np: SM UU Stage 2.1 - You're Welcome (Manaphy quickbanned - see post 92)

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#51
Everyone summed everything going for Conkeldurr, so I won't bother writing my own essay about it. Also, in case you were wondering, I will be voting ban.

Looks like I am the first to get reqs, yay me.


Anyway, I would like to talk about my team picks a bit...

Since Conkeldurr is not allowed during the suspect ladder, my natural pick was go to with stall.

1)


You got it right, my first team was Accelgor's Kyurem stall. I wanted a consistent stall team and Accelgor's stall team seemed like a great choice. Not only it proved to be as reliable as it has always been, it even showed way better results without Conkeldurr tearing it apart. I used this team for 1000ELO~1300ELO.

2)


I was pretty bored of using the same team and wanted to see how well can I build stall, therefore I started building around Shedinja, a stall toy I wanted to use ever since UU alhpa days. I previously had Mantine over Tentacruel, but I was really Toxic Spikes weak. Shame, because Mantine worked better in the team. Anyway, once again, stall had proven itself to be really successful. This time, I faced new threats including Guts Heracross and Guts Machamp, all seemed pretty threatening for stall but I had a way easier time dealing with them, because of their lack of recovery. I used this team for 1300~1400ELO, and peaked #1 with it (until I went to sleep and was like #13 when I woke up).

3)


Broke the mold and used the completely opposite playstyle, hyper offense. Since Conk almost 6-0'd my previous Trick Room team, I really wanted to rebuild it and give it a go. I had many quick games with it and won almost every game until I got the reqs.

CONCLUSIONS (assuming Conkeldurr is getting banned)
  • Thought stall was hard to beat? Trust me, you'll hate stall even more than you did earlier.
  • Dark-types are going to to dominate the metagame, especially Mega-Sharpedo.
  • During the suspect test, I had way more freedom in teambuilding than I did before. Unlike before, I didn't need to have at least three Conkeldurr checks in order to not automatically lose to it.
That pretty much sums my experience from the suspect test. Before I end my post, I'd love to share a set I thought of using, but hadn't actually had the chance to use.


Heracross @ Flame Orb
Ability: Guts
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Close Combat
- Facade
- Bulk Up / Swords Dance / Sleep Talk
- Rest

On paper, looks like this set destroys slower teams, mainly Stall. As I used stall and faced Guts Heracross, the only counterplay I had against it is to either revenge kill or stall it of HP (due to burn). Then, I thought for myself: "if it has Rest, might as well forfeit". This is when I thought of this set. The combination Close Combat + Facade literally deals with everything Stall has to offer, so I don't really see a point of having Knock Off (correct me if I am wrong).

Until the next broken Pokémon~
 
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#52
One thing that has been addressed but I'd like to expand on is Conk's unpredictability. Although the most viable sets run Guts/Flame Orb + Facade, the remaining issue is the other three moveslots. Drain Punch will likely be there for STAB and recovery, but the others are completely a toss-up. Knock Off could be run for general utility and ghosts/psychics, Poison Jab for fairies, Mach Punch for priority, Bulk Up for stronger wallbreaking, and Thunder Punch + Ice Punch for BoltBeam coverage.

Two sets tend to stand out in this mesh of coverage, and both are deadly in their own way, yet both have a different playstyle. One utilizing Bulk Up and Mach Punch can be a great mid to late game clearer after checks are removed, and possibly facilitate a sweep if its boosts enough. On the other hand, running Knock Off, Poison Jab, or the Elemental Punches gives it great utility to remove threats early to mid game with stellar wallbreaking.

In my humble opinion, Conk is too broken for UU and should be banned.

P.S. I've run Choice Band/Iron Fist Conk instead of Flame Orb/Guts Conk and it has been powerful as well, though nearly not as much as the Guts set. But it did provide a nice surprise and was still viable
 
#53
One thing that has been addressed but I'd like to expand on is Conk's unpredictability. Although the most viable sets run Guts/Flame Orb + Facade, the remaining issue is the other three moveslots. Drain Punch will likely be there for STAB and recovery, but the others are completely a toss-up. Knock Off could be run for general utility and ghosts/psychics, Poison Jab for fairies, Mach Punch for priority, Bulk Up for stronger wallbreaking, and Thunder Punch + Ice Punch for BoltBeam coverage.

Two sets tend to stand out in this mesh of coverage, and both are deadly in their own way, yet both have a different playstyle. One utilizing Bulk Up and Mach Punch can be a great mid to late game clearer after checks are removed, and possibly facilitate a sweep if its boosts enough. On the other hand, running Knock Off, Poison Jab, or the Elemental Punches gives it great utility to remove threats early to mid game with stellar wallbreaking.

In my humble opinion, Conk is too broken for UU and should be banned.

P.S. I've run Choice Band/Iron Fist Conk instead of Flame Orb/Guts Conk and it has been powerful as well, though nearly not as much as the Guts set. But it did provide a nice surprise and was still viable
I remember using iron fist banded Mach punch near the end of ORAS and sweeping teams with it late game. I also ran focus punch back then because of all the switches that would happen. Man, banded iron fist focus punch was beyond insane. I'm going to miss conk.
 
#54

Heracross @ Flame Orb
Ability: Guts
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Close Combat
- Facade
- Bulk Up / Swords Dance
- Rest

On paper, this set looks like it destroys slower teams, mainly Stall. As I used stall and faced Guts Heracross, the only counterplay I had against it is to either revenge kill or stall it of HP (due to burn). Then, I thought for myself: "if it has Rest, might as well forfeit". This is when I thought of this set. The combination Close Combat + Facade literally deals with everything Stall has to offer, so I don't really see a point of having Knock Off (correct me if I am wrong).

Until the next broken Pokémon~
I'd say Sleep Talk would be better in the third option. Since you still get the Guts bonus while asleep, and the inactivity doesn't invite setup sweepers and free switch ins.
 
#55
conkeldurr wasnt as good as last gen but this gen the burn nerf really boosted the flame orb sets viability the transition from its regular av set to the very present flame orb set in this metagame. In my opinion i want conk to go. one of the big components that make this mon so good is that it hits extremely hard of its 140 base atk boosted by guts. Its a terror for all playstyles and more effective against certain ones such as stall balance and bo. It's stab hits extremely hard and facade +knock off+coverage make it near impossible to switch into. There are very few checks and the best way to deal with it is faster mons like latias primarina and other that can ko or revenge kill it. As stated above if conk gets banned there are viable replacements but are not as strong wallbreakers or dont carry the niche conk carries. In conclusion, if i get reqs im voting ban this mon needs to go its too powerful for uu standards.
 
#57


On Conkeldurr I have two main thoughts. Firstly, I think it should be banned. Secondly, I think people are too optimistic that banning Conkeldurr will solve major problems, I really see no indication on the ladder that the metagame is much more balanced (although I never thought the metagame with Conkeldurr was particularly unbalanced).

Conkeldurr should be banned because:
  • I basically agree with 95% of the pro-ban posts which has been about 95% of this thread anyways
  • It doesn't really have counters because Facade/Knock Off/Drain Punch + Mach Punch KOs almost everything with SR
  • It can sweep or tank enough hits to sweep in addition to not having any counters
  • It's major problems are lack of resistances, need to activate Flame Orb, and low Speed
  • Those problems are mitigated respectively by its above average bulk, the fact that you can get it in on slow U-turns/double switches easily, and Mach Punch
Those points mean I think Conkeldurr is broken. On the metagame in general though:
  • It's a fun and more balanced than not metagame, where you can use most Pokemon and build creatively. But even the best teams still always have large exploitable holes through no fault of teambuilding
  • Bulky offense still remains the best style with its flexibility and ability to pressure everything
  • There's been an influx of Rain and I don't think it's just because of aim's laddering, I think it's legitimately very very strong because of Mega Swampert
  • Still I don't think it's enough for a suspect and Mega Swampert is likely leaving anyways by OU usage
  • Weavile is close to a suspect but I would be against it right now even if Conkeldurr gets banned if the ladder metagame is any indication; it's great but doesn't OHKO Mega Beedrill, Mega Aero or Scarf Dragons with Ice Shard after SR. It also almost requires support because SR weaknesses and while strong, it's Pursuit is not strong enough to OHKO anything unless the target is switching out, meaning it needs to predict because of its significantly below average bulk
  • Xurkitree I'm more convinced than ever is broken because of one new point: Z-Hypnosis was significantly underrated during both its previous tests and poses a threat to offense in games like this, despite the multiple Xurkitree "counters" and offensive nature and priority.
  • AV hyper offense has seemed popular as of late and is definitely a good choice to counter the many Rain teams
Overall I'm satisfied with the metagame, even if Conkeldurr doesn't get banned to be honest, and still want to see a Xurkitree suspect and ban.
 
#58
You cant really complain about losing to a +1 Xurk if you have 0 scarfers on ur team, thats kind of on u as a builder. The team in that replay would similarly get swept by something like a mega pert.

needing a scarfer isn't a lot to ask for an offense team either, as it greatly helps vs the opposing offense matchup, as well as just like not being an outrageous thing for an offensive team to have. The coverage that xurk had was also just the right set to sweep your team, as any other variation(no TG 3 attacks, grass knot or dazzling gleam over HP ice) would not have been as successful, but I'm not sure if thats for or against Xurk tbh

def agree about the conk ban tho
 
#59
To be fair though, Scarfers are a bit unfavourable in the current UU meta. You have sweepers like M-Swampert, M-Sharpedo and Hawlucha that outrun nearly all scarfers anyway. Being locked into a weak move leaves you open to being pursuited or simply used as setup fodder.

Furthermore, with the vast amount of priority in this tier, a CB or LO Priority user can fulfill the role of both the Wallbreaker and the Revenge Killer, leaving scarfers simply obsolete. I guess this kinda contrasts the situation in OU, since Psychic Terrain renders Scarfers almost mandatory for most teams.
 
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dingbat

ban all garden sneks
is a Tiering Contributor
#60
As someone who managed to pull off reqs with a fucking balance team... ye, balance is still awful lmao don't use that shit. Anyways:

First off, Conk needs to go because God forbid, this monster would legit almost always manage to completely fuck something sideways if it switched in; heck, it doesn't even need to be well played to wreak havoc in any given battle. What pushed Conk over the limit imho was (a) the burn nerf which made guts + Flame Orb such a popular option in the first place and (b) the fact that ghosts in this tier (moreso now) are severely hindered due to the omnipresence of Knock Off spammers like Krook and Weavile and other meta-defining ghost threats like Mega Aero, which afforded Conk the leverage to forgo Knock Off and run Bulk Up to not only boost its already horrifying power but also make it harder to revenge kill on the physical side. This makes for not just zero counterplay, but also an unreasonable amount of pressure that any battler facing Conk should experience.

Second off, there's obvious reasons why balance I believe is still the worst playstyle, even without Conk. Granted we were recently given some new stuff like Muk-Alola and Mega Steelix which are godsends to balance, the power surge that this tier has experienced between ORAS and SM with the entry of Z-crystals, and certain abusers of those, notably Xurkitree and Latias (yes, Latias), along with certain other drops like Weavile, Mega Swamp (bouta be OU again) and Mamo, has only hurt balance more than all the other shit has helped. It's that much harder to check shit defensively when there are threats nowadays that are not only capable of breaking through specific defensive cores but also upending entire teams. Stack a few of those on the same offensive team and you will easily give balance teams a run for its money.

In short, Conk is a good place to start, but other issues, most particularly Xurkitree, need to be addressed as well.
 
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#61
You cant really complain about losing to a +1 Xurk if you have 0 scarfers on ur team, thats kind of on u as a builder. The team in that replay would similarly get swept by something like a mega pert.

needing a scarfer isn't a lot to ask for an offense team either, as it greatly helps vs the opposing offense matchup, as well as just like not being an outrageous thing for an offensive team to have. The coverage that xurk had was also just the right set to sweep your team, as any other variation(no TG 3 attacks, grass knot or dazzling gleam over HP ice) would not have been as successful, but I'm not sure if thats for or against Xurk tbh

def agree about the conk ban tho


http://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7uususpecttest-607826654


I don't get swept by Swampert because it's weaker and does not generate free turns with a sleeping move. For example Latias can chunk a hit after SR and nearly OHKO back or put it in range of my priority. Same with Bewear and Blastoise. Moreover Mega Swampert doesn't threaten to OHKO stuff like Mega Blastoise and Bewear and Scizor before set up.

Honestly I'm not sure if you even looked at the replay because I'm obviously much less weak to Swampert than Xurkitree.

Lastly I agree with your point that Scarf users tend to make the matchup more favorable against Xurkitree but I think you're asking too much to prepare for it still - as I said, I already use offense which should limit the set up, I use double priority which should help revenge, and I have two supposedly good checks in speedy Gliscor and Z Latias. Now you're saying I need even more? On the archetype that's supposed to be good against Xurkitree? That's a sign it's overpowered imo.

As a side note, Z Hyponosis is great against stall too because sleep usually invalidates a counter and makes it faster than common stall responses to Xurkitree like Latias, Hydreigon, Kyurem, and Weavile.

Edit: also Dazzling Gleam would have swept me too if used over HP Ice, I don't understand why you think otherwise. +4 Dazzling Gleam easily OHKOs Gliscor.
 
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#62
I definitively agree with pif. Those who say that Xurkitree isn't that much threatening don't know what they talking about. For sure if you run both Aerodactyl-Mega, Scarf Tias + Blissey + priority, Xurk isn't a problem but tbh in a regular team, Xurkitree just put so much pressure on everything. I'm clearly fed up of it. It needs too much checks / counters on a team to take care of it and that's clearly a shame.

And this thing is clearly more versatile than it appears :
Specs or just Shuca Berry / Expert Belt All-Out ; Tail Glow + 3 attacks ; Tail Glow + Z-Hypnosis + 2 attacks (basically STAB + Filler [Grass Knot / HP Ice / Dazzling Gleam]) ; Electric Terrain + Electrium Z (with Thunder if you're playing a team like pokeaim one)..
 

Eyan

the great one with wings of steel
is a Tutoris a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Battle Server Moderator
Moderator
#63
I got council reqs (sorry I hate laddering, so no way I was going for standard reqs), so I'll share a few thoughts but keep it brief. Overall, I'm definitely on the pro ban side of this suspect test. The reasons for banning Conkeldurr is already pretty clear and were explained well by the posts above. After being popularised sometime around UUPL, the most common set you'd run into with Conkeldurr (and pretty much the only set I see in high-level play anymore) is the Flame Orb Facade one, which pretty much has no proper counters. You can check it offensively, sure, but it's still bulky enough to take a couple of average hits. Combine that with the insane power of Facade and Drain Punch, appreciated recovery in latter, and the priority of Mach Punch and you've got yourself a pretty dumb force to deal with.

As far as the laddering experience went, I cycled between three teams on two separate alts. A Lucario HO team, a bulky offense where I just replaced Conkeldurr with banded Bewear and see how that went, and a fatter balance team. Overall, I definitely felt as though the meta was more "free" in a sense. I agree with pif that the meta isn't fixed or stable per se, since there are still threats that completely fuck me over, but the lack of Conkeldurr was definitely a huge relief of pressure on the teams I used. I saw quite a few Flame Orb Heracross and opposing Banded (and even Swords Dance lol) Bewear scattered across the ladder, but they really just weren't as threatening as Conkeldurr was, with both lacking Mach Punch and recovery from Drain Punch, and the latter also lacking Guts, which is pretty huge in practice. Losing Conkeldurr is going to make stuff like Weavile more annoying, but as a whole, we seem to have sufficient alternative checks to them, and the teambuilding practices we already have aren't going to be warped or disrupted too much; similar cores and builds, just less pressure on them. I guess people won't need to run stuff like 16 Speed on their Florges anymore to outspeed Adamant Conkeldurr (granted I ran Jolly, which still 2HKOed Florges with Facade), but that's not exactly a big deal considering Florges also gets the jump on bulkier Scizor, which honestly makes it better than Sylveon in this meta personally; both are fine, though.

For what it's worth, I played UU open round 2, where Conkeldurr was still legal, after getting council reqs, and there were Conkeldurr in the first two games, which basically decimated both opposing teams. That's not really something I want to experience again after voting is done, so yeah, ban that shit. I guess neither our teams were perfect, and I'm bad at this game anyway, so there's that.
 

Amaroq

Avatar courtesy of DrReuniclus
is a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributor
#64
Now that I've gotten reqs, I figured I'd both share my feelings on Conkeldurr/the current meta and respond to some of the posts in this thread, since I've noticed a couple misconceptions I'd like to clear up. Most relevant information regarding Conkeldurr has already been disclosed, but, to summarize, its Guts + Flame Orb set boasts incredible power and coverage and its solid innate durability (even without investment) and access to priority and conditional recovery prevent it from being simply a slow, powerful wallbreaker that puts in work against fat teams, but lacks value against offense or is easily worn down by residual damage, by enabling it to pick off faster threats that could ordinarily KO it or take advantage of passive Pokemon or offensive Pokemon that can't KO it outright to recover HP. It's useful against every playstyle since it outspeeds and KOs most bulky Pokemon and has the defenses and sustain to 1v1 many offensive Pokemon (and can remove other offensive Pokemon with Mach Punch).

More generally, the meta without Conkeldurr felt much healthier to me. I encountered a decent amount of stall and really didn't have trouble dealing with it. UU still has plenty of countermeasures to stall, although many of them require a bit more thought to use correctly than Conkeldurr did. For example, Gliscor still has multiple sets that place considerable pressure on stall, but the player must utilize a strategy more complicated than simply switching the Pokemon in on something that can't threaten it, clicking the setup move of choice or Facade, and proceeding to win. The potential loss of one stallbreaker will not suddenly catapult the playstyle to prominence.

Balance also feels much more usable without Conkeldurr. While several threats to the playstyle, such as Xurkitree, Togekiss, and Nidoking, still exist, the removal of Conkeldurr made using balance a bit easier by opening up the option of using builds that don't rely on a small set of Pokemon that can check Conkeldurr and still contribute adequately to the defensive synergy that balance teams require. I used balance for the duration of my ladder run for multiple reasons. I haven't used the style much in SM and wanted to try my hand at it, the general consensus is that balance is the weakest playstyle right now and I wanted to evaluate that assertion, and it allowed me to incorporate Pokemon I don't normally use into my builds. I have concluded that balance is better now than it was before the most recent tier shift, but still the weakest playstyle by a significant margin. I am in favor of taking measures to restore balance to parity with other playstyles and intend to think carefully about what those measures should be. Frankly, I think balance's most prominent issue (and the biggest problem with the SM UU meta as a whole) is the existence of Z-moves. The power creep this mechanic enabled has tipped the scales heavily in the favor of offense. While I do not necessarily consider one playstyle being stronger than others a problem, I do believe that offense, balance, and stall should all be viable and approach parity in an ideal meta and that Z-moves inherently prevent the development of an ideal meta.

I might be a little late when it comes to addressing the whole Xurkitree issue, but it already received two council votes and wasn't banned in either of them. The meta hasn't shifted significantly in comparison to the metas Xurkitree was tested in, so giving it a public suspect immediately after two council votes is basically throwing tests at it until it gets banned rather than evaluating its place in the meta and deciding whether or not to ban based on that. While it's possible that Xurkitree is broken or unhealthy for the meta, I remain unimpressed by most of the arguments in this thread (although users whose opinions I respect have made considerably more compelling arguments in private). Running fast checks to deal with Pokemon that are hard to handle defensively is not a new concept, nor is bypassing situational checks with appropriate coverage. Choice Scarf is hardly "obsolete", and Choice Scarf users are common on many teams because of the value their revenge killing capacity provides. While Pokemon such as Scizor, Weavile, and Entei can revenge kill certain threats with priority, Pokemon like Latias, Infernape, and Hydreigon can revenge kill a wide variety of threats as well. The appropriate revenge killer for any given team is context-dependent. A team weak to Hawlucha may benefit from allocating that role to Scizor or Mamoswine, while a team weak to Mega Swampert might prefer Latias or Hydreigon. The point about Pursuit trapping is irrelevant because most common Choice Scarf users don't care about Pursuit (Hydreigon, Krookodile, Infernape, etc.) and playing around Pursuit is something anyone who wants to use Latias has had to take into account since the SM UU meta began. Becoming setup bait has been a risk associated with Choice items, and Choice Scarf in particular, since they were first introduced. They have still been used for years. It is fully possible to convince me to support a Xurkitree ban, but I must be presented with stronger arguments than have been posted in this thread.

Regarding Weavile, which I know has been divisive as well, I found it perfectly manageable without Conkeldurr. While I used balance for my reqs, I've played several games against Weavile using teams that did not incorporate Conkeldurr and have had very little trouble handling it unless I got outplayed. It still has multiple offensive checks and plenty of defensive answers. I will acknowledge that Weavile does place constraints on teambuilding, especially for offensive teams. That's what threats do. I don't think it's inherently bad for a Pokemon that offense struggles to handle to exist in the tier. Every playstyle has Pokemon that it struggles to deal with (before anyone accuses me of being a balance player who hates offense because it can break my balance, I have considered myself primarily an offense player ever since I made a concerted effort to improve my command of that playstyle at the end of ORAS and have used offense teams of some kind in the vast majority of my SM UU games). If the meta changes in such a way as to make Weavile broken or unhealthy, I am open to retesting it, but I do not think that doing so is necessary at this time.
 

eaglehawk

once known as smogon gay baby #4
#65
I got council reqs (sorry I hate laddering, so no way I was going for standard reqs), so I'll share a few thoughts but keep it brief. Overall, I'm definitely on the pro ban side of this suspect test. The reasons for banning Conkeldurr is already pretty clear and were explained well by the posts above. After being popularised sometime around UUPL, the most common set you'd run into with Conkeldurr (and pretty much the only set I see in high-level play anymore) is the Flame Orb Facade one, which pretty much has no proper counters. You can check it offensively, sure, but it's still bulky enough to take a couple of average hits. Combine that with the insane power of Facade and Drain Punch, appreciated recovery in latter, and the priority of Mach Punch and you've got yourself a pretty dumb force to deal with.

As far as the laddering experience went, I cycled between three teams on two separate alts. A Lucario HO team, a bulky offense where I just replaced Conkeldurr with banded Bewear and see how that went, and a fatter balance team. Overall, I definitely felt as though the meta was more "free" in a sense. I agree with pif that the meta isn't fixed or stable per se, since there are still threats that completely fuck me over, but the lack of Conkeldurr was definitely a huge relief of pressure on the teams I used. I saw quite a few Flame Orb Heracross and opposing Banded (and even Swords Dance lol) Bewear scattered across the ladder, but they really just weren't as threatening as Conkeldurr was, with both lacking Mach Punch and recovery from Drain Punch, and the latter also lacking Guts, which is pretty huge in practice. Losing Conkeldurr is going to make stuff like Weavile more annoying, but as a whole, we seem to have sufficient alternative checks to them, and the teambuilding practices we already have aren't going to be warped or disrupted too much; similar cores and builds, just less pressure on them. I guess people won't need to run stuff like 16 Speed on their Florges anymore to outspeed Adamant Conkeldurr (granted I ran Jolly, which still 2HKOed Florges with Facade), but that's not exactly a big deal considering Florges also gets the jump on bulkier Scizor, which honestly makes it better than Sylveon in this meta personally; both are fine, though.

For what it's worth, I played UU open round 2, where Conkeldurr was still legal, after getting council reqs, and there were Conkeldurr in the first two games, which basically decimated both opposing teams. That's not really something I want to experience again after voting is done, so yeah, ban that shit. I guess neither our teams were perfect, and I'm bad at this game anyway, so there's that.
What's council reqs?
 

GunGunJ

El patrón del mal
is a Tiering Contributoris a Smogon Media Contributor
#66
I don't talk too much because my English is not that good, but I want to say something about Xurkitree. I think if a Pokemon forces you to run a specific kind of Pokemon (for example, as Amaroq said, Scarf Latias, Hydra, Nape) or you don't even know what set it is (it can be Shuca and stop scarf krok and probably be faster than the rest of the team, can be Gigavolt Havoc, or Z-Hypnosis), that Pokemon ends being unhealthy for the metagame. For example, during the suspect laddering, I encounter several Xurkitree + Hail, and I probably lose just twice against that, but I had to lose 3 Pokemon to kill it, and I had Scarf Ape and Fast Gliscor. What is the problem? Things like Scarf Ape and Hydra cannot OHKO Xurkitree 100% of the time (252 SpA Hydreigon Draco Meteor vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Xurkitree: 274-324 (89.2 - 105.5%) -- 37.5% chance to OHKO, 252 Atk Infernape Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Xurkitree: 220-261 (71.6 - 85%) -- guaranteed 2HKO, 252 SpA Latias Draco Meteor vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Xurkitree: 250-295 (81.4 - 96%) -- guaranteed 2HKO), so you need prior damage to be able to revenge kill it. And what does happen if you have, for example, an Empoleon or a Mega Swampert? Xurki comes-in in a free switch, it puts you to sleep and it can survive an attack from the mon that it suppose to revenge kill him after he kills your Empoleon/Pert. Lets say that it kill Pert, you go into Ape and you have to U-turn, sack comething else and then kill it with Flare Blitz/CC or even EQ.

What I am trying to say is that if a Pokemon forces you to bring a Mon with a specific characteristic that mon is not healthy for the metagame. Another example, I think that non-eq Aero is thrash rn, because if you run Hone Claws, SE, Wing Attack and Aqua Tail you are force to run something else to stop +1 Speed Xurkitree (SE does the same damage that the scarfers that were mentioned before). So I don't think that is healthy or good for the metagame being force to build a team with a least 2 mons to stop Xurkitree, or a way to cheap him away + a scarfer. I like fast Gliscor for example, but if i want to use him bulkier I can't, because rn I am force to use him faster than Xurkitree, so I am lacking bulk. (or at least imo I am force to do so)

Another thing is Aurora Veil Offense with Xurkitree, how are we suppose to stop Xurkitree + things like Hawlucha, I mean, we can stop that, but we need a team that can stop xurkitree under veil + ways to not be set-up fodder for Hawlucha. Lets say that you revenge kill Xurkitree with Krok, then Hawlucha comes in and win, the same with Latias (if you are locked into Draco) and Hydra. In brief, Xurkitree isnt letting us build as we want and we are not seeing it. He is making us bring specfic mons just to stop him, and this is a problem, becuase Xurkitree is not alone, he has 5 mons alongside him. Imo both, Conk and Xurki are broken as hell and should be banned.

Sorry for my stupid english jaja.
 
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#67
What's council reqs?
35 games or more, a good record, and a good post here.


Also I am very much aware Xurkitree already received two votes. Two points on that though:
  • Z Hypnosis was thoroughly underrated and you can see that as there was little/no discussion on it. TBH it's still underrated as the extra coverage move can make or break lots of would he checks, Energy Ball is not required.
  • It was literally 6-6...that's not really a do not ban vote, that's a do not know vote.
The fact is that the only reason I didn't immediately post on Xurkitree when this thread started was because I knew it already had tests. But there is absolutely no question - this is a factual point, not an opinion - that our discussion was incomplete before because we didn't give Z Hypnosis enough credit.

These mistakes can occur, for example last generation we did a mega Houndoom suspect without realizing how useful Flame Charge was. I'm not saying that Houndoom decision was wrong or our recent Xurkitree decision was wrong for this reason alone, but it's a factor we need to account for and it would be bad policy to just dismiss Xurkitree because of two previous council votes.
 

TDK

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is a Tournament Directoris a member of the Site Staffis a Super Moderatoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a defending World Cup of Pokemon champion
OU Leader
#68
Playing on the ladder didn't really do anything to change my opinion on Conkeldurr; I've thought it was ban worthy ever since UUPL and the only thing that's changed is the one counter, Buzzwole, was recently banned, meaning it has gone back to its same old ways of having no reliable counterplay. Emphasis on reliable; there most certainly are easy ways to play around Conkeldurr with specific team styles, but Conkeldurr really doesn't have a reliable counter or anything of the sort. The best bet is predicting which move they go for and go to a resist that is capable of knocking it out. Then there's the fact it's very easy to revenge Conkeldurr in this meta; stuff like Latias, Xurkitree, and Mega Aerodactyl are seen practically every other game, giving many teams an easy way of knocking Conkeldurr out after a sac. The biggest thing about Conkeldurr that pushes it over the edge, though, is its Fighting STABs in combination with its bulk. It can easily tank any non-super effective hit in the tier outside of boosted (item or set up boosted) and then heal up the majority of damage taken or simply trade and knock out what is assumingly a major threat to their team, should they elect to trade their Conkeldurr for it. Mach Punch is also amazingly useful for Conkeldurr; giving teams an easy way to reliable RK Mega Sharpedo, allowing you to follow up on a previous hit, or even to potentially clean late game after the team is weakened.

As I previously stated, my laddering didn't really change my opinion on Conkeldurr, and I'm not going to reiterate what others have been repeating up til now due to the fact it's pretty obvious why people think it's broken. Something I do wanna point out is how Heracross functions in the tier now. With it being banned from RU and Conkeldurr seemingly being next to leave here, Heracross can step up to the plate as the next 'broken Guts Fighting-type.' I played all of my games with Heracross and I found it to be pretty successful, especially at breaking fatter teams. It's incredibly strong and didn't face any team that could switch into it. It's honestly pretty solid and very strong, the speed and access to SD are pretty huge, but obviously Conkeldurr is superior thanks to the bulk, Mach Punch, and Drain Punch. I think it'll surely become a thing should Conkeldurr wind up banned.

I also believe, as others have previously stated in the thread, that some things like Xurkitree and Weavile may be a little too good right now. To preface, I voted not to ban either a month back and stand by my opinion, although I was very iffy on Xurkitree the second vote. I felt it to be too early to ban Xurkitree (and wasn't too sure on my opinion of it) and that Weavile was manageable in the metagame it was tested into. Weavile, with Conkeldurr and Buzzwole in the tier, was pretty manageable, but without them around teams struggle to find adequate counterplay, relying pretty much entirely on bulky Scizor, which is a sitting duck after taking a Knock Off. Weavile is an incredibly silly strain on building and it's also very difficult to counter in a game without sacrificing something and then revenge killing with a Scarfer or priority, both of which give up a ton of momentum should they switch out and you fail to predict it. Xurkitree, while it doesn't always excel the way imagined, is a very big nuisance in the tier. Specs / Zap Plate are highly prediction reliant, but when they work correctly, it's really hard to stop it. This set absolutely demolishes balance teams with proper play, while Xurkitree's Z-Hypnosis set is pretty difficult to stop late game, between Hypnosis being a big annoyance in the later portion of the game, it being incredibly strong even unboosted, and the fact there's not guarantee it isn't Zap Plate. I much prefer Zap Plate myself but you cannot ignore Z-Hypnosis presence lest you wish to lose to it late game.

With that said I'll be voting to ban Conkeldurr.
 

Tony

is a Tournament Directoris a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributor
Moderator
#69
Another thing worth noting about Conkeldurr is that it's 'set' within Flame Orb + Guts has evolved, too. During UUPL meta, Conkeldurr almost exclusively ran an all-out-attacker set with Drain Punch, Mach Punch, Facade and Knock Off. Now, however, Knock Off is frequently dropped for Bulk Up, especially when Conkeldurr is paired with a user of the move Pursuit. This gives Conkeldurr an insane match-up vs. bulkier- and stall team, as if it wasn't hugely threatening as it is. (Unsurprisingly) I'll be voting ban on Conkeldurr as well.

Other than that I'm glad the Xurkitree discussion hasn't died down, with my man pif especially fighting the good fight. n_n I've voted ban on Xurkitree both times so far, but unfortunately the vote ended up 6-6 back to back. GunGunJ's (your English is perfectly fine btw) post was a nice read as well and I can definitely empathize with the sentiment there; Xurkitree is deceptively tricky to reliably revenge-kill, while it's even harder to switch in vs. it. I'll try to write up a more elaborate (and preachy) 'ban Xurkitree' post in the near future, but for now I'm glad the discussion hasn't died down yet.

Things I'll be looking at from a council perspective in the post-Conkeldurr metagame (assuming it's getting the boot, of course :p) are:

- Weavile; will it be too strong in UU with both Buzzwole and Conkeldurr banned?
- Heracross; does one Guts + Flame Orb Fighting-type fill the void left by the other's ban?
- Xurkitree; will public opinion on Xurkitree finally shift one way or another after split votes by the council both times it was voted on?

Oh! Don't forget that the (hopefully :s) upcoming usage statistics might change a thing or two in UU as well! Swampert-Mega and Ninetales-Alola have been used a good amount in OU, for example. This in turn means that other things have seen relatively less usage in OU, too. Could be an interesting month for drops and rises! :o
 
#70
I've spent quite a bit of time playing on the SMUU suspect ladder; and I can only really provide points based on the change in meta since Buzzwole's banning to BL - I will explore further down. UU was only given a short time to adjust after Buzzwole was banned, and IMO we had two clear threats: Conkeldurr and Xurkitree. Due to the circumstance in which Xurkitree remained UU (2 separate council votes); the decision to create a public suspect test for Conkeldurr first was reasonable.
In terms of tiering discussion, I'd like to highlight criterion that I feel should be addressed when it comes to debate on a suspect. This is important because it helps newer and existing users to understand why a particular Pokemon is being suspected; it gives us clear points upon which to discuss and justify our opinions and; consistency within the tiering process ensures a clear precedent for defining which Pokemon would be considered suspect worthy within future metas.

Why is this important to me? I myself am quite involved in UU chat room discussion on PS. Addressing clear points of discussion applicable to a suspect helps inform users as to why a suspect for a particular Pokemon is taking place. Clarification avoids repetition and helps to inform the user base efficiently. Clear criteria and transparency ensures users don't feel left in the dark once a decision has been made by the tiering council.

I'm also tired of reading the same thing said a million different ways.

Main points of interest that I think contribute to a particular Pokemon being uncompetitive/broken/unhealthy/or not and how they affect skillful play:
  • offensive utility/power
  • defensive utility/power
  • versatility
  • impact
  • effectiveness

At this point in time I myself have nothing more to add to the Conkeldurr suspect discussion and the community's consensus of opinion regarding the subject matter. In my opinion Conkeldurr could be labelled unhealthy by definition - undesirable for the metagame such that they inhibit "skillful play" to a large extent. Conkeldurr is clearly one of the best threats in the current metagame.
If the metagame has too much diversity wherein team building ability is greatly hampered and battling skill is drastically reduced, we may seek to reduce the number of good to great threats.

My thoughts on current metagame:

An unusually high number of powerful offensive threats places a lot of pressure on defensive play styles. Z-Crystals and Pokemon that can hit hard and strong are difficult to counter and in some cases can even lure their checks. Versatility and creativeness has become a large component of team building, whether it be Z-Thunder/Draco/Surf Latias, Sub/Shuca/Z-Hypno/etc. Xurkitree or Weavile's 4th moveslot. Hazard controllers are quite easy to capitalise on through the use of common metagame threats in Weavile, Xurkitree, Latias & Scizor. It's not surprising that we've seen the rise in Rain, Veil and Bulky Offence teams since they each have decent match up against opposing offence; whilst having sufficient counter play to Fat/Balance/Stall. An overly offensive and unpredictable meta leads to less reliance on skill and more reliance on match up. A lot of people have stated their disdain for laddering for reqs this time around and I think that the unpredictability of the metagame, more so than ever, heavily contributes to this.
  • The same argument applicable to Conkeldurr regarding no switch-ins could also apply although its user must pick its checks/counters (4MSS) - un-boosted 173 SpA is ridiculous.
  • Capable of surviving Scarf Draco Meteors and either: OHKOing opposing Dragons (thanks beast boost); setting up Z-Hypnosis.
  • Almost all of its sets put in work. Z-Hypnosis was regarded as its least viable set, yet it can still sweep teams late game or unprepared teams for that matter.
  • The fact that it can run so many sets means you can't be 100% certain of which Xurkitree you're facing at team preview - affecting counter play. For example, Shuca to tank Krookodile, M-Aero, Gliscor etc. Even Scarf Xurkitree has baited my Gliscor lead match up before.
  • Relatively low speed tier against offence, even with +1 Speed.
  • 2HKO by the majority of the metagame and difficult to find a safe opportunity to switch in, other than RKO, double switch or slow pivots.
  • CM Z-Draco/Z-Thunder/Z-Surf all viable sets each with a different purpose, makes it scary switching in my Steel-type.
  • Choice Scarf is a surprisingly good revenge KO Pokemon on Offence, esp. with the use of Trick/Healing Wish and emergency Defog.
  • Probably the number 1 reason as to why Pursuit is so prevalent in the current metagame.
  • Great Defensive typing + ability along with Speed + coverage makes it a decent check to a lot of Pokemon.
  • Great Speed, Great Offensive Power, Great STAB Coverage.
  • Nothing really likes to take a hit from this Pokemon, and is the tiers most effective Pursuit trapper.
  • Coverage in the form of Low Kick & Poison Jab is sufficient enough to limit its viable counter play until scouted.
  • Choice Band is a viable late game cleaner.
  • Frail AF and weakness to hazards really hurt it.
  • Weak to most common Pokemon in tier (although it doesn't enjoy switching in).
  • Swords Dance and Choice Band are its most common sets. I've seen other options in Occa Berry to hurt Pokemon such as Latias that run HP Fire coverage too.
  • Great defensive typing along with the lack common counter play to Fire types (Dragons, Rain, etc.) make it very splash-able.
  • Another great Pursuit user.
  • Most used Pokemon in the tier, thanks to its offensive and defensive presence.
 

Hogg

grubbing in the ashes
is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributor
UU Leader
#71
Yeah, I don't think there's a ton left to say about Conkeldurr. Decent bulk, priority, incredibly stupid wallbreaking capabilities: Conk has got it all. Yes, counterplay exists, but that doesn't stop Conk from consistently putting in a ton of work against almost every team, and in particular just demolishing balance and stall. Effectively having status immunity and recovery without sacrificing any offensive moveslots is a really big deal against bulkier teams, and makes Conkeldurr incredibly hard to counter.

If anyone wants to see Conk's impact on the meta, just watch basically any available replays from UU Open. It's insane how prevalent Conk, and how much work it puts in almost every game. The suspect ladder still has some flaws, but I'd consider it a definite step in the right direction.

Regarding said suspect ladder, I've also used Heracross a bunch, and it definitely gets a major boost in viability with Conk gone. That being said, I don't think it's anywhere near Conk levels of stupid. For one thing, the lower Attack means that there are just more things that can avoid the 2HKO, meaning it applies way less pressure right off the bat. This means it's reliant on Swords Dance to break through bulkier teams, which gives it a lot more counterplay than Conk. For another, despite having reasonably good bulk, the lack of recovery and the defense drops from Close Combat means it's way less likely to come into play several times in a game. It's a fantastic wallbreaker but not the force of nature that Conk was, and I think that's a good thing.

I was also very curious to see how ridiculous Weavile would be in a Conk-free meta and... honestly, I still don't find it overwhelming. I mean don't get me wrong; Weavile was already a top 'mon before the test, and losing one of its best checks definitely only helps it. The biggest argument I saw for Weavile's ban was that offense lacked switch-ins to the LO four attacks set. Sure, this is sort of true (mostly because Knock Off is a really stupid move to begin with)—but only to a point. Rocks weakness + LO + paper thin defenses mean that Weavile rarely gets multiple opportunities in a game to put in work, and even on offense I find that it isn't impossible to adjust for in teambuilding. Things like Swampert, A-Tales, Scizor, Suicune, Florges/Sylveon, Primarina and Infernape are all very good on offense and while none of them relish the thought of switching into a Knock Off, they can all check Weavile in a pinch (PJab removes the fairies from that list but opens Weavile up to other checks). It's one of those things that I always find scarier on paper than in practice. Maybe as the meta adjusts more to Conk leaving this might change, but based on the suspect ladder I still find Weavile falls in the "very good but not quite broken" category for me.

Finally, I wanted to address some general comments I've seen about Xurkitree and the previous votes. I've seen multiple people say that the previous votes were unclear or existed in some sort of limbo. The fact that the votes were divided 6-6 certainly shows some differing opinions among the council, but a 6-6 vote is not any less valid than any other vote. We set up voting standards for a reason, and those standards state that there must be a minimum of 7/12 votes to council ban something. Xurkitree has been voted on twice and missed the mark both times, and whether it fell short by one vote or six votes is irrelevant. I do not want to see us fall into the trap of constantly re-testing things until we get the results that we want. (For example, both Hikari and myself still strongly believed Azumarill was not broken when we re-tested it, and the majority of the council agreed—but it fell one vote short of the 8/12 required to unban, and we are not going to keep forcing re-tests just because we disagree with the results.)

Xurkitree may receive a suspect test down the road, but it will NOT be because the last two votes were close. Instead, it will either be because metagame trends shift and reveal it is more problematic than we previously thought, or because there is major public support to have another suspect in threads like this one.
 
#72
I know Mamoswine isnt the most influential pokemon in the tier. Its not threatening to HO because of its mediocre speed, and stuff like alomomola deals with it on stall. But it completely invalidates balance as a playstyle. I think once conk and xurk get banned, and balance becomes more viable its gonna become clear how difficult it is to switch into. Im not calling for a suspect now, but I think it should be looked into later down the road
 
#73


I wanted to talk about it for quite a long time but I was in a vacation so I didn't get the chance to. Now that I am back, I finally have the time to sit and write my feelings about it.

Since Xurkitree dropped, Z-Hypnosis has been considered to be amongst its worst sets. I don't think this set is particularily good comparing to other sets, but with a hand on my heart, this set is a big portion of why Xurkitree is unhealthy for the metagame.

With Aurora Veil rising in popularity (I have a few words regarding this playstyle) and the Z-Hypnosis set, with the right opportunity, the Xurkitree user literally has 60% to win the game (unless the opponent has a Shedinja or something). The Xurkitree user lands Hypnosis, gets the speed boosts and proceeds to Tail Glow up. Can we all agree that from there you have to revenge kill it? And what if the opponent has Aurora Veil? I would press X.

252 SpA Latias Draco Meteor vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Xurkitree through Light Screen: 125-147 (40.7 - 47.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

252 Atk Aerodactyl-Mega Earthquake vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Xurkitree through Reflect: 148-175 (48.2 - 57%) -- 91.8% chance to 2HKO

252 Atk Choice Band Weavile Ice Shard vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Xurkitree through Reflect: 61-72 (19.8 - 23.4%) -- possible 5HKO


As you can see, it is almost impossible to revenge kill a healthy Xurkitree through Aurora Veil. True, you aren't guaranteed to have Aurora Veil all the time and the opponent can try to stall it out, but be real - it's clearly unhealthy for the metagame.

To sum it up, Z-Hypnosis isn't a good set by any means but it certainly is unhealthy for the metagame.


As I mentioned before, I'd love to have a few words regarding Aurora Veil.

With Alolan Ninetales, setting up Aurora Veil is extremely easy and unless your opponent has a defogger, you're guaranteed to have pseudo-Light Screen + Reflect for entire 7 turns.

Aurora Veil gives rather frail set-up sweepers such as Hawlucha and Xurkitree the bulk they need to be broken for a few turns. Just to test how busted that is, I ran a Rock Polish Tyrantrum team, which isn't good in UU by any means, with Veil Support. The results were amazing - Tyrantrum, together with Hawlucha and CM Latias completely wrecked teams, even prepared ones.

I don't say Aurora Veil is broken, neither do I wanna start a ban veils campaign, I just don't want such an important topic to be overlooked.
 

Freeroamer

The greatest story of them all.
#75
I really don't buy this idea of running a choice scarfer or mega aero to guard against the threat of Xurkitree on every team is an acceptable state for the metagame to be in. I fully buy in to the idea that in the metagame there will exist Pokemon that have little to no switch ins, and that part of being a good player will mean you accept at times you will have to make a sacrifice, pick the right one and manage the game from there. However when this is limited to one unboosted Pokemon and a handful of choice scarf users, I think it honestly becomes a bit ridiculous. First of all obviously is the limited overall number of Pokemon that can revenge kill a boosted Xurkitree compared to something like a Heracross or a Primarina. Not only that if your only alternative is choice scarf users, that gives an enormous amount of momentum to the opposing user. If a Hydreigon or Latias locks into an unboosted Draco that gives a ton of setup opportunities, same with Krookodile with either of its STABs. Aero probably gives less of these opportunities away but stuff like Mega Swampert can still use it to set up. Thing is assuming it hit a Hypnosis or KOed something in the process of you saccing to get your scarfer/aero in, Xurkitree has provided some use in the game, and potentially swung the momentum in your favour for one of your other offensive threats to take advantage of. Z-Hypno is probably still looked down on a little due to its unreliability, but forces some really difficult situations for the opposing user. 3 attacks or Tail Glow with Elec Grass coverage are both good atm. Other sets are also dangerous, Specs/Zap Plate/Shuca have all shown to be a threat, any Tail Glow set is a huge threat to a bulkier archetype and only add to how strong this Pokemon is. I think the metagame is mostly ok otherwise, I'm not keen at times how little counterplay Mega pert can have but I can hardly argue it as broken and it might move up anyway. Nothing to add on conk ban this menace.
 
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