Hello, my name is KnightoftheWind and this is the team I have been using in the current Suspect metagame thus far. It's a fun team to use, and I've managed to hit the leaderboard with it. The general aim of the team is to maintain offensive pressure against offensive and stall teams alike, whilst still being able to endure offensive assaults. In other words, it's a bulky offense team :/. I made this team shortly after I had played with another team for a while which I had deemed terrible and started from scratch.
I first started out by thinking of something to base my hopeful sweep on, since I am an offensive player at heart. It didn't take long for me to decide on a Swords Dance Lucario. I had used it on my previous Suspect team, and on many other teams beforehand, so it's something that I am well familiar with. And since Salamence had left the metagame, it gave Lucario the oppurtunity to cause even more havoc. So onto the team it goes.
An in depth view of the team and its members:
Heatran (M) @ Shuca Berry
Ability: Flash Fire
EVs: 4 Atk / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Naive nature (+Spe, -SpD)
- Stealth Rock
- Fire Blast
- Earth Power
Intro to the set:
Lead Heatran was probably my best choice to lead off the team. This is mainly because of how Heatran threatens common stall leads such as Skarmory and Forretress. This is important because all my Pokemon with the exception of Gengar are vulnerable to Spikes. If I can prevent Spikes being set-up on me early on, I'll won't have worry too much about residual damage overwhelming me. Since all my Pokemon can 2HKO Skarmory and Forretress, this isn't hard to accomplish.
Aside from that, Heatran is a nice reliable lead in general, beating the majority of bulky leads. Suicide leads are a bit more tricky, but careful switching allows me to play around them. It also is a great special attacker and switch-in to the likes of Rotom-A, Scizor and Jirachi.
Moves, Set and Spread:
It's a standard Lead Heatran, no real fancy bells or whistles in here. Starting the match with Stealth Rock is a wise move, since it lets me get residual damage on the opposing Pokemon very quickly and weakens Dragonite and Zapdos. Fire Blast is a very powerful attack, ripping big holes into anything that doesn't resist it. Even those that do resist Fire Blast won't like it if I manage to get a Flash Fire boost. Earth Power complements Fire Blast, hurting Tyranitar, opposing Heatran and Infernape if I manage to catch it on the switch. The loss of Salamence who resists this combo means that Heatran has greater sweeping capacity in the suspect metagame, which is nice. Explosion is very helpful in a couple of ways. Firstly, if Heatran is very low in health and can't switch-in safely anymore, it can at least severely cripple any non-Ghost before going down. Secondly, if Heatran manages to Explode on Blissey, it paves the way for Suicune, Jolteon and Gengar to have a field day with the other team.
Against slower leads, Heatran can usually safely get up Stealth Rock whilst enduring a hit thanks to its Shuca Berry. Against faster leads, Heatran is in more of a pickle. Depending on the lead, I usually either break their Focus Sash by using Fire Blast or switch out. Explosions can be redirected to Gengar and non Exploders are predicted around until I get Lucario in safely so I can Extremespeed it. Later on in the match, Heatran deals with defensive Pokemon that Heatran can threaten and Steel-types that don't pack Earthquake. If Blissey switches in, I usually Explode right off the bat, since Blissey rarely Protects first turn. Sure, I lose Heatran, but the loss of their Blissey means my special sweepers are free to beat down the opponent's team without the fear of being walled to death.
Celebi @ Life Orb
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 232 HP / 244 SpA / 32 Spe
Modest nature (+SpA, -Atk)
- Leaf Storm
- Hidden Power Fire
- Thunder Wave
Tinkerbell Celebi manages to fufill both an offensive and defensive role. Taking multiple attacks and Recovering them off whilst providing paralysis support as well as hitting very hard with Leaf Storm off of 325 base Special Attack makes Celebi a versatile Pokemon to use. The main use of Celebi is to round out my Fire/Grass/Water defensive core, and the resistances Celebi's part Psychic typing is why I use it over something like Shaymin or Breloom.
Moves, Set, and Spread:
There were several things I wanted out of Celebi. Seeing as Celebi is the only part of my defensive core that has access to a reliable recovery move, Recover is a no-brainer for what I wanted. I also wanted Thunder Wave, because it will greatly help the sweeping capabilities of Heatran and Suicune, and Celebi is one of the best paralysers in the OU metagame, so losing out on that benefit isn't a good thing. Finally, since my Heatran and Suicune pack a bit of firepower, I wanted Celebi to do so as well. This means that Tinkerbell was the perfect choice for the role. Hidden Power Fire takes care of Bug, Grass and Steel Pokemon that resist Leaf Storm. In particular, it hurts Skarmory and Forretress, further helping out against any team that uses Spikes.
Celebi is brought in on Water, Ground, Grass and Fighting Pokemon that are unable to do any severe damage to it. From there, Celebi starts to spread paralysis throughout the opposing team. After Celebi paralyses something, I can then either take down the paralysed Pokemon, or if I can't hurt it, switch to something that can. It's a rather simple procedure for Celebi to do, though Celebi often ends up biting the dust in order to prevent something from completely destroying my team.
Suicune @ Leftovers
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid nature (+Spe, -Atk)
- Calm Mind
- Ice Beam
- Hidden Power [Electric]
Ah, offensive Suicune, one of my all-time favorite sets to use in the OU metagame. If you aren't aware of how great this set is, let me educate you on it. Suicune is an excellent all-out offensive sweeper thanks to its decent Special Attack and Speed, access to Calm Mind, great type coverage, and excellent natural bulk making hard to revenge kill. It works just as fine defensively as well, being able to effectively check Heatran, Gyarados, Metagross, Infernape and Vaporeon among others.
Moves, Set, and Spread:
There were very little dilemmas on what moves Suicune would be packing. I prefer offensive Suicune over any other Suicune set, simply because it has much better type coverage and will leave me less exposed to set-up, like say to Taunt Gyarados, who could cause some issues otherwise.
Max Special Attack and Speed because there's little reason to fuck around with around with the standard EVs. With these EVs, Suicune is capable of outspeeding Jolly Gyarados, Jolly Dragonite and Adamant Lucario.
Last thing of note is Leftovers over Life Orb. There's rarely been an occasion where the extra damage Life Orb would have been helpful. Life Orb's recoil would have also been too determental to Suicune's defensive role, since Suicune doesn't have any reliable recovery. Finally, Leftovers makes the fact that Suicune has a bit of Speed less obvious, because luring in Crocune counters and taking them out is another factor that makes offensive Suicune the beast that it is.
The plan for Suicune is to switch it into anything that Suicune is capable of walling in order to get a Calm Mind. If the opponent switches in something that is supposed to counter Crocune but not offensive Suicune, excellent, a free kill for me. Against stuff that does well against offensive Suicune, well that stuff is pretty rare. Suicune is incredibly difficult to OHKO, so I'm usually able to take a hit and bring down their Suicune check. This does come at the consequence of a heavily damaged Suicune, but keeping the offensive momemtum will greatly benefit me in the long run. If I do come against something that can OHKO Suicune, I can just switch to the appropriate check and bring Suicune in later. It kinda sucks I don't have a really good switch-in for Trick Scarfers that can mess up Suicune's sweep, but as long as I got at least 1 Calm Mind and there isn't a Kingdra or Vaporeon lying around, Suicune can take the Scarf and cause some damage with fast and powerful Surfs, and if I have to switch out, Suicune doesn't make for a bad Scarfer either.
Jolteon @ Life Orb
Ability: Volt Absorb
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid nature (+Spe, -Atk)
- Hidden Power Ice
- Fake Tears
Intro to the Set
After I saw this set being used in Articasshole's warstory, I decided that this would be a good set for Jolteon. Seeing as most of my Pokemon are special attackers, having some of them being able to beat Blissey and other special walls one-on-one would be excellent against stall. With Fake Tears, Jolteon does just that, weakening special walls into KO range for Thunderbolt. Not only that, Jolteon is used for a similar reason why Crobat was used in UU a long time ago, to check everything. It is tied with Aerodactyl as the second-fastest Pokemon in the OU tier, only outsped by the rarely seen Ninjask. This means that I can revenge kill anything without a speed boost, just as long as Jolteon sticks around.
Moves, Set, and Spread:
Like I said before, this set here is Jolteon's best chance at defeating stuff such as Blissey, Snorlax and specially defensive Tyranitar. Unless Blissey is carrying Toxic, Jolteon wins against it, using Fake Tears to lower it into 2HKO range for Thunderbolt and using Wish to heal off damage from Seismic Toss, Flamethrower or Ice Beam. Against Snorlax and Tyranitar however, it's a little more tricky, since they have some nice Attack to smash Jolteon with. After a Fake Tears, Thunderbolt does 2HKO though, so if they're weakened before hand, I should be good.
I use Hidden Power Ice over Hidden Power Grass because it can catch plenty of Gliscor that switch into Jolteon expecting to take a HP Grass or Shadow Ball and OHKO with Earthquake (just as long as they're not British). This clears the way for Lucario to have a clean sweep. It also deals with Flygon, which could otherwise cause some problems. Not to mention Swampert isn't as much as a threat to deal with in order to sweep, as Heatran isn't exactly my main sweeper.
Jolteon usually comes in on a Thunderbolt aimed at Suicune or after one of my Pokemon has died. From there, I tend to fire off a Thunderbolt conservatively, just to see what their main Jolteon check is. If it is Blissey, Snorlax or Tyranitar I switch out, out of Blissey to scout what status move it is using and out of Snorlax and Tyranitar in fear of Earthquake (unless they switched Choice Scarf Tyranitar into Jolteon, in which cause they're an idiot and I can KO Tyranitar there and then). If Blissey is running Thunder Wave over Toxic, perfect. Jolteon can then fire multiple Fake Tears' at Blissey and use Wish to heal damage from Blissey's attacks, then defeat it with triple-power Thunderbolts. If it has Toxic, no problem, that means Gengar can take care of it. Snorlax and Tyranitar are worn down by other attacks from my team, then are hit with a Fake Tears and KOed with Thunderbolt once they are around 50%. Otherwise, Jolteon revenge kills stuff.
Gengar @ Life Orb
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid nature (+Spe, -Atk)
- Shadow Ball
- Focus Blast
Intro to the Set:
With the decreasing amount of Steels in Suspect, with a little support, most teams won't have a ghost of a chance against Gengar. Lame puns aside, Gengar's high Special Attack and Speed make it a terrifying sweeper for offensive teams to face, but it's sadly walled by a bunch of special walls. That's where Hypnosis comes in. Call me a noob all you want (I shall disregard your existance), but with Hypnosis I can cripple Blissey, Snorlax etc. and take them out without fear of being killed or crippled. Not to mention, catching CB Scizor on the switch-in feels so awesome :)
Moves, Set, and Spread:
Hypnosis was picked as the last move because I wanted Gengar to be able to beat special walls for the same reason Jolteon has Fake Tears, and there wasn't really any better options. Focus Punch was too clunky for coverage, and it meant Gengar's sweeping abilities went down a lot. Explosion could wipe out Blissey and Snorlax, but it meant I'd lose Gengar as well. So Hypnosis and its subpar accuracy would have to do for Gengar.
Shadow Ball is obligatory STAB and rapes everything that doesn't resist it, Focus Blast is obligatory coverage for smashing most Steel types and Thunderbolt takes care of bulky waters and weakened Steels so I don't risk missing with Focus Blast.
Gengar's excellent immunities come into play by letting Gengar, well, come into play. I then generally Hypnosis first to hopefully disable their Gengar check. If it isn't Scarf Tyranitar and it misses, I can try for a second Hypnosis and most of the time, it'll hit this time. Against Blissey, Gengar deals with all Blissey that can deal with Jolteon, sending it to sleep then Focus Blasting it to death. Gengar also works as a back-up revenge killer if Jolteon is dead.
Lucario @ Life Orb
Ability: Inner Focus
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly nature (+Spe, -SpA)
- Swords Dance
- Close Combat
Intro to the Set:
I'm pretty sure this guy is rather familiar to you all. Swords Dance Lucario is definitely one of the deadliest sweepers that can be found in the OU metagame, and with the departure of Salamence, Lucario has become more of a deadly force than it already is, now that one of its checks is gone. Its an awesome stall-breaker as well, since there's little that can take Lucario's powerful boosted Close Combats and live to tell the tale. Getting that Swords Dance isn't too difficult either, because Lucario is capable of setting up on Dark attacks aimed at Celebi and Gengar, as well as on a bunch of other attacks as well.
Moves, Set, and Spread:
Pretty self-explanatory here. Swords Dance boosts Lucario's Attack to awesome heights, Close Combat murders slower Pokemon and faster Pokemon are picked off by Extremespeed. I guess the main concern here is my coverage move and nature. Crunch takes care of all those Ghosts and Psychics that resist Close Combat, in particular Rotom-A. The only other viable option was Stone Edge, to hit defensive Gyarados. The problem here is that Gyarados is easily checked in this team, with Celebi, Suicune and Jolteon taking care of it. This means that Stone Edge would have been a bit redundant. So Crunch it was.
Now for the non-standard stuff, the Jolly nature on Lucario. Whenever I use Lucario, I always use a Jolly nature, as I feel that is a much superior nature to Adamant. Sorry to fans of Adamant, but all I find it really does is just get a guaranteed KO on Skarmory and Bronzong, who should've been weakened beforehand anyway. In return, Jolly lets me outspeed Jolly Mamoswine, Timid Suicune, Timid Rotom-A, and just about everything that is EVed to hit that coveted 280 Speed required to outspeed Adamant Lucario. If I outspeed more stuff, Lucario kills more stuff, and who doesn't like that?
Lucario is my main end-game sweeper, and I try to get him in on 4x resisted attacks. However, I'm not afraid to introduce Lucario in the mid-game either. This is so Lucario can scout for its checks with Close Combat, so that they are moved into KO range for Lucario's attacks and so I can come up with a plan to get rid of them. I also use Lucario for occasionally revenge killing with Extremespeed, but this is a last-ditch resort at best. I don't really like recklessly switch Lucario into attacks, as that could compromise my chances of a sweep. The only real time when I do this is when I'm sure the opponent is going to use a Rock or Dark attack, otherwise I usually bring it in after one of my Pokemon has bit the dust.
One suspect gone and another one to go under Smogon's brute scrutiny once again. This time, it's Salamence's turn to be examined under the microscope. Last month saw the closing stages of the Salamence suspect period, which interested and inspired a lot of battlers to get involved. In such small proximity, the metagame shifted from stall-orientated after the Latias hangover period into a more upbeat, offensive pace.
KnightoftheWind's "Fuk Dragons, Get Bitches" RMT was a prime representation of the makeover the standard metagame had undertaken with the absence of Salamence, which previously moulded the stereotypical structure of offense. Instead of the same old 4Drag2Steel combination that had too often undermined offense, this team seeks to portray another side of offense—a side more open to variation. This team attempts to exploit Lucario's offensive prowess while one of it's key counters is banished from play. Futhermore, this team is an excellent representation of the good old Water-, Fire-, and Grass-type combination which started off in mid-DP. Hallelujah!
The team leads off with a standard Shuca Berry Heatran which sets up Stealth Rock relatively well and gets the ball rolling. KnightoftheWind correctly notes that Heatran is an idyllic lead to use, particularly on this style of team. Being able to handle common spiking leads such as Forretress and Skarmory is a godsend for this team as it doesn't have to stress or mess around in avoidance of incurring too much residual damage from potential entry hazards such as Spikes or Toxic Spikes. As well as breaking the aforementioned "stall makers", Heatran also threatens Blissey and other Pokémon such as Snorlax for big damage through Explosion, which also relieves the team's main special attackers of the threat presented by mainstream walls.
Not only does Heatran set up Stealth Rock rather efficiently, but it also sets the offensive, fast tempo this team is required to utilize in order to work well. Fire Blast, and it's complementary Earth Power, hit a lot of Pokémon for neutral or super effective damage, and at an exceptional cost coming off a huge base 130 Special Attack stat.
Next up in the line-up is Tinkerbell Celebi. Both KnightoftheWind's lead Heatran and partner Celebi have excellent synergy with one another. Celebi can switch into any Water-types that may threaten Heatran's existence, and Heatran defends Celebi from the potential onslaught of other Fire-types that will always threaten Celebi. The offensive theme of the team is maintained by Celebi. Its STAB Leaf Storm is a threat to any Pokémon that does not resist it, thus creating problems for the opponent who may have to play around it. Steel-types wanting to take the strain of Leaf Storm are deterred from doing so due to Hidden Power Fire which does its number on Celebi's common check, Scizor. Recover gives KnightoftheWind's Celebi durability, and in doing so grants him more opportunities to paralyze switch-ins, most notably Choice Scarf Tyranitar and Heatran. Not only does Thunder Wave help screw over Celebi's immediate threats, it also spells trouble for any threatening sweepers that may come in on Celebi and threaten the rest of the team; Pokémon such as Swords Dance + Mach Punch Infernape fall under this category.
Heatran and Celebi work as the first two parts of KnightoftheWind's Water-, Grass-, and Fire-type combination. The third component of this combination is offensive Suicune, which works as a check to Pokémon such as Dragonite and Bounce Gyarados, but also as a key wall breaker. Suicune's brute bulk and power make it a particularly difficult Pokémon to put down, and with Calm Mind this is especially true. KnightoftheWind makes sure to abuse Suicune to its maximum ability, and in doing so always keeps the momentum of the game at his own pace.
Suicune fits perfectly on this team because of its excellent typing, stats and ability to break teams from their core if able. The offensive prowess of Suicune is undoubtedly a major factor to the success of this team. KnightoftheWind has made excellent use of the absence of Salamence and Latias by utilizing an old favorite type combination—one of which happily dominated the suspect metagame with the decline in Steel-type usage.
The fourth member of the team is Jolteon. However, it's not just any old Jolteon: it's a Life Orb supporting sweeper. Jolteon's typing allows it to work excellently in tandem with Suicune; it can switch happily into Electric-type attacks and proceed to support the team from there. In my opinion, I believe Jolteon is the support MVP of the team. It's ability to Wish pass to other Pokémon on the team is an excellent asset, especially because no other Pokémon on the team, bar Celebi, has the ability to Recover reliably. Furthermore, Jolteon's Fake Tears is an unorthodox, but absolutely ingenious method of assisting its teammates in sweeping.
Let me explain the beauty of it on this particular team in the two potential situations: firstly, since this team is mainly Specially Attacking orientated, Fake Tears helps weaken and nullify Blissey's walling ability. If it has Thunder Wave, Jolteon can use a combination of Wish and Fake Tears to weaken and stall Blissey until KnightoftheWind decides to sweep with a strong Thunderbolt. Alternatively, if Blissey has Toxic, Lucario can switch in and use that as an opportunity to set up and potentially sweep after the team weakens the opponent's Pokémon; Jolteon can switch into Choice Scarf Rotom-A's Thunderbolt and set up, and can kill Gliscor with Hidden Power Ice. In my opinion, the synergy between Jolteon, Lucario and the aforementioned Heatran/Celebi/Suicune combination is an absolutely excellent portrayal of modern-day offensive synergy.
The last two Pokémon, Gengar and Lucario, represents KnightoftheWind's apparent old-school theme. He shows a lot of guts using Hypnosis on Gengar after the decrement of it's accuracy introduced by Platinum. Hypnosis is used to put potential threats to sleep and thus converting them into set up bait. Shadow Ball and Focus Blast provide perfect coverage, whereas Thunderbolt strikes those weakened Water- and Steel-types, in the hope to avoid a game-changing miss from Focus Blast's shaky accuracy.
Lucario acts as KnightoftheWind's clean-up Pokémon. After all the damage has been dealt by its teammates, and counters removed, Lucario is happy to switch in, use Swords Dance and kill off whatever may remain in its way. Lucario also acts as KnightoftheWind's primary stall-breaker, and does this especially well with the removal of Gliscors (to Jolteon) and Gyarados to any other Pokémon on the team—even Heatran's Explosion deals a huge amount of damage!
Although this team does indeed provide the reader with reason to stare in awe of its gameplan and diversity in the recovering sub-metagame that is Suspect, it does hold host to a couple of weaknesses. Firstly, Life Orb Agility Metagross with ThunderPunch basically sweeps the whole team if Celebi is gone or signficantly weakened. Thankfully, Metagross cannot really set up on this team unless KnightoftheWind miss-calculates a move with Lucario and / or Jolteon, though this is unlikely. Secondly, Jolly Swords Dance Lucario will obliterate the whole team if Gengar is pursuited by Lucario's common pair Scizor and (or Tyranitar). Finally, all-out Life Orb Jolteon will cause any match to end with a 6-0 result if its not checked by Lucario's ExtremeSpeed, which requires Life Orb recoil to have been incurred beforehand—meaning some intense switching would be needed to avoid losing all control over the game.
All in all, this team is an excellent representation of the changes occurring in the metagame now that Salamence and Latias are banned. Instead of being another generic Dragon-/Steel-type team, there is certainly diversity, and the innovation of the team is definitely evident. KnightoftheWind has produced an exemplary team which emulates a new and refreshed start to the metagame.