XY Preview Serebii QC: Fuzznip, PK Gaming, Ginganinja GP: Kingler12345, melvni Overview ######## While XY brought Mamoswine few boons, it retains its role as an excellent check to some of the most threatening Pokemon in OU. Mamoswine's high base 130 Attack coupled with outstanding Ice + Ground offensive coverage and priority in the form of Ice Shard allows it to KO dangerous sweepers such as Landorus, Garchomp, and Dragonite, as well as deliver crippling blows to opposing walls. Access to Stealth Rock, the useful Endeavor, and Oblivious also enables Mamoswine to run a unique offensive lead set that cannot be Taunted while still maintaining its revenge killing capabilities. However, Mamoswine's poor defenses and weakness to common attacking types make it difficult to switch into offensive Pokemon, and its relatively low base Speed means that it will often lose to offensive Pokemon that it cannot defeat with Ice Shard. This is compounded by a significant weakness to many priority attacks, notably Bullet Punch, Mach Punch, and Aqua Jet. Mamoswine's offensive lead set faces strong competition from other dedicated leads such as Deoxys-D, and the new Defog mechanics make the guaranteed Stealth Rock from this set less effective. Despite its flaws, Mamoswine is a formidable force on the field, as its ability to revenge kill prominent threats as well as break through tough walls is second to none. Physical Attacker ######## name: Physical Attacker move 1: Earthquake move 2: Ice Shard move 3: Icicle Crash / Icicle Spear move 4: Freeze Dry / Superpower ability: Thick Fat item: Life Orb evs: 244 Atk / 12 SpA / 252 Spe ivs: 29 HP nature: Naive / Jolly Moves ======== Mamoswine's movepool is far from expansive, but it has access to everything it needs to be both a strong revenge killer and an excellent wallbreaker. Earthquake is a very powerful STAB move with nice coverage, and Ice Shard provides priority to revenge kill a large number of threats, particularly Dragons. Icicle Crash is a strong secondary STAB attack that has amazing neutral coverage with Earthquake, hitting Grass- and Flying-types super effectively, while having a handy 30% flinch chance. Alternatively, Icicle Spear is an interesting option that can break through Substitute and Focus Sash users: Gliscor, Smeargle, and Breloom are relevant examples. It also has the benefit of 100% accuracy, though it is, on average, weaker than Icicle Crash. Freeze Dry may seem like an odd choice on a physical attacker, but it provides excellent coverage against bulky Water-types. Physically defensive Rotom-W is 2HKOed after Stealth Rock damage, and Gyarados takes massive damage. It also cleanly OHKOes Quagsire, which can be very handy in breaking stall teams. Superpower is viable to smash Ferrothorn and Air Balloon users such as Heatran and Excadrill harder than Mamoswine's STAB moves. Stealth Rock is an option, but it is generally set up more reliably by other variants of Mamoswine. Finally, Mamoswine also has access to Knock Off, which with its new mechanics could be useful in the final move slot if Freeze Dry and Superpower are undesired. Set Details ======== A Speed boosting nature is preferred in order to outrun offensive Heatran, Adamant Gyarados, and Breloom. Outspeeding Breloom is important, as this ensures Mamoswine's Ice Shard will strike before Jolly Breloom's Mach Punch. The choice of nature is dependent on the moveset. If Freeze Dry is used, Naive is ideal, though Naughty is also viable. Jolly or Adamant should be chosen on sets without Freeze Dry. The given EV spread emphasizes Speed and Attack, and the 12 EVs in Special Attack guarantee that Rotom-W is 2HKOed by Freeze Dry after Stealth Rock damage. Mamoswine without Freeze Dry should maximize Attack and have the remaining 4 EVs in Defense. As it gives a neutrality to Fire-type attacks and a resistance to Ice-type attacks, Thick Fat is the ability of choice, allowing Mamoswine to survive strong Fire-type attacks such as Choice Band Talonflame's Flare Blitz and Choice Scarf Heatran's Fire Blast. A Life Orb is ideal to maximize attacking power while retaining the versatility of switching moves, and subsequently the 29 IVs in HP minimize Life Orb recoil as well as Stealth Rock damage. Usage Tips ======== There are very few complexities involved with this Mamoswine set. It should be used to revenge kill opposing sweepers with Ice Shard, as it is difficult to switch in by virtue of its poor defensive typing. For this reason, it is always wise to preserve Mamoswine as much as is prudent during the match. Generally speaking, whenever Mamoswine is not required to use Ice Shard, one should simply use its fantastic coverage to punch holes in the opponents team, as only extremely bulky Pokemon can stomach repeated Life Orb-boosted hits. Keep in mind that Rotom-W should be only targeted with Freeze Dry on the switch unless it is significantly weakened, while Gyarados must be scouted in order to determine its set before you stay in on it to use Freeze Dry. Team Options ======== Mamoswine's vulnerability to strong Water- and Fighting-type attacks makes Mega Venusaur and Latias good partners. In return, Mamoswine can threaten Tyranitar, Aegislash, and Heatran. Similarly, Heatran makes a nice teammate, as it can repeatedly switch into Scizor, as well as defeat Skarmory. Mamoswine is generally more suited to offensive teams, whose dedicated sweepers appreciate its wallbreaking and revenge killing abilities. Focus Sash ######## name: Focus Sash move 1: Stealth Rock move 2: Endeavor move 3: Ice Shard move 4: Earthquake ability: Oblivious item: Focus Sash evs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe nature: Jolly / Adamant Moves ======== As this set focuses on reliably setting up Stealth Rock, it is the primary move, and with a Focus Sash, Mamoswine is almost certain to set it up. Endeavor makes further use of the Focus Sash and effectively turns Mamoswine's poor defensive capabilities into an effective means of crippling an opposing Pokemon. Ice Shard is useful for picking off Pokemon brought down to 1 HP by Endeavor, as well as revenge killing throughout the match. In the last slot, Earthquake is a strong STAB attack that still hits hard despite the lack of a boosting item. Set Details ======== A Jolly nature is used to set up Stealth Rock as quickly as possible, and, importantly, outspeed common leads such as Breloom and Smeargle as this set is designed as a lead itself. However, Adamant is viable to provide more power to Earthquake and Ice Shard, particularly if using the latter to revenge kill opposing sweepers late in the game. Focus Sash is vital for this set, as it allows for almost guaranteed Stealth Rock and maximizes Endeavor's potential. This set does not need to survive strong Fire-type attacks and would much rather prevent Taunt from opposing leads such as Deoxys-S and Greninja, making Oblivious the ability of choice. Usage Tips ======== You should nearly always be using this set as a lead, so setting Stealth Rock is generally the primary focus. Pokemon that bring Mamoswine to low health or to the Focus Sash can be eliminated by using Endeavor followed by priority Ice Shard. However, it might not always be ideal to set up Stealth Rock on the very first turn. Against some faster leads, Endeavor can be used immediately on an expected attacking move. The opponent will likely realize that Ice Shard is coming and switch. With good play, this can be your opportunity to set up Stealth Rock. Because of situations like this, it is important to avoid mindlessly laying down Stealth Rock on the first turn, especially if you see the likes of Greninja, Rotom-W, or Terrakion as an opposing lead. Also, be wary about sacrificing Mamoswine early in the game, as Ice Shard remains very useful as a revenge killing tool after its Focus Sash has been broken. Team Options ======== This set is most suited to offensive teams that benefit from reliable Stealth Rock on the opponent's side. Wallbreakers such as Dragonite and sweepers such as Thundurus appreciate both Stealth Rock support and Mamoswine's ability to cripple an opposing Pokemon via Endeavor. As the set is a dedicated lead, it might have problems with opposing Focus Sash leads, especially Smeargle and Breloom. As such, Espeon is a good partner to make Smeargle think twice about using Spore or entry hazards of its own. Other Options ######## As far as alternate moves go, Mamoswine's movepool is quite sparse. Stone Edge has good synergy with Earthquake, but is generally inferior to Mamoswine's Ice-type STAB moves and Superpower. Mamoswine can also make use of a Choice Band for more immediate power than Life Orb, but being locked into Earthquake is undesirable and easy for the opponent to exploit. Likewise, a Choice Scarf allows Mamoswine to act as a dedicated revenge killer; however, it is outclassed by other Choice Scarf users such as Garchomp, which sports better typing. Checks & Counters ######## **Physical Walls**: Skarmory can switch into any attack relatively easily and set up hazards of its own or remove Stealth Rock with Defog. Defensive Rotom-W can switch into Icicle Crash and Earthquake easily and threaten to spread burns or just KO with Hydro Pump. Similarly, defensive Gyarados can stomach any single physical hit thanks to Intimidate and deal heavy damage with STAB Waterfall. Both of these Pokemon must be wary of Freeze Dry, though. **Common Priority**: Scizor and Azumarill resist Ice Shard and can strike back with a super effective Bullet Punch and Aqua Jet, respectively. Similarly, Talonflame can pick off a slightly weakened Mamoswine with its faster priority in Brave Bird. **Faster Pokemon Resistant to Ice-type Attacks**: Generally, any naturally faster Pokemon that can take an Ice Shard and KO in return serve as good checks. Keldeo, Manaphy, Infernape, and Starmie are good examples here.