Doubles Aegislash

talkingtree

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[OVERVIEW]

A great defensive typing and solid all-around stats let Aegislash work as a switch-in to many top threats, such as Tapu Lele, Mega Kangaskhan, and Kyurem-B. Nearly unresisted STAB coverage and a huge Special Attack stat give it a strong offensive presence as well, making it capable of KOing prominent Fairy- and Psychic-types such as Tapu Bulu and Jirachi. Access to Wide Guard further cements its role as a solid utility Pokemon. Aegislash's exclusive ability Stance Change grants it the ability to shift between being an offensive powerhouse and a formidable tank. A low Speed stat is useful in ensuring that Aegislash takes hits in its bulkier Shield forme, but it leaves Aegislash easily whittled down over the course of a match when combined with its role as a pivot. Aegislash is also especially vulnerable to status due to King's Shield failing to block non-attacking moves.

[SET]
name: Wide Guard Attacker
move 1: Shadow Ball
move 2: Flash Cannon
move 3: Wide Guard
move 4: King's Shield
item: Ghostium Z / Weakness Policy
ability: Stance Change
nature: Quiet
evs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

Shadow Ball is Aegislash's primary STAB attack, useful for taking on Psychic-types like Necrozma and Mega Metagross. Flash Cannon serves as the secondary method of attack, hitting Fairy- and Rock-types for super effective damage and granting Aegislash a way to damage Mega Kangaskhan. Wide Guard stops spread attacks such as Earthquake, Heat Wave, and Rock Slide, the former two of which can severely damage Aegislash and the latter of which could hurt its ally. King's Shield is necessary to change formes; it also stalls out field conditions, protects Aegislash while its partner attacks a threat, and scouts for attacks while potentially crippling any foes that try to make contact with Aegislash.

Set Details
========

Ghostium Z powers up Shadow Ball into the doubly strong Never-Ending Nightmare, which is useful for the extra damage whenever Aegislash really needs it; holding Ghostium Z also has the benefit of helping Aegislash survive Knock Off. Weakness Policy has the ability to turn Aegislash into a fearsome attacker, and with Aegislash's high defenses and fairly common weaknesses, it will often be activated. However, it necessitates that Aegislash be hit by a super effective attack, making it difficult to predict when it will activate and only usable if Aegislash has enough health to survive the hit. A Quiet nature and maximum Special Attack EVs give Aegislash power, while maximum HP investment improves general bulk. A negative Speed nature and 0 Speed IVs ensure that Aegislash will take most hits in Shield forme. 172 Speed EVs and a Modest nature are also an option if Aegislash has Tailwind support, as they allow it to outrun Mega Gengar and Tapu Koko under Tailwind as well as uninvested Milotic outside of Tailwind.

Usage Tips
========

Pivot in on foes that can't really damage Aegislash and force them out, hopefully dealing a fair amount of damage to the switch-in. Use Wide Guard whenever a predicted spread attack threatens Aegislash or its ally. As Ghostium Z is a one-use item, it should be saved for when Aegislash needs the extra power to remove a particularly large threat to the team or to guarantee a hit, even through Protect, to take out a weakened foe. If using Weakness Policy as the item, keep Aegislash at high health so that it can survive a super effective hit and retaliate. Be cautious of slower attackers, as Aegislash should avoid taking hits in Blade forme. This set is typically most effective early- or mid-game, while it still has enough health to serve as an effective pivot, but it can be saved if Aegislash is being used to check a particular threat on the opponent's team.

Team Options
========

Almost any team can use Aegislash's support, as this set will rarely be dead weight in battle. Any Pokemon threatened by common spread attacks, such as Mega Charizard Y, Kyurem-B, or Shaymin-S, pairs well with this set. A Fairy-type like Tapu Bulu or a Fighting-type like Terrakion helps Aegislash by threatening the Dark-types that scare it out. Checks to Fire- and Ground-types pair especially well with Aegislash, so Water-types such as Milotic and Azumarill or Ground-types such as Landorus are solid options.

[SET]
name: Substitute Tank
move 1: Shadow Ball
move 2: Flash Cannon / Wide Guard
move 3: Substitute
move 4: King's Shield
item: Leftovers
ability: Stance Change
nature: Quiet
evs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

Shadow Ball is Aegislash's primary STAB attack, used for its excellent neutral coverage. Flash Cannon works as a secondary STAB attack, mostly for Dark- and Normal-types. If the extra coverage is not needed, Wide Guard can be used in its place, allowing Aegislash to support teammates weak to spread attacks. Substitute takes advantage of Aegislash's great defenses and lets it pressure less offensive builds. King's Shield drops foes' Attack, changes forme, and stalls for Leftovers recovery to regain health after using Substitute.

Set Details
========

Leftovers is the optimal item for this set, as it provides passive healing. There are no relevant bulk benchmarks for Aegislash to hit, so a simple spread of maximum HP and Special Attack is most effective. Minimizing Speed with 0 Speed IVs keeps Aegislash in Shield forme for most attacks and helps its Substitute survive them while also improving Aegislash's Trick Room matchup. If using Aegislash with Tailwind support, 172 Speed and a Modest nature allow it to outspeed 0 Spe Milotic while also outspeeding Mega Gengar and Tapu Koko with Tailwind active. Using fast Substitute Aegislash also helps against other Aegislash.

Usage Tips
========

Most of the time, this set plays similarly to non-Substitute variants as a solid offensive pivot; Aegislash switches in on weak or resisted attacks and forces its foes out. Use Substitute on a predicted switch or in otherwise favorable matchups. From behind the safety of its Substitute, Aegislash can work on breaking down its checks for later on in the game. King's Shield is useful to stall for Leftovers recovery when Aegislash is low on health or when you predict that the opponent may try to double target Aegislash. This set works best if used late-game as a cleaner, but it also functions well as a passive redirector of sorts, as an Aegislash with a Substitute up is a threat that opponents cannot ignore. Substitute Aegislash fits best on teams that have plentiful ways to break down its checks and need a wincon, but even without such support, Substitute may be an effective filler move for Aegislash.

Team Options
========

Even more so than other sets, Substitute Aegislash is dependent on its teammates being able to remove its checks and clear the path to victory. Water-, Fairy-, and Fighting-types have clear typing advantages over the threats most commonly used to check Aegislash, such as Hoopa-U, Heatran, and Landorus. Fake Out users, including Mega Kangaskhan and Scrafty, and redirectors, such as Amoonguss, make it easier for Aegislash to set up its Substitute.

[STRATEGY COMMENTS]
Other Options
=============

Shadow Sneak grants Aegislash a priority attack and the ability to pick off weakened threats, but oftentimes Wide Guard or Substitute helps Aegislash more. Using Shadow Sneak also leaves Aegislash vulnerable in its Blade forme for the remainder of the turn, and Psychic Terrain can prevent it from hitting grounded foes. Life Orb boosts all of Aegislash's moves without having to be hit by a super effective attack first, though it forces Aegislash to lose health and makes it more difficult for Aegislash to reliably check what it needs to. Safety Goggles shields Aegislash from Spore and Rage Powder, but other items are typically more useful, and Amoonguss is the only common user of such moves.

Checks and Counters
===================

**Dark-type Pokemon**: Dark-types such as Hydreigon, Alolan Muk, and Scrafty have the bulk to stomach a hit from Aegislash, and they severely damage it with their Dark-type STAB attacks. Scrafty and Alolan Muk also have the advantage of a lower Speed stat to hit Aegislash in its Blade forme. With Hyperspace Fury, Hoopa-U has the distinction of being the only Dark-type that can OHKO an Aegislash that is behind its Substitute.

**Fire-type Pokemon**: Heatran, Volcanion, and Mega Charizard Y all nail Aegislash with Heat Wave and have ways to circumvent Wide Guard should the situation call for it.

**Ground-type Pokemon**: Landorus is one of the few Pokemon capable of OHKOing a Shield forme Aegislash, accomplished by using Earth Power. Landorus-T can also be threatening, but Wide Guard stops it cold unless it carries Knock Off or Earth Power. Gastrodon has the bulk and movepool to take any hit Aegislash can deal and heal it off, and it has a low Speed stat and STAB Earth Power to OHKO Aegislash in its frail Blade forme.

**Taunt and Encore**: Any move that messes with Aegislash's ability to change formes severely hurts its ability to function, so Taunt and Encore users such as Thundurus and Togekiss can give it pause.
 
Last edited:

Bughouse

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Nah I don't think there's a reason to separate sub wide guard from regular sub 2 attacks. Flash Cannon is pretty rarely used anyway, mostly only for Diancie and Kyub in general or for Kanga or Hydreigon, when already behind a sub. Anything else that's common you're Shadow Balling.

So if you don't particularly need these 4 hits, Wide Guard slashes in just fine.

We did it that way in xy analysis and imo it should stay.
 

Memoric

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German Aegi is already there so idk what the fuss is about lol. IDK what the hell "hybrid" german Aegi is, though
 
"84 Speed / Modest also an option if using with Tailwind support"

I read somewhere in the Doubles discussion (I think from n1n1), that outrunning Diancie-Mega and Offensive Thundy is no longer the benchmark. To be honest, I agree as both are no longer used (as much). Rather I found outspeeding Tapu Koko and Mega Gengar to be far more useful under Tailwind support. 100 EV investment in speed and in Timid Nature is what I use, and I believe it's something to consider.
 

talkingtree

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Makes sense, I'll make the change to 168 Speed / Modest, which is a direct improvement on 100 Speed / Timid, as it saves about 18 points of Special Attack when in Blade forme, despite reaching the same amount of Speed. Thanks Test Bot!

I'll probably get this out of WIP sometime tomorrow
 

Lemonade

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regarding wincon, sweeper probably isn't the right word in this case, more like "Sub lets Aegi pressure" or something.
Why wincon / win condition and not sweeper? This isn't a battle commentary where you are explaining how to create a specific situation for Bisharp to sweep (ex weakening check to x% so Bisharp KOes them without taking damage and thus can survive another attack and KO that mon etc.). Basically what I'm getting at is calling a Pokemon itself a "win condition" is a misuse of the word "condition", and I know you guys are considering your position in the match or all the factors involved in actually winning with the given Pokemon, but newer players tend to pick up this terminology without considering "winning" (ie using it interchangeably with sweeper).

(Examples: Fire Emblem, FF Tactics victory conditions: defeat all enemies, defeat the leader, survive for x turns--all these are based on the state of the game. YGO: reducing opp to 0 LP, having Exodia in your hand, drawing any number of cards that enables you to get Magical Scientist and Catapult Turtle out on the first turn, etc. Basically any game that has defined "winning").

Edit: Here's something else I thought of about why you should care regarding new players and such. Since we're all competitive players, I don't think it's too much of a stretch to say we would rather have good discussion. So let's say there's a game on stours and peeps are in the lobby. Someone says "What's player X's wincon?" From a rando, would you rather hear "Clefable because it has good defense and can set up Calm Mind" or "Clefable completely wrecks this team cuz all X needs to do is get Pokemon A down to 60% and it can't stop Clef anymore". Definitely the second right? It shows they have at least grasped the basics of each team, and this type of thinking gives them a tool to improve on their own--good for competitive environment.

Problem is right now new players are going to answer the first because that is the most prevalent way people use "wincon". Bad cuz it offers nothing to the battle discussion. ex from OU forum
it starts using Bulk Up to patch its low atk and makes it have a good amount of def and spD, being a dangerous win condition late game
A new player reading this will probably say "Talonflame cuz Bulk Up boosts its attack and defense" instead of "Talonflame cuz if it gets a Bulk Up vs Clef lategame, nothing can stop it", when talking about an actual match.

Ideally people start only using "wincon" in regards to battles, so that when anyone hears the term, they also hear how people assess both sides (teams and position) in regards to actually winning.
 

Memoric

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OV: You should really say that Aegislash works as a great pivot thanks to the combination of bulk, typing, and power. It's not just good for its ability to switch in on stuff, but at its ability to punish with damage on a good number of good matchups. You should also mention how Stance Change effectively lets it change between a tank and an offensive monster; you only really highlight the part about its offense. Lastly, say that its low Speed can live it easily whittled down as a match goes on thanks to its role and Speed making it having to take hits a lot.

WG

Moves: "aids the team" is fluff on Wide Guard lol.

SD: Say that WeakPol is not as "reliable" in a way. Also, just say that the HP "maximizes its bulk." This is honestly a case of "you're not wrong" lol but it's not like we EV Deo-A's Def to patch that one up.

UT: Add more about using Ghostium Z "properly", like say stuff about using it when you really need something gone by nuking it or guaranteeing a hit through Protect or something. Also, explain why it's most useful early- to mid-game.

TO: Just say that general checks to Fire- and Ground-types are good; it's not just Waters (and I wouldn't list Keldeo as an example for stuff rn)

Sub

Moves: You don't need Flash Cannon for Fairy-types as you still hit them with Shadow Ball; using it is mainly for just Darks and Kanga. Also, no one's really surprised by German Aegi in this day and age lol, just say what Sub does. Also, say why / how Sub does what you said it does.

SD: Call me a madman but 168 Speed with Modest is also useful in this set. With Flash Cannon, it can still be a threat if going fast and it doesn't really need the help of a boosting item to be effective.

UT: You should really say what kinds of teams Sub Aegi should be run over the first one.

Double Protects are rarely done and are rarely good i.e. bad example. Just say that using Sub is a good idea on favorable matchups. Again, no one's really surprised by WG on Sub sets these days so just kinda word it like you did last set. Most (good) players take note of the possibility of either being run, anyway. This set actually plays quite similarly to the last set in the sense that it can also pivot and break down foes, but instead of having offensive tools it has the option to be a wincon. It's not exactly a "cleaner" but more like something that goes for its endgame by just breaking down its checks then going from there with good matchups. On that note, mention that it can break down would-be checks behind a sub.

OO: Sneak leaves it vulnerable, can get uberpwned by Tapu Lele's Psychic Terrain

CC: Muk-A is also slower.


1/2
 

Pocket

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If you are going Quiet as the primary nature, shouldn't you set Aegislash's Spe IVs to 0?
 
  • Overview: "punishing many potential foes such as Jirachi with heavy damage" is kind of awkward and vague, I'd change it to something along the lines of "capable of KOing the Fairy- and Psychic-types that are so prominent in the metagame"
  • Moves (Wide Guard Attacker): Remove the mention of Cresselia and replace it with a more relevant Psychic-type such as Necrozma
  • Set Details (Wide Guard Attacker): Add the mention about 0 IVs being desirable if running a Quiet nature
  • Set Details (Substitute Tank): Add the mention about 0 IVs being desirable if running a Quiet nature
  • Team Options (Substitute Tank): Remove the mention of Togekiss because it is not relevant this gen
The analysis is pretty watertight, so I don't have much to add. Do this for 2/2 and send it off to GP!
 

Memoric

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  • Overview: "punishing many potential foes such as Jirachi with heavy damage" is kind of awkward and vague, I'd change it to something along the lines of "capable of KOing the Fairy- and Psychic-types that are so prominent in the metagame"
I think the original line was already fine. Aegislash has always been the type of Pokemon that was played to punish slots on the field after it comes in and pivots. It's not about KOing specific targets, it's about the fact that Aegislash is capable of crumbling most neutral foes with its mentioned high power and neutral coverage
 

The Dutch Plumberjack

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C&C & TFP Leader


remove
add / fix (comments); (AC=add comma; RC=remove comma; SC=semicolon)
GP 1/2
[OVERVIEW]

A great defensive typing and solid all-around stats let Aegislash work as a switch-in on to many top threats, such as Tapu Lele, Mega Kangaskhan, and Kyurem-B. Nearly unresisted STAB coverage and a huge Special Attack stat give it a strong offensive presence as well, making it capable of KOing prominent Fairy- and Psychic-types such as Jirachi and Tapu Bulu and Jirachi. Access to Wide Guard further cements its role as a solid utility Pokemon. Aegislash's exclusive ability Stance Change grants it the ability to shift between being an offensive powerhouse and a formidable tank. A low Speed stat is useful in ensuring that Aegislash takes hits in its bulkier Shield forme, but it leaves Aegislash easily whittled down over the course of a match when combined with its role as a pivot. Aegislash is also especially vulnerable to status due to King's Shield failing to block non-attacking moves.

[SET]
name: Wide Guard Attacker
move 1: Shadow Ball
move 2: Flash Cannon
move 3: Wide Guard
move 4: King's Shield
item: Ghostium Z / Weakness Policy
ability: Stance Change
nature: Quiet
evs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

Shadow Ball is Aegislash's primary STAB attack, useful for taking on Psychic-types like Necrozma and Mega Metagross. Flash Cannon serves as the secondary method of attack, hitting Fairy- and Rock-types for super effective damage and granting Aegislash a way to damage Mega Kangaskhan. Wide Guard stops spread attacks such as Earthquake, Heat Wave, and Rock Slide, the former two of which can severely damage Aegislash and the latter of which could hurt its ally. King's Shield is necessary to change formes; it also stalls out field conditions, protects Aegislash while its partner attacks a threat, and scouts for attacks while potentially crippling any foes that try to make contact with Aegislash.

Set Details
========

Ghostium Z powers up Shadow Ball into the doubly strong Never-Ending Nightmare, which is useful for the extra damage whenever Aegislash really needs it and has the bonus of helping Aegislash survive Knock Off. Weakness Policy has the ability to turn Aegislash into a fearsome attacker, and with Aegislash's high defenses and fairly common weaknesses, it will often be activated. However, it necessitates that Aegislash be hit by a super effective attack, (AC) and is thus making it difficult to predict when it will proc and only usable if Aegislash has enough health to survive the hit. A Quiet nature and maximum Special Attack EVs give Aegislash power, while maximum HP investment improves general bulk. A negative Speed nature and 0 Speed IVs ensure that Aegislash will take most hits in Shield forme. 172 Speed EVs and a Modest nature are also an option if Aegislash has Tailwind support, as they allow it to outrun Mega Gengar and Tapu Koko under Tailwind as well as uninvested Milotic outside of Tailwind.

Usage Tips
========

Pivot in on foes that can't really damage Aegislash and force them out, hopefully dealing a fair amount of damage to the switch-in. Use Wide Guard whenever a predicted spread attack threatens Aegislash or its ally. As Ghostium Z is a one-use item, it should be saved for when Aegislash needs the extra power to remove a particularly large threat to the team or to guarantee a hit, even through Protect, to take out a weakened foe. If using Weakness Policy as the item, keep Aegislash at high health so that it can survive a super effective hit and retaliate. Be cautious of slower attackers, as Aegislash should avoid taking hits in Blade forme. This set is typically most effective early- or mid-game, while it still has enough health to serve as an effective pivot, but it can be saved if Aegislash is being used to check a particular threat on the opponent's team.

Team Options
========

Almost any team can use Aegislash's support, as this set will rarely be deadweight in battle. Any Pokemon threatened by common spread attacks, such as Mega Charizard Y, Kyurem-B, or Shaymin-S, pairs well with this set. A Fairy-type like Tapu Bulu or a Fighting-type like Terrakion helps Aegislash by threatening the Dark-types that scare it out. Checks to Fire- and Ground-types pair especially well with Aegislash, so Water-types such as Milotic and Azumarill or Ground-types such as Landorus are solid options.

[SET]
name: Substitute Tank
move 1: Shadow Ball
move 2: Flash Cannon / Wide Guard
move 3: Substitute
move 4: King's Shield
item: Leftovers
ability: Stance Change
nature: Quiet
evs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

Shadow Ball is Aegislash's primary STAB attack, used for its excellent neutral coverage. Flash Cannon may work as a secondary STAB attack, mostly for Dark- and Normal-types. If the extra coverage is not needed, Wide Guard can be used in its place, allowing Aegislash to support teammates weak to spread attacks. Substitute takes advantage of Aegislash's great defenses and lets it pressure less offensive builds. King's Shield drops foes's foes' Attack, changes forme, and stalls for Leftovers recovery to regain health after using Substitute.

Set Details
========

Leftovers is the optimal item for this set, as it provides passive healing. There are no relevant bulk benchmarks for Aegislash to hit, so a simple spread of maximum HP and max Special Attack is most effective. Minimizing Speed with 0 Speed IVs keeps Aegislash in Shield forme for most attacks and helps its Substitute survive them (RC) while also improving Aegislash's Trick Room matchup. If using Aegislash with Tailwind support, 172 Speed and a Modest nature allow it to outspeed Milotic while also outspeeding Mega Gengar and Tapu Koko with Tailwind set. Using fast Substitute Aegislash also helps with the Aegislash mirror.

Usage Tips
========

Most of the time, this set plays similarly to non-Substitute variants as a solid offensive pivot; Aegislash switches in on weak or resisted attacks and forces its foes out. Use Substitute on a predicted switch or in otherwise favorable matchups. From behind the safety of its Substitute, Aegislash can work on breaking down its checks for later on in the game. King's Shield is useful to stall for Leftovers recovery when Aegislash is low on health or when you predict that the opponent may try to double target Aegislash. This set works best if used late-game as a cleaner, but it also functions well as a passive redirector of sorts, as a set-up Substitute Aegislash is a threat that opponents cannot ignore. Substitute Aegislash fits best on teams that have plentiful ways to break down its checks and need a wincon, but it can also be effective as a third move whenever Wide Guard support is not needed. (dunno what you mean here, just that dual STAB + Sub + KS Aegislash is a fine set? needs that dangling "it" resolved anyways, but then it also borderline cross-references since this set has Wide Guard slashed too, meaning this sentence really doesn't make much sense if not read in the context of the dedicated WG set being here too. probably rephrase this to say it'll always pull its weight or just outright kill it)

Team Options
========

Even more so than other sets, Substitute Aegislash is dependent on its teammates being able to remove its checks and clear the path to victory. Water-, Fairy-, and Fighting-types have clear typing advantages over the threats most commonly used to check Aegislash, such as Hoopa-U, Heatran, and Landorus. Fake Out users, including Mega Kangaskhan and Scrafty, and redirectors, such as Amoonguss, make it easier for Aegislash to set up its Substitute.

[STRATEGY COMMENTS]
Other Options
=============

Shadow Sneak grants Aegislash a priority attack and the ability to pick off weakened threats, but often times oftentimes Wide Guard or Substitute help helps Aegislash more. Using Shadow Sneak also leaves Aegislash vulnerable for the remainder of the turn, and Psychic Terrain can prevent it from hitting grounded foes. Life Orb boosts all of Aegislash's moves without the caveat of having to be hit by a super effective attack first, though it forces Aegislash to lose health and makes it more difficult for Aegislash to reliably check what it needs to. Safety Goggles shields Aegislash from Spore and Rage Powder, but other items are typically more useful, (AC) and Amoonguss is the only common user of such moves.

Checks and Counters
===================

**Dark-type Pokemon**: Dark-types such as Hydreigon, Alolan Muk, and Scrafty have the bulk to stomach a hit from Aegislash, and they severely damage it with their Dark-type STAB attacks. Scrafty and Alolan Muk also have the advantage of a lower Speed stat to hit Aegislash in its Blade forme. With Hyperspace Fury, Hoopa-U has the distinction of being the only Dark-type that can OHKO an Aegislash that is behind its Substitute.

**Fire-type Pokemon**: Heatran, Volcanion, and Mega Charizard Y all nail Aegislash with Heat Wave (RC) and have ways to circumvent Wide Guard should the situation call for it.

**Ground-type Pokemon**: Landorus is one of the few Pokemon capable of OHKOing a Shield forme Aegislash, using Earth Power. Landorus-T can also be threatening, but Wide Guard stops it cold unless it carries Knock Off or Earth Power. Gastrodon has the bulk and movepool to take any hit Aegislash can deal and heal it off, and it has a low Speed and STAB Earth Power to OHKO Aegislash in its frail Blade forme.

**Taunt and Encore**: Any move that messes with Aegislash's ability to change formes severely hurts its ability to function, so Taunt and Encore users such as Thundurus and Togekiss, respectively, (you can keep it if you have to but pretty redundant / not essential to understanding the text from what I can tell) can give it pause.
 
Last edited:

talkingtree

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Doubles Captain
Saw the placeholder and then forgot to check back later, oops

Implemented it now, let me know if that last sentence in UT of Sub is still unclear!
 

GP 2/2
remove add comments

[OVERVIEW]

A great defensive typing and solid all-around stats let Aegislash work as a switch-in to many top threats, such as Tapu Lele, Mega Kangaskhan, and Kyurem-B. Nearly unresisted STAB coverage and a huge Special Attack stat give it a strong offensive presence as well, making it capable of KOing prominent Fairy- and Psychic-types such as Tapu Bulu and Jirachi. Access to Wide Guard further cements its role as a solid utility Pokemon. Aegislash's exclusive ability Stance Change grants it the ability to shift between being an offensive powerhouse and a formidable tank. A low Speed stat is useful in ensuring that Aegislash takes hits in its bulkier Shield forme, but it leaves Aegislash easily whittled down over the course of a match when combined with its role as a pivot. Aegislash is also especially vulnerable to status due to King's Shield failing to block non-attacking moves.

[SET]
name: Wide Guard Attacker
move 1: Shadow Ball
move 2: Flash Cannon
move 3: Wide Guard
move 4: King's Shield
item: Ghostium Z / Weakness Policy
ability: Stance Change
nature: Quiet
evs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

Shadow Ball is Aegislash's primary STAB attack, useful for taking on Psychic-types like Necrozma and Mega Metagross. Flash Cannon serves as the secondary method of attack, hitting Fairy- and Rock-types for super effective damage and granting Aegislash a way to damage Mega Kangaskhan. Wide Guard stops spread attacks such as Earthquake, Heat Wave, and Rock Slide, the former two of which can severely damage Aegislash and the latter of which could hurt its ally. King's Shield is necessary to change formes; it also stalls out field conditions, protects Aegislash while its partner attacks a threat, and scouts for attacks while potentially crippling any foes that try to make contact with Aegislash.

Set Details
========

Ghostium Z powers up Shadow Ball into the doubly strong Never-Ending Nightmare, which is useful for the extra damage whenever Aegislash really needs it; (semicolon) holding Ghostium Z also and has the bonus benefit of helping Aegislash survive Knock Off. Weakness Policy has the ability to turn Aegislash into a fearsome attacker, and with Aegislash's high defenses and fairly common weaknesses, it will often be activated. However, it necessitates that Aegislash be hit by a super effective attack, making it difficult to predict when it will proc activate and only usable if Aegislash has enough health to survive the hit. A Quiet nature and maximum Special Attack EVs give Aegislash power, while maximum HP investment improves general bulk. A negative Speed nature and 0 Speed IVs ensure that Aegislash will take most hits in Shield forme. 172 Speed EVs and a Modest nature are also an option if Aegislash has Tailwind support, as they allow it to outrun Mega Gengar and Tapu Koko under Tailwind as well as uninvested Milotic outside of Tailwind.

Usage Tips
========

Pivot in on foes that can't really damage Aegislash and force them out, hopefully dealing a fair amount of damage to the switch-in. Use Wide Guard whenever a predicted spread attack threatens Aegislash or its ally. As Ghostium Z is a one-use item, it should be saved for when Aegislash needs the extra power to remove a particularly large threat to the team or to guarantee a hit, even through Protect, to take out a weakened foe. If using Weakness Policy as the item, keep Aegislash at high health so that it can survive a super effective hit and retaliate. Be cautious of slower attackers, as Aegislash should avoid taking hits in Blade forme. This set is typically most effective early- or mid-game, while it still has enough health to serve as an effective pivot, but it can be saved if Aegislash is being used to check a particular threat on the opponent's team.

Team Options
========

Almost any team can use Aegislash's support, as this set will rarely be dead(space)weight in battle. Any Pokemon threatened by common spread attacks, such as Mega Charizard Y, Kyurem-B, or Shaymin-S, pairs well with this set. A Fairy-type like Tapu Bulu or a Fighting-type like Terrakion helps Aegislash by threatening the Dark-types that scare it out. Checks to Fire- and Ground-types pair especially well with Aegislash, so Water-types such as Milotic and Azumarill or Ground-types such as Landorus are solid options.

[SET]
name: Substitute Tank
move 1: Shadow Ball
move 2: Flash Cannon / Wide Guard
move 3: Substitute
move 4: King's Shield
item: Leftovers
ability: Stance Change
nature: Quiet
evs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

Shadow Ball is Aegislash's primary STAB attack, used for its excellent neutral coverage. Flash Cannon may works as a secondary STAB attack, mostly for Dark- and Normal-types. If the extra coverage is not needed, Wide Guard can be used in its place, allowing Aegislash to support teammates weak to spread attacks. Substitute takes advantage of Aegislash's great defenses and lets it pressure less offensive builds. King's Shield drops foes' Attack, changes forme, and stalls for Leftovers recovery to regain health after using Substitute.

Set Details
========

Leftovers is the optimal item for this set, as it provides passive healing. There are no relevant bulk benchmarks for Aegislash to hit, so a simple spread of maximum HP and Special Attack is most effective. Minimizing Speed with 0 Speed IVs keeps Aegislash in Shield forme for most attacks and helps its Substitute survive them while also improving Aegislash's Trick Room matchup. If using Aegislash with Tailwind support, 172 Speed and a Modest nature allow it to always outspeed Milotic while also outspeeding Mega Gengar and Tapu Koko with Tailwind set active. Using fast Substitute Aegislash also helps with the against other Aegislash mirror.

Usage Tips
========

Most of the time, this set plays similarly to non-Substitute variants as a solid offensive pivot; Aegislash switches in on weak or resisted attacks and forces its foes out. Use Substitute on a predicted switch or in otherwise favorable matchups. From behind the safety of its Substitute, Aegislash can work on breaking down its checks for later on in the game. King's Shield is useful to stall for Leftovers recovery when Aegislash is low on health or when you predict that the opponent may try to double target Aegislash. This set works best if used late-game as a cleaner, but it also functions well as a passive redirector of sorts, as an set-up Substitute Aegislash with a Substitute up is a threat that opponents cannot ignore. Substitute Aegislash fits best on teams that have plentiful ways to break down its checks and need a wincon, but even without such support, Substitute may be an effective filler move for Aegislash.

Team Options
========

Even more so than other sets, Substitute Aegislash is dependent on its teammates being able to remove its checks and clear the path to victory. Water-, Fairy-, and Fighting-types have clear typing advantages over the threats most commonly used to check Aegislash, such as Hoopa-U, Heatran, and Landorus. Fake Out users, including Mega Kangaskhan and Scrafty, and redirectors, such as Amoonguss, make it easier for Aegislash to set up its Substitute.

[STRATEGY COMMENTS]
Other Options
=============

Shadow Sneak grants Aegislash a priority attack and the ability to pick off weakened threats, but oftentimes Wide Guard or Substitute helps Aegislash more. Using Shadow Sneak also leaves Aegislash vulnerable in its Blade forme for the remainder of the turn, and Psychic Terrain can prevent it from hitting grounded foes. Life Orb boosts all of Aegislash's moves without the caveat of having to be hit by a super effective attack first, though it forces Aegislash to lose health and makes it more difficult for Aegislash to reliably check what it needs to. Safety Goggles shields Aegislash from Spore and Rage Powder, but other items are typically more useful, and Amoonguss is the only common user of such moves.

Checks and Counters
===================

**Dark-type Pokemon**: Dark-types such as Hydreigon, Alolan Muk, and Scrafty have the bulk to stomach a hit from Aegislash, and they severely damage it with their Dark-type STAB attacks. Scrafty and Alolan Muk also have the advantage of a lower Speed stat to hit Aegislash in its Blade forme. With Hyperspace Fury, Hoopa-U has the distinction of being the only Dark-type that can OHKO an Aegislash that is behind its Substitute.

**Fire-type Pokemon**: Heatran, Volcanion, and Mega Charizard Y all nail Aegislash with Heat Wave and have ways to circumvent Wide Guard should the situation call for it.

**Ground-type Pokemon**: Landorus is one of the few Pokemon capable of OHKOing a Shield forme Aegislash, accomplished by using Earth Power. Landorus-T can also be threatening, but Wide Guard stops it cold unless it carries Knock Off or Earth Power. Gastrodon has the bulk and movepool to take any hit Aegislash can deal and heal it off, and it has a low Speed stat and STAB Earth Power to OHKO Aegislash in its frail Blade forme.

**Taunt and Encore**: Any move that messes with Aegislash's ability to change formes severely hurts its ability to function, so Taunt and Encore users such as Thundurus and Togekiss can give it pause.
 
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