[OVERVIEW] Aurorus is a an effective offensive lead in the NU tier that has access to a variety of tools to help set up Stealth Rock and keep it on the opponent's side of the field. STAB Blizzard and Freeze-Dry are great in a tier with few solid switch-ins to Ice-type moves and notably help prevent Xatu and Golbat from keeping Stealth Rock off of their side of the field. Snow Warning is a great ability to break Focus Sash and Sturdy on leads such as Omastar and Steelix. Finally, Encore is a great support move that helps prevent Aurorus from being setup bait. Despite its many outstanding qualities, Aurorus does suffer from being rather slow with a poor defensive typing combination that leaves it vulnerable to Hitmonlee. Outside of being a lead, Vanilluxe is superior to Aurorus, as Vanilluxe has a higher Special Attack and Speed stat while still boasting 100%-accurate Blizzard and STAB Freeze-Dry. [SET] name: Lead move 1: Stealth Rock move 2: Blizzard move 3: Freeze-Dry move 4: Encore / Rock Tomb item: Focus Sash ability: Snow Warning nature: Timid / Hasty evs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe [SET COMMENTS] Moves ======== Stealth Rock is one of the biggest reasons to use Aurorus as a lead. Access to Snow Warning prevents Focus Sash and Sturdy from working properly on opposing Pokemon. Thanks to the combination of Stealth Rock and hail, the opposing Pokemon can take quite a bit of indirect damage each time they switch into Aurorus. Blizzard is Aurorus's strongest Ice-type attack and has perfect accuracy in hail. This prevents Defog Pokemon such as Golbat and Shiftry from being able to switch in and remove Stealth Rock while also preventing Xatu from freely switching into Aurorus to block Stealth Rock with Magic Bounce. Freeze-Dry is Aurorus's best attack for Water-type switch-ins such as Slowbro, Seismitoad, and Jellicent. Encore completes the set to prevent Pokemon such as Delphox and Houndoom from freely setting up on Aurorus while also locking other suicide leads such as Shuckle and Omastar into one hazard type. Rock Tomb can be used over Encore as an option to 2HKO Froslass, Cryogonal, Delphox, and Magmortar while also being a great utility move thanks to the Speed drop. The Speed drop allows Cryogonal to become slower than Aurorus and makes it more difficult for it to clear away Stealth Rock reliably against Aurorus. Set Details ======== Maximum Speed with a Timid nature allows Aurorus to outspeed Omastar, Rhydon, and Golbat and outspeed Adamant Barbaracle by one point. To preserve power with Rock Tomb, a Hasty nature is chosen, as Aurorus's physical Defense is not anything to write home about. When using Rock Tomb, 32 Attack EVs are recommended to reliably 2HKO Magmortar. Maximum Special Attack is necessary for Aurorus to deal maximum damage with Blizzard and Freeze-Dry. Snow Warning is the only ability to consider with Aurorus, as it helps Blizzard's accuracy, is effective against Focus Sash and Sturdy, and also provides indirect damage every turn for five turns against common Aurorus switch-ins such as Fire-types and Steel-types. Focus Sash is the best item to reliably set up Stealth Rock, and Aurorus's typing prevents damaging weather such as hail and sand from breaking it. Usage Tips ======== Aurorus is best used on offensive teams as a lead, as it has some perks over other leads such as Omastar and Garbodor. The biggest thing with Aurorus is to not be afraid to keep it alive throughout the course of the match. Some teams prefer having Aurorus around as long as possible to act as a check against Ice-types while also punishing Golbat when it attempts to Defog Stealth Rock from the field. Encore is a great tool to help Aurorus's teammates take advantage of Pokemon locked into setup moves or moves that will have no effect on Aurorus's teammates. Don't forget to capitalize on hail removing Focus Sash from Omastar, as the combination of Freeze-Dry and hail will only allow Omastar to set up one entry hazard at best against Aurorus one-on-one. Team Options ======== Cryogonal is a great partner alongside Aurorus, as it helps promote a hyper offensive playstyle. Thanks to access to Reflect, Light Screen, Rapid Spin, and STAB Ice-type attacks, it can reliably set up screens while keeping common Defog Pokemon such as Golbat away from removing the screens and hazards. Setup sweepers such as Vivillon are great partners to pair with Aurorus. Vivillon often takes advantage of Choice-locked Fighting-type attacks as well as slower Fighting-types such as Hitmonlee and Hariyama. As Steel-types are natural predators for Aurorus, Virizion and Turtonator are great partners alongside it, as they can easily threaten them out with their respective STAB attacks or set up with Swords Dance or Shell Smash, respectively. Garbodor or Qwilfish can be paired alongside Aurorus, as they can take on many of the tier's Fighting-types without too many issues while laying Spikes or Toxic Spikes alongside Aurorus's Stealth Rock. [STRATEGY COMMENTS] Other Options ============= Choice Specs Aurorus has Earth Power to obtain perfect coverage alongside its Ice-type STAB attacks, Ancient Power to thwart Cryogonal switch-ins, and the option to use Refrigerate Hyper Voice to bypass Substitute; however, in most scenarios, offensive Aurorus sets face severe competition from Vanilluxe. Frost Breath has the benefit of bypassing Special Defense boosts of various Pokemon such as Calm Mind Sigilyph, but it has little use outside of very niche scenarios. Checks and Counters =================== **Steel-types**: Steel-types, especially those that resist Ice-type attacks, don't have many issues with Aurorus. Probopass and Togedemaru can withstand a Blizzard or two and retaliate with their respective STAB attacks, and Klinklang has STAB Gear Grind to bypass Focus Sash. **Cryogonal and Hitmonlee**: Both of these Pokemon are capable of surviving Aurorus's STAB Ice-type attacks while using Rapid Spin to clear Stealth Rock from the field. Cryogonal can use Toxic and Recover to wear down Aurorus and repeatedly check it, while Hitmonlee immediately threatens Aurorus with its STAB Fighting-type attacks. **Taunt**: Froslass and Houndoom are rather annoying to face for Aurorus, as they resist Ice-type attacks and only fear Rock Tomb. They also can prevent Stealth Rock with Taunt while setting up Spikes or Nasty Plot, respectively. **Thick Fat**: With Thick Fat, Hariyama and Piloswine are great counters to Aurorus. Hariyama can respond with STAB Fighting-type attacks and close out Aurorus with Bullet Punch, while Piloswine threatens it with STAB Earthquake. **Bulky Fire-types**: Incineroar and Magmortar can stomach a couple of STAB Blizzards while responding with their corresponding Fire-type attacks. Magmortar must tread carefully if Aurorus successfully lays Stealth Rock before Magmortar switches in, though. **Faster Pokemon**: In general, Aurorus is rather vulnerable to faster Pokemon with super effective coverage moves. Such examples include any Pokemon with a Fighting-type or Steel-type attack such as Emboar, Sawk, or Vanilluxe; Sceptile and Rotom-C with their powerful Grass-type attacks; and Samurott, Ludicolo, and Kabutops with their powerful Water-type attacks. Faster Fire-types such as Delphox and Houndoom don't enjoy taking Rock Tomb; however, they can tank Blizzard and Freeze-Dry and respond with either Grass Knot or STAB Fire Blast. Both of these Pokemon must be very careful if Stealth Rock is on the field, though.