We Like Pi! (Peaked #1) [pimg]649[/pimg][pimg]200[/pimg][pimg]589[/pimg][pimg]207[/pimg][pimg]137[/pimg][pimg]627[/pimg] I’m not entirely sure how to start this RMT. First of all, it obviously peaked at #1 (the spot where it remained for more than half of this past round) but I’m not exactly sure when or how high. User: prem stated that he saw it as high as 1456, but the highest I ever saw it was at 1429 after it decayed for two days. Obviously the ladder is not really competitive anyways so who really cares. With the banning of Gligar, I still feel obliged to post what I think was my best team in a long while, and perhaps ever. Team Building Process I would be lying if I didn’t state that this team was wholeheartedly based on a “slippery slope”—that is, the logical fallacy where one argues that since one thing might happen a string of more and more improbable events are inevitable. Shockingly, it worked. The slippery slope here was the rise of Gligar. With Gligar becoming more popular right out of the gate, especially with blarajan’s team, I felt that it was only a matter of time before Bronzor became the next big thing. Because Bronzor is so easy to capitalize off of, I felt it would be good to use Scraggy. Unfortunately, Bronzor is always paired with a Scraggy counter or two, so I needed a super fast sweeper that could serve to a.) dent holes early game b.) clean up late game and c.) lay the smack down on Mienfoo. Thus, the core of Scraggy and Choice Scarf Misdreavus was born. With the rise of Bronzor, I saw the fall of Snover, and eventually a slight decrease in Staryu which would mean a slight increase in viability of Spikes. From there, everything fell into place. I saw Murkrow becoming an immediate problem (despite its lower usage at the start of the meta, it quickly rocketed up early-mid Feb.) and thus decided to use Porygon, a hard counter to SubRoost sets. With my only Fighting-type immunity coming from an offensive Pokemon, I decided that a defensive resistance was needed, so I opted for defensive Gligar, a set that, at the time, was all but unheard of, despite being popular in past metas. For the next slot, I wanted something no one was doing at the time, and that had to be Spikes. Entry hazards (despite Staryu being on an insane amount of teams) are quite easy to stack with the core of Gligar and Ferroseed, and it basically renders Croagunk and Mienfoo as worthless Scraggy counters if I get up all my layers and get in before Staryu has a chance. I placed Mienfoo in the last slot as I needed a defensive pivot to handle Scraggy. Sure, my reasoning is definitely flawed in places, but hey, it worked. Closer Look [pimg]649[/pimg] Peachie π the Mienfoo Eviolite | Regenerator EVs: 76 Atk / 196 Def / 236 Spd Impish Nature (+Def, -SpA) - U-turn - Fake Out - Drain Punch - Low Sweep Mienfoo’s the most reliable Scraggy counter, so it’s a no brainer on any team that fears Scraggy. It does much more than that, however. Fake Out and U-turn form a nice combo with Regenerator, allowing Mienfoo to scout the other team’s potential switch-ins and go to the appropriate counter. This works incredibly well when Misdreavus and Scraggy are both incredibly different Pokemon to switch into; for example, I will often U-turn to Scraggy and spam Ice Punch repeatedly to get a freeze on the opponent’s Mienfoo or Croagunk. This effect is amplified by Spikes and Stealth Rock, which I believe makes the team really shine. Drain Punch and Low Sweep were my two favorite moves on Mienfoo in the last meta. If Misdreavus is coming in, I would rather just U-turn out than mess with Payback and a potential Will-O-Wisp. If Gligar decides to come in, I can Low Sweep and U-turn out before being hit. And most importantly, it allows Mienfoo to take all variants of Scraggy, even Zen Headbutt and Hi Jump Kick, as I can switch in as they set up and Low Sweep them back down to normal Speed so I can guarantee another hit. This explains the EVs: enough Speed to beat all Scraggy, max Defense, and the rest in Attack. [pimg]200[/pimg] Pumpkin π the Misdreavus Choice Scarf | Levitate EVs: 240 SpA / 240 Spe Modest Nature (+SpA, -Atk) - Shadow Ball - Icy Wind - Hidden Power [Fighting] / Destiny Bond - Trick For the entirety of the last round, people apparently thought Choice Scarf Misdreavus was not allowed or something, as I did not encounter a single other one that I know of. Personally, I love it; being able to revenge kill opposing Misdreavus after they’ve taken about 30% damage is sweet, and I love the ability to revenge kill Gligar 100% of the time rather than relying on a Speed tie. I change the third slot based on my mood, honestly. Hidden Power Fighting is more “reliable”, making it so I don’t completely get destroyed by Porygon. On the other hand, Destiny Bond is ridiculously fun, allowing me a backup plan against nearly all set up sweepers, including Scraggy and Shell Smash users. This set really shines with hazards and Scraggy by its side, as nothing enjoys taking Shadow Balls repeatedly. Although both it and Scraggy end up with some trouble against some variants of Croagunk, I counted on Croagunk dropping when building this team and that happened. Furthermore, this was one of the main incentives for adding defensive Gligar. Misdreavus also doubles as an offensive spinblocker, and it is not OHKOed by Staryu’s Hydro Pump and easily deals with the starfish if it tries to stay in. [pimg]589[/pimg] Cutie π the Scraggy Eviolite | Shed Skin EVs: 116 HP / 76 Atk / 36 Def / 36 SpD / 212 Spe Jolly Nature (+Spe, -SpA) - Dragon Dance - Ice Punch - Crunch - Drain Punch This is the other monster I wanted to teambuild around, as it has a few counters that can be taken down by a balanced team. We all know about this Scraggy, but the concept is that so many teams last meta were only running one Scraggy counter (and it was just Croagunk or just Mienfoo 99% of the time). With hazards and support from the teammates, Scraggy has little difficulty getting past just one counter. For example, Spikes neuters Regenerator, and I have 2 solid Mienfoo switch-ins. Spikes renders Croagunk all but useless as well, so there’s that. I won’t ramble on this guy, you’ve all seen him, you’ve all gotten frozen by his Ice Punch, you’ve all whined to me about it. I get it people, but that was the mindset I had when building this team. [pimg]207[/pimg] Blueberry π the Gligar Eviolite | Sand Veil EVs: 156 HP / 156 Def / 76 SpD / 76 Spe Impish Nature (+Def, -SpA) - Stealth Rock - Toxic - Roost - Aerial Ace As I said, defensive Gligar was one of the most underrated and underused Pokemon this meta as everyone was hyping AcroBat. Personally, I love its utility to put up Stealth Rock while repeatedly sponge hits from Fighting-types (something Scraggy simply needs). He’s one of my first options early game, as Stealth Rock is important to render threats such as Snover less useful, although opposing Staryu can be a pain. Gligar is also incredibly useful against opposing Life Orb Murkrow, as I can typically stall it out with Roost. Aerial Ace is mostly just to handle opposing Mienfoo and Croagunk, and it certainly does its job. People often consider defensive Gligar dead weight, but I couldn’t be happier with it. [pimg]137[/pimg] Cream π the Porygon Eviolite | Trace EVs: 236 HP / 196 Def / 76 SpA Bold Nature (+Def, -Atk) - Ice Beam - Recover - Tri Attack - Charge Beam Porygon plays a massive role in this team, taking hits from the entirety of the three unbanned with relative ease. Recover is probably one of the best moves in the LC metagame, as even if you cannot hit very strong, you have recovery and the opponent doesn’t. Porygon also lures in Fighting-types, which is useful so I can get Stealth Rock back up against teams with Staryu or so I can get Misdreavus in late game to start sweeping. This was easily the most solid overall defensive Pokemon I used last meta, and I guess I have GK to thank for that. This guy gets more kills each game than one would expect, and two Charge Beam SpA boosts typically means the opponent has lost. This is fantastic, since Porygon switches in on Gligar and Murkrow with ease, and most Misdreavus with little consequence. [pimg]627[/pimg] Apple π the Ferroseed (M) Eviolite | Iron Barbs EVs: 4 HP / 36 Atk / 188 Def / 228 SpD Relaxed Nature (+Def, -Spe) - Protect - Leech Seed - Gyro Ball - Spikes Defensive Gligar needs a partner to handle Bronzor, and Ferroseed is the prime answer. Leech Seed is an incredible move, as so many things in LC lack recovery and Leftovers is non-existent. Spikes were exceedingly rare last meta, but basically guaranteed a Scraggy sweep if the opponent lacked Staryu. Speaking of Staryu, they are very hesitant to switch into Ferroseed, as it often carries Bullet Seed. Nonetheless, this is the set I have used for about 6 months and I have never looked back. Easily one of the bulkiest guys around, and forms an unbelievable core in conjunction with Gligar. Furthermore, I really love its ability to beat Shell Smashers, especially Tirtouga, who would otherwise be problematic for this team. In all honesty, I made a team of 5 Pokes and thought, “what is the best underrated utility mon I can think of that would maybe work in this slot?” and thought of Ferroseed. I never looked back. Closing Thoughts I thought about doing a threat list, but the meta is over at this point and I’d like to wrap this team up a little differently. Primarily, I’d like to say that my first real “round” on the Council was a wild one, and I’d just like everyone to know that despite the hating / whatever, I voted to ban what I truly thought should be banned (as evidenced by this team using Gligar and me voting to ban it). Second off, I’d like to say thank you. Thank you to the great LC community that has warmly welcomed me in 2011, and thank you to all of my friends that have helped me out as I begin to help Smogon out some more. I believe that we have a tight knit community, but one that is honestly not big enough. I hope whoever you are, reading this RMT, that you understand that Little Cup is a small community. We can’t survive without people, and frankly, we need more of those. In my stay at Smogon, I don’t believe I’ve made a better choice than looking up some random LC Pokemon and attempting to build a team and eventually being integrated into the community. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that many of the folks in #littlecup are some of my best friends, people I look up to, people I can trust, and people that may know me better than my real life friends. I look forward to the future rounds of LC, and am not sure what they hold. You can count, however, that I will be there and ready to kick some more butt.