Resource VGC '17 Complementary Pairs

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#26
One pair that I've been focusing my team building on lately is Muk + Tapu Bulu. Muk threatens all of the Tapus and has Knock Off to disrupt P2 and Celesteela while Bulu's grassy terrain coupled with 252 HP investment in Muk makes Garchomp's EQ a 3HKO. Bulu threatens most ground types that Muk doesn't appreciate such as Krookodile and Mudsdale.

The fun thing here is that Muk has multiple move sets that can be tried out here. Knock Off, Poison Jab, and Protect are obvious. Fourth move options include Shadow Sneak, Curse, or Minimize.
 
#27
A core that I've been working on a lot recently is one that not many people know about. However, it's probably one of the best cores in the format. It counters almost everything your opponent can throw at you. (As long as you set up Trick Room)



Stark (Gigalith) @ Rockium Z
Ability: Sand Stream
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 188 Atk / 68 Def
Brave Nature
- Protect
- Stone Edge
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide / Wide Guard

Marowak-Alola @ Thick Club
Ability: Lightning Rod
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 188 Atk / 68 SpD
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Protect
- Shadow Bone
- Flare Blitz
- Swords Dance

Although the two are very slow, with help from Trick Room, these two can win the game in the four turns you have to use it. Gigalith's spread makes it so Adamant Tapu Bulu has a 6.5% chance to OHKO it with a Horn Leech in Grassy Terrain. The Attack lets it OHKO 252 HP / 4 Def Marowak with Stone Edge 100% of the time. With the 1.5x Sp. Def boost and the already high defenses, Gigalith becomes a complete tank. Gigalith, being the second slowest weather setter (to Torkoal), is the perfect counter to any weather (barring Sun). It has no problem taking care of Ninetales or Pelipper. It effectively OHKOs 252 HP Gyarados with Continental Crush from Stone Edge at -1. This protects Marowak so it can hit a partner or even set up a Swords Dance.

However, Gigalith has a fair share of weaknesses. These include Celesteela, Tapu Bulu, Magnezone, Tapu Lele, Araquanid, etc. Marowak, however, has a great matchup with Steel and Grass types. Marowak's spread allows it to survive Modest LO Tapu Lele's Psychic in a terrain that isn't Psychic Terrain. Marowak can easily clean up any Steel Pokemon with a Flare Blitz. It also redirects Electric attacks, in case your opponent is trying to chunk Gigalith with a Thunderbolt. It also one shots Lele which allows Gigalith to sweep through unprepared teams more soundly.

Although they do share two weaknesses (Water and Ground), this is compensated by a couple teammates. Good partners include Tapu Bulu, Celesteela, Oranguru, P2, Gyarados, Tapu Koko, Magnezone, among others. If you have any questions or suggestions, please tag me or PM me if you would like. Thanks! :)
 
#28
A core that I've been working on a lot recently is one that not many people know about. However, it's probably one of the best cores in the format. It counters almost everything your opponent can throw at you. (As long as you set up Trick Room)



Stark (Gigalith) @ Rockium Z
Ability: Sand Stream
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 188 Atk / 68 Def
Brave Nature
- Protect
- Stone Edge
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide / Wide Guard

Marowak-Alola @ Thick Club
Ability: Lightning Rod
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 188 Atk / 68 SpD
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Protect
- Shadow Bone
- Flare Blitz
- Swords Dance

Although the two are very slow, with help from Trick Room, these two can win the game in the four turns you have to use it. Gigalith's spread makes it so Adamant Tapu Bulu has a 6.5% chance to OHKO it with a Horn Leech in Grassy Terrain. The Attack lets it OHKO 252 HP / 4 Def Marowak with Stone Edge 100% of the time. With the 1.5x Sp. Def boost and the already high defenses, Gigalith becomes a complete tank. Gigalith, being the second slowest weather setter (to Torkoal), is the perfect counter to any weather (barring Sun). It has no problem taking care of Ninetales or Pelipper. It effectively OHKOs 252 HP Gyarados with Continental Crush from Stone Edge at -1. This protects Marowak so it can hit a partner or even set up a Swords Dance.

However, Gigalith has a fair share of weaknesses. These include Celesteela, Tapu Bulu, Magnezone, Tapu Lele, Araquanid, etc. Marowak, however, has a great matchup with Steel and Grass types. Marowak's spread allows it to survive Modest LO Tapu Lele's Psychic in a terrain that isn't Psychic Terrain. Marowak can easily clean up any Steel Pokemon with a Flare Blitz. It also redirects Electric attacks, in case your opponent is trying to chunk Gigalith with a Thunderbolt. It also one shots Lele which allows Gigalith to sweep through unprepared teams more soundly.

Although they do share two weaknesses (Water and Ground), this is compensated by a couple teammates. Good partners include Tapu Bulu, Celesteela, Oranguru, P2, Gyarados, Tapu Koko, Magnezone, among others. If you have any questions or suggestions, please tag me or PM me if you would like. Thanks! :)
Nice. I just saw you on showdown talking bout this.
 
#29
I'm wondering if perhaps Mimikyu and Drampa have synergy as a core? Considering Mimikyu guarantees a trick room set and Drampa murders everything
 
#30
Bulu is quite good with gigalith, as the latter counters bulu's fire and ice weakness, while bulu counters water and ground that threatens gigalith. Add in a water type like milotic/gastrodon, and its quite efficient. One can even run Nihilego, and run TR for surprise attacks. Should definitely try it out.
 
#31
A pretty good combo I found is weakness policy gigalith and bulldoze special based arcanine. Works exactly as you think, bulldoze gives speed control which the rest of the team can capitalize on, and arcanine beats bulu which is a pain for gigalith, while it spams +2 rock slide. However, they are shut down by Milotic and gyarados, which is why I like to pair it with gastrodon.
 
#32
A core that I've been working on a lot recently is one that not many people know about. However, it's probably one of the best cores in the format. It counters almost everything your opponent can throw at you. (As long as you set up Trick Room)



Stark (Gigalith) @ Rockium Z
Ability: Sand Stream
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 188 Atk / 68 Def
Brave Nature
- Protect
- Stone Edge
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide / Wide Guard

Marowak-Alola @ Thick Club
Ability: Lightning Rod
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 188 Atk / 68 SpD
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Protect
- Shadow Bone
- Flare Blitz
- Swords Dance

Although the two are very slow, with help from Trick Room, these two can win the game in the four turns you have to use it. Gigalith's spread makes it so Adamant Tapu Bulu has a 6.5% chance to OHKO it with a Horn Leech in Grassy Terrain. The Attack lets it OHKO 252 HP / 4 Def Marowak with Stone Edge 100% of the time. With the 1.5x Sp. Def boost and the already high defenses, Gigalith becomes a complete tank. Gigalith, being the second slowest weather setter (to Torkoal), is the perfect counter to any weather (barring Sun). It has no problem taking care of Ninetales or Pelipper. It effectively OHKOs 252 HP Gyarados with Continental Crush from Stone Edge at -1. This protects Marowak so it can hit a partner or even set up a Swords Dance.

However, Gigalith has a fair share of weaknesses. These include Celesteela, Tapu Bulu, Magnezone, Tapu Lele, Araquanid, etc. Marowak, however, has a great matchup with Steel and Grass types. Marowak's spread allows it to survive Modest LO Tapu Lele's Psychic in a terrain that isn't Psychic Terrain. Marowak can easily clean up any Steel Pokemon with a Flare Blitz. It also redirects Electric attacks, in case your opponent is trying to chunk Gigalith with a Thunderbolt. It also one shots Lele which allows Gigalith to sweep through unprepared teams more soundly.

Although they do share two weaknesses (Water and Ground), this is compensated by a couple teammates. Good partners include Tapu Bulu, Celesteela, Oranguru, P2, Gyarados, Tapu Koko, Magnezone, among others. If you have any questions or suggestions, please tag me or PM me if you would like. Thanks! :)
If you don't mind me asking what's the 68SpD EVs for on Marowak?
 
#34
A core that I've been working on a lot recently is one that not many people know about. However, it's probably one of the best cores in the format. It counters almost everything your opponent can throw at you. (As long as you set up Trick Room)



Stark (Gigalith) @ Rockium Z
Ability: Sand Stream
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 188 Atk / 68 Def
Brave Nature
- Protect
- Stone Edge
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide / Wide Guard

Marowak-Alola @ Thick Club
Ability: Lightning Rod
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 188 Atk / 68 SpD
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Protect
- Shadow Bone
- Flare Blitz
- Swords Dance

Although the two are very slow, with help from Trick Room, these two can win the game in the four turns you have to use it. Gigalith's spread makes it so Adamant Tapu Bulu has a 6.5% chance to OHKO it with a Horn Leech in Grassy Terrain. The Attack lets it OHKO 252 HP / 4 Def Marowak with Stone Edge 100% of the time. With the 1.5x Sp. Def boost and the already high defenses, Gigalith becomes a complete tank. Gigalith, being the second slowest weather setter (to Torkoal), is the perfect counter to any weather (barring Sun). It has no problem taking care of Ninetales or Pelipper. It effectively OHKOs 252 HP Gyarados with Continental Crush from Stone Edge at -1. This protects Marowak so it can hit a partner or even set up a Swords Dance.

However, Gigalith has a fair share of weaknesses. These include Celesteela, Tapu Bulu, Magnezone, Tapu Lele, Araquanid, etc. Marowak, however, has a great matchup with Steel and Grass types. Marowak's spread allows it to survive Modest LO Tapu Lele's Psychic in a terrain that isn't Psychic Terrain. Marowak can easily clean up any Steel Pokemon with a Flare Blitz. It also redirects Electric attacks, in case your opponent is trying to chunk Gigalith with a Thunderbolt. It also one shots Lele which allows Gigalith to sweep through unprepared teams more soundly.

Although they do share two weaknesses (Water and Ground), this is compensated by a couple teammates. Good partners include Tapu Bulu, Celesteela, Oranguru, P2, Gyarados, Tapu Koko, Magnezone, among others. If you have any questions or suggestions, please tag me or PM me if you would like. Thanks! :)
I've been testing this core for some time now. It is really good, but as you said, certain Pokemon stop them completely. However, I've come up with an idea that solves some problems this core has :

Vikavolt @ Wiki Berry
Ability: Levitate
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD
Quiet Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Discharge
- Thunderbolt
- Energy Ball
- Bug Buzz

This set probably needs some improvement, but I just wanted to throw this in there, for anyone interested in trying this out.
Main problem is that you need both Thunderbolt + Discharge. If not, you won't be able to use a electric type move when you are next to Marowak. This set probably needs Protect too, unless you'd like to use Assault Vest.
Here are some interesting calcs:
252+ SpA Vikavolt Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Tapu Fini: 150-176 (84.7 - 99.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

252+ SpA Vikavolt Energy Ball vs. 244 HP / 88 SpD Gastrodon: 260-308 (119.8 - 141.9%) -- guaranteed OHKO

252+ SpA Vikavolt Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Milotic: 152-180 (75.2 - 89.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery


Thanks to Discharge, you can get rid of Araquanid if Gigalith is not on the field (assuming you're under Trick Room):
252+ SpA Vikavolt Discharge vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Araquanid: 98-116 (56 - 66.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

116 Atk Thick Club Marowak-Alola Shadow Bone vs. 252 HP / 4 Def Araquanid: 99-117 (56.5 - 66.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO


Something similar happens against Tapu Fini:
252+ SpA Vikavolt Discharge vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Milotic: 102-120 (50.4 - 59.4%) -- 73.8% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

116+ Atk Thick Club Marowak-Alola Shadow Bone vs. 252 HP / 4 Def Tapu Fini: 90-106 (50.8 - 59.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO


Also if you don't have Ice beam on your Porygon2 or P2 isn't your TR setter, you can use HP Ice to get rid of Garchomp (which completely walls Gigalith + Marowak-A):

252+ SpA Vikavolt Hidden Power Ice vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Garchomp: 188-224 (102.1 - 121.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO


Hope this is helpful to someone! Feel free to try it out!
 
#35
My favorite initial pairing as I am transitioning to the VGC format - it puts a tremendous amount of pressure on opposing teams.


Pheromosa @ Life Orb
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- High Jump Kick
- Poison Jab
- Lunge / U-turn
- Protect

Pheromosa hits very hard from the physical side and immediately threatens an OHKO on a ton of the tier. Notable exceptions for the LO set include Celesteela, Marowak-A, Bulky Arcanine, Bulky Muk, Tapu Fini, Araquanid, and Metagross (Note: Adding a Choice Band doesn't gain you any relevant KOs so it isn't advisable as protect is very valuable on such a frail pokemon). The EVs allow you to survive two HJK misses/protects while max unboosted speed puts you just ahead of neutral Scarf Xurkitree and a bunch on + nature mons at 200 (Koko and Aerodactyl namely). The difference between 203 and 223 isn't tremendous in terms of what you outspeed so I wouldn't recommend it (scarf Lele is a notably example though). Max attack gives you a better than 50/50 chance to OHKO Offensive Muk and a guaranteed OHKO on Oranguru with Lunge or above 50% with U-turn. I'll edit in damage calcs if that is desired.

Tapu Lele @ Psychium Z
Ability: Psychic Surge
Level: 50
EVs: 28 Def / 228 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 31 SpA / 31 Spe (Bottlecap Spe/SpA to 31 or deal with 30s)
- Psychic
- Dazzling Gleam
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Protect

Tapu Lele provides the special component of this attacking group as well as preventing priority against Pheromosa. Psychium Z provides a nuke to get through Arcanine, Marowak-A, and Fini (with help from Pheromosa) who otherwise wall and kill Pheromosa - both are guaranteed OHKOs on any reasonable set for either pokemon provided your terrain is intact. The small amount of defense investment guarantees you survive a Flare Blitz from 252+ Arcanine, the speed investment allows you to speed tie with 252+ Arcanine while outspeeding several other neutral threats (Mismagius, Nihilego, Garchomp, Mimikyu), and the rest is dumped into SpA to hit as hard as possible. The set is designed to deal with all the things Pheromosa can't deal with alone - Psychic provides the Z-move but can also help deal with Araquanid, Dazzling Gleam picks up the KO on Muk while providing spread damage to break sashes, HP Fire picks off the remaining HP on standard Metagross and Celesteela after Pheromosa attacks.

Overall the core focuses on preventing trick room and eliminating threats to your team. By using/dodging protect carefully you can do a lot of damage very early to your opponents. The biggest threat to the core is max speed Mimikyu which can potentially use disguise to kill both of these pokemon (needs high roll to OHKO Pheromosa with Shadow Claw) and still set up trick room. I'm sure there are a ton of other threats as well but given that the purpose of this composition is to derail an opponents strategy I feel that Mimikyu deserved special mention considering it destroys this core.
 
#36
I notice that most Gyarados sets suggest an Adamant Nature as opposed to Jolly, why is that? I thought Jolly was essential when paired with DDance to outspeed a significant portion of the meta? (I ran Jolly on mine). Also, I love that Togedemaru partner suggestion, but isn't its longevity still gimped with those poor defenses? If Gyara gets KO'd, Togedemaru's pretty much screwed, no?
 
#37
I notice that most Gyarados sets suggest an Adamant Nature as opposed to Jolly, why is that? I thought Jolly was essential when paired with DDance to outspeed a significant portion of the meta? (I ran Jolly on mine). Also, I love that Togedemaru partner suggestion, but isn't its longevity still gimped with those poor defenses? If Gyara gets KO'd, Togedemaru's pretty much screwed, no?
I've been using Togedemaru, its typing make up for its lack of bulk. Combined with Sitrus Berry, it can take a few hit quite well.
 
#38
I notice that most Gyarados sets suggest an Adamant Nature as opposed to Jolly, why is that? I thought Jolly was essential when paired with DDance to outspeed a significant portion of the meta? (I ran Jolly on mine). Also, I love that Togedemaru partner suggestion, but isn't its longevity still gimped with those poor defenses? If Gyara gets KO'd, Togedemaru's pretty much screwed, no?
I agree with you on Jolly vs. Adamant in general to be honest. Adamant with a speed boost still gets outsped by max speed Koko by 1 point which sucks as well as several other threats. BUT, within the context of a Togedemaru pairing a lot of those threats that you no longer outspeed (Koko, Xurkitree) are minimized a bit (barring discharge) and there may be some important KOs picked up in the process.

Togedemaru's typing is great defensively and with a huge threat next to it and access to Spiky Shield it is a risk to attack it directly. It struggles more due to its lack of offensive pressure in my opinion
 
#39
I agree with you on Jolly vs. Adamant in general to be honest. Adamant with a speed boost still gets outsped by max speed Koko by 1 point which sucks as well as several other threats. BUT, within the context of a Togedemaru pairing a lot of those threats that you no longer outspeed (Koko, Xurkitree) are minimized a bit (barring discharge) and there may be some important KOs picked up in the process.

Togedemaru's typing is great defensively and with a huge threat next to it and access to Spiky Shield it is a risk to attack it directly. It struggles more due to its lack of offensive pressure in my opinion
Makes sense. So should I reroll a new Gyarados as Adamant and partner him up with a Togedemaru?
 
#40
Makes sense. So should I reroll a new Gyarados as Adamant and partner him up with a Togedemaru?
Probably a better question for a teambuilding thread to be honest - but in either case I would do a little playtesting on showdown. Just lead Gyara and Toge to see how it goes without actually playing full matches if you want to save time.
 
#41

Drifblim @ Psychic Seed
Ability: Unburden
EVs: 12 HP / 236 Def / 12 SpA / 236 SpD / 12 Spe
Timid Nature
- Shadow Ball
- Tailwind
- Will-O-Wisp
- Disable

Tapu Lele @ Life Orb
Ability: Psychic Surge
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Psychic
- Moonblast
- Taunt
- Protect

Tapu Lele sets up Psychic Terrain, which allows Drifblim to activate its Seed and get an Unburden boost on turn 1. The other Tapus could be used with their respective Seeds, but the Defense boost from Koko and Bulu wouldn't be as helpful and if you use Fini, you won't be able to Will-O-Wisp grounded opponents. Drifblim is pretty much guaranteed to be able to be able to set up Tailwind, as it's immune to Fake Out and outspeeds pretty much everything after the Unburden boost. Will-O-Wisp helps out Tapu Lele immensely, as it allows Lele to survive attacks such as STAB moves from Steel-types and Alolan Muk's Poison Jab. Disable (and Lele's Taunt) were taken from Justin Burns's St. Louis Regionals team. Taunt in particular is great against Trick Room teams.

Max SpAtk with Modest and a Life Orb on Tapu Lele lets it hit as hard as possible. Its Psychic has an 87.5% chance to OHKO max HP Mimikyu, so you can double up on Trick Room variants and prevent it from setting up, even if it has a Mental Herb. 12 Spe and a Timid Nature lets you outspeed Naive Pheromosa after an Unburden boost. The rest of the EVs were taken from the WIP Drifblim analysis. I don't know exactly what they're supposed to do, but the SpDef investment does allow you take a Modest Tapu Lele Shattered Psyche in Psychic Terrain.


It seems like not much can truly have an advantage over this combo. Kartana+Fini means you can't Burn the former, but Drifblim can 2HKO with Shadow Ball while only really being KO'd in Return by doubling up with Night Slash and Specs Hydro Pump. Ninetales can deal heavy damage to Drifblim (but can't 2HKO) while they target it down. Koko can also deal heavy damage to Drifblim, but can't OHKO while being outsped and potentially KO'd by the second turn of LO recoil while Drifblim Shadow Balls it.
 
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#42

Drifblim @ Psychic Seed
Ability: Unburden
EVs: 12 HP / 236 Def / 12 SpA / 236 SpD / 12 Spe
Timid Nature
- Shadow Ball
- Tailwind
- Will-O-Wisp
- Disable

Tapu Lele @ Life Orb
Ability: Psychic Surge
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Psychic
- Moonblast
- Taunt
- Protect

Tapu Lele sets up Psychic Terrain, which allows Drifblim to activate its Seed and get an Unburden boost on turn 1. The other Tapus could be used with their respective Seeds, but the Defense boost from Koko and Bulu wouldn't be as helpful and if you use Fini, you won't be able to Will-O-Wisp grounded opponents. Drifblim is pretty much guaranteed to be able to be able to set up Tailwind, as it's immune to Fake Out and outspeeds pretty much everything after the Unburden boost. Will-O-Wisp helps out Tapu Lele immensely, as it allows Lele to survive attacks such as STAB moves from Steel-types and Alolan Muk's Poison Jab. Disable (and Lele's Taunt) were taken from Justin Burns's St. Louis Regionals team. Taunt in particular is great against Trick Room teams.

Max SpAtk with Modest and a Life Orb on Tapu Lele lets it hit as hard as possible. Its Psychic has an 87.5% chance to OHKO max HP Mimikyu, so you can double up on Trick Room variants and prevent it from setting up, even if it has a Mental Herb. 12 Spe and a Timid Nature lets you outspeed Naive Pheromosa after an Unburden boost. The rest of the EVs were taken from the WIP Drifblim analysis. I don't know exactly what they're supposed to do, but the SpDef investment does allow you take a Modest Tapu Lele Shattered Psyche in Psychic Terrain.


It seems like not much can truly have an advantage over this combo. Kartana+Fini means you can't Burn the former, but Drifblim can 2HKO with Shadow Ball while only really being KO'd in Return by doubling up with Night Slash and Specs Hydro Pump. Ninetales can deal heavy damage to Drifblim (but can't 2HKO) while they target it down. Koko can also deal heavy damage to Drifblim, but can't OHKO while being outsped and potentially KO'd by the second turn of LO recoil while Drifblim Shadow Balls it.
What about alola muk? Kills both of them, recovers up with figy berry. Etc
 
#43
What about alola muk? Kills both of them, recovers up with figy berry. Etc
I've been playing around a lot with a Drifblim-Tapu Lele-Pheromosa core and Alolan-Muk is a threat to this particular core but with a bit more defense on Lele and Will-O-Wisp into the Muk it is mitigated to some degree (though not eliminated)

Opposing tailwind (especially Mandibuzz) and Trick Room (especially Mimikyu) do well against this in my opinion.
 
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