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Hail: More Than Anti-Metagame Idealism

Discussion in 'BW OU' started by DEMo_Gorgon47, Sep 3, 2012.

  1. DEMo_Gorgon47

    DEMo_Gorgon47

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    Of the four weathers that dominant the battle fields of the OU stage, Hail stands out as being the absolute worst. With only Ice-type Pokemon not taking damage from a continuous pelting of falling ice; the few Pokemon that benefit from Hail all being extremely weak to common types and very common top tier threats; and the fact that the only Instant Hail Inducer has a wopping 7 weaknesses and rather underwhelming stats; it is no wonder Hail has faded into obscurity, with only the truly adventurous and possibly rebelious team builders taking on the difficult task of building a Hail Team.


    But what if all those negatives were simply just biases from long years of hearing "Ice is the worst defensive type" and "Hail is the absolute worst weather of them all." If one were to lay aside their prejudice they would see that before them could possibly be the most successful Anti-Metagame force on the OU beat today.

    Here is where I am asking those who wish to be Anti-Metagame and still wish to win to come. Here we will discuss how to optimize Hail's potential. From the classic Hail Stall all the way to Hail Offense and all levels in between. And hopefully from this we can create a more balanced and Hail loving OU environment.
  2. Lavos Spawn

    Lavos Spawn
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    Hail certainly isn't getting a lot of love these days. However, I think it still shows some real potential, especially since Abomasnow is the premier weather starter when you're talking about 1v1 matchups against opposing weather starters. For Hail, it may lack some of the benefits that the other weathers received in BW, but it can still put up a good fight.

    I don't think straight-up Hail-reliant teams are as viable as anti-metagame teams with an Abomasnow slapped on them for the purpose of trolling opposing weather. I know from extensive experience that facing Abomasnow when you're using Sand or Rain is extremely annoying, mostly because it's so hard to switch into. It can provide an excellent offensive pivot for a team, too: most teams only have one Pokemon that can safely switch into any one of Abomasnow's moves, so you can predict that switch and get in your respective offensive threat to do some work on the opponent's team.

    I'll post some more later, but thanks for making this thread. You might want to shorten the title up a bit, though.
  3. DEMo_Gorgon47

    DEMo_Gorgon47

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    I agree completely. That in it of itself is one of the greatest boons of Abomasnow. With the proper EV investment a good prediction, one can very easily abuse Abomasnow's excellent STAB's and resistances. (Grass actually sports some of the best reistances in the game)

    The Abomasnow set I currently run is this:
    [​IMG]
    Abomasnow @ Expert Belt
    Brave Nature; 208 HP/252 Atk/48 SpA
    - Seed Bomb
    - Ice Shard
    - Earthquake
    - HP Fire

    Ice Shard is pretty standard, excellent for netting KO's to faster Dragon, Flying, and Grass types. Earthquake provides a way to hit Heatran and Ninetails for Super Effective damage. Meanwhile HP Fire can hit Ferrothorn, Forretress, Scizor, Other Abomasnow, and Genesect very hard on the switch. I prefer Seed Bomb over Wood Hammer because without lefties recovery and the amount of hits he has to take the recoil wore him down way to fast. As far as EV's go, max Atk was necessary so I could punish all opposing weather starters. 48 SpA was taken from an RMT (I think it was Bubbly's), while the rest was dumped into HP for additional bulk. Outspeeding threats like Scizor is a waste, as most players will Bullet Punch anyway. So by using Brave I get maximun bulk and power.

    As for pure hail teams, I agree they are nearly impossible to use. In my experience the best way to build a hail team is to treat it as if it were a weatherless team. Abomasnow is there for support and hole punching. All the other Pokes on the team have to be ready to counter any other play styles.
  4. Danger Mouse

    Danger Mouse

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    Subroost Kyurem is a standard on hail teams, but what are some other good options for hail?
  5. bubbly

    bubbly

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    Yeah, I think I've probably used Hail more than anyone else in the last few months. I agree with the other guys that you can just stick Abomasnow on a standard bulky offense team, checking all types of weather offense, Water / Electric mons, and Ice Shard weaks - generally, you should focus on using offensive mons whose counters are worn down by Hail (think most Dragons).

    The basic problem fully Hail reliant teams have is simply that it doesn't have any good abusers. Cores of Abomasnow / Genesect / Dugtrio / Victini / Xatu for instance can almost always ensure Hail is up, but unlike Sun (which requires a comparable level of support), Hail doesn't have an equivalent to Chlorophyll. The only real option is Ice Body, which is more or less useless until (if ever) Regice gets it. SubDisableTWave Froslass completely wrecks some offensive teams but tends to just be setup fodder for anything with recovery.

    When you're thinking about Hail, the other thing to remember is that the side with the most HP recovery will do better in it than the other, which makes it viable on bulky offense and stall teams as a check to hyper offense (especially combined with other residual damage and Sub / Protect stalling). I actually got a semi-stallish Hail team to #3 on PO a couple of weeks ago which focused on stalling through the early and mid-game and then cleaning through weakened defensive mons with a Trick Room sweep.

    Also for that Abomasnow set ^, Wood Hammer is an absolute must for the OHKO on most Tyranitar. Thanks for crediting me for the EV's though =P
  6. ginganinja

    ginganinja Dating Haunter
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    I found Scarf Victini a really nice option on hail teams. Its a really good revenge killer, and hail can usually match up well against Rain, so its STAB V-Create can really hurt quite a lot of things (for example it utterly cripples Conkeldurr, a rarely seen threat that was an utter bitch to my hail team). Scarf Victini was also pretty good against sun teams, obviously you had to play around Dugtrio, as well as Heatran, but V-Create does a fuckload to Ninetales, as well as Volcarona, and it can generally be used as a wrecking ball if hail isn't up. U-Turn helped me ensure favourable switchs for my team, and all in all, it was a really solid pokemon. Please do try it out!
  7. Gary2346

    Gary2346 A filthy casual
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    Of course we can't forgot our good friend Mamoswine. He's pretty much a given on any offensive Hail team, as he provides great coverage with his Ground, Ice, and Superpower we needed, and he also can use Stealth Rocks.

    I prefer the Banded set over all his movesets, due to the sheer power of his STAB moves and doing a ton of damage to unresistant scarfers with Ice Shard. He's especially even more dangerous with his annoying Snow Cloak ability, making him an evasive revenge killer against common threats such as Breloom and scarfed Salamence. He can also possibly catch Terrakion on the switch with Earthquake. His Superpower is his designated move for wall breaking Blissey and Chansey who would normally be a good offensive Hail check since Ice typing is more special based.
  8. DEMo_Gorgon47

    DEMo_Gorgon47

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    @Bubbly: See, thats where I dont agree. TTar is relativelyy easy to beat down. Its weakness to Fighting especially (which goes well with some of the Ice-type Attacks Hail tends to carry). Besides, I cant outrun any TTars, so usually in that match up I just swith Aboma to something more favorable. Plus, Abomasnow is just so Hazard weak that the recoil from Wood Hammer utterly destroys it.

    Kyurem is alright, but unfortunately it just adds another Fight/Steel/Rock weakness to the team. While its bulk is very good, its typing holds it back. I prefer other dragons on my team, like Choice Scarf Salamene/Latios. Though Tail Wind Hydreigon could be interesting on a Hail team.

    Mamoswine is the same boat as Kyurem. He just adds onto the already common weaknesses. Especially Fire and Water (and Grass to some extension). Making him a poor choice to help fight those weather wars. Not to downplay those two Pokes strengths: they are extremely powerful. Just not right for a Hail Team.
  9. BattleStar

    BattleStar

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    Kind of like Demo said is that hail really doesn't have that much variety of Pokemon that can shine in hail as rain,sun, and sand does. Just off the top of my head these are the Pokemon you would usually would find in hail teams: Abomasnow, Mamoswine, Cloyster,Reuniclus, Kyurem, Frossglass and of course there others but these are ones you would fine on any hail team.

    Hail teams also suffer from communal weakness of Rock and Fire. This really makes a major part of the team vulnerable to fast sweepers carrying a move of this element. This is not mentioning Stealth Rocks where the majority of all Ice types have a quarter taken out of them.

    I could list quite a bit more of the flaws of running hail. This is not to say hail is unusable. I certainly think hail can be very successfully pulled off but it requires a lot of support and good team building skills.
  10. Pwnemon

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    Hail should be looked at in the same way as TR or Gravity: sure, you can build a really bad team around it, but its best assets are tailored to an individual mon, not a team. Gravity Landorus is heavenly; gravity teams suck. TR reuniclus is anti-meta, TR teams have an 800 rating. Hail teams suffer from shared weaknesses; Abomasnow is the #1 shut-down to weather based teams.
  11. DEMo_Gorgon47

    DEMo_Gorgon47

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    Hence, you build them like a weatherless balanced/offensive/stall team. Abomasnow is there as a check to weather. The other pokes have to fill in the other holes.

    What I have noticed is that Hail Teams have an EXTREME weakness to Tornadus-T. People underestimate its bulk. And meanwhile it can threaten an entire team by simply using Hurrican, Heat Wave, and Super Power. We need to found a usable counter to Tornadus-T that can also be used on Hail Teams.

    Thundurus-T may be that counter, as with an agility boost on a predicted switch, it can easily outspeed.
  12. Tavald

    Tavald

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    I think that hail is the best kind of weather when using the battle subway.
    Abomasnow and jynx can abuse the A.I.

    But on battling, hail is more like a troll move after you kill the weather setup.
  13. Dark Fallen Angel

    Dark Fallen Angel FIDDLESTICKS IS ALSO GOOD ON MID!

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    Wouldn't Reuniclus be a good option for hail teams? Thanks to Magic Guard, it takes no damage from hail, and doesn't compound common weakness to Fire and Rock.

    Unfortunately hail suffers from that old problem, Ice by itself is an bad type defensively, and with only Ice-type pokémon taking no damage from Hail, pokémons found on hail teams find themselves on a bad position because of the passive damage or negation of Leftovers. I never tried to do a hail team, but I would certainly try if there were a better hail inducer or more pokémon immune to Hail damage (not that I said pokémon immune to Hail damage; not Ice-type pokémon).
  14. DEMo_Gorgon47

    DEMo_Gorgon47

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    Not really, it has many perks that make it stand out from other styles. Like Rain and Sand it is able to go Offensive of Defensive. And it has the ability to consistantly win the weather war if played with smartly.

    @ Dark Fallen Angel: Well you can look at it like you look at Sand Storm teams. Not ALL the members have to take no damage from SS. Infact, some of the best Sand Storm teammates take residual damage (Rotom, Celebi, Virizion, Breloom). If we avoid all the "oh, it is rock weak and takes SR damage" we can really exploit its strengths. Thundurus and Tornadus are SR weak, but they are everywhere.
  15. Pwnemon

    Pwnemon judges silently
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    Well as Ginga said, Scarf Victini is more than capable of switching in on a torn-t's coverage move and V-Creating its balls off. The compounded SR weakness is unfortunate, though.

    Which then begs the question: who's the best spinner on hail teams? Tentacruel could be nice for fire, fighting, and steel resists, and his ability to urinate on rain teams. Sadly, he gets no recovery if you win the weather war. The only spinner that DOES get recovery (besides lolcryogonal bullet punch says hai) is Starmie, which actually seems like it could be quite useful, as it gets a decently strong Blizzard to abuse, along with Hydro Pump, recover, and Rapid Spin. Its speed tier is nice for dealing with the Musketeers, especially Terrak, who can rape most of Hail. Donphan seems to be another OK choice, as it can take Ninetales, and sun is the one weather hail has the most trouble with. Problem being again its lack of recovery (and speed)
  16. DEMo_Gorgon47

    DEMo_Gorgon47

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    A forgotten but still Viable spinner is Hitmontop. While it is no Starmie, Hitmontop has useful resistances thanks to being a fighting type, gets two useful abilities, and can counter powerful threats with its plethora of priority. The only unfortunate thing is its succeptability to Poison and lack of recovery, which again, brings us to beloved Starmie
  17. Dark Fallen Angel

    Dark Fallen Angel FIDDLESTICKS IS ALSO GOOD ON MID!

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    Yes, you are right. But unlike Hail, there are three types that are immune to Sandstorm damage, and one of them (Steel) is an amazing defensive type and the other two (Rock and Ground) aren't nearly as amazing but at least are better than Ice. All of them are much more common in the metagame than Ice-type Pokémon.
  18. bubbly

    bubbly

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    Generally with Tornadus-T, you rely on having a solid initial switchin (SpDef Tran, Chansey, both of which avoid the Hurricane + Superpower 2HKO from full health), and checking with Aboma's Ice Shard or a Scarfer. The other two options are SpDef Jirachi and SubRoost Zapdos. Jirachi is decent on Hail, although apart from beating Tornadus and its Rock resistance Heatran is superior. Zapdos is interesting too; you compound the Rock weakness, but it sets up on Jirachi, Scizor and some Fighting types, while benefiting from your ability to wear down or lure Tyranitar and co.
  19. DEMo_Gorgon47

    DEMo_Gorgon47

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    Well... there are plenty of Overcoat users (Like Mandibuzz), and Magic Guard users to help allieviate the Fight weakness.

    As a matter of fact, I just thought of an interesting set to run on a Reuniclus. Idk if it is original but still...

    [​IMG]
    Reuniclus @ Leftovers
    Bold Nature; 252 HP/252 Def/4 SpA
    Magic Guard
    - Calm Mind
    - Substitute
    - Psyshock/Shadow Ball
    - Focus Blast/Shadow Ball

    With Leftovers and an immunity to hail, this guy makes for a great teammate. With leftovers Recover is less necessary. Meanwhile with max HP investimate it can create large Subs to hide behind. From there it willl set up and then attack. Idk if it is viable, but it was just a thought of mine.
  20. superbadd

    superbadd

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    The thing about hail is that it lacks options, were as rain and sand could do whatever they want. Hails needs some mandatory team mates... Aboma/Spinner/Weather counter/Metagame check/filler/filler. The weather counter and metagame check also have to be able to cover hail's weakness to fire, rock, and fighting type attacks and take into account the biggest threat atm. So at least two is needed for success. The fillers are usually sweepers/abusers. So in essence, when you take into account all hail has to prepare for, you only have two overall options. Rain and sand have to do the same thing, but their abusers don't usually have difficulty being fit on teams, and can accomplish multiple tasks.. It rakes more effort building a hail team, which is why not many do it/are able to.
  21. Complications

    Complications

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    Personally I disagree with the top 1v1 weather starter statement. Any Ninetales roasts Abomasnow with whatever fire move it's carrying (No pun intended) while, when uninvested, T-Tat OHKOs with Stone Edge or Fire Blast on the mixed set, and is bulky enough to take a Wood Hammer.
    Here are some calcs:
    Max Atk Adamant Abomasnow using Wood Hammer vs. standard MixTar:
    317-373 damage. Impossible to KO Mixtar in a 1v1.

    MixTar using Fire Blast vs. Choice Scarf Abomasnow:
    383-450 damage. A guaranteed KO. In other words, against most T-Tars, especially the mixed, Abomasnow will always lose out in a 1v1. Note that I used the most popular sets when calculating on defense, and all Tyranitar sets bar Scarftar (which is faster than Abomasnow by a trollish 1 base speed stat and OHKOs with Stone Edge) and D-Dance (which is very rare) are even bulkier than the standard Mixtar.

    The only weather starter Abomasnow stands a fair chance agains in a 1v1 is Politoed, but even then it must look out for Focus Blast, especially from specs variants.

    On a more positive note for Hail, I agree that Abomasnow boasts some good resists thanks to Grass typing. I've also noticed the beginning of a cookie cutter hail team:

    Abomasnow: derp

    Tentacruel: boasts a fire, fighting, and steel resist, (all types ice is weak to,) and can spin away obnoxious Stealth Rock.

    Kyurem: often scarfed, used to sweep with incredibly powerful perfect-accuracy Blizzards which have amazing coverage in OU

    Heatran: a check to fire and steel types

    Other than that, some less used but still popular Hail abuses I see are Mamoswine, who is good regaurdless, and Weavile.

    EDIT
    Oh bother I forgot about Hippowdon...
  22. bubbly

    bubbly

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    Cookie cutter Hail team in this metagame is basically my old RMT: Heatran / Tentacruel / Landorus-T defensive core. I've also seen a fair number of Jirachi + Gyarados cores.

    Hippowdon + Abomasnow is actually a pretty pro dual weather combination. They have good synergy (Abomasnow takes Water attacks, Hippowdon takes Rock, and most Fighting and Steel types), and give you absolute weather control which is fantastic in this meta.
  23. deluge

    deluge

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    Abomasnow is pretty cool for its ability to handle other weather inducers in a pinch. Neither Politoed, Tyranitar nor Hippowdown will appreciate STAB Wood Hammers. HP Fire can catch Scizors and Ferrothorns (and Hail wipes out fire-weakening rain) while Ice Shard/Blizzard will do a number on common x4 weak Pokemon. Abomasnow is a bit hard to switch in itself but a number of Pokemon have something to fear by switching into it.

    A possible supporting cast:

    Reuniclus:
    Bulky and can take fighting attacks aimed at Abomasnow while Magic Guard prevents hail damage. I was thinking CM for its durability and sweeping potential.

    Heatran:
    Checks dangerous fire types as well as Genesect/Scizor. Lays SR to limit damage from damage flying types like Tornados-T.

    Conkeldurr:
    A solid check to Tyranitar, Ferrothorn and Terakion as well as synergizing well with Reu. Drain Punch helps it to heal and Bulk Up for sweeping when the time is right.

    Latias:
    Ugh, another weakness to U-Turn. Nontheless, it synergises well with Heatran and can provide Wish support. It's great SpD and water resist helps against rain while it can check other Dragons and Keldeo (is it even that common after all the hype?).

    It didn't come out so much as a hail team but more as of a bulky offensive team that uses hail to disrupt the opponent while being able to 'tolerate' hail itself. I spent a long time over the last slot and ended up not making the team. Possibilites are:

    Kyurem:
    A convention on hail teams for its STAB blizzard. But STAB surfs in rain are scarier. I didn't consider it a must-have.

    Jirachi:
    Is Jirachi. Can spread paralysis to help the slow team and has a very helpful typing.

    Teantacruel:
    Has many nice attributes (rapid spin + lol scizor) yet its lack of offensive presence is disconcerting.

    Mamoswine:
    I'd rather use it over Kyurem. Eats predicted Volt Turns for breakfast and has great STABs plus BoltBeam resist.

    Scizor:
    It seems like a bulky scizor could be useful in the case that the opponent has Reu or Latis. But scizor is never dead weight.

    Kingdra:
    Fire quad resist and a way to take advantage of rain teams which cannot run their own Swift Swim Kindgra.

    In the end hail teams can be difficult to build because of the issues mentioned in the OP. Furthermore there isn't an Excadrill or Kingdra of Hail that really makes the support worth it. But it could be a fun experiment.
  24. FaceFaceFace

    FaceFaceFace

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    Funny, I slapped on a Hail team revolving around SubRoost Kyurem lately, and it turned out to be the best team I've ever made.

    It was originally based around Scarfed Kyurem-B on PO(yes, he just got made OU in PO), but I swapped for regular SubRoost Kyurem and its proving to be very effective.

    Donphan is a good spinner for hail, since it attracts water/grass attacks, which means a safe switch in for Abomasnow or Kyurem.
  25. Rayquaza_

    Rayquaza_

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    I still believe rock is the worst defensive type, not ice.
    Rock's water, ground and grass weaknesses are worse than fire and rock, and its resistances are pretty useless.

    In a metagame dominated by rain, ice effectively loses its fire weakness, rock's fire resistance becomes less meaningful and its water weakness becomes lethal. Ice resistance is always great no matter how you look at it.

    Overall, rock is the worst defensive type in the game, not ice.

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