Gen 4 Charizard (NU Analysis)

Honko

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#1


https://www.smogon.com/dex/dp/pokemon/charizard

[Overview]
- Best Pokemon in NU hands-down
- Extremely versatile, powerful, fast, great typing
- Stealth Rock is about the only thing keeping it in check
- Can run a variety of special and physical sets that can get the jump on various Pokemon
- Very few safe switch-ins to every set
- The Pokemon you need to keep in mind when team building

[SET]
name: Special Attacker
move 1: Fire Blast
move 2: Air Slash
move 3: Hidden Power Grass
move 4: Roost
item: Life Orb
nature: Timid
evs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
- Most common and easiest to play with set
- Amazing coverage in just three moves that lets it defeat a wide range of Pokemon in the tier
- Fire Blast should almost always be your main STAB move, but on frailer heavy offense teams Flamethrower might be preferred to let you get the most mileage out of Charizard
- Air Slash mandatory secondary STAB
- HP Grass annihilates Water-types not named Slowking
- Roost lets Charizard heal off Stealth Rock and Life Orb damage on forced switches

[ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]
- Timid mandatory to outspeed as much as possible and Speed tie the other base 100s like Dodrio and Typhlosion, as well as outspeed Jynx, Haunter, and Magmortar
- Life Orb simplest option to give Charizard as much power as possible; you don't get a lot of mileage out of Expert Belt since you then can't beat Lickilicky with it and Slowking and Hypno still shit on you
- Expert Belt and Leftovers do still have their merits, as they allow Charizard to switch into Stealth Rock and attack more than once; to extrapolate, if Charizard switches into Stealth Rock and attacks with Life Orb, it automatically cannot switch back out unless your spinner is still alive or you get the opportunity to use Roost. Expert Belt is also a decent lead
- Focus Blast is a high-risk, high-reward alternative coverage move that does significantly more to Regirock and Lickilicky, but has low accuracy and leaves Air Slash as Charizard's only option against Water-types
- Hidden Power Electric is also an option if you're more scared of Mantine but HP Grass is probably better for Quagsire and Whiscash
- Running a straight 4 attacks set is possible to allow Charizard to break through as many Pokemon as possible, but it sorely misses the longevity that Roost provides
- Substitute + 3 attacks is also possible with Leftovers, but Charizard gets run down pretty easy even without the Life Orb recoil
- Stealth Rock and Spikes support is fantastic and easily pushes Lickilicky into 2HKO range of Focus Blast and limits the number of times that Slowking and Hypno can switch in safely
- Rapid Spin support should be used so that Charizard can switch into attacks like Vileplume's Sludge Bomb and force it out. Hitmonchan and Sandslash both pair very well with Charizard and cover its Rock-type weakness and switch into Regirock pretty decently.
- A switch into Hypno, Lickilicky, and Slowking is needed, or they need to be eliminated ahead of time. Skuntank can accomplish pretty easily with Pursuit and it's one of the best offensive teammates to pair with Charizard
- A solid switch into Tauros is needed as it can revenge kill Charizard pretty easily, making Regirock and Gligar solid teammates as well

[SET]
name: Swords Dance
move 1: Swords Dance
move 2: Flare Blitz
move 3: Earthquake
move 4: Thunder Punch
item: Life Orb
nature: Jolly
evs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
- Extremely threatening at +2, being able to OHKO Slowking with Thunder Punch and OHKO Hypno with Flare Blitz, as well as easily 2HKOing 252/0 Regirock with Earthquake
- +2 Earthquake even has a chance to 2HKO 252/252 Quagsire after Stealth Rock, typically a great counter to physical Charizard
- Is much easier to revenge kill than the Dragon Dance set since Charizard isn't gaining any Speed boosts, meaning this set works better as a wallbreaker than it does a sweeper

[ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]
- Adamant isn't really needed, though it secures the OHKO on Slowking after Stealth Rock
- A lot of Charizard's KOes hinge on Stealth Rock, making partners like Regirock and Gligar valuable in that regards
- A solid switch into Tauros is needed as it can revenge kill Charizard pretty easily, making Regirock and Gligar solid teammates in this aspect as well
- Rapid Spin support should be used so that Charizard can switch into attacks like Vileplume's Sludge Bomb and force it out. Hitmonchan and Sandslash both pair very well with Charizard and cover its Rock-type weakness and switch into Regirock pretty decently.
- Pokemon that appreciate Slowking out of the picture are ideal teammates, particularly Medicham, other Fire-types, and offensive Water-types like Whiscash and Floatzel

[SET]
name: Dragon Dance
move 1: Dragon Dance
move 2: Flare Blitz
move 3: Earthquake
move 4: Thunder Punch
item: Life Orb
nature: Jolly
evs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
- Physical Charizard gets the jump on a lot of its usual checks, primarily Slowking, Hypno, and specially defensive Lickilicky, with Flare Blitz and Thunder Punch easily 2HKOing all of them after Stealth Rock even without a boost
- Finding time to set up can be a bit tricky, and it's left really exposed to Sucker Punch Skuntank, but it prevents the likes of Choice Scarf users like Jynx and Haunter, as well as Tauros, from easily revenge killing it
- +1 Earthquake only has a small chance to 2HKO even 252/0 Regirock as well, meaning it remains a solid answer to Charizard

[ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]
- Jolly is mandatory so that Charizard has a chance to Speed tie other base 100s and outspeed base 95s like Haunter and Jynx before a boost
- Life Orb is needed so that Charizard can 2HKO the targets it needs to, particularly Slowking and Hypno
- Quagsire and defensive Whiscash hard wall this set, making Grass-type partners like Vileplume and Meganium necessary partners to remove them from the match. Skuntank can also lure them in and Explode on them if needed
- This set is best used as a late-game cleaner when Pokemon like Gligar, Sandslash, and Regirock are weakened, as Charizard easily 2HKOes them at +1 after Stealth Rock, but they will all easily OHKO if they're carrying Rock Slide or Stone Edge
- Choice Scarf Manectric and Aqua Jet Floatzel still easily revenge kill this Charizard, meaning teammates like Meganium and Hypno are needed to remove them from the match
- Rapid Spin support allows Charizard to come in more than once, and is very important for this set in particular so that it can use Flare Blitz hopefully more than twice before keeling over. Sandslash and Hitmonchan are both good teammates to accomplish this

[SET]
name: Choice Specs
move 1: Fire Blast
move 2: Air Slash
move 3: Hidden Power Grass
move 4: Focus Blast
item: Choice Specs
nature: Timid
evs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
- Main draw to this set is the slight chance that Charizard has to 2HKO Lickilicky with Fire Blast, mixed Slowking with HP Grass after Stealth Rock, and the small chance to OHKO 252/252 Regirock with Focus Blast after Stealth Rock
- Definitely a difficult set to use, and a bit outclassed by Specs Typhlosion. The inability to switch moves with the Stealth Rock weakness means that the opponent can typically play around this Charizard, but if they're without a Fire resist this Charizard is absolutely ridiculous to play against
- Good to pair with another Fire-type like Magmortar or Typhlosion that can sweep once the checks like Regirock are out of the picture

[ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]
- Flamethrower and Overheat are worth a look as alternative STABs on this set. Furthermore, if you're ok giving up Focus Blast, running Flamethrower + Overheat together gives you great flexibility in choosing power vs reliability depending on the situation
- Modest nature is an option over Timid in order to have the best chance to break through Lickilicky, Hypno, and the like. Leaves it really easy to revenge kill though by things like Haunter
- Rapid Spin support is crucial to the success of this set so that it can switch in and blast away at the opponent at every opportunity.
- Specially defensive Slowking remains a counter to Specs Charizard, making Skuntank an ideal teammate to take it out.
- All other base 100s now have the opportunity to take out Charizard, making defensive backbones like Hypno and Gligar good teammates

[SET]
name: SubRoost
move 1: Substitute
move 2: Roost
move 3: Flamethrower
move 4: Toxic
item: Leftovers
ability: Blaze
nature: Timid
evs: 248 HP / 8 SpA / 252 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
- A less offensive take on Charizard that is surprisingly effective
- Great at crippling typical defensive answers like Slowking and Regirock
- Is a solid switch-in to most Grass-types as well as Ground-types assuming they don't hit Stone Edge on the switch. Can also situationally be a good switch-in to Fire- and Fighting-types.

[ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]
- You can run the standard offensive 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe spread on this set as well in order to OHKO some offensive Pokemon such as Haunter, Jynx, and Glalie, at the cost of some switch-in opportunity.
- Works best with other teammates that spread Toxic
- Really likes Spikes on top of SR to punish opponents switching out to reset Toxic counter
- Needs a spinner

[Other Options]
- Scarf is a fine set, but Typhlosion is better in many cases.
- SunnyBeamer is a fine set if you have at least one other team member that benefits from Sun; otherwise it's inferior to the standard special attacking set. Also, Typhlosion is better in many cases.
- BellyZard is an extremely high-risk, high-reward set. Needs SR off the field, a free turn, and removal of all priority users, faster Scarfers, and physically defensive Water-types. If you can make all of that happen, then BellyZard will win the game.
- Passho or Lum Berry on any of the set up sets to protect it from getting crippled by Thunder Wave or Toxic from Hypno or Slowking
- Rock Slide can go on the physical sets to take out other Charizard but that's about your only target with it
- Will-O-Wisp could be hilarious against something like Skuntank, but Charizard isn't really that bulky to make use of it properly

[Checks and Counters]
- Slowking, Hypno, Regirock, and Lickilicky are the best immediate checks to Charizard
- Quagsire and Whiscash can combat most of the physical sets but are absolutely destroyed by HP Grass
- Grumpig is probably the absolute best counter to specially attacking sets that exists, but lack of recovery means it won't be able switch in as much over time as Slowking can. Specially defensive Flareon is an exceptional counter as well but is weak to Stealth Rock which can limit its effectiveness over time
- Mantine counters nearly every special set if they're not carrying HP Electric
- Probopass can check all special sets lacking Focus Blast and sets up Stealth Rock
- Purugly can check Charizard as well thanks to Thick Fat
- Tons of revenge killers like Tauros, Manectric, Electrode, priority users like Sharpedo and Skuntank, and Scarf users like Medicham and Haunter
- Cradily and Regirock in the sand are pretty hard counters
- Camerupt can check the special sets well enough if it has a Rock-type attack, Sandslash and Gligar can do the same for physical sets
- Finally, Solrock and Lunatone are decent counters if they avoid Hidden Power Grass, but they're really rare
 
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Honko

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#2
The man, the legend, the Zard.

- On Life Orb, I don't think Flamethrower should be slashed, and I don't think anything should be slashed with Roost. Fire Blast + Air Slash + coverage + Roost is the best set by far. 4 attacks is wasting a lot of potential and Sub with 3 attacks on a 4x SR weak mon holding LO is gonna be a dead move a lot of the time. The only time I would use Sub is together with Roost tbh (which is actually a good set and should be mentioned in AC). Maybe mention LO 4 attacks and Sub + 3 attacks with Lefties (or perhaps even Salac) in OO?
- SD (Swords Dance, not Sunny Day) is better than DD and should be the second set imo. DD is a decent sweeper but it has trouble getting KOs and it loses to the same things as special Zard, whereas SD owns Slowking and other common switch-ins making it one of the best wallbreakers in the tier.
- The other special sets are ok but in danger of being outclassed by Typhlosion, especially the Choice sets, extra-especially Scarf. I'd honestly put Specs/Scarf in OO. They aren't bad, I just wouldn't generally recommend them for most teams, but if you wanna write them up I guess I won't stop you. And I think we are in agreement that BellyZard is the worst set but still worth writing up because it's so iconic and it can still easily destroy you if you don't have SR up and you switch out to a wall expecting a different set.
- Take Sub off of Sunny Day, if you aren't using Air Slash or Roost on that set then you should be using Typhlosion.
- Mention teammates that love Slowking being gone on the SD set. Mainly Fighters, other Fires, and offensive Waters.
- Emphasize Air Slash on Scarf if you keep that set because that's its main advantage over Typhlosion. Lets it consistently beat scarfed Fighters, is a fairly safe cleaning move as it hits 90% of the offensive mons in the tier at least neutrally, and even has that flinch chance.
- Quagsire and physically defensive Mantine are BellyZard counters and should be mentioned in that set's comments. Also plz mention that Drifblim (or Skuntank if you get tricked into Fire Punching it) can "revenge kill" with Aftermath because it's hilarious.
- Replace OO SubPunch mention with Sub + 3 special attacks. Mixed SubPunch would rather just go fully special and use Focus Blast which hits everything harder, and fully physical SubPunch is just too weak.
- Grumpig is only a great counter to special sets, it just doesn't have the bulk to take on physical sets. Mention that it specifically works better on more offensive teams that don't have room for Slowking or momentum killers like Hypno.
- For the Camerupt mention, just say "Rock-type moves", because it can run HP Rock as well as the two you mentioned. (Camerupt is so unpredictable! Good thing we have Scarf Gligar keeping it in check)
- Solrock and Lunatone aren't very good but they aren't completely unheard of, and they both happen to handle Zard pretty well so they probably deserve a mention at the end of C&C. Solrock in particular is a solid counter to physical Zard (although it's even worse than Lunatone at everything else)
 

Cased

Banned deucer.
#4
Just mention about how important Skuntank can be for supporting any Zard. Slowking / Grumpig / Hypno / Solrock are all really annoyed by Skuntank. And Mantine / Flareon doesn't feel like taking an LO Crunch, so a Zard x Skunk offensive core is one of the best in DPP NU.

I guess add an Expert Belt option with the option of 4 attacks or 3 attacks roost with HP Grass or Focus Blast being the 3rd move. When you don't see Zard take Life Orb damage after an attack it's almost always considered Scarf if your opponent wants to calc damage. E-Belt Zard is one hell of a nasty lead if you don't have the right Charizard counter, and you choose to run Pokemon like Probopass / Regirock etc Pokemon destroyed by other Zard options just not Fire/Flying

Add Flareon as a solid counter. SpD Flareon destroys all special Zard sets so yeah.
 

Jirachee

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#5
meh I'm not sure about ebelt zard as a lead. to me it's kinda obvious unlike typhlosion

lemme explain. when you lead charizard, you sure as hell wouldn't lead scarf, because that's fucking retarded. that leaves the only possible sets you can lead with specs and ebelt. imo specs charizard isn't really worth running over typhlosion unless you REALLY need to ground immune which is irrelevant as a lead. if I see a lead charizard I'll probably just assume it's belt because it's the set that makes the most sense. when you go against lead typhlosion, your first reaction will probably be specs because lead specs typhlosion is a fucking animal, which makes the ebelt bluff so much more effective.

still, I'd agree with either ebelt or lefties mentioned on the first set because the lo recoil blows dicks on a x4 sr weak mon unless your team is really good at avoiding sr which is hard to pull off in dpp imo.

bellyzard is garbage imo

and yeah what cased said is good
 

Bughouse

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#7
lol is this analysis still a thing?

if it is, a subtoxic mention in OO would be cool

Also I think your sunny day set is weird. What is Air Slash even for?? Personally I go Overheat there to really truly nuke something if needed. Fire Blast doesn't hit every KO you'd want.

Oglemi
 

ryan

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#8
I was about to say make SubToxic a set. Almost got tossed by it in NUPL even tho I had an answer because the answer got crit. It's actually pretty bulky, forces switches really easily, and ruins a lot of its conventional checks and counters.

I'd also mention Floatzel in Checks and Counters as an offensive Pokemon that can switch in and take a hit then force it out.
 

Honko

he of many honks
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#10
Yeah, add SubToxic and get rid of that SunnyBeamer poop.

Also Oglemi are you ever gonna have time to write this up? Cuz if not I don't mind doing it, it'd be nice to have an analysis up for the #1 mon in the tier.
 
#12
Abilities are completely missing in the OP. While DD and Swords Dance sets should be played with Blaze, for the Sunny Day set Solar Power is obviously the better choice.