Arceus-Ice's solid offensive typing and good natural bulk make it a useful offensive check to several dangerous Pokemon, including Mega Salamence, Zygarde-C, specially offensive arceus-Ground, and Rayquaza. Balance teams that opt for Steel-types that do not resist Ice, such as Ferrothorn and Celesteela, are also vulnerable to Arceus-Ice. Unfortunately, Arceus-Ice's sole resistance to Ice-type moves means that it offers virtually no defensive utility to teams. This is compounded by Arceus-Ice's vulnerability to all entry hazards, especially Stealth Rock, and status, particularly poison. Arceus-Ice's biggest issue, however, is that it is significantly reliant on good matchups to function, as it loses to many common Pokemon in Ubers. Many bulky teams opt for Toxapex or Ho-Oh to check Marshadow; both of these Pokemon can stop Arceus-Ice depending on what coverage move it runs. Chansey and Blissey often run Confide to deal with Calm Mind Primal Kyogre and Z-Geomancy Xerneas; this also makes them hard stops to Arceus-Ice. The prevalence of Marshadow also hurts Arceus-Ice, as Marshadow easily stops Arceus-Ice thanks to its superior Speed and type advantage. This relegates Arceus-Ice to the role of a balance breaker whose effectiveness hinges greatly on matchups, making it difficult to justify for most teams.
name: Calm Mind
move 1: Calm Mind
move 2: Judgment
move 3: Thunder / Fire Blast
move 4: Recover
item: Icicle Plate
evs: 248 HP / 8 SpD / 252 Spe
Calm Mind boosts Arceus-Ice's offensive and defensive presence, making it difficult to break through and allowing it to hit harder. Judgment hits most of the Ubers metagame for neutral or super effective damage, OHKOing Zygarde-C, Rayquaza, Yveltal, and Mega Salamence and doing excellent damage to Arceus-Ground. Judgment is also a safe option against Primal Groudon as well as Steel-types that do not resist Ice, such as Ferrothorn. Thunder gives Arceus-Ice excellent neutral coverage alongside Judgment and hits Pokemon such as Primal Kyogre and Toxapex super effectively. Alternatively, Fire Blast ensures Arceus-Ice can better defend itself against Mega Lucario as well as Steel-types such as Bronzong; however, this leaves Arceus-Ice quite ineffective against bulky Water-types, which can be problematic. Recover is necessary to allow Arceus-Ice to recover health lost from entry hazards or from switching into weak attacks.
Maximum investment in HP gives Arceus-Ice solid bulk, and maximum investment in Speed with a Timid nature allows it to Speed tie at worst with Mega Salamence.
Arceus-Ice's bad defensive typing makes getting it into play somewhat challenging. Take advantage of its natural bulk and access to reliable recovery to switch it into neutral attacks from Pokemon it checks, such as Judgment from support Arceus-Ground. However, be very careful of switching it into Pokemon that employ super effective coverage moves, such as V-create Rayquaza; it is often best to scout for these moves before taking risks with Arceus-Ice. While Arceus-Ice is a good check to the most common Arceus-Ground sets, do not switch Arceus-Ice into Arceus-Ground that feature on offensive teams, as they will more often than not be physically offensive variants that can hit Arceus-Ice hard with Stone Edge. Arceus-Ice is quite difficult to switch into for offensive teams and certain balanced teams, so Judgment is often a safe option. If the opponent carries hard checks to Arceus-Ice, such as Ho-Oh, do not waste a turn attacking; instead, switch to a check to preserve your momentum. If running Thunder, Arceus-Ice can take advantage of Water-types that attempt to switch into it, such as Arceus-Water, Primal Kyogre, and Toxapex. If running Fire Blast, use it against predicted Mega Lucario, Bronzong, and Magearna switch-ins. Do not boost with Calm Mind until Arceus-Ice's checks are either severely weakened or removed, as reckless boosting risks inviting in Pokemon such as Ho-Oh and Marshadow. Arceus-Ice has an awful matchup against stall teams due to the prevalence of Confide Blissey and, if it is running Fire Blast, Haze Toxapex. Feel free to play it aggressively or use it to waste the foe's PP.
Stealth Rock setters such as defensive Primal Groudon, Tyranitar, and Dialga are good teammates, as Stealth Rock punishes Ho-Oh for switching into Arceus-Ice. Checks to Ho-Oh such as Mega Salamence, Zygarde-C, Tyranitar, and Primal Groudon are necessary, as Ho-Oh is a massive threat to Arceus-Ice. Checks to Steel-types, such as Primal Groudon, Zygarde-C, Mega Lucario, and Mega Blaziken, can ensure that Arceus-Ice does not totally need to rely on Fire Blast to remove them. Pokemon that can deal with stall teams, such as Mega Gengar, Mega Gyarados, and Swords Dance Primal Groudon, are absolutely necessary due to Arceus-Ice's uselessness against them; Mega Gengar and Primal Groudon can also beat Clefable, which walls Arceus-Ice. Arceus-Ice needs checks to Mega Lucario on its team; Aegislash, defensive Primal Groudon, and Marshadow can fill this role. Rock Tomb Marshadow in particular appreciates Arceus-Ice's ability to get rid of Zygarde-C and can remove Ho-Oh and Rock-types in return. If Arceus-Ice is not running Thunder, solid checks to Water-types, such as Primal Groudon, are required. Pokemon capable of removing entry hazards, such as Giratina-O, are needed to cover Arceus-Ice's nasty vulnerability to Stealth Rock and, to a lesser extent, Toxic Spikes. Alternatively, Mega Diancie can act as a more offensive deterrent to hazard setters with Magic Bounce and a check to Ho-Oh that benefits from Arceus-Ice's ability to deal with defensive Arceus-Ground if Mega Lucario is dealt with properly by the rest of the team.
Refresh can be considered, as no Pokemon is immune to Ice-type Judgment, and it lets Arceus-Ice defeat Lugia very easily and beat defensive Primal Kyogre one-on-one. However, Blissey and Chansey commonly run Confide, which makes Refresh Arceus-Ice a terrible stallbreaker. Furthermore, forgoing Fire Blast or Thunder for Refresh leaves Arceus-Ice vulnerable to many of the tier's Steel-types and bulky Water-types. Icium Z can be used to give Arceus-Ice a powerful Subzero Slammer, but running Icium Z forces it to be saddled with the weak Ice Beam or inaccurate Blizzard after Subzero Slammer is used, which makes it an inconsistent option. A more offensive EV spread with Calm Mind and three attacks can make Arceus-Ice quite difficult to switch into, but this significantly cuts into Arceus-Ice's durability and makes getting it into play safely extremely difficult.
Checks and Counters
**Blissey and Chansey**: Blissey and Chansey take very little damage from even a boosted Arceus-Ice and can stall it out with Toxic. While Arceus-Ice can potentially pose a threat if it is carrying Refresh, Blissey and Chansey commonly employ Confide, meaning even Refresh Arceus-Ice often struggles to break through them.
**Fighting-types**: Life Orb Marshadow outspeeds Arceus-Ice and can OHKO it with Close Combat after a very small amount of prior damage. Marshadium Z Marshadow requires Stealth Rock damage to achieve this benchmark. Marshadow is also bulky enough to switch into an unboosted Judgment if necessary and force Arceus-Ice out. Mega Lucario beats any Arceus-Ice set that forgoes Fire Blast, as it can take Judgment and Thunder, even being able to safely switch into the former move, and OHKO Arceus-Ice with Close Combat in response. Fire Blast OHKOes Mega Lucario after a small amount of chip damage, however. Pheromosa cannot switch into any of Arceus-Ice's attacks but can revenge kill it with High Jump Kick. Mega Blaziken and Mega Mewtwo X can stomach Judgment and Fire Blast and remove Arceus-Ice with Low Kick or use it as setup fodder.
**Ho-Oh**: Ho-Oh can easily stomach Judgment and retaliate with a super effective Sacred Fire. Arceus-Ice becomes more difficult for it to deal with if Stealth Rock is up on its side of the field, however. In particular, a boosted Thunder has a small chance to OHKO Ho-Oh after Stealth Rock.
**Certain Steel-types**: Magearna takes little damage from Fire Blast and can turn Arceus-Ice's Calm Mind boosts against it with Heart Swap or annoy it with Pain Split. Arceus-Steel is bulky enough to survive even a boosted Fire Blast and OHKO Arceus-Ice with Corkscrew Crash after a small amount of prior damage.
**Rock-types**: Arceus-Rock will win against Arceus-Ice in a Calm Mind war due to its type advantage. Mega Tyranitar shrugs off even boosted Judgment and can use Arceus-Ice as setup fodder or eliminate it with Stone Edge.
**Water-types**: If Arceus-Ice chooses not to run Thunder, it finds itself completely walled by Water-types. Toxapex can easily stall out Arceus-Ice by removing its boosts with Haze and using Recover to heal any damage taken from stray attacks. Arceus-Water can use Toxic to stall Arceus-Ice lacking Thunder out. Calm Mind Primal Kyogre can overwhelm Arceus-Ice with Primordial Sea- and STAB-boosted Origin Pulse, while defensive Primal Kyogre that carry Toxic can stall Arceus-Ice out. All of these Pokemon struggle to deal with Arceus-Ice carrying Thunder, however.
**Deoxys-A**: Deoxys-A outspeeds Arceus-Ice and easily OHKOes it with Superpower but cannot switch into it at all.