Arcanine

I think you guys are overlooking one very important new weapon in Arcanine's arsenal: smooth over. It allows him to combat his fellow fire types with efficiency (super-effective hits deal the same amount of damage as a neutral close combat), and its secondary effect lowers the opponent's speed by one stage. Now Arcanine's not slow, but as others have stated, there are those that can do the fast fire/fighting combo better, such as Infernape, speed boost Blaziken, and encourage Hihidaruma.

What separates Arcanine from these guys are Arcanine's impressive defensive stats, intimidate, and extremespeed. As such, he's probably best off acting as a bulky physical attacker, not an all-out life orb attacker or a choice user.

intimidate/heart of justice @ shell bell
adamant - 252 atk, 144 spe, 112 hp
~ flare blitz
~ wild bolt
~ smooth over/close combat
~ extremespeed

Max attack for hurting things, enough speed to outrun neutral base 80s and max speed adamant Gyarados, with the rest in HP to give him some bulk and cope with recoil damage. Shell bell is recommended since you're going to be attacking every turn, and it heals more than leftovers on really hard hits (such as OHKOing something). Also, you receive the HP right after your attack, rather than waiting till the end of the turn. This helps add to Arcanine's survivability (not by much, but it's still something). With smooth over and extremespeed, Arcanine doesn't need max speed to perform well, and the extra HP goes a long way in helping him hang around.

I personally like intimidate better on this set. It adds to Arcanine's bulk, and there are A LOT of terrifying physical attackers in the fifth gen. Simply having something with intimidate can make the difference between a win and a loss. However, heart of justice is also a cool ability for potentially scoring an attack boost and (presumably) adding an immunity to dark attacks.

Smooth over lets him take on Shanderaa (the chandelier) without resorting to wild bolt, and other fire types without lowering his stats via close combat. It's also a MUCH better choice against Heatran. Close combat will squander Arcanine's bulk by lowering his defenses, whereas smooth over slows your opponents down. Consider: a non-boosted close combat/smooth over will NEVER OHKO a Heatran that doesn't have a defense lowering nature. The same could be said for Heatran's earth power against Arcanine (if you don't believe me, run the figures). Naturally, the faster of the two would be the victor - so if you slow Heatran down on the first turn, you can easily pick him off on the second. Smooth over can allow you to get 2HKOs you wouldn't otherwise achieve, and also acts as a useful scouting tool. For instance, if you catch something like life orb Starmie with smooth over on the switch, you can easily finish it off with wild bolt (whereas flare blitz/close combat + extremespeed might not be enough). If you're worried about choice scarfers, just add some more speed. 212 speed EVs will let you outspeed naive choice scarf Heatran after the first smooth over. 248 EVs will let you outrun jolly Gyarados. Neither will OHKO you at full health, though, so I see little reason to go beyond 144 speed EVs.

However, if you're really scared of Tyranitar, close combat is still a viable alternative. And I guess it's nice to be able to KO Blissey without sacrificing a ton of health. Arcanine also struggles against Sazando (the dark/dragon that looks like King Ghidorah) if he lacks close combat, but Sazando outspeeds him anyway, so if he wants to hit you with a draco meteor or earthquake, he's probably going to do so. Your best response would still be to either switch or chip away at him with extremespeed. You can also run overheat somewhere to beat physical walls, but to reiterate an earlier sentiment, there are others that are better at this.
 
Eh.. I dont see Heart of Justice getting much use as it doesn't add an immunity. I thought of trying it anyways but, if you think about it what are you going to come in on? Tyranitar, for example, will still really hurt with Crunch. That, paired with defense and sp.def drops from Close Combat and all the recoil its gonna be taking from Flare Blitz and Wild Bolt will hinder its bulkiness.

Its starting to look like Staraptor lol...
 
Close Combat and Wild Bolt is a great addition for Arcanine. Close Combat takes out Chansey without the need for Flare Blitz, in which it takes tons of recoil. Wild Bolt is also a great addition for dealing more damage. Its a much better Thunder Fang. I want to try out a Sunny Day team, and I think this is going to be an addition.
 
I'm starting to wonder if Gamefreak trolled us again with Wild Bolt/Flare Blitz on Arcanine, but no Reckless or Rock Head to abuse it with.
 
Arcanine
Jolly
EV 4 HP, 252 Atk , 252 Speed
Flash Fire
Life Orb
Flare Blitz , Extreme Speed , Wild Volt and Close Combat .
 

Ash Borer

I've heard they're short of room in hell
intimidate is probably the best for choice sets because you'll have to switch in and out a lot.

life orb/mixed sets would probably do the best with heart of justice/flash fire
 
I rather like his new sprite well enough, compaired to his current Shoddy sprite anyway (just throwing that out there).

Anyway, I think Intimidate/Flash Fire are really the abilities of choice here as Dark is a fairly rare type (and in UU Sucker Punch is the most common Dark move I believe which kind defeats the purpose of switching in on a Dark move). The fact that it doesn't give Immunity also hurt Justice Heart in my eyes. I'd probably go Intimidate without any testing at this time.

I also like the Close Combat/Extreem Speed/Flare Blitz/Wild Volt move set. Extreem speed is Arc's big special move after all and the others are just nice overall.

That's just leaves Evs and Item to decide and likely that depends on team.

Those are my thoughts anyway.
 
I rather like his new sprite well enough, compaired to his current Shoddy sprite anyway (just throwing that out there).
The new sprite is awesome.

Intimidate has always struck me as an odd ability on Arcanine, since the vast majority of the time Arcanine forces the opponent out, meaning that the attack drop ends up not mattering at all. On a defensive set, sure, but the offensive sets could benefit more from other abilities imo. Nobody really uses Flash Fire, but I don't think it would be that bad of an ability. :/

I'm still a bit sketchy on Justice Heart, but it could see some kind of use. No dark immunity is sad, though.
 
Even if he forces someone out the intimidate still softens the blow on the switch in. Also, part of the reason he might force someone out is because he lowered their attack. And of course if they don't swap out (either they make a mistake or don't have a better poke to face Arc), well there you go.

Of course Flash Fire is good too (Immunity is nice as is a power boost) but it's a bit less generally applicable (only vs fire as apposed to vs attack based moves).
 
I honestly like heart of justice due to immunity to dark, which include sucker punch, and when hit by dark attacks it gain an attack boost where as flash fire only boosts fire move, and with smooth over and not knowing which ability it has, arcanine could be a good counter for fellow fire type houndoom
 
So, I've recently added Arcanine to recent PO team of mine, and I gotta say... Justice Heart, though it may suit our loyal dog, just doesn't give the same utility that Intimidate does, nor the immunity of Flash Fire.

Everything else is working wonderfully for him though <3
 
justice heart is not an immunity to dark attacks. it just raises attack after dealing damage. so if ur arcanine, DONT SWITCH INTO TTAR'S CRUNCH!
 
Finally Arcanine starts getting the moves to match his godly base stat. First Flare Blitz last gen to abuse his attack and STAB. Now Close Combat is great to kill the rocks specially Tyranitar and hits most waters neutrally - as it's a strong attack. Wild Bolt is great to kill the waters, but I don't expect it as much as Close Combat.

Intimidate
Flare Blitz
Extremespeed
Close Combat
Overheat/Wild Bolt/HP Ice/HP Grass/Will-o-wisp/Morning Sun

Now that I look at it Shadow Tag Shanderaa may force it to use Crunch, but anyway Flare Blitz power may be the enough to at least prevent set up. The water ghost may also force Crunch/Wild Bolt too (anyway Buru will hate Wow).. Hmm maybe Crunch starts being an option.
 
Well, Arcanine got a couple of new moves, and just because of them, it's probably going to end up BL IMO, although it'd be great if it broke into OU. Now if only Flareon got wild Volt...
 
I honestly like heart of justice due to immunity to dark, which include sucker punch, and when hit by dark attacks it gain an attack boost where as flash fire only boosts fire move, and with smooth over and not knowing which ability it has, arcanine could be a good counter for fellow fire type houndoom
When you switch on Sucker Punch it won't actually hit, and you can't switch into Pursuit either. So, that pretty much leaves you with Crunch and maybe a rare Dark Pulse. And then it doesn't even give immunity. Flash Fire gives an immunity to a more present move, but I'd still run with Intimidate due to its all-round usefulness.
 
I've been using Arcanine since Gen 4, and then he served me well, but now he WRECKS. I run LOCanine, and he gives me results.

Arcanine@Life Orb
Nature: Adamant
EVs: 252 Atk/ 252 Speed/ 4 SpDef
Ability: Flash Fire
~Flare Blitz
~Close Combat
~Wild Bolt
~XTREEEEEEMESpeed

This set works wonders. Flash Fire or intimidate is just a preference thing. I've had both be useful, so it really depends on my teams needs. Flare Blitz is a killer, and Close Combat is great for coverage, especially if you smell a switch and don't want the recoil from Blitz. Wild Bolt deals with Waters and some flying, and XTREEEEMESpeed picks off weak foes. The same set everyone else uses basically. Adamant because Arcanine NEEDS that power to keep up. Life orb is MUCH better than CB on him, simply because you need to be able to switch moves, or you're doing the same thing you were doing back when Arcanine had no options: switching out.

Also, with Arcanine at full HP, I've survived Shandera Shadow Balls and hit back with Wild Bolt. It's usually the last thing Arcanine will do, due to LO and recoil, but Shandera is gonna be on it's last leg, if not dead. With SR up, that thing is GONE. Another thing to keep in mind: if you manage to grab a FF boost, Flare Blitz pretty much becomes the only move you need to use, because if you hit something that resists it, it acts like it was just a neutral Flare Blitz, 180 BP STAB.
 
I've been using Arcanine since Gen 4, and then he served me well, but now he WRECKS. I run LOCanine, and he gives me results.

Arcanine@Life Orb
Nature: Adamant
EVs: 252 Atk/ 252 Speed/ 4 SpDef
Ability: Flash Fire
~Flare Blitz
~Close Combat
~Wild Bolt
~XTREEEEEEMESpeed

This set works wonders. Flash Fire or intimidate is just a preference thing. I've had both be useful, so it really depends on my teams needs. Flare Blitz is a killer, and Close Combat is great for coverage, especially if you smell a switch and don't want the recoil from Blitz. Wild Bolt deals with Waters and some flying, and XTREEEEMESpeed picks off weak foes. The same set everyone else uses basically. Adamant because Arcanine NEEDS that power to keep up. Life orb is MUCH better than CB on him, simply because you need to be able to switch moves, or you're doing the same thing you were doing back when Arcanine had no options: switching out.
All of his perks in one set. :) Choice Items could also work for this set if there not glasses.

PS The first XTREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEMESpeed has 2 more "E"s than the second.
 
I've been pretty much using the same set as you Celest. However, sometimes instead of using Wild Bolt, I used Morning Sun instead. I felt that he dies a little bit too fast sometimes with the sand, LO, entry hazards up (especially stealth rocks). It was useful to heal some hp on switches and scout in a way and have more longevity overall. I'm not saying use Morning Sun over Wild Bolt, but it is an option.
 
His bulk and Extremespeed are really the only reasons you'd ever use him over Infernape, so those two should be focused on. Flare Blitz/Close Combat/Extremespeed/Wild Bolt, as others have mentioned, is a solid set. Unfortunately, residual damage builds up quickly, but that's why you run a Wish user. He's been great with Vaporeon + Nattorei. Nattorei can set up Spikes and switch into stuff like Swampert, while Vaporeon can pass giant Wishes around. I'm running Adamant; 40 HP / 252 Atk / 216 Spe, which produces 280 speed. This allows me to outrun Heatran and Close Combat it in the face, neutral base 85s, etc. Extremespeed is a nice revenge killing tool, dealing 37.5% - 44.3% to 4/0 Sazandora, 44.4% - 52.3% to 4/0 Latios, etc. Very few faster threats can take Flare Blitz + Extremespeed (the two aforementioned are nearly 2HKOed).
 
Arcanine@Choice Band
Adamant/Jolly; 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe

Wild Bolt
Flare Blitz
Extremespeed/Crunch
Close Combat

With this set, Arcanine hits every water in the current UU (barring the new Lightning Rod Seaking, Lanturn and Quagsire), Venusaur and Registeel for SE damage; While Priority is excellent, Crunch allows you to hit Rotom and Mismagius and gives perfect coverage with Close Combat. However, Wish support is very necessary, as with all the recoil Arcanine's going to be dying very quickly. A way to get rid of entry hazards is nice too.
I liked this set. The only issue with it is DW Shandara. With two attacks that you can be locked into Shandara can set up the 6 CMinds easily. As far at crunch, against the psychic types other than Victini Flare Blitz hits harder. A Wild Bolt on a MAX ATk choice set with Rocks up will OTK a Shandara on the switch. If you can get through him and Burunga who also dies to Wild Volt, Arcaine can finish off alot of your oppenents team with Choiced Extreme Speed.
 

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