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Ludicolo (BW2 Revamp)

Discussion in 'Uploaded Analyses' started by Spirit, Mar 17, 2013.

  1. Spirit

    Spirit
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    [Overview]

    <p>Since the ban of Drizzle + Swift Swim, Ludicolo has yet to break away from the depths of NU. Losing its most valued asset, one may wonder why Ludicolo should ever be used in the OU tier again. The answer lies in Ludicolo's new role in the metagame, manual rain teams; Ludicolo can then reach its full potential as a solid special sweeper. With a great offensive and defensive Water / Grass typing, along with a respectable movepool, Ludicolo is more than capable of finding plenty of opportunities to switch in and wreak havoc. However, Ludicolo is the epitome of a niche Pokemon; your entire party should be devoted to setting up rain independently, or it will be of little-to-no use when adding it to your team. Despite these drawbacks, it is imprudent to underestimate a Ludicolo in the rain, as it will decimate your team if given the chance.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Special Attacker
    move 1: Hydro Pump
    move 2: Giga Drain
    move 3: Ice Beam
    move 4: Rain Dance / Focus Blast
    item: Life Orb
    ability: Swift Swim
    nature: Timid / Modest
    evs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Ludicolo excels as one of the best special sweepers for manual rain teams. Hydro Pump is the go-to STAB of choice; thanks to its high base power, which is further increased by rain and Life Orb, anything that does not resist it will face a 2HKO at worst and an OHKO at best. Giga Drain is the more reliable STAB attack that allows Ludicolo to break through bulky Water-types such as Jellicent and Vaporeon, something its partner Kingdra can't do as easily. Ice Beam rounds out the coverage and hits troublesome rain checks such as Celebi and Dragonite for super effective damage. The final slot is a matter of preference regarding either support or more power. Ludicolo can set up Rain Dance autonomously, which allows it to support its teammates and disrupt the momentum of opposing weather teams, in particular i.e. sand, hail, and sun. Focus Blast on the other hand allows Ludicolo to break through Ferrothorn and the Kyurem formes, which otherwise wall it to no end.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>The EVs are pretty straightforward, maximizing Ludicolo's Speed and Special Attack. The remaining 4 EVs are tossed into Special Defense ensuring that Ludicolo ends up with an odd HP number, allowing it to fire off 11 consecutive attacks with a Life Orb as opposed to 10 with an even number (assuming it has not taken prior damage and has not used Giga Drain). A Timid nature is preferred so that Ludicolo can outspeed base 108 Choice Scarf users - most importantly Keldeo and Terrakion. A Modest nature is also acceptable, but Ludicolo simply does not have the bulk to take repeated attacks from fast Choice Scarf users, so it is safer to stick to a Timid nature to outspeed them. In terms of other offensive options, Surf can either be used over Hydro Pump for the sake of accuracy or in the final slot so Ludicolo has the choice of both accuracy and power. Alternatively, Grass Knot can be used over Giga Drain to nail larger opponents such as Gyarados and Hippowdon. Substitute allows Ludicolo to dodge Thunder Wave and other status afflictions while also being able to lessen the impact of priority attacks from the likes of Breloom and Dragonite. Choice Specs and Damp Rock are both acceptable item options. Choice Specs gives Ludicolo much more power at the cost of being tied down to one attack, while Damp Rock functions supportively, allowing Ludicolo to extend the duration of Rain Dance from five to eight turns.</p>

    <p>Ludicolo is a rather situational Pokemon. If rain is on the field, it will likely be the most dangerous Pokemon in the face of the opposition, but if rain is not present, it will have difficulty leaving much of a mark. To alleviate this problem, Tornadus is an excellent partner, as it can setup Rain Dance with Prankster and break through troublesome threats such as Breloom and Blissey/Chansey. Entry hazards are crucial as even Stealth Rock allows Ludicolo to OHKO Dragonite with Ice Beam and 2HKO defensive Kyurem-B with Focus Blast. Kabutops is a great partner to setup Stealth Rock while also breaking through Blissey and Chansey with its powerful STAB Stone Edge. Choice Specs Kingdra can form a devastating offensive duo with Ludicolo, as Kingdra can easily break past the Kyurem forms and can take a physical approach in order to destroy Blissey/Chansey. Ferrothorn remains a troublesome Pokemon for Ludicolo and its team. For this reason, Gothitelle and Magnezone are useful partners to trap and dispose of it. Dugtrio and Gothitelle can also make themselves useful by removing opposing weather inducers such as Abomasnow, Hippowdon, Ninetales, or Tyranitar.</p>

    [Other Options]

    <p>Despite its vast movepool, Ludicolo can't really make much use of what it has. A physical Swords Dance set is possible, but between setting up Rain Dance and finding an opportunity to pull off a Swords Dance, it's too strapped for time and will likely have taken too much damage to get a sweep going. A SubSeed set with Rain Dish is also plausible, but there are far too many Pokemon that can simply break through it. Moreover, Ludicolo has neither the have the bulk nor power to abuse it. Finally, a mixed Hone Claws set can also be used, though it experiences the same complications as the Swords Dance set.</p>

    [Checks and Counters]

    <p>As with most weather-orientated sweepers, altering their favored weather condition drastically decreases their performance. In Ludicolo's case, it loses its blistering speed and its Water-type attacks weaken, making it susceptible to more powerful attackers. Specially defensive Ninetales is a good check, as it does all the above and can proceed to 2HKO it with Flamethrower. Abomasnow, Tyranitar, and Hippowdon have difficulty switching in, but their ability to change the weather is invaluable.</p>

    <p>Blissey and Chansey are above all the best counters to Ludicolo. They can easily sponge any attack and gradually wear it down with Toxic and repeated Seismic Tosses. If Ludicolo lacks Focus Blast, Ferrothorn and the Kyurem forms are also great counters, being able to switch into all attacks and 2HKO with Power Whip and Ice Beam, respectively. Defensive Latias, Celebi, and Toxicroak are also decent checks, all three of them can switch in relatively easily and only have to watch out for Ice Beam. Specially defensive Jirachi can tank a single hit and attempt to paralyze Ludicolo and Tentacruel can potentially stall it out with Toxic + Protect.</p>

    <p>Despite Ludicolo's blistering Speed in the rain, it falls short of outspeeding base 110+ Choice Scarf users. As such, Choice Scarf Latios is a great check, even being able to switch in once on Ice Beam - from there, it can outspeed and OHKO with Draco Meteor. Choice Scarf Gengar and Starmie don't have the same power, but can potentially take out a weakened Ludicolo. In the same vein, powerful priority users such as Breloom, Dragonite, Mamoswine, and Lucario can also take out a damaged Ludicolo. If Ludicolo decides to go for a positive attacking nature, then even base 100+ Choice Scarf users can deal with it, the most notable being Garchomp and Thundurus-T.</p>
  2. ginganinja

    ginganinja Dating Haunter
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    Hello =]

    I know this isn't QC ready yet however, I really dislike the Sub Seed Ludicolo set and think there needs to be a serious discussion as to whether we keep it in the analysis. The common issue I have with Sub Seed Ludicolo, is that it it really is massive bait for Ferrothorn, and its very easy for teams to play around. Sub Seeding, in general, is hard to pull off in this meta due to how common various grass types are, as well as the fast paced meta and I just think I would rather use something else over a Sub Seed Ludicolo. The recovery this set can get is massive, but Ludicolo isn't that fast, which lets many pokemon attempt to set up a Substitute to block Leech Seed, and then set up, heck, Keldeo itself can set up all over you with Sub CM, and Politoed phazes you out with Perish Song I guess. I really see this set struggling against an actual rain team, while sun teams (for example) can shut off Rain Dish, and Sand Teams can simply just hit this thing hard before it can sub up.

    tl:dr

    I don't like it, and I would sort of like logs proving its worthy (if someone wants to argue its good enough) as whenever I use / play against it, it fails to actually make any impact on the game.
  3. Dice

    Dice what's a god to a nonbeliever
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    helo subseeding mexican, meet my good friend ferrothorn and subcm anything :toast:

    ludicolo's only niche as a rain dance sweeper over kingdra is focus blast + beating spdef jellicent , so rain dance / hydro / giga / focus is all i'll accept. sd sux js.
  4. sora13

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    STAB giga drain is a huge assert over kingdra as it actually allows it to 2KO most bulky waters and beat gastrodon, which.kingdra can't do at all, only 3KOing most bulky waters.with lo dpulse. This is a huuge plus.that can't be underestimated. Ludicolo ground resistance is also pretty big too.
  5. Chillarmy

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    Personally, I'm not that big of a fan of SubSeeders in general. While Substitute is very useful for blocking status, which is vital for something defensively oriented, it doesn't fix the problems commonly found in SubSeeders; good SubSeeders are generally slow and rely on Leech Seed as their only means of recovery. Moreover, SubSeed requires a turn to set up, which is plenty of time for things like Nattorei, Jellicent, and Celebi to switch in. Protect more closely adheres to the main purpose of using Rain Dish Ludicolo -- to stall and check a few particular threats -- and doesn't require much commitment from Ludicolo, unlike Substitute. Protect also helps Ludicolo check certain threats; for example, Timid LO Thund-T won't ever be able to 2HKO Ludicolo with Thunder (though, the risk of AgilityPlot makes Ludicolo a rather shaky switch-in, anyway). Moreover, the amount of HP recovered over one turn with Protect is absurd and too good to pass up IMO. That said, I think that Giga Drain needs to be slashed with Scald. If this set is to be used with Toxic Spikes support, then Scald will become liability, burning targets that would otherwise have been stalled out with Toxic Spikes. Giga Drain gives Ludicolo a method of reliably hitting Politoed, Jellicent, Keldeo -- Water-types in general, but the mentioned three have a consistent means of stopping or just outright beating Ludicolo. Granted, the inability to break Jirachi's Substitutes can be frustrating, but a Jirachi behind a Substitute is much more manageable than a Keldeo behind a Substiute. IMO, Ludicolo's defensive set should look more like this:

    [SET]
    name: Rain Dish
    move 1: Protect
    move 2: Scald / Giga Drain
    move 3: Leech Seed
    move 4: Ice Beam
    item: Leftovers
    ability: Rain Dish
    nature: Calm
    evs: 248 HP / 8 Def / 252 SpD
    -with Substitute moved down to AC.

    Now onto the viability of this set; I think that defensive Ludicolo is just as viable as Parasect or Leech Seed Breloom. Though it doesn't have any means of halting or simply beating imposing bulky Grass-types (and an immunity to status, in Breloom's case), Ludicolo is able to check a number of nasty threats (oh hey, with Protect, it can actually beat Gyarados), which can be highly beneficial to rain stall. I mean, maybe Ludicolo's team needs a more reliable switch-in to Keldeo's Hydro Pumps that isn't slow as balls / susceptible to other specially based threats? That said, Nattorei shouldn't be too difficult to play around with correct support (Forry, Xatu, etc), especially if Ludicolo's main focus is geared more toward checking specific threats than hardcore stalling. It's plausible to argue that Latias gives Ludicolo stiff competition when it comes to checking threats to rain, but not having to tiptoe around Tyranitar / Scizor can be useful in the long run. If a set isn't heavily outclassed by its competition, why reject it? Because it's not effective in the current -- keep in mind, still dynamic metagame? Defensive Ludicolo has more than enough going for it to consider being used on rain stall or any variation of it; it's certainly nice to have an alternative to what's considered 'standard'.

    P.S - This is mostly false:
    CM Keldeo and EB can push on through; Thundurus, if running LO, can spam Thunder with little fear; and without Giga Drain, Starmie can win via a combination of Rapid Spin + Recover or Psyshock.

    This is also mostly false:
    Landorus (physically based Incarnate and Therian) often pack U-turn, so actually being able to damage them can prove to be quite the effort. Also, Sub + DD Gyarados -- Bounce Gyarados in general will beat physically defensive Ludicolo.

    P.P.S - Emphasize Spikes support -- entry hazard support in general -- more when you update the OP. Leech Seed forces a lot of switches, so naturally entry hazards will be of great benefit to Ludicolo. Also, Nidoqueen isn't relevant enough to get a mention as a partner. You're better off replacing its mention as a partner with Forretress since both it and Tentacruel can not only set up Toxic Spikes, but quickly get rid of them as well.
  6. Spirit

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    Alrighty, so I can see I'm fighting an uphill battle here and even though I do agree Sub-seed is a situational set, Ludicolo is a situational pokemon in general. If it's alright with you ginganinja, I'll be adding sub-seed to OO as I've had mild success with it. Rain sweeper set is up, and the analysis is ready for checks. As for the Rain Dish Hybrid, it's very similar to Sub-seed, and I actually tried that set out before and it was a major fail. It's actually worse than Sub-seed. If someone from QC can back it up or refute it, that would be great. Chillarmy, note how I said Ludicolo can check those threats not outright counter them. There are situations were they can beat Ludicolo, however Ludicolo can beat most sets. So the information is not false. Also, U-turn coming from Landorus isn't a reliable way at beating Ludicolo. J/s.
  7. jc104

    jc104 Humblest person ever
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    Rain dance and LO are mandatory on special sweeping ludicolo. Unless you're running a damp rock rain team, Ludicolo is clearly going to have to set rain up for itself about 3/4 of the time. Plus, Ludicolo has good coverage and some form of recovery in giga drain, so a Life Orb would be my choice anyway, even if drizzle + swift swim weren't banned.

    As for how to slash the other moves, I'm really not sure. Ludicolo really needs all of them. Forgoing Giga Drain worked reasonably well for me, but perhaps that's just because everyone expected me to have it. I suppose Focus Blast should be slashed behind Ice Beam, but being walled by Dragonite/Latios/Latias is not cool at all.

    I'd prefer modest as the nature too (unless I'm missing something - mention what it is in the analysis!)
  8. Spirit

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    Well, Timid does two things, it can speed tie with jolly Breloom and under rain, it can outspeed base 108 scarfers and speed tie with Scarf HP fire Lati@s. I'll mention it. ^^

    As for the set slashes, they seem okay to me. As you said everything is important, but I see Focus Blast as the one move you can live without. Giga Drain is what gives Ludicolo a distinction over other rain sweepers b/c it can break through water types. Also, would like me to remove Choice Specs and add it to AC or leave it as is?
  9. alexwolf

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    As jc said LO and RD are essential for the first set. I think that Ludicolo needs both STABs, as hitting Water-types is very important because Keldeo, Jellicent, and Starmie are all common Pokemon. Focus Blast should be slashed after Ice Beam, as hitting Dragon and Grass types is pretty big.

    Don't know about the Protect + Leech Seed set that Chillarmy posted. It does sound like it has some merit, but the fact that the therats it is supposed to handle can get past it no so hard makes me doubt its effectiveness.

    And the SubSeed belongs to OO.
  10. shrang

    shrang Reaction to Ubers ladder
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    I might go and test it later, but SD Ludicolo gives opposing rain teams a very hard time, although it's pretty useless outside of sun though.
  11. Spirit

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    Okay, added changes, alexwolf. Choice Specs+4 attacks in AC.
  12. PK Gaming

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    Focus Blast needs an additional slash on the 4th slot (after Rain Dance). If you're using Ludicolo on a classic Rain Dance team (IE the best place to use this kind of Ludicolo imo) then Focus Blast is a clear staple.

    I think you really need to stress Ludicolo's placement on classic Rain Dance teams, and its sheer "immediate" power in comparison to other classic rain dance abusers like Kabutops. It's really good at luring out rain checks and weakening them and making it easier for its teammates to sweep. You need to mention Tornadus-I as a primary partner (and mentioning other rain dance abusers couldn't hurt)
  13. Lavos Spawn

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    probably also mention that if you run modest nature, scarf terrakion keldeo landorus etc. will all outspeed you, whereas if you run timid you can outspeed all of those under rain, but scarf latios/latias/gengar and anything faster than that will also still outspeed. basically ludicolo's borderline too slow to use even as a swift swim abuser. also agreeing with what pkgaming says above me
  14. Pocket

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    Yea, make Timid the primary slash over Modest please - being slower than Scarf Keldeo / Scarf Terrakion is silly. Ludicolo really cannot afford to tank strong hits like STAB Close Combat.

    Ice Beam is crucial to Ludicolo's sweeping capabilities, otherwise it'll find itself walled by Dragons and Grass-types that are abundant for checking Keldeo. Focus Blast targets Ferrothorn and Kyurem, but I'd rather slap Superpower on Kabutops than Focus Blast on Ludicolo. Ice Beam just offers drastically better coverage. If one really needs to squeeze in Focus Blast, it should be over Rain Dance, with a Damp Rock user summoning Rain in behalf of Ludicolo and its fellow swift swimmers. I'll test Ludicolo on manual (aka classic) rain teams to affirm this.

    AC mention that Ludicolo's final slot can run either Water STAB to have best of both worlds - Surf for consistency and Hydro Pump for power.
  15. Spirit

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  16. PK Gaming

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    I really want to see a bigger emphasis on Ludicolo being used on "manual rain dance" teams before I can approve. Mentioning that Ludicolo functions on weatherless teams is nice, but in practice it's much better suited to being used on manual rain dance teams. Can you please edit the overview and main analysis to reflect that?
  17. Pocket

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    Add to AC that Substitute can also be used on the last slot to ease prediction / protect Ludicolo from powerful priorities.
  18. Spirit

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    Okay, I pretty much smacked references on manual rain and rain partners in every applicable area. If this reassures anything, in the overview, one paragraph will be devoted to talking about Ludicolo as a pokemon, while the other will be used to discuss its "new" niche.
    I'll add more references if requested, though there is a lot now.
  19. Cygnis

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    Mention how Magnezone is an excellent partner to SPAM H-Pumps and and not having to forgo F-Blast. i actually prefer F-Blast w/ rain dance because ice beam is like awesome at what it does.

    EDIT: 116 HP / 236 / 160 Spe has worked wonders for me with ModestNatur gining awesome power, decent speed but above average bulk helps it against scarf Keldeo and Latios
  20. shrang

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    Looks fine.

    [qc]1/3[/qc]
  21. Lavos Spawn

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    guess i'll second this one

    [​IMG]

    QC Approved (2/3)
  22. Spirit

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    Thanks guys, I'll write this up asap.
  23. Spirit

    Spirit
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    This shouldn't have took so long, but anyways it's finally written. Ready for the last check.
  24. BKC

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    aight

    qc approved 3/3
  25. Spirit

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    Thank ya. Time for GP checks.

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