Featured UU RMT
So yeah, I figured I'd post this team because it's been my best this metagame, and it features a cool Heracross set that I'd like to share with everybody before testing ends (or starts?). So, without further ado, I present team Boss Balance.
Venusaur @ Choice Scarf
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature (+Spe, -Atk)
- Sleep Powder
- Leaf Storm
- Sludge Bomb
- Hidden Power Flying
A desirable quality in a lead is the ability to start you off with the advantage, and Choice Scarf Venusaur does just that by incapacitating something on turn 1, effectively netting me the 6-5 advantage and preventing first turn entry hazards from being laid. This comes in handy against Spikes-stacking offense teams, as it eases switching into big threats such as Moltres and Houndoom, who generally need entry hazard support to overcome their counters. Venusaur is also my safety net against a plethora of pPokemon, and has saved me many times from something like a Dragon Dance Feraligatr, Sceptile, or Rhyperior in the late-game.
With a Choice Scarf and max EVs in Speed, Venusaur can outrun +2 Jolly Rhyperior, Modest Gorebyss and Omastar in the rain, +1 Dragon Dance Feraligatr, and revenge kill all of them with Leaf Storm. Sludge Bomb provides coverage against grass types such as Leafeon and Sceptile, and Sleep Powder stops everything else. Hidden Power Flying is more filler, but it OHKOes Heracross after rocks and 2HKOes specially defensive versions.
I've gone through a few different Pokemon in this spot, but Venusaur is probably the one I had most success with. I originally started off with Ambipom, and although its Fake Out was useful in stopping sweeps late game, I found Venusaur could do the same thing and also stop entry hazards more reliably. If there's one thing I miss, it's Ambipom's ability to trap and KO Ghosts with the exception of Spiritomb, but I generally don't have trouble with them anyways.
Rotom @ Life Orb
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature (+Spe, -Atk)
- Shadow Ball
- Pain Split
Rotom is a really cool Pokemon in this metagame; it gives the team an invaluable resistance to both of Heracross's STABs, checks Scyther and Moltres, and most importantly fucks with my opponent's mind if they have a Choice Scarf Heracross. The last thing anyone will want to do is give Rotom a free Substitute, so they'll usually Night Slash or Megahorn, trying to catch Rotom, and all they'll end up doing is giving Arcanine or my own Heracross a free switch.
This is probably my favorite Rotom set of all time. Life Orb allows Rotom to surpass many Pokemon that it would normally have trouble with; most notably, Venusaur. Shadow ball 2HKOes offensive Venusaur after SR, and defensive Venusaur is practically non-existent in this metagame. Registeel lacking Shadow Claw can't break Rotom's subs in one hit, and are beaten by a combination of Thunderbolt, Substitute, and Pain Split. Chansey… is straight up useless. As with any sweeper, my general rule of thumb is max Attack / Speed with a +Speed nature, and Rotom is no exception.
Registeel @ Leftovers
Ability: Clear Body
EVs: 252 HP / 40 Atk / 216 SpD
Careful nature (+SpD, -SpA)
- Stealth Rock
- Thunder Wave
- Seismic Toss
- Shadow Claw
I don't know why, but Registeel seems to be on every good team I've posted. This thing can just take so much abuse, it seems wrong not to use it. I won't spend too much time explaining Registeel's role, as it's pretty well known by now. Set up rocks, paralyze stuff, and keep many threats in check. Registeel does it and does it well. Enough said.
Standard Registeel setup. Shadow Claw is necessary because of all the Ghosts Hera attracts, and Seismic Toss hits everything else for consistent damage. I prefer Thunder Wave to Toxic for a few reasons. The primary reason is I already have Arcanine to poison Milotic and other bulky waters, so having it on Registeel would be redundant. Also, Thunder Wave puts threats such as Sceptile and Feraligatr down instantly, whereas if I poisoned them they'd still be able to do a lot of damage before poison took its toll.
I'm considering putting Explosion somewhere because Clefable can be a bitch if Heracross is gone, but all of Registeel's moves are essential to its success, so I don't really know what to replace it with. Suggestions are appreciated.
Heracross @ Life Orb
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly nature (+Spe, -SpA)
- Close Combat
- Sleep Talk
This. Is. The. Best. Fucking. Heracross. Set. Period. There is only one Pokemon in the tier that won't shit its pants in fear of this beast, and usually it's lured in early and KOed / slept before BOSScross makes its entrance. For those who are slow, I'm talking about Weezing. With a bit of luck, even a full health Weezing can be 2HKOed as it comes in, as long as its taken a bit of previous damage and Sleep Talk picks an attack both turns. (Close Combat / Megahorn deals 35% - 41.3%, so a 2hko with SR and some previous damage) Moving on, I've found this Heracross is way more useful than the standard status Orb +4 attack set, as it can actually heal itself while increasing its strength in the process, dealing huge amounts of damage with Guts + Life Orb + its base 125 Atk. It can also switch into any Venusaur set with impunity and respond with the appropriate move. If it Sludge Bombs, I can Rest it off and kick its ass, if it Sleep Powders, I still kick its ass.
Everything is quite self-explanatory. This Heracross is not meant to be a tank at all, so don't suggest HP EVs or Leftovers. Max attack and speed is essential to hit as hard and fast as possible, and Life Orb is necessary for Heracross to pose a threat while awake as well as asleep. While Megahorn and Close Combat don't offer the best coverage, Hera's sheer strength allows it to power through resistances like butter, eliminating the need for Stone Edge, Night Slash, and Facade.
Arcanine @ Leftovers
EVs: 248 HP / 232 SpD / 28 Spe
Careful nature (+SpD, -SpA)
- Flare Blitz
- Morning Sun
Arcanine is an integral part of this team's defensive core, providing the team with a very useful Fire resistance (you might have noticed my immense fire weakness at this point) and another check to Heracross. Because I'm not running specially defensive Milotic, it was important that I had another reliable check to Moltres and Houndoom, and Arcanine fit the bill perfectly.
This is the standard specially defensive Arcanine with some speed to outrun Jolly Torterra. The basic idea of this set is to be able to switch into common special attackers and eliminate them. Among these are Mismagius, Moltres, Houndoom, Alakazam, and Rotom, Pokemon that Registeel would normally have trouble with.
Milotic @ Leftovers
Ability: Marvel Scale
EVs: 248 HP / 252 Def / 8 Spe
Bold nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Hidden Power Grass
Milotic rounds out the team's defensive core nicely, providing an additional Fire resistance and functioning as an amazing physical wall. Almost every physical threat is handled easily by Milotic, with a few exceptions such as Toxicroak, Torterra, and Leafeon, who are dealt with by other means.
Physically defensive Milotic is necessary for this team since I otherwise lack a solid physical wall, and Milotic's naturally high Special Defense allows it to tank special attackers reasonably well anyways. The moveset is standard; Haze prevents stat boosters such as Registeel and Spiritomb setting up on me, and is generally more useful than Ice Beam because this team is heavy on Grass checks.
Well that's the team, it has been my main throughout the Heracross test (which hasn't started yet?) and it's been quite successful, peaking at #1 on the ladder for a short period before Smogon University went down, and has generally been a fun team to use. All suggestions are appreciated, and I hope you enjoyed it.
The featured UU team this time around is one that is deep-rooted in the Heracross metagame. In case you weren't aware, Heracross dropped down to UU in September and was met with mixed feelings from all of the top players of the tier. After about a month of playing with Heracross, though, the metagame has begun to settle and we have started to see which of the sets play the best. This team was chosen because of its leaderboard success, its very strange, yet excellent, Heracross set, and its solid build.
In UU, lots of entry hazards typically get set up on the first few turns. RT really needed to stop that, since 5 of 6 members of the team are vulnerable to Spikes. After playing around with a lot of options, like Ambipom, RT settled on Choice Scarf Venusaur. Choice Scarf Venusaur immediately threatens Kabutops and Omastar leads, and can put pretty much everything else to sleep with Sleep Powder. In addition, Choice Scarf Venusaur's viability as a mid-game revenge killer and support Pokemon makes it that much more valuable to a the team given its vulnerability to well-played Rock Polish Rhyperior and Aggron. Unfortunately, Choice Scarf Venusaur can't trap and KO Ghost-type Pokemon who give Heracross some issues like Ambipom could, although they aren't really that threatening to the team anyway so it's not a big deal.
UU is a tier where the Fire-, Water-, and Grass-type core strategy is very common in practice. RT's team is no different, and actually includes the lead, Venusaur, in the core. Arcanine is the Fire-type and Milotic is the Water-type that round out the core. Arcanine is specially defensive so that it can better switch into the many special attackers of UU, such as Mismagius, Moltres, and Houndoom. To help Arcanine in taking on opposing Fire-types, defensive Milotic is used. Milotic's naturally high special bulk lets it take on Pokemon like Houndoom to an extent, while the defensive EV spread lets it take hits from opposing physical attackers with relative ease. Registeel rounds out the defensive core of the team by setting up Stealth Rock, paralyzing opposing threats, and checking tons of threats with its massive, well-distributed bulk. Registeel also serves an important purpose in that it can deal a massive blow to the Ghost-types that Heracross lures.
This team has few dedicated sweepers, and instead focuses primarily on defensive synergy with modestly offensive Pokemon to wear down the opponents. RT's Rotom is useful defensively thanks to its resistances and immunities, but also provides key offensive support with STAB Thunderbolt and Shadow Ball. Thanks to Substitute and Pain Split, Rotom also puts the opponent into sticky situations where they have to sacrifice a Pokemon to take it out. Heracross's set is the real big seller of this team, however, as it is functioning both as an excellent status absorber and an offensive threat. Heracross uses the RestTalk combination with a Life Orb equipped to pick up a Guts boost for its STABs when sleeping and hit like a truck. Almost nothing outside of Weezing and bulky Nidoqueen can switch into this Heracross and avoid a 2HKO from the appropriate move. Heracross and Rotom are the closest things to sweepers that this team has, but when you factor in Arcanine, Milotic, and Venusaur's offensive presences as defensive pivots, you'll see that this team easily wears down most opponents quickly and without issue.
This team really isn't threatened by any one Pokemon in particular. Opposing Heracross can be painful for RT to face if they predict appropriately, but he's got all the tools necessary to beat it if he responds appropriately. Bigger threats to this team are Swords Dance Toxicroak and Rock Polish Torterra, which both set up on different Pokemon, but can beat the team apart after a bit of residual damage. The biggest issue this team has, however, is entry hazards. Seeing as this team has no Rapid Spinner and has 5 grounded Pokemon, RT has to play absolutely perfectly and double switch whenever appropriate to get Venusaur out against the typical Spikes users of UU. RT runs Hidden Power Grass on Milotic to keep Omastar from setting up on it, but that doesn't totally stop Omastar's control over this team if it so much as gets one layer down. Fortunately for RT, most Qwilfish are suicide leads, so they don't stick around long. This is important because Qwilfish can set up Spikes against Milotic, Arcanine, and even Heracross if it hasn't picked up a Guts boost!
This team is just as the team's name suggests: Boss. It has the means to deal with pretty much every offensive threat that's common in the game and its own offensive presence to secure the win after intelligently switching around a bit. Despite the vulnerability to Spikes if they can get set up, RT's team is superbly designed and calibrated to cover the holes other similar teams have. This is one of the best examples of a great team in the Heracross metagame that we've seen up to this point.