Announcement Landorus-Incarnate is now banned from OU

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OU & NU Leader
Hello all,

The OU Council has voted to ban Landorus-Incarnate from OU effective immediately.

With the combination of Sheer Force, 115 base Special Attack, and a versatile movepool, Landorus is a potent immediate offensive threat that can muscle past even the sturdiest special walls. While only a couple of moves find themselves on most Landorus sets, it has a wide array of filler moves to choose from, letting Landorus handpick its own counters. In fact, true counterplay is rare because Landorus can 2HKO most of its responses if it selects the correct move on switch-in. While these characteristics could be balanced by fragility or low speed, Landorus's base 101 speed is on the high side of this metagame, and it has sufficient bulk to survive most unboosted attacks comfortably.

All Landorus sets will be running Earth Power, a Sheer Force boosted STAB move that only Flying types and Levitators can escape from unscathed. Coverage like Focus Blast, which can punish Mandibuzz, Corviknight, Blissey, Celesteela, and a number of other Pokemon finds itself on most sets as well. Untimely inaccuracy can plague Landorus, but ultimately it is capable of doing significant damage to each of these would-be checks, including a crucial high chance to 2HKO most Blissey. Sludge Wave is another move you see on many Landorus, punishing various Grass and/or Fairy types like Tapu Bulu, Tangrowth, Rillaboom, and Tapu Fini. Perhaps more importantly, it provides neutral coverage to 2HKO noteworthy Pokemon like most Tornadus-Therian, Zapdos, Buzzwole, and Latios. Once you get past these three moves, there are a plethora of options to round-out the Landorus set. Rock Polish can be used to make Landorus a win condition alongside already being a dynamic breaker. Utility moves such as Stealth Rock and Knock Off can cripple counterplay and enable Landorus to beat them in the long term. Gravity enables Earth Power to be clicked without drawbacks, allowing Landorus to hit Moltres, Zapdos, and Latias in particular while also bolstering Focus Blast accuracy. Psychic will net OHKOs on pesky Fighting types like Buzzwole, Zapdos-Galar, Hawlucha, and Kommo-O while hitting Amoonguss harder.

While Landorus can be a complete terror to try to check and counter, it is true that a small handful of Pokemon have its number defensively. A Specially Defensive Mandibuzz will oftentimes be sufficient if it is able to keep its item in-tact and avoid the rare Rock Slide, for example. Few Pokemon counter Landorus, however, as the rare Cresselia rivals Mandibuzz as one of its few strong answers; Specially Defensive Moltres can do the trick if Landorus lacks Knock Off or Gravity as well. Both Latios and Latias find themselves in very favorable positions against Landorus, but neither is a long-term counter and both have to be careful of specific coverage options as well. Finally, a Blissey with significant special defense investment, Mantine, and Specially Defensive Slowking can do the trick under most conditions as well. Outside of the Lati twins, no faster or overly offensive threats are capable of keeping Landorus in check single handedly, but many revenge killers can dispose of it once they enter safely to their credit. This is not usually sufficient though as Landorus has likely gotten a kill or forced a significant amount of damage prior to being forced out in these scenarios. Adding onto this, Landorus can pick which of these Pokemon check or counter it due to how flexible it can be with its last move slots. With all of the aforementioned options and more being possible, there are no true, universal checks and counters to Landorus. This dynamic leads to guesswork when playing around Landorus and a lot of teams being weak to specific variants of Landorus.

Overall, Landorus is able to break a vast majority of the metagame offensively all while being quick and durable enough to leave its mark on most battles. While there are a handful of checks, counters are few-and-far-between, with many of these options being fringe in the context of the entire metagame. Much like other Pokemon we have quickbanned, Landorus is able to take full advantage of its movepool, covering almost everything and doing so with great strength. Therefore, the OU council believes that Landorus-Incarnate is banworthy and we will be banned it from the OU metagame effective immediately.

Tagging Marty and The Immortal to make this change on PS when they can; thanks!


A side note: I’d like to share that we will be sending out a state of the metagame survey this week, inquiring how players feel about the metagame and any changes they’d like to see. We wanted to wait for at least the first wave bans from DLC prior to sending it out, as we originally intended to send out a survey on October 1st.

See everyone soon!
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