Gen 4 DPP OU Viability Rankings V2

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Jirachee

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D
PP OU Viability Rankings Thread

Welcome to the official DPP OU Viability Rankings topic. You should know the drill by now; In this thread, we as a community will rank every single usable Pokemon into "tiers." In this thread, you're encouraged to post your thoughts and opinions on the various Pokemon that are usable in DPP OU and what tier they should fall under. It's about time the RoA subforum joined in on the action!

The general idea of the topic is to rank each DPP OU pokemon under "rankings" that go in descending order. Since this is a general tier list, everything is lumped together. There won't be any segregation between offense & defense threats.

  • EX: Flygon can be ranked in A tier as an offensive threat, Skarmory can be ranked under A as supportive threat and Heatran can be can be ranked in S tier as a versatile threat. These are just examples, they may actually not end up being true.
Note that the overall tier list is in no particular order.

MUST READ

..okay. Since it's apparent that everyone will want their "favorites" moved up until nothing exists in any rank below C, I'm going to try to introduce some objectivity into these proceedings.

S Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who can sweep or wall significant portions of the metagame with little support, and Pokemon who can support other Pokemon with very little opportunity cost ("free turns"). Also the home of Pokemon who can easily perform multiple roles effectively, increasing their versatility and unpredictability. If the Pokemon in this rank have any flaws, those flaws are thoroughly mitigated by their substantial strengths.

A Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who can sweep or wall significant portions of the metagame, but require some support or have some flaws that prevents them from doing this consistently. Supporting Pokemon in this rank may give opponents free turns or cannot create free turns easily themselves, but can still do their job most of the time.

B Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who cannot sweep through or wall significant portions of the metagame, but can properly fulfill a given offensive/defensive niche. Support Pokemon in this category have flaws that prevent them from doing their job or are setup bait for dangerous sweepers. Pokemon who are partially outclassed by a Pokemon in A or S Rank, but are otherwise very dangerous, may also fall into this category.

C Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who can be effective given the right support, but either have crippling flaws that prevent them from consistently executing their strategy or are typically inferior to Pokemon in the above ranks.

D Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who are simply not very effective in the current metagame.
DPP OU Rankings List V2

(Subject to change)

S Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who can sweep or wall significant portions of the metagame with little support, and Pokemon who can support other Pokemon with very little opportunity cost ("free turns"). Also the home of Pokemon who can easily perform multiple roles effectively, increasing their versatility and unpredictability. If the Pokemon in this rank have any flaws, those flaws are thoroughly mitigated by their substantial strengths.
  • Tyranitar
  • Starmie
  • Heatran
  • Rotom-A
  • Jirachi
  • Zapdos
A Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who can sweep or wall significant portions of the metagame, but require some support or have some flaws that prevents them from doing this consistently. Supporting Pokemon in this rank may give opponents free turns or cannot create free turns easily themselves, but can still do their job most of the time.

A+ Rank:
  • Dragonite
  • Skarmory
  • Breloom
  • Scizor
A rank:
  • Gengar
  • Infernape
  • Gliscor
  • Gyarados
  • Flygon
  • Lucario
  • Hippowdon
  • Metagross
  • Shaymin
  • Celebi
  • Blissey
  • Azelf
  • Forretress
A- Rank:
  • Aerodactyl
  • Suicune
  • Kingdra
  • Machamp
  • Roserade
  • Empoleon
  • Swampert
  • Crobat
B Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who cannot sweep through or wall significant portions of the metagame, but can properly fulfill a given offensive/defensive niche. Support Pokemon in this category have flaws that prevent them from doing their job or are setup bait for dangerous sweepers. Pokemon who are partially outclassed by a Pokemon in A or S Rank, but are otherwise very dangerous, may also fall into this category.

B+ Rank:
  • Abomasnow
  • Magnezone
  • Nidoqueen
  • Bronzong
  • Mamoswine
  • Vaporeon
  • Jolteon
B Rank:
  • Dugtrio
  • Quagsire
  • Venusaur
  • Snorlax
  • Raikou
  • Clefable
B- Rank:
  • Weavile
  • Milotic
  • Cradily
  • Togekiss
  • Spiritomb
  • Heracross
  • Tentacruel
  • Gallade
C Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who can be effective given the right support, but either have crippling flaws that prevent them from consistently executing their strategy or are typically inferior to Pokemon in the above ranks.

C+ Rank:

  • Froslass
  • Rhyperior
  • Cresselia
  • Staraptor
  • Donphan
  • Uxie
  • Hitmontop
  • Slowbro
C Rank:
  • Moltres
  • Sceptile
  • Yanmega
  • Mesprit
  • Medicham
  • Honchkrow
  • Registeel
  • Lanturn
  • Feraligatr
  • Torterra
  • Blaziken
  • Hariyama
D Rank: Reserved for Pokemon who are simply not very effective in the current metagame.
  • Smeargle
  • Dusknoir
  • Porygon-Z
  • Electivire
  • Umbreon
  • Ninjask
Lead Rankings V1
S Rank
  • Aerodactyl
  • Azelf
  • Jirachi
  • Machamp
  • Metagross

A+ Rank
  • Dragonite
  • Empoleon
  • Heatran
  • Tyranitar
  • Zapdos

A- Rank
  • Infernape
  • Mamoswine
  • Roserade
  • Starmie

B+ Rank
  • Crobat
  • Froslass
  • Gallade
  • Gengar
  • Gliscor
  • Gyarados
  • Swampert

B- Rank
  • Celebi
  • Flygon
  • Hippowdon
  • Nidoqueen
  • Smeargle
  • Uxie
  • Weavile

C Rank
  • Breloom
  • Bronzong
  • Forretress
  • Raikou
  • Skarmory
  • Togekiss

D Rank
  • Blissey
  • Hariyama
  • Ninjask
  • Yanmega

Rules
~Post intelligently. Posts like "I think pokemon X should be in this tier" will not be tolerated
~No flaming
~Usage statistics may be used to support an argument or a claim, but don't base your ENTIRE argument around them. For example, you can't just say "Pokemon X shouldn't be this tier because they aren't used that often!"
~No talk about editing the OFFICIAL smogon tier lists, yes this means no talk about Latias, mence or whatever being moved down, we have a thread for that.

This is very much in development so I really need you guys to contribute, remember, viability rankings cannot be made by 1 person, it's a community thing
Happy posting ♪♪
 
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Jirachee

the bad man
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My buddy Monte Cristo was too busy to continue updating this, which is why I took over the thread. Thanks for putting up with our past whining!

I'm going to add BKC's suggested revamp right now. You should continue the discussion from the last thread, the reason why there's a new thread is purely technical.
 
B/B+ rank is pretty harsh for Jolteon / Raikou imo, even if Zapdos / Rotom are outshining them at being electric type due to better typing/stats/abilities, Jolteon and Raikou can prove to be threatening and are pretty underrated. They can't break throught Blissey but they are purely awesome against offenses team, especially Jolteon, who can just straight up spam thunderbolt and keep the momentum with baton pass. Subcm Raikou is really threatening for offensive teams, but he still needs to set-up to be a problem, that's why i can't rank him in A.

At least putting Raikou is B+ and Jolteon in A- would be good imo.
 
I'd probably put Uxie up in B. It's a great lead, sets rocks reliably and U-turns out. It's a consistent T-waver and scout mid-game, and paralysis is fantastic for offensive teams. It can also go dual screens or weather if you're shooting for that. Heal Bell and Yawn add to its versatility; it can really do whatever you're looking for. Lack of reliable recovery is its only downfall, tbh.
 

Tomahawk

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B/B+ rank is pretty harsh for Jolteon / Raikou imo, even if Zapdos / Rotom are outshining them at being electric type due to better typing/stats/abilities, Jolteon and Raikou can prove to be threatening and are pretty underrated. They can't break throught Blissey but they are purely awesome against offenses team, especially Jolteon, who can just straight up spam thunderbolt and keep the momentum with baton pass. Subcm Raikou is really threatening for offensive teams, but he still needs to set-up to be a problem, that's why i can't rank him in A.

At least putting Raikou is B+ and Jolteon in A- would be good imo.
Nah, Jolteon isn't better than Raikou. I'd say they are about equally viable. Raikou has loads of advantages, more bulk, better movepool, Calm Mind, etc. while Jolteon has Speed, and Baton Pass? Also Volt Absorb. B+ sounds like a fair ranking for both of them

Jellicent: Uxie is a consistent lead, definitely, but B is a bit too high for it imo. I have a hard time putting it in teams as well, because if your team is too offensive it can kind of become deadweight, while for defensive teams it is a bit too easily worn down. B- sounds like a better ranking, or C+ maybe.
 

august

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crobat should be b/b+ rank i think..

i guess its cool that you have a pkmn that can taunt and shut down spikers while being able to beat breloom and that definitely makes crobat SEEM like its worth of a- rank but the stealth rock weak really hinders it imo. the stealth rock weak means it pretty much needs to be paired with a spinner like starmie or forretress, and both of the spinners compound weaknesses that you already get from using crobat, in particular forry compounds a heatran weakness and starmie is no help vs rock / electrics such as aero/ttar and zapdos/raikou/rotom-a. not to mention that against offensive teams, crobat is generally too scared to taunt the rock setters (heatran, metagross, azelf) and barring maybe breloom, it has little business around offensive powerhouses like dragonite, scizor, heatran, ttar, jirachi etc.

crobat does fairly well against defensive teams but most defensive teams will atleast pack rotom-a which is a solid offensive check, and zapdos is another pkmn seen commonly on defensive teams that can shut down crobat without the pursuit weak

i dunno just a thought
 
Crobat is a momentum machine.

It's the only pokemon I can think of that completely turns grass types into momentum, including Breloom. It is great for regaining momentum against stall due to taunt + u-turn. Due to it's typing it's an excellent pivot on offensive teams for regaining momentum.

While it's not scary on it's own, pair it with an OU powerhouse such as Tyranitar or Heatran and you'll be able to apply some heavy pressure to your opponent.
 
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crobat should be b/b+ rank i think..

i guess its cool that you have a pkmn that can taunt and shut down spikers while being able to beat breloom and that definitely makes crobat SEEM like its worth of a- rank but the stealth rock weak really hinders it imo. the stealth rock weak means it pretty much needs to be paired with a spinner like starmie or forretress, and both of the spinners compound weaknesses that you already get from using crobat, in particular forry compounds a heatran weakness and starmie is no help vs rock / electrics such as aero/ttar and zapdos/raikou/rotom-a. not to mention that against offensive teams, crobat is generally too scared to taunt the rock setters (heatran, metagross, azelf) and barring maybe breloom, it has little business around offensive powerhouses like dragonite, scizor, heatran, ttar, jirachi etc.

crobat does fairly well against defensive teams but most defensive teams will atleast pack rotom-a which is a solid offensive check, and zapdos is another pkmn seen commonly on defensive teams that can shut down crobat without the pursuit weak

i dunno just a thought
I agree. Suggested it last thread but got no reply. Crobat absolutely needs support to be effective.

Crobat is a momentum machine.

It's the only pokemon I can think of that completely turns grass types into momentum, including Breloom. It is great for regaining momentum against stall due to taunt + u-turn. Due to it's typing it's an excellent pivot on offensive teams for regaining momentum.

While it's not scary on it's own, pair it with an OU powerhouse such as Tyranitar or Heatran and you'll be able to apply some heavy pressure to your opponent.
Fantastic momentum... Assuming a rapid spinner. He can even knock off some key players like Infernape, Breloom, and Lucario against offensive teams with Taunt, Roost, Super Fang, and Brave Bird. But watch how quickly he falls in the sand with no RS support.
 

Jirachee

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B/B+ rank is pretty harsh for Jolteon / Raikou imo, even if Zapdos / Rotom are outshining them at being electric type due to better typing/stats/abilities, Jolteon and Raikou can prove to be threatening and are pretty underrated. They can't break throught Blissey but they are purely awesome against offenses team, especially Jolteon, who can just straight up spam thunderbolt and keep the momentum with baton pass. Subcm Raikou is really threatening for offensive teams, but he still needs to set-up to be a problem, that's why i can't rank him in A.

At least putting Raikou is B+ and Jolteon in A- would be good imo.
The thing about Electrics is that they're all pretty threatening, but you need to compare them with the others because they're all pretty similar overall. Electric spam teams are a thing but most normal teams can't afford to run more than 1 of them. It's pretty obvious why Rotom is the highest on the list, because thanks to Ghost typing it's one of the few reliable spinblockers in the (hazard centered) tier. Zapdos is right under it because I think it's the most threatening and well-rounded overall, however an SR weakness sucks I guess. I agree that Raikou is maybe too low so I'd agree with Tomahawk and make it B+, but honestly I can't see Jolteon any higher than a full rank below Zapdos.

I'd probably put Uxie up in B. It's a great lead, sets rocks reliably and U-turns out. It's a consistent T-waver and scout mid-game, and paralysis is fantastic for offensive teams. It can also go dual screens or weather if you're shooting for that. Heal Bell and Yawn add to its versatility; it can really do whatever you're looking for. Lack of reliable recovery is its only downfall, tbh.
I'm not sure if I agree with that. Uxie is a great lead but when you decide to use it you need to make sure other leads (especially Azelf) wouldn't be better in that spot. I think Uxie is a really niche mon because it has no use outside of the lead spot, and even in that spot it has to compete with other effective Pokemon that have many advantages over it. I don't think it makes much sense placing such a niche mon outside of the C rank...
 
Gallade has a good lead matchup, but it struggles for competition from 4 attack metagross and lead machamp. I hesitate to call it an 'anti lead' because it can't prevent stealth rocks (except from heatran). Mid game it struggles to switch in, but can be a threat and Zen headbutt is a surprisingly easy move to spam.

But I agree, I also think there needs to be a change, it shouldn't be in the same class as medicham, mesprit and torterra. Either make it higher or other pokes lower.
 
Azelf should be A- imo

Just used merely as lead, one of the best suicide leads and more agressive ones; also very versatile (sash/colburr/cb/sometimes screens) but overall A rank in the same level as other mons is probably a bit higher for a mon which is just used almost always as lead and still have flaws depending on their set if is using colburr, sash or cb.
 
The LO hp ground set is pretty damn scary, high speed, explosion hits like hell, it relies a bit on prediction since it's frail as hell and scarfttar can trap it no problem but it's actually quite good
 
steppin in to assist the witch doctors diagnosis.

gallade is good. outspeeding tran with a predator such as this and popping champ shouldnt be understated. lo cc is pretty fucking huge (the extra muscle for sdef hippo and skarm at the same time is a p important distinction compared to champ/meta) and the uniqueness of its coverage can be really threatening, some def teams like nidoq and glis shit just outright fail to cover it. and offense is obviously hard pressed if it gets the opportunity lol, especially when you have sneak hampering conventional pivots. the speed/dec special bulk also makes it easier to find the second window for a hit, offering some legitimate early-mid value out of a dedicated antilead.

bottom b-/top c+ imo
 
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Jirachee

the bad man
is a Top Tutoris a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Top Team Rater Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnus
I moved Gallade to B-. I think it's a fair ranking given what currently sits there

Also I disagree with Azelf being in A-. The non-lead sets are not exactly good but Azelf is just about the most unpredictable lead out there. When you go against most other leads, you'll pretty much know what move to choose all the time. Azelf has many different sets and they can all punish a certain move. This makes Azelf an extremely reliable lead. I think it's just as good as everything else in its rank.
 

SlottedPig

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Gyarados: A to A+. It's probably the scariest Dragon Dancer in the tier post-Salamence, and while it can't go mixed like Dragonite, it definitely has a lot of its own advantages. There are very few answers to bulky Gyara thanks to Taunt; Rotom-A gets worn down extremely easily while Celebi loses to Bounce, and both have to scout for CB Payback. While bulky Gyara isn't super strong before a boost it can get +2/+2 fairly easily since Rock attacks are p. uncommon outside of SR and no Electric-type can switch in directly besides Zapdos (which has to be extremely healthy if SR is up cause Gyarados can just go for the Waterfall).

Gyara also has offensive DD, DD Rest Talk and Rest Talk Roar so it can fit on a wide array of teams and has a super important niche for defensive teams in beating both NP + CC Infernape and SD Lucario in one slot. It conflicts type-wise with the best mon in the tier Starmie, which sucks because Gyara is best with spin support, but it's not a major issue (nothing stops you from using both or Forretress so ye).

Milotic: B to B-. Milotic is mediocre. It isn't awful, which is why it shouldn't drop to C ranks, but it competes with too many other mons (Starmie / Gyarados / Suicune / Vaporeon / Tentacruel) and has a very small niche especially since it cannot phaze and offers little team support; all it does is wall things, while giving free switch-ins to Shaymin, Celebi, Blissey and even Starmie. It definitely isn't better than Tentacruel which has an important niche for stall teams in Water + beating NP Infernape + Toxic Spikes + absorbing Toxic Spikes and also having Rapid Spin. Offensive Milotic is a cool glue mon, but it's still very specific and still gives free switch-ins to every mon listed above (except Starmie I guess).

Cradily: B- to C. It's completely outclassed by Celebi at everything except Curse sweeping in Sandstorm teams but it's so weak (and has so many weaknesses) that it's pretty hard to get time to boost up. Since it's slow it usually doesn't want to switch into any strong attack but it also needs things like Taunt + Toxic Gliscor, Taunt Skarmory, Machamp, Lucario, and Scizor all gone.

I also don't think Blaziken should be ranked (or D if it is) because it pretty much has no niche. It's stronger than Infernape but slower than even Bold Starmie so it gets cockblocked by the best Pokemon in the meta and is still checked by nearly everything that Infernape is.

Agreeing with raising Uxie, but I think B- is fine enough for it. It gets SR up against nearly every lead and spreads status well but gives free switch-ins to a lot of things like Scizor and CB Tyranitar.

Azelf should stay in A unless Aerodactyl drops too, since Azelf is pretty clearly better than Aero. Colbur Berry Azelf is probably the single best suicide lead in DP, and it's better than Aerodactyl against everything except other Azelf.
 

august

i am the one who haunts
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Azelf should stay in A unless Aerodactyl drops too, since Azelf is pretty clearly better than Aero
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aerodactyl is one of the single most threatening mons in dpp, STAB stone edge off of high atk with enough speed to beat scarf ttar, has awesome coverage, gets a sick spdef boost from sand (which is p common considering ttar is probably the best pkmn in dpp) and has roost + taunt to help beat down shit like skarm / hippo

which reminds me, why is aero a- rank anyway? sr isnt even _that_ huge of a deal with roost considering aero comes in on heatran easy and smacks around all the s rank mons in general

also i think maybe pert for b+ rank honestly. theres not much it does that hippo doesnt do besides maybe get an occasional roar on something like offensive cune after taking a huge chunk of hp
 
I think it's pretty hard to rank pokemon who are played almost exclusively as lead, i'd rather have a lead ranking because for example metagross is A but the lead set is the most common by far, cb and even agility are not seen that much compared to the lead set, they're not bad but it's hard to rank a pokemon with mons like shaymin for his lead job, even if it's great. As for the CB / Agility set, gross could be A-, every team has something to deal with it now (Rotom / Cune / Skarm / Swampert / Zapdos...) and the CB needs some support to work.
 

Jirachee

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I dunno about a lead ranking. I guess it'd be interesting to add but I think lead mons can be ranked with non-lead mons as well. The only things I can think of that are exclusively used as leads are Azelf, Uxie, and Smeargle which is only 3 mons. Everything else is either not a dedicated lead (ie Zapdos, Hippo) or have very viable non-lead sets (ie Aero, Metagross). To me these mons' lead set are part of what makes them viable and explains their placement on list.

I've seen other rankings list do discussions on specific Pokemon and I think it'd be cool to do that with this list too :)

Let's talk about Aerodactyl, Azelf and Swampert
 
They're all ranked correctly, in my opinion.

Swampert is an excellent defensive Pokemon with great synergy with a lot of common walls like Skarmory and Blissey. Always gets the Rocks up because it finds it easy to switch into strong fire, rock, and electric attacks, or tank moderately or weak powered neutral hits. Can check extremely common threats like Tyranitar, Flygon, and Heatran assuming no HP Grass. Some Pokemon just run HP Grass or a Grass move for one reason and one reason only: To keep Swampert from walling them.

Swampert's biggest issue might be that it has no reliable recovery outside of Rest which limits its small but great movepool. It isn't all so bad though, because Swampert isn't too prone to being worn down because it's typing offers a SR resist and Sandstorm immunity. Its typing is also great offensively, giving it STAB on EQ and Waterfall. It is also an excellent phazer, again, due to its typing and defenses.

A great Pokemon that has not needed to adapt, because it is so good at what it does. It saw plenty of usage with the same classic set when I was active in D/P and did and continues to do the same thing when I came back in '13, post Gen 4.

Swampert has some sets to run that I didn't mention: CB and Cursepert. CB is strictly for surprise, and can net a surprise KO / surprise damage on a Pokemon that easily switches into Swampert. It's a gimmick if you ask me. Cursepert is actually a pretty good set but you have to make the trade off of type coverage, and go with 2 attacks but be dead weight when you're resting or be a monoattacker w/ Sleep Talk. Can put the hurting provided its checks are gone or your opponent is not prepared for it.
 
Aerodactyl is like one the best stallbreaker in DPP right now, it's A+ at this job, but the fact that it needs hella support makes him A-, you have to put a sand inducer, which is another grass/water weakness, then a spinner like starmie sounds pretty obvious because Aerodactyl needs to switch on things like heatran and stuff, then you need a jirachi/zor check...You can't really do 100000 teams with LOdactyl, it will be something like hippowdon /roserade / starmie / heatran / aerodactyl (i think that's lizard man's team), the build restriction because of the support it needs makes him A-

Swampert
, especially the offensive versions are pretty underrated, in a metagame where everyone thinks that breloom or roserade are good enough checks to him, the choice / full hp + full offensive stat of your choice variants @ leftovers are pretty damn lethal. Some people thinks it's okay to switch on skarmory / rotom-w against it and...
252+ SpA Swampert Hydro Pump vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Skarmory: 216-255 (64.6 - 76.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252+ SpA Swampert Hydro Pump vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Skarmory: 145-172 (43.4 - 51.4%) -- 9% chance to 2HKO
252+ SpA Swampert Hydro Pump vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Rotom-W: 153-180 (50.3 - 59.2%) -- 75.4% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252+ SpA Swampert Hydro Pump vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Rotom-W: 153-180 (63.4 - 74.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
They really feel the sting. Some aditionnal calcs:
252+ SpA Swampert Ice Beam vs. 172 HP / 0 SpD Breloom: 258-304 (84.8 - 100%) -- 37.5% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Swampert Hydro Pump vs. 248 HP / 0 SpD Scizor: 195-229 (56.8 - 66.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Swampert Hydro Pump vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Gengar: 204-241 (77.8 - 91.9%) -- 31.3% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Swampert Earth Power vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Starmie: 138-163 (42.5 - 50.3%) -- 40.2% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery
252+ SpA Swampert Earth Power vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Starmie: 138-163 (52.8 - 62.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Swampert Earth Power vs. 0 HP / 0- SpD Kingdra: 141-166 (48.4 - 57%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
Offensive pert is one of my favorites mons to play in DPP OU because of how much. It won't be as bulky as the relaxed one, but the fact that you can keep an offensive pressure and prevent some annoying switches (i.e breloom) is pretty nice. It will need some support because you won't tank things like outrages and stuff but it's an underrated SR user imo.
As a defensive pokemon, pert can check the previously mentionned LO dactyl by creating a mindgame with EQ vs Roost, which is pretty awesome knowing how badly LODactyl destroys defensive teams, It doesn't have a lot of type resist besides fire/electric but it's still pretty good, it can check DDnite without LO (which is a gay thing to play), jolteon/raikou/zapdos without hp grass, agiliygross...it's a pain in the ass for a lot of underrated threats.
The fact its good as both an offensive and a defensive pokemon and that it doesn't really need any support (it is a support in itself actually) makes me wanna see it ranked a bit higher, as a A=

Azelf is a weird case, it's hard to rank a mon used as a lead 90% of the time, even if it is the most versatile lead in OU, being able to be played as cb / colbur / trickscarf / classic sash / dual screen...
The offensive LO variant is both good and bad depending of the match-up, it's pretty much shit against teams with scarf/pursuittar (or in rare cases weavile) but on the other hand someone who predicts well can pretty much destroy you with it if you don't have them. (or if slow ttar is weakened too much) The Psychic / Boom / Fire blast / Hp ground is pretty hard to check and you can only hope that you revenge kill it before it's too late.
A= is good enough for Azelf, because it's pretty frail and you can't put him on every team, but as a lead he is clearly in A+/S
 
Interviewer: What's your thoughts on Life orb aerodactyl?
Generic gen 4 player: ZOMG THE BEST FRIGGIN POKEMON IN ALL THE LAND

Interviewer: Do you use it a lot then?
Generic gen 4 player: Use it? *awkward laugh* No.

#aerodactylhype
 
i think all three have been covered for the most part, but adding on a bit about pert, imo it comes down to typing constraints vs hippo and/or adverse sand effects to a lesser extent. in addition to essentially a short term version of hippos defense, the fire resist lets it more readily check infernape/scarftran and the ability to fend off dd kingdra/cm cune in the early-midgame is actually pretty valuable for bulky offense. the water neutrality lets it play with bulky starmie, forcing it to recover, which is why its effectively (and more commonly) paired with ttar. pert is easily glued on compared to hippo, making it ideal for less defensively minded or just more nonstandard styles, see lizardman's dragmag (cbnite / pert / subsplit gar / scarfrachi / subleftiesddkingdra / zone) or boudouches blue shower rmt http://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/rmt-the-blue-shower.3506725/. the crobat semistall m dragon was touring with (crobat / scarftar / pert / skarm / mie / scarftom) is another good example of perts niche in that it lacks the optimal means to deal with waters so it cant really afford to run hippo. and this is p much bottom of the barrel, but ive seen yan sim packing the hp elec def pert, really stretchin that water neutrality for a gyara check, something hippo cant hope to accomplish.

eh, admittedly somewhat ghetto for handling a multitude of threats and if youre using it as a go to tran switch then youre a fucking trap star, pert is just a blue collar utility that is tough to quantify on paper. remember how common it was during latimence era; i think that metagame standardized the above styles and the succeeding ban shift is what led to hippo outclassing it in a lot of defensive contexts. the amount of defense pert offers is still really useful for some teams despite being less consistent, while significant drawbacks keep it at A- (spike fodder, loom fodder, difficulty touching a lot of things outside of roar, exploitable quad weak for zap). the way it approaches its defense is comparable to utility roserade, another A-. there seems to be merit in the offensive pert mentioned earlier too, but idk how much that should impact its tiering here given its p nonexistent usage and i don't think the luring would be enough to move it up regardless when you lose that many def checks.
 
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