He's big, he's round, he's bulky, and he's back. Snorlax is among an elite group of Pokemon that have been OU for all four generations. Unfortunately for Snorlax, DPP has been the least favorable of them all towards him. With countless new offensive Pokemon added to the mix and items such as Life Orb boosting their damage output, Snorlax has a very difficult time keeping up. In addition to this, Snorlax's typing always has and always will leave a lot to be desired. With a STAB that is resisted by over one-third of the metagame, it's tough to see why you'd want to use Snorlax at all.
Despite the nearly crippling faults mentioned above, Snorlax has a niche unlike any other Pokemon. He is the most durable offensively-inclined special tank in the metagame. This unique niche allows Snorlax to come into many of the special attackers in the metagame with near-impunity and have his way with them. While Snorlax isn't going to be winning any Best Pokemon awards with his faults, because of his assets, it's hard to deny him his rightful place in OU amongst the big boys.
What do you get when you combine rock-bottom Speed with high Attack and immense special bulk? You get the ideal Pokemon for a Curse set. Snorlax practically defined the use of Curse for sweeping in previous generations, and still carries the mantle admirably through DPP. The problem with Curse Snorlax these days is that everything else is so immensely powerful that even Snorlax's bulk isn't enough to save him from being ravaged. That aside, Curse Snorlax is still an immense threat and can set up against a surprisingly large chunk of the metagame.
Curse is the only thing about this Snorlax that's set in stone. Body Slam versus Return is the classic status over power argument. Return hits much harder than Body Slam, but paralysis helps Snorlax more, so Body Slam is recommended. For a coverage move, it really is about picking your poison. Earthquake will deal with Tyranitar and grounded Steel-types, namely Heatran. Crunch will deal with the pesky Ghost-type Pokemon that are immune to Normal-type moves, while Fire Punch is for Skarmory, Bronzong, and any other Steel-type vulnerable to it. In the last slot, you get to decide how you want your Snorlax to go out. Either Snorlax can use STAB Selfdestruct and go out with an explosive bang the likes of which made the dinosaurs extinct, or he can use Rest to heal up and try to continue the sweep later. Rest without Sleep Talk makes it easy for opposing sweepers to set up on Snorlax, so it's wise to either carry a cleric on your team or avoid using it until you've dealt with the opponent's sweepers.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Snorlax is a powerful Pokemon that forces a ton of switches. With a Choice Band, Snorlax can capitalize on his ability to wall special attackers and smash the switch-in for substantial damage. This is made even better by the fact that Snorlax can pack Pursuit and destroy the special sweepers that fail to break him when they run away. Starmie, Jolteon, Gengar, and Choice-locked Rotom-A all fall to Snorlax with appropriate prediction.
Body Slam is preferred here to support Snorlax with paralysis so that it might actually outspeed something. Return, with a Choice Band boost, deserves a mention for being immensely more powerful than Body Slam. In the next slot, you are forced to choose between two of the best moves Snorlax has for this set. Due to Egg move / move tutor illegalities, Pursuit cannot be used with Selfdestruct. Pursuit allows Snorlax to checkmate Starmie and offensive Rotom-A and maim Jolteon if he tries to switch out. Selfdestruct, however, pretty much obliterates anything that isn't immune to it. Even most physically defensive Skarmory are OHKOed by it after Stealth Rock damage. Crunch is a definite must for 2HKOing the Ghost-types that will try to switch into Snorlax's Normal-type attacks. In the last slot, Earthquake and Fire Punch are both good options. Earthquake destroys Heatran and hits Metagross and Jirachi the hardest of all options. Fire Punch, however, does respectable damage to both Bronzong and Skarmory.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Snorlax has just the right moves available to him to take advantage of his enormous bulk with a RestTalk set. Rest and Sleep Talk combine to give Snorlax some serious and much needed longevity. This Snorlax is effective at coming in on Pokemon that it effortlessly walls, forcing them out, and then shuffling the team further with Whirlwind. Whirlwind also doubles as a means to prevent a sleeping Snorlax from being setup fodder for Pokemon like Gyarados or Dragonite. Body Slam further deters opposing setup by threatening to paralyze anything it hits.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Sometimes the best way to use Snorlax is to take advantage of both his offensive strength and bulkiness at the same time. While the Choice Band set focuses on checkmating frail special sweepers, this set is more about taking multiple hits over the course of a match and continually attacking as your opponent switches in their best checks.
Body Slam and Return both have their merits on this set. Body Slam's paralysis can be immensely helpful in both supporting the team and letting Snorlax actually outspeed something. Return, however, sacrifices the chance of paralysis in exchange for hitting that much harder. Crunch is used in the second slot for the Ghost-type Pokemon that will inevitably switch into Snorlax's Normal-type STAB moves. Earthquake is a valuable move to have on this set for OHKOing Heatran and Magnezone while doing respectable damage to both Metagross and Jirachi. In the last slot, what could possibly be picked other than Selfdestruct? Selfdestruct is Snorlax's pitch at taking out one last Pokemon before going down. Fire Punch can be used in the last slot over Selfdestruct for the ability to OHKO Scizor and 2HKO Forretress, but let's face it, you're going to want to blow Snorlax up.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Like most Normal-type Pokemon, Snorlax has an exceptionally diverse movepool with a lot of options. All of the special attacking options available to Snorlax, including Surf, Ice Beam, Shadow Ball, and Fire Blast, are pretty much worthless coming off of a pathetic base 65 Special Attack stat. It's always better to use Snorlax's physical options. Speaking of physical attacks, Snorlax has Ice Punch and ThunderPunch available to him. Against the Pokemon 4x weak to these moves, they are powerful, but against everything else, they're inferior to the listed options on each set. Snorlax also has Zen Headbutt, but there's really no reason to run it given that Snorlax can't outrun any of the Pokemon it might want to hit with the move.
Despite the fact that Immunity is a good ability, Snorlax is typically using Selfdestruct to exit a battle or already taking advantage of Rest, which removes status. There is little reason to run Immunity on a Pokemon that plays like Snorlax, especially when Thick Fat allows Snorlax to check Heatran so effectively. However, if your team is particularly vulnerable to Toxic stalling and Snorlax isn't using Rest, you may elect to forgo Thick Fat for Immunity on Snorlax.
Checks and Counters
All of the best responses to Snorlax are Pokemon with powerful Fighting-type attacks. Most, if not all, of these Pokemon hate being paralyzed though, so be mindful of switching into Body Slam recklessly. If they can get in safely, Infernape, Lucario, Machamp, and Heracross can all put Snorlax down in a jiffy. Strong and boosted physical attackers will also punch through Snorlax's defenses. With a Life Orb equipped, Pokemon like Metagross and Mamoswine can 2HKO Snorlax easily with their STAB attacks. Ghost-type Pokemon can switch into Snorlax's STAB attacks with ease and also generally pack Will-O-Wisp with which to burn Snorlax. A burned Snorlax is pretty much worthless offensively, so at that point you can proceed to switch in one of the Fighting-type Pokemon he hates facing. Lastly, there are a few Pokemon that can effortlessly wall Snorlax even if he attempts to set up. Skarmory can switch into even sets with Fire Punch, set up Spikes, and Roost off damage taken. Fire Punch boosted by either Curse or Choice Band is about the only thing Snorlax can do that actually stings Skarmory. Bronzong can come into Snorlax much like Skarmory, set up Stealth Rock, and then Explode if Snorlax tries to set up Curse. Forretress functions in a similar manner, but only if Snorlax lacks Fire Punch.