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- With access to Shell Smash, Cloyster can be a fearsome sweeper under the right circumstances
- Skill Link gives Cloyster a powerful and reliable STAB move in Icicle Spear, and Hydro Pump is a good additional STAB attack
- Cloyster's high Defense stat lets it set up on some physical attackers like Flygon, Zygarde-10%, and Bruxish
- A decent typing lets it threaten Ground-, Grass-, and Dragon-types and set up on them
- However, said typing is also pretty bad defensively and sports weaknesses to common offensive types like Grass and almost no useful resistances. It also sports an unfortunate weakness to Stealth Rock.
- Low Special Defense and HP leave it vulnerable to a multitude of special attackers, especially before setting up.
- These flaws make finding setup opportunities pretty difficult overall
- Cloyster's subpar Speed leaves it outsped by most threats before setting up and outsped by fast Choice Scarf users like Salazzle and Shaymin even at +2 unless it's using a Speed-boosting nature.
- Water / Ice is decent coverage but forces Cloyster to run Breakneck Blitz to break certain walls. Even then, it's still walled by even bulkier threats like Registeel and Bronzong.

name: Shell Smash
move 1: Shell Smash
move 2: Icicle Spear
move 3: Hydro Pump
move 4: Explosion
item: Normalium Z
ability: Skill Link
nature: Naive / Naughty
evs: 252 Atk / 4 SpA / 252 Spe


- Shell Smash allows Cloyster to sweep late-game after its checks and counters have been weakened or eliminated.
- Icicle Spear is a reliable STAB attack thanks to Skill Link, deals a lot of damage after Shell Smash, and targets Ground-, Grass-, and Dragon-types like Nidoqueen, Shaymin, and Flygon.
- Hydro Pump is less reliable than Icicle Spear due to its lower accuracy but hits Fire-types such as Salazzle. It also allows Cloyster to become a mixed attacker, bypassing certain physical walls such as Doublade.
- Explosion gives Cloyster decent neutral coverage, but since it sacrifices Cloyster, a Normalium Z is required to make good use of it. Breakneck Blitz is useful for defeating Pokemon that would otherwise wall Cloyster, such as Milotic. Regular Explosion can also be useful to heavily damage a Pokemon if Cloyster is about to be KOed.

Set Details

- Maximum Attack and Speed EVs maximize Cloyster's sweeping potential.
- Skill Link turns Icicle Spear into a 125-Base Power attack, allowing Cloyster to do heavy damage to, if not OHKO, many offensive threats after a Shell Smash.
- Normalium Z turns Explosion into a 200-Base Power Breakneck Blitz capable of circumventing some of Cloyster's checks.
- A Naive nature allows Cloyster to outspeed Choice Scarf users such as Salazzle, Flygon, and Shaymin after a Shell Smash, while a Naughty nature gives Cloyster more power.

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Checks and Counters

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