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Claydol (OU Analysis)

Discussion in 'Uploaded Analyses' started by bugmaniacbob, Aug 16, 2010.

  1. bugmaniacbob

    bugmaniacbob Floats like a Butterfree, stings like a Metapod
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    Status: QC approved; awaiting grammar checks

    Link to original thread: http://www.smogon.com/forums/showthread.php?t=68333

    The original analysis for this was locked due to length issues, so after extensive concising I'd like to offer it for approval again. I'm pretty sure that this time, the length is acceptable - the set is now four times smaller (800 words compared to 3200 words), and I'm pretty sure all of the separate sections are each under 1000 words. So yeh. I also removed all mentions of Salamence and Latias.

    Stamps:
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    [​IMG] (uragg)[​IMG](Flora)

    [​IMG]
    http://www.smogon.com/dp/pokemon/claydol
    --------------------------

    [Overview]

    <p>
    Claydol, once one of the most prominent support Pokemon around, now lies overshadowed by many of the newer faces and older rivals that it has only a few advantages over. Bronzong, with a superior defensive typing and slightly higher stats, is more popular as a supporter, and Claydol's only advantages from a support point of view are its much higher Speed, allowing it to outpace most Scizor and to an extent Tyranitar, and access to Rapid Spin. Even in the Rapid Spinning department, however, it is overshadowed by Pokemon such as Forretress, who have a superior defensive typing, just as good a support movepool as Claydol, and the ability to strike Ghost-types hard. Claydol's many weaknesses to common types do not help its case either. However, Claydol's balanced offensive and defensive stats as well as its Ground-type STAB still make it worth using in certain situations.</p>

    [SET]
    name: OU Support
    move 1: Rapid Spin
    move 2: Stealth Rock
    move 3: Earthquake / Earth Power
    move 4: Explosion / Ice Beam
    item: Leftovers
    nature: Relaxed / Bold
    evs: 252 HP / 144 Def / 114 SpA

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Rapid Spin is the most important move on the set, as it removes entry hazards that can be
    crippling for the rest of the Pokemon on your team. You can also cut the opponent's time short with your own Stealth Rock. In the last two slots, attacking moves should be chosen as there are a lot of Pokemon in OU who can cause Claydol trouble. The first of these attacking moves should be a STAB Ground-type move, as Ground is an excellent attacking type and helps Claydol greatly with common Steel-types. Claydol has two choices for this slot: Earth Power and Earthquake. Earthquake is usually the superior choice, as it has a chance to OHKO Lucario and Infernape, as well as 2HKO Tyranitar and Jirachi, which Earth Power cannot do. However, Earth Power is a guaranteed 2HKO on standard Choice Band Metagross, is not affected by Intimidate, and prevents the need for splitting EVs if you wish to run Ice Beam. In the last slot there are a number of options, but generally it is best to avoid splitting EVs, since if you do so, both of your offensive moves will be weaker and you may find yourself losing out on important OHKOs and 2HKOs. Thus, if you run Earth Power, go for Ice Beam, and if you run Earthquake, use Explosion, though you can switch them around if you are willing to split EVs.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Determining the last slot is a complicated decision. If you have chosen Earth Power, it is advisable that you choose a second special move to
    avoid splitting EVs. Ice Beam is the most common option on this set, as it hits the Flying- and Grass-types who resist Ground for super effective damage, and is also very helpful for taking on the common Dragon-types in OU such as Dragonite and Flygon. However, it lacks power when hitting for neutral damage against Claydol's more prominent foes, such as Rotom-A. On the physical side, the option that most merits a mention is Explosion, which may seem ridiculous considering the fact that the first switch into Claydol is usually a Ghost-type. However, it is the most realistic way that Claydol will be able to cause significant damage to the opponent's team. Explosion can create an important gap in the opponent's team, especially if you can hit a bulky Water- or Grass-type, as well as granting a free switch that could give you the opportunity to set up for a sweep or regain momentum.</p>

    <p>Claydol is difficult to distribute EVs to given
    its multiple traits and talents, and you will very rarely find that most Claydol carry the same exact EVs. The 252 HP EVs grant Claydol maximum HP for overall defensive stability, and 144 Defense EVs ensure that it is never 2HKOed by Jolly Life Orb Mamoswine's Ice Shard or OHKOed by Swords Dance Infernape's boosted Fire Punch. It is also never OHKOed by Choice Band Machamp's Payback. 114 EVs in Special Attack means that Claydol is guaranteed to 2HKO 252 HP Metagross with Earth Power. It also gives Ice Beam a reasonable chance to OHKO 4 HP Flygon even without Stealth Rock, and allows Claydol to OHKO non-bulky Dragonite and 252 HP Gliscor with Stealth Rock down. If running a physical set, then the same investmentof 114 EVs in Attack allows Claydol's Earthquake to OHKO Lucario and Infernape with Stealth Rock and 2HKO non-bulky Jirachi and Tyranitar, while also adding more sting to Explosion.</p>

    [Team Options]

    <p>As Claydol has no reliable recovery moves of its own, it will be worn down very quickly. Thus, Wish support can be very useful. Blissey and Vaporeon are the most notable users of Wish, and both have considerable defensive synergy with Claydol; Blissey can take almost any special attack
    aimed at Claydol with ease, and as the majority of Claydol's weaknesses are frequently special attacks, Blissey can be considered a great partner for Claydol regardless of Wish. On Claydol's part, it resists Blissey's only weakness: Fighting-type moves. Vaporeon, on the other hand, can heal itself by switching into Water-type attacks aimed at Claydol thanks to its ability, Water Absorb, while also resisting Claydol's Ice-type weakness and being a good check to many of Claydol's normal counters such as Gyarados. However, Claydol shares a Grass-type weakness with Vaporeon and cannot adequately deal with Electric-types, such as Jolteon and Rotom-A, who threaten Vaporeon. Claydol will usually find that its most useful move is Rapid Spin, so it will need help from its teammates to get rid of Ghost-types. Scizor and Tyranitar both have very powerful Pursuits and can dispatch Ghost-types easily with a Choice Band equipped. However, Rotom-A can be difficult to deal with as defensive variants cannot be OHKOed by Pursuit if they do not switch out and can subsequently OHKO Scizor with Overheat or cripple both with Will-O-Wisp. Heracross, who also has access to Pursuit, can use Rotom-A's Will-O-Wisp to its advantage, however, since it can absorb Will-O-Wisp for a boost thanks to its Guts ability.</p>

    <p>Claydol is unlikely to be a direct offensive complement to any Pokemon in OU, but it can still help its teammates in a number of different ways, most notably the control of entry hazards during the game. By setting up Stealth Rock, passive damage to the opponent's Pokemon will build up over time, so you should make sure that you include set-up sweepers such as Swords Dance Lucario and Dragon Dance Dragonite who benefit most from this support. At the same time, Claydol can remove entry hazards thanks to Rapid Spin, which helps Pokemon who switch in and out often and are weak to Stealth Rock, such as Dragonite and Gyarados.</p>

    <p>Defensively, Claydol will need good partners to cover up its many weaknesses. Steel-types are perhaps the best defensive complements, as they have great defensive synergy together with Claydol – Steel-types resist five of Claydol's six weaknesses (Dark, Ghost, Grass, Ice, and Bug), while Claydol resists Fighting- and Ground-type attacks, two of Steel's three weaknesses, and can deal with most Fire-types in OU to an extent. There are two types that resist both Fire- and Water-type attacks: Dragon-types and Water-types themselves. In the case of Water-types, bulky Pokemon such as Vaporeon and Suicune make excellent partners; not only do they resist Fire- and Water-type attacks, but they also reinforce Claydol's Ice-type weakness, and Vaporeon in particular can aid Claydol with Wish support. To compensate, Steel-types resist their shared Grass-type weakness and Claydol itself is immune to Water-type's Electric-type weakness. Gyarados is an interesting case as Claydol resists both of its weaknesses, while it can take on many of Claydol's biggest adversaries, such as Scizor and, to an extent, Tyranitar.</p>

    <p>In the case of Dragon-types, Dragonite resists Claydol's Water-, Grass-, and Bug-type weaknesses, while reinforcing Steel-types' Fire-, Fighting-, and Ground-type weaknesses. Furthermore, your Steel-type can take Ice-, Rock-, and Dragon-type attacks aimed at your Dragon-type with ease. In the case of Tyranitar, a bulky Water-
    type, as already described, can usually fend off its assaults. Tyranitar itself can be very helpful as a partner, as not only does it have some defensive synergy with Claydol, but it can also prove very useful in disposing of Rotom-A and Jolteon, whom Claydol may struggle against otherwise. Using Tyranitar, however, adds a considerable weakness to Scizor, which can be addressed with Rotom-A or Zapdos.</p>

    [Optional Changes]

    <p>Claydol can be specialized for different teams, as it has a whole host of other support options that can easily be slotted in instead of Rapid Spin or Stealth Rock. Chief among these are Reflect and Light Screen, which have great merit on offensive teams that rely heavily on set-up sweepers, especially considering that Claydol also
    learns Stealth Rock. Claydol can also mimic pure support Uxie in this way, using Stealth Rock alongside dual screens with Explosion in place of Memento. Reflect and Light Screen take up both of Claydol's predefined support slots; therefore, Light Clay is recommended as the item over Leftovers on a dual screen set to maximize their effect. Gravity is another field effect that Claydol can set up, and although Claydol is slightly overshadowed by Bronzong or Forretress in this role, it is the only Pokemon capable of setting up Gravity who has STAB on Ground-type attacks. It also has access to Stone Edge, which gains perfect accuracy, and, unlike Bronzong, does not gain a Ground-type weakness under Gravity. Claydol also learns Trick Room and can be extremely useful to Trick Room teams, though remember to run a 0 IV in Speed and a Relaxed nature to minimize Claydol's Speed stat. Rest and Sleep Talk can be useful to provide Claydol with some form of recovery, if you want it to last longer throughout the battle. Lastly, Trick can be used alongside a Choice item to hopefully cripple a wall or counter switching in.</p>

    <p>Shadow Ball is another decent option, allowing Claydol to hit Ghost-types as they switch in to block Rapid Spin, which is particularly important as two of the three OU Ghost-types, Rotom-A and Gengar, are immune to Earth Power by virtue of their Levitate ability. Psychic is Claydol's other STAB choice, though it has a reputation as a poor attacking type in OU. Nevertheless, it can be useful as it has a chance to OHKO Gengar after Stealth Rock damage, and makes Claydol much more adequate at taking on Fighting-types. Bulky Water-types are one of Claydol's biggest worries, but it has a couple of options if these Pokemon are troublesome. Toxic is a very interesting option, as it can cripple the bulky Water-types who will commonly switch into Claydol, such as Swampert and Vaporeon, and other common switch-ins such as Rotom-A and Tyranitar as well. This is particularly notable as the only two types that are immune to Toxic—Poison- and Steel-types—are both hit for super effective damage by Claydol's Ground-type STAB. Grass Knot, with the standard EV spread, is guaranteed to 2HKO 252 HP Swampert through Leftovers, but it will deal pitiful damage to Suicune and Vaporeon.</p>

    <p>You may decide to run 236
    EVs in HP in order to maximize Leftovers recovery, which is particularly beneficial to Claydol as it is immune to sandstorm and takes minimal damage from entry hazards. Claydol's type combination would usually mark it out as a physical wall; however, you may decide to make greater use of Claydol's Special Defense stat, which often goes neglected due to Claydol's typing having difficulties in special walling. The same investment of 144 EVs in its Special Defense stat with a Calm nature will ensure that none of Timid Heatran's Fire Blast, Modest Magnezone's Hidden Power Ice, Timid Life Orb Zapdos's Hidden Power Grass, and Timid Choice Specs Jolteon's Hidden Power Grass will ever 2HKO with Leftovers. At the same time, Claydol has a fair chance of not being 2HKOed by Rash Life Orb Dragonite's Draco Meteor and Naive Life Orb Infernape's Grass Knot. Bear in mind, however, that this durability at one end of the scale will usually come at the expense of the other; so, you should choose what your individual Claydol should be best at taking on depending on your team's interests.</p>

    <p>While Claydol's Speed stat is not impressive, it is high enough to actually be quite threatening even without any Speed EVs—it is worth noting that Bold Claydol without any Speed EVs can outrun most Metagross, standard 8 Speed Scizor, and 96 Speed Tyranitar. Therefore, it can help in many situations not to cut your Claydol's Speed stat short; however, if Claydol runs a mixed set, this is often unavoidable. If Claydol runs a set with purely special attacks, it should use a Bold nature; likewise, with physical attacks, it should run an Impish nature. As previously mentioned, while Speed is useful, it is in your best interests to run a Relaxed nature in order to preserve Claydol's offensive stats on both sides if it is running a mixed set. If Claydol is running a specially defensive spread, use a Calm, Careful, or Sassy nature as appropriate.</p>

    [Counters]

    <p>Bulky Water-types are perhaps the best counters to Claydol, as most of them have enough bulk to take whatever Claydol throws at them and retaliate with their STAB moves. Gyarados is probably the best
    choice, as it is immune to Earthquake, takes little from Ice Beam, and can easily rack up Dragon Dances, or use Taunt in order to stop Claydol from supporting. The most Claydol can muster against Gyarados is Stone Edge, which does little to bulky variants thanks to Intimidate, and Toxic, which can be troublesome, but Gyarados can always run a Rest + Sleep Talk set in order to avoid this. The same is more or less true of for Suicune and Vaporeon, who both dislike Toxic but have strong Water-type STAB moves that will make Claydol tremble. Starmie has no such problem, thanks to its Natural Cure ability healing it of poison, and it also has access to Recover to offset any damage that Claydol can do with its STAB moves. Swampert does worse, as it is 2HKOed by the rare Grass Knot and dislikes Toxic, but the principle is much the same. Lastly, while most Dragon-types cannot take Claydol's Ice Beam, Kingdra is neutral to Ice-type attacks and can take almost anything Claydol throws at it while destroying Claydol with its Water-type STAB moves or setting up Dragon Dance.</p>

    <p>Bulky Ghost-types are the next-biggest worryGengar and Rotom-A are both extremely common, immune to Earthquake by virtue of their Levitate ability, and able to defeat Claydol with their STAB moves, although Gengar cannot switch into Shadow Ball or Psychic twice and defensive Rotom-A dislikes Toxic. Dusknoir acts identically but does not have any strong Ghost-type STAB moves nor an immunity to Ground-type moves. Yet, it is still an impassable fortress to Claydol.</p>

    <p>Bug- and
    Dark-types present a particular problem for Claydol as the common users of these types are more offensive and, in particular, have access to the move Pursuit, which can chase down and defeat a fleeing Claydol. Scizor can take anything Claydol throws its way barring Hidden Power Fire, and can Pursuit if Claydol tries to flee or Also, Scizor can U-turn, which will kill Claydol if it stays in and allows Scizor to escape from Claydol's Scizor check if it runs one. Tyranitar is much the same, but it has a more powerful STAB Pursuit and can also use STAB Crunch against a Claydol who tries to stay in; however, it is crippled by Toxic and can be 2HKOed by physical Claydol's Earthquake after Stealth Rock damage. Weavile also has access to STAB Pursuit and can scout with Fake Out, but is not strong enough to deal with a full-health Claydol, as not even Choice Band Ice Punch can OHKO 252 HP Claydol while Weavile is 2HKOed by Earthquake in return after Stealth Rock damage. Heracross is also worth noting, as it has a powerful STAB Megahorn, can absorb Toxic for a Guts boost, and has access to Pursuit. It is also the only one of the above who resists Earth Power, but this comes at a price of a weakness to Psychic.</p>

    <p>Grass-types can sometimes be a problem for Claydol as well. The biggest problem in this bunch is Celebi, who resists both of Claydol's STAB moves, doesn't take too much damage from Ice Beam and Shadow Ball, and hits Claydol hard with Grass Knot. Breloom does well too, despite weaknesses to Psychic and Ice Beam, and can use Spore or Seed Bomb to defeat Claydol. Roserade lacks the Ground-type resistance of its peers and also has weaknesses to Ice Beam and Psychic, but has a high Special Defense stat and access to STAB Grass Knot and Leaf Storm.</p>

    <p>Lastly, Bronzong and Skarmory can take just about anything from Claydol, but they cannot immediately pose a threat; Bronzong has to have Grass Knot to cause any real damage, and can only really hurt it by putting it to sleep with Hypnosis. Skarmory can whittle it down with Brave Bird, but it must be wary of being caught by Earth Power when it uses Roost if Claydol is slower. Blissey can take any special hit and is not terribly bothered by most physical attacks from Claydol. It can try to Toxic-stall Claydol to death, with Natural Cure curing Toxic and Softboiled recovering HP. However, if Claydol uses an unexpected Explosion, Blissey is pretty much out of the game, which can be crippling to teams that rely on it.</p>

    -------------------------------

    Changes:

    - Grammar Check 1, thanks to AccidentalGreed
    - GP Grammar Check 1, thanks to uragg
    - GP Grammar Check 2, thanks to Flora
  2. Ice-eyes

    Ice-eyes Simper Fi

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    No love for the lead TrickScarf set? It's reasonably effective in OU, does its 'Trick ---> SR ---> Spin ---> Explode or check stuff with EQ' thing against most common leads.

    Slashes should probably be swapped round to reflect the mention of not splitting EVs in SC.
  3. Despotar

    Despotar

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    I like the look of this set, but just to ask, why isn't Brave nature a option, as you can run a special set (EP/IB), which Brave would be a fair nature.
  4. Chou Toshio

    Chou Toshio @Fighting Necktie
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    What do you mean it cannot hit ghosts hard? If you are intent on hitting ghosts, why not use Shadow Ball?

    Ghost + Ground is pretty good coverage, certainly good enough for a support pokemon like Claydol. I admit I have not done any calcs, but Gengar's defenses are so pathetic, that I cannot imagine it taking the shadow ball well. Throw in SR and sand and I am sure it will not be holding up. As for Rotom, they often ev more to the defensive side, and its not like forretress can stay on them either . . .

    I think it is just odd to say "it cannot hurt ghosts" in the overview when it clearly can. I know you went over Shadow Ball in additional options.
  5. Alan

    Alan

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    maybe mention HP fire as an option to suprise skarmory and/or bronzong?

    and shadow ball should probably be slashed so you can ward off spin blockers

    imo
  6. scarloc

    scarloc

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    not bad a set overall. i feel that is out classe by bronzong as it has better resitances and a more powerful explosion. but rapid spin is a nice selling point. i disagree with the others above me as shadow ball will only 2HKO gengar whlist he will do 89.5% - 106.2% with his shadow ball with LO. if you want to KO gengar use psychic which has a chance to KO after SR. tyranitar will still trap you though.
  7. RaikouLover

    RaikouLover

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    I would like to see Psychic mentioned in there as a secondary attack. Can OHKO Gengar I'm sure and gives you SOMETHING to hit Rotom. Shadow Ball is alright but only hits 2 Pokemon where as Psychic grabs STAB and hits both well but hits everything else decent too. Psychic / Ground isn't bad coverage at all.
  8. scarloc

    scarloc

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    Psychic won't OHKO gengar even with 114 SPA ev's. you would need SR to KO it.
  9. Setsuna

    Setsuna Prototype
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    [​IMG]

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  10. Seven Deadly Sins

    Seven Deadly Sins ~hallelujah~
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  11. bugmaniacbob

    bugmaniacbob Floats like a Butterfree, stings like a Metapod
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    Brave increases Attack and reduces Speed, so I'm not sure why you would run it on a special set. Claydol's speed is actually pretty useful for a defensive Pokemon, so you shouldn't be trying to reduce it unless you are running a mixed set.

    Shadow Ball isn't even guaranteed to 2HKO Gengar, and from that you can probably see that most Ghosts don't actually have anything to fear from it. Gengar is literally the only Ghost you can actually damage significantly and even then that's shaky, because LO Gengar can easily OHKO in turn. Not to mention that Claydol doesn't want to be wasting turns randomly firing off Shadow Balls, even though that's pretty much the only way Claydol can actually beat Gengar. If you really want to stop Gengar, use STAB Psychic, but even that can't OHKO without Stealth Rock.

    So sure, it can hurt Gengar, but I stand by the assertion that Shadow Ball is of little help and I cannot in good conscience state that it can realistically threaten Ghosts without massively detracting from its overall usefulness.

    114 SpA Claydol HP Fire vs. 252 HP Skarmory: 35.3% - 41.9%
    114 SpA Claydol HP Fire vs. 252 HP 92 SpD Sassy Bronzong: 19.5% - 23.1%

    oh and just for perspective

    114 SpA Claydol HP Fire vs. 248 HP Scizor: 61.8% - 73.5%
    Claydol's offensive stats are simply too poor for it to "surprise" anything.

    I'd agree that Psychic is more useful than Shadow Ball, but still not enough to really warrant a slash, especially considering:

    Oh, and it's not even guaranteed to 4HKO Rotom-A.
  12. Plus

    Plus freedom of the son
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  13. Setsuna

    Setsuna Prototype
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    Good work. Ready for proofreading.
  14. AccidentalGreed

    AccidentalGreed HOMERUN, CABRONES
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    Changes in Green
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    Comments in Blue


    And I'm sorry for not correcting the OO and Counters, but I don't have much time, and overall, this needs somewhat of a conciseness check due to fluff and extraneous analyses.


    [Overview]

    <p>Claydol, once one of the most prominent support Pokemon around, now lies overshadowed by many of the newer faces and old rivals that it has only a few advantages over. Bronzong, with a superior defensive typing and slightly higher stats, is more popular as a supporter, and Claydol’s only advantages from a support point of view are its much higher Speed, allowing it to outpace most Scizor and to an extent Tyranitar, and access to Rapid Spin.butEven in the Rapid Spinner department it is overshadowed by Pokemon such as Forretress, who also has a superior defensive typing as well as being as good a support movepool as Claydol, in addition to having the ability to strike Ghost-types hard., something Claydol could never achieve. Claydol’s many weaknesses to common types do not help its case either. However, Claydol’s balanced offensive and defensive stats as well as Ground-type STAB still make it worth using in certain situations.</p>

    [SET]
    name: OU Support
    move 1: Rapid Spin
    move 2: Stealth Rock
    move 3: Earthquake / Earth Power
    move 4: Explosion / Ice Beam
    item: Leftovers
    nature: Relaxed / Bold
    evs: 252 HP / 144 Def / 114 SpA

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Rapid Spin is the most important move on the set, as it removes entry hazards that can be crippling for the rest of the Pokemon on your team. You can also cut the opponent’s time short with your own Stealth Rock. The last two slots should be devoted to attacking moves, as there are a lot of Pokemon in OU that can cause Claydol trouble. The first of these attacking moves should be a STAB Ground-type move, as Ground is an excellent attacking type and helps Claydol greatly with the common Steel-types of OU. Claydol has two choices for this slot, Earth Power and Earthquake. Earthquake is usually the superior choice, as it has a chance to OHKO Lucario and Infernape, as well as a 2HKO Tyranitar and Jirachi, which Earth Power cannot do. However, Earth Power is a guaranteed 2HKO on standard Choice Band Metagross, is not affected by Intimidate, and it is desirable to run Earth Power to avoid splitting EVs. In the last slot there are a number of options, but generally it is best to avoid splitting EVs; if you run Earth Power, go for Ice Beam, and if you run Earthquake, use Explosion, though you can switch them round if you are willing to split EVs. (Explain why splitting EV’s is such a bad thing. An inexperienced player may not know automatically)</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Determining the last slot is a complicated decision. If you have chosen Earth Power, it is advisable that you choose a second special move to avoid having to split EVs. Ice Beam is the most common companion on this set, as it hits the Flying- and Grass-types that resist Ground for super effective damage, and is also very helpful to allow Claydol to take on the common Dragon-types in OU such as Dragonite and Flygon. However, it lacks power when hitting for neutral damage against Claydol’s more prominent foes, such as Rotom-A. Another option that merits a mention is Explosion, which may seem ridiculous considering the fact that the first switch into Claydol is likely to be a Ghost-type.However it really is the most realistic way that Claydol will be able to cause significant damage to the opponent’s team, if that is important to you, andOverall, Explosion can cause a gap in the opponent’s team, as well as utilizing a free switch, that could give you a good opportunity to sweep or manage a counter.</p>

    <p>Claydol is difficult to distribute EVs to given its multiple traits and talents, and you will very rarely find that most Claydol carry the same exact EVs. The 252 HP EVs given here grant you maximum HP for overall defensive stability, and in the standard spread 144 EVs are allocated to Defense, ensuring that it is never 2HKOed by Jolly Life Orb Mamoswine’s Ice Shard, and also survives a Swords Dance Infernape’s boosted Fire Punch. It is also never OHKOed by Choice Band Machamp’s Payback. 114 EVs to Special Attack means that you are guaranteed to 2HKO 252 HP Metagross with Earth Power, and also gives Ice Beam a reasonable chance to OHKO 4 HP Flygon even without Stealth Rock, and allows you to OHKO non-bulky Dragonite and 252 HP Gliscor as well as 2HKO 4 HP Zapdos with Stealth Rock down. (Meh…Zapdos runs Roost, and the most common Zapdos today is the defensively-oriented ones. Take this as salt, but it’s my experience)</p>

    [Team Options]

    <p>As Claydol has no reliable recovery moves of its own, it will be worn down very quickly, and thus Wish support can be very useful. Blissey and Vaporeon are the most notable users of Wish, and both have considerable defensive synergy with Claydol; Blissey can take almost any Special attack aimed at Claydol with ease, and as the majority of its weaknesses are to types frequently associated with Special moves, Blissey can be considered a very good partner for Claydol regardless of Wish. On Claydol’s part, it resists Blissey’s only weakness, to , which is Fighting-type moves. Vaporeon on the other hand can heal itself by switching into Water-type attacks aimed at Claydol thanks to its ability, Water Absorb, while also resisting Claydol’s Ice weakness and being a good check to many of Claydol’s normal counters such as Gyarados, although they share a Grass-type weakness and Claydol cannot adequately deal with Electric-types such as Jolteon and Rotom-A who threaten Vaporeon. (You may need a conciseness check here) Also, Claydol will usually find its most useful skill is Rapid Spin, so will need help from its team-mates to get rid of Ghost-types. Scizor and Tyranitar both have very powerful Pursuits and when equipped with Choice Band can usually dispatch Ghosts with little problem; however, Rotom-A can be difficult to deal with as defensive variants cannot be OHKOed by any Pursuit if they do not switch out, and it can simply OHKO Scizor with Overheat or cripple either with Will-O-Wisp. Heracross can use this to its advantage, however, and can absorb Will-O-Wisp for a boost thanks to its Guts ability, and also has access to Pursuit.</p>

    <p>Claydol is unlikely to be a direct offensive complement to any Pokemon in OU, but can still help its teammates in a number of different ways, the most notable being the way it can influence the entry hazards during the game. By setting up Stealth Rock, passive damage to the opponent’s Pokemon will build up over time, so you should make sure that you include Pokemon that benefit most from this sort of support, usually in the form of set-up sweepers such as Swords Dance Lucario and Dragon Dance Dragonite. At the same time, Claydol can remove entry hazards thanks to Rapid Spin, which is enormously beneficial especially to Pokemon weak to Stealth Rock that will be switching in and out often, such as Dragonite and Gyarados. A Rapid Spinner is almost a necessity should you be using a Pokemon that is doubly weak to Rock, such as Yanmega or Moltres, and Claydol is an able candidate for the job.</p>

    <p>Defensively, Claydol will need good partners to cover up its many weaknesses. Steel-types are perhaps the very best defensive complements, and they have very good defensive synergy together – Steel-types resist five of Claydol’s six weaknesses (Dark, Ghost, Grass, Ice, and Bug), while Claydol resists Fighting and Ground attacks, two of Steel’s three weaknesses, and can also deal with most Fire-types in OU to an extent, Steel’s third weakness. There are two types that resist both Fire- and Water-type attacks: Dragons and Water-types themselves. In the case of Water-types, bulky Pokemon such as Vaporeon and Suicune make excellent partners, as not only do they resist Fire and Water, but they also reinforce Claydol’s Ice weakness, and Vaporeon in particular can aid Claydol with Wish support. To compensate, Steel-types resist their Grass-type weaknesses and Claydol itself resists its Electric-type weakness. Gyarados is an interesting case as Claydol resists both of its weaknesses, while it can take on many of Claydol’s biggest adversaries to a reasonable extent, such as Scizor and to an extent Tyranitar.</p>

    <p>In the case of Dragons, Dragonite resists Claydol’s Water-, Grass-, and Bug-type weaknesses, while reinforcing Steel’s Fire-, Fighting-, and Ground-type weaknesses. Furthermore, your Steel-type can take Ice-, Rock-, and Dragon-type attacks aimed at your Dragon-type with ease – or if your Steel-type is Scizor, Skarmory, or Heatran, and hence does not resist Rock-type attacks, Claydol can take Rock-type attacks well itself. (Conciseness check, and it should be perfectly obvious Steel types and Claydol in general have defensive synergy) In the case of Tyranitar, a bulky Water-type, as already described, can usually fend off its assaults. Tyranitar itself can be very helpful as a partner, as not only does it have some defensive synergy with Claydol, but it can also prove very useful in disposing of Rotom-A and Jolteon, whom you may struggle against otherwise. However, it does increase a weakness to Scizor, which if your Steel-type is not Skarmory, Heatran, or Magnezone, should be addressed with a Pokemon such as Zapdos or Rotom-A, who can take anything Scizor throws at it and OHKO back. Using Tyranitar, however, adds a weakness to Scizor, which should be addressed with textbook counters such as Rotom-A and Zapdos.</p>
  15. uraga

    uraga Walking the streets with you in your worn-out jeans
    is a Contributor Alumnus

    Joined:
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    [Overview]

    <p>Claydol, once one of the most prominent support Pokemon around, now lies overshadowed by many of the newer faces and old rivals that it has only a few advantages over. Bronzong, with a superior defensive typing and slightly higher stats, is more popular as a supporter, and Claydol’s only advantages from a support point of view are its much higher Speed, allowing it to outpace most Scizor and to an extent Tyranitar, and access to Rapid Spin. Even in the Rapid Spinner department, however, it is overshadowed by Pokemon such as Forretress, who also has a superior defensive typing, as well as having just as good a support movepool as Claydol, in addition to and the ability to strike Ghost-types hard. Claydol’s many weaknesses to common types do not help its case either. However, Claydol’s balanced offensive and defensive stats as well as its Ground-type STAB still make it worth using in certain situations.</p>

    [SET]
    name: OU Support
    move 1: Rapid Spin
    move 2: Stealth Rock
    move 3: Earthquake / Earth Power
    move 4: Explosion / Ice Beam
    item: Leftovers
    nature: Relaxed / Bold
    evs: 252 HP / 144 Def / 114 SpA

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Rapid Spin is the most important move on the set, as it removes entry hazards that can be crippling for the rest of the Pokemon on your team. You can also cut the opponent’s time short with your own Stealth Rock. The last two slots should be devoted to attacking moves, as there are a lot of Pokemon in OU who (you used who earlier when referring to Forry) can cause Claydol trouble. The first of these attacking moves should be a STAB Ground-type move, as Ground is an excellent attacking type and helps Claydol greatly with common Steel-types. Claydol has two choices for this slot,: Earth Power and Earthquake. Earthquake is usually the superior choice, as it has a chance to OHKO Lucario and Infernape, as well as 2HKO Tyranitar and Jirachi, which Earth Power cannot do. However, Earth Power is a guaranteed 2HKO on standard Choice Band Metagross, is not affected by Intimidate, and it is desirable to run Earth Power to avoid prevents the need for splitting EVs. In the last slot there are a number of options, but generally it is best to avoid splitting EVs, since if you do so, both of your offensive moves will be weaker as a result and you may find yourself losing out on important OHKOs and 2HKOs. Thus, if you run Earth Power, go for Ice Beam, and if you run Earthquake, use Explosion, though you can switch them around if you are willing to split EVs. </p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Determining the last slot is a complicated decision. If you have chosen Earth Power, it is advisable that you choose a second special move to avoid having to split EVs. Ice Beam is the most common companion on this set, as it hits the Flying- and Grass-types that resist Ground for super effective damage, and is also very helpful to allow Claydol to for taking on the common Dragon-types in OU such as Dragonite and Flygon. However, it lacks power when hitting for neutral damage against Claydol’s more prominent foes, such as Rotom-A. Another option that merits a mention is Explosion, which may seem ridiculous considering the fact that the first switch into Claydol is likely to be a Ghost-type. However, it really is the most realistic way that Claydol will be able to cause significant damage to the opponent’s team. Explosion can cause create an important gap in the opponent’s team, especially if you can hit a bulky Water- or Grass-type, as well as granting a free switch that could give you the opportunity to set up for a sweep or regain momentum.</p>

    <p>Claydol is difficult to distribute EVs to given its multiple traits and talents, and you will very rarely find that most Claydol carry the same exact EVs. The 252 HP EVs given here grant you maximum HP for overall defensive stability, and in the standard spread 144 EVs are allocated to Defense, ensuring that it is never 2HKOed by Jolly Life Orb Mamoswine’s Ice Shard, and also survives a or OHKOed by Swords Dance Infernape’s boosted Fire Punch. It is also never OHKOed by Choice Band Machamp’s Payback. 114 EVs in Special Attack means that you are guaranteed to 2HKO 252 HP Metagross with Earth Power, and also gives Ice Beam a reasonable chance to OHKO 4 HP Flygon, even without Stealth Rock, and allows you to OHKO non-bulky Dragonite and 252 HP Gliscor with Stealth Rock down. If running a physical set, then the same investment of 114 EVs in Attack allows Claydol's Earthquake to OHKO Lucario and Infernape with Stealth Rock, as well as to and 2HKO non-bulky Jirachi and Tyranitar. It also while also adding more sting to Explosion.</p>

    [Team Options]

    <p>As Claydol has no reliable recovery moves of its own, it will be worn down very quickly., and Thus, Wish support can be very useful. Blissey and Vaporeon are the most notable users of Wish, and both have considerable defensive synergy with Claydol; Blissey can take almost any special attack aimed at Claydol with ease, and as the majority of Claydol's weaknesses are to types frequently associated with special moves, Blissey can be considered a very good partner for Claydol regardless of Wish. On Claydol’s part, it resists Blissey’s only weakness, Fighting-type moves. Vaporeon, on the other hand, can heal itself by switching into Water-type attacks aimed at Claydol thanks to its ability, Water Absorb, while also resisting Claydol’s Ice-type weakness and being a good check to many of Claydol’s normal counters, such as Gyarados,. although they However, Claydol shares a Grass-type weakness with Vaporeon and Claydol cannot adequately deal with Electric-types, such as Jolteon and Rotom-A, who threaten Vaporeon. Also, Claydol will usually find that its most useful skill is Rapid Spin, so it will need help from its teammates to get rid of Ghost-types. Scizor and Tyranitar both have very powerful Pursuits and when equipped with Choice Band can usually dispatch Ghosts with little problem;. However, Rotom-A can be difficult to deal with as defensive variants cannot be OHKOed by any Pursuit if they do not switch out, and it can subsequently simply OHKO Scizor with Overheat or cripple either with Will-O-Wisp. Heracross, who also has access to Pursuit, can use this to its advantage, however, and since it can absorb Will-O-Wisp for a boost thanks to its Guts ability, and also has access to Pursuit.</p>

    <p>Claydol is unlikely to be a direct offensive complement to any Pokemon in OU, but can still help its teammates in a number of different ways, the most notably being the way it can influencing the entry hazards during the game. By setting up Stealth Rock, passive damage to the opponent’s Pokemon will build up over time, so you should make sure that you include Pokemon that benefit most from this sort of support, usually in the form of set-up sweepers such as Swords Dance Lucario and Dragon Dance Dragonite. At the same time, Claydol can remove entry hazards thanks to Rapid Spin, which is enormously beneficial, especially to Pokemon weak to Stealth Rock that will be switching in and out often, such as Dragonite and Gyarados. A Rapid Spinner is almost a necessity should you be using a Pokemon that is 4x weak to Rock, such as Yanmega or Moltres, and Claydol is an able candidate for the job.</p>

    <p>Defensively, Claydol will need good partners to cover up its many weaknesses. Steel-types are perhaps the very best defensive complements, as they have very good defensive synergy together – Steel-types resist five of Claydol’s six weaknesses (Dark, Ghost, Grass, Ice, and Bug), while Claydol resists Fighting- and Ground-type attacks, two of Steel’s three weaknesses, and can also deal with most Fire-types in OU to an extent, Steel’s third weakness. There are two types that resist both Fire- and Water-type attacks – Dragon-types and Water-types themselves. In the case of Water-types, bulky Pokemon such as Vaporeon and Suicune make excellent partners; as not only do they resist Fire- and Water-type attacks, but they also reinforce Claydol’s Ice-type weakness, and Vaporeon in particular can aid Claydol with Wish support. To compensate, Steel-types resist their shared Grass-type weakness, while Claydol itself resists its is immune to the bulky Water-type's Electric-type weakness. Gyarados is an interesting case as Claydol resists both of its weaknesses, while it can take on many of Claydol’s biggest adversaries, such as Scizor and, to an extent, Tyranitar.</p>

    <p>In the case of Dragon-types, Dragonite resists Claydol’s Water-, Grass-, and Bug-type weaknesses, while reinforcing Steel-types' Fire-, Fighting-, and Ground-type weaknesses. Furthermore, your Steel-type can take Ice-, Rock-, and Dragon-type attacks aimed at your Dragon-type with ease. In the case of Tyranitar, a bulky Water-type, as already described, can usually fend off its assaults. Tyranitar itself can be very helpful as a partner, as not only does it have some defensive synergy with Claydol, but it can also prove very useful in disposing of Rotom-A and Jolteon, whom you may struggle against otherwise. Using Tyranitar, however, adds a considerable weakness to Scizor, which can be addressed with Rotom-A or Zapdos.</p>

    [Optional Changes]

    <p>Claydol can be specialized for different teams, as it has a whole host of other support options that are useful for many different teams and styles of play, that can easily be slotted in instead of Rapid Spin or Stealth Rock. Chief among these are Reflect and Light Screen, which have great merit on offensive teams that rely heavily on set-up sweepers, especially considering that Claydol also learns Stealth Rock. Claydol can also mimic pure support Uxie in this way, using Stealth Rock alongside dual screens with Explosion in place of Memento. Reflect and Light Screen take up both of your predefined support slots, meaning that it is advisable to maximize their effect; and therefore, Light Clay is recommended as the item over Leftovers on a dual screen set. Gravity is another field effect that Claydol can set up, and although Claydol is slightly overshadowed by Bronzong or Forretress in this role, it is the only Pokemon capable of setting up Gravity that has STAB on Ground-type attacks. Earthquake and Earth Power, one of the most deadly moves under Gravity conditions, as well as It also has access to Stone Edge, which gains perfect accuracy, and, unlike Bronzong, does not gain a Ground-type weakness under Gravity either. Claydol also learns Trick Room and can be extremely useful to Trick Room teams, though remember to run a 0 IV in Speed and a Relaxed nature so as to minimize your Speed stat. Rest and Sleep Talk can be useful to provide Claydol with some form of recovery, if you want it to last longer throughout the battle. Lastly, Trick can be used alongside a Choice item to hopefully cripple a wall or counter switching in.</p>

    <p>Shadow Ball is another decent option, allowing you to hit Ghost-types as they switch in to block Rapid Spin, which is particularly important as two of the three OU Ghosts, Rotom-A and Gengar, are immune to Earth Power by virtue of their Levitate ability. Psychic is Claydol’s other STAB choice, though it has a reputation as a poor attacking type in OU. Nevertheless, it can be useful as it has a chance to OHKO Gengar after Stealth Rock damage, and makes Claydol much more adequate at taking on Fighting-types. Bulky Water-types are one of Claydol’s biggest worries, and it has a couple of options if these Pokemon are particularly troubling to you. Toxic is a very interesting option, as it can cripple the bulky Water-types that will commonly switch into Claydol, such as Swampert and Vaporeon, and can also cripple other common switch-ins such as Rotom-A and Tyranitar as well. This is particularly notable as the only two types that are immune to Toxic – Poison- and Steel-types – are both hit for super effective damage by Claydol’s Ground-type STAB. Grass Knot, with the standard EV spread, is guaranteed to 2HKO 252 HP Swampert through Leftovers, but will do less than a pittance to Suicune and Vaporeon.</p>

    <p>You may decide to run 236 EVs in HP in order to maximize Leftovers recovery, which is particularly beneficial to Claydol as it is immune to sandstorm as well as taking minimal damage from entry hazards. Claydol's type combination would usually mark it out as a physical wall,; however, you may decide to make greater use of Claydol’s Special Defense stat, which often goes neglected with a typing so fraught with difficulties in the area of special walling. The same investment of 144 EVs in its Special Defense stat with a Calm nature will ensure that none of Timid Heatran’s Fire Blast, Modest Magnezone’s Hidden Power Ice, Timid Life Orb Zapdos’s Hidden Power Grass, and Timid Choice Specs Jolteon’s Hidden Power Grass will ever 2HKO with Leftovers. At the same time, Claydol has a fair chance of not being 2HKOed by Rash Life Orb Dragonite’s Draco Meteor and Naïve Life Orb Infernape’s Grass Knot. Bear in mind, however, that this durability at one end of the scale will usually come at the expense of the other,; and so, you should choose what your individual Claydol should be best at taking on depending on your team’s own interests.</p>

    <p>While Claydol’s Speed stat is not impressive, it is high enough to actually be quite threatening even without any Speed EVs – it is worth noting that Bold Claydol without any Speed EVs can outrun most Metagross as well as the standard 8 Speed Scizor and 96 Speed Tyranitar. Therefore, it can help in many situations not to cut your Speed stat short,; however, if you run a mixed set, this is often unavoidable. If you are running a set with purely special attacks, you should use a Bold nature,; likewise, with physical attacks, you should run an Impish nature. As previously mentioned, while the unadulterated Speed stat is useful, it is in your best interests to run a Relaxed nature in order to preserve your offensive stats on both sides if you are running a mixed set. If you are running a specially defensive spread, use a Calm, Careful, or Sassy nature as appropriate.</p>

    [Counters]

    <p>Bulky Water-types are perhaps the best counters to Claydol, as most of them have enough bulk to take whatever Claydol throws at them and retaliate with their STAB moves. Gyarados is probably the best choice, as it is immune to Earthquake, and takes little from Ice Beam, and can easily rack up Dragon Dances against Claydol, or use Taunt in order to stop Claydol from trying any support tactics. The most Claydol can muster against Gyarados is Stone Edge, which does little to bulky variants thanks to Intimidate, and Toxic, which can be troublesome, but Gyarados can always run a Rest + Sleep Talk set in order to avoid this. The same is more or less true of Suicune and Vaporeon, who both dislike Toxic but have strong Water-type STAB moves that will make Claydol tremble. Starmie has no such problem, thanks to its Natural Cure ability healing it of poison, and it also has access to Recover to offset any damage that Claydol can do with its STAB moves. Swampert does worse, as it is 2HKOed by the rare Grass Knot and dislikes Toxic, but the principle is much the same.</p>

    <p>Bulky Ghost-types are the next-biggest worry – Gengar and Rotom-A are both extremely common, and are both immune to Earthquake by virtue of their Levitate ability, and can both able to defeat Claydol with their STAB moves, although Gengar cannot switch twice into Shadow Ball or Psychic twice and defensive Rotom-A dislikes Toxic. Further down the barrel, Dusknoir acts on the same principle, but does not have any strong Ghost-type STAB moves,. Yet, it is still an impassable fortress to Claydol.</p>

    <p>Bug-types and Dark-types present a particular problem for Claydol as the common users of these types are more offensive and, in particular, have access to the move Pursuit, which can chase down and defeat a fleeing Claydol. Scizor is pretty much unafraid of anything Claydol can throw its way barring Hidden Power Fire, and can Pursuit if Claydol tries to flee, or else use U-turn, which will kill Claydol if it stays in and allows Scizor to escape from your Scizor check if Claydol runs. Tyranitar is much the same, but has a more powerful STAB Pursuit and can also use STAB Crunch against a Claydol that tries to stay in,; however, it is crippled by Toxic and can be 2HKOed by physical Claydol’s Earthquake after Stealth Rock damage. Weavile also has access to STAB Pursuit, and can also scout with Fake Out, but is not strong enough to deal with a full-health Claydol, as not even Choice Band Night Slash can OHKO 252 HP Claydol, and it while Weavile is 2HKOed by Earthquake after Stealth Rock damage. Heracross is also worth noting, as it has a powerful STAB Megahorn, and can absorb Toxic for a Guts boost, and also has access to Pursuit. It is also the only one of the above that resists Earth Power, but this comes at a price of a weakness to Psychic.</p>

    <p>Grass-types can sometimes be a problem for Claydol as well. The biggest problem in this bunch is Celebi, who resists both of Claydol’s STAB moves, doesn't take too much damage from and has the necessary defensive stats to overcome weaknesses to Ice Beam and Shadow Ball, and can hits Claydol hard with Grass Knot. Breloom does well also, despite weaknesses to Psychic and Ice Beam, and can use Spore or Seed Bomb to defeat Claydol with Seed Bomb. Roserade lacks the Earthquake resistance of its peers and also has weaknesses to Ice Beam and Psychic, but has a high Special Defense stat and also has access to Grass Knot and Leaf Storm. While most Dragon-types cannot take Claydol’s Ice Beam, Kingdra is neutral to Ice-type attacks and can take almost anything Claydol throws at it, and can while destroying Claydol with its Water-type STAB moves.</p>

    <p>Lastly, Bronzong and Skarmory can take just about anything from Claydol, but cannot immediately pose a threat; Bronzong has to have Grass Knot to cause any real damage, and can only really hurt it by putting it to sleep with Hypnosis. Skarmory can whittle it down with Brave Bird, but must be wary of being caught by Earth Power when it uses Roost if Claydol is slower. Blissey can take any special hit at all and is not terribly bothered by most physical attacks from Claydol, and can try to Toxic-stall Claydol to death, while being immune to Toxic itself thanks to Natural Cure, and mitigating damage taken with Softboiled,. However, if Claydol uses an unexpected Explosion, Blissey is pretty much out of the game, which can be crippling to teams that rely on her.</p>


    GP CHECK 1/2

    STAMP [​IMG]
  16. Setsuna

    Setsuna Prototype
    is a Tutor Alumnusis a Site Staff Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Researcher Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis an Administrator Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

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    Changes have been implemented, this is ready for GP #2.
  17. bugmaniacbob

    bugmaniacbob Floats like a Butterfree, stings like a Metapod
    is a Smogon Media Contributoris an Artist Alumnusis a CAP Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus

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    Quiet bump

    Any GP checks available?
  18. Flora

    Flora Yep, that tasted purple!
    is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Pokemon Researcheris a Smogon Media Contributoris a Contributor Alumnus
    Moderator

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    GP Check 2/2:
    additions/changes/comments in blue
    removals in red

    Show Hide
    [Overview]

    <p>Claydol, once one of the most prominent support Pokemon around, now lies overshadowed by many of the newer faces and older rivals that it has only a few advantages over. Bronzong, with a superior defensive typing and slightly higher stats, is more popular as a supporter, and Claydol's only advantages from a support point of view are its much higher Speed, allowing it to outpace most Scizor and to an extent Tyranitar, and access to Rapid Spin. Even in the Rapid Spinner Spinning department, however, it is overshadowed by Pokemon such as Forretress, who has have a superior defensive typing, just as good a support movepool as Claydol, and the ability to strike Ghost-types hard. Claydol's many weaknesses to common types do not help its case either. However, Claydol's balanced offensive and defensive stats as well as its Ground-type STAB still make it worth using in certain situations.</p>

    [SET]
    name: OU Support
    move 1: Rapid Spin
    move 2: Stealth Rock
    move 3: Earthquake / Earth Power
    move 4: Explosion / Ice Beam
    item: Leftovers
    nature: Relaxed / Bold
    evs: 252 HP / 144 Def / 114 SpA

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Rapid Spin is the most important move on the set, as it removes entry hazards that can be crippling for the rest of the Pokemon on your team. You can also cut the opponent's time short with your own Stealth Rock. In the last two slots, attacking moves should be chosen should be devoted to attacking moves, as there are a lot of Pokemon in OU who can cause Claydol trouble. The first of these attacking moves should be a STAB Ground-type move, as Ground is an excellent attacking type and helps Claydol greatly with common Steel-types. Claydol has two choices for this slot: Earth Power and Earthquake. Earthquake is usually the superior choice, as it has a chance to OHKO Lucario and Infernape, as well as 2HKO Tyranitar and Jirachi, which Earth Power cannot do. However, Earth Power is a guaranteed 2HKO on standard Choice Band Metagross, is not affected by Intimidate, and prevents the need for splitting EVs if you wish to run Ice Beam. In the last slot there are a number of options, but generally it is best to avoid splitting EVs, since if you do so, both of your offensive moves will be weaker and you may find yourself losing out on important OHKOs and 2HKOs. Thus, if you run Earth Power, go for Ice Beam, and if you run Earthquake, use Explosion, though you can switch them around if you are willing to split EVs.</p>

    (avoiding repetition from "the')

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Determining the last slot is a complicated decision. If you have chosen Earth Power, it is advisable that you choose a second special move to avoid having to splitting EVs. Ice Beam is the most common companion option on this set, as it hits the Flying- and Grass-types that who resist Ground for super effective damage, and is also very helpful for taking on the common Dragon-types in OU such as Dragonite and Flygon. However, it lacks power when hitting for neutral damage against Claydol's more prominent foes, such as Rotom-A. On the physical side, the option that most merits a mention is Explosion, which may seem ridiculous considering the fact that the first switch into Claydol is likely to be usually a Ghost-type. However, it really is the most realistic way that Claydol will be able to cause significant damage to the opponent's team. Explosion can create an important gap in the opponent's team, especially if you can hit a bulky Water- or Grass-type, as well as granting a free switch that could give you the opportunity to set up for a sweep or regain momentum.</p>

    <p>Claydol is difficult to distribute EVs to given its multiple traits and talents, and you will very rarely find that most Claydol carry the same exact EVs. The 252 HP EVs given here grant you Claydol maximum HP for overall defensive stability, and in the standard spread 144 Defense EVs are allocated to Defense, ensure that it is never 2HKOed by Jolly Life Orb Mamoswine's Ice Shard or OHKOed by Swords Dance Infernape's boosted Fire Punch. It is also never OHKOed by Choice Band Machamp's Payback. 114 EVs in Special Attack means that you Claydol are is guaranteed to 2HKO 252 HP Metagross with Earth Power. (period) and It also gives Ice Beam a reasonable chance to OHKO 4 HP Flygon even without Stealth Rock, and allows you Claydol to OHKO non-bulky Dragonite and 252 HP Gliscor with Stealth Rock down. If running a physical set, then the same investment of 114 EVs in Attack allows Claydol's Earthquake to OHKO Lucario and Infernape with Stealth Rock and 2HKO non-bulky Jirachi and Tyranitar, while also adding more sting to Explosion.</p>

    [Team Options]

    <p>As Claydol has no reliable recovery moves of its own, it will be worn down very quickly. Thus, Wish support can be very useful. Blissey and Vaporeon are the most notable users of Wish, and both have considerable defensive synergy with Claydol; Blissey can take almost any special attack aimed at Claydol with ease, and as the majority of Claydol's weaknesses are frequently special attacks to types frequently associated with special moves, Blissey can be considered a very good great partner for Claydol regardless of Wish. On Claydol's part, it resists Blissey's only weakness: (colon) Fighting-type moves. Vaporeon, on the other hand, can heal itself by switching into Water-type attacks aimed at Claydol thanks to its ability, Water Absorb, while also resisting Claydol's Ice-type weakness and being a good check to many of Claydol's normal counters such as Gyarados. However, Claydol shares a Grass-type weakness with Vaporeon and cannot adequately deal with Electric-types, such as Jolteon and Rotom-A, who threaten Vaporeon. Claydol will usually find that its most useful skill move is Rapid Spin, so it will need help from its teammates to get rid of Ghost-types. Scizor and Tyranitar both have very powerful Pursuits and can dispatch Ghost-types easily with a Choice Band equipped when equipped with a Choice Band, they can usually dispatch Ghost with little problem . However, Rotom-A can be difficult to deal with as defensive variants cannot be OHKOed by any Pursuit if they do not switch out and can subsequently OHKO Scizor with Overheat or cripple either both with Will-O-Wisp. Heracross, who also has access to Pursuit, can use this Rotom-A's Will-O-Wisp to its advantage, however, since it can absorb Will-O-Wisp for a boost thanks to its Guts ability.</p>

    <p>Claydol is unlikely to be a direct offensive complement to any Pokemon in OU, but it can still help its teammates in a number of different ways, most notably influencing the control of entry hazards during the game. By setting up Stealth Rock, passive damage to the opponent's Pokemon will build up over time, so you should make sure that you include Pokemon set-up sweepers such as Swords Dance Lucario and Dragon Dance Dragonite that who benefit most from this sort of support, usually in the form of set-up sweepers such as Swords Dance Lucario and Dragon Dance Dragonite. At the same time, Claydol can remove entry hazards thanks to Rapid Spin, which is enormously beneficial especially to helps Pokemon who switch in and out often and are weak to Stealth Rock that will be switch in and out often, such as Dragonite and Gyarados. A Rapid Spinner is almost a necessity should you be using a Pokemon that is 4x weak to Rock , such as Yanmega or Moltres, and Claydol is an able candidate for the job (sounds identical to the other sentence before it).</p>

    <p>Defensively, Claydol will need good partners to cover up its many weaknesses. Steel-types are perhaps the very best defensive complements, as they have very good great defensive synergy together with Claydol – Steel-types resist five of Claydol's six weaknesses (Dark, Ghost, Grass, Ice, and Bug), while Claydol resists Fighting- and Ground-type attacks, two of Steel's three weaknesses, and can deal with most Fire-types in OU to an extent. There are two types that resist both Fire- and Water-type attacks: (colon) Dragon-types and Water-types themselves. In the case of Water-types, bulky Pokemon such as Vaporeon and Suicune make excellent partners; not only do they resist Fire- and Water-type attacks, but they also reinforce Claydol's Ice-type weakness, and Vaporeon in particular can aid Claydol with Wish support. To compensate, Steel-types resist their shared Grass-type weakness and Claydol itself is immune to the Water-type's Electric-type weakness. Gyarados is an interesting case as Claydol resists both of its weaknesses, while it can take on many of Claydol's biggest adversaries, such as Scizor and, to an extent, Tyranitar.</p>

    <p>In the case of Dragon-types, Dragonite resists Claydol's Water-, Grass-, and Bug-type weaknesses, while reinforcing Steel-types' Fire-, Fighting-, and Ground-type weaknesses. Furthermore, your Steel-type can take Ice-, Rock-, and Dragon-type attacks aimed at your Dragon-type with ease. In the case of Tyranitar, a bulky Water-type, as already described, can usually fend off its assaults. Tyranitar itself can be very helpful as a partner, as not only does it have some defensive synergy with Claydol, but it can also prove very useful in disposing of Rotom-A and Jolteon, whom you Claydol may struggle against otherwise. Using Tyranitar, however, adds a considerable weakness to Scizor, which can be addressed with Rotom-A or Zapdos.</p>

    [Optional Changes]

    <p>Claydol can be specialized for different teams, as it has a whole host of other support options that can easily be slotted in instead of Rapid Spin or Stealth Rock. Chief among these are Reflect and Light Screen, which have great merit on offensive teams that rely heavily on set-up sweepers, especially considering that Claydol also learns Stealth Rock. Claydol can also mimic pure support Uxie in this way, using Stealth Rock alongside dual screens with Explosion in place of Memento. Reflect and Light Screen take up both of your Claydol's predefined support slots; therefore, Light Clay is recommended as the item over Leftovers on a dual screen set to maximize their effect., meaning that it is advisable to maximize their effect; therefore, Light Clay is recommended as the item over Leftovers on a dual screen set. Gravity is another field effect that Claydol can set up, and although Claydol is slightly overshadowed by Bronzong or Forretress in this role, it is the only Pokemon capable of setting up Gravity that who has STAB on Ground-type attacks. It also has access to Stone Edge, which gains perfect accuracy, and, unlike Bronzong, does not gain a Ground-type weakness under Gravity. Claydol also learns Trick Room and can be extremely useful to Trick Room teams, though remember to run a 0 IV in Speed and a Relaxed nature to minimize your Claydol's Speed stat. Rest and Sleep Talk can be useful to provide Claydol with some form of recovery, if you want it to last longer throughout the battle. Lastly, Trick can be used alongside a Choice item to hopefully cripple a wall or counter switching in.</p>

    <p>Shadow Ball is another decent option, allowing you Claydol to hit Ghost-types as they switch in to block Rapid Spin, which is particularly important as two of the three OU Ghost-types, Rotom-A and Gengar, are immune to Earth Power by virtue of their Levitate ability. Psychic is Claydol's other STAB choice, though it has a reputation as a poor attacking type in OU. Nevertheless, it can be useful as it has a chance to OHKO Gengar after Stealth Rock damage, and makes Claydol much more adequate at taking on Fighting-types. Bulky Water-types are one of Claydol's biggest worries, and but it has a couple of options if these Pokemon are troublesome particularly troubling to you. Toxic is a very interesting option, as it can cripple the bulky Water-types that who will commonly switch into Claydol, such as Swampert and Vaporeon, and can cripple other common switch-ins such as Rotom-A and Tyranitar as well. This is particularly notable as the only two types that are immune to ToxicPoison- and Steel-typesare both hit for super effective damage by Claydol's Ground-type STAB. Grass Knot, with the standard EV spread, is guaranteed to 2HKO 252 HP Swampert through Leftovers, but it will do deal less than a pittance pitiful damage to Suicune and Vaporeon.</p>

    <p>You may decide to run 236 EVs in HP in order to maximize Leftovers recovery, which is particularly beneficial to Claydol as it is immune to sandstorm as well as and taking takes minimal damage from entry hazards. Claydol's type combination would usually mark it out as a physical wall; (semi-colon) however, (comma) you may decide to make greater use of Claydol's Special Defense stat, which often goes neglected due to Claydol's typing having difficulties in special walling with a typing so fraught with difficulties in the area of special walling. The same investment of 144 EVs in its Special Defense stat with a Calm nature will ensure that none of Timid Heatran's Fire Blast, Modest Magnezone's Hidden Power Ice, Timid Life Orb Zapdos's Hidden Power Grass, and Timid Choice Specs Jolteon's Hidden Power Grass will ever 2HKO with Leftovers. At the same time, Claydol has a fair chance of not being 2HKOed by Rash Life Orb Dragonite's Draco Meteor and Naive Life Orb Infernape's Grass Knot. Bear in mind, however, that this durability at one end of the scale will usually come at the expense of the other; so, you should choose what your individual Claydol should be best at taking on depending on your team's interests.</p>

    <p>While Claydol's Speed stat is not impressive, it is high enough to actually be quite threatening even without any Speed EVsit is worth noting that Bold Claydol without any Speed EVs can outrun most Metagross, standard 8 Speed Scizor, and 96 Speed Tyranitar as well as the standard 8 Speed Scizor and 96 Speed Tyranitar. Therefore, it can help in many situations not to cut your Claydol's Speed stat short; however, if you Claydol runs a mixed set, this is often unavoidable. If you Claydol are running runs a set with purely special attacks, you it should use a Bold nature; likewise, with physical attacks, you it should run an Impish nature. As previously mentioned, while the unadulterated Speed stat is useful, it is in your best interests to run a Relaxed nature in order to preserve your Claydol's offensive stats on both sides if you it's are running a mixed set. If you are Claydol is running a specially defensive spread, use a Calm, Careful, or Sassy nature as appropriate.</p>

    (now this got me thinking. there could possibly be: "you are running speed evs on claydol" or "claydol is running speed evs". i think this can get a little messy with all the "running" stuff going on. if it goes to a reference that only claydol can do, such as having a speed stat or offensive stats, it gets a little confusing. i'm changing most of the "you"s to claydol but idk if it's right or not but maybe it has to do with a "stay parallel or get messy" thing.)

    [Counters]

    <p>Bulky Water-types are perhaps the best counters to Claydol, as most of them have enough bulk to take whatever Claydol throws at them and retaliate with their STAB moves. Gyarados is probably the best choice, as it is immune to Earthquake, takes little from Ice Beam, and can easily rack up Dragon Dances, or use Taunt in order to stop Claydol from supporting trying any support tactics. The most Claydol can muster against Gyarados is Stone Edge, which does little to bulky variants thanks to Intimidate, and Toxic, which can be troublesome, but Gyarados can always run a Rest + Sleep Talk set in order to avoid this. The same is more or less true of for Suicune and Vaporeon, who both dislike Toxic but have strong Water-type STAB moves that will make Claydol tremble. Starmie has no such problem, thanks to its Natural Cure ability healing it of poison, and it also has access to Recover to offset any damage that Claydol can do with its STAB moves. Swampert does worse, as it is 2HKOed by the rare Grass Knot and dislikes Toxic, but the principle is much the same.</p>

    <p>Bulky Ghost-types are the next-biggest worryGengar and Rotom-A are both extremely common, immune to Earthquake by virtue of their Levitate ability, and able to defeat Claydol with their STAB moves, although Gengar cannot switch into Shadow Ball or Psychic twice and defensive Rotom-A dislikes Toxic. Dusknoir acts on the same principle identically but does not have any strong Ghost-type STAB moves nor an immunity to Ground-type moves. Yet, it is still an impassable fortress to Claydol.</p>

    <p>Bug-types and Dark-types present a particular problem for Claydol as the common users of these types are more offensive and, in particular, have access to the move Pursuit, which can chase down and defeat a fleeing Claydol. Scizor is pretty much unafraid of can take anything Claydol can throws its way barring Hidden Power Fire, and can Pursuit if Claydol tries to flee or Also, Scizor can U-turn, which will kill Claydol if it stays in and allows Scizor to escape from your Claydol's Scizor check if Claydol it runs one. Tyranitar is much the same, but it has a more powerful STAB Pursuit and can also use STAB Crunch against a Claydol that who tries to stay in; however, it is crippled by Toxic and can be 2HKOed by physical Claydol's Earthquake after Stealth Rock damage. Weavile also has access to STAB Pursuit and can scout with Fake Out, but is not strong enough to deal with a full-health Claydol, as not even Choice Band Ice Punch can OHKO 252 HP Claydol while Weavile is 2HKOed by Earthquake in return after Stealth Rock damage. Heracross is also worth noting, as it has a powerful STAB Megahorn, can absorb Toxic for a Guts boost, and has access to Pursuit. It is also the only one of the above that who resists Earth Power, but this comes at a price of a weakness to Psychic.</p>

    <p>Grass-types can sometimes be a problem for Claydol as well. The biggest problem in this bunch is Celebi, who resists both of Claydol's STAB moves, doesn't take too much damage from Ice Beam and Shadow Ball, and hits Claydol hard with Grass Knot. Breloom does well too, despite weaknesses to Psychic and Ice Beam, and can use Spore or Seed Bomb to defeat Claydol. Roserade lacks the Ground-type resistance of its peers and also has weaknesses to Ice Beam and Psychic, but has a high Special Defense stat and access to STAB Grass Knot and Leaf Storm. While most Dragon-types cannot take Claydol's Ice Beam, Kingdra is neutral to Ice-type attacks and can take almost anything Claydol throws at it while destroying Claydol with its Water-type STAB moves or setting up Dragon Dance. (maybe you can mention Kingdra with the water-types. just seems out of place when this paragraph was talking about grass-types.)</p>

    <p>Lastly, Bronzong and Skarmory can take just about anything from Claydol, but they cannot immediately pose a threat; Bronzong has to have Grass Knot to cause any real damage, and can only really hurt it by putting it to sleep with Hypnosis. Skarmory can whittle it down with Brave Bird, but it must be wary of being caught by Earth Power when it uses Roost if Claydol is slower. Blissey can take any special hit and is not terribly bothered by most physical attacks from Claydol. (period) and It can try to Toxic-stall Claydol to death, with Natural Cure curing Toxic and Softboiled recovering HP while being immune to Toxic itself thanks to Natural Cure and mitigating damage taken with Softboiled. However, if Claydol uses an unexpected Explosion, Blissey is pretty much out of the game, which can be crippling to teams that rely on it.</p>

    (not sure if you want to use "it" or "she" for blissey so i'm just going with "it")


    Take what you feel you need. This analysis looks pretty good to go otherwise!

    (and yes, i feel it's long, but it seems to be informative.)
    [​IMG]
  19. Rising_Dusk

    Rising_Dusk
    is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Battle Server Admin Alumnusis a Programmer Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a CAP Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

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    Looking this over and then uploading now.

    I chopped out a ton of unnecessary fluff and some rambling sentences here and there, but otherwise looks good. It's uploaded!

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