Skarmory

Sturdy
OHKO moves will fail.
Keen Eye
Pokémon's accuracy cannot be lowered.
Type Tier
Steel / Flying OU
Level 100 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
Min- Min Max Max+
HP
65
- 271 334 -
Atk
80
176 196 259 284
Def
140
284 316 379 416
SpA
40
104 116 179 196
SpD
70
158 176 239 262
Spe
70
158 176 239 262

Overview

Skarmory is among the premier Steel-types of Ubers for a reason. It has a key Dragon resistance that gives it the ability to check many common Pokemon such as Rayquaza and Groudon that lack Overheat. It's also got a quadruple Grass resistance and a resistance to Flying-type attacks, making Skarmory one of the best Shaymin-S checks around. Additionally, Skarmory is a hard stop to Scizor, as well as Latios and Latias that lack Thunder, Surf, and Hidden Power Fire. Setting up Spikes is a niche for which it competes with Forretress, but Skarmory is arguably better at it thanks to its access to Taunt. The combination of Taunt and Spikes makes Skarmory a decent lead, checking Groudon without a Fire-type attack and Deoxys-S to boot. Regardless of these positive attributes, Forretress is used more because it also has access to Toxic Spikes and Rapid Spin. However, Skarmory is still a great Pokemon as it has its niches over its competition that make it a solid choice.

Name Item Ability Nature

Specially Defensive

Leftovers Keen Eye Impish
Moveset EVs
~ Spikes / Stealth Rock
~ Roost
~ Whirlwind
~ Toxic / Taunt
252 HP / 16 Def / 240 SpD

While Skarmory seems to be a Pokemon built for tanking physical hits, its resistances give it the ability to be a decent switch-in to Draco Meteors; thus, its subpar Special Defense is invested into so that it can do this. With that in mind, Skarmory is an excellent check to most of the Dragon-types that dominate the Uber tier. Unfortunately, its Speed is mediocre and far below the Ubers standard of 90, limiting its ability to cripple Pokemon with Toxic and set up Spikes, as well as making it much more difficult to stall with Roost.

The first decision for this set is choice of entry hazard. Spikes is preferred, as its limited distribution means that you're unlikely to have anything else on your team to set it up. Additionally, it gives Skarmory something to do while it's on the field instead of sitting around as setup fodder. Stealth Rock is also useful, as it severely hurts some popular Uber Pokemon, such as Lugia and Ho-Oh, but usually you will have something else that can set it up. Plus, not using Spikes means losing out on one of Skarmory's main draws. Roost inhabits the second moveslot because it provides recovery for Skarmory, allowing it to take attacks repeatedly. It is also Skarmory's biggest advantage over Forretress. Whirlwind spreads entry hazard damage and prevents Skarmory from being setup bait. Whirlwind also allows Skarmory to check Calm Mind Arceus formes that lack a super effective Judgment and most Swords Dance Arceus formes. Finally, Toxic is preferred as the last move to break down walls such as Lugia and force Giratina to use Rest, but Taunt is also an option to prevent opposing entry hazards and setup. If you are using Skarmory as a lead, Taunt is the better choice for its utility against common leads, including Groudon and Deoxys-S.

Team Options & Additional Comments >>>

Other Options

Skarmory's movepool is pretty barren outside of the the moves listed on the set above. You could use Brave Bird so as not be total Taunt bait, but Skarmory already has four moveslot syndrome and will deal little damage to anything. Counter could be used to take advantage of Skarmory's Defense, but Skarmory has better things to do with its time, such as setting up Spikes, and its low HP stat means that it won't do a whole lot of damage with the move. Lastly, Torment could be used, as some Pokemon, such as Giratina-O, only carry one move that hits Skarmory hard; however, it's mainly a wasted moveslot when compared with Roost, Whirlwind, and Spikes. You might see Skarmory's base 140 Defense and want to use it as a physical wall, but it really needs the Special Defense investment to take Draco Meteors.

Checks and Counters

While Skarmory does check a plethora of Pokemon, there's also a myriad of Pokemon that are a hard stop to it. Calm Mind Electric, Fire, Ice, Normal, Steel, and Water Arceus all often carry moves that rip Skarmory apart (though Water needs rain to do so) and thus do not have to worry about being phazed. Ghost and Grass Arceus that carry Flamethrower and mixed Rock Arceus that carry Fire Blast work as well. Giratina-O and Groudon with a Fire-type attack can also break Skarmory. Ho-Oh is yet another Fire-type Pokemon that destroys Skarmory. Rain-boosted special Water-type attacks are too much for Skarmory, so Choice Specs Kyogre and Palkia can drown it. The rare Magnezone can trap and KO Skarmory. If you look at your team and somehow don't have at least one Pokemon that can beat Skarmory, you might want to rethink your team.