Resource BSS Viability Rankings

Jhon

Show me something eternal
is a Tiering Contributor
Rises:
1. Vivilion: C --> B-: This is a real mon, unlike the turds that currently reside in C that give your opponents free wins. Viv has one of the best boosting moves in the game, ultra accurate sleep powder and STAB hurricane. Its speed tier is definitely good for essentially a spore user as well. Outside of that, you have a ton of options as your filler slot: Bug buzz, sub, tailwind off the top of my head. This mon doesn't need nearly the level of support other guys in this tier need to really dent or flat out win games, and does not belong in C.
[...]
5. Espeon, Ninetails, B- --> B: Screens is underrated here, its gotta be at least as good as rain imo, and these both have good STABs and useful utility outside of their obvious niche.

Drops:
[...]
Latias: B --> B-: Choiced sets that hit like wet paper unless its a super effective attack won't sell me. Its mega version outclasses it and as a result it should drop
Gigalith: C --> UR: Can't imagine why this was ever ranked, lol
Just re these ones
Vivillon is practically only seen with the moveset Hurricane, Sleep Powder, Substitute, Quiver Dance with Leftovers. It's 4th most used move has 98.2% usage, and Leftovers has 97.5%, it really is a one set mon. It often requires support though, most Viv teams will have mons that carry Rock Tomb, Icy Wind etc as Viv needs to get its foot in the door, the first Sleep Powder, to get anything going. In addition, due to it's poor offensive coverage it can find it's self struggling with some common mons, mostly steel types, and especially so when they're combined with either Koko or Fini to make sleep far less reliable. I think these are genuine negatives for it.

Screens can be kind of dead weight against certain kinds of teams and also somewhat costly, so I don't think they're being particulalrly underrated. Especially as options like Koko also exist for dual screens. Espeon and Ninetales-A are fine where they are right now.

Latias is actually more common than it's mega form. Z-Psychic, Rocky Helmet and as you mention Choice Specs are pretty common among the handful of Latias used in higher ladder teams. Also, the choiced sets aren't the kind that are looking for an ohko, it's on a decently bulky mon, so it's more about trading efficiently than being an all out aggresive pick.
I don't think it's fair to say the mega outclasses it when they often do different things plus the opportunity cost of using it as a mega, though not huge, is still there

Gigalith was ranked because it saw some strong placements and served a genuine niche over Ttar and Hippo as a sand setter for Excadrill. Most notable it's access to Gravity and Explosion let it get Excadrill in safely and allow it to plough through what could have otherwise been checks with z-EQ. However it has seen very little usage as of late, and it is certainly no longer being considered a factor fo the meta, so UR may be right for it.
 
Rises:

1. Vivillon C -> B- = Agree. I believe it was season 9 that vivillon got a bit of usage on top teams, mainly due to the traits you mentioned above. Vivillon does have some very clear weaknesses. Tapu Koko for example which is on just under 20% of teams completely invalidates it. Misty terrain is a menace as well. What I think makes Vivillon suffer though is the need for substitute on it due to its lack of power where a large portion of the metagame can take multiple hits at +1 or just stay in whilst asleep otherwise especially steel types, making it unable to run a sash. It doesn't help that half of the top 10 in viability just straight up outspeed and OHKO it with their most common sets making Vivillon a risky pick needing lots of team support generally in terms of rock tomb/icy wind (jolly Mimikyu, Lando and timid Lele can also do this as well as Fini's waterium but they are not the most common set). However this all being said, in the right matchup, Vivillon can put in work, which I think is a more common happening than with most of C tier.

2. Empoleon C -> B- = Agree. Empoleon in my opinion is the best pokemon in C tier currently and is an easy move up to B-. I admittedly have not used Empoleon much, however I believe it is certainly a useable replacement to hippowdon that also covers different ground. One thing that people underrate about Empoleon is it's special attacking strength. Modest torrent boosted Waterium-Z hits harder than even the vogue Torrent Greninja Z-hydro cannon. Z-hydro pump does a minimum of 84% and can even OHKO max HP Porygon2 on a high roll in torrent. I don't think Balloon is necessary on Empoleon as it can take most EQs in the tier just with max HP which will get Empoleon into juicy torrent range asides from max attack lando-T's and it threatens back with water/ice move. You could technically run bold empoleon which even takes max adamant lando's EQ, but I feel that takes away from what Empoleon does best. Asides from that, steel is a great defensive typing for special attackers and it does well especially against the likes of greninja. It's best set probably would be a spdef set since it can switch into the likes of greninja and tapu lele pretty freely whilst being able to do respectable damage. Icy wind -> waterium can probably beat even ghostium-z mimikyu. Could say a lot more about this mon, its pretty good. Overall yes, underrated.

3. Lopunny B -> B+ = Agree. Lopunny is for sure a pretty good mon with a nice speed tier, being above the likes of Koko and Mega Gengar. My problem with Lopunny has always been that it doesn't quite do enough damage. For me, the difference between a mon in the B tier and a mon in the A tier is that you can switch into a certain top tier mon, no matter what you've decided to bring as your set and you are pretty much guaranteed to wall. Defensive Hippowdon and Tapu Fini are the dual banes of Lopunny, which is why I don't think it is higher up on the list. That being said, it is certainly possible to chip these mons into ranges where a return/HJK can KO.

4. Glalie B -> B+ = Agree. I've already mentioned my reasoning for this when I proposed it.

5. Espeon/Ninetales-A B -> B+ = Disagree. Unfortunately this is one that I have to disagree with. I don't necessarily think that screens is a bad playstyle, however it is difficult to pull off. For me, Tapu Koko is by far the best screener since it is far less telegraphed and it can beat some sets of Greninja, with both Ninetales and Espeon get outsped and OHKOed by. When it comes to some of the strategies in B+, shell smash cloyster, BD azu, z-conversion P-Z, Kommo-z Kommo-o that define the mons in that grouping, I think they are far easier and more consistent to pull off than screens. Espeon does have a niche as a BP recipient, which is also not a brilliant style in the current meta, but I don't think it is enough to warrant a rise.

EDIT: Wait, it's only going to B. I have no opinion on that then.

Drops:

1. Entei B -> B- = Agree. Honestly I think it could be dropped further to C. It's not used much and certainly under-explored, but it's essentially just sacred fire at the end of the day. I doubt we will see much of it on top teams and I think Arcanine with Intimidate might, despite the lesser usage and bulk be better due to its superior coverage. It might be different if Entei could use Extreme Speed as Banded Espeed, but it cannot in BSS unfortunately.

2 + 3. Latios/Gigalith. What Jhon said essentially sums up my thoughts on the matter.
 
Last edited:
Seems like its been a long while since this stuff has been updated. I'm not the greatest player, but having spent a lot of time in other formats, the tiers below A- need a lot of work. Here are several assertions of mine that using the eye test moving them to a different tier make sense, but I can't super justify it (they'd just seem way more in place in that tier than another tier).

Rises:
1. Vivilion: C --> B-: This is a real mon, unlike the turds that currently reside in C that give your opponents free wins. Viv has one of the best boosting moves in the game, ultra accurate sleep powder and STAB hurricane. Its speed tier is definitely good for essentially a spore user as well. Outside of that, you have a ton of options as your filler slot: Bug buzz, sub, tailwind off the top of my head. This mon doesn't need nearly the level of support other guys in this tier need to really dent or flat out win games, and does not belong in C.
2. Empoleon: C --> B-: Really good rock setter, has roar and yawn for support, and Ice beam/icy wind and scald to deter two of the kings of BSS, salamence and lando. While it is weak to EQ from those mons I just mentioned, I slap on an air balloon for it to ensure rocks get up. It does face competition from skarm and hippo, but those are so much higher in the ranks while empoleon has much better ability to set up on special attackers. I've seen a ton of offensive rocks teams use this unlike the other jokes in C
3. Lopunny-M: B --> B+: This mon gives me so much trouble as an offensive player, and I think it really should be recognized more. Fake out is such a problem to face as an offensive player, and being able to have STAB normal and fighting attacks hit ghosts is so so so important in BSS, giving Aegi/gengar/mimi a LOT of trouble. It has a bit of a 4MSS, but at the same time, its really hard to prepare for, and even if you are playing a more defensive team if you don't prepare for the occasional PuP, encore, or sub, you can lose equally as hard.
4. Glalie: B-->B+: Not that memey, been said above, moody is a good ability that just beats certain teams and glalie is the best one.
5. Espeon, Ninetails, B- --> B: Screens is underrated here, its gotta be at least as good as rain imo, and these both have good STABs and useful utility outside of their obvious niche.

Drops:
Entei : B --> B-, Who actually uses this mon? I haven't seen one this entire summer. Not a great speed tier, bad defensive typing, sure it has a really really good move, but thats not enough to make it on par with the rest of B
Latias: B --> B-: Choiced sets that hit like wet paper unless its a super effective attack won't sell me. Its mega version outclasses it and as a result it should drop
Gigalith: C --> UR: Can't imagine why this was ever ranked, lol

I have some other hunches in the higher tiers, but I don't think I'm qualified enough to make any assertions on the real mons of BSS, but wanted to bring them up for discussion:
M-Kanga to A-
Naga, Char Y to A
Thundy T, M-Mawile to A+

Thanks for reading, and hopefully some of you agree!
The set you describe on Empoleon was used on non-mega Swampert a lot last gen, why do you think Empoleon doing that is B- material if you don't question reg Swampy not being ranked? More physical bulk, and it beats Koko. Quite a bit less SpA but ice still does what it's supposed t and no EQ weakness.I mean Idk but that was my first thought.

Glalie users are bullies, even I stopped using it, too mean. But ofc by that logic I think it could move up. Moody is really strong and the best case is much better than the worst case is bad.

I'd agree on Espeon, don't know enough about Ninetails. Such a good ability, Xatu is plainly worse and mega Sableye and Absol have big issues, so it's almost unique. Good mon to set up w/, avoiding those annoying Hippos w/ their Yawn and/or Whirlwind.

Fully agree on Entei, in fact I wouldn't be surprised to have it go down to C. Sacred Fire is nice but not enough to me, Not when it's sorta slow for these days, not especially bulky, and not even that strong of an attacker compared to many top mons. Weak to EQ and it doesn't get to use it itself, and I forgot about no Espeed on it. Plus virtually useless ability. I wouldn't use it.

I still think both TTar forms should be in the same tier. Similarly I'd keep Latias forms together, weather they drop or no. The mega improves the stats quite a bit, but it's a shame when the pre-mega does not also have a useful ability. I think that takes a lot away from the value of using the mega. Choice sets suffered imo, since z-crystals and mega stones are immune to Trick, and that's a fairly obvious synergy with choice items. But not anymore if potentially 2/3 of a team will be immune. I'd consider those two equally underwhelming.

I disagree on Gigalith, w/ a niche in Gravity setting, potentially setting SR beforehand then later exploding, it does something. Seems exactly like what is being looked for in a C rank. Gravity isn't horrible, and many times I've though about using it. Many really strong moves have low acc. One example that seems like it could be good is Zap Cannon P2. Plus Gravity nullifies HJK for a few turns. Also EQ hits all, could be very important for Excadrill for instance. Stat wise it isn't much worse than the other 2 sand setters, actually 1 more Atk than TTar, similar physical bulk to them, and even though it's way slower none of them are fast(well mayb Mega DD TTar but that's way different.)
 
Seems like its been a long while since this stuff has been updated. I'm not the greatest player, but having spent a lot of time in other formats, the tiers below A- need a lot of work. Here are several assertions of mine that using the eye test moving them to a different tier make sense, but I can't super justify it (they'd just seem way more in place in that tier than another tier).

Rises:
1. Vivilion: C --> B-: This is a real mon, unlike the turds that currently reside in C that give your opponents free wins. Viv has one of the best boosting moves in the game, ultra accurate sleep powder and STAB hurricane. Its speed tier is definitely good for essentially a spore user as well. Outside of that, you have a ton of options as your filler slot: Bug buzz, sub, tailwind off the top of my head. This mon doesn't need nearly the level of support other guys in this tier need to really dent or flat out win games, and does not belong in C.
2. Empoleon: C --> B-: Really good rock setter, has roar and yawn for support, and Ice beam/icy wind and scald to deter two of the kings of BSS, salamence and lando. While it is weak to EQ from those mons I just mentioned, I slap on an air balloon for it to ensure rocks get up. It does face competition from skarm and hippo, but those are so much higher in the ranks while empoleon has much better ability to set up on special attackers. I've seen a ton of offensive rocks teams use this unlike the other jokes in C
3. Lopunny-M: B --> B+: This mon gives me so much trouble as an offensive player, and I think it really should be recognized more. Fake out is such a problem to face as an offensive player, and being able to have STAB normal and fighting attacks hit ghosts is so so so important in BSS, giving Aegi/gengar/mimi a LOT of trouble. It has a bit of a 4MSS, but at the same time, its really hard to prepare for, and even if you are playing a more defensive team if you don't prepare for the occasional PuP, encore, or sub, you can lose equally as hard.
4. Glalie: B-->B+: Not that memey, been said above, moody is a good ability that just beats certain teams and glalie is the best one.
5. Espeon, Ninetails, B- --> B: Screens is underrated here, its gotta be at least as good as rain imo, and these both have good STABs and useful utility outside of their obvious niche.

Drops:
Entei : B --> B-, Who actually uses this mon? I haven't seen one this entire summer. Not a great speed tier, bad defensive typing, sure it has a really really good move, but thats not enough to make it on par with the rest of B
Latias: B --> B-: Choiced sets that hit like wet paper unless its a super effective attack won't sell me. Its mega version outclasses it and as a result it should drop
Gigalith: C --> UR: Can't imagine why this was ever ranked, lol

I have some other hunches in the higher tiers, but I don't think I'm qualified enough to make any assertions on the real mons of BSS, but wanted to bring them up for discussion:
M-Kanga to A-
Naga, Char Y to A
Thundy T, M-Mawile to A+

Thanks for reading, and hopefully some of you agree!
I agree with most but I'd like to talk about viv. From my past ag experience this thing is a monster. But tapus do not help it fini and koko mean if they have it which is likely they can bring it and prep for the rest and now you have 5 pokemon to chose from. Mons like celesteela and pex sometimes run safety goggles along with other pokemon. There is also a lot of power in this meta. Many pokemon outspeed and kill it like most lando mence +1 speed blaze koko scarf lele greninja pheromosa and much more. So I disagree
 

cant say

twitch.tv/jakecantsay
is a member of the Site Staffis a Top Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Battle Simulator Moderatoris a Team Rater Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
Battle Spot Leader
Seems like its been a long while since this stuff has been updated. I'm not the greatest player, but having spent a lot of time in other formats, the tiers below A- need a lot of work. Here are several assertions of mine that using the eye test moving them to a different tier make sense, but I can't super justify it (they'd just seem way more in place in that tier than another tier).

Rises:
1. Vivilion: C --> B-: This is a real mon, unlike the turds that currently reside in C that give your opponents free wins. Viv has one of the best boosting moves in the game, ultra accurate sleep powder and STAB hurricane. Its speed tier is definitely good for essentially a spore user as well. Outside of that, you have a ton of options as your filler slot: Bug buzz, sub, tailwind off the top of my head. This mon doesn't need nearly the level of support other guys in this tier need to really dent or flat out win games, and does not belong in C.
2. Empoleon: C --> B-: Really good rock setter, has roar and yawn for support, and Ice beam/icy wind and scald to deter two of the kings of BSS, salamence and lando. While it is weak to EQ from those mons I just mentioned, I slap on an air balloon for it to ensure rocks get up. It does face competition from skarm and hippo, but those are so much higher in the ranks while empoleon has much better ability to set up on special attackers. I've seen a ton of offensive rocks teams use this unlike the other jokes in C
3. Lopunny-M: B --> B+: This mon gives me so much trouble as an offensive player, and I think it really should be recognized more. Fake out is such a problem to face as an offensive player, and being able to have STAB normal and fighting attacks hit ghosts is so so so important in BSS, giving Aegi/gengar/mimi a LOT of trouble. It has a bit of a 4MSS, but at the same time, its really hard to prepare for, and even if you are playing a more defensive team if you don't prepare for the occasional PuP, encore, or sub, you can lose equally as hard.
4. Glalie: B-->B+: Not that memey, been said above, moody is a good ability that just beats certain teams and glalie is the best one.
5. Espeon, Ninetails, B- --> B: Screens is underrated here, its gotta be at least as good as rain imo, and these both have good STABs and useful utility outside of their obvious niche.

Drops:
Entei : B --> B-, Who actually uses this mon? I haven't seen one this entire summer. Not a great speed tier, bad defensive typing, sure it has a really really good move, but thats not enough to make it on par with the rest of B
Latias: B --> B-: Choiced sets that hit like wet paper unless its a super effective attack won't sell me. Its mega version outclasses it and as a result it should drop
Gigalith: C --> UR: Can't imagine why this was ever ranked, lol

I have some other hunches in the higher tiers, but I don't think I'm qualified enough to make any assertions on the real mons of BSS, but wanted to bring them up for discussion:
M-Kanga to A-
Naga, Char Y to A
Thundy T, M-Mawile to A+

Thanks for reading, and hopefully some of you agree!
agree with all except gigalith fwiw.
 
Empoleon from C to B- = Agree
Empoleon in its "defensive" variant is capable of checking common pokemon in the goal such as Mega-Mense, Mega-Gross, Tapu Lele or even Hippowdon, for giving a couple of examples, also having access to Knock Off and Stealth Rock as very useful movements for this variant.
In its variant "offensive" despite not having the speed of Greninja is a pokemon that hits much stronger than this, being able to use a set similar to the one used with the latter, that some of its calculations were already mentioned to be able to demonstrate your power

Espeon from B- to B = Agree
Espeon is one of the best recipients for a strategy based on Baton Pass, but outside of that its limited to pokemon screens, in this role is pretty decent in my opinion for how little I use this variant, but the reason why I think I should go up is because it is a great response to stall teams, examples of this are: Chansey does not touch you if it is not with seismic movement and Toxapex minus makes you with Scald and can win quite easily


Ninetales-Alola from B- to B = Agree
I always felt that the style of play based on Aurora Veil was always undervalued due to the difficulty of the strategy, but when you achieve that function is GG, I based on this strategy achieve very good results with a team with which I get to overcome in one occasion the barrier of 1500 inside the ladder of Showdon and 1800 in 3DS.

Latias from B to B- = Agree and maybe C in my opinion
This pokemon sticks very loose compared to its Mega version or even compared to pokemon that are not used in this way as Latios or Hydreigon, nor with Choise Specs I feel that KO would give things that do not hit super effective

About Vivillion and Loopuny I have no clear opinion because I did not play much with them, so I do not want to comment at the moment, but I want to make some comments
1- Pelliper is better rain trigger than Politoad, in my opinion, the reasons for this are first its flying type stab that allows it to end with typical rain threats such as Mega-Venusaur and Amongoos, apart from having a utility movement that is of great help as it is Knock Off.
2- Diggersby I feel that it is rare that it is not in feasibility C range, I say according to the page that almost all of us look to see the use of pokemon in BSS is quite high in terms of use, hovering between the 60 to 70, apart to have a great skill like the Huge Power and a great stab like the Earth type.
They are not nominations but they are two opinions that came to me these days when analyzing these two in a better way and I wanted to see what they thought about it, other opinions that I did not include were Nidoking and Mega-Manectric
 

marilli

double the pokemon
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
I think Espeon is a quite a bit better screener than Ninetales, and Koko much better than both. l think Ninetales shouldn't rise necause Ninetales is reliant on its weather condition and thanks to Ice's multiple weaknesses there's a lot more Pokemon that offer counterplay to Ninetales that would not to most other screeners, such as Metagross, Charizard-Y, Hippowdon, Scarf Kartana, Naganadel, Tyranitar, etc. just to name the very meta Pokemon. I've perposefully left out Pokemon such as Scarf Gunk Shot / U-turn Greninja and Mega Gengar that also offer counterplay to other common screeners. Most of these other listed Pokemon cannot hope to deny screens vs other common Pokemon, and in fact many of them allows both screens - but they shut down Ninetales and deny any screens from coming up.

If there were a new Cresselia with 5 more base Defense, it really wouldn't matter how usable the current Cresselia currently is, but it would likely would be left off completely in the Viability Rankings - because it provides very little reason to use it over a strictly stronger alternative. For me, this is Ninetales. While screens is a pretty decent strategy once set up, Ninetales makes it much harder to set these goodies up when compared to using other alternatives. While Ninetales provides certain unique niche advantages when it IS in fact able to set up, I feel like it does not justify use over its alternatives considering the number of prohibitively bad matchups that other screeners do not mind.

If anything I feel like Ninetales should fall even though I quite like setup and screens.

Most of the other stuff I agree completely / I'm OK with.
 
I agree that Ninetales should not rise. Though its base speed is high, it is actually disappointingly not fast enough for a mon that NEEDS to outspeed other pokemon to get up screens before it gets KO'd, and as a result, it has to almost always run Focus Sash instead of Light Clay. Pokemon like Koko, for instance, do not have this problem and can hold Light Clay. Furthermore, Ninetales is very dependent on its weather because without it it cannot get screens up at all, and in a meta where both Hippowdon and Charizard Y are so good this leaves it very vulnerable. Another very Meta (lol) mon also destroys Ninetales... Metagross can Iron Head Ninetales down to its Focus Sash and you have a 30% chance of being in a 2 v 3 situation with no screens or damage to show for it. It's not all bad for Ninetales; Icy Wind, Encore, and Sheer Cold are simply amazing moves for a dual screener to have. However I do not think this great movepool makes up for Ninetales's shortcomings enough for it to rise.

Agree with Empoleon rising.
 
Scolipede B-<--C

I used this and it was really bad. I have a shiny one w/ good ivs for its nature(though said nature is questionable) in game so if anything I'd be pre-disposed to wanting it to move up so I think it's fine to bring this up.

Scolipede is not bulky or strong. In addition to an extremely mediocre 100 atk stat( or at least it's mediocre when no other stat is all that good) it can't run more than maybe 2 attacks and still fill its minor niche of baton passing Spe and ideally Iron Defense I think, since SD or just Spe seems extremely outclassed by Blaziken. As a non-BP speed booster it appears horribly outclassed by the aforementioned, Sharpedo, and probably Yanmega fwiw.

So it rarely helps by itself and isn't even great for BP. Also frailer than even non-mega Blaziken :| 60/89/69 vs 80/70/70 Do people try using this for a reason or just cause they managed to catch a shiny one?
 

Jhon

Show me something eternal
is a Tiering Contributor
So it rarely helps by itself and isn't even great for BP. Also frailer than even non-mega Blaziken :| 60/89/69 vs 80/70/70 Do people try using this for a reason or just cause they managed to catch a shiny one?
The difference in bulk is smaller than it looks when you consider than Scoli’s far higher natural base speed allows it to invest more in bulk. The typical speed-pass set is an Agauv Berry (or similar) with Sub, Double Team, Baton Pass and Throat Chop. Throat chop is the interesting element here as it prevents Perish Song and Roar, both blights on bp strats. I also think, the typing is better than Blaziken for a dedicated passer, particularly the Fairy resist and not being weak to Ground. You could argue that Blaziken conceals more information at preview because of it’s better set variance but I feel like teams using speed-evasion pass have to act quickly as they’re often playing on thin ice. Which leads to using options like Belly Drum Kommo-o or Stored Power Clefable. Having those two at preview is a major tip off, but that’s fine if you’re not relying on surprising your opponent.
Scoli has some other sets but they’re less interesting. Stuff like Sash lead with Toxic Spikes and Endeavour.
 
Oh wow, D-team? I used to BP Minimize w/ Drifblim in ORAS but lost interest this gen, z-moves that are attacks won't miss. D-team is half a Minimize. Throat Chop seems really useful, I was using Megahorn but whichever attack you use won't deal damage to most things anyway. I was wondering what mon used Throat Chop well since it seems like an ok move.
 
Oh wow, D-team? I used to BP Minimize w/ Drifblim in ORAS but lost interest this gen, z-moves that are attacks won't miss. D-team is half a Minimize. Throat Chop seems really useful, I was using Megahorn but whichever attack you use won't deal damage to most things anyway. I was wondering what mon used Throat Chop well since it seems like an ok move.
Baton Pass teams are easy to spot, you almost always will know it at the team preview that you're facing one of them. And since mostly every competitive team has a way to deal with them, you'd basically will always face a check or even two that could ruin your bp chain.
This is why Throat Chop is a key move. It can offer an answer to moves such as Roar. Combine this with Scolipede's ability and moves such as D-team, or i've seen SD or Iron defense too, and you'd have a powerful baton pass chain starter.

As for Z moves, you need to play around them as every team does. There is no such thing as the perfect strategy
 
Last edited:

Psynergy

It's all for you.
is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Live Chat Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon
Moderator
It's been awhile but since we're long enough past BSPL the next VR vote will begin shortly. There are a lot of noms that have happened since the last vote and we probably will not be voting on every single one, but there are a couple Pokemon that haven't been discussed that I want to add to that list first. None of these are guaranteed to happen obviously, but I think they're worth touching on.

Tapu Bulu: Drop from B+ to B
This one has had some discussion awhile back and I think it still holds, Tapu Bulu is far from bad but you really don't use it unless you're building around it or running Toxapex/Heatran or Toxapex/Metagross. In most other scenarios another Grass-type is a better fit, Bulu's middling Speed and high reliance on Grass-type STAB really limits the amount of builds where this thing really shines. I don't think this is any worse than B, but compared to everything else in B+ it feels out of place.

Skarmory: Rise from B+ to A-
We voted on this last vote so I'm normally hesitant to bring it up again, but it was so long ago and I think Skarmory usage has developed a little more beyond Stall builds, which is why we initially voted against this. More offensive Skarmory builds aren't new, but I've definitely seen more of them as of late as its general usage has also increased, so I'm willing to give this one another look.

Amoonguss: Rise from B to B+
Almost exclusively a rise of a result of Mimikyu, Amoonguss is a really cool pick. I've found myself considering it more often on teams every month and being a bulky Grass/Poison with Spore, Foul Play, and Regenerator makes for a very useful pick in the current meta. Its usage isn't much better than Tapu Bulu which makes this nom seem a little contradictory, but I think its niche has a more useful place in the current meta than Tapu Bulu does.

Ideally this vote will be out before the end of the season, but I'll try to get this out as soon as possible.
 

Psynergy

It's all for you.
is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Live Chat Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon
Moderator
And here we are. This vote could've gone up a few days ago but DragonWhale was unfortunately not able to get a vote in during the weekend so we're getting this up now. All of the votes are already conclusive so this won't impact anything. One thing to note is that we're moving Blacephalon down as well despite not voting on it formally. Theorymon's comments on it in his votes led to a discussion that was in agreement of dropping it, though we didn't drop it all the way to C. If someone wants to make a case for that next vote feel free to do so. Alolan Ninetales is also on the verge of dropping and will be considered for C next vote.

Speaking of C rank, I will note that while I'm still against splitting C rank at the moment, there is a slowly growing amount of Pokemon in C rank and B- also has quite a few Pokemon in it as well. Neither rank is large enough to justify a C rank split yet but if the next vote dips a lot of Pokemon down then it may be up for debate in a future vote, not necessarily the next one. Now that I've said that, don't nominate Pokemon down primarily with the prospect of this happening because they're not that bloated yet. With all that out of the way though, here's the vote.

Gyarados: B+ -> A-
cant say: regular gyara? idk if it's that good, z sets are mostly for surprise factor and there are better bulky waters.

chemcoop: Disagree, regular Gyara is just not that good. There are much better phys def RH users than Gyara and the Z-move sets are neat but not good enough to justify A-.

greilmercenary9: B+. Regular Gyarados is still an interesting mon, but defensive Helmet builds struggle due due lack of reliable recovery, and Z-move sets are interesting to bait stuff like Venusaur but really miss the lesser attack stat compared to Mega Dos on the non-Z move attacks.

NOVED: B+. gyarados is not that great without mold breaker

Psynergy: This is fine in B+ but I can see where this is coming from if we're factoring in its potential to Mega Evolve. However that's not a factor that's considered when ranking a base mon, and given its most common usage is with Flyinium Z or technically itemless I think that speaks for itself. Not bad at all but it's not a super common sight these days.

Solerme: A-. Its damage output might be not as fierce as MMence's or CharX's ones, but it can be still a pretty strong game changing mega. This also thanks to its a good movepool, and, compared to the stronger megas, a better mega/non mega typing that opens the way to mindgames. Last but not least: intimidate + mold breaker is no joke in the mimikyu meta.
Not A+, not A, but i can't really see it in B+.

Theorymon: Remain. I like those Z-move sets and all but I feel like Gyarados is by far at its best when it can choose when to mega evolve. Not having that choice removes a lot of that role codensing I like Gyarados for.

Xurkitree: B- -> C/UR
cant say: disagree, B-

chemcoop: Disagree, Xurkitree isn't the easiest mon to fit on a team, but properly set-up z-Hypnosis builds can be hard to stop, and bulkier TR variants can also put in work. Definitely a better mon than many others in C tier.

greilmercenary9: B-. The tree can still give a variety of teams trouble, as the speed boost from Z-Hypnosis sets can spell doom for offensive teams without something to outspeed it at +1, while more defensive teams can be run through by Tail Glow sets or by the Z-Hypno + Tail Glow combination (which is by far the most common build I’ve run into on the high ladder). These sets can run through teams by themselves with a little Hypno luck, and hit hard enough to pressure most defensive mons, so I think it deserves to stay up.

NOVED: B-. i dont think its that bad, tail glow is a pretty sick move.

Psynergy: I think C is arguably fair here but definitely not UR. I've admittedly never seen this thing on the ladder ever and I think a middling Speed mon's best set being a Z-Hypnosis set is not a good thing, but it is very strong if it does work so I'm willing to keep it in B- for that.

Solerme: B-. As said by many of you beast boost + its Z sets (hypno or even the electric terrain one that i like the most) and the bulky TR ones can win games alone in some situations.

Theorymon: Remain, I think B- is a good spot for Xurkitree: It can be very threateing if it gets a good dice roll with Hypnosis or surprise people with those bulky sets, but is very hard to fit in on teams otherwise. I feel that C is probably underselling a mon that threatening. Also, the idea of htis being UR feels strange when we have Blacephalon as B imo!

Buzzwole: B- -> C/UR
cant say: sure. c

chemcoop: Agree for C, doesn't see a ton of usage or have a particularly good niche. Definitely too good to be UR, but not as useful as many of the other B- mons.

greilmercenary9: C. I still think this is too good to be UR, but it increasingly struggles in this meta, so I’m more amenable to moving it down than I was earlier this year. Heracross just does most of what this wants to do better despite using a mega, bulky defensive builds with Roost suffer from the abundance of Fairy types about, and the AV set that I felt deserved to keep it in B- for awhile just struggles to outperform other mons in the role at this point even with Buzz having more surprise factor.

NOVED: UR. yeah i just dont see myself using this. maybe if kang gets really popular but thats not the case rn to a point where id wanna use this.

Psynergy: I don't like to keep coming back to a mon that keeps on getting nominated, especially for being compared to Pheromosa, but I think C is pretty fair given how pitiful its usage is. It does still have a place as a physical Ground resist with good coverage but being Bug/Fighting was already bad for Mega Heracross and it's even worse for Buzzwole.

Solerme: C. Would be a good physical tank, but since most of the top ranked physical megas hit it with supereffective damage it can really shine. Id still respect his power though.

Theorymon: I agree for C. There are a few things neat about it (I like the ground-resist for a figther a lot actually), but its a pretty limited Pokemon otherwise. I actually think its on the level of Blacephalon actually (btw Im shocked that thing is at B atm lol)

Stakataka: B -> C/UR
cant say: disagree, B

chemcoop: Agree for C, I very rarely see this on cart, and I think it can be hard to fit on TR teams when good TR builds are already pretty well established.

greilmercenary9: C. It’s a very interesting TR mon, but as Chemcoop noted it doesn’t really fit in the most accomplished TR team builds, and a defensive typing with 4x weaknesses to the myriad of EQ users in the tier (along with anything packing Close Combat/Focus Blast) doesn’t do it any favors either.

NOVED: i mean this isnt here but id probably go B-. this thing is a lot like cb ferro but can TR itself which is a pretty cool niche despite the not so great typing compared to ferro. if i could rank cb ferro itd probably be like b- so seems right. def dont unrank.

Psynergy: I can't agree with UR on this thing and would prefer to drop it to B- instead, but I unfortunately cannot justify that at the moment. It gets about similar usage as Blacephalon, which is to say not much at all, and it's a fairly niche Trick Room addition that does not benefit from Mawile monopolizing the Mega slot on those teams. Still a deadly one on the right team but if Xurkitree is B- then C for Stakataka sounds fair to me.

Solerme: C. With a x4 weakness to the most spammable type i can't really see this going further in the ranks. This being said, the combination of TR and Beast boost can still be a win condition.

Theorymon: C is a good place for it. I really wanted to like this thing more consistently, but its really hard to fit this on TR teams. For setters, Porygon2 is a much better bulky settter, while for attacking, I prefer to just go with Mega Mawile. It just doesn't gel all that well with TR staples sadly. Still totally usable though. Still better than Blacephalon though imo!

Mega Alakazam: B- -> B/B+
cant say: mmm idk, really not a fan. B-

chemcoop: Disagree, I really only see this mon on psyspam teams and Eeveepass. Both of those modes are extremely niche, so I think staying B- is fine.

greilmercenary9: B-. Only really notable on Psyspam or as a partner to help a setup mon get going, and while it can do those two niches quite well, it has little else going for it, especially in a meta where Mimikyu rules the roost and doesn’t even need a Z to OHKO uninvested Zam if it has Shadow Claw. Its niche in helping stuff like Glalie, Vivillion, or Eevee set up is arguably more interesting, especially since it’s easier to take someone by surprise with it and has some interesting tools like Thunder Wave and Trace, but it’s comparable utility is still dwarfed by something like Hippo or Serperior (or Whimsicott for Eeveepass) that really do the utility game better unless Zam really catches someone off guard.

NOVED: B. i actually think this thing can put in decent work. im pretty optimistic towards it and it can be an AoA kinda set or disruptor lead for BP. not B+ tho surely.

Psynergy: I'm not going to knock Mega Alazakam too hard since it's a very dangerous threat on the right team, but that's exactly where the problem lies. There's really not much reason to use it over another Mega or Psychic-type if it's not an EeveePass team or the rare Psyspam squad. I think B- is fine here.

Solerme: B-. Agree with Greil, i don't like this thing. You gotta respect its speed tier, and supporting movepool, but i can't really justify using the mega slot for this if not specificly for psychic spam teams or glalie strategies. What keeps me from saying C+/C is its great ability to handle most of the 1vs1 situation, this makes it a pretty solid tool in the late game 1v1 situations.

Theorymon: I literally only see this thing on Psychc terrain spam, don't think I'd move it up.

Entei: B -> C/UR
cant say: I think B- before C. people underrate this so much

chemcoop: Agree for C, very rarely see Entei and find it hard to justify as a fire type if its only niche is being bulky and burning things 50% of the time with Sacred Fire.

greilmercenary9: B-. Maybe I’m just too slow of an adopter on dropping this thing, but Sacred Fire is obviously great and between AV/SubToxic sets I think this thing can still be pretty good in the right spots. But it definitely deserves some sort of drop: B is too high, and maybe I’m just being a curmudgeon suggesting B- instead of C.

NOVED: C. being a little more aggressive on this than i have been in the past. honestly this things pretty shit id rather just use lava plume heatran or anything with scald if i want to get burns. i kinda tried to keep this up in the past cause "yeah sacred fires fucking broken" but nah this is just very rarely worth it the more i think about it. C seems like the best fit imo.

Psynergy: I think Entei being ranked only makes sense if you're familiar with the cart ladder because I've very rarely seen it outside of that. AV Entei is a very rude mon especially with Stomping Tantrum giving it an actually decent Ground-type option, and SubToxic with Pressure will always be a good build in the BSS format. It's definitely not B worthy though, let's drop it to B- instead.

Solerme: B-. This is one of those situations where id really like to have a C+ rank. I do like the AV set here, and you always have to be careful to Sacred Fire too, but i'm not a fan of mono-fire types, with ground moves being omnipresent

Theorymon: B- or C is fine with me. Sacred Fire is cool, but it has pretty heavy competition as a Fire-type otherwise.

Mega Slowbro: B+ -> A-
cant say: i really like this but i don't think it's A-. normally i don't care about opportunity cost but when there s a plethora of good bulky waters that don't take a mega i think it cuts into this thing's viability. it is a really nice glue mon tho

chemcoop: Disagree, good on stallier builds but hard to fit on most teams. Plenty of other megas/phys def walls that provide more utility.

greilmercenary9: B+. Mega Slowbro is a solid mon but I don’t think it’s good or versatile enough to prop it up to A-. The typing is interesting, but while it gives it a strong niche it also is generally worse typing than other super tanky stuff like P2 or Hippo in this meta, and while it is competent offensively it can struggle to punish switch-ins. Solid on stall, okay on other teams, but not really A- level.

NOVED: B+. its good but not that good.

Psynergy: Nah B+ is fine, this is a very stall exclusive mon and isn't even always used on the common stall builds. I'd drop this to B before raising it to A- honestly.

Solerme: B+. I'd say even B to be fair. I honestly like more the RH non mega version taking the advantage of Regenerator. But i can't really argue the fact that this alone can deal with most of the top physical megas in the tier, so it definitely deserve the rank. It even has the Gen1 godlike movepool, with the access to Fire moves, for example (i don't even know why.). Outside of this it's not even close to be strong as the A rank megas, not even in a TR team since it really relies on boosts to hit hard.

Theorymon: I'd rather it stick in B+ just because I feel like Mega Slowbro only really works well on stall. It's not like Skarmory who has more utility outside of it.

Golisopod: C -> UR
cant say: no

chemcoop: Disagree, this mon has a niche just small enough to stay C. Priority First Impression hits like a truck, and access to Aqua Jet can be a nice way to pick off weakened threats like Blaziken and Volcarona. Emergency Exit can also be used for some niche repositioning strats.

greilmercenary9: C. First Impression and a strong STAB Aqua Jet are strong assets. Not the best mon around, but an effective priority user and one with an interesting typing despite competition from Araquanid.

NOVED: UR. this things shit im never going to want to use this on my teams. in theory its ok but like in that ur not upset you get it in BSSF, you're not gonna put this on a team fr.

Psynergy: Surprised I'm not the only one that thinks this, but I'm actually fine with this remaining in C. I've run into this mon on more than one occasion and the strong priority options are actually very annoying, I think this can stay.

Solerme: C. Nice priority user, good typing. I really don't want it to be UR, even though C is probably its peak.

Theorymon: While I liked Golisopod better in SM, I still think it has enough of a niche to stay on the list. First Impression is really rad for picking off mons (like I think even Tapu Koko takes meaty chunks from it), and unlike Araquanid, it can pick off the fast offensive Fires with Aqua Jet. Its ability, while often lame, can actually be used effectively too by getting a priority hit off then letting the ability switch you to something with a good match up.

Quagsire: B- -> UR
cant say: no. i could settle for C

chemcoop: Agree for C, it's probably about on the same level as Gastrodon. Unaware isn't even that great when you look at Quag's stats.

greilmercenary9: C. Lazily quoting myself from two rounds ago: “It definitely has a niche with Unaware, but it struggles to have enough bulk to effectively tank stronger neutral hits. It also doesn't have the team support options or sheer walling power of other viable mons that have basically no offensive presence whatsoever.” I don’t think any of that has changed.

NOVED: B- is fine. this has no business being UR. maybe C but unaware can be pretty useful for stall.

Psynergy: Stall mon that gets 2HKOed by most offensive threats anyway? This isn't any better than Gastrodon but it's not worthless, let's put it in C.

Solerme: C. Lazily quoting myself Greil

Theorymon: I'd put this in C. Its stats sorta suck, but Unaware is a rad ability, and I don't think its actually that much worse than Clefable tbh.

Clefable: B- -> C
cant say: sure. shouldn't be lower or even equal to quag so if that moves down we should keep clef there

chemcoop: Disagree, sees niche usage on Scolipass as a BP recipient, and can be used with a little support as a part of Minimize strats.

greilmercenary9: B-. Completely agree with Chem here: the dedicated BP receiver is a really strong option for the archetype given that it can block one of the best general anti-BS ways to bother BP chains (Curse Mimikyu) with Magic Guard, and is also just a generally good BP receiver from stuff like BP Blaze to sweep with Stored Power. Minimize is also annoying if used.

NOVED: B-. this is a fine rank even just for the bp recipient role. curse mimi is a bugga!

Psynergy: I still think Clefable is trash, so I agree with putting this in C. Yeah it's viable on Baton Pass squads and very dangerous if it gets the necessary support, but if it's only good on one team I don't think B- is the right place for it.

Solerme: B-. This thing has the "Glalie factor" in the team preview. You have to bring answers for it or otherwise it will just sit and boost, no matter one many curses you throw at it.

Theorymon: I'm never really liked Clefable all that much in SM, just feel like a lot of the offensive mons this time don't need boosts to blast past it, so I'm fine with C. That being said, I think B- can work too if only because Minimize strats can screw you over ocasionally, which is something Quagsire can't do :P

Rhyperior: B- -> UR
cant say: no

chemcoop: Agree for C, it's really bulky and does a great job walling the electric types that only run coverage like HP Ice to hit ground types. Still not that great of a SR setter compared to something like Hippo or Lando-T though.

greilmercenary9: C. It keeps a small niche by being an interesting choice against certain cores like Mence-Koko-Aegi, but with Gren and an abundance of other Water types about, no speed, and a general inability to survive bascially any Water/Grass attack, it’s barely holding onto C IMO.

NOVED: UR. idk when id wanna use this its not that good. typing makes me cringe when greninja, fini and gyara are all too real threats rn.

Psynergy: Not really attached to this but I can't really think of a reason to defend it. Rock/Ground with that kind of bulk is actually pretty good but I've never seen this in USUM. I'm in favor of UR here.

Solerme: C. Great vs some very common cores, definitely against it being UR.

Theorymon: I think C is a better fit for it. As a Trick Room mon, I don't think it stands out all that much outside of Solid Rock being cool, and as an SR setter, I honestly mostly prefer Hippowdon. Still, its got way more power than Hippowdon, and I appreciate that solid rock does well vs stuff with Hidden Power Ice.

Glalie: B -> B+
cant say: i think i agree actually

chemcoop: Agree with this, although I think B+ is ultimately the ceiling for a luck based set-up like Moody. Glalie can be pretty easy to set-up without much support vs bulkier builds like Cele/P2 or Gliscor/P2 which is most likely why it sees usage on a few high rated Japanese teams.That being said, relying on luck to try and get past something like Mega Meta is not advisable which is why I think B+ is as high as it can go.

greilmercenary9: B+. This pains me because I hate this thing, but it deserves the bump to B+. Moody boosts can be a wild way to make a living, but with proper setup you can often get a couple and threaten especially more defensive teams between that and Sheer Cold. That said, it’s not invincible, and there are several fairly common anti-BS methods to downing it available.

NOVED: B+. its just actually good vs fat shit. its a bit of a lucker but really its just solid. no higher than B+ tho.

Psynergy: I seem to be the dissenting opinion this time, but I still don't agree with this and I think the "it's used a lot on high ranked teams" point is a bad one. I can agree that it does incredibly well against slow fat teams and it's the best luck-based mon in the game, but the heavy reliance on RNG is too much for me to agree with B+ here.

Solerme: B+. Well i've written upwards about the "glalie factor". It is said that every high ranked team has a check for this, and there is a reason behind. Without talking about lucky situations where you just desperately double protect to get an evasion / speed boost, if this thing has support it can go insane, and you won't need any luck to get to the point you want to reach.

Theorymon: Ugh I hate this bastard, so yeah it needs to go to B+ :P. But seriously, throughout USUM I've been seeing more and more Glalie teams with Glare Serperior, and it's quite irritating. It's probably the best "luck" Pokemon in the game at the moment.

Naganadel: A+ -> A
cant say: no

chemcoop: Disagree, still too big of a threat against weakened teams or teams without a specific plan against it.

greilmercenary9: A+. I can see why this was nominated down given that the hype has kind of died down and the meta has learned how to deal with it more effectively, but it’s still really good. NP sets still challenge Thundurus for being the best in the business at what they do, and the different typing and Beast Boost give it extra snowball potential against a lot of things once it gets going. Choiced sets are also interesting with surprise factor.

NOVED: A+. i feel like naga has melted into the meta finally but it feels like its just solid A+. i dont think it needs to drop.

Psynergy: As a huge user of Naganadel I actually agree with A here, but I'm on the fence. It can very easily checkmate you and force you into an instant lose position solely based on your first one or two turns, but at the same time I actually see myself benching it a lot. There are way too many situations where it's easy to stop it from snowballing but maybe that's just my matchup luck.

Solerme: A+. Beast boost guys. You pivot out, it kills and gets speed, it potentially sweep. You get a NP, it potentially sweep. You Z, it potentially kill. With its Dragon+Poison+Fire coverage (without the need of any Hidden Power) and its speed/spa, this thing is a monster who fits pretty well the A+ rank in my opinion.

Theorymon: Nah this thing still does pretty well against a lot of stall teams, even if I think we may have overhyped Naganadel a bit.

Tyranitar: A -> A-
cant say: eh yeah

chemcoop: Agree, mentioned why I think A- is appropriate in the thread earlier.

greilmercenary9: A-. Solid utility mon that can also help with trapping on stall builds with dedicated anti-trapper techs like Lum Berry + Pursuit to pick off Gengar. But the myriad of EQ users don’t help it, and it has heavy competition for its preferred utility role with Hippowdon, whose typing is better for support most of the time.

NOVED: A-. its just not A good. i might even be wanting to say B+ but dont think that'll happen soon anyway with other votes. but i think ppl should keep that in mind. i think reg ttar is just kinda mediocre at many things.

Psynergy: I'm still upset we let Mega Tyranitar drop below this in the first place when Mega is the most common set by a wide margin, but this should definitely drop to A-. The sand niche is still great but Hippowdon and Landorus-T hurt Tyranitar a bit in the current meta, I don't think it's on par with the other things in A right now.

Solerme: A-. I do like it, since bulky variants can deal with Mega Mence, CharX, ChaY and so on. Great movepool, good support movepool as well. Not A material though, since Hippowdon exist and is definitely a better sand setter / support / physical tank (whos weaker to chary but handles way better the ground type-spam, not to mention its access to a recovery and yawn)

Theorymon: Sure. I still love Tyranitar and all, but a lot of hard hitting common Pokemon can blast Tyranitar, so I don't usually find myself just slapping it on teams as glue either.

Mega Tyranitar: A- -> A
cant say: yes

chemcoop: Disagree, it is really bulky but the prevalence of so many good EQ spammers makes it hard to justify moving this up.

greilmercenary9: A-. Dragon Dance sets are dangerous and can definitely sweep, and it tanks hits incredibly well, but its typing and speed are kind of mediocre compared to other high level megas (especially since its strongest STAB move is Stone Miss) and it suffers as a result.

NOVED: A-. this is a more solid A- than reg ttar but also not A material imo. id rather use gyara most times for a DDer. it fits better on fatter builds tho and can set up on different stuff. A- is fine tho

Psynergy: Nah, I do think Mega Tyranitar is better than regular but not by much. The same things that hurt Tyranitar equally apply here, and while DD sets are very dangerous, that's a role with very heavy competition. I have not seen either Tyranitar super often this season, though it's still a respectable threat.

Solerme: A. I really think that this mega is underestimated. It can DD in front of a lot of mons, since its Sand Spdef boost and great bulk in general and has a great offensive typing and a very solid movepool. Not the best speed tier here, but just enough to outspeed base 130 at +1, so it's still fine. Just get some answers for Pheromosa and MLopunny.

Theorymon: I think Mega Tyranitar is best off being the same rank as Tyranitar. It may be a rad Dragon Dancer, but I think it faces similar issues to Tyranitar.

Vivillon: C -> B-
cant say: yes

chemcoop: Disagree, terrains are still just too good to allow for Sleep Powder based set-up.

greilmercenary9: C. I think this one is actually pretty close: Vivillon is a dangerous foe that can really snowball once it gets going and can be brutal for teams that don’t have an obvious answer for it. Further, while Misty/Electric Terrains do nerf it, forcing the opponent to bring these from preview gives the Vivillon user an easier time picking the correct three, and strong players usually pair this with mons like Gengar that have a distinct advantage over said Tapus. However, I don’t think it deserves to move up for now. While it can make preview somewhat easier, it obviously doesn’t handle either Koko or Fini 1v1 well at all (whereas, say, Breloom can 1v1 both with Sash), and it requires enough of the rest of the team to be tailored around it that it can handicap the user in building as much or more than the opponent in preview.

NOVED: C. this is a weird one but yeah what coop said convinced me to keep C. terrains are too easy counterplay.

Psynergy: Nothing has changed in the current meta to make me think this is any better now. While it does just win against some teams, terrains, sand, and Stealth Rock are way too common to move above C.

Solerme: C. This is another "glalie factor" mon. You always need to be careful when you see it in the team preview, yet with Koko and Fini being everywhere it really finds a hard time to pull out its sleep+qd strategy. And even if it does, it really needs at least 2-3 dances to sweep.

Theorymon: I think Terrains are just way too common to make Vivillon a good pick for most teams, I don't think it can justify itself higher than C.

Empoleon: C -> B-
cant say: yes

chemcoop: Agree, has been carving out a niche for itself as an anti-Hippo SR setter.

greilmercenary9: B-. Empoleon is perpetually underrated for whatever reason, perhaps because Hippo is seen as better than it at its primary role. But the typing, Water STAB, and extra SpDef differentiate it enough to be worth using on many teams, it’s great against Hippo 1-on-1 in a lead matchup, and it can even use Torrent boosted Z-moves without having to give up SR/Yawn utility if the player chooses to go that route. It’s an interesting choice, and while it won’t break the meta open anytime soon, it can definitely help specific teams with its niche.

NOVED: B-. water/steel hippowdon that also has more offensive z move options. just a good choice for some teams in certain metas. it happens to excel a lot more in this torrent gren meta too. i like B- a lot for this.

Psynergy: I know other people are a fan of this but every time I've run into Empoleon it's just getting OHKOed by something immediately or setting SR and dying. I'm not against this moving up but I'm personally still not a fan.

Solerme: B-. Yawn, Rocks, great spdef and fairy resistent. Good lead, and if you're crazy enough the sub petaya + agility set it can still be pretty strong. It is indeed weak to a common lead such as Landorus, but on the other hand it can deal with other leads like Hippowdon, Greninja, Lele, Gengar and such.

Theorymon: Yeah B- should be the MINIMUM Empoleon should be. It's a pretty damn unique Stealth Rock setter that does well vs Hippowdon, and is very specially bulky if you want to go that way too. I also find the Z-Torrent sets to be pretty useful, well at least the ones that still carry Stealth Rock :P

Mega Lopunny: B -> B+
cant say: yes

chemcoop: Agree, seems like the meta has been shifting back to an updated version of Mence/Koko/Aegi/Gren/Kart, so being able to have an HJK spammer against those types of builds is great.

greilmercenary9: B+. Like with Quagsire above, lazily quoting myself from two rounds ago: “This is another mon that improved somewhat with the move to USUM. The increased usage of fast sweepers in the 120-130 base speed range helps it, since many of them are frail enough to fall to, or at least take a ton from, Fake Out + Return/HJK. It also has some options with moveslots to help against stuff like unboosted Mence, Lando-T (Ice Punch), Aegislash or Fake Out mind games (Sub), and so on. I can see it going to B+ thanks to its superb performance against hyper offense and even some bulkier offensive/balanced teams, but no higher since it is still fairly weak compared to most viable megas and can't really do much to several common walls like Hippowdon and Cresselia.” I’ve been an advocate of this moving up for a long time and that hasn’t changed. The USM meta is just way better for it than SM ever was.

NOVED: B+. this is a pretty scary mon for lots of offense builds. B+ seems fair for it.

Psynergy: If you asked me this 2 seasons ago I would've said yeah definitely, but I'm on the fence now. It does a very good job of annoying offensive teams with Fake Out + Scrappy STAB moves, but I've not been super impressed with what I've seen of it recently. Probably going to abstain here but it appears like this is probably rising anyway.

Solerme: B+. Like with Quagsire above, lazily quoting myself Greil from two rounds ago. Ok jokes apart... This isn't a straight forward mega with which you can DD and attack, you need to actually use some mindgames to be effective, such as the FO/Sub one. With its speed tier and being blessed with an almost perfect coverage with the combination of Scrappy and Fighting+Normal STABs, this thing can literally punch holes into non bulky teams.

Theorymon: Yeah Mega Loppuny is actually a pain in the ass to switch into at the moment with a lot of team builds, and I appreciate having a fighting-type that can spam its STAB as easily as Mega Loppuny, considering the high profile Ghosts we deal with. Also, being a Fighting-type that outspeeds Greninja right away is godly atm!

Espeon: B- -> B
cant say: yes

chemcoop: Disagree, don't really see how this thing has expanded its niche in the meta since it was initially ranked.

greilmercenary9: B-. A better screener than A-Ninetales IMO as well as a strong BP receiver, but not enough to warrant a jump. Yawn utility is always welcome for the screener, especially backed up with a strong ability in Magic Bounce and a good speed tier, which hampers enemy supporters like Hippo. But it’s a one trick pony and hates the ubiquitous Terrains. The BP receiver is good but is also a virtual signboard announcing the plan on most BP teams and is potentially vulnerable to several different types of counterplay.

NOVED: B-. dont really see a reason to raise this. i dont respect the screens set much and as a BP recipient its probably in the same boat as clef, def not higher.

Psynergy: Nah, nothing has changed to make me want to shift to screens setup more often and even if I did I'd rather just use Tapu Koko. Still an annoying mon on Baton Pass teams but I can't give it much more credit than that.

Solerme: S. B-. I could literally write a book about this thing. I've used it in probably more than 10'000 games and really, really tried hard to pull off the best of it. As a screener, if the opponent has no Greninja / Gengar / MMence or Pheromosa it's hands down the best screener you'd ever have, since Magic Bounce + Yawn it's such a broker combo for a screener, specially if SR are down. I can't really say how many games i've won with it by just pressing a single screen and then using consecutively Yawn with SR down, since it's fast and can even be pretty dangerous with its stab (130 SpA boys) dealing enough damage to put stuff in range for its teammate mega.
If this thing had Koko's speed tier i'd have probably seen it even in B+ , but this thing isn't Tapu Koko. If the opponet has one of the upwards listed mons (that are all pretty common), you'll need to bring another lead and use Espeon as a t2 screener, which isn't bad if you manage to Rock Tomb once or twice and place Rocks (the Yawn + SR combo is indeed scary), but this would lead to the scenario where you'd have a stand alone mage that has to sweep all by itself, thing that isn't easy at all. So yeah, Tapu Koko is overall a better screener, even though this is still a solid one.
And also, i do think that every heavy Baton pass team should have one of this too, but how some of you said, it is really a one-trick pony, so with both sets it is somehow easy to know what to choose to have an answer.
I do see it pretty well in the B- rank, and honestly won't see it any lower, but it probably doesn't deserve the B (i'm not 100% sure tho) rank too...
I've been trying a 2018 "Espyjump" set, with normalium Z and Yawn/BP/stab/HP Ice-Ground with some success lately, as support and speed passer, but it really doesn't justify a B rank sadly.

Theorymon: Nah, I don't think much has changed to get Espeon outside of its niche.

Alolan Ninetales: B- -> B
cant say: no

chemcoop: Disagree, same as above. Weather is too easy to change and running Light Clay makes you liable to getting nuked by the ever popular Mega Meta, while Sash variants don't give you enough Veil turns to really work with.

greilmercenary9: B-. In theory Ninetales-A is an interesting screen setter, but in practice it tends to be both more annoying than one might think to get Veil up and tough to maximize utility even if you do. Chem wisely points out that the item choice is annoying since Sash gives a short time limit on Veil while Light Clay often means you just don’t get Veil up in the first place, while Theorymon also mentions how easily other weather mons can mess with this, both of which are important points that keep A-Ninetales from moving up. Nice speed and Ice type STAB, but with nothing to really compliment that besides Veil it struggles, and like with Bulu below, being target practice for several of the most common and dangerous mons in the format isn’t good.

NOVED: C. this thing sucks. basically just dont raise this. but i do think C is more accurate for this mon.

Psynergy: Going to be honest, this thing has been trash every time I've seen it. Weather is too common for Aurora Veil to really work consistently and it's just not fast enough to afford running anything other than Focus Sash. I'd honestly be in favor of unranking it if not for Screens support still being valuable on certain teams.

Solerme: B-. I do think that, as a screener, being able to break sashes can be a pretty great tool. It gets Icy Wind and Encore too, not to mention Sheer Cold, and last but not least Aurora Veil is a 1x2 move. This being said, it can't force oppoents out with its moves (barring encore that isn't great to be fair), which can stall screens in many situations, plus hail doesn't last enough (or screens, if you choose the icy rock as item) to really be effective. Also Aurora Veil is weak to other weathers, and Hippowdown, which is absolutely common, can definitely shut down Ninetales. B-, i'd even say C+.

Theorymon: I think this is pretty usable, but I think B- is a good place for it because its disgustingly weak to Mega Metagross lol. Doesn't help that most weather mons can mess with it and ruin aurora veil set up (hell even Hippowdon if you wanna roll the dice on Blizzard missing on the switch)

Gigalith: C -> UR
cant say: no

chemcoop: Agree, Gravity/Explosion lead is not a niche I have seen once in the past few seasons.

greilmercenary9: UR. I think I’ve seen only one Gravity Sand team in the last two seasons, and there are better Gravity users if one wants to pair with something like HypnoGar instead.

NOVED: C. C seems fine. its a bit of a unique setter and gravity is probably scary enough to keep ranked. not just for exca but the hypno gar synergy as well.

Psynergy: Gravity + Explosion on a sand setter is still a very cool niche, but it's not one that I think is worth keeping it ranked for anymore. I've not seen a Sand Rush Excadrill setup in awhile and for good reason, all of the 3 S rank mons give that setup a hard time, and that's no good for Gigalith in the current meta.

Solerme: UR. Wow i even forgot about this mon. I mean, ok.. It gets gravity, but why would you use it when you can use Landorus for Gravity and Hippo or TTar for sand?

Theorymon: Yeah honestly without Custap, I actually prefered using other Gravity Pokemon like Tapu Lele to help out Mega Gengar pull some BS off. Only merit I could think of is maybe running an AV set, but it has very marginal benefits over Tyranitar, so I don't think we need this on the list. If Custap comes out though, it might be worth looking into again.

Tapu Bulu: B+ -> B
cant say: i think i'm a little biased on this one, gonna say no but don't really care.

chemcoop: Agree, Bulu can't hack it in a meta run by fire types, Mega Meta, Mega Gar, and Mega Mence.

greilmercenary9: B. Bulu is a solid mon for certain builds, but with the USM meta consolidating around Mence, Meta, and Gar, and more generally 8 of the top 10 usage megas eating it for lunch and other mons like Lando that can be teched with poison moves to beat the common cores it's run with, it’s losing steam compared to where it was earlier. Still can run a variety of solid sets and is a solid choice for some teams, especially with Heatran and/or Toxapex, but just a case of the meta around it becoming much more hostile as of late.

NOVED: B. i was like ehh idk at first but really i dont like this thing much so i cant think of a reason to justify its position. B seems more fair for bulu.

Psynergy: My nom, but we've discussed this several times and I think it's not for no reason that I've barely seen any Tapu Bulu this season.

Solerme: B. Its terrain is great for supporting Bulky offensive teams with Heatran and such, plus it can be deadly with SD and the Z move. But with Mence, Charizard, Gengar, Greninja, Celesteela (and the list goes on) Bulu finds a really hard time to live in this meta.

Theorymon: Yeah I brought this up last month, I think too many of the top Pokemon just kick Tapu Bulu's butt. Not a bad Pokemon at all though, it does do well against the other Tapus and can support some pretty dastardly Steel-types, but overall, I think B is a good fit for Tapu Bulu

Skarmory: B+ -> A-
cant say: no

chemcoop: Agree, Skarm has been fitting into other build besides stall lately, great physical wall.

greilmercenary9: B+. I guess it’s time for me to be the curmudgeonly one again. While it has seen some more use on offense in the last two seasons, which does help it somewhat, Skarm still does basically what it has always done on offensive builds: lead, set up Rocks, and leverage its two main advantages over Sash Lando: it can use an item other than Sash and it gets Taunt. These are valuable assets, and Skarm is indeed a very solid lead choice for several different types of offensive teams, but the sets are telegraphed by what team they’re on, which makes it difficult to leverage any surprise value, and I’m not sure they’re so good that they bump it on their own. This is one of the two or three closest decisions in this vote in my mind, as Skarm is often underrated (perhaps by me right now too!), but I don't think there's been enough of a meta shift in its favor or shift in how its used on most teams to move this at least for the moment.

NOVED: B+. i respect skarm for sure and have enjoyed using it myself on non-pure stall builds. but idk B+ seems about right imo. like yeah its shown to be more flexible with what builds it can go on but i dont think its SO good at its role it deserves A-. like i still have qualms with the mon overall its dmg output is kind of lacking and that really holds it back for me personally. if it had regen or something like pex does itd bump it up for me but i just dont see it.

Psynergy: Again this is my nom, I'm not too attached to this but I do think its spike in usage is enough to make me think we should consider moving it up.

Solerme: B+. I really do like its offensive lead set, but id honestly just use it if i need the focus sash somewhere else, otherwise sash landorus does it better. As for its most used set, the physical defensive one, in a very offensive oriented meta that has the "steel-hate" factor i really don't think it can shine as it did in oras.

Theorymon: I'm cool with this. I've been thinking that I may have underestimated Skarmory this gen. Maybe not as "good" as Celesteela in some respects, but Stealth Rock and Roost make all the difference as far as I'm concerned. Also, doesn't come up too much, but Sturdy can be good for getting you outside of some desperate scenarios like Blaziken / Volcarona sweeps tbh!

Amoonguss: B -> B+
cant say: yes

chemcoop: Agree, been seeing Amoonguss more lately, always a pain to take down.

greilmercenary9: B+. The mushroom is a fun pick that does well against some of the most common mons in the format, being a strong pick against Mimikyu and Landorus while providing strong utility with Spore and Regenerator on the table. Foul Play is also a useful tool that hampers a lot of things that might otherwise give Amoonguss more trouble, especially when the threat of Spore is also present. Having Regen (which while not as useful as in 6v6 is still a very strong asset) and interesting movepool tools with Spore, Foul Play, and even Clear Smog in tow mean that this has a strong niche of its own that it fills effectively.

NOVED: B. on the fence on this one, almost said B+ but i just dont really see it personally. like skarm i have issues with the dmg output on this mon. you basically have to switch after sleeping something a lot of times. its not like breloom where it can go to town after the thing in front of it is asleep. i really like it vs mimikyu but i also like other mons vs mimikyu. not a bad mon for sure but B feels right to me.

Psynergy: Also my nom, Amoonguss is really cool and stuff.

Solerme: B+. Good defensive typing for this meta, great movepool with Spore, Clean Smog and Foul Play. It is indeed often forced to switch out since it's weak to common offensive typings such as ice and fire, but with regenerator and its good bulk, it can still be surprisingly good.

Theorymon: Yeah I strongly support this. With it being harder and harder to justify Mega Venusaur for a lot of teams (I still like it though), Amoonguss can make a good non mega alternative. Foul Play and Clear Smog are also very unique tools compared to other Grass-types that I like a lot. And of course, Regenerator is kick ass!


Changes:
Blacephalon moves from B to B-
Buzzwole moves from B- to C
Stakataka moves from B to C
Entei moves from B to B-
Quagsire moves from B- to C
Rhyperior moves from B- to C
Glalie moves from B to B+
Tyranitar moves from A to A-
Empoleon moves from C to B-
Mega Lopunny moves from B to B+
Gigalith moves from C to UR
Tapu Bulu moves from B+ to B
Amoonguss moves from B to B+
 
Last edited:
Naganadel should go from A+-->A

Even though it's good a few mons that are A rank already like mega mawile, Thund-T, and Ferrothorn actually have more usage so it seems misleading. They don't have as many good options as lots of the other top mons so are somewhat predictable too.
 

Jhon

Show me something eternal
is a Tiering Contributor
Naganadel should go from A+-->A

Even though it's good a few mons that are A rank already like mega mawile, Thund-T, and Ferrothorn actually have more usage so it seems misleading. They don't have as many good options as lots of the other top mons so are somewhat predictable too.
Usage isn’t the determining factor. Otherwise we’d just post the usage stats and call it a day. There’s a generally positive correlation between usage and viability, but it’s not so strong that the relatively minor difference you bring up need be addressed.
Besides, even if we choose to only look at the 3-attacks np build of Naga, it’s on a threat level which demands particularly tight counter play compared to most other setup options. This is largely down to beast boost and the fantastic coverage leading to a much smaller pool of reactionary counter/checks. It’s a fantastic mon, just not one that’s as splashable as some of it’s peers.
 
Well I can see how there's more to it than usage. I mostly wouldn't support Greninja being S even though it's more common than Landog or Mence.

But then, would you say those mons that are slightly more common but half a rank lower than Naga are worse? Ofc they are all different roles, but as starting mons to build around? If not, shouldn't all of them(Mawile, Heatran, Ferro, and Thund-t) be A+ too? Because if not it just seems really weird to me that on here Naga gets a better rank but is actually used last. I don't understand what'd be the cause of that, do people maybe not like the design or something?
 

Psynergy

It's all for you.
is a member of the Site Staffis a Forum Moderatoris a Live Chat Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon
Moderator
Some Pokemon just fit more easily onto a team and benefit from a wide variety of factors, such as the team support they provide, how they match up against top threats, and whether or not you're more likely or less likely to bench a Pokemon. Naganadel is definitely a mon you will be benching more often than other Pokemon in A+ and it's somewhat rigid on what sort of team you can use it on, but it's a Pokemon that you often need to account for at Team Preview at risk of it getting a sweep you have no way to control.

It is worth noting that Naganadel to A was just voted on in the last update though, and I was the only one with any degree of agreement with that (I do think it's the worst of the A+ mons). Unless it suffers from a major usage drop or significant meta change, don't expect it to be voted on again so soon.
 
omg the boss guy agrees w/ me

Yes I understand why these things take time, and the diffrentiaton is minute to say the least, A mons are still good it'd be ore telling if it ever moved down to B(would be weird imo.) Partly I'm biased I never get sick of Regice and as cant say has pointed out one of its selling points now is crushing naga all the time, taking even boosted moves after SR. Looking at mons most people use though it seems better though.
 
It should be noted that Naganadel is 22nd in usage whereas there are 18 pokemon in S/A+ so it is not even that far out in terms of usage. Only Thundurus-T, Mega Mawile, Breloom and Ferrothorn are in A that have higher usage. The real question is, why are these pokemon A ranked and Naganadel A+?

Naganadel to me is centralising in the same way that Tapu Lele is, it demands presence and respect in a way that even Thundurus-T doesn't. The reason steel types are on over 90% of teams is because otherwise Lele just wins by clicking Moonblast/Psychic. Similar story with Naga IMO. One thing that is so scary about Naganadel is its speed. Other than Koko, Greninja and Mega Gengar, Naganadel is the fastest pokemon in the top 40. Naganadel even beats pretty much all Koko sets and a large number of Mega Gengar sets 1v1. None of these pokemon can switch into Naganadel either, which means that when you have Naganadel in against a pokemon that it beats, you need to have Heatran, a scarfer, or get a lot of predicts correct in order to beat it.

Also, if Naganadel gets a KO at +2, due to the way beast boost works, the game is probably over unless you have like a heatran.

To compare that to Thundurus-T, I'd argue that Tapu Koko, Metagross, Serperior, Latios/Latias, Nihilego and Garchomp can all switch in without getting OHKOed and are able to outspeed and threaten it with some damage. There's no doubt that Thund-T is a far more versatile pokemon in terms of what its sets can do meaning it can be brought to more games and bait your opponent in terms of sets and spreads, however it is also easier to deal with. It is easier to wall also due to the existence of ground type, even despite having excellent coverage.

I do support Naga being in A+ personally.
 
woah I like how you people talk xD

You make a good point about how less stops it boosted, so you really do need a mon like Regice Heatran, and Lele does have a lot of similarity in terms of fear factor. I have never questioned Heatran's high usage despite that god awful 4x ground weakness-unlike the less irritating 4x fighting weakness of TTar that has frequently made me avoid using it-because of these sorts of amazing match-ups it gets.

Thund-T is a good comparison too being a lot slower, still frail, and just a bit more SpA to compensate for the Spe difference. Also no good flying STAB so the stat power difference isn't a huge benefit. I suppose I generally underestimate nags cause I use an obscure mon every game(not neccesarily bringing it but most every team has Regice for me,) that is a full-stop to it.
 

cant say

twitch.tv/jakecantsay
is a member of the Site Staffis a Top Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Battle Simulator Moderatoris a Team Rater Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
Battle Spot Leader
Things can have inflated usage in relation to their actual viability due to a number of reasons, one of the biggest is flexibility in sets. For example, Charizard isn't the 5th most viable, but since X and Y contribute to its overall usage it gets to sit up nice and high on the usage list. If you were able to separate them, Zard X would be 15th in usage and Y would be 17th.

Things like Ferrothorn can go either physically or specially defensive, meaning it fits on more teams than, say, Heatran, which can only go specially defensive.

You also have to take ladder trends into account. Breloom has high usage because suropoke Trick Room teams are so popular due to the influence of its most prominent user. A hugely exaggerated example is when aim got Mamoswine to rise to OU, despite it not being S rank in its previous tier.

The usage stats also take into everything from players 1550 (or 1600?) and higher, so a lot of "bad" players can skew the stats. It's better to cross-reference our own tournament usage and high ladder usage on nouthuca.
 
It should be noted on the opposite end, certain pokemon can have their usage inflated due to their partners. To look at Breloom from a different angle, I'd say it is not suropoke but mimikyu+breloom core which can fit into multiple archetypes that boosts brelooms usage. This is especially the case since 70% of Breloom Nouthuca teams have Mimikyu on (about 30-35% are TR). I'd argue Breloom is carried by how good Mimikyu is and in a metagame where Mimikyu wasn't top dog it would likely be far less viable. It just happens that Mimikyu is so good, it is not really a constraint on teambuilding.

Naganadel has no such restrictions, it is fantastic with Gyarados, Metagross or Scizor to just use mega examples.
 
Sorry if this was brought up but what do you guys think about metagross-meta going up to S rank? Its offensive versatility and the ability to check and/or smash fairy types that run rampant in BSS are amazing traits metagross has. I understand it has a fair share of shortcomings (i.e. not being able to cover everything to start) but I was wondering if this matter can at least get some discussion. Thanks.
 
Sorry if this was brought up but what do you guys think about metagross-meta going up to S rank? Its offensive versatility and the ability to check and/or smash fairy types that run rampant in BSS are amazing traits metagross has. I understand it has a fair share of shortcomings (i.e. not being able to cover everything to start) but I was wondering if this matter can at least get some discussion. Thanks.
I'm unsure about Mega Metagross. Although I personally believe it is the second best mega pokemon in the game after Salamence, I think S should be reserved for pokemon that are the creme de la creme of the battlespot meta. In my opinion, Mega Metagross, alongside Mimikyu and Greninja, is one of only three pokemon that will have impact almost every single game they are brought regardless of matchup. What I think holds Metagross back is whilst the base line of Metagross is higher than the likes of Salamence, because Metagross by nature quite literally punches holes through your opponents team every turn it is out, it less often has the highs of a Mega Salamence pick.

On my personal list, there are two S mons, Mimikyu and Greninja.

If you want to expand the tier further, you add Mega Salamence and then you add Landorus-T as the 4th as also S but below those above.

I understand I'm in the minority there with Greninja though.
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 1, Guests: 2)

Top