasonably good Speed and Attack stats, coupled with Sturdy, give it the opportunity to virtually always get at least one or two layers of entry hazards down, making it a very good "lead."
Dwebble is one of the best Pokemon in LC for laying down entry hazards, especially on offensive teams. With Jolly and max Speed, Dwebble hits 16 Speed, allowing it to outrun the majority of the tier. Sturdy allows Dwebble to practically always get at least one layer of Spikes or Stealth Rock down, and very frequently two. Rock Blast works well with Dwebble's usable Attack stat; it gives Dwebble a move to hurt opposing Dwebble leads with, and helps to discourage other Pokemon from setting up on it.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Shell Smash Dwebble is a very uncommon and overlooked threat, as most people expect the entry hazard laying variant, and it isn't the best Pokemon to utilize Shell Smash. However, Dwebble has many things going for it as a Shell Smash sweeper, notably Sturdy, its good offensive typing, and the surprise value it carries. With an Adamant nature and max Attack, Dwebble has an Attack stat of 17, which is doubled to 34 after a Shell Smash. Its Speed is also doubled to 30, which is faster than every common unboosted Pokemon in the tier.
Because of Shell Smash Dwebble's surprise value, many players will switch on the turn that Dwebble uses Shell Smash, expecting it to lay down an entry hazard. Many switch-ins will be unable to face Dwebble at +2/+2, allowing Dwebble to either get a fast kill or another Shell Smash boost. This works especially well for Dwebble, as with Sturdy it has a guaranteed two turns to attack, provided that it is at full health.
Dwebble's three attacks give it the best coverage it can have. Rock Blast, while seemingly unreliable, has more merit than any of Dwebble's other Rock-type STAB moves. X-Scissor is a much more reliable STAB attack and has great coverage alongside Rock Blast. Earthquake rounds out the coverage and hits Pokemon such as Magnemite and Croagunk which resist all of the other attacks. Stealth Rock can be used on this set, as it can be used to bluff a standard Dwebble set, or it can be used for an unexpected surprise after Dwebble has used Shell Smash.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Counter can be used to score surprise kills against Pokemon such as Scraggy, but Dwebble has better things to do with its four moveslots. Dwebble has many other boosting moves, including Hone Claws, Curse, and Swords Dance, but all of them are generally inferior to Shell Smash. A set with Flail could be used in conjunction with Sturdy; however; at level 5 the highest Base Power Flail can have is 150, and generally Little Cup is too priority filled for such a set to be effective. Bug Bite is always an option instead of X-Scissor to steal opposing Oran Berries, but Oran Berry is a rare hold item, so the drop in power is usually not worth it.
Checks and Counters
Taunt users such as Mienfoo can effectively prevent Dwebble from setting up entry hazards; however, they need to be more careful of being hit by Dwebble's actual attacks, and will probably be unable to beat the Shell Smash set. Breaking Sturdy by the use of Stealth Rock or Spikes is an easy way to ensure that Dwebble will not get too many layers up. If you can use team preview to manipulate Dwebble into not leading, setting up Stealth Rock with a Pokemon such as Ferroseed before Dwebble is sent out will be a huge step towards beating it. Once Sturdy is broken, a plethora of Pokemon can take on Dwebble.
Pokemon that can KO Dwebble around Sturdy also work very well. Shellder can use Rock Blast (or threaten to set up a Shell Smash of its own), which will kill Dwebble in one attack. A Dwebble of your own can do this as well; however, it will probably not OHKO without at least one critical hit. Rapid Spin users, while rare, also nullify Dwebble's presence on the field. Unlike other Spikes users, Dwebble will probably only be able to lay down entry hazards once, so Pokemon such as Rapid Spin Staryu and Tentacool can easily remove them after Dwebble has fainted. Drilbur can do this as well, and will usually threaten Dwebble out in fear of Drilbur setting up a Swords Dance. Natu is capable of reflecting Dwebble's entry hazards with Magic Bounce, and can nullify Rock Blast with a combination of FeatherDance and Roost, but it has difficulty switching in once Dwebble is out. Both Scraggy and Timburr can set up Dragon Dances or Bulk Ups, respectively, on Dwebble while it can't do anything notable in return.