We all know how dangerous Metagross can be, whether the hulking chunk of metal is running a lead set or easily ripping through the remains of a team. An excellent stat distribution (including a devastating Attack), coupled with great typing create a Pokemon who any team needs to be ready for. Top this all off with a more-than-usable ability that nullifies Intimidate, and you have a Pokemon who will always be remembered as a DPP OU staple.
Metagross fills a certain niche that gains it consistent usage in the lead spot, where it can make use of Stealth Rock, reliable STAB, priority, and Explosion. Its respectable defenses allow it to effortlessly come in on moves it resists and wreak havoc. The only stat that really leaves you wanting more is Speed, which can be made up for due to Metagross's access to stat-boosting moves in Agility and Rock Polish. As with any Pokemon, it can run into problems (such as being weak to the omnipresent Earthquake), but Metagross remains reliable due to its knack for fulfilling certain duties in a variety of roles.
This Metagross focuses on getting Stealth Rock up early, putting your team in a great offensive position and posing a threat to most common leads. Metagross tends to be a lot bulkier than the majority of suicide leads, and thus, very few leads can OHKO it (especially with Occa Berry). As for the move choice in the second slot, Earthquake allows Metagross to have greater coverage, but Meteor Mash is incredibly useful to hit with a strong STAB and pose a huge threat early on, should you obtain an Attack boost.
Bullet Punch is useful here in conjunction with Metagross's lower Speed, as it allows you to pick off the all-too-common users of Focus Sash. Explosion is an incredible move to add to your arsenal here, as with Metagross's huge Attack, you can pretty much be guaranteed that it's going to put a dent in something. To put it into perspective, Explosion has a high chance to OHKO Hippowdon, even without a single boost! Lum Berry is the preferred item here as it allows you to handle sleep-inducing leads in addition to Machamp, but Occa Berry helps against some Fire-types, such as Infernape. However, you will still lose to Heatran in this case.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
The only stat that Metagross is really lacking in is Speed, which can be remedied by Agility. After merely one boost, Metagross is more than capable of ripping through teams during late-game, where most useful resistances have been taken out or significantly weakened. Due to Metagross's huge Attack, sweeping at +2 Speed will be an easy task if the game has been played well so far.
Agility is a necessity here to boost Metagross's Speed and set the stage for a potential sweep. Meteor Mash is the best STAB option, due to its naturally high Base Power. Earthquake provides fantastic coverage alongside Meteor Mash, as most Pokemon resistant to Steel will take a heavy hit from Earthquake. ThunderPunch is the preferred option to pick off threats such as Gyarados or bulky Water-types, but Zen Headbutt is perfectly viable in order to hit Rotom-A. Life Orb is the obvious choice here, especially with the high Speed you will have, but Leftovers is usable. Lum Berry is also a viable option, as it allows you to set up on someone who thinks he will be able to status you.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
With a Choice Scarf, Metagross deals with its Speed problems without having to boost via Agility. This Metagross can serve as a great revenge killer, and often can net pivotal surprise kills. Meteor Mash is obvious as it is the best option in terms of STAB, while Earthquake greatly damages Fire- and Steel- types. ThunderPunch is helpful, as it allows you to dispose of Gyarados (even after a Dragon Dance), but Zen Headbutt threatens Rotom-A. Explosion is the recommended option in the last slot, as the extra Speed provided here allows you to net one last kill should you be at low health. Trick is viable though, as it can cripple a wall who your team just can't break.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Metagross's high Attack and excellent defensive typing make this set effective at doing what Metagross does best: sticking around and dealing damage. Meteor Mash has an unbelievable damage output with this set, and Earthquake retains the aforementioned synergy with Meteor Mash. Explosion is a given; with this set, it can cripple even Skarmory. Zen Headbutt rounds off the coverage nicely, but Bullet Punch is an option to pick off weakened Azelf or Gengar. Trick is an interesting option, but generally fits better on a Choice Scarf set. If coverage is absolutely necessary, Explosion can be dropped to accomodate both Zen Headbutt and Bullet Punch, although this is not recommended.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
A mixed Metagross may not seem like a viable option due to its significantly lower Special Attack, but this set does prove useful to beat some common counters. With this set, Metagross is capable of 2HKOing Skarmory and Hippowdon with the respective super effective moves, while netting an easy OHKO on Forretress and Swampert. Should Rotom-A switch in and attempt to burn you, you can easily retaliate with Psychic for the surprise KO. Meteor Mash remains, and should you decide to forgo Hidden Power Fire, Earthquake can be used for slightly different coverage (most notably, exchanging the ability to hit Skarmory in order to batter Heatran). Grass Knot allows Metagross to take on bulky Water- and Ground-types without fear, but Bullet Punch can be used if you are absolutely paranoid about its Speed.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Rotom-A and Skarmory make natural switch-ins to Metagross; it is only logical that Metagross employs a combination of moves to beat both of these foes. This particular set aims to make use of Metagross's high Attack rather than its low Special Attack. Trick combined with Iron Ball form the core of this set, as it leaves the aforementioned common threats susceptible to Ground-type moves. This means that the great type coverage provided by Earthquake and Meteor Mash gets even better.
The last slot is up for grabs. Explosion OHKOes almost any Pokemon who doesn't resist it, courtesy of Metagross's mammoth Attack. However, since this Metagross aims at being a utility counter, it may be more potent when it's not using Explosion. For this reason, Stealth Rock can be used to support the rest of the team.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
HP and Attack are generally the stats you will want to prioritize, but some Speed is fine in order to beat Skarmory or other Metagross. Zen Headbutt fits on most sets in order to take out Rotom-A. Iron Head has a nice flinch rate, and warrants use over Meteor Mash also because of its perfect accuracy. Icy Wind is a usable option, and can be useful on a special-based set over Ice Punch. It also deals with Metagross's Speed, while retaining coverage on Gliscor and Dragon-types. The main problem is that it is just a little on the weak side.
Other than that, movepool options are scarce. Gyro Ball is unreliable even with STAB and Metagross's low Speed, as Metagross's counters are generally slow. Hammer Arm warrants use on some sets, but its only real potential is against Magnet Rise Magnezone, making it therefore a little too situational. Psych Up is another situational move, but allows you to take on Curse Snorlax or even the rare Regirock. Magnet Rise can get rid of Metagross's Ground-type weakness, but still leaves you vulnerable to Fire-type moves, and doesn't complement its low Speed.
Checks and Counters
Rotom-A is the perfect counter to Metagross. Rotom-A resists all of Metagross's main attacking options while also being immune to Explosion and Earthquake. Rotom-A can immediately threaten Metagross with Will-O-Wisp, who obviously won't enjoy being burned, or stall through Rest + Sleep Talk if needed. Rotom-H can also severely weaken Metagross with Overheat; in fact, minimum Special Attack Rotom-H stands a small chance of 2HKOing Metagross with Overheat, provided Metagross has taken previous damage from Stealth Rock. Choice Band Zen Headbutt will pack a punch on Rotom-A though, so be wary of that as well as the Trick + Iron Ball set.
Skarmory fears next to nothing from Metagross, barring the occasional Choice Band ThunderPunch or Hidden Power Fire. Because of this, Skarmory can easily set up Spikes or Whirlwind Metagross out, depending on what the situation calls for. Bronzong also fares well, and can even do some damage with Earthquake. Forretress works similarly to these other Steel-types, but can be hit by a powerful Earthquake from Metagross. Zapdos also resists some of the main attacking options, and can threaten with Heat Wave. Again, Trick + Iron Ball beats most of these common counters, so be wary.
Bulky Water-types can often be problematic, but they fear both ThunderPunch and Explosion. Bulky Ground-types work even better, and most can easily do a lot of damage back with Earthquake. Hippowdon and Swampert fear Grass Knot though, while Ice Punch will quickly eliminate Gliscor.
Magnezone is obviously a problem should it get a Magnet Rise off before Metagross can use Earthquake, as it will then take pittance from whatever else Metagross shells out. Due to its ability, Magnezone can also trap Metagross, meaning it will probably be able to get the kill in such a scenario. Dugtrio can also work in this way, but it does not enjoy such nice resistances, and generally fears everything except ThunderPunch.