Shaymin-S

Serene Grace
This Pokemon's secondary effect chances are doubled.
Type Tier
Grass / Flying Uber
Level 50 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
Min- Min Max Max+
HP
100
- 175 207 -
Atk
103
110 123 155 170
Def
75
85 95 127 139
SpA
120
126 140 172 189
SpD
75
85 95 127 139
Spe
127
132 147 179 196

Overview

Shaymin-S holds the title for being the first Pokemon to be unanimously banned from the OU tier. Whether it was existing bias in the form of "60% = 100%" (a reference to a 30% chance to flinch opposing Pokemon with Air Slash that is doubled by Serene Grace), or that it was just that good, Shaymin-S once again finds its home among the Uber Pokemon. Excellent base 127 Speed and decent base 120 Special Attack make this flying deer a solid choice offensively, especially because its ability, Serene Grace, abuses the side effects of Seed Flare and Air Slash to great effect. Unfortunately, Shaymin-S is still weak to Stealth Rock, although this matters less considering Shaymin-S's 100 / 75 / 75 defenses are hardly enough to shoulder the powerful moves in the tier anyway. Overall, Shaymin-S is very much the same Pokemon it was in DPP, causing rage quits since September 12, 2008.

Name Item Nature

Substitute + Leech Seed

Leftovers Timid
Moveset EVs
~ Substitute
~ Leech Seed
~ Seed Flare
~ Air Slash / Hidden Power Fire / Earth Power
252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

Shaymin-S can successfully employ the SubSeed strategy due to its extremely high Speed. In fact, it is outsped only by Jumpluff in the sun and Ludicolo in the rain, whereas Prankster Whimsicott has priority SubSeed. Fortunately, all three of these are relatively uncommon in Ubers, so the competition is virtually nil. While it may be tempting to use Whimsicott, remember that Shaymin-S has a great base 120 Special Attack, allowing it to take on a more offensive approach. As with all SubSeed strategies, one starts by switching in Shaymin-S to scare off certain whales or behemoths. Then, it can Substitute on the switch and begin to wreak havoc, alternating between Substitute and an attack after Leech Seed. Alternatively, Seed Flare can force switches, as the Special Defense drops cause plenty of fleeing for Shaymin-S to take advantage of. Air Slash fills the last slot to annoy any victim that stays in; its health will be slowly sapped by Air Slash, unable to fight back due to the excessive flinching. Hidden Power Fire and Earth Power are also options to hit Scizor and Dialga, respectively, but Air Slash's high flinch chance makes it too good to pass up.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Nature

Choice Scarf

Choice Scarf Modest / Timid
Moveset EVs
~ Seed Flare / Leaf Storm
~ Air Slash
~ Earth Power
~ Hidden Power Ice
252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

When equipped with a Choice Scarf, Shaymin-S becomes a great revenge killer, outspeeding the entire unboosted tier. It can also function as a lead, flinching threats such as Darkrai to death before they can even respond. Seed Flare is the main STAB attack, having the ability to neutralize switch-ins with a Special Defense drop. Air Slash complements this move very well, also receives STAB, and can KO opponents lacking a resistance simply through repeated flinches. Earth Power provides coverage against those that resist Seed Flare and Air Slash, namely Steel-types such as Dialga, Jirachi, and Metagross. Hidden Power Ice has the most utility on a Choice Scarf set, revenge killing other common Pokemon with a +1 boost such as Garchomp, opposing Shaymin-S, and Dragon Dance Salamence and Rayquaza.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Nature

Special Sweeper

Life Orb / Leftovers Timid
Moveset IVs
~ Seed Flare
~ Air Slash
~ Earth Power
~ Hidden Power Fire / Hidden Power Ice / Growth
29 HP
EVs
252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

With excellent Special Attack and Speed stats even by Ubers standards, as well as a movepool that gives it good coverage, Shaymin-S makes a dangerous special sweeper. Seed Flare is what makes Shaymin-S so fearsome, as with Serene Grace there is a high chance of inflicting that Special Defense drop. After that, Shaymin-S can plow through the opponent or continue to assault the switch-in with its powerful attacks. One must be wary of spamming this move, however, as the prevalence of Pressure users means its PP could drop at an alarming rate. Air Slash is a secondary STAB move that has a great flinch chance, decimating switch-ins before they can even retaliate in conjunction with the Special Defense drops which Seed Flare can cause. Earth Power provides coverage on Steel-types such as Dialga, who resist both Seed Flare and Air Slash. However, this is hardly a problem if they have been inflicted with the Special Defense drops. The final slot is given to Hidden Power Fire, which KOes Scizor and Skarmory, both of whom 4x resist Seed Flare.

A few other moves can work in the last slot as well. Hidden Power Ice is one option, KOing Lugia if it has already been hit with a Special Defense drop. This also applies to Latias, Giratina, and Giratina-O, who could otherwise take Hidden Power Ice with ease. On the other hand, Growth forgoes coverage and gives Shaymin-S the ability to boost its Special Attack instead of relying upon Seed Flare's Special Defense drops. While the Attack boost would be unhelpful for the most part, +1 in Special Attack will allow Shaymin-S to take down Pokemon it would otherwise fail to KO. This becomes more useful in the sun, as Growth will grant a +2 boost to Special Attack; Shaymin-S can then proceed to decimate weakened teams with its decent three-move coverage of Seed Flare, Air Slash, and Earth Power.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Nature

Choice Specs

Choice Specs Timid / Modest
Moveset EVs
~ Seed Flare
~ Air Slash
~ Earth Power
~ Hidden Power Ice / Hidden Power Fire
252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

A Choice Specs set is a different take on Shaymin-S, affording it immediate power without the recoil of Life Orb. Seed Flare maims any switch-in that does not resist Grass-type moves, and even those that do pack a resistance must be wary of the Special Defense drops; if Shaymin-S outspeeds, the opponent will inevitably fall. Air Slash provides a second STAB move, and is especially great because of its 60% chance to flinch the opponent. Due to the fact that Choice Specs powers up Shaymin-S's special attacks, less Air Slash uses would be needed than without the boost, and thus there is a higher chance the opponent will be flinched to death before it can retaliate. Earth Power provides additional coverage, hitting the Steel-types that resist Grass- and Flying-type moves, such as Dialga and Jirachi. Hidden Power Ice rounds out the coverage, OHKOing Dragon-types such as Rayquaza and Garchomp; tread carefully around Choice Scarf variants of the latter, though, as they will outspeed and deal massive damage if not OHKOed.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>

Other Options

Shaymin-S has a few other options it can consider. A Swords Dance set is possible, as Shaymin-S has access to powerful physical moves in Seed Bomb and Return. Unfortunately, the rest of its physical movepool is barren. Hidden Power Rock is a viable alternative to other Hidden Power types for KOing Ho-Oh after Stealth Rock, 2HKOing Rayquaza, and 2HKOing opposing Shaymin-S, but has little added coverage outside of that. A Yache Berry allows Shaymin-S to bluff a Choice set and survive Ice Beam, but more powerful users of the move will OHKO Shaymin-S regardless. Lastly, our flying deer makes good use of Healing Wish due to its high Speed. This move can give a sweeper another chance to plow through the opposing team, especially after a counter to said sweeper is removed. However, this is generally situational, and may end up being an unneeded move in most matches.

Checks and Counters

Skarmory comfortably sponges Seed Flare and can retaliate with either Whirlwind or Brave Bird, provided it is not met with a Hidden Power Fire. Bronzong is a similar case, tanking both Seed Flare and Air Slash with ease, and can KO Shaymin-S with Gyro Ball. Ho-Oh, as long as it has a reasonable amount of health left, laughs at Air Slash and can KO back with either of its STAB moves or even Whirlwind Shaymin-S away. Steel Arceus is another great choice to counter Shaymin-S, as it is bulky enough to take an Earth Power or two and has access to Recover and Roar.

Choice Scarf users such as Dialga, Heatran, Jirachi, and Metagross can use their resistances to switch in and KO, making them great checks too. Pokemon with priority, such as Mamoswine and Scizor, bypass Shaymin-S's high Speed and maim it. Scizor must be careful, though, as after a Special Defense drop from Seed Flare, it will fall to Air Slash, because its Bullet Punch is unable to KO Shaymin-S even after Stealth Rock. Bisharp is another check in this priority category, as it is immune to flinching due to Inner Focus and can 2HKO Shaymin-S with Sucker Punch. Ferrothorn would be a great counter, but it is very susceptible to flinches from Air Slash, and Gyro Ball can only 2HKO. Likewise, Lugia and Latias can KO Shaymin-S with Ice Beam and Dragon Pulse, respectively, but must be wary of Seed Flare followed by Air Slash flinches.