BH Balanced Hackmons Suspects and Bans Thread

Unaware, as I have stated previously, is a fairly poor check. The ability grants no extra buff to survival during normal gameplay, which makes it nearly impossible for an unaware mon to keep up with the chip damage of u-turn, rocks, etc. against a smash team. Mold moves further contribute to this problem. Most significant of all, by running unaware you have committed to filling 1/6 of your team with a dead weight in all non smash battles.

Back when Pdon was a thing, it was a quite common to run fur coat Giratina on nearly every team to stop it. FC Tina is overall a far better mon in every situation aside from against smash. It had good utility against all physical breakers (photon wasn’t introduced yet), including things like adapt chomp and adapt ttar. Despite FC Tina being a decent mon, the community decided it didn’t want to have to run it on every team. (So I’m not sure why running a subpar mon on every team is acceptable)

You know what else makes a decent mon? Prankster. Show me a single balanced high Ladder team that does not utilize prankster. I don’t know what to say about this, it seems like the actual definition of meta centralization to me. To be honest I’m quite tired of using prankster on every team I make. It has great defensive utility sure, but I personally don’t want to run the same mon over and over again all the time, however good it might be. The current presence of smash makes teams without prankster or unaware very weak to smash. We are in a meta that nearly forces you to run prankster. I personally have spectated and lost many games where prank registeel or prank ZygardeC dies and the entire rest of the team falls soon after to smash. Not to mention that haze does not constitute a check because it has no way of threatening the opposing mon. It is incredibly passive and relies on the smashing mon not having coverage that kills the hazer (close combat for regi and ice hammer for ZygardeC and to a lesser extent Tina)

So why is it that we are forced to use imperfect solutions like unaware and prankster? Because the community has decided (so far) that it is more worthwhile to keep moves like tail glow, belly drum, and smash than it is to avoid meta centralization and the promotion of otherwise bad Pokemon (talking about unaware here not prank).
If an opponent doesn’t use a Shell Smash User, that doesn’t make Unaware useless. What about PHeal (Quiver Dance, Shift Gear) sweepers, Unburden Belly Drum, and (Simple) Tail Glow can be overwhelming if used on something self-Imposterproof like Gengar-Mega. Also random bonuses like the opponent using Download on Red Orb Groudon, and if you have a set up mon and the foe used Spectral Thief / Heart Swap on you.

By having Unaware Pokémon with resists to Moldy Moves like Gyarados-Mega Versus say Unburden Dusk-Mane, where a Spectral Thief 1HKOs Dusk-Mane, you are better able to punish an opponent, whereas Haze lets them hit you on the turn you Haze, and you have to predict if they will switch out (letting you then switch out), or if they outpredict your switch out of the Hazer first, then they can set up again.

Stealth Rocks and U-Turn chip can be handled with Leftovers (such as a Steel type that resists Stealth Rock - negating Stealth Rocks damage, is resistant to Sunsteel Strike and Photon Geyser, and resistant to U-Turn).

Haze doesn’t stop faster priority either. Think of Belly Drum Triage Heracross-Mega as an example. Drain Punch KOs Prankster Registeel before it can Haze, Leech Life KOs Zygarde-Complete with minor chip
+6 252+ Atk Heracross-Mega Leech Life vs. 252 HP / 252 Def Zygarde-Complete: 517-610 (81.2 - 95.9%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery
Since it can bypass RegenVest due to being a physical attack, and restore HP due to the nature of using a Draining Move, any Prankster on Zygarde-Complete is threatened, and even if it survives, the next turn it has to switch out so it doesn’t get hit by Leech Life for a 2HKO since it’s Recover is outsped.

Compare that to an Unaware mon, as Xanderpitz pointed out, Yveltal which can come in without fear, even with Stealth Rocks, and use Oblivion Wing to 1HKO and heal from that as well, or Spectral for a KO and a boost.

Prankster Haze resets, while Unaware users can reset with Spectral Thief while punishing the foe into a KO range.

While the set I mentioned is niche, we can also look at Extreme Speeders like Refrigerate MMX which, if it has Shell Smash, can threaten Prankster Zygarde-Complete and Giratina.

Haze is not reliable, as even with Strength Sap, you have things like mixed or Special sweepers that can bypass that (and in MMX’s case, the Photon Geyser switches to Special Attack, and he can attack off of that +2 SpA from Shell Smash).

I think you are underselling Unaware. The only thing that makes Unaware less common is finding something that can resist / is immune to enough of the “right” moves so that means at least 1/3 Moldy Moves, and common coverage moves.

I don’t suggest everyone run Unaware, I do, however, suggest everyone consider Unaware based on what the other 5 members of your team are naturally weak to, and select a specific Unaware user based off of that - as / if needed.

I get that Unaware has 0 purpose if we remove all forms of set up, but you only mentioned removing some set ups, so if the other sweepers that use Quiver Dance, Shift Gear, etc. will still heavily dent our Prankster users (Xerneas to Giratina, and to some extent Zygarde-Complete), Kyogre-Primal with Ice Beam, Moongeist Beam, Quiver Dance, etc. can also threaten them, and Slaking / Regigigas can use Facade for neutral hits on other Prankster users. I just view Unaware as too good to be “deadweight” in any matchup vs a Non-Smash team.

Also, consider things like Tail Glow Doom Desire Dialga. It can take advantage of Haze going first, use Tail Glow on the turn that Doom Desire lands (at the end of the turn), effectively bypassing Haze altogether, whereas Unaware users like Gyarados-Mega, can resist and not get impacted by the the Tail Glow altogether.

I think Unaware has a solid purpose, even if Shell Smash is gone. Removing one set-up, without removing all of them keeps Unaware’s viability alive.
 
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Gurpreet Patel (Sent you a Friend Request)

bh's very own pseudo-intellectual
is a Community Contributor
I think Unaware has a solid purpose, even if Shell Smash is gone. Removing one set-up, without removing all of them keeps Unaware’s viability alive.
"unaware is good even if we ban shell smash" so what? why should we care? this is completely irrelevant to whether or not things should be banned. stop derailing the thread man.
The first move I'm going to look at is Tail glow, because it's basically the least competitive of the three, purely from a effect standpoint. It gives +3 spA with no penalties which means tail glowing-> attacking yields more damage than simply attacking twice. This means if your mon lives the next turn, there is 0 incentive not to tail glow That just screams to me "Why is this allowed." I'm pretty sure the whole previous suspect was mostly misdirected anger at Tail Glow.
this looks at tail glow on paper and not in practice. literally the only thing that actually runs tail glow is triage. everything else running it is incredibly niche (tg mmy tg gar tg mmx) and not broken in any way. "oh but you can do more the next turn by setting up" who cares? why is this a problem? tail glow isnt deciding games and i never feel like i have to prep for glow users outside of triage in builder. try again.
TLDR - I agree boosting can be a huge factor when facing teams, but let’s not undersell some of our defensive options.
this is just like your other post. it doesnt take any stance on setup/smash, its just nitpicking about the argument.

you should only be doing 1 thing in this thread, and its making a case for why x element is broken or not broken. saying "oh it has counters" isnt enough, are these counters reasonable to run on teams? are they working out in practice (cite high level replays)?

argue for whether or not smash is broken, not whether or not it has counters.
 
"unaware is good even if we ban shell smash" so what? why should we care? this is completely irrelevant to whether or not things should be banned. stop derailing the thread man.

this looks at tail glow on paper and not in practice. literally the only thing that actually runs tail glow is triage. everything else running it is incredibly niche (tg mmy tg gar tg mmx) and not broken in any way. "oh but you can do more the next turn by setting up" who cares? why is this a problem? tail glow isnt deciding games and i never feel like i have to prep for glow users outside of triage in builder. try again.

this is just like your other post. it doesnt take any stance on setup/smash, its just nitpicking about the argument.

you should only be doing 1 thing in this thread, and its making a case for why x element is broken or not broken. saying "oh it has counters" isnt enough, are these counters reasonable to run on teams? are they working out in practice (cite high level replays)?

argue for whether or not smash is broken, not whether or not it has counters.
I wasn’t derailing the thread. I was saying that Unaware is viable when he said without Smash it is unviable, and thus that makes the case that Unaware is not a niche option, and that strengthens my argument for not banning Shell Smash because abilities you would normally use anyways would also counter Shell Smash - preventing it from being overpowering on many balanced and defensive teams.

By arguing that the additional counters to it, not just Unaware, (you skipped my list of other counter plays to set up), can be used, I also gave viable alternatives that people actively use for their counterplays, and that expands the available options on how Shell Smash won’t be an easy thing to set up, and thus the cost-reward of it are skewed away from being “too much” for the metagame.

Also some my replays for Unaware are on my Signature for Audino-Mega with Unaware can be watched.

I am surprised someone who has a signature full of replays is asked to show replays, especially when my set for Unaware-Audino is known amongst you, and that shows I have used Unaware...
 
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The problem with both Unaware and Haze is that it relies quite a bit on how well your hazer/unaware mon matches up against the setup mon in question. And given that ppl run Shell Smash on damn near anything, it's not really a toss in your favor.

Gyarados seems to come up often as a solve all problem. But Gyarados (aside from being a generally weak mon and not a good check at all to belly drum sunsteel mons due to taking 80 min from any of them and being easily chipped) easily loses to setup mmx or setup Diancie or setup mg mmy or setup Zekrom or setup Garchomp etc...
Unaware darks in general are good on paper but tend to be weak to really common coverage even on stuff they're supposed to wall. And unaware in general is decent against dazzlesmash but tends to crumble when you pair smash with an offensive ability.

Assuming the opponent has two or three setup mons in their team it's very unlikely that Gyarados lasts very long.

Unaware will have the occasional matchup where it actually does something, but a lot of the time it's complete deadweight.

Prankster has the utility of not being completely useless if it matches up badly against the setupers, and not being as susceptible to chip because they recover first. That and the fact that's it's not completely useless in other matchups.


It's completely unreasonable to predict setup everytime on every mon that can run it. Spectral Thief is good up to a point. Staying in with your Magearna or Audino to sthief a groudon on the smash is a pretty risky play and assumes you already know the groudon has smash. + it doesn't kill it and the groudon can try again next time. Or one of the other setup mons can try.

Prankster is mandatory on almost every team because it's the only way to not lose to bellyburden sunsteel (I'm not counting unaware because it's a very garbage check). And yet prankster alone is definitely not enough to deal with setup correctly, it's either overpowered or outnumbered.
 
The problem with both Unaware and Haze is that it relies quite a bit on how well your hazer/unaware mon matches up against the setup mon in question. And given that ppl run Shell Smash on damn near anything, it's not really a toss in your favor.

Gyarados seems to come up often as a solve all problem. But Gyarados (aside from being a generally weak mon and not a good check at all to belly drum sunsteel mons due to taking 80 min from any of them and being easily chipped) easily loses to setup mmx or setup Diancie or setup mg mmy or setup Zekrom or setup Garchomp etc...
Unaware darks in general are good on paper but tend to be weak to really common coverage even on stuff they're supposed to wall. And unaware in general is decent against dazzlesmash but tends to crumble when you pair smash with an offensive ability.

Assuming the opponent has two or three setup mons in their team it's very unlikely that Gyarados lasts very long.

Unaware will have the occasional matchup where it actually does something, but a lot of the time it's complete deadweight.

Prankster has the utility of not being completely useless if it matches up badly against the setupers, and not being as susceptible to chip because they recover first. That and the fact that's it's not completely useless in other matchups.


It's completely unreasonable to predict setup everytime on every mon that can run it. Spectral Thief is good up to a point. Staying in with your Magearna or Audino to sthief a groudon on the smash is a pretty risky play and assumes you already know the groudon has smash. + it doesn't kill it and the groudon can try again next time. Or one of the other setup mons can try.

Prankster is mandatory on almost every team because it's the only way to not lose to bellyburden sunsteel (I'm not counting unaware because it's a very garbage check). And yet prankster alone is definitely not enough to deal with setup correctly, it's either overpowered or outnumbered.
I see your point completely.
A Kartana could pack Power Whip and KO Gyarados-Mega, which equals the base power of Close Combat on MMX.

I also agree, and stated in a prior post, that you have to have the correct matchup for Unaware to be effective, like having Cresselia / Slowbro-Mega for MMX, but not for Moongeist MMY.

At that point, having the wrong Unaware user can back fire, but I think we can consider the most effective Unaware user is not the one that is a jack of all trades, but rather the final Pokémon you add to your team once you examine your teammates and deduce what weaknesses your team has overall, and add an Unaware Pokémon that covers it.

For example, if you have a Slowbro-Mega on your team, you know you can handle set up Mewtwo-Mega-X, and Dusk-Mane, but if you don’t have something for Gengar-Mega, then you understand you need Unaware Yveltal, who offers great counter coverage for Slowbro-Mega, barring Electric moves.

If you also consider Fairy types like Xerneas and Diancie-Mega could threaten both of them, but pack a Flash Fire Celesteela to handle each, then the number of set up Pokémon your Yveltal has to cover is lessened, and now your set up fears are not overwhelming.

Yveltal, due to matching defenses can handle multiple variants of mixed, physical, and special sweepers, but since it is being used for resistances to Photon Geyser and Moongeist Beam, it will be for Special and mixed sweepers as Slowbro-Mega handles physical sweepers.

I see your point, and I agree with it that you cannot create a perfect Unaware user, but I still feel it warrants use because you can maximize filling the holes on your team if your team is able to handle the checks to your Unaware user, just as your Unaware user is able to handle the checks to the rest of your team’s soft spot.

Thank you for your post.
 
The point of motherlove's post was despite advanced preparation for smash and other boosting moves, it is still very possible to lose to it. Listing a long list of unaware users has very little to do with what we are discussing, which is how smash and other extreme boosting moves are broken and unhealthy for the game because they are difficult to wall due to splashability and the fact that current checks to them (prankster, unaware) are either not as good as they look on paper or can otherwise be worked around.

Being forced to run prankster on every team is every bit as unhealthy as being forced to run fur coat girtina on every team when primal don was unbanned. It limits teambuilding and creativity in the tier. In addition I would argue that shell smash is a move that rewards low skill play styles and is pretty toxic to fight against so I cant really see any argument for keeping it
 
The point of motherlove's post was despite advanced preparation for smash and other boosting moves, it is still very possible to lose to it. Listing a long list of unaware users has very little to do with what we are discussing, which is how smash and other extreme boosting moves are broken and unhealthy for the game because they are difficult to wall due to splashability and the fact that current checks to them (prankster, unaware) are either not as good as they look on paper or can otherwise be worked around.

Being forced to run prankster on every team is every bit as unhealthy as being forced to run fur coat girtina on every team when primal don was unbanned. It limits teambuilding and creativity in the tier. In addition I would argue that shell smash is a move that rewards low skill play styles and is pretty toxic to fight against so I cant really see any argument for keeping it
I get the point, my point was I don’t consider Unaware as a universal answer.
Prankster is closer to universal, but even then What about Triage + Tail Glow or Belly Drum?

Regardless, I didn’t provide a long list, I just mentioned that if you have a weakness to certain Shell Smashers, then using Unaware can be a suitable option if the Unaware user’s checks are handled by its fellow teammates. Cross-coverage is just team building 101.
I never believed Unaware was universal, I only thought it was undersold as a viable option.

The relevance of Unaware as a viable option in this discussion is that Shell Smash, when discussed, is considered overpowered. The counters and checks are a form of saying you don’t need to view Shell Smash as overpowered because it can be handled.

Shell Smash might be overpowered when combined with say Simple and White Herb bc it eliminates drawbacks, but on its own it isn’t.

I never thought Unaware = Do not Ban Shell Smash.
I did think, it, alongside everything else from my early list of answers would add up as enough of a reason. When Unaware was undersold as a niche option that is too unreliable, I only brought up how it can be used well when fit into a team - not an automatic stop to all Shell Smash.

In order to have a discussion to consider both sides, it doesn’t seem fair to dismiss what can check Shell Smash bc that is an example of showing Shell Smash is not too much for the metagame. And serves as evidence to prove it doesn’t need a ban...
 
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You are repeatedly missing the point. I have said it. Motherlove has said it. I'm downright certain others have said it. The things that you are mentioning are NOT checks. Unaware and prankster is extremely extremely dependent on matchup and because you can run boosting moves on pretty much anything you want, you can't just say "oh run prankster unaware u noob xd" because chances are you are going to get a bad matchup because there's nothing stopping people from just running 6 smashers.

For prankster you have several very very very common matchups that end badly for prankster. DQM smash gar beats both prank tina and prank regi. It beats regi through pp draining recover and through outright killing tina in most instances. Because DQM is a dumb and uncompetitive ability you can't turvy or encore it either.

All unaware users have to be able to switch in on a hit and take another to spectral. You keep bringing up unaware audino, but literally every physical/mixed set-up sweeper in the game OHKOs that with sunsteel.

(Obviously we would be here all day if I kept listing specific instances of smash beating its "check" and that would be besides the point anyway, I just want to provide tangible examples of smash beating something designed to beat it)

There is an extremely evident amount of centralization in the meta. Pretty much every single team above 1700 runs prankster. Some of them, like Loser's team run 2. And here you are asking me for evidence that it's too much for the meta. People did not prepare for mega ray as much as they did smash. Yet Mega ray got banned. The same can be said for illusion, gengarite, mag pull, and almost every other recent ban. Here we have a set of moves that are completely warping the meta, and forcing people to run laughable checks like haze on every team and you want me to provide evidence that its bannable. Like seriously wtf.

The ONLY other bans that have had an effect on the meta comparable to setup moves are the pre-CFZ, primal don and water bubble metas. In the CFZ meta you had people running scarf phermosa on many many teams, in the water bubble meta you had the same thing happen with water absorb and garbage checks like regen palkia. And on the pre primal don you had nearly every team running FC tina. Every other thing that has been banned (in my opinion at least) has had a far less evident effect on the meta (in terms of centralization). I just really can't understand how you can even claim that there isn't evidence that extreme boosting moves are overpowered.
 
The problem is either Smash itself or something like DQM. Without DQM, I feel as though Smash would be a lot more manageable. Or maybe complete garbage, one of the two. Either way, I feel as though that is the source of the problem. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.
 
The problem is either Smash itself or something like DQM. Without DQM, I feel as though Smash would be a lot more manageable. Or maybe complete garbage, one of the two. Either way, I feel as though that is the source of the problem. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.
DQM is the least of our problems - due to the removal of EV limit, Shell Smash mons can more easily tank priority, and everyone uses Prankster Haze which isn't blocked by DQM.
 
You are repeatedly missing the point. I have said it. Motherlove has said it. I'm downright certain others have said it. The things that you are mentioning are NOT checks. Unaware and prankster is extremely extremely dependent on matchup and because you can run boosting moves on pretty much anything you want, you can't just say "oh run prankster unaware u noob xd" because chances are you are going to get a bad matchup because there's nothing stopping people from just running 6 smashers.

For prankster you have several very very very common matchups that end badly for prankster. DQM smash gar beats both prank tina and prank regi. It beats regi through pp draining recover and through outright killing tina in most instances. Because DQM is a dumb and uncompetitive ability you can't turvy or encore it either.

All unaware users have to be able to switch in on a hit and take another to spectral. You keep bringing up unaware audino, but literally every physical/mixed set-up sweeper in the game OHKOs that with sunsteel.

(Obviously we would be here all day if I kept listing specific instances of smash beating its "check" and that would be besides the point anyway, I just want to provide tangible examples of smash beating something designed to beat it)

There is an extremely evident amount of centralization in the meta. Pretty much every single team above 1700 runs prankster. Some of them, like Loser's team run 2. And here you are asking me for evidence that it's too much for the meta. People did not prepare for mega ray as much as they did smash. Yet Mega ray got banned. The same can be said for illusion, gengarite, mag pull, and almost every other recent ban. Here we have a set of moves that are completely warping the meta, and forcing people to run laughable checks like haze on every team and you want me to provide evidence that its bannable. Like seriously wtf.

The ONLY other bans that have had an effect on the meta comparable to setup moves are the pre-CFZ, primal don and water bubble metas. In the CFZ meta you had people running scarf phermosa on many many teams, in the water bubble meta you had the same thing happen with water absorb and garbage checks like regen palkia. And on the pre primal don you had nearly every team running FC tina. Every other thing that has been banned (in my opinion at least) has had a far less evident effect on the meta (in terms of centralization). I just really can't understand how you can even claim that there isn't evidence that extreme boosting moves are overpowered.
I don’t think I was ever arguing with you the way you believe I was.

I only set out to explain my point that Unaware is underrated. It’s not enough to stop Belly Drum or Tail Glow or Shell Smash always, but it certainly helps.

I don’t recall asking you for evidence.

I said: “In order to have a discussion to consider both sides, it doesn’t seem fair to dismiss what can check Shell Smash bc that is an example of showing Shell Smash is not too much for the metagame. And serves as evidence to prove it doesn’t need a ban.”

I was saying that Unaware can provide evidence it’s not too much.

I didn’t say the other side is lacking evidence.

I don’t have a problem with Shell Smash being considered overpowered, bc in my last post I even said I consider it overpowered when it uses White Herb and Simple. (Or even without White Herb - like if on Gengar-Mega because it’s already Imposterproof). Unburden can also work, but Simple opens up the door for Power Trip and Stored Power.

I just thought Shell Smash is only overpowered in conjunction with items and abilities rather than an automatic win by itself. The EV limit removal also made checks to offense bulkier as well, so they wouldn’t have to split their EVs for mixed offense.

Bringing up Audino-Mega on physical attackers doesn’t make it less effective on special attackers reliant on Moongeist for their Moldy Move, as I know I won’t be seeing Special Attackers like Sceptile-Mega packing Sunsteel Strike anytime soon.

Obviously Haze can check, depending on what the Haze user is (such as not Giratina VS Gengar-Mega), but it also matchup dependent bc unless you switch into or already have a Haze user in place, then there is not a certainty you can get one in by the time it sets up.

I also understand it’s a waste to use Unaware of their MMY ends up only being Sheer Force, or if your Unaware has to deal with Shedinja - both of which don’t use set up moves.

I get all of that.

I see why people want it banned.

I just also see why people don’t want it banned, and I just so happen to be one of those people.

My point was only to ensure Unaware was seen for what it was - situationally useful when facing set up moves, but not completely a waste when considering all forms of setup can be common in at least one form or another.

P.S. I appreciate you taking the time to explain it to me as best you can. It shows humility because you want to ensure we are on the same page.

I hope I have shown I see your point. I don’t want you to feel you typed it up for nothing, I do see the value in your words.

If it helps, I think you made good points. I just wanted to ensure the other side of the argument wasn’t dismissed as “Unaware doesn’t count”.

Unaware has a place in the meta as long as Set-Up moves are common and defensive checks can successfully handle those setup sweepers. Which can be done based on overall team structure.*
 
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Unaware is neat, but we're well beyond the days where you could run Unaware Cresselia and beat 90% or more of the set-up sweepers.

So, set-up, there's three ways to look at this. Either...

a) Shell Smash, likely Belly Drum, and potentially some other moves (I'd vote Tail Glow, eh on the rest) are the problem

b) DQM is the problem by blocking priority attacks like Fakespeed and Sucker Punch or more effective Pranskter strategies like Topsy-Turvy and Encore

c) Moldy Moves are the problem by blocking Unaware, Shedinja, and, to a lesser extent, Fur Coat

I don't think these are mutually exclusive. If Gen VII lasted forever, I'd say all three would be worth looking at individually as they're all kinda aids. But we only got time for one suspect (which I think Species clause is still a viable candidate for, but an equally viable one as to set-up), so we gotta pick and choose. Of them, I feel strongest on Moldy Moves, but my issues with the stronger set-up moves (Shell Smash, Belly Drum, Tail Glow) are pretty close so I'd not object if the community, in general, aimed for those.

DQM is more iffy. I feel those are a pair of pretty anti-competitive abilities, but there are other things in effect that'd make a DQM ban less impactful (MRay ban = weaker flying Fakespeeds in the meta and Dark-types would still lol at Prankster Topsy/Encore/etc.) I mean, I'm not opposed if it went DQM, but I really feel Glowing Shell Drums or Moldy Moves are bigger culprits and one of those, if not species clause, should be suspected.

So yeah, whichever way general consensus goes on Moldy Moves or Set-up Moves, I'll be fine with it. Assuming, of course, there is general consensus to go on.

I've never said this before since there's no chance in hell it'd happen, but in a dream world where all my fantasies can come true, I'd also really love a U-Turn suspect because that move is grossly overcentralizing. But I'm 99.999% sure nobody will agree with me, so don't take that as a serious suggestion. Species, set-up, or Moldy are my focuses.



As for "Unaware being underrated", I do agree with its underrated for a rather good reason. Most of the "best" Unaware users are weak to Mold Breaker moves, eg. Cress and Audino. Wall breakers are also a lot more common this generation than they have been, so it's a lot harder to get in and utilize an Unaware safely. And with how people have been compressing a lot of walls really hard this generation, most Unaware sets become a bit dead weight against a non-set-up teams or ones with poor match-ups since they're already finding it difficult to find secondary utility.

You have to play very proactive with Unaware, which is hard when a lot of the mons that do it only do plink damage with Spectral Thief and U-Turn. Historically, I've had the most luck with Wish-passing Unawares, who bring utility even if the opponent has zero set-up. Though in the current meta? Probably Arceus, who does okay damage with 120 Atk Spectral Thief and has a solid, albeit not super strong, STAB Boomburst to pressure out some recovery PP or to pressure offensive mons wanting to switch on. Or to directly utilize stolen boosts rather than just waving them around like a derp like passive walls do. Add on Moongeist immunity, Spectral immunity, good speed and bulk, and no major weaknesses and its pretty decent.

But even then, you still have to play proactive and kinda aggressive with it, otherwise they'll get set-up move going and just kill it with Photon Geyser or Sunsteel. It's also allergic to MMX, which is a pretty damn big problem, especially since MMX was passively buffed by the MRay ban. It also struggled with PH Gigas with Knock Off (support) and Spore, but luckily that's not very common anymore. And no matter what you do with it, it still gets beaten by a misstep, getting overwhelmed by lots of set-up users, or bad match-ups. All the other Unawares I've tried have been largely worse or very team specific. So, underrated or not, Unaware ain't good enough for set-up, in its current state, to be "fine".
 
Unaware is neat, but we're well beyond the days where you could run Unaware Cresselia and beat 90% or more of the set-up sweepers.

So, set-up, there's three ways to look at this. Either...

a) Shell Smash, likely Belly Drum, and potentially some other moves (I'd vote Tail Glow, eh on the rest) are the problem

b) DQM is the problem by blocking priority attacks like Fakespeed and Sucker Punch or more effective Pranskter strategies like Topsy-Turvy and Encore

c) Moldy Moves are the problem by blocking Unaware, Shedinja, and, to a lesser extent, Fur Coat

I don't think these are mutually exclusive. If Gen VII lasted forever, I'd say all three would be worth looking at individually as they're all kinda aids. But we only got time for one suspect (which I think Species clause is still a viable candidate for, but an equally viable one as to set-up), so we gotta pick and choose. Of them, I feel strongest on Moldy Moves, but my issues with the stronger set-up moves (Shell Smash, Belly Drum, Tail Glow) are pretty close so I'd not object if the community, in general, aimed for those.

DQM is more iffy. I feel those are a pair of pretty anti-competitive abilities, but there are other things in effect that'd make a DQM ban less impactful (MRay ban = weaker flying Fakespeeds in the meta and Dark-types would still lol at Prankster Topsy/Encore/etc.) I mean, I'm not opposed if it went DQM, but I really feel Glowing Shell Drums or Moldy Moves are bigger culprits and one of those, if not species clause, should be suspected.

So yeah, whichever way general consensus goes on Moldy Moves or Set-up Moves, I'll be fine with it. Assuming, of course, there is general consensus to go on.

I've never said this before since there's no chance in hell it'd happen, but in a dream world where all my fantasies can come true, I'd also really love a U-Turn suspect because that move is grossly overcentralizing. But I'm 99.999% sure nobody will agree with me, so don't take that as a serious suggestion. Species, set-up, or Moldy are my focuses.



As for "Unaware being underrated", I do agree with its underrated for a rather good reason. Most of the "best" Unaware users are weak to Mold Breaker moves, eg. Cress and Audino. Wall breakers are also a lot more common this generation than they have been, so it's a lot harder to get in and utilize an Unaware safely. And with how people have been compressing a lot of walls really hard this generation, most Unaware sets become a bit dead weight against a non-set-up teams or ones with poor match-ups since they're already finding it difficult to find secondary utility.

You have to play very proactive with Unaware, which is hard when a lot of the mons that do it only do plink damage with Spectral Thief and U-Turn. Historically, I've had the most luck with Wish-passing Unawares, who bring utility even if the opponent has zero set-up. Though in the current meta? Probably Arceus, who does okay damage with 120 Atk Spectral Thief and has a solid, albeit not super strong, STAB Boomburst to pressure out some recovery PP or to pressure offensive mons wanting to switch on. Or to directly utilize stolen boosts rather than just waving them around like a derp like passive walls do. Add on Moongeist immunity, Spectral immunity, good speed and bulk, and no major weaknesses and its pretty decent.

But even then, you still have to play proactive and kinda aggressive with it, otherwise they'll get set-up move going and just kill it with Photon Geyser or Sunsteel. It's also allergic to MMX, which is a pretty damn big problem, especially since MMX was passively buffed by the MRay ban. It also struggled with PH Gigas with Knock Off (support) and Spore, but luckily that's not very common anymore. And no matter what you do with it, it still gets beaten by a misstep, getting overwhelmed by lots of set-up users, or bad match-ups. All the other Unawares I've tried have been largely worse or very team specific. So, underrated or not, Unaware ain't good enough for set-up, in its current state, to be "fine".
Ya I guess it comes down to personal experience with using it as well, as Unaware demands specific users and many arguments about Unaware are for whether you can find the right specific user for a team, which is stated to be the most limiting aspect of it.

Anyways, to keep this thread moving I agree that DQM is less a priority (a pun that may have been intended ;) ), than Moldy Moves as they oftentimes are less used abilities and don’t always come with Sweepers (think of Dazzling Aerodactyl-Mega for support).

I think, even if I don’t believe they are as big a problem, that set up moves trumps Moldy Moves. Sure Sunsteel Strike + Steelworker + Choice Band can be a pain, but without Belly Drum + Unburden and Shell Smash, Sunsteel won’t be as threatening because they lack a Power + Speed simultaneous boost.

Overall, I believe Set-Up & Moldy Moves are the most important of the 3, and I doubt people will call for Moldy Moves on their own before suspecting Set-Up Moves.
 
unaware sucks.
can we move on and not talk about unaware. and focus on smash.
veterans know that unaware and prank haze are not enough to check set up sweepers in general because the most noticeable mon which has
risen in usage due to ray ban, xerneas runs spikes+qd with nuzzle. unaware cant beat this set nor can prank haze because it adds another layer of pressure on ur team to deal with this is common in pretty much every game we had since ray ban, if not way before where smash or set up sweepers can easily bypass there counters/checks like prank haze/unaware with ease. good luck dealing with getting para hax'd while having to remove hazards everytime. a single prank hazer or unaware mon cant beat that.

the only reason why prank haze is used because it stops the pressure instantly and u dont have to predict or anything, it is like lando-t in ou, its one of the best glues in bh atm, the main difference between unaware and prank haze is that unaware cant stop pressure or in a sense it cant relief the pressure while a mmx is at +2, it just stares at a smash mmx and either dies or gets put into ohko range in mid game. its relatively easy to pressure a unaware due to its overall passiveness in the battle, one set of spikes can determine whether u lose to smash mmx with an unaware mon. there are no pros while using unaware only cons. ur better off running av regen with thief and hoping for the best. whereas prank has pros and cons as mention above it doesnt lose to the standards sets of smash even while pressured but it still struggles the same way unaware does just to a lesser extent because it just doesnt sit there, u actually gain momentum and counterplay its not all over though ofc they are exploits to beating prank haze.
 
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unaware sucks.
can we move on and not talk about unaware. and focus on smash.
veterans know that unaware and prank haze are not enough to check set up sweepers in general because the most noticeable mon which has
risen in usage due to ray ban, xerneas runs spikes+qd with nuzzle. unaware cant beat this set nor can prank haze because it adds another layer of pressure on ur team to deal with this is common in pretty much every game we had since ray ban, if not way before where smash or set up sweepers can easily bypass there counters/checks like prank haze/unaware with ease. good luck dealing with getting para hax'd while having to remove hazards everytime. a single prank hazer or unaware mon cant beat that.

the only reason why prank haze is used because it stops the pressure instantly and u dont have to predict or anything, it is like lando-t in ou, its one of the best glues in bh atm, the main difference between unaware and prank haze is that unaware cant stop pressure or in a sense it cant relief the pressure while a mmx is at +2, it just stares at a smash mmx and either dies or gets put into ohko range in mid game. its relatively easy to pressure a unaware due to its overall passiveness in the battle, one set of spikes can determine whether u lose to smash mmx with an unaware mon. there are no pros while using unaware only cons. ur better off running av regen with thief and hoping for the best. whereas prank has pros and cons as mention above it doesnt lose to the standards sets of smash even while pressured but it still struggles the same way unaware does just to a lesser extent because it just doesnt sit there, u actually gain momentum and counterplay its not all over though ofc they are exploits to beating prank haze.
Ya I already moved on, as stated in my last post. Thanks for the added input.

Anyways I am interested to hear if we need to include Belly Drum, Tail Glow, or anything else?

If we declare a suspect I think we should mention what needs to be considered in totality.

Are we suspecting only Shell Smash?
 
Well we've had suspects similar before such as the GKR (Groudon, Kyogre, Rayquaza) suspect in gen6.
So the vote can be Smash / Drum / Tg independently. Drum and Smash have been the main discussion points with Tail Glow making an occasional appearance in the mix.
 
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OM i assume that we would be suspecting Belly Drum/Tail Glow/ Smash and then depending how people feel, possibly including swords dance/nasty plot. (because to be honest smash gar and nasty plot gar are exactly the same if you aren't running mmy)
 
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Gurpreet Patel (Sent you a Friend Request)

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veterans know that unaware and prank haze are not enough to check set up sweepers in general because the most noticeable mon which has
risen in usage due to ray ban, xerneas runs spikes+qd with nuzzle. unaware cant beat this set nor can prank haze because it adds another layer of pressure on ur team to deal with this is common in pretty much every game we had since ray ban, if not way before where smash or set up sweepers can easily bypass there counters/checks like prank haze/unaware with ease. good luck dealing with getting para hax'd while having to remove hazards everytime. a single prank hazer or unaware mon cant beat that.
this doesnt even make sense, u dont need prank haze or unaware to beat qd ph xern with no coverage. bounce resists, poison heal, offensive pressure etc can all just stop him from doing anything. technically your "setup check" cant beat every single pokemon that boosts its stats, but in practice this means nothing.

anyway im really unconvinced that suspecting setup instead of the other considered things (shed, species clause) makes any sense at all.

i said this in the discord but i dont think setup is what makes species spam uncompetitive. its annoying when u lose to last mon smash mmx after killing everyone else, but in practice i think you lose to spam because all your mons are slower than all their mons, you generally cant get momentum, and ps doesnt show you the right set.

we have no replays and no broken teams that use setup spam instead of species spam to further the argument, its literally just theorymon. meanwhile shed is on every broken team and species spam at least has bmoc to represent it.

i used to think needing prank on every team was lame before sets like prank taunt xern and still hold that view to some extent, but you still need an argument for why needing a prank user is any different from needing a gar check, a ph mmx check, something that helps u not lose to sf mmy, etc.

banning sd and np is dumb and makes no sense
 
this doesnt even make sense, u dont need prank haze or unaware to beat qd ph xern with no coverage. bounce resists, poison heal, offensive pressure etc can all just stop him from doing anything. technically your "setup check" cant beat every single pokemon that boosts its stats, but in practice this means nothing.
that was never the point, i never said in that post that unaware/prank haze is needed to beat ph xerneas, im not sure how imagined this statement from your mind without even reading context and came to that conclusion when its clear that my post was directly related to both unaware and prank haze as some of the most common options to stop set up immediately (well not unaware). ph xerneas was simply just used as an example as to how the metagame has adapted over the time of set up spam, as time goes we adapt this is obvious and ph xerneas is the main example of how the metagame has changed to beat the counterplay against set up sweepers in general, simply just adding another layer of pressure, thats all that example was doing, my post never claimed that those options(unaware and prankhaze) are needed to beat xern, its like u didnt even read the post at all.
literally any mon that follows the same formula as ph xerneas can easily be used in the affect such as "ph smash chomp with spikes by mamp". the entire point is to show that prankhaze/unaware only beats the bad set up sweepers
 
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E4 Flint

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Based on the discussion so far, I think I'm kinda leaning towards going forward with a Shell Smash suspect.

Before announcing the suspect for sure, maybe we should have a bit more discussion on Belly Drum and if it's on the same level of consideration, since most of the current discussion has been primarily around Smash. Some talking points that I would think about are:
  • if its HP cost which decreases its re-usability, and makes it weaker to Prank Hazers who can tank prio and arguably much weaker to Spectral thief mons; however, have to concede that Drum users can use priority Taunt themselves to shut that and DBond down, and there is the surprise option of Belly Drum with strong priority attacks like -ate or to a lesser extent, Triage
  • its susceptibility to prio (if unburden) and Scarf Imposter or faster APS mons (if not)
  • its slightly different role from Smash being more of a suicide sweeper early game or surprise late game finisher that makes its users too tough to handle. The trade-off with the latter of course is that its user has to be kept healthy throughout the game meaning it has to be played a bit more conservatively
  • its increase of only Attack and not Speed or Special Attack leading it to be slightly more predictable in terms of potential movesets, and less mixed sets (though not impossible to use a mixed set and have the option of Belly Drum to open up the game later). It also lends it to have slightly better counterplay as big defensive Fur Coat mons can be an option against it, even when its using mold moves (and Unaware would also likely perform a little better against it as well)
Regardless of what we decide for Belly Drum, I agree with some posters who say we should start looking at just these setup moves to begin with

E: As an aside, based on discusion elsewhere, (this is my personal opinion as a player, not as TL so I didn't include it originally) I think suspecting Shell Smash is a better direction to go to as well since almost every good species spam team heavily makes use of it to be effective and I would prefer taking out a move that has been brought up before rather than species clause for a few mons featured in smash spam teams.
 
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IMO: The reason drum's so strong despite the drawbacks is that the opponent has an incredibly narrow window to react to it safely. If they have the wrong mon out using the wrong move, or faster pivot/manual switch at the wrong time, Belly Drum's pretty much a guaranteed KO thanks to moldy moves, meaning not even Shedinja or Unaware are safe switch-ins (which used to stop most Drum users cold). They also can pick and choose their own checks and counters, eg: Prankster/Priority Drum beats Prankster Haze, Priority probably beats priority (and Dazzling makes opponents use priority a lot less often than previous gens where Drum had to fear -ate Fakepseed all the time), APS beats priority, healing moves/leeching moves/Wish support make it usable multiple times, Normal-types beat Spectral Thief, and so on.

Additionally, even if the opponent suspects/knows a Drum user is on the field. the threat is so massive that they are forced to move to their check/counter every time with very little room for clever maneuvering or outplaying since the cost of a misplay is incredibly high. Meanwhile, the Drum users can play pretty freely every time the Drum user hits the field, whether they Drum or not. Drum's pressure is simply insane.


Tail Glow is in a similar boat, IMO, except a bit less threatening and is lacking a couple of synergies at the cost of better survivability/reusability. Although Simple Tail Glow still pulls a lot of the "HOLY ARCEUS!" levels of pressure Drum pulls.
 
yo i don't think shell smash should be banned and species spam should be

  • most teams have a shell smash answer like prankster mons zyg,gira
  • shell smash is only good/broken if you will on species spam teams because most of the time have counters to ohko or kill zyg/giratina (if u want an example look at bmoc specs mmx.) the reason its good is because if you reveal shell smash they will go their prankster mon to try to haze, sure this can work as a check the first time. but then the prankster mon has a trouble coming in again since there is 6 mmx, and they're all different sets and zyg/gira could get ohko by the specs mmx set. which then is pretty uncompetitive since your literally guessing
  • there has been no good team AFAIK that uses shell smash that isn't a species spam team
Like e4 flint said in the discord

MethydracoToday at 1:01 AM
fun is subjective

how excited do you feel when you load up a game against bmoc? 6 chanseys? one of stresh's HO or just any good ho? I know the most people i've played on ladder with bmoc have said "oh not this guy again." "fuck" "/forfeit" or something around those lines. if you rly want to make the meta fun i would say banning species spam because its rly not fun for anyone other than the user using species spam.


I also don't think belly drum is broken either because you have to send it out late game unless if you set up you get bopped by prankster or priority or chansey/blissey, or focus sash mons.
 
I'm not exactly sure where I stand on Shell Smash right now. Its the best setup move in the game and it can turn almost any mon into an immediate threat. It can be pretty stupid to play against too, especially depending on which mon is running it and their ability. I'm just not sure this means it should be potentially removed from the game.

I do think that now would be a great time for a poll, though. Its fairly clear that not everyone is on the same boat with the potential Shell Smash suspect, whether they think Belly Drum should come first or if they just don't think Shell Smash is banworthy. There are also multiple other things the community is viewing as suspect-worthy recently, such as Shedinja or a Species Clause.

It seems like a poll similar to the one we had for the Sleep Clause would be good. I thought the reqs for this were great and kept voters to mostly serious and/or high level players. I think a poll would bring some clarity to how people are really feeling about the meta in its current state.

Potential options for the poll, based on recent discussion, would probably include:
  • Shell Smash
  • Belly Drum
  • Species Clause
  • Name Clause
  • Shedinja
  • Do nothing
 
What I think people ignore about species spam is that using the same mon is only partially what causes problems. There are many many examples of HO teams that utilize several different mons. The playstyle is still very viable because what makes species spam work (generally) is overloading the opponents stat boosting check and imposter and then sweeping with stat boosts. This strategy is still viable without species spam. The centerpiece of the strategy is not the fact that every mon is the same, it's the process of overloading checks and sweeping. This process isn't really possible without smash/glow/drum but it is with species clause

Also shell smash is usable outside of species spam and its no more competitive in that situation
 
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