SM OU Core 4


Bulky Offense has always been my favorite playstyle. Core 4 is what I affectionately call this team which consists of 4 mons (Metagross, Landorus, Greninja, Tapu Lele) that are very clearly the most metagame defining threats of Gen 7 OU. I've always had a lot of respect for people who are able to craft good teams that perform consistently well in various settings and in all my time playing I've never considered myself a very good team builder at all, which is why it was a pleasant surprise that this ended up as solid as it is. I am aware that this team does not exactly have any revolutionary stuff on it, but from the time of its inception until now, it has had good results in both tournament and ladder play early on this generation. Helped BKC in his run to the finals of the SUMO OU Release Tournament, as well as being what I used to obtain voting requirements while peaking #1 on the suspect ladder for the most recent Genesect suspect test. Several friends who I have passed this to over the past couple of months can attest to how well it plays too. I am pretty much done using this for now because metagame trends are changing every day and it's hard to keep up with those, especially when using the same stuff. This is more of a showcase of sorts for something that holds a special place for me. I will try to keep it mostly short here, but many thanks go out to people who take the time to give this a read.​

The Squad:

@

Ability: Clear Body
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Meteor Mash
- Thunder Punch
- Ice Punch
- Hammer Arm

Metagross is the best Pokemon in the tier and I don't think it's even close. He is so good that his existence alone defines what is usable and what is not and he alone invalidates the use of pretty much every mega released at this point. The classic boltbeam set from ORAS makes a return here and it is just as good as it ever was. Ice Punch and Thunder Punch provide general coverage that compliment the power and spammability of the obvious STAB Meteor Mash. The last slot has gone through the most changes, being Bullet Punch at one point because this team can obviously have problems with Pheromosa and having an extra priority move always helps with that. Earthquake is also nice for opposing Metagross and Chople Magnezone and I've toyed with Zen Headbutt in the past for its obvious synergy with Psychic Terrain, but I always try to limit the amount of free turns I give Ferrothorn to be annoying, so I mostly use Hammer Arm.


@

Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Earthquake
- Dragon Claw
- Outrage
- Fire Fang

Garchomp is one of the best Scarfers in SM OU because he sits in a nice speed tier just above some of the tier's top threats. He is chosen as the team's revenge killer because he provides a much needed check to Volcarona, Mega Charizard X and Salamence, all stuff that sits in the base 100 speed tier. Garchomp's typing, natural bulk and strength also means he is fully capable of cleaning house lategame vs a lot of offensive teams provided I play correctly and dent what needs to be dented, namely defensive Landorus-T. Moveset is self-explanatory and has been a staple on Scarf Garchomp for several generations.


@

Ability: Iron Barbs
EVs: 252 HP / 88 Def / 168 SpD
Relaxed Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Spikes
- Leech Seed
- Power Whip
- Gyro Ball

Spikes are so good. They are a very important part of how this team functions because every Pokemon on here is naturally good at forcing switches. This obviously makes them great Spikes abusers. Ferrothorn gives me general utility vs stuff that I wouldn't handle that well otherwise. Think Tapu Koko, Metagross, Greninja. It is the team's only water resist, so stuff like HP Fire Greninja and Keldeo (thank goodness he hasn't been seen as much early on) can be pretty problematic. Most of the time I'll just throw Ferro in to get as many layers of Spikes up and that'll be the end of it. If I am able to do this, one of Garchomp or Greninja will almost always clean up vs offense. Again, standard moveset/EV spread, although the increasingly popular dual hazards with Knock Off set can definitely be worth a go here too.


@

Ability: Battle Bond
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Hydro Pump
- Dark Pulse
- Water Shuriken
- U-turn

Greninja is still the threat it always was in gen 6 and the addition of Battle Bond only helped to cement him as one of the top metagame threats. I remember first seeing this when stats and mons were getting leaked and thinking it was going to be ass because of a potential nature lock. Pretty sure I wasn't alone in thinking that either. If you play OU I think you know how this Greninja works by now. Hydro Pump and Dark Pulse are great STABs and Water Shuriken becomes a stupidly powerful priority attack once you are able to transform. 4th moveslot is not critical to Greninja's function since you're going to be clicking the other 3 moves like 90% of the time. For this reason, Ice Beam or U-turn are fine here, but I normally use U-turn because the amount of switches Greninja forces means it is quite easy to grab momentum with it. The first person I saw mess around with this set was ABR and it is one of the few innovations he has made that I have been on board with (get that HP Fire Landorus/Scizor shit outta here dude).


@

Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Earthquake
- Swords Dance
- Stealth Rock
- Stone Edge

Landorus might be the most important member of the team. He is used as the Stealth Rock setter and if played correctly, there won't be a game in which it doesn't nab at least one kill. Worst case scenario, he heavily weakens the opposing team's physical wall and makes it easier for Scarf Garchomp or Metagross to win in the lategame. I play Landorus pretty aggressively by trying to get a Swords Dance with any opportunity I get so I can nuke something with Continental Crush. Normally I'm a +Speed nature fiend but I really do enjoy the power this provides. If I ever made Ferrothorn dual hazards, I guess this slot would become Jolly dual dance, which would be a nice win condition under the right circumstances.


@

Ability: Psychic Surge
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Taunt
- Psyshock
- Moonblast
- Hidden Power [Fire]

Last, but certainly not least, we have the top Tapu in Lele. This is the mon on the team that I think has received the most changes. Started out as Scarf back when that set had a lot of hype around it. As more people started expecting Scarf, I made the switch to Calm Mind Twisted Spoon because it gave me a nice win condition and could bluff a choice item. With the more recent popularity of Dugtrio stall however, I picked this set after seeing ben gay dismantle several stall teams with a combination of Shed Shell Tapu Lele and Taunt Mega Gyarados, so kudos to him on that one. I'd love to run CM Spoon again, but I think this is the superior metagame choice.


Importable

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------​

Conclusion: This team is far from perfect (and no team can be perfect), but it has been fun as hell to use. It does a good job at giving an idea of how dominant the faces of bulky offense in SM OU are. I also think it has no matchup that is too shit to overcome from team preview, which is always a nice plus. I look forward to playing more SM and seeing how it develops in the future.

Lastly I'd like to shoutout two groups who continue to make Smogon an enjoyable community for me:

1) Everyone in the "cbb circlejerk meme crew" (waaaay too many to tag), for being awesome friends and enjoyable people to interact with every day.

2) My SPL team, the Indie Scooters, for being a great bunch of dudes who are easy to get along with and enjoy the grind of preparing for each SPL week.



 
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CTC

The Lord Shepherd shall guideth ye cattle
is a Past SPL and WCoP Champion
mein negar's godsquad is already shaping up the metagame. the squad is spammable, brainless, and solid, so lemme sum up its few weaknesses in the form of poetry
play this
while u rock to this shit

these bitches love mosa
LO end or cho(ice) end
fuckin w them volcas u gonn get fucked over
fire on da ninja,
these HOs love that ol boi
hit em w da LO bruh, now dat thorn slumped over
they do it all for mosa,
yo boys aint makin no choice
yall know he 6-0 boy
yo clique fulla broke walls
god yall some slow boys
god yall some slow boys
he QD its over, he got lots of powa

these bitches love mosa
and they love em stall boys
steela and growtha
them walls aint gettin broke boi
no i dont know mo boys
i think that is all boi
sweepas and countas
always gon show up
i know u got plans boi
and its in yo hands boi
double switch dem ol bois
you wont sweep again boi
dont think that im playin boi
no we dont use bands boi
no we dont do sand boi
collect wins IDM bois
i gets lotsa comma(ent)s
i can get the archive
i aint w da drama
u can meet my partna
ridin w Cbbama
tho he is a foreign
these bitches see mosa
swear to god they all dead
 
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man ctcs so gay

unstoppable team tbh, the only real weakness is keldeo which is definitely manageable. I thought about extrasensory on ninja a few times, helps with him while luring the heck out of silly venu/moong/toxapex who can prevent you from transforming, spikes + dark pulse helps achieve this too but it can be kind of obnoxious and might take a while which you dont always want cause it can leave more room for ninja to get worn down.

charizard-y is the only other thing I was scared of when using it but it's just a matter of beating them in the long run. ninja/chomp might have to take a massive hit and later you might have to sac against it but if youre wearing their team down with hazards + attacks then you should be good. plus its switchins tend to be pretty telegraphed so theres that

timid lele is for pussies BTW hope you are aware of this. even worse when it isnt twistedspoon (which was seriously so strong with cm my god fuckin dug...) smh.

sr spikes ferro + dd land seems alright if you know you wont be facing sableye and friends but I really prefer being able to get up rocks vs stall with Utmost ease because then the rest of your team just crushes it. not a bad change at all though and its still beatable just more annoying

I guess hammer arm megagross is important for ferro but man opposing megagross is Incredibly gay and I found myself wishing for earthquake a lot. maybe knock off on ferro (this'd also remove lefties from tran/cheeky tapu fini which helps as well) over one of the stabs + mash/eq/zen/bp gross (my favorite, bp is great in a billion scenarios and zen with psych terrain is just stupid) wouldnt be a bad idea to compromise.

nice team b, I say with nothing but pure deadassity and facts that it is Exemplary of the sm metagame and is an instant archive contender. my guy.

e: ok so I came up with some more things while eating lunch because this teams so good it pervades my thoughts at all hours of the day

first off is that you could consider scarf latios over chomp for a True Keldeo Check (and I'm not really that fond of extrasensory on ninja so any excuse to get rid of it). also switches into zardy. plus in general its just great and cleans super well with psyshock lategame. draco/psyshock/trick/recover is def the set imo. outrunning the increasingly popular scarf terrak is also nice. the only thing is that this makes gross even more of an issue... god gross is the worst dude. FRFR. regardless scarf lati is p nice so it's worth thinking about, it actually might not be awful because you will lure it a lot and draco does chunk it kinda nice which helps lele, wearing it down via hazards and your own meta. I also realized you probably wanted boltbeam meta for celesteela (who knock off ferro also helps against! I like this idea at least so much no matter what), but latios' trick can catch it, so with him maybe you can still run the set I favor. however you could probably drop zen for thunderpunch and still do alright. just some food for thought.

once more, my sincerest congratulations on making this tremendous, spectacular, phenomenal, extraordinary work of art. word is bond.
 
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Leo

turn around and leave again
is a member of the Site Staffis a Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Media Contributor
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Great team overall, the only thing I noticed that could be improved is Garchomp's moveset. If you're running Scarfchomp I think you should always have Rock coverage for Volcarona because it could potentially 6-0 after setting up on ferro and some prior damage on Chomp in which case you need to win the 50-50 to waste its z-move. Other than that the team looks really solid
 
Great team! A very good showcase of the current sumo meta. I played vs this in the finals of the SUMO ou release tour: http://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7pokebankou-234041

The game itself doesn't really show too much but I did see this team in a replay from a previous round BKC used it in. The biggest weaknesses I noticed about the team at the time were pheromosa and scizor. On paper these problems might not seem too bad but I think in practice both of these mons could be very problematic. Expert belt/life orb Pheromosa can revenge kill a landorus-t, ferrothorn, tapu lele and a weakened metagross and with psychic terrain up and a +1 speed boost, there isn't much that you can do back. Scizor i find is just generally annoying for metagross ferrothorn and garchomp (locking itself into fire fang is makes it fodder for other mons) and with enough spdef it could threaten lele and pre-ash form greninja.

Other than that and weaknesses mentioned above, this team looks fantastic. Congrat!
 
Solid Team.
My suggestions to make this team better imo:
1) Jolly on Lando-T to outspeed keythreats like Modest Tapu Lele, Adamant Mimikyu, neutral Speed Kyurem-Black and at least have a speedtie with other nonscarf Lando-T.

2) Rock Slide on Scarchomp allows you to check Volcarona, M Pinsir, Zardy without locking yourself into Outrage and it kills all of them 100%.
If you really wanna keep Fire Fang, I think Fire Blast is a better choice based on the following calcs:

Mega Scizor:
252 Atk Garchomp Fire Fang vs. 248 HP / 16+ Def Scizor-Mega: 192-228 (55.9 - 66.4%)
0- SpA Garchomp Fire Blast vs. 248 HP / 200 SpD Scizor-Mega: 196-232 (57.1 - 67.6%)

Ferrothorn:
252 Atk Garchomp Fire Fang vs. 252 HP / 88+ Def Ferrothorn: 192-228 (54.5 - 64.7%)
0- SpA Garchomp Fire Blast vs. 252 HP / 168 SpD Ferrothorn: 180-216 (51.1 - 61.3%)

Skarmory:
252 Atk Garchomp Fire Fang vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 82-98 (24.5 - 29.3%)
0- SpA Garchomp Fire Blast vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Skarmory: 158-186 (47.3 - 55.6%)

Tapu Bulu:
252 Atk Garchomp Fire Fang vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Tapu Bulu: 126-150 (44.8 - 53.3%)
0- SpA Garchomp Fire Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Tapu Bulu: 124-146 (44.1 - 51.9%)


There is literally no reason to use Fire Fang on Garchomp, unless you are using Swords Dance. Even if Fire Fang does a bit more damage against some of them, you prevent taking Rocky Helmet/Iron Barbs damage by using Fire Blast over it.
 

power

metro boomin turn this to a moshpit
is a Pre-Contributor
I'm surprised no one has commented on the Alakazam weakness - this teams gameplay vs. it is either hope ferro dodges or sack a mon and bring in scarf chomp. Slight chip is all that is needed to ensure the KO on Metagross with shadow ball, and ferro gets 2hkoed with ease by focus blast (and hp fire - I've seen a few zam run that in the fourth slot bc missing sucks).

Otherwise, pretty solid team, other than the fact that a well played alakazam literally wins. Definitely put Rock Slide over fire fang, also.
 

Leo

turn around and leave again
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Hm well I know it's been a while but I've been using this team lately and honestly it's one of the best if not the best team out there rn, however there's something that used to bother me back then and that has become a bigger issue for this team: Pheromosa. LO has no safe switchins, Specs and Scarf snowball pretty quickly and QD is almost unstoppable against this team, which is why I've been using BP>Ice Punch on Meta and even though giving up Ice Punch sucks Bullet Punch is definitely the superior option in this meta and is almost mandatory here helping against any Mosa variant and doing a big chunk if they lead it (which they almost always do unless it's QD, at least on the ladder). Anyways just wanted to share that because I feel like the team gets 100x better with BP because Mosa has been getting a ton of usage lately
 
Hm well I know it's been a while but I've been using this team lately and honestly it's one of the best if not the best team out there rn, however there's something that used to bother me back then and that has become a bigger issue for this team: Pheromosa. LO has no safe switchins, Specs and Scarf snowball pretty quickly and QD is almost unstoppable against this team, which is why I've been using BP>Ice Punch on Meta and even though giving up Ice Punch sucks Bullet Punch is definitely the superior option in this meta and is almost mandatory here helping against any Mosa variant and doing a big chunk if they lead it (which they almost always do unless it's QD, at least on the ladder). Anyways just wanted to share that because I feel like the team gets 100x better with BP because Mosa has been getting a ton of usage lately
yea pheromosa was always a big problem on paper because as you said i don't have a safe switchin. i made this when pheromosa popularity wasn't nearly as high as it is now so it was never really a huge deal. in the current metagame though, i pretty much never leave home without bullet punch on my metagross. i totally agree with bullet punch > ice punch btw as the importance of hitting celesteela with thunder punch and ferrothorn with hammer arm on this team heavily outweighs the importance of having ice punch and pheromosa is just way too popular right now.

keldeo is also a big problem because nothing switches in comfortably and that has also picked up recently. other stuff i'd do is throw rock slide/tomb over fire fang on the garchomp and make landorus jolly btw
 
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