Seems that like my 100th post, my 200th will be another Subway run, though it's more coincidental this time. There was a bit of a preview of the team with that battle video ID I posted earlier, but here's the full details now that my run has ended:
Politoed @ Choice Scarf ***Asclepius
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 254 Spd
Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk)
- Ice Beam
Slightly different from the previous Politoed I used, also changed up Focus Blast for Hypnosis. It's a move that was rarely used in the first place, so the difference is fairly negligable. The only Pokemon I really used Focus Blast for before was Empoleon, but I have Gastrodon to handle that. Aside from that, no changes. Hypnosis has made my life a bit easier on a few battles, as long as it didn't miss of course.
Ludicolo @ Absorb Bulb ***RideTheDUX
Trait: Swift Swim
EVs: 36 HP / 4 Def / 252 SAtk / 4 SDef / 212 Spd
Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
- Fake Out
- Grass Knot
- Ice Beam
No change. Still the murdurous Sea Pineapple that it's always been.
Scizor @ Life Orb ***LunaticRed
EVs: 60 HP / 254 Atk / 4 SDef / 192 Spd
Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
- Bullet Punch
- Bug Bite
I bumped Scizor's Speed up to 106. This allows it to outrun a sizable amount of Pokemon. Most notably Milotic, Suicune, and Cresselia. Being slower than Milotic has costed me a battle in the past. And I'm surprised being slower than Suicune hadn't screwed me.
The extra speed doesdn't change much for Scizor when it comes to Trick Room. The most common trainers to get one off would be Harlequins, Psychics, or trainers that use Set 4B (Doctors, Nurses, etc). All of the Harlequin's Pokemon are way slower than Scizor. The only Pokemon that a Psychic uses between 91 and 106 Speed is Claydol. And 4B only have a small handful of things that mostly don't matter.
The boost is speed ended up cutting Scizor's HP by 15. It is no longer able to take Ludicolo's +1 Surf in the rain. I rarely go for a Surf if it would hit Scizor in the first place, so this isn't too much of a problem. A Life Orb is now used instead of a Bug Gem. This change provides extra power to Bullet Punch and Superpower, which has been quite useful, allowing Scizor to net a OHKO on Pokemon like Empoleon, Lapras, and Excadrill.
Gastrodon @ Rindo Berry ***Kerykeion
Trait: Storm Drain
EVs: 120 HP / 92 Def / 232 SAtk / 64 SDef
Quiet Nature (+SAtk, -Spd)
- Earth Power
- Ice Beam
Although I have said that I gave Gastrodon a try but felt it didn't work that well, I decided to give it a more serious attempt. Gastrodon in the back of the team, provides a good switch in for Electric attacks, and a way to completely demolish Trick Room users who think that reversing speed will give them a shot at me. I think my most common switch in for Gastrodon is either to take a Thunder Wave after one of my Pokemon have been hit by Thunder Wave, or a Thunder directed at Politoed.
I felt that Politoed+Ludicolo handled things pretty well on their own without needing Kingdra's help. And the record proves that Gastrodon was an effective replacement.
When the opponent has two Pokemon on field that can be wiped out by a Surf, I can switch out Politoed for Gastrodon. Although it's not fast, by the time it gets to attack again it will be at +2 Sp Atk from Ludicolo's Surfs, making it slaughter anything in its path. It's interesting to watch it overpower Blisseys with Special Attacks, as Ludicolo piles up Storm Drain boosts on Gastrodon. I'm not sure whether I should feel impressed or appalled by the fact that Blissey loses a bit over half it's health to +6 Earth Power.
Since Storm Drain is largely ignored by the AI, I use this to my advantage against Water Pokemon heavy teams, if I know that they have single target Water attacks. By making the opponent constantly waste time using something Hydro Pump in order to "KO" Scizor, I've managed to get myself out of situations which would be difficult to pull a win from.
It's ultimately just a single Pokemon change from my previous team. Although that's not different from the times I changed up my Trick Room team in 4th gen.
Since Kingdra is not there anymore, keeping Politoed alive is more important. There are only 2 fast Pokemon on the team, they are both leads and neither run Protect. Losing both Ludicolo and Politoed can put the team in vulnerable situations. Fortunately, Gastrodon and Scizor make great switch options for either Politoed or Ludicolo, being able to take on Electric attacks and Grass attacks respectively. This makes it fairly easy to retreat from danger.
I'd say that the team is a bit more difficult to run against the average trainer compared to using Kingdra, but Gastrodon's presence bails me out against tougher trainers like Fishermen and Parasol Ladies.
The team still averages about 15 minutes to get through a set of 7 trainers. Which isn't too surprising as my leads are the ones that do most of the work.
A lot of the threats and problems haven't changed too much. I'll still be going in depth with the descriptions, but I'll put them under spoiler tags so the post isn't extremely long.
The dangerous trainers are still about the same as usual, although Trick Room teams are less threatening now.
Legend Trainers (Gentlemen, Socialites, Veterans)
Their high team versitility means that you still have to take these trainers seriously. They have a number of Pokemon that aren't too much of a problem on their own, but can cause problems when paired up with other problem Pokemon. eg. Articuno + Virizion lead.
Water Teams (Fishermen)
Water Pokemon don't do too well against each other. I have an advantage over them with Ludicolo, and Gastrodon. Pokemon like enemy Vaporeon, Ludicolo, and Kingdra can still cause all sorts of problems though.
Hail Teams (Ice Workers)
Still an issue. Scizor tears them apart, but it is risky to switch in due to the threat of freeze. But, as long as I can keep the hail away, they aren't too bad.
Rain Teams (Parasol Ladies)
Parasol Ladies are still probably the most dangerous Trainer type for me to face. With Gastrodon, the Electric types aren't as dangerous, but they still have a higher chance at bringing Vaporeon, Ludicolo, and Kingdra into the battle than other trainers.
Sand Teams (Workers)
They have a very high chance of running a Hippowdon or Tyranitar, making Politoed's rain often short lived. However, since most of their Pokemon are weak to water, they're managable. The trick is to switch out Politoed at the earliest opportunity against them.
How I lost
Using the same list as my previous run, but updating the comments. Some of the Pokemon in the "others" section aren't really that threatening anymore but I left them in and said what has changed, while other Pokemon have more reason to be mentioned.
Hippowdon: Hippowdon still isn't a problem to my team itself, but the loss of rain can give the opponent an opportunity to try something.
Tyranitar: Since some of the Tyranitars have Speed EVs, it's a bit more dangerous to face than Hippowdon. All my Pokemon have attacks that can hit it hard however. Gastrodon's survivability and rock resistance provides a fairly good switch option to get Politoed or Ludicolo out from Tyranitar's attacks.
Abomasnow: The most dangerous auto-weather. Hail is more of a problem than Sandstorm is, and the Pokemon that benefit from it are more difficult for me to handle. Although Gastrodon is worse than Kingdra at dealing with Abomasnow, Scizor holding a Life Orb allows Bullet Punch to OHKO, which is very handy.
Regigigas 4: Bulky and stops me from slaughtering things with double Surfs. This can be pretty annoying if their ally is a Fire Type that knows Sunny Day, like Heatran 3.
Bastiodon 4: Fairly common Pokemon, but it usually isn't too troubling with Wide Guard.
Bastiodon 1, Machamp 1, Mr. Mime 2, Throh 1: Rarely show up so they don't matter too much, I just need to be aware that they run it
Mienshao 4: Will always use Hi Jump Kick instead
Kingdra: Without Kingdra on my team, there is no easy way to handling Kingdra. It can hit pretty hard, attacks a bit unpredictably, and can survive a few hits. It's also pretty annoying that some of the sets run Protect. Every battle against them will require some thinking, especially against Trainers that run multiple different sets.
Ludicolo: Kind of a pain, since Gastrodon is awful against them and my leads don't do much damage to them either. The usual goal to take Ludicolo down is to get Scizor onto the field, and KO with Bug Bite. Ludicolo 4 is particularly annoying however, since the AI does not use Grass Knot properly. It attacks unpredictably, going so far as to use Hydro Pump against my Ludicolo.
Seismitoad: Seismitoad 3 and 4 can outspeed Ludicolo, and they run Poison attacks which hurt. But since they are 4x Grass weak, and Water neutral, they are easily taken out.
Floatzel: Will always be faster than my Pokemon, but they are the least dangerous Swift Swimmers, due to lack of secondary STAB. Gastrodon turns them into jokes, as they will constantly attack with Waterfall to no avail.
Manectric 4: Outruns Ludicolo and Politoed. But is walled bad by Gastrodon, who can safely switch in for Politoed against Manectric.
Lanturn: Grass Knot is a measley 40 Power against them, and they like throwing Thunder Waves around, Gastrodon doesn't particularly care about Lanturns aside from a Ice Beam freeze, but their ability to paralyze my Ludicolo is a real pain.
Vaporeon 4: Water Absorb + Signal Beam is a pain for Ludicolo. Even with Gastrodon on the team, it's kind of annoying to deal with. I tend to try to get Scizor out there to attack it with Bug Bite, but it does use Surf every now and then when it can KO Scizor with it.
Regice: Special Wall. Takes Surfs like champs and can get troublesome to handle at times. Especially when Regice is throwing around Thunder Waves or Icy Wind while I try to deal with opponent legendaries.
Blissey 4: Minimize Blissey is very annoying, if it shows up. But it does get OHKO'd by Life Orb Superpower after I get rid of its Chople Berry, so it's not too much of a problem. Also, since it's pretty harmless I can set up Gastrodon to the point where Earth Powers are doing well over half of Blissey's HP.
Ferrothorn: Ferrothorn has no Grass Attacks. Ferrothorn get's murdered by Gastrodon.
Trick Room users: Trying to use Trick Room is "slowly" dealt with by Gastrodon. As long as Gastrodon is standing, I can maintain control over the battle under Trick Room.
Metagross 3, Bronzong 3, Lickilicky 4: These three, and sometimes a few others, have a bad tendency to go for a Turn 1 Explosion. If I'm not careful, I can lose my high speed Pokemon, and be pitted into a 2 vs 2 of unknown opponents, which can be a pretty scary situation.
Muk 4: I'm really scared of Quick Claw Gunk Shot. And to make things worse, it can survive 2 Surfs.
Articuno 3: Bulky Tailwind user. Can easily take 2 Surfs making it pretty likely for it to pull off Tailwind.
Virizion. Due to its high Sp.Def, it can take attacks from my leads pretty easily. Scizor is a safe switch in, and it can't OHKO Gastrodon through a Rindo Berry, but it still is something that I should not leave on the field too long.
Walrein 4: I just hate this thing. Even if the chances of it screwing me over are low, I just hate fighting Walrein 4.
Donphan 4: Similar to Muk, its usage of Quick Claw + Sturdy can be annoying
My opponent is a Painter, who leads off with a Metagross and a Bronzong. I'm really concerned about Turn 1 Explosions, and both of the Pokemon can potentially do it. Letting them explode turns the battle into a 2 vs 2, and I didn't want to take the risk. Even if Bronzong goes for a Trick Room, Gastrodon can usually handle it well enough. Had I known what was in store for me, I would have taken the Explosion risk.
I go for a Fake Out against Metagross and Surf. Both Pokemon remain above half health. Bronzong uses Trick Room.
From damage dealt, it's eaither Metagross 2 or 3. I switch out Politoed for Scizor, since Explosion is still a risk, wiping out both my leads, and I use Surf with Ludicolo. Although Scizor would get KO'd if Ludicolo attacks, it will KO both Bronzong and Metagross.
Bronzong critical hits Ludicolo for a KO. Metagross uses Magnet Rise. I'm facing Bronzong 4, and Metagross 2.
The use of Magnet Rise is pretty annoying, since it means that I can't finish off Metagross with Earth Power. I go for a Surf and Protect with Scizor. Both Pokemon survive in the red. Bronzong critical hits Gastrodon, and Metagross finishes it off with Psychic.
This puts me in a really bad situation as I have to bring out my Scarfed Politoed and there are still two turns left in Trick Room.
I can finish off Metagross with Bullet Punch, but that leaves Politoed to use a move that won't KO Bronzong, and Hypnosis which will be wasted on a Lum Berry. What I didn't realize at the time was that I probably could have KO'd Bronzong with Bullet Punch, and finished Metagross off with Politoed.
Metagross goes down to the Bullet Punch, and Bronzong Zen Headbutts for 60% of Politoed's HP. I hit it with an Ice Beam, which mocks me as it freezes it and activates the Lum Berry.
The opponent sends out Porygon-Z. I have no idea which Porygon-Z it is, but it will outrun Scizor after Trick Room, so I have to go for the Superpower against it to ensure a KO.
Superpower KOs, and Bronzong KOs Politoed. The last Pokemon is Forretress.
There are three possible Forretress I can face (since Metagross had an Occa, Forretress 1 cannot show up). One of them does not have any damamging attacks. But that isn't the one I face. I finish off Bronzong with Bug Bite, and Forretress uses Magnet Rise.
It's Forretress 2, but since Scizor is at -1 Atk/Def, my chances are pretty grim. In the end, I had to hope for a critical with Superpower, which didn't come through.
Battle Subway Super Double Battle
R Inanimate (919) - Politoed, Ludicolo, Gastrodon, Scizor
Once again, I fall short a few hours short of the 4-digit mark, which is rather frustrating. Aside from that, it was a good run. I had a couple entertaining battles and close calls around the 600-700 battle range. Having a battle with the following first turn never ceases to amuse me:
Ludicolo uses Fake Out on Bastiodon
Bastiodon flinches (was going to use Wide Guard)
Politoed uses Surf, Critical on Bastiodon, Critical on Carracosta
Bastiodon fainted, Carracosta activates Sturdy
Carracosta uses Rock Slide
Misses Politoed, Misses Ludicolo
I then proceed to get another critical hit in the battle, and freeze the opponent Cradily with Ice Beam. I would have saved a battle video of it, but I already had one that I wanted to upload at the time, but had some issues getting onto Wi-Fi.
21-91799-46079 - Example of Gastrodon helping in KOing Blissey with Special Attacks
26-39851-14323 - Close call, due to Regice spamming Protect, and me forgetting about Salac Berry
52-66456-89907 - Vaporeon 4 + Swift Swim Kingdra 4 leads, fun.
58-25016-70160 - Battle 920, loss
One of these days, I'll be able to join Jumpman and Peterko in having a 4-digit record. Alas, today is not the day. I'll probably try again another time, but I tend to have a habit of dropping other things and marathoning Battle Subway when going for a serious streak, so I don't think that will be for a while.