OU ADV OU Viability Ranking

Wanted to share my ideas of the metagame and post some of my own takes on where I see the meta going w a Vr. (warning this is super long)

S Rank:
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Tyranitar is of course the best Mon in the tier -- I think it bares repeating, but even if it had no moves or EVs, Tar's sand would be defining in Adv due to pressure it puts on defensive builds. Since we all know this, would like to shoutout the value of Phys defensive Pursuit Tar (something like 248 Hp / 108 Def), as it can fulfill an aero check on those Loom / Mence / Forre teams we've seen running around. I also love bulky Lum DD Grass Tar alongside SubCM Thunder / Ice Jirachi, as it allows you pressure the few things that wall Jirachi while still having a fat TTar in the back for when you need it. Other options I enjoy include Protect, Counter, DD Double Edge, DD Endure Salac, UDTar (I think Fast MixTar could use some resurgence), and CB.

S- Rank: (I think these next two are a cut above the others)
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Zapdos is one of the best offense enablers in the tier. I think we've seen the Timid Fast BP die out a bit as people realize the value that SpDef + BP and Twave has on creating offense opportunities. Don't sleep on SubPass either -- one option I've really liked is to combine it w a Focus Punch Gar with enough EVs to live Modest Bliss Ice Beam (248 HP on Zap and 204 SpDef on Gengar will do the trick) so you can get that instant momentum on bliss off of a Skarm/Cune lead as an example. Zap is also one of my favorite options on Forre teams, as its resistances and overall bulk can help save your bliss or celebi against trapping or a rogue MixZap. A cool option I first heard of from Ibidem is to run enough Speed for Ada Hera and Drill Peck, so you're not so vulnerable against Loom and Hera (even Timid 0 Atk Drill Peck OHKOs them) with Rest / Roar or Hp Grass / Tbolt. Fully offensive MixZap is also really awesome too, as you take advantage of those teams that rely on just celebi to be their special wall. Zap + Beat Up dug of course is awesome, but I think people are starting to catch on and not lead mons passive to Zap on their stall teams or run other special walls besides bliss (like pairing it w their own Rest Zap).

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Meta is another great offense enabler that also has a lot of defensive versatility. I think its bulk and Explosion is one of the best blanket checks to anything in the tier. Team weak to Starmie after you lost Snorlax? Tank the Hydro and boom on it. Salamence giving you pain? Even max Hp allows you to live any hit and Explode. I personally am really liking the Eq / Tpunch / HP Grass / Explosion set, but I'm also a big fan of CB of course, defensive, and any super fast version (salac or the fast Mix set Cowboy Dan likes). I think Agility is pretty mediocre unless you're running like Smeargle HO w Rock Spam. I think there's some unexplored territory using it as the main Rock resist on some Forre spikes like Marcop used in SPL. Also think its one of the main reasons Mag first starting dropping in usage once people figured out CB Boom killed SpDef skarm and people dropped Protect on Skarm for some reason

A+ Tier:

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Like Siglut, I think Celebi belongs up here up at the top of A+ (I don't think people have had it this high since like 2014?). I value versatility pretty highly, and Celebi is one of the most diverse mons in the tier -- Defensive (both SpDef and Phys Def although imo SpDef is better), SuperBi, and CMPass (although I think it has started to be better prepped for) are all great options. Having Leech Seed is such a great tool to force switches, while having the immunity is also very helpful. I think SDPass is a little too inconsistent for my liking -- a lot has to go right to get the pass off, and with Salamence (either CB, or Mix w Roar) being super popular, it is pretty hard to make work beyond the normal inconsistencies of Mag offense. A set I have always enjoyed is CM 2 attacks + Leech seed with a Special wall like Bliss in the back. I enjoy pairing it with Fighters like Yama or Medicham to help them against break through Moltres and Salamence. I think we'll see a bunch more great Celebi builds in the coming year.

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I find it hard to put Pert outside of the top 5 in ADV -- even though I love to use other Rock resists, I always come back to Pert in some way due to its insane reliability at its job. I think there are a lot of teams out there cleaved by offensive Pert, although I think the nonbulky (you pretty much need 248 HP) version kinda struggles in the current metagame cause it gets blasted by Aero. Like Eden, my standard is to run the Quiet offensive pert, but I also like EndSalac's ability to break through things Pert should have no ability to get through, like Milo if you cheese w like Swagger. An option I first heard from Asta I like is to try mono Focus Punch w ProTox (perhaps w Surf as well), as you help your Jolt Spikes or other special offense break through Bliss while still giving them some coverage against Rock threats.

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Jirachi is another super versatile threat that people have tended to not prepare for as well. A lot of teams really struggle against SubCM Jirachi (especially those super Fat Double Wish stalls and poorly build Forre teams). Defensive Jirachi typically struggles once it takes a Zap TWave, but is still pretty reliable for teams trying to bypass the pain of ZapDug (running SpDef Zap helps here). Superrachi is still a great offensive threat, and physically defensive (either straight up or with CM) can just seem unkillable to some teams. I am not a huge fan of the Mixed set w DynamicPunch as I used to be due to its unreliability, but it is there. Jirachi has seen a rise as people have explored its versatility (can distinctly remember 10 years ago when people only though of Calm Mind sets). I also really enjoy it w DDGrass Tar or w CMPass celebi/Sub Pass Vaporeon -- helps it get through Bliss or any other thing.

A Tier

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I am a Mence lover, and really helps to shore your team up against a whole host of threats, most prominently the Fighters and Celebi. Intimidate is also a fantastic tool to help out for weakening threats such as DDTar or Heracross. I think Mixed is probably the in vogue set, but I'm also a big fan of Jolly CB and a fat Protect Wish set (specifically 152 HP / 20 Def / 200 SpA / 136 Spe so you can combat opposing Salamences w Dragon Claw better than the super fat WishProtect set). I think a lot of people have replaced Gar w Mence on their stall teams, as they satisfy the Fighter defensive switch in, but I've had success running them together (like a CB mence aggressively predicting TTar w Brick Break so that Gar can be more free, see my Finals g2 in my set against Mikmer for PP Open 1 as an example for a team). Mence also is a fantastic Breloom partner much like Zard is -- I think we're in peak Mence metagame for now.

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And now the Mon people love to shit on, Gengar. I do not prescribe to theory that Gar is washed -- imo any list w Gengar outside the top ten is hard to take seriously. I think Gar is due for a revival -- with Spikes down, nothing is harder to switch into for offensive teams than Taunt Wisp Gengar. Options I really love on it are SpDef Giga Drain, SpDef Taunt Wow Destiny Bond (being able to do your Gengar shenanigans while still removing Tar for something like a SubCune in the back is awesome), double Status, HP Grass, and Hypno Focus Punch. Gar also shores your team up against Fighters with its fast Explosion, while also stopping Celebi from passing w its fast Taunt (although watch out for Psychic). Gengar I think is gonna make a comeback despite Pursuit Tar's high usage, especially since a lot of teams are relying solely on an unreliable trapper to remove it. I think it is also great on Spikeless builds -- Roro ran a fantastic team w Jynx + Dug to remove Tar for Gar to run rampant, and it always is nice to remove Bliss the old fashion way by boom + Dug (even if this is pretty predictable). I also like the linear option of running it on Medi + Meta + Celebi + Star team for that opposing Fighter counter.

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Another mon people have loved to bash, Blissey. As someone who used to think Bliss was the second best mon in the tier, I think the key to getting the most out of Blissey's incredible potential is to build properly w it. Having leads that immediately are forced out by Zapdos, not having other options for switching into special threats, and having Bliss be your only way to revenge Mence is a recipe for disaster in the current meta. Bliss's bulk is accentuated w Spikes and Sand up -- even things like SD Pass can be annoyed by Bliss repeatedly clicking Seismic Toss or Ice Beam. Bliss can also shore up a team against mixed attackers, as without Fighting coverage, it can be quite difficult to 2HKO reliably. I think people will start diversifying their special wall slot or run things alongside Bliss, but I think it is still quite reliable. Shout out to Aromatherapy, Toxic Snatch (and Toxic in general), and of course Fire or Electric Bliss.

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If you asked me a few months ago, I would have had Skarm in the next tier or even lower, but I've been liking recent builds w it. Skarm is one of the more iconic threats in ADV, as Spikes makes so many mons much greater threats while it is also the former gold standard for physical walling. I really like dropping Roar on Skarm (as long as you can handle Metagross well), as being able to have both the ProTox that made Skarm so good in 2016/2017 while also having Drill Peck for Fighters is great. A set I don't really like right now is YOLOskarm, as Mag is pretty bad in the current metagame and having a Skarm without HP or Special bulk feels painful (a SpDef Gar tbolt does about double the damage) and it is hard to get the spikes up. Like CB Meta boom, I think Taunt Skarm is another reason Mag usage has dropped due to its Spikes preventing utilities.

A- tier:

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I think Dug is a very polarizing mon -- on one hand, it is partially responsible for helping make bliss less secure about its metagame placement, while on the other, making a defensive team w only five slots forcing you into predictable defensive builds or missing key utility. However, Dug is undeniably great at simplifying the game -- a lot of top mons are trappable, and being able to trap TTar and then remove Sand for something like a Suicune is fantastic. A pairing I like in the current meta is both Sunny Day Dug + Suicune and the classic Skarm + Dug. Spikes makes it a lot easier to trap the threats you need to. I am not as high on CM Spam w Dug as I was, I personally think the best CM Spams drop Dug to make the team more powerful.

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I think the biggest winner of the "Gar sucks" chant is Forre. I'd argue that Forre is the best option in the game for the hazards war -- while not nearly as good as a wall as Skarm, its durability, relative difficulty in trapping, and access to both Spikes and Rapid Spin make it good at getting Spikes up for you an removing them. An option I really like on Forre is Counter, as it helps you out a lot on the phys def side by counter strong attacks while still covering you against Mag to an extent. I think the meta is gonna come for Forre soon, as the same forces in like 2015/2016 that brought Forre back down (like more Fire spam, SpDef Gengar, more offensive threats to take advantage of Forre's lack of offense) could return. But right now, I like it here.

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Aero can sometimes just bullshit its way to win games. I think Aero Spikes teams are one of the strongest teams against cheese or other non optimal structures. I think Aero also is pretty underrated defensively -- it stops CM Celebi from passing w HP Bug, is the best nontrapper revenge killer in the game by being faster than everything, it is a pretty good MixMence counter, and can remove DDTar w HP Fighting if you choose to go that route. I wish I could have it higher up, as it just cleaves through people cheating on their defense for more speed, but a well build team can sometimes make Aero feel a little lost. Niche options like Curse or SD pass are nice on specific teams.

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I personally have relatively high Suicune usage, but I feel it needs to be all the way down here. Cune can be really awesome w a lot of support, but it is susceptible to a lot of metagame conditions like sand and Spikes. I find offensive Cune w/o rest or Sub to be mediocre -- Resting sets have a ton of potential, but need to be built around. Cune's functional bulk also helps it act a Rock resist if sand isn't up. I love Suicune on Explosion offense, as well as with Sunny Day Dugtrio. I do not like it as much as a replacement to Milotic on Spikes teams unless alongside Aroma Bliss or Heal Bell Celebi even if it has a great Roar and defensive utility on those teams. SubCune also requires a team built around it, but can absolutely devastating w Rain Dance.

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I think Lax is due for a rise in the next installment, as people as running teams very weak to good ole curse lax. Forre teams typically only have Ttar to phase it out, as Forre is set up bait for it. I think Curse Boom is great (it can get rid of Skarm, but I like to run it with something else that gets rid of Skarm to take advantage), but I like it alongside Claydol, as it helps you out from being so weak to special threat w sand and Spikes. I think dropping the normal coverage on these sets can be pretty great. A Curse, Rest, EQ lax I think is gonna be the next big metagame adjustment bc those teams people ran in SPL are quite weak to it.

B+ tier:

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I'm a huge Claydol spammer. I think it is quite nice get your special wall in against Zapdos without immediately losing it to Dugtrio/getting worn down by Tbolt. There was a period where I had a Claydol, Starmie, or Forretress on every team I build, simply bc the utility of Spin is so high. I do like the double spinner archetype w Forre, Boom spam w Off Claydol, and just good ole Skarm beatdown. An option I'm really liking is to run 248 HP 136 Atk / 112 Def to dodge the 2HKO from Aero Double Edge while still being a threat. It also is a great answer to the Fighters and generally helps keep your Snorlax healthy from Tbolt on Spikeless offense.

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Another Mon I use a lot of, Starmie. I think Bolt Star is a little over saturated in the metagame, but it is a quite nice Swampert/Meta answer while still being fast enough for Moltres as well as of course being a great spinner. Be careful about getting trapped by TTar Pursuit (I like a little SpDef on it so this doesn't happen) or blanking your Rapid Spin into Gar when you could have Para'd or hit it. I haven't used an OffStar in quite some time -- I don't think it is bad, but it feels very match up dependent. I think the 3 attacks Spin is pretty mediocre. I do think OffStar is due for a rise, if only Hydro didn't miss.

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I love the fire bird. It is definitely a mon that can run into some great matchups -- those Jolt Spikes teams typically really struggle to switch into it (shoutout hclat). Even Milo can struggle to switch into Modest HP Grass w Spikes down (please run Modest on your Moltres). It quite enjoys Bliss's usage dropping. An option I really like on it is Protect, which helps your team be less weak to Aero. Sunny Day + Morning Sun is one of the better weather clearers. I don't really agree that using Zap is better, as Molt's unique ability to shred offensive teams w Fire + Grass + Wow while giving the team a check to Hera is under-appreciated.

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Missing Megahorn is such a pain. I feel like it'd be a tier higher if it didn't miss (which it never seems to do against me :( ). Hera is the 6-0 machine though, and is the bane of poorly build defensive teams. It doesn't like being in the Mence era much, but Sub Salac sets clean like few others and CB tears teams apart. I also am a big fan of the Linear bulky set w Thief on it, but not as much as I was a few months ago. It pretty much forces teams to run some kind of Flyer, Gengar, or trap it w Dug lest than want to be annihilated

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I think Vaporeon belongs back in OU -- its offensive SubPass set generate momentum like few others while its defensive sets are the bane of Suicune. It lost a great partner in Mr. Mime on MaedPass, but it still is a great Wish mon. A pairing I really like is w Medicham -- passing a 101 HP sub from the lead spot against Bliss is a guaranteed KO on anything in the game w Lefties Medicham. An underrated option I feel is Roar over Ice Beam on the Offensive SubPass set, as Hclat showed last SPL, prevents slow Roar Cune from being a counter. Vaporeon also survives all kinds of dumb stuff at full health, like DD Tar Rock Slide, Mence boosted HP Flying, Zap Tbolt, and others. Defensive Vaporeon needs to be run w a Heal Beller, but is really good at being an alternative option to Milo that shores the team up against Suicune.

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Another Mon I think should be OU, Yama is a great option both w offensive and hyper stall options. Pairing it w defensive Star is a great option to help mitigate Skarm without a Magneton. Knock Off is obviously great, and Focus Punch + Coverage hits really hard. Doesn't enjoy the Mence metagame that we're currently in, but Knock + Sand is always a great wallbreaker. Another option I like to help w teams without a good Heracross answer is to run HP Flying, as it takes Megahorns fairly well. I don't think it ever should be your only Rock resist unless you're running a super physically fat Pursuit Tyranitar and Wish support. I think we've already hit peak Hariyama, but it still is a great option

B tier:

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Loom has finally gotten its due as a scary Sleep + Fighting option. Being able to almost always get a Spore off is a fantastic ability and its triple Fighting set has really been a boon for teams that drop Gengar for more offensive coverage over the last year+. I think you should always run Jolly -- being able to get Spore off against the 244-252 tier is invaluable. I've experimented w bulky Breloom and thought it was pretty mediocre. I think running other Hidden Powers is quite nice -- running Bug to nail Celebi or Ghost to get Gengar is quite nice. It also helps reduce the dependence on Pursuit Tar. I think we will see an adjustment in the meta to help combat Breloom, but I have been enjoying the innovation like w SubPunch and SD Loom.

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I think Milo is a bit ass right now. It of course walls Mixed threats forever, and is awesome alongside Celebi or on any team that needs a lot of threats checked in one slot. However, it is really passive and hard to prevent Metagross from Exploding on a key member. I don't think the offensive sets are are really worth it, and Milo really needs Refresh to not be completely helpless to Toxic. I think pairing it besides another Rock resist is pretty mandatory.

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I feel like teams relying on Magneton to remove Skarm or Forre can feel hard to justify in the current meta. I personally think the only Mag worth using is one w Magnet and Forre bulk, as not shoring yourself up against those threats is rather painful. Some teams need it to function, but smart play from Skarm or Forre can make your team getting worn down relatively quickly. I do think Mag has some nice utility as a switch in against CB threats w its resistances as well as forcing damage on Bliss teams w Toxic. I suppose rain support or EndSalac are there, but don't feel very good in the current meta. MagDol also feels like a matchup fish at this point

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Flygon is another good Rock resist that isn't affected by Spikes -- however, it primary issue is being OHKOed by so many Ice-type moves. I am a fan of the Rest sets, whereas the offensive sets need quite a bit of support, but can feel fantastic w Pursuit Tar and maybe Mag as well due to its high speed and great coverage. I'm not a huge fan of CB, I like the berry options Hclat has experimented w, but can feel easily walled. I think relying on Flygon to pivot Zapdos can be a fool's errand due to HP Ice, but works well on highly offensive teams that use Zapdos or Jolt as their main special wall.

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P2 is quite good at its niche of removing Dug and being prob the game's best counter to Salamence. Its also one of the best Para spreaders. It's bulk is deceptive esp not in sand -- tanking things like Molt Flamethrower, Aero, and Starmie. However, I find that unless it is absolutely needed for Dug removal, it is extremely passive and often can be fulfilled with another mon. Even Gardevoir or Salac Dug can do what P2 does wrt to removing opposing Dug. P2 gives momentum to Meta and Lax while also giving Bliss a super free softboiled. It can also lull teams w multiple Ground weaks into a false sense of security by removing Dug, but then being weak to Spikes or generally being weak to Earthquake.

B- tier:

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I feel like Venu's viability is really hurt by the prominence of TWave Zap. I also think that other Venus besides Timid max Speed are viable -- Gacusaur (max Calm special bulk w 252 speed) is also quite nice. I think it was Watermess who said Venu fits only on teams that can really use that extra momentum from Sleep + Seed, and I agree -- looking at my Venu teams, the best partners I found were Forre/Skarm spikes or SubPunch and ZapDug. I think it absolutely needs back up in the special wall slot -- I think this mon could definitely use some more innovation.

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I am a big fan of Steelix -- being immune to Aero's Rock Slide and being the best Steel type against both Mag and Dug is quite nice. I think teams like the Forre + Steelix and Gyara + Steelix are quite good, as they give the team options to absorb CB Meta without having to risk the Water. However, despite my love for lix, it is very passive -- games against Skarm teams feel like inexorable Stall walls or force the usage of Magneton. I've been experimenting w Boom teams w Steelix, think it is one of the best BLs.

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Jynx is one of the best offensive leads in the metagame -- it immediately forces a trap on TTar and Meta while gaining momentum on all leads except like modest CroCune. I've tried the occasional midgame Jynx, but I feel like most Jynx builds have been optimized pretty well -- you're pretty much required to run Dug, but Jynx can just 6-0 some teams w Ice Beam and HP Fire/Psychic and Calm Mind. Jynx's main problem is the brutal accuracy on Lovely Kiss, sleep RNG, and the prominence of Jolly CB Mence leads, but if you're willing to risk that, Jynx is one of the best options for CM Spam archetypes in the current meta.

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I have real problems w Cloy in the current meta. It dies so quickly, and w the reemergence of Claydol, Starmie, and Forretress over the last two years has really hurt Cloy's viability. Cloy forces you to run Gengar for this reason, of which teambuilding feel quite restrictive in making sure everything is covered. However, Cloy is the only Spiker that can't be trapped easily, as well as has less variance than the other two HO Spikers, Smeargle and Yoloskarm. Cloy is also quite good at gaining momentum on bulky waters. Cloy's style also is quite prediction dependent to make sure one gets the most out of its Boom and Spikes combination, and as such, can feel quite inconsistent.

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Like Cloy, Zard can feel quite inconsistent -- it is arguably the most prediction heavy non Choice Band Mon in the entire metagame. However, getting the Focus Punch on Tar or Bliss can win games, and if the opponent doesn't have Milo or Suicune, the opportunity can arise frequently. Zard also suffers from Heracross syndrome -- missing Fire Blast on Zapdos or Gengar can be soul crushing at times. I think the Sunny Day Blast Burn set is fun, as well as Beat Up (with or without the gimmicky Fire Spin to trap Bliss). If the meta goes more offensive, definitely looking forward to more Zard.

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Again, another very inconsistent mon. I find Jolt Spikes to be very hard to use, as I constantly feel I am one Suicune Hydro Pump or Molt Flamethrower away from losing the game. However, it is undeniable these teams have found success on ladder and in the past. My take on it is to run more bulk -- I've used 144 HP and 8 Sp Def to Tank Suicune's +1 Hydro Pump while running enough speed for Dugtrio. Think Wish is a nice option -- run it alongside things that can take care of Bliss and Spikes.
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Medicham is one of the scariest Fighters in the game. Nothing walls Medicham outside of Super Fat ProTox WishMence or maybe Weezing. I think Medi's bulk is rather underrated, as even w a small amount of investment it can live DDTar Eq and Jolly Dug Eq. I think CB is rather bad on Medi despite the insane power -- lefties or even Black Belt or Lum (lures Gengar like a charm) allows you to switch moves and 480 Attack does quite a bit of damage. I think we've seen some nice Medi builds in the metagame, although I think the hype has died down a bit. One of my favorite tools on my bulkier teams

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I really struggled where to put Gyarados -- I think it has some good sets like TWave, Taunt HP Rock (pairing it w Knock Off for Skarm is amazing), HP Ghost Gyara, etc. But it is so unbelievably weak even at +1 and is hard countered by Zapdos. Even on SD Pass at +3, Gyara stills struggles to get kills. Teams that it should ravage can typically tank a hit and boom on it or hit it w like TTar Rock Slide. It also almost 100% requires Magneton to function. However, if teams are lacking options for it, it can be quite devastating. I think Rest DD bulky Gyara is pretty bad right now, but I would love to be wrong.

C+ Tier:
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Despite recently dropping to BL, Ice man can be effective w the right support. It is great as a back up special wall and likes Dug support for its pathetically weak Explosion to get the trap on Bliss. It does a good job spreading Twave and hitting things hard w Ice Beam. Being weak to TTar and Meta really shafts its viability, however.
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Smeargle is main HO Spiker in the metagame (I think it is a lot better than Yoloskarm). Infinite options and access to Spore help teams built around Rock spam + Agiligross function. I think previous iterations of the metagame w BP allowed on it were a lot more favorable for it, but it's got a decent Speed tier and just enough bulk to tank hits and activate that Salac to get off a STAB Boom, Spikes, or really whatever it wants.
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I think Armaldo has a lot of unexplored territory both w other options and in teams. Knock Off is always excellent and it has a great offensive typing. It of course is the best Snorlax counter in the game w Harden, but it also can use HP Bug to OHKO offensive Celebi while being deceptively bulky. The mons that hurt its viability are not as good, with the exception of Metagross. Be on the lookout for it
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Kingdra Rain can be quite good if built around it. Think it is a great receiver for CM Pass Celebi. Like Sub on it, as well as HP Grass to not have to risk HPump's horrible accuracy. While Kingdra's bulky, it can be hard to justify letting the cleaner take a big hit to revenge like a DDTar for example. Think Kingdra isn't as viable as it used to be, but still can be effective.
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I love Raikou, but I think the hype behind Lead Toxic has worn off and we're left w all the normal Raikou problems. Sub CM can sweep w the best of them if it receives a CM Pass from Celebi, and the rogue CMRest can be quite nice w support. Still think it is quite effective in the right match up, however.
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Blaziken hype has definitely worn off from last SPL -- it still is a Big 5 killer that can quite some damage behind a Sub. An underrated option that Asta showed me was max attack Focus Punch -- being able to 2HKO Milo behind a sub is quite impressive. Think it really didn't like Zapdos running a lot of bulk as the standard, but it still can be effective in the right match up against standard TSS.
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I used to be a big Weezing fan, but I now find it pretty hard to build with. I liked it on Boom offense w Naughty HP Fighting, Fire Blast, and Wow, but it can feel difficult to use. I found Gar to just work better in the slot I used Weezing unless I really needed help against Drill Peck Skarm. I think Taunt can still be effective, and it of course has a much stronger boom and physical bulk than Gengar.
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Donphan needs so much support to be usable -- pursuit trapper for Gar, Magneton, special wall, etc. But it is the best DDTar counter in the game (besides Groudon lol) and can be quite effective against Aero Spikes teams. Don't think the metagame has really affected it all that much -- might see a comeback if CurseLax sees a resurgence.
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Umbreon pretty much only fits if you want a Pursuiter that doesn't bring sand or you want to use a physical ttar. It is quite good at its niche -- it pretty guarantees Gengar's removal next time it comes in if you switch into WoW and it hits if you're smart and invest in SpA. I find my Umbreon teams typically can struggle against the classic Gar + OffStar combo if I don't run a Heal Beller. You can also be cheeky and run Vapicuno's Mean Look pass too, be on the lookout for that.
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That other Pursuiter. Like Umbreon, run Houndoom if you want to run a physical Tar or don't want sand. However, unlike Umbreon, Houndoom fulfills almost no defensive niche, so it is more restrictive in terms of team building. On the other hand, Houndoom's Pursuit is much stronger than both Umbreon and Ttar's, so it can actually remove SpDef Gar instead of chipping it w a good roll. I think there are some under-explored options on Doom like Beat Up, but it feels so restrictive to build w you might not ever see those options.
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Registeel is infuriating to play against -- it never dies and has Counter if you try to use physical moves on it then Rests off the damage while spreading Paralysis. It pretty much only fits on hyper stall teams w Forretress, but its defensive utility is undeniable. I've seen curse + boom sets, but I've had a hard time fitting them, although definitely theorymonned them as a back up special wall if curse + boom lax dies.
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Like Hclat, I also see Scizor as more of a Fighting mon than as a Bug mon. It can definitely match up fish for someone who doesn't know what's up w the EndSalac Reversal. I also think it can be a decent CB mon w Baton Pass acting like U-Turn for Mag to switch in. I think the SD passer can have some viability on hyper offense. At the same time, I don't think it is consistent at all and that HP Bug is doing very little damage otherwise.

C Tier:
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Cross Chop accuracy makes me hate this mon. I swear its like 60% accurate and misses at the worst possible times. I think it's only really viable as either Bulk Up or CB. I liked Linear's teams w it -- it is enormously powerful if you can predict well as well as being deceptively bulky with investment. If only No Guard was in Adv...
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The fish! I think Lanturn has become underrated after it was overrated over the summer. I'm not a huge fan, but it can be effective in the right circumstances. I typically just set up on it w Suicune or just kind of ignore its coverage, but it is absolutely a great Starmie counter and Volt Absorb is quite helpful. It is good when you don't want to be so passive against special threats.
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Marowak is prob the best Speed pass recipient in ADV -- almost every good adv player has been swept by this getting Speed passed from Ninjask or Zapdos on the ladder. It also fits on some defensive teams as a breaker w Para support. Can live some weak attacks, but this thing took a hit to its viability once Mime got banned.
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I think Eggy is the most underrated mon in ADV. Sleep + Boom is always a good combo, and it has a good movepool with options like Wish and of course the standard Psy / Grass / Fire coverage. Eggy really made me appreciate how good Celebi's stats are, because even to live Dug's HP Bug, you need insane investment. It is prob best to run speed for base 70 creep, enough bulk for Swampert ice beam, and then put the rest in SpA. Can be a good option for some Spikeless offenses.
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Linear showed us all how effective Jumpluff Spikes can be after I think UD theorymonned this Poke. Still think it only really fits on very specific teams, but in that niche (preventing set up w Encore, Sleep, SubSeed) it is bar none the best at it.
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Demon bug! I think Ninjask is probably going to eventually get banned, but it is undeniably the best Dugtrio punisher in the game and definitely the best Speed passer. I can't tell how many times I raged at this thing when I lost my Sand Veil (RIP Cacturne and Gligar in these rankings) req accounts to teams w this thing. Maybe the Mime banning will finally be what's needed for this thing not to be awful?
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Dusclops is so bad. I have tried to make this thing work in modern ADV, but it is just so uniquely bad, I don't know how to justify running this over Gengar or even alongside it if you Destiny Bond the Tar. I think the Snatch Wow Thief set is pretty cool, as is the attack invested set w Shadow Ball Wow Pain Split and Focus Punch. But its so unbelievably slow and weak -- I guess that Sean B guy annoys me w it whenever I play him on ladder.
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Good ole Zammer. Zam has an awesome movepool, a great Speed tier, and SpA stat. It can be quite effective w four attacks, Knock off, or a Calm Mind. So what gives? It just has no defensive niche whatsoever. It has to risk the speed tie w Dug. I have seen it work on some Jolt Spikes and as a kinda pseudo suicide lead for Dug, but Jynx or Raikou just do that way better. If it had Magic Guard and Focus Sash, I could see it be amazing like in BW, but it instead sucks in ADV.
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Gardevoir can actually be kind of effective -- it is a much more offensive Dug trapper w Trace and can be annoying w Taunt, Salac, and Destiny Bond. Pokology stalled the shit out of me w a ProTox Wish specially defensive Gardevoir. It is pretty decent option that prob needs some more exploring.
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I swear every time I try to make Ludicolo work as a rain sweeper or as a bulky leech seed attacker, it disappoints me. I just find it to be too weak or too frail to do anything of note. I know some people love it, but count me out.
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Camel! I'll repeat what I said in the earlier thread -- a Ground-type that can't counter TTar and is immediately removed by ZapDug is rather hard to build around. It is quite nice that it is a great counter to Defensive Zap and Gengar. It also has Explosion and good offensive stats. But it is so unbelievably slowwwwwwwwww. Previous iterations of the metagame were kinder to it.

Everything else really isn't worth using (like Slaking or Rhydon) or I haven't really experimented w it enough to comment (like Miltank, Dragonite, Solrock, or Politoed). Seen them on ladder, though.


Thanks for reading!
 

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S

:rs/Tyranitar:
Surprise surprise, Tyranitar is still good in ADV. Sand support is just too important for too many teams and those teams are also generally the best in the game. IMO bulky pursuit is its best set providing excellent support for spike teams, explosion heavy offenses and teams that incorporate fighters. More recent moveset picks like counter and protect make for some cool options but the old standard crunch suit fire move roar is also great. Physical attacking bulky sets also make for a great back up special check against Zapdos, Celebi and Jirachi which is particularly important with the recent popularity of bulky dugtrio to remove blissey.

A+

:rs/Metagross:
While it may not be the best rock resist, it is the best pokemon that resists rock in the tier and as long as you have lefties it's good enough as a one stop shop against aero as long as you have a couple eq resists. A number of more recent trends such as hp fight aero and mach punch loom can make up for the dd tar weakness you introduce if you run this as a solo rock resist which is great because having to use swampert when you already have a metagross really sucks. Out side of that, this thing is tough to wall, and bulky explosion users are always a huge asset to any offensive team. Choice band will always be good but I think the best sets right now are the bulky protect variants and mixed metagross as they allow you to run lefties. Im still partial to psychic hp fire personally as unless your opponent has a jirachi it can really put in some work and isn't forced to boom in awkward scenarios allowing you to save it for later in the game when you'll need it vs aero. Another thing I've really been liking is + speed natures on it. When you're using this as one of your primary midgame tar answers, getting out sped by UDtar can be devastating. It also puts you ahead of most opposing metagross and magneton which can be really nice for mixgross who otherwise struggles vs both. Outspeeding and killing a low endeavor pert thinking they can get that final sub on you is also pretty useful.

A

:rs/Skarmory:
This might be a hot take these days but I don't feel like there's a whole lot stopping skarmory from doing its thing right now. The fact of the matter is that spikes are second only to sand as the best offensive support option in the game and nothing sets up a layer faster than skarm. It may have trouble keeping that layer vs spinners compared to forretress but once you have that layer down there are tons of options to exploit your opponent's attempts to spin. Personally my favorite set right now is taunt toxic with a good bit of speed. It's particularly useful against opposing skarm builds as shutting down the opposing skarm and getting a free roar is amazing in the early game for revealing your opponent's team.

:rs/Gengar:
I have to say I don't really understand why Gengar's usage is still low these days. Its immunities, speed and the threatening nature of its coverage and status moves give it so many opportunities to come in and do damage. In the past I was a bit low on its abilities as a spinblocker but on faster paced spike teams where you should really only be giving a couple opportunities for the opponent to spin I find I don't have much trouble keeping spikes down with a gengar on my team. The thing that really pushes it to the top for me though is the way it uses explosion. Having a fast explosion user is so valuable in the late game when you're really looking for pivoting options for your attackers. The fact that it's a bit on the weak side is usually not a huge deal too because of ADV's turn ending mechanics giving you a free switch into one of your other pokemon. Gengar teams just feel like they have so many options to keep the pace of the game on your side.

:rs/Zapdos:
I'm not as high on Zapdos as other people seem to be but it is still easily one of the best pokemon in the tier, and worth respecting. Baton pass + dug or fighter strategies are both incredible at dismantling common defensive cores, and when blissey is out of the way Zapdos can really wreak havoc. Its defensive traits are also excellent, providing a secondary check to a number of dangerous pokemon including metagross, suicune and mixmence among others. The main reason I don't put it as high as others do is I find it can struggle to maintain offensive momentum at times. It usually only gets one turn of damage at a time before its forced out due to its speed and inability to ohko a lot of common pokemon meaning even when you remove all its checks it's generally in a racing scenario vs pokemon like aerodactyl, healthy tyranitar and even starmie if you take enough damage. Furthermore If you just slap it on a team that doesn't have one of those aforementioned methods of punishing blissey, it can be pretty useless at times giving blissey free opportunities to heal itself and spread status. I'm generally not a huge fan of it on spike teams as it tends to take up the Gengar slot and gives Claydol opportunities to switch in on its STAB which eases up the pressure you put on forre and dol teams.

:rs/Blissey:
In the past I would have put blissey right alongside metagross but the recent prevalence of bulky beat up dugtrio really hurts its niche on the slow paced teams it used to call home. That being said, I think it is incredibly underrated on more aggressive aero spike builds that usually just need a way to re-set tempo a few times during a match. I find the old UDbliss set actually works really nicely here as its ability to lure metagross with fire blast and tyranitar with toxic is a huge asset, it also puts a lot more pressure on spikers than celebi does. Meanwhile aerodactyl is able to take off some slack against a number of the tier's special threats meaning if you lose your bliss it isn't game over vs special offense. Wish bliss is also a nice pick on fighter teams notably those with hariyama, giving it much more longevity against oppposing blissey and ttar. I don't think you can really just slap this on any old stall team and expect not to lose to the tier's special threats anymore but with a little bit of support this thing is still incredibly strong and shouldn't be slept on.

A-

:rs/Swampert:
This is another pokemon I feel I don't rate as highly as others do in recent times. It is the best rock resist in the tier and if you're not running something that can outspeed and do serious damage to a +1 tar or provide a solid back up check to it I definitely think you need either this guy or something like Flygon, Donphan or Steelix. That being said I personally don't find swampert to be as slappable as a lot of people claim. It shores up a ton of defensive issues in one slot so it's easy to just put on a team without thinking and call it good but it also introduces a number of offensive deficiencies due to the free turns it gives to pokemon with recovery moves like Blissey, and Celebi. Milotic and bulky suicune don't even have trouble coming in and getting free recovery/set up on the offensive variants. The fact that the defensive variants also give free rein to almost every spiker in the tier is another huge issue. I personally haven't found much use for offensive swampert recently, I think metagross + fighter or hp fight aero is generally better on the kinds of aggressive teams it used to fit on. The bulky sets still have their place on slower teams though which keeps it relevant as a top tier pokemon. Nothing really does its job quite as well as it can and its job is very important. I just think a lot of teams that slap it on without thinking can be better suited looking for ways to make up for the deficiencies of its competitors. Endeavor pert is of course still great as well although it is a bit of a niche pick.

:rs/Aerodactyl:
This might be a bit high to some people but I feel like all of my best teams use this pokemon so it didn't feel right putting it lower. Whenever you're in any sort of racing scenario where you and your opponent are just sacking back and forth to regain tempo, Aero is THE pokemon you want to have on your side. If your opponent doesn't have a pokemon that can avoid a 2hko from one of its moves (or 3hko with the threat of flinch) they generally have no choice but to sack due to its nearly unrivaled speed. Ironically Aero is also really useful defensively, its ability to check nearly every special attacker in the tier is a huge asset when you consider the fairly poor selection of special walls ADV has, especially now that the go to blissey is not as reliable as it used to be. It's also pretty much the best thing to have when facing off against a stat passing celebi. Hp fight aero can also shore up dd tar weaknesses allowing you to use more offensive rock resists. Offensive spike teams are traditionally where it finds its place and it is excellent on those builds (which also happen to be the best teams in the metagame imo) but I also think it's underrated on explosion based spikeless offenses. Those teams traditionally struggle against special attackers due to their lack of speed control and Aero goes a long way towards solving that issue. I've also found some pretty unique synergy between aero and rest suicune as it allows you to play more aggressively in the cune on metagross match up since they often lose to aero if they decide to boom on cune.

:rs/Jirachi:
Jirachi has always been a bit of an oddball to me, it's consistently one of the pokemon I have some of the hardest times dealing with but in the past I struggled to use it for myself. More recently I've been finding it's an excellent replacement for snorlax on explosion based offenses when paired with Aerodactyl to help pull up the slack against special attackers. I personally really like substitute sets with either CM or Dynamic punch as they really punish a number of common teams. I also think the specially defensive wish sets with hidden power fighting are quite strong on more mid-rangey spike teams due to the excellent role compression they provide between rock resist and special check. Overall don't have too much to say here, it can be less than optimal in certain match ups but it's one of the few standard pokemon that people seem to commonly be insanely weak to so as long as people keep bringing those teams I don't see any reason this shouldn't be considered top tier.

B+

:rs/Celebi:
Another pokemon I don't rate as highly as others. I think the spikes weakness the defensive variants can introduce to some teams can be really hard to overcome especially considering how much of a problem it has checking things when spikes are down. That being said, it's a great option for teams that have some way of removing spikes or at least removing skarm reliably and still an ok option without that support if you really need its defensive properties (just have some other way of dealing with gar/starmie/electrics because celebi alone is not enough with even a layer down). Offensive variants are quite strong with CM pass being one of the scariest sets in the tier but their lack of recovery makes them difficult to be relied on defensively which can make it hard to fit on certain teams. Ultimately I would describe celebi as a great pokemon that has a hard time finding the support it needs to truly shine.

:rs/Dugtrio:
Dugtrio is always going to be relevant in ADV but the relatively recent discovery of beat up is a pretty big buff for it as it allows those bulky sets sets to be significantly more reliable as they no longer fear counter and can afford to lay up a bit on attack without fear of not 2hkoing blissey. This is probably the single biggest change the metagame has seen in the past year or so as previously hit or miss full on special offenses now have a pretty consistent method of removing their biggest obstacle. Traditional fast variants also shouldn't be slept on though, outspeeding +1 tyranitar, and starmie is still necessary for some teams and dugtrio's traditional role is still as relevant as ever.

:rs/Suicune:
The set that really carries suicune for me is the offensive restalk set Asta introduced a while back. It doesn't have quite the same longevity problems faced by its other sets while also still being able to bust through things like Snorlax. Having a pretty strong surf after just one boost is a huge asset and makes it a lot easier to avoid crits since you don't have to be at +3 to be dangerous. I think this set works really nicely on boom spam teams with Claydol to remove spikes. In theory I think UD's rain dance set is also really promising but I haven't personally tried putting it to use in any serious way yet.

:rs/Claydol:
I'm personally not a fan of the idea of dedicated spinners, I think spending an entire slot on a generally sub optimal pokemon just so you can use a move that does not push forward your offense and is solely there to react to your opponent is generally just not good team building philosophy. That being said I think claydol has some additional traits that make its niche a bit more than just rapid spin and as a result I think it works pretty nicely in this role. The immunities to spikes, EQ and thunderbolt are huge and give it plenty of opportunities to sneak in, and if you pump its attack and speed it can be a surpsingly strong offensive threat in the late game thanks to its ability to outspeed and 2hko metagross and tyranitar and having the threat of explosion. The ability to get off a rapid spin can also be really crucial for pokemon like suicune who like the additional longevity so that they can abuse pressure to get past pokemon like leech seed celebi. The biggest thing holding it back is that it has pretty bad match ups vs most of the tier's spinners so you need them gone for it to do its thing. I generally like to use it on skarm beat down builds and usually try to avoid revealing claydol until the spiker is either gone or low enough that if it switches in on spin I can just take it out with boom.

:rs/Salamence:
A lot of people seem to be really high on this mon but I haven't really been using it much recently, the recent uptick in fighting type usage is definitely a pro for it but I find mixmence competes really heavily with Gengar's slot on spike teams and on the kinds of teams where cb mence normally fits I've been running a lot of aerodactyl for the extra assurance against special threats. Not much to say here, mence is good I've just been really high on the mons it normally competes for a teamslot with.

B

:rs/Breloom:
This mon seems to be really polarizing at the moment but I personally love it and think it absolutely deserves its place in OU. It generally only has a few impactful turns in any given match but when played well it is very good at creating a 3 turn tempo shift that often results in one mon getting slept and another getting killed or at least seriously wounded. I think a lot of the disappointment people have in this mon comes from sending it out too early to get that sleep off. Breloom becomes significantly more dangerous the longer the match goes and the more fewer options your opponent has. I find the optimal time to play it is generally when your opponent is down to about 3 pokemon ideally with all fighting resists removed. It's great at coming in on a double down or a revenge kill, firing off a spore and then a focus punch at which point your opponent will usually only have one pokemon left that's actually usable meaning this is generally check mate. Just don't use this strategy alongside para spreaders as it will give your opponent a method of blocking spore. I feel I should also mention mach punch is a really great move. I think endure salac sets are really underrated and underprepared for but mach punch gives you a surefire stop to them not to mention the ability to take stop even a +6 dd tar assuming you were able to get at least 30% or so chip on it.

:rs/Moltres:
Im also a pretty big fan of the other recent OU member. I think moltres shares a lot of similarities to Zapdos with Zapdos better speed and defensive typing generally making it the better pick (water weakness really sucks). That being said moltres does have some distinct advantages. Its ability to ohko metagross makes it a far more reliable answer as it can check it from any HP. Additionally it puts a lot more pressure on Forretress and Claydol making it a better pick on a lot of spike teams in my opinion. You don't run in to quite as many teams these days with 0 moltres switch ins but it can still put in a ton of work vs any team that doesn't have bliss or milotic. I think a lot of people are coming around to the idea that it doesn't really need will o wisp to do its thing so its other options like protect, roar and overheat are seeing a bit more use which is definitely good.

:rs/Snorlax:
I don't think snorlax is entirely useless but it's definitely seen better years. I think it's the ultimate example of a pokemon who gets mindlessly slapped on teams where it isn't optimal just because of the unique defensive abilities it carries. That being said it's still solid on certain archetypes. I think offensive claydol is a great partner for it thanks to its ability to soak up thunderbolts and remove spikes. Generally I try and save it for later in the game and use its ability to act as a one time check to basically everything thanks to its massive bulk and powerful self destruct to help secure end games. It's pretty good at that but if you try to rely on it throughout the game you'll just be disappointed.

:rs/Vaporeon:
Definitely a bit of bias here but this is a personal favorite of mine. That combination of 101 HP subpass and a super strong stab hydro pump just puts so many common teams in a huge catch 22. I think it works particularly well with fighters like hariyama, machamp and medicham as if you can get that subpass to them vs say a blissey, you're almost guaranteed to kill something. That being said it is stupidly frail on the physical side and leaves a bit to be desired in the speed department so it can be a bit hit or miss at times (quite literally thanks to hydro pump's accuracy).

:rs/Forretress:
Forretress is the best spiker when it comes to protecting its spikes. It has really solid match ups vs most of the tier's spinners thanks to stab HP bug, the worst one being the mirror match it has vs itself. Its ability to stay in on Zapdos is also a pretty important trait especially now that blindly switching to bliss is no longer a safe play before you have a layer up. Its biggest weakness is it has a really hard time actually finding a moment to switch in and get spikes up in the first place. There just aren't very many pokemon it can freely switch in on. Still a great choice for slower paced spike teams though.

:rs/Hariyama:
I wasn't the biggest hariyama fan until I started using the more offensive sets. Focus punch + knock off is a game changer and with wishbliss support this thing completely dismantles the slower paced spike teams that used to dominate the tier. Biggest thing holding it back is how slow it is, if it was fast enough to outpace standard blissey without a ton of investment it would be so much better but overall great pokemon.

:rs/Heracross:
I think the rise of the other fighters has hurt heracross a bit but the additional coverage of that stab megahorn and the extra speed it has compared to the others definitely make it still one of the better ones. Its main flaw is it's probably the worst one when it comes to 1v1ing skarm since it doesn't really have a powerful followup to focus punching it on the switch and can't come in and out as consistently as say hariyama. The fact that it isn't a rock resist also kinda sucks but overall still a great mon.

:rs/Cloyster:
I like cloyster, water stab + boom is a great combo and it gets a layer of spikes up pretty reliably. It really only fits on one fairly specific archetype but it's a good archetype.

:rs/Milotic:
Milotic is a really swingy pokemon. There are certain match ups where it is just an unkillable wall that sits on your opponent's entire team and just has to avoid getting exploded on and there are others where it does absolutely nothing. I personally don't really love the level of support it often needs to do its thing but I've lost to it way too many times to not respect it.

:rs/Starmie:
I personally don't think bulky star is good at all. It's basically the most egregious example of the dedicated spinner problem I mentioned earlier. Offensive star will always be a threat though. The coverage and speed are just too much for some teams to handle and it's one of the top beneficiaries of the beat up dugtrio strategy. It's not the most consistent pokemon since it's still trapped by dugtrio without too much effort and Hydro misses are way too common for my liking but nothing makes a team wish it had speed control more than this mon.

B-

:rs/Magneton:
I think there has been a lot of experimentation with alternative methods of removing skarm recently, primarily with skarm beat down builds but trapping skarmory will always have its place. I haven't been using it much recently but I still think it should be considered a staple.

:rs/Smeargle:
There was a brief period where I considered this to be the 2nd best spiker in the tier after skarmory. It's a great lead, that fast spore gives an easy opportunity to get that layer down and then you can just freely sack it with a boom if necessary to keep the tempo on your side. Then people started running a ton of lum berry leads and it just became too risky to use on a regular basis. I don't think it's as good outside of the lead slot as your really need that t1 tempo on the kinds of teams it fits on. It's still great in certain match ups just probably not a great ladder mon and definitely not something you want your opponents to expect you to bring.

:rs/Flygon:
Flygon is one of those pokemon I've always wanted to make work but can just never seem to get right. It's interesting offensively, EQ slide HP bug fire blast is pretty tough for a lot of frailer teams to switch in on and it comes in pretty freely on most zapdos and ttar sets my issue with it is it's not exactly a hard counter to most of the things it checks and even dd tar who it's supposed to handle pretty well can still ohko it with the rare ice beam so you can't exactly afford to use it as a solo answer to those pokemon and get randomly 6-0'd by a slightly non standard set. Because of that I always feel like the teams I have it on are missing something. I still think it's cool on paper and in theory there's a good team out there with it but I just haven't found it yet.

:rs/Venusaur:
Been a while since I've used this mon but I think it's still alright, I feel like it fits best on skarm mag teams which aren't quite as big as they used to be. Still relatively fast sleep is good and venu's ability to check electrics is an important niche. I'm personally quite partial to roar in the 4th slot. I don't find Hidden power to be all that useful for the most part but roar puts a hard stop to sub electrics, allows you to abuse spikes and prevents you from getting 6-0'd on the spot by subcune which is definitely a risk with a lot of venusaur teams i've seen.

:rs/Charizard:
Charizard is pretty cool, it's similar to moltres but trades the better bulk, power and will o wisp for more speed and access to focus punch to smack blissey and tyranitar. It's pretty heavily prediction reliant as whiffing on the focus punch often means death but it's even scarier to be on the receiving end of it. My main issue with it is its lack of power, unlike moltres it can't really afford to drop fire blast and the accuracy can really bite. Its HP grass is also super weak. Moltres can put a ton of pressure on suicune and even milotic with spikes up but charizard doesn't really have much hope against milo and suicune has a lot more wiggle room against it. Even swampert needs to take quite a bit of chip before you have any hope of killing it. Its focus punch sometimes leaves a bit to be desired vs blissey as well since it leaves it at just enough health to come back in later and softboiled up on something like a zapdos. All that being said though, there aren't many teams in ADV that can survive a perfectly played charizard. I should mention it also has some other options available to it like sunny day blaze abuse sets that can do some insane damage and I guess belly drum although I don't really see that all that much anymore.


C+

:rs/Glalie:
Glalie is actually pretty legit. It's very similar to cloyster, but trades that excellent physical bulk and stab surf for a decent special defense stat and the ability to 1v1 zapdos. This doesn't sound huge on paper but a lot of offensive spike teams struggle against early game zapdos so I think this niche is actually pretty important. The main thing that puts cloyster ahead of it in my eyes is that surf is just a way better move to have alongside explosion if you want to avoid it getting blocked by a ttar or something. Still definitely worth considering imo.

:rs/Medicham:
The insane power of medicham's focus punch is the main thing it has going for it, unbanded punch followed by brick break takes out skarmory, if you manage to pull off the subpass from vap i mentioned earlier even salamence gets 2hkod since you block intimidate. Its speed is also worth noting when compared to hariyama and machamp. I think it's pretty similar to heracross in how it plays, its able to punish skarm a lot more effectively but it pays for it by being extremely frail and being ironically kind of weak against pokemon that aren't switching out since outside of focus punch most of its moves are pretty low base power.

:rs/Jolteon:
As much as it pains me to say this I honestly think we've gotten to a point where Jolteon isn't really worth running anymore. The teams it fits on generally just don't have the offensive punch to make up for how flimsy they are. Heavy twave usage on Zapdos and the rise of claydol were really the nails in the coffin for it. Claydol in particular is just such a rough match up as it is not only a spike immune wall to it, but also uses it as an opportunity to remove spikes entirely which those teams rely on heavily. It can still do well in certain match ups and fast late game twaves are always useful but I don't think bringing it is worth the risk a lot of the time.

:rs/Jynx:
Jynx does a great job of giving you an info advantage early on in the match thanks to the switches it forces after its sleep goes off (assuming it hits). Lum leads give it similar issues to smeargle but at least you don't lose your spiker when you run in to one of those. I know Hclat hates this but I really like the thief set on dugtrio teams as between the two you pretty much cover everything that'll switch in after the sleep sack.

:rs/Steelix:
Steelix is one of the few things that can really choke the life out of an aerodactyl offense and its ability to reliably handle electrics on top of that is really useful. It does next to nothing offensively and can introduce some big problems against skarmory but if your team has ways of handling that then it's definitely a solid choice.

C

:rs/Gyarados:
I'm not the biggest gyarados fan ever, it's a pretty good swords pass recipient and the rest sets can snowball to victory in certain match ups but it's not the most consistent pokemon, its lack of power really holds it back as even against teams without a proper answer it can just find itself dead to chip damage before its fully set up enough to win unless it has rest.

:rs/Machamp:
The lowest fighter on the list but certainly still worth using. It's very similar to hariyama, it's faster and has a bit more attack but outside of seismic toss the bulk is pretty comparable between the two. The main reason I think hariyama is significantly better is because of knock off. If you're not using knock off I think Machamp is generally the better choice.

:rs/Wailord:
Almost forgot this guy! It has an ok speed tier for the early game and the water spout + boom combo is really strong. Main things holding it back are the that that it's pretty frail and the weakness of its boom does actually kinda sting at times unlike gengar. It's also a lot worse once you take some damage since it really relies on water spout for those ohkos on tar and hard hits on skarm/metagross. Still makes for a cool early game breaker on boom heavy offenses.

:rs/Raikou:
That lead raikou set that's been running around is honestly kind of a terror. There are ways certain teams can play around it though if they know what's coming so I still don't have it too high as a result.

:rs/Houndoom:
Not the biggest houndoom user but removing gengar is always good and beat up sets are honestly really tough for a lot of teams to switch in to. Has a bit of 4mss though.

:rs/Weezing:
Not something I use very much but it's a cool offensive threat, it's kind of like a slower physically bulkier Gengar in a lot of ways. I think physical sets are unexplored. Sludge bomb hp fight wisp boom is something I've had in the back of my head for a while.

C-

:rs/Porygon2:
I'm really not a fan of this pokemon, it's just so passive but it's also not exactly a stellar defensive pokemon. Its main niche is getting rid of dugtrio which is something that's generally appreciated by more offensive teams, but it plays like a discount milotic which is not exactly something you want on an offensive team. I've so far only ever built one team with this pokemon where I felt it actually added something useful.

:rs/Kingdra:
Kinda like a stronger faster starmie when set up but the fact that its set up move is on a timer and removes sand kinda sucks for it.

:rs/Blaziken:
Blaziken is kinda like charizard except without needing to rely as much on prediction to get past blissey and ttar. It pays for this pretty heavily though by losing that key ground immunity. It absolutely dismantles most TSS builds and is a lot of fun to use but is a bit lacking in consistency as it has pretty much 0 defensive value.

:rs/Scizor:
endure salac swords pass is really cool and reversal sets can be really dangerous. it suffers from not being quite fast enough at +1 though.

:rs/Marowak:
Kinda gimmicky but easily the best speed receiver in the game, I'm sure anyone who plays ladder has been swept by one of these things more times than they'd like to admit.

The rest of these are pokemon I haven't really used much recently but just want to recognize they have a niche and try to rank as best I can

:rs/Ludicolo:

:rs/Regice:

:rs/Regirock:

:rs/Jumpluff:

:rs/Registeel:

:rs/Lanturn:

:rs/Alakazam:

:rs/Donphan:

:rs/Rhydon:

:rs/Umbreon:

:rs/Camerupt:

:rs/Golduck:

:rs/Ninjask:

:rs/Politoed:

:rs/Swellow:

:rs/Sableye:

:rs/Armaldo:

:rs/Exeggutor:

:rs/Miltank:

:rs/Arcanine:


:rs/Tauros:

:rs/Lunatone:

:rs/Espeon:

:rs/Dusclops:

:rs/Solrock:

:rs/Dragonite:

:rs/Dodrio:
 
Last edited:
Let's go, god it took more time than i thought it would

S Rank
The one who shapes advance the most



I don't think Tar is ever falling down from S Rank at this point, Sand Stream is just too good. Making any kind of chip on mons like Cune, Lax, Celebi, Milo, permanent is insanely good. But it's not just that. Tar's one of the best leads, it fits in literally every archetypes and is very versatile. 4atk physical and CB hit like a truck, Mixed sets are quite hard to handle thanks to one of the best coverages, DD is still an incredible finisher.
It's also the best Pursuit user, offering great support to teams with spikes, fighting types, etc.


S- Rank
Boss of momentum



Zapdos is absolutely great at everyting. It's probably the best lead right now, it takes advantage of Gross, Tar leads, it can Sub to check CB Gross or take advantage of switch, it can status other Zapdos with T-Wave or Toxic. There's also the rise of BP Zap + Bulky Beat Up Dug to remove Blissey extremely early in the game. As Cowboy Dan said in his post, this combo or Zap + fighters can break defensive cores really fast, and then Zap just becomes a nightmare. It actually forces us to have a better answer to lead Zap, like pivoting into Claydol, Lax, or just leading with something unorthodox like we saw during SPL with lead Blissey.
Electric stab is extremely strong when you remove special checks, especially with 252 252 sets, being either Timid or Modest. Mixed sets are not so popular but Drill Peck or even HP Fight are viable options. And there's also Bulky sets, SpD Zap being the best of the two in my opinion.


A+ Rank
Mons shaping the metagame



I don't have much to add to what Cowboy Dan covered, but Metagross is a very consistent figure. CB will most likely damage everything, even Pert, Zap or Skarm, but its best sets are probably Bulky attacker and Defensive with protect. Mixed set is also a very good option.



Thanks to Intimidate, Mence is great to pivot into, especially when you face fighting types. DD can be a great finisher especially when it's invested to live an IB from Blissey. CB hits very hard but usually gets worn-down by sand too easily. Wish + Protect is a good support set, same for Mixed.



Celebi is very splashable and versatile, it can be defensive, offensive, support, whatever is best for the team. All sets are pretty bulky except maybe for CM + 3 atk, thus it usually requires spikes to worn it down, or running HP Bug on things like Tar, Hariyama, Aero. Celebi is particularly good as a special wall. Leech Seed and BP are two useful tools to gain momentum. Some teams, including common archetypes, are really weak to CM 3atk, or even to Sub CM as we saw during SPL. SD Pass can be a viable option even though it's not the most consistent.



Jirachi seems to be underrated some times (cf what Dan said). Sub CM is a huge pain to some fat builds and Physically Defensive can be unkillable sometimes. BSlam is a pain when it starts paralysing your team, Wish Protect makes it really hard to break.



The best rock resist. Don't have much to say, it's usually very good at what it does. Offensive 4 atk doesn't seem to be that popular recently, but EndPert is still a decent option.

A Rank
Consistent performers



Fuck Hypnosis. Gengar is good enough with Wisp, DBond, coverage moves. Even Explosion is a decent pick to get special walls like Blissey or Celebi.



Obviously the best special wall. Just don't get in front of Zap T1.



Not much to add on Skarm, it should probably regain some popularity.

A- Rank
Very good mons



Special wall killer. Bulky Beat Up rised in usage for good reason, being able to kill Bliss almost surely (unless freeze, crit, or.. Blizzard? LOL) is the best. Also here to revenge kill Celebi, or at least chip it to put it in range of something else. Always good at what he does.



Good special wall, especially Restalk. Running IB on CM sets can be a good idea. Sub is a also a decent option.



I feel Curse is underrated in the current metagame. Always reliable.

B+ Rank
Very good but not so splashable options



Constant threat. Not a fan of Sub Liechi though.



Man this thing always gets a sleep off and it's a huge pain. FPunch from Loom has to be covered by something otherwise it genuinely gets a kill. Loved Roro's set (Sub Leech Seed with 0IV HP) as it gets a Sleep off, then Subs and starts Leech Seeding.



I wonder why Starmie isn't seen more tbh. Offensive is a real threat when you remove special checks, it's the fastest spinner, it has recover unlike Dol. Bold Mie is a good pick against usual physical builds.



Never been a fan of Claydol but it's good at spinning, it can worn-down Gar with Psychic. One of the best rock resists too. Also I'd recommend always using Boom so it can actually do something useful against teams with no spikers.


B Rank
Reliable mons



We've seen Forre quite a lot during SPL. Probably better at spiking up than Skarm because it can stay in front of Zap, Counter can chunk Gross or Tar, it can spin. Probably fits best in teams with a slower pace though.



Some very bulky fish. Very reliable on fat builds.



Trap.



Sub Salac is always something to be prepared for if you don't want to get obliterated in the endgame. Sub Lefties is a decent option too as it doesn't get worn-down by sand. Sunny Day is another option but it means not having HP Ghost, Rock Slide or whatever.


B- Rank
Can be good but not always consistent




Usually seen in TSS, Wisp and Roar are a decent way to worn Bliss down with spikes up. Fire Blast or sometimes Overheat can put a lot of pressure on the opposing team.



Only Knock Off user. Can be a reliable Tar check especially on stall. Decent fighting type when it runs 4 atk.



Look how he's threatening. Seriously, Sub FPunch is a good breaker, probably better with Lefties than with Petaya because of sand.



I don't know why but everytime I face this, it's a massive pain in the ass. Being insanely fast, being able to throw out stabbed Tbolts or to BP to keep momentum makes it a good asset to mixed spikes offense.


C+ Rank
Hard to fit in a team and not always consistent but can be good



Has Intimidate and good typing to wall some things. Can be a decent finisher with DD but it always lacks a coverage move as you have to pick between HP Fly and HP Rock.



Good breaker but is very frail. Sub Lefties is a threat.

C Rank
Not so good but still has something that can work from time to time




C- Rank
Can be viable





D Rank
Has some niche but kinda hard to make it work





E Rank
Has some niche

 

McMeghan

Dreamcatcher
is a Forum Moderatoris a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis an Administrator Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnusis the 5th Smogon Classic Winneris the Smogon Tour Season 14 Championis a Past SPL Champion
Moderator
Gonna make the bi-annual post to spill my thoughts about every 'mon in the current metagame. I'll try to avoid spending time on the obvious and just focus on the personal feeling regarding them. If you're interested, I made my ranking on stream and talked about every Pokemon individually for... 4 hours. The stream is available on YouTube.

The McRankings 2021 Pt.1

S Rank


Sand. Does it all. I like Double-Edge on DD because it works against every check. Big fan of Focus Punch/Rock Slide/Fire Blast/HP Grass as a standalone breaker, nothing really comes on this one beside Milotic. Pursuit is as consistent as ever and is a prime partner of Forretress but those teams gotta watch out on not putting too much reliance on Tyranitar's trapping job.
Big fan of Brick Break/Focus Punch coverage on special sets to avoid Blissey/Tyranitar abusing you, moreso than Roar (don't like Dug-weak phazers). Max HP Physical stays beastly because the bulk allows it to check a lot of special attackers and avoid delegating all the job to your Blissey/Jirachi to deal with them. Also makes Dugtrio work for its trap.

A+ Rank


Zapdos oils Offense together like nothing else. Slap this bad boy on any team with Baton Pass and there goes your free entry to all the nasty breakers you can think of. I love to make mine beefy. Having a lot of SpDef allows it to check a myriad of annoying threats for Offense on top of doing its job (Starmie, Moltres, Suicune, Swampert, etc). Not a big fan of TW anymore, I've grown to love Agility on the slot instead, TW on spikesless often does no progress vs Celebi/Blissey, whereas Agility will open a lot of doors offensively for yourself and your other 'mons. Roar Zapdos is one of the best spikes abuser in the tier too and is a good temporary solution to Celebi pass for bulky builds so you can get the chip that will let your back Aero finish the job for example. SubPass on lead has insane upswing potential, legit makes me avoid every team that has to play on the backfoot vs lead Zap as a result.


Jirachi is good mon TM. It's like, the opposite of one-dimensional. Metagross typing, solid bulk across the board, sand-immune Wish and great coverage allows it to be one of the best glue in the tier really, kinda like Pert with a different set of resistances/weaknesses. Spreading status means nothing really likes switching on it. It's a really good teammate for every resistances it brings to the team and yeah, Wish is great like I said before. As a sweeper, it's most importantly the only CMer that is immune to Sand, and as a result, it makes it the best one by far in my opinion. There is just not much room for error vs a CM Rachi or it just goes out of control immediately. Big fan of SubCM; BoltBeam is "optimal coverage" but with Magneton partner, you can go like PsyGrass which is a lot better vs two of its best checks Ttar & Pert. I'm also liking the BoltGrass coverage that ibidem introduced, especially because defensive Celebi barely runs CM nowadays. I liked Superachi a lot when every Bliss was Wish but TW is back to being popular so I prefer Sub. WishCM is less flexible imo, give it Cleric support imo because para'd Jirachi kinda stinks.


You legit cannot go wrong with Swampert. Sturdy, sand immune and not overly passive, access to a ton of great moves for every situation/build. The only downside is how spikes bait it is imo. There isnt one Pokemon that will make you feel as safe vs DDTar/Aero than Pert, simple as is, and those two will always be in the metagame's picture. Anyway, no HP Pert sucks (unless it's endeavor). If you wanna damage the spikers, feel free to invest in SpA but keep the HP. Roar Pert is amazing and underrated offensive pressure. I usually don't leave home without Protect because it Just Works to keep Swampert healthy, always. I also really dislike not having water coverage because I don't wanna be do 0 to Skarmory and being a free Moltres entry. To go back on Roar Pert, it's the only phazer that isn't Dug weak and sand immune, that makes it a lot more durable and harder to work around for any kind of setup/pass shenanigans, which is great.


CB Gross is the most mindless yet kinda good form of offense in the tier, and I still love it. I even drop coverage to fit Sleep Talk on it nowadays. Excellent breaker that will often catch Skarm/Forre/Water, which benefits every offense. I know a lot of people make it work, but I dislike Fire/Tpunch-less without Magneton, and tbh, Mag + Meta is rarely bad anyway. Mix is pretty sick as a non-support-required set for offense. Pursuit is ok but I don't like relying on it to kill Gengars because it's pretty weak, esp into spdef variants. I don't really like the defensive sets because I feel like it does literally nothing if you're not booming into a Water, and I dislike my rock resists being weak to EQ (at least as standalone Rock resists). Nowadays, I tend to prefer Jirachi status spreading and Wish support over Metagross / Snorlax power on balanced builds but Meta's boom is more appreciated for more offensive teams. Also it's annoying how Dug/Mag can trap it before it booms on the Pokemon you wanna discard.

A Rank


Super big fan of Celebi. Will start by saying though, that I don't like the defensive sets. Too passive, always missing a move too, be it Leech/HPFire/Psychic/Grass, you're always a free entry to something annoying basically or/and you're Dug prone. I still stand by offensive sets though. It's simple, Celebi is good by itself, and it makes a ton of shit/average mons good thanks to SD/CM Pass. Status not being a permanent sentence is amazing. BP is great for early momentum, especially when you can use it against Zapdos pretty freely. Celebi shares the Jirachi trait of hard punishing any mistake/free turn it can generate. It's not sand immune though so you're more limited in options, like its very possible you took some chip setting up then you opponent can stop you through something like Mence/Moltres/Aero and now its almost impossible to make use of it. My advice is to not wait too much with Celebi and seize the early game momentum as much as you can. By the way if you're tired of Fire/Grass limited coverage on BP set, consider Psy/Leech with Magneton partnership (also remove Meta with Sub once it's seeded). I have a hard time using fat builds without a Phazer because of this guy specifically by the way.


First time I rank Salamence this high, but yeah I'm a fan now. Speed + Coverage + Raw power allows it to immediately reverse the momentum on a lot of Pokemon by pivoting on them. Intimidate is rly good for a lot of situations, but especially to give you a real check to the fighters that are now part of the metagame. I will say already that I'm not a big fan of CB; lacks longetivity and kinda needs Mag support (I also prefer Aero speedtier to offensively check more Pokemons). Without Spikes, Pert is annoying to deal with in Sand too. Pursuit Ttar doesn't help. DDMence has its usual problems too. However, as you might have guessed with my first lines, the real deal is Mix. I especially love how Mence can use two of my favorite moves: Wish & Roar (DClaw/Fire/Brick Break is really all you need). Wish is crazy good on spikesless (Snorlax in particular loves it) and Roar is insane on spikes build. Ofc you can just use HP Grass... I like Naughty without Spikes so BB actively threatens Bliss and does that tiny bit more needed to kill those Ttars.


Best special wall, generates free turns for itself, not as pressured to recover, yadayada. Before the Beat Up Dug uprising, I felt like Counter Blissey was super splashable on every team. I mean I still love it but it doesn't really keep Dug in check anymore so it's worse. Counter also allows you to invest in speed, pretty sick vs some MixTar, Gross, Skarmory or Swampert. Anyway it's just good ol' Blissey but I feel like it's one of the most common point of entry for offensive 'mons because of how unthreatening it is so I ranked it a bit lower this time. I also feel like a lot of Pokemons, at least I do, tech moves specifically for Blissey nowadays (Focus Punch/BB/Roar+Spikes), it's really the one Pokemon with Skarm that you don't want to give free turns healing imo. Beat Up Dug just forces Blissey to be more cautious in the early game nowadays, and makes it even more wanting of spikes support.

A- Rank


Honestly feels like MixMence and Gengar often fights for the same slot on spikes build, and I prefer Mence reliability as a non-pursuitable Pokemon and also the fact it still checks what its supposed to check even if it took 30% chip. Obviously, I'm not selling Gengar this short, but Pursuittar being everywhere really doesnt help its case, even if it has the tools to combat it. It's still probably due for a resurgence with Forretress back to being very popular. Fastest Boom in OU makes it the best positional tool for endgames for a lot of teams, on top of all the disruption its causing before. Imo mandatory on spikes HO (think some Jolt/Starmie builds), where Dbond sets are great at always preventing Spin from happening, even vs Claydol. Recently explored back Gar with a Ttar-killing early setup (like Raikou/Jynx into Dug) and it's really good, give it a try; shout-out star.


Spikes is one of the most consistent playstyle in ADV. Skarmory is the least support-heavy spiker and most durable one so there it is. I'm personally not a fan of Skarm builds that try to play the long game because you just run into unwinnable matchups vs Mag+Spin. However, I like it alongside breakers because those will abuse the free turns Skarm generates to be dealt with (either itself or its spikes later). I also like it alongside Pokemons that are typically very good vs MagSpin teams so that you can abuse those (think CMBP Celebi). On those teams, it's also a nice meatshield early to preserve the important HPs on your offensive pieces. Skarmory, much like Blissey, has a lot of dangerous Pokemons that use it as a point of entry though because of its relative passiveness, and that's something I dislike about it, hence why I'm placing it this "low". Forretress back in the meta also gives it competition both as a spiker and in the games themselves.


Trapping is broken, that easy. Simplifies a lot of gameplans (or make them straight up viable). Beat Up Dug is amazing and really prevents early Bliss from running free. I'm a fan of lead + Dug strats, they're consistent and make a lot of underrated Pokemons viable. Not much to add it's the same as it's ever been really. I mean by now everyone knows that ZapDug kinda redefined the early-game plans vs special offense so won't comment further.

B+ Rank


The ultimate gatekeeper of pretty much everything. Kinda hot take but every Optimal team runs Aero, as it keeps you alive in pretty much every situation. I've finally learned to use Aero more than in the last 5 turns of the game, or where I have to click the obvious move otherwise I lose and now I see how great it is. Immediately reverse momentum, keep everything under control, further your lead, king of the sack-game. It really has a lot of strenghs, kinda balanced by the fact that it's very average if you play obvious with it, especially true if you face teams actually resilent to Rock Slide. I know some people think its ok without Spikes, but I hate clicking Rock Slide into Pert/Meta and doing a net average of 6% after two turns of Leftovers, so yeah just use Spikes with it. HP Fighting allows you to cheat vs DDTar in the builder. SubAero I like on super fast HO where I don't have the defensive backbone to switch after locking myself and like the flexibility on switch moves.


Lets not waste time: Curse Rest Lax kinda sucks. Even in optimal conditions (and that means a lot of support), there is straight up no avoiding hax in an ideal game. Rock slide flinch, crits, whatever you want, it will need to be risked. At least use EQ on it, even with its flaws it will actually be capable of pressuring stuff. Anyway, BoomLax, now we're talking about the good set. Don't use it for its defensive utility, I mean yes you do but only rely on it for the very early part of the game, it just wont last, so back it up with like SpDef Zap or w/e you want to deal with Special Attackers later. CurseBoom is where its at imo, and I've been a fan of EQ/SB as it doesnt need real support and will force Ttar/Meta's hand without Booming. Don't waste your time with Snorlax, it's a CBMetagross-like wallbreaker. The problem with Lax teams is they kinda leave a lot in the air for the end-game, as it often devolves into "I hope my back Pokemons will beat yours" due to the urgency of acting quickly with Lax before it becomes bad. Oh btw, Lax LOVES Wish support if you wanna make it more durable, Wish from Mence in Offense for example. Also if you're using CurseLax, you often run into situations where your Lax will want to kill something instead of Resting but it will be left at 15%, being effectually dead. That's when Wish also becomes amazing as it can revive it with a sack ala later gens Healing Wish, this shit wins games.


Spikes like Skarm but more support-heavy and harder to wield in my opinion. 4x Fire Weakness and reliance on it to Spin makes its teams vulnerable to MixSweepers, so consider pairing with stuff like SpDefZap, Milo or Jirachi. Really likes Wish support, possibly more than Skarm because grounded and slower. It will also allow you to get the true value you want of Forre, ideally all of Spin/Spikes/Boom. If your team is balanced and spikes centric, I really like Forre toolbox to deal with more situations than Skarm between HP Bug, Counter, EQ or Boom. Spin-less is pretty cool in this regard if you pair it with like Claydol because now you can try to cover every situation with it. Big flaw of Forre is it kinda telegraphes a lot of sets on a given team because of the support it requies but could be worse things to deal with. By the way if you're using Forre, be conservative with it. Do not get two spikes early only to be at 25% health because good luck getting any value out of it later now (that's why I said I think it's harder to wield). Forre teams need a solid defensive basis imo whereas Skarmory can get by with less.

B Rank


I have a lot of problems with many Suicune sets. Defensive Roar is constantly under pressure in common battle conditions, gets easily exploited/dealt with until the field is cleared so you're always giving the momentum to your opponent with it. Offensive Suicune isn't resilient and can be handled by a lot of things (Bliss, Zap, Cele, Aero/Dug after chip, etc). Sleep Talk is a lot more flexible but I hate relying on Sleep Talk rolls. I legit think the real deal is UDCune (Rain Dance). You need so much less support to work, and healing yourself as you setup Jirachi style is just too good. I will say that off Cune is a nice fit on some HO though, especially Spikes less. It has such good stats that it can offensively check a lot of Pokemons in one slot, while never truely being forced out thanks to its sheer defensive bulk.


Claydol is probably one of the easiest Pokemon to fit in a team thanks to all its unique traits compressed into one slot (Spin, Elec immune, Rock resist). However the problem is if you want it to do everything at once, if often sucks and so does the team it lands on. It's actually a bit hard to use it effectively imo. I'm also not as high on Skarm beatdown teams anymore because Wish is a common support for them nowadays, so I think it's better to just remove the Skarm from play through Mag or Boom. Ideally Boom because MagDol defensively is way too passive and offensively takes too much space on a team just to deal with Spikes. Not a big fan of offDol, it's really a terrible Rock resist, taking like 33 from Aero and only threatening 30% Psychic back or having to Boom. Refresh still sucks. The thing is, Claydol is pretty much never useless in a game just because Spin and Boom are That Good, so that's why it's up there. Also SkarmGar will never completely disappear from the meta, and Claydol will always be good in this matchup.


Most offensive and reliable sleeper in the tier, that's enough for me to be ranked this high. Thanks to Pokemon like Zapdos, it's not that hard to get frail Pokemons multiple time on the field per game so that's an easy flaw to get past. End-game Breloom is legit a checkmater because putting a Pokemon to sleep when its a 3 v 3 situation is a lot stronger than in the early-game, think about it when using it. It's just a bit annoying how it cant fit all the coverage it'd want sometimes, having to chose between Bug and Ghost without Pursuit support, but sleep more than makes up for it. I also like how it can damage / setup a Dug kill with Mach Punch before going down unlike Hera/Medi. Sub is underexplored on it, both Seed and non Seed as it allows you to not throw Spore nilly-willy when it gets on the field.


Magneton kinda blows by itself but I still like on some hardcore offense, it just makes some team work when you remove Skarmory the wall, rather than the spiker. Effectively allows a lot of Pokemons to cheat with coverage if they disregard Forre/Skarm to make them deadlier, which is another plus. I like Timid Magnet as a result, because it gets the most opportunities to do something outside of killing Skarm (and you're fine playing with two Spikes on those hardcore offense so no need to oneshot Skarm). Forre back in the meta is good and bad for it. I think Elec/Grass coverage is better on average but if you want to kill/limit Forre you need Fire, which kinda sucks because you're not doing anything to Pert/Clay/Flygon now. FatMag is worse than Timid on average but can trap Forre and will make better use of its resistances and leftovers to pivot vs Banders/check some Waters so keep that in mind.


It seems I'm a bit lower on Starm than the average. I think BulkyMie is pretty shit in general, it does negative amount of progress, dangerous setup baits for some Pokemons, and isn't even that good at spinning vs some Spikes core (Toxic Skarm + Pursuit, Bug Forre, Pursuit in general). Bold is legit bulky enough to tank Meta/Pert, but you get marginally worse vs other Pokemons such as Gengar or even Jirachi now Subbing on you. OffMie I just dislike how it cannot do anything to Bliss, unlike most of the other special attackers who can go Mixed or use Roar alongside Spikes. OffMie at least has the advantage of being a good offensive check to many Pokemons and gatekeep a lot of frail offense, altho it kinda sucks to be slower than Jolt/Aero because I feel like the HO are going back to Jolt/Aero style rather than Mence/Meta/Ttar/offZap style. That being said, it's the fastest Spinner, which can be quite clutch in some structure, and offensive 3 Atks alongside a spinner is pretty good because it actually finds opportunities to heal vs like Bliss/Milo/monoPert/Skarm/Claydol to some extent.


If it wasnt for the fact that Milotic straight up win games in the right conditions, I wouldn't have put it up this high. Im starting to think Milotic has to be built around like Suicune or Snorlax, almost. You need Spin, for starter, and I'm beginning to believe you need Spikes too. Milo just makes 0 progress otherwise, not to mention it's always pressed to Recover to avoid dying to crits so yeah, legit negative progress. Without Spikes, you're endlessly throwing useless Surf/Toxic against the like of Bliss/Starm/Celebi for 0 progress beside depleting your PPs. Wish + Steel types unironically wall it too. But yeah it's still a hard counter to many Pokemons and with a proper environnement, it can create checkmate situations. Obv this is all about the defensive sets. I think OffMilo kinda sucks but Hypnosis defensive is cool on some offense.


So there are two Heracross I'd say. The endgame 6-0 machine. I don't think it's good but it 6-0s some teams (esp in a no-sand games) and punish greedy teambuilding, which is a force. Needs support tho but I like the Rain Dance Cune partnership nowadays. Then there is Hera the breaker, used early/mid game like a fighting type. I kinda prefer Medicham/Breloom in this role but Hera's stab Bug means you don't get blanked by one of Gengar/Celebi like Breloom and you have a bit more defensive utility than Medi (only marginally so, that's one of Hera's flaws). I heavily dislike how even a properly setup last Hera will lose to Horn misses though.

C Rank


This is just a worse Aero honestly, but having Aero traits of being alive in a lot of games thanks to the sheer speed and power is a lot better than many Pokemons following Jolt. If you don't face spin Claydol, chance are Jolteon can win the game, though as usual with Jolt, it will be predict-heavy. Jolt is also the fastest Wisher in the tier, I think this is a niche to explore for some Offense because you can revive dead mons with Wish sack or setup something on a hit and get 50% back to still be tanky afterwards. Anyway, the classic Jolt spikes can still work, as shown on the ladder. Wont mention the flaws because they didn't change.


Honestly not terrible for HO Spikes offense. I especially like how it doesnt allow Moltres to click a fire move for free and keep the offensive momentum in a lot of situations. In an era of Forre/Skarm both at the top, I'm sure many people will cheat their way in the builder with Magneton or just try to spin with Claydol, and both are good to face with Cloyster. I also think Rapid Spin is good again, not because it's reliable, but having that one time spin before dying against Skarm can go a long way to give your offense more playing room for the rest of the game. A bit underexplored, but I also like it with Wish Support on some TSS, notably from Jirachi. We've seen that from Triangles/Umbry this SPL and Asta in the past, I think those teams are pretty good especially vs Claydol control.


Im not high on Moltres myself, but I reckon its good based on the results its getting. I just think I pretty much always prefer having Mence or Zapdos in the slot. If i'm gonna need Roar to break through Bliss with Spikes, I prefer Zapdos or Mence better defensive typings. Moltres has the advantage of better assaulting some offense and taking advantage of Gross early game compared to Zapdos tho, and WoW can go uncontested vs Bliss-less so there is that. Doesn't really like the fact that many Gengar went back to BoltBeam coverage though, but may change with the upswing of ForreTtar tempting Gengar to use grass coverage again. I will say tho, Moltres is one of the biggest reason I always like to use Surf and 44 spdef on my Pert to trade in a pinch because how oppressive it can be.


Moltres without power but with a better speedtier (honestly clutch vs Zap/Cele) and better coverage options. Not much to add honestly, I think it's a really good momentum reverser, like Mence, especially with access to Dclaw/Focus Punch/Beat Up to legit threaten everything but Milo/Starmie, but its obviously very prediction reliant (though honestly, not so much more than Moltres with Fire/Grass coverage alone, but WoW is often a safer midground into Aero/Ttar).


Hariyama access to the whole fighter arsenal ON TOP of Knock Off is really unparalleled. It's a one-man army in some games, and can legit be entirely built around to break defensive cores long term, tho it will need both Wish and Spin support. It's really not that flexible as a result because it's quite slow on top of that. I've had troubles wielding those teams personally as a result.

D Rank


The primary goal of a fighter is to dish damage and break through teams. Medicham is just the best at it. It doesn't need offensive support because it's got SBall and Rock Slide, and it just hits like a truck. Slightly offset by the lack of defensive utility and it's still a bit prediction reliant as a result but worth the risk.


There is just always a problem with Gyarados. Adamant is outsped by Jolt/Aero at +1, Jolly lacks power, not to mention the coverage issue with the choice of Hidden Power. In many games, you feel like it's always one turn away from reaching the perfect conditions to sweep, yet it's never easy to meet them. Despite all that, it's a fearsome settupper because it just beats Pert/Cune. DD HPGhost has potential as it still beats Cele/Starm but now OHKOs Gengar at +1, pretty sick stuff, shout out Asta.


Milotic syndrome of checkmating many Pokemons but also being a sitting duck. At least this one has TWave, which is often more annoying for offenses to deal with. The problem is its often a free spikes, heal or spin for many Pokemons. I honestly only like it on CMSpam but some people namely Asta make it work on Fight spam, so the potential is there. Trapping Dug and walling Mence is just that good sometimes.


Nowadays I appreciate Flygon the most for being a Rock resist that also checks Celebi. Obviously it's good vs Electrics but I just hate bargaining in the builder that I won't run into some HP Ice variants. I dont like CB because EQ is rarely spammable and the set of resistances isnt as good when its not healing with leftovers.


Sets Rain in pretty much any conditions, which is all you want to do with it really. Not a big fan of Rain but I reckon it's a viable playstyle, and Kingdra is a good representation of it. I like the idea of pairing it with CMPass, it's really nasty at +1, different beast.


Jynx is honestly a really good HO lead. Sleep + stab IB and access to a plethora of good wallbreaking moves (Taunt, CM, Perish Song) gives some teams such a strong start. I always like to pair with Dug personally, because it just combos perfectly to trap stuff right off the bat like Ttar/Meta/Bliss. I like HP Fire for Forretress too and to put Meta in Dug range (Jirachi too). I don't like to risk LK Miss/Lum vs some leads so I kinda lose the benefit of Jynx in those situations, but well. Also if CB Jolly Mence becomes Meta, this will take a hit, it's just rly good right now because of its really good matchup spread in conjunction with Dug.


Despite all its flaws, Raikou is, put simply, the fastest CMer in the game. In some match-ups, this is enough to win straight up or just be a big threat. Now obviously we know how this doesnt quite happen in practice. Technically any Pokemons can be "good" with Agility/CM Pass, but I believe Raikou is one of the best receiver so there goes that. Lead Raikou is cool but Jynx kinda does it better AND has a sleep move.


Great offense enabler. SubPass is just rly good in offense and it has the stat and typing to abuse it the best. While Vaporeon soaks everything at 100, some chip will be enough to deal with it later, so I find it a bit hard to extract value out of it after the first usage personally (sand/spikes chip triggering Sailak is often the only other use you'll get out of it). I do like the SubRoar set to turn the table against phazers. Cool member of offensive chains but those teams usually have some big defensive flaws.


I don't get the Ludicolo hate. It's legit just a different Kingdra. Sure it doesn't setup on Flying coverage (and Megahorn I guess?) like Kingdra does but it's not even that common. Stab HP Grass actually matters too, I mean, even Kingdra likes it to not risk miss on Pert or just OHKO it, not to mention just killing the Waters. I also like mikmer take on it, to use it with Leech Seed AND Rain Dance.


Legit a good HO mon. Spikes + Spore + suicide spin block through Boom or Sub/Endeavor to weaken something is legit at creating a snowballing momentum that can carry 'till the endgame. Some nightmare scenarios can suck and it also doesnt have a perfect lead matchup vs everything, which sucks for an HO because they dont wanna find themselves switching out turn 1.

E Rank


If you want your fighting type to be fast AND bulky, this is the answer. Only specific teams want it imo but it's there as a backup Rock resist that doesn't die to every hit with breaking potential. AgilityPass is great support.


Venusaur is weird to me. I finally got around to test its classic set, and while I see the merits over Celebi because it's more offensive with Sleep Powder, it lives and dies by it and kinda does nothing without Spikes. Now I've tried GacuSaur, aka fat Roar, which is actually pretty sick with Spikes but there is this weird combo of Leech Seed and Roar being antisynergic. Honestly dont know how to feel about it.


Donphan only fits a very narrow range of team imo, but it's good where it does, because it has a legit bulk, good attacking power and spinning is great. I've tried it extensively without Spikes, and since it only fits teams with Pursuit and Mag, I felt like the team was soooo passive, just not doing anything really. So now I believe it needs all of Spikes/Pursuit/Mag. However it's a very strong fit there and is actually good at spinning vs Gengar-less Forretress (as long as they dont carry Counter).


MeanPass is legit not that good but it can win games. SpDef Umbreon is wayyyy too passive for my taste, and it's not a good Wish passer. But heh, it frees Ttar moveset in some teams and its the best Gengar remover, which Just Wins Games sometimes.


SpDef tank that resists Rock, kinda like Jirachi but with some cool tools like Counter or Boom. Kinda needs Spikes otherwise it's a sitting duck not doing anything, unless you're using Curse Boom, but that's a worse set overall. Ibidem's team is cool (Regi Milo Forre Ttar Gengar Celebi).


One of the best typing in the game, but it hits like a wetnoodle and needs a very strong anti-Skarm partnership. It's a bit like Registeel imo because without Spikes, it's not anything if not booming, but Registeel's Stoss is more well rounded than Steelix's EQ.


I'd just rather use Gengar honestly. I understand the point of Weezing, like it's a GSC Egg-style Boomer that picks its coverage moves to lure the right target, but I never really wanna build with it, even in Boom spam where I'd rather use more well rounded mons like Lax and Meta. One day I may see the extra merits, but not yet.


May be optimal to lead with it so you just do as much damages as you can before switching out. Def not bad in theory but very prediction heavy with a bad defensive typing. Sort of a worse Medicham.


Think that Pokemon is garbage but it's better at trapping Celebi than Tyranitar and Umbreon, some some Fighter team would appreciate it there. BeatUp Lum on some offense to avoid free Bliss is worth considering too.


SpeedPass, ParaSpam, nothing new. I like the idea of Focus Punch to kill WW Skarmory.


Weird hybrid of Snorlax and Jynx. Slow and weak physically, Boom does 0 to a lot of targets. Better hope you don't face Jirachi and Forre being back sucks for it because you kinda want HP Fire again but without TW you're really not threatening switchins enough.


Ban Risk in the future :^)

Lanturn / Alakazam / Armaldo / Dnite / Solrock / Scizor / Camerupt / Nidoking / Exeggutor / Gardevoir / Jumpluff are Pokemons I either think have a niche, are not awful, or I've seen being used well but don't really have something interesting to comment at this point. Alakazam has potential as a lead, Armaldo is good for long games, Dnite can be MixMence with Heal Bell or CB/DDMence with Focus Punch, CMBoom Solrock can bait some phazer or Bliss, Nidoking can abuses Elecs and Skarm to do some good mixwallbreaking.

Summary in picture:
 
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Here's my VR's:

S

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Tyranitar



A+

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Gengar

This thing is massively threatening, if people tried building teams without Blissey+suit Ttar they would realize it, not to mention suit Ttar now is the most popular Ttar set largely because of how broken Gengar is, Skarm+Gar+Dug has legit no counters and just Skarm+Gar can win every matchup if u play it well; btw every Gengar should have sp def to live suit Ttar and have wow cause being walled by Jirachi sucks

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Skarmory

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Metagross

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Blissey



A

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Zapdos

Zap+Dug is very good, and Zap on cm chains is good also, i dont really like Zap that much anywhere else

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Swampert

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Salamence

Mixmence is the truth, probably the best Metagross partner and one of the best Blissey partners, it singlehandedly beats some poorly built offenses and with wish/roar it's not dead in the stall matchups, cb mence and wish mence are also quite good



A-

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Jirachi

Rachi is good but if people think is top 3 then my god it is overrated, i know it can click 20% hax with ice punch behind a sub, but people are starting to adapt and are putting back Earthquake on their Swamperts and Tyranitars, astarachi is also great it singlehandedly beats some poorly built mixed offenses but its pretty terrible vs dug

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Celebi

Offensive celebi is great but defensive kinda sucks, the fact that it invites so many things like aero, mixmence and fire types is terrible and you always have to scout for random hp bugs

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Snorlax
Snorlax is very good as long as you are running earthquake+pursuit support, curse+eq is great especially now that jirachi is quite popular, i think curse rest is very viable but curse boom is probably easier to use, fire blast lax is also interesting since the forre resurgence

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Dugtrio

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Aerodactyl

Hp bug aero is the best at stopping bp celebi chains, aero is also one of the best dugtrio revenge killers, one of the best offensive switchins to mixmence, and for these reasons it is one of the best forre partners, also hp fight is a cool way to make up for a ddtar weakness



B+

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Forre

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Claydol

Claydol is amazing rn, checking cm rachi and rocks and electrics while not being dead to gengar is an incredible asset for many teams

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Magneton

Mag is very good rn, i think partially because people are not prepping for it as much as they used to



B

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Starmie

If offstar's hydro was a 100% accurate ohko on ttar this thing would be S rank, also if u could make a bulky starmie that outspeeds Gengar and still takes 2 hp bug from forre and 2 hp grass from mix mence/moltres it would be S rank

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Suicune

Cune kinda sucks now, you really wanna run ice beam for mixmence or sleep talk for skarm+bliss but then you are walled by other cunes so..., the fact that mixmence is so popular rn kinda makes me wanna use milo over him a lot of the times

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Milotic



B-

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Heracross

Still by far the best fighter, the only liability of this mon is not having a 100% accurate finishing move

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Gyarados

One of the best sd pass receiver, and rest gyara is a matchup fish that can destroy some poorly built stall teams

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Cloyster

I hate this dude but spikes lovers keep winning games with him so i can't put him any lower



C+

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Smeargle

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Jolteon

Jolt is a great mu fish vs zap+dug and some frailer offenses, make sure to flip some coins as the aero vs jolt endgame happens more often than you'd think

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Moltres

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Charizard

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Flygon

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Venusaur

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Breloom

Not a fan of this one, i know people love him but i think he's quite terrible after sleep clause is activated

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Vaporeon



C

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Ludicolo

People hating on this guy have legit never played with it, it has better typing AND better movepool than kingdra, i don't understand how it can be worse, especially now that we live in the mixmence era i'd take the eq resistence of ludi over the dclaw weakness of kingdra anyday

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Hariyama

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Blaziken

This chicken is fire

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Medicham

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Dusclops

This dude is good, there are probably 2 or 3 teams in total that can support it but it's worth it



C-

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Kingdra

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Marowak

Without full pass he has lost most of his appeal

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Dragonite

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Machamp

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Raikou

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Porygon2

This guy is very low because i haven't seen a good p2 team in forever

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Donphan

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Jynx

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Regice

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Jumpluff

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Weezing

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Steelix

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Exeggutor

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Camerupt

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Lanturn



D

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Armaldo

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Sceptile

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Houndoom

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Golduck

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Registeel

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Slaking

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Rhydon

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Alakazam

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Regirock

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Miltank

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Scizor

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Slowbro

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Mantine

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Gardevoir

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Aggron



E

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Umbreon

Umbreon sucks don't use it

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Ninjask

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Articuno

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Solrock

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Nidoqueen

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Flareon

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Entei

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Nidoking

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Lapras

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Lunatone

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Pikachu


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Here's my VR for ADV OU :)

S tier
:bw/tyranitar:
No surprise here, Ttar itself is still #1. It's meta defining with its stats, ability, and movepool. The way sand affects the metagame affects the viability of SO many pokémon such as Suicune and Snorlax. It also has a lot of versatility in its sets, as it can run Pursuit, MixTar, Choice Band, 4 Attacks Physical, and Dragon Dance. These are all sets to be cautious of and they can break a huge hole in your team if you aren't prepared. Though like any Pokémon, Tyranitar has weaknesses. Fighting types getting an uprise don't help it very much, and it is often susceptible to Dugtrio.
Favorite set to use: Choice Band

S- tier
:bw/zapdos:
Zapdos is one of the most splashable and effective special attackers in the tier imo. Its STAB Thunderbolt is very strong coming off of a base 125 Special Attack allowing it to threaten Water and Flying types for a lot of damage. It has its choice of Hidden Power between Grass or Ice. Grass hits Swampert which could otherwise sit on Zapdos. (but not a lot of people even consider switching Swampert in unless they know it will Thunderbolt) Ice hits targets such as Celebi, and Flygon, but I generally see myself using Grass more. Baton Pass is a great tool to keep momentum, sort of as a pseudo-U-turn. It can also be used to pass Agility boosts and/or Substitutes, but this is rarer. Specially Defensive Zapdos makes use of its valuable resistances, and its ability Pressure to stall out threats, or phaze them out via Roar. It can even run a mixed set consisting of moves such as Drill Peck and even Hidden Power Fighting which chip Celebi, and Blissey/TTar respectively.
Favorite set to use: Offensive w/ Thunderbolt, HPGrass, TWave, Baton Pass

A+ tier
:bw/metagross:
Metagross can be effective in so many roles. It can be a Choice Bander which has potential to OHKO Skarmory with its powerful Explosion, a mixed attacker that can threaten usual checks such as Swampert, a bulky set that can be a reliable rock resist, though this set commonly competes with Jirachi, due to Jirachi's similar typing, ability to spread status via Body Slam, Fire Punch, and Serene Grace, and Wish to heal itself and its teammates. Last but not least, it has an Agility set that uses its bulk and resistances to set up on things such as Choice Band Aerodactyl locked into Hidden Power Flying, and potentially sweep, though I advise Magneton alongside this set for Skarmory. Metagross' defensive typing is incredible, as it has a lot of resistances, and only 2 weaknesses in ADV. Its ability, Clear Body, also has use so something like a Gyarados can't check you as easily. Its strong Explosion might be one of the reasons why so many Pokémon run Protect, other than to heal from Leftovers due to a Pokémon's sand immunity, like Metagross itself can do.
Favorite set to use: Choice Band

:bw/salamence:
Salamence is a terrifying breaker/sweeper in the metagame. It has a great movepool including moves such as Roar, Wish, Dragon Claw, Rock Slide, Dragon Dance, Brick Break, Fire Blast, and Earthquake. It's mixed set is especially dangerous at the moment, and I have even seen people dropping a move on the mixed set to make way for another move that could be very valuable. (the dropped move is usually HPGrass, and I see Wish the most replacing it) MixMence is one of the reasons Milotic is preferred over Swampert on a lot of bulkier teams. It does have other sets that are threatening though. Choice Band makes use of its great coverage, though it's kinda sad it has to use Hidden Power for STAB. DDMence is also a set that can be very threatening as one of the best abusers of a CB-locked Dugtrio, but even if it has Brick Break, it cannot OHKO Modest Blissey at +1, and due to Mence's 4x weakness, it gets KOed back with Ice Beam. It can also run a Bulky Wish set which is a fantastic check to Fighting types, as it can even survive a Rock Slide or two from them thanks to Intimidate, an ability which can even give offensive sets a bit of longevity.
Favorite set to use: MixMence and CBMence

:bw/swampert:
So I heard you liked Mudkips! Memes aside, let's talk about the mudfish. As a Water/Ground type in the OU environment, Swampert is the only Water-type Pokémon to resist rock, and be immune to Sandstorm. (Quagsire cries) It can run defensive sets which use Protect to give Swampert more longevity. Refresh Swampert seems to be one of the more popular sets, as it can shrug off status, while also being able to status defensive and offensive Pokémon alike. Offensive Swampert makes use of Swampert's good coverage to break holes in the opposing team. I'd like to run a little bit of bulk on this to tank Rock moves and whatnot slightly better. There is also Substitute+Endeavor Swampert which uses Substitute and Salac Berry to activate Torrent. It uses Hydro Pump or Surf as its water STAB, then Roar, or even Swagger, which is known as more of a cheese move, but can potentially come in clutch, especially if you are behind a Substitute. Unfortunately for Swampert, you really need to be thinking about its Grass weakness against something such as Tyranitar.
Favorite set to use: Defensive w/ 3 Attacks

A tier
:bw/skarmory:
Spikes, like sand, are extremely important in the tier for passively wearing down offensive and defensive threats alike. Skarmory's stellar defense stat and defensive typing allow it to switch in on various attacks into the tier such as Earthquake and most of Snorlax's attacks. Its STAB Drill Peck while not strong against most neutral targets due to Skarmory's average attack stat, can help against the Fighting types in the tier, namely the 4x weak ones, Breloom, and Heracross. I am happy that Mr. Mime is banned so that Skarmory's Roar can't really be blocked. (unless you like Cradily, Octillery, Exploud, and Electrode) Even when Mr. Mime was around, Roar was preferred over Whirlwind due to Whirlwind being illegal with Drill Peck. Nowadays, Roar is definitely better. It does have its fair share of checks though. Magneton can straight up trap it, but has a hard time OHKOing unless it is Magnet. Speaking of Magneton, YoloSkarm is basically an anti-Magneton set, but I always felt like it was more of a gimmick, as most of the time, standard Skarmory already lives Thunderbolt and could just lay down another spike, which is devastating for the physical offense teams Magneton tends to find itself on. Skarmory also has troubles with Gengar which is immune to both Spikes, and Toxic. Gengar can also taunt Skarmory and hit it super-effectively with Thunderbolt/Fire Punch, or even cripple its STAB Drill Peck via Will-o-Wisp.
Favorite set to use: Standard

:bw/gengar:
Gengar can be a great defensive and/or offensive threat on many teams, and can annoy a lot of Pokémon due to how strong it can be. The defensive set is known for throwing out Will-o-Wisps, and it can either Taunt, Explode, or use its special coverage to deal with things that don't mind Wisp that much. It can also run an offensive set due to its varying coverage options such as, Thunderbolt, Ice Punch, Giga Drain/HPGrass, Fire Punch, and Explosion. This Pokémon is the main reason Pursuit Tyranitar might be my most used variant, as Gengar can be very tough to deal with even if you have checks. Gengar fits very well on TSS teams, as Spikes-immune Pokémon won't typically want to switch in, due to Gengar commonly running Thunderbolt, Ice Punch, and/or Will-o-Wisp. It also has options like Hypnosis which can catch people off-guard, Mean Look + Perish Song, which can trap defensive Pokémon eager to stop Gengar's havoc, or even Destiny Bond to take a Pokémon down with it when Gengar is at low HP.
Favorite set to use: Will-o-Wisp + Taunt

:bw/celebi:
Celebi is a very versatile Pokémon in this metagame. The defensive set makes use of its defensive typing and movepool to stick around, using moves such as Leech Seed, Recover, and Psychic. It is a fantastic check to Snorlax, as on the teams Snorlax functions on, it won't want to explode on Celebi immediately due to how much Pokémon it has to "check" on the styles of teams it features on. It can also annoy waters and if you are running Pursuit Tyranitar, you can drop Psychic entirely. Calm Mind Celebi is also a big threat, it's coverage includes Giga Drain, Psychic, and HPFire. I have even seen HPIce rarely for teams that need insurance vs. Salamence. It can even run Baton Pass on its Calm Mind sets to send its boosts to another Pokémon. Speaking of Baton Pass, it can even run a Swords Dance set. It is really only seen on physical offense, but it can generate interesting sets such as Substitute Liechi Berry Aerodactyl, so if you wanna build a physical offense team, try out this Pokémon! Sadly for Celebi, a lot of Pokémon have been running Hidden Power Bug such as Tyranitar, Dugtrio, and Metagross. It also has other crippling weaknesses such as Ice, and Fire. Especially Fire, because despite Natural Cure, it won't want to take on one of the best Will-o-Wisp Pokémon in Moltres, due to the strong Fire STAB that it packs.
Favorite set to use: Defensive

A- tier
:bw/blissey:
I was debating rating this Pokémon as A tier but so much abuses it rn. Dugtrio can run Beat Up for it, Zapdos can run mixed with HPFighting, etc. Though it still has its good traits. It has the highest HP in the game and great special defense, which allows it to check pokemon such as Celebi, Suicune, and Zapdos. A move that I really like on Blissey is Sing. It can open the door for offensive threats and since Blissey isn't that pressured to heal every time it comes in, it can get Sings off pretty well. Calm Mind Blissey is not something I would recommend, but if you wanna run it, I would use the BoltBeam coverage.
Favorite set to use: Sing Bliss

:bw/dugtrio:
This thing has one job and one job only, trapping. (Well technically, it can set weather via Sunny Day for teams that want weather clearing i.e. builds centered around CurseLax but whatever) It can also run special defense to live hits such as Blissey Ice Beam, but I like standard max-max on Dug usually. Think of all of the Pokémon that would go absolute bonkers without Dugtrio around. Heracross, CM Celebi, CM Jirachi, even fringe stuff like Blaziken would be so much better not having to worry about it. A lot of things can abuse an Earthquake-locked Dugtrio however, for example, DDMence as I mentioned earlier, Zapdos can get a free Baton Pass, Gengar can get an attack off or threaten to Wisp something, etc.
Favorite set to use: Choice Band Max Attack Max Speed Jolly
:bw/jirachi:
Holy crap, this thing has so much versatility, just look at its movepool! It can do a lot of stuff like Defensive Wish + Protect, Sub + CM, Superachi (CM 3 attacks), Wish + CM, and Mixed. Wish + Protect Jirachi is great for spreading status with its 60% paralyzing Body Slams and 20% burn Fire Punches. It's sorta like a Metagross with more longevity, but less power overall, and worse physical bulk in exchange for good special bulk. The goal of Substitute + Calm Mind is to setup on things that cannot break its Substitute such as Blissey to potentially get a sweep. Wish + Calm Mind can do similar things while having the potential to heal a teammate, but you are more vulnerable to status than with Substitute. Superachi is a great Pokémon on Special Offense due to its defensive typing allowing it to check certain Pokémon in a pinch, and it can be great at abusing choice locked moves such as Salamence's Hidden Power Flying. Mixed is a set that can catch a lot of people off guard. It makes use of Jirachi's great coverage to break a hole in (and hax) the opponent's team. Dynamic Punch + Body Slam is funny for parafusion. Choice Band is also an option if you have offensive partners that appreciate the extra oomph from Doom Desire. It can also bait in Pokémon such as Blissey and Tyranitar via HPFighting, and spread paralysis with Body Slam.
Favorite set to use: Mixed with Dynamic Punch + Body Slam
B+ tier
:bw/aerodactyl:
One of, if not the best cleaners in the game. Its Rock Slide is a powerful clean up tool, especially considering the flinch chance. Double-Edge hits rock resists for good damage such as Swampert and Claydol, while Earthquake hits steels and Tyranitar. HPFlying is the standard Hidden Power, but I have seen HPBug and HPFighting for Celebi and Tyranitar respectively. It can also run a Liechi Berry set with Substitute on physical offense when paired with SD Baton Pass Celebi. +3 Aero can rip teams apart.
Favorite set to use: CB HPFlying
:bw/snorlax:
I feel bad for Snorlax right now. Hates sand, hates spikes, and the teams it is commonly used on unfortunately don't have much other options against special attackers. It can also be forced to boom prematurely due to how much chip it takes. Curse + Rest Snorlax generally requires too much support to work imo. Though it does have its upsides. With Magneton support, its coverage is great, EQ for steels, Shadow Ball for Gengar (or no Shadow Ball if you have Pursuit TTar!), Body Slam for spreading paralysis, and Self-Destruct because it is the strongest boom in the game aside from CB Metagross, and why not unleash that power onto the opposition?
Favorite set to use: Utility Lax

:bw/starmie:
Starmie can tear offensive teams apart with its coverage and high speed or fill a supportive role with Rapid Spin. Its offensive set has coverage moves such as Hydro Pump, Thunderbolt, and Ice Beam, which can grab 2HKOes/OHKOes against much of the metagame, such as Tyranitar, Metagross, and Salamence. Bold Starmie is effective as a Metagross check and spinner. It isn't permanently crippled by status thanks to Natural Cure, and can Recover from Skarmory's Drill Pecks especially if it is running a Bold spread. However, its defensive set can be pretty passive at times and can tend to let in stuff like CM Celebi. Starmie can run Thunder Wave on its defensive set to ruin offensive Pokémon or force something like Celebi to switch out. It can also run Thunderbolt in the 4th slot to pressure Waters not named Swampert which is neutral to Surf, but I particularly like Psychic to help the Gengar matchup.
Favorite set to use: Offensive Star

:bw/heracross:
Best fighting type in ADV imo. It takes advantage of a lot of the defensive Pokémon in the metagame and has great STABs and coverage. It can even Swords Dance to bolster its power. I feel like the best set is 4 attacks with Leftovers and Guts. Though, Choice Band and SubSalac, especially with Focus Punch, are cool as well. It even has a bit of defensive utility, being able to switch into Earthquakes and Will-o-Wisps, though it won't want to switch into even resisted hits repeatedly due to its mediocre bulk. One of the reasons I like SubSalac is because it is a Salac Berry sweeper that outspeeds Aero and Jolteon after the speed boost, unlike Swampert which cannot even outrun max speed Starmie.
Favorite set to use: SubSalac
B tier
:bw/milotic:
Mixed attackers hate this Pokémon. It's generally tougher to fit on teams than something like Swampert due to its lack of sand immunity and rock resist which is unfortunate. Another quality that sets it apart from most other bulky waters is its 32 PP Recover. It also has a unique ability which boosts its Defense upon being status, but you would generally want to Refresh. Hypnosis can also be an option to potentially shut down a big threat on the opposing team. It can even run a more offensive set taking advantage of its decent special attack and speed.
Favorite set to use: Defensive

:bw/moltres:
This thing is pretty tough to switch into. Fire STAB + HPGrass is fine by itself, but Will-o-Wisp can really turn the tables on some of its checks. It can even force out Pokémon such as Blissey via Roar. Even the Rock types (which it is 4x weak to) don't want to switch into it due to its sheer power. Sunny Day can be cool on teams that want to clear weather. Overheat is an option as well, as it can damage a lot of Pokémon severely, such as Gengar.
Favorite set to use: Standard with Overheat

:bw/suicune:
I might as well call B tier "the mono-water tier" because we got 2 of those so far. Suicune is very bulky and has a neat ability in Pressure, which can help its attempts to stall out foes. It really hates sand and spikes which force it to Rest quicker, leaving it passive. This is why when I use Suicune, I like Rain Dance on it just to clear the sand and make the water STAB even stronger. Unlike other bulky waters, it has Calm Mind allowing it to really take advantage of passive Pokémon like Blissey. Roar is great for phazing out threats on the defensive Calm Mind set.
Favorite set to use: Rain Dance

:bw/forretress:
Unlike Skarmory, Forretress is a spiker that can spin and explode. Its options include Earthquake, Counter, Zap Cannon, and HPGhost. Earthquake/Counter ensure you can damage Magneton, with Counter being less reliable due to not all Magneton carrying HPFire. Zap Cannon/HPGhost chips Gengar so you won't have to run Pursuit TTar alongside it. Unfortunately, it can't fit all of these moves into its set, and it needs to watch out for fire moves due to its unfortunate 4x weakness. Running it alongside something like a Rapid Spin Claydol frees up a moveslot so you can run something like Spikes, EQ, Zap Cannon, and Explosion.
Favorite set to use: Spikes, Spin, EQ, Boom

:bw/claydol:
Oh my, another spinner! Claydol has very unique traits that help it stand out as a spinner. Like Starmie, it has STAB Psychic to hit Gengar hard, and a STAB Earthquake that hits hard if you invest in Attack. It also has good bulk even when not invested and it can live attacks such as +1 Tyranitar HPBug in a pinch. It is one of the most effective exploders as no normal resist will want to switch into it aside from Skarmory.
Favorite set to use: Offensive

:bw/jolteon:
Great on offensive teams and makes a good partnership with Starmie. Like Zapdos, it is an Electric type that can Baton Pass, although Jolteon is the better cleaner of the two due to being super fast. It speed ties Aerodactyl! It's also a decent check to Gengar because it doesn't mind Will-o-Wisp, isn't weak to Ice Punch like Zapdos, gains HP from its Thunderbolt, and outspeeds it.
Favorite set to use: HPGrass with Roar + Baton Pass

B- tier
:bw/magneton:
Believe it or not, this thing has utility outside of trapping Skarmory and can be surprisingly versatile. The thing is that even with its utility and good defensive typing, it struggles with a lot of threats. Its mediocre bulk also keeps it from being a Zapdos check which is sad since it resists Tbolt, HPGrass, and HPIce. It can use Magnet which gives it better chances to OHKO Skarmory, a bulkier set designed to survive YoloSkarm HPGround, and an Endure + Salac Berry set to surprise pokemon such as Offensive Starmie and Dugtrio. It can even use Screech alongside Dugtrio to trap another big threat. The unfortunate thing about Salac Magneton is that it is undersped by Aero and Jolt, by ONE point!
Favorite set to use: Salac Berry + Endure

:bw/breloom:
The newest OU Pokémon! Unlike other sleep users such as Blissey and Gengar, it has a 100% sleep move in Spore. I have seen Pokémon run Sleep Talk as a filler on some sets just for this mon, kinda like DPP. I like the set with 3 fighting moves, but stuff like SubSeed is also cool. It is the one of the only Pokémon in ADV to resist QuakeSlide, but it can only switch in once or twice into an Earthquake/Rock Slide due to its mediocre bulk.
Favorite set to use: Spore + 3 Fighting type Moves

:bw/flygon:
I really wish this mon was better. In theory it can be a check to Electric types, but you never know when they will HPIce you or even use Toxic in Zapdos' case. Even on its offensive sets, it can struggle from lack of power outside of its STAB Earthquake. Fortunately, Flygon does have its positive points, such as being a fairly bulky rock resist when its HP and Defenses are invested, and being a pain for HPGrass Electrics to deal with. It can also abuse Dugtrio being locked into Earthquake with a Sub + 3 Attacks set, which makes use of Flygon's coverage to break a hole in the opposing team. It can even run a Choice Band set which funnily enough, commonly runs Gust. I like to run Fire Blast on its defensive set to surprise Skarmory.
Favorite set to use: Defensive w/ Fire Blast

C+ tier
:bw/cloyster:
Cloyster is a very unique spiker because it resists water, has a great STAB in Surf, and can explode. It's only used on offensive teams though, unlike Skarmory and Forretress which are much more splashable. Speaking of Forretress and Skarmory, I like to run Rapid Spin on my Cloyster to not be spikes fodder for those two. Its mediocre special defense can really hurt it, but if you manage it right, it can be a serviceable spiker.
Favorite set: Standard

:bw/gyarados:
Not gonna lie, I haven't used this Pokémon much, except for the time I wanted to try out UD's physical offense. Gyarados' defensive utility really shines on that team. Like Salamence, it is a Dragon Dancer with Intimidate, but unlike Salamence, it doesn't fear waters clicking Ice Beam against it, because it can just Rest the attacks off then keep on trucking. Unfortunately, Gyarados can be walled by something as frail as Aerodactyl due to its mediocre coverage. It also can really struggle against Electrics if it hasn't grabbed a boost, especially since Zapdos resists HPFlying + Earthquake.
Favorite set to use: DD + Rest

:bw/porygon2:
The trapper that traps Dugtrio! It doesn't fit on much aside from CM spam which would really struggle with Dugtrio otherwise. P2 can also deal with mixed attackers pretty well due to its typing and good bulk. Watch out for Brick Break with Spikes up though. I like HPFighting for hitting Tyranitar pretty hard, as P2 has an OK attack stat.
Favorite set to use: Standard BoltBeam

C tier
:bw/hariyama:
The best Knock Off user, and one of the best counters to Tyranitar. It can go offensive or defensive depending on what its teammates will prefer. It has great STAB options such as Cross Chop, Brick Break, and Focus Punch, Rock Slide for coverage, and its choice of Hidden Power. On the offensive set, I like Guts so you can absorb stuff like Gengar Will-o-Wisps, then Rock Slide it for a good amount of damage.
Favorite set to use: Offensive

:bw/charizard:
Think of Moltres but slightly faster, no Will-o-Wisp, less Special Attack, less bulk, but with Focus Punch and Blaze. Beat Up is cool for Blissey, Dragon Claw for Salamence and Flygon is good too.
Favorite set to use: SubPunch

:bw/blaziken:
This mon has great mixed attacking stats and unlike Charizard, it doesn't have to rely on Focus Punch to hit targets such as Tyranitar. It can use STAB Sky Uppercut instead. It can also afford to run a + Special Attack nature unlike Charizard, because Blaziken is slightly slower and 284 doesn't outspeed much that 259 doesn't aside from stuff like Heracross.
Favorite set to use: Mixed

C- tier (my brain capacity ran out at this point so I will just list the mons from now on)
:bw/medicham:
:bw/jynx:
:bw/vaporeon:
:bw/raikou:
:bw/machamp:
:bw/kingdra:
:bw/weezing:
:bw/regice:

D tier
:bw/steelix:
:bw/lanturn: Lanturn gang :D
:bw/dragonite:
:bw/regirock:
:bw/houndoom:
:bw/registeel:
:bw/ninjask:
:bw/armaldo:
:bw/umbreon:

E or below
A ton of other BLs


Thanks for viewing this VR! It's my first time making one and I spent hours :)​
 
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I nominate Tentacruel to at least get some credit over pretty junky options (like Camerupt/Registeel/Lanturn) I always see popping up in these lists.
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I think it could be slotted into teams more. If Vaporeon is getting love in OU, Tentacruel should too. Here is to sharing ideas, right?
The dual-type of Water/Poison, effective movepool, and Speed carve it as viable.
Comparing and contrasting to Vaporeon, yes: they are interesting alternative water types, but Tentacruel is a pretty sweet stall-breaky mixed attacker (instead of special attacking BP'er) and therefore is unique in my eyes.

Immune to Toxic and notable resists include Ice/Water/Bug/Fighting among others.

One superb thing is that it at least speed-ties and can hit Zapdos and Celebi with its physical STAB. Not many mixed attackers can claim to do that. And Celebi gets hit with 2x damage because of weakness. Zap should feel a good sting taking a neutral hit usually anyway. It hits Salamence and Starmie with a good sting, too.

It is going to be hard to switch in against the myriad of EQ users, so you have to take the opportunities to go blow for blow at times against attackers when you can tell they don't have EQ (or can't use it since Choice locked).
An effective use of Tentacruel can be against Celebi. Uninvested Celebi HP Grass will not break a Tentacruel Sub. If Celebi is a stat-passing variant, then Substituting can be a good play to ease prediction to see what's coming in as the recipient and you can play with a Sub up, at least.

The decent HP and high special defense Tentacruel has can let it take some Psychics and T-bolts in a pinch.

I do not think it worthwhile to Spin with, but it can do that. But it will be tough to drop a move to make room for it.
Honestly - not too versatile since the only set that will work well in the meta to "make progress" (the latest phrase in competitive ADV) is probably Sub/HPump/SD/Sludge.

But -- to state the obvious now -- it can eat Milotic and Cune alive, and it's solid against MixTar!
I like Clear Body as its ability moreso than Liquid Ooze. No drops from Intimidate or Crunches!

I am looking at the top 10, or heck, even the top 20 or so mons in OU Viability, and it gets solid hits on everything except Jirachi, and it threatens Blissey. I think you need Sub for the Blissey mind-games and to have an edge against Dugtrio coming in too freely. (Although Sub might very well be the one thing to drop for Rapid Spin if you'd really want it.) It's pretty average against Skarmory - it can concede Spikes and it won't like taking Drill Pecks but it can withstand ProTox variants in Sandless environment and also set-up as un-phazable last mon - careful with the HPump PP.

70 base attack is not great but Sludge Bomb has some power behind it - 90 base power, STAB, and the good chance to poison.
120 base power STAB Hydro Pump is very decent too, even if coming off of 80 sp. attack. See below example.

Tentacruel @ Leftovers
Ability: Clear Body
EVs: 80 HP / 80 Atk / 96 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
- Substitute
- Swords Dance
- Sludge Bomb
- Hydro Pump

Thoughts?
Also, I can't tell if the community has banned Sand Veil in OU yet or not, but
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>
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for viability's sake because abilities are just that strong sometimes. As you can tell, I value the ability to create free turns, the Offense/Speed/Evasion, and slight Defensive utility from lesser-used mons over passive traditional OU staples like Milo/P2/Donphan, and even Claydol (Bug weak is bad!).
 
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2021 Post SPL ADV VR, Altina edition

#1 :tyranitar:
Use Tyranitar if your team needs sand. So unless you are using some passive PLS DON’T CRIT ME team just use Ttar. If you need sand and don’t use Ttar you are probably just MU fishing.

#2 :metagross:
CB Brick Break Gross paired with a spinner is one of my favourite ways to run this right now. This is a mon that can easily trade for 1.5 mons in any game, use this mon if you are running offense. Just don’t boom T1 100% of the time or you’re gonna be Cteam’ed by 1000000 Tect Leads one day……

#3 :jirachi:
Wish Sets provide great role compression but are OHKO’ed by Twave. WishCM is bad because it tries to do everything but sucks at doing anything. Fish for Freeze with IcePunch, profit. Both SubCM BoltBeam and SubCM TboltGrass both have merit, but really you should be using ice punch to freeze, snowball from there and make your opponent mald. Fuck linear for beating me with SubCM THUNDER Jira multiple times and making me think a 70% move is viable on this Mon.

Case in point. Picture taken moments before disaster
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Use Tbolt on Jirachi kids.

#4 :zapdos:
Best lead, don’t complain bout ZapDug being broken when you choose to lead the one Zap weak Pokemon on your team and go Blissey turn 1. If you find yourself losing to ZapDug turn 2 because your Blissey got dugged by Beat Up Dug, you should rethink your team/opening sequences.

#5 :salamence:
People run more MixMence on the Floating Spikes abuser slot nowadays. You use MixMence when you don’t want your spike abuser to take a bit of chip, then die to pursuit tar. Has a weird conundrum of being good against 3 moves of quite a few Pokemon gets smashed by their 4th move; also generally has a move that can 2HKO almost every mon after a bit of chip so it rewards aggressive play. Honestly SSS tier if you have clairvoyance and know exactly what move your opponent is going to click every turn to dance around it/let it in.

#6 :skarmory:
With the Magneton BAD crusade reaching its peak and no signs of dying down, you might think Skarmory will get better. But nowadays people either 1) abuse Skarmory better than they did 5 years ago, or 2) just click rapid spin. Spikes/DPeck/Pro/Tox remains my favourite Skarmory for beating spinners but be careful of HOUDINI not clicking Boom and getting 100000 mash raises when you use this set.

#7 :gengar:
People like using MixMence more in the slot where you find Gar. Definitely good, just not my cup of tea. Something I especially dislike is how when you run Defensive Gengar, you generally run WoW and click it on free turns to make progress, but missing a 75% happens when you need to hit multiple, and it realistically happening in games, is a momentum killer. If you are fine with that, WoW Giga Drain gar is a good call right now with the Gar weak + PursuitTar Spam we have seen recently.

#8 :swampert:
Pert will always be a rather splashable tank with a few nifty offensive sets (surf fpunch tect roar from Roro, EndPert), however you become a much much more flexible builder if you eschew Pert and cheat on having strong physical checks. E.g. HPFightJira + Aerodactyl help you enough against both DDTar and opposing Aerodactyl, the combination of Salamence and Metagross help u stave them off similarly. Or you can just use Good Ol’ Boring FatPert that fits best on TSS teams. Just don’t complain when everything you are supposed to check carries HP Grass.

#9 :blissey:
WishBliss good, but people have found more and more ways to role compress without using this. Don’t let yourself be abused when you use this and you will probably get more value out of it than I do.

#10 :suicune:
King of the PLEASE DON’T CRIT ME archetype, and is the best mon to support if you are really using that. As a person that does not believe in relying on Stalk rolls to win against like every phazer, I stopped believing in Modest CroCune.

#11 :celebi:
You hover dangerously into PLEASE DON’T CRIT ME territory if you run this as your sole special check on a TSS team except it also adds PLEASE DON’T FREEZE ME into the picture. However, CM sets are one of the most dangerous sets for the PLEASE DON’T CRIT ME archetype to handle, which is why it is ranked this high.

#12 :dugtrio:
People rediscovered the ancient EV Spread created by MDragon or BKC 10000 years ago that lives Ice Beam from Blisseys, so it became all the rage this SPL. Does the same shit it always did, just more consistently due to optimisations in special offense.

#13 :snorlax:
BKC made an entire video as to why its bad, but it has its uses. D Tier in SkarmGarTar MU, but CurseEQBoom is S Tier in the no sand special offense MU/or some Forre/PursuitTar Garless Mus. CurseLax on the PLEASE DON’T CRIT ME archetype kinda sux, because ya know, it gets critted, but it can be S Tier in the sandless stall mu.

#14 :claydol:
Good typing, immunities, Spin, Boom. Not much changed for it imo. The only thing I have experimented with recently is using Adamant Rock Slide with pursuit tar to check zap/molt better, it works on some teams.

#15 :forretress:
Linear said it was good, so it remained good to today. People are becoming a lot more creative with the role compression that Forre provides and we definitely haven’t seen the last of it for the next one year at least despite everyone becoming more and more prepared for Forre.

#16 :aerodactyl:
Aerodactyl allows you to build teams with defensive holes by virtue of its speed, just enough power, good enough typing can help u soft check a bunch of dangerous random mons

Meme Credits: vapicuno
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#17 :starmie:
Offense killer 80% of the time. Defensive sets got worse because people put toxic back on their Skarmory.

#18 :breloom:
Sleep Good (maybe broken???). And this mon has the 100% accurate one.

#19 :heracross:
SubSalac need to hit at least 2x 85%s in endgames, which is honestly the biggest deterrent for me to use it there. Other midgame sets seem to have been outclassed by different fighters. Still dangerous though, maybe a bit slept on.

#20 :milotic:
I think this mon is fuckin trash and hate using it personally; you are hard pressed to find anyone who loves it nearly as close as Zokuru does. However, I acknowledge that If you aren’t prepared for this it 6-0’s your team. On the other hand, if you pack Milotic counterplay, it can very likely do 0.

#21 :cloyster:
Underrated Spiker. A valuable trait of Cloyster is being able to boom Starmie reliably so you either 1)don’t need to waste your Metagross against defensive Starmie teams, or 2) removed one of the biggest offense killers. Cloy teams designed to not need spikes to make progress is a good way to use this so you can yolo boom stuff.

#22 :moltres:
There is a considerable overlap between teams MixMence owns and teams Moltres own. However I hate needing to click roar 10000 times against Blissey teams to make progress so I do not use Moltres that much.

#23 :gyarados:
I like HPRock + Taunt sets for dividing the Skarmory MU with Aerodactyl. Aero owns DPeck no Tox Skarm, Gyara owns Toxic no DPeck Skarm. Honestly, I have used this combination on quite a few teams and Gyara is better than people give it credit for because of its defensive typing and intimidate. Click X if your opponent uses the woke no phaze Skarm though.

#24 :hariyama:
Knock Off good, Fighter good.

#25 :flygon:
A picture speaks a thousand words
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For real though I only use it if I’m stupidly weak to Celebi and cannot afford other rock resists as a result. CB is a interesting option on some Forre teams because of the ground immunity, and has been the only place I have used Flygon on the last few months.

#26 :jolteon:
S Tier Pokemon if you can have precognition and know every move your opponent makes. Unfortunately, I’m a but a mere human incapable of wielding the Jolt Theorom.

#27 :kingdra:
Use this if your DugOffense is weak to DDMence but good against everything else.

#28 :charizard:
MixMence with stronger FireBlast + Focus Punch, with a worse defensive typing.

#29 :medicham:
I brought CB in SPL drunk on the power of CB Focus Punch OHKOing Skarm and got waxed. Recover 3Atk is probably the most consistent Medi.

#30 :magneton:
People who played ADV in the past where Gengar was S-Rank didn’t yet discover the art of tossing a spinner that can hit Gengar for super effective stab psychic onto teams that can use one, and as such used Magneton to beat both SkarmtheSpiker and SkarmTheWall. In 2021, people realised that a more efficient way to beat SkarmTheSpiker is to put pressure on the Spiker and Spin off later. BKC even made an entire video on why teams that rely on Mag to beat SkarmTheWall suck, and that’s the crux of the issue with Magneton right now. There are like 2, max 3 viable SkarmMag Structures, MagOff is mediocre, MagBalance eschews Mag for a spinner unless they are running some shitty PLEASE DON'T CRIT ME team without a Spinner or some virgin MU fishing MagDol, hence Magneton’s ranking.

#31 :smeargle:
Last time I tried using this boy on the ladder, I got 6-0’ed twice by Maed’s lead lum DDtar, but its still fine on yolo teams, I guess. Non Boom sets with Substitute + Endeavour have been explored more the last one year or so, which honestly has some merit.

#32 :weezing:
For a while I thought of Weezing as a slow Gengar you put on offense with more defensive utility. Now, one of my favourite uses of this is doubling up on Weezing + Gengar. HPFight Weezing with SludgeBomb WoW and Boom is really really good at going 2 for 1 against pursuit tar teams, which really frees up your own Gengar to wreak havoc.

#33 :porygon2:
Garbage Pokemon but has good synergy with fighters and CMSpam and allows you to build 5-0’ed to Dug + P2 so it gets points for that. As always, the problem is it lets scary pkmn in for free, unless u consider twave a good enough punish.

#34 :jynx:
Lead it, sleep something, setup and snowball then call your opponent bad. Freezing things also gives you an opportunity to call your opponent bad.

#35 :venusaur:
Misses sleep and eats twave, then becomes effectively useless. That gives you an excuse to insult your opponent, I guess.

#36 :vaporeon:
People started running bulk on their lead Zapdos because LiNeAr sAiD bUlKy zAp gOoD, as a result Salac Lead Vapi is worse. Still decent as a midgame SubPasser.

#37 :machamp:
Pretty much only Linear uses this nowadays but its decent because it is a fighter, and has guts.

#38 :ludicolo:
Use this if your Dug Offense is not weak to DDMence but weak to everything else.

#39 :umbreon:
Another mon that only Linear seems to be able to get huge success out of. Everytime I use this I think its mediocre.

#40 :regice:
Boomers still malding in response to it dropping to BL in favour of zoomer mon Loom.

#41 :scizor:
Meme Credits: McMeghan
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#42 :exeggutor:
Sleep good. Boom good.

#43 :marowak:
Idk how Linear and Star win with Wak Balance, I think its ass there as it’s a rock resist with no recovery and is really fuckin slow.

#44 :jumpluff:
Sleep good. Fast. You might think its good because Linear won the final game of his CI run with it, then you realise that all it did was Encore a Moltres once then get sacced against said Moltres at the end of the game for a Leech Seed.

#45 :ninjask:
SSS Tier Dug punish.

#46 :houndoom:
One of the worse 4MSS in the game for a Pokemon that people still haven’t figured out how to use optimally.

#47 :donphan:
Good in theory, and worth building a team around. Problem is the archetype which it best fits on (Requiring Spikes/Mag/Suit) leaves you with limited slots and is seen to be mediocre in 2021

#48 :raikou:

#49 :golduck:
Dekzeh/Watermess/Gacu swept me on the ladder with this before so I can’t talk shit bout it.

#50 :armaldo:

#51 :regirock:

#52 :dragonite:

#53 :steelix:
I think its garbage on ForreLix because that’s 2 mons that can make Skarmory + ScaryMon sequences awkward. However it seems to me that Eden and UD are believers and have won games with it, so I acknowledge its probably better than I give it credit for. You won’t catch me using this shit though.

#54 :lanturn:
Can’t believe I’m ranking this shit but Hclat won a SPL game with it so I have to give it a pass.

#55 :blaziken:
Ye. Higher than Camel (once again)

#56 :camerupt:
The one mon to me that has Quick Claw as the best set unironically.

#57 :nidoking:
Vapi has made me see the light with Sludge/Fire/Grass/FPunch.

#58 :dusclops:
Eeveeto gave me a fun JoltSpikes team with this and it won some games.

#59 :sceptile:

#60 :registeel:

#61 :miltank:
I just lost to maklistr earlier today. Hi Endill

#62 :rhydon:

#63 :glalie:
People compare this to Cloyster but I think in practice it feels more interchangeable with Smeargle because the defensive role it covers is spiking on Zapdos and keeping momentum with boom. Depends on whether you value Taunt/StrongerBoom vs Spore/More Utility, most of the time u prefer the latter.

#64 :alakazam:

#65 :solrock:

#66 :wailord:

#67 :arcanine:
Lowkey a threat when I play it on the ladder sometimes cause Idk whether its HPFight or Grass. Probably is me being bad though.

#68 :mantine:

#69 :politoed:
Honestly kinda annoying when you think you can boom your metagross but damp politoed switches in.

#70 :espeon:

#71 :quagsire:

#72 :gardevoir:

#73 :swellow:
Walls Curse EQ SBall Boom Lax lollllll

#74 :slaking:

#75 :articuno:

#76 :lunatone:
Drake Seawood seems to have eschewed this mon in favour of Skarm TSS

#77 :tauros:
Might be worth exploring tbh because of intimidate and speed tying gar.

#78 :dodrio:
The other wall to CurseEQSBallBoom Lax, if you get a lax to boom your dodrio its a win for you.

#79 :ursaring:
I honestly forgot this mon existed.

I'd like to give a big shoutout to people that I regularly discuss ADV with, discovering new ways to grief people on the ladder is one of the biggest joys I have in this game, even if I shoot down half of these ideas for being trash. Half of these VRs are only possible because of the amount of ADV exploration I began when I met y'all.
Flygon Sux Clan: thelinearcurve vapicuno Hclat Sadlysius sstj
Others: eden McMeghan
 
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View attachment 331710

If anyone has any questions regarding any of my selections, please let me know. Also, there are a bunch of Pokemon that could probably belong in the F tier that I just didn't bother adding in.
Why is camerupt so low? I've used Camerupt for over 1500 games and have reached 1600 ELO while beating plenty of 1650+ ELO people in the past. The fact that it's not taken seriously is hilarious.
 
I want to hear your thoughts on Gyara, since B is a lot higher than most people would rank it.
A DD user that can switch into waters makes it quite unique. I also find that if gyarados starts setting up in the late-game (spikes/sand), it becomes incredibly difficult to deal with (tough to switch in, taunt, etc.). There's also just the surprise factor of things like HP ghost/rock. Teams I use don't tend to match up well against Gyarados however.

Why is camerupt so low? I've used Camerupt for over 1500 games and have reached 1600 ELO while beating plenty of 1650+ ELO people in the past. The fact that it's not taken seriously is hilarious.
Everything you said is literally true?
 

Triangles

What's life without risk?
is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Past SPL Champion
1618184815746.png


Everything is in order down to B-. The Niche tier is unordered - they're all mons I'd be comfortable using in the right circumstance when they fit perfectly on a specific team, or to CT someone, and none of them are objectively better or worse than each other.

Anyway, elephant in the room time. Dugtrio is beyond unbalanced in what it does in the tier. Trapping is just an insanely unhealthy mechanic. The issue isn't even what a lot of people think the issue with Dug is - the new age tanky Beat Up Dug on Zap pass teams to guarantee Bliss removal - that is in fact just a small part of it. The real issue is just all the 'normal' stuff that Dug has been doing for years and we are so used to - trapping Tar, Rachi, Celebi etc. For a while even I was convinced by the argument for having Dug in the tier - that it's such a good equalizer for keeping down other stuff that would be broken without its presence. However I now realize this is just an advanced form of Stockholm Syndrome and dugtrio is truly fucking things up beyond recognition. This is Dugtrio's tier and we are just living in it.
 
Sadlysius' ADV OU VRs


Hi! I got the motivation to write about my VRs some days ago. I had never realized the time commitment needed to do a post of this kind and now I’m even more appreciative of all the players who have shared their thoughts here.

Regarding my explanations, I tried to avoid stating “obvious” stuff regarding the top Pokémon, but I still ended up using some of it to help connect my main points. Also, I tried adding my personal view on either my favorite set or the strongest set for the majority of the 30 entries, alongside some moves or ideas that have potential but haven’t been explored as much.

Still, I think this is far from perfect and hopefully I can use this instance to learn and make a better VR post in the future!

S+

1 Tyranitar (--)



I feel like everything has already been said about Tyranitar regarding its rank.

Best set by far is Bulky Pursuit (and it has some cool tech options like Counter) because it's an amazing support with high splashability which not only removes one of the most dangerous Pokémon in Gengar, but also helps dealing with Salamence, Aerodactyl, and even Jirachi, Zapdos, and Celebi. STAB Crunch is a really solid cover-all move to click with Spikes down and the added chance of SDef drop can even generate checkmate scenarios.

Bulky Physical is still as solid as ever, but Dragon Dance sets have taken a hit as a result of being the “standard” sweeper teams need to prepare for, and it has a huge EVing problem where it needs all 3 of defensive benchmarks + high (boosting nature) attack + good speed, when in reality it can only reach 2 out of 3.

A+

2 Zapdos (+2)



Same as Tyranitar’s entry; the standard HP Grass set has remained as viable as ever while the less popular HP Ice variant is picking up in usage.

Almost everything about why Zapdos is so good has been said already: It has amazing typing, solid speed, and great STABs. But the biggest reason is probably the flexibility of its spreads and how it can adapt to what Zapdos’ team needs.

In practice Zapdos doesn’t really need the SpA as much, relying on its high base stat and Hidden Power super-effectiveness (similar to Gengar) so you can invest in both bulk and speed to end up with the best “offense enable” of the entire tier. It can even run mixed sets, giving it some tools/flexibility against common counters.

Regarding my first point, it may be a bit of a controversial take but my favorite set on it is max speed Timid with a lot of bulk and Hidden Power Ice + Protox. I feel like this set, which had fallen a bit in favour of the more common Grass/Wave/BP variants, is really strong given the most common progress makers in current popular teams (Salamence / Aerodactyl), and the fact that Refresh is becoming more uncommon on Swampert helps it too.

3 Metagross (-1)



A wise old man once said “Metagross has no real counters…”, and this is one of the phrases that has stuck with me the most across my ADV career.

I only had to remember a few of Metagross’ traits to justify myself ranking it 3rd: Meteor Mash attack boosts being one of the most powerful comeback tools available in the metagame (even if tied to some % chance), add to this a 135 base attack, amazing rock-resist defensive typing, better-than-Skarmory physical bulk, possibility of running mixed sets, and Explosion.
In my opinion, Metagross best set currently is probably Lead Choice Band. This is a bit ironic given its high value as a mon when alive, but the really strong Explosion and the targets being only some few selected Metagross checks opens up a lot of really interesting and powerful divide-and-conquer lineups.

A

4
Gengar (+1)



Surprise, Gengar is still a top threat in ADV.

Its typing provides offensive teams key pivot opportunities, together with the added bonus of spin-blocking defines Gengar as the best “tempo-keeper” of the tier. It has the tools to adapt against all metagames, and has a multitude of support moves that can help cover key weakness for the team (s/o Destiny Bond for being the most underrated move that performs this task), on top of having access to some of the most broken moves in the entire game (Sleep, WoW, Explosion).

There’s just too much that can be said about Gengar to try and justify its top rank, but the fact that it's arguably the singlest most targeted Pokémon in team building (in the form of Pursuit Tyranitar) speaks about how threatening it can be if left unchecked, and this doesn’t take into consideration some of the solid counterplay it exists for it in Dugtrio and bulky Grass variants (one of my favorite sets currently).

That being said, there are some arguments to be made about Gengar that justify its slight drop in viability (especially if you look it from a 2 years window POV): how hard it can be to balance being able to get past Pursuit Tyranitar and still being able to fit the role as a Spikes sweeper coverage-wise, the a small paradox about being a spin-blocker and being an Explosion user, and to a lesser extent the overlapping it exists with other rising threats like MixMence (or other already established Spikes abusers).


5 Swampert (+1)



During the last few years we have seen a cyclical Swampert set metagame:
Standard -> Refresh -> Offensive -> ...

During the last few months I feel like Standard is once again the most reliable set. This is thanks to overall low toxic usage and the rise of hard hitting physical attackers trying to take advantage of Bulkless Claydol + Offensive Water cores.

Even if not running the Standard set, dropping Refresh/Toxic in favor of other utility/attack (Earthquake especially to hit the popular Jirachi, or Focus Punch for Blissey) seems like a great option at the moment.

6 Skarmory (+1)



Skarmory is one of those Pokémon I would classify as playstyle dependent (alongside some others like Gengar, Suicune, Jolteon, and Flygon).

Once regarded as the undisputed best spiker (thanks to its Drill Peck set) back in the refresh meta, before people started to exploit more and more the fact it couldn’t comfortably fit Toxic. Players started shifting away from Skarmory-the-anti-spinner teams and even from Skarmory altogether.

During the past few months I feel like opinion on Skarmory’s viability has depolarized and the Protox set has made a small comeback in the form of new structures, lead by those players who feel like Skarmory fits their style better than the now popular Forretress and Spikeless balance builds.

My favorite set currently is phazeless which has some really nice synergy with spike inmune steel-resists and gets the best of both worlds + the always handy Protect.

A-

7
Jirachi (+1)



I have always been a Jirachi fan, and have rated it higher than the average rank for the past few VRs.

Jirachi is the textbook definition of “extremely versatile”: all its sets have “slashed moves'' and even inconsistent sets (like DPunch mixed variants) have good surprise value. This versatility extends to EVing too; thanks to 100/100/100/100/100/100 stats Jirachi has amazing flexibility when it comes to spreads and they can be adapted to what best fits the team without sacrificing a lot. It has an even better comeback tool than Metagross (and sometimes a legit win-con) in Serene Grace Ice Punch (and to a lesser extent in damage dealing Thunder Wave Thunder).

A cool trend recently is adding more offensive coverage to the passive SDef Jira, and also structures using a SpecialWall + WishRachi core to not overload it as the sole check to multiple (status carrying) threats. The strongest set, and also my favorite, is arguably SubCM (Thunder / Thunderbolt / Ice Punch / Psychic / Fire Punch), especially if paired with Dugtrio as it has virtually no counters and can often exploit common members of slower teams for easy set-up opportunities

In short: Dugtrio, Moltres, and the paralysis status keep this thing from being Uber.

8 Dugtrio (+3)



Trapping is intrinsically powerful (and some would argue, even broken). In the same way as Tyranitar’s ability boosts its viability to sky-high levels, Dugtrio is one of the best Pokémon in the metagame for its ability alone.

The amount of support Dugtrio can provide to Pokémon that are almost solely stopped by grounded phasers (or special walls) is unmatched. The only things stopping Dugtrio from becoming truly uncompetitive are its low Attack stat, inflexible moveset, and the prevalence of powerful “dug punishers” in the form of Wisp Gar, Mix/CB Mence, and Aerodactyl.

This means that Dugtrio doesn’t truly fit in a lot of teams right away, one needs to have the tools to handle post-trap turns, leaving Dugtrio relegated to mostly defense-inclined / balanced teams. Even considering the negatives, the possibility of playing aggressively (via double switches or Baton Pass) and trading 1-0 can be enough to auto-win some games.

9 Celebi (--)



Bulky Leech Celebi is probably, on paper, the best glue / mixed wall in the metagame and a lot of what I said about Jirachi, especially EVing flexibility, applies to its 600 BTS onion friend (minus some of the movepool versability). CM/SD/Sub pass sets are amazing punishers against slow-paced teams and CM offensive sets are equally threatening vs offense.

There is no “best set” for Celebi in my opinion, but something that has given me pretty solid results recently is fitting HP Fire in Bulky Leech sets; CM Leech Recover-less sets could have untapped potential too.

10 Blissey (-7)



Blissey will always look broken on paper, but she just sucks so much momentum from the game and is so exploitable for me to comfortably rank her higher.

In my opinion, one needs to play aggressively with Blissey to make it worth adding her to the team. This means somewhat being forced to click an attack or try to put some immediate pressure after bringing her in, and save support moves for mostly specific slow-paced teams and in late-game situations.

For this reason, I really like Sing sets and special offensive sets (BoltBeam and even 3 attacks) that either generate immediate progress or pressure stuff that try to exploit her passiveness (like the popular Bulky Starmie).

B+

11
Suicune (-1)
:rs/suicune:


Suicune is a weird case for me personally. I don’t feel like my playstyle fits well with the standard (Surf / Calm Mind / Rest / Roar) defensive Suicune teams at all, but I acknowledge its value whenever facing/spectating top players whose calculative playstyle makes Suicune seem almost unbeatable.
On the other hand, I really like offensive Suicune sets, especially with Hydro Pump and Roar, as a role compressor (CM sweeper, phazer, soft check for physical threats) in fast-paced teams. Substitute and/or weather-reset sets are also some (slightly unexplored) sets that have huge potential in opening up new powerful teams.

12 Salamence (--)
:rs/salamence:




Salamence is a really similar case to Suicune: doesn’t really fit my plastyle (especially Choice Band and Dragon Dance sets) but I understand why some people are so high on it currently. MixMence is a powerful spikes abuser that has really few (and relatively uncommon) counters + it also has good defensive utility which is a rare trait among its class, and it's definitely Salamence’s best set. Wish variants should be explored more, and have some nice potential.

13 Starmie (+1)
:rs/starmie:


Starmie has always been the bane of physical offense (even if somewhat inconsistent at its job) but the “recent” rise in popularity of Bulky sets that aimed to auto-win vs passive Toxic-less Skarmory builds (and all the mixed sets between offensive and bulky) is enough of a reason to make Starmie rise a bit in the viability rankings.

My favorite set(s) is 2 attack + Recover, with the coverage move covering for a team weakness. I feel like it hits that sweet spot between a reliable spinner and still having some attack power to not get completely used as setup bait (this point is similar as my point about offensive Blissey sets being better; they fit my piloting style and team tendencies).

Toxic deserves a small mention as a cool underused 4th move, as well as ABR Starmie (offensive with Surf > Pump) for added consistency in late-game situations.


14 Aerodactyl (+1)
:rs/aerodactyl:


Aerodactyl: the OU gatekeeper. Unmatched speed and strong coverage (including the sneaky HP Fighting variant) is what defines this Pokémon. Strong selling points in the current metagame are taking care of CM chains, punishing Dugtrio, revenge killing Jirachi, and being able to pivot into the thereathing MixMence.

There isn’t a lot of room for creativity regarding Aerodactyl (outside of gimmicky Curse-White Herb or SubTox sets), and I would have ranked it even higher if not for the fact that Protect and bulky Swampert/Claydol are making a slight resurgence. As a final note, Aerodactyl + Dugtrio is a limiting core to build with but feels really powerful right now.

B

15
Snorlax (-2)
:rs/snorlax:


Not a lot has changed regarding Snorlax. Curse + Rest sets suck and require too much support which leads to a team that has a non-flexible win condition. On the other hand Curse + Self-Destruct sets have always been great but they have recently gained a lot more popularity to compress roles as normal-resist removal, special sponge, and as a way to make progress against sandless Balance.

My favorite set to use is Lead Choice Band for the same reason I like it on Metagross: opening up creative divide-and-conquer teams (and it takes advantage of its unpopularity + low Gengar usage to do heavy reads in the first turns and generate immediate progress).

16 Forretress (--)
:rs/forretress:


Forretress is just Forretress… Not a lot about its viability has changed fundamentally during the past few months but it has seen a lot more experimentation regarding move slots. HP Bug variants gained popularity to exploit Bulky Starmie and HP Fire + Counter/Toxic sets fit some Garless teams really well as a way to win in the spikes mirror.

17 Claydol (--)
:rs/claydol:


In the same vein as Forretress, Claydol has remained fundamentally the same. Only changes are some players going back to +Def/SDef -Speed spreads and a decrease in Refresh usage thanks to Skarmory being less popular.

Regarding Claydol structures, Claydol + Forretress opens up some creative combinations where you can take the concept of Hidden Power Forretress (and this applies to Cloyster as well) one step further and do 3 attack spineless.

18 Moltres (+4)
:rs/moltres:


Moltres just keeps getting better for me; the key resides on using Wisp-less sets and relying on the raw power of Modest Fire Blast/Overheat to break (with help of Spikes). Similar to Phazeless Skarmory, freeing a slot also means that you can run the always handy Protect and reverse all the momentum vs Aerodactyl builds.

Still, even considering this, Moltres faces direct competition in team slots with Zapdos, so it gets somewhat relegated to a limited number of teams.

19 Flygon (+4)
:rs/flygon:


DDTar syndrome: a Pokémon that has a hard time balancing between bulk, power, and speed.

Poor Flygon has this affliction and defending its viability rank in the “MixMence meta” can sometimes be an up-hill battle. That being said, Flygon is arguably the best Pokémon in the tier at fitting, compressing roles (rock-resist), and covering weaknesses on certain lineups; in this case, teams that really need some insurance vs Celebi/MixTar (even AstaRachi and Moltres with targeted techs like Rest) so Swampert isn’t a consideration.

One of its best advantages is living in a metagame that is teched around Swampert being the main rock-resist on opposing teams, which means that with proper scouting you can use Flygon as a direct standard-set Zapdos answer and reverse the momentum, or as a cold hard counter to HP Grass DDTar, Taunt HP Rock Gyarados, etc...

CB/Sub offensive sets have some merit too but even smaller niches than the standard set, so they can only fit specific teams or need to be built around.

20 Milotic (-2)
:rs/milotic:

chicken nugget

21 Breloom (-1)
:rs/breloom:


Give a Pokémon Spore + Focus Punch: 2 out of the 10 best moves in the tier (and both with STAB!) and it won’t matter if it gets OHKOed by 90% of all common attacks: with time and proper team building it will find a way to climb in the viability ranking and establish itself as one of the many OU threats.

Breloom has been the center of ADV discussion for some time now, so I don’t really have anything new to say about it. I’m a big fan of the McMeghan set (SubLeechPunch) and I was a direct witness of its potential while prepping with Marcop during SPL.

Some other cool unexplored options include Stun Spore, Toxic, and various Hidden Powers, including Grass as a sneaky way to deal with Swampert (which admittedly some offense Breloom structures are naturally weak to).

B-

22
Magneton (-3)
:rs/magneton:


We all know Magneton: the most consistent Skarmory remover in the game, but extremely one-dimensional.

In Skarm-less matchups one would rather have any other Pokémon in its place. At least it can provide some support against boltbeam and Choice Banded rock-types if using a Leftovers + Protect set.

The fact that it's so all-in regarding Skarmory/Forretress removal is also a kind of disadvantage on the builder, because it means the teams tend to rely too much on getting the trap off and also tend to always follow the same structure (screaming “Hey I have a Magneton in the back, you should scout!”), which leads to some awkward 50/50s (with Dugtrio/Double or Forry’s EQ) that can decide the outcome of the game quite early.

Favorite set right now is just doing HP Fire bulk + Modest Charcoal.

23 Heracross (-2)
:rs/heracross:


It has roughly (0.85^(# enemy mons alive when its send out)*100)% chance of winning.

24 Cloyster (+2)
:rs/cloyster:


Cloyster hasn’t really changed over the last months. Has the best “average” matchup vs any given team out of all the Spikers but also doesn’t excel at any of them. I feel like one gets the most out of it with an aggro playstyle and either running 2 attacks faster-than-Celebi, or just a slower/bulkier spread (252 HP has amazing physical bulk) with Rapid Spin + Celebi abusers thanks to the lower Gengar usage. Cloyster + Claydol is also an interesting underexplored core.

25 Jolteon (-1)
:rs/jolteon:


Yes, I’m a firm believer in the Jolteon theorem. Our favorite electric cat is a weird case where it hasn’t really fallen in viability per se and has just been in the Pokémon limbo for the past few months. The natural playstyle of Jolteon teams leads to the opinion about its rank to be slightly polarized: the ladder mon for excellence.

Something inside me suggests that it could make a small resurgence in new structures taking advantage of unexplored sets like WishPass, Sub(Berry)Pass, and even old sets like HP Ice + Roar.

26 Charizard (+1)
:rs/charizard:


Charizard is just the Spikeless offense Moltres, which means that as an individual its viability has slightly increased but the archetype it fits the better has seen less and less play across the last year.

Cool underexplored options include Beat Up variants that fit in Spikeless *special* offense, and some underrated 4th slot moves like Dragon Claw/Overheat.

27 Gyarados (+2)
:rs/gyarados:


A Dragon Dance Salamence that trades power, speed, and coverage for better bulk and typing. Considering that Dragon Dance Salamence isn’t too good then it’s no wonder Gyarados isn’t ranked too highly.

Still, it fits well on divide-and-conquer teams that need it to handle bulky waters, as it excels on using them (and Skarmory/Others if Taunt) as setup bait. Favorite set is Jolly faster-than-Aero with HP Rock.

28 Hariyama (-3)
:rs/hariyama:


Weaker than all the other Fighters, but Knock Off + decent bulk makes it valuable on slow-paced Balance teams. The fact it can pretty much check/switch into all Tyranitar sets also adds to its viability. Unfortunately it competes with other solid options on the usual lineups (namely Dugtrio) and if considering offensive sets (Bulk Up) Machamp is a lot better.

C

29
Medicham (+7)
:rs/medicham:


Stronger than all the other Fighters, but extremely frail and doesn’t provide anything outside of wallbreaking. For this reason, using it as a lead with Leftovers + Recover is pretty solid and it fits sandless Balance teams well with Wish support. Also suffers a bit from 4MSS but Rock Slide isn’t really missed as long as the Medicham player can catch Flying-types with Focus Punch.

30 Smeargle (+11)
:rs/smeargle:


Best suicide Spiker for hyper-offense in ADV, thanks to its ability to beat the best lead in Zapdos. The 4th moveslot has infinite possibilities and can be teched to help with some obscure lead matchups too, but my favorite for overall consistency is Substitute + Explosion.

--

31 Porygon2
:rs/porygon2:

32 Jynx
:rs/jynx:

33 Vaporeon
:rs/vaporeon:

34 Venusaur
:rs/venusaur:

35 Kingdra
:rs/kingdra:

36 Marowak
:rs/marowak:

37 Camerupt
:rs/camerupt:
Making an exceptional explanation for Camerupt, because I realized its 16 spots higher than the current average:

So… honestly I don’t think Camerupt is that good as the difference of my ranking versus the current VRs reflect. I feel like this was just a result of me rating its traits as more valuable than stuff below it in the right (or in its best) team.

It can fit the role of Zapdos/Gengar counter on offense which frees Snorlax from its responsibility of being alive to check them (and even from its usual set, so it can run stuff like Lead Choice Band).

Camerupt is unironically also the best Quick Claw user in ADV, which adds a tiny bit to its rank.

38 Ludicolo
:rs/ludicolo:

D

39
Regice :regice:
40 Machamp :machamp:
41 Raikou :raikou:
42 Steelix :steelix:
43 Jumpluff :jumpluff:
44 Weezing :weezing:
45 Umbreon :umbreon:
46 Dragonite :dragonite:
47 Houndoom :houndoom:
48 Armaldo :armaldo:
49 Ninjask :ninjask:
50 Registeel :registeel:

--

And thats all!

s/o to the amazing ADV community and ADV content creators that keep this tier alive.
huge s/o to my friends on the flygon sux clan (Hclat Altina vapicuno thelinearcurve sstj eden Jisoo) for all the metagame discussion and for motivating me to keep playing :blobnom:
final s/o to Kiichikos for being the best :heart:
 
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Jirachee

*dds twice*
is a Top Tutor Alumnusis a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Top Team Rater Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnus
So, one of the issues I find with Viability Rankings is that they don't really do a great job at showing which Pokemon has influence over the metagame, and which is simply benefiting from another's presence. I've always found it misleading that a Pokemon like Skarmory was ranked under something like Swampert for example, when Skarmory can beat an unprepared team in about 3 turns and Swampert will never beat anyone by itself. Obviously, among competent players, we know better and prepare for Skarmory, but the impact Skarmory has on our preparation for a battle and our early game moves is lost on a list like this.

For this reason, my post will be a little different. Rather than making an ordered list by tier, I'll simply be grouping the threats that make up ADV OU in clusters. Each cluster represents influence and value rather than what's currently trendy in the metagame. Here are the clusters, all of it in the humble opinion of one Jirachee:

Cluster 1:

I grouped these guys together because they affect the viability and movesets used by every single Pokemon in ADV OU. Tyranitar and Skarmory are, in my opinion, self-explanatory in that regard. Dugtrio really affects the way you play early game (don't want to send a Dug-weak mon directly into a Zapdos BP, for example) and what's viable to check certain threats. Gengar forces the best Pokemon in the game to use Pursuit running off its SpA that's 39 points weaker than its physical attack, and pretty much ruins the viability of certain physical offense teams. There's no denying that any of these guys change ADV OU more than anything else.


Cluster 2:

This second cluster represents the Pokemon that enable Offense in ADV OU, which is more valuable than Defense in my opinion. For this reason, they're all roughly as valuable as each other. The biggest value Celebi has to offer is in the form of CM BP which can snowball things super fast, as opposed to the defensive sets that concede a bunch of momentum to your opponent. Aerodactyl might just be the best offensive Pokemon in the tier as it's threatening at every phase.


Cluster 3:

For this cluster we find the best Defensive Pokemon in the game. Blissey and Swampert are no-brainers. Jirachi is kind of an odd-ball because it's obviously a good addition to any team and can run any set, but I find that its main value comes from the defensive aspect of its game. Toxic and Sand immunity make it super hard to wear down, and resisting Rock is one of the best defensive attributes one 'Mon can have. You might be surprised to find Claydol here as it hardly walls anything, but I think being able to remove the best Offensive move in the game (Spikes) makes it an incredibly defensive Pokemon.


Cluster 4:

These are the Pokemon that are very good but need a good deal of support to succeed. I placed Heracross in this cluster because of the Salac sets that can turn into a GG button in an instant. It might surprise you to find Salamence in this cluster, but I find that its current effectiveness is largely propped up by how good Spikes are. Without them, the Mixed set is far less effective and in my opinion is just another 'Mon. Let's not forget that the Physical set need support from the much maligned Magneton (which I love!)


Cluster 5:

This is the first cluster I'd consider as a "satellite" to the core of ADV OU; each of these Pokemon have great qualities and matchups against top tier ADV 'mons, but their viability is entirely dependent on current metagame trends. For this reason, you'll see them trending up or down on the VR as time goes on, but they never truly go away (although some wish they would!)


Cluster 6:

Pure offensive threats. These dudes can all severely punish passive play and help you further your game plan. They're all fairly consistent as well, but their flaws lie more in the extent of what they can do. Moltres is never getting past Blissey and gets eaten alive by Rock offense late game. Gyarados never has the right coverage, Breloom dies to any hit, Cloyster's type is pretty bad, etc.


Cluster 7:

The value of these Pokemon comes from having fairly unique Defensive niches. For example Milotic is pretty much immune to status or mixed sweepers. Steelix stops electrics cold. Hariyama is pretty much the best Pokemon against Tyranitar in the game, and it gets Knock Off! Nothing else really does what these guys do, so they have a fair bit of value. But they're not super useful outside of that. Obviously Hariyama also has interesting offensive capabilities.


Cluster 8:

These Pokemon all need a lot of justification to be used, but can offer huge rewards. In the right situation, they offer something nothing else can, so they perfectly fit on a limited number of teams. Jynx is a good example of a currently trendy 'mon that does this; by leading off you really force your opponent in a predictable move that can be accounted for. I rank Dragonite along with them because it's a very good Pokemon that is simply usually overshadowed by a top tier dude.


Cluster 9:

The cheese cluster. Cheese is pretty good (sometimes) so these guys deserve a place somewhere. But none of these Pokemon should be used outside of cheesy stuff (RIP Mr Mime, gone alongside Kyogre on the tier list)


Cluster 10:

The extreme niche cluster. These guys all excel at ONE particular role. What separates them from cluster 8 is that the reward they offer isn't nearly as good. For that reason, they should rarely ever be considered for a team. There are teams they do make better however, which is why I consider this cluster to be the last viable cluster in ADV OU. Don't be afraid to use any one of these dudes, but at the same time ask yourself if anything else would fit your team better.


Cluster 11:

The unviable cluster. Do not use these Pokemon.


Anything that wasn't listed fits in either cluster 10 or 11.

I think the order of clusters represents how much each one of these influences ADV OU. If you were to group them into "super clusters", I'd say Cluster 1 is in a league of its own; then 2 through 4; followed by 6 through 8; to end with 9 and 10.

Keep up the good content, been enjoying this thread :toast:
 
An ADV VR from somebody that can only pilot offense!
Heads up: I don't really care about ordering them because mons in A+ are all incredible and the difference between something being the second best mon in the game and the fourth best mon in the game is incredibly arbitrary and something I do not care about, same logic applies to lower tiers as well.

Tyranitar Tier
:rs/tyranitar:
Sand good, psuedo-legendary stats good. Incredibly flexible and customizable for your team.

A+ Tier
:rs/metagross:
A demon. People dropping EQ on Swampert only makes this thing even better. CB Gross is a nightmare.

:rs/celebi:
I've been high on this thing forever. Versatile and a great facilitator for a lot of offense. SuperBi is God.

:rs/zapdos:
It hits really hard, grabs momentum, and it cripples the opponent with status. SpDef Zapdos is a massive pain in the ass to deal with.

:rs/swampert:
People running less fat waters makes offensive pert better, but everybody seems to have a MonoPert addiction. Speaking of MonoPert, please run roar. It allows you to not be setup fodder for all of the very potent mons in the tier. I personally like HP Bug physical Swampert a lot, but I think I'm alone in that department. It's like Flygon, but it can actually click Earthquake every now and then!

:rs/salamence:
I wonder if people will start putting Ice Beam back on their Swampert so Salamence won't be able to sit on it and Wish up, or maybe Salamence will just not have to use HP Grass anymore. With that aside, Salamence with Spike(s) down is a terror. I'm not on the "DD Mence sucks" train, I just think people need to build with it better. Pokemon in this tier don't get OHKOes, and DD Mence is no exception. I think perhaps a physical MixMence is worth trying out, but I'm not good enough to build with that idea effectively.

A Tier
:rs/jirachi:
Freeze Clause when?

I think people dropping EQ on Swampert and the rise in special Tar/mixed Gross usage led to this thing's peak. Maybe that's obvious to the rest of you. I don't know.

:rs/skarmory:
Apparently Skarm sucks now. I don't get it either.

:rs/gengar:
Hypnosis is stupid and I hate it.

:rs/blissey:
I feel like it has the Gengar syndrome of every team prepping for it, but unlike Gengar, (unless it is balls to the wall special offense) teams aren't overly reliant on one mon to remove/exploit it, and instead have 3 or more.

:rs/dugtrio:
Pictures taken moments before disaster:
1618243088542.png


A- Tier
:rs/aerodactyl:
Never forget your rock resist at home, kids.

:rs/starmie:
I think Bold Starmie blows chunks. The other sets are quite good.

:rs/suicune:
ADV Players Hate Him! How He Gets Crit in the Endgame Using This One Simple Trick!

:rs/breloom:
Spore is really good, so is a 130 base Attack stat. HP Bug Loom is pretty cool.

B+ Tier
:rs/snorlax:
It becomes surprisingly good when people:
1. Start running more special Tyranitar sets
2. Start running more specially oriented Metagross sets
3. Start running less Gengar
4. Start running less Skarmory
5. Start running more MonoPert
6. Start running more Jirachi
Crazy how that works.

:rs/forretress:
Frankly, I have no idea how to use or build with this damn thing. But, I acknowledge that it is good. So, albeit begrudgingly, I will put it up this high.

:rs/hariyama:
Really good. I think the fat Rest set is complete dogshit, but I am a big fan of every other set.

B Tier
:rs/heracross:
The Butt Clencher 5000

:rs/moltres:
It's like Zapdos, but without a lot of the good stuff.

:rs/charizard:
It's like Moltres, but it can punch stuff.

:rs/vaporeon:
This thing is stupid good, especially in the age of MonoPert spam. 110 Sp. Atk Hydro Pump is a thing of beauty (80% of the time).

:rs/flygon:
I'd like to talk some mess about Flygon like everybody else, but Hclat keeps beating me with that damn Salac Flygon Lanturn team.

:rs/milotic:
Sorry guys, I got haxed :/
Not much I could do about that.

:rs/smeargle:
Blame nchmax.

B- Tier
:rs/jynx:
Live and die by 75% accuracy.

:rs/gyarados:
I love it alongside Wish Jolt. I'm lukewarm on it everywhere else.

:rs/kingdra:
Less Milotic and Suicune is good for this thing. Use Sub fourth if you aren't already.

:rs/claydol:
I think this thing is terrible, but I don't think it's as terrible as I once thought it was. It does no damage, sits around and gets the crap beat out of it, and is pretty ass without Explosion. Some days, I might rank it a little bit lower, but I'm feeling generous today.

:rs/jolteon:
Jolteon Move Tier List:
S: Baton Pass
A: Substitute, Thunder Wave
B: Roar, Wish, Any remotely strong damaging Electric move
C: Hidden Power, Bite

:rs/cloyster:
I don't hate this thing anymore. I've been using Toxic 4th for a couple months, pretty neat.

:rs/magneton:
If you EV this thing properly, it'll do its job well. Run a Charcoal if you want to trap Forretress, run YoloSkarm EVs if you want to trap Skarm, etc. Maybe somebody can make something out of my Refresh Magneton tech.

C Tier
:rs/lanturn:
Anglerfish in ADVPL finals LFG

:rs/weezing:
Really cool mon to use. EVing it is pretty weird, but I think that's just due to my inexperience with it.

:rs/venusaur:
I really like Roar with Spikes support. Growth is pretty funny.

:rs/exeggutor:
Boom + Sleep: What's not to like?

:rs/porygon2:
It has one very important job, and provided you don't get double crit, it does it pretty well. It is a passable blanket check to a lot of stuff too.

:rs/machamp:
I don't get why this Pokemon works so well. I've never had a bad experience using it.

:rs/medicham:
I'll take (almost) any other fighter over this thing.

:rs/dragonite:
If Salamence didn't exist, it'd be a lot better. Still has some merits to it though.

:rs/steelix:
me wall zapdos me let in other big scary fliers

:rs/houndoom:
Pretty cool Pokemon that I think gets underutilized a bit.

:rs/blaziken:
Feels incredible when you get those good matchups, feels bottom five when you don't.

:rs/donphan:
Using it reveals basically your entire team. It creates a lot of unnecessary mindgames that I'd rather avoid.

:rs/raikou:
+1 Thunderbolt is really scary. Has DD Mence syndrome.

D Tier
:rs/marowak:
AgiliPass is broken.

:rs/gardevoir:
I swear, somebody designed this thing to showcase just how restricting having only 4 moveslots can be. It has the entire game in its learnset. Have you seen some of the stuff this thing learns? Wish, Hypnosis, Taunt, Memento, Destiny Bond, Will-o Wisp, and that's not even the offensive moves. Somebody creative could figure something out, but I'm not imaginative enough for that. Abuses Claydol exceptionally well, and Wisp on a CMer is pretty cool.

:rs/ninjask:
Sure, it abuses Dugtrio very well. If you ignore the fact that it only really has one redeeming trait, you might trick yourself into thinking this is more than a cheese Pokemon.

:rs/politoed:
A really cool lead that I think people should use more.

:rs/solrock:
Same thing as above.

:rs/armaldo:
Similarly to Milotic, it does a lot of existing.

:rs/regice:
lol

:rs/umbreon:
Too passive for me.

:rs/registeel:
Read above

:rs/ludicolo:
It's a mild annoyance at best. If I'm losing to Ludicolo, I'm probably losing to Kingdra too.

:rs/camerupt:
It's not terrible.

:rs/tauros:
Hits really hard. That's good enough for me.

:rs/dodrio:
Also hits really hard, but it has Baton Pass.

:rs/ampharos:
Probably better than I'm giving it credit for.

And that's all I have to say. If I didn't include something, I haven't used it enough or fought it enough to accurately rank it (or I forgot about it). Feel free to flame me for putting your favorite OU Pokemon 1 spot too low on the VR, or question my ability to play my mons because Lanturn is on here! :blobwizard:
 
Hey all, it's your 15th favorite ladder fiend here. I don't really post on the forums too often but after finally getting a break from schoolwork just in time to get smashed back to back in Callous Fight Night and PP open 3, I've decided to do what all washed up C- tier players in niche hobbies do. Create content.

I've been pretty upfront about my complete inability to play the more defensive builds in the meta or, as mess put it, how I'm "unviable using any team with an instance of the move recover". Maybe one day I'll figure out how to win by clicking moves that do negative HP damage, but in the meantime I want to share the way I view the game. I've always thought its cool to see the way that different people look at things so hopefully someone else will enjoy getting in the head of a shameless offense spammer.

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S: These mons will consistently perform their intended role and then some in any given game (setting sand, booming a mon, ect.). Very high ceiling combined with a high floor and a wide variety of sets make them a natural fit on many many teams.

A: Take everything I said about the mons above but throw an extra layer of variance on top of them. High ceiling + high floor, that floor just has a couple of holes in it.

A-: These mons warp the metagame against them, yet remain viable regardless. I think we've already seen what peak counterplay looks like for these mons and their continued relevance shows that they truly are ADV staples.

B: These mons are a bit more targeted. Very good at doing their intended jobs, not nearly as good at doing things beyond that. You know what you're getting when you put any of these on your team.

B-: Take B rank and add in either a smaller target (mag, rain mons) or more inconsistency in doing their jobs (skarm, heracross).

C: These mons either strictly are support or strictly need support. Good but I think it'd be tough to call any of then great.

C-: B- for C

D: The worst mons to have a legitimate niche in ADV, small as it might be. Fit more on specific teams then specific team styles.

Y: Mons that aren't an instant loss to use, but have no justification to put them on a team over other mons. You could probably put a bunch more things on here but these are just some of the main ones I've played around with.

Graphic design is my passion btw. I think most of the above picture is pretty self explanatory and I don't think there's a lot of value in rehashing the better written words of better players so I'm only going to go in depth on areas where I think I can add something new to the conversation/differ substantially from the general consensus. Mons that I think I feel especially strongly about are marked with a * in case anyone feels like cutting through the rest of the junk I've written.

1.
Overcentralizing in a way that makes the tier more fun
2.
Get used to playing 5v5 and metagross suddenly seems like only upsides.
3.
Dreadful to switch in to before you know its set and only marginally better afterwards. I'm including the more defensive sets in that statement too because a wish/sub/cm can be incredibly oppressive when you click the wrong move/mon. Also arguably the best fisher in the tier.
4.
2 solid prediction reliant wallbreakers with the right defensive attributes to let them make quite a few predictions. Can't be wrong every time. If your mence doesn't at least make some progress for you, you probably weren't going to be making progress with any mon. Ambivalent to the dd mence sucks train
5.
ADV tapu koko. Keeps momentum, beats specific threats late game, breaks teams without specific walls/when walls are dead. At worst a good enabler
6.
One of the scariest wincons in the game, just prone to getting bullshit.
7.
I kind of see this as a slightly less terrifying rachi. Same versatility, same offense/defense mix up. Just doesn't have rachi's ability to bullshit games even after its set is known
8.
From my experience, the mark of a good defensive player is how well they conserve pert health vs aero/ttar. Naturally I spam endpert
9.
A lot of people are down on Snorlax but I think the mon is fantastic. Curseboom is clearly the best set but I don't think it needs any other. Lax is a Wallbreaker that switches in on zapdos and starmie and that alone makes it invaluable for a lot of tempo based offenses. Essentially, lax is a specially oriented endpert, role compressing early game momentum savers with the ability to trade one for one when required. The mon is also one of the best panic buttons in the game, you can't get swept if you've got a full health lax.
10.
Best scarfer in adv
11.
"Protect the bliss" regularly becomes a teams win con vs a lot of archetypes. Turns out that's easier said than done vs a good team. Will also always have a niche so long as people want to shit on others through nicknames.
12.
Both overwhelming and underwhelming on paper. Pretty whelming in practice. Rarely if ever useless in any given game though.
13.
Ghost of its former self or still haunting the meta? Probably both. Will always be a necessary part of any viable mixed strategy over a long enough period of time.
14.
I'm a huge Breloom supporter. I probably would've brushed the boxing mushroom off as a fad months ago but at this point I think its proven its worth as a very viable pick in ADV. Between 3 fight, dual status, 2 fight + coverage, and subseed, Loom has the very unique ability to tailor its set to hit pretty much anything your team struggles with. I sort of see this mon as almost like metagross where you pick its move to choose who you want to hit with your haymaker (boom/spore). Unlike metagross though, breloom has a nasty left hook as well. Since loom doesn't kill itself with its most threatening move, its a phenomenal bait for any of its standard checks with hidden power or stun spore. Just make sure you have a plan to deal with the things you aren't baiting.
15.
Smeargle is the best spiker in the game if you have 0 intention of getting in a spike war. As someone who can't win a spikes war for my life, thats a godsend. If you want to ride or die on momentum while also using spikes, no mon gives you more spikes and more advantage while setting them than ADVzelf. Sure, you're never getting a chance to reset spikes if they get spun, but on the teams smeargle fits on, you can ideally punish them enough for trying to spin that its not a huge issue. Probably best as a suicide lead but I think it still has merit in the back as a way for hyper offense teams to gain advantage while switching out of zap t1. Backgle also makes lum leads less of an issue.

Smeargle (M) @ Salac Berry
Ability: Own Tempo
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Spikes
- Spore
- Explosion
- Whirlwind

^ I think that generally the above set is the best suicide lead variant while backgle needs endure over whirlwind. There's a ton of other options though which have their own merits, even if only to avoid being predictable. I'm also not totally convinced that spikes is non negotiable either. Haven't made it super consistent yet but this mon gets every broken move in the game, there's got to be some other HO jank it can pull off, right? I don't think these sorts of ride or die HO teams are as good in ADV as they can be in later gens, but I think they're viable enough to be a solid B tier pick in tours. As smeargle is the face of these builds and the key to making them work, I'm putting him in B as well as a proxy for the archetype as a whole much like how politoad used to be used as a proxy for the viability of rain in gen 6.
16.
Smeargle is the face of spikes HO, Jynx is the face of spikeless. Best mon at baiting and removing lead tar because of how much jynx threatens the team around the tar. Threatens every other lead but cb jolly mence. Also sometimes just wins from lead cause freeze is bonkers. Does almost always necessitate dug though. I think spikeless HO is about as viable as Spikes HO so these two slots can be interchangeable. I've also got a really sick team with lead smeargle + back jynx thats perhaps not going to tear the tour scene apart but works much better then you'd think from looking at the paste. I'd give that combo a try sometime, its really fun.
17.
The only true "set play" in adv is how well your team deals with the turn after a dug trap. Always need a plan for how to both abuse being trapped and avoid being abused.
18.
I truly believe that Charizard is the best fire type in ADV. Breaks a hole into every team that doesn't have a milotic on it (and even then, milo is far from unabusable). PSA, sub lefties is trash. Its far too weak to break anything. 4 attacks is a little better but I think the best set by far is:

Charizard @ Petaya Berry
Ability: Blaze
EVs: 12 HP / 24 Atk / 228 SpA / 244 Spe
Rash Nature
- Substitute
- Hidden Power [Grass]
- Fire Blast
- Focus Punch

+1 228+ SpA Blaze Charizard Fire Blast vs. 44 HP / 0 SpD Blissey: 323-381 (48.7 - 57.5%) -- 53.1% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery. Look at this calc. In sand this cannot be walled. Charizard is a mixed attacker that forces the issue on many mixed walls due to its sheer power while also being threatening enough to get multiple turns to make guesses. I also think its pretty good when paired with smeargle fwiw.
18.
Best mon at winning spikes wars. Spikes control is a good archetype
19.
Probably compresses too many roles into one slot but that means it usually gets at least something done. Far too easy to mistake your own outplaying for claydol being amazing. Outplay and its a good mon though.
20.
Tough to find good info about this mon since
1: its only just now getting popular
2: googling it is playing with fire
Good HO enabler though both in lead and in the back
21.
I've been very low on skarm ever since I started playing ADV. I think the metal bird has the worst "influence on the tier"/"value on a team ratio in ADV". Any team that loses to skarmory is a bad team. Therefore, no one brings teams that lose to skarmory. It's very difficult for skarmory to consistently do its job vs a lot of the meta. Defensive builds usually win the spike war, Offensive builds tend to overpower it + slot fire coverage or mag. Imo, having to scout for so much vs offense before skarm can take advantage of its good traits is such a hindrance on so many teams. Being a physical wall that doesn't resist the best move in the game, rock slide, is always a sign for disaster as well. The main thing skarmory has going for it is that its the most natural spiker to slot on a team and requires the least concessions in the builder to make work. Skarm is like the underperforming trust fund kid Dad bought into college. Spikes are so valuable that its sometimes worth it to just look past all the mediocrity.
22.
Magoff is good, just stop relying on mag to also be your pert answer. Viability is intrinsically tied to skarm.
23.
The mon who would probably benefit the most from any major change in the tier. Heracross is the unbelievably earnest kid from high school who always sees the upside despite all the popular kids wanting to knock him down. Sure, people keep kicking sand in his eye. Sure the socialites try to ace him out of the pecking order. Sure the bigger bully keeps coming around to intimidate him. Its all good though because This megahorn is going to hit. He's sure of it
24.
The only teams with skarm I like are jolt spikes. Sucks not to be immune to t wave though
25.
Smeragle is the Hyper Offense spiker. Cloyster is the regular offense spiker. Gets up less spikes less early then smeargle does but has actual defensive value in exchange. Cool mon, always feels like it comes up just a little short of its potential
26.
Like mence, this cleans past aero with a single turn of set up. Like mence, this mon needs some serious chip on the other team to pull off a sweep
27.
Kingdra that sets up on dug and needs less chip vs suicune. About as good overall but harder to set up with. Cool when paired with kingdra
28.
Used to think it sucked. Turns out the air worm is pretty good at beating standard phys spam answers once I started getting c teamed more.
29.
Milotic is the attractive girl who follows the queen bee around. Personality made up entirely of whatever her friends like. Always seemed out of your reach from afar until one day you started talking after getting paired up for a project and you realize she doesn't actually do anything herself.
30.
More bark then bite. Knows a lot more about what makes a good athlete (levitation, ability to handle rocks thrown at you) than how to actually win games. Will probably end up as a commentator or something rather then a player one day but will definitely seem impressive once or twice a year at the occasional commentator charity match
31.
The most threatening 2% you're ever going to eat
32.
I think raikou is pretty solid. I like the modest salac one linear made awhile ago when using it myself and somehow always wind up losing to the sub sets. Either they're good or I'm bad. For my egos sake I'll go with the former.
33.
Probably not broken but spirit breaking to come across if you're using dug
34.
I have a very tough time justifying running this over Zard. Maybe that's just me though.
35.
The second most threatening 2% you're ever going to eat
36.
Legitimately good physical wall. You'd think such an imposing design would be able to hit harder though
37.
Fighters are good. Personal preference which you prefer tbh
38.
P2 is the smart but a little weird kid who you're sort of friends with because he helps you and you're friends out on calculus homework. By the third time he's gone ignored your claims of disinterest and gone onto a rant about how Dragon Ball Z did in fact peak with the Freeza ark, you start to realize that he's sort of a drag to hand out. Do you reaaaally need to pass calculus that badly?
39.
This is smeargle if you want to threaten things with your boom. Worse overall imo but the niche is there
40.
The chunkier little brother to the schools former third most popular kid who always feels overlooked and misunderstood. Despite Gar's recent Target on his back, The clopper doesn't really have much going for it other than a desire to set things on fire, an obsession with sharp things, and some serious schadenfreudic tendencies. Maybe I'm wrong but that doesn't sound like the path to popularity to me. Sorry Dusclops, won't be overtaking gar anytime soon, but at least some people do prefer the bulkier things so there's that.
41.
Decent at getting rid of gar if you can pass the marshmallow test. I clearly can't as I can't use umbreon for my life but I've faced enough people who can that I at least respect it.
42.
Venu is the hotshot player who always seems to crack under pressure at the last minute. Somehow sleep powder just never crosses the strike zone when its most needed. Good when either the stars do align or when you can keep up enough pressure to win the game early though
43.
I've been liking this a lot recently and if I was writing this a month or two in the future, I think its very possible that this is a tier or so higher on the list. Strictly a support mon but a support mon with boom is always cool.
44.
I feel like my usage of Machamp betrays how mediocre I think it generally is. I'm like one or two lines of logic away from convincing myself its outclasses in its role by offensive yama. Its still crazy fun to use though when rolling up with fight spam
45.
Fine spiker. Not amazing, but spikes are good and Omastar is a passable pokemon with spikes and the ability to wall lax
46.
Houndoom is the Local mall goth. Lots of piercings, edgy tee's, likes to act tough. Whimpers out pretty hard when she gets in a fight that isn't about nightmare before christmas though.
47.
Regice is the senior who's been unable to graduate for so long that he was actually put back into junior year classes. There's some hidden potential there but he definitely has to go back and refresh some of the basics. Maybe the material will stick better second time round. Only time will tell
48.
I think linears Magoff team with Solrock is very good. I've never been able to make the mon work outside of that team though. Textbook D rank
49.
The future still looks bright for this little fish, Not that bright though
50.
Second best mon based on a duck. Sand immune end salac sweepers are always at least workable though
51.
The only TSS team I kind of like has a jumpluff on it. That probably means the mon is bad and requires far to many reads to work but whatever. Seems solid to me. Kind of dead in the water versus celebi though
52.
Weezing is a swiss army knife that's been dredged out of a river after a year or so. Its got a lot of tools but none of them are quite as effective as I'd wish
53.
Gardevoir is the free spirit who seems to pick up a new hobby every other week because "its my true passion" only to drop it entirely when their next "true passion" comes along. Can get pretty decent at most anything if he tunnel visions hard enough though, and has definitely picked up a few truly unique party tricks along the road to self discovery
54.
A lot of low tier but technically viable mons are only dangerous until you know their hidden power. Sceptile is one of these mons
55.
Registeel is the state champion wrestler at school. Of course, most people don't give a damn about wrestling so the jock cred here is pretty low. While most people might not pay him much mind, if Registeel does decide to get in your way, you may find him damn near impossible to move
56.
If you rely on passive damage, you're never breaking this before it runs out of pp. That being said, Miltank does next to nothing back to you
57.
Sand immune endure salac mons are always decent at worst. Probably the best physical one while Golduck is the best special one
58.
More unpredictable version of mixmence with the downside of also being way worse. Heal bell is fine but other, better mons get that too
59.
Monumental health stat led me to try curse boom once. Pretty cool, should probably get back to screwing around with it at some point. Maybe too high on this list but I don't particularly like a lot of the stuff behind it so I'm putting it here out of hope.
60.
Screams your team from the second it shows up for only a moderate reward. Even in the best conditions I think Donpahn is just kinda meh, though I do respect why other people like it.
61.
More mediocre than its counterpart skarm. Its fine at the very very specific things it does I guess
62.
I think Blazekin is abysmal, a worse charizard in almost every way. Its a blatant fish vs big 5 but isn't even all that great when it does run into that matchup. Weak to dug + sand + spikes + paper towel defenses means that blazekin can never stick around long enough to actually break apart the teams its meant to. Never having enough ev's to threaten ohko's both specially and physically is dreadful as well. Just not worth the trade off of having a near dead slot vs offense. Imo blazekin is the worst fighter you might reasonably see in a match and almost the worst fire.
63.
I don't really get the Camerupt hype. Its weak to the best move of the only mon it can switch into in the tier.
64.
Good recipient of speed boosts but can find it tough to stick around long enough to sd + sweep in a mimeless world. Every mon is a good recipient of speed + attack
65.
The worst mon I'd say has a legitimate niche. Hard blocking metagross from t1 is cool and thief + hypno can grant it instant advantage.
66->
Why are you using these mons? If your goal is to win, you should probably steer clear. If your goal isn't to win, then use whatever you want. Not Z tier because at least these mons are functional and have discernable gameplans if you're just goofing around on ladder

Didn't think it'd be so tough to write stuff about so many mons when I first started this but there you have it.
 
Last edited:
Idk how I posted somebody elses rankings here earlier but here are my actual ones.

My Rankings

:rs/tyranitar:
same shit as usual

:rs/zapdos:
Should be called Slapdos because you can put it on any team. Perfect on offence for getting phys mons in on blissey and such. Outspeeds and 2hkos mixmence, which is insane. I think it's best used with spikes + roar. I remember thinking other players were crazy for putting it in #2 but ive come around. Run it with Timid 120SpD 148spd 240spA and reap the rewards on TSS.

:rs/skarmory:
I should really have put this guy at no.2 considering its average damage output per game and how every team that doesn't have magneton needs a complex strategy just to stop it from staying alive forever. Maybe next VR if it remains as potent.

:rs/metagross:
All of its sets are good. Hard not to get return value out of it. CB is a bit of a personal fav to just slap on some offences in the lead slot and immediately reduce the opponent to a 5 mon battle. Lead zap is its worst nightmare though. Protect is a great set as it seems to reliably get itself out of range of important attacks that kill it; like duggy eq after a few spikes or a zapdos tbolt from around half. Mixed is still good with max HP. Albeit, I dont really use that set as much as I used to.

:rs/swampert:
Still the wall it always was. The weird, offensive pert meta is over and we are back to the set that walls like 95% of physical threats. Incredible measures have to be taken to ensure oneself vs DD Tar if this guy is not present on the team. Unfortunately, bulky sets are pure spike bait so I often find myself pumping huge investment into the SpA stat unless I have a spinner.

:rs/blissey:
I think its still boring and good. Not gonna spend too much time explaining what its good and bad for. Counter has gotten kinda shit in the age of beat up dugtrio. I have been slowly edging it out of my TSS over the last year or so.

:rs/jirachi:
Much fonder of this mon than ever. It really just cuts out a lot of the RNG. CM Sub is still an amazing set that just beats every archetype when done right. Beats stall t1 and punishes any of the myriad poorly-built TSS teams out there that dont use phys mons. Astarachi has always been the best wish passer in the tier. You can switch it in on mixtar/mixmence and just wish stall their fireblasts and force them to switch. Insane walling ability. It might be the ultimate noobstomp mon. Superachi has made a grand return in my builder. Stick it on special offence and it has like a 1.5 mon killrate minimum. If you run it with psychic you 1v1 blissey after enough boosts.

:rs/salamence:
I think many people know that I have always had a fondness for Mence. People are finally coming around. Mixmence is so slappable. Outspeeds so much, has great coverage, and defensive ability vs fighters. If you ev it to outspeed heracross, you are left with the exact amount of hp you need to always live opposing mixmence dclaw. Roar mixmence + spikes is the most metagame-covering set has ever been conceived.
I don't agree that CB is its best set. It's really coinflippy and I have always found that set susceptible to pursuit trapping and general chip. DD Mence is actually decent. I think, with the the right team environment, it can wreak havoc. There is a reason every team has multiple measures for it.

:rs/gengar:
Ive been using a lot of the cheshire cat. I'm not onboard the hate train. The best sets completely depend on the team you are using it on. Pursuit tar being really common isn't as inhibiting as people are making it out to be. Even if you do encounter a forre team, every playing onus is on the forre wielder to get their tar in on your gar. You can switch in on forre and switch out again as tar comes in. you can also run bulky and pair it with dugtrio. In the many scenarios where your opponent doesnt have ttar, gengar is still good as ever. i really like pairing it with zapdos on TSS for a toxic immune that still pressures skarmory. Fast explosion is still rly important because the types of teams gengar is on are often lacking in explosion users. I have also been using hypno gar on special offence. hypno is so good if you get in on skarm because you get 2 turns to use it even if your opponent has a suit tar. You can sleep tar and switch to dugtrio.

:rs/aerodactyl:
So high on this guy. I've always really liked aero. It cuts through cm bullshit, outspeed and ohkoes zap, mence and some gengars. I think one of its best attributes is just checkmating ttar in the endgame. I think it does a much better job eliminating chance than most would give it credit for. It's so good that even when you are doing all the right things to win the game, multiple mons up, your opponent may be one aero speed tie from an advantageous position.

:rs/dugtrio:
A really nice glue that force-removes threats that would run rings around you otherwise. I think <328 speed sets are really bad. Is it really worth ensuring that you always live modest ice beam after a spike for the small price of getting outsped by Raikou, Starmie, Celebi, Jirachi, +1 DD Tar, Zapdos, Salamence etc. I really don't think so. Adamant in general is pretty shit but it's just not worth it for that.

:rs/celebi:
I am not on the onion train the same way 75% of the community suddenly decided to be. Offensive is obviously its best set but its mad flawed. If you are running both CM and Pass, you forgo important coverage. Its biggest problem is just being useless in the aero/duggy matchup. Duggy outspeeds and KOs you, as does aero. If you think your opponent has cmPass, you can literally switch your dug into it raw and kill it from full, especiall with >328 adamant. Not to mention aero lives 2 psychics. Its super weak to status and has a boatload of common move weakness. PLS DONT CRIT ME sets are actually good glue, despite their hax-prone nature. leech doesnt let skarm gain health, and if you pair it with starmie, you actually advance quite nicely.

:rs/suicune:
So many good sets on one very dangerous pokemon. Surf Roar Rest just shuts down so many dreams. It's such a bulky set that it really seems to just wall everything. It functions as a pp-staller, a wall and an endgame sweeper, which is just insane. I think its main problem is that it can only really win the long game, which makes it susceptible to spontaneous offence and booms. Crocune is just nightmare material that causes me to pray on that sleep-talk->boom turn.

:rs/starmie:
I never find myself using super slow starmie because it's speed is definitely important. Recover sets are definitely really good if done well. I think Watermess' starmie-molt-celebi team was excellent. I had real trouble trying to get past it on ladder with multiple different teams. This guys really fits in well when you need a spinner that doesn't get negative progress vs skarm. I really like offensive, I think it has always been good. Pair it with celebi double rocks and you just wreck.

:rs/claydol:
Dol is so much better than I let on. It is by far the best spike remover in the tier. Not only that but it has an incredible moveset and a nice base speed. I think bulky sets that drop speed are gonna be the future. I have started using dol on my offence teams and dropping snorlax. Of course you have to make certain changes to facilitate this replacement, but the yield value is insane.

:rs/forretress:
I think the whole "Forre replacing skarm" skit is really weird. Skarm is better in every way. Forre is certainly really good again, and it has a much wider and more fruitful list of viable TSS compositions. However, I think its super easy to chip and break down. It's so different to skarm in that sense. I think forre's main utility is conjoining roles so that you can run another good mon instead of starmie/claydol. It is also way better in the magdol matchup than skarmory. I really wanna make hp bug work to hammer down doll and starmie, but I cannot see anything making more sense than eq boom.

:rs/milotic:
I think milo is pretty formidable despite my taunting of people who use it a lot. It walls all the mixed shit in the tier. I see a lot of people sticking a dugtrio alongside it, thinking that they are sound vs heracross and special offence. which is silly. This guy can really solo TSS though so long as you don't get crit. If you have the time on your hands, and the lack of human attributes, you can be really successful winning games with this guy, stalling your opponent out of their desire to play the game, like Cockuru.
milotic.PNG



:rs/breloom:
A fantastic addition to offence that can actually pick up multiple kills in an ideal matchup. Sleep is rly broken in end games and a really good momentum setter in the early game. It does suffer pretty bad from 4MSS. I have used hp bug myself, but I think its typically just better to run fight moves. Ghost is rly good if your trapping slot is a metagross or if you do not have one at all. Loom is just an excellent dd tar counter too and it has checkmate ability because of mach.

:rs/moltres:
Super punishing with spikes + roar. I still think that big 5 + moltres is an all-time S-tier team. I personally do not use it that much any more though.

:rs/flygon:
One of the most sturdy and consistent mons for me. Use bulky sets on superman teams and you should enjoy it's walling ability.
Golden Sun uses it really well. Flygoons who hate just misuse it. There is so much confusion and hysteria about how to use/EV flygon. Once you start using it as a phys resist that walls electrics, you really begin to appreciate what it can do. It's so nice not having to click some bullshit recovery move after coming on zapdos and losing all the momentum again.

:rs/snorlax:
Just not using this guy at all. I have completely replaced it with Claydol. Zapdos + Spikes just destroys it. Offensive sets are rly bad because they roll the dice vs Skarm, Tar, Meta, Gar switching in and out of them. I do like the Noitu set that Roro has been banging on about. Curselax is actually okay on Ojama-style weather reset teams.

:rs/vaporeon:
I really like vaporeon. It has a fantastic pairing with rock spam and phys offence in general. If you can land a sub on the switch, you can just about kill anything with well-made offence. I'll either opt for bulky modest or timid. bulky modest is really good on hyperoffence.

:rs/hariyama:
I really dont like passive, no attack move sets. I actually don't think they're viable. Or if they are, they are just really inconsistent. Max attack, max defence knock off 3 attacks is rly good on stall, and i like 4 attacks on offence.

:rs/heracross:
Lower than hariyama because Ive been using more Hari than hera. It sucks vs too many things; Mence, zap, molt, zard. Not to mention that the worst possible MU for it is Tar-Skarm-Gar TSS. I still think that sub-salac is one of the premier offensive threats in the game. Definitely my favourite stallbreaker in the game. It's a great choice vs a stall-fond opponent.

:rs/magneton:
Really down on mag of late. I think the tier is just evolving and realising that this guy is just a waste of a slot a lot of the time. Id much rather deal with skarm using CB boom/special attackers. It is obviously still needed on a lot of stall teams though. Pairs particularly well with claydol if you want to remain a virgin throughout adulthood.

:rs/venusaur:
I really like Venu. I know that sleep powder is high blood pressure simulator and that status ruins this guy, but its glue potential is amazing. really sticks TSS together like no other. I think its best paired with anti special offence mons like aero.

:rs/medicham:
Really like the damage output from this guy. I don't think you need to use CB at all, but I do like that set. sub-bb-fp-shadow ball is an excellent breaker set everybody should try. I havent used recover as much as I should have.

:rs/gyarados:
Kinda down on this guy recently. Feels too easy to deal with when im playing against it, and it just suffocates too much in the TSS matchup. All the things that are said about DD Mence are more true for this guy. It doesnt really set up on waters like its supposed to. Pert chips the shit out of it and doesnt take that much from its attacks. Cune has roar and milo has toxic. If you choose to run sub/taunt then you miss out on valuable coverage that lets certain airborne threats bully you. I think my fav set is DD-HP Fly-EQ-Double Edge. I also think taunt-hp rock has utility.

:rs/jynx:
LK + sub is really good. sleep something and get something into duggy range hopefully. people have a tendency to use shit sets though.

:rs/raikou:
Ive recently been using it as better jolteon on spike stack teams. Modest is really nice as it ohkoes duggy. CM-Tbolt-HP-Roar is a set I think people should try out. I also think this guy is rly good on special offence.

:rs/porygon2:
I am actually much fonder of P2 than most. Its damage output is shocking, but it stays alive forever with its lax of weaknesses, and it forces booms quite often.

:rs/jolteon:
Upon further testing I confirmed that it is in fact, really bad. needs double hidden power coverage and it gets fucked by twave. Dont run it w/out roar either.

:rs/smeargle:
Way better than clitster. hard to tech it to beat starmie, but it still wrecks. Spore, spikes, twave boom is good. I like wisp on it too. I find it quite difficult to tech this mon so that it doesnt hit a dead-end when a spinner switches into it turn 2. Still havent quite worked out how.

:rs/cloyster:
I still use it a bit for fast paced games on ladder. People seem to think that it eats water attacks better than skarm. I see them sticking cloy on really water weak teams thinking that it covers something, but it doesn't. Fun mon, but it's always gonna lose the TSS/SO matchup.

:rs/kingdra:
Gets walled by a ridiculous amount of shit, but absolutely wrecks offence. This mon is certainly match up dependent. I think it has great return if you dug the opposing bliss. I think a really nice way of using it is to pair it with rock spam.

:rs/umbreon:
Most reliable suit trapper in the tier. It's also an excellent special wall and wish passer. It does however suffer from blissey syndrome, as it gives phys mons and skarmory free turns to switch in.

:rs/charizard:
Never use this guy. That to me, tells me that it is overshadowed by other things.

:rs/ludicolo:
I don't get the ludi hate. I think it's a really good rain sweeper. I have made rain teams in the past where I used this guy and no kingdra. stab hp grass is so noticeable vs cune and milo.

:rs/marowak:
AgiliZap + this is something I use a little bit. Can sweep games earlier than p much any other mon.

:rs/Scizor:
Been using a lot of this dude recently. Absolute beast. very hard to set up as it gets whomped by status and fire moves, but its sweeping potential is off the rails. There are some major drawbacks. Jolly only hits 376 speed, so you get outsped by base 130s, and of course, you are required to run jolly. SD-Endure-HP Steel- Reversal can really do damage. Here's one of my fav replays of all time https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen3ou-915390506

:rs/houndoom:
Not amazing but it's a nice surefire gengar-trap option and it messes up the onion too.

:rs/blaziken:
Annihilates TSS. little slow and frail though.

:rs/ninjask:
Great dug punisher. I like to use it on that Hclat team. way better than 1100 ladder lords would make it seem. I get genuine return value consistently from this guy.

:rs/steelix:
Has good walling ability some of the time. Teams with poor mix coverage get hard walled by it.

:rs/politoed:
Hypno hydro ib thief is an amazing set of moves. It is frail asf though.

:rs/weezing:
Very over-hyped by the adv community. All it does it wisp shit and hazard a lucky boom. Don't get me wrong, wisp is good but the notion that sticking this mon on an offence team suddenly beats milotic is a farce. Takes way too much from surf, and the only way it beats milotic is by killing itself??

:rs/armaldo:
God forbid you bring a PLS DONT CRIT ME team vs this guy. good mon. Too hard to fit it on a team though ):

:rs/machamp:
Can really mess stall up. RS just doesnt do enough damage though

Rubbish Bin

:rs/camerupt:
I don't actually think it rly has a niche but I've left it here just so that TheAsianC3PO Camerupt69 can see that I think it's bad. Also its not like blaziken at all. Use this drugged out, desert cow against me and I'll give it a third hump.
 
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