Quality Control Chansey (QC 1/2)

Theorymon

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[SET]
name: Wall
move 1: Seismic Toss
move 2: Soft-Boiled
move 3: Stealth Rock / Charm / Thunder Wave / Sing
move 4: Charm / Thuder Wave / Sing
item: Eviolite
ability: Natural Cure
nature: Bold / Relaxed
evs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD

[SET COMMENTS]

* Chansey is the bulkiest option for special walling, and thanks to eviolite, is a more effective mixed wall than Blissey.

* Chansey is an excellent setter of Stealth Rock due to its bulk, and this makes it an especially effective partner with Yawn Quagsire, who helps check Zacian-C.

* Charm lets Chansey out-stall Dragon Dance Necrozma-DM switch-ins, and otherwise reduce the risk of switching out from powerful physical attackers. Note that Choice Band Urshifu-S gets around this thanks to Wicked Blow's granted critical hit.

* Thunder Wave punishes common physical attacking switch-ins to Chansey, such as Zacian-C, Necrozma-DM, and Urshifu formes. It does make Chansey fairly vulnerable to some Substitute users, such as Calyrex-S.

* Sing's poor accuracy may make it seem like a risky move, but putting offensive switch-ins to sleep can open up devastating wincons with Dynamax sweepers such as Yveltal and Zapdos. It also gives Chansey a shot at shutting down Substitute Calyrex-S. A Speed IV of 0 with a speed reducing nature can also be used to put slow, defensive threats such as Quagsire to sleep without it using a sleep turn.

* Shadow Ball is an extremely weak move, but its Chansey's only way of dealing reasonable damage to Calyrex-S, 3HKOing it.

* If using Chansey on a stall team, consider using a shiny one if you have access to it, since the extra 2 seconds in animation on the switch-in can help with timer-stall win conditions. Note this only matters when playing on the Switch, as Pokemon Showdown is not impacted.

EV Spreads
========

* **252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD with Bold**: Maximizing Chansey's Defense gives it a 56.2% chance of surviving Jolly Zacian-C's Close Combat, and allows Charm Chansey to stall out some Dynamax users such as Landorus-T and Seismitoad.

* **252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD with Relaxed and a Speed IV of 0**: Minimizing Chansey's Speed allows it to hit incoming Pokemon from even the slowest pivot moves from Incineroar and Swampert.

* **4 HP / 252 Def / 252 SpD with Bold**: While this spread does sacrifice some physical bulk needed to survive some of the more powerful physical attackers, the extra Special Defense allows Chansey to avoid a 2HKO from Modest Kyogre's Water Spout after Stealth Rock damage 98% of the time.

* **252 HP / 4 De / 252 SpD with Calm**: This spread gives Chansey a 60.5% chance to avoid a 2HKO from Life Orb Kyogre's Max Geyser after Stealth Rock damage, at the cost of dealing with physical threats. Note that Blissey is a more reliable Kyogre check though.
 
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Theorymon

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Got this ready for QC!

One thing I'm not sure about is Minimize and Substitute. I almost considered either mentioning them in set comments like I did with Shadow Ball, or even giving them their own set. I'm leaning towards the former to be easier on GP, but I want some feedback before I mention it.

I also actually mentioned the shiny thing! I did this because not only is Chansey a staple on stall teams, but even though I'm starting that timer stall article today, I'm not sure how long that'll take to get onsite.
 
I would mention a max hp max defense spread as an alternate option. This allows Chansey to always live a non banded Urshifu Close Combat from full, and cripple it with paralysis, as well as giving Chansey a few rolls that allow it to live Jolly Zacian-C Close Combat. A max defense spread also significantly improves its Ho-Oh matchup, as without dynamax Chansey can thunder wave and then spam Soft-Boiled to drain its Sacred Fire PP, which can be super helpful for things like Zacian and Dusk Mane.
 
This is a great start. What Chansey does is pretty obvious, but there are a few subtleties that I think you can add to help the analysis here:

To start, I think it's worth explicitly mentioning that Chansey is a signficantly better generalist wall than Blissey due to its extra bulk. While Blissey gets the advantage of using different items and something approaching passable Special Attack to help against Kyogre and Calyrex-Shadow specifically, Chansey is just bulkier. On the special side it's mostly a non-factor, but the extra physical bulk is really what makes Chansey stand out, as it can passably wall some decent physical attackers. For example, a fairly decent physical attacker that mostly relies on its STABs having good SE coverage on the meta like Adamant Sash Mamoswine is well short of a 2HKO with EQ, while Blissey can't hold up to that. Bold Chansey also lives an Adamant Zacian Blade from full, which is absolutely huge for Thunder Wave variants in a pinch to enable paired sweepers, especially if the physical defensive partner in a stall mode wasn't brought or was incapacitated. This has borne out in the meta by Chansey moving up this month to 23rd at the time of this check, while Blissey has fallen from almost equal to Chansey last month (literally 28th in usage to Chansey's 27th in March) to 40th this month.

For a few other specific moves: TWave is the most reliable 4th move and provides critical utility in this meta with speed being as important as ever. This is definitely the move of choice for being stable and dependable, but the big downside is its ineffectiveness against Sub users, especially the dreaded Sub Calyrex-Shadow, which completely runs through Chansey stall cores with TWave in the 4th slot. Nevertheless, it's by far the most dependable move here, and a Chansey user can just drop the idea of going semi-stall mode vs Caly-S + Zacian constructions if needed, or perhaps bring a secondary Caly-S check like Umbreon on full stall. By contrast, Sing is very risky, but Chansey gets an insane amount of free turns, and Sing has two key advantages over Thunder Wave. First, it hits through sub to debilitate big threats to stall modes like SubNP Calyrex-Shadow and SubSeed Celesteela. This is especially important with Shadow Rider since a paired PhysDef mon like Quagsire or Skarmory cannot hope to stop Caly-S. But Sing, while risky, can also serve as a Hail Mary play when any more standard play would likely lose on the spot. For example, if LO Lando managed to get in on Chansey to start causing havoc, then Chansey has enough bulk to live one from high health and pray to hit a Sing to stop the rampage long enough for you to reposition. To be blunt, this is not the kind of thing you want to rely on, but it can also save otherwise lost games. Shadow Ball is an interesting middle ground option, and it's worth mentioning that it's a way to dispatch Shedinja as well if the team is desperate for ways to get rid of Boots Shed, but the damage against Caly-S is appalling. And of course Charm is something a bit different altogether, something that physical attackers (save perhaps Urshifu) hate to get hit with on the switch and can often be stalled out by.

One other weird quirk re: Sing: it isn't necessary, but it's worth considering if Sing Chansey wants to intentionally go lower on speed, such as min speed to try to underspeed Impish Quagisre and the like, since not allowing them to take their guaranteed sleep turn until the next turn can be helpful in getting to an attacker to finish them before naptime is over.

Tl;dr for the salient points: TWave is the reliable option, Sing is the most threatening but risky option, and Shadow Ball and Charm are the more specialized options.

As for nature, Bold should be strongly recommended because of how critical the extra physical bulk is to Chansey's advantages over Blissey. If you want to mention Calm as an option, use Kyogre LO Max Geyser calcs and the vastly improved chance to survive them when switching in at full with Calm as your example. Yveltal still has 57%+ Sucker Punch usage, and 120 BP Max Darkness off of Sucker Punch actually still does more to 252+ Def/252 SpDef Chansey than 130 BP Max Darkness off of Dark Pulse even from Modest Yveltal with Chansey at -1 SpDef. Obviously Calm is still relevant against Taunt LO Yveltal who are already maxed and don't have a physical Max Darkness option, but these are much less common than Sucker Punch LO variants.

4- Atk Life Orb Dark Aura Yveltal Max Darkness (120 BP) vs. 4 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Chansey: 172-203 (52.7 - 62.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252+ SpA Life Orb Dark Aura Yveltal Max Darkness (130 BP) vs. -1 4 HP / 252 SpD Eviolite Chansey: 165-195 (50.6 - 59.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

This is an easy interaction to forget, but one reason why Yveltal is such a great special attacker is that it has to tools to power past the obvious special attacker checks with either physical Max Darkness or Taunt, and both Yveltal and Caly-S having the option to hit most targets on their PhysDef if needed is why they're such a pain to stop of course. But again, the Kyogre calcs are also relevant and are worth considering Calm, although to be fair if you're doing this almost entirely for Kyogre then it's worth asking if Umbrella Blissey isn't the better fit:

Calm calcs vs LO Kyogre Max Geyser:
252+ SpA Life Orb Kyogre Max Geyser (150 BP) vs. 4 HP / 252+ SpD Eviolite Chansey in Rain: 142-169 (43.5 - 51.8%) -- 10.9% chance to 2HKO
252 SpA Life Orb Kyogre Max Geyser (150 BP) vs. 4 HP / 252+ SpD Eviolite Chansey in Rain: 130-153 (39.8 - 46.9%) -- 39.5% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock

And now Bold:
252 SpA Life Orb Kyogre Max Geyser vs. 4 HP / 252 SpD Eviolite Chansey in Rain: 142-169 (43.5 - 51.8%) -- 10.9% chance to 2HKO (same chance as Modest vs Calm above)
252+ SpA Life Orb Kyogre Max Geyser vs. 4 HP / 252 SpD Eviolite Chansey in Rain: 157-187 (48.1 - 57.3%) -- 91.8% chance to 2HKO

Lastly, I enjoyed the note about shiny Chansey adding animation time and its potential benefit for stall modes, but just in case it might be worth clarifying that this is only useful on cart in the analysis sentence itself.

Once the salient points of the above are implemented and made less like a novel, consider this QC 1/2. Good work!
 
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Theorymon

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Thanks a ton for those points, I updated the analysis to reflect the points you made! Just need one more QC check!
 
I would mention a max hp max defense spread as an alternate option. This allows Chansey to always live a non banded Urshifu Close Combat from full, and cripple it with paralysis, as well as giving Chansey a few rolls that allow it to live Jolly Zacian-C Close Combat. A max defense spread also significantly improves its Ho-Oh matchup, as without dynamax Chansey can thunder wave and then spam Soft-Boiled to drain its Sacred Fire PP, which can be super helpful for things like Zacian and Dusk Mane.
This can also allow it to fight Dynamax Landorus-T with a Jolly LO Max Quake/Airstream -> Charm -> Max Quake/Airstream -> Softboiled combination stalling out Dynamax. It also is not 2HKOed by LO Adamant Dynamaxed Seismitoad and can stall out all three turns of dynamax and then isn't 2HKOed by LO Liquidation in Rain even if you aren't running Charm.

I think in general Chanseys effectiveness vs. Kyogre is middling, especially with the various Ogre sets running around nowadays but Chansey can be used as a check in combination with other pokemon.
 

Theorymon

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This can also allow it to fight Dynamax Landorus-T with a Jolly LO Max Quake/Airstream -> Charm -> Max Quake/Airstream -> Softboiled combination stalling out Dynamax. It also is not 2HKOed by LO Adamant Dynamaxed Seismitoad and can stall out all three turns of dynamax and then isn't 2HKOed by LO Liquidation in Rain even if you aren't running Charm.

I think in general Chanseys effectiveness vs. Kyogre is middling, especially with the various Ogre sets running around nowadays but Chansey can be used as a check in combination with other pokemon.
Yeah as time as passed, I'm inclined to agree with this. I've changed Chansey's main EV spread to be max HP / max Defense because when paired with Charm, its SO damn effective, and even when not it can pull stunts that can win the game. The rise of stuff like LO and Sheer Cold Kyogre makes Calm Chansey a lot more awkward anyways (though I still mention the Calm spread because its around, with a warning that Blissey is a better Kyogre check).

I also added Relaxed, which is nice for being slower than Incineroar and Swampert's pivot moves.
 

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