Hello everyone. On April 15th I went to the Pleasanton regionals with a team that was risky, unbalanced, and not completely thought-out. I went home with a fairly modest 5-3 win record, a nice hat, and spirits crushed so thoroughly you could have sprinkled it over fettuccine alfredo. The team had some pretty well on PO (Although in retrospect, not quite), and I just didn't know what happened. I admit, I am not a very good Pokemon player. Strategy, typing, and moves are all quite foreign to me. When I was little I was used to getting badass pokemon and plowing through my opponents. When I first broke into the online scene, I got my ass handed to me several times. In fact, I was an annoying little bitch. But this last team was a masterpiece in my eyes. I had counters to rain, sun, goodstuffs, TR, everything. What went wrong was that it was a bad team. So the days following the VGC, an extremely sad Luis plopped down on the computer and started fiddling with PO and the teambuilder. I decided to use a team of my favorite pokemon, awesome looking beasts that I had always liked. Nidoking has always held a spot in my heart as the most awesome pokemon in the entire universe. A rogue, relentless powerhouse that was reserved solely to the uses of Giovanni. I wanted to center my team around him, so I first paired him up with Tornadus. Unfortunately, it was an awful combination and I went down to 800 in PO. I decided it was awful so I trashed the idea. While reading Feathers' VGC warstory I saw he used Dewgong, which was a pokemon that I had always liked. My brother used to own this card: and I thought he looked awesome. So I took his Abomasnow and Dewgong. While messing around with them I saw they worked pretty well, so I tried a hail team. It didn't work well at all. By this point I was pretty discouraged. Nothing worked for me. So I decided to say fuck it I'm gonna use Nidoking and Dewgong. I realized that Zapdos was an often used TW setter, so I tried them out. I didn't have anything else though, so I threw in Scizor and Hitmontop. This team brought me up to 1128, and I'm rank 169 on the Skarmbliss server. I know that's not quite impressive, but that's the highest I've ever been. And I'm rising every day. So now I need help refining the team, making cuts and additions, and helping form it into an amazing team that could contend at Nats. Without further ado, here's the team. VOOODOOO (Nidoking) (M) @ Life Orb Trait: Sheer Force EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk) - Earth Power - Thunderbolt - Flamethrower Should I change either of these for Ice Beam? I'm leaning toward replacing Flamethrower. - Protect My inspiration, my partner, my badass powerhouse. Named after Voodoo Pimp because he's a boss. Absolutely nothing can stop Sheer Force LO, and the coverage is insane. Earth Power destroys Metagross, Thunderbolt is great against Politoed, Rotom, and the like, and Flamethrower is great against Scizor. With TW support I can outrun everything, and even not in TW I'm still pretty fast. But the lack of bulk is a bit troublesome. When paired with Zapdos there's great synergy, as I can throw off Discharges left and right. My coverage moves are kind of redundant, so I'm thinking about replacing Flamethrower with Ice Beam to kill off dragons, which are a problem for my team. Heat Wave can take care of Scizor. #teamswagg (Zapdos) @ Sitrus Berry Trait: Pressure EVs: 140 HP / 252 SAtk / 116 Spd Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk) - Discharge - Tailwind - Heat Wave - Hidden Power [Grass] He sets up Tailwind and spits out Discharges until he dies. Heat Wave is standard, and HP Grass destroys Gastrodon. Has great synergy with Nidoking, as he can Protect while I set up TW, then we go to town on everything. Everything except Cresselia. Seriously, fuck her. I have nothing that can successfully counter her, except Scizor. I was contemplating making Nidoking physical and putting Megahorn on it so she'll be less of a problem, but I'm not sure. She hasn't really cost me anything yet, so if nothing comes up I'll keep everything as it is. However, if she's packing Psyshock or Psychic, my Nidoking is kinda screwed. Another big threat for us is Latios, which can also KO with Psychic or Psyshock. Ice Beam can take care of him though. Hitmontop is kindof a threat, but he's quite frail so we can easily dispatch him with Discharge/whatever. With these two guys leading I can destroy literally everything. #YOLO (Scizor) (M) @ Occa Berry Doesn't really let me survive anything, except the occasional Heat Wave. Let's me survive HP Fire from Latios though. Should I switch to Choice Band/Flying Gem Acrobatics? Trait: Technician EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 Spd Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk) - Bug Bite - Bullet Punch - Night Slash - Protect So I sort of just threw him on the team, but he's become a staple. A great revenge killer, his Bug Bite is amazing against anything that doesn't resist it. Bullet Punch is awesome as well. Night Slash was filler, as I was going for a more standard Scizor set rather than my last Flying Gem Acrobatics one. But I might just bring it back, seeing as I don't have anything for fighting types. Occa berry is kinda useless. Lucien (Hitmontop) (M) @ Fight Gem Trait: Intimidate EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 Spd Naughty Nature (+Atk, -SDef) - Wide Guard - Close Combat - Sucker Punch - Fake Out Named after Lucien, because he's awesome. Another staple to my team, Fake Out and Sucker Punch are both invaluable. Close Combat destroys everything, and Wide Guard has saved me before. Pretty standard, I'm not really trying to change anything. This is where I run into trouble. I usually go with the above four now, since these two are sort of misfits. Abomasnow is a good ice type, and I use him whenever I see dragons. But he's so slow and frail. Dewgong is great for surprising people, as is Fake Out. But he's quite weak offensively and doesn't do much to support. So I'm looking to replace both of them, preferably with a weather starter. Abomasnow (M) @ Focus Sash Trait: Snow Warning EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SAtk Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk) - Blizzard - Giga Drain - Ice Shard - Protect Standard Abomasnow. Blizzard is insane, and 100% accuracy is awesome. Giga Drain is great as well, and Ice Shard is perhaps the best priority move in the VGC. But he's too slow to utilize Tailwind, and too frail to really survive. Two Bullet Punches and he's gone. Dewgong (F) @ Leftovers Trait: Hydration EVs: 140 HP / 100 SAtk / 240 SDef / 28 Spd Calm Nature (+SDef, -Atk) - Fake Out - Protect - Blizzard - Surf Dewgong has great staying power. Fake out is great, and Blizzard/Surf are amazing spread moves. But he's really weak and slow as an attacker. So I need to replace him. So there's my team. As I said, Cresselia is hugely annoying, and dragons are troublesome. I'm really pleased with how good it's doing though, it's doing way better than any other team I've ever used. But it's not quite at that level of performance that I want. Any sort of help will be greatly appreciated.