Well hey there, Smogon! Today I am presenting a team which I have been using almost (almost) exclusively in BW2. I created this team in early July, during the first couple weeks of BW2, mostly because I wanted to use Sandslash. He is my favorite Ground-type, as well as the 2nd cutest one. So I initially created the team to support a Sandslash sweep, and while I think the team does utilize Sandslash quite well, I end up using him less than I first imagined I would. That will come later, though.
I've decided to retire this team, and so it's a perfect time for an RMT. I'm retiring it for a few reasons, including: 1) Many of the things which made the team work are now becoming less useful. Take Scarf Latios. When I made the team in July, no one, and I mean no one was using Scarf Latios. The core of CBTar+Keldeo is another example. 2) Although this is my favorite team I have ever created, I've logged 2000+ battles with it over the last 6 months. I am tired of using it, to be honest. Now that XY is going to come out in October, I want to experiment with some other teams before the BW era comes to an end.
I've been told that this team is ineffective, even poorly made. Honestly, I don't really care though. I've made reqs in a couple Suspect Tests (although I missed the 2nd half of Garchomp's, as well as Kyurem-B and Genesect due to being inactive on Smogon) and I have topped the Pokemon Showdown ladder with it. Although generally speaking, ladder peaks are not any more than a little impressive, doing so with “such a bad team” would be a compliment to my battling ability, so I'll take it. *shrugs*
Well, I think I've talked enough. The last thing I'll say is an explanation of the team's name. I am a little bit sad to retire this team, even though I know it's time, so I wanted a nostalgic name for it. In the French Republican Calender, which was only used for about 10 years during the (first) French Revolution, they renamed all of the months. Messidor was the period between mid-late June and mid-late July. Seeing as that is the period in which this team was born, I thought that it would be an appropriate name. With that done, let's move on to the team!
Robopon (Tyranitar) (M) @ Choice Band
Trait: Sand Stream
EVs: 152 HP / 252 Atk / 104 Spd
Adamant Nature (+Atk, -Satk)
Tyranitar is interesting on this team for me. Interesting, because I like Hippowdon better. But alas, Tyranitar has been the better fit. Okay, so as you already know, I wanted to create a Sandslash-based team, meaning I knew I would have to choose the Hippo or Tyranitar. I actually put this choice off until later into my teambuilding, but I ultimately chose Tar, clearly. This is because as I went through, and picked up Pokemon like Keldeo and Latios alongside Sandslash, I saw that my team was leaning more offensively. I would tell you that Tyranitar often wears down Skarmory/Gliscor/Landorus-T, so that Sandslash can sweep later on, but it rarely works out that way. Tyranitar's job is simply, to kill things. I use the Choice Band set because my team has a little bit of a weakness to Skarmory and Ferrothorn, and the power of this set helps to mitigate that a bit. Other than being my general check to things like Latias/Latios and Sun/Rain (<3 Pursuit), Tyranitar is typically my best sac. Not because “Oh, I've won the weather war, I'm done”, but because he has the least utility out of all my team members. Nonetheless, I don't want to short-play my big green friend. Without him, Reuniclus would tear me a new one everytime I saw it, and Latias/Latios would be fun to face either. Despite his importance to the team, Tyranitar's role is simple though. I run more Speed EVs than the standard set, but that is because of Wobbuffet. Skarmory and defensive Politoed frequently run enough Speed to beat fast-Wobb, and so I speed-creeped enough to still comfortably outrun them.
Summary: Pursuit and weather-control are essential roles. Also, dat power.
Toripon (Volcarona) (F) @ Chesto Berry
Trait: Flame Body
EVs: 144 HP / 252 Satk / 112 Spd
Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
You'll notice that I did not include a Teambuilding section in my RMT. That's because I actually cannot remember the exact order in which the team members came onto the team, and I didn't want to accidentally provide an incorrect Teambuilding section. However, I do know with certainty that Volcarona came last. Volcarona does not conclusively solve any issue that my team had before... but it helps out with pretty much all of them. My team hates Steel-types with a passion, and guess who Volcarona sets up on! Additionally, Latios is a shaky switch-in to things like Conkeldurr and Breloom, which Volcarona does a much better job of. I'll come back to Breloom in a minute though. I normally don't try and sweep with Volcarona though. If my opponent lacks a Skarmory, Bronzong, Ferrothorn, or Heatran, then you can bet your can that I am going to play Volcarona pretty early on and try to wedge into the opponent's team. Despite the number of Pokemon in OU which resist Volcarona's dual STAB, it makes a surprisingly good wall-breaker early game. Also, I play Volcarona recklessly because of Stealth Rock. You'll see in a moment that Sandslash is not a Rapid Spinner, and so I never want Stealth Rock to get up on my side before Volcarona hits the field. Now, back to Breloom. Screw Breloom. Spore too strongth. Volcarona is a guaranteed switch-in to Breloom on my team. Although I am aware of Stone Edge, most Breloom are too cautious of Latios switching in to spam it the first time. I might be digressing too much into Breloom... but seriously, screw Breloom. Additionally, Volcarona eases the pressure off of Keldeo to check Scizor, so that I can preserve Keldeo for when I need it to tank a Volt Switch and Secret Sword the pants off a Rotom-W or something. I use ChestoRest Volcarona because it fits the wall-breaker role that I use it for the best. My team's greatest weakness is to Stall, and Volcarona is my best bet against Stall. Although the whole “set-up to +5 on a counter, Rest, 2HKO and sweep” thing only works about half of the time, at best, that still gives me a significantly better win-loss ratio vs Stall teams than I would otherwise have. I run more Speed EVs than the standard set, although Volcarona's revamp is switching it to my EV spread. I feel a little bit ahead of the ball-game on that one, but whatever. It's to beat Jolteon at +1, and to beat Scarf Latios at +2, just to be clear.
Summary: Ferrothorn and Skarmory should go die in a hole. Otherwise, it just tries to set up and do as much damage as possible.
Kibapon (Sandslash) (M) @ Life Orb
Trait: Sand Rush
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 4 Def / 248 Spd
Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk)
Ah, Sandslash. You are my favorite Ground-type, as well as the 2nd cutest one (I haven't said that before ^_^). Call me a Sandslash fanboy, but I think it is absolutely hilarious that Stoutland gets more usage than Sandslash. They have the same Attack stat. And it absolutely goes without saying that STAB Earthquake beats STAB Return. Oh, and let's not forget that Stoutland is weak to Mach Punch, which is (slightly) more common in the metagame than Ice Shard is. The only real difference I can see is that Stoutland can afford to run an Adamant Nature, for a bit more power. But if you ask me, having to use Return as your STAB neuters the extra power. Sandslash has better coverage moves. Oh, I admit that Superpower on Stoutland is really cool. But other that, he has... Fire Fang? Yikes. Okay, enough about Stoutland. Sandslash is the reason that I built this team, and I love him so much. Although his role has changed a bit since the beginning. Early on, I kept trying to use him as a sweeper, and it didn't work well for me. Nowadays, Sandslash is my (amazing) revenge-killer. When he does sweep, it's often because I take my opponent's team down to something like Jirachi/Tentacruel/Tornadus/Salamence. Although Sandslash does have trouble with bulkier teams, and he is dependent on Sand, his ability to slip in and kill threats I need him to is pretty phenomenal, and it really helps to take the pressure off of Latios. Sandslash's moveset is probably one of the big reasons why other people don't like to use my team. It lacks Rapid Spin, and my team (*cough* Volcarona *cough*) is very vulnerable to hazards. This is actually where part of my weakness to Stall comes in. They get up their hazards, and my team dies fast. However, I'm disillusioned with any Rapid Spinner who uses a Life Orb and is vulnerable to all hazards without recovery. So why Life Orb? Because without it, Sandslash would not have guaranteed kills on Tornadus (who just got banned), Thundurus, Salamence, Gyarados, and more. Sandslash has a decent Attack, but he's not Landorus-T. Anyway, X-Scissor has proven quite useful against Rain teams. I won't switch Tyranitar in to Pursuit Celebi in those situations, because I want to save it to Pursuit Politoed, so Sandslash can get in some nice Celebi kills there, allowing Keldeo to go nuts. Splitting the last 8 EVs between HP and Defense insead of putting it into one allows Sandslash to take about half a percent less damage from physical attacks, which has probably only come into play... maybe once or twice in all my battles. But hey, every bit counts. … I'm all done with Sandslash now, except for my obligatory rant on Adamant Sandslash. Don't use it. The power doesn't matter when Scarf Salamence/Jirachi or Thundurus/Landorus all beat you, not to mention the occasional Hydreigon or (rarely) Haxorus. Oh, and Volcarona after a Quiver Dance. I haaaaaaate Adamant Sandslash.
Summary: Think of Weavile, except better. Great tool to remove things, but needs Sand and is not a powerhouse.
Megapon (Latios) (M) @ Choice Scarf
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk)
I'm gonna have a hipster moment now. When I first started using this team, Scarf Latios wasn't original, but it was certainly uncommon. Nowadays, the set has almost doubled in usage, and it has flown up to Latios' most common set. This upsets me, because all of the free Starmie and Scarf Salamence kills are going away. Nonetheless, it remains my faithful Scarfer. As I was saying with Sandslash, having the redundancy of two dedicated revenge-killers is really helpful, allowing me to play a little more recklessly than I otherwise would. I actually prefer LO Latios myself, but Scarf Terrakion, Scarf Keldeo, and Venusaur would butcher me without the Scarf here. That's why I picked Latios in the first place... it can actually out-speed most things. Although speaking of Venusaur, I should mention how Scarrfed Latios is good against pretty much every member of your typical Sun team. It's really my best defense against them. I do love using Latios in conjunction with Sandslash, because if I've gotten a chance to read my opponent, I regularly get a great double-switch into Sandslash, as their Tyranitar or Jirachi or Heatran switches in. My only problem with Latios on my team, as a Scarfer, is that it exacerbates my weakness to Stall and combinations of Steel-types. Trick does prevent it from being utter dead-weight vs Stall teams, but it's not enough sometimes. On the flip side of that, Offensive teams are almost a non-issue for me. Although Latios is an absolutely crucial team member, I really don't have much to say about it. It's common enough now that most battlers have seen it multiple times, and unlike with the Pokemon I've shown so far, nothing really stands out about mine. The moves and EVs are completely standard, because they let it do the job I want it to do the best. Latios has saved my life plenty of times, and I love spamming Draco Meteor against Steel-free teams, but I guess you could call it a “popcorn break” in my team.
Summary: ...It's a Latios. Revenge-kills stuff that Sandslash can't and uses Draco Meteor a lot.
Mahopon (Keldeo) @ Choice Specs
EVs: 252 SAtk / 4 SDef / 252 Spd
Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk)
-Hidden Power [Electric]
WATER PONY. This is the 2nd cutest Pokemon in existence. Don't you just want to snuggle with it? Okay, so Water Pony is my fifth Pokemon. Although the core of CBTar and Water Pony is very well-known and common nowadays, I actually wasn't thinking about it last July. I chose Keldeo because it was a new toy that BW2 gave to us, and I love new toys. Well, there was more to it than that. These were the days of yore, when CM Keldeo was at least as common as Choiced Keldeo, possibly even more common. And Scarf Keldeo was nowhere to be seen. Nowadays, Scarf Keldeo is the most common, and for good reason. It is nuts in the Rain. If my Latios dies somehow, and my own Keldeo has been weakened, an opposing Scarf Keldeo will straight-up sweep me. I opted not to use it though, for the very reasons I mentioned under Latios. I needed a way to revenge-kill things like +2 Dragonite, Venusaur, Stoutland (ironic, is it not?), and then Scarf Terrakion. Unfortunately, Scarf Keldeo cannot. But Specs works better on my team anyway. If my opponent does not have a Celebi or a Ferrothorn, odds are that I'm bringing Keldeo out early on to try and knock a couple holes in my opponent's team. Sound familiar? That's because Keldeo and Volcarona have very similar jobs on my team! Sandslash is fast as heck, as is Latios, but they're power is severely lacking. Keldeo and Volcarona can oftentimes provide a one-two punch that teams without Tentacruel (in the Rain) fail to hold up to. On another note, Keldeo's typing is exceptionally helpful, allowing it to act as a secondary check to things like Volcarona, Scizor, Cloyster, and others. The 4 SDef EVs are still a holdover from the Genesect era, when it was preferable (for my team) to give Genesect an Attack boost and not a Special Attack boost, although they could just as easily be shifted over to HP now. Many Keldeo opt for HP Ice and Surf as their two coverage moves, but I prefer this set. Gyarados with Ice Fang will beat everything on my team if it gets a chance to set up, but for some reason, they never switch out of Keldeo. It's as though they think that Keldeo switches into them for no reason. Also, HP Electric lands a 2HKO on most Jellicent. Or rather, it would, if they ever stayed in for the second hit. But it's no big deal, because it easily puts them into Tyranitar's Pursuit-range (staying in). Icy Wind is usually equivalent to HP Ice, so I'm not entirely sure why people use HP Ice. Against Salamence, Haxorus, Gliscor, and both formes of Landorus, Icy Wind will get the same OHKO that HP Ice does. Against Latios and Latias, Icy Wind will get the same 2HKO that HP Ice does (in fact, it allows you to actually hit twice). I'll admit, that having Hydro Pump as my only Water STAB has lost me matches (in fact, Hydro Pump singlehandedly knocked me out of the OST), but ultimately, I think that having both HP Electric and Icy Wind has proven the better trade. As far as Specs Keldeo goes, mine is not very unique, but I don't know where I'd be without my Water Pony.
Summary: Water Pony is very cute, and VERY strong. Like Volcarona, tries to go on a slaughter early, so Sandslash and Latios can succeed later.
Dekapon (Metagross) @ Leftovers
Trait: Clear Body
EVs: 224 HP / 252 Atk / 32 Spd
Adamant Nature (+Atk, - SAtk)
If anyone here tells me to replace this with a Jirachi or a Scizor, I will draw what I think you like, and punch it. Don't do it. Although I've stressed with each member how they help my team and how important they are, I am gonna have to do it twice with Metagross. He carries the defensive weight of my team on his shouders. Oh sure, I can switch Latios and Keldeo and Volcarona in on resisted hits. They all have some bulk, but it's Metagross who takes all the real hits. I'm not going to bother listing every Dragon attack he has ever tanked, or the number of times he's stomached an Earthquake and then KOed Landorus-T/Gliscor. Metagross is a “just enough” Pokemon. He has just enough bulk to take the hits I switch him in on. He has just enough power to KO the threats I want him to KO. He's not excessive in anything though. I'd rather have a Scizor using Bullet Punch, but then my team loses Stealth Rock and is much more vulnerable to Dragonite or Volcarona. Perhaps a Jirachi would be nice, but then you encounter that 15% DDMence or Scarf Terrakion which sweeps you (after Latios is down, of course). Metagross can't do either of their jobs as well as them, but he can do both of their jobs (mediocrely) and only take up a single Pokemon slot. It's a trade I'm happy with. My regret with Metagross is that I generally don't get him in the battle (and therefore, get Stealth Rock up) as early as I would like, but unfortunately, there's not much of a way around it. With Metagross, we finally return to me actually tweaking some of the standard sets. I use Zen Headbutt rather than Meteor Mash, because... Steel STAB. It's just not good. Most Metagross that I've faced use Earthquake to catch an incoming Heatran or Magnezone, but I just don't have room for it, because Metagross needs all the moves it has. Poor Meta, with his 4MSS. Heatran doesn't really worry me, between Latios, Keldeo, and Tyranitar as switch-ins, and with Sandslash to revenge-kill it. Magnezone is an absolute pain to face, but it's a cross I've got to bear. Predicting around it is often my only choice. However, if I took out Ice Punch, then I could do nothing against the things that Metagross is actually supposed to counter. And lastly, I can't remove Bullet Punch, because... well, I just described earlier how I would like a Scizor. Despite Metagross's 4MSS, he pulls the team in a sleigh behind him. Frequently, Metagross's job is “check a dangerous sweeper, and almost die in the process”, but that's perfectly alright. He kills the sweeper, and then I have a great sac to use later on. I know that there's a whole lot of Metagross-hate going around in OU right now, but that's probably because people use him where a Jirachi or a Scizor is supposed to be. Now, I'll admit that Metagross is part of my weakness to Stall. He can't do anything to a physically-bulky Pokemon. He sits there and lets them do their thing. But it's just like I said for Latios: The weakness that he provides against Defensive teams is compensated for by the immense support he gives the team elsewhere. The only other noticeable thing that I neglected was the Speed EVs. Metagross has the same speed as Tyranitar: just enough to speed-creep Skarmory and defensive Politoed. It beats fast-Wobb, which lets me be the one who chooses which move Wobb inevitably Encores.
Summary: Sets up Stealth Rock, and checks a potential sweeper. Then it Bullet Punches something as it dies.
Threats and Conclusion
It's been my experience using this team that an entire load of Pokemon are able to threaten it, but that it can play around almost all of them if you know it's limits. I'm not going to go through the entire Threat List for RMT's, because it would be a series of repetitive one-liners, not to mention the multiple different scenarios that can come from a single Pokemon. All that said, however, there are a few threats to this team that are insanely difficult to play around, no matter how well you know the team.
I mentioned Stall teams a lot in the individual Pokemon. You'd think that with Specs Keldeo and CBTar that I could simply smash through all the walls, but nope. A well-built Stall team can just keep bouncing between its members until I am all but defeated. Generally, I can only win by setting up with Volcarona, predicting like a monster the entire time, or by getting lucky and Latios Scarfing the perfect enemy. Luckily for me, Stall teams have been on the decline for a while, but that doesn't make them any less dangerous when they do crop up.
The other huge threat to this team is Rock Polish Landorus and Agility Thundurus. Not together, but individually (or I guess they'd be just as threatening together). My team relies on Latios and Sandslash for revenge-killing duties, but these two can't be revenge-killed without priority (ie Mamoswine). After they boost their Speed, they outrun and OHKO everything on my team, except for Keldeo/Volcarona in the case of Landorus, and Metagross/Volcarona in the case of Thundurus. However, Keldeo, Metagross, and Volcarona are only able to take a hit if they are at or near full health, which is very difficult for my team to maintain over the course of a match. To beat them, I really have to hammer them as they set up, but if they find a good opportunity to boost, they will probably get off a clean sweep right there.
I really love this team. After half a year and literally thousands of battles, I'm not entirely sure how I'll do without it. Despite that, feel free to go all out on it, be it critique, compliments, using the team, or even a Messidor-induced rage. Thanks for reading, Smogon! And a cookie for whomever recognizes my Pokemon's nicknames ;)
Hey. Sorry, but I'm too busy for a full rate. Since Volcarona is important for Steel types, I doubt you would want it to die to Stealth Rock. I suggest you change Sandslash's set to a Rapid Spin set. It is very similar to the one you are using and also strongly supports Volcarona. I can understand your reasons not to use it, but it seems like it would be a good idea. It fixes all the hazard problems you have at the cost of a single moveslot. Entry hazards are popular in the metagame, and an efficient way to deal with them is always nice. Congrats on the peak, though.
Hi bro, got the request, and I love the creativity!
I'm sure you thought about it a lot, but have you tried Rapid Spin over Swords Dance on Sandslash? He doesn't seem like the kind of mon that has much time to set up or sweep even if he does get up a dance because of his mediocre attack stat and the prevalence of rain. I loved running Earthquake, Rock Slide, X-Scissor, and Rapid Spin on Excadrill when it was legal, so I imagine that Sandslash could run a similar set and get away with it. Alternatively, you could replace X-Scissor with Rapid Spin (I only used it on my Excadrill because NP Celebi was rampant!), since you have Psychics pretty much covered as far as I can tell.
I noticed the weakness to stall teams, and it's pretty unfortunate. One thing you could do is replace your Keldeo with a CM Leftovers set. That thing would definitely annoy stall cores after you trap the ghosts/celebi with Tar. The set I'm thinking of is:
Keldeo @ Leftovers
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
- Calm Mind
- Secret Sword
- Hidden Power
I leaning toward HP Ghost in that last slot, but Ice could also work.
Not much else to say, since I realize how well you did on the ladder. Good job!
Hey SlimMan, playing against this team the other day was certainly a demonstration of how well it works! Very cool take on sand offense, and a very original team overall.
I don't have many suggestions since the team and sets seem very solid, so just a couple notes. You noted your weakness to stall a few times--one way to mitigate this would be to add rapid spin on sandslash. While this would mean giving up a moveslot, it would also totally turn the tables vs stall, especially since bandtar is so great at taking out those spinblockers. You mentioned in slash's summary that you've come to use him less as a sweeper and more as a revenge-killer, so maybe rapid spin could go > SD, making him more of a hit-and-run attacker. IDK how much of the time you end up using SD but if you use it a lot, maybe > x-scissor, although I can see how it'd be useful. Anyway, just a thought.
I might support psychic > psyshock on tios to OHKO stuff like BUconk and keldeo (psyshock just falls short...although you know from our battle it does > than 87% haha). Then again, psyshock is useful for terra in sand and stuff, just something to consider.
I would definitely support surf > hp electric on keldeo. While weakening jelli is nice, you really have CBtar for that and it's really nice to have a 100% accurate water STAB (coughcoughOSTcoughcough xD). Imo, trying to double switch ttar into jelli early game is a good strategy since keldeo is great at luring it out. In this case, hp ice > icy wind obviously, although that is an interesting point about it not having advantages. I wonder if hp ice OHKOs haxy after rocks or something. Also i bet you don't get a 2hko on defensive latias with icy wind, while you prob do with hp ice, maybe after rocks.
Really nice use of metagross on this team, you do a very good job of justifying its usage > similar defensive steels. Don't really have suggestions, though maybe consider trying out eq > zen headbutt? You didn't mention what threats zen hbutt is hitting, although not having a strong stab is a bit annoying. EQ could be pretty darn useful though.
Finally, my last suggestion for the team. When we played, garchomp was a huge threat to your team, threatening to sweep or kill multiple mons every time it came in (which was only avoided because of your great predictions of outrage vs sub, as well as my blunder at the end haha). While I don't want to suggest many changes in the team, it occurred to me that there's a mon that helps fix both the chomp weakness and the two weaknesses you noted above of RP landy and agilidurus: mamoswine. LO mamo easily OHKOs landy and KOs thundy at ~80%, while OHKOing non-yache chomp and KOing through substitute with icicle spear. There's not a great spot for it to go on the team, I'd probably say > latios since it naturally checks set-up dragons, venusaur, and the like. It definitely does make you weaker to scarf terra and keldeo though. Another option would be > metagross, since mamo can also run a SR set while performing the same job of checking dragons, although it can't switch in. Either of those would be a large change however, so idk if you want that since your team is already very solid as is. It could really help fix up your weaknesses though, so maybe think about it.
That's pretty much all I have to add, very cool team man and luvdisced!
Got your request, this is a very interesting team and has proven to be solid by getting #1 on the ladder. Looking at your team, a major threat to it is Rock Polish Landorus. Landorus can set up a Rock Polish against Sandslash as well as against Tyranitar and Keldeo when they are locked into certain attacks (Pursuit and Superpower for the former and Secret Sword and HP Electric for the latter). After it Rock Polishes, Landorus outspeed your entire team and can hit very hard with with coverage of Earth Power, Focus Blast, and HP Ice. Another threat to your team is Chlorophyll Venusaur. Under the sunlight, Venusaur can outspeed your entire team and deal major damage with Giga Drain and HP Fire while using Sleep Power or Sludge Bomb to cripple Volcarona and Latios. For these threats, I recommend replacing Metagross with a Sash Endeavor Lead Mamoswine with a moveset of Stealth Rock / Endeavor / Earthquake / Ice Shard. Mamoswine can pick off Landorus with a priority Ice Shard that is 4x Super Effective as well as deal solid damage to Venusaur. Mamoswine carries the Stealth Rock that Metagross currently does. He makes a great lead at the beginning of the game to get up rocks, get knocked down to his Sash, bring the opponent to 1 HP with Endeavor and finish it off with Ice Shard. This strategy can often take out a critical Pokemon on your opponent's team as it's difficult to play around, or possibly their weather starter, allowing you to win the weather war early.
Some smaller changes for your team. I suggest replacing X-Scissor on Sandslash with Rapid Spin. Rapid Spin allows you to clear your side of entry hazards which is really helpful for Volcarona so it doesn't lose half of it's HP every time it switches in. It's also helpful to clear off the Spikes and Toxic Spikes that would cripple your grounded Pokemon. X-Scissor isn't really required as you already have Tyranitar, Volcarona, and Latios to check Celebi. On Keldeo, I suggest you try Surf over HP Electric. Surf provides you with a 100% accurate Water type STAB when you can't afford to miss with Hydro Pump. HP Electric is a nice move to surprise Jellicent and Gyarados but Latios and Tyranitar handle them pretty well already.
Hope I helped and and good luck with your team!
Interesting team you have there. Its really nice to see Sandslash getting some love. Grats on the peak, however, i feel like some of your choice are questionable.
First, as all the other raters said, Rapid spin should be your preferred move on Sandslash. Im not saying that sandslash is good at spinning, because it isnt, excadrill was good because it forced out people with its steel typing, and sandslash is just weak... but still rapid spin is way better than X-scizzor. I cant think of anything else honestly other than Celebi that you want to hit with Xscizzor, in the description you said "it helps with rain teams" but i cant understand why. Its good to have an another way to deal with it, but i think that ill change something else to deal with celebi even better. Anyway, You are not even weak to grass type, and two breloom checks are enough, also xscizzor fails to ko it anyway. Celebi is easily pursuitted by ttar that lacks of Baton pass. So, in conclusion, rapid spin maybe sucks on Sandslash because its frail, but still its a better option than X-scizzor.
Now i would like to switch the role of Latios and keldeo. I know its a bit standard, but ill explain why you need to do so. First, some of the things you said in the descriptions are wrong. Venusaur actually outspeeds Scarf latios anyway, if you are facing modest venusaur then you are lucky, because honestly i dont see reasons not to run timid Venusaur since the point of clorophill is to outspeed things. To deal with venu, you just need to pursuitkill Ninetales avoiding the burn, which is not hard i guess. Also, Keldeo actually outspeeds Stoutland, Dragonite, and Modest Venusaur anyway. With the scarf Keldeo reaches 519 speed, while dragonite, Stoutland and Modest venusaur are outspeed anyway by one point, since they reach 518 speed.
Its not only that, you actually need your latios to stay alive longer. Since you only have 2 water resistors without recovery, some rain offense spamming hydro pump can easily weaken your Keldeo/latios. Also, Latios is your best pokemon to check Landorus and Thundurus, so if you try to run a Recover Lo set you can stick it longer to check them. Not to mention that Scarf Latios is actually a pursuit bait for Scizor and Tyranitar, which sucks since you need it to revenge kill stuff, and with life orb you can at least hit them with Surf. Also, you were probably going to do Draco meteor to everything to do significant damages, which sucks sicne the drop lets a lot of sweeper set up for free. Lo latios also helps a bit facing Celebi, who dont like tanking Dmeteors, as well as Breloom, since you are kinda obsessed by it. In other hand, Scarf keldeo is just as good as Scarf Latios at revenge killing things, so you should not be worry about that. The set you should on Latios is the standard Recover / Psyshock / Draco meteor / Surf, while on Keldeo Surf / Hydro pump / Hidden power Ice / Secret Sword.
Now, an another little nitpick, Heatran can actually stop Volcarona, Metagross, and in general the special defensive set can catch some of your pokemon switching in with Toxic or something like that, which sucks. Its not like you are weak to Heatran, but lets say that if you unluckily got your tyranitar burned by lava plume before you can attack heatran, you are going to do less damage to it, so you will have to switch it into something else to ko it. So i would say that a spread on tyranitar that can outspeed it should be fine, you dont have to invest that much, 140 evs are enough to outspeed all the special defensive Heatran with 8 evs in speed, so that you can smash it with stone edge before a possible burn.
Thats it i guess, thanks for sharing this team, i will probably try it with something else over Metagross (yes, i would suggest you a jirachi or something else, but you dont want to change it so ill not waste time) to see how it works. Luvdisc'd.
Good team. I only have a little 'changes to suggest, as I said the first is to put Rapid Spin> X-Scissor, with X-Scissor can hit just right Celebi, at most Hydreigon which is still little used, Rapid Spin is undoubtedly a best choice because it takes away from the field Entry hazards, annoying in general and especially for Volcarona.
Celebi In addition, to kill him you can easily hit him with Pursuit Tyranitar.
To suggest Keldeo Surf> HP Electric, since it is often Surf sufficient to delete a Pokemon, Hydro Pump view of the lack of detail you should look for when you need it for a particular Okho to a Pokemon, for the rest you should use Surf has 100% accuracy and strikes, so good. HP Eletric may be a surprise to, Jellicent, Slowbro, Gyarados (that is rarely used) for example, but the first two if it already occupies Tyranitar well, while for the second both Latios, Sandslash and.
Now seeing the problems known precisely the weakness to Rock Polish Landorus and Venusaur. These two problems are easily solved, it would be enough to put Latias Calm Minder> Latios, which has more bulkyness and able to resist their special moves, even with the help of Calm Mind.Now pass the Choice Scarf on Keldeo, it would not hurt, since it is a great renvege-killer too, because revenge-killa more or less the same things as Latios.
For Venusaur, another thing you can do to block us the speedup is (as well as use Latias) kill Ninetales with Tyranitar Pursuit of a thing that should not be too complicated.
One last thing I would suggest would remove Metagross, Jirachi probably, but I read in the description that Metagross do not want to remove, then do not go on to suggest that you remove it. for Venusaur, another thing you can take advantage of a weakened time is also Bullet Punch Metagross.
Good luck, with your team!
Hey man! :D
Ok so what I'm seeing is that you use Metagross to sponge Dragon hits and Volcarona to blast through steels? Why not just sack both of them and use Heatran? Volcarona looks like a god-honest dead weight when rocks come up whereas Heatran takes care of all you Timid Chloro Venusaur issues (which currently outspeeds and OHKOs Latios..... doesn't that suck :[). Heatran can still get up rocks, and it also blast through all those annoying steel types like Jirachi / Scizor / etc. The only thing you really miss out on is switching into Breloom, but this team can more tan handle it.
Secondly, I think you got Keldeo and Latios's roles mixed up. Your Sandslash hates Gliscor (and Specs Keldeo sucks at beating it since it protect scouts and switches), Rotom-W (Scarf Latios is too weak to actually beat it while it goes for the TWave and then proceeds to rest in your face); while Keldeo hates Celebi, Jellicent, Rotom-W, etc.
Why rely on Banded TTar to actually live long enough to beat them all when you can just go into Latios and spam Specs Draco Meteor's? Specs Latios breaks more of Sandslash's and Keldeo's counters, which is why I implore you to use it. I'm going to recommend this set:
You said you hate switching into Breloom... well I have the new solution in Sleep Talk! Switch into every Breloom and laugh as you spam Sleep Talk Specs attacks all over its face! :D
Ok, now to Keldeo. Obviously I would prefer you go with the Scarf set. The scarf set proves to be a good cleaner, and paired with Specs Latios and Band TTar, its quite versatile. Its simply amazing at RK'ing.
Now for the last member in replacing Volcarona. I realize your quite rain-boosted STAB weak, and a bit Torn weak since of me giving you Heatran, so I want to recommend SDef Rotom-W. I recommend SDef because it helps tank water hits in rain, and it also helps vs. Keldeo if it has a good chunk of health. The Volt-Switch momentum is greatly appreciated for going straight into Band Tar or Specs Latios.
Just a quick mention: RP Landy-I used to be a threat as well, but this spread only takes 51% from FB, so..... :D
Good Luck with this team man! Luvdic'd :)
So I forget the Heatran spread. FML!
First of all, as already said, on Sandslash I'd use Rapid Spin, replacing X-Scissor. Rapid Spin on Sandslash is a bad move because it has weak defensive statistics but anyway Rapid Spin is better than X-Scissor because your team hasn't problem vs. Celebi. Also, you need a Rapid Spin user because you have Volcarona which loses 50% of its HP by Stealth Rock when it switchs in. Then, on Keldeo I'd change HP Electric into Surf. Surf is a useful move because in many chances you don't need Hydro Pump's fire power (against Landorus and Terrakion for example) and use Hydro Pump is risky because of its accuracy. HP Electric can be useful against Gyarados but it isn't common in the current metagame and you can revenge-kill it with Sandslash if sand is up anyway. Finally, your team is a bit weak to Venusaur and Rock Polish Landorus. To solve this weakness, I'd use Life Orb Latias, replacing Latios. I'd use a EV spread of 72 HP | 252 Spe | 186 SAtk and I'd use a moveset of Draco Meteor, Surf, Psyshock and Recover. 72 EVs in HP allow Latias to resist to Venusaur at +2's Sludge Bomb and to tank Landorus' hits better and that's pretty good for your team.
Anyways, nice team! Congrats on the peak and good luck!
It is a very effective and solid team, I appreciate Sandslash with his ability (Sand Rush), speed is multiplied by 2 with the SandStorm, and then with Sword Dance it is awesome, but you are disadvantage against Gengar with Substitute I think, because with the Sub, Gengar can OHKO Tyranitar with Focus Blast, Latios breaks the substitute but it is OHKO by ShadowBall and if Gengar has Energy Ball,GigaDrain, Thunder or Thunderbolt it can kill Keldeo easily, and then Keldeo is 2HKO by Shadow Ball. I suggest you to swap Tyranitar in Choice Scarf, with this item Tyranitar can outspeed Gengar and kill him with pursuit or crunch, but before break the Substitute.
Then you are weak against Rotom-W, even if you have Latios, it can not tank Volt Switch correctly because it does not Recover/Roost and then the opponent can put a counter after Volt Switch to force you to switch, you will be disadvantage, I suggest you Latias Life Orb on Latios, Latias is a very good pokemon for your team, even if Latios is better, Latias Tank better and with the Orb Life it can be awesome, and then Latias has Recover to heal, so it can easily come on Rotom-W. I agree with Novaray, Landorus Rock Polish is your main counter, you can not do anything because Keldeo is OHKO by Earth Power and Landorus outspeed Latios after a Rock Polish, now that you have Latias you can kill him easily.(252 + SpA Thundurus - T Hidden Power Ice vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Latias: 146-172 (48.34 - 56.95%) - 89.84% chance to 2HKO) and Thundurus-T is OHKO by Draco Meteor.
Now your team is weak against the Entry Hazards (Spike/Stealth Rock/Toxic Spikes) I see that you have Sandslash in your Team, I suggest you Rapid Spinn on X-Scissor because after a Sword Dance Reuniclus is 2HKO by EarthQuake, Latios sweep and Latias sweepalso, Slowbro is 2HKO by EarthQuake with the Life Orb, then you have Volcarona, without spinner he can't set up correctly (50% on Stealth Rock). And then with the Sand Storm Sandslash can spinn easily.
Hope I Helped and Good Luck with your Team.
You seem slightly Latios weak, as Specs versions click on Surf and do a number on your whole team, even on Keldeo between SR + Sand (that is 12% already) and outspeeds everything bar Sandslash / Latios (and nobody in his right mind would risk a potentail 50/50 early on)
You should really use Bronzong over Metagross, I could see why Metagross helps you, really, but I could also see Bronzong patching up all of your weaknesses far more easily, still has SR, and lures in Ferrothorn and Skarmory, fodders of Volcarona, so it just fills the same roles as Metagross, but better! And it's a better Pokemon anyway, it'd help more vsing Tornadus-I for example, it has a better matchup vs Magnezone and you can run HP Fire so Forretress doesn't set up on you!
Hey everyone, thanks for checking out the team and commenting! To avoid an enormously long post, I'm not going to quote everyone individually, but I will address each of the comments made.
On: Sandslash's set, Rapid Spin>X-Scissor
This suggestion has been almost universal, and it's not hard to see why. I complained about Stall teams the entire time, and I had a way to delete their hazards all along. But this is a more interesting suggestion than first meets the eye, at least concerning myself. The biggest reason that I do not use Rapid Spin is because... I guess you could say that I ”min-maxed” my team vs Stall. If Sandslash had Rapid Spin, I'm not sure that it would make enough of a difference. Not a single member of my team has reliable recovery, and I lack any set-up sweepers (Sandslash isn't strong enough to set up and break Stall). I think that not using Rapid Spin on Sandslash is only compounding a problem that's already there. Especially with three Choice users, I feel that the team is not very hard to wear down, and that fighting Stall teams is an uphill battle regardless. In light of that, I chose simply to throw Stall matchups to the wind, and focus on other teams. X-Scissor is not as helpful as Rapid Spin would be, but it's more useful against the kind of teams that I did focus on. It allows me to KO Latios, Latias, and Hydreigon at +2, after Stealth Rock damage, although that situation rarely arises. Neliel raised a good point, asking how it helps with Rain teams. Against a Rain team, I need Tyranitar to be at or near full health the whole time, so that he can tank a Specs Surf or a Scarf Hydro Pump, and Pursuit Politoed. Therefore, I often can't use him to Pursuit Celebi, who always carries Giga Drain. Celebi pretty much invalidates Keldeo in a battle, so it useful to be able to kill him without resorting to Tyranitar. With the banning of Tornadus, I only predict Celebi to become more common. You're all correct that Rapid Spin would come in handy more often than X-Scissor does, but due to an underlying weakness to Stall, I decided that Rapid Spin could not singlehandedly alleviate the issue. You all are probably better at facing Stall than me, so I encourage you to use Rapid Spin if you want to use my team. It's just personal preference and perhaps a little eccentricity that are the reasons I prefer X-Scissor.
On: Keldeo's set, Surf>HP Electric
This is one that I have considered myself many-a-time. Not having a fully accurate Water STAB sucks, and like I said, I've lost battles purely because I didn't have Surf. If I had to describe HP Electric on Keldeo, I would call it a holdover from the early days of the team. Now, having HP Electric does make Keldeo into a pretty good Gyarados counter, although Latios and Sandslash could revenge-kill him anyway. It is helpful against Jellicent and Tentacruel, but they switch out before Keldeo can land the 2HKO. In the Tornadus-era, it found new life and proved useful against Rain teams. When Keldeo faced Politoed, I wouldn't have to predict Tornadus switching in on Secret Sword, because I could just click HP Electric to kill Toed or Tornadus. But now that Torn-T has been banned, it's very possible that HP Electric has breathed its last. HP Electric does have its uses, but the metagame has been steadily becoming more hostile to Electric attacks for a while now (things like Garchomp and Kyurem-B running around, Tornadus-T leaving, etc.), and Surf has probably reached the point of surpassing it in usefulness. Since I'm retiring the team, HP Electric is going to remain in the moveset because it is what Keldeo has always used. But if I were going to use this team for another month or two, I would probably switch it to Surf, which is (at long last) what I recommend to others using this team.
On: Making Latios Specs/LO and Keldeo Scarf
It's been pointed out a few times that since Keldeo can outrun everything that Latios can, and that since Scarf Keldeo is a great late-game cleaner, that I ought to switch their items. Although I agree that Scarf is better on Keldeo, and Specs is better on Latios, I disagree that the switch would necessarily help the team. On the contrary, I fear that it would open up a weakness to Sun teams. At +2, a Venusaur is able to OHKO the entire team, making it a necessity to be able to revenge-kill it. Although Timid Venusaur is too fast to RK, it has only 10% usage, compared to 50% for Modest. The real problem with Scarf Keldeo is that it can't KO Venusaur with HP Ice, while Venusaur will just heal off the damage with Giga Drain, and then sweep the rest of my team. Latios's ability to OHKO Venusaur with Psyshock makes it much more reliable when fighting Sun teams than Scarf Keldeo would be. Although Venusaur is not a threat after Tyranitar Pursuits Ninetales, the frequency of Dugtrio on Sun teams makes it very difficult to use Tyranitar effectively. It's always good to have a backup in case you lose the weather war, and unfortunately, Scarf Keldeo is simply a poor backup against Sun teams.
On: Replacing Team Members
Metagross → Jirachi
I was too harsh on this in my section about Metagross, you guys who suggested this are fine. ;) Although Jirachi can switch in on Dragons much more frequently than Metagross is able to, it kills any offensive momentum you might have had. Given the fast-paced nature of the team, the paralysis which Jirachi provides will often benefit only Tyranitar (although the opponent getting FP'ed is helpful at any time, you can't count on hax) most of the time. When I want Jirachi to check something like Dragonite, all it can do is Body Slam and hope for a paralysis. This isn't a perfect fit, but I would use the analogy of the passive tense versus the active tense in writing. Jirachi passively tries to cripple Dragons, and then it can subsequently flinch them to death. Metagross actively attempts to kill Dragons by hitting them with a pretty strong Ice Punch. You remember that a moment ago I mentioned how Jirachi kills offensive momentum. Honestly, Metagross barely has enough offensive pressure to work for me, and Jirachi is obviously weaker. What Jirachi does beat, it beats more consistently than Metagross, but it often takes too long to beat them for my tastes. Against something like Terrakion, I don't want to 2HKO with Iron Head, I want to OHKO with Zen Headbutt, because Terrakion is a huge threat. It's the fact that Jirachi is so defensive that I chose Metagross instead. Jirachi would be an amazing buffer against special attackers, but this team cannot often afford to have something as weak in that Pokemon slot.
Latios → Latias
This is a change that if I were using this team more, I would consider very strongly. I pointed out that this team is fairly weak to RP Lando and AgiliDurus. Latias is able to comfortably take an HP Ice from them, and hit back with Dragon Pulse. Also, Latias makes for a much better Keldeo counter (because Latios is the only safe switch-in to Keldeo at the moment, as well as Rotom-W now that I think of it), tanking Hydro Pumps and Secret Swords like they're nothing. Unfortunately, using Latias would strip the team of one of its revenge-killers. Sandslash can RK a whole lot of things, but against faster Pokemon like SubSalac Terrakion, or against bulkier Pokemon like Garchomp, Sandslash is sadly unable to get the job done. Earlier, I mentioned how Latios protects me against Sun teams. Latias could take their hits better, but Latias becomes vulnerable to the likes of Sleep Powder, whilst Latios can KO most Chlorophyll sweepers before they get the chance to move. Here's my overall thinking on Latias. If I were going to use Latias, I would probably turn Metagross into a Jirachi (see above) and try to convert the entire team to a bulkier, more balanced variant, where less immediate power and Speed would be required. That is certainly a valid option, and I sort of want to explore it now, but changing the play-style so much would make it a whole new team in my opinion, and not a mere change to this one. I think Latias is certainly a good choice, but I believe that to make it work optimally would require a shifting of the whole team. We're all free to our own thinking though.
I think that Kidogo and Novaray's suggestion of Mamoswine is really cool. Mamoswine is better at killing Dragons that Metagross is (with the exception of Kyurem-B), and he still manages to provide my team with Stealth Rock support. On top of that, Mamoswine would go a long way toward alleviating my RP Lando and AgiliDurus weakness. It would be nice to have a Pokemon in the sixth team slot who isn't slow as molasses like Metagross currently is. I think that it would force the team to play a lot more cautiously though, because it leaves the team with absolutely zero safe switch-ins to strong Dragon moves. I was talking earlier about how Metagross has more offensive pressure than Jirachi... Well Mamoswine has more offensive pressure than Metagross! They can perform very similar roles on a team, which is nice. I'm not sure that losing out on the team's bulkiest member is worth Mamoswine's increased potential to perform the job, although it seems worthy of experimentation. Nice suggestion, guys.
Shurtugal's suggestion of making Volcarona into a Rotom-W, and Metagross into a Heatran was cool. Heatran could check Steel-types more reliably throughout the course of a match, and it gives me another Dragon switch-in. My main problem with this is the same reason that I rejected Jirachi: Specially Defensive Rotom-W has no damage output. It can have Volt Switch, which preserves momentum, but it just seems like a case of Metagross vs Jirachi all over again to me. :/ I think that if I were doing what I said earlier, and reworking this team into a bulkier, balanced version, then I would probably test out Rotom-W in place of Volcarona, but again, that would be a whole new team.
LuckOverSkill, you suggested a Bronzong in place of Metagross, but everything you said Bronzong could do, Metagross already does. Metagross lures in Ferrothorn and Skarmory every time, Metagross (could) run HP Fire even though it doesn't, and I don't see how Bronzong is any better off against Magnezone or Tornadus-I. I'm not trying to be mean or anything, I just honestly don't see the difference between what you said Bronzong could do, and what Metagross already does.
So, in conclusion, you guys made some really neat points. I'd thought of the moveset changes before, but some of your Pokemon changes were new to me. Sadly, I will not be testing these changes, because I'm severing my bond and stopping using this team, so this will be the final version I use. That's why I ultimately rejected a lot of you guys' suggestions: because I couldn't test them, so I relied solely on theory of how they would mesh in the team. But I love hearing them, because when I inevitably gravitate toward using this team again (probably in a few months) I'll want to check them out in battle. I would love it if someone did test out some of these suggestions and let me know how it worked for them, although the team tends to put other people off. :/ Seriously though, thanks for the suggestions guy, and I'm glad you liked the team!
Groovy team :) (sorry i'm late!!!)
Making Metagross & Sandslash work in OU is cool in my books. I wish I could offer you some meaningful changes since you took the liberty to contact me, but I can only reinforce the suggestions made by the previous users. IE: X-scissor ==> Rapid Spin, since entry hazards Volcarona definitely appreciates the lack of SR, no matter how early you intend to bring it out, because you can't always prevent SR. Surf ==> HP Electric, because Specs Surf is outrageously powerful and you need the accuracy OR turning Keldeo into a Scarf user and Latios into a Specs user.
Anyway, it sounds like you aren't going to use this team anymore (its for the best imo). Just be proud you made this awesome team and soak it in ♪
I got your PM a couple days ago, so as I promised, I'm here to offer some suggestions. You've obviously done a lot of good work so far, so I don't think you need any major changes. It's refreshing to see a traditional balance team have as much success as yours has. Lately it's been rain, rain, and more rain. Good job.
Anyway, the biggest issue that sticks out to me is Volcarona. I know you don't like having a Rapid Spinner, which is fine, but Volcarona is very difficult to use without one. You need it for too many jobs, and if Stealth Rock on the field, you're almost playing behind 5-6 from the start. Volcarona isn't a substantial sweeping threat right now either. There are too many Scarf Terrakions, Hippowdons, Heatrans, Politoeds, Scarf Keldeos, and Stealth Rock users that limit its effectiveness. Between Stealth Rock and all those counters, I just can't see Volcarona's effectiveness.
My suggestion for you would be to try Mix Salamence instead of Volcarona. Use Fire Blast / Draco Meteor / Earthquake / Roost as your moves with Naive Nature and 252 Sp Atk / 4 Atk / 252 Spe for your EVs. Basically Salamence is going to take over the wall breaking slot that Volcarona currently fills. It sacrifices set-up potential for immediate power, which I think is really beneficial for your team. Salamence can counter Ferrothorn, Skarmory, and Breloom relatively well too. Mix Mence is relatively under appreciated, and it really punishes slow teams. You can also put a lot of pressure on Rain teams since they don't have Tornadus-t anymore. Politoed, Locked Keldeo, Ferrothorn, Jirachi, Starmie, Tentacruel, Toxicroak, and Rotom-w are all invitations to spam free Draco Meteors for a lot of damage.
Obviously you know your team best, and I can't possibly see all the nuances that Volcarona covers. On a bigger scale though, I think Salamence would be a very effective replacement if not an upgrade all together. Try it out, see what you think. Obviously you have a good team already, so there's no need to fix it if it isn't broken.
Finally, before I go, I just want to second (or however many times it's been said) the change to Surf on Keldeo. Hidden Power Electric is kind of useless in my experience. Jellicent should be covered by Tyranitar if you play it right, and other than that, I don't see HP Electric's utility at all. I'd rather see you use HP Ice + Surf for more consistent power in a majority of matches. Hydro Pump will miss when you need it to hit, and the best teams have to be consistent if nothing else.
I got your request and amazing team of course! Its good to see you peak number one with such underated stuff like Sandslash, Metagross and Volcarona in sand. As you and everyone else has mentioned stall, Rock Polish Landorus and Agility Thunderous-T are the biggest threats to the team. The therians can use their good speed after an Agility/Rock Polish and their coverage to destroy your team if weakend and with your teams vunrability to Spikes and Volcarona's Stealth Rock weakness stall teams can have an easy time against you.
Now I would agree witht the people suggesting Life Orb Latias because of the reasons they have stated. However for the sake of making my rate different to others another thing worth trying could be a Sub+CM Latias>Latios with its ability to boost its special attack and special defense simultaneously, after a few boosts it will be able to comfortably take Landorus and Thunderous's attacks and threaten back with Dragon Pulse. Substitute helps you break through stall teams easier, which you mentioned to be trouble by blocking status moves. Also seeing as stall teams don't pack as much offense as a standard balanced or offense team, Latias's Substitutes can prove to be quite hard to break. With Sandslashes great speed, you shouldn't be missing Latios to badly, while Latias also provides you with a bulkier Fighting-type resist, taking some pressure of Volcarona. Latias also gives you a Pokemon that can switch into rain teams easier, seeing as if Keldeo goes down, your team will have a lot of trouble with rain teams boosted Hydro Pumps.
Good luck with the team I hope I helped!
Thanks for responding and coming in here guys!
Reinforcing what's been said before is totally cool man, not like it isn't true. Yup, I said in my previous (long) response that for the most part, I think that all the changes you proposed would help the team gap some of its weaknesses (with the sole exception of Scarf Keldeo, which I am dubious of).
MixMence is a cool 'mon, and one that I had seriously never thought in Volcarona's place. Mence and Volcarona are such different Pokemon, despite being able to do a similar job, that it just never occurred to me. I think that Mence would actually be a really cool fit into the team. You said in the last sentence of your post "the best teams have to be consistent if nothing else". I think this sentence also applies to why Mence would work in the team. Volcarona is a better check to most Steel-types, but it lacks consistency in a match. Volc typically comes out once, maybe twice, to scare the Steels and then it is done. With Roost, and only a 2x weakness to Stealth Rock, Salamence would be able to threaten a Fire Blast or Earthquake multiple times throughout a match, and I wouldn't be as forced to play it near the beginning of the match. The fact that Mence's coverage beats Volcarona's through and through is icing on that cake.
What the team would miss if Salamence replaced Volcarona is that free switch-in on Steel-types. It reduces Keldeo to my sole (safe) Scizor switch-in, which would force me to use it more conservatively. I also like being able to fall back on Flame Body if I need to. Burning Scizor, Terrakion, Breloom by saccing Volcarona has saved me a number of times, although it is so unreliable that I can never count on it anyway. Still, Volcarona's odd set of resistances has been appreciated.
Other than Surf>HP Electric on Keldeo (which I fully support for using this team in the future), MixMence is probably the single most interesting suggestion I've read so far. It loses Volcarona's ability to switch in on the Steel-types it wants to kill. But with some smart switches to get it in, MixMence's reliability in checking most of the same threats as Volcarona makes it a very worthy option in my opinion. Although I'm not currently testing it, I am going to be sure to remember that one.
SubCM Latias is a Pokemon that I feel, in conjunction with Rapid Spin on Sandslash, could make the team much more well-rounded. Between the two of them, my weakness to Stall would be greatly reduced, although I think it would still be present in some degree. You're absolutely correct in pointing out its ability to take HP Ice from Landorus and Thundurus, which Latios lacks. To be honest, I think SubCM Latias would fit better on the team than LO Latias, despite having a lesser offensive pressure immediately (which I ranted about before on Metagross vs Jirachi).
Although Sandslash is a great revenge-killer, I'm skeptical about using him without another Scarfer in tandem, due to things like Bulky DDNite and Stoutland, which he cannot handle on his own. Additionally, I've tried to optimize this team (within the boundaries of the current roles) to handle the more offensive teams of the metagame, and I've completely thrown the team's weaknesses out the window in terms of preparation. Adding SubCM Latias would make the team more rounded, which isn't a bad thing at all, in fact it would probably help more often than anything, but it would be a different style than I having been playing.
Of all the different Latias sets that have been thrown at me thus far, I think you provided the most fitting one. SubCM Latias would throw the team even more solidly into the Balanced archetype, which is my personal favorite I admit. And with Rapid Spin on Sandslash, it could seriously help against the team's current weaknesses. I am a little queasy about losing Scarf Latios, but that's as much a case of... traditionalism (not the right word) on my part as anything. I think that in a revamping of the team, SubCM Latias would find itself right at home, if not on the version of the team seen now.
I appreciate the rates (and the compliments :P) that you guys have left here. When I revisit the team later (as I'm sure I will after toying around with a few new teams I'll make), I am going to have a LOT of things to tinker with, thanks to the great rates!
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