Thundurus is enjoying free reign as one of the Pokemon brought down from Ubers to participate in the DW OU metagame. Top-notch mixed offenses and a fantastic base 111 Speed, along with a movepool that contains everything it needs, will keep Thundurus a top contender for a long time. While a weakness to Stealth Rock does no favors for Thundurus, it is mitigated by the fact that Thundurus is immune to Ground-type attacks, Spikes, and Toxic Spikes. Prankster was a gift bestowed upon Thundurus, giving it priority Taunt and Thunder Wave. Low bulk and weakness to Stealth Rock are the major problems Thundurus has, but with proper team support, Thundurus can shine.
This set is Thundurus's bread and butter, the reason it was banned from OU. The idea is to stack hazards, take out the opponent's Choice Scarf user, beat the opponent's special wall, set up Nasty Plot, and sweep. High Special Attack and Speed stats make Thundurus an ideal candidate for the job. Switching in on a support Pokemon or something Thundurus forces out, such as Breloom or Jellicent, is ideal, allowing Thundurus to grab a Nasty Plot on the switch. After a Nasty Plot, Thundurus hits a sky-high 698 Special Attack stat, which, alongside its excellent coverage, lets it plow through the entire metagame.
Thunderbolt is, of course, the primary option if you are not running rain support, and still hits insanely hard. Hidden Power Ice complements Thunderbolt with coverage on the common Grass- and Ground-types in the tier, such as Serperior and Gliscor, and Focus Blast grants Thundurus super effective coverage on both Ferrothorn and Tyranitar. Substitute is an option with Leftovers for a deadly Substitute + Nasty Plot set. It prevents status, specifically Thunder Wave and Toxic, and Substitute can be used in lieu of Protect, scouting out the opponent's next move. Taunt can also be used in a similar vein to Taunt + Dragon Dance Haxorus. It helps Thundurus set up on Jirachi and Ferrothorn, who otherwise pose a major pain thanks to Thunder Wave. Body Slam is still an issue with Jirachi, however, so it is best to determine if it has Body Slam or Thunder Wave before attempting to use Taunt. Taunt also prevents Breloom from setting up on Thundurus, which can be very helpful if Breloom lacks Stone Edge.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Thundurus also has a good 115 Attack, with which it can take down its common checks, namely Blissey and Tyranitar. With mixed attacking stats, Thundurus can function as an excellent wallbreaker, weakening opposing teams for its teammates to sweep. Thundurus can be a great powerhouse with this set, and its effectiveness can sometimes eclipse even the powerful Nasty Plot set.
Thunderbolt is Thundurus's main STAB move for its power and reliability. Hammer Arm allows Thundurus to OHKO non-Chople Berry Tyranitar and 2HKO Blissey, as well as severely dent Terrakion. Hidden Power Ice is the best coverage move available to Thundurus, complementing its other moves very well by hitting the Dragon-types that resist its other moves. The last slot is a bit of a toss-up. Volt Switch is a great option particularly for VoltTurn offense teams, and also allows Thundurus to maintain offensive pressure if faced with a counter. U-turn functions similarly, with the advantage of hitting Ground-types such as Garchomp and Excadrill, who are common switch-ins to Thundurus. Taunt can be used to screw over walls attempting to paralyze or set up hazards on Thundurus, and also stops Dragon Dance boosters in their tracks. It also cripples Deoxys-S, but backfires if Deoxys-S uses Magic Coat.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
With its Prankster ability, Thundurus's non-attacking moves gain priority. This makes Thundurus a quick check to a Dragon Dance sweeper or something continually stalling with Substitutes or status moves. The ability to go first, outspeeding even most other Prankster users, gives Thundurus the advantage over bulkier alternatives. In general, this set's main purpose is to be a last-ditch stop to threatening sweepers, and maybe get some attacks off if it finds the time.
Thunder Wave is the crux of the set, and the reason why Prankster Thundurus is so good. It can be a game-saving clutch against a Dragon Dancer or Choice Scarf user that your team cannot overcome because of its high Speed; it can also cause paralysis hax, giving Thundurus more opportunities to attack. Thunderbolt is a reliable STAB move. Hidden Power Ice is Thundurus's best possible coverage move, while as on all Thundurus sets, the last slot is a toss-up. Taunt is the primary option to shut down status spreaders such as Jirachi and Jellicent, and prevent boosting Pokemon from setting up further. Volt Switch or U-turn can make Thundurus an effective scout, while Hammer Arm can be used for coverage on Tyranitar and Blissey—of course, be sure to use a Naive nature and 4 Attack EVs if using Hammer Arm or U-turn.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
Swift Swim teams should consider using Thundurus as a Rain Dance setter; Thundurus can even take advantage of the rain itself with Thunder. Torment is an option to mess with and annoy the opponent, especially in combination with Substitute, as Pokemon such as Excadrill and Jirachi have only one attack capable of breaking Thundurus's Substitutes. Once again, though, it is often a waste of a moveslot in comparison to Thundurus's other options. Defiant is a neat ability that raises Thundurus's Attack stat by two levels when any of its stats are lowered by the opponent, and it is useful for boosting Hammer Arm's power; however, it is highly situational, especially as Intimidate users aren't very common in the Dream World metagame. Hidden Power Fire hits Steel-types more reliably than Focus Blast, but it requires forgoing the coverage Hidden Power Ice provides, and is weakened by rain. Dark Pulse is an option to hit Latios, but is generally a waste, as Hidden Power Ice hits nearly as hard.
Agility can remedy Thundurus's problems with Choice Scarf users, but Thundurus's attacks will lack the punch that Nasty Plot provide. A double boosting set on the other hand requires too many turns to set up, and also suffers from the loss of coverage moves. Bulk Up can be used for a physical set, with Brick Break and Wild Charge as attacks. However, Thundurus has a higher Special Attack stat, and is outclassed by most physical attackers; furthermore, Wild Charge has hindering recoil. Choice Specs can turn Thundurus into a hard-hitting special attacker, and Choice Band makes it a strong physical attacker. Choice Scarf might seem tempting, but it is outclassed in this role by other Pokemon such as Rotom-W and Terrakion, which have better movepools for the role, along with better coverage.
Checks and Counters
Gastrodon, Blissey, and Chansey are Thundurus's main counters, as they can sponge all of Thundurus's common attacks, can recover off the damage, and deal with Thundurus either directly or with status moves. Quagsire ignores the Nasty Plot set's boosts and so can deal with it. As with most other Choice Scarf users, Rotom-W can switch in on the Nasty Plot and KO it with a rain-boosted Hydro Pump. Excadrill causes huge problems to Thundurus, switching in for free on Thunderbolt and outspeeding in sand to OHKO with Rock Slide; Choice Scarf Garchomp and Landorus can similarly switch in and KO with Stone Edge. Choice Scarf Tyranitar can surprise Thundurus by bluffing a standard set, only to outspeed and Stone Edge for the KO. Raikou can also function as a decent check, as it is immune to Thundurus's Electric-type moves and outspeeds, forcing Thundurus to rely on a 70% accurate Focus Blast.