All Gens Find a Niche: Feraligatr

Bughouse

Like ships in the night, you're passing me by
is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a CAP Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
#26
I love me some weezing!

Conveniently it's a check to all 3 of S-rank in XY OU (per current viability rankings here in RoA) - Clefable, Lando-T, and Mega Lop (which should drop but hasn't ha).

Weezing @ Black Sludge
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 Spe
Bold Nature
- Sludge Bomb
- Will-O-Wisp
- Clear Smog
- Pain Split
 

Jellicent

is a member of the Site Staffis a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
RoA Co-Leader
#27
I've been racking my brain for an actual reason to use Weezing in RBY OU. Poison is easily the worst type thanks to Psychic and Earthquake weaknesses; it's also the most common, beating out even Water, so it's very difficult to stand out. Explosion is Weezing's biggest selling point, though that still leaves Muk and Gengar as Poison-type alternatives. Compared to Muk, it's similar in bulk (takes physical hits slightly better, special slightly worse) and weaker physically (so worse boom), but is able to go mixed and has 10 higher base Speed. That extra speed puts it ahead of Chansey and Exeggutor (ties with Lapras), making those two relatively easier targets. As far as the mixed part goes, Thunderbolt is kinda nifty coverage that you might use in some scenarios. Smogon lists Fire Blast for Egg, but that's bizarre (Sludge outdamages and is 100% accurate). I'd rather go Hyper Beam, which could at least pick off a Chan around 40% (or something like para'd Zam around half health) without needing to self-KO.

Exploding Poison-type that can use Tbolt still isn't really enough of a niche, since Gengar does that with much higher Speed, a Normal immunity, and Hypnosis. But, we've set our sights on Chan and Egg, and Weezing happens to threaten both more than Gar (at least, after sleep clause activates). That said, the Poison typing is why people don't use Gengar, not its draw. Compared to boomers with better typing, Weezing's still pretty scrubby. In order for it to not be outclassed, we're probably gonna wanna go full Explosion and just put the other good boomers on the team. It'd be crazy to use Gar and Weezing together, though, and no offensive team (or team, really) is complete without Tauros, so Weezing's niche is looking reduced to basically 1 team...

Going boom without Gar is tough because the obvious lead choice vanishes. Egg's an old-school lead, but the lead metagame is pretty harsh to it atm. It's also a Garless boom team's only consistent source of status, so gambling it too quickly is a poor choice. This is forcing our hand pretty hard just to build around Weezing, but I'm going to say lead Lax becomes the best bet. It's a fine sleep absorber for us, but also a generally alright matchup 1v1 against anything if sleep misses or it isn't a sleep lead. If nothing else, it'll apply offensive pressure off the bat better than anything else could. This team doesn't really look great or anything, but it'd probably be fun to make ballsy plays with and might catch peeps off-guard. If you really wanna try Weezing in RBY OU, this is the best role I can come up with.

Snorlax
- Body Slam
- Earthquake
- Hyper Beam
- Self-Destruct

Exeggutor
- Psychic
- Sleep Powder
- Stun Spore
- Explosion

Golem
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide
- Body Slam
- Explosion

Cloyster
- Blizzard
- Clamp
- Hyper Beam
- Explosion

Weezing
- Sludge
- Thunderbolt
- Hyper Beam
- Explosion

Tauros
- Body Slam
- Earthquake
- Blizzard
- Hyper Beam
 
#28
Jellicent pretty much nailed why RBY Weezing is terrible in OU, which also carries on to lower tiers as well. Over on Pokemon Perfect, where RBY tiering is at the equivalent of what Smogon would classify as FU (or ZU, or whatever the tier below PU is currently called), in PP's 5U (aka PU) and up Weezing is mediocre at best, and even in 6U (FU/ZU) where all Psychic-types and majority of the better FEs have been taken by higher tiers, Weezing is still at the borderline of belonging to the tier or dropping even further.

tl;dr, RBY Weezing is hot explosive garbage.
 

BKC

is a Team Rater Alumnusis the Smogon Tour Season 16 Championis the Smogon Tour Season 22 Championis a defending World Cup of Pokemon champion
Past Gens Champion
#29
In ADV it's quite good. WoW is always a strong strategy, it can be a solid mixed attacker (HP Fighting) that doesn't give a shit about Skarmory and has a powerful Explosion. It can get up to Taunt fun as well and STAB Sludge Bomb's 30% poison is pretty nasty. Counters the shit out of Heracross and emergency checks every physical attacker.

It struggles to keep up in DPP but you could definitely do worse. Countering Fighters (Lucario/Breloom/Machamp/physical variants of Infernape) is really sweet. However SR really hampers its survivability in longer games and it baits Heatran like a motherfucker. That said, some physical offense teams really hate to face what's essentially a Will-o-Wisping Gliscor and not being Water weak assists greatly against the dangerous Gyarados. Could probably pull some unexpected tricks.

In ORAS it gets Toxic Spikes, which can be really threatening to many of the bulky offensive teams that are popular in the tier. No permanent sand, physical attackers it dumps on (Landorus/Lopunny/Heracross), resists Clefable... it'd probably make good use of Rocky Helmet. Lots of moves it wants to use but I think it could definitely be used.
 

Typhlito

One Activer Dawg
is a Smogon Social Media Contributoris an Artistis a Community Contributor
#30
Just to go more in depth about weezing in ADV, its really quite an underrated pokemon. Its a poison type with levitate as its ability which takes away 2 huge things would would make the difference between it being good or not; spikes and earthquake immunity (an otherwise weakness). Its great movepool and stat spread allow it do utilize many sets that very few other pokemon can replicate, allowing it to use both offensive and defensive set with ease. Some examples for sets are Sludge bomb/WoW(HP Fighting)/Fire Blast(T-Bolt)/Explosion or Sludge Bomb(Flamethrower)/Taunt(Haze)/WoW/Pain Split(Explosion/Destiny Bond/Memento/Rest) which can handle most pokemon with ease. That being said, it has its own share of problems. For once, if you are not careful, it can easily be worn down by heavy attackers + sand since its only form of recovery is the semi-reliable pain split and rest so it should not be used as a primary wall. Its also not very bulky on the special side so pokemon like gengar, starmie (does have shadow ball lol) and jirachi can potentially switch in on a prediction and force it out. Its also a bit slow so it would usually take a hit before doing anything. Its still quite a neat pokemon that deserves more attention. These issues are easily mitigated with team support though. Wish blissey helps keep it healthy while also covering its weaker sp def side. Pursuit/trapper mons can also take care of the threats I mentioned.

By the way, if you are tired of facing bp on the ladder, just bring haze weezing and your problems are solved! They will forfeit 9/10 times as soon as you use it.
 
Last edited:

Jorgen

World's Strongest Fairy
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
#31
In GSC Weezing is a mixed attacking Exploder that can halfway reliably deal with a Snorlax that's already gotten a Curse off. Higher Defense and Special Attack make it better suited for this sort of role than Muk, the latter of which is the better Curser.

Weezing @ Leftovers
-Thunder / Pain Split
-Fire Blast / Flamethrower
-Haze
-Explosion

Note the lack of Sludge Bomb - it's not worth it considering Fire Blast hits Egg for SE damage anyway and Weezing's Attack isn't that much better than its SpA. It is removed for the critical move Haze, which Weezing can use to wash away Snorlax's Curse boosts to threaten it anew with Explosion. It's more reliable than, say, Screech (which it also gets fwiw) because it also allows Weezing to tank a couple hits.

Pain Split can be used over one of the attacking moves (preferably Thunder although Ttar can become an even more insurmountable bother with only flamethrower burn chance to combat it). It sacrifices coverage (which honestly isn't that great to begin with) for the ability to heal up and come in multiple times against Lax. Plus it's another thing in its toolbox that separates it from its sistermon, Muk.
 

Jellicent

is a member of the Site Staffis a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
RoA Co-Leader
#32


Moltres has always had a tough time making an impact in OU (particularly after Stealth Rock debuted). That said, it's never really been a /bad/ Pokemon... It's more like a nifty Pokemon with a disappointing typing. So what sort of teammates could help this phoenix rise to the big leagues? What unique roles can it pull off that are actually worth using? From RBY to ORAS, how do we make Moltres succeed in OU?

 
#33
- BW

Moltres @ Choice Specs
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Sleep Talk
- Hurricane
- Fire Blast
- U-turn

This set is really cool in my opinion; I tried it against fv in stour and it worked well, being able to switch into stuff like Amoonguss and absorb spore to just sleep talk the next turn. Furthermore its stabs are pretty threatening in the metagame, covering a lot of stuff and whenever you see something that can wall this there's u-turn to get momentum right back. I reckon this set is pretty standard for those who run Moltres anyway, but I really like it, especially on rain teams when you will always had a 100% hurricane accuracy without risking any miss.
 
#34
ADV
While moltres is a bit iffy defensively thanks to those unfortunate rock/water/electric weaknesses, it is easily one of the single hardest things to switch in to in the tier. Fire STAB + Will-o-wisp alone is very tough for anything not named blissey or starmie. Physically offensive teams tend to get dominated by it, as do the very popular skarm mag teams. Its somewhat middle of the pack speed stat can sometimes come back to haunt it but a well played (and not unlucky) moltres can cripple/kill a pokemon basically every time it gets a turn against a large number of teams. It's also spikes immune so it can come in again and again. I personally like to run a subwisp set with fireblast and hidden power grass. Some people like sunny day because sun boosted STAB fire attacks from that insane spA are just so ridiculously powerful. Either way, it's a tough mon to fit on a team but it's incredibly dangerous in the right hands.
 
#35
- ADV

Moltres @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 40 HP / 252 SpA / 216 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 2 Atk / 30 SpA
- Sunny Day
- Fire Blast
- Hidden Power [Grass]
- Will-O-Wisp

In this tier, Moltres is not one of the best pokemon, but it is very useful in some match-up (for example, against a team with swampert+ celebi core). It makes pressure to dragon and water types thanks to will-o-wisp, hp grass or fire blast under the sun.
Some teammates that could help it are: Dugtrio because trap tyranitar and makes easier an eventual sweep; 2 wall breakers that usually are checked by water types or steel types like Tyranitar (dragon dance or band), Metagross (leftovers or band) or Salamence (dragon dance or band) because their checks are not immortal; it will sooner or later go down.
 

p2

enfuego theorist
is a Tiering Contributoris a Team Rater Alumnusis a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
#36
moltres is mostly outclassed by talonflame / zard y and faces massive competition from torn-t, when it comes to birds in oras ou

i guess it has a niche on rain teams w/ specs because its insanely hard to switch into without chansey and unlike torn-t, rain doesn't completely ruin its fire moves.

the idea of subroost when mega sableye was tossed around a fair bit, but i cant imagine it functions as well in the current meta, very nice teammate for mega diancie though and it just abuses the hell out of steels that aren't tran

Moltres @ Choice Specs
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Fire Blast
- Hurricane
- U-turn
- Sleep Talk

Moltres @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Flamethrower
- Hurricane
- Substitute
- Roost

something like that i suppose, dont have any ideas for subroost ev spread though, but yeah the immense competition from talon/zardy/torn-t make it extremely difficult to justify using moltres on a serious team
 
#37
Believe or not but in RBY Moltres competes with... Cloyster. It's a perfectly decent mon though.

Both of them have a really good physical bulk (Moltres also has a good special one but sadly most of the attacks it will eat will be super effective), beat Tauros one on one and their main checks are Chansey and Starmie. They also both have a partial trapping move. Cloyster switches into Snorlax/Tauros/Rocks (careful about that rock slide) whilst Moltres doesn't really switch into anything, you kinda have to predict Earthquake, Cloyster has boom and isn't walled by Rocks although they don't enjoy switching into those Fire Blasts too much. Overall i'd say Cloyster outclasses Moltres but Moltres has a very offensive niche that makes it usuable (I love it in non-tauros teams because it just murders it one on one and can sweep afterwards if it sets up an agility, you have to put it in the right circumstances. You can play around the fact that your last is Tauros but it isn't and put your opponent where you want him. It's personally how I like to use mons such as Moltres or Articuno). Though Moltres isn't walled by say Lapras, but can't boom against Slowbro.

It can really put in work if you take down Chansey and Starmie (paralysing Starmie can be enough) but the risk is obviously to burn them before in which case it can put you in trouble (you then have to rely on Fire Spin to take down Chansey and you need to set up Agility to do the same against Starmie, but it's very risky).

A good partner is Jolteon. It takes down Waters (mostly Starmie) while checking Zapdos, and can be used to pivot against EQ users to get in Moltres for free (Snorlax and Tauros don't enjoy that Moltres match-up). It basically works in very agressive teams, marcoasd built two timeless ones that both handily drop Tauros (one also drops Chansey, the other one Exeggutor, you can find them in his archive)

Moltres Fire Blast vs. Tauros: 191-225 (54.1 - 63.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
Moltres Fire Blast vs. Snorlax: 197-232 (37.6 - 44.3%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

upload_2017-7-3_14-0-17.png

Moltres
- Fire Blast
- Hyper Beam
- Agility
- Fire Spin
 

Mr.378

Glass Soldier
is a Tiering Contributor Alumnus
#38
GSC:



Moltres @ Charcoal
- Fire Blast
- Hidden Power [Fighting]/[Grass]
- Reflect/Substitute
- Sunny Day

Moltres mainly has a niche in GSC due to the monstrous power it has. With Sunny Day up it has strength that is unmatched by most standard attacks in the tier. The most notable examples:

Charcoal Moltres Fire Blast vs. Snorlax in Sun: 237-279 (45.3 - 53.3%) -- 92.2% chance to 2HKO after Spikes and Leftovers recovery - a 2hko on Lax with spikes support with a special attack is no joke.

Charcoal Moltres Fire Blast vs. Zapdos in Sun: 268-316 (69.9 - 82.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery- Devastating power. Given that Sunny Day turns Thunder hitting into a coin flip you have a reasonable chance at 1v1ing with sun up.

Charcoal Moltres Fire Blast vs. Raikou in Sun: 250-294 (65.2 - 76.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Spikes and Leftovers recovery Can do it to Raikou as well. Notable as it's one of the best Special walls in the tier.

Fire Blast also has pretty good coverage hitting very common mons like Exeggutor and Steelix for super effective damage and torching them. The last two moves are just ones I like having. HP Fighting seems the best to me as 55% on Tyranitar and getting a 3hko on the rare Blissey seems more useful then 30% on Suicune who can wall this anyway. I don't mind the DV drop it takes usually either. Meanwhile reflect just brings the utility for teammates and can give you some decent set up time which the set appreciates due to having no lefties recovery. In terms of team support as said the set can't do anything to Suicune so having an exploder that can take it down like Steelix or a Mixlax would really help this set clean.

Overall while it's not the most common or conventional mon Moltres in gsc can work as a good wall breaker and cleaner with the right support.

Edit: Jorgen makes good points about the last few moveslots so I'll slash them in. Noteworthy to say that sub is different on Moltres then it is on Tenta because it doesn't speed tie Zap but SD increasing Thunder's miss rate makes it very viable for sure.
 
Last edited:
#39
A bit more on RBY Moltres regarding Fire Spin:

Burning Chansey isn't too big of a problem for Moltres as long as both Pokemon are unparalyzed and Moltres isn't unlucky. If a full health Chansey switches into Fire Blast and gets burned, assuming minimum rolls Moltres only needs 4 turns of Fire Spin to put Chansey in Hyper Beam range, which means it only needs to connect at most 2 (about 50/50 chance of doing so), and only 1 if it gets a 4-5 length Fire Spin or a crit Fire Blast.

Slowbro's a bigger threat since Slowbro is bulkier, but it is still beatable 1v1 with Fire Spin. After a Fire Blast burn, Moltres needs 6 turns of Fire Spin to put Slowbro in Hyper Beam range, which means assuming mininum rolls it needs to connect 2-3 Fire Spins (about 1/3 chance of connecting all 3 if the first two don't add up to 6 turns), or 1-2 with a crit depending on the first Fire Spin's length.

Starmie however is a much much worse matchup, assuming Starmie switching into Fire Blast and getting burned, Moltres has to take paralysis, Agility and then pray for Fire Spin to connect enough times without Full Paralysis screwing it over. Assuming minimum rolls, Moltres needs 5 turns of Fire Spin to be able to comfortably KO Starmie, and with Full Paralysis interrupting Fire Spin cycles, odds are heavily in Starmie's favor.


A couple more options you can use:

Leer over Agility - Not exactly a good option, but it does help to soften Starmie / Chansey enough to force them out or break through with Hyper Beam, which can be helpful if those targets get paralyzed since it becomes a lot harder for Moltres to spin to win against them, and due to glitchy RBY mechanics Leer can reapply paralysis and make its opponent slower if both it and its opponent are paralyzed.

Toxic - Even worse than Leer, but you could use this in UU with Fire Spin to bait and wear down bulky Waters, particularly Omastar which greatly aids Wrap Dragonite. Bad idea in OU but used well with a bit of luck could cause a lot of problems for Slowbro teams, and has some synergy with other partial trappers for wrap teams.
 

BKC

is a Team Rater Alumnusis the Smogon Tour Season 16 Championis the Smogon Tour Season 22 Championis a defending World Cup of Pokemon champion
Past Gens Champion
#40
Really good stuff here so far guys


Moltres can also be an effective ResTalker (SD/FB) absorbing it from Exegg and scaring it out, plus not being ruined by a random BS para from Lax or Toxic Skarm. Ttar still gets hit decently by Charcoal-boosted Blast with Spikes down and you can abuse it with something like Machamp. Many, many offensive teams don't have a fire resist and Moltres is pretty speedy so they really dislike facing it, plus having something that OHKOs boosted Steelix is great and it outruns Nidoking which is quite useful. It could also probably abuse Substitute in sun to really fuck with electrics.


Moltres can also use Morning Sun to solid effect and is a dangerous late-game threat with Agility (although HP Ice is probably preferred for this position). Also, clearing sand can be priceless in Advance. It's also got a good speed tier.


I used to use a Scarf Moltres + Dugtrio combo to U-turn out of nail Tyranitar/Heatran (this was before Scarf became the most common Tran set again). It's still pretty decent (Dug not required). It functions similarly to its fellow Fires when running Scarf but it's got a Fighting resist (ENORMOUS for assistance in switching into opposing Infernape) and isn't threatened by offensive Shaymin in the slightest. Specs/LO are cool as leads since they shatter Metagross and Machamp (the latter has to be Sashed, carry Stone Edge and avoid 30% flinch from Air Slash to beat it), as well as Jirachi. It's generally hard to switch into and can run various Hidden Powers. SubRoost needs a ton of support but is incredibly annoying if it gets going, especially with Pressure. Scarf being the best/most common Heatran set is amazing for it, and it blanks most sets from the 4 big Fighters (Ape/Loom/Champ/Luc). Moltres wielders must exercise extreme caution but it is definitely a worthy pick for OU.


The most popular set is Sub/WoW/Hurricane/Roost, seems most obvious on rain teams but it's been used on a lot of sand as well (Shoka is known for it). Quite effective at wearing everything in sight down, especially with SpD Roar Tran being largely a thing of the past (RIP) and non-Choice Tyranitar almost never carrying rock moves meaning you often have a pretty safe Wisp. Obviously the 4x SR weakness is a big factor but good players have made it work fairly consistently (I daresay moreso than its fellow 4x SR weak Volcarona at least). Again, and as Kyurem has shown us, SubRoost with Pressure is a bitch, especially against choice users. I could see that Specs set being good as well in the sleep absorber/nuke role a la Latios, especially with the current power of Excadrill. Entry against Ferro nearly every SR Lando as well as is also nice to potentially get in before the rocks go up.
 
Last edited:

Foggi

Tournament Banned
#41
- ADV

Moltres @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 68 HP / 208 SpA / 232 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Flamethrower
- Morning Sun
- Will-O-Wisp
- Sunny Day

This is my favorite set from the two viable moltres sets that we have in ADV, it is amazing with the right partners wich are dugtrio and mons that enjoy sand gone, good examples are Curselax , Suicune , CM Blissey and CM Celebi. Wisp helps the Ttar traping and wearing down offensive teams wich usually rely on physical threats like Snorlax, Salamence, Aerodactyl to check it.


Moltres @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 68 HP / 212 SpA / 228 Spe
Timid Nature
- Fire Blast
- Hidden Power [Grass]
- Will-O-Wisp
- Substitute/Agillity

The second viable Moltres set (In my opinion) is the breaker set wich ive seen some people like dekzeh use alot. It completly nails offensive teams and only reliable check for it is Blissey. The thing about this set is that compared to the first set, it kinda sits and does nothing vs more fat teams with Blissey.

- DPP

Moltres @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 248 HP / 164 Def / 96 Spe
Timid Nature
- Flamethrower
- Roost
- Will-O-Wisp
- Hidden Power [Ground]

Im not that big fan of Moltres in dpp but ive been using a fun bkc team that had this set paired with dual spinners and it worked pretty okayish. Wisp is extremely good for Ttar wich is the main switchin and HP ground to nail the cheeky Heatrans that will try to get up rocks on you. Even with x4 rocks weakness it has pretty useful typing wich resists both of Infernapes stabs aswell as walls the most annoying mon in the tier wich is Breloom (Unless you face the super old and not popular stone edge set), In general i think it has some niche in dpp but needs too much support to be consistent mon wich could be used on overall serious and solid teams.
 

Jorgen

World's Strongest Fairy
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
#42
GSC:



Moltres @ Charcoal
- Fire Blast
- Hidden Power [Fighting]
- Reflect
- Sunny Day

Moltres mainly has a niche in GSC due to the monstrous power it has. With Sunny Day up it has strength that is unmatched by most standard attacks in the tier. The most notable examples:

Charcoal Moltres Fire Blast vs. Snorlax in Sun: 237-279 (45.3 - 53.3%) -- 92.2% chance to 2HKO after Spikes and Leftovers recovery - a 2hko on Lax with spikes support with a special attack is no joke.

Charcoal Moltres Fire Blast vs. Zapdos in Sun: 268-316 (69.9 - 82.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery- Devastating power. Given that Sunny Day turns Thunder hitting into a coin flip you have a reasonable chance at 1v1ing with sun up.

Charcoal Moltres Fire Blast vs. Raikou in Sun: 250-294 (65.2 - 76.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Spikes and Leftovers recovery Can do it to Raikou as well. Notable as it's one of the best Special walls in the tier.

Fire Blast also has pretty good coverage hitting very common mons like Exeggutor and Steelix for super effective damage and torching them. The last two moves are just ones I like having. HP Fighting seems the best to me as 55% on Tyranitar and getting a 3hko on the rare Blissey seems more useful then 30% on Suicune who can wall this anyway. I don't mind the DV drop it takes usually either. Meanwhile reflect just brings the utility for teammates and can give you some decent set up time which the set appreciates due to having no lefties recovery. In terms of team support as said the set can't do anything to Suicune so having an exploder that can take it down like Steelix or a Mixlax would really help this set clean.

Overall while it's not the most common or conventional mon Moltres in gsc can work as a good wall breaker and cleaner with the right support.
Moltres should run Substitute as its fourth, not Reflect. Why? Same reason Tentacruel does - to cheese for Thunder misses & beat the electrics.

Also HP Grass is a viable slash over Fighting. It won't beat Suicune or anything and does less (albeit respectable) damage to the more common Ttar, but getting walled by Quag or Rhydon or Golem stinks.

I usually use Leftovers instead of Charcoal. Generally offensive Pokes like having Leftovers recovery to punish switching around to PP stall/pivot, and considering Moltres' setup only lasts 5 turns it especially wants Lefties to help it set up more subs / punish trying to stall out sun. Although I never realized just how reliable that charcoal 2HKO on Lax was after Spikes.

The STer is generally easier to fit on a team. It's actually not bad for absorbing sleep from most things - it outspeeds Nidoking and does loads of damage, and of course it puts the fear of death into Egg and the odd Jynx. That's more than Raikou or Zapdos can claim - the former can't do Nido, the latter can't do Jynx. In general I think of Moltres more as an anti-metagame wildcard for your 6th than something to build around (if you focus too much on it you sacrifice loads of synergy) - another reason I find the STer easier to work with (if it can't sweep due to bulky water at least it can be my Egg switch). If they don't carry a bulky water or Ttar though, like, say:

Snorlax
Zapdos
Cloyster
Egg
Steelix
Machamp

then you can pull Moltres out of your pocket to run train, even with a ST set that lacks a coverage move.

Also Moltres is a lot of fun as the receiver on a gimmicky Growth-pass team:

Espeon @ Leftovers
-Psychic
-Growth
-Baton Pass
-Morning Sun

Jolteon @ Leftovers
-Thunder
-Hidden Power Water
-Growth
-Baton Pass

Vaporeon @ Leftovers
-Hydro Pump
-Growth
-Acid Armor
-Baton Pass

Moltres @ Leftovers
-Fire Blast
-Hidden Power Grass
-Sunny Day
-Substitute

Snorlax @ Leftovers
-Double-Edge
-Curse
-Lovely Kiss
-Rest

Tyranitar @ Leftovers
-Rock Slide
-Roar
-Pursuit
-Fire Blast
 

Jellicent

is a member of the Site Staffis a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
RoA Co-Leader
#43


Watch out, son, it's kung fu action! Hitmonlee looks like a total champ, but its tiering record over the years proves otherwise. It's never seen much OU usage, but that's not to say there isn't a nifty niche or two to find. So, what support can we give this brawler to help it succeed in the big leagues? Are there any useful and unique roles it can fill on past gen OU teams? How do we make Hitmonlee truly kick ass?

 
#44
I actually kinda like using Hitmonlee in RBY. Don't get me wrong, it's terrible, but when I feel like being weird it's a lot of fun. Finding a niche for Hitmonlee isn't that hard: Three of the Big 4 in RBY take extraordinary damage from Hi Jump Kick even unboosted, and Hitmonlee has access to Meditate. His role is as a secondary surprise sweeper (you shouldn't drop Tauros for it) best kept as a surprise late-game reveal when most of your opposing team is paralyzed - the nice thing is you can go nuts with your Tauros a bit earlier in the match to try to spread good chip damage around, and the element of surprise with using Hitmonlee at all can work to your advantage as your opponent may unwittingly sacrifice its hardest counters (like Eggy) earlier on. The set I'd use is

Hi Jump Kick
Meditate
Seismic Toss
Body Slam/Hyper Beam

Hi Jump Kick is duh, and Meditate is necessary if you actually want a fighting (heh) chance to attack more than one opponent because if you don't OHKO and instead give your opponent a chance to hit back, Hitmonlee gets straight destroyed. One Meditate guarantees the OHKO on Chansey, gives you a good chance to OHKO Tauros, and does up to 90 to Snorlax. Hitmonlee's big problems are that he isn't as fast as you'd think he should be, he can't take hits, and he's walled by way too many things. So for this to work at all, most of your opponent's team needs to be paralyzed and the dangerous psychics (Starmie, Alakazam, and Eggy) need to be gone. It's not too hard to sleep Alakazam or Starmie (as they're usually leads) and it's also not too hard to bait an opposing Eggy into Explosion (or trade your own Eggy to take it out). If you bring Hitmonlee into a sleeping or frozen opponent to set up a Meditate, or get a Meditate off by forcing a switch, you can do some serious late-game sweepage. If the conditions are right (mainly paralysis and a bit of chip damage spread around), Hitmonlee is threatening to a lot of OU staples - the aforementioned Snorlax, Tauros, and Chansey, but also Lapras, Cloyster, Golem/Rhydon, even Jynx. That's practically half of the tier and again, three of those Pokemon you're virtually guaranteed to face.

Seismic Toss is to try to cheese anything else you'll face - Gengar, Exeggutor, Starmie, Alakazam, etc, and the last is preference. Hyper Beam is stronger but only relevantly so if you get a Meditate off. Body Slam can paralyze.

For support, you should use a sleep lead to try to disable Alakazam/Starmie out the gate, and from there you need to be able to get rid of Eggy and spread paralysis, and get Tauros paralyzed and chipped and/or gone. So really, you'd probably just use it as your standard 6th slot filler with Jynx lead for sleep and the Big 4.

Fighting-type attacks have really nice coverage in OU, it's a damn shame they're just not on anything viable.

ETA: inb4 someone suggest a Counter set. I've seen people use Counter on Hitmonlee, and ... meh. A bunch of stuff gets Counter. That's not really a niche.
 
Last edited:
#45
I actually kinda like using Hitmonlee in RBY. Don't get me wrong, it's terrible, but when I feel like being weird it's a lot of fun. Finding a niche for Hitmonlee isn't that hard: Three of the Big 4 in RBY take extraordinary damage from Hi Jump Kick even unboosted, and Hitmonlee has access to Meditate. His role is as a secondary surprise sweeper (you shouldn't drop Tauros for it) best kept as a surprise late-game reveal when most of your opposing team is paralyzed - the nice thing is you can go nuts with your Tauros a bit earlier in the match to try to spread good chip damage around, and the element of surprise with using Hitmonlee at all can work to your advantage as your opponent may unwittingly sacrifice its hardest counters (like Eggy) earlier on. The set I'd use is

Hi Jump Kick
Meditate
Seismic Toss
Body Slam/Hyper Beam

Hi Jump Kick is duh, and Meditate is necessary if you actually want a fighting (heh) chance to attack more than one opponent because if you don't OHKO and instead give your opponent a chance to hit back, Hitmonlee gets straight destroyed. One Meditate guarantees the OHKO on Chansey, gives you a good chance to OHKO Tauros, and does up to 90 to Snorlax. Hitmonlee's big problems are that he isn't as fast as you'd think he should be, he can't take hits, and he's walled by way too many things. So for this to work at all, most of your opponent's team needs to be paralyzed and the dangerous psychics (Starmie, Alakazam, and Eggy) need to be gone. It's not too hard to sleep Alakazam or Starmie (as they're usually leads) and it's also not too hard to bait an opposing Eggy into Explosion (or trade your own Eggy to take it out). If you bring Hitmonlee into a sleeping or frozen opponent to set up a Meditate, or get a Meditate off by forcing a switch, you can do some serious late-game sweepage. If the conditions are right (mainly paralysis and a bit of chip damage spread around), Hitmonlee is threatening to a lot of OU staples - the aforementioned Snorlax, Tauros, and Chansey, but also Lapras, Cloyster, Golem/Rhydon, even Jynx. That's practically half of the tier and again, three of those Pokemon you're virtually guaranteed to face.

Seismic Toss is to try to cheese anything else you'll face - Gengar, Exeggutor, Starmie, Alakazam, etc, and the last is preference. Hyper Beam is stronger but only relevantly so if you get a Meditate off. Body Slam can paralyze.

For support, you should use a sleep lead to try to disable Alakazam/Starmie out the gate, and from there you need to be able to get rid of Eggy and spread paralysis, and get Tauros paralyzed and chipped and/or gone. So really, you'd probably just use it as your standard 6th slot filler with Jynx lead for sleep and the Big 4.

Fighting-type attacks have really nice coverage in OU, it's a damn shame they're just not on anything viable.

ETA: inb4 someone suggest a Counter set. I've seen people use Counter on Hitmonlee, and ... meh. A bunch of stuff gets Counter. That's not really a niche.
Just thought I'd point out that Hitmonlee doesn't learn Hyper Beam for some reason, otherwise I agree with most of this
 
#47
Why would you ever use Seismic Toss vs. Alakazam, atleast when it isn't behind Reflect? Body Slam does more without even needing Meditate boosts. You also fail to mention Jynx, which while only neutral to HJK still outspeeds and OHKOs, so you need to be sure Jynx is paralyzed or asleep if you want to avoid Hitmonlee being revenge killed. There's also no mention of Zapdos which is another major threat to Hitmonlee, especially as Zapdos is often preserved for the lategame unlike the Psychics which limits Hitmonlee's sweeping abilities.

I also see no Mega Kick mention, which despite the whole 25% chance to miss issue, can severely reduce the amount of chip you need to take out HJK resists (besides Gengar obviously).
At +1:
Alakazam - reliably KO'd at about 75%
Starmie - reliably KO'd at about 50%
Exeggutor/Zapdos - reliably KO'd at about 40%
Slowbro - reliably KO'd at about 35%

It's no Hyper Beam, but it is something.

Now, for lower tiers, not much to say except that Hitmonlee remains awful throughout a large portion of RBY due to its typing, terrible bulk, mediocre speed and limited coverage. In UU, it is surrounded with powerful fast glass cannons, common HJK resists with powerful Special attacks like Moltres, Hypno, Gyarados and Victreebel, and there's Haunter blocking its primary attacks too. Worse, the only targets for HJK is Kangaskhan, Omastar and Persian, and of those the only one Hitmonlee (barely) beats 1v1 is Omastar. This pattern generally continues beyond UU, to the point that it doesn't start getting good until Psychics and most of the Pokemon faster than it are all gone. On Pokemon Perfect that happened by 6U/FU, where it finally gets to shine as a dangerous revenge killer/sweeper.
 
Last edited:
#48
Why would you ever use Seismic Toss vs. Alakazam, atleast when it isn't behind Reflect? Body Slam does more without even needing Meditate boosts.
Eh, I was just listing stuff that Hi Jump Kick wasn't good against and at the time I had slashed Body Slam with [the impossible] Hyper Beam so carrying Body Slam wasn't a guarantee on my sample set - so if you weren't carrying slam, you might use stoss to chip away at the things I listed, hoping to score on fp so you could get things into KO range for [again, the impossible] beam, but you're right if you WERE carrying slam it's better than stoss against Zam.

You also fail to mention Jynx, which while only neutral to HJK still outspeeds and OHKOs, so you need to be sure Jynx is paralyzed or asleep if you want to avoid Hitmonlee being revenge killed.
I did mention Jynx in my list of the many things in OU Hitmonlee threatens if they are paralyzed and/or chipped.

I also see no Mega Kick mention, which despite the whole 25% chance to miss issue, can severely reduce the amount of chip you need to take out HJK resists (besides Gengar obviously).
At +1:
Alakazam - reliably KO'd at about 75%
Starmie - reliably KO'd at about 50%
Exeggutor/Zapdos - reliably KO'd at about 40%
Slowbro - reliably KO'd at about 35%

It's no Hyper Beam, but it is something.
Yeah, that's a good point - with Hyper Beam off the table (still super weird, wth Game Freak), Mega Kick is a good slash for that last slot.
 
Last edited:

McMeghan

Dreamcatcher
is a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis an Administrator Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnusis a Past SPL Championis the Smogon Tour Season 14 Champion
#49
Hitmonlee is pretty fuckin bad in ADV. I tried to think of why you'd want to run this in OU. What could be its niche be after all...

Do you want a hard hitter? Then you're better off using Heracross/Medicham. Both of those Pokemons also pull off the Reversal set better. If I wanna branch out for a spinner, I'd rather use Donphan,Armaldo or even Hitmontop since that has Intimidate, and if I need Mach Punch, I'd probably look at Breloom.

That leaves us with Hitmonlee's probably only niche: a Pokemon with access to both Rapid Spin and Mach Punch. Rapid Spin utility is self-explanatory. Priorities are very rare in ADV and can come in clutch, not to mention one of the most intimidating sweeper of the tier is DD Ttar, so Mach Punch is a pretty good one at it. Hitmontop is still probably better overall, because you have a better bulk and Intimidate to help, but Hitmonlee is faster and has Limber to abuse Blissey to the fullest.

Hitmonlee @ Choice Band (you need it to OHKO Ttar)
252 atk 252 spd, adamant or jolly (you want adamant for the OHKO vs ttar, but jolly can be neat, making sure you'll outspeed offensive cune for example)
Rapid Spin
Mach Punch
Brick Break / HJK
HP Ghost / Rock Slide / HP Bug
--
As for BW, Hitmonlee gains Reckless to do more damages there, alongside the HJK boost. It got used once in WCoP by 199lives and 2ko'd a Hippowdon on the switch with HJK lol. Anyway, Mienshao pulls off that set better. It's actually more powerful and faster, and has U-Turn/a decent SpAtk to HP Ice a Lando-T. The only reason you'd want to consider Hitmonlee is once again if you need to Spin so I'd definitely go with HJK/Spin + 2 (Foresight for the guaranteed spin vs Jellicent teams maybe?).
 

Jorgen

World's Strongest Fairy
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
#50
GSC: Reversal. It's slightly faster than Heracross, does just about as much damage, & most importantly gets to have Sub + Reversal, which is actually a niche worth mentioning in the simulator environment where cleric clause is imposed.

Hitmonlee @ Quick Claw
-Reversal
-Substitute
-Endure
-Hidden Power Ghost

Yeah, both Sub & Endure. Why not have as much flexibility as possible when getting down to 1hp? Until then Lee is useless anyway (hence the other "weird" thing - no HJK)