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Research Week #7 - Kangaskhan, Arbok, Ampharos, and Shelgon

Discussion in 'BW NU' started by DTC, Apr 14, 2012.

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  1. DTC

    DTC ˢᵉʳᶦᵒᵘˢ
    is a Smogon IRC SOPis a Battle Server Admin Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Researcher Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

    May 8, 2011
    NU is a tier where many Pokemon are usable, and there are a ton of different options. Research Week aids in helping explore the tier, and is especially effective right now as NU is relatively balanced. Who knows, maybe in future tier changes one of these Pokemon can be incredibly useful, potentially being able to check the new threats well. Maybe one of these Pokemon may find uses in other tiers and is not just a simple throw-away Pokemon, unlike some unfortunate Pokemon in NU.

    Some rules:
    -Be open-minded, don't just say something is terrible and walk away; at least look into them and see what options they may be able to utilize!
    -Feel free to theorymon, but make it clear that you are theorymon'ing. At the end of the week, however, I want discussion to move towards how useful the Pokemon actually are in NU, and what sets are effective on them.
    -Just because an analysis has been done for a Pokemon doesn't mean there isn't more to explore; it's quite possible that something might have gone unnoticed or is missing.
    -Do not post in this thread complaining about the Pokemon I choose and/or suggesting ones we should do for future weeks. I want discussion to stay on topic about the 4 Pokemon we are "researching". Feel free to VM / PM me these suggestions, but don't expect the next research week to have all the Pokemon you suggested, or any of them.

    Anyways, the 4 Pokemon we will be looking into for this Research Week are:

    [​IMG]One of the better Normal-type tanks in the tier, Kangaskhan has excellent overall stats and can present a significant threat to players that underestimate it. It can abuse the Fake Out + Sucker Punch combination to revenge kill many weakened offensive Pokemon, and due to its ability, Scrappy, not even Ghost-types are safe from its powerful STAB attacks. It can also make good use of a Substitute + Focus Punch set, abusing not only Scrappy but the ability to create 101 HP Substitutes, and a Choice Band set can smash through opponents with Double Edge if Rock- and Steel-types are removed.

    [​IMG]This cunning cobra can fill the role of a physical tank well despite its somewhat lacklustre stats, due to its access to Intimidate, Coil, Glare, and resistance to Fighting-type attacks. The most common set abuses Coil to boost both the power and accuracy of Arbok's STAB Gunk Shot; even with only a single boost, it has the power to overwhelm many opponents. Meanwhile, access to coverage moves such as Earthquake and Sucker Punch helps Arbok defeat opposing Steel-, Rock-, and Psychic-types when attempting to sweep, ensuring it isn't walled easily.

    [​IMG]Ampharos is extremely versatile, and can fill a multitude of roles exceptionally well if given the chance. Offensively, it can run a devastating Choice Specs set to abuse the utility of STAB Volt Switch, or it can use Agility to outspeed and KO opponents that attempt to revenge kill it. Defensively, it can abuse its lack of weaknesses, good defenses and access to Heal Bell to become a specially-defensive cleric for a team, or can provide Dual Screens or Rain Dance support for frailer sweepers. Its Static ability also supports its team by occasionally paralysing fast opponents, regardless of its role.

    [​IMG]As one of the many NFE Dragon-type Pokemon that sees use in the tier, it abuses its excellent base 100 Defense (boosted to ridiculous heights by Eviolite) to become a physically-defensive tank, making excellent use of its somewhat unique-resistances and almost unresisted physical STAB. A fully defensive set becomes almost impenetrable against physical attacks while providing Wish support for its teammates, while a bulky Dragon Dance set can reach +6 Attack / Speed with remarkable ease once its checks are removed, smashing through opponents with a high-powered Outrage.

    (cheers to erisia for the descriptions!)

    The Research Week Challenge:

    • Users will use any number of the research week mons on their team
    • Users will attempt to reach as high as possible on the ladder with the Pokemon. Breaking past the 1400 mark on the ladder with your registered alt will earn you a spot on the Hall of Fame: Gold Class. Crossing the 1350 mark will secure you a Silver Class spot while a 1300 rating will earn you a Bronze Class spot. Post a screen-shot of your peak in order to achieve this, and a pastebin of your team.
    • Users will be expected to post their experiences with the pokemon they use, the teams they used, the problems they encoutered while trying to make the said pokemon work.
    • If a user does not participate in the discussion, he will be passed over.

    In order to participate in the challenge, simply pm me (on irc or on the forums) what Pokemon you're trying and your fresh new alt (yes, this is mandatory). Post battle logs, experiences with your team on the ladder, and generally how a Pokemon has worked out for you: past or present.

    Discuss; I can't wait to see the discussion that comes out of this! Don't forget you're not just limited to this topic to discuss these Pokemon, I encourage you to talk about them on the #neverused irc chat as well! At the end of the week I hope we can reach a general consensus on how good these Pokemon really are, and maybe we might find some interesting discoveries.

    One person will get chosen as the Research Week Champion for this week. This will be decided by me; the person who ladders the most and contributes to the research week discussion the most will get temporary Half Op status on #neverused and they will potentially get a few other perks! Good luck all!

    alt list (open)

    Research Week Hall of Fame (open)

    Gold Class: 1400+

    Silver Class: 1350-1399

    Bronze Class: 1300-1349

    Also, crashinboombang won last research week and now has temporary hops on #neverused. (and permanent vops!)
  2. FLCL

    is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis Smogon Frontier's Salon Maidenis a Past SPL Winner

    Mar 14, 2010
    Alt: Amphapro

    Using Ampharos.

    Update One:

    I had high hopes for Ampharos at first since it has solid bulk and a powerful special attack stat with decent coverage options like Focus Blast and Signal Beam. At first I used a Choice Specs set with Volt Switch/Thunderbolt/Focus Blast/HP Grass and it was rather underwhelming to be honest. Bring locked into a electric attack is never a good thing and it was easily predicable. When faced with a Pokemon with Protect, such as Alomomola, it usually meant a free switch-in for the opponent. With that in mind, I switched to a Expert Belt set, which was great at luring in the likes of Quagsire and Tangela (I ran Signal Beam over Volt Switch). I stocked my team with physical attackers such as Absol and Samurott which could take advantage of the removal of Quagsire and Tangela. This variant of the team was alright, getting me to around 1250, but at times Ampharos would miss out on a important KO or get KOed too easily; I found myself using Ampharos as a fodder quite often. In my opinion offensive Ampharos is outclassed by Eelektross, who is blessed by superior coverage moves like Flamethrower and Grass Knot while having no weaknesses, which helps it greatly against foes such as Marowak.

    After that I decided to change Ampharos to a bulky set with Heal Bell and it has benefited the team a lot since it was extremely weak to status. I was astonished by the bulk of Ampharos as well; it even survived a +2 Life Orb Gorebyss Hydro Pump! The slow Volt Switch was also useful because my team contained some pretty frail Pokemon. So far I have hit 1300 with the new version of the team, going undefeated since the change. I'll aim for higher after my internet becomes more reliable.

    Show Hide

    Update Two:

    Managed to hit 1350 with the team; it probably would've been higher if I didn't encounter some bad luck and unfortunate disconnects. Ampharos has proved to be a sturdy special sponge, checking Jynx, Haunter, and various other special threats. Volt Switch is the key here, breaking the subs of the Pokemon mentioned above and allowing a faster threat to get in unharmed. Pairing it up with a fast U-Turner (Braviary, in my case) makes for a dangerous U-Turning core. Heal Bell has not seen much use, but there have been situations where a clutch Heal Bell has saved me from disaster. The only downside to Ampharos is the lack of recovery outside of Leftovers. This hampers its ability to switch in multiple times against something like Jynx.

    Show Hide

    Update Three:

    Not much to say here except that I hit 1400 and that slow Volt-Switch is best Volt-Switch ^__^

    Show Hide

    Importable here: http://pastebin.com/uTGEYZ6J
  3. erisia

    erisia (macho) brace yourselves
    is a Contributor Alumnus

    Nov 29, 2011
    Alt: Kangaskhanage

    Guess what I'm using. Arbok!
  4. Raseri

    Raseri here to help
    is a Tutoris a member of the Site Staffis a Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Researcher Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
    NU Co-Leader

    Aug 4, 2007
    Alt: Tali
    pokemon: Shelgon
  5. Django

    is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

    Oct 23, 2009
    Alt: _TM 87_

    Gonna be using that big Kanga and Shelgon.
  6. CrashinBoomBang

    CrashinBoomBang muahahaha EHEHEHEHEHEHEHE
    is a Contributor to Smogonis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis Smogon Frontier's Factory Foreman

    Aug 14, 2010
    I can't believe you actually included Kangaskhan, it's too strong ;~;.

    I'll ladder with Kangaskhan first (under the alt "kangaskhan strong"), but I'll probably do at least 3 of those.
  7. Limi

    is a Smogon IRC AOPis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

    Aug 25, 2011
    DTC always so enthusiastic

    Gonna try Ampharos for sure, and probably Shelgon and Kangaskhan as well. Not too keen on Arbok.

    Alt: RWLimi
    (i hope this one won't fail as hard as the other one... lol)
  8. shnen

    shnen שוני
    is a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

    Sep 13, 2011
    alt: shnen rw2
    mon: ampharos now testing Kanga
    ranking: 1349 (let's just say I got to 1350 shall we?)
    using my team from last rw with ampharos>stunfisk cause I'm lazy FINE I'll revamp it
  9. TROP

    TROP *tips fedora*
    is a Tiering Contributor

    Apr 6, 2011
    Alt: Pink Pride
    Arbok because Arbok is cool, and Amphy because pink master race.
  10. Cherub Agent

    Cherub Agent
    is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

    Jul 6, 2009
    Alt: CherubRW
    Pokemon: Kangaskhan

    EDIT: was suing Arbok, but it wasn't that great, so I changed to Kangaskhan.
  11. Hippo Icicle

    Hippo Icicle

    Dec 31, 2011
    Alt: -HipsterHippo-
    Using Arbok and Shelgon
  12. The Reptile

    is a Pre-Contributor

    Sep 16, 2011
    Alt: SnakeCult
    Pokemon: Arbok and Amphardos

    EDIT: Change Alt to SnakeCultReturns since I will no longer be using Amphardos.

    Pokemon: Arbok and Shelgon and Kangaskhan
  13. Straw Hat

    Straw Hat

    Mar 5, 2011
    Alt: Rubberman
    Pokemon: Kangaskhan
  14. elchupo


    Jul 13, 2009
    NU (lolz) alt: Azteca

    Testing: Kangaskhan, possibly Arbok.

    Already tested Kangaskhan not too long ago and found it hard to differentiate it self from bulkier and harder hitting 'mons. Maybe try a mixed wall breaker or something idk.
  15. Buckles


    Jun 15, 2008
    Alt: Charbok
    Pokemon: Probably Arbok
  16. tennisace

    is a member of the Site Staffis a Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Pokemon Researcheris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a CAP Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
    Social Media Chief

    Dec 16, 2007
    alt: nekairbezz

    Gonna use Arbok because I specifically requested it!
  17. drakon136


    Nov 14, 2011
    Alt: Helias 8
    Pokemon: All of them
  18. Steamroll

    Steamroll Tasty
    is a Smogon IRC AOp Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

    Jan 1, 2011
    Alright I'll pull a 2 account one with this:

    Alt: Ampharos

    Alt: Shelgon

    holy crap I'm too obvious...

    lol ampharos is an Oglemi alt
  19. col49

    col49 what.
    is a Contributor to Smogon

    Sep 1, 2011
    oooh, very cool, i enjoy two of these things. not one for laddering (or being good at playing as a whole, but that's neither here nor there .-.), but i'll give it a try.

    alt: chemisrty set (i realize all too well of the spelling error, i'll be sure to explain the joke never)

    might try shelgon later, but i'm already stretching my all-too-finite abilities as is with one
  20. Raseri

    Raseri here to help
    is a Tutoris a member of the Site Staffis a Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Researcher Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
    NU Co-Leader

    Aug 4, 2007
    wow Shelgon destroys teams without tangelquag. Like really badly, though relying on sleep talk has cost me many matches. Switching alts to a monster named stu
  21. Zebraiken

    is a member of the Site Staffis an official Team Rateris a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Pokemon Researcheris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Battle Server Moderator
    NU Co-Leader

    Oct 7, 2011
    even teams with Tangela can end up losing to it, although Leech Seed + a potential HP Ice is really a bitch

    I'm gonna use Kangaskhan though!

    alt: ecasinnet
  22. Full2Half


    Dec 18, 2011
    Alt: 50 Percent

    Mon: Kangaskhan, possibly arbok and/or ampharos later on

    Edit: Taking ampharos as well.

    Edit (again): Nevermind, just using kanga. Swapping ampharos for zebstrika, eelektross, or rotom-s
  23. CrashinBoomBang

    CrashinBoomBang muahahaha EHEHEHEHEHEHEHE
    is a Contributor to Smogonis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis Smogon Frontier's Factory Foreman

    Aug 14, 2010
    So I just broke the magic 1400 mark using Kangaskhan which wasn't too hard since it's just so good!

    Show Hide

    Kangaskhan (F) @ Choice Band
    Trait: Scrappy
    EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spd
    Adamant Nature (+Spd, -SAtk)
    - Double-Edge
    - Earthquake
    - Sucker Punch
    - Ice Punch

    That's the Kangaskhan set I used, just with a Jolly nature over an Adamant one.

    In my opinion, Kangaskhan is a real offensive menace, with a special place in the tier: It's one of the few Pokemon who are both incredibly sturdy but can still hit hard. When you add its above average 90 base speed to that, it becomes a real force, able to take all kinds of hits as well as dishing them out with its (often underestimated) speed.

    Furthermore, Kangaskhan is also really diverse, being able to run more offensive minded sets, such as the Choice Banded (which, unsurprisingly, is my favorite set) or Life Orbed attacker, but also more defensively minded sets like SubPunch and 3 attacks + Rest, which means it can threaten a huge range of different Pokemon.

    Scrappy is also one of the greatest abilities in the entire game; with it Kangaskhan can easily threaten every non-Rock/Steel Pokemon not called Tangela with its STAB attacks alone, doing 52% minimum to the most defensive Misdreavus with an Adamant Choice Band boosted Double-Edge. Most of the aforementioned Rock and Steel types are easily eliminated by its powerful Earthquake, though, which only leaves Tangela as a truly insurmountable wall. Sucker Punch is also a great priority move, even though locking yourself into it with a Choice Item isn't the best idea. It actually hits surprisingly hard, even from Kangaskhans mediocre attack stat.

    The only problem I had with Kangaskhan is that it seems outclassed at some points. It's not as much as a hard hitter as Sawk, doesn't have Emboar's offensive typing and movepool and isn't as fast as stuff like Swellow. In conclusion, it's basically one of the only offensive Pokemon that also combines good bulk and decent speed, making it a rare sight in NU. Its great offensive typing (when taking scrappy into account) is also a godsend.

    So, like I mentioned before, CB Kangaskhan is my favorite set, which is why my ladder team just had to have it. It's actually my standard ladder team for the current NU meta and included Kangaskhan before the research week even started; It's THAT good in my opinion.

    Show Hide
    Zebstrika (M) @ Choice Scarf
    Trait: Lightningrod
    EVs: 252 SAtk / 4 SDef / 252 Spd
    Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
    - Volt Switch
    - Thunderbolt
    - Overheat
    - Hidden Power [Grass]

    Kangaskhan (F) @ Choice Band
    Trait: Scrappy
    EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spd
    Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk)
    - Double-Edge
    - Earthquake
    - Sucker Punch
    - Ice Punch

    Emboar (M) @ Choice Band
    Trait: Blaze
    EVs: 160 HP / 252 Atk / 96 Spd
    Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
    - Flare Blitz
    - Superpower
    - Head Smash
    - Wild Charge

    Sawk (M) @ Choice Band
    Trait: Sturdy
    EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SDef / 252 Spd
    Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk)
    - Close Combat
    - Stone Edge
    - Earthquake
    - Reversal

    Musharna (M) @ Choice Specs
    Trait: Synchronize
    EVs: 52 HP / 188 Def / 252 SAtk / 16 Spd
    Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
    - Psychic
    - Shadow Ball
    - Hidden Power [Ground]
    - Baton Pass

    Braviary (M) @ Choice Band
    Trait: Keen Eye
    EVs: 88 HP / 252 Atk / 168 Spd
    Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
    - Brave Bird
    - Frustration
    - Superpower
    - U-turn

    I, obviously, used another Choice team, seeing how they're the most fun to play with for me. This team is a lot like my Articuno team, just less centered about momentum and more around raw power. Between Emboar, Kangaskhan, Braviary and Sawk, I almost never have problems breaking every single defensive core in the tier with the appropriate prediction.

    It also isn't as weak to hazards as the Articuno one, although Stealth Rock can be annoying by chopping Braviary's health down slowly as well as breaking Sawk's sturdy. Thus, I will gladly sacrifice either Emboar or Sawk's Sturdy to Close Combat Golem turn 1, forcing them to either leave Sawk untouched or forgo Stealth Rocks. Since they're both basically the same I'll figure out which of those does more damage to the opponents remaining team and sacrifice the one I need less (if my opponent has Tangela I'd rather preserve Emboar, if he has Kangaskhan I'd rather keep Sawk alive, etc).

    Since both Braviary and Emboar hit incredibly hard, I chose to make both Kangaskhan and Sawk Jolly since it makes them outspeed dangerous threats such as Magmortar and non-scarf Rotom-S in Kangaskhans case. That, unfortunately, makes both of them miss out on some important KO's and 2HKO's, which means that they shouldn't be used for straight out wallbreaking but rather for cleaning a weakened team late-game.

    Kangaskhan also checks a lot of very big threats for my team, which include most decently fast sweepers able to hit everything neutrally and not weak to assaults from Zebstrika (Cinccino, other Kangaskhan, Life Orb Cryogonal, etc). Kangaskhan can take a hit from all of them and OHKO back with its own Double-Edge (Kangaskhan takes like 80%) or just Sucker Punch them if they're at low health. Because of its great overall stat distribution, Kangaskhan acts as both an offensive and defensive anchor to my team and is incredibly important.

    Musharna and Zebstrika are nothing special, the former dismantling teams full of physical walls (doing ~70% to both Shelgon and Alomomola which is huge since they can keep the whole team healthy with Wish) and gives me a decent Sawk check, while Zebstrika kills dangerous setup sweepers such as Dragon Dance Charizard, Gorebyss, some weather sweepers, Carracosta and many, many more. I should probably change Hidden Power [Ground] to Hidden Power [Fighting] on Musharna, but the one time I faced a Skuntank it really saved me. Absol and Cacturne aren't that big of an issue anyway, unless I screw up.

    The main problem with this team are the aforementioned fast sweepers, since Zebstrika is the only one that can hope to outspeed them and has to slowly chip away at them with Volt Switch (if the rest of the team is weakened). Defensive cores with a lot of physical walls (say, Shelgon/Tangela/Alomomola/Regirock all on one team) can also be troublesome since I will only be able to break them with perfect prediction.

    So yeah, with Kangaskhan out of the way I guess I'll do Ampharos next, under the alt ampharos strong.
  24. Jukain

    Jukain .leaf
    is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Media Contributor

    Feb 25, 2011
    I decided to come over to NU DST and see how to start getting into NU, so I'll be participating in this research week.

    alt: Odysseus Dances

    using: Shelgon and Kangaskhan
  25. Mael


    Jul 1, 2011
    Alt: Nema veze
    Pokemon: Kanga and Arbok
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