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Shrang's team is an excellent Rain build that shows how powerful Drizzle + Swift Swim teams were during their time in the metagame. With Politoed's rain support, Choice Specs Kingdra could easily plow through opposing teams with doubled speed and a boost to its Water attacks. This team also features the now-banned Manaphy that was capable of easily sweeping teams with as little as a single Calm Mind under its belt, thanks to automatic full recovery in Rest + Hydration. Another set this team introduced into the metagame was the dangerous Calm Mind Virizion (referred to as Birijion), who not only sees its Fire weakness removed thanks to the Rain, but also acts as an excellent game finisher after Kingdra has left severe dents in special walls. Ferrothorn (referred to as Nattorei) is a very important member of the team, not only because it sets up the almost-mandatory Stealth Rock, but also because it acts as the primary check for opposing Rain teams. Jirachi is used to patch up a few weaknesses, such as Swords Dance Toxicroak, while having solid offensive presence of its own.
Layla - Iconic [January 2011]
Iconic's Layla is the definitive and ideal offensive team of the early Black and White era, a time when behemoths such as Darkrai and Shaymin-S were still allowed in OU. This team is a perfect example of team synergy between bulky offensive Pokemon, using anti-metagame sets such as specially defensive Lum Berry Swords Dance Scizor to surprise kill Darkrai. This team’s unique Tyranitar and Gliscor sets eventually became the metagame's standards. Shaymin-S, the team's lone suspect, showed just how much of a menace it was and why it was the first unanimously banned Pokemon in the history of Smogon’s suspect testing. As a bonus, the presentation is impeccable, featuring a neat layout, detailed descriptions for each team member, and a comprehensive threat list.
franky's WOLF GANG was built to abuse the suspect-nominated Excadrill. This team was partly responsible for popularizing the use of Nasty Plot Celebi as a defensive check to rain teams and as a powerful offensive sweeper. The underrated Slowbro makes an apperance as a counter to some of the metagame’s top physical threats, such as Garchomp and Terrakion. Tyranitar is used for Sandstorm and Stealth Rock support as well as a solid check to powerful rain threats such as Tornadus and Thundurus, using Chople Berry to halve damage taken from quad-effective Fighting attacks. On the offensive side, franky made use of the then-rare Hidden Power Ice Landorus to lure in and KO Excadrill’s most common counter, Gliscor. The mole’s other common counter, Skarmory, is lured in and severely dented by Swords Dance Scizor. Excadrill is abused fully as both an excellent revenge killer thanks to his blistering speed under sand, and as a late-game sweeper, with his most common counters lured and destroyed by franky’s other team members. This team also features a neat formula devised to help sand teams combat opposing rain teams.
Enter the Dragon - PK Gaming and JabbaTheGriffin [July 2011]
PK Gaming and JabbaTheGriffin's Enter the Dragon is notorious for introducing the DragMag strategy to BW OU. The underrated Choice Band Haxorus shows just how destructive it can be through sheer raw power, leaving the opponent scrambling to counter it and thus leaving them open to being run over by one of the team's other two Dragons. Magnezone is used to trap and remove the one type of Pokemon that resists Dragon attacks, Steel, thanks to its ability, Magnet Pull. Another underrated threat this team utilises is Life Orb Mamoswine, who can leave devastatation in its wake with extremely powerful STAB Earthquakes, while also checking opposing Dragon-types with its strong STAB Ice Shard. Choice Scarf Politoed may seem out of place on a team that does not abuse rain in the slightest but its use is in making sure the team doesn't get run over by certain Sand threats such as Garchomp and Excadrill.
Tabloo - tab and Bloo [July 2011]
The Frontier-winning Bloo utilized this team constructed by tab, designed to deal with all types of weather teams without using its own weather. Tabloo is partly responsible for the sudden increase of the Gastrodon + Heatran + Skarmory core in the metagame. With this beautifully constructed unit of six, Tabloo is able to beat all types of weather by using solid defensive Pokemon to beat common weather sweepers. However, this team is not full stall, as it is capable of holding its weight offensively with the combination of Toxic Spikes + SubSplit Gengar. The team was nearly perfect around the time it was created because it held the upper hand on many standard weather teams. Tabloo leaves its mark as one of the best non-weather teams ever created and proves that you can remain victorious in this weather-infested metagame without using it at all.
Team: Rain Man - undisputed [September 2011]
Rain Man was one of the first really successful rain stall teams in the early BW metagame. With this team, undisputed established the standard rain stall core of Politoed, Tentacruel, and Ferrothorn. Tentacruel acts as an amazing Rapid Spinner thanks to essentially holding double Leftovers under rain, while Ferrothorn has its fire weakness halved, allowing it to hold off a few threats it couldn't otherwise, while setting up stall's necessary Spikes. Blissey acts as a nearly unbreakable special wall while using the numerous free turns it gets to set up Stealth Rock. This team also showed the first use of Substitute Gliscor as both a counter to numerous physical threats while being capable of stalling out entire teams in conjunction with Toxic Spikes. The final key to the team is Substitute Calm Mind Jirachi, who was capable of turning some of its counters into set-up bait since at this point, most players expected a Specially Defensive set. This team's immense success and impact on the metagame definitely earns its spot in the archive.
This team was responsible for the rise of offensive rain teams. No Rain, no Gain strives to steamroll the opponent with high amounts of offensive pressure. The offensive benefits of rain transforms Nasty Plot Thundurus and Swords Dance Toxicroak into major nuisances for the opponent. With a slight tweak in their standard sets, McMeghan was capaple of bypassing usual threats such as Tyranitar and Gliscor with Substitute and Ice Punch in their movesets respectively. Furthermore, no Rain, no Gain takes full advantage of this by pairing Thundurus and Toxicroak with entry hazards and great momentum builders in Scizor and Rotom-W, who forced and abuses switches via U-turn and Volt Switch. The tone setter of the team lies within the use of Choice Specs Politoad, very often netting a KO within the first couple turns due to its sheer strength. Overall, no Rain, no Gain was notorious for dishing out intense damage, giving the opponents very little wiggle room.
This team shows how stall looked during the Excadrill-era. Bulky Hippowdon to set up the Sandstorm, which not only helps with stalling but it also activates Excadrill's Sand Rush. A combination of Slowbro and Jirachi is used to cover most threats in the metagame, including opposing Excadrill. Roserade sets up Spikes and provides the team with additional Aromatherapy support. A original Dragonite set is used to stall thanks to Multiscale as well as phaze with Dragon Tail. And then there is Excadrill, acting as both the Rapid Spinner and as an offensive check for a lot of pokes in the offensive meta.
The title of this team speaks for itself; it is, in fact, the art of rain stall. The team's success and nearly flawless synergy makes it arguably the best rain stall ever created. The steady rise of this play style was quite noticeable around the time; however, this team stood out the most. It is said that any team who attempted to make a full rain stall showed striking similarities to this. It's not surprising as the team can fend off a sizable amount of threats in the metagame with its unique core. The most noticeable Pokemon used in this team is Dragonite - instead of using the typical offensive set, M Dragon cleverly tweaks Dragonite to a defensive variant to hold off some of the most common threats to rain teams, such as Celebi and Reuniclus. The rest of the team features ideal stall weapons: Rapid Spin, entry hazards, and the ability to counter nearly every offensive threat in the game. IR: The Art of Rain Stall is one of the greatest forms a BW OU rain stall team will ever assume and is more than deserving of a spot in the archive.
Reflections - Stone_Cold [October 2011]
This team defines speed and pure momentum. Not a single hint of low Speed (bar Dragonite) is showed in this team, as it features a slew of fast Pokemon. Reflections makes an ideal offensive team by minimizing the the threats to cover, while maximizing the amount of victims to kill. The synergy is simple and is reliant within the revolutionary two-punch combo in Dugtrio and Dragonite. These two in tandem make quite the lethal combo by trapping Steel-types and paving a clear path for Dragonite to sweep. The team itself is nothing too fancy, but it does hold quite the perfect synergy. Technically, the presentation is akin to the synergy: straight to the point and effective. Reflections is responsible for the sudden rise of heavy offensive teams and is quite exemplar to the community around the time this was posted.
French Orgy with Belzebuth is one of the best offensive Drought teams of the B\W era. Grimm70 popularizes sunny day Ninetales, that is designed specifically to counter other weather-inducing Pokemon such as Tyranitar and Politoed. Ninetales along with magma storm Heatran and Arena Trap Dugtrio make a lot easier for this team to fight against other weahter based strategies. The team goal is to sweep with either Venusaur or Volcarona, that uses a bulky set with morning sun to heal HP while setting up as many quiver dances as possible. Technically the RMT is unexceptionable, with a very pleasant format and with detailed descriptions for each Pokemon.
Apocalypse - mostwanted [October 2011]
This is the team that spurred the use of dual hazard suicide lead Deoxys-S in the metagame. Utilizing a heavy offense playstyle, mostwanted uses Gengar to provide a potent offensive threat while protecting his Deoxys's multiple layers of entry hazards against Rapid Spin. This team also popularized Choice Scarf Rotom-W as a way to keep common spinners that Gengar can't beat, such as Starmie and Tentacruel, in check. With the use of the devastatingly powerful wallbreaking Choice Band Terrakion, as well as exceptional overall offensive synergy, mostwanted is able to pressure his opponents to sweep late-game with Dragon Dance Dragonite, who also serves as a check to sun teams. This team peaked at #1 on the ladder, was copied by several people right up until Deoxys-S's ban, and was very influential on Heavy Offense in B/W OU, which makes it a prime candidate for the RMT Archive.
This team is an excellent example of Deoxys-S's other trademark suicide lead set, the dual screener. With its unmatched base 180 Speed, it's able to throw up Reflect and Light Screen at the beginning of a match to allow any of Eggbert's 5 monstrously powerful sweepers to set up and start wreaking havoc. The goal of this team is to use so much combined offensive power that the opponent's physical wall will eventually succumb, and then the remaining sweepers will win the game. Swords Dance Virizion is used as an anti-metagame threat, almost single-handedly deconstructing Rain Stall teams that were extremely common at the time. Dragon Dance Gyarados without Substitute is rarely seen in B/W OU but Eggbert makes full use of its classic Life Orb set to catch his opponents off-guard and open up holes for his other sweepers. The deadly Haxorus is used to its full potential here, with Lum Berry to shrug off status and Taunt to prevent its #1 counter, Skarmory, from phazing it out. Overall, this is an excellent example of Dual Screens Offense from the Deoxys-s era of B/W OU and it's therefore deserving of a spot in the RMT Archive.
This team defines Excadrill/Thundurus-era bulky sand offense and made the Volt-Turn strategy popular in BW OU. This team was so influential on the metagame that nowadays when a player uses this team with an Excadrill replacement, which is pretty common, they is said to be using "standard Volt-Turn". Besides popularizing an entire playstyle that was so dominant it even inspired teams in other tiers, Sir Azelf also reached the first spot on the ladder and held it for three weeks. While Volt-turn teams tend to have trouble dealing wit multiple Entry Hazards, Sir Azelf smartly paired his pokemon with the best offensive spinner the OU tier has ever seen, Excadrill. This team was notorious for putting immense offensive pressure on opposing teams due to how powerful Volt-turn was while paired with Sir Azelf’s Sand sweepers.
Christmas - Delko [December 2011]
Delko's Christmas is an excellent showcase of a balanced Hail team. The fact that Hail is the least used weather doesn't stop this team from being able to combat all the top threats the OU tier has to offer. This team also features the surprising qualities of Kyurem, an oft-overlooked threat that has the potential to destroy unprepared team. Delko uses a physical variant of Abomasnow with priority Ice Shard to keep the tier's powerful Dragons in check. While Hail teams and Ice-types in general are weak to hazards, Tentacruel is used to patch up that problem, while also setting up Toxic Spikes. Reuniclus can sponge attacks from the strong Fighting-types in OU and is also Delko's main way to handle Stall. Heatran is used to stop Sun teams that naturally have an advantage over Hail. Last but not least, Conkeldurr adds a Rock-resist and the ability to check threats in a pinch with its powerful priority Mach Punch.
Most offensive Drought teams run Venusaur as their Chlorophyll sweeper of choice; however, Stone_Cold and Alice break away from the norm, abusing the underrated Lilligant to much success on the ladder. Substitute Hydreigon, another underrated Pokemon, makes an appearance, preying on the switches it forces to protect itself from attacks while striking back with its huge 383 Special Attack stat. Specially Defensive Heatran makes an appearance to patch up the weakness to Latios and Latias that most Drought teams have, as well as providing consistent Stealth Rock support. Overall, this unique Sun team has been very influential on the metagame, mainly in showing how effective Lilligant can be, and deserves a place in the RMT Archive.
Toxic Invasion was an early team that utilized the now incredibly popular Toxic Stall Gliscor. A proficient balanced team created by Ojama for the Official Smogon Tournament, Scarf Tyranitar is used to checkmate numerous troublesome pokemon such as Gengar, Starmie, Latios, Latias, and Celebi. Skarmory and Heatran are Ojama’s entry hazard setters of choice, while also walling opposing Sand and Sun teams. Ojama also added a very clever Celebi set to cover threats he was weak to, specifically Rotom-W, Reuniclus and strong Water-type attacks. Starmie was finally added to due to the team's need for a Rapid Spinner and bulky water. Toxic Stall was Gliscor's most popular set in late BW1, due largely to this team and the success it had.
In a metagame filled with weather, Snunch went against the grain with his Smogon Tournament-winning team. A perfect example of a balanced team, Snunch uses three offensive Pokemon to keep up pressure while relying on a core of three defensive Pokemon to take hits. His three offensive Pokemon are all underrated threats -- Swords Dance Virizion decimates the common Rain Stall team of the era; Nasty Plot Mew is a threat that continuing surprises his opponents due to its most popular set, Taunt + Will-o-Wisp, having completely different counters; and the ever-fearsome Substitute Dragon Dance Dragonite, who can completely turn the tide of a battle in one turn. Snunch’s defensive core utilizes Heatran to counter Sun teams while setting up Stealth Rock, Forretress to lay down Toxic Spikes while Rapid Spinning his opponent’s Stealth Rock to keep Dragonite’s Multiscale intact, and finally Jellicent to stall-break and prevent enemy Rapid Spinners from ridding Snunch of his hazards. This team proved its worth by going 7-0 on Snunch’s victory-earning Smogon Tournament run.
Sand Enduring Territory - Taylor [March 2012]
Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds! - dice [March 2012]
The Great Southern Trendkill is an original team created by Funkasaurus and BKC. This team is largely responsible for popularizing Hippowdon in the final stages of BW1 OU; the seventh Official World Cup in particular saw a massive influx of teams utilizing the hippopotamus, who was an uncommon sight prior to this team. Hippowdon is used over its Sand Stream counterpart, Tyranitar, thanks to its superior bulk and longevity, along with its lack of vulnerability to Dugtrio, which made it much more effective at fighting sun teams. The pair of team builders took a balanced approach by supporting Hippowdon with a strong defensive core consisting of Forretress, Jellicent, and Roserade. Forretress contributed physical walling ability, Spikes and the ability to Spin. Jellicent complimented Forretress by switching into Fire-type moves and blocking attempts to Rapid Spin away the hazards Hippowdon and Forretress had set up, while functioning as a solid weapon against stall teams. Roserade was added as a sand team’s obligatory switch-in to the Water-types capable of inflicting burn, such as Rotom-W and Politoed, earning the spot over the more common Celebi thanks to its access to Sleep Powder and its Poison typing allowing it absorb Toxic Spikes upon entry. The team’s main offensive presence is found in Jirachi and Gliscor. Jirachi acts as an uncommon yet effectiveChoice Scarfer, with the ability to revenge kill a slew of threats, and a general source of speed on an otherwise slow team, while Gliscor is used in a Garchomp-esque manner, using Sand Veil’s evasive effects to set up with Substitute and Swords Dance. Overall, this was one of the best and most influential balanced sand teams in late BW1.
Eriatarka - Iconic [June 2012]
Eriatarka is a unique offensive Rain team that was incredibly successful during the BW1 metagame. Iconic used it to peak #1 on the ladder numerous times, while also performing well in many large-scale tournaments. The main feature of the team is the one-two punch of Choice Specs Politoed and Choice Specs Starmie. Very few teams were able to weather the absurd brute power of their rain-and Specs-boosted STAB Surfs without crumbling. Iconic added a double steel core to help check the rampant dragons of the OU metagame. Ferrothorn sets up Stealth Rock while Jirachi acts as a strong pivot and sweeper; both are capable of handling many of the metagame's top threats. Latios helps the team against Rotom-W while weakening opposing walls even more for one of its teammates to clean up. Choice Scarf Landorus patches up any remaining weaknesses by revenging any extra threats, using the rare Hidden Power Flying to destroy the otherwise-threatening Breloom. Overall, one of the best and most well-known offensive rain teams makes its way to the archive.
The Schwein - Blue_Blur [August 2012]
Blue_Blur’s The Schwein is the definition of consistency. Originally created in 2011 for suspect testing, this teams staying power shows as Blue_Blur was able to still excel with the team a full year later, with minimal changes. At its core, The Schwein is a sand stall team that utilizes Choice Band Tyranitar to eliminate troublesome Pokemon, such as Reuniclus, Jellicent, and Latios and Latias. Tyranitar also gives Blue_Blur weather control, allowing him to better take on Rain and Sun teams. Blue_Blur then added the strong defensive core of Blissey/Gliscor/Quagsire. Blissey handles the majority of the Special Attackers in OU while Gliscor and Quagsire together handle most Physical attackers. Latias is, in many cases, the glue that holds the team together. It can dismantle Sun teams almost single handedly and is Blue_Blur’s best bet for a sweep. Its Calm Mind set allows it to ravage opposing teams after they’ve been stalled out by the rest of his ‘mons. Latias also gives Blue_Blur a top notch check against the infamous Volt-Turn core of Scizor and Rotom-W. Forretress was added last and provides both Rapid Spin and Spikes support. Blue_Blur’s team has stood as one of the most solid stall teams to ever grace the OU metagame.
If you want to see what Sun teams tended to look like at the end of the BW1 era look no further than dragonuser’s Highway to Hell. This team was built for World Cup VII where dragonuser’s team USA East made it all the way to the Finals. The team was centered around the offensive core of Latias and Dugtrio as Dugtrio removes most of Latias’ most common counters, including Tyranitar and Heatran. dragonuser also employed a rather novel set for its time, Weather trapper Heatran. This Heatran uses a combination of Magma Storm, Sunny Day, and SolarBeam to remove enemy Politoed, who Dugtrio struggles more against. The team is also supported by Forretress who spins and lays Toxic Spikes, which makes Calm Mind Latias all the stronger. Rounding off the team is Venusaur with a more unorthodox bulky spread. This team is the picture of Sun as BW1 finished, because of this, and its impressive track record it deserves to be put in the RMT archive.
This right here is the interesting Sun team that took the metagame by storm after Genesect’s incursion into the OU metagame. Lavos Spawn formed the unorthodox core of Dugtrio, Genesect, Victini, and Xatu and proved its power by dominating the OU ladder. The true strength of this team lies in the synergy shared by all the members. Choice Scarf Genesect provides enormous momentum and when paired with Dugtrio doesn’t have to worry about its number one counter, Heatran. Xatu, who was a rare sight in the OU metagame before, makes sure that Lavos’ side is kept clean of entry hazards, which is especially key for both keeping Ninetales alive, and preserving Dugtrio’s Focus Sash. To finish Lavos’ U-Turn core Victini aids in nuking the opposition with its powerful Choice Banded Sun-boosted V-Creates. Venusaur rounds off this team by giving Lavos Spawn a top-notch sweeper who finishes off weakened teams. This team prompted the rise of usage of Genesect on Sun teams, and Xatu. For all of these reasons, it’s easy to see why Simulation of a Drought belongs in the RMT archive.
Sexual Showers - Valentine and TFC [September 2012]
Valentine’s and TFL’s Sexual Showers is as sweet as it sounds. With the induction of Genesect into the OU metagame, a powerful core was found, Genesect and Dugtrio, Genesect’s most notorious counter Heatran was easily removed by Dugtrio who was often given a free switch-in thanks to Genesect’s U-Turn. Valentine and TFL utilized this core, and surrounded it with near perfect support. Another huge threat at the time was Choice Specs Tornadus-T who abused a massively powerful Hurricane and its awe-inspiring speed to demolish most teams without a dedicated counter. The beauty of adding Tornadus-T to the already powerful Genesect and Dugtrio core is that Dugtrio also removes many checks to Tornadus-T, including Jirachi and Tyranitar. Once the offensive Pokemon were in place the pair of team builders added the tried and true defensive core of Politoed, Tentacruel, and Ferrothorn, though they used uncommon sets such as Sub-Toxic Tentacruel and Rest Ferrothorn. This team was the face of Drizzle times until Genesect’s ban from the OU metagame, and represents a major period of BW2.
H-C’s White Fang’s Revolution won the 2nd #Pokemon cup by accumulating the most wins when used by the players of the tournament. The team is based around the offensive core of Sheer Force Landorus and Sand Rush Stoutland. H-C found that these two Pokemon worked well in tandem as Landorus lured in many of Stoutland’s checks and counters as many players assume Landorus is physical. Hippowdon was added next to provide the necessary support for the offensive pair and allows the team to better combat opposing weather teams. A classic Water-Fire-Grass core was then added to provide useful resistances and an overall defensive backbone to the team. Heatran checks many special threats, including Genesect who was the most popular Pokemon at the time of this teams creation. Amoonguss is a great addition to the team as it can combat Drizzle teams thanks to its typing and ability. Starmie provides an extra Water-type resistance and Rapid Spin support, which allows H-C’s other defensive Pokemon to stick around much longer.
CTC's Swimmin Pools was the perfect picture of the completely Rain dominated metagame during the Tornadus-T period. The team however strays from the typical build that most players were using at the time, and instead broke off into an entirely new range entirely. Unique sets, Pokemon, and items were all included on this team, which would later become standards. The team features the very popular at-the-time Sash Lead Terrakion to keep up offensive momentum, get Stealth Rock up early, and even prevent the opponent from getting up hazards themselves. Both Tornadus-T and Thundurus-T make appearances on the team, which help break up opposing teams with ease. Double Dance Thundurus-T became instantly popular after this team was created because of its flexibility in sweeping and overall power it had against all team archetypes. Scarf Keldeo makes an appearance as an amazing revenge killer, and even if somehow the team needed an extra bit of force, Azumarill is included just to put the extra push through. To finish the team off, we have Politoed who gets the ball rolling. Holding a Water Gem, Hydro Pump instantly becomes a powerful hit on anything that switches in. A perfect team for the offensive nature of this metagame, this team defined Rain offense basics for quite some time.
(°ᴥ°) - Harsha [January 2013]
This cute team by Harsha is another fantastic example of Rain offense utilizing the powerful sweepers of its time, obviously including Tornadus-T. The team features a build a bone-crushing offense, with powerful an Anti-Metagame sweepers like SD Toxicroak, who absolutely destroyed most standard opposing Rain offense, which was everywhere at the time. Tornadus-T + Scarf Keldeo make a very potent offensive combination, and they both were easily some of the most powerful and dangerous sets to use at the time. The team gets its hazard support from Rocky Helmet Garchomp, one of the best momentum and U-Turn killers. Garchomp not only supplies Stealth Rock, but also provides a bulky check to the likes of Scizor, Jirachi, and Rotom-W. Utilizing a bulky spread, Garchomp can hang onto life much longer than a normal offensive spread would. The team also includes SubCM Jirachi, a Pokemon basically needed for a team like this because of the destruction Tornadus-T would otherwise reign over a team like this. Lastly, Harsha obviously included Politoed, but a powerful Specs Version to break through opposing dragons, bulky waters, grass types, and in general anything that it can hit.
Fiction.'s Liberation Transmission is a beautiful example of Sand Balance during the Tornadus-T and rain dominated time of the metagame, showcasing how a more bulky approach to sand can go a long way by using some very unique options to cover large amounts of threats. We start the team off with a solid defensive backbone of Zapdos / Ferrothorn / Starmie / Landorus-T, which when together can wall a majority of the metagame. We start with Zapdos, slayer of Rain offense and destroyer of dreams. Zapdos was a perfect Specially Defensive wall in the rain-offense dominated metagame, and it could completely immobilize most standard teams very well. Outside of Rain, Zapdos could handle sun sweepers, Landorus-T, Scizor, and Jirachi very well, which made it the perfect candidate for a more balanced team like this one. Ferrothorn is the obligatory bulky steel-type needed to combat dragons, and also be an additional check to rain teams thanks to its useful water resistance, which makes sure the team doesn't crumble against the likes of Gyarados, Rotom-W, and Starmie. Starmie is absolutely needed for spinning for a team like this, without Rocks on the field the entire teams defense is strengthened thoroughly. It is also a good switch to Keldeo. Starmie in general revenges a lot of top threats like Terrakion, Breloom, Gengar, and Keldeo. Landorus-T finishes us off here with a solid answer to the likes of Dragonite, Terrakion, and multiple other physicals sweepers, while also gaining momentum at the same time. The team is finished off with the likes of CBTar and CB Stoutland, which add the offensive push on the team. CBTar is a great Pursuiter of spin-blockers, the Lati twins, and is a great last-minute check to almost all special sweepers in general. While Stoutland adds the speed to the team, and acts as a powerful revenge killer and breaker of offensive teams. This team combated the great offense that was in the metagame at the time, and stood tall for a decent amount of time afterwards.
Meru's Aromacity is widely known in the community as one of the most successful stall teams of this Generation. Meru abuses the powerful defensive build of Hippowdon / Roserade / Jellicent / Skarmory / Latias to cover the majority of threats in the metagame and provide the team's hazard support. The UU build of Hippowdon + Roserade makes a return in the OU metagame on this team, displaying how solid of a combination it made. Both provide the team's hazards together, and offer overall solid support for the team and its defensive nature. Jellicent acts as a magnificent bulky spin blocker and secondary counter to Keldeo, fighting types, and overall great utility Mon' to use. Skarmory finishes off the hazards by providing Spikes and acting as a solid Physical wall that takes the majority of Outrages and Physical onslaughts that come towards the team's way. Latias finishes the defensive portion off nicely as another check to bulky water types, a way to defeat Sun sweepers, and a great Pokemon to pair with the team's nature, speeding it up and giving some more offensive presence. To round off the team is Stoutland, who spiked in popularity after the team's posting. Stoutland is a perfect revenge killer for Sand Stall, and overall acts as the "emergency check" to quite a lot of the teams threats. Under Sand combined with hazards Stoutland becomes a deadly sweeper against lighter variants of offense, and can break down a lot of the light checks these types of teams typically carry. Overall, the synergy that this team has paired with it's interesting options makes it a very solid team for the metagame at the time, and it seems stall teams like this will only continue to keep evolving as time goes on.
Kidogo's Passport To Victory popularized the use of Baton Pass Nasty Plot Celebi + rain offense sweepers to put full effectiveness in their sweeping ability. While at first glance it may seem like standard rain offense in its most basic form, it is quite different. Celebi passes Nasty Plot boosts to Special Sweepers like Scarf Keldeo and Thundurus-T. Synergy wise, Keldeo is the perfect partner for Celebi, and considering the speed Keldeo has, a lot of its previous checks are drowned by a +2 Scarf Surf, in the rain or not. Thundurus-T has amazing coverage and power, making him a fitting Pokemon to receive a Nasty Plot boost. Thundurus-T also carries Agility in order to boost its speed to the point where only priority can revenge it, making it very dangerous against lighter offense teams which struggle to handle something of this power. Synergy wise, these combinations are genius, basically using Celeb's checks and counters as easy ways to switch in Keldeo or Thundurus-T through Baton Pass. Being rain offense, the team obviously has Politoed on the team, who is a nuke in itself with the Choice Specs set. Stealth Rocks are provided by Lead Terrakion who does a great job preventing and setting hazards at the same time, while being able to still pack a punch. To finish the team off it includes a faster bulky Jirachi who is the main dragon check, being able to beat Latias and Latios with ease, rounding out the team's offensive synergy and providing momentum with U-Turn..
Remedy's offensive team Friends Prophecy was one of the best displays of the Landorus-I dominated metagame pre-ban. The team popularized sets the higher levels such as Lead Sash Chomp and Weavile. The team focuses on gaining amazing momentum through Landorus-I's U-Turn which lures out common checks and counters to both Breloom and Keldeo. Latias, Celebi, and Jellicent are all dead meet by the hands of Weavile. Both Latias and Celebi are killed easily by a a strong STAB Pursuit by Weavile. This combination is new to man people, venturing away from the typical Tyranitar combination. Weavile introduces a handy revenge killer with its great speed and access to Ice Shard. Weavile, while it seems like a strange Pokemon to use at the height of Keldeo's and Scizor's popularity, is actually a very solid Pokemon to use which Pursuits just as well as Tyranitar and Scizor. It doesn't need to use a Choice Scarf to be fast, and Weavile also checks prominent threats like Starmie, Thundurus-T, and Garchomp. Breloom and Scizor are both fine options to give a double priority core, completely limits the amount of setup the enemy can have. Fighting Gem Breloom does amazing once Latias and Celebi are dead thanks to the combination of Landorus-I and Weavile, which open up a clean path for it to sweep. Scizor is the glue of the team. U-Turn provides momentum, while Swords Dance gives it a reliable way to sweep the opponent late game. Overall this team completely revolutionized offense at the time, and showcases just how dangerous U-Turn Landorus-I could be when paired with a Pursuiter.
Yee's balanced team, The Way it Was, is a great representation of the late BW2 metagame. It features some interesting choices in team building such as Rest Jellicent and Choice Scarf Heatran, which were very rare and original threats at the time. Yee leads the team with the once popular LeadTerrakion who although was once amazing at its job, dwindled in success over time, as Yee even states itself. But it gets the job done and can prevent and lay hazards down quickly, which gives this team a good early game start. Skarmory, Jellicent, and Latias combine and create a solid defensive core which together have incredible defensive synergy. Skarmory provides Spikes obviously, and paired with Jellicent keeps them on the field. Skarmory for starters is very bulky physically and specially with a specially defensive based set, which allows it to be much more versatile when laying Spikes. Jellicent is also quite original with the use of Rest. Jellicent is a status magnet, and with Rest it allows it to do great against Tentacruel, random burns, Toxics, and Thunder Waves. Latias finishes up the core as a reliable way to combat Thundurus-T, Breloom, and Landorus-I. Tyranitar is included as a Scarf user to Pursuit check multiple threats like Gengar, Starmie, and Latias who otherwise would be problematic for Yee. Tyranitar patches up some of the most threatening Pokemon for the team, which helps keep the team in good condition. Scarf Heatran is the final Pokemon included on the team. It provides a reliable sun check which doesn't get beaten by Dugtrio, which gives the team some security against these team archetypes. Yee's team shows that Balance is still a very reliable style way into BW2, and that there is always room for creativity, even far into a Generation.
PDC's team is pretty unique in that it uses Sand as an actual weather to boost the teams sweepers, rather than to cancel out opposing weather. This is generally a sand bulky offense team, which aims in sweeping with either Terrakion, or Landorus-I. Tyranitar is a really cool lead for this team, as it can catch usual checks like Ferrothorn and Landorus-T off guard, as well as setting Stealth Rocks up. Both Gastrodon and Latias help a ton when facing other weather teams like Rain and Sun, and they are both surprisingly pretty effective offensive Pokemon, despite often being seen as defensive Pokemon. What's important to note is that both of these Pokemon have reliable recovery, allowing them to stay around for the majority of the match. Jirachi is really the only defensive Pokemon on the team, and it checks several threats for his team, often acting like the glue for his team. Terrakion is PDC's main win condition, as once it's checks and counters have been removed or weakened, it's pretty hard to stop Terrakion from sweeping. Finally, PDC chose Landorus-T as a revenge killer, mainly because of it's incredible base 101 speed, allowing Landorus to out speed Scarf Salamence, Scarf Jirachi, and +1 Volcarona. Landorus is also a great user of U-turn, and can act as a late game sweeper once Terrakion has weakened it's checks. This is an incredible sand based team which uses a very popular core.
GGolbat! - Ojama [August 2013]
Ojama's team is based around the deadly Double Dancer Landorus-T. The goal of this team is to remove all of Landorus-Therian's counters, keep rocks off the field and then proceed to start a deadly sweep with the Double Dance Landorus-Therian. Ojama does this by overwhelming the opponent with extremely hard hitters like Choice Specs Keldeo, Choice Banded Dragonite, and Swords Dance Garchomp, breaking Landorus-T's checks. Garchomp is generally the best lead, as aside from setting up Stealth Rocks early in the match, it also lures in Landorus-T checks like Ferrothorn and Mamoswine, allowing you to severely cripple them with boosted Earthquake's and Outrage's. Every offensive team like this often needs to carry a revenge killer, and Ojama made a great choice in using Jirachi, as it often acts like glue for the team. It's the only Dragon type resist, and revenge kills Pokemon that can potentially be very dangerous for offensive teams to face. Finally, Latios catches a lot of Pokemon off guard, thanks to the un-common yet brilliant Expert Belt set. Expert Belt Latios often lures in Scizor, Ferrothorn, and Skarmory, allowing you to easily dent them, allowing Landorus-T to sweep the opposing team easily. This is easily one of the best weatherless offensive teams, and it truely demonstrates how dangerous Double Dance Landorus-T can really be.
fairy user - dragonuser [September 2013]
It's in his name, dragonuser has one of the most interesting DragMag teams this Generation. The team takes advantage of the common Dragon checks and pressures them to the point where it renders them almost completely useless against this team. Aerodactyl is certainly one of the most interesting choices a DragMag team could make. Aerodactyl sets up Stealth Rock and provides a quick way to prevent Rocks from getting up on his side of the field. Common Aerodactyl counters like Scarf Jirachi get smashed by Magnezone, which usually scares them off from the possibility that they could be trapped early game. Kyurem-B and Dragonite are the main wallbreakers once Stealth Rock is one the field, and Steel-Types don't even have to be gone for them to do serious damage. Kyurem-B handles most steels pretty well by itself anyway, and Dragonite can break most of them up pretty well. Dragonite carries Earthquake as an easier way to defeat Heatran, Tentacruel, and Jirachi. Latios and Jirachi finish off the team's simple premise, by both being Scarfers. Scarfed Jirachi provides momentum and a way for the team to switch into Latios, Latias, and Gengar. Scarfed Latios, while it may seem like a strange choice, actually covers up the teams weaknesses to offense and sun. It provides an insane amount of speed, and a good way to nullify weather once the opponent thinks its safe to sacrifice their weather starter. The team has brought good success in World Cup and ladder. The next step up for DragMag, a much more modern version in the metagame we have now from the one we had back in 2011 with Enter The Dragon.
Drown All! - trickroom [May 2011]
With the introduction of monstrously powerful new threats such as Reshiram and Zekrom, many thought that rain teams would be less effective in BW. This is, however, far from the truth. Kyogre is still the most dominant force in Ubers. Drown All utilizes a few underrated movesets rarely seen in the tier. While the standard Lugia dies to status easily, trickroom's uncommon Lugia set with Substitute easily solves that issue. The uncommon Lustrous Orb Palkia also makes an appearance on this team as both a cleaner and Kyogre counter. Thanks to the solid presentation of the RMT, amazing synergy between all the team members, and massive effect this team had on the metagame, Drown All is very deservingly the first archived Uber team of Generation V.
Rock All! - shrang [June 2011]
In Rock All, Shrang proves that Sandstorm can be a viable weather option in the Uber tier. Tyranitar is used to set up Sandstorm and acts as the special wall of the team, while also weakening Choiced Kyogres locked into Ice Beam or Thunder. There are many Psychic-types in Ubers, and Tyranitar can handle nearly all of them. Excadrill is used for its excellent Rapid Spinning abilities, which lets Shrang's Ho-Oh come in and out of battle to continuously check Sun teams and Calm Mind Arceus formes without being inhibited by Stealth Rock. The team also uses the rare Choice Scarf Hydreigon as a revenge killer thanks to its Levitate ability letting it avoid damage from the omnipresent Spikes. Giratina's rare Calm Mind set makes an appearance, capable of easily sweeping several teams that think it is nothing more than set-up fodder. Arceus-Grass is used as the team's obligatory Kyogre counter as well as for Stealth Rock support. The team is well presented with lengthy descriptions and a comprehensible threat list, even featuring a Dream World variant of the team.
Iron Curtain - trickroom [January 2012]
Subfreeze - Jubilee [July 2011]
Jubilee's hail team is incredibly solid as hail teams go, making use of entry hazards and Hail to wear away the opponent's HP gradually. While synergy is normally a problem for Hail teams, Jubilee's team is definitely well equipped to deal with normally dangerous Fire-types and the like. Froslass is incredibly annoying when Hail is up, as it makes use of Substitute and Snow Cloak to fish for misses while it sets up Spikes with ease. If Froslass is annoying under Hail, you'd have to come up with a whole new word for Walrein, as it is incredibly hard to break through, especially with the Toxic Spikes support it recieves from Nidoqueen. "SubFreeze" is a perfect example of a great UU Hail team, and Jubilee was using it quite a while before Hail became popular.
kd24, in the face of overwhelming offense and racism, managed to produce this excellent stall team. Chansey and Ferroseed, a pair of fantastic NFEs, are put to excellent use on this team, and are as effective in UU as their evolved counterparts are in OU. During the era of this team, UU was inhabited by a surplus of powerful physical attackers such as Mamoswine, and kd24 makes these normally overwhelming Pokemon laughable with Reflect Suicune and two Intimidate Pokemon in Arcanine and Hitmontop. Mismagius rounds off the team with a very unique moveset, giving it the ability to act as a spinblocker, and a revenge killer for dangerous Pokemon like Alakazam.
"Won't You Stay?" is about as unique as unique teams go. For one, it contains a selection of Pokemon that were uncommon at the time, and as if that wasn't enough, they all use choice items. Hitmontop is the only Pokemon that is not choiced on the team, and it is there to provide Rapid Spin support, which this team desperately needs, as all the choice items will result in a lot of switching, as well as the fact that the team is terribly weak to Stealth Rock without Hitmontop. With a team as unique as this, it is evident that August put a great amount of thought and effort into crafting it, and this can also be seen in the little intricacies in the Pokemon's movesets, like Hidden Power Flying on Zapdos or Sunny Day on Yanmega, for example.
Snunch's team makes use of a very powerful threat in Moltres. The basic premise of the team is to get entry hazards up and then use Choice Specs Moltres' overwhelming power to roast the enemy. Moltres' flaws are overcome through skillful team building, as Blastoise provides Rapid Spin support to aid Moltres' crippling weakness to Stealth Rock, and Heracross can eliminate any special wall (Chansey) that can sponge its attacks (Chansey). Blazefire Saber is well built, powerful, and is a force to be reckoned with if used in capable hands; a perfect example of an offensive team in early UU.
Darmanation - Heysup [October 2011]
Darmanation is an excellently built team that focuses on spikestacking and luring Darmanitan's counters in, only to U-turn out to the appropriate Pokemon to beat that counter. Roserade and Rhyperior can handle anything that gives Darmanitan a hard time, namely bulky Water-types and Flash Fire Pokemon such as Chandelure and Arcanine. Froslass and Donphan are an incredibly efficient duo, and between them they have two types of entry hazards, a Rapid Spinner, and a spinblocker. The pair provide excellent support for the offensive core of the team. Life Orb Zapdos is an excellent attacker that maintains the offensive nature of this team, while also adding to the team's synergy.
This team did something very special for UU: it popularized offensive Porygon2. Before, people thought that all Porygon2 could do was switch into every attack that wasn't named Close Combat, but people began to realize that it could do all this while hitting extremely hard too. Download and a base 105 Special Attack stat allow Porygon2 to hit very hard with perfect coverage, while its amazing bulk, Recover and Eviolite ensure that it is almost never taken down easily. Porygon2 praising aside, this team is incredibly solid, containing a manner of bulky Pokemon, most of which hit incredibly hard. Gligar is the only member of this team that doesn't hit like a truck, although it is just as important, as it sets up Stealth Rock and keeps Heracross in line.
If someone were to ask what was considered to be a "standard" Sandstorm team in UU during the Hippowdon era, then fatty's Welcome to Jamrock would be the answer. It showcases how a well-built Sandstorm team can be frustratingly solid. The formula for building a Sandstorm team during this era was as follows: Hippowdon, Roserade, Stoutland, a bulky Water-type, a spinblocker, and a filler Pokemon. For the most part, nothing is unique about this team, although the clever use of Aerodactyl—which is normally seen merely as a suicide lead—to take advantage of the benefits of Sandstorm and shut down stall gives it an advantage over other typical Sandstorm teams during this era.
PK Gaming's team is a perfect example of an offensive team in the post Hippowdon era of UU. PK Gaming makes use of popular bulky Pokemon, namely Blastoise, Rhyperior and Roserade, although Life Orb Roserade is used, which was usually cast aside in favor of bulkier variants beforehand. This team also makes use of Choice Scarf Krookodile and Nasty Plot Mew; two underrated Pokemon that don't get enough usage in UU. The whole premise of this team was to show that Life Orb Darmanitan should definitely not be overlooked in favor of faster Choice Scarf variants, and "Straw Hat Pirates" certainly delivers.
This impressive offensive team peaked in the final days of Deoxys-D's reign in the UU tier. Deoxys-D leads off by providing the crucial entry hazards that make any offensive team's job easier. Davy Jones then uses five extremely powerful Pokemon to completely overwhelm the opposition. Substitute Chandelure ensures that Deoxys-D's hazards can't be spun away; he may die in the process of protecting the hazards, but he'll definitely leave a dent before he goes thanks to his base 145 SpAtk. Choice Band Heracross is the main wallbreaker of the team while Choice Scarf Flygon is used to revenge kill any speedy enemies. Davy Jones' main offensive duo is the Calm Minding pair of Suicune and Raikou; they set up on each others' counters and are capable of finishing off any team.
Nuke Em - fatty [June 2012]
Strobe - kokoloko [October 2012]
Ultimate Balance is a team that demonstrates some of the reasons Cresselia and Bug-types dominated the early RU metagame. Substitute + Calm Mind Cresselia was the dynamic setup sweeper of the metagame, kept in check by the two Bug-types—Yanmega and Venomoth—and the rare Steel-types with enough offenses to bust through Cresselia. Bulky Quiver Dance Venomoth was a rarer approach this team wildly popularized, sweeping unprepared teams with ease. Omastar completes the triumvirate of setup sweepers: if any of them are given a free turn, you're in for a tough ride. In order to support the sweepers, Thunder Wave Rotom-S is a great choice to buy free turns and slow down the opposing team, all the while checking the Bug-types that threatened Cresselia. Ferroseed provides Stealth Rock, and serves as the main check to opposing rain teams. Hariyama functions as the team's main revenge killer and wallbreaker. As with most other teams in a developing tier, this team has multiple flaws: the teams best check to opposing Cresselia was Cresselia itself, never a guarantee of success. Still, it managed to overwhelm the opponent with superior offenses while covering the main threats.
Infinity - Windsong [October 2011]
Infinity was a metagame-defining team that introduced the concept of trapping to RU. With this team, Windsong used Dugtrio and Wynaut to trap and eliminate opposing threats to the team. This strategy, in tandem with the strongest special attackers in the tier, proved to be deadly. Porygon-Z and Alakazam were two of the hardest Pokemon to counter, and with Dugtrio and Wynaut combining to remove those counters, this pairing annihilated any team with shocking ease. The two semi-bulky Pokemon on the team, Lilligant and Lanturn, round off the team’s synergy by providing both key resistances and team support. Lilligant is the answer to sun teams, and is also able to put an opposing Pokemon to sleep which makes it even more difficult to face this team. Lanturn handles rain and hail, also supporting the team with Heal Bell and Thunder Wave. Furthermore, Volt Switch allows Dugtrio or Wynaut to switch in freely, trapping whatever comes in. Infinity was no doubt one of the toughest teams to play against, and Windsong successfully made great use of the most powerful threats in RU.
Save the World was one of the most metagame defining teams of early-RU, with Pearl utilising the deadly combination of Moltres alongside Spikes to rampage through opponents. With Spikes support, not even Slowking, the best special wall in the tier, is capable of countering Moltres, and the rest of the team is based around supporting this sweep. Claydol was one of the most effective Rapid Spinners, removing the Stealth Rocks that plagued Moltres while also setting Rock itself. Ferroseed supplied the necessary Spiking abilities Moltres required, and alongside the spinblocking abilities of Dusknoir created a dangerous situation for the opponent. Lanturn fit into the team as a cleric, a catch-all tank, and mostly importantly a Volt Switch user, which provided plenty of opportunities for Moltres to switch in safely after the slow switch. With Scarf Drapion removing Rotom, one of the few checks to Moltres, the fiery bird was free to rampage. Save the World was one of the most successful RU teams ever, winning the first RU tournament, and is more than deserving of a place in the archives.
qht - Nails [December 2011]
This team is an excellent example of a balanced RU team, being the best of its time. This team effectively covered most of the prominent threats in the RU metagame by utilizing a core consisting of Gligar and Qwilfish to decimate opposing physical attackers and to set up entry hazards. Nails used Rotom as the designated spinblocker, popularizing the SubWisp set. In combination with the rather unique defensive core, the offensive core, consisting of Bulk Up Gallade and Substitute + Calm Mind Uxie, was successfully able to set up on the majority of the metagame and provide the team with a sweep. Nails rounds off the team with the final Pokemon, Krookodile, who patches up the remaining holes by serving as a revenge killer and late-game sweeper. All in all, qht defined balance teams in the RU metagame and popularized the playstyle.
Choice teams have been a somewhat rare sight since the DPP age. While some people talk about how strong their attacks are, and therefore, how tough to deal with the teams are, others say that they are too reliant on prediction, and that a mistake will usually cost you a Pokemon. In this RMT, Ginku showcases one of the most successful RU teams in SPL, going undefeated. The team uses a very famous defensive core in Slowking and Tangrowth, and a good momentum keeper in Rotom-C to help ease prediction and make sure that the player has a somewhat bigger margin for mistakes. The Regenerator Core also hits very hard on the special side of the spectrum, with Slowking's Psyshock knocking out one of the best special walls in RU—Roselia. On the physical side, Choice Band Entei and Aggron can annihilate almost everything between them with Flare Blitz and Head Smash alone. Entei's ExtremeSpeed is also very useful for revenge killing purposes, removing some pressure from the most controversial member of the team: Choice Scarf Haunter, whose main purpose is to deal with Omastar, which would otherwise be very annoying.
ShakeItUp's Final Attack Orders was an extremely powerful heavy offense team during its time, showcasing just how deadly Heavy Offense could be in RU. Uxie starts off the team by setting up Light Screen, Reflect, and Stealth Rock for ShakeItUp's team, giving him a strong start right off the bat. From there, ShakeItUp has five incredibly lethal set-up sweepers at his disposal: Belly Drum Linoone, Shell Smash Omastar, Shift Gear Klinklang, Swords Dance Drapion, and Offensive Trick Room Cofagrigus. Belly Drum Linoone is the star of this team, and while it was a very underrated sweeper at the time, ShakeItUp shows just how deadly it can be. With both screens up, Linoone had no problem setting up a Belly Drum, and it could easily tear through teams with its +6 STAB Extremespeeds. To compliment Linoone, ShakeItUp uses the increasingly common Offensive Trick Room Cofagrigus set, which sets up on almost all of Linoone's checks and counters, and tears through teams at +2 with Trick Room up. To compliment these two Pokemon, ShakeItUp uses Shell Smash Omastar as a secondary special sweeper, as well as Swords Dance Drapion, whose main purpose was to absorb Toxic Spikes while posing a significant offensive presence, and Substitute + Shift Gear Klinklang, which helps this team deal with Pokemon with Substitute. After this team was posted, Linoone saw a significant rise in popularity, almost rising to RU at one point, while Offensive Trick Room Cofagrigus soared to #3, then #1 once Honchkrow and Claydol moved up to UU, showing just how influential this team was.
Daylight - Zebraiken [March 2012]
Daylight was a incredibly metagame-defining team that revived a forgotten strategy in RU - Spikestacking with two Ghosts - and easily dominated the ladder upon its debut. Zebraiken starts off the team with Smeargle, an underrated lead at the time, which could easily get at least one layer of Stealth Rock, as well as one or more layers of Spikes against most teams. From there, Zebraiken ensures that the team's entry hazards will basically never be spun away by pairing Smeargle with two durable Ghost-types in Offensive Trick Room Cofagrigus and SubWisp Rotom. Between the two of them, they successfully prevented every single common Rapid Spinner from spinning, bar Cryogonal, who could be easily taken advantage of by the rest of Zebraiken's team. The rest of Daylight consists of two "glue" Pokemon in Hitmonchan and Bouffalant, the former checking fast sweepers with Mach Punch while posing a strong offensive threat, and the latter stopping pesky Grass-types like Lilligant from ripping through Zebraiken's team, while hitting things hard with its powerful Head Charges. All of these Pokemon are designed to help Zebraiken's last Pokemon, Sharpedo, successfully sweep. With Stealth Rock and Spikes up, Sharpedo suddenly becomes absurdly difficult to wall, and thanks to Speed Boost, it could easily rip through offensive teams. While Sharpedo moved up to UU soon after this team was posted, this team was responsible for popularizing Smeargle, who became the go-to entry hazard layer for most offensive teams.
Dancing Free - SilentVerse [March 2012]
Foundations - SilentVerse and DittoCrow [June 2012]
Storm - complete legitimacy [July 2012]
My Love - Windsong [November 2012]
Pester Ball - Honko [November 2012]
Blue Hail - DittoCrow [February 2013]
Goodbye - Zebraiken [December 2011]
One of only two archived teams from the earliest NU metagame, Zebraiken's team is tailored a lot more to the Round 0 NU metagame than Hot N Cold's. It checked nearly every prominent threat through the defensive combination of Lanturn, Misdreavus, and Camerupt, while Smeargle set up entry hazards to punish teams that needed to switch frequently to break through the core. Goodbye popularized hazard-setting Smeargle in NU and encouraged its use in RU and up - while it was introduced in one of Kevin Garrett's DPP OU teams, Smeargle was only occasionally used as a Baton Passer in the fifth gen until this team proved it could consistently get up multiple layers and put a Pokemon to sleep in a match. This was an enormous advantage to have in a tier with very few spinners, and if Goodbye could get a layer of Spikes and Stealth Rock up, it was almost impossible to stop.
Klinklang and Swellow round off the team, with the former serving as a bulky booster against defensive threats and the latter cleaning up teams after they have been worn down by Stealth Rock and Spikes. The threat list that Zebraiken created is also a very good picture of the metagame at the time, highlighting a number of important threats while also noting the various uncommon weaknesses of the team, and several underrated NU Pokemon. While Zebraiken's team would be hard-pressed to deal with NU threats that have become more popular throughout the ages, like Emboar and Samurott, it was clearly a top team of the age and easily proved its worth by peaking the NU ladder multiple times on multiple accounts.
Blue Hell - Hot N Cold [January 2012]
The earliest NU metagame was a glob of many different playstyles and Pokemon, and Hot N Cold managed to find one of the most consistent strategies available by using a Hail-based team. Hail was actually severely underrated at the time, and it's hard to imagine that it wasn't a strategy that everyone used frequently. While Snover is the weakest link of the team, it was also the most important - there have never been any other permanent weather starters in NU, so if it sees the battle even for a moment, it's virtually impossible to slow down Hot N Cold's Blizzard spammers and Substitute + Protect users. Cryogonal was the best spinner in NU and was absolutely necessary for the team, since Stealth Rock and Toxic Spikes could easily stall his strategy otherwise.
While Substitute + Protect Walrein has been around for some time, Hot N Cold was the first to popularize Substitute + Protect Glaceon, which saw brief use about a year later when Snover dropped back into NU. The two in combination wore down nearly every kind of team, eliminating powerful threats through hail damage and repeated Blizzards. Duosion served as a strong glue, being immune to the hail and checking powerful Pokemon such as Sawk. Rotom-Frost was the last Pokemon slipped in, acting as a safety net in case anything beat out Walrein or Glaceon and powering through offensive threats with its two strong STABs. Blue Hell was one of the scariest teams to face in the early NU metagame thanks to its unreal consistency against any playstyle and overall effectiveness.
Too Many Mices shows that you should never judge a book by its cover. This was one of the scariest teams in its era, even going to the point where people brought Pokemon specifically to counter it! Amarillo used a peculiar but devastating Butterfree set to cripple the opposing team with Sleep and Paralysis. Tailwind and U-turn make sure Too Many Mices keeps up the momentum early on in the match. Golem is Amarillo's Stealth Rock setter and bird check, and the combination of Normal Gem and Explosion often meant death for the opponent's Pokemon. Pikachu is Amarillo's strangely effective wallbreaker, forcing a surprising amount of switches. The electric mouse could often get a Substitute up and beat many of Gorebyss and Raticate's counters in the process. Raticate and Dodrio were Amarillo's offensive backbone. Because they share many of the same counters, one could wear down the other's checks and open up a hole for a clean sweep. Dodrio was also Amarillo's revenge killer, outspeeding the entire metagame and packing quite a punch. Lastly, Gorebyss was Amarillo's late game sweeper. Gorebyss could easily break through Dodrio and Raticate's counters. At the time nobody really prepared for Gorebyss, many of its viable counters at the time couldnt stand the power boost given by Life Orb, meaning Gorebyss could often sweep the opponents team clean. Too Many Mices was one of the most successful troll teams of its time, and is not to be underestimated.
While other stall variants surfaced during early NU, there were none other like VN.'s Neon Hail Mary. Fresh metagames are generally very offensive in the beginning because nobody is too sure what the strongest threats are and what the most important defensive Pokemon are to use, but VN. put together a combination of Pokemon that beat just about everything. Tangela and Lickilicky form an iconic core that feels very similar to the famous SkarmBliss - dominant physical wall paired alongside a specially defensive pink blob that passes Wishes around. Hypno was an incredibly underrated choice, but VN. found a Pokemon that would patch up his weaknesses to Duosion and Sleep Powder-using Grass-types while also serving an important role to his team.
However, Neon Hail Mary had a very limited palette of Rapid Spinners to choose from, with only a handful of fully evolved Pokemon and a couple of viable NFEs. Tentacool was a very interesting choice, and fit VN.'s team very well thanks to his two Wish passers that could give Tentacool some form of recovery. It could also check Gorebyss, something no other Rapid Spinner could do. Since VN.'s choice of physical wall was weak to Flying-type moves, he added Probopass as his Stealth Rock user and check to dangerous threats like Braviary. Quagsire filled the last slot, dealing with all bulky boosters like Swords Dance Samurott and Carracosta. VN.'s team was the picture of stall in early NU, and was the basis for future strides in stall teams when the metagame shifted.
'Underrated' is an excellent word to describe Molk's ladder-topping RMT. It manages to use some interesting sets to great effect, and is the team responsible for the rise of Bulk Up Scraggy, once thought to be completely ineffective. Molk utilizes an excellent defensive FWG core along with Stealth Rock support to wear down the opposing team. Quagsire and Tangela stop every major physical attacker in the NU metagame, while Flareon, an uncommon sigh even now, is used to great effect as a special wall, as well as a cleric with Heal Bell. Jynx is also used in an uncommon way here, as a Choice Scarf revenge killer with the ability to outspeed almost the entire relevant metagame. Overall, while not the most defining team of the early NU metagame, Molk used the little lizard that could to prove, once and for all, that surprising Pokemon can work very effectively.
FLCL's Fiery Bombardment showcased the absolute dominance that Magmortar had in the NU metagame during its short stay. Paired with Marowak, the two could cripple or just blast through defensive teams, while the remainder of the team served to check offensive teams and put Marowak and Magmortar in good positions to devastate defensive cores. Magmortar was the centerpiece of the team, consistently netting several kills in each battle thanks to its unmatched power. Marowak served an important role in preventing Stealth Rock; FLCL was the first to popularize Bonemerang Marowak, which could cleanly OHKO Golem and other popular SR leads through Sturdy. It does have exploitable weaknesses to bulky Grass-types, but FLCL could easily overcome that with smart play of Magmortar.
Vileplume is one of the most important members, checking powerful Water-types for Fiery Bombardment's main offensive weapons. Without Vileplume, many dangerous boosters like Swords Dance Samurott would just run through FLCL's team. Scarf Rotom-Frost and Life Orb Skuntank put a lot of pressure on offensive teams, being able to pin down threats like fast Water-types, Gardevoir, and Musharna and scare them out or outright KO them. Armaldo covers everything else, giving FLCL a Stealth Rock user while also providing Rapid Spin support and a check to Swellow. FLCL's Fiery Bombardment was one of the best teams to exploit Magmortar in the early NU era, and achieved great success on the ladder.
No Luck Involved's The Bird in Disguise is one of the most innovative teams to ever grace the BW NU tier. Almost every single set in NLI's team became a standard set or variant, and all of them were very effective individually. Unburden Drifblim variants skyrocketed in popularity after NLI showed how easily it can dismantle offensive and defensive teams alike with a combination of speed, Will-O-Wisp, and Disable (or Destiny Bond). As the team's namesake, Drifblim whittled down the Pokemon that would normally deal with the rest of NLI's team - for example, Drifblim would lure in Regirock on the Acrobatics, then proceed to burn it and Disable its Rock-type move, wearing it down to the point that Swellow could punch through it in the end-game.
Fast trapper Probopass was unheard of before The Bird in Disguise, but it pulled its weight very well in NLI's team by trapping Bastiodon and other Probopass, two of the more obnoxious threats to Drifblim and Swellow. Between Garbodor and Probopass, both kinds of hazards were covered and the duo handled the majority of Pokemon on bulky teams, such as Alomomola. Taunt Calm Mind Serperior was another underrated creation never seen before, and became one of Serperior's best sets through the entirety of the BW NU tier, proving how anti-meta Serperior had been all along. It also checked opposing Swords Dance Samurott and Calm Mind Musharna, keeping them from nabbing a boost and running through NLI's team.
Samurott and Swellow clean up the pieces left after Probopass and Garbodor get up their hazards and Drifblim does its job wearing down the opposing team's defensive core. There have been very few teams that are so effective and innovative as The Bird in Disguise - it's a testament to the quality of this team that every set lived on and became standard for the remainder of the metagame.
One of the fifth generation's defining attributes was the dominance of Dragon-types. Garchomp, Salamence, Kyurem-Black, and virtually every Dragon-type you can think of sat atop the throne of OU. Needless to say, that means that aaaaall the way down in NU, you could count all of the usable Dragon-types on one hand (three fingers, maybe?). ebeast's team showcases the only fully-evolved Dragon-type in NU ever, and is a fine team at that.
Cloudy with a chance of Draco Spam capitalized on the lack of Steel-types in NU by throwing out sneakily strong Draco Meteors from Choice Specs Altaria. Altaria as a Pokemon was a rather anti-metagame choice, checking loads of powerful threats like Swords Dance Samurott, and ebeast popularized the Choice Specs set with this team. The team also features Choice Band Emboar, and compliments the pair of wallbreakers with Spikes from Cacturne. SD Samurott, Substitute + Disable Haunter, and Probopass finish off the team, and serve mostly to check various threats of the metagame and clean up after Emboar and Altaria smash through defensive cores. While ebeast's team didn't peak the ladder or have significant tournament success, it showed that a little innovation can go a long way, and was one of the defining bulky offense builds of the era.
MMF's King for a Day is an early incarnation of what is often referred to as Normal spam, which has since grown into one of the most dominant team styles in the metagame. The two Normal-types on MMF's team work in tandem with one another, wearing down the few checks that the other has and clearing the way for a sweep. Zangoose's Dream World ability Toxic Boost had just been released, and King for a Day proved how effortlessly strong it is, 2HKOing all but the physically bulkiest Pokemon in the game without needing a boost. Kangaskhan was criminally underused at this point in the metagame, and MMF's team pulled it into the spotlight by proving it could be a fantastic check to all forms of offense thanks to its unique ability and priority (especially weather, which has consistently been one of the scariest teamstyles in NU).
The rest of the team is a bulky defensive core that help set the stage for Kangaskhan and Zangoose to run through opposing teams. King for a Day is the first in a string of teams in the RMT Archive that sits on Gurdurr as an offensive pivot and check to opposing Normal-types, which justifies its immense popularity on bulkier teams. It's also the only NU team in the archive to feature Amoonguss, and takes advantage of Regenerator and Amoonguss's potential as a pivot by slapping a Life Orb onto it, making it actually threatening offensively. Musharna and Regirock wrap up the team, checking a plethora of threats like Sawk and Charizard, respectively. King for a Day was one of the scariest teams to face back in the day, with a defensive core that's hard to punch through and an offensive duo that has no trouble punching back, and certainly deserves its place in the archive.
Volcanic Eruption was one of the teams FLCL rode to success in NU Open I, and is a perfect indicator of the metagame at the time of his victory. Bulky offense was so popular during this time that FLCL could run a Pokemon that failed to outrun base 80 Speed Pokemon even at +2, and still have great success. His use of Shell Smash Torkoal is the perfect example of taking an underrated, unexpected threat and making it work very well for your team; in fact, even if the opponent knew exactly what set Torkoal was, it was genuinely hard to prevent it from accomplishing its goal (whether spinning or smashing) because of the way FLCL's team was set up.
Volcanic Eruption is built around a balanced core that checks everything that the metagame could possibly throw at it. Gurdurr, Skuntank, and Ludicolo all serve as bulkier pivots in one way or another, and all three check vital threats such as Kangaskhan, Musharna, and Samurott. Ludicolo is particularly dangerous, because if it gets a single free turn it can turn a match on its head. Choice Scarf Rotom-S serves to check Flying-types that would run through the other three, and Golurk sets Stealth Rock while providing a number of useful immunities. The success of Volcanic Eruption through NU Open I proves how consistent at winning it was, and while the oddball choice of Shell Smash Torkoal could seem really strange to an outsider, FLCL makes it click.
The Heist - Zebraiken [November 2012]
While it can't be said to have the same tournament success as FLCL's Volcanic Eruption (considering that The Heist lost to it in the finals of NU Open I), Zebraiken's The Heist was an exemplary team that featured and popularized a very dominant set in Bulk Up Braviary. The Heist also has a stellar format, with a well-documented teambuilding process and threat list that almost act as a time capsule back to the metagame when the team was built, and was heralded as one of the most thorough and iconic RMTs as the time.
The Heist actually bears a lot of similarities to Volcanic Eruption: it carries the same popular bulky offense core that is seen in Volcanic Eruption (Gurdurr / Skuntank / Ludicolo); it was built around an innovative threat that steamrolls basic bulky offense (Bulk Up Braviary), and it had significant tournament success. Despite similarities, The Heist plays very differently to Volcanic Eruption because of a focus on stacking hazards and relying on bulk to handle threats, rather than outright revenging them.
The real power behind this team was the might of Bulk Up Braviary and how it could steamroll through most bulky offense teams. Very little could break it given a boost, and it could even PP stall Rock Slides and Stone Edges of bulky Rock-types so it couldn't even be slowed down. The Heist is a well-built and beautifully displayed team that was the face of the metagame for some time.
Frozen Pork - FLCL [December 2012]
Hail didn't manage to stay in NU for longer than a month, but FLCL put together a hail team that stepped away from traditional hail stall and performed very well. Many hail abusers, such as Glaceon, Rotom-F, and Walrein were all found in NU because Snow Warning had been previously banned by UU, so Snover dropping into NU was a very drastic change of pace. FLCL took this to the fullest by pairing Substitute + Pain Split Rotom-Frost with Choice Band Emboar, decimating virtually every defensive core between the two and creating the namesake of his team.
As for the rest? Piloswine was the best Stealth Rock user in the hail era, being one of only a handful that could consistently handle opposing Rotom-F, Glaceon, and friends. Duosion was fitted in over the bulky offense staple Musharna, since it had similar bulk, was immune to hail, and also kept its full recovery (Moonlight is cut to 33% recovery in hail). Snover is a rather necessary inclusion to a hail team and could actually check a number of dangerous threats to FLCL's team, such as Ludicolo, while Cinccino wraps up the team by serving as a very fast Choice Scarf user and performing admirably with hail support. Despite being short-lived because Snover was only around in NU for a month or so, FLCL's frozen pork was a trendsetter that broke traditional expectations of hail in just about every way.
Evioliters - ebeast [March 2013]
by ebeast captures the change in dynamic of stall teams since the Neon Hail Mary. By the time was created, Alomomola and Roselia became the go-to stall core to check a plethora of offensive threats and set up hazards. In fact, they complement each other so well that you'd be hard-pressed to find any successful NU stall that doesn't have the pair.
Unlike VN.'s Neon Hail Mary, doesn't worry about trying to fit in one of NU's subpar Rapid Spin users; instead, it relies mostly on passing Wishes from Alomomola to circumvent the extra damage (plus, opposing hazard users weren't too common at the time!). Zweilous and Musharna help separate ebeast's unique stall team even further from the competition - Musharna serves as ebeast's win condition and provides Heal Bell support, both of which a lot of other stall builds struggle to fit in, while Zweilous is a phazing platform that checks a lot of special threats that Roselia and Misdreavus struggle with, like CM Musharna.
Misdreavus and Metang clean up shop, with the former helping handle other bulky teams with Taunt + Will-O-Wisp and acting as a spinblocker, while Metang filled the very important niche of "answer to Bulk Up Braviary". After The Heist (above), BU Braviary became a rather popular set that dismantled teams like ebeast's, so Psych Up was placed on Metang in order to help check it better. was a solid team that explored a relatively forgotten playstyle, reminding the rest of the NU metagame that stall was still around and just as strong as ever.
Copacabana - Hot N Cold [May 2013]
FLCL's a cat is fine too is one of the few teams in existence that can be said to have spurred an entire suspect process on its own. a cat is fine too aims to abuse mechanics that allow Liepard to have a priority Whirlwind at the beginning of every turn, racking up entry hazard damage until it can just clean up the remainder of the team since nothing can stop Liepard once it gets going.
It works like this: Liepard gets Prankster Assist, which calls a random move that a teammate knows and uses it. Nothing on FLCL's team can be called by Assist (moves like Transform or Protect will never be called by it) except Whirlwind, so every time Liepard uses Assist, it will use Whirlwind. The composition of the rest of the team is rather clever, because it uses a relatively short list of usable moves to set Stealth Rock (through Ditto), get rid of Leftovers and deal with Regenerator Pokemon (Arbok, Lopunny), and deal with a last Pokemon that Liepard can no longer phaze or beat on its own (Drifblim).
The team's success speaks for itself; given smart play, it ran through virtually every team that didn't use Cradily with ease, and had people resorting to sets like Magic Coat Golurk to have a chance at stopping it. It also singlehandedly inspired the Assist + Prankster ban, which is definitely nothing to sneeze at. There's no other team out there as wacky and successful as FLCL's a cat is fine too.
Little Cup - Elevator Music [July 2011]
"Little Cup" was an incredibly successful team which was made during an era of very dangerous Pokemon such as Meditite, Misdreavus, Gligar and Dragon Dance Scraggy. It uses a four Pokemon core that allows him to deal with these top threats. Not only does this team cover all of the dangerous threats in Little Cup, but it is well equipped for every style of play, too. The aim of the team is to aquire residual damage over time with entry hazards supplied by Dwebble, and Hail provided by Snover. Overall, Elevator Music's is one of the most well-built teams around, and is a perfect example of a successful team during an era of very powerful Pokemon.
Little by Little is a good example of team containing the top threats in LC. Dragon Dance Scraggy and Drifloon with Unburden have the potential to sweep a lot of unprepared teams. The team also features Bronzor and Munchlax to check the majority of offensive threats out there. Mienfoo is another great sweeper and is actually pretty bulky with the Eviolite attached. It's here to keep the pressure up and of course to have answer for opposing Scraggy. All these pokemon are also supported by Rapid Spin Staryu who keeps hazards of the field.
Furai's team is another excellent example of a bulky offensive team in the LC tier. The idea here is to sweep with the underrated Larvesta but the other parts of the combo; Chinchou and Mienfoo can do the same thing. Choice Scarf Mienfoo makes a great late-game sweeper but it also serves as an emergency counter for the dangerous DD Scraggy. This team also utilizes Croagunk who provides useful priority to keep threats at bay while to a lesser extent it also absorbs Toxic Spikes which can stand in the way of a sweep. Bronzor keeps Drilbur and Brave Bird spammers in check and Staryu is here to provide Rapid Spin for Larvesta.
We Like Pi! - Ray Jay [April 2012]
LC Rising - iss [August 2012]
◕‿◕ - muffinhead [November 2011]
muffinhead paints a picture of what the VGC 2012 environment was like shortly after the rule set's creation back in November of 2011. ◕‿◕ is a near standard goodstuffs team for its time with plenty of options at hand. The star players of the team are Cresselia and Garchomp, still a common and effective core by today's standards. However, muffinhead innovates the core with a few newoptions such as using Thunder Wave over Icy Wind for better speed control versus rain and Substitue over Rock Slide on Garchomp to take advantage of its fantastic defensive typing. Some of muffinhead's more unconventional choices like Tentacruel and Breloom have been eclipsed as the metagame has progressed, but are an interesting glimpse into what was viable early on. On a similar note, it's interesting to see what muffinhead accesses as threats in team archetypes with currently rarely seen Pokemon like Typhlosion and Yanmega included.