Cyclohm is one of the best physical walls in the CAP metagame, as it has solid HP and Defense as well as handy resistances to common attacking types in Water, Grass, Steel, Fire, Electric, and Flying. Cyclohm's high bulk and resistance to Flying allow it to serve as one of the best counters to Cawmodore and Talonflame. It is not weak offensively, either, as a base 112 Special Attack prevents it from being taken advantage of by setup sweepers and Taunt. Its wide special movepool grants it the options it needs to handle most threats in the metagame. In addition, it has two great abilities: Static punishes foes using contact moves, and Shield Dust blocks the secondary effects of moves. However, Cyclohm's Special Defense is merely average, allowing special attackers to prey on it. It also has some annoying weaknesses to common attacking types in Dragon, Fairy, Ground, and Ice. Its vulnerability to entry hazards also threatens to reduce its longevity.
Slack Off is a reliable form of recovery that enables Cyclohm to hold its own against many physical attackers. An Electric-type STAB attack is used to hit anything that does not resist it for decent damage. Discharge is preferred due to its higher chance to paralyze threats, while Thunderbolt can be an alternative if Toxic is used to prevent clashing status. Fire Blast and Flamethrower hit Grass-, Ice-, Bug-, and Steel-types, such as Necturna, Kitsunoh, Mega Metagross, Mega Scizor, Ferrothorn, and, most notably, Cawmodore. Fire Blast should be used on any set with Shield Dust due to its chance of OHKOing Cawmodore, but if Static is chosen, Flamethrower is an option for a more accurate Fire-type move. Whirlwind allows Cyclohm to phaze setup sweepers and rack up entry hazard damage on foes. Heal Bell turns Cyclohm into a cleric that can cure the team of status and free up a moveslot for a teammate. Toxic can be used to place a timer on walls and hit switch-ins that can otherwise threaten Cyclohm, such as Mega Gardevoir. A Water-type attack such as Surf or Hydro Pump can hit Landorus-T, Colossoil, Mega Diancie, and Gliscor, though there is little room for it in this set. Surf is more reliable than Hydro Pump and does not miss out on any important KOs, while Hydro Pump is an option for more power. Dragon Pulse can also be used for coverage against Dragon-types, but it is hard to fit in this set.
Maximum HP and Defense investment with a Bold nature maximizes Cyclohm's physical bulk. Leftovers is used for passive recovery, further increasing Cyclohm's longevity. Static allows Cyclohm to punish attackers using contact moves, especially Talonflame and Cawmodore, while Shield Dust is an alternative to prevent secondary effects such as burns from Scald and Lava Plume, poison from Sludge Bomb, and Defense drops from Shadow Strike. Static is notable in that it allows any set lacking Whirlwind to repeatedly use Slack Off until Cawmodore gets paralyzed, leaving it vulnerable to Flamethrower. An alternate spread of 252 HP / 116 Def / 140 SpD can be used to enable Cyclohm to avoid the 2HKO from Mega Charizard Y's Fire Blast, Keldeo's Hydro Pump, Thundurus's Hidden Power Ice, and uninvested Heatran's Earth Power, allowing Cyclohm to use Slack Off against these foes.
This set is more suited for defensive and balanced teams that need a wall to deal with Cawmodore and Talonflame. Cyclohm should switch in on Pokemon that cannot deal much damage to it. Due to Cyclohm's high physical bulk, it is a good switch-in to physical attackers, especially Talonflame and Cawmodore. If Cyclohm is up against a setup sweeper, it should use Whirlwind to phaze it. If running Heal Bell, Cyclohm should use it whenever the team needs status ailments removed. If running Toxic, it should be used on a predicted switch-in to put it on a timer. Cyclohm should use Slack Off when needed to avoid getting KOed.
Clerics such as Chansey, Clefable, and Sylveon can pass Wishes to Cyclohm and also cure it of any status inflicted onto it with Heal Bell. Chansey can take on any special attacker lacking Psyshock or Secret Sword, while Clefable and Sylveon deal with Dark-types, Fighting-types, and Dragon-types. Tomohawk and Skarmory are also good teammates, as they can switch into Ground-types such as Colossoil and Landorus-T. Colossoil and Bisharp make for good teammates as well, as they can trap Gothitelle with Pursuit and revenge kill Syclant with Sucker Punch. Bulky Water-types such as Rotom-W, Arghonaut, and Slowbro as well as Mega Scizor can switch into Ice-type moves aimed at Cyclohm, and Arghonaut and Mega Scizor can also check Syclant. Mega Venusaur, Mega Scizor, Mollux, Pyroak, Ferrothorn, and Heatran are also great partners to Cyclohm, as they can deal with Fairy-types. Any sweeper that appreciates Talonflame and Cawmodore removed is a good option as well; Aurumoth and Revenankh are some great sweepers in the metagame that can set up once Talonflame and Cawmodore are removed from the game.
Thunderbolt is a reliable STAB move that deals decent damage to any Pokemon that does not resist it. Thunder can be used on a rain team for more power. Draco Meteor is used to hit Dragon-types for super effective damage; however, Dragon Pulse is an alternative to prevent Cyclohm's Special Attack from being lowered. Hydro Pump hits Ground-types such as Colossoil and Landorus-T, Fire-types such as Heatran and Victini, and Rock-types such as Stratagem and Mega Diancie, 2HKOing specially defensive Heatran and having a chance to OHKO Cawmodore after Stealth Rock. Fire Blast is used to hit Grass-, Ice-, Bug-, and Steel-types such as Necturna, Mega Scizor, Mega Metagross, and Cawmodore. Ice Beam can be used instead to hit Mega Altaria, which can otherwise wall Cyclohm. Slack Off is an option alongside Life Orb to negate recoil damage and increase Cyclohm's longevity.
Shield Dust is the preferred ability to prevent secondary effects such as poison from Sludge Bomb, burn from Scald and Lava Plume, and Defense drops from Shadow Strike. Static is an option to punish foes that use contact moves, such as Talonflame and Cawmodore. Both Choice Specs and Life Orb increase Cyclohm's damage output, with Choice Specs offering no recoil damage and more power and Life Orb enabling Cyclohm to switch moves. A Choice Scarf gives a different role to this set, enabling Cyclohm to lure in and deal with a few faster threats such as Stratagem and be a decent revenge killer. Maximum Special Attack and Speed EVs with a Timid nature are used to hit as hard and as fast as possible; with Choice Specs or Life Orb, Cyclohm can outspeed Tomohawk, uninvested Landorus-T, uninvested Kyurem-B, and Assault Vest Colossoil. A Modest nature can be used for more power on sets with Life Orb and Choice Specs, as it only loses out on outspeeding Timid Togekiss, Mega Scizor, Mega Altaria, 232 Speed Landorus-T, 224 Speed Gliscor, and 200 Speed Kyurem-B. An alternate spread of 212 HP / 252 SpA / 44 Spe with a Modest nature can be used on sets with Choice Specs or Life Orb for more bulk while still outspeeding uninvested Tomohawk. When using a Choice Scarf, it is vital to run a Timid nature with maximum Speed investment to be able to outspeed and revenge kill Stratagem, Mega Lopunny, +1 Adamant Mega Gyarados, and Adamant Mega Beedrill. Note that no matter what item Cyclohm is holding, it will fail to OHKO Assault Vest Colossoil, and prior damage is needed for sets with Choice Scarf to guarantee an OHKO on Mega Diancie if running a Timid nature. The shared quality between all three items is the extra power of this set to surprise an unsuspecting opponent.
This set is more effective on offensive teams, though it can work on balanced teams as well. When using offensive Cyclohm, try to find the perfect opportunity to surprise the opponent, such as when the opponent's current Pokemon tries to attack Cyclohm or set up on it, expecting to survive an incoming attack from Cyclohm. If using Choice Specs or Life Orb, Cyclohm should be used early- and mid-game to punch holes in teams for Cyclohm's teammates to clean up late-game. If using Choice Scarf, Cyclohm should come in once a teammate is KOed, as it can then revenge kill the foe. The Choice Scarf set can also clean up late-game once its checks and counters are removed. If Cyclohm can take a hit from the foe, it should switch in to deal with the threat. Cawmodore, Talonflame, and Kitsunoh are good targets for Cyclohm to switch in on and take advantage of. Cyclohm should use the appropriate coverage moves to hit the foe hard, taking advantage of its ability to lure in common switch-ins such as Colossoil and Mega Altaria.
Clerics such as Chansey, Clefable, and Sylveon can offer Wish support to Cyclohm and also remove its status ailment should it have one. Chansey can also deal with special attackers, while Clefable and Sylveon are better answers to Dragon-types, Fighting-types, and Dark-types. A teammate that can deal with Ground-types such as Colossoil is also helpful; Keldeo, Tomohawk, and Skarmory are good options. Keldeo is notable, as it can fit on rain teams due to rain boosting its Water-type STAB attacks. A wallbreaker that can remove special walls such as Chansey and Sylveon is helpful; Mega Gardevoir, Kyurem-B, and Mega Metagross are useful wallbreakers. Mollux, Ferrothorn, Plasmanta, Mega Scizor, Heatran, and Kitsunoh are also great teammates, as they can check Fairy-types, and Mollux can also fit on rain teams due to Dry Skin increasing its longevity. Clefable, Mega Diancie, Sylveon, and Ferrothorn are also great partners because they can handle Dragon-types. Necturna is also a good partner, as it can use Sticky Web to allow Cyclohm to outspeed the majority of grounded threats. Politoed and Rain Dance Tomohawk can set up rain to power up Hydro Pump and make Thunder more reliable. Sweepers that appreciate having Talonflame and Cawmodore removed, such as Aurumoth and Revenankh, are great partners to Cyclohm, as it helps open the way for them to set up.
Cyclohm can use Light Screen with maximum investment in Special Defense and a Calm nature to tank hits from Volkraken, Mega Charizard Y, Krilowatt, and Stratagem. Charge Beam can be used to set up a sweep, but common threats such as Colossoil and Unaware Clefable can easily force Cyclohm out. Thunder Wave is an option to cripple faster Pokemon. Rain Dance can be used to take advantage of Cyclohm's bulk by using it as a supporter for rain teams. Power Gem can be used to hit Pyroak and Mollux, though it has no other uses. Substitute can be used for more insurance against switch-ins.
Checks and Counters
Specially Defensive Pokemon: Chansey, Cresselia, and Mollux can take hits from Cyclohm by virtue of their special bulk and can cripple Cyclohm with Toxic or strike it with super effective moves. Mega Venusaur can use Leech Seed to whittle down Cyclohm's health, though it can't do much else. Heatran takes on any set lacking Hydro Pump.
Fairy-types: Not only are Fairy-types immune to Cyclohm's Dragon-type STAB attacks, but most of them also have enough bulk to take Cyclohm's other attacks. Clefable, Sylveon, Mega Gardevoir, Mega Diancie, and Mega Altaria can inflict a considerable amount of damage onto Cyclohm or even OHKO it with their own STAB attacks. However, physical Mega Altaria has to set up Dragon Dance before it can OHKO Cyclohm, and Cyclohm can run Hydro Pump to discourage Diancie from switching in and Mega Evolving.
Ground-types: Mamoswine, Excadrill, Diggersby, Garchomp, Colossoil, Mega Swampert, Mega Camerupt, and Landorus-T force Cyclohm out with Earthquake or Earth Power. Colossoil can even come in on Toxic to bounce it back at Cyclohm with Rebound or gain an Attack boost with Guts.
Special Attackers: Syclant, Stratagem, Krilowatt, Latias, Latios, Noivern, Mega Sceptile, opposing Cyclohm, and Kyurem-B prey on Cyclohm's weaker Special Defense with super effective moves. However, aside from Krilowatt, none of them are safe switch-ins; Syclant gets taken down by Fire Blast, Stratagem falls to Hydro Pump, and Kyurem-B, Mega Sceptile, Cyclohm, Noivern, Latios, and Latias do not like Dragon Pulse or Draco Meteor.
Gothitelle: Gothitelle can trap Cyclohm and wear it down to the point where it will have a hard time dealing with the Pokemon it is meant to check.