Metagame [Gen 8] Category Swap

A meta where Nidoking can use its actual best stat? Sign me up!
Gengar is still usable, I love that. Koko is going to be even worse to play against. But being able to use its ACTUAL best attacking stat is worth it. It will be a menace, also why is Dragapult free, lmao.
Speaking of Leaf Storm.

Sceptile @ Sitrus Berry/Life Orb/Leftovers
Ability: Unburden
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Swords Dance/Dragon Dance
- Leaf Storm
- Focus Blast
- Substitute/Toxic/Protect

Virizion @ Life Orb
Ability: Justified
IVs: 0 Atk
- Swords Dance
- Leaf Storm
- Focus Blast
- Air Slash/Taunt/Toxic

These two are the fastest users of Leaf Storm. Focus Miss is meh as we all know, but hits hard as we all know.

Dragonite has lost Espeed, poor love of mine.
Imho in this meta Will-O-Wisp and burning mons in general is going to be sometimes even better than in regular OU. I can see Sableye being used on some teams because of that. Dragapult also is the fastest WoW user, bar Cal-Shadow. Also Mewtwo, Spectrier, Talonflame, Marshadow, Salazzle, Gengar, Frostlass and Blacephalon. Not all of them are really usable in this meta.
I'll also experiment with Volcarona and in general any mon weak to rock, since that weakness is literally not going to matter. Bar like ONE or TWO mons. I'm not sure this is going to make anyone too strong, but it's going to make some mons definitely more usable.
 
I'm trying to find defensive pokemon that benefit from the mechanic.

:ss/Hippowdon:
Hippowdon @ Leftovers
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Def
Impish Nature
- Scorching Sands
- Weather Ball
- Slack Off
- Stealth Rock
Can Scorching Sands finally see some mainstream usage? Previously it was rarely used since most Ground types are physical attackers, but now Hippo, Garchomp, and Rhyperior all seem like good contenders. Hippowdon stands out for having recovery and for now being one of the few Pokemon to have a reliable Rock attack (as long as sandstorm is up).

:ss/Quagsire:
Quagsire @ Leftovers
Ability: Unaware
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Def
Impish Nature
- Scald
- Earth Power
- Recover
- Toxic
Not really too different from standard, but while most Water types have seen their Scalds get weaker, Quagsire's is actually now operating from its higher attack stat. Seismitoad is also slightly improved for the same reason.

:ss/Gourgeist-Super:
Gourgeist-Super @ Leftovers
Ability: Frisk
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Def
Impish Nature
- Giga Drain
- Hex
- Flamethrower/Fire Blast/Mystical Fire
- Will-O-Wisp
Gourgeist has always been tantalizing as a rare Grass type with Fire coverage, but due to its abysmal special attack it could never utilize it. Now that its best moves are physical it can finally hurt the Steel and Grass types that always give Grass trouble (as well as Ice and Bug to a lesser extent). This set is defensively designed with WispHex but you could make it offensive too.

:ss/Pincurchin:
Pincurchin @ Leftovers
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Def
Impish Nature
- Rising Voltage
- Scald
- Recover
- Spikes
Probably still a lower-tier mon due to the low HP, but now its Rising Voltage packs a little more punch as a physical attack. Scald again too.

That's what I got so far. I think Hippo looks really promising but realistically the others will probably remain at lower viability.

The following isn't defensive but is interesting.

:ss/Thievul:
Thievul @ Choice Specs
Ability: Stakeout
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Knock Off
- Play Rough
- Sucker Punch
- U-turn
While its stats are still terrible, it is insane how much better Thievul's previously unused physical movepool is than its special movepool. Now it may finally be able to leverage Stakeout properly. The fact that it now has one of the more powerful STAB Knock Offs is certainly a feather in its hat. Now any switch-ins that can handle the Stakeout boost have to suck up losing their items. Special U-turn is also huge for Thievul.
 
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Some sets I've had fun with under webs on ROM :

Braviary (M) @ Life Orb
Ability: Sheer Force
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Heat Wave
- Hurricane
- Hone Claws
- Roost

Works like a charm. Bulky enough to switch in to thicker mons, and fast enough under webs to absolutely demolish opposing mons. Requires a bit too much support to be a meta staple I feel, but good nonetheless.

Hydreigon @ Leftovers
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Nasty Plot
- Crunch
- Scale Shot
- Earthquake

Yeah. It's basically the Scale Shot Chomp with a special twist. Lefties are a throw-in item, so can (and probably should) be switched to Life Orb for more output.

Clefable @ Life Orb
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 HP / 164 Def / 92 SpA
Bold Nature
- Knock Off
- Drain Punch
- Calm Mind
- Soft-Boiled

This was a menace. It disrupts fat really well and is nigh unbreakable for too passive teams (I mean it's a Clef.) Variations are unlimited since the blobs movepool is pretty damn versatile on the physical side as well.
 
All of these have not been tested due to my lack of testing on TrashChannel.

Don't forget to minimise your SpA IVs for Foul Play (I don't know whether confusion is attack or spa based now but I assumed it's attack based so I minimised those IVs too)

Hear me out - The lad gets no good STAB but there might be potential here. Not that he's missing out, as with bolt beam as well as fire coverage and even water, he hits just about everything. 3 special moves, that's really it.

I put substitute in there as an option for the 4th slot but it seems like the better option. If you don't know what they're gonna switch into, set up a sub and you might be able to get a 2hko or at least some chip damage!

tauros.gif

Tauros (M) @ Life Orb
Ability: Sheer Force
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
IVs: 0 SpA
- Flamethrower/Fire Blast
- Ice Beam/Blizzard
- Thunderbolt/Thunder
- Surf/Substitute/Hyper Beam

araquanid.png

Araquanid @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Water Bubble
EVs: 248 HP / 252 Atk / 8 SpD
Adamant Nature
IVs: 0 SpA
- Hydro Pump
- Bug Buzz
- Ice Beam
- Giga Drain/Mirror Coat

And the new defensive pivot is...
milotic.gif

Milotic @ Flame Orb
Ability: Marvel Scale
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Flip Turn
- Triple Axel
- Recover
- Toxic/Haze

Edit: Got another one! Whilst Nihilego lacks the coverage it once had, it now has knock off (or zen headbutt if you want to punish poison type switch ins that absorb toxic spikes). But the main draw here is its new STABs, Head Smash and Gunk Shot

nihilego.png

Nihilego @ Black Sludge
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Toxic Spikes
- Head Smash
- Gunk Shot
- Knock Off/Zen Headbutt
 
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KaenSoul

FuegoAlma
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There has to be a way to make Sceptile decent on this mode, it does have the movepool to work as either a physcial or special attacker.

:dp/sceptile:
Sceptile @ Grassy Seed / some other seed
Ability: Unburden
EVs: 148 HP / 252 Atk / 108 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Leaf Storm
- Swords Dance
- Focus Blast
- Dragon Pulse

Even with 85 Atk it should be able to deal some high damage with a base 130 stab, it still has no coverage.
Not really sure about the EVs, this just gives you the same speed Hawlucha needs to outspeed Excadrill on sand.


:rs/sceptile:
Sceptile @ Grassy Seed
Ability: Unburden
EVs: 148 HP / 252 SpA / 108 Spe
Modest Nature
- Acrobatics
- Leaf Blade
- Thunder Punch
- Drain Punch / Earthquake

This has coverage but now you cant use SD, so good luck with that.
 
Unlike cases like Body Press and Foul Play that have special damage calculations that are independent of category, because altering the Physical and Special categories is the premise of the metagame, I think there are three reasonable possible implementations for moves with dynamic categories depending on how the premise is interpreted/defined in detail:-

1. Base category priority: The base category is changed, but the dynamic categorization is not changed to compensate. Due to how the original dynamic categorization is implemented, Photon Geyser (and similar moves like Shell Side Arm) would always end up choosing Physical in-battle.

2. Dynamic category priority: The dynamic categorization is also changed to compensate for the base category being swapped. Photon Geyser would technically be base Physical rather than Special, but would ultimately work the same as in vanilla games in-battle; the technical base category would remain cosmetic.

3. Swap after dynamic categorization: A swap is implemented that occurs after what the normal outcome of dynamic categorization would be. This means that Photon Geyser would always choose the weaker category instead of the stronger one in-battle.

Whatever you decide, please add an FAQ to the OP so that there can be an objective reference for users and programmers regarding how these moves should work.
 

drampa's grandpa

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I was planning on writing a post defending a mon that has become controversial in the Other Metagames Room. And by controversial I mean everyone wants it banned. Instead I realized I don't know what I think and decided to just sort of word vomit about it.

:ss/magearna:
This little Uber robot thing has some serious shiny new toy syndrome, and is taking down a lot of other shiny new toys. Its standard set is Shift Gear + Fleur Cannon, as without the boost of Shift Gear and the spammable, 130 BP pretty much no drawback besides 90% accuracy STAB Magearna is kind of weak. But once we get beyond that there's a ton of versatility in what this thing can run. I haven't seen any choice sets yet but they could probably find a niche.

:magearna:
Magearna
Ability: Soul-Heart
IVs: 0 SpA
- Shift Gear
- Fleur Cannon

So let's say we have this so far. Looks decently easy to counter or check.
Taking a quick glance at its offensive movepool we have Stored Power, Ice Beam, Thunderbolt, Energy Ball / Grass Knot, Focus Blast / Aura Sphere, and Shadow Ball, with some possible niche options.

Trying to optimize its EV spread I ended up deciding to outspeed Dragapult at +2 to avoid Fire Blast.
:magearna:
Magearna
Ability: Soul-Heart
EVs: 76 HP / 252 Atk / 180 Spe
Adamant Nature
IVs: 0 SpA
- Shift Gear
- Fleur Cannon
- A bunch of different options we're gonna run through

I was looking at items. So far I've seen Leftovers and Weakness Policy. Neither of these have seemed to effect Magearna's overall brokenness in the matches I've watched, so I'll leave them be for now.

Stored Power is near mandatory on Weakness Policy sets. It becomes insanely powerful, being capable of hitting 160 BP in one turn while offering super effective / neutral coverage for fatties like Toxapex, Amoonguss, Toxapex, Volcarona, and Toxapex. On non-Weakness Policy sets it's an option, but significantly weaker due to requiring multiple boosts to reach high power. Soul Heart makes it still usable though.

Ice Beam is an extremely weak option on Magearna, primarily because it overlaps so much with Fleur Cannon. Because of its STAB boost Fleur Cannon is more powerful against neutral targets than Ice Beam is against Super Effective ones. If you wish to target Landorus-Therian for a OHKO then Ice Beam is useful, if not then it is probably best forgotten.

Thunderbolt is a good option on Magearna. It is its best move against Toxapex, Gyarados, and Corviknight, although it falls a little short against Slowbro where Fleur Cannon has a better chance to 2HKO. While Fleur Cannon once again is usually the most spammable move, Thunderbolt hits some very valuable defensive Pokemon and shouldn't be overlooked.

Energy Ball lets you break Quagsire. There really isn't much more to it than that. Right now nobody is running Quagsire so I don't recommend it, but if people start to run Quag stall, remember the move.
Grass Knot is arguably superior to Energy Ball in that it also breaks Quagsire and lets you beat Hippowdon reliably.
+1 252+ Atk Magearna Grass Knot (120 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Hippowdon: 224-264 (53.3 - 62.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery
Being contact is nothing but a negative however, and there are some Pokemon which can abuse the low weight, such as Gastrodo-
+1 252+ Atk Magearna Grass Knot (60 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gastrodon: 316-376 (74.1 - 88.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
ok that still does a lot. Still stuff like Flame Body burns are scary.

Focus Blast is, as I show below, the best way to blast through Heatran. Aura Sphere may seem more reliable but the drop in power is extremely noticeable and KOing 0% of the time < KOing some of the time and missing some of the time. It's also your best move for Kartana and Ferrothorn (again the power drop is very noticeable from Focus Blast to Aura Sphere). Overall Focus Blast, and to a significantly lesser extent Aura Sphere are probably the best coverage moves Magearna can run.

Shadow Ball hits Aegislash, Doublade, and Marowak-Alola, and Victini. Out of these, I only find Victini notable at all. It's a pretty niche move, but not quite useless.


:ss/heatran:
I tried building a Heatran set to counter Magearna. The main issue I'm running into here is I don't know standard spreads yet.

252+ Atk Magearna Focus Blast vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Heatran: 160-190 (41.4 - 49.2%) -- 21.5% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery
0 SpA Heatran Heat Crash (120 BP) vs. 76 HP / 0 SpD Magearna: 288-342 (90 - 106.8%) -- 81.3% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
44 SpA Heatran Heat Crash (120 BP) vs. 76 HP / 0 SpD Magearna: 300-354 (93.7 - 110.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ Atk Magearna Focus Blast vs. 252 HP / 212+ Def Heatran: 166-196 (43 - 50.7%) -- 53.1% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery

This is how much SpA Heatran needs to OHKO Magearna after SR with the spread I just posted.
252+ Atk Magearna Focus Blast vs. 252 HP / 124+ Def Heatran: 180-212 (46.6 - 54.9%) -- 99.6% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery

Wait what?
:heatran:
Heatran @ Leftovers
Ability: Flash Fire
EVs: 252 HP / 44 Atk / 124 Def / 88 Spe
Impish Nature
- Toxic
- Protect
- Heat Crash
- Earthquake

What this does is outspeed this, perfect, ideal spread that I have created and OHKO it, while tanking a hit no matter what they do. Isn't that nice.

So my conclusion on Heatran: It's a perfect, reliable, counter right!
No.
Why not? Because, let's say, someone isn't running this nice spread I have so kindly provided and is running 252+/252 Atk/Spe. This Heatran just gets outsped and 2hko'd. Your best bet out of all of these is the fully physically defensive Heatran which is the first set I dropped.
My real conclusion is that Magearna's ability to customize its EV spread makes it able to turn would-be checks and counters, notably Heatran, into dead things.

Notably Magearna loses half the time here anyway because it's using Focus Blast but as Heatran has no recovery, Magearna can simply nail it on switchin, and Magearna can come in very easily thanks to its bulk and typing, there really isn't much stopping Magearna simply playing it safe.

Other things that can try to counter Magearna:
:hippowdon: Can tank Magearna's hits and phaze it, but is at extreme risk from Weakness Policy sets. Fleur Cannon is Magearna's best move against it. Grass Knot will break Hippowdon, but isn't common.
:corviknight: Pdef Bulk Up sets can set up alongside Magearna, Tank Thunderbolts, and win if they don't get crit, but it's risky and you're running Pdef Bulk Up. Corviknight also has a trashy movepool now.
:victini: Victini will force out Magearna with pretty much any set, and can tank multiple hits. Even Shadow Ball isn't a reliable 2HKO without a boost.
:volcarona: Magearna just sort of loses to Volcarona, especially the bulky set.
:tangrowth: Tangrowth can fat its way through Magearna, but not easily. Sleep Powder is important to make sure you don't get too worn down, so make sure you don't let them trick you into sacking another mon to sleep.

Looking for Magearna answers what I've found is that non-Fighting weak Fire-types and generally physically fat mons tend to do best. If you can tank Fleur Cannon you can probably win versus it, given that Magearna's Attack is actually pretty mediocre.

In order to break Magearna and the meta, I have decided to leave you with one last set.

:ss/magearna:
Magearna @ Leftovers
Ability: Soul-Heart
EVs: 76 HP / 252 Atk / 180 Spe
Adamant Nature
IVs: 0 SpA
- Shift Gear
- Draining Kiss
- Substitute
- Stored Power

Oh did I say one? I meant two

WOOOOOOOO (Magearna) @ Life Orb
Ability: Soul-Heart
EVs: 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
IVs: 0 SpA
- Shift Gear
- Steel Beam
- Fleur Cannon
- Focus Blast

3 (Magearna) @ Life Orb
Ability: Soul-Heart
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 SpA / 0 Spe
- Trick Room
- Fleur Cannon
- Focus Blast
- Volt Switch / Gyro Ball

the point of posting a ton of sets at the end is to show y'all that Magearna has a ton of flexibility that has barely been explored. Go fuck shit up and find what is gonna get this mon banned.
Magearna @ Leftovers
Ability: Soul-Heart
EVs: Not optimized but something fat :<
Not Serious Nature
- Shift Gear
- Pain Split
- Fleur Cannon
- Focus Blast

Magearna @ Chesto Berry
Ability: Soul-Heart
EVs: 76 HP / 252 Atk / 180 Spe
Adamant Nature
IVs: 0 SpA
- Shift Gear
- Fleur Cannon
- Rest
- Focus Blast

OK I ran out of set ideas I can fool myself into thinking are viable for now!


EDIT: why is it that every time i look back at one of these posts i have no reaction but "damn my adhd is showing"
 
2. Dynamic category priority: The dynamic categorization is also changed to compensate for the base category being swapped. Photon Geyser would technically be base Physical rather than Special, but would ultimately work the same as in vanilla games in-battle; the technical base category would remain cosmetic.
This is what I was thinking of, but I don't know if it counts as a subjective change. Can we get a Showdown programmer here?
 
This is what I was thinking of, but I don't know if it counts as a subjective change. Can we get a Showdown programmer here?
Hopefully I can oblige.

Right now, Photon Geyser is coded in such a way that the move category will change to Physical if the user's attack stat is higher than the Special attack stat. There is always going to be jank edge cases that pop up, and that's fine. For what it's worth, all 3, including the option you were thinking of, all fit into the idea that the move's category is being flip-flopped and could be fine (I would still check just to be sure).
 
Btw here is the code for Photon Geyser and Shell Side Arm
Code:
photongeyser: {
        num: 722,
        accuracy: 100,
        basePower: 100,
        category: "Special",
        name: "Photon Geyser",
        pp: 5,
        priority: 0,
        flags: {protect: 1, mirror: 1},
        onModifyMove(move, pokemon) {
            if (pokemon.getStat('atk', false, true) > pokemon.getStat('spa', false, true)) move.category = 'Physical';
        },
        ignoreAbility: true,
        secondary: null,
        target: "normal",
        type: "Psychic",
        contestType: "Cool",
    }

Code:
shellsidearm: {
        num: 801,
        accuracy: 100,
        basePower: 90,
        category: "Special",
        name: "Shell Side Arm",
        pp: 10,
        priority: 0,
        flags: {protect: 1, mirror: 1},
        onPrepareHit(target, source, move) {
            if (!source.isAlly(target)) {
                this.attrLastMove('[anim] Shell Side Arm ' + move.category);
            }
        },
        onModifyMove(move, pokemon, target) {
            if (!target) return;
            const atk = pokemon.getStat('atk', false, true);
            const spa = pokemon.getStat('spa', false, true);
            const def = target.getStat('def', false, true);
            const spd = target.getStat('spd', false, true);
            const physical = Math.floor(Math.floor(Math.floor(Math.floor(2 * pokemon.level / 5 + 2) * 90 * atk) / def) / 50);
            const special = Math.floor(Math.floor(Math.floor(Math.floor(2 * pokemon.level / 5 + 2) * 90 * spa) / spd) / 50);
            if (physical > special || (physical === special && this.random(2) === 0)) {
                move.category = 'Physical';
                move.flags.contact = 1;
            }
        },
        onHit(target, source, move) {
            // Shell Side Arm normally reveals its category via animation on cart, but doesn't play either custom animation against allies
            if (!source.isAlly(target)) this.hint(move.category + " Shell Side Arm");
        },
        onAfterSubDamage(damage, target, source, move) {
            if (!source.isAlly(target)) this.hint(move.category + " Shell Side Arm");
        },
        secondary: {
            chance: 20,
            status: 'psn',
        },
        target: "normal",
        type: "Poison",
    }

For looking at the code here, it seems like both moves are going to be physical 100% of the time.
In both moves, they start out as Special moves, but change to Physical after their respective conditions are met.
However, if the condition fails, it just remains the category that it is. Normally this doesn’t matter, but here, since the category is physical and if the conditions fail, it’ll just remain physical, but if the conditions are met, it’s set to physical.

I think leaving it like this would be the most approriate thing to do, otherwise you’re modifying the move beyond.
If you don’t care about formalities, you can fix it by
1. Having every moves’ category be either -1 (Physical) or 1 (Special), then flip them by multiplying by -1, and having the cases for PG/SSA do that same thing if the conditions are met (this would make it so they do less damage)
2. Don’t apply the rule to PG or SSA.

I prefer if they just remain physical since OMs don’t want to just start modifying individual parts like this.
 
avalugg3dmodel.gif

Avalugg looks way better than usual in this OM. It no longer has to worry about the physical attackers it's tasked with checking knocking off its boots, it gains a more consistent STAB option in the form of Ice Beam, and it can consistently check almost every Nidoking set (provided it's healthy). I still only really see it being used on stall, but I think it's viable as a stall answer to Nidoking and other physical threats.

Nidoking
252+ Atk Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Sludge Wave vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 101-121 (25.6 - 30.7%) -- guaranteed 4HKO
252+ Atk Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Flamethrower vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 130-153 (33 - 38.9%) -- 99.8% chance to 3HKO
252+ Atk Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Fire Blast vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 159-187 (40.4 - 47.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
0 Atk Avalugg Ice Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Nidoking: 276-326 (91 - 107.5%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO

Dragapult
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Dragapult Shadow Ball vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 110-133 (27.9 - 33.8%) -- 0.2% chance to 3HKO
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Dragapult Flamethrower vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 166-198 (42.2 - 50.3%) -- 1.2% chance to 2HKO
0 Atk Avalugg Ice Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Dragapult: 282-332 (88.9 - 104.7%) -- 31.3% chance to OHKO

The only thing that's bad for it in this OM is the fact Body Press now hits on the special side, meaning any mon with Body Press can threaten it out. I would also say that this makes its Iron Defense + Body Press set slightly worse, and would consider a set with Ice Beam + Toxic to be overall more useful.
 
View attachment 443976
Avalugg looks way better than usual in this OM. It no longer has to worry about the physical attackers it's tasked with checking knocking off its boots, it gains a more consistent STAB option in the form of Ice Beam, and it can consistently check almost every Nidoking set (provided it's healthy). I still only really see it being used on stall, but I think it's viable as a stall answer to Nidoking and other physical threats.

Nidoking
252+ Atk Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Sludge Wave vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 101-121 (25.6 - 30.7%) -- guaranteed 4HKO
252+ Atk Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Flamethrower vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 130-153 (33 - 38.9%) -- 99.8% chance to 3HKO
252+ Atk Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Fire Blast vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 159-187 (40.4 - 47.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
0 Atk Avalugg Ice Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Nidoking: 276-326 (91 - 107.5%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO

Dragapult
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Dragapult Shadow Ball vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 110-133 (27.9 - 33.8%) -- 0.2% chance to 3HKO
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Dragapult Flamethrower vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Avalugg: 166-198 (42.2 - 50.3%) -- 1.2% chance to 2HKO
0 Atk Avalugg Ice Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Dragapult: 282-332 (88.9 - 104.7%) -- 31.3% chance to OHKO

The only thing that's bad for it in this OM is the fact Body Press now hits on the special side, meaning any mon with Body Press can threaten it out. I would also say that this makes its Iron Defense + Body Press set slightly worse, and would consider a set with Ice Beam + Toxic to be overall more useful.
First of all, I was just about to explain how good Avalugg is in this OM.

You also didn't explain that the amount of special mons in this OM is more limited than normal. Physical moves on a special attacker seem to be fewer (& with less coverage) than the other way around.

Anyways, my favorite set for lugg most of the time, is Curse Recover Body Press ice move. It still fits in my HO team.
Body Press is still very good, infact, being able to do massive damage from both Physical and Special makes it better.
 
Crappy first-ish iteration of a team after an hour and a half of tweaking and playing.

https://pokepast.es/45a1a58b138648f9

:dragapult:
Dragapult @ Choice Band
Ability: Clear Body
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
IVs: 0 SpA
- Dragon Pulse
- Shadow Ball
- Thunderbolt
- U-turn

The golden child of the OM. I'm not such a hipster that I'm not going to use the king of the meta unless I really hate the Pokemon, and I like Dragapult. This thing has the power, coverage, and speed to always be a threat at teambuilder, and it's got a good defensive typing to boot, hard checking every Volcarona. If there's any suspect test this month it will be Dragapult.

Goodnight, sweet prince.

:tyranitar:
Tyranitar @ Leftovers
Ability: Unnerve
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Adamant Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 SpA
- Stealth Rock
- Dark Pulse
- Ice Beam
- Earth Power

I'm honestly not sold on this. I might switch it to CB Sand Stream and move the team more towards a sand team to help contend with opposing weather; Leafeon's a trip. Tyranitar may lose Rock coverage (though I think it could run Ancient Power under sufficient motivation), but it gains in big power jumps for most of its coverage (EQ to EP is more of a trade given the SpDef drop chance).

:kartana:
Kartana @ Occa Berry
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
IVs: 0 SpA
- Swords Dance
- Giga Drain
- Steel Beam
- Vacuum Wave

Maybe it makes me basic but I love most of the Ultra Beasts. They're weird fucked-up things that have prime numbers for all of their base stats and have these outrageous designs and uncommon typings. Kartana is a little origami samurai that is also the living embodiment of the anime cut. I find Kartana has more than enough power to be able to forgo Life Orb and workable physically defensive profile to cut its worst weakness; you live Adamant non-LO Flamethrower from Nidoking from full with a layer of Spikes up, and three layers gives you a 25% chance to live.

While this coverage may leave you hard-walled by Moltres, Air Slash has imperfect accuracy, poor power (as poor as Kartana gets), and its utility is much less compared to the above moves.

:nihilego:
Nihilego @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Rock Slide
- Head Smash
- Gunk Shot
- Knock Off

Nihilego is my hero. It's got junk coverage but fantastic power and Special Rock-type attackers are nightmarish to handle because most of the good resists are physical. Beast Boost makes it revenge killer and sweeper in one, it's got the HP to tank Head Smash recoil better than most standard users of it, and it's great SpDef profile makes it a strong answer to a number of threatening Special attackers, almost hard-countering Volcarona (unless the bastard crits you with Wild Charge before you started using a Scarf set).

:gengar:
Gengar @ Life Orb
Ability: Cursed Body
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 29 HP
- Substitute
- Focus Punch
- Poltergeist
- Pain Split

The bitch is back, baby. This is a revival of a very very old set from before Focus Blast even existed if I'm remembering correctly, specifically to smoke the Blobs. Now running off its highly superior Special Attack with an almost-straight upgrade to Shadow Ball in Poltergeist, this has really shown up in like two games out of around ten because this metagame is still pretty fast-paced and reliably getting a sub is difficult. If it ever slows down this will be a threat.

I think the IVs give you 25 points of damage from Life Orb, I need to actually check (unless someone just wants to feed me the numbers).

:moltres:
Moltres @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Flame Body
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Brave Bird
- Flare Blitz
- Defog
- Roost

While I was copypasting over all of the sets and formatting before actually typing these paragraphs up I was idly brainstorming what I would put here and for Moltres I was thinking "...it has some defensive issues, but Flare Blitz and Brave Bird are straight upgrades to its standard moves, and in fact this would probably make a devastating Agility cleane--son of a bitch."

Moltres would make a sick defensive pivot on a balance or bulky offense with just Brave Bird and U-turn in Flare Blitz's stead, but I'll be reshuffling the team with this as an Agility cleaner. You lose Scorching Sands, which means you really need to weaken Heatran before attempting to sweep, but I'm sure it will be just fine.
 
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The council have decided...

Nidoking, Magearna, and Dragapult are now banned.

Nidoking: the increase in power as well as making Nidoking's incredible coverage physical forces this mon over the line. The offensive nature of CatSwap has made webs ever more viable, and Nidoking thrives under webs outspeeding most if not all usual checks. It forces a physical blanket check like Avalugg on too many teams, and even Lugg is paper if you switch one of your coverage moves into a special one.
We will also be keeping an eye on Nidoqueen going forward.

Magearna: Even though the snowballing nature Mag has with its sweeping sets in regular play are diminished due to Soul Heart increasing the wrong attack, the sheer versalitity and natural bulk combined with flexible coverage make Magearna stupidly hard to deal with. 99% of sets will run SG, but combining Iron Defense+Stored Power, Trick scarf and many possible coverage options put the opponent of a Magearna at a huge disadvantage by default. Scouting forever isnt really possible, again, due to the offensive nature of the meta. + No drawback Fleur Cannon goes brrrr a bit too hard

Dragapult: No surprises that Pult sees itself being pushed over the line in yet another OM. Getting its great special movepool to work with its better attacking stat combined with Dragon Dance forces, again, a blanket physical check like Avalugg on all viable teams as to not get swept by a DD Pult or get torn apart by banded sets. An immunity to Intimidate doesn't help Pult's case in the least.

in the hills or any other mod: Please could you implement these bans?
 
THIS IS THE NEW WAVE. I PRESENT: STALLBREAKER TALONFLAME

(started mostly a joke, proved to be legit)


Talonflame @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Flame Body
EVs: 68 HP / 252 Def / 188 Spe
Impish Nature
- Roost
- Fire Spin
- Taunt
- Will-O-Wisp

188 Speed outspeeds Garchomp and +1 Adamant Tyranitar to either burn or taunt, depending on your prediction. The rest is dumped into Talon's physical bulk, as to maximize the hits it can take after burning something. 68/252+ is bulkier than 252/68+.

Talonflame has a very fast taunt, a semi-trapping move, consistent status and consistent recovery, which makes it a surprisingly great stallbreaker. It goes 1v1 with most defensive scald users-- it can regularly solo a Toxapex.

Talonflame is, unfortunately, held back by one very common mon- Heatran completely counters you, doesn't care about Taunt, and obliterates you with Special Stone Edge. For almost anything else on stall, or generally annoying mons, Talonflame can do quite well for itself.

Pair this with Hex Marshadow, by the way. Insane combination.

252 Atk Life Orb Sheer Force burned Nidoqueen Sludge Wave vs. 68 HP / 252 Def Talonflame: 101-121 (32.1 - 38.5%)
252 Atk burned Tyranitar Thunderbolt vs. 68 HP / 252 Def Talonflame: 99-117 (31.5 - 37.2%)
252 Atk burned Tapu Koko Volt Switch vs. 68 HP / 252 Def Talonflame in Electric Terrain: 135-159 (42.9 - 50.6%)
252 Atk burned Tapu Koko Volt Switch vs. 68 HP / 252 Def Talonflame: 103-123 (32.8 - 39.1%)
0 Atk burned Quagsire Scald vs. 68 HP / 252 Def Talonflame: 75-88 (23.8 - 28%)
 
Been enjoying this meta a lot, here's my take on things so far
:magearna:
This thing was broken, yeah. I predicted that this would be super viable with a ton of different sets, but we didn't get to try many of them as Shift Gear proved the most viable and led to a quick ban. It had a bit of 4MSS in coverage but even without Ice Beam it could often beat down Lando-T and Nidoking if it had Shuca Berry. Not a surprising ban.
:dragapult:
Dragapult was damn powerful, but if it was the only offensive Ghost you could run it probably would have been more manageable. The fact that Ghost spam had powerful attackers on both sides of the spectrum forced you into using mixed-bulk Dark types like Mandibuzz on most teams to check them defensively. Overall I'm fine with this ban too, it didn't feel super bad to me but in the wake of the ban I realize that I was over-prepping for it a bit.
:nidoking:
Not sure about this one though. It's a powerful fit in the meta and has a great defensive quality against Tapu Koko, Magearna (rip), and others. But it's still a relatively slow breaker and can be sponged by pivots like Slowbro with correct prediction. While there isn't an outright counter to it like in standard play (Blissey), I found Nidoking taxing, but manageable to play around defensively, and against more offensive structures not too reliant on Tapu Koko it didn't overperform much. This is a ban I disagree with, or at least I think it's a bit premature, but I can at least see where it's coming from.

:gengar:
Specs Poltergeist is insane. It's basically a free kill unless you have Blissey (better have EQ!), Mandibuzz, or SpDef Hydreigon. Gengar can Trick them, Focus Punch (2HKO's Blissey), Poison Jab poison them, Ice Punch, or even just Explode for a big chunk. To me this is easily one of the most defensively restrictive mons, but with Dragapult banned it might be easier to manage as you can more fully focus your Ghost checks on special defense. Also it has Nasty Plot! It just absolutely crushes most defensive play.
:marshadow:
The other broken Ghost. I've seen people using sets like Choice Band, Wisp + Hex, and while those might have a place, to me the best sets are special-oriented LO or Specs. They hit harder, even from the lower attack stat, thanks to the higher power + consistency of Superpower and Poltergeist, and you get Shadow Sneak, one of the most powerful priority attacks available in the metagame. This was great for taking out Dragapult, but it has also proved nice as just a general revenge killing tool. Spectral Thief is also nice, although I haven't used it much personally. Marshadow is significantly weaker than Gengar to such an extent that you can sometimes sponge it once it's locked in with Mandibuzz or Toxapex, but it makes up for it with more consistent priority, speed, neutral coverage.... so it's even better in most situations.
:volcarona:
Volcarona really benefits from all the good priority options being special now. Attempting to defeat it with special attackers usually results in it leeching all its health back and putting you in an unwinnable position. Often you need to beat it by forcing it to go for Flare Blitz and chipping it off while it's weakened. I've been really struggling to fit checks to this mon, since Garchomp / Zygarde is disincentivized because it's a Ground type that doesn't beat Koko, and Heatran walls it but struggles against a lot of the other good mons. Maybe there is more room for Toxapex now, so I'll try that, but it's barely a check cause of Wild Charge.
:dragonite::gyarados::salamence:
Annoying Dragon Dancers with their strong Flying STAB and wide coverage. Gyarados and Dragonite's high special bulk and a lack of good Ice Shard users makes revenging them pretty annoying too. They might feel less annoying if I can manage to dodge a Hurricane for once, oh well.

:Tapu Koko:
This mon is very powerful and present, but it has some good natural checks in Ferrothorn, Lando-T, and Nidoqueen. Against teams without a Ground immunity, and where you decide to run SpDef Ferrothorn instead, it goes crazy. But it's pretty linear and manageable usually.
:Nihilego:
Speaking of SpDef Ferrothorn, here's the best argument for it. This mon forms a nice core with Tapu Koko, overwhelming each others checks while hitting on opposite sides of the spectrum. I really got to use this mon more, it's really very good against most teams without Blissey.
:Naganadel:
Naga is a viable Scarfer. I've found it useful as an offensive check to a weakened Volcarona and just great for hitting boosted stuff. With Magearna gone I can't wait to use it more.
:Zeraora:
Loved this when Dragapult was around, still seems good as an offensive check to Koko + general annoyance. Cannot overstate how good it is that it doesn't care about Landorus-T as much if you run a special set.
:keldeo:
Solid mon. Since I favour Slowbro over Pex I've gotten fucked by Megahorn a couple of times.
:togekiss:
Fun cleaner, but with all the fast offensive Ghosts I think it's pretty unviable actually.
:hydreigon:
Great mon. Scale Shot generally always does something unless they have Clefable or Blissey. It's pretty reliant on that speed boost though.
:thievul:
Another legit Dark type, it's honestly been a really solid breaker with good utility
 
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Some of the unbanned ubers seem very strong. :magearna: has just been banned, which I agree with. In addition to the mentioned builds, gyro ball and coverage brick break are decent too and last moves in trick room, heal bell, explosion.

:Cinderace: is in my opinion very wild. I run fire blast, scorching sand and electro ball. Not sure if the loss in uturn and sucker punch makes it balance enough.

:Naganadel: has spA uturn, outrage and gunk shot. I run modest scarfed for potentional spA boost sweeps, decent uturn dmg and obviously for speed control. While the loss of fire moves might justify the unban, I feel like it does not matter too much if I can just switch out with a strong uturn instead.

:Spectrier: seems indeed less broken now. However, phantom force + lefties is pretty decent to stall additional heal turns like protect does. Paired with sub, nasty plot and double-edge, you have a very scary mon.
 

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