Alakazam

Synchronize
When statused, the enemy is also statused. Can pass nature to wild Pokémon.
Inner Focus
Prevents flinching.
Type Tier
Psychic UU
Level 50 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
Min- Min Max Max+
HP
55
- 130 162 -
Atk
50
63 70 102 112
Def
45
58 65 97 106
SpA
135
139 155 187 205
SpD
85
94 105 137 150
Spe
120
126 140 172 189

Overview

If not the best in class, Alakazam is at least one of the most powerful special sweepers in the UU tier. With excellent Speed and Special Attack stats, Alakazam goes through teams that lack priority moves or a Choice Scarf Pokemon with relative ease. While offense is Alakazam's natural role, it can also run a few useful supporting roles, such as dual screening and Encore support. Alakazam's main drawbacks are its paper-thin defenses and lack of resistances. Most priority attackers will take a huge chunk out of Alakazam's HP, threatening to cripple or OHKO it. While STAB Psychic is a great attacking type in UU, it also allows Dark-types to switch in without taking a scratch. Houndoom, for example, can come in on a Psychic-type attack and then OHKO Alakazam with STAB Sucker Punch or Dark Pulse.

Name Item Ability Nature

Choice Specs

Choice Specs Synchronize Timid / Modest
Moveset EVs
~ Psychic
~ Signal Beam / Grass Knot
~ Focus Blast
~ Trick / Shadow Ball / Grass Knot
4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

Alakazam holds the title for the highest Special Attack in the UU tier, so it's a no-brainer that it can utilize a Choice Specs set. However, wielding a Choice Specs set is a mixed blessing in the UU tier. Alakazam will seriously dent a number of things with a stat of 607 or 553, depending on the nature of choice, but its type coverage allows a number of Pokemon to switch in through immunity. The worst possible scenario would be getting trapped by Spiritomb since it is immune to a good portion of this set. All in all, this set attempts to play riskily while dishing out a good amount of damage. This set holds the best possible coverage Alakazam can have.

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

Substitute + 3 Attacks

Life Orb Synchronize Timid
Moveset EVs
~ Substitute
~ Psychic
~ Focus Blast
~ Shadow Ball / Signal Beam
4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

One of Alakazam's most prominent drawbacks as a sweeper is his miserable Defense stat, which leaves him completely open to the omnipresent priority attacks in the UU tier. Furthermore, Pursuit users can often OHKO Alakazam even if he decides to stay in, making it extremely difficult to pull off a successful sweep. It would only make sense for Alakazam to utilize Substitute to help it overcome these problems. Substitute shields him from priority hits and also helps Alakazam escape from a possible Pursuit trap from the likes of Spiritomb. Behind a Substitute, Alakazam becomes extremely dangerous, and the opponent will usually be forced to resort to sacrifices in order to break its Substitute. Considering Alakazam's monstrous offensive stats, it isn't difficult to use Substitute on a predicted switch out. Psychic, along with Signal Beam / Shadow Ball, and Focus Blast provide the best possible coverage.

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

Calm Mind

Life Orb Synchronize Timid
Moveset EVs
~ Calm Mind
~ Psychic
~ Focus Blast
~ Shadow Ball / Signal Beam / Grass Knot
4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

This set utilizes Calm Mind to boost Alakazam's already-high Special Attack stat to further heights. The best way to pull off a successful sweep with this, because of the lack of Encore, is to reveal it later in the match once your opponent's team has been mostly revealed. This way, Alakazam can avoid being easily trapped by the likes of Spiritomb or walled by Chansey. Psychic is a given on this set since it provides STAB, while Focus Blast lets Alakazam deal heavy damage to the most prominent special walls in the tier: Chansey and Registeel. With a single Calm Mind boost, Focus Blast deals 83% - 97.8% to Registeel, while Chansey takes 56.8% - 67.1%. The final slot boils down to which Pokemon you need Alakazam to hit. Shadow Ball strikes Mismagius and Spiritomb for heavy damage, while Signal Beam can reliably finish off weakened Dark-types without worrying about Focus Blast's 70% accuracy. Additionally, Signal Beam and Shadow Ball allow Alakazam to hit bulky Psychic-types like Uxie and Slowking for super effective damage. Grass Knot can be used in the final slot if inflicting significant damage to Milotic is priority.

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

Calm Mind + Encore

Leftovers / Life Orb Synchronize Timid / Modest
Moveset EVs
~ Calm Mind
~ Encore
~ Psychic
~ Signal Beam / Focus Blast
4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

Even with Alakazam's monstrous Special Attack stat, he struggles to muscle through dedicated special walls such as Chansey and Milotic. Calm Mind remedies this by giving him the power he needs to defeat said walls, while Encore gives the frail Alakazam opportunities to set up. After a boost, Alakazam will reach a Special Attack stat of 553 or 607, depending on the nature of choice. This, coupled with his high Speed, allows him to sweep unhindered. This set has the potential to hit just as hard as the Specs set, while allowing you the freedom to switch moves at the cost of coverage.

Psychic will dent any Pokemon not resistant or immune to it, while the coverage move helps Alakazam deal with Pokemon who have no trouble with his STAB. Signal Beam is an accurate move that helps deal with Psychic- and Dark-types, while the less reliable Focus Blast allows Alakazam to defeat Registeel, Steelix, and Chansey. If you wish to hit Spiritomb and Milotic as hard as possible, Grass Knot can also be used, but it isn't particularly useful outside of that.

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

Substitute + Encore

Leftovers Synchronize Timid
Moveset EVs
~ Substitute
~ Encore
~ Psychic
~ Signal Beam / Focus Blast
40 HP / 252 SpA / 216 Spe

This set aims to tone Alakazam down offensively in order to support your entire team with its unique move: Encore. Much like the previous sets, Substitute is used to ensure Alakazam is protected from Pursuit and priority hits. However, the tried-and-true strategy with Substitute is used in conjunction with Encore. The opponent is forced to attack you when you are behind the Substitute, giving Alakazam a chance to use Encore. If the opponent decides to use a Dark-type attack, for instance, you can bring in someone who appreciates a free turn to set up, such as Blaziken. Even without a Substitute, Encore can be useful on something that decides to set up on Alakazam.

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

Attacking Lead

Focus Sash Inner Focus Modest / Timid
Moveset EVs
~ Taunt
~ Psychic
~ Focus Blast / Counter
~ Signal Beam
4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

Alakazam can fill a nice role in the lead slot thanks to Taunt and its ability Inner Focus, which prevents Fake Out leads from flinching it. In general, this set fares well against a number of popular leads in the UU tier, aiming to dish as much damage as possible with excellent coverage all-around while preventing an easy set up for the opponent. Taunt makes a fantastic opening move on leads such as Omastar and Cloyster since both of them enjoy deploying entry hazards early in the match; it also prevents Uxie from setting up Stealth Rock and paralyzing you with Thunder Wave. Psychic is Alakazam's obligatory STAB move, and it 2HKOes almost any lead that does not outright resist it. Focus Blast will OHKO a number of leads including Omastar, Cloyster, Ambipom, and Snover, but if its accuracy makes you nervous, Counter is also another alternative to look for in order to OHKO Ambipom after it uses Fake Out. Signal Beam is essential on this set in order to hit Uxie for super effective damage.

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

Dual Screens

Light Clay Inner Focus Timid
Moveset EVs
~ Reflect
~ Light Screen
~ Encore
~ Taunt / Psychic
252 HP / 40 Def / 216 Spe

Despite Alakazam's paper thin defenses, you have to consider its blistering Speed stat and ability to create an opening for setting up dual screens. Furthermore, Inner Focus allows Alakazam to bypass the flinch from Ambipom's Fake Out and set up both Reflect and Light Screen. Taking all of this into account, Alakazam can open up opportunities for your entire team, and it can make Baton Passing sufficiently easier.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>

Other Options

Alakazam can fill the support role fairly well with moves such as Knock Off and Thunder Wave. However, it is extremely frail and will struggle to find the time to use such moves. Recover is another option, as it gives Alakazam the ability to stay in on attacks such as Chansey's Seismic Toss, but the resulting loss in offensive coverage is usually not worth this benefit. Snatch is a great move, but not really usable on Alakazam, since your opponent will usually just try to OHKO Alakazam as soon as possible and not bother using the setup moves that Snatch works on.

Offensively, Alakazam also has quite a few options. While Charge Beam might seem inferior to Calm Mind, it gives Alakazam an extra offensive move while retaining the ability to boost that awesome Special Attack. The boost from Charge Beam is not reliable, however, and this strategy is only recommended when you need to make room for Encore or another support move. Alakazam also learns Shock Wave, but you will rarely find a use for it, since few Pokemon take more from Shock Wave than they do from Psychic. Furthermore, Hidden Power Electric is stronger, and thus Shock Wave should only be used on sets where Alakazam is already using a Hidden Power of another type. Energy Ball and Grass Knot are great options if you need coverage against Water-, Rock-, and Ground-types; however, this is only useful on certain teams, since Psychic will usually do enough damage. Hidden Power Fighting can be considered over Focus Blast if you are worried about the latter's accuracy; however, the damage output will be disappointing against Pokemon such as Chansey, Omastar, and Registeel.

Lum Berry can be used in combination with Synchronize, letting you switch into a move such as Thunder Wave or Toxic, inflicting the status effect on your opponent while Alakazam is essentially unscathed. Salac and Petaya Berry are also options, since either boost makes it a little easier for Alakazam to sweep; however, Alakazam really misses Leftovers, especially on sets with Substitute. Furthermore, with the omnipresence of residual damage, namely sandstorm, Alakazam will be quickly worn out without the aid of Leftovers.

On offensive sets, it is recommended you use a Timid nature, 252 Special Attack EVs, and at least 216 Speed EVs to outrun any base 115 Speed Pokemon. If you are not worried about outspeeding Ambipom, you can give Alakazam 176 Speed EVs, which will outrun any base 110 Speed Pokemon (who max out at 350 Speed). On the other hand, 252 EVs in Speed lets you tie with other Alakazam, Sceptile, and Dugtrio. A Modest nature is perfectly viable on the Aggressive Lead set since the only Pokemon who will outpace it are Ambipom and opposing Alakazam. Ambipom can't OHKO Alakazam thanks to Focus Sash, and it dies to Focus Blast or Counter. Furthermore, Alakazam won't be sticking around for a long time so you don't have to worry about a possible Dugtrio or Sceptile encounter. The only drawback for using a Modest nature is getting outpaced by opposing Alakazam.

Checks and Counters

Don't expect a broad list of counters because there aren't many that lie in UU. However, Spiritomb is by far the best counter for almost every set thanks to its Psychic- and Fighting-type immunity. Spiritomb can dispose of Alakazam with Pursuit, Shadow Sneak, Dark Pulse, and Sucker Punch. To a smaller extent, Drapion and Skuntank can check Alakazam fairly well thanks to their unique typing. However, 252 HP / 252 SpD Drapion takes 44% - 52% from a Life Orb Focus Blast, so it's probably a good idea to bring him in on a predicted Psychic to avoid a possible 2HKO. Skuntank has Sucker Punch and Pursuit to keep Alakazam second guessing. On a set that doesn't utilize any form of stat-boosting move or item, Chansey is your best bet as it can use Seismic Toss until it eventually drops dead. An Alakazam who is lacking Grass Knot will have problems bypassing a Specially Defensive Milotic since it can take a hit or two and hurt Alakazam with Surf.

Although they're not considered counters, priority hits will seriously injure Alakazam or possibly OHKO it. If Alakazam is not behind a Substitute, feel free to use your respective priority hits when the opening is there. Some noteworthy priority hits that can OHKO include Absol's Sucker Punch and Azumarill's Aqua Jet.