Fear the seadragon!


I've been wanting to use my favorite Pokemon, Kingdra, on a team for the past couple of weeks. I've tried quite a few strategies, from dual screens to Encore, and my team has gone through at least 5 complete makeovers, but I've finally got something that performs reasonably well, so I decided to post it to see what I can do from here. It looks very reminiscent of my previous team at the moment, but I'm sure that will change.

Team Building Process

Of course, it all started with Kingdra. I decided to run the standard sub-DD set. Although Kingdra lacks the raw sweeping power of other OU Dragen Dancers like Salamence and Gyarados, I feel that Kingdra's excellent dual STAB and lack of a 4x weakness makes it more useful in many situations. In my experience, Kingdra has a much easier time setting up two DDs, at which point it surpasses the other two in both Attack and Speed. Kingdra is an excellent mid-to-late game sweeper and with a DD or two, it easily tears through half a team.

To ensure that Kingdra can pull off its sweep, I needed to remove its counters. The list of Pokemon that Kingdra has the most problems with, at least in my experience:
- Bulky Waters (More offensive Vaporeon or if it has Roar, Suicune, Swampert)
- Steels (Skarmory especially, Jirachi, Forretress, Scizor, Metagross)
- Latias

I tried a bunch of different Pokemon, but I found that the Pokemon that could most consistently deal with Bulky Waters and Steels was Zapdos running the physically defensive set with Thunderbolt / Roost / HP Grass / Heat Wave. I really don't understand why Zapdos isn't used more often. It laughs in Scizor's face, taking 35.2% max from a +2 Bullet Punch, survives at least one Stone Edge or Ice Beam from just about anything, and trades its two weaknesses for a weakness to a type that it's normally immune to when it Roosts, which makes for great mindgames.

So I still haven't taken care of my Latias problem. In fact, I've just exacerbated it by adding another Pokemon that can't do anything to it. The next addition to my team seeks to mitigate that problem.

I LOVE the Curse Umbreon set. It switches in safely on anything but a Specs Draco Meteor (53.6%-63.2%), and takes everything else Latias can throw at it like a champ. Against a Specs Latias, it can easily set up after something else absorbs the initial hit. Umbreon may lack the sheer special defensive bulk that Blissey has, but its Dark typing and its superior movepool make it much more useful, in my opinion. Zapdos resists Bug and Fighting, making for a pretty good defensive partner.

So now I have a strong defensive lineup, but I'm still easily walled by Steels such as Heatran if I don't have time to set up. I decided to introduce MixApe as a wallbreaker.

My team isn't very entry hazard dependent, but it never hurts to have Stealth Rock in play, so I decided to go with my favorite bulky Stealth Rock lead, Metagross. This also gives me an additional check against Latias.

The sixth slot was really up in the air. There were a lot of things that could benefit this team. I have no Ice attacks and no way to deal with setup sweepers other than to get them out of the way as fast as possible, or to start setting up Umbreon as they set up (which works sometimes against people who think a Calm Mind Latias can beat an Umbreon for some reason). I stuck Scarfed Flygon in here as an all-purpose revenge killer. Its resistance to EdgeQuake pretty useful to have against Tyranitar, and it helps prevent a runaway Salamence from wrecking this team.

Team Details

Metagross @ Lum Berry
Ability: Clear Body
EVs: 252 HP/220 Atk/36 Spd
Adamant nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
- Meteor Mash
- Earthquake
- Bullet Punch
- Stealth Rock

Lum Berry Metagross is a very consistent lead. It beats just about every popular lead in the game except Swampert and Heatran. It can often come back later in the game to revenge kill something or threaten it out.

Kingdra (M) @ Leftovers
Ability: Swift Swim
EVs: 4 HP/252 Atk/252 Spd
Adamant nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
- Waterfall
- Outrage
- Substitute
- Dragon Dance

Here's my main sweeper. It has a fairly easy time getting 2 Dragon Dances once its main switch-ins have been removed. A lot of the common switch-ins to this Pokemon are taken out by Zapdos. I often send this into battle in the middle of the game, and by the time it's taken out the game is about over.

Infernape (M) @ Life Orb
Ability: Blaze
EVs: 252 Atk/192 Spd/64 SAtk
Naive nature (+Spd, -SDef)
- Close Combat
- Overheat
- U-turn
- Mach Punch

Standard wallbreaker. Infernape takes out defensive behemoths like Skarmory and Blissey with ease. Mach Punch is for Agility Empoleon, ScarfTar, and Lucario. U-turn makes Infernape a great scout. I usually end up U-turning into Umbreon, since I see a lot of Rotom-As and Latias switching in.

Umbreon (M) @ Leftovers
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 HP/200 Atk/56 SDef
Careful nature (+SDef, -SAtk)
- Wish
- Heal Bell
- Payback
- Curse

This set is great. Wish support, Heal Bell, and a Curser all rolled into a single Pokemon. Synchronize is great for switching into an obvious status inflicter like Blissey or Dusknoir. Umbreon is one of those Pokemon that has an insane support movepool but lacks the 5th moveslot to make it all work. There are so many options that could fit in the 5th slot. Mean Look. Baton Pass. Taunt. Yawn. Pursuit. Torment, even.

Zapdos @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 248 HP/228 Def/32 Spd
Bold nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Thunderbolt
- Roost
- Hidden Power [Grass]
- Heat Wave

This Zapdos handles extremely well against a large number of threats. It removes most of Kingdra's switch-ins, plus it PP stalls many walls.

Flygon (M) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 6 HP/252 Atk/252 Spd
Jolly nature (+Spd, -SAtk)
- Earthquake
- Outrage
- Dragon Claw
- U-turn

This is just the standard revenge killing set, for a lack of a better Pokemon to put on the team. Infernape and Metagross have problems with Earthquake, and Zapdos has problems with Stone Edge, so this is a pretty welcome addition to the team, regardless of how well it fits my purpose.

Possible Changes
- Zapdos for Gyarados. My team has severe issues against Trick, Taunt, and Roar. Gyarados helps fight this quite nicely, and can replace Zapdos as a physical wall. However, I don't appreciate the 4x Electric weakness much, Gyarados lacks reliable recovery, and I don't really want another set up sweeper on this team. I also lose the ability to handle opposing Gyarados.

- Flygon for a phazer. Flygon has saved my ass a couple of times, and the Rock resist and Ground and Electric immunities are definitely appreciated. However, I do have huge issues with Skarmory, Swampert, and Gliscor, especially once Zapdos is eliminated. Flygon and Infernape seem like the more obvious candidates for replacement.
Over Umbreon, I'm going to suggest a choice band gyarados which lures in counters to this set, like rotom and jirachi, and removes them with a boosted payback.
252 atk/252 spd/4 def
@choice band
stone edge

this really helps to removes kingdras counters and sweep easier.

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