SM OU Ash-Greninja Balance by TDK

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Ash-Greninja Balance by TDK




Introduction
TDK's team provides an ideal representation of the most common balance archetype that was prevalent in the wake of the Mega Metagross suspect test. Ash-Greninja is the main focus of the team and one of the most fearsome sweepers in OU with its tremendous power after transforming, excellent coverage and blistering Speed stat. Ash-Greninja provides useful support for this team as well in the form of Spikes, which it usually has multiple opportunities to set up thanks to its natural ability to force switches. The team also showcases Zapdos and Mew, two Pokemon that enjoyed rises in popularity as an anti-metagame offensive Pokemon and a solid check to many top tier threats, respectively. Mega Scizor and Amoonguss provide a potent defensive core, covering the majority of the metagame's offensive behemoths like the Tapus, Latios, Ash-Greninja and Keldeo between them. Garchomp rounds off the team as a capable revenge killer and late-game cleaner. This build was quickly established as an influential and effective template for balance, achieving substantial success in tournaments, and as such is deserving of a place in our archive.

Team Members

Zapdos @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Discharge
- Heat Wave
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Roost
Offensive Zapdos's fantastic typing and ideal blend of power and bulk makes it a very anti-metagame Pokemon, and one that is difficult to deal with for typical balanced teams. Staples of these builds, such as Landorus-T, Zygarde, Mega Pinsir, Celesteela and Tangrowth, struggle to get past it, and Zapdos's coverage makes it very tricky to switch into. While its Stealth Rock weakness does limit it somewhat, Defog support from Mega Scizor and access to a reliable recovery move renders it no more than a minor nuisance most of the time. Given these attributes, Zapdos provides this team with a lot of utility thanks to its ability to pressurise common balanced cores and check several top threats. Perhaps most crucially, it handily checks Mega Pinsir, which is a Pokemon that can sweep this team clean if given an opportunity to set up against Choice-locked Garchomp or Greninja.

Discharge is a solid STAB move, and its paralysis chance makes up for Zapdos's relative lack of power against neutral targets such as Heatran, Mew and Mega Sableye. Heat Wave and Hidden Power Ice provide excellent coverage and allow Zapdos to hit a wide portion of the metagame super effectively. Roost allows Zapdos to stay healthy throughout the match and do its job effectively.


Mew @ Leftovers
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 240 HP / 56 Def / 8 SpA / 140 SpD / 64 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Will-O-Wisp
- Soft-Boiled
- Psychic
Mew helps the team with offensive threats that can break through Mega Scizor and Amoonguss, such as Mega Medicham, Tapu Lele and Mega Mawile. Mew is the team's Stealth Rock user. Mew's bulk and Psychic typing allow it to handle a wide range of threats, from strong wallbreakers to weaker attackers like Zapdos. Mew's ability to tank hits, reliably set up Stealth Rock, and wear down threats with burns works well in tandem with Greninja's Spikes, making it easier for Greninja or another team member to net a KO on a weakened opponent.

Mew's EV spread allows it to take on Mega Medicham and Tapu Lele, avoiding a 2HKO from every attack of theirs except for Moonblast from Specs Tapu Lele. Will-O-Wisp allows Mew to cripple Mega Medicham and other physical attackers, and can also be helpful in wearing down other threats alongside Spikes and Stealth Rock. Psychic allows Mew to 2HKO physically defensive Toxapex, OHKO Gengar with Stealth Rock on the field and provides it with a useful STAB move in general that can help provide chip damage. Softboiled provides Mew with longevity and 64 Speed EVs allows Mew to outspeed Magearna that are fully invested in Speed.


Scizor-Mega (M) @ Scizorite
Ability: Light Metal
EVs: 248 HP / 120 Def / 124 SpD / 16 Spe
Impish Nature
- Bullet Punch
- U-turn
- Roost
- Defog
While not as popular as it was when Mega Metagross dominated the tier, Mega Scizor is still an excellent Pokemon that fulfils several crucial roles for this team as its only Dragon resist, Defogger, and main check to many top threats like Tapu Bulu, Tapu Lele, Kyurem-B and Latios. A Steel-type is very important for a balanced team such as this, especially one that lacks a Fairy-type, and Mega Scizor is undoubtedly one of the most reliable in the tier. It offers plenty of additional utility to the team as well, with Bullet Punch to pick off weakened threats like Gengar, Tapu Koko and Nihilego, and U-turn to provide momentum and bring Greninja in safely.

Mega Scizor's access to Defog allows TDK to adjust his hazard strategy according to his team's matchup - he can either choose to set up his own hazards to pressurise the opponent's team, or keep his field clear of them if it would be in his favour to do so. Bullet Punch, U-turn and Roost are staples on any Mega Scizor set, with the latter allowing Mega Scizor to stay healthy and continuously switch in throughout the game to remove entry hazards or keep certain threats in check. The mixed EV spread allows Mega Scizor to take on a wide range of threats, reliably taking on threatening physical attackers while tanking Draco Meteors and Moonblasts more comfortably.


Garchomp (M) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Outrage
- Earthquake
- Toxic
- Dragon Claw
Garchomp provides the team with a capable revenge killer, outspeeding the entire unboosted metagame. By virtue of its typing and movepool, Garchomp is a very effective Choice Scarf user. Among other things, it revenge kills Volcarona, which a must for any balance team. ScarfChomp was a popular set in past generations, and it has come back with a vengeance this generation. It also provides some valuable resists and immunities, most notably to Electric and Fire.

Outrage allows Garchomp to clean late-game, offering a powerful STAB that dents even Pokemon that resist it. Earthquake provides effective complimentary coverage, hitting most Fairy-types for neutral or better damage. Dragon Claw offers a Dragon-type STAB move without the drawbacks associated with Outrage. Toxic cripples common Garchomp checks, such as Tangrowth. A spread with maximum Attack and Speed with a Jolly nature is necessary to revenge kill threats such as +1 Volcarona and Choice Scarf Tapu Lele.


Amoonguss (F) @ Black Sludge
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 248 HP / 44 Def / 216 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Spore
- Giga Drain
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Toxic
Amoonguss adds a lot of defensive utility to this team with its ability to counter common threats such as Ash-Greninja, Keldeo, Kartana, Tapu Bulu and Tapu Koko. Regenerator makes it an excellent pivot for this team too, allowing it to act as a sponge for powerful attacks while never losing momentum despite its lack of offensive presence. Amoonguss synergises particularly well with this team due to the threat that both Greninja forms pose to its other team members. It also absorbs Toxic Spikes, which half the team is vulnerable too, and spreads around status that makes it easier for Zapdos and Ash-Greninja to pressurise the opposing team. Amoonguss forms a solid defensive core with Mega Scizor and Mew, and is overall a vital member of TDK's team.

Spore is a staple on Amoonguss and provides fantastic support for any team. It can act as an emergency button to put a threatening foe out of commission or open up opportunities for Ash-Greninja, Mew and Zapdos to capitalise on. Giga Drain is a solid STAB move that allows Amoonguss to deal with the many threatening Water-types in the tier and stay relatively healthy throughout a match, especially in conjunction with Regenerator. Hidden Power Fire nails Steel-types, being particularly useful in limiting setup opportunities for the likes of Ferrothorn and Mega Scizor. Toxic hinders a number of Pokemon that could otherwise give this team trouble, such as Mega Charizard Y, Zygarde and and Volcarona.


Greninja-Ash @ Choice Specs
Ability: Battle Bond
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Water Shuriken
- Hydro Pump
- Dark Pulse
- Spikes
Ash-Greninja serves as a cleaner, revenge killer, and wallbreaker. While relatively weak before transforming, once Battle Bond activates Ash-Greninja becomes a powerful force that is very hard to switch into. Its STAB moves have good coverage, and the few Pokemon that resist both, such as Keldeo and Tapu Fini, lack reliable recovery. Ash-Geninja also provides the team with Spikes support, helping the rest of the team by weakening their checks. Choice Specs is the preferred item, allowing Ash-Greninja to hit incredibly hard. The bulky nature of the team also allows Ash-Greninja to pivot out relatively safely should it lock itself into an unfavourable move. Ash-Greninja also sits in a valuable speed tier, outspeeding the likes of Tapu Koko for example.

Hydro Pump and Dark Pulse are the obligatory STAB moves, and provide solid coverage overall. Dark Pulse hits many Water-type resists, such as Toxapex, for solid damage, while Hydro Pump blows through Dark-type resists, such as Clefable. Water Shuriken provides the team with a strong form of priority, and is one of the few forms of special priority available. Spikes may seem like an odd choice for a Choice Specs user, but Ash-Greninja can set up a layer of Spikes when a check comes in before pivoting out.

Threatlist

The team's Fire-type resists are Garchomp and Greninja, neither of which have recovery or the bulk to repeatedly switch into Fire-type attacks. Heatran can switch in against Mew, Scizor, Amoonguss (assuming another teammate is already asleep or if Electric/Misty Terrain is active), and can potentially switch into Greninja and Garchomp if they are locked into Spikes or Toxic / Dragon Claw respectively. Heatran can trap and KO most of the team with Magma Storm, and when switching into Heatran, Greninja and Garchomp can get worn down due to potential entry hazards and Magma Storm's residual damage. Charizard-Y and Volcarona won't be able to switch in as frequently as Heatran, but they can deal apply more pressure to Greninja and Garchomp with Sun-boosted attacks from the former and coverage moves from the latter. Marowak is a slow and can be outsped by Mew, but it can use both Fire- and Ghost-type STAB attacks to wear down Greninja and Garchomp, with the latter being susceptible to Will-O-Wisp as well.


Stall is difficult to break down due to the team's lack of a dedicated stallbreaker. Mega Sableye is able to wall Mew and Amoonguss, bounce back Greninja's Spikes, and can burn any member of the team with Will-O-Wisp. Sableye can also use Knock Off to get rid of Zapdos', Mew's and Amoonguss' recovery items. This will force Mew and Zapdos to use Roost more often than they would like. Greninja is also prone to Knock Off, as without Choice Specs, it won't be able to 2HKO Mega Sableye.


While Mew can switch into most of Tapu Lele's attacks, it can get worn down over time and can't do much damage back. Mew is also prone to Stallbreaker Lele sets that run Taunt, and the same set can also pressurise the team as Mega Scizor is taken care of with HP Fire. Choice Specs variants are also a bit reliant on prediction, as Mew can handle most of Tapu Lele's attacks outside of Moonblast. If Mew is sufficiently weakened, however, everything on the team excluding Greninja can be 2HKOed with Psychic after Stealth Rock damage.


Ash-Greninja can usually be taken care of with Amoonguss, but with the team lacking a Dark-type resist outside of its own Greninja, opposing Greninja can spam Dark Pulse and potentially abuse entry hazards to weaken Amoonguss enough to put it in KO range.

Importable
Zapdos @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Discharge
- Heat Wave
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Roost

Mew @ Leftovers
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 240 HP / 56 Def / 8 SpA / 140 SpD / 64 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Will-O-Wisp
- Soft-Boiled
- Psychic

Scizor-Mega (M) @ Scizorite
Ability: Light Metal
EVs: 248 HP / 120 Def / 124 SpD / 16 Spe
Impish Nature
- Bullet Punch
- U-turn
- Roost
- Defog

Garchomp (M) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Outrage
- Earthquake
- Toxic
- Dragon Claw

Amoonguss (F) @ Black Sludge
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 248 HP / 44 Def / 216 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Spore
- Giga Drain
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Toxic

Greninja-Ash @ Choice Specs
Ability: Battle Bond
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Water Shuriken
- Hydro Pump
- Dark Pulse
- Spikes

Credits

Created by: TDK
Written by: Anish, Celticpride, IronBullet, Team Pokepals
Grammar checked by: IronBullet
Art by: Team Pokepals
 

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