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Ceremonials (Peak #9)

Discussion in 'BW Other Teams' started by Psycho Cut, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. Psycho Cut

    Psycho Cut

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Messages:
    127
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    "Let’s talk about magic. Because music, at its best, is a kind of magic that lifts you up and takes you somewhere else."
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    Ubers is a tier that many often consider 'n00bish' due to the large amount of players with almost no competitive knowledge who battle in the Uber tier purely because one of their favourite pokemon is Uber and whom then complain that everyone uses so many legendaries. I won't deny that such people exist, but I will argue the case for the Ubers Tier. As you climb higher up the legendary-laden ladder, things do become much more tougher and you soon require a lot more skill to advance. It is this part of the Ubers Tier that is the attraction and it discards the prejudices that many people hold. If the OU Tier is a tactical skirmish between two opposing forces in a burnt-out city, made up of men carrying pistols and handguns, then Ubers is much the same. Except with machine guns and RPGs. In short the message is that the Ubers Tier is just as tactically demanding as other tiers and isn't solely for n00bs. Of course, there's a chance you are, dear reader, an established Ubers player already and know all this, but, if you're someone browsing Smogon's Ubers RMTs thinking of starting the Tier, bear in mind what I said​

    Onto the Team itself. Considering my recent war analogy and the fact that you have probably noticed this team has stemmed from my earlier RMT with the not-so-fluffy Title Absolute Corruption you're probably wondering why this team has been named after something relatively serene and gentle. I explain with another analogy: Florence + The Machine's music is as varied as they come; at times it is fast paced, loud and in your face, whereas at other times it is quiet, relaxing and serene. Besides, as some of you will know, if I thought more highly of Florence + The Machine, I would be the first member of the "Florencism" religion. Though, I suppose you could've half-guessed that from my Avatar. Similarly this team, and the Uber Tier in general, is not about firing off Water Spouts left, right and centre and nor, as the Uber Tier is becoming, is this Team about condemning my opponent to a slow death by hazards. It is a recipe of many types of strategy, blended to overcome any obstacle. In theory, anyway. Indeed, Florence + The Machine is one of the few truly 'unique' artists out there, in a time when most of the music we hear is Standard Pop or some filth-ridden noise some dare to call music. Similarly, I fear this team could be one of the last "hurrah"s of Balanced Play before the Uber tier is overcome by a raging torrent of Spikes and Pink Blobs.​

    As you will have seen from the Title, this team has had good success, peaking 9th on the Smogon Server with a rating of 1336 under the alt "[uber]Psycho Cut", the proof of which can be found at the bottom of this post. As a result of this and the fact I no longer wish to obsess myself with trying to edge closer to the top, I post this RMT not for help, but rather just to share it with you all, as well as the reasons I've explained above. So, enough with my exasperating blabber, let's get down to the nitty-gritty of this fine team...​

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    Prior stages to this can be found in my previous RMT: http://www.smogon.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4059308&postcount=1



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    I pick up where I left off in Absolute Corruption, as this was the fial draft of that Version of the Team​



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    However, I was extremely weak to Hazards, in particular, Toxic Spikes. If my opponent got down 2 layers of T-Spikes, it was basically GG. To solve this, I swapped Kingdra for Tentacruel, who also provided me with hazard support of my own.​



    The team's composition stayed as it is, but various sets changed. There were many, many little tweaks from this stage to the one you see now. ​


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    "And the only solution was to stand and fight"
    Florence (Darkrai) | [​IMG] | [​IMG]
    Trait: Bad Dreams
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk)
    ~ Substitute
    ~ Nasty Plot
    ~ Dark Pulse
    ~ Focus Blast


    If you've followed this team from its conception, you'll know that Darkrai was not one of the main players in the team, and was added due to what was, somewhat, a hole that needed to be filled. And although Darkrai leads this RMT, it rarely leads the team in battle. You may be wondering then, why it is named after Florence + The Machine's leading lady. Well, although the team was built around the omnipotent ExtremeKiller Arceus, such as Pokémon finds it hard to sweep at times, as it is a threat that almost all teams prepare for. What many do not prepare for, however, is Substitute Darkrai, or SubRai, as I often call it. And for this reason, Darkrai tends to get the most KOs and is often the MVP of the team, hence the name Florence. At first glance, it does seem silly not to use Darkrai's main fear-weapon, the soul-destroying Dark Void, but there's good reason for this. Substitute is simply golden. It avoids status and helps me set up on a whole load of things, even more so when you factor possible burns from Giratina-O's will-o-wisp. Nasty Plot is also a necessity, giving Darkrai the power to blast through the tough walls of the Uber tier. As I really need the perfect coverage granted by Darkrai's two attacking moves, there is no place for Dark Void. There's not much need for it either, a +2 Darkrai behind a Sub is a very scary thing indeed. I love the sense of power you get when you have such a thing out, knowing that you will be able to nail whatever the hell comes in with extremely powerful attacks. Besides, the fear of Dark Void is a weapon in itself and can usually lead into me setting up with increased ease. As Hermione Granger said: "Fear of the name move only increases fear of the thing itself"


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    "The stars, the moon, They have all been blown out"
    Isabella (Arceus) | [​IMG] | [​IMG]
    Trait: Multitype
    EVs: 88 HP / 252 Atk / 168 Spd
    Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
    ~ Swords Dance
    ~ ExtremeSpeed
    ~ Shadow Claw
    ~ Brick Break


    Now we arrive at the mighty Arceus. It was His might that brought about the construction of this team and His power that my opponents most fear (sometimes). Despite His power, He is also benevolent, and is not angry at me for nicknaming him after a girl. Yes, Arceus was who this team was built around, and also from where the name of the original team came from, hence the nickname "Isabella", being derived from Isabella 'Machine' Summers, the keyboard player who puts the "Machine" in "Florence + The Machine". As I've mentioned, Arceus isn't seeing the glory or destruction it was further down the ladder but it still has a role as powerful late-game sweeper, should it get the chance, and a competent revenge killer as well. Arceus may not KO anything in some matches, but there is rarely a game where He doesn't leave a massive dent in something before His rampage is stopped. It is Swords Dance and Extremespeed that really make Arceus shine, with them Arceus can reap destruction: OHKOing any pokemon with 100 Base Def (uninvested) after SR damage that doesn't resist and 2HKOing most others. The two coverage moves are pretty standard; Shadow Claw allows Arceus to hit Giratina and Ghost Arceus, 2HKOing almost all sets, the Lum Berry meaning that even their will-o-wisps do not save them from a shadowy demise; Brick Break allows Arceus to damage steels such as Dialga, Arceus-Steel and Ferrothorn which are 2HKO'd, if not OHKO'd. Skarmory is the only frequently seen Steel Type which can withstand this onslaught, yet even it takes heavy damage. The EVs have been amended since Absolute Corruption, sacrificing bulk for the ability to outspeed Rayquaza, meaning Arceus can hit it with Extremespeed before it does the same which stops SD Rayquaza rampaging throughout my team and prevents it picking off Arceus when weakened. It's a situational change, but one that has saved me on a number of occasions. The old spread of 132 HP / 252 Att / 124 Spd is still perfectly viable though.​


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    "Your slaps don't stick, your kicks don't hit"
    Robert (Ferrothorn) (M) | [​IMG] [​IMG] |[​IMG]
    Trait: Iron Barbs
    EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SDef
    Careful Nature (+SDef, -SAtk)
    ~ Power Whip
    ~ Stealth Rock
    ~ Leech Seed
    ~ Thunder Wave


    Robert Ackroyd isn't well known as far as members of Florence + The Machine are concerned, but, because he's the guitarist, as is the case with most modern music, he plays a pivotal role in the band. In the same way, Ferrothorn won't be making any heroic sweeps but provides an essential Dragon resist and the rocks that he lays edge a whole host of Pokemon into the OHKO range of Arceus' +2 Extremespeed. He truly is the backbone of the team. A Specially Defensive set allows Ferrothorn to switch into a multitude of things, including, but not limited to, Water Spouts and Draco Meteors from all the heavy-hitters of the Uber Tier. Laying Rocks is Ferrothorn's main job whilst it's out, but Thunder Wave is another brilliant support move, crippling many a sweeper that tries to use Ferrothorn as setup bait. This generally makes threats a lot easier to handle, for example, it will allow Giratina to take on Rayquaza and win. Power Whip is also very useful, and it's high Base Power combined with Ferrothorn's decent Base Attack means it hits hard, denting switch-ins such as Groudon and making it easier to handle Pokémon like Kyogre and Arceus-Ground. I used to have Toxic in the slot that is now occupied by Leech Seed, and, although it might sound like a weird thing to have two status moves, it allowed Ferrothorn to handle a much wider variety of threats. However, the team was very weak to Dialga, and Leech Seed allows Ferrothorn to help drain its HP and make it easier to take out.​


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    "Though the pressure's hard to take, It's the only way I can escape"
    Mark (Tentacruel) (F) | [​IMG] [​IMG] | [​IMG]
    Trait: Rain Dish
    EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SDef
    Calm Nature (+SDef, -Atk)
    ~ Toxic Spikes
    ~ Scald
    ~ Rapid Spin
    ~ Protect


    Tentacruel is similar to Ferrothorn in the sense that he won't be making heroic sweeps and blasting large holes in the enemy, but will provide essential support for the team. And so, he is named after Mark Saunders, the Machine's Bass Guitarist. Tentacruel was bought on to this team to provide protection from Hazards, which are no rare thing in the Metagame. I noticed how, just like the older version of this team, many other Uber teams are very weak to Toxic Spikes, and these can cripple many sweepers, the most notable of which being Kyogre, whose Water Spout is severly weakened as it remains in play. When using this team, however, one must be careful when using Toxic Spikes. If my opponent is packing an ExtremeKiller Arceus, it is a good idea to try and burn it before laying down Toxic Spikes. After all, ExtremeKiller Arceus can do a lot of damage before Toxic Spikes gradually bring it down. That said, you cannot tell what form of Arceus your opponent is using from Team Preview so, if you spot a gaping T-Spikes weakness, it may just be a good idea to lay them down. It is for this reason, that being helping stalling out a poisoned ExtremeKiller Arceus, I added Protect instead of Ice Beam. A Specially Defensive Set maximises Tentacruel's substantial Special Bulk and allows it to switch into Water Spouts and the like.​


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    "You can't choose what stays and what fades away"
    Tom (Giratina-O) | [​IMG] [​IMG] | [​IMG]
    Trait: Levitate
    EVs: 248 HP / 252 Def / 8 Spd
    Impish Nature (+Def, -SAtk)
    ~ Shadow Sneak
    ~ Will-O-Wisp
    ~ Dragon Claw
    ~ Dragon Tail


    Tom Monger is the Harp Player in The Machine. Yes, Harp. But that's exactly the point, it's an odd instrument nowadays and, similarly, this Giratina set may seem odd to some when it appears that I should probably use a standard "Great Wall" Giratina. However, I find this set still does many things that "The Great Wall" would do, such as counter ExtremeKiller Arceus and Groudon, among others, effectively and also provides a good offensive presence, able to deal with Pokémon like Mewtwo much better. This is further complimented, as I've already said, by Ferrothorn's Thunder Wave. Max Defence and Will-o-Wisp are quite obvious moves, as they mean that Giratina-O can counter almost any physical attacker that doesn't have a type advantage. Shadow Sneak and Dragon Claw are not to be underestimated as, despite not being invested EV-wise, they are boosted by STAB and Griseous Orb, and can deal a significant amount of damage. Dragon Tail rounds off the set with helping to counter set-up sweepers, as I was having problems with many of them prior to this change. Giratina-O's numerous resistances mean that it can often come in, tank an attack and phaze it out. Again, Dragon Tail is boosted by STAB and Griseous Orb, so the damage output is good too. I use it over Roar for, primarily this reason, but also because the most common Sub-users, such as Ho-oh, are dealt with my something else on the team. Roar is a viable alternative though. The 8 Speed EVs are there to speed creep other base 90s, such as fellow Giratinas and, most importantly Dialga, who is probably this team's worst enemy and who requires a lot of prediction and cunning to defeat.​


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    "Let the only sound be the overflow"
    Chris (Kyogre) | [​IMG] | [​IMG]
    Trait: Drizzle
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
    ~ Water Spout
    ~ Thunder
    ~ Ice Beam
    ~ Surf


    Yes, the King of the Seas and King of Ubers makes his regal presence known on this team as well. He's named after Chris Hayden, the drummer, because drums and other percussion can often be, like Kyogre, the most loud and powerful part of any song. Although Kyogre isn't as powerful as Darkrai or Arceus once they've set up, neither can match the sheer destructive power of Choice Scarf Kyogre. This guy can come in, likely out speed the opponent, and bombard them with what is the most powerful unboosted attack in the entire game. Some may wonder why I've gone with Modest instead of Timid. Well, although this means I don't speed tie with other Scarved/+1 Base 90s, I do get a lot more power, edging many things into the 2HKO range, such as Latias, Giratina-O and Raquaza, limiting the amount of things that can switch in. I've never been a fan of speed ties anyway, and I prefer, if I have the choice, not to rely on outspeeding my opponent in a speed tie. The rest of the set is standard, and fairly self-explanatory. Thunder catches Palkia on the switch, as well as decimating fellow Kyogres and other bulky waters, and Ice Beam provides bolt-beam coverage along with Thunder and allows me to hit dragons. Surf is a replacement attack for when Kyogre's health drops to the point where Water Spout has a Base Power less than 95. Suffice to say, there's a reason why Kyogre has dominated the Uber tier for so long.​


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    Well, I'll begin wrapping this up by firstly saying that this has been my most successful team ever and, although the Ubers ladder probably isn't the hardest out there, reaching the Top 10 on any Ladder is a commendable achievement. As for what this RMT hopes to achieve, well, it's mainly a shout-out saying that Ubers is fun and it is challenging and I hope a lot of you who haven't done so prior to this, after reading this, will go out there and give it a go. It's just a shame I’m too late to influence you all to vote for Ceremonials in the Brit Awards on the 21st...​

    As for what threatens this team, the main culprit has to be Dialga, though purely because I have no idea what set it's running prior to the match. I can generally play around it, and end up burning, paralysing or leech seeding it, but it's certainly a pain. Aside from the threats that threaten almost every team, that's about it.​

    So, that's it from me. I'll finish by saying it's been great fun laddering with this team and getting to know and love the Uber Tier. Thank you all for reading, as I say, I hope it's influenced you one way or another!​

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    Here's the importable for the team. You have my permission to use it however you want, but I ask you to keep the nicknames!​



    Show Hide
    Florence (Darkrai) @ Leftovers
    Trait: Bad Dreams
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk)
    - Substitute
    - Nasty Plot
    - Dark Pulse
    - Focus Blast

    Isabella (Arceus) @ Lum Berry
    Trait: Multitype
    EVs: 132 HP / 252 Atk / 124 Spd
    Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
    - Swords Dance
    - ExtremeSpeed
    - Shadow Claw
    - Brick Break

    Robert (Ferrothorn) (M) @ Leftovers
    Trait: Iron Barbs
    EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SDef
    Careful Nature (+SDef, -SAtk)
    - Power Whip
    - Stealth Rock
    - Leech Seed
    - Thunder Wave

    Mark (Tentacruel) (M) @ Black Sludge
    Trait: Rain Dish
    EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SDef
    Calm Nature (+SDef, -Atk)
    - Toxic Spikes
    - Scald
    - Rapid Spin
    - Protect

    Tom (Giratina-O) @ Griseous Orb
    Trait: Levitate
    EVs: 248 HP / 252 Def / 8 Spd
    Impish Nature (+Def, -SAtk)
    - Shadow Sneak
    - Will-O-Wisp
    - Dragon Claw
    - Dragon Tail

    Chris (Kyogre) @ Choice Scarf
    Trait: Drizzle
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
    - Water Spout
    - Thunder
    - Ice Beam
    - Surf


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    Proof:

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  2. locoghoul

    locoghoul

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    818
    Hi, I think I've battled you at some point. Looking at your team I'm wondering if you had any problems with physical sweepers (given that I don't see any phys wall). I'm thinking Ekiller (maybe faster than yours), RP Groudon, double dance Terrakion/Groudon, DDQuaza, etc.
  3. Electro Gypsy

    Electro Gypsy

    Joined:
    May 11, 2010
    Messages:
    46
    Lusterous Orb Palkia breaks your defensive core wide open, taking down Giratina O, Kyogre, Luring in Tentacruel and Ferrothorne, who both fall to Thunder and Fire Blast after switching into Hydro Pump. It can also OHKO your E Killer with Hydro Pump too. DD Ray is also a huge problem, as it runs through your team after a Dragon Dance. Sub Claw Zekrom also gives you a lot of trouble. For this reason, I suggest you change your E Killer into a Physically Defensive Ground Arceus. While Palkia still ails you, Sub Claw Zekrom and Rayquaza are now soundly checked. It also completely remedies your Dialga issues. The other main perk for Ground Arcues is how much stress Giratina O has relieved with another physical tank aiding it. As for potential sets, you have a few options. Judgement/Roar/Recover/Ice Beam allows it to deal with all these problematic attackers, while Judgement/Recover/Stealth Rocks/Ice Beam frees up Spikes for Ferrothorne, allowing you to more easily wear down and promptly be cleaned up by Kyogre. Enough Speed to outspeed +Speed Rayquaza, and the rest in HP and Defense. Decent team, otherwise, grats on Top 10
  4. Psycho Cut

    Psycho Cut

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Messages:
    127
    Well, I was tailing you for a while, so, while I can't remember doing so, it wouldn't surprise me if we have actually battled :)

    As for those threats, yes DDQuaza is probably the worst. However, at times it's actually not that bad. With a mixture of SR, Arceus and prediction, I can usually play around it.

    Palkia's not too much of a problem. As you say, Ferro/Tenta have to switch into Hydro Pump to be then KOd by those respective attacks, so, if I don't I can usually end up T-waving it, etc.

    However, you're quite right on the SubClaws Zekrom. I've only encountered it twice, but each time it's destroyed (or come close to) my team. The Arceus suggestion sounds great though! Perhaps I'll try it out at some point in the future
  5. Steven Snype

    Steven Snype
    is a Tutoris a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
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    Joined:
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    Messages:
    2,044
    Hi there, this looks like a really cool team with solid offensive potential. However, I see some issues that this team looks like it will have trouble handling.

    #1 threat that I can see handling would be Sub + CM Giratina-O, which would come in on Ferrothorn or Tentacruel while setting up hazards, and if it has enough Speed outspeed to sub up.

    You mention issues to Dialga. While you seem to be able to have a way to handle most bulky Dialga, it seems that last mon Bulk Up Dialga will cause trouble for your team as Giratina will be unable to status it due to Rest and it continually boosts its Defense to handle a Brick Break from Arceus. If any of these options are unavailable, taking it out will be incredibly hard (and considering Darkrai's frailty, this will be very hard to pull off.)

    While not as strong as other teams, this team looks like it will have some difficulty handling Ho-Oh + strong Special Dragon Attacker as your two answers to a dragon like Palkia can't do much back against Sub-Ho-Oh and don't like taking damage from either of its STAB moves.

    For this reason, I would like to suggest replacing Darkrai with a Mixed Zekrom. You still have the offensive potential against most bulkier teams as those tend to rely on Zekrom + Lugia and you can still hammer against steels such as Dialga and Ferrothorn with Focus Blast. Lugia and Ho-Oh don't like taking repeated Bolt Strikes, though the former can still attempt to stall you out with Pressure and Roost (if you're able to paralyze with Ferrothorn or Kyogre's Thunder though, that shouldn't be too bad)

    Mixed Zekrom (open)

    Zekrom @ Life Orb
    Nature: Naughty
    104 HP / 148 Atk / 252 SpA / 4 Spe
    -- Draco Meteor
    -- Focus Blast
    -- Outrage
    -- Bolt Strike


    Naughty over Lonely is just my preference as I don't see Zekrom taking any minimal damage from the Rain-boosted Water-type attacks and the common Draco Meteors/Dragon Pulses/Spacial Rends flung about. The EV spread is as it is on-site as a base template to follow, and I don't really see much to invest in apart from maybe taking a few Special Attack EVs and moving them to Speed just to get a Speed creep on other Base 90s that don't run much speed, such as Bulky Giratina-O, Giratina, and Sub + Hone Claws Zekrom.

    Note though that in replacing Darkrai, you're a bit more vulnerable to Psychics, notably Lugia and Mewtwo. The former of which won't like switching into Zekrom and being paralyzed, and the latter will not appreciate taking on Kyogre's assaults and Arceus' ExtremeSpeed.

    Also another suggestion that could help would be taking out Protect for Ice Beam on Tentacruel as this team looks a bit MixQuaza weak and Ice Beam can ward away Rayquazas looking to come in, when Ice Beam does approximately 3/4 damage or so, either OHKOing them with SR up or leaving them with only one turn to do anything.


    tl;dr:

    Replace Darkrai with Zekrom.
    Swap Protect on Tentacruel for Ice Beam.
  6. Psycho Cut

    Psycho Cut

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Messages:
    127
    Thanks for the rate, Steven!

    The Mixed Zekrom looks pretty good, I'll try it out if ever I want to ladder with this team again. As for Ice Beam > Protect, I used to have Ice Beam, and, although it was useful for taking out Rayquaza, the ability to rack up an extra turn of T-spikes damage proved much more useful.

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