Because UU does not have the plethora of Steel-types that are found in OU, Magneton has a tough time proving its worth. But due to the prevalence of Registeel and Steelix in the UU environment, Magneton can fill a niche on teams that utilize hard-hitting Normal-, Dragon-, or Flying-type Pokemon by removing those Steel-type Pokemon from play with its ability, Magnet Pull. With a superb Special Attack stat, Magneton can also take the offensive by either boosting its Special Attack with Charge Beam or lowering the opponent's stats and forcing switches with Metal Sound. Magneton also has decent defenses as well as resistances to Dragon, Steel, Bug, Normal, Flying, Rock, Electric, and Ice, allowing it to form sturdy Substitutes and switch in against a wide variety of attacks.
Like its OU brethren, Magnezone, Magneton's utility lies in its ability to trap and knock out Steel-types. Substitute blocks all forms of status while scouting the opponent's actions. Magneton's Substitutes are not broken by Registeel's Iron Head or Ice Punch or Steelix's Gyro Ball, Stone Edge, or Crunch; however, an Earthquake from either Registeel or Steelix will break the Substitute, due to Magneton's 4x weakness to Ground. With Magnet Rise, Magneton is able to hover safely above the range of normally fatal Ground-type attacks. Magnet Rise should be Magneton's first priority against Steelix in order to prevent Earthquake. At worst, Magneton will be Roared away. For this reason, it is a good idea to save Magneton until Steelix is in range to be KOed by Hidden Power Fire. It should also be mentioned that Substitute is Magneton's first priority when up against Registeel.
Hidden Power Fire is used over Hidden Power Ice or Hidden Power Grass for its ability to successfully hit Steelix, one of the main targets of this set. Hidden Power Fighting or Hidden Power Ground could be used in place of Hidden Power Fire due to their ability to deal greater damage to Probopass and Bastiodon, while still hitting Steelix for super effective damage; but due to the type coverage that Hidden Power Fire offers when paired with Thunderbolt (compared to that offered by Hidden Power Fighting or Ground), it is considered the superior choice. Thunderbolt efficiently KOes Probopass and Bastiodon, so the power loss when using Hidden Power Fire is not a big issue. Hidden Power Ice is not listed as an option on this set due to the fact that there are no commonly used Dragon-types in UU that do not take neutral damage from Thunderbolt. Altaria is 2HKOed by Thunderbolt after Stealth Rock damage and UU Grass-types are hit equally hard by Hidden Power Fire as they would be by Hidden Power Ice (with the sole exception of Torterra).Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Unlike the Steel Trapper set, this set focuses Magneton's often overlooked base 120 Special Attack (the highest of any UU Electric-type). Offensive sets such as this should normally be left to faster, more immediately threatening special sweepers, such as Rotom and Manectric, but Magneton, due to its good defenses and numerous resistances, is able to set up much sturdier Substitutes than the two aforementioned Pokemon. Sturdier Substitutes mean that Magneton can set up against a wider variety of foes, such as Registeel (that lack Earthquake), Spiritomb, and Choice Scarf Venusaur locked into Energy Ball or Sludge Bomb. None of these Pokemon are able to break Magneton's Substitutes with attacks they commonly carry, allowing it to safely boost its stats without fear of immediate offensive assault.
With Charge Beam, Magneton keeps its boosts until switching out or being phazed, so it retains more of an offensive presence. Charge Beam also has the benefit of doing damage to the opponent and benefiting from STAB. Metal Sound on the other hand has the ability to force switches, thus dealing Spikes and Stealth Rock damage to the opponent. Due to the somewhat defensive nature of Metal Sound, it is recommend that Magneton be used alongside residual damage support. Flash Cannon can be used in the last slot in order to hit Rock-types much harder, however it does not add much coverage-wise.
As is the case with most Electric-type Pokemon, the choice of Hidden Power is a difficult one. Hidden Power Grass is the best choice due to its ability to hit Ground-types, especially Quagsire and Gastrodon, for super effective damage. Hidden Power Ice also performs similarly, but the main target of Hidden Power Ice is Altaria, which is easily taken care of with a boosted Thunderbolt. Another benefit of Hidden Power Ice is the ability to hit Grass-types, which resists both Thunderbolt and Hidden Power Grass, for super effective damage. The combination of Electric and Ice is only resisted by Lanturn, Shedinja, and other Magneton in the UU environment. Hidden Power Fire helps against Steelix and other Magneton while still hitting Grass-types for super effective damage.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Although the Electric-type Choice set is better left to faster options such as Manectric and Electabuzz, Magneton performs decently in this department due to its access to Explosion. With Explosion, Magneton can suddenly OHKO its main counter, Chansey; something that Manectric has no hope of doing. With 56 Attack EVs, Magneton always OHKOes 252 Def Calm Chansey with Explosion as long as it has taken Stealth Rock damage.
Magneton has much less utility in the UU environment than does Magnezone in the OU environment. However, it can still perform adequately by KOing hard-hitting Flying-types. With Choice Scarf, Magneton outspeeds standard Dragon Dance Altaria after a single Dragon Dance and can switch in against Outrage or Dragon Claw with impunity. Magneton can then OHKO Altaria with Hidden Power Ice, assuming it has taken prior damage from Stealth Rock. Magneton also does a fantastic job of countering Swellow. If Magneton switches in against Facade or Protect, Swellow will normally stay in hoping to U-turn out, but Magneton will outspeed and OHKO with Thunderbolt before Swellow has the chance.
As previously mentioned, Magneton can use Hidden Power Ice to KO Altaria, making it the best bet for a Hidden Power. Hidden Power Grass can be used to severely dent Gastrodon and KO Quagsire. Hidden Power Fire can finish off weakened Steelix; however, outside of that, it has little utility. Flash Cannon has decent neutral-type coverage and should be used when Magneton predicts a Grass-type or Ground-type (not Gastrodon or Quagsire!) will switch in to absorb Thunderbolt.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
With the abundance of bulky Water-types and other Electric-weak Pokemon in the UU tier, Electric is one of the best STABs to have. Magneton boasts the highest Special Attack stat out of all the Electric-types available in UU, and this set takes full advantage of that by utilizing Choice Specs. With the boost from Choice Specs, Magneton reaches a monstrous 556 Special Attack (factoring in the imperfect IVs from Hidden Power), which allows it to leave gaping holes in the opponent's team. While Magneton's defenses are nothing to write home about and its Speed is subpar, it can still switch in multiple times during a match to dish out hefty blows by relying on its 13 resistances. Thunderbolt is Magneton's main STAB attack and will badly hurt any Pokemon that does not resist it. Flash Cannon is Magneton's secondary STAB move and hurts most Pokemon that resist or are immune to Thunderbolt. While Hidden Power Grass has better coverage alongside Magneton's STAB attacks, Hidden Power Water is preferred since it allows Magneton to take full advantage of its ability, Magnet Pull, by allowing it to severely dent Steelix. However, Hidden Power Grass is still a great option if one is wary about trapping Steelix, as it OHKOes Quagsire and Gastrodon while 2HKOing Lanturn. Explosion rounds out the set by giving Magneton a means to OHKO Chansey after Stealth Rock damage. If one doesn't like blowing Magneton up, Signal Beam can be used over Explosion in order to hit Grass-types like Tangrowth and Leafeon for super effective damage.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Discharge is another option for an Electric attack that has the added bonus of paralyzing the opponent 30% of the time, as opposed to Thunderbolt's 10%, at the cost of 15 Base Power. Reflect and Light Screen bolster Magneton's decent defenses, allowing it to take many more attacks, while also supporting the entire team. Signal Beam can be used to hit Grass-types and Psychic-types for slightly more damage than Thunderbolt, but it does not have enough utility to take up an entire moveslot. Toxic could pair well with Substitute to cripple some of the special walls, such as Hypno, that do not have Natural Cure or a status recovery move.
Checks and Counters
Chansey is the best counter to any Magneton set that does not have Explosion due to its sky-high Special Defense and HP and access to Softboiled or Wish. Claydol does a good job against sets lacking Magnet Rise and takes little damage from Magneton's super effective Hidden Powers. Camerupt is immune to Thunderbolt, resists Flash Cannon and Hidden Power Fire, and takes neutral damage from Hidden Power Ice and Hidden Power Grass. It can also get around Magnet Rise by hitting Magneton with STAB Fire-type attacks. However, due to Camerupt's low defenses and HP, it must focus heavily on HP and Special Defense.
Bulky Grass-types with access to recovery such as Shaymin, Venusaur, and Meganium do a great job against Magneton due to their resistance to Thunderbolt. None of these Pokemon take excessive damage from super effective Hidden Powers due to their good Special Defense stats. Shaymin and Venusaur can KO Magneton with Earth Power and Earthquake respectively. Although Earthquake is rare on Meganium sets, it has that option and can also set up Light Screen to lessen the impact of Magneton's attacks even further.
Gastrodon and Quagsire perform exceptionally well against Magneton due to their immunity to Thunderbolt, resistance to Flash Cannon and Hidden Power Fire, and neutrality to Hidden Power Ice. However, they must be wary of any Magneton carrying Hidden Power Grass. Both can hit Magneton with STAB Ground-type attacks or break its Substitutes with Water-type attacks if it has used Magnet Rise. They can then heal off any damage taken with Recover.
Gardevoir can Trace Magneton's Magnet Pull and weather a few of Magneton's attacks due to its high Special Defense and access to Wish. Gardevoir can then dispose of Magneton with Focus Blast. Hard-hitting Fighting-types with good Special Defense, such as Hitmontop and Hitmonlee, can absorb one or two Thunderbolts and threaten Magneton with Close Combat or Mach Punch.