At a glance: Intro: The main objective of this team is abusing Toxic Spikes. The combination of Substitute or a set up move + Toxic Spikes is a very dangerous and effective strategy, since Toxic Spikes weakens the foe, allowing me to set up much easier. At the start of the game I try to set up TS and SR as fast as possible. After that, I try to force switches, and I abuse TS with set uppers, Taunt and Substitute. The team has been working very well in SB, getting high in the LB with some alts, and it has been a pretty fun team to use. The team: Picardía | Roserade @ Focus Sash Ability: Natural Cure EVs: 4 HP/252 Spd/252 SAtk Timid nature (+Spd, -Atk) - Sleep Powder - Toxic Spikes - Leaf Storm - Hidden Power [Ice] Set analysis One of the most reliable leads in today’s metagame, while also being the most reliable Toxic Spiker for offensive teams. With its speed + Focus Sash, it will set up TS nearly always, and it will also put something to sleep. It also absorbs the opponent’s TS, making Swampert’s life much easier. With Natural Cure, it can also absorb status, which is great in some situations, and have helped me a lot. It has also killed lots of gliscor, dnite and salamence with HP ice. Leaf storm is a strong attack that helps me beating those annoying bulky waters, and it allows me to weaken a lot most sleep absorbers, which can be key later in the battle, especially if that means their rotom cannot take a +1 DD waterfall from gyara, or their bulky gyara cannot wall heatran anymore. Even though it has 252 Spe / 252 SpA and a Focus Sash, it is NOT a suicide lead. I like to keep her alive later to absorb possible Toxic Spikes and to beat Crocune if Jirachi ever goes down. Roserade has proven to be an excellent member of the team. EVs The EVs are standard. 252 EVs in spd let me outspeed neutral base 100s, and 252 in SpAtk to hit as hard as possible. Lead Comparison This is how Roserade fairs against the top ten common leads according to the usage statistics; blue indicates little trouble caused, orange indicates that there is a bit of switching to do, and red is problematic: Hide (Move your mouse to the hide area to reveal the content) Show Hide Hide Hide | Azelf: I Leaf Storm turn 1. It will always Taunt me, or set up rocks. If ut attacks, Sash let me take the hit, and I switch to Scarftran. | Aerodactyl: HP ice while it taunts, and kill it with HP ice in the second turn while it sets up the rocks. If he uses SR the first turn, it will taunt the second turn, so I do the same. | Swampert: Sleep powder and set up Toxic Spikes. Sometimes I like leaf storming turn 1, so I catch their sleep talker and they take a big hit, or even better, I kill their Swampy if they are stupid enough to keep Swampy. | Machamp:I use TS and then I switch to Gyara to intimidate it. Sometimes I switch to Gyara in turn 1. It's an annoying lead. | Metagross: It can be quite annoying. I switch to Rotom and t-bolt it to doom. If I know it doesnt have occa berry, I switch to Heatran. | Jirachi: Switch to Swampy to set up the rocks. | Infernape:I switch to swampy to set up the rocks. | Roserade: Hidden Power Ice means that Im faster than HP fire version, while HP ground version does little to my rade. I HP first turn and switch to tran next turn. | Ninjask: Hidden Power until it BP. After that I use Sleep powder. | Hippowdon:The same than with Swampert. StarCry | Jirachi @ Leftovers Ability: Serene Grace EVs: 252 HP/220 Def/36 Spd Bold nature (+Def, -Atk) - Calm Mind - Thunderbolt - Wish - Psychic Set analysis This jirachi is a monster, especially with TS support. Wish + CM allows me to outstall many pokes, and with TS support, it will always easily beat things like Celebi or Blissey, which are very annoying (specially leech seed celebi). Wish is very useful, especially when none of jirachi partners has recovery moves, and works especially well with Gyarados. Gyarados and Jirachi cover their weakness perfectly, and they resist nearly all the types. Psychic is its main attack, and helps a lot against things like Machamp or Breloom, which are very annoying pokes. Thunderbolt + Serene Grace has helped me many times paralyzing things like Scarftran. Psychic and Thunderbolt is an old standard with great neutral coverage. Jirachi is designed to tank hits while setting up and Wishing as required. This Pokémon can destroy stall and hurts offense a lot. EVs The speed EVs let me outspeed most Breloom, so I can Psychic them before they can Spore me, and defensive Zapdos that are EVd to outspeed jolly DDtar. The rest goes to HP and defense, because I want it to take physical hits as well as possible Miedo | Gyarados (M) @ Leftovers Ability: Intimidate EVs: 156 HP/72 Atk/96 Def/184 Spd Adamant nature (+Atk, -SAtk) - Dragon Dance - Waterfall - Stone Edge/Bounce - Taunt Set analysis What a monster. It can take lots of physical hits like nothing, and easily set up in lots of pokes. It is also my main Infernape and Heatran answer, pokes that love switching into Jirachi. Gyarados is a great Jirachi partner, and Wish keeps it at good health, giving it lots of chances to sweep. Dragon Dance to raise its Attack and its Speed, so it becomes a big threat for my opponent’s team. Taunt means I can easily set up in a lot of walls like Skarm or bulky Gyara, and avoids things like Celebi to paralyze me, and it also helps me abusing the TS. Late game it can easily destroys many teams. I’m using Stone Edge because it let me beat other Gyara and Salamence (now uber), but Bounce let me beat Celebi, and the extra turn for poison damage and leftovers recovery is nice. I need suggestions here. EVs It’s just the standard EV spread for bulky gyara. The HP EVs let Gyara survive 2 LO Fire Blast from Heatran, and the spd EVs let it outspeed scarftar and +speed base 115s after a Dragon Dance. Krakatoa | Heatran (M) @ Choice Scarf Ability: Flash Fire EVs: 4 Atk/252 Spd/252 SAtk Naive nature (+Spd, -SDef) - Fire Blast - Earth Power - Dragon Pulse - Explosion Set analysis Scarftran is a very good pokemon, and it revenge kills a lot of stuff. I had subtran in this spot at first, but things like LOgar or HP ground azelf gave me a lot of trouble, so I decided to give him the scarf, and it works quite well. TS means bulky waters have a much harder time switching in (specially Vappy), and it actually surprises (now most of the heatran are bulky, sub or shuca berry). It has lots of resistances, wish support, massive sp atk, and a Speed stat of 417 with the Choice Scarf, so expect it switching in a lot of times, and doing a lot of damage, specially with the TS adding damage to their bulky waters. Fire blast is my main attack, and it scores a lot of OHKOes to things like Metagross, Gengar or Celebi, but Im considering Flamethrower because FB misses has costed me some games. Earth Power complements FB very well, and it allows me to revenge kill threats like LOtran or Infernape. I’m considering using Hidden Power electric instead of Dragon Pulse, since Salamence is now uber, and it would give me another gyara check. Explosion for Bliss and Snorlax. EVs Maximizing Special Attack is an absolute necessity to achieve the aforementioned OHKOs, while maxing the speed allows me to speed ties with opposing Scarftran, and outspeeding all +speed base 76s with Choice Scarf, and all neutral base 80 Choice Scarfers. Naive is the superior option because I wanted to be able to switch into Scizor's Bullet Punches better, and I didn’t want te make my explosion weaker. Pesadilla | Rotom-w @ Leftovers Ability: Levitate EVs: 64 HP/212 Spd/232 SAtk Timid nature (+Spd, -Atk) - Substitute - Shadow Ball - Thunderbolt - Hydro Pump Set analysis The MVP of the team, and the responsible of a lot of wins. Rotom is my Sub + TS abuser, and my spin blocker. I usually can set up a Sub vs a bulky water or a choiced ground move, and start its reign of terror. Substitute block status, and it allows me to hit hard to anything my opponent sends. Thunderbolt is its main attack, and it lets me beating bulky waters, and it provides great coverage with Shadow Ball. Hydro Pump let me beat bulky grounds like Gliscor and Hippowdon, and it also let me beat Tyranitar. It also destroys Steelix, and 2HKOes Magnezone (both of them resist my 2 stabs). Hydro Pump also let me revenge kill Mamoswine and non scarf Heatran. If I have 2 layers of TS, Rotom will always beat non Aromatherapy Bliss. It aso works really well with Heatran, since people will try to kill Rotom with Dark or Ghost attacks, which usually mean free switch for Heatran. Heatran attracts a lot of Fighting and Ground attacks, which usually mean free Sub for Rotom. EVs The HP EVs mean that bliss will never break my Sub with Flamethrower or IB, while the speed EVs let me outspeed Jolly Mamoswine, and most Subrotoms, which is always nice. The rest goes to sp atk. Lodoso | Swampert (M) @ Leftovers Ability: Torrent EVs: 252 HP/4 Atk/252 Def Relaxed nature (+Def, -Spd) - Stealth Rock - Ice Beam - Earthquake - Roar Set analysis After having the other 5 members of the team, I noticed some problems in the team. The most important one was the lack of SR, which is very important in any team, and especially in a team that is trying to abuse TS. The team also had lots of trouble with Heatran (specially Scarf), and with Tyranitar (despite of the TS, a DDtar was very annoying, especially if its item was Lum Berry), so I thought, what poke can set up SR, and can take most Heatran hits well and at the same time be able to check Tyranitar (especially the DD version)? The answer seems easy: Swampert is the perfect pokemon or this spot. Swampert not only does that quite well, it can also take electric attacks like nothing (which gives the rest of the team a lot of trouble, especially if used with Shadow Ball), and it can wall a big number of pokes. EQ is my main attack, and it is used to take down things like Metagross and Tyranitar, while IB kills dragons. Roar helps me wearing down my opponent team and is a great way to scout his team and to expand the TS. EVs Standard EVs, just to take physical hits as well as possible.