Gen 5 Let's Talk About BW OU

LL

zion williamson
is a Pre-Contributor

Now I'm no council member and I can't guarantee that this thread will sway the actions of the council, but I’m an avid BW OU player and want to encourage discussion about the tier outside of the restrictive setting of Policy Review. I want to use this thread as a medium to discuss whether or not you guys believe Excadrill needs to be banned/nerfed and if so, how you would personally nerf it. The idea to make this thread mainly stemmed from sed’s post in PR saying that some of the voters for the test couldn’t even post in PR, so this is more of an open discussion medium. I’ll kick off this discussion with my own opinion and hopefully this thread will have some constructive discussion about Excadrill prior to the impending vote about it.

Personally, I believe that Excadrill is fine as it currently is. Sand teams are equipped with numerous, highly viable Pokémon that can comfortably beat Air Balloon Excadrill such as Skarmory, Superpower Landorus-T, and Rotom-W. All these Pokémon are top tier offensive and defensive threats and naturally fulfil a variety of roles aside from just checking Excadrill. I understand that Excadrill is fairly constricting as it forces certain sand structures, such as teams that use Superpower Landorus-T minimizing mons that let in for free, but that fact remains true for a myriad of offensive threats. Scarf Keldeo on rain is an incredible threat to sand teams without Amoonguss or Jellicent and forces similar structures of mons that don’t let it in for free and it’s not considered as “broken” as Excadrill is. Another large part of the benefit of Excadrill is that it enables non-sand archetypes to have a chance in the hazard game against MG Psychic sand teams while not completely tilting the hazard game in their favor. In spite of all of this, I understand why people dislike the immense pressure that Excadrill puts on sand teams even if I don’t agree that it’s reached an extent where it’s banworthy, so if it’s considered broken I believe we should blanket ban all weather speed-boosting abilities while removing existing complex bans involving these abilities as it’s more in line with smogon’s current tie ring philosophy.

Agree with my opinion? Disagree? Do you think something aside from Excadrill is problematic in BW OU? Let me know your thoughts in this thread!
 

elodin

kingpin jr
is a Tiering Contributoris a defending Smogon Snake Draft Championis a Past SPL and WCoP Champion
Excadrill is blatantly overpowered in BW, so much that it completely shifted the metagame from Magic Guard Sand spam into a polarized Exca Rain Offense / Bulky Sand metagame. I hate seeing how many people support the ban of Sand Rush because it never presented itself as an inherently broken ability. Every other Pokémon that has access to Sand Rush improves the metagame by increasing playstyles and diversity. The fact that we would rather ignore our tiering policies so much just to keep a Pokémon that is clearly broken is just stupid to me.

To elaborate on that, Sand Rush + Sand Stream was banned solely for the purpose of putting an end to a very popular metagame trend back in SPL 6 of hazard stacking + Magic Guard Psychics. This playstyle was clearly superior compared to any other back then, with CM Reuniclus (assisted by Sand's chip damage, paralysis spam and hazard stack) being its biggest threat. By banning the combination of Sand Rush + Sand Stream, Excadrill would become OU again and improve the tier by adding another form of counterplay to such teams considering it would add a new spinner in a tier where all spinners suck and Defog doesn't exist, that way bringing more options to teams that weren't sticking to the Magic Guard + hazards archetype. This was the reasoning behind bringing back Excadrill.

What happened in reality is that Excadrill polarized the metagame so much with its presence that right now there are 2 viable weathers, both of them usually carrying Excadrill as possibly their greatest abuser. Despite not being able to run Sand Rush alongside Tyranitar, Excadrill's presence on Rain Offense is almost a necessity because it poses as that big of a threat to Sand teams and that way it makes the weather war a lose/lose situation for the opposing team in multiple scenarios (either let Rain up and struggle to counter Keldeo, Tornadus, Thundurus-T or Toxicroak or remove Rain by bringing Sand up and lose to Excadrill). If this issue presented itself with any other Pokémon that carry speed boosting abilities under weather I would probably agree that Sand Rush is the thing that we should be targeting, but that is not the case. Very rarely you'll see teams try to provoke the same effect by using Swift Swim Kingdra outside of Rain, and that is because it is extremely outclassed by other Pokémon without its weather boost. The same applies to virtually every other Pokémon with Sand Rush, Swift Swim, or Chlorophyll. So can someone explain to me exactly how are the abilities the problem? Why aren't we looking to ban the Pokémon that has the potential to sweep through entire teams by pressing Swords Dance instead? Considering we already tiered to nerf Excadrill with the original Sand Rush + Sand Stream ban, which goes completely against what prior policies did, are we seriously considering doing it again just to keep this obviously broken Pokémon in the BW tier?

The reality is that Excadrill is broken. It's the Pokémon, not its combination with Sand Rush. The fact that it has 3 abilities which are all good, a very solid Speed tier, amazing typing, decent bulk, Rapid Spin and Swords Dance... it's just way too much. Like I said previously, if the only problem with this Pokémon was Sand Rush I would be ok with it, but fact is that Scarf Sand Force Excadrill is just as popular and it is a bitch to switch into under Sand. The fact that it reaches a great Speed tier even with an Adamant Nature (outspeeds Base 70s with +Speed natures without running max investment) and has both its STABs and its main coverage move boosted by Sand coming from a 135 Base Attack stat (higher than Terrakion's) is just way too much. The fact it can run Mold Breaker because so many of the counterplay to Excadrill is by sending in Pokémon with Levitate on predicted Earthquakes means it also has a way of virtually beating all its counters except 1 (Skarmory). That's not to mention the amount of strategies you can run coupled with Excadrill that make it clearly overpowered, such as Gravity support + Choice Scarf Sand Force Excadrill or Eject Button Pokémon + Scarf Gothitelle + Scarf Sand Force Excadrill. BW right now is completely shaped by this Pokémon and that is not the positive contribution we were hoping for when we unbanned it.

I sincerely hope we review this tiering decision made a couple years ago and bring back BW to the state it was previously. Without Dugtrio I firmly believe Chlorophyll wouldn't provoke the matchup issues it did back then, and by bringing back Sand Rush + Sand Stream we might see the rise of Sand teams that have different archetypes by adding Stoutland (and even the occasional Sandslash) to them.

Tl;dr:
- Excadrill has always been the problem, not Sand Rush;
- Sand Rush + Sand Stream is not broken on any other Pokémon, but Excadrill is so overpowered it makes it a broken combination even when not used on the same team;
- Excadrill completely shifted the metagame into a polarized state that is very predictable and unbalanced;
- It is one of the only Pokémon that has access to 3 amazing abilities and makes excellent use of all 3 of them depending on its team;
- Its improvements to BW are completely overshadowed by the negative aspects it brought to the tier.

My proposal to fix BW as it is right now would be banning Excadrill, unbanning Sand Rush + Sand Stream and unbanning Chlorophyll + Drought.

EDIT: After some deliberation I'd also like to mention that suspecting Sand Rush over Excadrill would go against all our tiering decisions from the past. It was known that if a Pokémon was a problem coupled with a strong ability but that did not apply to others, then the Pokémon should be suspected and not the ability. Blaziken is still Ubers in BW when we all know it'd be an UU Pokémon without Speed Boost. Why? Because Pokémon such as Yanmega and Sharpedo are clearly not broken when coupled with this ability. This was recently applied in the Dugtrio suspect, considering it was decided by the BW Council to suspect Dugtrio over Arena Trap (which is also not a very big issue when coupled with its other users). When an ability is so uncompetitive that it pushes nearly all its users over the edge of brokeness, that's when it should be looked into. This was the case with Sand Veil, which had an inherently uncompetitive nature and would make Pokémon such as SubSD Gliscor and Garchomp way too powerful, but also maintained its uncompetitiveness when coupled with bad Pokémon such as Cacturne. That is not the case here, as Excadrill is the only Pokémon that poses as an Uber threat when carrying Sand Rush alongside Sand Stream.
 
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zf

take it easy, amigo
is a Tiering Contributoris a defending World Cup of Pokemon Champion
Gonna make a short post because I think this
The reality is that Excadrill is broken.
got some stuff wrong.

Outside of the TL;DR, I feel like there are two underlying assumptions that were made in this post:

1) BW OU is currently a shitty metagame
2) BW OU was better before Excadrill was unbanned

I want to address these first because I don't think they are true and they are both intrinsically linked. Firstly, BW OU is dominated largely by 3 main archetypes - Rain (mainly offense), Sand (mainly balance), and Mag teams (mainly weatherless offense); I'm not gonna talk about Sun because its viability waxed/waned with bannings. This has been the case throughout the entire generation. Rain, Sand, and Mag weatherless have always seen the most usage, although their most popular/dominant structures have changed over time. With the introduction of Excadrill, bulky Magic Guard + hazard sands were no longer the de-facto best sand structure because 1) sand now has a viable spinner 2) Excadrill applies enough pressure to break Reuni and 3) Rain now punishes passive sand teams much harder than before. This resulted in Rain structures becoming more centralized around Exca and Sand structures became more diverse wihout the necessity to engage in Psy + hazard stack use; weatherless was unchanged for the most part. From a diversity standpoint, the post-Excadrill metagame is at least as diverse in terms of playstyles and team structures as the pre-Excadrill metagame.

Secondly, Excadrill has not affected the playability of the BW OU metagame; games are competitive no matter what playstyle is used, even when one player has an Excadrill and the other does not. This fact is reflected in Excadrill's win percentage across SPL and WCoP, shown below:
Code:
| Rank | Pokemon            | Use  | Usage % |  Win %  |
| 6    | Excadrill          |   31 |  31.63% |  38.71% | (SPL 9)
| 5    | Excadrill          |   14 |  29.17% |  50.00% | (WCoP 13)
Based on these win percentages, I'm inclined to say Excadrill is not broken; it has high usage but not an insanely high winrate. It's just simply another staple of the tier that must be accounted for in teambuilding.

- Excadrill has always been the problem, not Sand Rush;
-There is no inherent problem with Excadrill. Winrate and usage show it is a balanced, staple of the tier.
- Sand Rush + Sand Stream is not broken on any other Pokémon, but Excadrill is so overpowered it makes it a broken combination even when not used on the same team
-Same as above, your assertion that Excadrill is broken is strictly based in emotion (not data) and your argument that it creates toxic play patterns is also unfounded.
- Excadrill completely shifted the metagame into a polarized state that is very predictable and unbalanced
-I addressed this earlier, but Excadrill has not polarized the metagame any more than trends in the past and the current metagame is balanced, playable, and enjoyable.
- It is one of the only Pokémon that has access to 3 amazing abilities and makes excellent use of all 3 of them depending on its team;
-Excadrill has 3 viable abilities, yes, but its sets are no more diverse than other top mons (Garchomp, Keld, Rachi, TTar, etc) and it reveals all information about its potential sets upon switching in (if it's not on a sand team, it's SD sand rush; if it's on sand, you get to see the ability when it comes in).
- Its improvements to BW are completely overshadowed by the negative aspects it brought to the tier.
-This is a subjective opinion and really has the do with whether you enjoyed the tier more with or without Excadrill; usage data doesn't support this. I could blindly say the same about Volcarona and it would be equally as true.
That's not to mention the amount of strategies you can run coupled with Excadrill that make it clearly overpowered, such as Gravity support + Choice Scarf Sand Force Excadrill or Eject Button Pokémon + Scarf Gothitelle + Scarf Sand Force Excadrill.
Gravity + Scarf makes it hard to switch in to, but is hard to support from a building perspective because it leaves you very susceptible to opposing ground scarfers and requires you to double up on grounds (Lando-T + Exca) that can't break mons like Slowbro. That second one is just some cheese bullshit that's never been used and rolls over to any scarfer faster than Exca (ie every scarfer).

I do agree with your point about tiering consistency, but it doesn't really have anything to do with whether Excadrill is broken or not.
 
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Fwiw i think all weather boosting abilities should be banned to stop with the complex bans
if this were to happen cherubi would be completely banned, which is stupid. i am on board with an excadrill ban if the council thinks sand rush is too problematic (it isn't). it's funny, smogon these days has been very against the ban of complex bans but when it comes to excadrill, nobody wants to do that for some reason. also free dugtrio something something sand balance.
 

Zard97

free dugtrio
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Zf brings up a very interesting point, people are just assuming BW is shit while I truly believe it was fine after Dugtrio's ban (even if I question the ban itself). Now I have no idea where are we going. Preventing Sun from becoming popular again means to buffer Sand Rush Excadrill (it's useless against Sun plus now it's pretty much guaranteed to face either Sand or Rain), which already is a controversial pokemon. The same can be said about Specs Latios (Sun fucks it hard with Chansey) and Spikes (Xatu). Pretty sure Latios will never be banned because we'd basically replace this tier with another one, but Excadrill will 100% be looked into. And Gothitelle too, because even if it is not a problem it is in contrast with newgen mentality (basically the same guys who let Magma Storm Heatran with Z-Moves on the loose while banning Trapinch bc "unhealthy" "cheese" "unaesthetic" and ultimately "gay"). There's too much uncertainty about the future of this tier, idk

I think I am going to use Gothitelle whenever I can, or it'll end up like Diglett and Trapinch (wasted potential)
 
I haven't visited RoA in a while and this thread seems to have died down a bit, which is a shame, as this is where metagame discussions should be held anyway, the metagame is made up by the people who care about it.

I 100% agree that Excadrill is broken. In fact I 100% agree with Elodin, so there's no real point in repeating what has been already said.

But the problem with the discussion here is the same old problem Smogon has had over the years, it is not very related to the topic at hand, although it brings examples from the recent BW suspects, and is related to just about any discussion involving a Pokémon, so I'm gonna put it under spoiler, you should skip it if you don't care about anything but "Excadrill".

How do we prove something is broken? How do we prove something is not broken? Bringing stats to the Dugtrio argument was fruitless, as it was in numerous other suspects. Also our sample size is so small that they are probably a bad indicator anyway. If we had at least 1000 BW tournament games in which we collected stats over the year then maybe they could be considered. But stats outside of an active ladder environment are pretty much meaningless. So what are we left with? A bunch of subjective factors, such as our own feel of the metagame, and how the mon in question interacts with it. So you have people like me and Elodin who think Sun is fine and that Excadrill is broken beyond belief, and then people who think Excadrill is the best thing that happened since sliced bread, and that Sun is literally satan. Which side is right? Which belief is right? How do we determine it? Metagames have been shaped based on feelings more and more the older Smogon gets I feel.

Also, how come it's 2018, we stripped the game of so many of its elements for the sake of a "fair" metagame, and we still try our hardest to avoid complex bans? Do we really distrust ourselves so much to make sensible decisions? And don't get me started on how complex bans make older gens "harder" to get into, that's actually such a stupid argument. Getting into an old gen is already hard compared to SM, there's a lot less teams running around, the people who play them actively are most likely dinosaurs who really don't have the time or drive anymore to help newcomers, and it isn't as easy as hopping on PS and finding a ladder match, as these ladders aren't very active anymore. The complexity of bans does not scare people away from old gens, nor does it make any harder to get into them. Why does RBY keeps getting newcomers? There's a full community out there dedicated to RBY. So if I wanted to learn RBY I'd just have to join PP and interact with the people there. Want to learn BW? Tough luck, either ask one of the people who play in high level tours to help you out, or load up some sample teams and get beaten to death so many times until you finally learn the ropes, and then get beat some more until you reach a decent level. Most people will quit in the second stage unfortunately, and the same goes for every generation that isn't ORAS or SM.

Rant over. Ban Excadrill and free Chlorophyll.

Thanks for reading, cheers.
 
I agree with pretty much everything zf said, so there's no point in repeating his arguments. Having played every single version of the BW metagame since the games were released, I'd dare to say that the current version of the metagame feels like one of the best BW ever had. If anything, banning Excadrill would probably reverse the metagame back to the sand spikes-stacking overcentralized metagame, which I don't think is any better than the current one. However, I believe that the main issue here is what Luck>Skill described in his post. The definitions of "broken", of the "healthy metagame" etc. are quite vague, which eventually leads to subjectivity. The problem is that even the interpretation of stats can be misleading in this game, which makes it objectivity seeming like a utopia. Considering this, I'd say I'm an advocate of a suspect process that discourages bans, unless something is extremely broken/unhealthy (for example, Arena Trap Dugtrio).
 

LL

zion williamson
is a Pre-Contributor
I renamed the title of the thread, as I wanted to make this more about the BW OU tier in general. The Sand Rush suspect should be wrapping up in about a week, so I figured we might as well talk about any other qualms we may or may not have that aren't related to Excadrill to try and get the ball rolling so that we can have some real momentum going following the suspect test.


With the recent blanket ban on Arena Trap, sun teams have fallen into a state of disrepair, with ultra-gimmicky Gothitelle-centric teams being shaky matchup picks at best in this tier that can end up losing more often than not, even with a matchup that's "good" on paper. I understand the tier doesn't necessarily have to have 3 viable weathers in order to be balanced or competitive or whatever, but with Arena Trap out of the tier, I genuinely think Chlorophyll Pokemon on Teams, most notably Venusaur, are no longer broken, as there's no longer a Dugtrio to trap things like Tyranitar, Heatran, Jirachi, etc. to Pokemon on these teams. Venusaur under sun with Chlorophyll will obviously still be an incredibly dangerous sweeper/cleaner, but it won't be as laughably broken as it was when paired with Dugtrio prior to its ban. I can understand why people wouldn't want Venusaur in the tier, but I definitely think it's a strong mon that could put a good amount of pressure on a lot of offensive teams without completely warping the metagame around it like it did with Dugtrio in the tier.


Now I understand that Gothitelle isn't broken in the traditional sense, as it can't completely invalidate nearly as many things in BW OU as it could back in ORAS OU, but it still is an incredibly uncompetitive Pokemon that removes room to outplay from the opposing player and largely limits player interaction to a point where it's disgusting, causing brainless sequences like Googly vs Gama in Smogon Tour. With the recent Arena Trap ban showing that uncompetitive abilities should be banned even if the abusers of said abilities may or may not be the most dominant Pokemon in the tier, I believe that Shadow Tag should be banned as a whole.


Finally, I believe that the Sand Rush ban was handled slightly suboptimally, as Excadrill is frankly the only broken Sand Rush Pokemon in the tier with sand up. I believe that the ban should be changed to a complex ban that prevents Excadrill from running Sand Rush. This ban is honestly of equal complexity to the multitude of ability + ability bans we have right now like Chlorophyll + Drought and Drizzle + Swift Swim, so it's not like we're making some ridiculously complex ban on it like Endless Battle clause in ORAS/SM, which should be implemented in BW OU and any other generation where the combination is possible btw. I understand that Smogon's current tiering philosophy is to stay away from complex bans for the most part, but the metagame is changing and the main reason for avoiding complex bans in the first place is to make it as easy to get into the website's tiers as possible. However, older generations shouldn't be handled in the same way because the slew of mechanics changes and overall metagame differences make the barrier to entry in the tier high enough that some slightly complex bans that are very easy to comprehend shouldn't really make a difference in the long term.

Well there's some of my thoughts on the tier atm, let me know what you guys think and whether or not you guys think anything needs to be banned/unbanned in BW OU aside from Excadrill, which is already amidst a suspect test. Thanks in advance for your responses c:
 
Without Dugtrio I'd expect Sawsbuck to be the best performing Chlorophyll sweeper. It's the best Physical Chlorophyll sweeper thanks to its access to Grass + Normal STAB and Earthquake (Nature Power is always Earthquake in BW) or Jump Kick if you feel adventurous. It even learns Wild Charge if you are feeling extra spicy. Victreebel has some perks over Sawsbuck, namely Sleep Powder and decent Special Attack to run Hidden Power Fire to destroy Ferrothorn and Skarmory in Sun, but Sawsbuck is overall better.

Venusaur is obviously the best overall Chloro abuser: decent bulk, Sleep Powder, versatile, and it can kill anything except Chansey with the right coverage moves. The downsides are how easy it is to shut down if it has the wrong moves (Heatran completely stops any non-EQ Venusaur, the Latis are impossible to break through without Sludge Bomb, same goes for Volcarona, Dragonite and basically every other Dragon in the tier, and Steels in Rain are problematic too, you are never breaking past Chansey, and anything with decent Special bulk and who isn't hit supereffectively by your moves can definitely put a stop to your fun, for example Volca). Maybe Magnezone support with Giga Sludge EQ is the way to go now? It'll require some tests obviously, it's hard to predict what's gonna happen if Chloro comes back.

Victreebel's only redeeming quality as a special attacker is its access to Weather Ball, but without any decent form of controlling weather I expect it to suffer a lot. Maybe if Weather Ball was Ground type in Sand it could still be good. It has always been a niche pick, but without Dugtrio it is probably not good enough.

The other Chloro sweepers are generally inferior to Venusaur, they might work in some odd situations but in 99% of the cases they will be worse, except maybe Shiftry if you just want to nuke stuff with Leaf Storm + Low Kick and then Explode (Exeggutor does the same with a Sleep move and way higher Special Attack too), but I wouldn't expect much from it. Tangrowth and Lilligant are probably the best of the bunch, Tangrowth still retains decent tankiness for stuff like Earthquakes and priorities (something that stops every other Chloro sweeper), but the issue is that it is still too slow, while Lilligant doesn't really improve by much except losing a couple revenge killers, while retaining its usual weaknesses.

Stoutland is cool and just about anyone who has played BW in the past will tell you the mon is awesome and perfectly balanced by numerous factors. Sadly we are still using criterias from over 10 years ago to decide how to ban things, the game evolved unlike our rules, so it's probably going to stay where it is. Stoutland opens up Sand teams' options without really making it any different to build against it.
 
Well, it might seems a bit off topic or some people might think I'm meming but I'm taking this seriously.
I find it totally incoherent to ban sand veil but not brigth powder. Even though bright powder has less effect than sand veil, it remain as uncompetitive as sand veil, more over bright powder has no condition to be effective.
I know it's a niche item, and a very few amount of people use it but I believe clause to preserve competitivity should not be decided based on the uses. The idea is to extend the evasion ability clause to items too because they are as uncompetitive as the abilities targeted by this clause.

Again people might not agree and it's only my own opinion but I think it's moreover kinda logic to do so.
 

Zard97

free dugtrio
is a Smogon Media Contributor
If you're referring to ben gay's team, I have seen it in action on the bw ladder weeks before he could manage to win a stour with it and it only had a 70% gxe or something. I believe it falls flat once you to know it (just like Assist teams) and even I managed to beat it with some smart positioning the first time I've faced it. I don't have the log yet there still is a couple of replays ("sw is kewl") where Baton Pass just plain fails and their user is forced to forfeit. It's not more "cheesey" than things like Hail Endeavor teams really. Pretty sure ben gay himself would be more than willing to point out all the flaws that strategy has.
Also last night Empoleon won not baton pass lol. Let's not start another witchhunt, please. Or we'll end up in a vicious circle of bannings (arena trap, baton pass, shadow tag, assist, volcarona, magnet pull, shell smash, screens...it never ends).

Anyway I don't like how this "let's talk" thread has turned into a "let's ban" thread, even before the intervention of Finchinator. This will not help to address the unpopularity of the tier nor to promote metagame development. Therefore I propose to talk about the future of rain teams instead; there's been a surge of Jirachi/Ferrothorn/Tentacruel rain balance teams and I've also seen people running Ferrothorn rain offenses with some priority moves (Azumarill/Feraligatr) to patch up defensive holes, not to mention the U-turn Jirachi + ScarfLando teams that hate Latios, renounce to Spikes, but on the other hand are able to fit in things like Keldeo and Thundurus-T easier. I must say I like the latter more, I feel like they fare better against opposing fat Sand teams. My favorite version right now is Poli / LO Mie / Sucker Punch Toxicroak / NP Thundurus-T / Scarf Lando-T/ U-Turn Body Slam Jirachi.
 

dice

natural beauty
is a Tiering Contributoris a Tutor Alumnus
general thoughts: feels kind of hard to not use ferrothorn right now. it's by far and away the best steel, and common teams are still way more prepared for skarm than they are ferro. gliscor seems to be a mon that abuses current meta trends well & i think it we should continue seeing a steady amount of teams favoring it for a ground. jira is absolute fucking trash and has the worst 4mss. how do u even use sr 3 atks jirachi without losing to excadrill? 4 atk is probably the most viable set, but relying on thunder also isnt the greatest so.

i've been steering clear of rain offenses. so often they feel more dependent on your oppos team structure than actual outplay. ojama's np celebi rain has stood out as less of a matchup-prone rain, and i think come spl time we'll see the same standard rain ferro tenta 3 offensive mons core being used fairly frequently.

any disruptive poke that force's sand balances hand is the best kind of anti-meta approach rn. balances rely upon resistances, so powerhouses like volcarona, specs kyurem (and -b to a lesser extent), tornadus, thundurus-t, etc. which require sheer bulk to reliably manage are all sitting pretty. i think that's also why offensive rain has been so prevalent--they naturally matchup well against standard sands,,,, but fatter variants with jellicent and other non-normative rain answers tend to dick. maybe the meta will grow bulkier as a result of these resistance-based breakers.

besides that, spdef exca deserves way more usage for its general utility and and hazard control. the fact that it can switch into skarm and ferro with relative impunity and get a spin is just huge, and this means ur oppo often has to choose between sr & being aggressive with their steel. my only ~real~ meta prediction is scarf landt balance falling out of favor. more and more, those teams rly want a spinner and the sands typically can't afford it.
 

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