Double Battle Thunder-Dancing Heh, I'm sure there's tons of these teams running around out there, but here's my rendition of one. It started way back in the Orre region, with Suicune and Raikou. It's not perfect, but I think it's a pretty solid team, and, as Janine of the Elite Four says I should, I'm using the Pokemon I like, not just the strongest of the strong. This is my first attempt at a... shall we say, "professional" team. Be gentle. I also realize that I can only have 4 Pokemon at a time in the Battle Tower. I'll be rotating through these 6, which are going to be my "everyday" team as well. This is mostly a Battle Tower team! Also, it's a Double Battle team. Yeah, I played Colosseum way too young, and the Double Battle style took root. It could probably do pretty solidly in competitive play if I wanted it to, but I don't like competing against human players much, and I prefer Battle Tower rules to those of the PvP environment. Primary Lead / Thunder Sweeper Raikou @Damp Rock/Magnet Pressure 252 SpA / 252 Speed Timid Rain Dance Calm Mind Thunderbolt Thunder I'm honestly surprised that Raikou doesn't show up on more Rain Dance teams. Raikou is one of those Pokemon that can not only set up the rain quickly, but make full use of it as well. With his incredible speed and power, STAB'd Thunder, and unshakable accuracy in rain, it seems like a perfect fit to me. As a lead, Raikou's speed is important. The first thing he does is set up Rain Dance, then on turn two, if he doesn't set up a Calm Mind first, he blasts his opponents with Thunder. The best thing about Raikou as a lead is that he also doubles as a sweeper until his demise, rather than simply setting up rain and Self-Destructing. Thunderbolt is a backup move, just in case the rain ends, no one can set it up again, and for some reason Raikou's still alive. Or if Thunder runs out of PP. Raikou's biggest weakness is how fragile he is. The bane of Raikou is the ever-popular Earthquake, which he rarely survives. But, all in all, I think, a solid start. Secondary Lead / Special Sweeper Suicune @Mystic Water Pressure 100 HP / 128 Def/SpD - (This is if I remember correctly...) Modest Surf Ice Beam Calm Mind Hydro Pump Suicune (and Raikou) have been with me since the Orre region... which is where I discovered ThunderDancing in the first place. Suicune is also the proud bearer of about 50 ribbons, stretching from Orre to Hoenn to Sinnoh to Johto and Kanto. Suicune is more of a bulky water type than a sweeper, and another Pokemon I'm surprised I don't see more often on Rain Dance teams. There are probably better choices out there, but I like her. Her survivability is above and beyond that of most sweepers, and her power, with STAB and rain, isn't too bad, either. Raikou is much, much faster than Suicune, so while he sets up Rain Dance on Turn One, she's already preparing a Hydro Pump for her opponents. I picked a Modest nature over anything else, because Suicune's defenses are already pretty solid, and she needed the extra power boost more than another survivability upgrade. Ice Beam handles pesky grass types and the more dangerous Dragon types. Calm Mind is there for when she can spare a turn for a couple of power boosts, rounded off by the much preferred Hydro Pump. Surf is bad on a Double Battle team, but she can use it to heal Vaporeon if needed (see below.) Suicune's weakness are few and far between. As a "legendary", Suicune's speed is above that of most of her threats. Grass types quickly meet an Ice Beam, and the vast majority of electric types in my experience are quite fragile. Primary Physical Sweeper Kingdra @Lum Berry/Life Orb? Swift Swim 92 HP / 252 Atk / 164 Speed Lonely Waterfall Outrage Dragon Dance Hydro Pump A Rain Dance team without Kingdra? Incomprehensible. My Leads already handle the Special side of sweeping, so Kingdra follows up as a more Physical sweeper on this team. In a competitive environment, however, your opponent has no way of knowing that, as Kingdra functions well as both as Physical and Special sweeper. With Dragon Dance as an option however, and two solid Special sweepers already, Physical simply seemed a better fit to me. Lonely is the nature of choice, since this Kingdra also has a slight mixed feel to it, and Defense was the only stat I was willing to lower, and Dragon Dance fixes that after a single turn anyway. Waterfall is the best Physical water type move Kingdra learns (to the best of my knowledge,) and hits respectably hard with STAB, rain, and Kingdra's base attack. Outrage is the second STAB attack, and after a Dragon Dance, Kingdra's Outrage gets scary. With its STAB Water and Dragon attacks, Kingdra gets nearly perfect coverage with simply two attacks. The third slot carries Dragon Dance, saving the last move slot for a Hydro Pump, increasing Kingdra's versatility even further and making Kingdra an invaluable addition, able to take down both physical and special walls. With Swif Swim, Kingdra's speed is boosted to unreachable levels, only furthered by Dragon Dance. As a Water/Dragon type, Kingdra has a single weakness: other Dragon types, which are easily taken care of by Outrage or Ice Beam. Supporting Physical Sweeper Scizor @Life Orb/Occa Berry? Technician 252 Atk / 252 HP / 4 Speed Adamant Bullet Punch Bug Bite Swords Dance Roost Scizor may seem at first like an odd choice for a Rain Dance team, but the closer you look, the better a fit he becomes. Scizor is my answer to many of the threats that face Rain Dance teams, the biggest three being the auto-weather inducers that are the bane of Rain Dance teams: Tyranitar, Hippowdon, and Abomasnow. Bullet Punch quickly takes out Tyranitar, while Bug Bite take out the less common pest known as Abomasnow, as well as any Psychic, Dark, or Ghost types I encounter. With an incredible 143 base attack (Adamant), Swords Dance, Technician, STAB, and Bullet Punch's priority, Scizor is a terror, and one of the staples of my team. Swords Dance boosts Scizor's attack to obscene levels, while Roost rounds it all off, allowing Scizor to regain what health he does end up losing. Scizor takes hits like a tank and hits back like a truck. Adamant is the nature of choice, since Scizor's speed is quite dismal to begin with, and Bullet Punch, his signature move, has priority anyway. Scizor boasts 10 resistances and an immunity, along with his Steel typing and Roost. He only suffers from a single weakness: fire. Did I mention that Fire's power is cut by 50% in the rain? Toxic Stall / Rain Dancer / Team Healer Vaporeon @Damp Rock/Leftovers? Water Absorb 252 HP / 252 Defense Bold Wish Toxic Rain Dance Hydro Pump Vaporeon is, I feel, often overlooked when considered for a Rain Dance team. However, it's often forgotten that Vaporeon has a base Special Attack of 110 - same as Latias. Also, in a double battle, I think that Vaporeon's signature ability Water Absorb really shines. As I mentioned earlier, Suicune can spam Surf all day long, healing Vaporeon each turn and, if Suicune is knocked out, Kingdra can take over, targeting his ally instead of an enemy with Waterfall. Since every Pokemon so far has been a sweeper, and rather fragile, I knew I needed at least one wall. Vaporeon may not be the greatest wall in the world, but she serves a very important purpose on my team. First of all, with Water Absorb, Suicune and Kingdra, she has a very long survival rate. Secondly, it provides what I'm sure you've noticed has been severely lacking on my team: another Rain Dancer. It's unlikely I'll sweep my opponent's entire team with just the few turns of rain Raikou provides for me. Wish provides healing for the entire team, so any Pokemon I manage to switch out and save can quickly be healed by half next turn. Toxic is the classic stall move, getting stronger each and every turn the opponent doesn't cure it, which, with Vaporeon's massive HP and Water Absorb, will hopefully be a long time. Hydro Pump rounds off the set, making sure Vaporeon isn't completely useless if she gets Taunted. Final (Ish Happens) Sweeper Latios @Soul Dew Levitate 252 SpA / 252 Speed Timid Ice Beam Thunder Dragon Pulse Recover This last slot is more of a filler, to be honest. There are a lot of things I could fit in here. Bronzong would provide another wall, screens, Stealth Rock... really, Bronzong is a slightly nerfed Jirachi when it comes down to it. Ludicolo is another option. With Rain Dish, Leftovers, Leech Seed, and its typing, it would be another solid option to go here. If they weren't banned by Battle Tower rules, I would probably stuff a single Uber into my team. Kyogre being the obvious go-to, followed by Jirachi, whose typing, Serene Grace + Water Pulse + Thunder would stall and frustrate any opponent to tears. Lugia would be another walling option, with obscene defensive stats and very capable sweeping options. In the end, though, my thoughts kept returning to how this was a Battle Tower team, and by far one of the best Pokemon for a Battle Tower team is Latios, for a single reason: Soul Dew. This is a bit of an unconventional set, but that's because it's the "glue" for my team. BoltBeam gives me at least neutral coverage on everything, combined with Soul Dew'd Latios's insane Special Attack. Dragon Pulse is the STAB move of choice, taking out most of the stubborn opponents he'd encounter, and Recover fills in the last slot, giving the dragon invaluable healing in a situation where items are not allowed. Team Weakness: As a whole, the first thing I notice is the lack of Rain Dancers. If both are taken out, I'm in rather serious doo-doo. The next thing I really notice is that, a lot of the threats to my team have only a single answer, usually Scizor. However, the longer I think about that, the more I realize that I can hardly have an answer to every single Pokemon out there if I'm limited to only 4-6 on my own team. My team does one thing, and I think it does it pretty well. Common Threats: Having just read the sticky on the Smogon site, this'll be a brief summary with only a *few* names named, since I haven't the energy to individually go through every single Pokemon on the list. Scizor handles auto-weather inducers. Water types are met with Raikou. Grass types are met with Ice Beams. Dragon types are met with Kingdra, and more Ice Beams. Electric types, to the best of my knowledge, are almost always rather fragile, and so can (hopefully) be dealt with by most of my team. Psychic/Ghost/Dark types are met with Scizor again. The biggest threat, to my mind, is Empoleon, who resists everything I've got. The thing I'm looking for the most advice on is item placement! Any general improvements that come to your minds would also be greatly appreciated. Thanks!