BH Balanced Hackmons

cityscapes

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so basically an issue with zacc i have is that yes counters exist, but a lot of them just feel super unusable to me. palk/xern/resh on occasion are pretty common and also hard to deal with, and all the counters listed here fail to do pretty much anything against them. no, volcanion does not beat metro xern without scales because you have no spdef: 252+ SpA Pixilate Xerneas Boomburst vs. 248 HP / 252 SpD Volcanion: 128-151 (35.2 - 41.5%), volc is forced to recover, xern picks up the kill easily.

the problem is you can get forced into some real Hombre Pasivo defensive core type things with like desolate land hooh, some prank user, and (somehow) counterplay for the myriad of physical and special attackers that beat your guys. you are not running imposter. you are not running any consistent source of breaking power (bringing your own zacc does not work here because it never finds good opportunities to come in with that passive defensive core). you just lose to like everything in the game. this is why i dont like these counters, you start yourself off on the back foot and you're just asking to lose to any sort of ladder variance with weird sets or any bit of hax.

if we're going to evaluate whether or not zacc is broken, it should be assuming you aren't creating irreversible holes in your team just to deal with it. while these pokemon arent completely unviable, in practice they can be extremely strained and can be a massive pain for the rest of the team to take care of. i think these pokemon are better at beating zacc and not losing to everything else:

Palkia @ Rocky Helmet
Ability: Fur Coat
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bold Nature
- Core Enforcer
- Recover
- Scald
- Spectral Thief

the best counter. only loses specifically if they play rough you on the switch (though you do have to scout imprisonform), not passive, helps against other physical attackers like regigigas, actually puts in work with scald burns, able to run helmet.

Entei @ Leftovers
Ability: Prankster
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Haze
- Flare Blitz
- Recover
- Court Change

prank entei!!! you die to pblades and imprisonform but can haze on rend. i like using the prank as a zacc answer because its very easy to throw out vs zacc balances that beat the prank with everything else. kinda beats xern on occasion. best when used with other answers.

Lunala @ Rocky Helmet
Ability: Fur Coat
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Nuzzle
- Hex
- Core Enforcer
- Roost

the guy. very strong pokemon, BEATS IMPRISONFORM, more helmet action so u laugh even if they sunsteel you, will win the game unless youre facing tttech and his regen heal bell umbreon (????????).

Chansey (F) @ Eviolite
Ability: Imposter
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Impish Nature
- Heal Bell / Court Change
- Recover
- Anchor Shot / Whirlwind
- Spectral Thief

must be used with one of the above counters, but with both you have a pretty good chance at beating zacc and you also get to run imposter which is a massive help against everything else. good times!

OTHER FUNNY THINGS:

- fc pert, though i have had unfortunate run-ins with ph regi as this mon
- fc suicune sucks and youre probably bad at the game if you use it. water that loses to palk kekw
- fc gira is decent but is veeeeery passive
- fc volcarona is awesome just bring a water resist and u beat everyone. shame it cant run helmet
- once i tried to run galv zek as a response to this mon. it doesnt work, he takes like 50 from fakespeed its horrible dont use it
- golisopod is ok though you also kinda lose to ph regi and can get forced into ultra passive sets like uturn recover worry seed pain
- prank dbond is pretty decent though trading off the prank isnt always good unless you have like a second one in the back
- ran ff zamac scarf imposter desolate land victini on offense once which was pretty stupid
- dont use fc ludicolo. please.
- triage sap is funny though there are like no good users
 
Dialga @ Rocky Helmet / Shed shell / leftovers
Ability: Fur Coat
Shiny: Yes
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Impish Nature
- Anchor Shot
- Topsy-Turvy
- Strength Sap
- Spiky Shield / kings shield

hi friends piggybacking off cityscapes post here ill show my zacian counter.

+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Sunsteel Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Dialga: 105-123 (25.9 - 30.4%) -- guaranteed 4HKO
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Sunsteel Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Dialga: 105-123 (25.9 - 30.4%) -- 1.9% chance to 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 94-112 (23.2 - 27.7%) -- 81% chance to 4HKO
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 94-112 (23.2 - 27.7%) -- possible 5HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Glacial Lance vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 91-108 (22.5 - 26.7%) -- 28.1% chance to 4HKO
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Glacial Lance vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 91-108 (22.5 - 26.7%) -- possible 5HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Precipice Blades vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 168-198 (41.5 - 49%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Precipice Blades vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 168-198 (41.5 - 49%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 168-198 (41.5 - 49%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Bolt Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 45-54 (11.1 - 13.3%) -- possibly the worst move ever
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Bolt Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 45-54 (11.1 - 13.3%) -- possible 8HKO (non leftovers)
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned V-create vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 125-148 (30.9 - 36.6%) -- guaranteed 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned V-create vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Dialga: 125-148 (30.9 - 36.6%) -- 68.3% chance to 3HKO

as you can see it pretty evenly survives most of its attacks without a problem and even if it hits with a pblades or close combat on switch you can strength sap next turn and have a base zacian that only 3hkos. before anyone brings up a crit close combat or pblades on switch, id like to remind you while this theoretically means death the chances of it happening in a real game are incredibly low. anchor shot allows you to trap the zac if it doesnt switch after sap and since most of its moves are only about 8pp you can theoretically pp stall it with this mon.

spiky shield is the alt if you dont have helmet while kings shield helps with lowering atk. topsy turvy is fun since it shuts down things like geomancy and bdrum instantly if you can predict and is nice with zac if you want it to deal less than half the damage it dealt before. sap just lets you dab on it when it thinks it can pblade thrice for an easy kill. shed shell can be used if you want to deal with imprisonform better or don't have a mon that can do it already.
 
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Darm-G was never banned, and using Darm-G with Zen Mode and having it transform into the form Zen Mode is allowed, you just aren’t allowed to start with Darm-galar-zen.
Darmanitan-Galar can still be used if you give Darmanitan-Galar Zen Mode, but it's still banned if you try to use it without normal circumstances
sorry the waste of time then, last time i checked the list i thought it was on it
feel free to disregard my ramblings
 
over the last few days, I've been thinking about the metagame as a whole and its stability, when I think of broken mons in this tier I mostly think about zac-c, which is extremely strong on the offensive side, but I've also noticed a looming threat on the defensive side as well.

the mon I'm mentioning is obviously, Zama-c. while it has a few counters or checks on the physical side, but those are few and far between, like adaptability Groudon/Landorus-T, the occasional Desolate land user (although they fail to beat its primordial sea set), and the aforementioned Zac-C, with this list possibly dwindling even further with a possible suspect.

252+ Atk Choice Band Adaptability Groudon Precipice Blades vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Zamazenta-Crowned: 268-316 (69 - 81.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

252 Atk Choice Band Adaptability Landorus-Therian Precipice Blades vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Zamazenta-Crowned: 236-280 (60.8 - 72.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned V-create vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Zamazenta-Crowned: 200-236 (51.5 - 60.8%) -- 93.4% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

252 Atk Ho-Oh V-create vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Fur Coat Zamazenta-Crowned in Harsh Sunshine: 246-290 (63.4 - 74.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

outside of limited counters, another issue is its flexibility in general. you can run this mon for just about anything, as it can run a multitude of great abilities such as Fur Coat, Prankster, Primordial Sea, or even Ice Scales. not to mention it's extremely flexible for role compression, as you can give it just about any move that you might need.

zama-c in my opinion is extremely hard to deal with given the lack of mons that can threaten it on the physical side, along with its counters not being consistent across its various sets, practically forcing you to run either a special mon to beat it or one of the mons mentioned in paragraph 2, which sometimes might not work.
 
Let's talk about how Zamac affects teambuilding. Yes, Zamac is bulky and has tons of great sets, and solid stats all around. However, none of its stats are best in class, and its defensive typing, though good, isn't the best, as the part fighting type brings plenty of unfriendly neutralities, the worst of these being Fairy. It also can't run all the abilities it wants at the same time, meaning that most good teams will have something to threaten it out, wear it down or pp stall it. For offensive teams, it can't run all of Fur Coat, Flash Fire, and Ice Scales at once, meaning that they can threaten to ohko it with something whether that be Reshiram, Palkia, Zacian-C or Metronome Xerneas. Because it doesn't have some of the standard resistances of the Steel-type, you have to compensate for those, which restricts your building more. For defensive teams, many of the Zamac sets, especially fur coat ones, are running Shed Shell to escape trapping from Impform, meaning they don't run Leftovers or Boots so they can be worn down with burns or Spikes, and can be put to sleep with Spore or paralyzed and broken through that way. Shed Shell Imposter is also a threat, capable of forcing it out for free recovery.

During the game, scouting out the Zamac set is not too difficult for an offensive team, since it's often the switchin of choice for one of the attackers on those teams, and a damage calculation can quickly give you the information you need. Zamac's fairly average attacking stats means that even if it does retaliate, it's not going to ohko your mon unless the move it used was super efective and boosted by STAB. Being at base 128 speed and without a boosting nature most of the time (this is a max of about 385 speed), any mon over base 80 can outspeed it after one speed boost with a neutral nature. Its bulk is just good enough to survive powerful hits against the unboosted side of its defenses, but it is also often unable to KO back, meaning that that speed boost is often key in beating it and outpacing its recovery. I feel that Zamac's presence is healthy for the metagame because it encourages smart positioning and incremental progress instead of explosive KOs and that's a good thing because it encourages skillful play during the game instead of matchup fishing in the teambuilder.
 

cityscapes

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wanted to talk about zacc.
  • worth noting that imprisonform is actually a really dumb set to take on defensively due to the massive amount of variants and techs to beat ghosts/shed shell/general walls. however this is not really part of my main point.
  • MAIN POINT: zacian-c is unreasonably good at shutting down offensive counterplay and has imo done more than any other mon to contribute to the inconsistency of offense as a style.
  • as you all know, zacian is strong, but what really pushes it over the edge in my opinion is its defensive utility and speed.
  • limiting zac-c with offense is an incredibly difficult task. killing it with priority is near-impossible outside of the dire galvanize zekrom, there is 1 (one) decent mon naturally faster than it, and its mobility cannot be limited by spikes/webs since hazards straight up do not work as a mechanic in this generation.
  • zac-c finds an unreasonably easy time coming in against common threats such as xerneas and has pushed out otherwise decent-to-great pokemon including eternatus, yveltal, kyurems, and offensive psychics (m2 solg dusk mane) from the metagame entirely. compare this to the resident anti-offense pokemon of gen 7, ph regi/slaking-- this mon has no resists (outside of spectrier rip bozo), needs a turn to set up, and needs its toxic orb activated, meaning there are a ton of windows to limit it.
  • unless you have an fc wall or expendable prank, you are not switching into zacc and forcing it out. it simply does not work like that. even scarfers like hooh and groudon can have issues straight up dying to moves like fishious or glance in addition to the obvious issue of being scarfed.
  • the only way to beat zacc really is to lame him out. even imposter fails to function as a good blanket check because vcreate/pblades just do too much so you're just totally losing long-term. this is mostly why i want to ban him.
  • i will say that more offensive and teams that are flexible rather than brittle are at least semi usable right now which is pretty epic. we have done well so far gamers.
 
I'm just going to give a quick one liner about this. I wholly agree with what city has written here. I'd just like to connect the two previous posts. Skylake discussed how Zama-C's presence in the meta is healthy, despite it's insane versatility, mainly because often times it isn't too active and gives the opponent enough time to play around the set and figure out what it actually is with smart positioning and playing, which is a sign of a healthy meta. Zac-C on the other hand forces the opponent to do the exact same thing, the only issue here is that one wrong move, and you might instantly find yourself a mon down. Yes you still need smart position but often for Zac-C it feels like throwing a dart at a dart board, and if u miss you lose a mon, whereas if you miss against Zama-C you're mildly inconvenienced. This results in a lot of tiptoing which results in the opponent making extremely passive plays and slow plays, often a sign of an unhealthy metagame. It's also difficult to offensively scout out Zac-C since any of your mons can die instantly to a move due to the vast amount of moves Zac-C can use. There is no one check to all Zac-C sets, there are only checks to specific Zac-C sets. It's offensive, defensive, and unparalleled speed tiers make it extremely difficult to prep for and play against. Whether it's presence is healthy or not I'm not sure, but those are simply my thoughts right now.

And just to reaffirm my point of the diverseness of Zac-C I compiled a pokepaste of a bunch of Zac-C sets that came to mind and organized them by category (spoiler I came up with 15 unique Zac-C sets, with each set being able to run a combination of different offensive moves)
https://pokepast.es/6f4107b6b207769c
 
I have a question: why is Bolt Beak banned but not Fishious Rend? This question may have been answered earlier, but idk. Isn't Bolt Beak just electric type Fishious Rend?
Simply put, Bolt Beak as a coverage option was far superior than Fishious Rend. With Bolt Beak water types pokemon more or less lost their viability, and it made Zac-C at times impossible to check. Fishious Rend on the other hand can at times be more easily checked with Desolate Land users and fc waters. Fishious Rend also hits a lot less viable pokemon than Bolt Beak, thus via a suspect test, Fishious Rend was kept, whereas Bolt Beak was banned.

Note: That Bolt Beak was primarily seen as broken not because of it as a stab move of Zekrom or Regieleki, but because of its insane coverage it gave to physical pokemon. (Bolt Beak / V-create / Glacial lance Mold Breaker Kyu-B at times had 0 checks).
 
I'm just going to give a quick one liner about this. I wholly agree with what city has written here. I'd just like to connect the two previous posts. Skylake discussed how Zama-C's presence in the meta is healthy, despite it's insane versatility, mainly because often times it isn't too active and gives the opponent enough time to play around the set and figure out what it actually is with smart positioning and playing, which is a sign of a healthy meta. Zac-C on the other hand forces the opponent to do the exact same thing, the only issue here is that one wrong move, and you might instantly find yourself a mon down. Yes you still need smart position but often for Zac-C it feels like throwing a dart at a dart board, and if u miss you lose a mon, whereas if you miss against Zama-C you're mildly inconvenienced. This results in a lot of tiptoing which results in the opponent making extremely passive plays and slow plays, often a sign of an unhealthy metagame. It's also difficult to offensively scout out Zac-C since any of your mons can die instantly to a move due to the vast amount of moves Zac-C can use. There is no one check to all Zac-C sets, there are only checks to specific Zac-C sets. It's offensive, defensive, and unparalleled speed tiers make it extremely difficult to prep for and play against. Whether it's presence is healthy or not I'm not sure, but those are simply my thoughts right now.

And just to reaffirm my point of the diverseness of Zac-C I compiled a pokepaste of a bunch of Zac-C sets that came to mind and organized them by category (spoiler I came up with 15 unique Zac-C sets, with each set being able to run a combination of different offensive moves)
https://pokepast.es/6f4107b6b207769c
What about something super bulky like Eternatus combined with Prism Armor, Shadow Shield, or Multiscale, and then Strength Sap. Or even Prankster Strength Sap?
 

cityscapes

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What about something super bulky like Eternatus combined with Prism Armor, Shadow Shield, or Multiscale, and then Strength Sap. Or even Prankster Strength Sap?
first of all this has issues taking on teravolt users such as kyurem-b (which saw and still sees use to break through abilities such as fur coat and flash fire)

secondly you run into a lot of problems if the offensive mon decides to do anything other than attack you. in ompl we saw sets such as imprisonform and spore used to break through passive counterplay

finally, you can have a lot of issues in the builder if your team is too passive. if you run a passive wall like that, you will probably need to run another passive wall because of how easy it is for say special attackers to come in on your first passive wall. this can lead to brittle teams that aren't able to create counterplay if they get put into disadvantage. example is this game where my lugia got poisoned early and my offensive guys weren't able to do much because the rest of the team was so bad at creating pressure.
 
From my perspective Zac-C's versatility in sets can be boiled down to three in particular, the heavy hitting standard offense, imprisonform, and pivot + status/hazards support. The issue is that the walls required to check imprisonform and heavy hitting offense are incredibly incompatible with eachother, and as such you wont find any mon able to fill both roles or an easy way to accommodate both on your team at the same time without sacrificing a slot solely for that purpose. The general purpose status/hazards support pivot that usually packs a move like sunsteel etc is the hardest to actually wall on its own if you tried, but similarly it isn't able to actually destroy your team in the same way the other can, and if your team is well put together it is likely to be more of a nuisance than a threat. As mentioned by cityscapes up above its speed and defensive stats and typing make it really easy to throw in and lets you put minor pressure and throw down hazards and/or status.

But of course the real issue here is that the pressure isn't minor in the slightest, the difference between the two extreme ends of Zac-C sets can mean the difference between a win and a loss. Imagining a meta without such a centralizing figure like Zac-C is a daunting task and while it wouldn't be as game changing as the removal of Imposter, I personally believe it would impact the meta much bigger than the ban on Cramorant and bolt beak (possibly even combined).

On one hand you would be removing the fastest pokemon in the meta with the ability to tank a few hits and a very potent breaker that doesn't require setup, and on the other hand you're removing the requirement of specific walls that free up other slots on your team to be used more effectively. Even with the loss of an all around fast hitter I think offenses would be better off on balance teams due to less dedication to walls, allowing more space to dedicate into creative offenses and multi-mon synergies that are hard to take advantage of while prepping for all the kinds of Zac-C you could be hit with.

Do I think Zacian-Crowned should be banned? Probably, but it's a really hard call to make considering its practically the iconic staple of Gen8BH at this point. I definitely do not think the meta would be negatively effected by the removal of the imprisonform set, or the super offense sets. But the real loss would be in the form of the only fast mon with bulk and a pretty solid typing, and I personally view the utility Zac-C set as a healthy addition to the metagame and would be sad to see it go.
The value of a mon being bulky enough to take hits from Zama-C (aka arguably the most commonly used support) that is able to swap in freely and put on pressure with status or hazards, without being concerned about being outsped and taking 2 hits on the swap is incredible. This is the only reason I would hesitate to advocate banning Zac-C from the meta, but the immense pressure and versatility from imprisonform and the free +1 offense make it the biggest constraint to teambuilding and an overall unhealthy presence in the meta.
 
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Zacian-C is honestly a bullshit pokemon. Like, it's simultaneously our fastest and most powerful* attacker and with a great typing and also solid bulk, like what the hell. It renders whole swathe of possible stuff unviable, like whenever I try to run a fast mon I remind myself that it doesn't actually outspeed anything unless it's Pheromosa. Every setup sweeper has to outrun Zacian or they're unviable. Any fur coat you run has to wall it (and then you find out they're a random coverage move and your Darm-Z takes 65 from rend or whatever anyway) or you need to run two of them.

And to be honest, even that was manageable because Fur Coat is such a good ability that you could make it work, but imprisonform is just the actual worst, because now you need to play stupid guessing games. If you switch your FC Zamazenta in on Anchor from imprisonform, you die. If you switch your Giratina in on Glance from offensive, it basically dies too. You can run both in one but with how much sunsteel does FC Giratina is not the most reliable check either lol. And unless your scouting method is imposter, you can't even be sure until two moves are revealed because Imprisonform has a free moveslot to do whatever the fuck it wants. Knock off a shed shell? Be my guess. Glacial Lance that Giratina? By all means. And unlike most offensive wallbreakers and stallbreakers, you can't just keep it out with offensive pressure because it outspeeds and ohkoes most of them, so it gets tons of chances to come in and claim.

Now, that's not to say it doesn't have downsides. Imposter gets a +2 on it, so it's rather difficult to imposterproof, it's effectively itemless, and the meta is about as well adapted to it as can be expected. But what I think is pretty clear is that frankly, that's just not enough, and given how much time we've had and the effort spent already it seems it probably never will be.


*Yes there are technically stronger stuff like CB Adapt Groudon and faster stuff like Pheromosa but it's very close for the former and not relevant for much besides outspeeding Zacian-C for the latter.
 
If Zac-C is removed from the tier it would undoubtedly leave a noticeable hole in the meta, leading us to ask "what Pokemon could fill its role?" Obviously nothing replace such a meta centralizing fiend like Zacian-Crowned, but there are some Pokemon that would be left in positions to rise to power. The two pokemon that I believe would see a massive uptrend in viability would be Xerneas and Eternatus. Both of these pokemon would more than fill in the gap left behind by Zac-C in terms of offensive presence, preventing an uptrend of stall dominating the meta. Without the oppressive teambuilding constraints on balance prepping for Zac-C it opens up a world of possibilities for specific team compositions and certain sweepers.

Xerneas is already a menace but not too difficult to counter with ice scales, or more commonly pivoting to Zac-C and threatening to OHKO with a +1 Sunsteel. Yes this is able to be countered by spamming strength sap enough assuming you're at +1 Spe from rapid spin, but if you aren't at +1 when Zac-C comes in or if it gets a single critical hit it will instantly kill Xerneas no matter what set its running.
With the removal of Zac-C I feel like the usage of Xerneas would rise to an all-time new high, somewhat forcing players to use specific steel Pokemon or an ice scales mon but it's already a common threat and I don't think this would actually have a major effect compared to what it already is.

Much more so than Xerneas, Eternatus on the other hand has many things going for it with a removal of Zac-C in the meta and could drastically shift in how its used. After Zac-C is gone the matter of the next fastest Pokemon will fall directly onto the hero forms of the legendary dogs, with normal Zamazenta/Zacian likely taking up the torch for fast supports. However directly underneath them in terms of speed would be Eternatus, edging out Zama-C by a hair and possessing incredible bulk for its Speed and SpAtk which would likely make it the go to pokemon for speedy supports in general, with the hero forms existing primarily just to outspeed this menace.
The reason why Zac-C heavily blankets the usage of Eternatus is due to two main factors. 1. It is better as a fast support due to its immense speed and advantageous typing, along with isword being incredibly powerful for throwing on an offensive move without any investment. 2. It is completely immune to STAB from Eternatus, and can simply outspeed with GLance and murder an Eternatus lacking setup. Without these factors it's fair to say that Eternatus would be much less threatened and likely flourish in the new meta.

Here is a list I have compiled of some support/offensive Eternatus sets to showcase a few of the sets that it can run (even ignoring defensive ones like mbounce or fur/scales). Eternatus Sets

 
I actually want to talk about another move that deserves some hard discussion, which is trick. Trick is great for crippling checks permanently with just a single prediction at little cost to the user. With the removal of z crystals, mega stones and primal orbs, trick is easier than ever to pull off. Almost every wall in the game is unable to avoid trick, the only exceptions being grysius Giratina and the never seen Rusted Shield Zamac. I will argue that tricking a wall is often better than outright KOing it because the tricker doesn't lose momentum like he normally would if he had just KOed the wall, and the wall is forced to provide free turns to the opponent if it ever comes back in as well. Exacerbating the problem is that Eternatus, the most common Trick user and probably the best, can KO non Ice Scales Giratina from full without a boosting ability, meaning its Orb set can't switch in safely at all. If Zacian-C were to be banned, that would make Trick Eternatus even more unbearable, because Zacian-C was probably the only real switchin to the trick set currently available, immune to both STABs and Trick. Additionally, Eternatus is unable to be poisoned, so you can't even switch a Poison Heal user into it. Eternatus is not the only mon that can successfully use Trick, of course. Specs Xerneas is an underrated user of the move that can easily cripple Ho-Oh or Zamac, though it does miss out on the snowball effect of Metronome, though it does get to take Ho-Oh's boots or Leftovers a lot of the time meaning it can stay alive way longer. Palkia's Rain sweeping sets can employ Trick to deal with Tapu Fini on the switch.

On the flipside, there are a few disadvantages to Trick and some countermeasures against it, and I will detail why they are not too worrisome downsides and inadequate countermeasures. A Protect move user makes Choice Item use a liability in many cases, and this includes Trick. The problem with this argument is that many teams' only Trick absorber is Zacian-C right now, and the protect move is also highly telegraphed after the first use meaning a good opponent can gain momentum by doubling as the Protect user wastes PP. Another is that Trick often clashes with item removal moves like Knock Off, though, this isn't a huge downside since Tricked walls are super easy to KO. Users of the item Mail are immune to Trick, but Mail is completely useless otherwise, and can be knocked off meaning that the mon can be tricked later.
 

a loser

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sword.png

The BH Council has unanimously voted to Quick Ban the Rusted Sword item from Balanced Hackmons, which means Zacian-Crowned can no longer be accessed.

Zacian-C has been the face of Gen 8 BH since the beginning of the generation. Its outstanding stats and typing have kept as one of the top threats available throughout every DLC release and metagame shift from bans and such. Despite going through changes of its own and being restricted to one held item and ability, Zac-C remains a centralizing force in the metagame and has a huge impact on teambuilding.

Zac-C is still the best offensive Pokemon available and despite its restrictions, it has a ton of versatility and can effectively run a variety of sets like All-Out-Attacker, 3-attacks recovery/utility, 2-attacks utility, Imprison/Transform trapper, and more. Each of these sets are checked by entirely different Pokemon, which leads to unfortunate matchups that are lost in the teambuilder because you prepped for the wrong Zac-C set or even the wrong coverage move. Even teams with answers to specific Zac-C sets can still be outdone, as just the other day I used Anchor Imprison Zac-C with Soft-Boiled that happened to prevent a Prankster Tapu Fini from recovering its health. Zac-C's power, Speed, versatility, and impact on every other offensive threat in the metagame has lead the council to believe it is too restricting and centralizing and must be removed.

Tagging Kris to implement the Rusted Sword ban, please!
 
I'm a newcomer to Gen 8 Balanced Hackmons, but from what I've experienced, it's very very stall based. Things like trapping Zygarde-Complete, Poison Heal Giratina-Origin and Zamazenta-Crown are everywhere, and I feel like the meta is forced to play against that, usually with one of those three. It doesn't make it fun for a newcomer to join in. I don't have any problems with Imposter, though.

Of course, I lack experience in the metagame so I might be missing something but it's just my opinion.
 
I'm a newcomer to Gen 8 Balanced Hackmons, but from what I've experienced, it's very very stall based. Things like trapping Zygarde-Complete, Poison Heal Giratina-Origin and Zamazenta-Crown are everywhere, and I feel like the meta is forced to play against that, usually with one of those three. It doesn't make it fun for a newcomer to join in. I don't have any problems with Imposter, though.

Of course, I lack experience in the metagame so I might be missing something but it's just my opinion.
Stall is definitely a strong playstyle, but I don't think I'd say the meta is very stall oriented atm. Imprison Transform Zacian-C punished most stall teams hard since the only real counters were ghosts + shed shell (easily knocked off). Yes, Zacc is gone now, but it being the most oppressive offensive mon means that with it gone, there's now a much wider array of things to deal with at once, namely fat special dragons like Eternatus.

Trapping definitely isn't as strong now without Zacian, since it isn't backed up by unmatched speed, fat defensive typing, and the possibility of a myriad of other offensive sets that you autolose to off a wrong prediction. Zygarde is threatened more easily than Zacian, for example, and can't outspeed plenty of other walls, much less offensive mons.

PH Tina is really nice, but PH offensive mons in general are really nice. I'll assume you meant Giratina-Altered since that's the more defense-oriented Gira form, though, and in that case, that mon runs plenty of other sets that make PH by no means dominant. They're all strong in their own ways but are scared shitless by some pretty common attacking types, namely Ice/Dragon/Fairy.

Zam is in a similar state, but as several people pointed out earlier, it's not a very active pokemon and often gives up momentum for the sake of not dropping dead immediately, which can be detrimental in its own right. It's got a lot of versatility, yes, but it isn't hard to figure out what set it's running after even a turn or two, and it isn't threatening enough in most cases to keep you from getting that crucial information.

BH has a lot of really stupid offensive sets on the ladder, but it has an equal number of legitimately fun, interesting, and solid ones, too. If you need any recommendations, I'm sure most people here would be willing to offer some, but off the top of my head, here's some.

Xerneas: Metronome Boomburst + Rapid Spin, Poison Heal, Specs Pixilate
Eternatus: Mold Breaker, Corrosion, Sheer Force, Dragon's Maw, etc
Palkia: Swift Swim if you like rain, adaptability, etc.
Reshiram: Poison Heal, Regenerator (kinda defensive but still has offensive pressure), Dland
Regigigas: Poison Heal is tried and true
Groudon: Mold breaker band, shift gear setup, offensive support with rocks, etc
Kyu-B: Mold Breaker is nutty but really hard to improof lmao
Kartana: Steelworker, Tinted Lens

These are just a few examples for a few mons, but trust me, there's a lot of choices for blasting through defensive mons in this meta.
 
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Thanks for replying! I'll try to use a couple of the mons you mentionned!

Also, curious, any reason why mold breaker over teravolt when you listed kyurem-b? lol
No prob. Mold breaker is functionally identical to teravolt/turboblaze, so they're just collectively acknowledged as mold breaker style abilities. Same goes for Sunsteel Strike, Photon Geyser, and Moongeist Beam; they ignore abilities, so they're often referred to as moldy moves.
 

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Things seem a little too quite here so I'm gonna give a quick update on the metagame and the council's plans.
:ss/eternatus::ss/xerneas::ss/zamazenta-crowned::ss/groudon:
Say hello to the new faces of Balanced Hackmons. Eternatus, Xerneas, Zama-C, and Groudon are some of the best available mons thanks to their offensive and defensive capabilities, excellent BST, and good typings. There will be few reasons not to use one or more of these mons on your teams since each of them can fill various roles.

Etern's offensive sets will be in the spotlight here with Dragon's Maw and Adaptability both being very strong and other options like Mold Breaker, Final Gambit, and multiple others being able to put in work. Xern is still able to spam Boomburst like before but is a little more free to do so without Zac-C around, meaning it might not be locked down to Rapid Spin quite as much. It can also still run very effective Poison Heal sets with things like Thunder Cage for Ho-Oh and its great stats allow it to do various other things as well. Zama-C notably checks and pressures both Etern and Xern, depending on the ability (and Zama-C can run basically any ability and be viable), which makes it a very useful mon to have. But this also means that Etern and Xern will try their hardest to get rid of Zama-C and they can do this with things like Gambit, luring with coverage like Blue Flare and V-create, or depending on teammates. One good teammate would be Groudon, who is able to offensively pressure Eternatus and Zama-C and can even beat Xern 1v1 depending on the sets and how things play out. Groudon can use Choice items or setup moves and has a handful of abilities to choose from too.

As for the council, we are each currently pretty busy with building/playing/managing in OMPL and most are in the BH Seasonal Tour too. So BH is definitely on the brain for all of us, but it isn't exactly the best time for us to share all of our new BH strategies considering most of us will face off against one another.

With that being said, we are definitely aware that the sample teams and viability rankings are in need of a big update to reflect the metagame now that Zac-C is gone. These will be our top priorities once these tournaments are done. This will also give us time to reflect on the state of the still new BH metagame, since OMPL and the BH Seasonal will give us a good idea of how things are looking. This will also help us know if any tiering decisions are required to make the meta the best it can be.

In the meantime, we'd love to see what sets, ideas, and strategies you all have been using since Zac-C got fully banned. There are other mons that could be on the rise too like Ho-Oh, Kartana, and Solgaleo since they can help deal with four mons shown above.
 

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