Gen 2 GSC Good Cores

OP Stolen and slightly adapted from darkrai147
Approved by Jellicent

This thread is a place to post cores that you have found to be effective in the Generation 2 OU Metagame and get feedback. It is also a place for new and experienced players alike to find cores to use in teambuilding. Keep in mind that a core is a group of 2-3 pokemon that work extremely well together in performing a specific task that will help in winning battles. Offensive cores take out the checks to their partners so they can sweep more easily. Effective defensive cores will resist a large amount of common offensive attacks and check or counter large portions of the metagame such that it will greatly improve the longevity of a team.

Here is an example of a post for a pretty simple core:
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Snorlax @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Double-Edge
- Earthquake
- Curse
- Rest

Zapdos @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Thunder
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Rest
- Sleep Talk

or

Raikou @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Thunderbolt
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Rest
- Sleep Talk


The three most common Pokemon in the metagame. This core is pretty much on most Competitive GSC teams. The Lax Set can be changed around to Drumlax or Mixlax depending on your team structure. Use Dos for more "Offensive" based teams, but don't sell him out for defensive teams. Same thing with Kou. Can change his set to phazer if you want. Kou is made for more defensive teams but don't sell him out for offense.


A couple simple rules to follow when posting:
1. Please include a detailed-semi detailed description of the reasoning behind the sets in the core and why the core is effective. Posts with insufficient explanations will be ignored and possibly deleted depending on how poorly the core is described.

2. Always Always Always include an importable separate from the explanation. It is preferred that you put it in a hide tag but it is not completely necessary. It is extremely convenient when you find a core you like to be able to grab it immediately and paste it into the teambuilder.

3. Using sprites in your post is not required but if you do want to add them, please take them from http://pldh.net/. Making your post look nice is encouraged but please do not get carried away. Remember this is not an art competition, the point is still the core and why it's effective.

4. When critiquing a core from someone else, it is imperative that you be detailed in your reasoning. Simply saying something like "that pokemon is bad use this instead" is way too negative and useless to the person who posted the core. Posts like this will be deleted immediately.

With all that said, cores of any kind with sufficient reasoning will be added to the archive below.
Happy posting :)
 
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Offensive Cores
Machamp @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Cross Chop
- Hidden Power [Bug]
- Rock Slide
- Curse

Cloyster @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Surf
- Hidden Power [Electric]
- Explosion
- Spikes

Simple stuff here. Machamp is deadly but has a few annoying switch ins. Cloyster not only gives spike support to make for easier kills but also practically forces Starmie, one of Machamp's hardest checks in. You can then explode on the obligatory rapid spin and eliminate the hard Machamp check to give it a much easier time. It also allows for some nice mind games on certain switch ins which are more high risk high reward that help it like booming on a predicted electric switch in. HP electric is there because I really like it due to winning the very common Cloyster mirror but that move could be a few different things like toxic for other bad switch ins or Ice Beam to hit Exeggutor and Zapdos on the switch.

Zapdos @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunder
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Rest
- Sleep Talk

Gengar @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunderbolt
- Ice Punch
- Explosion
- Hypnosis

Simple concept. They both get pseudo-boltbeam coverage. One of them Explodes, the other is a tanky monster. Gengar baits and Explodes on all of Zapdos' most common counters. Tyranitar can be a pain, as can Umbreon, and Steelix is a minor nuisance, but that's what Hypnosis is for.


Cloyster @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Surf
- Toxic
- Explosion
- Spikes

Exeggutor @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Psychic
- Giga Drain
- Sleep Powder
- Explosion


If you look away from the obvious Snorlax+Electric, then this might very well be the most splashable core in the metagame. The sheer utility these two bring to teams is just too good to ignore. Cloyster is pretty much the least worthless spiker and Exeggutor can provide Status, as well as great defensive capabilities. They can both open up the way for a sweeper, through exploding on Snorlax or an Electric (and make washed up old men cry in the process), or just use the threat of explosions as a way to make the opponent respect you/as a safety net.

The sets provided are just the most common examples. Feel free to tinker with alternative attacks that you believe better fit your team/playstyle.

This core, in conjunction with Snorlax+Raikou/Zapdos, is a very newbie-friendly way to build teams in GSC. It's hard to mess up the two last team slots, as Cloyster+Exeggutor fill a lot of important roles on their own.


Machamp @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Cross Chop
- Rest
- Rock Slide / HP Ghost / Earthquake / Sleep Talk
- Curse

Umbreon (M) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Charm
- Toxic
- Rest
- Pursuit


A personal favorite of mine.

Machamp's not really at the top of the threat list, but I believe its presence is impactful vs teams with certain high-profile threats, particularly Tyranitar. Both Machamp and Umbreon are some of the most reliable switches to deal with Tar. Machamp as a Cursing Pokemon is also a threat to most phazers. Cross Chop is neutral or SE to most anything packing Roar, and of those common options, only Skarmory is packing Drill Peck to hit it for SE damage. After a Curse, Drill peck becomes a 4HKO while Machamp can 2HKO (OHKO with crit) it back.

However, Machamp can run into trouble setting up against Psychics, relying on prediction/having the correct move (Rock Slide vs Flying types, Hidden Power vs Psychics/Ghosts) to reach its counters. Pairing it with Umbreon gives it some breathing room by cornering Psychics/Ghosts (especially important for Sleep Talk Machamp). Pursuit Tyranitar could fit the bill for the job, but unlike Tar, Umbreon isn't weak to Starmie's Surf.


Jolteon @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunderbolt
- Hidden Power [Water]
- Agility / Substitute
- Baton Pass

Marowak @ Thick Club
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide
- Hidden Power Bug / Rest
- Swords Dance

The famous "Joltwak" core. The jobs of these two are simple, Jolteon with its great speed tier is meant to pass an agility and or substitute to Marowak so it can sweep. Thunderbolt is for a reliable STAB for Jolteon, Hidden Power Water is the preferred hidden power but you can swap it up to hidden power ice if you want. BP is for passing and Agility/Sub is up to you. Marowak sweeps with his enormous attack stat and after an agility boost he becomes really fast.Earthquake and Rock Slide give him great coverage Hidden Power Bug and rest it a throw up with this combo hp bug being reliable rest heals you


Steelix @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Earthquake
- Curse
- Roar
- Explosion

Exeggutor @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Psychic
- Giga Drain
- Sleep Powder
- Explosion

This core can be seen on many gsc offensive teams because of how reliably it takes out the HP Legends (Zapdos, Raikou) and how easily it opens up sweeping oppurtunities. Basically Steelix will be able to wall the Hidden Power Ice Electrics. (Bar having to explode on zapdos as your only effective way of dealing with it) Meanwhile, Exeggutor can wall the electrics with Water. Hidden Power Fire electrics are almost nonexistent.


Snorlax @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Belly Drum
- Return / Body Slam / Double Edge
- Earthquake / Lovely Kiss / Curse
- Rest / Lovely Kiss

Marowak @ Thick Club
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide
- Hidden Power Bug / Rest
- Swords Dance

This is, for more defensively oriented teams a nightmare to face. These two are the best wall breakers in the game due to their overwhelming attack stats. Marowak is going to hit things hard with his coverage. You can use Rest to make him last longer. BD Lax is going to hit hard after he gets his boost up. Again really STAB and the other two move slots come down to personal preference.


Nidoking (M) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Lovely Kiss
- Thunder
- Earthquake
- Ice Beam

Gengar (M) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunderbolt
- Ice Punch
- Mean Look / Explosion
- Destiny Bond

Espeon (M) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Growth
- Psychic
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Morning Sun

I decided to pair these three guys up together in my World Cup game against Isa that I was fortunate enough to win, unfortunately he brought double electric and I had a CurseTalk Lax / Nidoking so I realized Espeon's worth was to force either the Electrics or Snorlax to rest so Nidoking / Gengar can pressure with Spikes (Actually wound up using Destiny Bond on a Zapdos that really helped out for Nidoking). But the plan is pretty simple, Gengar uses Destiny Bond on the Pokemon that annoy Nidoking and/or Espeon, Explosion can be used for Explosion if you don't think Mean Look is worth it in order to trap if you've already revealed Destiny Bond, but that's kinda why I like Explosion because if you've revealed Destiny Bond (and it isn't a Tyranitar), most people assume you don't have Explosion so you just wind up Exploding on a Snorlax or Zapdos and wind up either getting a kill or damaging it a lot. I hate Hidden Power Water Espeon too, and Fire is really nice to have for Exeggutor especially, since the only reason to have Water is for Tyranitar and you have a lure for that anyways.

Like I said, this core isn't classic or perfect like the Cloyster / Machamp or the Gengar / Zapdos kinda cores, but it's worked really well for me and Lavos really liked it but he's banned now so... Yeah. Also, they're purple :3


Defensive Cores:

Skarmory + Firelax Counter
(Skarm+ Tar/Rhydon, Skarm + tank/umbreon, Skarm+Cune, Skarm+Missy)

(Warning)
there's a big issue with dedicating two slots for a non-guarantee counter to snorlax. you better hope your skarm + whatever plays a much bigger role than JUST stopping snorlax, because the majority of the time snorlax can probably play around both your "counters" somehow. this is literally pitfall #1 in gsc.

moreover, the skarm + missy/miltank/umbreon/suicune option means 1/3 of your team has a total of 2 attacks, neither of which do any significant damage to anything in the game. that's a lot of pressure on your other 4 to do most of the offensive work.

which means at this point, you're going to need a spiker. that way, your 2 non-attackers can induce indirect damage via spiking. the issue is, of course, both gsc spikers don't exactly deal damage either [outside of explosion]. so now 1/2 of your team functionally has 0 attacks.




The idea behind this one is pretty simple, Skarmory walls Snorlax unless it runs Fire Blast, on paper at least. Having a second look at Snorlax is pretty mandatory, otherwise you will just get ran over. This core has tons of variables that also pull off a variety of roles on a team, making it the go-to core to cover as many Snorlax variants as possible, as well as providing a solid defensive core against many things in the metagame. So this core is pretty much on every team that has a defensive approach to the game (stalls, turbodrumming, etc.), making it not only a no-brainer to use but also one of the most basic things to aim to break when building an offensive team. I will just name a couple of variants and provide importables for all the sets afterwards.

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Already mentioned before, this is pretty basic. If Snorlax runs EQ it gives the rock types troubles but gets walled by Skarmory. If Snorlax runs Fire Blast it beats Skarmory but fails to break the rock types. Rhydon is probably the more classic choice for this because as already mentioned, the rock needs Curse/Roar to actually do things to a Snorlax and Rhydon pulls off a curse/roar set more comfortably than Ttar most of the time. What's good about the combination here is that Rhydon isn't as passive as Skarmory is, it actually dishes out big hits, giving you one "safe" look at physical threats as well as a physically sturdy switchin that actually does have offensive pressure. Speaking of offensive pressure, Tyranitar does that too, as well as being the classic "jack of all trades" mon. Tyranitar is easily fittable on many teams because of the wide variety of things it can do, despite being not the most complete role-filler, especially when it comes to countering snorlax. Tyranitar can combat laxes, but very often just flat out won't beat them without running curse/roar. Basically Ttar is more an offensive utility mon that also checks firelax. This core does struggle against all-out attacking lax as well as belly drum versions that run lovely kiss and a coverage move, should effectively cover most other snorlaxes though. Other physical offensive mons sometimes need to be covered by the teammates though (Machamp comes to mind).

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Growl and Charm respectively can just stall out Curselaxes most of the time, as well as reliably come in on any potential fire moves from Snorlax. Miltank also provides good general support for teams with Body Slam and Heal Bell, making Skarmory more durable so it can wall any potential physical threat. Umbreon is also more of a team player with several support options, most commonly Pursuit and Toxic, but also potential Mean Look and Baton Pass shenanigans. This core has one big problem in being enourmously passive though, making it breakable by well played Lovely kiss laxes, Selfdestruct laxes, etc.

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Suicune might not be the most reliable Snorlax counter since all it can do is basically Roar it out or Toxic it. This does make it a decent answer to Lax with Spikes support, easily capitalizing on its insane bulk, being a general go-to wall that also comes in on firelax to shuffle things up a bit. You should be aware that Suicune will not really beat any Lax with Rest (read most of them) 1 on 1 or in the long run, it's an answer that fits well on teams that rely on spikes abuse, it's not a definite counter. Lovely Kiss Drumlax as well as Fire Blast + Selfdestruct can break through this, last mon firelax does beat this too. This core is again passive as hell, making it a better thing on paper than in practice.

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The concept here is pretty simple again, Ghosts ~usually~ beat Snorlaxes that lack EQ, Skarm usually beats EQ Snorlaxes. Missy has decent special bulk, making it a very good answer for most Fire Blast Snorlaxes. Missy does provide a rather unique role in perishtrapping providing wallbreaking abilities for stallier teams as well as just forcing tons of switches, making residual damage quite abusable, which is what defensive teams rely on alot after all. Misdreavus might look like a pretty passive mon, but it really isn't, it actually forces your opponent to play accordingly, making it a good pivot too. Missy without the classic perishtrapping set has seen quite some usage lately and i gotta say it's a pretty neat mon that does have other things vouching for it too in thief, destiny bond, hypnosis, Toxic, etc.


Quite often you will see Skarmory in one of these pairings, sometimes even more of them on the same team. The sets here are just suggestions, some mons are pretty versatile and can run way too much to press into one importable. I know the cores aren't like too innovative, i promise i will post something less boring soon

Skarmory @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Drill Peck
- Whirlwind
- Rest
- Curse/Toxic/Thief

Rhydon @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Curse
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide
- Roar

Tyranitar @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Rock Slide
- Pursuit/Earthquake/Rest
- Fire Blast/Curse
- Roar

Miltank @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Body Slam
- Growl
- Milk Drink
- Heal Bell

Umbreon @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Toxic
- Charm
- Pursuit
- Rest

Suicune @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Toxic
- Roar
- Surf
- Rest

Misdreavus @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Mean Look
- Perish Song
- Protect
- Confuse Ray/Thunder/Attract


Skarmory @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Whirlwind
- Drill Peck
- Rest
- Curse / Thief / Toxic

Blissey @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
Bashful Nature
- Soft-Boiled
- Heal Bell
- Light Screen / Ice Beam / Flamethrower
- Sing / Toxic / Light Screen

If you have played any Gen after Gen 1 competitively you know about the "SkarmBliss" core. While not as common today and often seen as inferior to the skarm+miltank core this core can still be effective. Skarmory is pretty much standard and is good because it in most cases beats the best pokemon in the game, snorlax. Blissey on the other hand pretty much stops every special attacker in the game. Curse is on Skarmory for overall consistency, but thief and toxic are viable alternatives as well. Blissey has many options that it can go with so choose what best fits your team.


Raikou @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunderbolt
- Roar
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Rest

Suicune @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Surf
- Sleep Talk
- Ice Beam
- Rest

This is a decent core for spikes stacking teams. Raikou and Suicune together pretty much take care of the unboosted meta. Raikou is used for phasing due to consistency and Suicune is rest talk to increase his longevity. This core while simple, is still good. It's very flexible too, you can make cune a phazer as well to make a dual phasing team. Raikou can be turned to rest talk but it is usually the better pick for a phaser. Cune can be changed to a starmie so that you have rapid spin. This core really appreciates a second/third phaser and spikes support. Also it really appreciates a lax check due to them only being able to phase it. Another thing it appreciates is a spin blocker like gengar/misdreavus. Skarmory is commonly paired with this core as well.


Misdreavus @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Mean Look
- Perish Song
- Protect
- Thunder

Cloyster @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Rapid Spin
- Spikes
- Surf
- Toxic

This core is nothing revolutionary. Cloyster spins and sets up spikes I chose rapid spin over explosion mostly because this core isn't really meant for offensive teams. Toxic is my preferred choice as it helps support spikes. Misdreavus is chosen as the spinblocker because it has better overall spikes synergy with cloyster and can block the spins from starmie unlike gengar. This is not to say that gengar and cloyster can't be used of the same team though. This core benefits from things that can abuse spikes such as raikou or skarmory. Pursuit support from the likes of Tyranitar and Umbreon or maybe even Houndoom is also much appreciated. An interesting choice to mix things up if your using a full out spikes + toxic stall then I suggest you use a set of misdreavus with toxic, thunder, dbond and pain split.


Forretress (M) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Spikes
- Rapid Spin
- Hidden Power Bug / Giga Drain
- Toxic / Explosion / Hidden Power Ghost

Gengar @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunderbolt / Thunder
- Ice Punch
- Hypnosis / Dynamic Punch
- Explosion / Destiny Bond

So this core is a little more offensive of a spinning core mostly because of gengar. Forretress is consistent in beating in other spinners and gengar acts as the spinblocker of sorts. Its set is pretty standard and there isn't a lot to go into it although you can pull the same trick with the core above this one and put toxic on this thing because its can hit a good amount of gar switchins. You got a few choices with forrre go standard or go with brazilian forretress your choice. This core also like pursuit support too and zapdos makes an okay mon with this core.



Dragonite (M) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Body Slam / Sleep Talk
- Reflect
- Haze
- Rest

Snorlax @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Belly Drum
- Body Slam
- Earthquake
- Rest

Miltank @ Leftovers
- Heal Bell
- Milk Drink
- Growl
- Body Slam

or

Blissey @ Leftovers
- Soft-Boiled
- Heal Bell
- Light Screen
- Sing

Okay so really quickly, there is a little variation with this core but what it boils down to is essentially pick your preferred beller with a preferred moveset. Then pick your preferred bellylax set variations. Now, I know there has been controversy over mixnite in paticular in the viability ranking recently but this core has a niche on certain stall teams. Some say its good some say its bad its up to you really.
 
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Mr.378

The Iron Man of Ubers
is a Tiering Contributor Alumnus
Machamp @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Cross Chop
- Hidden Power [Bug]
- Rock Slide
- Curse

Cloyster @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Surf
- Hidden Power [Electric]
- Explosion
- Spikes


Simple stuff here. Machamp is deadly but has a few annoying switch ins. Cloyster not only gives spike support to make for easier kills but also practically forces Starmie, one of Machamp's hardest checks in. You can then explode on the obligatory rapid spin and eliminate the hard Machamp check to give it a much easier time. It also allows for some nice mind games on certain switch ins which are more high risk high reward that help it like booming on a predicted electric switch in. HP electric is there because I really like it due to winning the very common Cloyster mirror but that move could be a few different things like toxic for other bad switch ins or Ice Beam to hit Exeggutor and Zapdos on the switch.
 

Jorgen

World's Strongest Fairy
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
Zapdos @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunder
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Rest
- Sleep Talk

Gengar @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunderbolt
- Ice Punch
- Explosion
- Hypnosis


Simple concept. They both get pseudo-boltbeam coverage. One of them Explodes, the other is a tanky monster. Gengar baits and Explodes on all of Zapdos' most common counters. Tyranitar can be a pain, as can Umbreon, and Steelix is a minor nuisance, but that's what Hypnosis is for.
 
Cloyster @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Surf
- Toxic
- Explosion
- Spikes

Exeggutor @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Psychic
- Giga Drain
- Sleep Powder
- Explosion


If you look away from the obvious Snorlax+Electric, then this might very well be the most splashable core in the metagame. The sheer utility these two bring to teams is just too good to ignore. Cloyster is pretty much the least worthless spiker and Exeggutor can provide Status, as well as great defensive capabilities. They can both open up the way for a sweeper, through exploding on Snorlax or an Electric (and make washed up old men cry in the process), or just use the threat of explosions as a way to make the opponent respect you/as a safety net.

The sets provided are just the most common examples. Feel free to tinker with alternative attacks that you believe better fit your team/playstyle.

This core, in conjunction with Snorlax+Raikou/Zapdos, is a very newbie-friendly way to build teams in GSC. It's hard to mess up the two last team slots, as Cloyster+Exeggutor fill a lot of important roles on their own.
 
i've always liked skarm + tyranitar to wall both fb and eq curselaxes. it fits well as a standard team with the combination above + op's. tyranitar is versatile and adds somewahat unpredictable offense.
 

Mr.E

im the best
is a Pre-Contributoris a Past SPL Champion
Nothing wrong with Skarm + Ttar but I don't inherently like it as an anti-Snorlax core, since Ttar still can't beat Snorlax anyway unless you're using Curse/Roar (which just loses to everything else because honestly you're not killing shit with mono-Rock Slide) and Ttar relatively easy to wear down with Spikes and status compared to Skarmory.
 

Umby

I'm gonna bury you in the ground~
is a Contributor Alumnus
Machamp (M) Leftovers
- Cross Chop
- Rest
- Rock Slide / HP Ghost / Earthquake / Sleep Talk
- Curse

Umbreon (M) @ Leftovers
- Charm
- Toxic
- Rest
- Pursuit


A personal favorite of mine.

Machamp's not really at the top of the threat list, but I believe its presence is impactful vs teams with certain high-profile threats, particularly Tyranitar. Both Machamp and Umbreon are some of the most reliable switches to deal with Tar. Machamp as a Cursing Pokemon is also a threat to most phazers. Cross Chop is neutral or SE to most anything packing Roar, and of those common options, only Skarmory is packing Drill Peck to hit it for SE damage. After a Curse, Drill peck becomes a 4HKO while Machamp can 2HKO (OHKO with crit) it back.

However, Machamp can run into trouble setting up against Psychics, relying on prediction/having the correct move (Rock Slide vs Flying types, Hidden Power vs Psychics/Ghosts) to reach its counters. Pairing it with Umbreon gives it some breathing room by cornering Psychics/Ghosts (especially important for Sleep Talk Machamp). Pursuit Tyranitar could fit the bill for the job, but unlike Tar, Umbreon isn't weak to Starmie's Surf.
 

Bedschibaer

NAME = FUCK
is a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnus
Look mom i'm contributing, gonna cover a couple of basics for the newbies i guess.

Skarmory + Firelax Counter

The idea behind this one is pretty simple, Skarmory walls Snorlax unless it runs Fire Blast, on paper at least. Having a second look at Snorlax is pretty mandatory, otherwise you will just get ran over. This core has tons of variables that also pull off a variety of roles on a team, making it the go-to core to cover as many Snorlax variants as possible, as well as providing a solid defensive core against many things in the metagame. So this core is pretty much on every team that has a defensive approach to the game (stalls, turbodrumming, etc.), making it not only a no-brainer to use but also one of the most basic things to aim to break when building an offensive team. I will just name a couple of variants and provide importables for all the sets afterwards.

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/

Already mentioned before, this is pretty basic. If Snorlax runs EQ it gives the rock types troubles but gets walled by Skarmory. If Snorlax runs Fire Blast it beats Skarmory but fails to break the rock types. Rhydon is probably the more classic choice for this because as already mentioned, the rock needs Curse/Roar to actually do things to a Snorlax and Rhydon pulls off a curse/roar set more comfortably than Ttar most of the time. What's good about the combination here is that Rhydon isn't as passive as Skarmory is, it actually dishes out big hits, giving you one "safe" look at physical threats as well as a physically sturdy switchin that actually does have offensive pressure. Speaking of offensive pressure, Tyranitar does that too, as well as being the classic "jack of all trades" mon. Tyranitar is easily fittable on many teams because of the wide variety of things it can do, despite being not the most complete role-filler, especially when it comes to countering snorlax. Tyranitar can combat laxes, but very often just flat out won't beat them without running curse/roar. Basically Ttar is more an offensive utility mon that also checks firelax. This core does struggle against all-out attacking lax as well as belly drum versions that run lovely kiss and a coverage move, should effectively cover most other snorlaxes though. Other physical offensive mons sometimes need to be covered by the teammates though (Machamp comes to mind).

+
/

Growl and Charm respectively can just stall out Curselaxes most of the time, as well as reliably come in on any potential fire moves from Snorlax. Miltank also provides good general support for teams with Body Slam and Heal Bell, making Skarmory more durable so it can wall any potential physical threat. Umbreon is also more of a team player with several support options, most commonly Pursuit and Toxic, but also potential Mean Look and Baton Pass shenanigans. This core has one big problem in being enourmously passive though, making it breakable by well played Lovely kiss laxes, Selfdestruct laxes, etc.

+

Suicune might not be the most reliable Snorlax counter since all it can do is basically Roar it out or Toxic it. This does make it a decent answer to Lax with Spikes support, easily capitalizing on its insane bulk, being a general go-to wall that also comes in on firelax to shuffle things up a bit. You should be aware that Suicune will not really beat any Lax with Rest (read most of them) 1 on 1 or in the long run, it's an answer that fits well on teams that rely on spikes abuse, it's not a definite counter. Lovely Kiss Drumlax as well as Fire Blast + Selfdestruct can break through this, last mon firelax does beat this too. This core is again passive as hell, making it a better thing on paper than in practice.

+

The concept here is pretty simple again, Ghosts ~usually~ beat Snorlaxes that lack EQ, Skarm usually beats EQ Snorlaxes. Missy has decent special bulk, making it a very good answer for most Fire Blast Snorlaxes. Missy does provide a rather unique role in perishtrapping providing wallbreaking abilities for stallier teams as well as just forcing tons of switches, making residual damage quite abusable, which is what defensive teams rely on alot after all. Misdreavus might look like a pretty passive mon, but it really isn't, it actually forces your opponent to play accordingly, making it a good pivot too. Missy without the classic perishtrapping set has seen quite some usage lately and i gotta say it's a pretty neat mon that does have other things vouching for it too in thief, destiny bond, hypnosis, Toxic, etc.


Quite often you will see Skarmory in one of these pairings, sometimes even more of them on the same team. The sets here are just suggestions, some mons are pretty versatile and can run way too much to press into one importable. I know the cores aren't like too innovative, i promise i will post something less boring soon
Skarmory @ Leftovers
- Drill Peck
- Whirlwind
- Rest
- Curse/Toxic/Thief

Rhydon @ Leftovers
- Curse
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide
- Roar

Tyranitar @ Leftovers
- Rock Slide
- Pursuit/Earthquake/Rest
- Fire Blast/Curse
- Roar

Miltank @ Leftovers
- Body Slam
- Growl
- Milk Drink
- Heal Bell

Umbreon @ Leftovers
- Toxic
- Charm
- Pursuit
- Rest

Suicune @ Leftovers
- Toxic
- Roar
- Surf
- Rest

Misdreavus @ Leftovers
- Mean Look
- Perish Song
- Protect
- Confuse Ray/Thunder/Attract
 
there's a big issue with dedicating two slots for a non-guarantee counter to snorlax. you better hope your skarm + whatever plays a much bigger role than JUST stopping snorlax, because the majority of the time snorlax can probably play around both your "counters" somehow. this is literally pitfall #1 in gsc.

moreover, the skarm + missy/miltank/umbreon/suicune option means 1/3 of your team has a total of 2 attacks, neither of which do any significant damage to anything in the game. that's a lot of pressure on your other 4 to do most of the offensive work.

which means at this point, you're going to need a spiker. that way, your 2 non-attackers can induce indirect damage via spiking. the issue is, of course, both gsc spikers don't exactly deal damage either [outside of explosion]. so now 1/2 of your team functionally has 0 attacks.
 
Alright time to put in more popular cores

Jolteon @ Leftovers
- Thunderbolt
- Hidden Power Water
- Agility / Substitute
- Baton Pass

Marowak @ Thick Club
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide
- Hidden Power Bug /Rest
- Swords Dance

The famous "Joltwak" core. The jobs of these two are simple, Jolteon with its great speed tier is meant to pass an agility and or substitute to Marowak so it can sweep. Thunderbolt is for a reliable STAB for Jolteon, Hidden Power Water is the preferred hidden power but you can swap it up to hidden power ice if you want. BP is for passing and Agility/Sub is up to you. Marowak sweeps with his enormous attack stat and after an agility boost he becomes really fast.Earthquake and Rock Slide give him great coverage Hidden Power Bug and rest it a throw up with this combo hp bug being reliable rest heals you.

Skarmory @ Leftovers
- Whirlwind
- Drill Peck
- Rest
- Curse

Blissey @ Leftovers
- Soft-Boiled
- Heal Bell
- Light Screen / Ice Beam / Flamethrower
- Sing / Toxic / Light Screen

If you have played any Gen after Gen 1 competitively you know about the "SkarmBliss" core. Curse Skarmory is for consistency and it comes down to prefrence. Personally I like an attack in the second spot but again its up to you on Blissey. Overall it's up to you.

Steelix @ Leftovers
- Earthquake
- Curse
- Roar
- Explosion

Exeggutor @ Leftovers
- Psychic
- Giga Drain
- Sleep Powder
- Explosion

This core can be seen on many gsc offensive teams because of how reliably it takes out the HP Legends (Zapdos, Raikou) and how easily it opens up sweeping oppurtunities. Basically Steelix will be able to wall the Hidden Power Ice Electrics. Meanwhile Exeggutor can wall the electrics with Water.

Snorlax @ Leftovers
- Belly Drum
- Return / Body Slam / Double Edge
- Earthquake / Lovely Kiss / Curse
- Rest / Lovely Kiss

Marowak @ Thick Club
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide
- Hidden Power Bug / Rest
- Swords Dance

This is, for more defensively oriented teams a nightmare to face. These two are the best wall breakers in the game due to their overwhelming attack stats. Marowak is going to hit things hard with his coverage. You can use Rest to make him last longer. BD Lax is going to hit hard after he gets his boost up. Again really STAB and the other two move slots come down to personal prefrence.

Raikou @ Leftovers
- Thunder / Thunderbolt
- Roar
- Hidden Power Ice / Hidden Power Water / Reflect
- Rest

Suicune @ Leftovers
- Surf
- Sleep Talk
- Ice Beam
- Rest

This is a decent core for spikes stacking teams. Raikou and Suicune together pretty much take care of the unboosted meta. Raikou is used for phasing due to consistency and Suicune is rest talk to increase his longevity. This core while simple, is still good. It's very flexible too, you can make cune a phazer as well to make a dual phasing team. Raikou can be turned to rest talk but it is usually the better pick for a phaser. Cune can be changed to a starmie so that you have rapid spin. This core really appreciates a second/third phaser and spikes support. Also it really appreciates a lax check due to them only being able to phase it. Another thing it appreciates is a spin blocker like gengar/midreavus.
 
Last edited:

Mr.E

im the best
is a Pre-Contributoris a Past SPL Champion
The last "core" is typically considered with Skarmory as part of it, where Skarm covers basically everything Raikou doesn't (notably Snorlax) and Suicune is basically the backup plan against Marowak, Nidoking, and to a lesser extent Machamp just because of Cross Chop's PP issues.

Steelix @ Leftovers
- Earthquake
- Curse
- Roar
- Explosion
Basically Steelix will be able to wall the Hidden Power Ice Electrics.
Keep in mind that Steelix doesn't exactly do a great job of fending off Zapdos when the only way you can damage it is killing yourself.
 
I don't use growth teams but someone that does should post their knowledge because they're scary.

Jolteon does it best, and can switch in easy on the electric gods. Espeon does have that morning sun though and you can bring zapdos without having two electrics. Vap is a distant third because you'd have to paralyze raikou/zapdos just to consider passing growth.

Zapdos + espeon seems legit?
Jolteon + gengar/starmie. Probabaly don't want to run zap/kou if your using jolteon.
 
jolteon is hard walled by roar raikou.

+1 vaporeon ice beam has a better chance of killing zapdos than zapdos does of killing vaporeon.

gengar/starmie are extremely poor choices of receiving the +1. even moltres is better.

if you're serious about any sort of passing, it's usually not just a core of 2 pokemon -- it's the entire team. umbreon is extremely beneficial as a pivot passer to absorb damage and force in something less threatning like skarm/steelix.

zapdos + -eon is probably the closest you'd get. probably jolteon tbh. better players have tried to make espeon+zap work, it just doesn't. it's extremely matchup reliant. jolteon is more consistent.
 
pivot passer...interesting. does the mean look baton pass set work here? umby can still be used to charm and play defense.

how many pokemon should the core be? 4?
 

Mr.E

im the best
is a Pre-Contributoris a Past SPL Champion
Vaporeon can pass fine on its own, you just need to status Zapkou (even getting them low and forcing them to Rest puts the odds greatly in your favor, you don't have to PAR them) and Vap's already slower, so Umbreon isn't doing much for it. Vap suffers against Roar Suicune as Jolteon does against Roar Raikou though, though Vap can use Roar itself unlike Jolteon if you really suspect the opponent would use it if you're teambuilding for a tourney match.
 

Jorgen

World's Strongest Fairy
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
I'm not sure where the "Jolteon is more consistent" thing is coming from. Explain?
 
jolteon does more outside of passing and has longer sustain. espeon is a crutch against ttar teams. jolteon can still at least do stuff to a raikou. espeon is only "tanky" if they run gengar, otherwise it can barely switch into a drill peck skarm.
 

Cased

Banned deucer.
This was a core against Isa that I wound up using, it's not foolproof and it doesn't beat every single one of Espeon's counters but through experience it's worked out. Obviously Snorlax is an issue if the opponent has Tyranitar but you have to be smart when you decide to set-up with Espeon, usually the Electric(s) and the Lax should be asleep!

+
+

Nidoking (M) @ Leftovers
- Lovely Kiss
- Thunder
- Earthquake
- Ice Beam

Gengar (M) @ Leftovers
- Thunderbolt
- Ice Punch
- Mean Look / Explosion
- Destiny Bond

Espeon (M) @ Leftovers
- Growth
- Psychic
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Morning Sun


I decided to pair these three guys up together in my World Cup game against Isa that I was fortunate enough to win, unfortunately he brought double electric and I had a CurseTalk Lax / Nidoking so I realized Espeon's worth was to force either the Electrics or Snorlax to rest so Nidoking / Gengar can pressure with Spikes (Actually wound up using Destiny Bond on a Zapdos that really helped out for Nidoking). But the plan is pretty simple, Gengar uses Destiny Bond on the Pokemon that annoy Nidoking and/or Espeon, Explosion can be used for Explosion if you don't think Mean Look is worth it in order to trap if you've already revealed Destiny Bond, but that's kinda why I like Explosion because if you've revealed Destiny Bond (and it isn't a Tyranitar), most people assume you don't have Explosion so you just wind up Exploding on a Snorlax or Zapdos and wind up either getting a kill or damaging it a lot. I hate Hidden Power Water Espeon too, and Fire is really nice to have for Exeggutor especially, since the only reason to have Water is for Tyranitar and you have a lure for that anyways.

Like I said, this core isn't classic or perfect like the Cloyster / Machamp or the Gengar / Zapdos kinda cores, but it's worked really well for me and Lavos really liked it but he's banned now so... Yeah. Also, they're purple :3
 
Last edited:

Cheryl.

Celesteela is Life
This was a core against Isa that I wound up using, it's not foolproof and it doesn't beat every single one of Espeon's counters but through experience it's worked out. Obviously Snorlax is an issue if the opponent has Tyranitar but you have to be smart when you decide to set-up with Espeon, usually the Electric(s) and the Lax should be asleep!

+
+

Nidoking (M) @ Leftovers
- Lovely Kiss
- Thunder
- Earthquake
- Ice Beam

Gengar (M) @ Leftovers
- Thunderbolt
- Ice Punch
- Mean Look / Explosion
- Destiny Bond

Espeon (M) @ Leftovers
- Growth
- Psychic
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Morning Sun


I decided to pair these three guys up together in my World Cup game against Isa that I was fortunate enough to win, unfortunately he brought double electric and I had a CurseTalk Lax / Nidoking so I realized Espeon's worth was to force either the Electrics or Snorlax to rest so Nidoking / Gengar can pressure with Spikes (Actually wound up using Destiny Bond on a Zapdos that really helped out for Nidoking). But the plan is pretty simple, Gengar uses Destiny Bond on the Pokemon that annoy Nidoking and/or Espeon, Explosion can be used for Explosion if you don't think Mean Look is worth it in order to trap if you've already revealed Destiny Bond, but that's kinda why I like Explosion because if you've revealed Destiny Bond (and it isn't a Tyranitar), most people assume you don't have Explosion so you just wind up Exploding on a Snorlax or Zapdos and wind up either getting a kill or damaging it a lot. I hate Hidden Power Water Espeon too, and Fire is really nice to have for Exeggutor especially, since the only reason to have Water is for Tyranitar and you have a lure for that anyways.

Like I said, this core isn't classic or perfect like the Cloyster / Machamp or the Gengar / Zapdos kinda cores, but it's worked really well for me and Lavos really liked it but he's banned now so... Yeah. Also, they're purple :3
Purple Power Edit: Rip Lavos
 
Misdreavus @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Mean Look
- Perish Song
- Protect
- Thunder

Cloyster @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Rapid Spin
- Spikes
- Surf
- Toxic

This core is nothing revolutionary. Cloyster spins and sets up spikes I chose rapid spin over explosion mostly because this core isn't really meant for offensive teams. Toxic is my preferred choice as it helps support spikes. Misdreavus is chosen as the spinblocker because it has better overall spikes synergy with cloyster and can block the spins from starmie unlike gengar. This is not to say that gengar and cloyster can't be used of the same team though. This core benefits from things that can abuse spikes such as raikou or skarmory. Pursuit support from the likes of Tyranitar and Umbreon or maybe even Houndoom is also much appreciated. An interesting choice to mix things up if your using a full out spikes + toxic stall then I suggest you use a set of misdreavus with toxic, thunder, dbond and pain split.


Forretress (M) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Spikes
- Rapid Spin
- Hidden Power Bug / Giga Drain
- Toxic / Explosion / Hidden Power Ghost

Gengar @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Thunderbolt / Thunder
- Ice Punch
- Hypnosis / Dynamic Punch
- Explosion / Destiny Bond

So this core is a little more offensive of a spinning core mostly because of gengar. Forretress is consistent in beating in other spinners and gengar acts as the spinblocker of sorts. Its set is pretty standard and there isn't a lot to go into it although you can pull the same trick with the core above this one and put toxic on this thing because its can hit a good amount of gar switchins. You got a few choices with forrre go standard or go with brazilian forretress your choice. This core also like pursuit support too and zapdos makes an okay mon with this core.



Dragonite (M) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Body Slam / Sleep Talk
- Reflect
- Haze
- Rest

Snorlax @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def / 252 SpA / 252 SpD / 252 Spe
- Belly Drum
- Body Slam
- Earthquake
- Rest

Miltank @ Leftovers
- Heal Bell
- Milk Drink
- Growl
- Body Slam

or

Blissey @ Leftovers
- Soft-Boiled
- Heal Bell
- Light Screen
- Sing

Okay so really quickly, there is a little variation with this core but what it boils down to is essentially pick your preferred beller with a preferred moveset. Then pick your preferred bellylax set variations. Now, I know there has been controversy over mixnite in paticular in the viability ranking recently but this core has a niche on certain stall teams. Some say its good some say its bad its up to you really.


Thats what I got, I wanted to add some more defensive cores to post #2 debate cores below.
 

Bedschibaer

NAME = FUCK
is a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnus
What actually makes the Dnite+Lax+Bell core interesting/popular/used is the reflect user. It's a pretty straightforward idea to support Drumlax. In a perfect world you set up reflect, switch to Lax on their incoming electric or similar, set up belly drum, kill a pokemon, live an attack due to reflect so you can rest, go to your beller and use heal bell so you can repeat the process. I really wouldn't call this a niche core if you exchange "dnite" with "reflect user of choice". It's just that reflect happens to go very well on teams that want drumlax to do work, so does para support, so does rapid spin support, etc.
 

Jorgen

World's Strongest Fairy
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
Yeah often it's Raikou or Starmie using Reflect for the DrumLax teams.

As for the spikes/spinblock cores, the main attraction to Forretress + Gengar is the toxic immunity, which means you can go without Heal Bell. Cloy + Missy basically needs Heal Bell support to outlast an opposing stall. Also there's nothing preventing Gengar + Cloy or Forry + Missy; in fact, those pairings tend to happen more organically during the teambuilding process, as Forry and Missy are better suited for defensive teams, whereas Cloy and Gengar are natural fits for offensive teams.
 

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