Gastly

Levitate
This Pokémon is immune to Ground-type moves.
Type Tier
Ghost / Poison LC
Level 100 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
Min- Min Max Max+
HP
30
- 201 264 -
Atk
35
95 106 169 185
Def
30
86 96 159 174
SpA
100
212 236 299 328
SpD
35
95 106 169 185
Spe
80
176 196 259 284
  • Little Cup

Overview

Gastly has all the ingredients needed to be a good sweeper: not only is it relatively fast, it also has a phenomenal Special Attack stat, a great movepool, and key immunities that give it many opportunities to switch in. However, Gastly is slower than many of the premier threats in the metagame, as it only reaches a maximum of 18 Speed. Despite this, Gastly still manages to hold its own as one of the most dominant forces in the metagame. Whether it is holding a Choice Scarf, hiding behind a Substitute, or spreading status, Gastly shows the world that even a ball of gas can cause mayhem.

Name Item Nature

Choice Scarf

Choice Scarf Timid
Moveset EVs
~ Shadow Ball
~ Sludge Bomb
~ Hidden Power Ground / Hidden Power Fighting
~ Explosion / Hypnosis / Thunderbolt
36 HP / 40 Def / 200 SpA / 200 Spe

Gastly is a perfect example of a Pokemon that really benefits from having a Choice Scarf; its fantastic Special Attack stat is often hindered by its inability to reach 19 Speed, meaning that it will be slower than many of the biggest threats in the tier. With a Choice Scarf, however, Gastly will be able to outspeed all unboosted Pokemon and many other Choice Scarf users as well, most notably Houndour, Chinchou, Machop, and Mankey. Shadow Ball and Sludge Bomb are both powerful STAB moves, while Hidden Power Ground rounds off Gastly's coverage perfectly, hitting Stunky and Aron super effectively, two major threats to Gastly. Hidden Power Fighting also offers perfect neutral coverage alongside Gastly's STABs but it does not hit Stunky super effectively. Finally, Explosion can be used to take out a special wall, such as Munchlax. Hypnosis allows Gastly to incapacitate a counter, but its shaky accuracy makes it rather unreliable. Finally, Thunderbolt can be used to hit Water-type Pokemon, most notably Mantyke, which it OHKOes.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Nature

Substitute

Life Orb Modest / Mild
Moveset EVs
~ Substitute
~ Shadow Ball
~ Sludge Bomb / Hidden Power Fighting
~ Hypnosis / Explosion / Sucker Punch
76 Atk / 200 SpA / 200 Spe

Although Gastly is not slow, it does not reach a Speed stat of 19, making it slower than many threats in the metagame. Substitute is one way for Gastly to sweep despite its lower Speed. With a Special Attack stat of 20 and a Life Orb equipped, Gastly can actually 2HKO Munchlax, Little Cup's premier special wall. Hidden Power Fighting OHKOes Aron, but in almost all other cases Sludge Bomb is the superior move, having both a higher Base Power and the benefit of STAB.

Sucker Punch is one of Gastly's more interesting options, giving Gastly priority and an unpredictability factor that it lacks if it doesn't carry the move. Even coming off of a base 35 base Attack stat, Sucker Punch can do a fair amount of damage, making Gastly a decent revenge killer for Pokemon such as Mantyke and Chinchou. Gastly is formidable but easily revenge killed, and Sucker Punch ensures that Gastly does a fair amount of damage before being taken down. Sucker Punch is, however, fairly weak, though priority is very important in such a fast-paced metagame. Gastly can also use Hypnosis to incapacitate a counter, allowing Gastly to cause even more chaos, or Explosion to quickly eliminate a troublesome Pokemon from the match.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Nature

Substitute + Explosion

Oran Berry / Life Orb Mild
Moveset EVs
~ Substitute
~ Sludge Bomb
~ Explosion
~ Hypnosis
36 HP / 76 Atk / 196 SpA / 196 Spe

By utilizing both Hypnosis and Explosion, Gastly can effectively remove two Pokemon from the battle: one through Hypnosis, rendering a Pokemon useless for a few turns, and another with Explosion. Substitute and Hypnosis complement each other well; Substitute often gives Gastly two opportunities to use Hypnosis, giving Gastly a much better chance of incapacitating a foe, and in return, Hypnosis can often net Gastly a free Substitute, before firing off a powerful Sludge Bomb. If the switch-in is a specially bulky wall such as Munchlax, Explosion is a great way of eliminating it, allowing other special sweepers to wreak havoc with Munchlax gone.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Name Item Nature

Trick Room Lead

Focus Sash Quiet
Moveset IVs
~ Trick Room
~ Explosion
~ Shadow Ball
~ Hypnosis / Sludge Bomb
0 Spe
EVs
116 HP / 166 Def / 196 SpA / 76 SpD

Speed is usually Gastly's most important stat, as it needs to outspeed opponents in order to take them out. However, Gastly can lower its Speed down to 11 through the use of a Quiet nature and an IV of 0, with its frailty being a small issue thanks to the bulk being invested, which allows Gastly to take some weaker hits. This Gastly is more centered on supporting its teammates, rather than attacking straight off the bat. However, it can come back in late-game and sweep when most Pokemon are weakened. Trick Room allows Gastly to hit first against most foes after it is used, while Explosion allows Gastly to take a Pokemon out with it, if neither of its other moves will fare well. Shadow Ball gains STAB, and is the attack Gastly will be using most. Finally, Hypnosis allows Gastly to put a foe to sleep, meaning Gastly can defeat two opponents, one through the use of Hypnosis, and then the switch-in with Explosion.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>

Other Options

Gastly can run a Sub-Salac set, but priority is so common in the metagame that Gastly will be dispatched quickly by most competitive teams. Gastly has the credentials that make a good lead, either as a Trick-Scarf lead or a fast sleep lead, but it loses to the majority of common leads and almost always starts the match off poorly. Pretty much any combination of Substitute, Shadow Ball, Sucker Punch, Hypnosis, Sludge Bomb, Hidden Power Fighting or Ground, and Explosion can make a viable Gastly set. Gastly is strong and fast enough to use whatever combination of moves fits your team. Will-O-Wisp can be used along with Hypnosis, allowing Gastly to incapacitate a foe with Hypnosis, and then hitting the switch-in (often a physical attacker) with Will-O-Wisp, crippling them for the rest of the match. Will-O-Wisp can also be used along with Substitute, crippling Dark-type Pokemon such as Stunky, who love to switch in and defeat Gastly with its STAB attacks. Finally, Energy Ball can be used to hit Rock- and Ground-type Pokemon for super effective damage, but is otherwise outclassed by Thunderbolt, as they both hit Water-types for super effective, while Thunderbolt has a higher damage output.

Checks and Counters

Munchlax can come in on anything other than Hidden Power Fighting and threaten to trap and KO Gastly with Pursuit. Munchlax is entirely immune to Gastly's main attack, Shadow Ball, so it is a decent counter, especially for the Choice Scarf set. Teddiursa can also come in on a Shadow Ball and activate its ability, Quick Feet, making it faster than non-Scarf Gastly. Taillow functions in a similar manner to Teddiursa as a counter, being able to switch in, activate its status orb, outspeed, and do massive amounts of damage to Gastly.

Aron resists Ghost and is immune to Poison, making it an ideal counter to many Gastly sets. Aron also has a handy 4x resistance to Normal, making Explosion a non-issue. Without Hidden Power Fighting, Hidden Power Ground, or Hypnosis, Gastly loses to Aron entirely. Aron can easily set up a Rock Polish before striking back to OHKO Gastly with Head Smash.