Announcement Aipom is now banned from SM LC

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Cautiously Optimistic
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After much discussion within the council, we have decided that Aipom will be banned from this generation of LC moving forward.

The addition of Tail Slap to Aipom's movepool has heavily improved its ability to be a wallbreaker. Because of how damage rolls function in LC, low base power moves are capable of doing noticeable amounts of damage.

So this is the average calculation for the standard Aipom set as of now in LC (15 Attack w/ LO):

116 Atk Life Orb Aipom Tail Slap (5 hits) vs. 156 HP / 196 Def Eviolite Mienfoo: 20-25 (86.9 - 108.6%) -- approx. 6.3% chance to OHKO
Possible damage amounts: (4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 5)

Ok, big deal, right? It could already do that with Fury Swipes. But, take a look at these calcs:

116 Atk Life Orb Aipom Tail Slap (5 hits) vs. 212 HP / 196+ Def Eviolite Spritzee: 20-25 (74 - 92.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
Possible damage amounts: (4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 5)

116 Atk Life Orb Aipom Tail Slap (5 hits) vs. 116 HP / 236+ Def Eviolite Vullaby: 20-25 (80 - 100%) -- approx. 6.3% chance to OHKO
Possible damage amounts: (4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 5)

So as you can see, more defensive options such as Spritzee and Defensive Vullaby are no longer able to switch in to Aipom. By no longer needing to remove their items you're taking away a level of prediction, making Aipom easier to use. But this isn't the real problem. The real problem is how much damage Aipom can do to its resists.

Standard Eviolite resists are fine against Aipom. Tail Slap will roll 1s and you're in the clear. However, remove that Eviolite, and...

116 Atk Life Orb Aipom Tail Slap (5 hits) vs. 0 HP / 36 Def Pawniard: 15-20 (71.4 - 95.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
Possible damage amounts: (3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 4)

A resist needs to reach at least 16 Defense for Aipom's Tail Slap to start rolling 1 damage. a Non-resist needs tor each 31 in order to resist. Which non-resist in LC is capable of reaching that number without a boost? None of them. The highest a non-resist in LC can reach is 30, achieved by Shellder and Koffing. Shellder is OHKO'd under standard conditions and Koffing is OHKO'd after rocks.

So what about Aipom's checks? Aipom's main checks would have to be Rock/Steel types defensively, Fighting-types offensively, and any Pokemon with an ability to punish contact moves.

- Most Rock/Steel types are victim to one of Aipom's coverage moves, as it can use Fire Punch, Brick Break, and Seed Bomb/Grass Knot. Although Ferroseed can spell impending doom for a Tail Slapping Aipom, it has no issue Fire Punching it into oblivion. Same goes with Pawniard and Brick Break. Most of the prominent Rock-types carry a secondary typing which makes them weak to Grass Knot. Archen is an exception, although most Archen sets are offensive in nature and have Defeatist activated after a Knock Off or Tail Slap.

- Fighting-types can still take it out in a single hit but they have to revenge it. Aipom can live a Timburr Mach Punch from a high HP so it has to Drain Punch. Scarf Mienfoo still does fine at revenging it.

- Pokemon such as Ponyta, Ferroseed, Mudbray, Larvesta, and Gible can punish Aipom for hitting them. Ferroseed and Gible will do a total of 10 damage if hit by a Tail Slap. Ferroseed also resists Tail Slap. However, as mentioned Ferroseed will then be KO'd by Fire Punch and Gible isn't considered a very good Pokemon overall. Mudbray's defense increases to +5 after Tail Slap but it can still be 2HKO'd by a Grass Knot assuming the standard set. Ponyta and Larvesta can burn it with Flame Body thus nullifying all of its power, but their weakness to Stealth Rock decreases their chances at effectively burning Aipom.

- Diglett can revenge and KO Aipom with Tectonic Rage.

- Just as a side note, Aipom's acceptable bulk allows it to take many stray hits, even without an Eviolite. For example, Timburr's Mach Punch only does 18 damage typically to a Life Orb Aipom, which is why it has to Drain Punch if Aipom is perfectly healthy.

Overall, Aipom being able to do 20 damage minimum and outspeed nearly everything has made it too powerful of a wallbreaker. Even if it cannot defeat everything on its own its ability to break virtually any Pokemon allows for other Pokemon to finish the job. In addition, the longer Aipom is healthy during a battle the more threatening it becomes, being able to easily clean up a weakened team. For all of these reasons listed above among others I didn't even mention (Baton Passing boosts to it) we feel that Aipom is unhealthy for the current LC metagame.
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