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Metagame 1v1 Metagame Discussion

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You shouldn't expect to wake up after one turn. Probability management is part of the game. You should prepare for (multiple turns of) sleep like any other strategy. Now if you're arguing that sleep can't be prepared for then that's a different story. But the argument of "luck" is weak.

Edit: As an example, UOP decides to use this strategy where he puts you to sleep turn 1, sets up turn 2, and kills you turn 3. There is a 33% chance that you will wake up after turn 1 and ruin his strategy. UOP knows this, though. He made the decision to run this strategy knowing that there's a chance of failure.

Anyway, I'll say that if this sleep strategy is becoming a thing, then create counter strategies. It's hard to believe that you can't prepare for it as there are several abilities, items, and moves that deal with sleep. If those are not enough, fine, you're free to make a case that sleep moves (or certain Pokémon running them) are broken.
The viable mons with an ability that counters sleep are Tapu Koko, Tapu Fini, Mega Sableye, Mega Diancie, and Banette before mega evolving. However, jumpluff can use protect and substitute to stall out Fini's misty terrain. Also, 2 of these 5 are unreleased.

The viable items that counter sleep are Choice Scarf and z Fighting. Choice Scarf works well vs jumpluff and Gengar, but guarantees you cannot stop Snorlax from yawning you. Z Fighting has a chance to OHKO Snorlax, but Snorlax is usually running protect so one must hope that doesn't ruin one's counter strategy.

The viable moves that counter sleep are substitute and uproar. Substitute is good vs Snorlax, who has an opportunity to predict and break subs making it not close to a 100% counter. Very few mons are fast enough to get a sub up on Mega Gengar, and jumpluff has infiltrator... Uproar is good vs jumpluff and Snorlax, but has no effect on Gengar.

This list was to point out the extremely limited abilities, items, and moves that act as a counter strategy to deal with sleep. On a conceptual note, Hypnosis Mega Gengar is banned from ubers because putting something to sleep and not letting it switch out was seen as uncompetitive, for the uber tier. In 1v1, every mon has an additional ability of shadow tag because nothing can switch out. Furthermore, sleep clause is part of 6v6 so that people do not put the entire opposing team to sleep. In 1v1, the mon you send out is your entire team for the battle meaning we can currently put our entire opponent's team to sleep.

- Free Dislikes
 

The Immortal

They Don't Want None
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There's also berries, Magic Coat, and Sleep Talk, all of which have seen use in standard tiers. Sleep Talk Heracross, for example, was a common set in earlier gens to counter sleep and abuse Guts.
 
The viable mons with an ability that counters sleep are Tapu Koko, Tapu Fini, Mega Sableye...
Congratulations, you've just named about 15% of everything used in 1v1, not to mention the the third most popular Pokémon in general. And that's just the ones that win off of Abilities.
The viable moves that counter sleep are substitute and uproar...
Substitute is one of the best moves in 1v1 for many reasons, and is thus used on many teams. But since there's no non-time intensive way to check that that I know of, I'll focus on Uproar. Uproar is a move most commonly found on Porygon-Z, a mon notable for running Scarf and being able to beat ghosts. So Pory-Z adds 6% to your failure rate.
Last but not least, let's not forget Pheromosa, which can outspeed Jumpluff and Gengar and be Fighting type.
On a conceptual note, Hypnosis Mega Gengar is banned from ubers because putting something to sleep and not letting it switch out was seen as uncompetitive, for the uber tier. In 1v1, every mon has an additional ability of shadow tag because nothing can switch out. Furthermore, sleep clause is part of 6v6 so that people do not put the entire opposing team to sleep. In 1v1, the mon you send out is your entire team for the battle meaning we can currently put our entire opponent's team to sleep.
The whole point of the Gengar ban is that it was uncompetitive for a tier where a solid part of strategy IS switching out. You don't build around doing that in 1v1. And while yes, you can send your opponents entire team to sleep, they can kill off your entire team in one hit. Don't you think that if that could happen in Ubers, they'd have banned that too? You can't justify a 1v1 ban proposal with an example taken from a 6v6 meta in which the greater part of strategy is doing things that you can't in 1v1, like setting hazards and group healing special conditions.
FINAL NOTE: I was looking over the percentages I gave throughout the post, and that's a 26% chance that someone is running at least one thing that counters your sleeper, which I think is too much risk for a strategy, much less an OP one. Thanks to the most recent 1500 1v1 usage stats for these figures.
 
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And of course, the Sleep inducing moves themselves have some of the lowest accuracy in the game, making it even less likely for you to win.
 

Felucia

formerly UnleashOurPassion
is a Battle Simulator Driver
The viable mons with an ability that counters sleep are Tapu Koko, Tapu Fini, Mega Sableye, Mega Diancie, and Banette before mega evolving. However, jumpluff can use protect and substitute to stall out Fini's misty terrain. Also, 2 of these 5 are unreleased.

The viable items that counter sleep are Choice Scarf and z Fighting. Choice Scarf works well vs jumpluff and Gengar, but guarantees you cannot stop Snorlax from yawning you. Z Fighting has a chance to OHKO Snorlax, but Snorlax is usually running protect so one must hope that doesn't ruin one's counter strategy.

The viable moves that counter sleep are substitute and uproar. Substitute is good vs Snorlax, who has an opportunity to predict and break subs making it not close to a 100% counter. Very few mons are fast enough to get a sub up on Mega Gengar, and jumpluff has infiltrator... Uproar is good vs jumpluff and Snorlax, but has no effect on Gengar.

This list was to point out the extremely limited abilities, items, and moves that act as a counter strategy to deal with sleep. On a conceptual note, Hypnosis Mega Gengar is banned from ubers because putting something to sleep and not letting it switch out was seen as uncompetitive, for the uber tier. In 1v1, every mon has an additional ability of shadow tag because nothing can switch out. Furthermore, sleep clause is part of 6v6 so that people do not put the entire opposing team to sleep. In 1v1, the mon you send out is your entire team for the battle meaning we can currently put our entire opponent's team to sleep.

- Free Dislikes
You fail to mention that sleep isn't just countered by a move, ability or item. Keep in mind the main sleep abuser(s) (I'm going to mainly talk about jumpluff here) aren't unstoppable.
The last, and probably most important, counter to sleep is simply getting a KO before you can fall asleep.

Easier said than done
Not... really......

This inspired me to create a very nice post about why Jumpluff is one of the most stupid things in the meta
UnleashOurPassion's guide to dealing with sleep
Trust me, I have experience with not falling asleep

Jumpluff

You can be an ice type
Required speed: 350+ (base 110+)


Required speed (Scarf): 234+ (base 57+)

More but I got tired of finding images
Required Attack (STAB Ice Shard): 400-ish


Being a viable grass type


Being fast


Ignoring Substitute


Immunity to Sleep Powder
Sap Sipper


Sleepless


Magic Bounce


Overcoat


Otherwise immune


Taunt


Multi-Hit moves

Anything with icicle spear works too, probably

Items


Moves!
- Sleep Talk
- Uproar
- Magic Coat
- Taunt
- Reflect Type (Gotta be really desperate for this one ;-;)


Beating Jumpluff... Based on usage
No
Yes
Yes
Yes partys over says no...
No
No
Yes
No
Yes Speed Tie + Ice Punch
No


Closing words
I really don't get the fuss about sleep, it's annoying to deal with if you can't deal with it, but that's just as much of a design flaw in your team as my daily frustrations are


Apparently those weren't the closing words
Several of my best teams autolose to Dragonite, yet I'm not petitioning to get it banned. In my opinion just the fact that you are too stubborn to put counters to something on your team, doesn't mean it's broken in any way.
I'm too lazy to counter Dragonite, you're too lazy to counter Jumpluff
Not my problem
I started off saying Jumpluff is stupid, but that's because we are making it stupid. Jumpluff and sleep have no big issue at their core, and removing them would restrain creativity and render a lot of perfectly viable sets useless, which just doesn't weigh up to a few people complaining about Jumpluff.

The actual closing words


~Mez
 
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Serperior @ Grassium Z
Ability: Contrary
EVs: 96 HP / 252 SpA / 8 SpD / 152 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Leaf Storm
- Substitute
- Leech Seed
- Dragon Pulse

This is an odd set that I put together that has worked better than the gimmick should have and for me not to talk about it. The speed puts it 2 points faster than the fastest max speed base 100. Sub allows tanking key z moves, Leaf storm builds up SpA for the z-move. Dragon pulse for coverage or for damage. The extra ev's went into HP with the 8 going into SpD to make download raise attack while keeping HP an odd number. It's a little strange but very satisfying and quirky anti stall mon.
 

Rumplestiltskin

I will rain lels all over you and you will drown in them
I'm going to interject this time even though there has been a lot of times where posts/discussions in this thread needed interjection.

UnleashOurPassion's guide to dealing with sleep
Trust me, I have experience with not falling asleep

Jumpluff

You can be an ice type
Required speed: 350+ (base 110+)


Required speed (Scarf): 234+ (base 57+)

More but I got tired of finding images
Required Attack (STAB Ice Shard): 400-ish


Being a viable grass type


Being fast


Ignoring Substitute


Immunity to Sleep Powder
Sap Sipper



Sleepless


Magic Bounce


Overcoat


Otherwise immune


Taunt


Multi-Hit moves

Anything with icicle spear works too, probably

Items


Moves!
- Sleep Talk
- Uproar
- Magic Coat
- Taunt
- Reflect Type (Gotta be really desperate for this one ;-;)


Closing words
I really don't get the fuss about sleep, it's annoying to deal with if you can't deal with it, but that's just as much of a design flaw in your team as my daily frustrations are


Apparently those weren't the closing words
Several of my best teams autolose to Dragonite, yet I'm not petitioning to get it banned. In my opinion just the fact that you are too stubborn to put counters to something on your team, doesn't mean it's broken in any way.
I'm too lazy to counter Dragonite, you're too lazy to counter Jumpluff
Not my problem
I started off saying Jumpluff is stupid, but that's because we are making it stupid. Jumpluff and sleep have no big issue at their core, and removing them would restrain creativity and render a lot of perfectly viable sets useless, which just doesn't weigh up to a few people complaining about Jumpluff.




The actual closing words


~Mez
The last, and probably most important, counter to sleep is simply getting a KO before you can fall asleep.
Except that there is no "simply" in outspeeding and OHKO'ing when it comes to pokes as fast as Jumpluff and (Mega)-Gengar and as bulky as Snorlax.
And if the only really viable answer is to outspeed and OHKO, it isn't really something that belongs in a balanced meta (not saying 1v1 is balanced at the moment, but that's another discussion), is it?

I don't think people are too lazy to counter Jumpluff (or even sleep itself) rather than not wanting to be screwed over in matchups against everything else. All of the ice types you mentioned range from not viable to barely viable with the exception of Cloyster, and they need scarf for them to even be considered answers, which is also something that shouldn't be required for dealing with something as less than competitive as sleep in a balanced meta. Most of the answers listed for Jumpluff (Xatu, Espeon, Absol, Escavalier, Banette, Mega Banette, and Mega Beedrill,) aren't even that viable, which says a lot about the thing that needs answering in question. Regarding the moves suggested, bringing Sleep Talk in 1v1 on something that doesn't use Rest just for dealing with sleep is really crippling, while Magic Coat is extremely unreliable and takes away an important move slot from everything it's viable on (I would know, I've run Magic Coat in 1v1 before), and Reflect Type sets haven't been that good in 1v1 even on its viable users in my experience, and also only deals with grass type spore/sleep powder users. Also I don't know what the items listed are, you should include the names of the items. I'm guessing the 1st one is goggles? Which would also be a massive cripple to run in 1v1 if only for the sleep users, which are not even close to what's most used and needing to be prepared for.

Your guide to dealing with sleep doesn't even mention Gengar, which is arguably even more of a problem than Jumpluff.
Hypnosis + Hex (Mega)-Gengar has been an absolute pain in 1v1, landing Hypnosis on my pokes like 90% of the time. I know that's anecdotal, but relying on 60% accuracy to induce another luck based gameplay mechanic, while also gaining more damage than it otherwise would have had access to, resulting in wins where it otherwise would have lost feels very uncompetitive. And as mentioned by someone earlier, a very similar situation to this is banned even by ubers. In any case, something neds to be done about Hypnosis + Hex (Mega)-Gengar.

Honourable mentions go to Yawn Belly Drum Snorlax and Smeargle with whatever sleep inducing move + ImprisonForm (a strat that should also be banned in a 1v1 setting, but that's also another discussion).

Now you can go ahead and list the counters to the other sleep inducers, but how many overlap, i.e. which are the universal sleep counters? Are there many enough? Are the different poke archetypes represented, i.e. not just outspeed and OHKO, and how do you justify it if they aren't?
These are not rhetorical questions. I believe these questions need to be answered to address this subject properly.

You fail to mention that sleep isn't just countered by a move, ability or item. Keep in mind the main sleep abuser(s) (I'm going to mainly talk about jumpluff here) aren't unstoppable.
You fail to address the Sleep Clause argument, which in my opinion is something that needs addressing. Correct me if I'm wrong, but going from the function of Sleep Clause, I'm going to assume that the reason behind it is to not have your entire team being induced to sleep. 1/6ths of your team seems to be what the tolerable limit was when Smogon created Sleep Clause. It was created even while 6v6 also has just as much, and more (you can switch out after Yawn) counterplay to sleep. In 1v1 your 1 poke is your entire team. Your 1 poke being induced to sleep is your entire team being induced to sleep, which is the situation Sleep Clause was created for, to keep from happening. Now of course the difference is that due to being 6v6, sleep inducing itself didn't have to be banned altogether, they could keep sleep inducing while also avoiding the situation in question by limiting the pokes allowed to be induced to sleep to just 1. The question that arises is that would Smogon have banned sleep inducing altogether if Sleep Clause wasn't an option? Or would we have Smogon singles tiers without Sleep Clause? Would that be acceptable today if Sleep Clause suddenly wasn't an option any more?
 
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Felucia

formerly UnleashOurPassion
is a Battle Simulator Driver
I'm going to interject this time even though there has been a lot of times where posts/discussions in this thread needed interjection.
Thanks Rumple, I feel like we need to talk more because you have a bright and logical vision.

All of the ice types you mentioned range from not viable to barely viable with the exception of Cloyster, and they need scarf for them to even be considered answers, which is also something that shouldn't be required for dealing with something as less than competitive as sleep in a balanced meta.
How did I even manage to forget to list Kyurem-Black

Your guide to dealing with sleep doesn't even mention Gengar, which is arguably even more of a problem than Jumpluff.
Hypnosis + Hex (Mega)-Gengar has been an absolute pain in 1v1, landing Hypnosis on my pokes like 90% of the time. I know that's anecdotal, but relying on 60% accuracy to induce another luck based gameplay mechanic, while also gaining more damage than it otherwise would have had access to, resulting in wins where it otherwise would have lost feels very uncompetitive. And as mentioned by someone earlier, a very similar situation to this is banned even by ubers. In any case, something neds to be done about Hypnosis + Hex (Mega)-Gengar.
I would have included Gengar, had I known it was considered a problem. I haven't heard anyone complaining about Gengar in a long time. Because Jumpluff was the only thing I heard people complaining about, I made it a guide to dealing with Jumpluff.
The title wasn't accurate, I should've changed it.


You fail to address the Sleep Clause argument, which in my opinion is something that needs addressing. Correct me if I'm wrong, but going from the function of Sleep Clause, I'm going to assume that the reason behind it is to not have your entire team being induced to sleep. 1/6ths of your team seems to be what the tolerable limit was when Smogon created Sleep Clause. It was created even while 6v6 also has just as much, and more (you can switch out after Yawn) counterplay to sleep. In 1v1 your 1 poke is your entire team. Your 1 poke being induced to sleep is your entire team being induced to sleep, which is the situation Sleep Clause was created for, to keep from happening. Now of course the difference is that due to being 6v6, sleep inducing itself didn't have to be banned altogether, they could keep sleep inducing while also avoiding the situation in question by limiting the pokes allowed to be induced to sleep to just 1. The question that arises is that would Smogon have banned sleep inducing altogether if Sleep Clause wasn't an option? Or would we have Smogon singles tiers without Sleep Clause? Would that be acceptable today if Sleep Clause suddenly wasn't an option any more?
For most of your post I agree with you, and this post is mostly me justifying small details and defending my post more than my opinion (I'm a bad person) but here I do want to comment on something. I don't think Sleep Clause can be used to justify a 1v1 problem. The reason sleep clause is necessary is because there is more counterplay to sleep.

I probably lost everyone there.

Imagine the following situation:
My Venomoth just used sleep powder on the opponent, and is now ready to start using Substitute and Quiver Dance.
My opponent obviously doesn't want this to happen, and is looking for a way out.
A) Opponent stays in. Result: Probably a free substitute, quiver dances and repeated sleep.
B) Opponent switches. Result: Free Substitute, then locked down because of sleep clause

Now imagine this situation without sleep clause
B) Opponent switches. Result: Free Substitute, then put opponent to sleep and repeat the process.

Just by removing the sleep clause, the most valid counterplay disappeared entirely. My Venomoth can now use Quiver Dance, and put anything to sleep that gets in its way, with not much the opponent can do to change it.


In 1v1 banning sleep might be necessary to balance out the metagame, but this has in no way something to do with Sleep Clause, 6v6-1v1 comparisons should be avoided at all cost in my opinion.

I wish I could use a horizontal line as seperator
I want to remind everyone of the fact that sleep has 2 excellent sleep counters in the top 3 usage.

Kyurem-Black: Might be coincidence, but Kyurem-Black can beat all sleep (ab)users, though it does need 2 sets to do it (Scarf won't beat Snorlax, but I don't consider Snorlax a problem anyway)
Tapu Koko: Other than a speed tie with Mega Gengar, a well-played Tapu Koko can beat every sleep (ab)user except stunfisk but we don't talk about stunfisk
Gyarados-Mega: Although this one doesn't hold its ground against Snorlax or Jumpluff, it can deal with Mega Gengar with relative ease.
Charizard-Mega-X: Might not beat Jumpluff, but can stand up against Snorlax and possibly beat Mega Gengar (don't quote me on that).


So yes Rumplestiltskin there's a lack of viable sleep counters, but the most viable pokémon altogether just so happen to counter viable sleep in one way or another.

Conclusion
You got me thinking, my opinion on sleep is no longer as one-sided as it was before and all this thinking about sleep even got me to doubt Z-Moves, I'm open for discussion on both topics.

~Mez
 

Serperior @ Grassium Z
Ability: Contrary
EVs: 96 HP / 252 SpA / 8 SpD / 152 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Leaf Storm
- Substitute
- Leech Seed
- Dragon Pulse

This is an odd set that I put together that has worked better than the gimmick should have and for me not to talk about it. The speed puts it 2 points faster than the fastest max speed base 100. Sub allows tanking key z moves, Leaf storm builds up SpA for the z-move. Dragon pulse for coverage or for damage. The extra ev's went into HP with the 8 going into SpD to make download raise attack while keeping HP an odd number. It's a little strange but very satisfying and quirky anti stall mon.
I've been using Serperior too! In my opinion, though, Dragon Pulse is a wasted moveslot. Grassy Terrain (for Koko) or HP Fire (for Ferrothorn) are better as what you hit with Dragon Pulse OHKOs you anyways.
 
You fail to mention that sleep isn't just countered by a move, ability or item. Keep in mind the main sleep abuser(s) (I'm going to mainly talk about jumpluff here) aren't unstoppable.
The last, and probably most important, counter to sleep is simply getting a KO before you can fall asleep.


Not... really......

This inspired me to create a very nice post about why Jumpluff is one of the most stupid things in the meta
UnleashOurPassion's guide to dealing with sleep
Trust me, I have experience with not falling asleep

Jumpluff

You can be an ice type
Required speed: 350+ (base 110+)


Required speed (Scarf): 234+ (base 57+)

More but I got tired of finding images
Required Attack (STAB Ice Shard): 400-ish


Being a viable grass type


Being fast


Ignoring Substitute


Immunity to Sleep Powder
Sap Sipper


Sleepless


Magic Bounce


Overcoat


Otherwise immune


Taunt


Multi-Hit moves

Anything with icicle spear works too, probably

Items


Moves!
- Sleep Talk
- Uproar
- Magic Coat
- Taunt
- Reflect Type (Gotta be really desperate for this one ;-;)


Beating Jumpluff... Based on usage
No
Yes
Yes
Yes partys over says no...
No
No
Yes
No
Yes Speed Tie + Ice Punch
No


Closing words
I really don't get the fuss about sleep, it's annoying to deal with if you can't deal with it, but that's just as much of a design flaw in your team as my daily frustrations are


Apparently those weren't the closing words
Several of my best teams autolose to Dragonite, yet I'm not petitioning to get it banned. In my opinion just the fact that you are too stubborn to put counters to something on your team, doesn't mean it's broken in any way.
I'm too lazy to counter Dragonite, you're too lazy to counter Jumpluff
Not my problem
I started off saying Jumpluff is stupid, but that's because we are making it stupid. Jumpluff and sleep have no big issue at their core, and removing them would restrain creativity and render a lot of perfectly viable sets useless, which just doesn't weigh up to a few people complaining about Jumpluff.

The actual closing words


~Mez
UnleashOurPassion You've just identified one Pokemon and covered all possible counters for it. Let's not forget that other viable sleep abusers are Snorlax, venusaur, relicanth, empoleon......... The list goes on....... And that's why I feel the focus should not be on the "Pokemon which is viable to induce sleep" ; rather it should be on "sleep itself and how removing it will make the 1v1 meta better"
 

Felucia

formerly UnleashOurPassion
is a Battle Simulator Driver
UnleashOurPassion You've just identified one Pokemon and covered all possible counters for it. Let's not forget that other viable sleep abusers are Snorlax, venusaur, relicanth, empoleon......... The list goes on....... And that's why I feel the focus should not be on the "Pokemon which is viable to induce sleep" ; rather it should be on "sleep itself and how removing it will make the 1v1 meta better"
Apparently my opinion wasn't entirely clear. There is absolutely no problem with sleep in my opinion as there are only 2 abusers with enough speed to reliably pull it off.

Jumpluff and Mega Gengar

All the others are too slow and have a very simple counterplay called Substitute or Taunt, both of which are viable and used a lot and therefore don't force players to go out of their way to beat those sleep users.
If you look at that statement again another thing you'll notice is that the slower sleep users (mostly yawn) don't influence the metagame at all.

If even I with Stunfisk can't visibly change the metagame then I don't know what sleep user has visibly changed it.
Sleep is a strategy, and a viable one, but not one without counters. It's not centralizing at all and not difficult to play around unless you can't outspeed the sleep user, bringing me back to my 2 problematic sleep users.

That is why my focus is on 2 sleep users and not on dealing with the sleep problem itself, because in my opinion the sleep problem is not something that should be dealt with.
 

Felucia

formerly UnleashOurPassion
is a Battle Simulator Driver
This is going to take up a LOT of space... Oh well...
I'll at least put the images in hide tags because they're pretty huge.


Allow me to introduce you all to what I get like when I have something actually important to do, like studying for the most important exams in my life

0: Hello everyone
I'm Mez or UnleashOurPassion and I'm here with something entirely different. 6v6 is all about synergy and about having switchins for every move to survive as long as possible and take out your opponent in the process. In 1v1 this isn't the case, it's about the individual strengths of your Pokémon and their ability to support each other. This is why in 1v1 having a good set is essential. A Durant with 252 Attack and 252 Speed (Jolly Nature) simply can't top a 228 Atk / 28 Def / 252+ Spe Durant, because in the end you beat things you normally could lose to, while not losing to new things in the process.

Good, we've have established having a good set in 1v1 is important. And while the perfect set for any Pokémon doesn't exist we can always aim to look for them. This is also evident if you look at the recent developments in the metagame, in terms of viability; most importantly Kyurem-Black. Before I, Uselesscrab, Kentari and CallMeJJok3R took up Kyurem-Black and started messing with EVs, it wasn't that big of a deal in gen 7. Now the sets have gotten close to perfection. So close in fact, that it's now seen as banworthy.

Now I think that if we go through some effort, we can make other things banworthy. This leads me to a paraphrase from The Official Glyx:
Mega Charizard X might be S rank, but people haven't gotten to making it S rank yet
Now, after quite some time, I think I understand what that means. If people don't take a Pokémon to another level, then it never will reach another level. There are a few users who do try to take their sets to another level. Some use it to make good Pokémon great, others use it to make mediocre Pokémon... Slightly less mediocre.
Yes MaceMaster I'm talking about you
[18:49:08] Kentari: That's gonna be a great post when you're done
[18:49:16] Kentari: You have the best EVs in 1v1
[18:49:17] Kentari: easily
[18:49:27] Kentari: you and Macemaster
[18:49:32] Kentari: and UC surprisingly enough

Can we just add lost heros to that list?

Point is, there's a lot more to EVs than meets the eye, you might never get to MaceMaster level, but I could at least spend some time showing you the basics in an extremely overdone, eleborate, detailed post about EVs.

I present to you:

UnleashOurPassion's guide to...
EVs, spreads and Natures
aka literally 5 hours of wasted time


1: Concepts, general rules


1.1: Nature
If you want to be a Pokémon master you want to be able to do your Natures right. First of all I want you to keep in mind this doesn't really apply to your classic 252/252+ EV spreads. I'm going into this "guide" assuming you have some basic knowledge of how to build a Pokémon, meaning you know how to make something that isn't 252/252+, and generally this doesn't work on 252/252+.

Now that we've got that out of the way; the first thing you'll need to know is something that can feel very obvious if you put some thought into it
A nature gives a bigger boost to a higher stat
Because your nature is going to boost your stat by 10% you're going to get more if your stat is 100 than you would get with a stat of 10. Basic maths.

This is why, if possible, you should always have the boosting nature in the highest base stat unless you want a stat to exceed their unboosted maximum.
In the case of Tapu Koko, having a Jolly Nature gives you more revenue, but if you want the damage given by Adamant then obviously Adamant is your only option.


1.2: Raw EVs
The concept explained in #1.1 also works in reverse. If you have a base stat that is already low, then you're going to relatively gain more by raising that stat.

If your pokémon has 5 defense note that I'm not talking about 5 base defense, then adding 20 EVs will double the stat, while a pokémon with 500 Defense will hardly even feel those 20 EVs.


1.3: Defensive calcs from scratch
Imagine you're building a beautiful Kyurem-Black that is supposed to survive a Hyper Beam from Choice Scarf Porygon-Z (haven't we all made one of those at some point? No? Oh... Let's continue) it makes sense to just throw that into the Damage Calculator, max out HP and add 44 SpD to conclude:
252+ SpA Adaptability Porygon-Z Hyper Beam vs. 252 HP / 44 SpD Kyurem-Black: 384-452 (84.5 - 99.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

If you were wondering: Yes I memorized those EVs

Well what if I told you: you just did something wrong!
You just used up 296 out of your available 508 EVs, while all you needed was 192.
252+ SpA Adaptability Porygon-Z Hyper Beam vs. 0 HP / 192 SpD Kyurem-Black: 330-390 (84.3 - 99.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

That's right, you just wasted 104 EVs without thinking.
RAW Def or SpD is usually more efficient than HP + Def/SpD (there are a few exceptions, I'll (probably) get to those later.

This would be a different story if you, like me, are also trying to get some bulk on the defensive side of things, imagine you also want your Kyurem-Black to survive a Smart Strike from Choice Band Kartana. If you just follow the rule I just set you'd get the following EVs.
80 HP / 252 Def / 140 SpD
I took the liberty of lowering the Special Defense seeing as we now have more HP to work with
Nice spread, gives us survival on both things we wanted, but it does leave you with only 16 EVs to do other things with.

If you want to have both Defense and Special Defense: Max out HP first
252 HP / 140 Def / 44 SpD​
Now we have 72 leftovers to work with. Still not much, but it's a lot more.
Don't forget, we use Adamant Nature to get the best out of our stats.

The lord MaceMaster has spoken
I've been informed that maxing out HP is not always more efficient for mixed defensive spreads (as I'll mention later). Pokémon with really high base HP might have more benefit in a pure Def/SpD spread. It's always worth testing out.


1.4: Defensive calcs with limited EVs
Imagine the following scenario: You're UOP so you like to do crazy things with spreads. You want your Tapu Lele to have 252 SpA, 28 Spe and a Modest Nature, but you still want to be able to survive an Iron Head from Adamant Kyurem-Black (I just made that up because it works here).

All right so what do we have to work with? 280 EVs and our Nature have already been expended so we have 228 EVs left to make this work!
252+ Atk Teravolt Kyurem-Black Iron Head vs. 0 HP / 228 Def Tapu Lele: 228-270 (81.1 - 96%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Well. That was easy... We just hit our benchmark without effort, and there's even a margin to tank stronger physical hits!

This is often wrong! This is partially up to personal preference, There are probably many cases in which this isn't wrong but in my eyes it's not preferable.
If the strongest hit you want to be able to survive is an Adamant Kyurem-Black, then there's no reason to assume you'll have to survive anything stronger. You built your team in a way that your Tapu Lele isn't supposed to survive those hits, so there's no real point in making it survive.

If you calc with leftover EVs, put as much into HP as possible Again, personal preference
This is actually a pain to calculate, as you'll have to go over every possible EV combination until you've found the one that works.
Personally I prefer to put 228 (in this case) into HP, then switch 228 to Def and see which one is closer.
252+ Atk Teravolt Kyurem-Black Iron Head vs. 228 HP / 0 Def Tapu Lele: 298-352 (88.1 - 104.1%) -- 25% chance to OHKO

Looks like HP is closer to perfect, so let's take it from there.
Now what we'll do is keep moving X EVs from HP to Defense until it's perfect. For me X will always be 4 but if you're lazy you can do like 16 or 20...

228 HP / 0 Def Tapu Lele: 298-352 (88.1 - 104.1%) -- 25% chance to OHKO
208 HP / 20 Def Tapu Lele: 290-342 (87 - 102.7%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO
188 HP / 40 Def Tapu Lele: 282-334 (85.9 - 101.8%) -- 12.5% chance to OHKO
168 HP / 60 Def Tapu Lele: 276-326 (85.4 - 100.9%) -- 6.3% chance to OHKO
148 HP / 80 Def Tapu Lele: 270-318 (84.9 - 100%) -- 6.3% chance to OHKO
128 HP / 100 Def Tapu Lele: 262-310 (83.7 - 99%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

once you're done, take X=4 and start moving them back just so you don't overshoot it.
252+ Atk Teravolt Kyurem-Black Iron Head vs. 144 HP / 84 Def Tapu Lele: 268-316 (84.5 - 99.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Looks like we've got our Lele ready to fight some Kyurem-Black. With this HP investment you're likely to survive some special hits you would normally lose to
252+ SpA Heatran Flash Cannon vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Tapu Lele: 254-302 (90.3 - 107.4%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO
252+ SpA Heatran Flash Cannon vs. 144 HP / 0 SpD Tapu Lele: 254-302 (80.1 - 95.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO



1.5: Exceptions

Note: These are examples, these things apply to basically anything with similar stats
Durant
You've all been using the beautiful Durant set I posted at some point, I'm sure. What if I told you that set is actually not optimized
The damage calculation with my spread is as follows:
+1 252+ Atk Mold Breaker Gyarados-Mega Waterfall vs. 0 HP / 28 Def Durant: 217-256 (84.4 - 99.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
I discovered, 3 months after I made this spread. That I could've done this better.
+1 252+ Atk Mold Breaker Gyarados-Mega Waterfall vs. 24 HP / 0 Def Durant: 222-262 (84.4 - 99.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
I wasted a big 4 EVs!
Honestly... This isn't a big deal, Durant still did what it had to do and 4 less Attack really isn't going to stop it. But this is an interesting thing to keep in mind.
Pokémon with really high base Def or SpD, but really low base HP, will benefit more from an HP boost

Guzzlord
For Guzzlord, you could run 252 HP and 252 Atk, and you'd be wasting your EVs. A lot of them too!
252+ SpA Abomasnow-Mega Blizzard vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Guzzlord: 662-782 (101.8 - 120.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO
252+ SpA Abomasnow-Mega Blizzard vs. 0 HP / 128 SpD Guzzlord: 542-638 (92.3 - 108.6%) -- 50% chance to OHKO
By just putting 128 Def / 128 SpD instead of 252 HP, you end up taking less damage from any attack that comes your way because of Guzzlord's huge HP compared to its low Def/SpD.

I did some calculations and it's looking like the following applies:
Code:
HP is more efficient than Def
if
HP / Def < 6 / 11
I'm no wizard though so I might be very wrong on this, damage calculations are complex and it almost sounds wrong to assume such a simple rule applies and is independent of the actual stats.

Similarly: (assuming SpD = Def)
Code:
0 HP / 128 Def / 128 SpD provides more protection than 252 HP
if
Def / HP < 7 / 12
I'm not claiming any of this to be true! I just did some math and thought this looked about right. I could be 100% wrong



2: Basic examples


2.1: Saving some Attack on Gyarados

100 HP / 252 Atk / 156+ Spe Gyarados-Mega

This is just a quick Gyarados spread I put together to illustrate my point, I suggest you don't use it because it's pretty bad, but it shows the point.

100 HP / 160+ Atk / 248 Spe Gyarados-Mega

As you can see, the second Gyarados clearly has more attack than the first one, while the other stats are identical.


2.2: My Tapu Koko done right
When I first built this Tapu Koko, I just went with Modest because I figured I needed more power, but then for some reason cut the power down to exactly the same as 252 Timid. Giving the following result:
180 HP / 48 Def / 148+ SpA / 132 Spe

Now believe it or not this is what my bulky Tapu Koko used to look like. 180 HP and 48 Def is what lets me survive a Flare Blitz from Jolly Charizard-Mega-X with as little defense as possible, just so I can balance my bulk a little more to the special side as well.

Looks good, right? Outspeed Charizard and tank a flare blitz, what could go wrong?

Well... after the speed and SpA stat I have 228 EVs left to work with, now let's look at the improvement I found after a few weeks of using this.

216 HP / 24 Def / 252 SpA / 16+ Spe

Those few EVs I saved make a huge difference to the spread. With 252 SpA and 16+ Spe I still hit the same speed.
(Well, I overshoot it by one because the jump from 12 to 16 actually gives 2 speed points. Added bonus I guess)
But I did end up freeing 12 additional EVs; and look at those defensive EVs, looking a little different...

I can assure you it still does the exact same thing. Can survive a Flare Blitz from Jolly Charizard-Mega-X with as little Def investment as possible. but now it has more HP meaning more special bulk as an added bonus, making my Tapu Koko just a little more usable.

252+ SpA Choice Specs Magearna Fleur Cannon vs. +1 180 HP / 0 SpD Tapu Koko: 297-349 (91.1 - 107%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO Reliable
252+ SpA Choice Specs Magearna Fleur Cannon vs. +1 216 HP / 0 SpD Tapu Koko: 297-349 (88.6 - 104.1%) -- 25% chance to OHKO More reliable



The exception 2.3: My Gyarados process
This looks kinda stupid but it shows there are exceptions to the rules I just created.
2.3.1: My initial Gyarados

Yay! I have the HP I want, I have the Def I want, the SpD I want and even the Spe I want.
What did you say? Not optimal? Too little attack? Yea... the problem is that with an Adamant Nature I wouldn't be able to hit 223 Spe so I really need that Jolly here.

Because Atk is not important to me, I have no reason to even want to use an Adamant Nature. But you're right, it's still not optimal. I mean... I'm boosting the second lowest base stat, that can't be right.

2.3.2: Boosting a different stat

This is a clear improvement. All the stats are the same except for that Special Defense, which is actually higher than it was before.
This shows that even if it's not your highest base stat, it's still beneficial to put your nature in the higher base stat

2.3.3: Counterintuitive
[18:33:42] Kentari: Is there not an EV guide somewhere? Or has 1v1 pushed EVs to the limit
[18:43:10] UnleashOurPassion: There's an EV guide I'm sure
[18:43:17] UnleashOurPassion: But in 1v1 it's way more important
[18:43:26] Sorry about that: yeah
[18:43:33] UnleashOurPassion: Some of my exceptions only apply to 1v1
[18:44:23] UnleashOurPassion: Even in 6v6 tryhard teams don't have some of the stuff I'm covering

Kentari this is what I was referring to.

I found this little flaw 3 hours ago By the time I finished this post it was 8 hours ago and it's actually been the main reason for me writing this post.
This is probably the most controversial thing in my entire post because between #2 and #3 I actually lowered my stat total and called it an improvement. Here's why:

The 316 SpD stat on my Gyarados-Mega is for a 2HKO from Porygon-Z Uproar
The 278/279 Def stat on my Gyarados-Mega is for a 2HKO from Kyurem-Black Fusion Bolt

With the Careful Nature I did get a Special Defense boost of a few points, but I realized it wasn't actually helping me with anything.
Now, with the Impish Nature, I almost exactly hit my Defense benchmark with no need to add extra EVs and also not overshooting it by too much, meaning the EVs I put into this aren't as wasted.

Because I have 80 SpD and 96 Def, going from +SpD to +Def frees up 16 EVs that I can put in either Atk or Spe depending on where I think I need them.

Although this spread doesn't give me better stats than the other, in the end it gives me more Attack with no drawback


3: Closing words
Thanks everyone for reading my post, thanks to everyone I mentioned at some point for not getting mad at me for mentioning them.
Thanks to The Official Glyx for at some point pointing out my Koko was bad
Thanks to Dream Eater Gengar for lauging at me for having a 15000 character post.

I'd like to ask you a few things.
Give me some feedback Tell me if you liked it, if there's any examples I need to add and if I should do similar guides in the future.
Share your work If you created a cool EV spread after or before reading this post, I'd love to see it and give feedback if you want to


4: Happy laddering!

~Mez
 
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DEG

ADIOS COMPADRES
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
On Sleep inducing moves, as many have already raised concerns it may be uncompetitive from a far look but if we dive deep into the metagame it isn't as bad as it was last generation. We have more forms of checks this generation and we're still getting new additions like Mega Stones and Marshadow soon that might be able to counter Sleep. Though, like it was said there's also items and strategies that can be used to counter Sleep and the users of such moves don't make up the metagame, it's a minim part of the metagame. Now, if the playstyle deems to be dominant in the future then we might consider it banning it but as of right now the abusers are a few and it's not a reliable or spammable strategy. There's a post coming soon from me, stay tuned!
 

DEG

ADIOS COMPADRES
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

Target Select: Deoxys-Defense.
Role: Defensive behemoth.
Accused: Breaking the metagame.

Deoxys-Defense was unbanned last generation as it wasn't deemed that broken or deserving to be present in the 1v1 banlist. Such remarks were made because it has a crucial hazards setting role in OU which made it broken, with hazards not being in the 1v1 metagame, Deoxys-Defense wasn't looked at as broken last generation, especially with the abundance of more suspect-worthy threats last generation like Mega Salamence, Mega Gyarados, Mega Mawile, and Kyurem-Black which made the discussion or the thoughts of Deoxys-Defense ever being banned masked. Even though some people vouched for such ban last generation it didn't get the boot as like mentioned we didn't get to see much discussion. It was also unbanned this generation as we were setting the same banlist as last generation for a start, I didn't consider it banworth back then but as the metagame developed more and we're few months in Generation VII metagame I do believe now that Deoxys-Defense restricts teambuilding in a way.

Deoxys-Defense as its name indicates is a defensive monster being able to easily tank hits from the scariest threats in the metagame notably Kyurem-Black, Mega Charizard X, Mega Mawile, Dragonite and more. Not only it can tank these hits but it can also reliably beat them with the help of Counter, Mirror Coat or by PP stalling due to pressure. Furthermore, Deoxys-Defense can beat defensive Pokemon as it is a fast Pokemon with access to Taunt and Seismic Toss. All these traits make Deoxys-Defense at the top of defensive threats. The usage of Taunt can also stop set up moves by offensive Pokemon like Dragonite and Mega Charizard X allowing Deoxys-Defense to beat them easier.

What makes Deoxys-Defense broken in my opinion is with the correct play it can beat a good part of the metagame with methods that can be called cheap such as PP stall thanks to pressure. Plus its typing leaves it prone to underused types in the metagame Dark and Bug, and an average type in the metagame Ghost allowing it to perform its role as a defensive Pokemon better due to it not being weak to a lot of Pokemon. Such protection from the moveset, typing and stats sides make it a threat that needs special countering on each team or it will run through it. Deoxys-Defense makes it hard to run stall teams or even offensive Pokemon without moves tailored to beat it such as Set up+Strong Z-move condition the foe is faster than Deoxys-Defense or it will be taunted.

I have no time to detail more the post but I will do if I get counter arguments later.
 

Uselesscrab

if you still had the bones of an idol
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnus

Target Select: Deoxys-Defense.
Role: Defensive behemoth.
Accused: Breaking the metagame.

Deoxys-Defense was unbanned last generation as it wasn't deemed that broken or deserving to be present in the 1v1 banlist. Such remarks were made because it has a crucial hazards setting role in OU which made it broken, with hazards not being in the 1v1 metagame, Deoxys-Defense wasn't looked at as broken last generation, especially with the abundance of more suspect-worthy threats last generation like Mega Salamence, Mega Gyarados, Mega Mawile, and Kyurem-Black which made the discussion or the thoughts of Deoxys-Defense ever being banned masked. Even though some people vouched for such ban last generation it didn't get the boot as like mentioned we didn't get to see much discussion. It was also unbanned this generation as we were setting the same banlist as last generation for a start, I didn't consider it banworth back then but as the metagame developed more and we're few months in Generation VII metagame I do believe now that Deoxys-Defense restricts teambuilding in a way.

Deoxys-Defense as its name indicates is a defensive monster being able to easily tank hits from the scariest threats in the metagame notably Kyurem-Black, Mega Charizard X, Mega Mawile, Dragonite and more. Not only it can tank these hits but it can also reliably beat them with the help of Counter, Mirror Coat or by PP stalling due to pressure. Furthermore, Deoxys-Defense can beat defensive Pokemon as it is a fast Pokemon with access to Taunt and Seismic Toss. All these traits make Deoxys-Defense at the top of defensive threats. The usage of Taunt can also stop set up moves by offensive Pokemon like Dragonite and Mega Charizard X allowing Deoxys-Defense to beat them easier.

What makes Deoxys-Defense broken in my opinion is with the correct play it can beat a good part of the metagame with methods that can be called cheap such as PP stall thanks to pressure. Plus its typing leaves it prone to underused types in the metagame Dark and Bug, and an average type in the metagame Ghost allowing it to perform its role as a defensive Pokemon better due to it not being weak to a lot of Pokemon. Such protection from the moveset, typing and stats sides make it a threat that needs special countering on each team or it will run through it. Deoxys-Defense makes it hard to run stall teams or even offensive Pokemon without moves tailored to beat it such as Set up+Strong Z-move condition the foe is faster than Deoxys-Defense or it will be taunted.

I have no time to detail more the post but I will do if I get counter arguments later.
I wholeheartedly agree and I'm glad to see this subject finally being raised. The fact is that given its fast speed tier for a defensive Pokemon, the only ways to reliably beat Deoxys-D are 1) the use of exceptionally powerful attacks from the uncommon types that hit it super effectively and 2) the use of highly constraining stall-breaking strategies such as the combinations of Taunt + Swords Dance or Taunt + Dragon Dance.

Selected Pokemon from category 1 (mostly middling):
  • Heracross-Mega
  • Genesect
  • Greninja
  • Durant
  • Hoopa-U
  • Niche Bug-type Pokemon such as Volcarona and Buzzwole
  • Gengar-Mega if it hits Hypnosis quickly enough
  • Some Aegislash
Selected Pokemon from category 2 (that don't even necessarily beat Mental Herb Taunt or Psychium Z Deoxys-D):
  • Gyarados-Mega
  • Tapu Koko
  • Tyranitar-Mega
The prevalence of those former two is the main reason why most people find Deoxys-D manageable, in my opinion. And it's important to note that with the exception of a select few fellow "stall" Pokemon such as Mega Sableye and Oblivious Slowbro (not even sure if this wins tbh), that playstyle is largely shut down by Deoxys-D with Taunt. On the whole, there are very few reliable counters to Deoxys-D commonly used in the 1v1 metagame. Typical offensive moves for dealing with stall Pokemon, such as Taunt, Substitute, and Toxic, can all be handled by various Deoxys-D sets. It can't run all of these at once, but the sheer unpredictability necessitates the use of the same few ridiculously common Pokemon like Gyarados-Mega to handle it.

I'd also like to address the honestly laughable "just crit" argument, the equivalent of the "just use Ice Beam" that was thrown around by some of our most respected players during the Mega Salamence suspect. The chance of a Pokemon not getting a critical hit in 8 tries (representing the case of a Pokemon running a 16 PP 100% accurate attack) is 60% (does this sound familiar to anti-Jirachi people?), something that can be further mitigated by a Deoxys-D by effective "crit-proofing" through the use of Mud Slap, a move that further reduces the average matchup versus Deoxys-D to a race to get good luck. Not to mention that without a boosting move, a double- or triple-crit is often necessary.

All in all, this is far from my most coherent post but I'm looking forward to seeing some discussion about a likely-broken Pokemon that has largely flown under the radar in terms of ban discussions and is finally getting its comeuppance.

oh also I kind of foolishly neglected to talk about Substitute in this post so it might be nice if someone else could discuss that
 

Target Select: Deoxys-Defense.
Role: Defensive behemoth.
Accused: Breaking the metagame.
Deoxys used Counter!

As long as it's been in 1v1, Deoxys-D has proven to be a consistent and powerful defensive pokemon. However, it's nowhere near broken enough to warrant a ban. Here's my take on the subject.

CounterCoat:

Deoxyclean (Deoxys-Defense) @ Sitrus Berry / Leftovers / Colbur Berry
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Counter
- Mirror Coat
- Taunt
- Recover

ID/Amnesia PP Stall:

Deoxygen (Deoxys-Defense) @ Aguav Berry / Mental Herb / Lum Berry / Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Def / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Iron Defense
- Amnesia
- Taunt
- Rest / Recover

Z-Cosmic Power:

Deox Ex (Deoxys-Defense) @ Psychium Z
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 248 HP / 8 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Cosmic Power
- Night Shade / Seismic Toss / Toxic
- Recover / Rest
- Taunt / Substitute

Note: If you like, you can invest defensively (esp good for ID/Am and PsyZ sets), but you end up losing to all other DeoD as well as several other semi-fast pokemon.

248 HP / 52 Def Bold lets you tank Icium-Z KyuB. Alternatively, SpDef invest can help you with would-be counters like Greninja.


What makes Deoxys-Defense broken in my opinion is with the correct play it can beat a good part of the metagame with methods that can be called cheap such as PP stall thanks to pressure. Plus its typing leaves it prone to underused types in the metagame Dark and Bug, and an average type in the metagame Ghost allowing it to perform its role as a defensive Pokemon better due to it not being weak to a lot of Pokemon. Such protection from the moveset, typing and stats sides make it a threat that needs special countering on each team or it will run through it. Deoxys-Defense makes it hard to run stall teams or even offensive Pokemon without moves tailored to beat it such as Set up+Strong Z-move condition the foe is faster than Deoxys-Defense or it will be taunted.
Deoxys-Defense has been accused of the following (we court case now bois):

- Using "cheap" tactics to win (PP Stall)
- Having good typing
- Requires specific counters to beat
- Being good against stall
- Being good against non-setup attackers
- Frustrations regarding Crits

CHEAP TACTICS TO WIN

How do you define "cheap?" What makes one set cheaper than another? Deoxys Defense has three ways of winning a match. It can boost its defenses and whittle an opponent down over time (stoss, night shade, toxic), it can reflect an attack directly (counter, mirror coat), or it can PP stall (Taunt, Recover, Rest, Pressure). The ambiguity of which type of Deoxys you're against (similar to Charizard, Kyurem) is part of what makes it viable at all. Different Deoxys sets beat different things, and players pick which type of Deoxys to use based on what threats they want to cover, and how reliably they want to take out common picks.

No one win condition is significantly easier to achieve than the other two. There is no one godly Deoxys set that stands out in usage or viability, and if there was it's certainly not the PP stall set. If it's not easier or more effective to win with PP stall than CounterCoat (a legitimate strat used by many other pokemon in the metagame), then PP stall isn't "cheaper" than any other DeoD set. It may "feel" cheap because:

- Matches take longer or end in /ff
- Struggling is no fun
- The only way you can win without having a counter is to crit

However, none of these things are actually as bad as they seem. Longer matches are not worse. Stall may be boring for some, but that doesn't make it an illegitimate playstyle. Many people enjoy using and winning with stallmons, doesn't make them unfair or unbalanced. Struggle-forcing is a unique mechanic in a couple ways. First of all, the only other pokemon who utilize it are Imprision+Transform Smeargle and Encore+Disable MegaZam/Salazzle. Both of these mons are considered fairly unreliable esp higher on the ladder. More importantly, once you're struggling, the game is over. In most cases, it's nothing more than a win condition - there's no coming back, the game is over. You may not have fainted yet, but Deo-D has you. I'll talk more about crits later.

GOOD ASS TYPING

It's mono-psychic. No 4x weaknesses, loses to Bug, Dark, and Ghost. These types may not be as popular in the tier as Ground, Dragon, or Steel, but they still exist. If your team is lacking all three of these coverage moves, it's possible you need to re-think your building strategy.

SPECIFIC COUNTERS CHECKS

- Mega Gyarados (unless no Crunch/Taunt/Sub)
- BD Zard X
- Zard Y
- Icium Kyu-B
- SD Maw (sometimes 50/50)
- Trick Scarf Porygon-Z (unless Z-Cosmic DeoD)
- Mega Pinsir
- Slowbro
- Tapu Koko
- Other Deoxys Defense
- Greninja
- Metal Sound Magnezone
- SD Mimikyu
- Curse Mimikyu (if no Rest)
- Aegislash
- Toxic Chansey (if no Rest)
- SD Chomp (sometimes 50/50)
- Genesect
- SD Kartana
- Trick Scarf Jirachi (unless Z-Cosmic DeoD)
- Trick Scarf Togekiss (same)
- Mega Gengar
- Regular Gengar (why not)
- Sub SD/BU Lando-T
- Whimsicott
- Mew
- Pheromosa
- M-Sableye
- Scizor/M-Scizor
- Buzzwole
- Hoopa-U
- ToxicRest Type: Null
- M-Alakazam
- Banded Slaking
- Banded Bulu
- Vivillion
- The God-Pokemon Shedinja

- Anything faster than base 90 with Taunt
- Anything faster with Sub beats CounterCoat
- Anything with Toxic provided it's running Recover

Just to name a few...


GOOD VS STALL

I plead guilty. It is good vs stall. (and thank Arceus for that!)

GOOD VS NON-SETUP ATTACKERS

I mean... that's exactly what it's supposed to beat. Huh.

A NOTE ON MUD SLAP

Mud-Slap is terrible, and a waste of a moveslot. It makes games more frustrating without really changing what you beat. If you like pissing people off a little extra, go for it. It's not better than having Taunt or Recover though, I can promise you.

Here's a fun idea. If Mud-Slap Deo-D is too annoying or un-competitive, let's ban accuracy reduction. Evasiveness boosts are already banned, and since there's no switching (because this is 1v1) its literally the same thing.

A NOTE ON SET AMBIGUITY / UNPREDICTABLE FACTOR

Some people may complain that they can't tell what kind of DeoD they're up against and don't know what mon to pick or what move to use. That'd be a great argument if pokemon like Charizard (is it X or Y?) or Kyu-B (is it Scarf, Icium Z, Band, Specs, Haban Berry, Dragonium Z, Electrium Z, Groundium Z, or Weakness Policy, and is it the bulky or fast version?) didn't exist.

FINALLY, CRITS

The Crit argument doesn't really apply to CounterCoat Deoxys (it gets crit the same as everything else), but the stat boost sets are worth talking about. Every turn Deoxys is on the field, it has a 1/16 chance to get crit. UC did the math above for a specific scenario - a 100% acc move with 16 PP (reduced to 8 by pressure) has a 60% chance to NOT crit in the 8 turns. However, this obviously doesn't apply to all scenarios. Some matchups have vastly different odds - moves like Shadow Claw and Night Slash are especially effective because of their enhanced crit rate. Some moves have far more PP, some pokemon have multiple moves to go through the PP of before a crit lands (ex. Kartana has to go through all its Leaf Blades, Night Slashes, and Smart Strikes before it starts Struggling). The fact of the matter is, your odds change drastically depending on matchup, and you can't simply say "look it's about 60%, it's basically Jirachi." Luck exists in Pokemon, it's not always predictable, and that's okay.

A Deoxys user that's okay with taking more risks might use PP stall Deo. They might win lots, or they might get crit a few times in a row. The choice is theirs how much they want to rely on not getting crit, and they can make the choice to trade a smaller pool of nearly-guaranteed victories for a wider pool of probably-victories if they so desire. You as a player may not get to choose what risks your opponent takes, but you can control your own. Over enough games, the person who makes the smartest choices about what risks to take or avoid in teambuilding and in battle will still win the most.


NOW ENOUGH BLATHERING HERE'S MY SOLUTION

Real talk, if DeoD seems a little overpowered, why not just introduce something else into the metagame to tone it down and provide another counter? Let's unban Darkrai. Now that Dark Void is essentially worthless, he'd make a healthy addition to the tier, acting as a check/counter to both DeoD and the ever-present Mega Gyarados (Nasty Plot Tbolt) while being a generally strong pokemon on its own. I fail to see any negatives here, plus we get to keep everyone's least favorite psychic bulwark while at the same time toning down its overall strength in the metagame.


Thanks for reading my nonsense rambling
peace
 
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So I'm really glad to see something done about a mon that's been broken for a long time.

From a teambuilder's perspective, deod is super obnoxious. When ghosts or fast bugs find their way on my team, I become happy knowing I actually have a chance to beat deod without resorting to something stupid. The problem with this is that these bugs or ghosts suck. The highest ranked one, mimikyu, is a- rank. Sure, good mons like gyara and zard have a chance, but that's another problem. They can beat some deods, but it's hard for commonly used mons to just straight up beat all deods. You might be able to beat the countercoat one, but the pp stall one would win. You can't just slap taunt or crunch on a mon like gyarados and expect win always beat deod. 50/50s can be the case against mons like zard and gyara with the amnesia/iron defense and the taunt/iron defense situations. Overall, building around deod is stupidly hard and is one of the biggest reasons it's unhealthy in my opinion.
 

Gross Sweep

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it's time for another installment of...

Should I Stay or Should I Go?
(Deoxys-Defense Edition)



Yes, I know the post you've all been waiting for when I, an irrelevant user, share my opinions on a possible ban worthy mon. To be blunt using this mon is the definition of a stereotypical "cancerous" strategy, where the user either takes advantage of its opponent's strength or sits there, praying for no crit, while their opponent keeps pummeling away until they reach a state of extreme exhaustion as they begin to struggle moving tripping about tell they faint - oh and did I mention Deoxys speeds up this exhaustion by taunting its opponents making them feel a constant pressure on inadequacy. Now, while I enjoy the playful descriptions, this mon really deserves a serious discussion from here on out. Deoxys-Defense is a Pokemon that in my opinion deserves Action. While I'm not 100% sure on whether it's truly ban worthy I do feel discussion at this time is appropriate, and I will divulge my tentative opinion at the end of this post so that this post isn't just me describing a mon with no drawn conclusion.

Sample Sets


Deoxys-Defense @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Taunt
- Iron Defense
- Amnesia
- Recover



Deoxys-Defense @ Psychium Z
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 HP / 108 Def / 148 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Recover
- Cosmic Power
- Mud-Slap
- Taunt



Deoxys-Defense @ Sitrus Berry
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 HP / 108 Def / 148 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Taunt
- Counter
- Mirror Coat
- Recover

Simply listing off a few sets that stick out. It should be noted that even though Deoxys-Defense is widely known as a defensive monster, it actually has a lot of diversity in what set it can run. This diversity is one of the biggest advantages Deoxys-Defense has, because it forces your opponents to take a chance trying to counter one set when it could potentially be playing into the hands of another. Also if you'll notice the first set, Deoxys-Defense is capable of running max speed in order to handle average speed mons that could potentially try to taunt/hit Deoxys-Defense before it gets a chance to boost up or get off its own taunt due to the immense natural bulk Deoxys-Defense has. Or you can follow the formula of the second two sets, that are EV'd more defensively to live a Blast Burn from Mega Charizard-Y 100% of the time, with the rest of the EVs being poured into Phys Def. I wont get into to many more specifics for each set as I'm sure you can draw conclusions as to what each set does from the move sets. (If you have any questions on the sets feel free to ask me though)

Pros and Cons

In this section I'm going to quickly go over some of the Pros and Cons that come with running a Deoxys-Defense, so everyone can at the very least be aware of what comes with using this mon.
Pros:
  • Deoxys-Defense is a defensive monster who can change his spread and move set to check a wide variety of threats.
  • Natural bulk allows a Deoxys-D with no investment in Def and SpDef to hit 356 Def/SpDef allowing Deoxys-D to separate itself from other fat mons as it can invest in speed with little cost.
  • Does well vs "stall" and non set up attackers, which is a decent portion of the current metagame.
Cons:
  • Critical hits can can change the entire shape of a Deoxys-D match up. Obviously it's not a reliable way to check Deoxys-D, but it does need to be factored in.
  • Any mon that is faster, and hits hard right away or has a set up move is a large threat that doesn't have much counter play.
  • Pokemon that can switch between physical and special sets can throw a wrench in Deoxys-D's strategies, especially mons like Charizard.
What's it Beat?
just a quick note that this list is just to give a few examples. Obviously there are a some "less common" sets that could contradict some of these mons, which is why this portion will be using the word "mostly" to its fullest. There's also a lot of overlap between the sets, so these aren't all only this set beats that mon scenarios.
Things Counter Coat Deoxys-D beats MOST of the time:


Things Counter Coat Deoxys-D Loses to MOST of the time:


Things Pressure Stall Deoxys-D beats MOST of the time:


Things Pressure Stall Deoxys-D loses to MOST of the time:


Once again restating that this is just a quick list for a few examples. Some earlier posts by Elo Bandit and Uselesscrab do a great job at identifying what Deoxys-D does win/lose versus more thoroughly, so I'd check those out if you're interested.

Sample teams
Team with Counter Coat by Kentari

Charizard-Mega-X @ Charizardite X
Ability: Tough Claws
EVs: 128 HP / 24 Atk / 104 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Outrage
- Flare Blitz
- Substitute

Deoxys-Defense @ Aguav Berry
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 HP / 108 Def / 148 SpD
Bold Nature
- Taunt
- Counter
- Mirror Coat
- Recover

Metagross-Mega @ Metagrossite
Ability: Tough Claws
EVs: 252 HP / 52 Atk / 132 Def / 72 Spe
Impish Nature
- Bullet Punch
- Meteor Mash
- Thunder Punch
- Earthquake


Team With Pressure Stall by Kentari

Sableye-Mega @ Sablenite
Ability: Prankster
Shiny: Yes
EVs: 248 HP / 144 Def / 116 SpD
Impish Nature
- Metal Burst
- Will-O-Wisp
- Taunt
- Recover

Magnezone @ Choice Specs
Ability: Sturdy
Shiny: Yes
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Rash Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 SpD
- Thunderbolt
- Flash Cannon
- Mirror Coat
- Hidden Power [Ice]

Deoxys-Defense @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
Shiny: Yes
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Taunt
- Recover
- Iron Defense
- Amnesia


Fun team featuring Deoxys-Defense by MaceMaster

Bulululu (Tapu Bulu) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Grassy Surge
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Wood Hammer
- Rock Slide
- Horn Leech
- Hidden Power [Fire]

Shredder (Excadrill) (M) @ Choice Band
Ability: Mold Breaker
EVs: 236 Atk / 240 Def / 32 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Earthquake
- Iron Head
- Rock Slide
- Brick Break

Virus (Deoxys-Defense) @ Sitrus Berry
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 HP / 40 SpD / 216 Spe
Timid Nature
- Counter
- Taunt
- Recover
- Mirror Coat



Conclusions
I want to first thank anyone who read all my ramblings. Then I'd also like to give a special shout out to Kentari who helped me a lot with this post when it came to match ups, and just about anything else I was unsure on initially (I also want to state that while he definitely helped with some of the info for the post, the opinions (and mistakes) are my own - so don't hold anything against him). Enough of that though, it's time for my final thoughts. While I do find Deoxys-Defense to be an extremely powerful mon in the meta, I'm not quite convinced it's broken. I believe there are a sufficient number of checks in the meta to keep it from really approaching ban worthy levels, but I will say I'm extremely on the fence with this one. Meaning that if this mon that has truly been under the radar for a while starts to pick up usage, and shows its true potential I could see myself easily being swayed over to voting ban. However, for the time being my judgement is an uneasy No Ban.
 
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Osra

1v1 and I
is a Pre-Contributor
Added a few notes to this portion of Elo Bandit 's post, since a lot of the matchups are p ambiguous.
SPECIFIC COUNTERS
- Mega Gyarados (unless no Crunch/Taunt/Sub) - 50/50 for both (Iron Defense/Taunt//Crunch/Dragon Dance)
- BD Zard X - Just plain gross
- Zard Y - Just bulk creep and Z-Cosmic becomes a counter to both normal Charizard forms
- Icium Kyu-B - 252/44+ isn't asking a lot to tank the hit
- SD Maw (sometimes 50/50) - With the right bulk, you can afford to Taunt and boost without dying
- Trick Scarf Porygon-Z (unless Z-Cosmic DeoD) - Praise Z stones
- Mega Pinsir - Iron Defense..?
- Slowbro - Unless weird movesets/poorly timed hax, Deo wins
- Tapu Koko - Z-Cosmic makes it a 50/50 relationship
- Other Deoxys Defense - Mud Slap MVP
- Greninja - Spdef Deo can actually take two specs Dark Pulse, though that requires running Spdef Deo...
- Metal Sound Magnezone EW
- SD Mimikyu -
+6 252 Atk Mimikyu Shadow Claw vs. +6 252 HP / 0 Def Deoxys-Defense: 120-144 (39.4 - 47.3%) -- guaranteed 3HKO - MUD SLAP MVP
- Curse Mimikyu (if no Rest) - Give it Taunt and it'll be a counter
- Aegislash - Z-Cosmic tanks NeN + Sneak
- Toxic Chansey (if no Rest) - What Deo doesn't use Taunt-
- SD Chomp (sometimes 50/50) - Just max HP fares poorly, though some bulk = Iron Defense win
- Genesect - Some investment in Spdef can make Deo live a SpecsBuzz
- SD Kartana - It counters, but why sacrifice beating the Zards?
- Trick Scarf Jirachi (unless Z-Cosmic DeoD) - PRAISE Z stones
- Trick Scarf Togekiss (same) - PRAISE Z stones
- Mega Gengar - On the topic of 60% mons...
- Regular Gengar (why not) - Z-Shadow Ball ftw
- Sub SD/BU Lando-T - Bulky Iron Defense makes it a war of RNG
- Whimsicott - Faster Taunt wins
- Mew - mUd SlAp MvP
- Pheromosa - Typically has the advantage, but results may vary depending upon which Deo set/spread
- M-Sableye - mud slap mvp
- Scizor/M-Scizor - Plain 50/50
- Buzzwole - Neither side is guaranteed victory
- Hoopa-U - Usually wins, but CAN be countered with particular counterbuilds
- ToxicRest Type: Null - How can you even assume all Deo are speedy but don't all run Taunt-
- M-Alakazam - Taunt + Attack = Deo win, not to mention nobody knows how to get 2 turns of struggle every time
- Banded Slaking - Speedy Deo isn't the only viable spread you know...
- Banded Bulu - Iron Defense says hi
- Vivillion - Isn't Deo faster?
- The God-Pokemon Shedinja - Rip

- Anything faster than base 90 with Taunt
- Anything faster with Sub beats CounterCoat
- Anything with Toxic provided it's running Recover

In short, Deoxys-Defense as a whole has very few clear counters, and many potential checks. Sounds familiar... almost like a croissant...
 

Uselesscrab

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A few objections (get it because court case...) I have to Elo Bandit's post:

GOOD ASS TYPING

It's mono-psychic. No 4x weaknesses, loses to Bug, Dark, and Ghost. These types may not be as popular in the tier as Ground, Dragon, or Steel, but they still exist. If your team is lacking all three of these coverage moves, it's possible you need to re-think your building strategy.
I agree that it's simply bad teambuilding to forget a counter for Deoxys-D. But that is not synonymous with a Bug-, Dark-, or Ghost-type move. It's possible to have a team that beats Deoxys-D without one of those three (cited by DEG: Mega Pinsir + Tapu Lele + Charizard X), and perhaps more importantly, it's possible to include multiple moves of that type and still lose to Deoxys-D. Sucker Punch Mega Mawile isn't a guaranteed counter, nor is Shadow Ball Porygon-Z (I may have been looking at your signature while writing this post), nor is Sucker Punch Golem.

So you really need the STAB users of these moves, many of which I listed in my post above, and which are significantly rarer. I'm pretty sure the only ones you added are Mimikyu, which has to be Ghostium Z max Speed Jolly to get a guaranteed win; regular Gengar, which is 173 in the usage stats; Scizor, which doesn't actually win a considerable amount of the time; and Pheromosa. In general, Glyx already addressed a lot of the issues I have with your list of counters, but here are some more:

SPECIFIC COUNTERS

- Icium Kyu-B max speed Icium Z Kyurem-B isn't the main spread by any means in the UOP era
- Other Deoxys Defense A 50/50 is not a counter. If Deoxys-D countered itself then those matchups would never have a winner
- SD Mimikyu has to be max speed Ghostium Z to avoid getting Taunted or pray for Shadow Claw to crit which is not always the optimal choice
- Toxic Chansey (if no Rest) I haven't looked into this too much but I am pretty sure this gets Taunted and loses. If Deoxys-D is rest you have a chance of Psywave 3HKOing I guess?
- SD Kartana 10.5% of Kartana
- Whimsicott I thought Taunt Whimsicott was a thing of the past because it no longer beats Mega Gyarados?
- M-Alakazam I'm not sure what set you are assuming here but I can't imagine a way in which it wins
FINALLY, CRITS

The Crit argument doesn't really apply to CounterCoat Deoxys (it gets crit the same as everything else), but the stat boost sets are worth talking about. Every turn Deoxys is on the field, it has a 1/16 chance to get crit. UC did the math above for a specific scenario - a 100% acc move with 16 PP (reduced to 8 by pressure) has a 60% chance to NOT crit in the 8 turns. However, this obviously doesn't apply to all scenarios. Some matchups have vastly different odds - moves like Shadow Claw and Night Slash are especially effective because of their enhanced crit rate. Some moves have far more PP, some pokemon have multiple moves to go through the PP of before a crit lands (ex. Kartana has to go through all its Leaf Blades, Night Slashes, and Smart Strikes before it starts Struggling). The fact of the matter is, your odds change drastically depending on matchup, and you can't simply say "look it's about 60%, it's basically Jirachi." Luck exists in Pokemon, it's not always predictable, and that's okay.

A Deoxys user that's okay with taking more risks might use PP stall Deo. They might win lots, or they might get crit a few times in a row. The choice is theirs how much they want to rely on not getting crit, and they can make the choice to trade a smaller pool of nearly-guaranteed victories for a wider pool of probably-victories if they so desire. You as a player may not get to choose what risks your opponent takes, but you can control your own. Over enough games, the person who makes the smartest choices about what risks to take or avoid in teambuilding and in battle will still win the most.
I know that it was one specific scenario, and reducing my argument to "it's basically Jirachi" is a gross oversimplification. The fact is that the Kartana you mentioned is an outlier. Especially in an age of Z-moves, many Pokemon are like Donphan: they have one primary attack that can even give them a chance of getting through Deoxys-D, and once that's used up they are basically toast. Only fast boosters like Kartana have the ability to ensure that they will even be in a position where a crit is enough to win by avoiding a potential Taunt. In this way, it virtually invalidates non-boosting offense, as you admitted. That's an awfully large portion of the metagame, especially considering that it can also shut down slower boosters, often the Pokemon that need to boost the most.

NOW ENOUGH BLATHERING HERE'S MY SOLUTION

Real talk, if DeoD seems a little overpowered, why not just introduce something else into the metagame to tone it down and provide another counter? Let's unban Darkrai. Now that Dark Void is essentially worthless, he'd make a healthy addition to the tier, acting as a check/counter to both DeoD and the ever-present Mega Gyarados (Nasty Plot Tbolt) while being a generally strong pokemon on its own. I fail to see any negatives here, plus we get to keep everyone's least favorite psychic bulwark while at the same time toning down its overall strength in the metagame.
This is the part of the post that set me off the most and what necessitated my response in the first place, because I think a lot of people could be getting the wrong idea. This proposal looks tempting at first, but truly runs counter to Smogon's fundamental tiering philosophy. We don't unban broken things to check other broken things. There's a reason no one said "Why not just unban Shaymin-Sky?" during Mega Gyarados suspect discussion. The tangled web of broken-checking-broken scenarios that we already have on our hands in 1v1 (something I've heard Rumplestiltskin call the "Uber state" of the metagame) is not something to add to, and by mentioning checking Mega Gyarados (almost suspected before) and Deoxys-D (under discussion now), you have basically ensured that your post cannot be read as anything but a call for another couple of said scenarios to be incorporated into the metagame.
 
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Looking to the future, we have Marshadow coming in to town. This over-done s'mores will have no problem at all dealing with Deoxys-Defense. A Choice Banded Spectral Thief can take 59.8% minimum from a fully 252 HP 252+ Def Deo-D. There's no backlash from Counter, as it doesn't hit Marshadow, no fast subs or stats boosts, because Marsh sprints around at 125 base speed and spectral thief hits through subs and steals the stats first, and finally - for those who want to see the world burn - a standard 0 SpA invested Deo-D could take down a marshadow with a Z-Psycho boost provided if Marshadow has anything less than the bulk equivalent of 252 Spdef.

tl;dr Marshadow is nintendo's anti-deod care package 1v1 has waited for. I might not be enough to take down other huge threats but hopefully it scares Deoxys from showing its very round face for a month.



Edit I made one hell of a Marsh set:
Jet Puffed (Marshadow) @ Fightinium Z / Marshadium Z
Ability: Technician
EVs: 108 HP / 68 Atk / 136 Def / 196 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Spectral Thief
- Close Combat
- Rock Tomb
- Substitute/Endeavor/Bulk up

With one EV left over. This tiny guy plays mind games with the likes of Mega Gyarados, Charizard-X, Kyurem-B, Donphan, Magnezone, and more.

To show off what it can do, here are Pokemon at their highest defense, and highest offenses.

Wost case scenario Kyurem-Black Attacks:
  • 252+ Atk Teravolt Kyurem-Black Outrage vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 271-319 (77.8 - 91.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ SpA Teravolt Kyurem-Black Ice Beam vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 168-198 (48.2 - 56.8%) -- 90.2% chance to 2HKO
Marshadow:
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Kyurem-Black: 416-492 (91.6 - 108.3%) -- 50% chance to OHKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252 Def Kyurem-Black: 456-536 (100.4 - 118%) -- guaranteed OHKO

It handles worst case scenarios pretty darn well. Living anything a scarf could normally throw at it. While there are stranger c-teamers out there who could try to run modest scarf with psychic (64.3 - 75.8%) or adamant fly (78.1 - 91.9%), this little guy really tanks it. Any Kyurem-b without its scarf gets blasted away with All-Out Pummeling.

Wost case scenario Metagross Attacks:
  • 252+ Atk Tough Claws Metagross-Mega Meteor Mash vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 234-276 (67.2 - 79.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ Atk Tough Claws Metagross-Mega Bullet Punch vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 105-124 (30.1 - 35.6%) -- 32.8% chance to 3HKO
Marshadow:
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Spectral Thief vs. 252 HP / 252 Def Metagross-Mega: 164-194 (45 - 53.2%) -- 32.4% chance to 2HKO
  • +1 68+ Atk Marshadow Spectral Thief vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Metagross-Mega: 222-264 (60.9 - 72.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Soul-Stealing 7-Star Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Metagross-Mega: 320-378 (87.9 - 103.8%) -- 25% chance to OHKO
Metagross is a tricky pokemon. Most don't run Zen Headbutt but should it try going with just Meteor Mash, it needs to be weary of the risks about touching this little wisp. Should Metagross miss, Marshadow capitalizes and goes for the 2HKO. Should Meteor Mash land, it has a 20% chance of raising Metagross's attack - which will be immediately stolen by the slower Marshadow and used to OHKO Metagross.

The safer option is to run Marshadium Z and OHKO any Mega-Metagross with less than 84 HP/ 252+ Def. Metagross still has to be careful about raising its attack just like before.
Keep in mind that Mega Metagross needs 200+ Speed evs just to get faster.

Wost case scenario Gyarados Attacks:
  • 252+ Atk Mold Breaker Gyarados-Mega Waterfall vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 169-199 (48.5 - 57.1%) -- 92.6% chance to 2HKO
  • 252+ Atk Gyarados Waterfall vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 144-169 (41.3 - 48.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
Marshadow:
  • -1 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gyarados-Mega: 260-308 (65.9 - 78.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • -1 68+ Atk Marshadow Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gyarados-Mega: 168-198 (42.6 - 50.2%) -- 0.4% chance to 2HKO
  • -1 68+ Atk Marshadow Spectral Thief vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gyarados-Mega: 31-37 (7.8 - 9.3%)
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gyarados-Mega: 390-462 (98.9 - 117.2%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO
  • -1 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gyarados: 80-95 (20.3 - 24.1%) -- guaranteed 5HKO
Gyarados loves to toy with fighting types by deciding when to Mega Evolve. Marshadow isn't here for that. With the right predictions, Marsh can lead off with a Rock Tomb to drop Gyarados's speed. Marsh will hit (25.8 - 30.9%) on a regular Gyarados, and on a Mega (10.6 - 12.6%). Spectral Thief will hit a Mega Dos for (11.6 - 13.9%) at +0 and definitely putting it in range to All Out Pummel. If you predict wrong, Gyarados happily soaks up the z-move for (20.3-24.1%). The only way to kill of the worst case scenario Gyarados is through a critical hit or if Gyarados mega evolves out of fear or cockiness. Fortunately no 252 HP, 252+ Atk, 252+ Def Gyarados exists and this Marshadow set takes mine down with more grace. The stupidest thing a Gyarados can do in this battle is waste a turn Dragon Dancing and let its stats get stolen or have Marshadow pull up a substitute.

Wost case scenario Charizard-X Attacks:
  • 252+ Atk Tough Claws Charizard-Mega-X Flare Blitz vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 288-339 (82.7 - 97.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
Marshadow:
  • 68+ Atk Technician Marshadow Rock Tomb vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Charizard-Mega-X: 124-146 (34.4 - 40.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Charizard-Mega-X: 193-228 (53.6 - 63.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • +1 68+ Atk Marshadow Spectral Thief vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Charizard-Mega-X: 136-162 (37.7 - 45%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
Our hero returns not wanting to take anything from anyone. Marshadow will Rock Tomb first turn without any better alternatives. Its speed investment allows itself to Speed tie a max base 103, so Charizard will never go first. If Charizard-X Dragon Dances, Rock Tomb brings its speed right back. If Charizard uses Flare Blitz the recoil will be too much for it to live. If Charizard goes for the Sub, Spectral Thief hits right through it and thanking Charizard for the free 25% less HP. If Charizard Dragon Dances behind the sub, Spectral Thief will take its attack boost and it would have been a waste of a turn. Sub+Flare blitz is suicide so now its down to using Outrage. Sub+Outrage is suicide because Marshadow will continue to reach right past the sub. If Charizard were to lead off with Outrage, Marshadow would have to risk the odds of trying to go Rock Tomb + All-Out Pummeling for 88-103.8% or it would need to lead off with sub and stall out the outrage until confusion with a riskier chance of haxing to victory.

Wost case scenario Charizard-Y Attacks:
  • 252+ SpA Charizard-Mega-Y Air Slash vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 342-404 (98.2 - 116%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO
  • 252+ SpA Charizard-Mega-Y Flamethrower vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow in Sun: 309-364 (88.7 - 104.5%) -- 31.3% chance to OHKO
  • 252+ SpA Charizard-Mega-Y Solar Beam vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 182-215 (52.2 - 61.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ SpA Charizard-Mega-Y Heat Wave vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow in Sun: 325-384 (93.3 - 110.3%) -- 62.5% chance to OHKO
  • -2 252 SpA Charizard-Mega-Y Overheat vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow in Sun: 204-240 (58.6 - 68.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • Fire Blast and up OHKO

Marshadow:
  • 68+ Atk Technician Marshadow Rock Tomb vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Charizard-Mega-Y: 308-364 (85.5 - 101.1%) -- 12.5% chance to OHKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Soul-Stealing 7-Star Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Charizard-Mega-Y: 249-294 (69.1 - 81.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
It's surprising this little guy can take an Air Slash when blessed down by RNG. Marshadow like a good little fighter throws the first punch. If Charizard-Y doesn't have fire moves stronger than Heat Wave or isn't carrying Air Slash, it has screwed itself over. If you know Blast Burn or Overheat is coming, use Substitute and the battle is over. The next Overheat will only hit up to 68.9% allowing Marshadow to skate away and subbing a Blast Burn will have Marshadow laugh in Charizard's face. If your Rock Tomb misses, doesn't do enough, or you sub and Char-Y lands the Hail Mary of Ancient Powers, the match is over. There are options to boost your luck: the Speed investment allows Marshadow to speed tie a Nihelego. That's purely arbitrary. You can set Marshadow's speed back to 329 and dump the new Ev's into attack. In addition, maybe one or two HP EVs can move to Spdef but it wont make much of a difference and will make you lose your edge against Gyarados.

Wost case scenario Tapu Fini Attacks:

  • 252+ SpA Tapu Fini Hydro Vortex (185 BP) vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 292-345 (83.9 - 99.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ SpA Tapu Fini Moonblast vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 302-356 (86.7 - 102.2%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO
  • 252+ SpA Tapu Fini Hydro Pump vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 174-205 (50 - 58.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Marshadow:

  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Soul-Stealing 7-Star Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Tapu Fini: 195-229 (56.6 - 66.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Spectral Thief vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Tapu Fini: 90-106 (26.1 - 30.8%) -- guaranteed 4HKO
Marshadow is a bit in over its head. The only way to stop Fini is to use something like endeavor and pray Tapu Fini didn't kill you with Moonblast or to try to 7 Star Strike it, tank a Moonblast through RNG and finally retaliate with Spectral Thief if Tapu Fini is running 252/252 defense investment instead of being fully maxed out. The last way is to move the 24 speed EVs into SpDef to give Marsh a 100% chance of living a Moonblast outside of a crit (83.3 - 98.8%).

Wost case scenario Magnezone Attacks:
  • 252+ SpA Magnezone Gigavolt Havoc (190 BP) vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 373-439 (107.1 - 126.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO
  • 252+ SpA Magnezone Gigavolt Havoc (185 BP) vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 363-427 (104.3 - 122.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO
  • 252+ SpA Magnezone Gigavolt Havoc (175 BP) vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 343-405 (98.5 - 116.3%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO
  • 252+ SpA Magnezone Zap Cannon vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 235-277 (67.5 - 79.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ SpA Magnezone Flash Cannon vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 157-186 (45.1 - 53.4%) -- 34% chance to 2HKO
  • 252+ SpA Magnezone Electroweb vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 109-129 (31.3 - 37%) -- 74% chance to 3HKO
  • 252+ SpA Magnezone Thunder vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 216-255 (62 - 73.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ SpA Choice Specs Magnezone Thunderbolt vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 264-312 (75.8 - 89.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ SpA Choice Specs Magnezone Thunder vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 322-381 (92.5 - 109.4%) -- 56.3% chance to OHKO
Marshadow:
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Magnezone: 378-446 (109.8 - 129.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Magnezone: 236-282 (68.6 - 81.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Spectral Thief vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Magnezone: 90-106 (26.1 - 30.8%) -- guaranteed 4HKO
Magnezone has options on how to take Marshadow down. There's no investment for Magnezone to run modest and be able to Electroweb Marshadow to be slower. Choice Specs Magnezone isn't a threat to this Marshadow due to its slower speed and less power. Marshadow leads with Rock Tomb to break the sturdy, then rampages on the UFO if Magnezone lands a paralysis. Even Paralyzed, Marshadow still out paces a -1 Magnezone with 252 speed. What Marshadow needs to do in the case of a Z-Zap Cannon Zone is pull up a sub first, break down Magnezone with All-Out Pummeling then finish it off with Spectral. If Zap Cannon can even land on Marshadow, theres still a chance it wont take our little wisp out.

Wost case scenario Donphan Attacks:

  • 252+ Atk Donphan Tectonic Rage (180 BP) vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 313-369 (89.9 - 106%) -- 37.5% chance to OHKO
  • 252+ Atk Donphan Earthquake vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 174-205 (50 - 58.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ Atk Donphan Ice Shard vs. 108 HP / 136 Def Marshadow: 47-56 (13.5 - 16%) -- possible 7HKO

Marshadow:

  • 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Donphan: 183-216 (47.6 - 56.2%) -- 82% chance to 2HKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Soul-Stealing 7-Star Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Donphan: 187-222 (48.6 - 57.8%) -- 95.3% chance to 2HKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Spectral Thief vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Donphan: 87-103 (22.6 - 26.8%) -- 33.9% chance to 4HKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Donphan: 117-138 (30.4 - 35.9%) -- 39.2% chance to 3HKO
Marshadow has to sub first turn to avoid Tectonic Rage. Then Marshadow goes in for the All-Out Pummeling and a fast close combat. Because of its ghost typing, Marshadow can not be countered or endeavored. However Endeavor is useful here for taking out Donphan instead.



Wost case scenario Porygon-Z Attacks:

  • 252+ SpA Choice Specs Porygon-Z Psychic vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 362-428 (104 - 122.9%) -- guaranteed OHKO
  • 252+ SpA Porygon-Z Psychic vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 242-286 (69.5 - 82.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
  • 252+ SpA Choice Specs Porygon-Z Shadow Ball vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow: 322-380 (92.5 - 109.1%) -- 56.3% chance to OHKO
  • Porygon-Z Hyper Beam vs. Marshadow: 0-0 (0 - 0%) fresh
Marshadow:
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow All-Out Pummeling (190 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Porygon-Z: 518-612 (138.5 - 163.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO

  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Porygon-Z: 330-390 (88.2 - 104.2%) -- 25% chance to OHKO
  • 68+ Atk Technician Marshadow Rock Tomb vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Porygon-Z: 83-98 (22.1 - 26.2%) -- 11.1% chance to 4HKO
Porygon-Z isn't a threat to Marshadow. Only a Choice Specs Variant can take it out but Marshadow can beat it to the punch with a powerful All-Out Pummeling. If running the Soul-Stealing 7-Star Strike variant, Close Combat might finish off the Porygon-Z. If scarf, use Rock Tomb to get it in range of Close Combat.


Wost case scenario Deoxys-D Attacks:


  • 252+ SpA Deoxys-Defense Shattered Psyche (200 BP) vs. 108 HP / 0 SpD Marshadow on a critical hit: 780-920 (224.1 - 264.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO
  • ggezpz

Marshadow:

  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Soul-Stealing 7-Star Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Deoxys-Defense: 306-360 (100.6 - 118.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO
  • 68+ Atk Marshadow Spectral Thief vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Deoxys-Defense: 140-168 (46 - 55.2%) -- 61.3% chance to 2HKO
Deo D can't hurt Marshadow fast enough. Guaranteed dead in 4 turns tops. Set up Sub, start thieving.
 
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Felucia

formerly UnleashOurPassion
is a Battle Simulator Driver
Sample Team

Terrakion @ Rockium Z
Ability: Justified
EVs: 208 Atk / 48 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Stone Edge
- Close Combat
- Substitute
- Swords Dance

Kyurem-Black @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Teravolt
EVs: 156 Def / 252 SpA / 100 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Draco Meteor
- Ice Beam
- Focus Blast
- Earth Power

Tapu Koko @ Electrium Z
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 148 HP / 252 SpA / 16 SpD / 92 Spe
Timid Nature
- Thunder
- Wild Charge
- Charge
- Substitute


Mixed Koko is good.
Don't ask me why Def on KyuB because idk


This was supposed to be a good post
 
To really determine if Deoxys-D is broken, we need to look at the 1v1 Suspect Philosophy. To quote this, "A pokemon is deemed broken if it defeats at least more than the half of the metagame with a set or its other viable sets without having an opportunity cost." So let's find out how much of the meta Deoxys-D really beats (I'll be using the textbook Psychium set for my analysis). Percentages show what percent of that species runs that set.
Crunch Mega Gyarados (45%): Lose
Non-Crunch Mega Gyarados (55%): Win
Kyurem-B: Win

Offensive Mega Charizard X (~80%): No clear winner
Defensive Mega Charizard X (~20%): Win
Tapu Koko: Lose
Tapu Lele: Win
Mega Charizard Y: Win
Deoxys-D: Mirror match
Dragonite: Win
Magearna: Win
Mega Mawile: Win
Mega Metagross: Win
SD Mega Pinsir (22%): Lose
Bulk Up/Non-SD Mega Pinsir (78%): Win
Aegislash: Win
Donphan: Win
Landorus-T: Win
Magnezone: Win
Ghostium/Curse Mimikyu (75%): Lose
Fairium Mimikyu (25%): Win
Mega Slowbro: Win
Mega Venusaur: Win

Blaziken: Win
SD Garchomp (57%): Lose
Non-SD Garchomp (43%): Win
Genesect: Lose
Golem: Win
Greninja: Lose
Mega Heracross: Lose
Non-SD Kartana (75%): Win
SD Kartana (25%): Lose
Meloetta: Win
Primarina: Win
Tapu Fini: Win
Mega Blastoise: Win
Chansey: Win
Ferrothorn: Win
Jirachi: Win Who am I kidding?
Jumpluff: Lose
Sawk: Win
Snorlax: Lose
Mega Swampert: Win
Buzzwole: Usually lose
Celesteela: Win
Durant: Lose
Mega Gengar: Lose
Z-Heal Block Latios (53%): Lose
Non-Z-Heal Block Latios (47%): Win
Mew: Win
SD Terrakion (70%): Lose
Non-SD Terrakion (30%): Win
Umbreon: Win
Whimsicott: Lose

Blissey: Win
Keldeo: Win
Alolan Marowak: Lose
Landorus-I: Win
Pheromosa: Lose
Mega Pidgeot: Win
Taunt/Toxic Mega Sableye (33%): Lose
Non-Taunt/Toxic Mega Sableye (67%): Win
Mega Tyranitar: Lose
Victini: Lose
Aggron: Win
Avalugg: Win
Hitmonlee: Win
Infernape: Win
Non-SD Mega Lucario (70%): Win
SD Mega Lucario (30%): Lose
Quagsire: Win
Relicanth: Win
Thundurus-T: Win
Mega Abomasnow: Win
Barbaracle: Lose
Carracosta: Win
Mega Manectric: Win
Nihilego: Win (unless Acid Spray, 9% usage, ignored)
Pyukumuku: Win
Salazzle: Usually win
Mega Sceptile: Win
Tapu Bulu: Usually lose
Zygarde: Win

New VR is AMAZING

Doing a simple tally, ignoring set-dependant pokemon, we get 46 wins and 16 losses, or a 65% win rate, which is far above the 50% needed to be broken. And hell, this is just with one set, it can beat a great number of these pokemon with its other sets. However, set dependant matchups DO exist and we should really be weighting Kyurem-B a lot heavier than Barbaracle, so let's count again, but this way this time: Set dependant matchups will split the win/loss based on percentage. S ranks will be valued as 4 points, A rank as 3, B rank as 2 and C rank as 1. Counting this way, we end up with 97.56 on the win side and 37.3 on the losing end. This is a 62% win rate: nearly the same! Looking at things from the tiering policies straight-forwards viewpoint, Deoxys Defense is certainly broken.

As for the solution, I feel like Elo Bandit had an amazing idea: unbanning Darkai. I get where Uselesscrab is coming from with not unbanning a broken thing to check another broken thing, but there's a flaw in that logic: Darkrai isn't broken. One interesting thing to look forwards to sometime in the future is the Marshadow release. Having both Darkrai, and the far more relevant Marshadow in the meta would keep Deoxys in check. However, Marshadow may just as well face a ban, and I don't expect Darkrai to be popular enough to help with the Deoxys crisis. So, all in all, I'd like to see Deoxys-D banned, regardless of whether Darkrai is unbanned or of the way Marshadow plays out.

Edit: It appears that I've made a couple mistakes. Speedy Dragonite and SD Landorus-T beat Deoxys-D, but the general point of the post still stands: it beats over half the meta. Also, about crits. Mud Slap turns crit matchups in your favor (like Aegislash).
 
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Why Accuracy-Reducing Moves Should Be Banned


1. Why we should put off discussion of Deoxys-Defense in order to ban accuracy-reducing moves
If this
Aegislash: Win
is going to be a reason that Deoxys-Defense gets banned, then accuracy-reducing moves need to finally be banned. If Aegislash is a winning match-up for Deoxys-Defense because of Mud Slap, Mud Slap must go. The only reason accuracy-reducing moves haven't been banned is because they have been irrelevant, and so have been ignored. Clearly, they are no longer irrelevant and must be banned.

2. Evasion-boosting and accuracy-reducing moves are essentially the same in 1v1
In 1v1, there is no real difference between evasion and accuracy, as there is no switching. Evasion moves are already banned, so accuracy-reducing moves should join them.

3. These moves, abilities, and items should be banned

Moves
Flash
Kinesis
Leaf Tornado
Mirror Shot
Mud Bomb
Mud-Slap
Muddy Water
Night Daze
Octazooka
Sand Attack
Smokescreen

Abilities
Sand Veil
Snow Cloak

Items
Brightpowder
Lax Incense

3a. A note in the interest of uniformity
Now, I don't really think all of these moves are useful in 1v1. If your Octazooka Sableye is not usable if we decide to ban accuracy-reducing moves, then that's a shame. Only Mud-Slap and Flash are problems in 1v1. I think we should ban all evasion-boosting and accuracy-reducing moves in the name of consistency, however.

3b. A note on drawing the line
Looking at the list of every move that increases evasion or reduces accuracy, one might wonder, why ban every move? Why not just ban the problem moves, namely Flash and Mud-Slap and leave Muddy Water for some crazy build in the future. I would argue against this line of thinking because it then becomes difficult to decide where to draw the line at what is too haxy and what is not. Is Muddy Water the line? Is Brightpowder? Is Kinesis? What is the right amount of hax? I would rather avoid having a discussion that will, frankly, be pointless. Who cares if 1v1 bans Octazooka? Just ban everything and be done with it.

4. Conclusion
Accuracy-reducing moves should've been banned from the beginning of 1v1. They have been allowed to remain in 1v1 simply because they have been overlooked. I have always believed that the moment accuracy-reducing moves became relevant in 1v1, they would be judged uncompetitive and swiftly banned. I believe that has happened in Macemaster's post. Mud-Slap has moved from a harmless meme to a detrimental move. I think the subject of accuracy-reducing moves must be addressed before we can appropriately assess how broken Deoxys-Defense is in a meta without accuracy-reducing moves.
 
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Osra

1v1 and I
is a Pre-Contributor
In regards to the notion that Aegislash is a Deoxys-Defense counter:
(Z-Cosmic Power)
252+ SpA Aegislash-Blade Never-Ending Nightmare (160 BP) vs. +2 252 HP / 0 SpD Deoxys-Defense: 212-252 (69.7 - 82.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Aegislash-Blade Shadow Sneak vs. +1 252 HP / 0 Def Deoxys-Defense: 56-68 (18.4 - 22.3%) -- possible 6HKO

It takes just a pinch of investment to make this unlikely 2hko turn into a guaranteed 3hko. Physically offensive Aegislash may have a chance, but then that risks falling to the popular Iron Defense set, while Metal Sound just makes it into yet another Taunt/No Taunt 50/50.

An important thing people need to keep in mind is that Deoxys has a severe advantage against slower offensive mons, being able to take the win back even after choosing poorly at team preview with similar 50/50's that it uses to beat Gyarados, Buzzwole, Heracross, and more.
 
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