Metagame Middle Cup (Combusken Suspect!)

#27
Electabuzz has a fair bit of competition coming from Magneton as a power electric spammer while Kadabra shares its incredible speed tier, has a better ability and is more powerful on the special side. There is also Chansey and P2 both of which are annyoing for Electabuzz. Magmar on the other hand is a solid mon, one of the few good fire types in the tier. It has an awkward speed tier sitting at 93 speed. It is great at breaking through the fat Normal-types in the tier, Cross Chop smacks them pretty hard. Overall, both are solid mons just have a fair bit of competition will all the stuff from last gen unbanned. There isn't much of a reason to run Magmar over Combusken rn in my opinion.
 
#28
First of all, this meta is very fun. But uhm... Chansey is a big problem. It completely nullifies risk by being able to switch into pretty much any special attacker for the team, it has a reliable attacking move in seismic toss, it acts as a cleric and it has recovery. It's absolutely ridiculous. I will post another time with some in-depth discussions about some of the 'good' Pokemon.
 
#29
First of all, this meta is very fun. But uhm... Chansey is a big problem. It completely nullifies risk by being able to switch into pretty much any special attacker for the team, it has a reliable attacking move in seismic toss, it acts as a cleric and it has recovery. It's absolutely ridiculous. I will post another time with some in-depth discussions about some of the 'good' Pokemon.
This is the tipping point, especially in a metagame like Middle Cup where HP stats are already much lower as is. Not to mention Chansey's defenses and HP even without eviolite are simply ridiculous, not to mention access to recovery moves, team healing moves, wish, and other options.
 
#30
How are Magmar and Electabuzz looking to fair in the Middle Cup metagame right now?

Also...

Why didn't this middle cup Pokemon get attacking moves, or any moves other than Cosmic Power / Teleport / Splash... Dem stats:

HP: 43
Attack: 29
Defense: 131
Sp.Atk: 29
Sp.Def: 131
Speed: 37
Holy crap I didn't realize its defenses were that good. If it even just got Baton Pass it would have had a niche. Sure Taunt would kill it but it'd a niche no less! Here's hoping it gets tutor moves! It won't...
 
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#31
Holy crap I didn't realize its defenses were that good. If it even just got Baton Pass it would have had a niche. Sure Taunt would kill it but it'd a niche no less! Here's hoping it gets tutor moves! It won't...
Mono-Psychic type with 4 god-awful stats and literally 0 useful moves, I wouldn't get your hopes up. Normally Pokemon like this with restricted movepools (Unown, Wynaut line, etc.) don't ever gain good moves. Even if you're somewhat bulky you lose all of your momentum when switching this in + you can't even do anything in return.

Alas
 
#32
Mono-Psychic type with 4 god-awful stats and literally 0 useful moves, I wouldn't get your hopes up. Normally Pokemon like this with restricted movepools (Unown, Wynaut line, etc.) don't ever gain good moves. Even if you're somewhat bulky you lose all of your momentum when switching this in + you can't even do anything in return.

Alas
Give this thing Baton Pass / Recover, literally the only two moves it needs to function. Add Stored Power on there to make it even more functional.
 
#33
Holy crap I didn't realize its defenses were that good. If it even just got Baton Pass it would have had a niche. Sure Taunt would kill it but it'd a niche no less! Here's hoping it gets tutor moves! It won't...
Mono-Psychic type with 4 god-awful stats and literally 0 useful moves, I wouldn't get your hopes up. Normally Pokemon like this with restricted movepools (Unown, Wynaut line, etc.) don't ever gain good moves. Even if you're somewhat bulky you lose all of your momentum when switching this in + you can't even do anything in return.

Alas
Give this thing Baton Pass / Recover, literally the only two moves it needs to function. Add Stored Power on there to make it even more functional.
I honestly feel like we shouldn't talk about what we want something to get and instead talk about some of the Pokémon. How about Trumbeak?



As threw mentioned in an earlier post, it has some cool traits. Most notably not being walled by Rhydon due to Skill Link Bullet Seed. It can't get past Doublade though, science it's immune to Trumbeak's steel coverage, Brick Break, and Flame Charge not doing any good damage:

252+ Atk Trumbeak Flame Charge vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Doublade: 64-76 (19.8 - 23.6%) -- possible 5HKO

Choice Band does damage around a 3HKO, but I think Trumbeak wants to boost its speed with Choice Scarf instead. Here is a set I made:

Trumbeak @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Skill Link
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Brave Bird
- Bullet Seed
- Rock Blast / Brick Break
- U-Turn / Fury Attack

With a Choice Scarf, Trumbeak outspeeds base 100s but not Kadabra or Electabuzz, but I don't think Trumbeak wants to stay in on them anyway. Brave Bird is the main STAB attack, while Bullet Seed and Rock Blast take advantage of Skill Link. Fury attack is a secondary STAB that also takes advantage of Skill Link, but U-Turn can be used instead scince Fury Attack doesn't offer any good coverage.

EDIT: Brick Break can be used instead of Rock Blast to hit random Fighting-weak Pokémon that switch into Trumbeak.

What are your thoughts on this Pokémon?
 
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#34
I honestly feel like we shouldn't talk about what we want something to get and instead talk about some of the Pokémon. How about Trumbeak?



As threw mentioned in an earlier post, it has some cool traits. Most notably not being walled by Rhydon due to Skill Link Bullet Seed. It can't get past Doublade though, science it's immune to Trumbeak's steel coverage, Brick Break, and Flame Charge not doing any good damage:

252+ Atk Trumbeak Flame Charge vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Doublade: 64-76 (19.8 - 23.6%) -- possible 5HKO

Choice Band does damage around a 3HKO, but I think Trumbeak wants to boost its speed with Choice Scarf instead. Here is a set I made:

Trumbeak @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Skill Link
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Brave Bird
- Bullet Seed
- Rock Blast
- Fury Attack / U-Turn

With a Choice Scarf, Trumbeak outspeeds base 100s but not Kadabra or Electabuzz, but I don't think Trumbeak wants to stay in on them anyway. Brave Bird is the main STAB attack, while Bullet Seed and Rock Blast take advantage of Skill Link. Fury attack is a secondary STAB that also takes advantage of Skill Link, but U-Turn can be used instead scince Fury Attack doesn't offer any good coverage.

What are your thoughts on this Pokémon?
I am thought is that it's probably the best middle evolution we got this gen, (unreleased tutors and HA's notwithstanding). Workable speed and good attack tiers by middle evolution and type coverage Pidgeotta, Tranquil, and Staravia would kill for.

As for the set in particular, I'd slash Rock Blast with Brick Break on the end and flip Fury Attack and U-Turn assuming you are organizing by effectiveness. Even with STAB, Fury Attack's Base Power and so-so accuracy leave it as quite underwhelming, especially since you're Scarfed. Something hit neutrally by it will probably be hit just as hard by Brave Bird. And if not, you'll probably want to get out of there which is what U-Turn is for. As for Brick Break, I feel it's ability to pick off a weakened, Fighting weak Pokemon can come in handy for quickly dispatching a weakened threat mid game. I think it's useful enough to deserve a slash somewhere and Rock Blast, while strong and utilizing Skill Link, doesn't super-effectively hit any types that directly threaten Flying besides the rare Ice type.
 
#35
I am thought is that it's probably the best middle evolution we got this gen, (unreleased tutors and HA's notwithstanding). Workable speed and good attack tiers by middle evolution and type coverage Pidgeotta, Tranquil, and Staravia would kill for.

As for the set in particular, I'd slash Rock Blast with Brick Break on the end and flip Fury Attack and U-Turn assuming you are organizing by effectiveness. Even with STAB, Fury Attack's Base Power and so-so accuracy leave it as quite underwhelming, especially since you're Scarfed. Something hit neutrally by it will probably be hit just as hard by Brave Bird. And if not, you'll probably want to get out of there which is what U-Turn is for. As for Brick Break, I feel it's ability to pick off a weakened, Fighting weak Pokemon can come in handy for quickly dispatching a weakened threat mid game. I think it's useful enough to deserve a slash somewhere and Rock Blast, while strong and utilizing Skill Link, doesn't super-effectively hit any types that directly threaten Flying besides the rare Ice type.
Actually now that I think of it, the only stuff worth hitting with Rock Blast is Staravia and Magmar. I'll slash Brick Break with Rock Blast. Also, maybe Return instead of Fury Attack?
 

Cheryl.

Celesteela is Life
#38
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So me and Miyami~~ were having some battles in Middle Cup today and we discovered a few things. One of these things is that Shadow Tag Gothorita is actually insane. I've been running a CroGoth set and it basically punishes the opponent for using slower passive Pokémon such as Chansey and Marshtomp by coming in (usually through U-Turn or Volt Switch by a mon that is checked by these defensive Pokémon), easily setting up on them, and then eliminating them and breaking down the opposing team, sometimes being able to just sweep thanks to +6 Psyshocks killing everything and it's impenetrable special bulk after Calm Mind. We think this is quite unhealthy as it can make the opposing player just autolose just for having these bulky Pokémon, which is often needed on a MC team due to all the offensive threats around. While you can potentially answer Gothorita after it has trapped something by using a Dark-type or Doublade, or just really strong physically offensive pressure, it still doesn't dismiss the fact that it can eliminate your defensive backbone in one fell swoop, leaving your team open to a myriad of offensive threats. As such, we think a ban on Shadow Tag is needed, as Gothorita clearly isn't broken without it and the ability is the problem due to it being inherently unhealthy in the meta.

Some replays showing Shadow Tag's unhealthiness:
http://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/azure-gen7ubers-115365 (Gothorita easily sets up on Mia's passive team and while it is forced out once by Haze Dusclops, it easily just comes back in and sets up again for the win.)
http://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7ubers-526197734 (Gothorita comes in on Marshtomp, eliminates him while setting up, and while Sleep Talk rolls ended her time, she still left Mia's team without a defensive backbone, and making her team weaker to the Electric-types on my team.)
http://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7ubers-526202807 (Goth doesn't actually do much here as Marshtomp was already dead, although this does showcase a flaw of Shadow Tag: not being quite as effective versus offensive Pokémon, so you can take that into consideration.)
http://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7ubers-526205581 (The same deal here, but with Gothorita being awake, it's able to more reliably take out the other threats on Mia's team and just sweep due to it's bulk.)

I'd also like to address another topic. As you can see in the last two replays there, me and Miyami were using two non-Middle Cup Pokémon, Castform and Minun. Now, one would ask why? Well, this is because we have an idea that could help improve the meta! Right now, Middle Cup is extremely unbalanced, as you can really only use offense or bulky offense with some pivots due to all the offensive threats around in the meta. It also has a very small number of mons, and other around half of them are even good, making teams not very unique. Me and Miyami thought that maybe adding more Pokémon to the meta would spark more variety in teams, and potentially make the metagame healthier as a result. We decided that perhaps we could take some of the least-used PU mons (not fully-evolved but ones that cannot evolve such as Minun or Dedenne) and put them into Middle Cup and see what would happen. For this session, we decided to test out Castform and Minun, as the latest PU usage stats from ORAS showed them in the bottom 5 of used mons by PU usage. As these replays showed, they both weren't overbearing, as Minun mostly just pivoted around with Volt Switch and Castform died by Thunderbolt from Electabuzz or posed an actual threat to my team with a Z-Rain Dance set, KOing my Marshtomp with Weather Ball and crippling my Golbat with Thunder and paralysis. While these two weren't spectacular, we feel that they could add something to the meta, as Minun is unique in being an Electric-type set-up sweeper with Nasty Plot and a good Speed tier, and Castform has really good coverage and decent power with Weather Ball. While doing this does break the rules of Middle Cup, I think that potentially making the metagame more healthy and unique is a good payoff.
 
#39
Seems like Shadow Tag is 100% busted in any tier below Uber's...

And I really like that expansion idea. Do you think it would be possible to also reach into the Little Cup and LC Uber pools for a couple bonus candidates? 2 stage mons like Ferroseed, Pawniard, and Could be interesting.

Also how do you have your matches again?
 
#40
Seems like Shadow Tag is 100% busted in any tier below Uber's...

And I really like that expansion idea. Do you think it would be possible to also reach into the Little Cup and LC Uber pools for a couple bonus candidates? 2 stage mons like Ferroseed, Pawniard, and Could be interesting.

Also how do you have your matches again?
Use Ubers and manually set all the Pokémon to level 50 in the teambuilder. You should be able to do it here:

Screen Shot 2017-01-30 at 9.17.11 PM.png


If you find me on (My username is Miyami), challenge me and we can battle.

Also, Mazz - what's the ruling on Type: Null? It's listed as NFE in the teambuilder.
 

Cheryl.

Celesteela is Life
#41
Seems like Shadow Tag is 100% busted in any tier below Uber's...

And I really like that expansion idea. Do you think it would be possible to also reach into the Little Cup and LC Uber pools for a couple bonus candidates? 2 stage mons like Ferroseed, Pawniard, and Could be interesting.

Also how do you have your matches again?
I think reaching into the 2 stage LC mons is a pretty good idea, as a good chunk of them could be decently viable in the meta, like Gligar, Misdreavous, Mareanie comes to mind.
 
#42
Type: Null doesn't have a pre-evolution. Remember, for something to be eligible for middle cup, it must have an evolved form and a pre-evolution.

NFE is its own metagame, and I have no intentions of turning MC into NFE. I wouldn't mind playing it, but that's not the route I'm going to take.

Also, I've been super inactive as of late but I'll get some resources done up for you guys in the coming month.
 
#43
I'm done with college applications so I have way more free time on my hands to start looking at the new mons and new sets. Last gen I was talking bout how good STag is, still is insane and will always be. Whether or not it is busted in this tier to the point where it needs to be suspected I don't know. Only time will tell since things have been pretty slow so far.
 
#44
Hi guys !
i just have discovered this thread. I used to play Middle Cup when it still existed as a ladder. I would really appreciate a revival of this meta !

Well, what is your opinion on this ?

Magmar @ Normalium Z
Ability: Vital Spirit
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant / Jolly Nature
- Belly Drum
- Flare Blitz / Fire Punch
- Thunder Punch
- Mach Punch

(nb: in bold, what I was thinking to run)

Thanks !
 
#45
So is Dartrix remotely viable in the Sun / Moon metagame? It has okay-ish stats, a relatively decent physical and special movepool with some nice set up options and support moves (Defog, Confuse Ray, Swords Dance, etc).

Also, Haunter, one of my favorite Pokemon of all time (and I have a tattoo of him on my left arm!) He didn't lose Levitate like Gengar did! So he's still a nice powerhouse that you can switch into various Pokemon.

Haunter @ Life Orb
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Shadow Ball
- Sludge Bomb
- Thunderbolt / Giga Drain / Destiny Bond
- Thunderbolt / Giga Drain / Destiny Bond

Haunter's 115 Special Attack is powerful enough to justify running a Timid nature thanks to LO's power boost. You've got your two main STABs that give pretty solid coverage. Last two slots are dependent on team needs. Thunderbolt has more utility based on the current Middle Cup threats, but Giga Drain nails Ground types as well as Water, and increases Haunter's longevity. Destiny Bond is another option for taking down slower threats (especially in the slower pacing of Middle Cup)
 

Xayah

We always have a plan
is a Contributor to Smogon
#46
I have never played Middle Cup before and thus won't be going in depth into the metagame, but I have a different proposal that I think could help the metagame.

Near the end of ORAS, I really wanted to get into Middle Cup, but was never able to find a battle and thus never did. It's quite likely something similar will happen in SM, if it is not already the case. There is a way to fix this however: a Middle Cup Discord channel.
The biggest problem with finding matches is never being sure if anyone who plays Middle Cup is on, and wether they even see it. On a discord channel, you can see it very clearly, plus if need to reach someone specific, you can always do that. I think this would make it much easier to find matches, which in return could very well make the metagame more popular.

I'd also be willing to help setting this up
 
#47
I want to bump this because Middle Cup is one of my favorite metagames, and I'd hate for it to die from inactivity. So let's bring attention to one of the new Middle Cup Pokemon "Steenee", part of the Tsareena evolution line. I'm gonna be honest, it's pretty terrible in terms of its base stats. But if you feel like being creative and giving yourself a challenge, it's worth a try.

Steenee @ Leftovers
Ability: Oblivious
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Impish / Bold Nature (Depending on whether you're using Physical or Special attacks)
- Synthesis
- Play Rough / Dazzling Gleam
- Teeter Dance / Toxic
- Payback / Energy Ball / Leaf Storm / Low Sweep

This was basically the most useful set I could come up with for Steenee. The unfortunately problem is that it has mixed base attacking stats of 40, so it's not gonna be doing damage at all for the most part. It gets access to Synthesis / Teeter Dance which at least gives it a little bit of viability, along with some odd standout moves such as Payback, Acupressure, Aromatherapy, Low Sweep, Light Screen and Reflect. So there's possible other options in there.
 

The Immortal

They Don't Want None
is a member of the Site Staffis a Battle Server Administratoris a Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Programmeris a Forum Moderatoris a Live Chat Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnus
Other Metas Leader
#48
Since this has been bumped, I'll take the opportunity to ask if anyone is interested in taking over this OM. Leave a message on my profile if you are.
 
#49
I want to bump this because Middle Cup is one of my favorite metagames, and I'd hate for it to die from inactivity. So let's bring attention to one of the new Middle Cup Pokemon "Steenee", part of the Tsareena evolution line. I'm gonna be honest, it's pretty terrible in terms of its base stats. But if you feel like being creative and giving yourself a challenge, it's worth a try.

Steenee @ Leftovers
Ability: Oblivious
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Impish / Bold Nature (Depending on whether you're using Physical or Special attacks)
- Synthesis
- Play Rough / Dazzling Gleam
- Teeter Dance / Toxic
- Payback / Energy Ball / Leaf Storm / Low Sweep

This was basically the most useful set I could come up with for Steenee. The unfortunately problem is that it has mixed base attacking stats of 40, so it's not gonna be doing damage at all for the most part. It gets access to Synthesis / Teeter Dance which at least gives it a little bit of viability, along with some odd standout moves such as Payback, Acupressure, Aromatherapy, Low Sweep, Light Screen and Reflect. So there's possible other options in there.
Steenee is one of only two Pokemon In middle cup to learn Rapid Spin, the other is Wartortle. That being said, even though it has Rapid Spin + Recovery, and being the only Mon here to have it, I don't recommend using it.
 
#50
Steenee is one of only two Pokemon In middle cup to learn Rapid Spin, the other is Wartortle. That being said, even though it has Rapid Spin + Recovery, and being the only Mon here to have it, I don't recommend using it.
I completely overlooked that it has Rapid Spin, with recovery that's still a usable niche.