i'm going to do this a little bit differently than FLCL; not that i have an issue with the way he did it, but i think my method is going to have a little bit more of my actual teambuilding process in it rather than just giving you guys the end result. hopefully it'll give you a little more into my thoughts as i shove together a team and hope that it works. =)
firstly, about my thoughts on "offense". i really am not a fan of defining playstyles because they're so hard to actually capture and explain and there's no real universal definition. i guess i'd say the difference between something like balance and offense isn't really the composition of the team, but rather how you play with it in live matches (duh, that's why they're called playstyles). for example, samurott can be an excellent choice on both offense and balance teams even with the same exact set, but it can perform different functions based on how the rest of the team works and relies on it. in that sense, i am not going to restrict the selections of my pokemon (and it's rarely ever a good idea to do so simply to fit into a team "archetype", in my opinion). to be blunt, offense is simply a playstyle where your team is made to pressure and pick on your opponent's team and push them to a breaking point, when you clean up shop and win the game. it's vital that you set a goal (win condition) when you start building a team and always build to try to maintain this condition. without having a solid win condition in mind, you will rarely ever be able to pull out a win against an equally good player who does have one.
so here's my process for building teams successfully (and it applies to various other playstyles, too). i'll be following through with this exact process as i build my team, so feel free to follow along or think about what you would do with the mons i have selected.
- select a good, reliable threat to build a team around. it doesn't have to be famously overused, it doesn't have to be monstrously strong. just pick something that you're comfortable with using and that you think can be reliable in performing its job. there's a huge difference between selecting something like sawsbuck and something like leavanny - if you're a newer team builder, don't be afraid to simply stick to the tried-and-true!
- try to identify everything about your pokemon. that sounds a bit confusing, but let me explain. if you're going to build something around swords dance samurott, how do you know what teammates are going to work best with it? you should understand what stops your central threat, so you can pick teammates that either take advantage of these common checks / counters or outright beat them so you have a chance at sweeping. at the same time, you should think about your mon's strengths, too. what can samurott come in on easily, or force out, or set up on? anything that creates a situation where samurott can come in and set up can also be a good teammate. this is the very basis of synergy, imo.
- step back and identify what threatens your initial core. whether you have 2 or 3 pokemon that help your central threat sweep, it's never ever going to be absolutely perfect. can you think of anything that beats all of these? how do you deal with them? for example, say you selected samurott and serperior for your first two pokemon. what directly impedes a sweep for both of these pokemon, or is not handled by one or the other? something like rotom-s would definitely fit that description - what can you add that can help you defeat rotom-s while also contributing to the main goal of the team (a sweep with samurott)? if you can't think of anything, don't fear. your team will never ever ever be perfect the first time you build it, so feel free to throw on something that you think might work well. who knows, maybe it'll do very well!
- test. this initial building stage will rarely ever produce a quality team. not even the best minds in pokemon will be able to sit there and think out a perfect team in one simple session. test it on the ladder, against friends, whatever! the most important part of teambuilding is this part imo, where you test and identify weaknesses, then address them by adjusting your team. many, many of my best teams started out fairly mediocre but became great simply because i worked away at improving them whenever i felt like it.
teambuilding should always be a fun process. if you find yourself being stressed out by it or you can't think of the perfect
teammate, don't worry about it! just throw some stuff together and go enjoy playing with your team and testing it out. there's no harm done in trying new things that may not fit your ideal team.
i'll be building around something that's actually incredibly underused for how good it is: everyone's favorite, charizard
. there are a few things that stand out immediately to me when i pick 'zard: 1) sr weak 2) easily revenge killed by various means (priority, scarfers like rotom-s, outright faster pokemon like cincy) and 3) it's got several huge enemies in the current metagame, depending on the set. there are a couple different ways we can go with the set (specs, scarf, subroost, sunny day) but i think i'm going to work with the specs set simply because it's an unseen threat in the current metagame and very very few people use it. plus it's strong.
when working with something that has enormous and common weaknesses, it's a good idea to devote at least a member of your team towards said weakness - in this case, i'm talking about zard's susceptibility to sr. especially given the fact that i'm going to build around a specs set which will be switching in and out constantly, it's incredibly important that sr is never on the field when i need zard to come out. i could do any of the following: carry taunt users and try to prevent sr from coming up; use mold breaker mons like rampardos to try to ohko the sr users through sturdy and prevent them from ever setting it up; carry a spinner. of all of these, the most reliable is definitely to carry my own spinner, despite the fact that i really dislike most of the spinners. one thing that i've always wanted to do is use a different, actually effective wartortle
set. the defensive set is notoriously bad, since it consistently gets 2hkoed by golurk while it doesn't 2hko in return with scald. i really want to take offensive spinner wartortle out and give it a go, since it can spin against every sr setter as well as koing both golurk and defensive misdreavus. plus, charizard handles misdreavus incredibly well anyway, and it also helps with stuff like amoonguss who can very easily switch in and take advantage of wartortle. it's obviously not going to be perfect as they already share several weaknesses (most notably to stuff like eelektross, rotom-f, zebstrika).
outside of wartortle, what would support charizard the best? primary switchins to charizard will be things like regirock, altaria, lickilicky, audino, carracosta, golem... depending on the current situation, of course. you can obliterate any of these with the proper prediction, but you won't always be perfect in predictions, sadly, so let's think of what would help get them out of the way so we don't have to predict with charizard! my natural inclination is to go: hey, they're all weak to fighting-type attacks (barring altaria). why don't we try out something that we can double switch into and fire off powerful fighting-type attacks and pressure the opponent's team? choice band sawk
seems absolutely perfect here as it decimates each and every one of these checks (it even 2hkoes altaria with sr up on our side of the field, which we will likely add eventually). plus, it benefits from wartortle's support as it can spin away hazards that would break sawk's sturdy, and wartortle can help bust through ghost-types that trouble sawk. to be honest, adding sawk is kind of a hasty decision on my part, but i really like its wallbreaking capacity and it does seem to partner very well with charizard, although there are still several weaknesses to work on (but we can fix them with other teammates!).
now, at this point, i think i'm gonna take a brief break from building because i'm lazy and i've been typing this for ages. keeping in mind the team so far (which i will put in hide tags at the end of this post), where do you think i should go with it? what should i add next? do you have any questions about what i've done so far? will the three mons i've discussed actually work out? two choice item users (zard and sawk) is a very restrictive team backbone, meaning if i were to use this effectively right now i'd have to be on top of my game as far as predictions. what can i do to lessen the reliance on predicting perfectly and make it so i can play my way out of a hole when i predict incorrectly? i already know the answers to many of these questions and i have an idea with where i want to take the team in the future, but i'm really interested in seeing what new players or oldies have to say about this team and where you think it should go from here.
i'll hopefully be finishing this up sometime tomorrow / the day after depending on the responses i get, if any. sorry for the massive tl;dr, but that's the way i write. =)
@ choice specs | blaze
timid nature (+spe, -atk) | 252 spa / 4 def / 252 spe
fire blast / air slash / focus blast / hidden power ice
@ eviolite | torrent
modest nature (+spa, -atk) | 198 hp / 252 spa / 60 spe (enough spe for min alomomola)
surf / ice beam / toxic / rapid spin
@ choice band | sturdy
adamant nature (+atk, -spa) | 4 hp / 252 atk / 252 spe
close combat / ice punch / earthquake / stone edge