TURNABOUT LITTLE CUP INTRODUCTION I would introduce myself, but being the egotistical peacock I am, I presume you already know of me and my greatness. I recently got back into Little Cup after obsessing over Ubers a bit. I tend to flip-flop between the two, occasionally dabbling in Neverused. I haven't really played extensively since the Gligar ban, so I needed a new team. This team is the result. I am quite proud of it to be honest. Usually my teams are a mishmash of my favorite Pokemon, but with this one I actually focused a lot on team synergy when building it. In battle, it holds its own very well, but I have trouble testing it because I am generally a poor battler and seem to be a misfortune magnet when I am doing well. The reason I'm posting it is threefold: one, I would like imput on possible ways I could improve my team, two, I want to wave my e-peen around, and three, I liking making RMTs because they're fun to write. So, without further ado, here we go. TEAM BUILDING I started with Choice Scarf Taillow. I honestly can't tell you why I decided to start from there, but it seemed to work out in the long run, so I have no complaints here. I added these two at the same time because they make quite an offensive duo. Choice Band Aron and Choice Specs Misdreavus can capitalize on their synergy together to force switches and hit their counters with extremely powerful attacks. Their main problem is Scraggy, who Taillow handles quite nicely. I remember talking about Fake Out Scraggy in #littlecup with prem, so I decided to add it to my team. It was originally a bulky Dragon Dance set, but it didn't seem to be effective and the utility of Fake Out was difficult to resist. Also, it wouldn't be a Little Cup team without the omnipresent Scraggy. Misdreavus was my only switch-in against Fighting-type attacks, and when you have two Pokemon weak to Fighting-type, one isn't enough in Little Cup. Enter Oddish, who not only resists Fighting but also resists Electric, covering one of Taillow's more glaring weaknesses. Oddish was running Sleep Powder/Stun Spore/Sludge Bomb/Giga Drain, but he ended up being replaced for reasons I'll explain later. With Oddish being added to my team, I felt way too vulnerable to Fire-type attacks. I wanted something that could resist them while still patching up some of my teams other weaknesses, notably Flying and Ice. I decided that Choice Band Aron, whilst powerful, probably wasn't going to cut it. He just doesn't have the survivability without Eviolite to keep switching in. I replaced him with Defensive Tirtouga. This was probably the best thing I did during the entire course of teambuilding. Tirtouga has proved to be invaluable to this team's success. With Tirtouga added to my team, I noticed a few glaring weaknesses. First, I seemed more vulnerable to Electric-type attacks. Second, hazards are Tirtouga's worst nightmare due to his lack of healing. Finally, my team could really use Stealth Rock to wear down Pokemon like Snover and Murkrow, who otherwise give me trouble. So, I needed a Electric-resisting Rapid Spinner with access to Stealth Rock. That left me with Sandshrew and Baltoy. I didn't like Baltoy's Bug-type weakness, so I went with Sandshrew. And I don't regret it for a second. Oddish was good, but he just didn't seem to have enough "umph". When I needed heavy damage, he just didn't seem to be packing. Bulbasaur, while having lower Special Attack, has access to Leaf Storm, which was just the power I needed. So Oddish got replaced, Bulbasaur became permanent, and there we have it: Team Turnabout Little Cup. I took some suggestions and changed Misdreavus to Choice Scarf and Taillow to Status Orb abuse. They are now much better, to be honest. THE TEAM The Ranking System: In order to show how useful I think each Pokemon is, I developed a ranking system. It ranks each Pokemon on a scale of one to five on the utility it provides, the damage it does, how well it handles top threats and its overall survivability. If a Pokemon has scored higher than a four, I see no need to replace it. If it scored a four or lower, I am open to suggestions. Every time I replace a Pokemon, I'll reevaluate each Pokemon. This system helps me organize what I need to improve and what I don't. Edgeworth (Sandshrew) @ Eviolite Trait: Sand Veil EVs: 196 HP / 76 Def / 196 SDef / 40 Spd Careful Nature ~ Stealth Rock ~ Rapid Spin ~ Toxic ~ Earthquake Edgeworth is kind of funny. Whether he ends up being the most crucial member of the team or sacrificed as deathfodder depending entirely the opponents team. As I said, my team really needed to Rapid Spinner for Tirtouga (and to a lesser extent, Taillow), and Sandshrew fit the bill perfectly. While his performance is sometimes poor, he would be very difficult to replace. Stealth Rock and Rapid Spin are there for the reasons given. Toxic gives Sandshrew a chance at whittling down defensive Pokemon and something to punish Misdreavus with on the switch. Earthquake is there merely for STAB, I don't use it too much. Basically, if Edgeworth manages to get up Stealth Rock and spin the opponent's hazards away, he has done his job. Anything else is simply bonus. Utility: 5/5 - Edgeworth's ability to set up Stealth Rock, remove hazards and switch into Electric-type moves is very important to my team. Damage: 2/5 - Earthquake isn't exactly powerful, leaving Toxic as Edgeworth's only form of inflicting damage. Threats: 4/5 - Sandshrew can Toxic most of them, which counts as something. I can't really score this too low because Sandshrew is here for Rapid Spin and Stealth Rock, not to take on super-threatening Pokemon. Edgeworth can handle his own well enough for what he's meant to do. Survivability: 3/5 - Lack of a form of healing and average Special Defense hurts Edgeworth here. His resistance to Stealth Rock and high Defense keep him from dropping to a two, though. Overall: 3.5/5 - Edgeworth, while extremely important to the team, doesn't always perform up to snuff. I can't think of anything better to replace him with, but if anyone else has a good idea, I'll take it. Gumshoe (Tirtouga) @ Eviolite Trait: Solid Rock EVs: 244 HP / 212 Atk / 12 Def / 20 Spd Adamant Nature ~ Aqua Jet ~ Stone Edge ~ Earthquake ~ Knock Off The star of my team, Gumshoe is the most critical member to my success. His ability to take hits while dishing them out makes him incredibly good. He is part of the reason why Pokemon like Drilbur and Murkrow don't completely clean my clock. Aqua Jet is the most important move in his moveset. It picks off weakened Pokemon fantastically and helps intimidate Drilbur. Stone Edge is there as a powerful STAB option. Earthquake hits Chinchou on the switch for huge damage, which is always helpful. Knock Off is there solely for the utility it provides. It has helped me in a number of battles. It should be noted that I'm running max Attack. With 18 Attack, Gumshoe is doing a hefty chunk of damage even without any form of boosting. Seriously, this guy is amazing. If you haven't tried it out, give it a shot. Utility: 5/5 - The ability to switch into a number of Pokemon that otherwise threaten my team, i.e. Ponyta and Murkrow, Knock Off and Aqua Jet makes this guy crucial to my teams success. He is literally the pillar that helps keep my team's synergy intact. Damage: 5/5 - He's not Choice Band Aron, but Gumshoe does enough damage with 18 Attack to earn him a perfect score in this department. His high-power moves Stone Edge and Earthquake help his case even more. Threats: 4.5/5 - He gets half a point off for being unable to effectively take on Fighting-types, but otherwise Gumshoe does pretty well against most top Pokemon. Grass-types, of course, should be avoided. Survivability: 4/5 - Despite his amazing physical bulk, his only above average Special Defense and lack of recovery loses him points. Solid Rock does prevent him from dropping down to a three, though. Overall: 5/5 - Okay, technically 4.625 out of 5, but I rounded up. This guy is crucial to my current teams success. He has saved me enough to make him irreplaceable. Possibly my new favorite Pokemon to use in the tier. Franziska (Bulbasaur) @ Eviolite Trait: Overgrow EVs: 236 HP / 236 SDef Calm Nature ~ Giga Drain ~ Sleep Powder ~ Sludge Bomb ~ Leaf Storm Franziska is here for her resistances, not the damage she does. Not that she does poor damage. Leaf Storm puts a significant dent in anything that doesn't resist it. Giga Drain gives her access to healing, which gives her much more bulk than meets the eye. Sleep Powder is... well, Sleep Powder. Has putting the foe to sleep ever been something to pass up? Sludge Bomb hits Grass-types and is a little more reliable than her other two moves. She is meant to be a special tank, much like how Gumshoe is a physical one. Also, you have no idea how badly I wanted to fit Vine Whip into her moveset. Utility: 4.5/5 - Her resistances are very important and access to Sleep Powder gives her some disruptive potential. She also absorbs Toxic Spikes and is immune to Leech Seed, which is cool. Damage: 3.5/5 - Leaf Storm saves her here. Sludge Bomb and Giga Drain aren't very strong unless they are super-effective, but Leaf Storm hits very hard. The Special Attack drop has proven to be annoying at times, though. Threats: 3.5/5 - She does... alright. There are a lot of Pokemon she can't hit, but she does handle a few Pokemon like Mienfoo surprising well. I gave her an extra half-point for Sleep Powder, since it does alleviate this somewhat. Survivability: 4/5 - Giga Drain is really helpful, in addition to her amazing Special Defense. Her Defense isn't too hot, but she somehow seems to get by, likely because of Giga Drain. Her resistance to common attacks, like Scald and Drain Punch, helps her here. Overall: 4/5 - Again, I rounded up. She fills her niche quite nicely, but I wouldn't mind a better option if one exists. She also pairs very nicely with Tirtouga, if I haven't mentioned that already. Godot (Scraggy) @ Eviolite Trait: Shed Skin EVs: 116 HP / 196 Def / 196 SDef Adamant Nature ~ Fake Out ~ Payback ~ Drain Punch ~ Rest Ah, the fragrance of dark coffee. Godot, as a Scraggy, shouldn't be surprising. Scraggy is arguably the best Pokemon in the tier. His moveset, however, should be. There is a surprising lack of Dragon Dance. Godot isn't meant to sweep: he is meant to take hits and stall out opponents with healing, all while whittling them down with Payback and Drain Punch. Fake Out is a very useful move for scouting and finishing off weakened Pokemon. ShedRest is a common strategy in Little Cup (like that stupid Dratini set I can't seem to ever beat), and its no surprise it made it onto such a defensive Scraggy. Godot brings an element of surprise to my team, as many people don't expect him. His ability to take on Misdreavus is also critical. Utility: 5/5 - He can take on Ghost- and Psychic-types, which no one else on my team really can. This is so crucial to my team's success that its not even funny, considering that Abra is possibly the scariest Pokemon for my team to face. Damage: 4/5 - His Adamant nature helps patch up missing out on EVs. Drain Punch isn't too strong, but Payback is quite powerful. His coverage allows him to hit a wide variety of Pokemon, boosting his score. Threats: 3/5 - Everyone prepares so much for Scraggy that Godot suffers in this department. His incredible defenses to give some of Scraggy's normal checks considerable pause though, so that keeps him from getting a two in this department. Survivability: 5/5 - Great defenses, Rest and Drain Punch make him very sturdy. When I need someone to take repeated hits, Godot is my mon. Overall: 4.5/5 - I had to round up again. Scraggy is a good Pokemon in general, and Godot is no exception. I might give Dragon Dance another go in the future. Maya Fey (Misdreavus) @ Choice Scarf Trait: Levitate EVs: 240 SAtk / 240 Spd Timid Nature ~ Shadow Ball ~ Hidden Power Fighting ~ Nasty Plot ~ Trick Formerly Choice Specs Still lingering from my MissyAron core, albeit now with Choice Scarf as the awesome Furai suuggested, Maya is the team main revenge killer. This alone makes her pretty important, as she is capable of taking out otherwise difficult Pokemon, like Shellder. Shadow Ball and Hidden Power Fighting should come as no surprise. Nasty Plot and Trick might though. Choice Scarf Misdreavus is a great disrupter. Trick allows her to debilitate defensive Pokemon and physical attackers. Without Choice Scarf, she can freely set up Nasty Plot. I wish there was more to explain, but there really isn't. Trick adds some unpredictability, but otherwise she's a lot like other Misdreavus. Utility: 5/5 - Immunity to Fighting-type attacks, immunity to Ground-type attacks, high Speed... I shouldn't need to explain how useful Misdreavus is. Trick is also fun to toy with. She is also crucial as a revenge killer. Damage: 4/5 - Even without Choice Specs, Maya still hits hard. Shadow Ball leaves a respectable dent, and a Nasty Plot boosted one even more so. She also gets perfect coverage. Threats: 4/5 - Again, like Scraggy, a lot of people overprepare for Misdreavus. Not as many people prepare for Choice Scarf, which somewhat helps, but people are just so prepared for Misdreavus its hard to award her a four. She does, however, now take out some notable Shell Smashers, which is extremely helpful. Survivability: 3/5 - Without Eviolite, Misdreavus is surprisingly fragile. She can take a few hits, but strong STAB moves and super-effective attacks really hurt. She scores average here because her immunities do help with her survivability. Overall: 4/5 - Same score, but infinitely better. Maybe this scoring system wasn't the best idea, but it did help me organize my thoughts. She is now critical to my team's success. Phoenix W. (Taillow) @ Flame Orb Trait: Guts EVs: 36 HP / 236 Atk / 236 Spd Jolly Nature ~ Brave Bird ~ Facade ~ U-turn ~ Roost Formerly Choice Scaf My new heavy hitter, thanks to spuds. Most Orb Taillow run Quick Attack, but I decided to run Roost. It gives me an edge over Pokemon like Bronzor. Brave Bird and Facade are Phoenix's powerful STAB options. U-turn is used for scouting and revenge-killing. Unlike Choice Scarf Taillow, there isn't much to explain. His job is to hit things as hard as possible. However, he is now more dependent on Edgeworth's Rapid Spin because of switching in, taking SR damage and potential burn damage. Utility: 4/5 - He is my most powerful attacker. He punches holes in the opponents testimony team so that Maya can hopefully clean up. Also, he absorbs status, which is nice. Noticed that all of my Pokemon score high here? That's because they work well together! Damage: 5/5 - Guts boosted Brave Bird and Facade hurt. A lot. That is all. Threats: 4/5 - He's now not-so-anti-metagame. He still can take on a lot of common Pokemon, but to the extant that he used to be able to. That being said, the sheer power of his moves makes him difficult to switch in to and stand up against. Survivability: 3.5/5 - I'm actually adding half a point now since he can now use Roost to gain some recovery. Flame Orb is slowly going to whittle away at him, but Roost is always helpful, and he shouldn't need to switch so much. Overall: 4/5 - Still had to round down, oddly enough. Despite having the same overall score, he is now much better, so I guess this proves my ranking system does have its flaws at times. CONCLUSION Well, I hoped you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it. Please feel free to leave suggestions, and even more free to leave praise. My self-esteem needs it. Thank you, and, with that I leave you- <@prem> draco your team is weak to shell smash <@prem> ! ... CRAP. Any tips? I might switch to Dragon Tail Scraggy.