Groudon is one of the bulkiest Ground-type Pokemon in Balanced Hackmons, and it is capable of both taking and dealing large amounts of damage thanks to its versatile defensive and offensive capabilities. When equipped with a Red Orb, Groudon can transform into Primal Groudon, which is otherwise banned from the metagame due to its incredible power. This gives it several advantages over other tanky Ground-types, including immunity to burns and Water-type attacks and the ability to check Mega Diancie thanks to a resistance to Fairy-type moves. However, Groudon faces competition both from Mega Swampert, as a bulky attacker and even in some defensive roles as a result of the latter's Water typing, and from Mega Garchomp, which has higher Attack and gets STAB on Dragon-type moves.
name: Red Orb Groudon
move 1: V-create / Sacred Fire
move 2: Thousand Arrows / Precipice Blades
move 3: U-turn
move 4: Synthesis / Stealth Rock
item: Red Orb
ability: Download / Intimidate
evs: 248 HP / 252 Atk / 8 Spe
V-create is an incredibly powerful STAB move but comes at the cost of a Defense, Special Defense, and Speed drop; however, the OHKO potential is usually worth it. Sacred Fire is a good alternative option because it does not lower Primal Groudon's stats and can burn the foe; this residual damage is very useful against Giratina and Mega Slowbro, whose Poison Heal sets are particularly crippled if their Toxic Orb has not yet been activated. Thousand Arrows has neutral coverage on the whole metagame, and it is a more spammable move than V-create. Precipice Blades is an alternative option for more damage, and it also can be used to better deal with Imposter users because one's own Flying-types do not have to worry about the Smack Down effect that is a component of Thousand Arrows. U-turn can be used to gain momentum and slowly wear down Primal Groudon's counters. Synthesis is a recovery move that benefits greatly from Desolate Land, enabling Groudon to heal 2/3 of its HP, at the cost of having only 8 PP. Stealth Rock and other support moves can be run effectively in Primal Groudon's last moveslot.
Holding Red Orb is currently the only way to access Primal Groudon due to Primal Groudon's ban. 252 Attack EVs and a boosting nature make Primal Groudon hit as hard and possible, and maximum HP investment makes Primal Groudon as bulky as possible, while 8 Speed EVs allow it to outspeed Pokemon of the same base Speed with 0 or 4 Speed EVs. Download can boost Groudon's Attack once before Red Orb triggers; however, Primal Groudon must be switched into a Pokemon whose Special Defense is higher than its Defense, or else Download will provide a useless Special Attack boost. Intimidate is an alternative that can be used to force out fast physical attackers like Mega Mewtwo X. Primal Groudon's ability after Primal Reversion is Desolate Land, which provides a boost to Fire-type moves and a Water immunity.
V-create should be used carefully because it has few PP and Groudon is often forced to switch after using it as a result of the stat drops. Thousand Arrows is Primal Groudon's primary means of attacking, and zero relevant Pokemon resist it thanks to its inherent Smack Down effect. U-turn is highly useful, as momentum and scouting are extremely important elements of Balanced Hackmons, and U-turn provides both. Burns from Sacred Fire help Primal Groudon wear down its checks and counters, like Mega Slowbro, faster. Stealth Rock is ideally used on the switch, but be careful of Magic Bounce from random defensive Pokemon. Primal Groudon generally can safely switch into passive walls such as Registeel and Regirock. If possible, try to scout the foe's abilities first, as Levitate and Flash Fire, for instance, can be devastating to Primal Groudon under certain circumstances.
Mega Rayquaza is an excellent partner for Primal Groudon, as they can beat each other's counters. Mega Rayquaza can eliminate Giratina and Mega Slowbro, while Primal Groudon can significantly damage Steel-types and Fur Coat Chansey, both of which inconvenience Mega Rayquaza. Mega Gengar beats both of Primal Groudon's main counters, Mega Slowbro and Giratina; however, it is not a great switch-in due to its low bulk. It is highly recommended you run a counter to Primal Groudon on your team, such as Mega Slowbro or Giratina, so that Imposter users cannot exploit your set.
name: Defensive Don
move 1: Thousand Arrows / Thousand Waves
move 2: U-turn
move 3: Stealth Rock / Sacred Fire / Leech Seed
move 4: Recover
item: Safety Goggles / Toxic Orb
ability: Fur Coat / Poison Heal
evs: 252 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Def
Thousand Arrows is the best STAB option and pressures frail Pokemon. Thousand Waves is an alternative STAB option that can trap the foe, but it cannot hit Flying-type Pokemon. U-turn gains momentum, and it can slowly wear down Groudon's switch-ins. Reliable recovery is essential to all walls and other defensive Pokemon in Balanced Hackmons, so make sure you run Recover or one of its clones. Stealth Rock and other team support moves can be run effectively in Groudon's last moveslot. Leech Seed can siphon HP from the foe (a function that is particularly useful against Imposter Chansey, which has a high HP stat) and KO Sturdy Shedinja.
The given EV spread makes Groudon as physically bulky as possible in order to minimize damage from moves such as Mega Mewtwo X's V-create. Safety Goggles protects Groudon from Spore and other powder moves and, less importantly, Hail. Toxic Orb is used to trigger Poison Heal, which gives Groudon additional recovery and turns Groudon into a means of blocking status.
Groudon is an excellent counter to Tyranitar, Regigigas, and Mega Mewtwo X. These Pokemon frequently trouble Registeel + Giratina cores, making Groudon a good supplemental option. While unlikely, it is possible for fast special attackers like Mega Mewtwo Y to carry Water- or Ice-type coverage, which may be able to beat Groudon, so scouting is recommended if possible. Poison Heal is preferred for countering Tyranitar and Regigigas because these sweepers often carry Knock Off and status-inflicting moves such as Sacred Fire and Spore, neither of which matters much provided that Toxic Orb has already been activated, so it is important to get Poison Heal Groudon a safe switch so that it can be badly poisoned.
Giratina can switch into highly threatening Water- and Grass-type attacks for Groudon. Gengar can check Mega Slowbro and Giratina. Chansey can deal with several of the strong specially attacking threats that can threaten defensive Groudon sets. Chansey's Imposter set is also very helpful for scouting for coverage moves that might threaten Groudon, such as the aforementioned uncommon Water- and Ice-type moves from Mega Mewtwo Y. Registeel is a good counter to Pokemon with -ate abilities, which can easily threaten Groudon with Boomburst.
Choice Scarf and Choice Band Adaptability sets remain a viable option, due to the lack of Pokemon that resist Thousand Arrows, though they are generally better employed by the stronger Mega Garchomp, which also has a second STAB on Dragon-type moves. Poison Heal Coil and Shift Gear sets are also very viable, but they must be specialized to be able to deal with Imposter foes through the use of moves like Leech Seed or Sacred Fire. Red Orb Groudon can also run Draco Meteor to help it better defeat its most common counter, Giratina; this also makes the Special Attack boosts that Download may provide more useful. Since this set is difficult to counter, one must also run a Primordial Sea Fairy-type Pokemon like Mega Audino or Xerneas to defeat Imposter users. Soundproof is also an option on regular Groudon, since Groudon's Defense allows it to easily take Fake Out and Extreme Speed from -ate ability users and Soundproof provides a Boomburst immunity. It's important to scout for Techno Blast, however. Groudon is a rather weak Soundproof user, however, since it has no answer to Refrigerate Kyurem-B or Kyurem-W.
Checks and Counters
**Strong Special Attackers**: Strong special moves such as Boomburst from Aerilate Mega Rayquaza can OHKO Groudon due to its below-average Special Defense. Other common users of this move are Pixilate Mega Diancie, Arceus, and Mega Gengar.
**Fur Coat Users**: Physically bulky Fur Coat users like Giratina and opposing Groudon often have more than enough bulk to counter offensive Groudon sets.
**Strong Water- and Ice-type Attacks** Water- and Ice- type attacks, especially special ones like Steam Eruption or Origin Pulse and Ice Beam, respectively, can easily defeat Groudon. In addition, (AC) Scald and Steam Eruption can inflict burns on non-poisoned Groudon if it survives, crippling it for the rest of the match.
**Primordial Sea**: On Pokemon like Mega Rayquaza, this ability can be used to completely shut down Primal Groudon. Primordial Sea Mega Rayquaza is immune to both Fire- and Ground-type moves and can thus only be hit by obscure coverage (e.g. Draco Meteor) and U-turn. It can then easily KO Primal Groudon with a rain-boosted (for pseudo-STAB) Water-type move. Primordial Sea is also occasionally used on Kyogre (often with Blue Orb), which can check, if not counter, Primal Groudon.
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