Tyranitar is the most powerful Pokemon in the ADV OU metagame. With the ability to both hit from behind bulky Substitutes and sweep with Dragon Dance, it is the one of the toughest threats to counter. Sand Stream negates Leftovers recovery for a lot of Pokemon too, which makes Milotic and Suicune less reliable switch-ins. Unlike Salamence, it can even stay in on bulky Water-types if need be to land a finishing blow.
Every ADV OU team must be able to deal with this Tyranitar, as it is one of the most threatening sweepers in the metagame. Setting up Dragon Dance as soon as you switch Tyranitar in early-game is foolish; it should always test the waters first by attacking before attempting to set up. This allows Tyranitar to weaken the opponent's Swampert or Suicune to the point where Tyranitar can take it out with a boosted attack the next time it switches in.
The final moveslot is mainly for additional coverage. Hidden Power Bug hits Celebi and Claydol, two Pokemon that might try to counter Tyranitar. Taunt stops Skarmory and other phazers from roaring Tyranitar out or healing, allowing Tyranitar to slowly wear them down overtime. When paired with Spikes, Taunting switch-ins such as Milotic can devastate a team.Team Options & Additional Comments >>>
STAB Pursuit, a diverse movepool, and the stats to back it up make Tyranitar a premier wallbreaker in ADV OU. This set utilizes Tyranitar's special moves to assist in taking down more defensive teams while simultaneously threatening unprepared offensive teams. One of the major selling points of this set is its ability to effectively trap and kill Gengar with Pursuit. Gengar's only way to damage Tyranitar usually lies in Giga Drain and Will-O-Wisp, both of which this Tyranitar can brush off. With Gengar down, spinning becomes much easier, which is why this set is more effective when paired with a Rapid Spin user.
Fire Blast wears down Skarmory, Forretress, and other Steel-types. With the threat and rising usage of special Tyranitar, these Pokemon might be wary about staying in. While this might limit the amount of kills you get with Tyranitar, keeping Spikes users at bay is never a bad idea and allows Tyranitar to spam Rock Slide more freely. Fire Blast may also be your strongest move in general at times. If the accuracy is a concern, Flamethrower can be used over Fire Blast. Hidden Power Grass allows Tyranitar to take down one of ADV's most heralded Pokemon, Swampert. It pairs well with Fire Blast, providing a sense of offense versus opposing Tyranitar and other bulky Water-types. On more offensive teams, Hidden Power Grass is a great way to lure in opposing Swampert and take them down. Rock Slide is generally more common in the last slot because of Tyranitar's phenomenal Attack and for the ability to hit threats such as Blissey, Zapdos, and Salamence. However, Ice Beam allows Tyranitar to keep its Special Defense intact by switching to a Modest nature while giving it more Special Attack to play with. Ice Beam allows Tyranitar to take on Flygon, Zapdos, and Salamence while also providing a guaranteed OHKO on Dugtrio.
188 HP EVs allow Tyranitar to survive Dugtrio's Earthquake and give Tyranitar the bulk to successfully threaten defensive Pokemon that have decent Attack. The Speed EVs outspeed 4 Speed Skarmory, allowing Tyranitar to Fire Blast before they have a chance to use Spikes. The rest is placed into Special Attack to make sure Tyranitar finishes the job.
With massive Attack and a Speed stat hovering just above that of most bulky Water-types, Choice Band Tyranitar is very hard to switch into. The most common Tyranitar counter, Swampert, takes as much as 70% from Focus Punch on the switch. Milotic shouldn't even think about coming in, as it stands a good chance of getting 2HKOed by Rock Slide. Hidden Power Bug is useful in the last moveslot to kill Celebi and heavily weakened Claydol.
As Choice Band Tyranitar can take out its typical counters with sheer power, Tyranitar's standard switch-ins need to be more wary in handling it. Prediction is key both in defeating and using this Tyranitar, as one wrong move could put either player in a bad situation.
The EV spread and nature are straightforward and enable this set to hit as hard and fast as possible. As this Tyranitar punishes switching so heavily with its immense power, Spikes can be a useful asset to your team.
This is a popular Tyranitar set; it is bulky and has the ability to readily switch in and deal huge amounts of damage on the switch. As long as Tyranitar avoids getting hit by status, it can switch in on Blissey and Normal-type moves fairly well. Once safely on the battlefield, choose to either set up a Substitute to ease prediction or Focus Punch right off the bat for immense damage. Using Focus Punch immediately against a foe such as Blissey is a good idea because you won't have to waste Tyranitar's precious HP on a Substitute.
The choice between Hidden Power Bug and Hidden Power Grass depends on what your team has greater issues with. If your team lacks Spikes or a way to threaten bulky Water-types, then Hidden Power Grass is the better option for dealing with Swampert. However, if Swampert is not a problem, Hidden Power Bug eliminates Celebi, which otherwise sets up on Tyranitar.
An Adamant nature boosts Attack without reducing Tyranitar's Speed but reduces the impact of Hidden Power Grass. Brave is quite the opposite, as it reduces Tyranitar's Speed but maintains Hidden Power's strength. Ultimately, the choice comes down to how powerful you need Tyranitar's Hidden Power to be to cover specific opposing Pokemon.
Curse is usually inferior to Dragon Dance, but if used, such a Tyranitar variant should use a specially defensive EV spread to set up and become a mixed tank. Double-Edge is an option as a fourth move on the Dragon Dance set; it is stronger than STAB Rock Slide and will hit many threats, such as Flygon, Claydol, and Swampert, for heavy damage. Toxic and Thunder Wave are great all-purpose status-inducing moves, but Tyranitar is usually better off attacking; the former is, however, noteworthy for its ability to wear down many of Tyranitar's counters.
Classic sets like Tyraniboah and RestTalk are usable but not very effective in current ADV. Tyraniboah is a Substitute set with special attacks and Focus Punch, working similar to how the current special set works but focusing more on killing Blissey and opposing Tyranitar. RestTalk gives Tyranitar some longevity but doesn't output much damage.
Checks and Counters
Tyranitar's large movepool makes it difficult to counter effectively. Swampert is the best bet here, as it is able to switch in on and scare away all Tyranitar sets barring ones with Hidden Power Grass. Suicune is bulkier but has the disadvantage of having Leftovers recovery canceled in sand.
Flygon can handle the Dragon Dance set but should watch out for Ice Beam. Claydol is bulkier but must watch out for Hidden Power Bug. Similarly, Celebi can force Tyranitar out if it lacks Hidden Power Bug. Dugtrio deserves a mention, as it can trap Tyranitar, outspeed it even after a Dragon Dance, and swiftly OHKO it. This is a viable strategy to use if your team consists mostly of offensive Pokemon and you don't want to slow down the pace of the game, but be wary that Dugtrio cannot switch into Tyranitar at all.