Level 100 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
Kecleon is not a great Pokemon in the NU metagame. While it has great special bulk, which allows it to take several special attacks, as well as a wide movepool that makes it unpredictable, its ability in Color Change makes it extremely easy to play around, letting opponents hit it for super effective damage when they normally couldn't. The fact that its STAB is constantly changing also means that it has to rely on Foul Play to deal consistent damage. Therefore, Kecleon really only works as a bulky Pokemon, and not a good one at that.
Kecleon can make use of its above average special bulk to set up Stealth Rock in front of special attackers. Color Change also allows it to wall several Pokemon such as special Samurott lacking Taunt and Choice Scarf Jynx. Recover allows Kecleon to keep itself healthy against the onslaught of special attackers. Foul Play is used as Kecleon's attacking option, as its Attack stat is subpar and it rarely receives a STAB boost on any move due to Color Change. Foul Play also deals heavy damage to Golurk. Kecleon can also be a decent status spreader, with Toxic crippling walls and Thunder Wave crippling fast opposing attackers; both can potentially pave the way for a teammate's sweep. It should be noted that it is very easy for opponents to take advantage of Color Change to expose Kecleon to super effective attacks. For instance, Charizard can use a combination of Hidden Power Grass and Fire Blast to easily KO Kecleon. As such, Kecleon should always be used with caution.
Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Kecleon can support the team with various field effects, such as weather and Trick Room. It can also carry a Choice item along with Trick to cripple opposing walls, but due to Kecleon's lack of power and low Speed, this isn't recommended. Sucker Punch is a powerful priority move to pick off weakened foes and somewhat mitigates Kecleon's low Speed. Shadow Sneak can also be used, but it is much weaker. Disable is a decent surprise move and often comes in handy by Disabling Ghost- and Dragon-type moves and preventing the opponent from taking advantage of Color Change. However, Kecleon's low Speed means prediction is required. Aqua Tail can be used to defeat opposing Stealth Rock users such as Camerupt and Golem. Knock Off is an option to cripple certain opposing Pokemon by taking away their items. Kecleon can be used as an offensive Pokemon and has access to boosting moves such as Nasty Plot and Hone Claws. However, Kecleon is weak and outclassed by many other offensive Pokemon. Counter can be used to surprise physical attackers in tandem with a Focus Sash. Kecleon also has a wide range of special attacks at its disposal, but its horrible Special Attack stat means it can't make use of this.
Checks and Counters
Almost any Pokemon that has more than one move and isn't wielding a Choice item can easily take advantage of Color Change by first attacking with a coverage move to change Kecleon's type and following up with a move that is super effective. Before Kecleon changes its typing, Fighting-type attackers, such as Sawk and Gurdurr, can obliterate it easily, although Sawk does not enjoy switching into Thunder Wave. Unless Kecleon is carrying Magic Coat, it is shut down entirely by Taunt, especially from a Pokemon that does not mind Foul Play. For example, Mandibuzz and Skuntank can easily stop Kecleon this way. Mandibuzz can then proceed to Toxic stall it to death, and Skuntank can play around Color Change with two different STAB moves. Most Poison- and Steel-types can defeat Kecleon as they are immune to Toxic, and Ground-types are immune to Thunder Wave. A good example of a counter would be Probopass, which is immune to Toxic, takes little damage from Foul Play, and can play around Color Change using Power Gem and Earth Power. Finally, almost every physical STAB move can at least come close to KOing Kecleon if it doesn't resist the hit because it is very frail physically.