Big boss alligator himself is here in the form of Feraligatr, one of the more fearsome Pokemon in RU. Wielding dual setup moves in Swords Dance and Dragon Dance along with a solid movepool to make use of them makes Feraligatr an incredibly effective sweeper. Powerful priority in Aqua Jet combined with stellar coverage options in Superpower, Crunch, and Ice Punch make both the Swords Dance and Dragon Dance sets very efficient as well as difficult to wall or revenge kill effectively, especially with a Torrent boost. Despite Feraligatr's solid offensive prowess, it does have a few issues. Choice Scarf users that resist Aqua Jet, such as Rotom-C, can effectively revenge kill Feraligatr with relative ease, whereas bulky Grass- and Water-types, such as Tangrowth and Slowking, are able to wall it depending on Feraligatr's coverage moves of choice. In addition, Feraligatr faces stiff competition as a Swords Dance user from the more powerful Kabutops, and competes with Crawdaunt as a Dragon Dance user. Nevertheless, Feraligatr is a significant offensive threat in the RU metagame.
It's Gatr Time! Swords Dance turns Feraligatr into an absolute juggernaut that can both crush walls and wipe out sweepers with ease. Grab that boost at the right moment and then watch with pride as Feraligatr tears the opponent's team apart in just a few turns. With a little bit of residual damage, Aqua Jet OHKOes most of the fast, frail Pokemon that outspeed Feraligatr, including Rotom, Accelgor, Manectric, and Primeape. Meanwhile, Waterfall easily 2HKOes any wall that doesn't resist it, and Feraligatr's solid natural bulk allows it to take a hit from most defensive Pokemon and carry on sweeping. In fact, opponents that try to wear Feraligatr down with weak attacks often hasten their own demise by bringing it into Torrent range; three Torrent-boosted hits from +2 Feraligatr will often translate into three quick KOs. Return is generally the best coverage option, as it hits every common Pokemon that resists Water neutrally, barring Ferroseed. Crunch is also a worthy option for super effective coverage against foes like Slowking and Uxie that could otherwise survive any of Feraligatr's attacks and cripple it with status or powerful special attacks. However, Poliwrath completely walls Feraligatr without Return, and the lower Base Power of Crunch makes it harder for Feraligatr to get past other bulky Pokemon that resist Water, such as Lanturn and Druddigon.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Dragon Dance sweepers are a rare sight in RU, primarily because all of the best Pokemon with access to such a powerful setup move are perched in higher tiers. For the most part, those that have fallen to RU are poor sweepers that lack sufficient power (Altaria and Dragonair), Speed (Crawdaunt and Shelgon), or both (Whiscash). Feraligatr is the exception to this rule; a single Dragon Dance gives it enough power to OHKO most offensive Pokemon and enough Speed to beat virtually every unboosted Pokemon in the tier. Unfortunately, a +1 Attack boost isn't enough for Feraligatr to break through RU's sturdiest walls, and most Choice Scarf users will outspeed it even after a Dragon Dance, so this Feraligatr is generally easier to stop than the Swords Dance variant. On the other hand, the Speed boost and additional coverage this set brings to the table help Feraligatr defeat some of its most common switch-ins, and it is still a capable sweeper, especially if it can grab a second boost.
Waterfall is the STAB move of choice thanks to its perfect accuracy, respectable Base Power, and handy flinch rate. Ice Punch covers Grass- and Dragon-types, allowing Feraligatr to beat some of the best counters to its Swords Dance set; after a Dragon Dance, Feraligatr outspeeds and OHKOes Sceptile, Lilligant, and Rotom-C with Ice Punch. In the last slot, Earthquake offers the best overall coverage, OHKOing Lanturn and Drapion, 2HKOing Qwilfish through Intimidate, and hitting Slowking, Poliwrath, and Ferroseed for neutral damage. However, Crunch is a notable alternative for extra power against Ghost- and Psychic-types such as Dusknoir, Slowking, and Uxie, which can ruin Feraligatr's sweep with paralysis or a burn.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Like any offensive Pokemon, Feraligatr can use Substitute to block status and set up in the face of defensive Pokemon such as Ferroseed and RestTalk Poliwrath. The problem is that the recoil damage from Substitute and Life Orb together cut Feraligatr's lifespan dramatically. Switching Feraligatr's item to Leftovers would help counteract Substitute's HP cost, but Feraligatr relies heavily on Life Orb for its KOs; without that extra power, it would rarely be able to sweep without gathering multiple boosts. Lum Berry is another option to protect Feraligatr from status, but Life Orb is simply more reliable if you want to sweep.
Aqua Tail is a slightly more powerful STAB attack, but Waterfall's perfect accuracy and useful flinch rate are hard to pass up. Superpower is Feraligatr's best option against Ferroseed, but its stat-reducing effect makes it a poor option on a boosting sweeper. Superpower would fit nicely on a Choice Band set, though, along with Waterfall, Aqua Jet, and Ice Punch or Crunch. Rock Slide and Dragon Claw round out Feraligatr's physical movepool, but they don't offer any significant additional coverage. If you're tired of Tangrowth ruining Feraligatr's sweeps, Ice Beam will always 2HKO it, even with a Special Attack-hindering nature. Venturing into the land of the insane, a Choice Specs set would be a fantastic lure for Tangrowth, and Choice Specs Hydro Pump is statistically Feraligatr's strongest viable unboosted attack thanks to its high Base Power. Feraligatr has the bulk and typing to be a passable defensive bulky Water-type, but its support movepool is limited to Toxic, Dragon Tail, and Roar, and it lacks the excellent secondary typing and ability that Pokemon such as Slowking, Qwilfish, Lanturn, and Quagsire enjoy. Stick to using Feraligatr as a deadly physical sweeper; anything else would be a waste.
Checks and Counters
Tangrowth is the ultimate answer to Feraligatr. Even a +1 Ice Punch will never 2HKO Tangrowth, whereas Tangrowth always OHKOes Feraligatr with Power Whip after Stealth Rock and Life Orb recoil, or 2HKOes with Giga Drain while recovering most of its HP. Quagsire ignores Feraligatr's boosts thanks to Unaware and takes a maximum of 39% from Waterfall, so it can easily stall Feraligatr out with Toxic and Recover. Ferroseed takes little from any of Feraligatr's attacks even after a boost, and it can cripple Dragon Dance sets with Thunder Wave while siphoning Feraligatr's HP with Leech Seed. Poliwrath is immune to Waterfall and resists Ice Punch and Crunch, so it can take a hit and phaze Feraligatr with Circle Throw. Faster Grass-types such as Sceptile, Lilligant, and Rotom-C are all good switch-ins to Swords Dance sets, while Choice Scarf users with super effective STAB attacks can take out Dragon Dance versions with ease.
Sheer Force will be an incredible upgrade; the 30% power boost to key attacks such as Waterfall, Ice Punch, and Crunch will make Feraligatr nearly impossible to wall. Unfortunately, this will probably result in Feraligatr being promoted to a higher tier, so enjoy Gatr Time while you can!