Breloom is unique; unique in typing, unique in strategy, and perhaps unique in accomplishment as well. As the OU Pokemon with the third lowest Base Stat Total, Breloom is an excellent example of a Pokemon capable of overcoming its middling stats through its access to a fantastic ability, an item that caters specifically to its needs, and a movepool that gives it all the necessary tools to fully utilize its advantages. Breloom's unique typing allows it to switch into top threats such as Tyranitar with ease, and Spore almost guarantees the incapacitation of at least one opponent. Combine that with a multitude of ways to take advantage of Substitute, as well as a unique ability that heals it while granting it immunity to status, and Breloom turns from a mediocre mushroom with middling stats into one of the most difficult Pokemon to deal with in the OU metagame.
Between Spore, STAB Focus Punch, and its unique ability Poison Heal, Breloom is quite possibly the best user of the SubPunch strategy ever created. The strategy is simple; set up a Substitute, then start firing off brutal STAB Focus Punches. With its massive base 130 Attack and the 150 Base Power of Focus Punch, Breloom's attacks are nearly impossible to shrug off. For example, the standard Life Orb Starmie takes 58.6% - 69.3% from Adamant Breloom's Focus Punch; it is quite difficult to find a Pokemon that can reliably switch into Breloom.
Substitute and Focus Punch are the focus of this set. Substitute allows Breloom to use Focus Punch without fear of interruption, and is especially effective on Breloom because Poison Heal enables it to heal off the HP lost to Substitute in a mere two turns. Spore, Breloom's signature move, is the only 100% accurate sleep-inducing move in the entire game. It not only lets Breloom incapacitate one of its counters on the switch, but also makes it easy for Breloom to set up the first Substitute and start its rampage. Seed Bomb is Breloom's best coverage move, as it is a reliable attack against bulky Water-types, and also dents Rotom-A. However, Stone Edge is more effective against a number of Pokemon that resist Focus Punch, such as Gyarados, Dragonite, and Zapdos.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
While the previous set is geared towards hammering the opponent with powerful STAB attacks, this set aims to stick around and whittle away at the opposing team. Though the SubSeed combination is by no means new, Breloom's unique assets allow it to perform the role in a very interesting way. First, Spore guarantees Breloom not only the ability to incapacitate at least one opponent, but also a free turn to use Substitute or Leech Seed. Second, Toxic Orb + Poison Heal makes it easy for Breloom to replenish the health lost from setting up Substitutes and block incoming status moves. Finally, STAB Focus Punch makes Breloom a veritable threat even without offensive investment, and allows it to hit hard when immediate damage is needed over stalling.
The moveset is fairly self-explanatory. Spore is the best reason to use Breloom, as a 100% accurate sleep move is indispensable. Leech Seed slowly drains the health of foes while replenishing Breloom's, and allows it to bring down even the bulkiest of foes while setting up Substitutes with ease. Substitute synergizes well with both Leech Seed and Poison Heal, as it allows Breloom to take no more than 25% damage per turn while healing nearly as much at the end of each turn. Focus Punch rounds out the set by enabling Breloom to deal significant damage to enemies from behind a Substitute if need be.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
While most of Breloom's best sets focus on its ability to use Substitute, this set focuses more on Breloom's massive base 130 Attack and fantastic type coverage. In addition to making it a powerful offensive status absorber, Breloom's Poison Heal ability also gives it constant healing and a devastating 140 Base Power Facade.
As always, Spore is a fantastic move for Breloom. However, it is less of a setup aid on this set, and functions as more of a way to cripple or temporarily take out a counter, which makes it easier for Breloom to take advantage of its excellent power and type coverage. Facade is one of the big draws of this set, as it provides more power than some of Breloom's STAB attacks. Alternatively, Breloom can use Stone Edge alongside Life Orb for a powerful coverage move against Flying-types that resist its dual STAB. Seed Bomb is Breloom's only usable Grass-type STAB, but Breloom has many viable Fighting-type STAB moves. Superpower is its strongest possible initial attack, but the stat drops often force Breloom to switch out. Sky Uppercut is a more consistent Fighting STAB, while Mach Punch gives Breloom a form of priority and lets it pick off weakened targets.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
While the All-Out Attacker focuses more on breaking through an opponent's defenses with powerful attacks, this set aims to use Swords Dance to boost Breloom's already powerful STAB Mach Punch, circumvent Breloom's middling Speed, and sweep the opponent's team. Between Spore, Poison Heal's recovery and status immunity, and Breloom's solid set of resistances, it's easy for Breloom to find an opportunity to set up Swords Dance and enable a sweep.
Mach Punch is the preferred Fighting-type STAB attack on this set, as after a Swords Dance boost, it allows Breloom to pick off many faster offensive Pokemon. Seed Bomb and Stone Edge are both good choices in the second slot. While Seed Bomb provides secondary STAB and reliable power, Stone Edge hits Gyarados and other Flying-types that would otherwise wall Breloom. The final slot is a toss-up; Spore allows Breloom to incapacitate an opponent, which makes it easier to set up, but Swords Dance-boosted Facade is not only immensely powerful, but also provides excellent neutral coverage alongside Mach Punch, Seed Bomb, or Stone Edge.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
While base 70 Speed isn't very impressive, it's enough to let Breloom run an effective Choice Scarf set. Choice Scarf Breloom can easily incapacitate a faster foe with Spore early on in the match, and then return to revenge kill opponents with its powerful dual STAB. With Choice Scarf, Breloom can outspeed any Pokemon with less than base 130 Speed, and surprise many opponents, such as Starmie, Infernape, and +1 neutral Gyarados, by revenge killing them.
Spore allows Breloom to remove an opponent from play, and is even more effective with the Speed boost from Choice Scarf. Seed Bomb and Superpower make up Breloom's dual STAB combination; Superpower is the preferred Fighting STAB due to its massive power and the hit-and-run nature of this set. Stone Edge rounds out Breloom's type coverage nicely with a super effective hit on Flying-types that wall Breloom's dual STAB, as well as neutral coverage on Celebi and Gengar, which also resist both of Breloom's STAB attacks.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
This set aims to use Breloom as a platform for spreading status around the opposing team. Often, after the opponent switches out their designated sleep absorber, they will head immediately to their Breloom counter; this allows Breloom to take advantage of the switch by paralyzing the incoming Pokemon with Stun Spore, potentially crippling two opponents and remaining healthy enough to take on further members of the opposing team.
Spore is, as always, one of the big draws of this set. Stun Spore capitalizes on the switches created by Spore by crippling faster opponents looking to outrun Breloom. Focus Punch is Breloom's most powerful attack, but without Substitute, Breloom can use it only on predicted switches or on status moves. For this reason, Superpower and Sky Uppercut are viable options to provide Breloom with a more reliable Fighting-type STAB. The final slot is for coverage: Seed Bomb provides secondary STAB, but Stone Edge hits Flying-types hard, and has excellent coverage alongside Breloom's Fighting-type STAB.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
While most of Breloom's options are covered in the sets listed above, there are a couple of notable moves that might be useful on niche sets. ThunderPunch guarantees a KO on Gyarados, but Stone Edge generally does well enough and offers coverage against Zapdos and Dragonite as well. Bulk Up is an option, but Breloom's 60 / 80 / 60 defenses don't do it any favors. On top of that, many of Breloom's counters are specially based, which limits the defensive value of Bulk Up and makes Swords Dance a significantly more appealing choice.
Checks and Counters
If ever there was a Pokemon specifically designed to counter Breloom, it's Celebi. With Natural Cure to shrug off Spore, resistances to Breloom's dual STABs, and a solid super effective attack in STAB Psychic, Celebi has Breloom cornered all day long. However, there are a number of other Pokemon that can deal with Breloom effectively. RestTalk Rotom-A is one of the best Breloom counters as it is capable of dealing significant damage to Breloom with Shadow Ball and can break Breloom's Substitutes with Thunderbolt. RestTalk Gyarados has Intimidate to soften up Seed Bomb and Focus Punch, though Stone Edge can prove problematic.
Once Breloom has successfully put a Pokemon to sleep, it becomes much easier to deal with. Gengar is immune to Focus Punch and resistant to Seed Bomb; this allows it to take Breloom's attacks as needed and hit back with powerful STAB Shadow Ball. Zapdos and Dragonite resists both of Breloom's STABs, and the former can eliminate Breloom with Heat Wave or Hidden Power Ice. However, Stone Edge and Facade can cause problems for them. Aside from these Pokemon, there are still many ways to deal with Breloom. Sets without Substitute can easily be handled by switching a faster Pokemon in on a resisted attack; for instance, Starmie can switch in on a Fighting-type attack, and Jirachi on Seed Bomb, Facade, or Stone Edge. Without Substitute, Breloom is easily revenge killed.