DARMANATION Introduction After being #1 on the ladder for the majority of the round I kind of felt like it would be a waste to not post this team for others to use, see, and critique (/shameless bragging). It, like most of my teams, involves Spike stacking offense. I also came across a very useful algorithm for winning ladder matches and it works great against good players as well. Darmanitan lures specific counters into the match, and those Pokemon are easily destroyed by other Pokemon. At a glance: In depth: Darmanitan (M) @ Choice Scarf Trait: Sheer Force EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SDef / 252 Spd Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk) - Flare Blitz - Earthquake - Superpower - U-turn Role Summary If leading with entry hazards isn't a viable option, Darmanitan is usually the first thing my opponent sees. Darmanitan is so useful because it has very specific counter types: Bulky waters, bulky Rocks, Bulky/Flash Fires, and Snorlax. U-turn allows me to dent one of them and switch to my appropriate counter for that which usually ends up with something dead on my opponents side. See Rhyperior and Roserade's description for more details. If the opponent decides to let their Darmanitan counter go, I just sweep the opponent's team with Flare Blitz. Part 1 of my offensive cycle. Details Flare Blitz and U-turn are pretty straightforward. Earthquake lets me hit a predicted Chandelure or Rhyperior. Superpower lets me hit Snorlax and Chansey. Jolly is to outpace other Darmanitan. Donphan (M) @ Leftovers Trait: Sturdy EVs: 252 HP / 160 Atk / 96 Def / Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk) - Earthquake - Rapid Spin - Stealth Rock - Head Smash / Stone Edge Role Summary Donphan is the most versatile Rapid Spin user in the tier simply because of his ability to check many physical threats and set up Stealth Rock. My team is not horribly weak to entry hazards, but since I have no set up sweeper I do prefer not having to play on a timer against effective stall teams. So to not make it a liability, Donphan's counters tend to be Water-type which Roserade can easily handle. Details EVs let me survive two CBPerior Earthquakes among other things. I can still 2HKO Mismagius with Head Smash, though Stone Edge is much safer. Froslass (F) @ Leftovers Trait: Snow Cloak EVs: 232 HP / 100 Def / 176 Spd Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk) - Taunt - Pain Split - Spikes - Ice Beam Role Summary Bulky Froslass is almost on every team I use because its again so versatile. Having both Donphan and Froslass doing two jobs each is essential for any offensive team, four+ jobs in two Pokemon. Spin Blocking, Spiking, and generally checking any Ice or Fighting-types makes Froslass great. Froslass also shuts down opposing set up Pokemon such as Deoxys-D, Mew, Roserade, and various slow Stealth Rock users. Details Survives Stone Edge / Payback from Machamp with these EVs while still outpacing base 100s. Pain Split lets it heal up on big HP Pokemon like Snorlax or Chansey. Roserade (M) @ Life Orb Trait: Natural Cure EVs: 40 HP / 252 SAtk / 216 Spd Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk) - Sludge Bomb - Leaf Storm - Sleep Powder - Rest Role Summary Roserade is part 2A of the offensive cycle. I can U-turn on the opposing Suicune, Blastoise, Milotic, Rhyperior, and many others and go to Roserade for a free attack. Sleep Powder makes sure Roserade is not walled by anything. If I can't capitalize with my 383 SpA Life Orb boosted STAB attacks, I can definitely shut something down. And the beauty about this situation is that gen 5 Sleep mechanics allow me to switch out and force a switch before the opponent attacks and keep the opponent permanently slept. Considering the opponent will be sending in a Fire-type or Steel-type into Roserade, Rhyperior can easily force the switch. Details Fast enough to outpace Adamant 85s. I'm thinking about making it slower and bulkier, but I'm not sure. Leaf Storm > Giga Drain to keep nailing counters on the switch. Rest is for reliable recovery, but I may just put Giga Drain there. Rhyperior (M) @ Choice Band Trait: Solid Rock EVs: 40 HP / 252 Atk / 216 Spd Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk) - Earthquake - Stone Edge - Rock Blast - Megahorn Role Summary Part 2B of my offensive cycle. If the opponent sends in a Rock-type, Fire-type, or Snorlax on Darmanitan, I U-turn to Rhyperior. This monster basically OHKOes all offensive Pokemon and some defensive Pokemon while it also 2HKOes most others. Rhyperior is strong enough to even 2HKO Hippowdon with Stealth Rock or Spikes. This makes Rhyperior also an excellent Pokemon to fuck over sandstorm teams. He makes a great counter for Stoutland and 1-2HKOes every member of the common sandstorm team. It also checks opposing Darmanitan. Hands down my team's MVP. Details Rock Blast is there simply to OHKO Focus Sash Zam and other Substitute users like Froslass. Other attacks are straightforward. Zapdos @ Life Orb Trait: Pressure EVs: 252 SAtk / 4 SDef / 252 Spd Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk) - Heat Wave - Thunderbolt - Hidden Power [Grass] - Roost Role Summary Zapdos is just the missing piece of the puzzle. Its main purpose is to take Earthquakes and Grass-type attacks. Carrying Thunderbolt is definitely an added advantage to having Zapdos and its sweep potential should not be ignored. Details HP Grass > Ice just so I don't have to risk switching into Rhyperior if I find myself against one. The rest of the attacks are straightforward. ____________ So yea, I just want this team to be the best in can be. Even though it peaked #1, I still feel like I could improve it with your help. To aim your criticisms: I'm pretty weak to Alakazam and I sort of have trouble with a well-played bulky Mismagius.