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The Dark Horse Project IV

Discussion in 'BW OU' started by Birkal, Oct 2, 2012.

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  1. Lavos Spawn

    Lavos Spawn
    is a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Past WCoP Winner

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    Pokemon Showdown! Username: cune
    Hall of Fame Standing: none yet
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: ok probably suicune
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: none yet
  2. ginganinja

    ginganinja Member of the Gamefreak ORAS Balancing Team
    is a Forum Moderatoris a CAP Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus
    Moderator

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    DONE

    PROOF VIA MY SHITTY SCREENSHOT SKILLS

    Show Hide
    [​IMG]


    Pokemon Showdown! Username: We All Love Birkal
    Hall of Fame Standing: GOLD BITCH
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: Gotha,
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: 2227 if its Glicko2, 2138 if ACRE, 16th on the actual ladder

    How did you choose your Dark Horse Pokemon for this project? What lead you to choose the Pokemon you did? Did you have regrets or were you happy with your selection?

    Gothitelle was prolly one of the easier pokemon to use in a Dark Horse challenge, due to it being such a strong but underrated pokemon. Gothitelle gave me pretty strong control over the battle, since I could highlight pokemon it could trap just by looking at Team Preiview, and then make a game plan around it. I was very happy with my choice.


    How did you go about building a team for your Dark Horse Pokemon? Which kinds of teammates did you consider? What factors contributed to the team you created?

    In all honestly, I have like 50 OU Teams (some of which i had yet to test), so I basically looked at the pokemon on my teams, highlighted the Dark Horse ones, looked at what everyone else was using, and then made a selection. It didn't have to be Gothitelle, it could have ended up has Hippowdon / Meloetta / Amoonguss / Slowbro / Metagross / Ditto / Sandslash or something, I just picked Gothitelle randomly. Confident I could use it easily, and quickly (due to me wanting to speed run this challenge due to the next week or so being rather busy).

    The actual team itself was based around Gothitelle trapping and getting rid of counters for my sweepers. Gothitelle was amazing on Rain Teams, since it could trap and kill counters for Breloom and Keldeo, while also trapping and killing Abomasnow and Ninetales, while crippling Hippowdon with trick or Psychic. Gothitelle was also rather neat at destroying the odd stall team I played, since I would be able to shut down whatever was most threatening to me on the stall team, (usually Chansey), Trick it a Scarf, and go from there.

    The Team was actually built around Sub Calm Mind Keldeo, since I had always wanted to see how it could do in the metagame, and I used Gothitelle to trap and kill Jellicent, Amoonguss and Celebi, while crippling Politoed which would prevent it from ruining me with Perish Song. I actually used Perish Song Politoed myself, which pissed off a few people since I could bring in Gothitelle if they switched into a Perish Song, and then they would be unable to switch out allowing me to get a free kill. Gothitelle would also trap Breloom for me which was everywhere, a massive (BAN ME PLEASE) in general, and many teams check to water attacks / electric attacks, which opened them up to other members of my team. The rest of the team was standard Rain, basically a Sub CM Jirachi, a Scarf Thundurus-T for revenge killing duties, and a Ferrothorn for Stealth Rock. The team is below and it played pretty similar to my old "Dear Susan" Team. I suspect I could run Gothitelle over Meloetta on that team and still do extremely well but whatever.

    Do you think it is more difficult or less difficult to ladder with a Dark Horse Pokemon? Why? Does the element of surprise play a factor in your battles? Is it easier to fight with a "highly used"" team or with Pokemon that are less common?

    I think it was slightly difficult to ladder with a lesser used pokemon, but there are some solid Dark Horse options that are really awesome on a team, and that doesn't handicap your team too much. I think if your team is solid, you will be just fine, if you are having problems, you might need to relook at your team.

    I think it is easier to fight a highly used team of pokemon, due to actually knowing how much damage they do, sets, etc etc. I remember running into a team which had a bunch of UU pokemon and struggling, because I thought Lickilicky was some random Wish Passer, the fucking thing had Cloud Nine which cancelled my weather, and then promptly Swords Danced in my face and took out half my team. The element of surprise can work very well in the Dark Horse challenge, I was just unable to use it very well myself due to Gothitelle's standard sets being known.

    How did you reach the Hall of Fame? Was it easy or difficult? Did having a Dark Horse Pokemon on your team benefit you? What advice would you give to those laddering with Dark Horse Pokemon?

    It was easy for me to reach the hall of fame. I speed ran the challenge, and had a massive amount of points so it was fairly simple for me to get onto the ladder. My Dark Horse Pokemon I suppose benefited my team since I had actually built the team around it, but I suspect I could drop it for something else, make a few minor changes and the team would still work fine. If anyone wants advice I guess for this challenge, just I guess make sure you have a solid team, and that your Dark Horse pokemon has a purpose being on that team, since if its randomly tacked on its going to be much harder to ladder.

    Cheers

    Importable (open)
    Politoed @ Leftovers
    Trait: Drizzle
    EVs: 32 Spd / 252 HP / 224 Def
    Bold Nature
    - Scald
    - Toxic
    - Perish Song
    - Refresh

    Jirachi @ Leftovers
    Trait: Serene Grace
    EVs: 252 HP / 4 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Timid Nature
    - Substitute
    - Calm Mind
    - Psyshock
    - Thunder

    Ferrothorn @ Leftovers
    Trait: Iron Barbs
    EVs: 252 HP / 252 SDef / 4 Def
    Sassy Nature
    IVs: 0 Spd
    - Bulldoze
    - Power Whip
    - Gyro Ball
    - Stealth Rock

    Thundurus-Therian (M) @ Choice Scarf
    Trait: Volt Absorb
    EVs: 252 SAtk / 252 Spd / 4 HP
    Timid Nature
    - Volt Switch
    - Thunder
    - Focus Blast
    - Hidden Power [Ice]

    Keldeo-Resolution @ Leftovers
    Trait: Justified
    EVs: 252 Spd / 252 SAtk / 4 SDef
    Timid Nature
    - Substitute
    - Surf
    - Secret Sword
    - Calm Mind

    Gothitelle @ Choice Specs
    Trait: Shadow Tag
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Timid Nature
    - Psychic
    - Thunderbolt
    - Signal Beam
    - Trick

  3. Lady Alex

    Lady Alex I asked Mawile to not hurt me. I was betrayed.
    is a Tiering Contributor

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    I didn't expect to get enough points for the hall of fame with just 5 matches O.o
  4. alkinesthetase

    alkinesthetase <@dtc> every day with alk is a bad day
    is a Smogon IRC SOp Alumnus

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    ^ deviation: you also need to be within the top 100/50/25 of the ladder to hall-of-fame, which should require a bit less deviation than you can get in 5 matches

    I think the cutoffs are a little low this time around though, but that's a topic i'll raise with my overlords some other time
  5. Lady Alex

    Lady Alex I asked Mawile to not hurt me. I was betrayed.
    is a Tiering Contributor

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    I have a higher ACRE and Glicko2 than the person at 100. Can you look at my SS and see if I made the requirements lol?
  6. alkinesthetase

    alkinesthetase <@dtc> every day with alk is a bad day
    is a Smogon IRC SOp Alumnus

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    your deviation is 181 though; there's no way you're on the PS OU leaderboard. leaderboard is minimum 80 dev if i recall correctly. to be sure, i checked, and your alt is not on the top 100. still got some more battles to go =P
  7. Ricky Horror

    Ricky Horror

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Messages:
    254
    Pokemon Showdown! Username: Miss May I
    Dark Horse Pokemon: Zapdos(Pocket)
    Screenshot of Top 100 Ladder Ranking:
    Rank Shot (open)
    [​IMG]

    Dark Horse Pokemon Complete Set: not stating set for now, I plan to go for gold.
  8. Sayonara

    Sayonara don't forget

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Messages:
    764
    Pokemon Showdown! Username: Sayonara
    Hall of Fame Standing: None yet.
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: Qwilfish
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: None yet.
  9. Lady Alex

    Lady Alex I asked Mawile to not hurt me. I was betrayed.
    is a Tiering Contributor

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    haha ok. thanks. I thought that seemed way off xD
  10. TaBuu

    TaBuu

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2012
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    305
    Pokemon Showdown! Username:Pokemon Ace Tabuu
    Hall of Fame Standing: natta ._.
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: Heracross
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: N/A
  11. Master of the Six Kings

    Master of the Six Kings

    Joined:
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    Lol, i sign up with Mew, go to work and come back and hes gone :(

    I'll Take Machamp then. I havent played any games yet so no need to switch alts.
  12. 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
    Moderator

    Joined:
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    Pokemon Showdown! username: pokemon0078_eatinghorses
    Hall of Fame Standing: zilch zero nada
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: Empoleon
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: 1658

    blame pocket, i was all like what should i test for specs empoleon on the analysis and he was all like sign up for dark horse project and test it and im all like fuck ive been coerced.

    this will be quite fun, maybe ill use specs empoleon sufficiently to test it and then go easy mode with my subpetaya empoleon team.

    haha yepp :) - Pocket
  13. Pocket

    Pocket Apo, the astronaut's best friend >:3
    is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus

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    DAYUM four Hall of Famers already! Congrats >:D Ginganinja even placed in Gold! I encourage current Bronzies to work at it and ACHIEVE MORE.

    ClubbingSealCub - I am glad you found a way to utilize Sandslash, which is often passed for Stoutland ;(

    Jimbon - that's a really interesting team, and i'm surprised that Lanturn even works in OU (I recently rejected an OU Lanturn analysis ;o). I'm also really interested in the Mew set you used, and I'd like to hear more about it - Tailwind is a really nice touch to the suicide lead set :d Specs Keldeo seems a bit dangerous with only Lanturn as your defensive pivot, though - it still worked as effective as ever?

    ginganinja - Yea, Gothitelle is underappreciated right now, it ought to see MUCH more use. Although your team is bog standard Rain team, Gothitelle is the perfect fit to ensure a sweep by Keldeo or Thundurus.

    you guys are too good. Oh yea, and Discussion Questions are up, so please follow ginganinja's suit and answer them - your inputs are priceless for this project, and it's a good way to become a POTATO

    PS: oh, and the four timer, Lady Alex is back for more! Thanks for being there for us ;) I only expect good things from you!
  14. MCBarrett

    MCBarrett i love it when you call me big hoppa

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2012
    Messages:
    551
    Pokemon Showdown! Username:MC50cal
    Hall of Fame Standing:none
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With:Bisharp
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!:none yet
  15. alexwolf

    alexwolf Fear the D
    is a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon
    Moderator

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Pokemon Showdown! Username: MoltresMan
    Hall of Fame Standing: None yet
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: Moltres
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: None yet
  16. Milos

    Milos

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
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    Pokemon Showdown! Username: Jet Li
    Hall of Fame Standing: none as of yet
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: mienshao, shaymin
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: ou 1676 76 1809 ± 94 (provisional) 14 2 0
  17. alkinesthetase

    alkinesthetase <@dtc> every day with alk is a bad day
    is a Smogon IRC SOp Alumnus

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    i'll mark you down for ditto... in retrospect i probably should have made the reverse decision >_>
  18. Lady Alex

    Lady Alex I asked Mawile to not hurt me. I was betrayed.
    is a Tiering Contributor

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    Ok. Made it for real this time xD
  19. ginganinja

    ginganinja Member of the Gamefreak ORAS Balancing Team
    is a Forum Moderatoris a CAP Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus
    Moderator

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    Just posting to say, I disagree with a Glicko2 rating being recorded, as I prefer the ACRE rating (which is the one the ladder focuses on iirc). Just something to think about in future or somethnig, but I think Glicko2 is usually 100 points highier than ACRE, which makes it slightly easier to achieve the challenge.
  20. Temp V1

    Temp V1 Movin' at the speed of life and I can't slow down

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2012
    Messages:
    115
    Proof of Bronze (open)
    [​IMG]


    Pokemon Showdown! Username: Temp V5
    Hall of Fame Standing: Bronze
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: Uxie
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: 1871 (#89 on the ladder) Or 1971 if using Glicko2

    How did you choose your Dark Horse Pokemon for this project? What lead you to choose the Pokemon you did? Did you have regrets or were you happy with your selection?

    Have to say this was quite fun, it made me think outside the box a little as to exactly which Dark Horse I wanted to use. Instantly I thought it was Sableye, because I love using that thing in general OU, however through some testing with ganj4lF I discovered that it really wasn't working and so I decided to change the team up a bit. Originally it was an offensive rain team, with Sableye there as an annoyance factor and a check to certain stall threats, however when my tests on the beta and with ganj4 revealed it wasn't working I knew I had to change something. It was obvious that I needed a grass type to patch up my issues with Thundurus-T and Rotom, so I decided to add another Dark Horse; Celebi. This made me change the team to a more balanced team, and it worked alright in testing, however I still wasn't really satisfied with the overall results. It was to vulnerable to losing a match due to hax, which I believe no good team should be.

    As most of you would know ganj4 was the first to complete this challenge, and I had spent a fair bit of time talking with him about his team, and his strategy. At one point he suggested I try a Hyper Offense team, because they were a lot less vulnerable to hax, and generally quite strong in the current metagame. I hadn't made a HO team since the days of BW1, but I did like the idea of giving it a go, and it worked perfectly. I didn't like HO when I first used it because my playstyle was more suited to stall/balance, although now it seems HO fits me perfectly.

    Ganj4 gave me the formula for this HO team, and so I set to work on building my own. I knew that the place the start would be with a Dark Horse, as most of the mons which best fit on HO teams are very commonly used, and there are next to know offensive Dark Horses that work as well as some of OUs most used for a HO team. That lead me to thinking of the suicide role, there were plenty of horses that could fill the slot. To my amazement Deoxys-D qualified as a Dark Horse, with its usage being slightly over 4%. So I figured why not abuse that and use it. Then I realised that would sort of be defeating the purpose of the challenge, as its so close to not being a Dark Horse, that it might as well not be one. That along with the fact that it meant I didn't have to be creative at all, which would have kind of ruined this challenge for me. I was interested in Mew because of ganj4's success with it, although I wanted to try something more original, which eventually lead me to choosing Uxie.

    How did you go about building a team for your Dark Horse Pokemon? Which kinds of teammates did you consider? What factors contributed to the team you created?

    This was sort of answered in the above paragraphs, Uxie was chosen to fit a teamstyle, and it was the first membero f the team, so I guess technically the team was built around it.

    Do you think it is more difficult or less difficult to ladder with a Dark Horse Pokemon? Why? Does the element of surprise play a factor in your battles? Is it easier to fight with a "highly used"" team or with Pokemon that are less common?

    I found laddering incredibly easy, went from 1000-1871 in a bit under 2 hours. I think its hard to say whether using a Dark Horse makes laddering harder, it comes down to a lot of factors. For example if you try and build the team around a poke that is never going to be great, the team as a whole may struggle. If you just throw it on the end of an already built team, you might find some success, but it won't be due to the Dark Horse. Personally for my team, using Uxie significantly helped me ladder. Simply because there is literally no other Pokemon that can do the job Uxie does, to the level of which Uxie does it. That said the remaining 5 members of my team were all above the 5% margin, and I was pretty happy to only use one Poke from the Top 10 in usage, which was Breloom at #8.


    (For Hall of Fame members only) How did you reach the Hall of Fame? Was it easy or difficult? Did having a Dark Horse Pokemon on your team benefit you? What advice would you give to those laddering with Dark Horse Pokemon?

    I reached the hall of fame quite easily and quickly, in a little under two hours as I said. As mentioned earlier also, having Uxie seriously benefited the team, I am certain the team would not have been anywhere near as successful with another Poke. Now as far as tips for others. I think to be successful in this challenge you need to find a Dark Horse which is a great fit, not just good, for the team you wish to use. You can definitely build a team around your Horse, although I personally think these teams will not be a successful as those that incorporate the Horse well. My team for example was not exactly based around Uxie, in that it was my other 5 members doing all the work, however Uxie made it possible for said work to be done. I would recommend collaborating with friends if possible when you first decide on exactly which Horse you wish to use, or even before you have decided. At the start of the challenge I was really wanting to use Sableye, however through discussion and testing with ganj4lF I discovered that I wasn't going to have optimal success using it, which inevitably lead me to rethink my whole approach, and now I'm in the hall of fame.

    For those of you interested, the team I used is in my OP on page 1. I don't know if I'll go for gold, I think it should be relatively straight forward as I seriously breezed up to bronze, although now everyone here knows my team, and secrets, so it might be slightly more difficult :d

    I'd like to say a big thank you to Ginganinja, Birkal, Pocket and Alkinesthetase for all their great work on this project. I'd also like to give a special shout out to ganj4lF; Props on finishing the challenge first, and thank you for all the help with getting my head on track to create this truly effective team, cheers man <3
  21. The Unlucky one

    The Unlucky one

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2012
    Messages:
    996
    I would like to join this thing. I really have a lot of fun with victini and I would like to use it as my dark horse. However, I do have 2 other dark horses on my team but people have already used. Ill put those sets anyways.






    Pokemon Showdown! username: I love hax
    Hall of fame standing: none
    dark horse working with: Lilligant,Victini,Virizion
    Current ladder rating on Pokemon Showdown!: 1000
    EDIT: Edited many times since i kept tryin this team out that didnt work out well. I decided to go back to my old team and use it since it has a couple of dark horses.
    second edit: the ladder reset so i will be using another alt since i was on that alt and lost with another team unconciously
  22. Uvood

    Uvood

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2010
    Messages:
    142
    I would like to join :D. Just asking if it's okay if I use my main profile, I have not laddered with it since august and the ladder was recently reset, so it should be fine. Is it okay, or do you still want me to make a new account for the project?


    Edit: think I'm making an alt regardless.

    Pokemon Showdown! Username: Aviora
    Hall of Fame Standing: None
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working with: Articuno and Swampert
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: 1696(highest around 1750, don't remember exactly)
  23. Eranu

    Eranu

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2011
    Messages:
    376
    Pokemon Showdown! Username: vwgold
    Hall of Fame Standing: None
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: Deoxys-d
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: 2043

    Show Hide
    [​IMG]

    Set:
    Deoxys-Defense @ Tanga Berry
    Trait: Pressure
    EVs: 252 HP / 4 SDef / 252 Spd
    Timid Nature
    - Taunt
    - Night Shade
    - Spikes
    - Stealth Rock

    How did you choose your Dark Horse Pokemon for this project? What lead you to choose the Pokemon you did? Did you have regrets or were you happy with your selection?

    I've played with Deoxys-defense before and it surprised me how well it does. Finding out it had less than 5% usage surprised me and I wanted to prove it belongs much higher.

    How did you go about building a team for your Dark Horse Pokemon? Which kinds of teammates did you consider? What factors contributed to the team you created?

    Since Deoxys-d is mainly for setting up hazards i decided to go with an offensive team. i threw gengar and dragonite on since gengar is the only offensive spin blocker and dragonite destroys a lot after hazards. Then i threw on genesect since it forces switches which, with hazards, is important. Then i threw on alakazam so i could revenge kill pretty much any poke that set up on deoxys-d thanks to focus sash. Lastly i decided to use breloom since i've tried it before and the choice band set stunned me. i decided to pick a swords dance set since, after a swords dance, mach punch and bullet seed can sweep pretty easily. I used to run lucario over breloom, but after testing breloom fitted better.


    Do you think it is more difficult or less difficult to ladder with a Dark Horse Pokemon? Why? Does the element of surprise play a factor in your battles? Is it easier to fight with a "highly used"" team or with Pokemon that are less common?

    I don't think it was harder. In fact, i find it easier to battle with deoxys-d offense than with standard teams. How easily it sets up hazards is great for offense.

    The team:

    Show Hide
    Deoxys-Defense @ Tanga Berry
    Trait: Pressure
    EVs: 252 HP / 4 SDef / 252 Spd
    Timid Nature
    - Taunt
    - Night Shade
    - Spikes
    - Stealth Rock

    Alakazam (F) @ Focus Sash
    Trait: Magic Guard
    EVs: 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Timid Nature
    - Hidden Power [Ice]
    - Psyshock
    - Shadow Ball
    - Focus Blast

    Dragonite (M) @ Choice Band
    Trait: Multiscale
    EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spd
    Adamant Nature
    - Earthquake
    - Outrage
    - Fire Punch
    - ExtremeSpeed

    Gengar (F) @ Choice Scarf
    Trait: Levitate
    EVs: 252 SAtk / 4 SDef / 252 Spd
    Timid Nature
    - Hidden Power [Fire]
    - Shadow Ball
    - Focus Blast
    - Trick

    Breloom (F) @ Fighting Gem
    Trait: Technician
    EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 Spd
    Adamant Nature
    - Mach Punch
    - Bullet Seed
    - Swords Dance
    - Spore

    Genesect @ Choice Scarf
    Trait: Download
    EVs: 4 Atk / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Naive Nature
    - U-turn
    - Bug Buzz
    - Ice Beam
    - Thunderbolt
  24. exotic

    exotic

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2012
    Messages:
    99
    Pokemon Showdown! Username: Exotic
    Hall of Fame Standing: None
    Dark Horse Pokemon Currently Working With: Wobbuffet
    Current Ladder Standing on Pokemon Showdown!: 1700
  25. Jimbon

    Jimbon FAKE TRAIN
    is a Team Rater Alumnus

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    Jan 24, 2012
    Messages:
    493
    Yeah, Lanturn is slowly becoming one of my new favourite 'mons, you should try it. It covers all of Keldeo's weaknesses pretty nicely (flying, electric, etc) and being able to deal with Keldeo's most common checks such as the therians and Genesect is amazing. People have been arguing that the combination of those Rain abusers is "overpowered", but Lanturn beats all three easily and even checks Keldeo to an extent. On an offensive team such as this where momentum is helpful, Lanturn fills a much needed role on an offensive team. A great pivot with ResTalk + Volt Switch, a phenomenal counter to the aforementioned trio of Rain abusers while still providing the team with a (usually) slower Volt Switch which is great for switching into more frail members of my team such as Terrakion and Keldeo. Also something with recovery on a team with no spinner is also nice, especially against Rain Offense trying to stack hazards and such.

    As for Mew, that was also something I wanted to try out. I didn't actually realize it's also a Dark Horse until just now, aha. But yeah, it's probably one of the most underrated leads for Hyper Offense, and filled a vital role in the team. It sets up hazards pretty easily against most opposing leads, while the leads that can actually beat Mew (Deoxys-D, Genesect, etc) are beaten by other team members pretty easily. The main thing that I liked about Mew was how expendable it was. There were so many situations where it did so well, like being able to OHKO Latias as it Calm Minds or pretty much any other stat booster who will try to use Mew as setup fodder. It's also great because Normal Gem Explosion does around 35-45% to standard Ferrothorn, putting it into easy KO range for Keldeo. Tailwind was just a filler move, but turned out to be arguably the best move on Mew. There were so many situations where Tailwind has been helpful, in paving the way for Keldeo and friends to simply plow through an opponent's team. A common strategy I used was setting up Stealth Rock, using Tailwind and then Exploding on whatever came in. It didn't matter if it lived Explosion, because you could be sure as hell a Specs +2 Speed Keldeo is gonna kill whatever comes in. Tailwind in general just made it a lot easier to setup with numerous 'mons, especially Terrakion who can Sub on a Latios Draco Meteor and get a free Substitute as Latios dies to a Stone Edge. Due to the offensive nature of the team, something was guaranteed to die every time I got Tailwind up. Keldeo destroyed Rain Offense, while Landorus mauled Sun. Other weathers/playstyles were usually beaten by just hitting every thing hard and not giving your opponent a chance to setup anything, while Mew is great for catching surprise kills.

    But yeah, I've rambled a little bit too much - I guess I'll answer these questions.

    How did you choose your Dark Horse Pokemon for this project? What lead you to choose the Pokemon you did? Did you have regrets or were you happy with your selection?

    Choosing my Pokemon really wasn't difficult. I had used Lanturn pretty extensively before this project, and I had no doubt in my mind that I was going to use it. Given the way the current metagame is, it has a certain niche being able to beat Rain spam teams pretty easily. The only regrets I had were choosing a set quicker. I had tried Choice Specs Lanturn prior to the current set due to just how my team played out, and relied on offensive momentum, however I lost to Rain Teams pretty easily. The extra bulk really was notable and I actually lost 3/4 of the first matches I played using Specs Lanturn. I hated not being able to switch into Genesect with hazards up, or not being able to sponge a Hurricane quite so well, so I shifted back pretty quickly to the old set. I guess there are just some Pokemon that have a certain niche for something, and in this case, Lanturn just performed well against a lot of the most common teams in this metagame.

    How did you go about building a team for your Dark Horse Pokemon? Which kinds of teammates did you consider? What factors contributed to the team you created?

    When I chose to use Lanturn, I wanted to try something new. I didn't want to mess around with stall, as that really isn't fun to play. Hyper Offense was a playstyle I never really tried before, and was intrigued. Given that Lanturn already has Volt Switch, there was no reason why I couldn't use it on such an offensive team. I quickly added a Mew lead, followed by Scarf Genesect + Specs Keldeo which is a combination I use on a lot of my teams. Given that Genesect beats everything Keldeo can't (Tornadus-T, Latias, Celebi) it was only logical to use those two together, not to mention that Lanturn beats everything that Keldeo loses to. Landorus was added to help against Sun which heavily crippled Lanturn's effectiveness, while Terrakion was just a filler mon I needed for stall as choice Keldeo has trouble breaking through common stall cores as opposed to any other Keldeo set. When teambuilding, my main focus was beating weather, as that was what I faced 75% of the time.

    Do you think it is more difficult or less difficult to ladder with a Dark Horse Pokemon? Why? Does the element of surprise play a factor in your battles? Is it easier to fight with a "highly used"" team or with Pokemon that are less common?

    I'd probably say it was less difficult laddering with a Dark Horse Pokemon. When making a team, I always try to implement something that makes it different from any other team whether it be an underrated Pokemon or set. A lot of people had trouble against Lanturn in matches, as they didn't really know what to expect. Whatever they tried to switch into to beat Lanturn, I could just Volt Switch out and kill their switch-in with any other member of my team. Standard Rain Offense teams usually struggled, as I could easily keep switching into Lanturn to buffer literally any hit. It had a nice surprise factor that really kept my opponent in the dark until I revealed the set. Lanturn didn't work as well when I played people more than once due to PS's weird ladder, as they knew the set. But still, I found it effective in a large percentage of my matches. I'd say the element of surprise plays a huge factor, you literally do not know what to expect. One move or play that your opponent does not expect can completely mess with their head, and completely disregard any momentum they have prior.

    (For Hall of Fame members only) How did you reach the Hall of Fame? Was it easy or difficult? Did having a Dark Horse Pokemon on your team benefit you? What advice would you give to those laddering with Dark Horse Pokemon?

    Completing the challenge itself wasn't so hard, but trying to make an effective team was. Like I said before, I lost 3 matches right from the get go due to a bad set, which messed with other elements of my team. That bad set meant I lost a huge defensive member of the team, which left me wide open to offense. Every time Genesect switched in, something died, which really annoyed me to no end. Once I changed the set, I won over 95% of the matches I played with this current version of the team which really goes to show how important good teambuilding is. As for the actual laddering etc, it really wasn't difficult. My team had a pretty neutral matchup against most teams, meaning if I played smart I would win pretty convincingly. Under the radar sets like Normal Gem Mew really played a big part in my success, as I could easily remove one Pokemon instantly with no trouble. Should this Pokemon be a good answer for Keldeo / Landorus, then I can sweep easily when they're removed. If you want to do well on this challenge, I'd highly recommend making a team solely based around your Dark Horse. Providing it with correct team support is necessary, as you may find that in most matches you start at a 5-6 disadvantage as your Dark Horse cannot do anything. There is no other Pokemon in the game that could do what Lanturn does for this team, and that is what sets it apart from all the other Pokemon I could've used. Find something with a niche, something unique and go for it.
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