Tauros

Intimidate
Lowers the foe's Attack one stage. Decreases wild encounter rate.
Anger Point
Raises Attack to +6 if struck by a critical hit.
Sheer Force
Increases power of moves with secondary effects by 30%, but removes the effects.
Type Tier
Normal NU
Level 5 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
Min- Min Max Max+
HP
75
- 24 27 -
Atk
100
14 16 19 20
Def
95
14 16 19 20
SpA
40
9 10 13 14
SpD
70
11 13 16 17
Spe
110
15 17 20 22

Overview

Tauros is a straightforward, dangerous physical attacker in NU, capable of threatening a wide variety of teams. The reason for this should be fairly obvious—it's one of the fastest Pokemon in the tier, packs plenty of power, and has a good amount of coverage in its decent movepool. This is combined with an excellent ability in Sheer Force, which pushes its attacking prowess even further, and it has ways to work around Pokemon that other Normal-types would typically struggle with. Tauros's main flaw is that it usually struggles with prominent physical walls. It also has competition with Kangaskhan, who has Scrappy and several priority moves to work with.

Name Item Ability Nature

Life Orb

Life Orb Sheer Force Jolly
Moveset EVs
~ Rock Climb
~ Earthquake
~ Zen Headbutt
~ Substitute
4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe

This is the set Tauros is best known for, offering impressive coverage that is augmented by its high Attack and Speed. Like any other Pokemon that utilizes Sheer Force, Tauros has the advantage of ignoring Life Orb recoil while still obtaining all the benefits of the item, meaning outpredicting it will not wear it down as quickly as other Pokemon. Rock Climb is the strongest STAB move Tauros gets that is affected by Sheer Force, and is thus used on this set. Although not boosted by the ability, Earthquake is essential for coverage against Steel- and Rock-types. Zen Headbutt gets a super effective hit on Fighting-types such as Gurdurr and is the only way Tauros can hit most of the Ghost-types in the tier, including Haunter, Misdreavus, and Drifblim. Zen Headbutt also gets the bonus of 2HKOing Weezing. Because the above three moves offer excellent coverage, Tauros has room to run Substitute. With a Substitute, it can ease prediction and protect itself from status, as well as defeat defensive variants of Misdreavus without Foul Play as it is immune to Misdreavus's Ghost STAB. Substitute also allows Tauros to avoid revenge killers and hit them hard before they are able to damage it.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Ability Nature

Choice Scarf

Choice Scarf Intimidate Adamant / Jolly
Moveset EVs
~ Double-Edge
~ Earthquake
~ Stone Edge
~ Pursuit / Retaliate
4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe

Although it might seem like a waste to give a Choice Scarf to a Pokemon as fast as Tauros, this excessive Speed is in large part why it makes such an effective Choice Scarf user. Because Tauros is so fast, it can afford to run an Adamant nature and still be capable of revenge killing weather sweepers. More importantly, however, even Adamant Tauros can outspeed almost all other prominent Choice Scarf users in the tier, most notably ones at base 95 Speed, such as Primeape and Jynx. Double-Edge is the strongest reliable STAB Tauros has, and it is the move it will be using in nearly every situation. Earthquake is primarily for hitting Rock- and Steel-types who can switch into Double-Edge, for a solid amount of damage. Stone Edge allows Tauros to OHKO Drifblim, and it is the best option it has against Misdreavus. The final move is used for specific situations. Pursuit practically checkmates Jynx, Haunter, and Kadabra to an extent, OHKOing them if they switch out and still dealing a substantial amount of damage even if they don't. Retaliate, on the other hand, is an interesting option that goes well with Tauros's role as a revenge killer—it usually finishes off the opponent in this case due to its high power. Note that neither move is particularly good to be locked into though, however, as both are fairly weak most of the time.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Ability Nature

Substitute + Endeavor

Life Orb Sheer Force Jolly
Moveset EVs
~ Substitute
~ Endeavor
~ Rock Climb
~ Zen Headbutt
8 HP / 248 Atk / 252 Spe

Although this set might look somewhat gimmicky at first, it makes Tauros an excellent lure for Pokemon that would typically wall it with ease, opening up the way for other sweepers to have a much easier time. The goal of this set is to use Substitute as many times as possible, and then use Endeavor to bring the opponent down to very low HP, leaving it able to be finished off by just about any move and irreparably damaged if it lacks recovery. Among the Pokemon that this set can wear down immensely are Regirock, Carracosta, and Metang. To an extent, it can also wear down Pokemon such as Alomomola and Tangela as well, although they have recovery to compensate for the loss of HP. This set is still capable of doing damage to its foes outside of this strategy—Rock Climb alongside Sheer Force and a Life Orb is still strong enough to make it a hard-hitting physical attacker. Finally, Zen Headbutt is the best move Tauros has to hit Ghost-types, which are immune to Endeavor.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>

Other Options

Even though Tauros has a relatively generous movepool, most of it is unusable, and it lacks very many other options. Despite its terrible Special Attack, Sheer Force allows it to use Fire Blast and Thunder to 2HKO Tangela and Alomomola. However, these moves have limited use outside of this because they do not inflict a lot of damage against most targets, and Thunder in particular has horrid accuracy. Iron Head is boosted by Sheer Force and hits Rock-types harder than anything else Tauros has, but its coverage otherwise is fairly bad, making Earthquake the superior option most of the time. Earthquake also hits Steel-types such as Metang much harder than Iron Head. Tauros's only setup option is Work Up, but in the end, a +1 boost is rarely enough to take advantage of, especially for a Pokemon that rarely has space to run it. Wild Charge can OHKO Drifblim and deals a heavy blow on other Flying-types and doesn't have any chance of missing, but the recoil damage can be fairly annoying. Finally, Tauros can utilize a Choice Band with Intimidate to make a decent offensive pivot, but with Sheer Force canceling out Life Orb recoil on most moves, the main advantage of Choice Band is somewhat wasted. In fact, because of its reliance on Double-Edge, a Choice Band set often takes more recoil damage than a Life Orb set!

Checks and Counters

Tauros has several ways to get around many Pokemon that would usually counter it, leaving few Pokemon that can reliably take on all variants. Any Misdreavus with Foul Play over Shadow Ball is the best way to take on Tauros, as it is immune to its STAB, can burn it with Will-O-Wisp, and has an attack that can break its Substitutes. It also has Heal Bell to take any surprise Toxics. Golurk is also immune to Normal-type attacks and isn't weak to anything Tauros has. It can hit back hard with Drain Punch and Earthquake. Although Gurdurr is 2HKOed by Zen Headbutt, it has Drain Punch to heal off the damage and get out of range of this, Mach Punch to finish Tauros off, and the bulk to switch into any other attack. Alomomola can wall Tauros almost completely and stall it out due to Wish, and it can usually break its Substitutes with Waterfall. Additionally, recoil from Double-Edge takes a large toll on Tauros due to Alomomola's high HP. It must be careful around Endeavor, although Regenerator and Wish help it regain lost HP. Tangela is in a similar boat in regards to walling, although its Giga Drain will always break Tauros's Substitutes.

There exist more shaky checks to Tauros that need to be careful around coverage moves or Endeavor due to lack of reliable recovery. Regirock is a prime example of this despite being able to cripple Tauros with Thunder Wave and wear it down with Drain Punch while keeping itself healthy. It has a high enough Defense to sponge an Earthquake, but it still must be careful around Tauros. Defensive variants of Carracosta have Solid Rock to mitigate damage from Earthquake and can wear down Tauros over time. Weezing gets 2HKOed by Zen Headbutt, but it can wall Tauros otherwise and burn it with Will-O-Wisp. Finally, Tauros can be revenge killed by faster Pokemon such as Swellow and Choice Scarf Primeape, although this is only if Tauros doesn't have a Choice Scarf of its own and isn't behind a Substitute.