Resource BSS Viability Rankings

I've been thinking of whether to make this post for quite a while and have decided it is about time to come out with it or the generation will be over before I do. There was certainly a time when the tier list had quite glaring inaccuracies at all levels. I remember when Tapu Fini and Mega Metagross, two behemoths of the format even when I was just starting out as a player were both ranked A. I do think the tier list has come a long way due to the hard work of the community, where S -> B+ and perhaps even to B tier are largely accurate. Some of the suggestions above are good steps which I agree with, especially on Mega Lopunny and Tapu Fini. If I was to make my own, I would move Thundurus-T to A+ but it is not something I have a very strong opinion on. What I do have strong opinions on is the state of the lower tiers.

I've been somewhat critical of the lower tiers, the C tier in particular on both Pokemon Showdown and Discord and thought it might be a good idea to explain my issues with the grouping and hopefully get some impetus to restructure the tier whether for this generation or the next.

I think most of the issues come down to three things:

1. Lack of clarity on what defines a niche and the category being far too broad
2. Lack of updates to the list leading to pokemon from older metas laying there by default
3. Lack of game knowledge, particularly full cast knowledge when it comes to their application in BSS

A pokemon that holds a niche, at least in my mind, is one that fulfills a valuable or unique role in a team that could not be performed better by another pokemon. This is only the first part of what I think constitutes a niche though. The second part which I think is overlooked is that the pokemon must fulfil the above whilst being able to be part of a team that could consistently reach to the peak of the ladder if used by your average high ladder player (not some laddering god who can get pikachu to rank 25). Essentially this is saying that your team is not significantly worse for utilising that archetype. This is what I think disqualifies a lot of B- and C pokemon and why they should be axed off the list. Take B- for example, a pokemon like Mega Alakazam sticks out to me as extremely dangerous pokemon if utilised correctly which I wouldn't at all be surprised to see on a team getting 2100 at the end of this season. For a pokemon like Entei, I do not feel the same way. I could give many examples here but one is enough to get the point. This issue is further compounded because I can take pokemon like Gastrodon in C tier and have the same thoughts that I have about Mega Alakazam because C and B- have so much overlap.

The last two issues are far less major but worth noting. A lot of these pokemon placements come from over two years ago. An obvious one is Alolan Marowak, which before the release of Mega Mawile and in an era where Tapu Koko was far more used had a far stronger niche than it does now. I'd hazard a guess this hasn't been updated for a very long time because touching these lower tiers kind of is a mess and the pokemon are not really explored very well. It is not something I hugely want to get into, but it is of note. However it is because of this that people will keep suggesting Mega Aggron, Moltres or one of my favourite ones Mega Steelix. It is because, by the very broad definition of niche, they actually fit into a C or B- tier. Some of these pokemon even have the odd top team to back them up, just like many of the current C and B- tiers do. There are certainly ones that would easily be in C without a question like Shedinja.

I think the question of lower tier mons we need to ask is, if they perform a niche, is it significant enough to mention or are they just a nerfed version of a better pokemon that could be substituted there? If they do have a significant niche, does this work within the context of the team and make that team archetype competitive at the top level of play?

If the answer to either of these questions is a no, in my opinion they need to go and I feel if people really think about it, it applies to quite a few pokemon on the list, probably over 10 pokemon and would help spring clean the tier.
 
Last edited:
A radical idea based on what I have said above which I'm sure will be shut down:

Currently B+:

Cloyster: B+ -> B
Lopunny-Mega: B+ -> A-
Slowbro-Mega: B+ -> B

Cloyster: In my mind, with more strict definition of what is B+, Cloyster is too one dimensional and reliant on certain conditions to be present to sweep. You ideally want sash, but with sash you generally struggle to break through most steels. Meanwhile waterium-z means you will struggle to be able to smash in a lot of games.

Lopunny-Mega: Really said by other people, its use in the meta has really gone up. No need to explain more than has done above.

Slowbro-Mega: It is strong, but in far less circumstances and team archetypes than other pokemon on this list. It's often very slow to get going if you are going for a setup set, teams with any fat or any toxic/taunt mon generally beat it. Also being a bulky water physical wall that hates Mimikyu sucks which restricts its building potential outside of stallier cores.

Currently B:

Mega Latias: B -> B-
Politoed: B -> B-


Mega Latias: It isn't that it is weak or anything, but in the cores you see latias, particularly Lati-Mawile, regular latias is preferred. Specs and Psy-Z hit harder and it doesn't take up a mega slot which gives it more versatility. You can do stuff with mega latias but really it suffers from similar issues to mega slowbro, being too slow to set up, hating mimikyu, hating greninja, hating fairies in general, hating ice beam, hating the toxic that will surely go on it.

Politoed: Im not sure whether Pert and Pelipper should be B+ and Toed should be B or Toed should be B-. Either ways, Pelipper is the better rain setter overall and this should be reflected in the rankings.

*One other one to possibly think about is magnezone but Im on the fence

Currently B-:

Blacephalon: B- -> Unranked
Clefable: B- -> C
Entei: B- -> Unranked
Kingdra: B- -> C/Unranked
Marowak-A: B- -> C
Nidoking: B- -> Unranked
Sharpedo: B- -> C

Blacephalon: Unfortunately the clown is just not that good. As a scarfer, you can use chandelure which essentially does similar things but is so much more versatile and has infiltrator.

Clefable: Its not that clef doesn't have a niche, I just think it doesn't fit on any standard archetype, not on most stalls which prefer quag for unaware and even on baton pass teams I think Espeon plus another sweeper is more standard than having espeon + clef nowadays. It's probably worth being aware of still mainly because in the right circumstances it can be a terror.

Entei: Has a few things going for it, but doesn't really fit on any team unless you are shoehorning it on there. It is hampered by availability of certain movesets. Not having Ada banded espeed really hurts. If you want something fatter and more threatening, what about charizard x?

Kingdra: Just outclassed by Swampert, honestly its probably outclassed by ludicolo. With Pelipper/Politoed on the team already, you've generally got enough special water stab to go around and too many tapus, mimikyu and steels going around for draco to be as good as it was in past gens.

Marowak-A: It has a certain niche on trick room, koko can sometimes be a big problem to those archetypes and the type coverage is excellent but mawile is your sweeper of choice generally. Also to be considered is that chandelure can set up rooms and use the same stab. However it can work.

Nidoking: It's a sash ground type with some great coverage but I'd honestly rather use Mamo, Chomp or Drill if I wanted a sash lead. Life Orb I think it is too frail and too slow to do what it wants to effectively. Too weak to break through bulky normals on fatter teams nidoking traditionally took advantage of.

Sharpedo: It's alright but not as good as the mega form.

Currently C Rank:

Aerodactyl-Mega: C -> Unranked
Buzzwole: C -> Unranked
Gengar: C -> Unranked
Golisopod: C -> Unranked
Incineroar: C -> B-
Rhyperior: C -> Unranked
Shuckle: C -> Unranked
Vivillon: C -> B-
Wobbuffet: C -> Unranked

Aerodactyl-Mega: Really had one tiny niche on a very specific stall which isn't used anymore.

Buzzwole: Its not terrible but other than being cool as shit, it doesn't really do much unique.

Gengar: Give this thing a mega stone and it is one of the best mons in the game.

Golisopod: I think emergency exit whilst interesting in theory is not brilliant in practice, does nothing over other waters and first impression unfortunately is not useful most of the time

Incineroar: Actually sees usage on top teams, has a great ability in intimidate which carries it and sets it apart from other fat fires, can also slow uturn into threats

Rhyperior: It's not awful but really doesn't occupy any niche worth noting

Shuckle: I just think even hard setup teams don't use shuckle anymore as a lead since there's just such better options out there.

Vivillon: Thing is a terror to unprepared teams and actually unique in what it brings in the tier.

Wobbuffet: Unfortunately taunt and toxic exist. The trapping teams wob is seen on are non existent

Currently Unranked:

Shedinja: Unranked -> C
Slowbro: Unranked -> B
Uxie: Unranked -> C

Shedinja: Unlike many of the other mons I've said should be unranked, shedinja actually holds niches on top teams and is an integral member of the aptly named sheninja stall, walling certain threats that would annoy stall otherwise like certain gyara, gross and pert sets, thundurus-t, being able to reliably burn mega mawile.

Slowbro: Not on the list for some reason, not much to be said other than obviously should be treated differently to mega, with helmet, specs, bulky berry, z-move being options.

Uxie: I think its probably one of the most overlooked hard setup leads in the game and instrumental on certain "cheesier" archetypes. You generally want a mental herb but just a generally hard setup lead that is difficult to kill, has a versatile support move pool and chooses when it will die with memento
 
Last edited:

marilli

two, but one.
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
B+

Lopunny (Mega) B+ -> A-
Agreed - this seems to be on-par as stuff like Scizor, Mega Tyranitar, etc. - arguably even better, as the Lopunny archetype gets more establishes.

:cloyster: Cloyster B+ -> B
every time i look at this mon it feels just more and more like a noob trap. While it is good, so are Pokemon on B - situationally good. Sash is a surprisingly big commitment on offense Cloyster finds itself in, and the prospect of facing Fini, Steel-types like Aegislash, etc. consistently means that the meta isn't actually that kind to it anymore. Sweeping past Mimikyu is nice but Gyarados does it better, and that never put Haxorus on the VR.

:slowbro-mega: Slowbro-Mega: B+ -> B
Sure. This is a situational Pokemon as Stall goes to more aggressive variants which do not have room for Slowbro. That being said, the TR option can be strong for defensive teams to flip the switch and turn momentum.


B and lower


I would personally never use most of these mons anyways, so no opinion on many. But some few i have opinions on

Politoed B-> B-
Toed is strictly worse because of U-turn on Pelipper. That move's a godsend.
:clefable: Stays
Feels significantly stronger than most of the B- and C Pokemon currently on the list.
Gengar Stays
Sash set is kind of good.
Incineroar C -> B-
Sure. Incineroar is great.
Quagsire C -> B-
This is great on stall.
Vivillon C -> B-
We all know the drill, move the butterfly up.
Wobbuffet Stays C
Skysword is good, Wobbuffet stays.

UR

:diggersby: Diggersby UR -> B
One of the better Aegislash checks in the game, strong Sashed or Scarfed.
:shedinja: Shedinja UR -> C
Surprised it's not on there when Sableye is.
:slowbro: Slowbro UR-> B/B-
Also surprised it wasn't on the list

no opinion on mandibuzz or uxie

https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/adv-viability-ranking-ou.3503019/page-16#post-8116093
we got to try something similar to this.
 
Last edited:
My thoughts on Ika's nominations

Currently B+:

Cloyster: B+ -> B. Agree, this mon is a 1TP that can sweep in the right situations, but theres enough priority in this meta that its just not that easy to pull off, way more games it is dead than effective.
Lopunny-Mega: B+ -> A-. Ye up the bad bish bunny
Slowbro-Mega: B+ -> B. Not relevant in our current meta, and while it should be respected I honestly think it could go down as far as B- (for example, I think Mega-Zam is better)

Currently B:

Mega Latias: B -> B- Nah, this mon is a dead stop to so many teams. It might be hard to afford the mega stone for it (for example, prevents you from using Mawile with it), but on the team comps where it works, it really works.
Politoed: B -> B- Agree, I'd even drop it to C if C is purged and redefined to be truly "niche" mons of BSS. Its definitely B- in our current setup, though, very little reason to use this over Pelipper.

Currently B-:

Blacephalon: B- -> Unranked Would prefer it to go to C, definitely underexplored and while frail as fuck, has a power and STAB combination that is hard to ignore
Clefable: B- -> C/Unranked C, really really doesnt like this gen for Z moves, and even its most gimmicky sets really just dont have the time to set up in this generation.
Entei: B- -> Unranked I don't think theres a reason to use this mon. Its overall power feels like it could be a C mon, but with absolutely no usage it doesnt deserve a rank
Kingdra: B- -> C/Unranked. C, No reason really to use this over Pert, I guess allows you to run M-Scizor. It has the "hard to ignore" factor and can sweep you outright.
Marowak-A: B- -> C. Honestly, UR. This mon doesn't serve a usable niche, it doesn't even see play in Trick Room, and electric attacking isn't at its peak in the meta right now.
Nidoking: B- -> Unranked. C. This feels like a true C mon, with 3 semi-viable sets (sash, scarf, and life orb), which can throw off opponents just enough that it deserves a ranking.
Sharpedo: B- -> C. C feels right. In days where it had higher usage B- could have been justified, but its just a niche pick right now that has to hope its opponents are weak to its attacks and not expecting D-bond to get net positive value.

Currently C Rank:

Aerodactyl-Mega: C -> Unranked Sure, not really seen much, but its speed tier is incredible so Im indifferent on this
Buzzwole: C -> Unranked. C. It is an unparalleled physical check to SOME pokemon, and gets enough situations where you can choke out its only threats and it can win straight out. Wasn't too long ago when Greil's Haunted tower variants features Buzzwole.
Gengar: C -> Unranked. C. Its bad blacephalon if ur not using mega stone, if you want to use a sash set, use Blace.
Golisopod: C -> Unranked. Just a terrible pokemon that should have never seen the light of day for these rankings
Incineroar: C -> B-. Already covered above
Rhyperior: C -> Unranked. Its kinda Moltres tier, in that it can pack a punch, but is too often situational with better options.
Shuckle: C -> Unranked. C is fine, as the only rocker/webs mon in the tier
Vivillon: C -> B-
Wobbuffet: C -> Unranked. haven't used enough to comment, but trapping is trapping and this mon can definitely fuck with you.

Currently Unranked:

Shedinja: Unranked -> C. Covered above.
Slowbro: Unranked -> B weird that this isn't w/ Mega Bro. Should probably be B- though
Uxie: Unranked -> C. No better than shuckle. If shuckle is UR it should be too, if its C so be it.
 
Sounds like things are mostly going to be lowered. Of all the drops none really seem strange, but I want to especially agree w/ dropping Entei to C/off the VR.

For the obvious, no one seems to use it, even though stats are somewhat better than Arcanine which is seen. It's abilities are close to useless, unlike all 3 of Arcanine's(well, not that justified makes much sense but besides the point.) It can't really pressure stall. Suicune gets no good recovery but is pretty much the only good(ish) RestTalker. Entei has Sacred Fire to burn even more than Scald...but that's physical and Entei does not get Bulk UP. So it can't do the same thing. Inner Focus is about as bad, Togekiss is very uncommon and other than that flinching moves aren't heavily relied on. Or rather, the moves may be but not as much for the flinch chance like w/ Togekiss.

Espeed is cool but not unique. Mostly Entei just has Sacred Fire as some kind of claim to fame. It's sorta nice to consolidate moveslots, 50% burn and good power let it save space over having Wisp and another fire STAB. Except for the fact that Entei's movepool is average at best anyway so it only benefits marginally from the 'extra' moveslot. I can kinda see Entei in C but it'd be a bit meaningless given significant support it drops even further. Good stats w/o much else don't really get a mon on here, e.g Goodra, Regis( :), Tornaduses, Raikou, spirit trio, musketeers, reg. Metagross, and Moltres. Entei is a bland mon w/ no meaningful way to surprise a foe w/ moves or its ability.

Wobuffet can certainly mess w/ people. But while Shedinja can I'm dubious about that rising. No need to go into why here it's obvious and so people nomming it know as well...mostly if it goes up I'd just say Zoroark for C also, Samegimmicky quality that might line up for someone but isn;t that great.
 
Sounds like things are mostly going to be lowered. Of all the drops none really seem strange, but I want to especially agree w/ dropping Entei to C/off the VR.

For the obvious, no one seems to use it, even though stats are somewhat better than Arcanine which is seen. It's abilities are close to useless, unlike all 3 of Arcanine's(well, not that justified makes much sense but besides the point.) It can't really pressure stall. Suicune gets no good recovery but is pretty much the only good(ish) RestTalker. Entei has Sacred Fire to burn even more than Scald...but that's physical and Entei does not get Bulk UP. So it can't do the same thing. Inner Focus is about as bad, Togekiss is very uncommon and other than that flinching moves aren't heavily relied on. Or rather, the moves may be but not as much for the flinch chance like w/ Togekiss.

Espeed is cool but not unique. Mostly Entei just has Sacred Fire as some kind of claim to fame. It's sorta nice to consolidate moveslots, 50% burn and good power let it save space over having Wisp and another fire STAB. Except for the fact that Entei's movepool is average at best anyway so it only benefits marginally from the 'extra' moveslot. I can kinda see Entei in C but it'd be a bit meaningless given significant support it drops even further. Good stats w/o much else don't really get a mon on here, e.g Goodra, Regis( :), Tornaduses, Raikou, spirit trio, musketeers, reg. Metagross, and Moltres. Entei is a bland mon w/ no meaningful way to surprise a foe w/ moves or its ability.

Wobuffet can certainly mess w/ people. But while Shedinja can I'm dubious about that rising. No need to go into why here it's obvious and so people nomming it know as well...mostly if it goes up I'd just say Zoroark for C also, Samegimmicky quality that might line up for someone but isn;t that great.
I should have replied to this earlier but forgot for some reason. I don't think it is necessarily true that stuff is going to drop/rise. It's been my personal opinion for a while that C/B- ranks should be cleared up and more specifically that the definitions should be tightened on what constitutes a niche, but the opinions of the council generally tend to differ to mine. I've made most of my nominations within that context.

Zoroark definitely is an interesting pokemon but I've never personally found any success with it and at least competitively, I've not seen a top team with one either. As someone who uses tons of memes, there are definitely different levels of annoyance, where Zoroark definitely is on the low end of the scale, whereas playing around shedinja stalls is harder (tho stall is kinda easy to vs. a lot of the time). I definitely think Shedinja is at the very bottom of C and any cut off should be pretty close to that.
 
I should have replied to this earlier but forgot for some reason. I don't think it is necessarily true that stuff is going to drop/rise. It's been my personal opinion for a while that C/B- ranks should be cleared up and more specifically that the definitions should be tightened on what constitutes a niche, but the opinions of the council generally tend to differ to mine. I've made most of my nominations within that context.

Zoroark definitely is an interesting pokemon but I've never personally found any success with it and at least competitively, I've not seen a top team with one either. As someone who uses tons of memes, there are definitely different levels of annoyance, where Zoroark definitely is on the low end of the scale, whereas playing around shedinja stalls is harder (tho stall is kinda easy to vs. a lot of the time). I definitely think Shedinja is at the very bottom of C and any cut off should be pretty close to that.
Zoroark is terrible because it cant fake HP, terrains, just about half the relevant abilities and the punish for not reading zoroark in play is usually pretty modest for most teams. If its imposter actually worked it might be relevant but you have 3 slots and to fake one that has terrible synergy with most the highest viability mons, that keeps it far in the unranked territory.
 
Zoroark is terrible because it cant fake HP, terrains, just about half the relevant abilities and the punish for not reading zoroark in play is usually pretty modest for most teams. If its imposter actually worked it might be relevant but you have 3 slots and to fake one that has terrible synergy with most the highest viability mons, that keeps it far in the unranked territory.
It should also be noted that it can also be easily found out by stealth rock switchin and it has an awful typing, no bulk etc. etc. There are numerous reasons why Zoroark doesn't work, I didn't want to personally go through them all.
 
As it does not look like they will update the VR until later, I want to leave my opinion.

B
Heracross (Mega) B -> B- : It is a mega with good offensive stat and that works very well in teams of Trick Room / speed control, being seen in some high ladder team in most seasons, but it is very dependent on them to exploit its potential, it has good bulk but a typing that does not favor very well against common threats of the goal such As an example Charizard Y, Heracross usually has Rock Blast but in conditions where there are no speed alterations, it is obvious who would win most cases, its 75 base speed is not the big deal against even if we use Jolly nature still Common things like Fini (which is not the fastest thing in the world) would beat us in speed.

C
Incineroar C -> B-/B : This pokemon had a pretty good evolution throughout the seasons, not being the thing that centralized the metagame but always having an appearance in high-ladder teams at the end of several seasons, this is due to the versatility it possesses, being special defensive, physical or even rarely do you see mixed defense and being able to perform functions like sweeper similar to those of Charizard X (obviously it does not exceed this in most cases but it has the great advantage of not using mega stone), in addition to having a good typing, Good skill and synergy with several Pokémon that are top of the metagame such as Mega-Gengar or Landorus-T.
Finally, I would like to mention that according to pokedb.tokyo it has a similar use to Pokemon of ranking B, even surpassing in use Latios, Entei, Chandelure, etc. which makes me think that as I could reach B standards, but if not it would be a solid B-.


UR
1570727255104.png
Diggersby
UR -> B : Agree. The same as marilli said.
1570723987462.png
Slowbro
UR -> B-/B : Agree (B-). The same as Ika Ika Musume said.
 
Last edited:
As it does not look like they will update the VR until later, I want to leave my opinion.

B
Heracross (Mega) B -> B- : It is a mega with good offensive stat and that works very well in teams of Trick Room / speed control, being seen in some high ladder team in most seasons, but it is very dependent on them to exploit its potential, it has good bulk but a typing that does not favor very well against common threats of the goal such As an example Charizard Y, Heracross usually has Rock Blast but in conditions where there are no speed alterations, it is obvious who would win most cases, its 75 base speed is not the big deal against even if we use Jolly nature still Common things like Fini (which is not the fastest thing in the world) would beat us in speed.

C
Incineroar C -> B-/B : This pokemon had a pretty good evolution throughout the seasons, not being the thing that centralized the metagame but always having an appearance in high-ladder teams at the end of several seasons, this is due to the versatility it possesses, being special defensive, physical or even rarely do you see mixed defense and being able to perform functions like sweeper similar to those of Charizard X (obviously it does not exceed this in most cases but it has the great advantage of not using mega stone), in addition to having a good typing, Good skill and synergy with several Pokémon that are top of the metagame such as Mega-Gengar or Landorus-T.
Finally, I would like to mention that according to pokedb.tokyo it has a similar use to Pokemon of ranking B, even surpassing in use Latios, Entei, Chandelure, etc. which makes me think that as I could reach B standards, but if not it would be a solid B-.


UR
View attachment 199948 Diggersby UR -> B : Agree. The same as marilli said.
View attachment 199943 Slowbro UR -> B-/B : Agree (B-). The same as Ika Ika Musume said.
I'm definitely unsure if I agree with your Mega Heracross nomination. I think it is something you are going to pretty rarely see outside of the context of a trick room core such as Cress-Hera-Tran or something like a Blazpass. So when it comes to speed control, assuming you are able to set up trick room, you generally have the upper edge as Heracross. Whilst you are correct that Charizard Y roasts Heracross, the things that happily take Charizard Y Fire Blast in the sun have always been limited to like Heatran, Chansey and Toxapex, a lot of stuff really does just get OHKOed by that completely broken pokemon. Heracross has always been pretty tanky though against pokemon that don't have stab super effective moves or flying coverage.

I do think Heracross for what it is worth has got a bit worse as the generation has gone on, it has a bad habit of activating 50% berries on shit like Tapu Fini and I've never personally been a fan of the strategy of Lead Heracross, let it do some stuff, switch to cress, trick room, lunar dance, back into Heracross and sweep and a lot of teams nowadays have the capability of covering both Heracross lead and Trick Room lead in 1 slot. It's in this limbo where it wants to be fast in order to do stuff outside of rooms (like outspeeding ada breloom, celesteela for example) but wants to be slow to do stuff in rooms. It also wants all five of its moves and can struggle to hit certain things for much damage without the right moveset. As well as this, it is shoehorned into its core because other main TR mons and Steels expose big compositional weaknesses and significantly cut down Heracross's longevity which a big roadblock to its viability. This sort of archetype essentially hates quite a few things which is why I don't think you see it much anymore.

Mawile kind of circumvents a lot of Heracross's problems by being able to put out threat even when rooms end with sucker punch priority and having intimidate and a far better defensive typing, slower under rooms and even better sweeping potential which is why you see it more often.

With all that being said though and my opinion that it has a lot of shortcomings, the power is undeniable and I think when I look at other megas around there, Heracross is in the same tier as in the right situations it puts in huge amounts of work and can dent most teams pretty significantly. I do think its about as good as Manectric and Alakazam (which should be B IMO), probably better than Latias and slightly worse than Swampert.
 
Last edited:
Zoroark is terrible because it cant fake HP, terrains, just about half the relevant abilities and the punish for not reading zoroark in play is usually pretty modest for most teams. If its imposter actually worked it might be relevant but you have 3 slots and to fake one that has terrible synergy with most the highest viability mons, that keeps it far in the unranked territory.
100% agree actually. Did try it, seems vaguely promising but wasn't gonna stick it out it kinda sucks. I'd agree no rank, just meant I see Shedinja on that level. Stuff what reveals Zoroark like weather and hazards just kills Shedinja.

Shedinja was brought up for being on a high ranking team. I think some people could do similarly well w/ Zoroark. But on average it'd be a terrible thing to use.
 
Last edited:
100% agree actually. Did try it, seems vaguely promising but wasn't gonna stick it out it kinda sucks. I'd agree no rank, just meant I see Shedinja on that level. Stuff what reveals Zoroark like weather and hazards just kills Shedinja.

Shedinja was brought up for being on a high ranking team. I think some people could do similarly well w/ Zoroark. But on average it'd be a terrible thing to use.
You should try out this Zoroark team:

https://pokepast.es/9148697e40ab5f86

Zoroark is still crap but this team is hella fun.
 

Psynergy

Strategy in motion!
is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Live Chat Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon
Moderator
Hey, sorry it's been so long, but it's been awhile since the last vote and there are several reasons for that. The main one being that I was very busy over the summer so with BSPL happening it was basically impossible for any meaningful update to take place (in addition to the lack of posting during that time). Now that Masters has concluded we finally got around to discussing the VR update, and since this is the final one before Sword and Shield we approached it differently.

One thing that sometimes gets forgotten is that the biggest reason for a Pokemon remaining in a placing it likely doesn't deserve anymore is because nobody brings it up, so it ends up overlooked (or just simply that the meta has changed in the time since the previous vote). Thus, instead of the usual voting on all the nominations, I had everyone go through whole the VR individually and vote on which Pokemon they believed should be moved, and where. Nominations here were taken into consideration as usual, and due to the sheer amount of Pokemon there naturally won't be full reasoning behind every single vote, mostly the more important changes. That being said, I doubt anyone here is going to want reasoning for why something like Alolan Marowak dropped.

One final note: if you still feel strongly that something here should be moved or disagree with one of these changes, it is not too late to change it. This is the final formal VR update for the gen but we do want this to be as accurate as possible, so we're still willing to make changes up until Sword/Shield are released. Don't forget however, that viability rankings are never going to be completely objective. While we attempt to accurately represent the meta, it's inevitable that some people will feel differently, obviously we don't have complete agreement among the VR council as is.

With that, here's the list. If something is not listed, it means that nobody voted to move it or it got no more than 1 or 2 votes. The numbers represent the level of agreement with the change, Theorymon has not kept up much with the current meta so he did not vote with the rest of us. Reasoning for the more important changes are at the bottom to avoid clutter.

S rank
-No changes

A+ rank
-Mega Blaziken down to A (5/7)
-Tapu Fini up to S (4/7)

A rank
-Blaziken down to A- (6/7)
-Snorlax up to A+ (6/7)

A- rank
-Mega Lucario down to B+ (6/7)
-Tyranitar down to B+ (4/7)

B+ rank
-Cloyster down to B (5/7)
-Mega Lopunny up to A- (7/7)
-Mega Slowbro down to B (6/7)
-Gyarados down to B (4/7)

B rank
-Chandelure down to B- (6/7)
-Mega Heracross down to B- (5/7)
-Magnezone down to B- (6/7)
-Politoed down to B- (7/7)
-Xurkitree up to B+ (6/7)

B- rank
-Blacephalon down to C (7/7)
-Clefable down to C (7/7)
-Entei down to C (7/7)
-Kingdra down to C (7/7)
-Marowak-A down to C (7/7)
-Whimsicott down to C (6/7)
-Ninetales-A down to C (6/7)

C rank
-Buzzwole UR (6/7)
-Golisopod UR (6/7)
-Rhyperior UR (6/7)
-Stakataka UR (6/7)
-Incineroar up to B- (6/7)
-Vivillon up to B- (6/7)

New Additions
-Shedinja for C (7/7)
-Slowbro for B- (7/7)
-Diggersby for B (7/7)

Tapu Fini rises to S
after much debate, and this will perhaps be the most controversial change of the bunch. There was quite a bit of discussion on whether Tapu Fini can compare to the other S rank Pokemon in terms of usefulness and flexibility. The prevailing argument is that Tapu Fini is comparable to Landorus-T in the sense that it is an excellent choice for just about any non-stall team, due to its fantastic typing and great options both for support and even offense. Like Landorus-T, it lacks reliable recovery options but makes up for it with sheer versatility and being a key check to a wide range of threats in the meta. Landorus-T may still be a little more dominant of a choice in the meta but overall Tapu Fini feels suitable as an S rank Pokemon as well.

Mega Blaziken drops to A.
For a long Mega Blaziken has been sitting on the lower ends of A+ with the meta continuing to be relatively unkind to it, and while it poses a huge threat to a majority of the A rank threats it likewise struggles against most of the S rank threats, including the newly added Tapu Fini. While Mega Blaziken is more than capable of adapting to the meta it will always run into something it can't account for among the top threats, and so we feel it is more suitable for A nowadays rather than A+. Regular Blaziken is likewise dropping to A- for similar reasons, though these issues are a bit more accentuated than with Mega Blaziken.

Snorlax rises to A+ in what is likely not a surprise to most people. While Snorlax does not boast the same level of incredible usage as most of A+ rank, Snorlax has more than proven itself with results as of late. Snorlax is a menace to teams that lack Toxic or Fighting-types, and with the meta continuing to be unkind to the latter, this makes Snorlax even more effective. More bulky offense teams or stall teams struggle greatly against Snorlax without these tools, and with the trend towards bulky offensive teams it's clear that Snorlax is incredible in the current meta.

Mega Lucario drops to B+. Speaking plainly, Mega Lucario doesn't really have the results justifying its A- ranking and truthfully hasn't for a long time. Mega Lucario absolutely demolishes teams that lack solid answers to it but no matter what set it runs, it's always forced into running awkward moves for its STAB options. Additionally, shaky bulky also makes it hard to set up without being forced to capitalize on reads, which is increasingly difficult in the bulky offensive metagame.

Tyranitar drops to B+. While Tyranitar is still a strong pick, the majority of its strength comes from its Mega Evolution. Most offensive sets in the current meta are better handled by running the Mega variant instead, and its support sets compete with much more popular alternatives such as Landorus-T, Hippowdon, and the like. Smooth Rock setups with Excadrill are also less popular than they used to be so ultimately Tyranitar feels like it's a full step behind Mega Tyranitar at this point in the meta.

Mega Lopunny rises to A- after pulling off consistent results in tours this year. Mega Lopunny sounds like an awkward rise in light of the bulky offensive meta but the fact remains that Mega Lopunny puts immense pressure on offensive teams and teams that lack really bulky Pokemon due to its fantastic neutral coverage. Competing with Mega Lopunny offensively is difficult for most teams, and without a good check it can quickly become a nuisance, so the rise feels justified at this stage.

Xurkitree rises to B+. This may seem like an odd rise since it's not one that's seen much discussion. Quoting reasoning by chemcoop, Xurkitree sees usage as a "balance-killer" between its Electrium Z and bulky Tail Glow sets. The Z-Hypnosis set is also a lingering fear for some teams despite being less consistent, but otherwise it's a solid choice in the current meta.

Blacephalon drops to C. While most drops in the lower tiers aren't being commented on, Blacephalon deserves a quick mention since it was nominated for UR rather than C. Some of us still believe it's better off not being ranked at all, but most were more comfortable with it dropping to C citing its good Speed as a Choice Scarf user and powerful coverage between its STABS and Hidden Power Ice.
 
Great slate, VR group! I find myself in agreement (or at least not opposed) to every move made, which is actually incredible considering the sheer size of the voting slate.

Looking forward to discussing a bunch for SwSh with you all, and I am really pleased to be leaving the VR for the USUM meta in a good place before the new gen's start.
 
I think I agree with most of the changes given. No issues here.

I do want to mention something before the start of the new generation and this is just me being frank and wanting the best for the tier. This may be taken on board or disregarded, either ways is fine with me but I thought I'd put it on the record. Something I have noticed during my last two years playing is a drop in activity of some of the VR Council members. Not saying that is a bad thing, we all have our lives or BSS becomes less interesting to play. However purely from the perspective of a VR list, I think you need to be in touch with the current meta in order to make a judgement on what is good or not. I hope people can see where I am coming from. I do think thats why it's really good that people like Marilli and 1TP have participated and their contributions have helped improve the list a lot.

I'd only ask the VR Council to consider this going into the next generation, especially when the excitement of playing a brand new pokemon game dies down.
 
Last edited:

Psynergy

Strategy in motion!
is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Live Chat Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon
Moderator
I think I agree with most of the changes given. No issues here.

I do want to mention something before the start of the new generation and this is just me being frank and wanting the best for the tier. This may be taken on board or disregarded, either ways is fine with me but I thought I'd put it on the record. Something I have noticed during my last two years playing is a drop in activity of some of the VR Council members. Not saying that is a bad thing, we all have our lives or BSS becomes less interesting to play. However purely from the perspective of a VR list, I think you need to be in touch with the current meta in order to make a judgement on what is good or not. I hope people can see where I am coming from. I do think thats why it's really good that people like Marilli and 1TP have participated and their contributions have helped improve the list a lot.

I'd only ask the VR Council to consider this going into the next generation, especially when the excitement of playing a brand new pokemon game dies down.
Going to address this real quick since this is a relevant topic I've been thinking about and I wanted to talk about this in some fashion. The simple answer to this is that the current VR council will definitely not carry over into the next gen as is.

If not for things being busy and awkward this year there likely would've been changes here too but with the delayed timing it ended up being a better idea to just wrap things up and start fresh with next gen. I was not as assertive as I would've liked to be regarding the VR council so I will definitely be trying to keep that concern to a minimum (assuming I'm still the one running it), but I will say that I definitely share some of these sentiments. I greatly appreciate the effort that everyone on the current VR council puts in to the votes since it definitely gets tedious at times, but there will definitely be changes as the new generation will demand different experiences and knowledge.

We will see how things go as things move into the next gen though, especially since next gen is also fast approaching.
 
7th Gen Battlespot once made a video detailing the top 30 pokemon in USUM. Noticeably absent on that list was one Tapu Koko. I'm not of that opinion that Tapu Koko is not even top 30, it clearly is a very good pokemon. I do however think Koko is the worst A+ pokemon and that there are many good pokemon residing in A. I could make a very long case about Koko but it ultimately comes down to what I vaguely said in the battle spot room:


[17:18:14] Ika Ika Musume: if mega blaziken, naganadel, thundurus-t, volcarona, ferrothorn, heatran are A
[17:18:16] Ika Ika Musume: koko = A
 
7th Gen Battlespot once made a video detailing the top 30 pokemon in USUM. Noticeably absent on that list was one Tapu Koko.
He also had Entei in his Top 30, but no Charizard X :D

Not sure about Tapu Koko though, I think it's about equally viable as Gyarados or Snorlax or Hippodown which are also A+
 
He also had Entei in his Top 30, but no Charizard X :D

Not sure about Tapu Koko though, I think it's about equally viable as Gyarados or Snorlax or Hippodown which are also A+
The reference to Lance was mostly a joke rather than an actual reference point.

I do think there is a difference between as slottable and as threatening/good. Hippo and Gyarados for sure are better than Tapu Koko, Snorlax I felt its rise to A+ was more one born of frustration rather than anything else and it is another that is on that fine line. I do think Koko is the worst of the A+ pokemon which is why I put it up and also Snorlax has been debated recently.
 

marilli

two, but one.
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
1. You are always going to have a cutoff point and have some things in a tier be worse than something else. Does not mean you have to rank it down.

Instead of comparing Koko to everything on A+, comparing Koko to everything on A seems to be overwhelmingly in favor of Koko. Unlike Naganadel / Volcarona, Koko does not need setup to do damage, and does not bleed momentum vs Mimikyu like Blaziken. It also does not bleed momentum like Ferrothorn / Heatran. The current VR isn't too picky about A+, that is basically 20 Pokemon on S/A+ combined, so similarly with Snorlax I don't think it's a result of everyone being bad and just frustrated. Snorlax gets much higher usage on high ladder than 23/24th overall, out-usaging everything on A by a huge margin on high ladder and being solidly top 15~20 Pokemon.

2. You might think Tapu Koko is worse than Celesteela, but others can disagree.

Multiple players rank Pokemon like Porygon2 and Celesteela lower than Tapu Koko. While this is debatable, it just means that it isn't so obvious and deserves more reasoning than "it's just worse than everything OK"

3. Tapu Koko might not supposedly be the "main pokemon" in most notable cores, but that completely neglects Tapu Koko being present with most cores at a high level due to how it counters many top-tier threats and other cores.

Koko sees usage on just about anything at a high level: with Mence, Metagross, Gyarados, Kangaskhan, Rain, Blaziken, etc. it warps teambuilding to a much more significant degree than anything in A, and that often simply means deciding to have an Ice weak that will get KO'ed on a predict, but at least that's better than just losing straight-up to Volt Switch spam. Being an offensive check to things and outspeeding Mega Mence, Greninja, Fini, etc. is all great. Actually, having a positive matchup against entire S rank is incredible especially given that it basically uses 5 moves to achieve that.

Interested in hearing more past simple statements of opinion ("Koko is worse than Heatran" - followed by no justification) and Top10/20 team usage (It's always been a top-of-the ladder mainstay. Does current 1 "bad" placing at a time where people stopped caring invalidate the entire years of results leading up to this?)
 
1. You are always going to have a cutoff point and have some things in a tier be worse than something else. Does not mean you have to rank it down.

Instead of comparing Koko to everything on A+, comparing Koko to everything on A seems to be overwhelmingly in favor of Koko. Unlike Naganadel / Volcarona, Koko does not need setup to do damage, and does not bleed momentum vs Mimikyu like Blaziken. It also does not bleed momentum like Ferrothorn / Heatran. The current VR isn't too picky about A+, that is basically 20 Pokemon on S/A+ combined, so similarly with Snorlax I don't think it's a result of everyone being bad and just frustrated. Snorlax gets much higher usage on high ladder than 23/24th overall, out-usaging everything on A by a huge margin on high ladder and being solidly top 15~20 Pokemon.

2. You might think Tapu Koko is worse than Celesteela, but others can disagree.

Multiple players rank Pokemon like Porygon2 and Celesteela lower than Tapu Koko. While this is debatable, it just means that it isn't so obvious and deserves more reasoning than "it's just worse than everything OK"

3. Tapu Koko might not supposedly be the "main pokemon" in most notable cores, but that completely neglects Tapu Koko being present with most cores at a high level due to how it counters many top-tier threats and other cores.

Koko sees usage on just about anything at a high level: with Mence, Metagross, Gyarados, Kangaskhan, Rain, Blaziken, etc. it warps teambuilding to a much more significant degree than anything in A, and that often simply means deciding to have an Ice weak that will get KO'ed on a predict, but at least that's better than just losing straight-up to Volt Switch spam. Being an offensive check to things and outspeeding Mega Mence, Greninja, Fini, etc. is all great. Actually, having a positive matchup against entire S rank is incredible especially given that it basically uses 5 moves to achieve that.

Interested in hearing more past simple statements of opinion ("Koko is worse than Heatran" - followed by no justification) and Top10/20 team usage (It's always been a top-of-the ladder mainstay. Does current 1 "bad" placing at a time where people stopped caring invalidate the entire years of results leading up to this?)
I am merely putting my own personal opinion out there.

Generally I try not to preface stuff too much with huge amounts of reasoning because it is often a damned if you do damned if you don't sort of situation when it comes to some of these discussions where you start getting people talking at each other rather than to each other. For example, people will cite usage stats as an argument in one discussion and then in another discussion say that rating pokemon based usage stats shows a lack of understanding of the meta as a way of discrediting an opponents argument putting you in a lose lose situation. This sort of thing happens multiple times which is why I do get reluctant to contribute here and especially reluctant to put paragraphs of reasoning which takes quite a while to type.

I'd argue that Tapu Koko does in fact bleed momentum against certain pokemon, hippowdon being a big one unless you have specific techs, Mamoswine being another. Even Landorus-T in certain circumstances despite the existence of HP Ice. Tapu Koko also hates being in vs. certain threats. You mention Naganadel and Volcarona, two pokemon that get to do their thing vs. Koko where the existence of Koko is a liability. I'd argue Koko also enjoys setup, though yes you are right not to that extent. Volcarona is certainly a different beast, but Naganadel arguably doesn't need to set up every game, its natural speed tier and the fact you get beast boost often is enough if you have set up your win condition right. If Koko got quiver dance or nasty plot, you can bet it would be using it, it just doesn't have those tools.

You reference snorlax's usage on high ladder, yet Thundurus-T is higher used than Koko and Snorlax on high ladder as an electric and yet is tiered worse. I'm not arguing here that Koko is a bad pokemon, all I'm saying is that if you have X in a certain tier, then Y should be there or it should be the other way round. Generally you don't want stuff in A+ tier being worse than pokemon in A tier, I'm not sure that is objectively correct. Again, if you are going to cite usage stats, you need to be consistent in your citing.

Similarly, mentioning all the archetypes where you see Tapu Koko is kind of misleading without comparing it to other pokemon. Practically everything in A you see in a large variety of archetypes. Ferrothorn for example ticks practically every box you mentioned other than with Metagross, Heatran also ticks every single box except Blaziken cores. Thundurus-T checks every single box, some of which it is the preferred electric over Koko. I'd certainly agree that one of Koko's strengths is its versatility, but this is not a trait unique to Koko.

In terms of warping teambuilding, I'd argue that Volcarona, Naganadel, Thundurus-T and even Breloom warp teambuilding just as much as Koko and having checks to those threats are vital on any top team.

I'm not so sure it has a positive matchup vs. the entirety of the S rank, Tapu Fini in most situations, Mega Salamence unboosted, Non-Scarf Greninja sure. Landorus-T and Mimikyu I'm less so sure about. Lando-T with any investment or sash can tank HP Ice and OHKO. Sure you break Mimikyu's disguise and pivot, but a lot of pokemon can do that. Thundurus-T can do all that Koko is doing, except against protean Greninja and I think has a far better matchup spread when considering A+.

I'm not here arguing that Koko is bad, it is clearly very good. I'm not even arguing that Tapu Koko is worse than any of these pokemon I've cited. All I have said is that certain pokemon should be in the same tier together as they have approximately the same viability.
 
Last edited:
You know, in retrospect I was looking at your survey and I did rank Koko above Mega Gyarados and Mega Charizard Y who are also A+ so I will admit I was wrong there. I just wanted to put across a point that I think stuff should be in the same tier.
 
I was thinking and I would like to suggest a change for the VR (the current one or Gen 8 VR), It is to implement in the pokemon of the VR a URL that directs the analysis of Smogon or in case of not having it to a pokepast / pastebin with the most used sets.
I propose it because:
- Many of the Smogon tiers use this function that makes life easier for players who wish to start in the metagame or for players who want to know how to play "X" pokemon without having to ask or investigate.
I don't think its implementation is difficult and it would be quite useful for everyone.
 
Quick Noms.

Pelipper/Swampert to B+/A-.

These bad boyes just won both game 5 sets of invitational, are well represented on the top S16/17 teams, and overall just have incredible raw power level, warping games completely in favor of the user if their opponents aren't prepared.

Lets start with the obvious: these are lightyears better than all the other mons in B, and I would argue are at the same level of viability as the bottom mons in A- like excadrill. Why the hell is it in a tier with A-Muk, Prim, Manetric and other forgotten relics on USUM?

Pelipper is the best weather setter in the game, in my opinion, and has the ability to either have the most longevity of any weather setter with u-turn, roost, and great bulk, or it can run a Z move/specs/scarf to catch even prepared opponents by surprise. This duality is something Char-Y cannot boast, it is excellent in both roles as a weather pivot/wallbreaker.
Its partner in crime, Swampert, outside of outspeeding the majority of the unboosted metagame under Pelipper's rain, benefits from having incredible type synergy and the ability to take down foes that wall Pelipper. Swampert under rain does an absolutely ridiculous amount of damage output, putting even resisted foes in jeopardy after including waterfall flinch chance. It also has the offensive coverage to neutrally or super effectively hit just about everyone. Mons traditionally considered safe, such as Ferrothorn, crumble to focus punch, and sub helps pert completely mop up passive damage options such as toxic/leech seed. You can also forgo coverage to run rocks, to pressure traditional checks like Zard-Y and make switching in that much more of a bitch to deal with.

Both of these mons, despite being labelled as one dimensional, have a lot of versatility. For their ability to cause absolute respect on team preview and having the most unpredictability of weather cores, they should both go to B+/A-.

Also: If anyone wants to do ferrothorn to A+ as well, please feel free. This thing is an absolute menace and has gotten even more unbearable now with the curse variants becoming such a bitch to deal with and also outright walling/sweeping so many varieties of teams.
 
Last edited:

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 1, Guests: 0)

Top