1. Welcome to Smogon! Check out the Smogon Starters Hangout for everything you need to know about starting out in the community. Don't forget to introduce yourself in the Introduction and Hangout Thread, too!
  2. Welcome to Smogon Forums! Please take a minute to read the rules.

Azelf (Full Revamp)

Discussion in 'Uploaded Analyses' started by complete legitimacy, Jan 22, 2012.

  1. complete legitimacy

    complete legitimacy Honko's Happy Funtime With Men
    is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Messages:
    1,149
    [​IMG]
    Azelf

    [Overview]

    <p>Azelf has fallen from its former OU status in DPP mostly due to the advent of Team Preview, almost destroying the need for a dedicated lead. This led to Azelf's placement in BW UU, where it is a very versatile threat with great mixed attacking stats and and Speed. It has a good movepool to use, and can even fulfill its previous role of a lead in UU arguably better than it ever did in DPP OU. However, Azelf is not invincible. There is an abundance of Choice Scarf users in UU that can dispatch Azelf without a second thought; additionally, whichever set it runs, there will always be a slight gap in Azelf's coverage that can be exploited and used against it.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Nasty Plot
    move 1: Nasty Plot
    move 2: Psychic / Psyshock
    move 3: Fire Blast
    move 4: Grass Knot
    item: Life Orb
    nature: Timid
    evs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Offensive Azelf is most commonly seen using a Nasty Plot set, which has become a lot more effective due to the removal of Chansey and Alakazam from UU. Nasty Plot skyrockets Azelf's Special Attack to an astounding 698 with a Timid nature, letting it break through the bulkiest Pokemon in the tier with its amazing power and great coverage. Psychic OHKOes defensive Roserade easily, and is also a guaranteed 2HKO on Curse Snorlax after Stealth Rock (with a good chance to 2HKO even without it). Psyshock is also an option for hitting Snorlax even harder, but it is generally inferior due to its lower Base Power and lower damage output against threats such as Hitmontop. Fire Blast is a necessity to hit bulky Steel-types such as Registeel, Escavalier, and Bronzong without giving them a chance to do anything back. Grass Knot is in the the final moveslot in order to hit bulky Water-types such as Slowbro, Suicune, Swampert, and Milotic very hard, while also doing massive damage to Krookodile and Rhyperior.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Life Orb is the item of choice, as it allows Azelf to power through almost everything. Maximum Speed with a Timid nature is necessary to Speed tie Raikou, as well as outspeed common threats such as Cobalion and Froslass. Maximum Special Attack investment lets Azelf hit as hard as possible, and the remaining 4 EVs are thrown into Special Defense to prevent Porygon2 and Porygon-Z from picking up a Download boost. It is worth noting that running Stealth Rock over Nasty Plot makes Azelf an effective hazard user for offensive teams that don't want to lose momentum.</p>

    <p>Thunderbolt is an option over Grass Knot to hit Houndoom while retaining super effective hits against Water-types, but is generally inferior. Grass Knot hits bulky Water-types harder, and running Thunderbolt would leave you susceptible to being defeated by the likes of Krookodile and Rhyperior. Likewise, Shadow Ball is also an option to hit Deoxys-D and Dusclops harder, but serves no purpose otherwise, and is generally a waste of a moveslot. Flash Fire Arcanine is a fantastic teammate, as it easily checks Weavile, Bisharp, Houndoom, and Victini, all of which are major threats to Azelf's sweep.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Choice Band
    move 1: Zen Headbutt
    move 2: Fire Punch
    move 3: Ice Punch
    move 4: U-turn / Trick
    item: Choice Band
    nature: Jolly
    evs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Choice Band Azelf is a nasty surprise for those expecting a Nasty Plot set, no pun intended. It works well on offensive teams, as it can hit hard, keep momentum, and cripple a wall with Trick. Zen Headbutt is Azelf's most powerful physical STAB attack, but its imperfect accuracy might let you down sometimes. Fire Punch hits Steel-types that resist Zen Headbutt, namely Registeel, Bronzong, and Escavalier. Ice Punch gives Azelf near-perfect coverage, hitting threats such as Zapdos, Flygon, Xatu, and Togekiss super effectively. U-turn is the primary option in the last slot; it preserves offensive momentum by allowing you to switch to a counter. It also hits Slowbro harder than any other move, and can save Azelf from being helplessly stuck facing down Victini's V-create. However, Trick is also viable, as it can cripple slow walls and special attackers. NFE foes such as Dusclops, Gligar, and Hippopotas will particularly hate having their Eviolites stripped away; it can also allow a teammate to sweep once its counter is crippled. For example, Arcanine can 2HKO Dusclops with a Life Orb Flare Blitz once its Eviolite is removed.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>The EV spread is fairly simple, maximizing both Attack and Speed to hit as hard and fast as possible. There will always be a gap in this set's coverage, as it can't hit most bulky Water-types hard enough. ThunderPunch is an option to hit them harder, but it is generally inferior to hitting the aforementioned threats. There are no other viable physical moves that Azelf can make use of.</p>

    <p>Rotom-H is a fantastic teammate, as the duo can abuse the VoltTurn strategy to pressure the opponent's team immensely. Rotom-H also hits both Steel- and bulky Water-types super effectively with its STABs, leaving Azelf clear to break through the opponent's team. As with the previous set, Bisharp and Weavile can cause Azelf a lot of problems, especially if it's Choice-locked into Zen Headbutt. You can use Machamp's DynamicPunch to destroy them or the switch-in, or give Cobalion a setup opportunity by bringing it in after Azelf has bitten the dust against said Dark-types. If you can manage to activate Cobalion's Justified by switching it into a rare Night Slash, all the better.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Dual Screens
    move 1: Reflect
    move 2: Light Screen
    move 3: Taunt
    move 4: Stealth Rock
    item: Light Clay
    nature: Jolly / Timid
    evs: 252 HP / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Azelf is arguably the best non-Uber user of dual screens, and the absence of Choice Scarf Tyranitar in UU only adds to its effectiveness. This set is perfect for offensive teams, as it allows frail sweepers to set up easily behind Reflect and Light Screen and then proceed to ravage the opponent's team. Taunt is extremely useful on this set, preventing any offensive Pokemon from boosting and beating you to the punch by setting up its own sweep first. It also prevents foes from phazing you with Roar before you can get both screens up, and can be used to prevent the enemy from using entry hazard or status moves, protecting the setup sweepers that will follow Azelf. Just be wary that Pokemon such as Bronzong and Swampert will predict Taunt and attack Azelf outright, so, depending on the situation, it can be more effective to set up a screen before using Taunt. Stealth Rock is perfect for offensive teams, as it is often the difference between a OHKO and a 2HKO. All in all, your sweepers will appreciate the massive team support provided by Azelf.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Light Clay is really the only item that should be used, as it extends the duration of Reflect and Light Screen from five turns to eight. An alternative is a Focus Sash, but this severely hinders the effectiveness of the set. Maximum Speed investment allows Azelf to Taunt as many foes as possible, and maximum HP optimizes Azelf's overall bulk to guarantee it sets up Reflect and Light Screen. U-turn could be a useful move on this set, but none of the moves are really replaceable; it is a viable option nonetheless. The choice between a Jolly and Timid nature is insignificant most of the time, but if you are using U-turn, a Jolly nature should be used so as not to reduce its power.</p>

    <p>When dedicated a team slot to setting up screens, you want to be sure that you have very destructive setup sweepers waiting in the wings to make the best use of the screens. Some of the most terrifying offensive setup Pokemon include Venomoth and Gorebyss, who can Baton Pass Quiver Dance and Shell Smash respectively, as well as independent sweepers such as Cobalion and Kingdra.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Weather Lead
    move 1: Rain Dance / Sunny Day
    move 2: Taunt
    move 3: Stealth Rock
    move 4: U-turn
    item: Damp Rock / Heat Rock
    nature: Jolly
    evs: 252 HP / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>With the increasing popularity and effectiveness of weather-based teams, Azelf is a fine lead to provide eight turns of either rain or sun, with the moves Rain Dance and Sunny Day respectively. Taunt prevents slower foes from setting up on Azelf, blocks status, and prevents entry hazards from being set up. In particular, it is immensely helpful against Deoxys-D, who is a dominant force in the metagame. Stealth Rock is a natural fit for this set as it will primarily be used as a lead, and can give an offensive rain or sun team's sweep the edge by breaking Focus Sashes and Sturdy. U-turn is an excellent move for scouting against switches once Azelf has finished setting up.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Damp Rock and Heat Rock extend the duration of rain and sun, respectively, to eight turns each. This provides ample time for Azelf's teammates to take advantage of weather, allowing the likes of Kingdra and Darmanitan to blow gaping holes in the opponent's defensive core. Maximum investment in Speed is always the most effective on Azelf's setup sets. Maximum HP increases Azelf's poor bulk to a somewhat decent level as well.</p>

    <p>Safeguard is an option to keep your sweepers free of all status, but it is mostly outclassed by Taunt, which thwarts many other forms of support. Magic Coat prevents faster foes such as Crobat and Aerodactyl from using Taunt on Azelf. However, faster opponents are exceptionally few and far between, and Azelf is already pressed for moveslots. Focus Sash can Azelf survive for another turn of setup, which is useful when you mispredict with Taunt or need to get up Stealth Rock. However, losing the turns of weather assured by Damp Rock and Heat Rock greatly decreases the value of this set.</p>

    <p>Various Choice Scarf users, such as Chandelure and Heracross, outspeed and threaten to KO Azelf with their super effective STAB moves. Fortunately, a Choice-locked foe and weather support can give a teammate a prime chance to set up.</p>

    [Other Options]

    <p>Azelf has a wide movepool, and can run a number of different sets effectively. A Life Orb late-game sweeping set can be used effectively, with U-turn replacing Nasty Plot and a Naive nature used instead. Choice Specs is not recommended on Azelf because of the poor coverage of its STAB and its frail defenses. Azelf does best when it can rely on switching to get super effective hits, avoiding the dual drawbacks of bad coverage and low Base Power of its STAB attacks. Explosion is a viable option in a throwback to the days of DPP, but it has been greatly weakened in the transition to BW, and is therefore not recommended.</p>

    [Checks & Counters]

    <p>Houndoom is hands down the best way of dealing with Azelf. It is immune to both Psychic- and Fire-type attacks, resists Grass Knot and Ice Punch, and is only hit neutrally by U-turn. It also has STAB Sucker Punch and STAB Pursuit to play deadly mind games with Azelf, forcing it to predict perfectly or be KOed. Victini boasts a similar set of resistances, and will decimate Azelf or one of its teammates with V-create. Choice Scarf Krookodile can come in a Psychic-type attack, outspeed, and KO with STAB Crunch. Choice Scarf Chandelure can switch in on anything other than Azelf's STAB move of choice, outspeed, and KO with STAB Shadow Ball. Weavile is immune to Azelf's STAB, outspeeds, and KOes with either Night Slash or Pursuit. Choice Scarf Pokemon that use U-turn, such as Flygon and Darmanitan, give Azelf a lot of problems, as they force it to choose between sacrificing itself or letting the enemy build dangerous momentum against Azelf's team.</p>

    <p>While Azelf can power through almost anything, there are a couple of exceptions. Both Deoxys-D and Dusclops can tank anything Azelf throws at them and cripple Azelf with status. They are both immensely bulky, and Azelf will never get past them without entry hazard support. Azelf hates status, especially paralysis, which cuts off the Speed Azelf relies on for survivability.</p>
  2. ToF

    ToF
    is a Team Rater Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnusis the Smogon Tour Season 13 Champion

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Messages:
    2,061
    i would swap the order of the dual screens and weather abuser sets because dual screens has more utility on more types of teams.

    rest looks good. i think you can come up with a better checks and counters section though, that needs to be fleshed out a bit more
  3. complete legitimacy

    complete legitimacy Honko's Happy Funtime With Men
    is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Messages:
    1,149
    Updated with the suggestions.
  4. kokoloko

    kokoloko from Mexico
    is a member of the Site Staffis a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Media Contributoris a Past SPL Winner
    UU Leader

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2009
    Messages:
    3,700
    This is a pretty minor nitpick, but running 4 SDef EVs prevents Download from working at your opponent's advantage, and since they're pretty useless anywhere else, you might as well do it.
  5. complete legitimacy

    complete legitimacy Honko's Happy Funtime With Men
    is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Messages:
    1,149
    Well that's about as useful as lowering your HP IV to 29 to take less Life Orb damage, and as you can see that's the kind of stuff that I do, so I'm going to implement that.
  6. Snunch

    Snunch
    is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnuswon the 8th Official Smogon Tournament

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,074
    Move Thunderbolt to AC on the NP set. GK hits most bulky waters harder and also hits pokemon like Krookodile and Rhyperior. Those two are much more relevant than Houndoom is and Victini beats you regardless. Also mention in the AC of that set that replacing Nasty Plot with Stealth Rock lets Azelf become an effective hazard user on offensive teams that don't want to lose momentum.

    I'm not sure what Thunderpunch actually accomplishes for the CB set; you hit Slowbro just as hard with U-turn, and Fire Punch is a very valuable move for Azelf. Move it to AC.

    I'm iffy about including the weather set. While the speed is a nice advantage over other weather users, weather as a strategy is pretty bad. Looking for more QC input on that.
  7. ToF

    ToF
    is a Team Rater Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnusis the Smogon Tour Season 13 Champion

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Messages:
    2,061
    i mean i would include the weather set solely because azelf is probably the best pokemon to set it up for those kinds of teams, which warrants a set onsite imo. it sucks yeah, but its a strategy nonetheless and therefore should have a set onsite.
  8. blunder

    blunder

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Messages:
    629
    Stealth Rock plus 3 attacks is a good set- like SR, Psychic, Fire Blast and Grass Knot- AC material at best I guess- a Specs set could be viable as a Specs Psychic from Azelf could leave huge dents in a team- just a thought
  9. AccidentalGreed

    AccidentalGreed "Smogon friends" is an oxymoron.
    is a Forum Moderatoris a Contributor to Smogon
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2009
    Messages:
    2,684
    Specs belongs in OO because there's a LOT more Psychic-types that wished they had Azelf's coverage and solid stats, and have to resort to Specs. Azelf, on the other hand, only really needs the power provided by Life Orb because of its high, HIGH attacking stats and coverage to abuse alongside it. I guarantee that there's more instances where I'd want the power of Fire Blast or utility from Stealth Rock or U-turn, except there's the existence of resistant threats, so yeah.
  10. complete legitimacy

    complete legitimacy Honko's Happy Funtime With Men
    is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Messages:
    1,149
    All right, this is edited and (I think) ready for QC checks.
  11. Chou Toshio

    Chou Toshio @Fighting Necktie
    is an Artist Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2007
    Messages:
    8,268
    I don't see any reason to hold this up. Victini probably deserves a slightly bigger mention in checks/counters (resists all of Azelf's common attacks except neutral to U-turn, OHKOes with V-Create), but other than that looks good.

    QC APPROVED (1/3)
  12. Snunch

    Snunch
    is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnuswon the 8th Official Smogon Tournament

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,074
    QC APPROVED 2/3
  13. PK Gaming

    PK Gaming Pursuing My True Self
    is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Winner

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Messages:
    5,158
    QC APPROVED (3/3)
  14. complete legitimacy

    complete legitimacy Honko's Happy Funtime With Men
    is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Messages:
    1,149
  15. Chou Toshio

    Chou Toshio @Fighting Necktie
    is an Artist Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2007
    Messages:
    8,268
    Show Hide


    On the Smogon forums, we use a lot of "jargon", set phrases, that we DON'T use in analyses. Terms like "cleaner", "scarfer", etc. are not standardized in analyses and can be confusing for the reader. Read the Grammar standards for more information. In terms of these "-er" nouns, only "sweeper," "attacker," and "supporter" are allowed. In any other case, use the word "user"; "Choice Band user," "Choice Scarf user." This is better for readers, especially those with less exposure to Smogon (n00bs).

    Also stop saying "things like," or "thing" when there are plenty of words that are actually good, like "foe", "teammate" or... "Pokemon."


    There were a lot of problems, but:

    GP Check 1/2
  16. complete legitimacy

    complete legitimacy Honko's Happy Funtime With Men
    is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Messages:
    1,149
    Thanks a lot. I think I will go read those grammar standards before I write my next analysis. Changes implemented.
  17. sirndpt

    sirndpt
    is an Artist Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2011
    Messages:
    1,124
    [​IMG]

    gp approved 2/2

    copypastable (open)
    [Overview]

    <p>Azelf has fallen from its former OU status in DPP mostly due to the advent of Team Preview, almost destroying the need for a dedicated lead. This led to Azelf's placement in BW UU, where it is a very versatile threat with great mixed attacking stats and and Speed. It has a good movepool to use, and can even fulfill its previous role of a lead in UU arguably better than it ever did in DPP OU. However, Azelf is not invincible. There is an abundance of Choice Scarf users in UU that can dispatch Azelf without a second thought; additionally, whichever set it runs, there will always be a slight gap in Azelf's coverage that can be exploited and used against it.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Nasty Plot
    move 1: Nasty Plot
    move 2: Psychic / Psyshock
    move 3: Fire Blast
    move 4: Grass Knot
    item: Life Orb
    nature: Timid
    evs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Offensive Azelf is most commonly seen using a Nasty Plot set, which has become a lot more effective due to the removal of Chansey and Alakazam from UU. Nasty Plot skyrockets Azelf's Special Attack to an astounding 698 with a Timid nature, letting it break through the bulkiest Pokemon in the tier with its amazing power and great coverage. Psychic OHKOes defensive Roserade easily, and is also a guaranteed 2HKO on Curse Snorlax after Stealth Rock (with a good chance to 2HKO even without it). Psyshock is also an option for hitting Snorlax even harder, but it is generally inferior due to its lower Base Power and lower damage output against threats such as Hitmontop. Fire Blast is a necessity to hit bulky Steel-types such as Registeel, Escavalier, and Bronzong without giving them a chance to do anything back. Grass Knot is in the the final moveslot in order to hit bulky Water-types such as Slowbro, Suicune, Swampert, and Milotic very hard, while also doing massive damage to Krookodile and Rhyperior.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Life Orb is the item of choice, as it allows Azelf to power through almost everything. Maximum Speed with a Timid nature is necessary to Speed tie Raikou, as well as outspeed common threats such as Cobalion and Froslass. Maximum Special Attack investment lets Azelf hit as hard as possible, and the remaining 4 EVs are thrown into Special Defense to prevent Porygon2 and Porygon-Z from picking up a Download boost. It is worth noting that running Stealth Rock over Nasty Plot makes Azelf an effective hazard user for offensive teams that don't want to lose momentum.</p>

    <p>Thunderbolt is an option over Grass Knot to hit Houndoom while retaining super effective hits against Water-types, but is generally inferior. Grass Knot hits bulky Water-types harder, and running Thunderbolt would leave you susceptible to being defeated by the likes of Krookodile and Rhyperior. Likewise, Shadow Ball is also an option to hit Deoxys-D and Dusclops harder, but serves no purpose otherwise, and is generally a waste of a moveslot. Flash Fire Arcanine is a fantastic teammate, as it easily checks Weavile, Bisharp, Houndoom, and Victini, all of which are major threats to Azelf's sweep.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Choice Band
    move 1: Zen Headbutt
    move 2: Fire Punch
    move 3: Ice Punch
    move 4: U-turn / Trick
    item: Choice Band
    nature: Jolly
    evs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Choice Band Azelf is a nasty surprise for those expecting a Nasty Plot set, no pun intended. It works well on offensive teams, as it can hit hard, keep momentum, and cripple a wall with Trick. Zen Headbutt is Azelf's most powerful physical STAB attack, but its imperfect accuracy might let you down sometimes. Fire Punch hits Steel-types that resist Zen Headbutt, namely Registeel, Bronzong, and Escavalier. Ice Punch gives Azelf near-perfect coverage, hitting threats such as Zapdos, Flygon, Xatu, and Togekiss super effectively. U-turn is the primary option in the last slot; it preserves offensive momentum by allowing you to switch to a counter. It also hits Slowbro harder than any other move, and can save Azelf from being helplessly stuck facing down Victini's V-create. However, Trick is also viable, as it can cripple slow walls and special attackers. NFE foes such as Dusclops, Gligar, and Hippopotas will particularly hate having their Eviolites stripped away; it can also allow a teammate to sweep once its counter is crippled <if you could provide examples of attacks that KO w/o eviolite if it's relevant, that'd be best!>.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>The EV spread is fairly simple, maximizing both Attack and Speed to hit as hard and fast as possible. There will always be a gap in this set's coverage, as it can't hit most bulky Water-types hard enough. ThunderPunch is an option to hit them harder, but it is generally inferior to hitting the aforementioned threats. There are no other viable physical moves that Azelf can make use of.</p>

    <p>Rotom-H is a fantastic teammate, as the duo can abuse the VoltTurn strategy to pressure the opponent's team immensely. Rotom-H also hits both Steel- and bulky Water-types super effectively with its STABs, leaving Azelf clear to break through the opponent's team. As with the previous set, Bisharp and Weavile can cause Azelf a lot of problems, especially if it's Choice-locked into Zen Headbutt. You can use Machamp's DynamicPunch to destroy them or the switch-in, or give Cobalion a setup opportunity by bringing it in after Azelf has bitten the dust against said Dark-types. If you can manage to activate Cobalion's Justified by switching it into a rare Night Slash, all the better.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Dual Screens
    move 1: Reflect
    move 2: Light Screen
    move 3: Taunt
    move 4: Stealth Rock
    item: Light Clay
    nature: Jolly / Timid
    evs: 252 HP / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Azelf is arguably the best non-Uber user of dual screens, and the absence of Choice Scarf Tyranitar in UU only adds to its effectiveness. This set is perfect for offensive teams, as it allows frail sweepers to set up easily behind Reflect and Light Screen and then proceed to ravage the opponent's team. Taunt is extremely useful on this set, preventing any offensive Pokemon from boosting and beating you to the punch by setting up its own sweep first. It also prevents foes from phazing you with Roar before you can get both screens up, and can be used to prevent the enemy from using entry hazard or status moves, protecting the setup sweepers that will follow Azelf. Just be wary that Pokemon such as Bronzong and Swampert will predict Taunt and attack Azelf outright, so, depending on the situation, it can be more effective to set up a screen before using Taunt. Stealth Rock is perfect for offensive teams, as it is often the difference between a OHKO and a 2HKO. All in all, your sweepers will appreciate the massive team support provided by Azelf.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Light Clay is really the only item that should be used, as it extends the duration of Reflect and Light Screen from five turns to eight. An alternative is a Focus Sash, but this severely hinders the effectiveness of the set. Maximum Speed investment allows Azelf to Taunt as many foes as possible, and maximum HP optimizes Azelf's overall bulk to guarantee it sets up Reflect and Light Screen. U-turn could be a useful move on this set, but none of the moves are really replaceable; it is a viable option nonetheless. The choice between a Jolly and Timid nature is insignificant most of the time, but if you are using U-turn, a Jolly nature should be used so as not to reduce its power.</p>

    <p>When dedicated a team slot to setting up screens, you want to be sure that you have very destructive setup sweepers waiting in the wings to make the best use of the screens. Some of the most terrifying offensive setup Pokemon include Venomoth and Gorebyss, who can Baton Pass Quiver Dance and Shell Smash respectively, as well as independent sweepers such as Cobalion and Kingdra.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Weather Lead
    move 1: Rain Dance / Sunny Day
    move 2: Taunt
    move 3: Stealth Rock
    move 4: U-turn
    item: Damp Rock / Heat Rock
    nature: Jolly
    evs: 252 HP / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>With the increasing popularity and effectiveness of weather-based teams, Azelf is a fine lead to provide eight turns of either rain or sun, with the moves Rain Dance and Sunny Day respectively. Taunt prevents slower foes from setting up on Azelf, blocks status, and prevents entry hazards from being set up. In particular, it is immensely helpful against Deoxys-D, who is a dominant force in the metagame. Stealth Rock is a natural fit for this set as it will primarily be used as a lead, and can give an offensive rain or sun team's sweep the edge by breaking Focus Sashes and Sturdy. U-turn is an excellent move for scouting against switches once Azelf has finished setting up.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Damp Rock and Heat Rock extend the duration of rain and sun, respectively, to eight turns each. This provides ample time for Azelf's teammates to take advantage of weather, allowing the likes of Kingdra and Darmanitan to blow gaping holes in the opponent's defensive core. Maximum investment in Speed is always the most effective on Azelf's setup sets. Maximum HP increases Azelf's poor bulk to a somewhat decent level as well.</p>

    <p>Safeguard is an option to keep your sweepers free of all status, but it is mostly outclassed by Taunt, which thwarts many other forms of support. Magic Coat prevents faster foes such as Crobat and Aerodactyl from using Taunt on Azelf. However, faster opponents are exceptionally few and far between, and Azelf is already pressed for moveslots. Focus Sash can Azelf survive for another turn of setup, which is useful when you mispredict with Taunt or need to get up Stealth Rock. However, losing the turns of weather assured by Damp Rock and Heat Rock greatly decreases the value of this set.</p>

    <p>Various Choice Scarf users, such as Chandelure and Heracross, outspeed and threaten to KO Azelf with their super effective STAB moves. Fortunately, a Choice-locked foe and weather support can give a teammate a prime chance to set up.</p>

    [Other Options]

    <p>Azelf has a wide movepool, and can run a number of different sets effectively. A Life Orb late-game sweeping set can be used effectively, with U-turn replacing Nasty Plot and a Naive nature used instead. Choice Specs is not recommended on Azelf because of the poor coverage of its STAB and its frail defenses. Azelf does best when it can rely on switching to get super effective hits, avoiding the dual drawbacks of bad coverage and low Base Power of its STAB attacks. Explosion is a viable option in a throwback to the days of DPP, but it has been greatly weakened in the transition to BW, and is therefore not recommended.</p>

    [Checks & Counters]

    <p>Houndoom is hands down the best way of dealing with Azelf. It is immune to both Psychic- and Fire-type attacks, resists Grass Knot and Ice Punch, and is only hit neutrally by U-turn. It also has STAB Sucker Punch and STAB Pursuit to play deadly mind games with Azelf, forcing it to predict perfectly or be KOed. Victini boasts a similar set of resistances, and will decimate Azelf or one of its teammates with V-create. Choice Scarf Krookodile can come in a Psychic-type attack, outspeed, and KO with STAB Crunch. Choice Scarf Chandelure can switch in on anything other than Azelf's STAB move of choice, outspeed, and KO with STAB Shadow Ball. Weavile is immune to Azelf's STAB, outspeeds, and KOes with either Night Slash or Pursuit. Choice Scarf Pokemon that use U-turn, such as Flygon and Darmanitan, give Azelf a lot of problems, as they force it to choose between sacrificing itself or letting the enemy build dangerous momentum against Azelf's team.</p>

    <p>While Azelf can power through almost anything, there are a couple of exceptions. Both Deoxys-D and Dusclops can tank anything Azelf throws at them and cripple Azelf with status. They are both immensely bulky, and Azelf will never get past them without entry hazard support. Azelf hates status, especially paralysis, which cuts off the Speed Azelf relies on for survivability.</p>
  18. complete legitimacy

    complete legitimacy Honko's Happy Funtime With Men
    is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Messages:
    1,149
  19. Chou Toshio

    Chou Toshio @Fighting Necktie
    is an Artist Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2007
    Messages:
    8,268
    uploaded, good job everyone

Users Viewing Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 0)