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Smeargle (Analysis)

Discussion in 'Locked / Outdated Analyses' started by Paradox, Dec 14, 2010.

  1. Paradox

    Paradox

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    [​IMG]
    Smeargle

    QC Approved 3/3 – (Iconic, Bloo, PK Gaming)

    - Ready for grammar checks
    =============================

    [Overview]
    <p>Smeargle is an old dog that has learned some new tricks in all of the new moves added this generation, a few of which are quite effective. Smeargle's signature move Sketch gives it access to every released move in the game, allowing for some unique and effective options for movesets. By using Spore, which provides free set-up turns, and moves such as Shell Break and Baton Pass or Spikes and Toxic Spikes, Smeargle can make the opponent pay for those turns.</p>

    <p>However, Smeargle's terrible base stats mean it has zero offensive presence, little bulk, and only half-decent speed to work with, which combine to greatly limit Smeargle's ability to set up. This means that Smeargle operates best as a lead so it can utilize an unbroken Focus Sash to ensure a turn of set-up, although Smeargle can also operate outside of the lead slot as long as it manages to get in on a slower opponent that it can Spore or otherwise gain a free turn to set up.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Baton Pass
    move 1: Baton Pass
    move 2: Shell Break
    move 3: Spore
    move 4: Magic Coat / Substitute
    nature: Jolly
    item: Focus Sash / White Herb
    evs: 4 HP / 252 Def / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>Access to the crippling Spore, alongside the ability to Baton Pass huge stat boosts and reflect Taunt and other non-attacking moves like Roar or Whirlwind with Magic Coat, makes Smeargle a formidable support Pokémon. Spore will almost always provide a free turn of set-up while also putting an opposing Pokémon temporarily out of commission, and after using Shell Break Smeargle will be faster than almost every Pokémon, allowing it to Baton Pass the obscene offensive boosts to a more threatening sweeper, sometimes even taking no damage in the process. Substitute is another good option on the set, as it prevents users of Dragon Tail from phazing Smeargle as well as providing a safe switch in for the receiver. However Magic Coat is typically the superior option for reflecting faster Taunts and preventing phazers from removing Smeargle's boosts.

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Smeagle's nature and EVs are designed to give Smeargle as much Speed and bulk as possible, in order to provide ample set-up opportunities. Likewise, Focus Sash is the preferred item for Smeargle, as it will typically provide at least one free turn of set-up. This means that Smeargle operates best in the lead position, although it is still viable outside of the lead position with Rapid Spin, Magic Bounce, or Dual Screens support, or simply strategic use of Spore against slower Pokémon. White Herb is also viable though, negating the defence drops from Shell Break, and works best with Dual Screen support to ensure that Smeargle can survive a hit. Smeargle can also Baton Pass a number of effects other than Shell Break. Other great boosting moves such as Butterfly Dance and Gear Change can also be considered, as they do not decrease Smeargle or the receiver's, bulk, and still provide useful boosts. Tail Glow and Belly Drum are also options, although Belly Drum comes alongside the risky sacrifice of half of Smeargle's health, and neither option provides the speed boost that can be vital for ensuring that Smeargle passes its boosts successfully. Smeargle is also the only Pokémon capable of passing the niche move Ingrain, which is useful for preventing phazing in a Baton Pass chain.</p>

    <p>The most important teammate for a Baton Pass Smeargle is of course the intended receiver of its boosts. In order to best take advantage of the offensive boosts, receivers should have strong sweeping stats and typings. The largest threats to recipients are usually status such as paralysis and priority attacks due to the recipient's weakened defences and high speed. Landorus, especially when carrying Substitute, is a great example of a good Shell Break receiver due to its immunity to Thunder Wave, solid bulk, powerful offense, and neutrality to most priority attacks. These threats to receivers can also be worked around by having more than one option for Baton Pass receivers, as often opponents will only have one or two ways to check a Shell Break + Baton Pass combination. Combinations of Pokémon with good type synergy and resistance to a number of priority attacks such as Salamence and Heatran can thus be good teammates, as an opponent will be hard pressed to deal with a pass that could go to either Pokémon. Aside from receivers, Smeargle needs little support, as it provides its own set-up opportunities with Spore and Magic Coat, and its Normal typing and terrible stats both require and offer little offensive or defensive synergy. Espeon also gets a special mention as an effective receiver and teammate due to its amazing ability Magic Bounce, which will prevent Whirlwind, Roar, Taunt, or Thunder Wave from preventing a sweep. Espeon also has access to Baton Pass and boosting moves such as Calm Mind or Work Up, so it can easily pass the boosts on to a more powerful sweeper or continue a Baton Pass chain. If Espeon is being used as a receiver it is recommended to use Substitute in Smeargle's last moveslot to prevent Dragon Tail from phazing Espeon. As mentioned before, Rapid Spin or Magic Bounce support can be useful to increase Smeargle's set-up opportunities. Dual Screen support is also very useful for aiding Smeargle's setup and enhancing the bulk of the receiver for a few turns.</p>

    [SET]
    name: Hazard Lead
    move 1: Spore
    move 2: Magic Coat
    move 3: Spikes
    move 4: Stealth Rock / Toxic Spikes
    nature: Jolly
    item: Focus Sash
    evs: 4 HP / 252 Def / 252 Spe

    [SET COMMENTS]

    <p>With access to all entry hazards, Spore, and Magic Coat, Smeargle can be a very effective lead. Spore allows Smeargle to shut down an opposing Pokémon, and provides at least one free turn for Smeargle to set up. The ability to put an opposing Pokémon to sleep is what sets Smeargle apart from other hazard supporters such as Deoxys-S, making it an invaluable move. Smeargle can also make us of Magic Coat to reflect Taunt, status, and more, often providing free setup turns with proper prediction. With this combination not much can prevent Smeargle from putting a Pokémon to sleep and setting up at least one layer of hazards.</p>

    [ADDITIONAL COMMENTS]

    <p>Smeargle received a mixed bag with the introduction of Team Preview. The flexibility offered has significantly decreased the importance of dedicated leads, making Smeargle more predictable and easier for opponents to work around. On the other hand, Team Preview allows you to predict common sleep absorbers such as Gyarados and determine which form of entry hazards will be the most beneficial. There are also a number of very common slow threats such as Ferrothorn and Reuniclus that Smeargle can set up on even outside of the lead slot, making Smeargle viable even outside of the lead position if necessary. Smeargle is typically most useful on offensive teams as a suicide lead, setting up quick hazards and opening a hole in the opponent's team with Spore to support powerful sweepers. And as always Smeargle's greatest threat can be its unpredictability. Moves such as Toxic Spikes, Counter, U-turn, Endeavour, Encore, Perish Song, and others can replace either hazard or Magic Coat on the set to surprise the opponent.</p>

    [Other Options]

    <p>Smeargle can use every move in the game, so its options are many. As the only Pokémon capable of passing Ingrain, which prevents phazing, Smeargle has a unique niche on dedicated Baton Pass chains. Ingrain can also be used on the standard Baton Pass set in the fourth slot, but cannot stop Taunt or paralysis. Encore and Taunt are also viable options to provide set up opportunities and prevent phazing or Taunt, and can be used over Magic Coat in both sets or over either entry hazard for the lead set. Counter is another option for the lead set, allowing Smeargle to surprise and KO a physical attacker, or U-turn can be used to escape Taunt users and break Focus Sashes or Sturdy. Other sets can also be run, such as a niche Lv. 1 Endeavor Lead set with Trick Room, Spore, Endeavor and Dragon Rage or a Choice Scarf + Trick set that can lock the opponent into an attack and allow Smeargle to set up. Smeargle can also use other niche moves such as Dual Screens or Rapid Spin, but typically it is outclassed in these roles.</p>

    [Checks and Counters]

    <p>Sandstorm, Hail, Fake Out, and multi-hit moves all cause significant trouble for Smeargle running Focus Sash, negating it and often preventing Smeargle from doing anything. However, Smeargle is faster than Tyranitar, Abomasnow, Hippowdon, and the most common multi-hit user, Cloyster, so it can typically outspeed them and incapacitate them with Spore. Status absorbers also cause problems for Smeargle. Pokémon with Lum Berry, Sleep Talk, and various other abilities such as Insomnia can negate Smeagle's Spore to hinder its setup. Smeargle is also easily dispatched by faster attacks once its sash is broken due to its frailty. The Baton Pass set is mostly susceptible to priority, due to its weakened defences and high speed, requiring good prediction to try and put the opponents priority user to sleep as it switches in.

    [Dream World]
    <p>Now released, Smeargle gets the ultra-annoying Inconsistent, allowing it to stall for boosts in Evasion, Speed, and defenses. Smeargle is also the only Pokémon with Inconsistent and Baton Pass, allowing it to pass any accumulated boosts to something that can better take advantage of them. However, Inconsistent is banned in standard play.</p>
  2. Paradox

    Paradox

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    Skeleton finished.
    I'd love substantiated opinions on other sets, maybe some good teammates, and perhaps a better EV spread (I just got this one from the DP analysis).
  3. panamaxis

    panamaxis Allons-y!
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    I've seen a set like the following be very annoying:
    Spore/Magic Coat
    Substitute
    Protect
    Baton Pass

    Basically stall for inconsistent boosts and then pass it off to the sweeper of your choice. If you get the right boosts it can be devastating, I think this type of set should be in the analysis.
  4. Paradox

    Paradox

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    Inconsistent Smeargle isn't released yet, and Inconsistent is mentioned in the Dream World section.
  5. panamaxis

    panamaxis Allons-y!
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    My bad, however I think that when you see smeargle, unless you see a bunch of other pokemon that learn baton pass you can be fairly sure it's going to lead because it needs the sash, so I think the old lead set should still be up there if the set that we have now is going to go up there (which it should).

    Spore
    Spikes
    Magic Coat
    Stealth Rock

    It could be worth mentioning that Endeavor could be run over either spikes or SR in additional comments. With Magic Coat's new buff, as far as I know nothing apart from a lum berry can stop Smeargle if it predicts right, so even if you know this set is coming it's still not that easy to stop.
  6. Paradox

    Paradox

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    Yup, I added a Lead set, and between the new sleep mechanics and Magic Coat, it was actually quite effective when I tested it out. It certainly isn't the best lead out there, but it can get the job done.
  7. Paradox

    Paradox

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    Bump for QC?
  8. TorchicBlaziken

    TorchicBlaziken

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    Maybe add in Team Options that you could put white herb on the receiver of the Shell Break Pass. But this should be tested first.
  9. Solstice

    Solstice

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    You could also add Coil into the Baton Pass set under the set-up move.
  10. Iconic

    Iconic
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    you got pretty much everything covered, but you just might want to mention that anything with strong priority (scizor, roobushin, etc) can come in as you shell break and murk you if your sash is broken. you also need to get rid of any mention of darkrai and deoxys-a since they were banned alongside inconsistent.

    QC Approved 1/2
  11. Paradox

    Paradox

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    Changes made, thanks
  12. Salem1

    Salem1

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    I've only used him in one match so far as my latest trump card but he played his part flawlessly. Extremespeed, Spore, Belly Drum, Extremespeed, Spore, Technician-boosted Aqua Jet, game won. The thing comes with a Silk Scarf for a 144 power Extremespeed off 834 attack, needless to say cleaning up with it is very effective. I think it deserves a mention as a set. You can feign that it's some other Smeargle by appearing and Sporing something, catching them completely off-guard later on when you attack them instead of passing the boost. You might think that it's just an inferior Linoone, but does Linoone come with Spore?

    Smeargle
    Silk Scarf/Muscle Band|Jolly|Technician (unless using Waterfall)
    252 Attack/252 Speed
    Spore
    Belly Drum
    Extremespeed
    Aqua Jet/Waterfall
  13. Paradox

    Paradox

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    Sorry, but there's no possible way that will work. Without a sash it will be very difficult to set up, and even after Belly Drum Jolly Smeargle only hits 417 Attack, and Adamant isn't much better.

    If you need a Priority sweeper with Spore, even non-Technician Breloom will do far better than Smeargle.
  14. Salem1

    Salem1

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    Err, a sash on a belly drum set? you do realise that the point of the set is to belly drum, right? Jolly Smeargle doesn't hit 417 attack, you have your math wrong - it hits 834 attack. Smeargle is faster as well, letting it set up Spores on targets that would savage Breloom into bloody little mushroom parts (like it should be... I hate Breloom) unless you'll be sacrificing your bulk for speed that still won't be at Smeargle's level.

    Regardlessly, the point stands that Smeargle hits harder than Breloom. An Adamant Black Belt TechLoom will have 394 attack which is slightly less than half of Smeargle's and Technician > STAB > Black Belt for a 108 power move. Impressive for sure, but still 36 power short of Silk Scarf Extremespeed.

    Sure Smeargle can't come in on an attack but the payoff is over double as hard as Breloom's attack. Plus, who will expect to get hit by an 834 attack 144 power Extremespeed over facing some support Smeargle?
  15. Paradox

    Paradox

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    I understand you don't want a sash... that's why I pointed it out as a major flaw (Smeargle needs a sash to be successful).

    My math was wrong, but so is yours, +6 Smeargle hits 556 Attack (139*4=556).

    And yes, Smeargle will hit harder than Breloom... but only after the Belly Drum, don't forget Breloom can and will often use Swords Dance, but I don't want to further the comparison.

    Suffice it to say that Smeargle isn't going to sweep anything, it fails to OHKO anything with decent defences (71.2% - 83.8% on ScarfChomp), and is walled by literally everything that resists Extremespeed (Gengar takes 58.4% - 69.1% from Aqua Jet).
  16. Salem1

    Salem1

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    Yes you're right, we were both wrong.

    It's true about the Swords Dance, I hadn't considered that. You forget something important though, this set is not made for OU use - a direct comparison is nearly pointless since Smeargle is UU right now. Nah well, whatever :P
  17. Paradox

    Paradox

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    Bump for QC control. Should lead set stay? Should Ingrain-Pass be added? Let's hear some opinions.
  18. GtM

    GtM

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    I would de-slash Butterfly Dance from the Baton Pass set imo, since Venomoth really outclasses it. It has higher speed, defenses, and the loss of Magic Coat is completely moot given the lower density of Taunters in the 5th Gen metagame, and also given that Venomoth can't really be statused thanks to Miracle Skin. Just mention Butterfly Dance in the Additional Comments imo.
  19. MewGod

    MewGod

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    I find this offensive, take off mew from all baton passing analyis... it's better than that D:
  20. Bloo

    Bloo
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    This looks good; though, there are a few things you can add to Smeargle's Other Options section.

    1. Mention that Smeargle can utilize Toxic Spikes, but is completely outclassed by Tentacruel when it comes to doing so.
    2. Talk about how Smeargle can use a Choice Scarf + Trick set to mess up its opponents.
    3. Make sure to note that Smeargle can use moves like Encore and Taunt; also, mention Smeargle's ability to use Spider Web on Baton Pass sets in order to trap a Pokemon that it can easily set-up on. You can also mention Smeargle's ability to pass Belly Drum's (even though it's nearly impossible to do so in today's metagame).
    4. Lastly, give U-turn a sentence or two in your Other Options section for reasons that are hopefully self-explanatory.
    That's all I have. good job.

    QC APPROVED (2/3)
  21. Paradox

    Paradox

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    Thanks for the feedback Bloo. I'll incorporate all of your suggestions asap, but I'm on vacation for a bit.
  22. Farewell

    Farewell

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    I think Spider Web/Block/Mean Look wore off after Baton Pass in Gen V, hence why Umbreon lost its niche...

    Add a Fun transform set:

    Smeargle: @ Leftovers
    252 HP / 252 Spe
    Jolly

    Spore
    Substitute
    Transform
    Torment

    Sleep a foe, Sub on their switch, if you are faster then go for a Torment as they hit the Substitute, if you are slower Transform into your foe as they break the Substitute. Torment helps causes switches in case you are facing a Choiced foe, or a set-upper.
  23. PK Gaming

    PK Gaming Pursuing My True Self
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    Sorry for the delay, I had a post typed up and it got deleted -_-.

    Anyway, bloo did a good job covering everything. My only suggestion is that you add counter in OO. It had decent utility on smeargle in gen IV, and its pretty useful if you want to get the surprise KO against some pokemon.

    QC APPROVED (3/3)
  24. MewGod

    MewGod

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    It can work as a good fear lead if you really wanted too...
    level 1
    [SET]
    name: ROFLPWNED
    move 1: Bullet Punch/Ice Shard/ExtremeSpeed
    move 2: Endeavor
    move 3: Stealth Rock/Spore
    move 4: Destiny Bond
    nature: Jolly
    item: Focus Sash
    evs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe

    Not sure if Espeed is +2 priority, if so then slash it first. When they notice it's level 1 they will either try to toxic or straight out kill it and hope for a kill, hopefuly it doesn't have something that hits twice. It's a nice set, mainly because arceus gets 2HKO by it. Destiny Bond can be used to scare pokes into killing it, unless it's a set up then either way you're screwed. You can Destiny Bond and then go for spore, since they will be scared to kill you.

    Just try it, takes some skill to pull off, unlike others.
  25. The Fall of Eden

    The Fall of Eden

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    Yes, extremespeed is +2 priority, which is helpful to outspeed other priority users, considering you are level 1 o.o. One idea though, if you increase the level to an acceptable level, It won't seem as obvious it is running FEAR setup.

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