Sandslash

Type Tier
Ground UU
Level 100 Statistics (see level 5, 50, 100)
Stat
HP
75
353
Atk
100
298
Def
110
318
SpA
45
188
SpD
55
208
Spe
65
228
  • Overused

Overview

Sandslash is a vastly underrated Ground-type in GSC, mainly because Marowak is more powerful. However, Marowak also gets KOed easier and doesn't match Sandslash's Speed. Sandslash is the fastest pure Ground-type after Dugtrio, but Sandslash can actually dish out some damage and set itself up. Once its Attack is boosted, Sandslash can do some decent damage to many of the slow, tankish Pokémon that are often played in GSC. With paralysis support, this thing does usually pretty well.

Name Item

Swords Dance

Leftovers
Moveset
~ Swords Dance
~ Earthquake
~ Rock Slide
~ Substitute

Swords Dance obviously gives Sandslash some more attacking power and the Earthquake + Rock Slide combo is a given. Substitute provides some more setup time for Sandslash. Its Speed is high enough to get a Substitute up before Exeggutor can hit Sandslash with Sleep Powder or Giga Drain, for example. This set works best with plenty of paralysis support from the rest of your team.

Other Options

Body Slam is a great option over Substitute since it provides the added paralysis that Sandslash usually needs to sweep teams and beat Water-types like Starmie. Sand-Attack is an option for annoyance purposes against walls like Skarmory who will attempt to Whirlwind Sandslash out. Counter is a cool move since it works on all types of Hidden Power, so a sweeper like Hidden Power Zapdos can get Countered for the KO since Sandslash has enough Special Defense to take the blow and still be usable. Sandslash could use Hidden Power Bug for Grass-types, but the hit would have to be on the switch. Sandslash can make some use of Rapid Spin but there are generally better Pokemon for this role.

Checks and Counters

Most Water-types, such as Quagsire, have good Defense with which to take Earthquake, and while Sandslash's Defense is great, its Special Defense is not. A strong Surf or Ice Beam will knock it out quickly. Grass-types like Meganium and Tangela are resistant to Earthquake and can also reply with super effective attacks. Note that if Sandslash is behind a Substitute, they cannot break it with Giga Drain because Giga Drain fails to work on Substitute in GSC.