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VGC'11 Tailwind team (peaked #16 on simulator play, came top 8 in Birmingham VGC)

Discussion in 'BW Other Teams' started by callforjudgement, Jun 4, 2011.

  1. callforjudgement


    Jul 8, 2009

    I've just come back from the Birmingham VGC, in which I won an invite to Worlds. As I'm not planning on attending, I thought that people might want to see the team that made it. As always, this is a rate-my-team, and there are some things that can quite possibly be improved, as well as some obvious changes (like flawless IVs on the Pokémon I didn't breed flawess); I'm interested in any suggestions people might have, to see if this team can be made even better. I tried to design the team to take the best advantage of the unusual VGC ruleset (especially the use of 4-from-6 with Team Preview; there's so much more it can be used for than just including a couple of counters to strategies your main 4 can't deal with).

    A reminder of VGC'11 rules for people who don't know: item clause, species clause, self-KO clause, event clause, team preview, doubles, flat battle, pick 4 from 6 (after seeing the team preview), all Pokémon not introduced in 5th gen are banned, along with Reshiram/Zekrom/Kyurem/(event Pokémon).

    As this is a "wifi" team (actually infrared), I've given actual EVs and IVs, including non-flawless ones and the spare EVs that make no difference. The team was deliberately placed into the battle box in a confusing order for the actual VGC to reduce the chance of the opponent picking the correct leads in the actual VGC, but I'll present the Pokémon in a more logical order here.

    The Team


    As always with team preview, there's no such thing as a true lead, as you can lead with any pair of Pokémon. However, Whimsicott is always one of my leads, always always; I tried other combinations on simulators, and the team falls apart without it. You could well say that the team was built around it.

    Whimsicott @ Focus Sash
    Prankster, Modest
    EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 6 SpD
    IVs: 18 Atk (irrelevant, but I didn't bother breeding the sixth stat flawless)
    - Tailwind
    - Encore
    - Giga Drain
    - Protect

    The most obvious use of this lead is as my Tailwind setup. It can often manage to set it up twice a battle, but once is often enough; this team is designed to function passably well outside of Tailwind, making it a sort of semi-Tailwind team that Tailwind sweeps to weaken the opponent's team then cleans up the rest. I will generally go for Tailwind immediately if the opponent has nothing to stop it or exploit it (Fake Out / Taunt / Encore / Trick Room / Tailwind of their own); obviously, given all the things that can break Tailwind setup, that doesn't happen against many competent teams, and I often use one of the other moves instead.

    When it isn't setting up Tailwind (or when that's already up), Whimsicott does very well with its priority Encore. This has three very important uses. The first is as a general counter to all sorts of setup-based strategies and general shenanigans, in case I come up against a gimmick team; generally, you can Encore a setup move to defeat the enemy strategy. (This is also enough to beat the Terrakion/Whimsicott combo by itself if it tries to set up Tailwind rather than going straight for the combo first turn, by Encoring either enemy turn 2 after Tailwinding turn 1; one of many methods this team has to beat the otherwise deadly combo, and the one I most often use as it doesn't require compromising my lead strategy.) The second use is as a general deterrent to Protect use; Protect is one of the best moves in doubles, and if my opponent daren't use it, I have a relatively major advantage right there (which is more significant than it might seem). This leads into the third use, which happens if the opponent does Protect despite the risks, or use pretty much any move that my Pokémon (possibly after switching) don't fear; it lets me effectively cripple a Pokémon by encoring it into a setup or defensive move, or resisted attack, and then focus my efforts on killing the other one. (This is especially good if Whimsicott comes out alongside Amoonguss, which I might switch to against a bulky team, or send out as a revenge mushroom.) Effectively having two Pokémon against the opponent's one is a huge advantage, and even if the opponent switches to break the lock, I still have an advantage as a result.

    The third move is Giga Drain, unusually (for Whimsicott) backed by a maxed-out Special Attack. This move does huge damage on many Pokémon that it's super-effective on (although rarely an OHKO, except on typical Krookodile), while often restoring my Sash if it was broken by a low-damage or resisted move like Fake Out or Earthquake; it's my simplest option against Jellicent and Krookodile, and often a major factor in defeating enemy Terrakion too (which otherwise can trouble my team). Its other important use is as a Sash-breaker and pseudo-Helping Hand, to get in damage on a Pokémon that would otherwise survive its partner's attack; even a neutral or resisted Giga Drain can bring many Pokémon that would otherwise survive into OHKO range for Hydreigon or Darmanitan, or more rarely one of my other team members. (This is particularly useful if the other enemy Pokémon is stuck repeating Protects or something like that, due to Encore.) It also helps me win in Whimsicott vs. Whimsicott stall matches, as the high SpA means I deal more damage and recover more damage, giving a major advantage over time. Finally, it gives Whimsicott something to do if none of its other moves would be useful and nothing could switch in safely, although I hate sacrificing Pokémon like that.

    The final move is Protect, by far the most common move in Doubles. I had Helping Hand in this slot for ages before I realised it was mostly redundant to a boosted Giga Drain; Whimsicott mostly doesn't need Protect, but there are a few cases where it's very useful (and it won me a match I could otherwise easily have lost in the UK VGC Nationals, so I'm glad I made the change). The most important is to block Fake Out + a supereffective target or spread attack from OHKOing Whimsicott through the Sash and forever denying me a Tailwind setup, something that makes the match much harder to win, by double-Protecting on turn 1 (and in fact turning it into an advantage, because I can Encore the Fake Out the next turn while the other Pokémon fails to KO through the Sash). It also has some minor use in stalling out field effects like Trick Room (if the opponent manages to get it up) or an enemy Tailwind.

    Unlike most Whimsicott, this doesn't run max speed. Trying to outsmart enemy Whimsicott on turn 1 with a move like Taunt or Encore is typically very difficult, as if you guess which way the speed tie will go incorrectly your move does nothing. However, if you already know you'll lose a speed tie, you can just Encore the other Whimsicott. This does leave me weaker to genies who guess that they outspeed me with Prankster and Taunt me, but enemies typically don't guess that (unless they remember the speed tiers wrong). It also leaves me in trouble against Whimsicott who Taunt me in the hope that they'll win the "speed tie". As for the rest of the EVs, I put them in HP to generally improve defensive capability, although I'm considering putting them in Spe instead (while still deliberately losing speed ties with Whimsicott) to outspeed genies rather than relying on mind games, or in SpD instead in order to give an even bigger advantage in the Whimsicott last Pokémon mirror match.

    The item is a Focus Sash, because pretty much nothing else you can do with the item or EVs can keep Whimsicott alive through Heat Waves and Acrobatics and Ice Beams and Flamethrowers and other such super-effective moves; Whimsicott is at its most useful when it's set up Tailwind and is still alive turn 2 (thus the importance of Protect to save the Sash from Fake Out). It can also trigger surprisingly late in a match rather than turn 1, due to enemies tending to not focus on Whimsicott until later, and Giga Drain's ability to restore the Sash from minor damage.

    Fast Sweepers

    I can't rely on Tailwind to always be up (or the opponent to not cancel it out with their own), so I have some Pokémon that are capable in their own right outside Tailwind, before it's set up or after it's petered out. These are also common choices for my second lead (Hydreigon in particular), although it depends on what I see in Team Preview.

    Darmanitan @ Choice Scarf
    Sheer Force, Adamant
    EVs: 252 Atk / 252 Spe / 6 HP
    IVs: 16 SpA (random as it really doesn't matter)
    - Flare Blitz
    - Rock Slide
    - Earthquake
    - Superpower

    Standard Scarf Darmanitan (Superpower over Fire Punch seems standard nowadays despite the Smogon analysis). I really don't understand why this thing isn't used more than it is; it OHKOs half the metagame and 2HKOs most of the other half (Flare Blitz even 2HKOs most typical Jellicent builds, which is rather shocking for a Fire-type move against such a defensive Pokémon, although of course the Darmanitan would typically not get a chance to make the second hit), making it a great revenge sweeper and late-game clean-up Pokémon. I've also been known to use as a lead alongside Whimsicott, because it can OHKO genies; I haven't done that recently, though, because lack of Protect on a lead leaves the team really weak to Fake Out users, and things seem to go wrong with that even if I don't see one in the team preview. I'll normally bring this thing into the team unless three or more of the enemy Pokémon can withstand a Flare Blitz, and sometimes even then.

    Flare Blitz is the really important move here, the rest being mostly filler, but as I have four moveslots I may as well use them; the other three are generally for last Pokémon situations when I sent Darmanitan out against the remaining one or two members of the opposing teams, and know for sure what it'll be facing. (For instance, I definitely don't want to lock it into Flare Blitz against a Chandelure that might have Flash Fire, if I have no Pokémon to switch it with to reset the Choice lock.) Rock Slide and Earthquake are spread moves for when I need to KO both enemies (with Earthquake better against badly injured Pokémon, unless they're immune to it, due to the accuracy difference) hitting different weaknesses, although both are weaker when super-effective than a neutral Flare Blitz (due to STAB and Sheer Force). Superpower is a really niche move, allowing Darmanitan to beat Hydreigon (and Terrakion if it doesn't have Focus Sash, Chople Berry, or Choice Scarf, which is kind-of unlikely) in a 1v1 situation; however, it's not unknown for me to be down to last Pokémon Darmanitan against the enemy last Pokémon Hydreigon, and converting a loss to a win there is useful.

    The use of the Choice Scarf is reasonably obvious, allowing me to outspeed the majority of the metagame. (This is especially useful in Tailwind vs. Tailwind matchups, often allowing Darmanitan to sweep three members of the opposing team while Whimsicott shuts down a fourth via Encore locking, allowing it to take them on one at a time.) Adamant because it's easily fast enough, and the EV spread is the usual one for a physical sweeper.

    Hydreigon @ Life Orb
    Levitate, Modest
    EVs: 252 SpA / 252 Spe / 6 HP
    IVs: flawless (the flawless Atk EV was random, I wasn't aiming for it...)
    - Dark Pulse
    - Dragon Pulse
    - Flamethrower
    - Protect

    A pretty standard special sweeper; this is probably the Pokémon I most often use as my second lead. It's particularly useful against enemy Psychic- and Ghost-types (for what I hope are obvious reasons), often fainting an enemy Reuniclus or Musharna that was weakened by Whimsicott, and knocking Chandelure down to its near-inevitable Sash (or KOing it if it was damaged first); Dark Pulse is obviously the most important attack for this purpose. It's also the attack I most often use as a neutral attack on full-HP Pokémon, due to the flinch chance (with Dragon Pulse used for finishing).

    Dragon Pulse is the secondary STAB, and has great neutral coverage, allowing me to deal with pretty much anything that Dark Pulse doesn't deal with (as Steel is unusual in this metagame, confined to just a few rarely-seen Pokémon). During Tailwind, it also outspeeds and OHKOs most enemy Dragons; unfortunately, as Modest it isn't typically fast enough to do this outside. (I've considered changing the nature to Timid as a consequence, but it seems to miss out on important KOs when I do that.)

    Flamethrower completes flawless neutral coverage (possibly except for some obscure Unova Pokémon nobody ever uses and I hadn't considered at all), being this Hydreigon's best option against the unusual Bisharp and even more unusual Durant and Ferrothorn, and gets better damage when super-effective than the STAB moves (in particular, against Amoonguss). I don't use it all that often, but it's nice to have on occasion.

    Finally, Protect does what Protect always does in doubles, blocking predicted attacks, stalling out field effects, and generally being useful.

    The item is a Life Orb. I'm a little annoyed at having to use this, as there are a lot of items that would be useful instead (Focus Sash although I'd need to move it off Whimsicott, Haban Berry for beating faster Dragons, Lum Berry because it seems to get statused much more than the rest of my team for some reason), but in testing it turned out needed to get several important OHKOs and 2HKOs (which annoyingly, I can't even remember what they are any more, although they come up quite often...) The recoil isn't great, but Choice Specs would seem to have an even bigger drawback, and I doubt I could achieve a similar result with gems either (perhaps I should test Dark Gem).

    Tailwind Sweepers

    In any Tailwind team, rather than a team that just uses the move as occasionally useful filler, some Pokémon are needed to abuse the doubled speed. Here are the Tailwind sweepers in this team. All the remaining Pokémon hit 90 speed, enough to outspeed base 111s (genies) with a Tailwind boost; anything naturally faster, I didn't deem important to outspeed, and can deal with using Darmanitan if necessary (they're all very rarely used in VGC, except for the occasional Zebstrika, which doesn't do much to my team).

    Jellicent @ Sitrus Berry
    Cursed Body, Modest
    EVs: 252 SpA / 172 HP / 80 Spe / 6 Def (adapted to deal with suboptimal IVs)
    IVs: 7 Atk, 30 Spe, 30 SpD (suboptimal, and 31s would be better in Spe/SpD, allowing me to shift EVs around to put 1 more point in a stat of my choice)
    - Water Spout
    - Blizzard
    - Will-O-Wisp
    - Protect

    This is my third most common secondary lead, behind Darmanitan and Whimsicott. I use it as a lead if I can safely (i.e. without fear of interference by the opponent) do Tailwind/Protect the first turn, then sweep with Water Spout from then on.

    Water Spout is the core move of the set; only bulky and resisting Pokémon survive 150 Base Power + STAB from Jellicent's decent Special Attack stat. The advantage of KOing both enemy Pokémon before they can move (often with support from Jellicent's partner to weaken one or occasionally both into KO range) is that Jellicent takes no damage in the process, meaning that its Water Spouts stay at full power.

    Blizzard is relatively unreliable, but a miss tends not to matter much with this team once I'm using it, and is the move I typically use against enemies that resist Water or when Jellicent is too wounded for its Water Spouts to do significant damage. The random freeze chance saved me from being knocked out in the first round in the VGC too, although I can't recommend relying on it. Water/Ice is far from perfect coverage (notably missing out on enemy Jellicent, among VGC Pokémon), but it's been good for me; I didn't run Shadow Ball because it only really helps against other Jellicent, and Blizzard works better in general. (This Jellicent has an awful mirror matchup, though; having Whimsicott and often also Hydreigon on the team with it helps cover for that, though.)

    Will-O-Wisp looks like a bizarre choice, but it's there to cover a weakness in the team; it prevents Jellicent being defeated by Sucker Punch (typically from Bisharp or Druddigon), a move that otherwise completely stops its sweep. Random burns also help with breaking through defensive Pokémon like Amoonguss (if my better methods of defeating it are unavailable), let it beat other Jellicent if they don't know Shadow Ball either, and can be used to take the edge off physical attacks that would otherwise hurt other members of the team. (Scrafty is a great target for Will-O-Wisping.) It also has a niche use in burning my own team to protect them from Spore, although ironically every time I've done this (luckily only on simulator, I haven't had to try that in the actual VGC) it's missed...

    Finally for the moveset, Protect lets it survive while its partner sets up Tailwind in particular, and does everything that Protect normally does in general.

    Both available abilities are viable on Jellicent, but I found Cursed Body more generally useful; I typically lose to other Jellicent anyway so being able to switch in on its water attacks doesn't help much, and hardly anything else uses Water attacks in VGC anyway (with the exception of the occasional Hydreigon, or Rain team members). Meanwhile, Cursed Body occasionally gets me wins at random by locking out the opponent's only attack that can hurt one of my Pokémon, and allowing Choice items or Whimsicott to lock opponents into Struggle, forming the nicely deadly Encore+Disable combo (which I don't think worked in Gen IV, but seems to now).

    Sitrus Berry has two purposes; it's nice on a generally bulky Pokémon to add a bit of extra survivability, and also helps keep Water Spout useful even after taking damage. (It's typically superior to Leftovers in doubles matches, unless playing a heavy stall team, which are rare in this metagame and anyway mostly shut down by Whimsicott.)

    Conkeldurr @ Flame Orb
    Guts, Adamant
    EVs: 252 Atk / 196 Spe / 52 HP / 5 Def / 5 SpD
    IVs: flawless except SpA, I never actually checked how much SpA mine has
    - Mach Punch
    - Drain Punch
    - Stone Edge
    - Protect

    Probably the weakest link on my team, but still useful in a generally Fighting-weak metagame. I'd be willing to replace this if I could find something better, but I didn't before the VGC, so in my team it went. It can be very useful sometimes, finishing off weakened Pokémon and OHKOing others even without prior damage, but is sometimes just dead weight, and I'm really bad at working out whether to include it in my team or not based on team preview.

    Mach Punch is probably the most important move, giving me one of the most reliable ways possible in this metagame to finish arbitrary non-Ghost enemies on low HP. It's pretty powerful with a Guts boost, doing fun things like getting Archeops into Defeatist range before gets a chance to do anything. A huge number of my matches have ended with Mach Punch finishing the opponent's last Pokémon, although often other moves would have worked just as well and it's just there for the certainty that a priority move survives.

    Drain Punch is Conkeldurr's best generic attack for doing neutral damage to things that don't die to Mach Punch, and with a Tailwind boost will typically go first anyway. The healing helps somewhat in things like Conkeldurr vs. Conkeldurr mirror matches, and is probably the best side effect out of moves in Conkeldurr's movepool with approximately that amount of base power. It's also my best answer to Dark types like Hydreigon and Scrafty; Scrafty I can often outstall (and sometimes even set up Tailwind again when it's gone), but Hydreigon can give this team issues (especially if running a +speed nature, so it outspeeds mine).

    When I put Stone Edge on this moveset, I muttered to myself "I can't believe I'm doing this...", but it gives me a chance to win when Conkeldurr ends up in combat against Flying-types. Rock Slide unfortunately misses some very important KOs, like Tornadus and Thundurus when attacking two targets, and at least Stone Edge has an 80% rather than 0% chance of killing them before they can oneshot Conkeldurr. (The high crit chance also gives me a small chance of recovering from an otherwise lost game, which is useful although hardly reliable.)

    As the last move, the inevitable Protect allows me to activate Flame Orb in safety, allows Conkeldurr's partner to set up Tailwind, and does general Protecty goodness.

    The EV spread may look a bit bizarre; it's to get as much physical attack as possible, hit 90 Speed, and the rest of the EVs give as much mixed bulk as possible (abusing rounding errors in the EV calculation at level 50 to give marginally more bulk than putting it all in HP).

    Tailwind Staller

    OK, so this might seem like a really counterintuitive concept, but sometimes the best response to a team, especially a bulky team (which normally beats Tailwind), is to outstall it. And even stall can benefit from Tailwind to get a head start. My Amoonguss is built to help me beat bulky enemies, and brings a useful Fighting-type resistance to help protect the rest of the team.

    Amoonguss @ Lum Berry
    Effect Spore, Timid
    EVs: 252 Spe / 132 HP / 100 Def / 20 SpD / 6 SpA
    IVs: 18 Atk (irrelevant)
    - Spore
    - Rage Powder
    - Sludge Bomb
    - Protect

    Even though it's stated in the Smogon analysis, many people don't realise that Amoonguss can hit speed 90 when running maximum speed, outrunning genies in Tailwind. This lets it get in a fast Spore that can disable a wide range of enemies with 100% success rate, hopefully allowing Amoonguss and its partner to KO them before they wake up.

    Rage Powder, often the most important move on Amoonguss sets, is of secondary importance here. Instead of using an Amoonguss as a lead to defend a setup (often of Trick Room), this one works best in the third position, where Rage Powder can support a sweep, preventing a frail Pokémon like Darmanitan being targeted; even bulkier Pokémon benefit from having super-effective moves and the occasional Fake Out deflected away from them. When my Tailwind sweepers cannot outspeed their opponent because Tailwind has run out, they can sometimes continue their sweep with Amoonguss taking hits for them instead, and the extra couple of turns this gives is often enough to ensure victory.

    Sludge Bomb is perhaps an unusual choice over Giga Drain, but my testing showed that Amoonguss' "other STAB" is by far the better one, especially as I already have a Grass attack on my team, and Amoonguss / Whimsicott is my usual combination (switched to, not lead) when I decide to try stalling, say against a Scrafty or a team full of defensive Pokémon. Poison simply has much better neutral coverage than Grass, dealing neutral damage to dragons, genies and other Amoonguss, and it can even get in a super-effective hit on Whimsicott, a Pokémon that is otherwise difficult to deal with, and almost OHKO it (with a very small chance of an OHKO against uninvested defenses). The downside is an inability to hurt Steels, but they're hardly ever used in this metagame.

    For the last move, Protect does what Protect always does. I don't use it much except when refreshing Tailwind and stalling enemy field effects, but Amoonguss' movepool is relatively shallow and there's not really anything better to put there.

    The item is something I'm unsure about. Lum Berry is rather situational (its main purpose is beating other Amoonguss if their owner has set up Trick Room), but I couldn't think of another item that would work better (I tried Leftovers but it was even less useful than Lum, and considered Red Card as a surprise option but think it would quite possibly be worse than no item at all; after all, I have enough ways to shut down Terracott in this team as it is).

    The Strategy
    This team was very much designed for Team Preview. Many VGC teams are really 4-member teams with maybe some counters for specific team styles thrown in (like an Imprison Chandelure), and perhaps a Zoroark to keep the opponent paranoid. However, this team really uses all six members, and tries to create as many synergies as possible between them; apart from the ever-present Whimsicott, the other five are used about equally often (although the team is at its weakest with Conkeldurr involved). I make sure I include any member in my team if it would sweep the enemy team with appropriate support (such as Jellicent or Darmanitan); this doesn't happen often against well-built teams, but seeing a team with, say, a strong Darmanitan weakness can happen even in the later rounds of an actual VGC tournament. One big factor that makes me choose a particular lead combo is the presence of Fake Out users; this used to encourage me to lead with Darmanitan in order to KO the Fake Out user's partner before it could kill Whimsicott, but that strategy was far too prediction-prone (if Darmanitan was Faked Out, it was often game right there), and nowadays I lead with anyone but Darmanitan if that happens so I can start with a double-protect. Intimidate users make me want to avoid a physical attacker as the lead; I typically put Hydreigon there if the opponent has Fake Out users too, or Jellicent if I can get away with Tailwind/Protect without interference (which is rare, but devastating if it works; note that I can't double-protect then tailwind/protect as that requires a dangerously unreliable double-protect). Hydreigon is also a common second lead of mine against trick room teams, with the Whimsicott/Hydreigon combo blocking or crippling most Trick Room setups except for those involving Musharna (either by KOing the setup Pokémon before it can attack, or by Encoring Trick Room); Trick Room followed by switching can set it up semi-reliably against this team, but ends up with few turns of Trick Room left, especially after the effects of Protect are handled in.

    Apart from the lead, I generally choose my backbenchers by what sort of Pokémon they're good against. For instance, Amoonguss is good against Fighting-type and defensive Pokémon, Darmanitan is good against aggressive Pokémon, and Jellicent (with support) beats most Pokémon that aren't bulky and don't resist Water.

    Once actually in battle, I aim to set up Tailwind as soon as possible against goodstuffs teams, and typically on turn 2 or 3 against other Tailwind teams (so that once theirs peters out, I have the advantage for a couple of turns). Trick Room teams are dealt with via disrupting their setup, outstalling if necessary, and maybe the use of Amoonguss to aid with outstalling. The team can beat the Terracott combo in many ways (Whimsicott to disrupt setup, Amoonguss to disrupt setup even better, Darmanitan or (in Tailwind) Jellicent or Conkeldurr to revenge-kill); normally, if I see a Whimiscott and Terrakion in the opposing lineup, I make sure to have Darmanitan in the back just in case the setup somehow goes off despite my attempts to stop it, but the lead can still be varied. (Jellicent does pretty well as a lead against most Terracott teams; after Tailwind/Protect, a turn 1 setup for the opponent leads to Whimsicott getting knocked to Sash and Terrakion KOed (through Sash via double-targeting) turn 2, and a turn 2 setup for the opponent is disrupted via Encore, while Jellicent gets to start sweeping.) Against random other gimmicks, Whimsicott normally shuts them down with Encore.

    The biggest threats to this team are probably attackers that beat the team generally outside Tailwind, especially dragons like Hydreigon and Haxorus. There are also Pokémon I have few checks for and that can sweep the rest of my team if the opponent prepares first, particularly Terrakion and Jellicent. Another common way I lose is via the opponent overloading Hydreigon; it covers a range of threats for me, and can be spread too thinly trying to cover too many, especially as taking even a single neutral hit normally spells its doom via Life Orb recoil.

    The other thing that this team often struggles against is a disrupted setup, like with many setup-based teams. Something like a fast Whimsicott with Encore, Taunt and Mental Herb combined with a Fake Out user would be the worst possible lead matchup for this team, probably guaranteeing I didn't get Tailwind up no matter what I did, and quite possibly rendering Whimsicott useless. Genies who guess that Whimsicott is slower than them turn 1 (which is rare, because it usually isn't) and Taunt it can also shut me down quite easily, as the Sash on Whimsicott is more useful than a Mental Herb could be. Hax is also capable of disrupting my setup quite badly; I eventually lost in the VGC due to a Heat Wave burning my Whimsicott turn 1 and effectively OHKOing through sash, meaning I got no Encore-lock and severely weakening my team.

    Finally, I can have problems against Trick Room teams if they manage to defeat my locks on its setup, such as via using a second Pokémon to set it up after Whimsicott is defeated or otherwise incapable of interfering, perhaps due to doing too much at once.

    So, team raters, and interested people, feel free to say what you think of the team, and to suggest improvements. I'm pretty sure it isn't perfect, after all; teams rarely are, and there are several things about the team I'm unhappy with, as I mentioned above. Although I won't be doing any more VGCing in actual tournaments, I may well keep playing online, to aid other people's practice, and making this team the best it can be will help people out in that.
  2. TheStarRapper


    Sep 15, 2011
    Holy garbage man, this has got to be the most complex team analysis I've ever seen in an rmt, and I really appreciate that. That being said, sprites might help eliminate the "wall of text" feel. Hopefully someone better at VGC can give you a more proper rate later down the road.
  3. lucariojr

    lucariojr MS State Pokemon!!!
    is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus

    Jun 2, 2009
    Looks like a solid team! I especially love the fast Amoonguss and Stone Edge Conkeldurr for the added power. I can't help but think that Terrakion would be better for the fast Fighting-Type role, but I suppose Guts deters Thunder Waves and such. I'd also like to see how you like Wide Guard over Protect on Conkeldurr since you seem slightly weak to spread moves, Heat Wave in particular. Congrats on your success!
  4. King of Blades

    King of Blades

    Apr 12, 2012
    Well hello there.

    As previously mentioned by TheStarRapper, this is a very complex team rate, and it really feels like a wall of text, so I will direct you to my one-stop-shop for pokemon sprites that I use when I rate teams.


    Trust me (and him/her!), using sprites will make this so much better.... You'd be surprised how much interest 6 puny little images can create for a RMT.

    On to the team.

    I see a huge weakness to tornadus. Tornadus will do a number on every team member seen here except for darmanitan, who is your best check to it. (If thundurus could actually learn tailwind, this would be an easy fix. Stupid troll freak....) In order to give you insurance against this threat as well as against chandelure who gives parts of your team trouble, I suggest replacing conkeldurr with terrakion. Terrakion gains a useful neutrality to flying as well as a beneficial rock typing, and can outrun every commonly seen pokemon in the metagame under tailwind except when (insert prankster pokemon here) uses a non attacking move or the opposing side has tailwind up.

    Here is the set:

    Jolly | 252 Atk, 252 Speed, 4 HP | Justified | Focus Sash
    ~Rock Slide
    ~Close Combat
    ~Quick Attack / Earthquake

    Rock Slide is obligatory STAB, and it hits tornadus, thundurus, and chandelure hard. Close Combat is another STAB, and it hits other terrakions as well as most unresistant pokemon hard. The third slot is a toss-up between quick attack and earthquake. Quick attack is great for picking off weakened faster pokemon, as pokemon can get much faster than terrakion. (tailwind support, prankster, choice scarf) Earthquake is another option, and it gives edge quake coverage, which is always good. Protect is a great move in VGC, and should always be used in the last slot if there is nothing better to put there and you aren't choiced.

    Overall, terrakion is a great pokemon that will help patch up multiple weaknesses on your team as well as being a generally strong attacker. If you have any doubts about this pokemon, I have tested him at VGC and on the simulator and can say that he is phenomenal at the role that he would serve.

    Hope this helps, and good luck with the team!

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