Other Tiers LGPE OU Viability Rankings

As the only way I'll ever get anything done is in segments, here are some reasonings for some of the shifts! This post is covering the A rank pokemon that moved up or down, some of the most important pokemon in the tier.

:muk-alola: it's not like it got worse or anything i just genuinely don't think it can be compared to Aero and Bee, I think Dragonite and Nidoqueen are good comparisons of viability. Its place on the VR did not represent the ban of Mega Gengar, which was a large component of its viability, and it clearly did not preform to the standards of the meta defining behemoths it was alongside. If needed I could elaborate on its drawbacks but this is really just a matter of the VR not being updated post Gengar.
:rhydon: I really dislike using this Pokemon, having rocks denied by water types, particulary Scald carrying Mew, super sucks, and it struggles to switch into EQ carrying pokemon as well. Having your Zapdos check being weak to toxic and neutral to U-turn is highly unfavorable as well, and Rhydon's health will go down very fast. Being OHKOd by Melmetal is an issue it has that Nidoqueen and Sandslash also don't care about. Its raw power puts it a step above B+ but it is easily one of the worst A- Pokemon for me. My wording for my initial nomination can be found
Rhydon has consistently under preformed its rank both against me and for me. Getting up rocks is absolutely essential in LGPE, there is almost no matchup where it is not of hyper importance. Therefore it is the job of Stealth Rock users to get up rocks reliably, and do as much as they can in addition to that. Rhydon is held back by god awful typing, which leaves it forced out and denied rocks by every viable grass or water type in the tier, as well as scald mew, the most common SR setter. It also cannot switch into earthquake users, limiting early game hazard viability even more. The last detriment of its typing would be leaving it OHKOd by Melmetal. All of these factors mean its very easy to deny Rhydon hazards, and in the case of melmetal, rhydon is required to sacrifice its life to get the hazards up. Rhydon does boast a very high attack stat compared to other, much better stealth rock users like Mew, Sandslash, and Nidoqueen, but due to the burden of having to get up rocks combined with its abysmal speed, it rarely gets to exercise this, or wallbreak. Rhydon also struggles as a Zapdos check, being an easy target for toxic, and often losing 1v1 to reflect variants. Nidoqueen does a better job at countering Zapdos, being immune to toxic, a better rocker, and resisting U-turn. I feel like Nidoqueen and Sandslash cover the things Rhydon does much better than it does, and you would only choose it when looking for a mixture of the 2. All of this said, Rhydon is still a great physically bulky Pokemon, being immune to electric and being a good check to Pokemon like mega bee, Mega Aero, and Dragonite. Certainly a A rank pokemon, but not deserving the same rank as Nidoqueen.
:zapdos: This mon is one of the faces of the tier and in my eyes clearly carves out a place above the mega pokemon in A+. It's one of the first mons any team thinks of dealing with offensively and defensively, it's one of the premier defensive checks for a plethora of pokemon, and is the wincon of game after game after game, a menace to deal with that most teams need a dedicated answer to. While choosing Beedrill, Mega Gyarados, or Mega Aerodactyl leaves you clearly advantaged and disadvantaged against certain archtypes and opposing megas or styles, Zapdos, in a similar fashion to mew and melmetal, has a very skewed risk/reward ratio when adding it to your team, leaving it *almost* always the best option for teams, besides certain archtypes.
:alakazam-mega: I think this pokemon being A- is a remnant of Mega Gengar, where the use of limited counterplay like Alolan muk, Snorlax, and even Chansey was more prevalent. In the current meta, while not as dominant as Aero, it's a very scary mega for many teams to fight, and is def a step above starmie and mega venusaur.
 
alakazam (base form) ~ unranked to B- (? idk exactly where)

i think base form alakazam needs to be ranked again. it being unranked does not reflect the metagame post m-gengar ban.

~ base form alakazam is now a quite usable revenge killer, with an excellent speed tier, and teams lacking specific checks dont switch in very well either. shadow ball 2hkos mew and starmie, and obv gengar is also outsped and forced out. psychic ofc ohkos nidos and zam has good matchups against the other grounds as well.
in terms of switch ins, zam's psychic stab is hard to switch into on teams lacking muk-a or m-gyara, sometimes melmetal is rly the only switchin and potentially forcing ~50% on melmetal with two psychics is significant. shadow ball isnt much easier to switch into (if mew or starmie is forced out), ofc except teams with a normal type but none are all that common in the tier. the lack of very good switchins to its two most used attacks on a number of teams means that despite its frailty zam often doesnt rly need to make risky predictions.
its speed tier leaves it faster than everything except the three fastest megas (and electrode) and base aero. however m-beedrill is obv identifiable from team preview, and m-zam will often be the mega of choice against m-bee teams anyway, since rly the only zam check that tends to fit well on those teams is chansey, and the others are a potential speed tie for m-zam anyway.

~ i think ranking base form zam is important to indicate its usability on dual mega teams (bc if the base form is not ranked, that implies that zam always has to mega evolve). imo the best second mega to pair with zam is aero, and id argue they are the best dual mega pairing in the tier currently. other than melmetal which is on every team, there is no overlap in their best checks, so many teams are significantly more vulnerable to one than the other from preview, and even when that is not the case it pressures the opponent to preserve their checks to both megas until one of them mega evolves. however there is some overlap in semi-checks like m-gyara, which one base form can pressure to come in and weaken it for the other, and ofc melmetal which each can often force some damage on even staying in base form.
[i have seen some aero+zam teams, but they almost always ran stealth rock on aero. aero rly doesnt want the responsibility of setting rocks if it is m-evolving frequently, and the offensive threat of aero+zam requires maximum flexibility in choice of mega. but i suppose it is an advantage that from preview u might not be able to distinguish a true dual mega aero/zam team from an m-zam team that is just using base aero as an offensive rocks setter.]
i think other mega pairings are probably viable, eg zam + gyara which would play more similarly to aero + gyara where gyara is the primary mega and zam is typically only mega evolving against m-beedrill teams which are often a bit weak to it, and being used in base form as a revenge killer otherwise. but my nomination is primarily based on zam + aero.

i picked B- kind of arbitrarily as thats where base gyara is. honestly i see base zam as more like B rank as it has gone from a pokemon that rly needs to m-evolve to a solid option on dual mega teams, but i have barely seen it used.
 
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With a significant amount of theory since the last discussions of viability, and the LGPE Global Championship coming to a close, there is quite a bit of evidence to support Pokémon both moving up and down the VR. Here's my first post of several, detailing the 4 Pokémon that have without much doubt showcased a higher ranking than what the current ranking reflect.
:sm/Alakazam-Mega:A+ > A This nomination should come to the surprise of nobody who to has any extent followed or participated in the past couple hundred games played in this tier. Mega Alakazam, after being developed in theory and moved upwards last VR slate, was put into full practice this tournament, and has preformed admirably. It has no reliable offensive checks due to its speed, and it's never an impossible task to damage its defensive ones. The number of Pokémon in the OU tier that can survive an attack after a Calm mind number at 6, and Alakazam has setup opportunities on many relevant Pokémon such as Nidoqueen, Poliwrath, Mew, and Zapdos. Teams lacking harder answers such as Alolan Muk, Chansey, and Snorlax must be exceptionally careful to keep their checks at high enough health to not lose to even an unboosted Alakazam, and this means those teams must sack Pokémon or make tough decisions when it comes in, due to Alakazam's ability to wallbreak for itself. I don't believe it is broken, nor do I think it's objectively the best mega, but IF there had to be a mon labeled as problematic in the OU tier, it would probably be this one. Mega Alakazam has earned its place among the other 3 best Mega Pokémon in the meta.
:sm/gengar: A- > B+ Gengar saw much more use and exploration this tournament than in the previous one and is an extremely scary mon to face. Its current ranking poorly reflects its abilities and I'd like to see that change. Gengar boasts a very positive matchup against the best mons in the game, being the only non mega to reliably 2HKO Mew, effectively warding off Mega Gyarados and Melmetal completely with Will-o-Wisp, and has the speed and power to bully mons like Zapdos, Mega Charizard, and anything else slower trying to switch in. With its coverage and strong STABs it's very difficult to switch into Gengar period, and you'll often find yourself using Pokémon like Snorlax or Alolan Muk to effectively deal with it, when Gengar is often more than ok with trading itself for a large amount of damage on these Pokémon, paving the way for common partners like Mega Alakazam to win in its wake. Gengar is extremely flexible teambuilding-wise too, offering a huge amount of offensive presence for not taking up a mega slot, and having useful defensive typing in most matchups. It's easily comparable to A- Pokémon and if the sub-ranks were to be ordered, at the moment I would put it as the best of the rank.
:sm/persian-alola: B > B- For the second time in a row Persian-A has had a very small and very successful stint of use in tour. But even setting the small sample size of results aside, Persian-A has all the tools to be 1 or even 2 subranks higher than where it is now. High speed Taunt and STAB Foul Play provide a ton to a variety of teams, able to prevent rocks from almost every setter in the game, 2HKO Mew, and do large amounts of chip to Melmetal using it's own attack stat. https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7letsgoou-1306118272-5n2g5xd3pu3ug1vx9o4mojqn0sz6p3ppw
Here it can be seen landing toxic on a Gyarados and U-turning out, leaving it poisoned and at 56%, and having the speed to provide utility at any point later in the match. It can force out the Melmetal later on with STAB Foul Play, and as Zapdos tries to switch in, it is taunted and hit to be under 25%, eliminated from the game due to rocks. There are many scenarios where Persian can trade favorably, and always have the option to U-turn out and preserve itself for the rest of the match, denying your opponent the chance to double or take momentum. Again hesitant to put it any higher due to it still being quite unexplored despite its merit, but I can easily compare what Persian-A does with pokemon of B rank, especially because its ability to outspeed and KO Dugtrio and Gengar matches well with rising usage mons like Gengar as well as old staples like mcooldudeaero.
:sm/cloyster: B+ > B Cloyster is riding the wave of special cleaners like Gengar and Mega Alakazam very well, showcasing very well recently what it excels at, abusing mons like Mega Gyarados, Nidoqueen, and Dugtrio-A to Shell Smash up and force your opponent to use defensive counterplay. Cloyster can reliably put your opponent into unwinnable positions by leaving them no option but to use a Pokemon like Mew, Melmetal, or Alolan-Muk to sponge a hit and KO it, and when you combine this removal of a Alakazam check with the normal wear and tear the opposing team will experience throughout the game, it's very difficult to not lose to Alakzam after Cloyster successfully sets up, with some outs being Hydro Pump missing a crucial target Melmetal or making the very risky play of switching out a Snorlax or Muk-A into something more suitable for taking a Self-Destruct. Cloyster's synergy with other fast offensive Pokémon is very unexplored as well, as it's primarily spammed alongside Mega-Alakazam or Starmie, we don't even know the full extent of its utility when used alongside Pokemon like Dugtrio or Mega Aerodactyl, or any other Pokémon over base 100 speed that very much appreciates Mew/Melmetal being cut down to 20-40% health. It's very possible that Cloyster's viability is not even fully realized, and I think B+ works much better for it at the moment.
 
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(i agree with all of collette's noms, a lil unsure abt cloyster but def the other three)

i was going to make a general grounds post but i think all the ranks are close enough except for once again

rhydon ~ drop to B or maybe B-

it was dropped last time but it is still completely out of place in A-. it does not fit well onto rly any teams / structures rn and it consistently performs badly.
in the current tourn it has basically been used on two team types, m-beedrill and m-venu/chansey. m-beedrill teams using any ground other than sandslash-k have done very badly in this tourn, as sandslash's few weaknesses means it is rarely forced out which is key for m-bee teams that cannot afford the momentum loss, on top of which golem is also usually better than rhydon for m-bee teams for its ability to preserve momentum with explosion.
while rhydon's synergy with m-venu is good, the 'wishkiller' type teams have too many other issues, and otherwise m-venu teams often prefer dugtrio-a for its speed tier, if they run a ground type at all.
~ honestly i think B is too high in terms of its current effectiveness but 1) zard x has had extremely low usage in this tourn and the mu vs fire types is one of the few good reasons to use rhydon; 2) there is def still ~ room for development, in terms of movesets rocks-less rhydon is very underexplored esp given how bad rhydon is at setting rocks, eg sub + megahorn if u can provide para support or running megahorn + toxic on the same set, and other rhydon/venu structures in terms of team options.


[ ~ i think there can also be some discussion of fighting types, which all benefit from the continuing prominence of psychic-less mew. idt poliwrath has any room to rise but it easily 1v1s scald mew if it runs stoss; machamp loves psychic-less mew and can 1v1 scald mew reasonably well with toxic + facade which machamp easily has room to run, and when opposing mew cant even check it machamp def performs way above a C- rank; hitmonlee, esp its bulk up set (+ facade), is very threatening to teams with psychic-less mew; primeape hates burn and lacks the special bulk but is still obv very happy if it can stay in on scald to click u-turn, and low kick / u-turn / ice punch is sufficient coverage so facade is an option in the fourth slot, tho it doesnt 2hko mew but allows primeape to not become 'deadweight' if it gets burned.
however none have had a lot of usage recently, tho poliwrath 1v1ing mew did happen (repeatedly) in the tourn in the matches where poli was used, so this is more directed at discussion than any ranking changes
(the fighting types are all decent users of facade as they still do good damage to melm when burned with low kick/hjk, but particularly machamp which also has the phys bulk to take a dib)
 
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Well, with the end of the LGPE GC I would like to do some nominations:

:alakazam_mega: A to A+ : Without any doubt LGPE GC is the tournament that put Zam in the spotlight and helped it solidify itself as one of the 3 best megas this tier has to offer. I know Collette already mentioned that but with the recent trend of Cloyster (or Gengar) alongside it just shows how of a menacing force it can be once Cloyster (or Gengar) weaken its checks, but it is a force to be reckoned with on its own as well. Also, teams lacking special sponges like Muk-A are in extreme danger if Zam shows up at team preview and you have to play with extreme caution to not give it free turns.

:cloyster: B to B+ : Speaking of Cloyster, here it is. When paired with a strong special wallbreaker like Gengar or Mega Alakazam it can open up big holes for its special wallbreaking partners as Cloyster shares checks like Melmetal, M-Gyarados and Muk-A with those pokemon. Finding setup opportunities on the tier's best ground types Nidoqueen and Duggy-A (I wouldn't say it can setup on M-Gyarados as Dragon Tail is quite common on it and Gyarados doesn't feel threatened by it anyways). Its downside as I'd been noticing on LGPE GC is how often it miss Hydro Pump, I think i dodged multiple Cloyster Pumps throughout the tour lol, but I don't think you miss out too much by using Surf, Cloyster is almost never sweeping anyways, your goal is to break would-be Zam/Gar checks wide open with it.

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:gengar: B+ to A- : At this point I am just copypasting Collette's post, but Gengar has been doing good as a Zam partner doing similar things Cloyster did but with different tools, as in the case of the Zam + Cloyster pairing, Gengar and Zam share their checks on Muk-A, Gyara and Melmetal, but instead of dealing huge chunks of damage on them like Cloyster usually does Gengar's selling point in this role is crippling them with Will-O-Wisp forcing constant chip damage and maybe even allowing Zam or itself to eat an extra hit from them, but even though Gengar is usually used as a Zam partner in crime Gengar is a bit more independent than Cloyster, I can see it working outside of Zam's partnership, as Collete has already mentioned it is the only non-mega to 2hko mew reliably and it is really strong overall, mainly on non-Muk matchups where Gengar can go berserk so it is absolutely reasonable that Gengar is a rank higher than Cloyster.

:aerodactyl: B to B+ : Aka guaranteed rocks, it just can't disappoint on what it is supposed to do, which is fast rocks, and it is of absolutely importance to get rocks up asap in LGPE OU and in addition to this it gets Taunt to prevent opposing rocks early, even if you end up trading it for rocks it can still be worth the sack. Nidoqueen, the best rocker in the tier, as bulky as it is, it can still be pressured and outplayed enough via good pivoting causing it to set rocks up way too late in the game or not setting up at all, regular Aero can set rocks up early with little to no things interfering it. Its speed tier is also really useful as well with EdgeQuake coverage and the potential to chip Melm down and fishing for some Rock Slide flinches. It just feels way more useful than anything in B.

:beedrill-mega: A+ to A : It's just not on the level of Zam, Aero and Gyarados. It is still great as a Pokemon, it is unique on what it does of course, it just feels less rewarding using it when you see Gyarados immediate power and Zam/Aero cleaning potential while dealing lots of damage. I guess its main problem is its rocks weakness, you would have to run additional support to prevent rocks (and even then, it is not a guarantee anyways), also Bee teams are all about mainteining momentum, which Bee absolutely fails on this task when it is forced to click Roost, and if you just give up Roost on it and run X-Scissor instead, you have limited switchins, but overall it is still a great pokemon it just doesn't show the same level of threat the other megas show.

:rhydon: A- to B : It's really not it anymore, it only have a solid opportunity to set up rocks against zapdos/m-bee (both of which can just u-turn on it) and that`s prob about it (?), it can hit kinda strong I get it but its defensive capabilities are not good enough, it is pressured by SO many things, its rock-type gives it more cons than pros, being weak to ground, quad weak to water and weak to steel are things you usually don`t want on your rocker, paired with a poor base speed of 40, only notably outspeeding Snorlax, Sassy Muk-A and Melmetal, plus its rock-type does not give any notable resistances as Normal, Flying and Fire-type attacks are really uncommon in this tier. The upside of being rock-type, however, is basically STAB EdgeQuake and that`s about it. Nidoqueen outclasses it defensively, being immune to toxic and possessing good physical and special bulk, allowing it to switch on something like Muk`s Crunch and set up rocks, or even being able to eat Mew`s Psychic/Scald as a last resort if you really need those rocks up, Nidoking outclasses it by virtue of its okay bulk, better typing and having the ability to pressure teams because of its great movepool, Sandslash outclasses it by literally not having a Rock-typing, and it is decently faster than Rhydon, Duggy-A outclasses it for being able to pressure virtually everything when given the chance with Substitute 3 Attacks, Toxic + 3 Attacks or SubsToxic (please don't use rocks duggy) and its great speed stat helps it picking off weakened Pokemon. TL:DR Rhydon gets outclassed by too many ground types in the tier and its real selling point is just STAB EdgeQuake.

We still have a lot to explore in this tier and hopefully we can search through some options in the upcoming teamtour.
 

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Decided I'd do a personal Viability Rankings because I was bored. This has some fairly big differences compared to the current VR, which is probably overdue for an update. I also made it roughly ordered within ranks but this becomes less precise lower down because I hardly use most of the mons there and don't want to be too biased. Would love to see other people's opinions- if you want to do one like this, here's the tiermaker link.
1623975844268.png

Rough reasoning:
S Rank: Mew is the single most reliable Pokemon in the tier regardless of the role it's filling so it gets #1. Melmetal is vitally important to almost every team's defensive integrity while also being the best wallbreaker so it gets #2. This probably won't be very controversial and these descriptions don't really do these mons justice but oh well.
S- Rank: Zapdos combines offense, defense, and pivoting prowess into an unmatched package that also heavily warps teambuilding. Putting it on par with A+ mons would be underselling it and it's closer to Mew and Melm honestly, so it goes here.
A+ Rank: These three could really go in any order, but this is what feels most right to me. Mega Aerodactyl is extremely reliable as a cleaner and breaker while also having some defensive utility, Mega Alakazam is ridiculously potent offensively and doesn't ever have a rocks weakness unlike the other two so it gets loads of opportunities with good play, and Mega Gyarados is near impossible to handle defensively while also being amazing defensively itself.
A Rank: Mega Beedrill is the enabler of a huge number of cool and powerful strategies and a potent cleaner and wallbreaker in its own right, earning it its spot at the top of A Rank. Nidoqueen is imo the best Ground-type for its defensive reliability and splashability, but Alolan Dugtrio is a close second for its offensive prowess, especially with the newly popularized Sub set. Gengar is a ridiculous wallbreaker and especially the best way to enable Alakazam, but it isn't tied to Zam teams and can be amazing no matter what style it's on. Alolan Muk happens to be the best answer, and it's generally an invaluable mon defensively while never really struggling to threaten the opponent like Lax or Chansey very often do.
A- Rank: Dragonite can struggle with forced Outrages but it's still an extremely potent sweeper. Cloyster doesn't really sweep many teams but it's great at abusing Grounds and leaving dents in the opponent's team in a way little else can, Zam especially loves it. Mega Venusaur can be really horrible to try and play around with its ability to spread residual and sleep while never taking any damage and healing it all off over time. Poliwrath has a godly defensive typing in a tier filled with Melmetal, Gyara, Aero, Grounds etc. but is held back from being a mainstay by its relative passivity, still a very reliable mon though.
B+ Rank: ZardX is pretty much the only good Fire-type in a tier where that's a really strong offensive typing, and it's complemented perfectly by Dragon and its overall decent longevity via Roost. Dragon Tail off ZardX's 130 attack actually hits hard and makes switching around it pretty much a no-go so you have to take its hits head on, but the mon is pretty crippled by Toxic and its Rocks weakness so it's hard to use. Starmie is kinda weak and not that bulky but it can be really useful for more offensive builds as a Ground and Melmetal check that doesn't let up on Speed. Don't run Surf or Scald, they deal no damage. Nidoking doesn't have Nidoqueen's bulk or Super Fang but it's pretty solid offensively and very, very versatile. Sandslash is a really reliable rocker thanks to its minimal weaknesses and not being weak to Ground is unique to it among viable Ground-types. Rhydon is an atrocious rocker but it's absolutely bonkers offensively and can still be a nice check to Aero, Bee etc.
B Rank: Snorlax doesn't answer Alakazam anywhere near as well as Alolan Muk and it can struggle to make much progress without blowing itself up due to mediocre STAB and being outsped by Melmetal but it's still nice sometimes, its lack of a Ground weakness especially can get it a spot on teams over Muk. Alolan Exeggutor is the only real Ground resist in the tier and is really solid offensively too, VERY underutilized mon. Starter Eevee occasionally completely takes over a game but it's usually pretty underwhelming- still, it does some irreplaceable things that you might be looking for. Golem is like Rhydon but it can blow itself up for a strong hit + momentum and can outspeed standard Sassy Alolan Muk if it wants, generally most noteworthy for the former though. Regular Aerodactyl is really good at getting Stealth Rock up, makes for a passable revenge killer, and, of course, gives your team a secondary Mega option in a pinch. Ranking base formes is really awkward in most cases but regular Aero absolutely has to be mentioned for its own merits.
B- Rank: This one is pretty messy but oh well. Alolan Persian is deceptively good, Foul Play + Taunt + U-turn can force damage that sticks on lots of Pokemon and even deny Stealth Rock sometimes, fits very nicely on Bee teams. The Nasty Plot set is pretty fun too, catches people off guard and has really good coverage for lategame cleaning + hypnosis cheese >:). Mega Blastoise can perform way above this ranking but it's generally less optimal than Mega Gyarados from my experience, I could see this going up if it got used more though. Dodrio and Omastar are matchup monsters that can absolutely shred slower or surgically opened teams with Swords Dance and Shell Smash respectively. Omastar can also provide Stealth Rock which is actually pretty cool for Hyper Offense. Clefable is a very neutral Stealth Rock setter that doesn't struggle to set the hazard, but it doesn't really counter anything so it's hard to justify as one of your 6 Pokemon most of the time. Chansey is awful but also by far the best answer to Mega Alakazam so it has to be ranked here at minimum.
C Ranks: Pretty unimportant and veeeery loosely ordered. Starter Pikachu is underrated, it revenge kills the fast Megas from very commonly achieved ranges e.g. Alakazam after Mew U-turn + Rocks, Aerodactyl after Beedrill U-turn + Rocks. Literally nothing else reliably revenge kills all 3 so this is actually... really impressive. It still has negative defensive utility though, so keep that in mind. You could persuade me to put any of the mons in this section anywhere else in this section realistically. Notably I think that Mega Pidgeot deserves ranking now, has potential in two ways via either pairing with fast breakers as an offensive pivot or making use of its great Speed, typing, decent bulk and ability to melt Melmetal for a unique Toxic + Roost stall set.
 
Decided I'd do a personal Viability Rankings because I was bored. This has some fairly big differences compared to the current VR, which is probably overdue for an update. I also made it roughly ordered within ranks but this becomes less precise lower down because I hardly use most of the mons there and don't want to be too biased. Would love to see other people's opinions- if you want to do one like this, here's the tiermaker link.
View attachment 350298
Rough reasoning:
S Rank: Mew is the single most reliable Pokemon in the tier regardless of the role it's filling so it gets #1. Melmetal is vitally important to almost every team's defensive integrity while also being the best wallbreaker so it gets #2. This probably won't be very controversial and these descriptions don't really do these mons justice but oh well.
S- Rank: Zapdos combines offense, defense, and pivoting prowess into an unmatched package that also heavily warps teambuilding. Putting it on par with A+ mons would be underselling it and it's closer to Mew and Melm honestly, so it goes here.
A+ Rank: These three could really go in any order, but this is what feels most right to me. Mega Aerodactyl is extremely reliable as a cleaner and breaker while also having some defensive utility, Mega Alakazam is ridiculously potent offensively and doesn't ever have a rocks weakness unlike the other two so it gets loads of opportunities with good play, and Mega Gyarados is near impossible to handle defensively while also being amazing defensively itself.
A Rank: Mega Beedrill is the enabler of a huge number of cool and powerful strategies and a potent cleaner and wallbreaker in its own right, earning it its spot at the top of A Rank. Nidoqueen is imo the best Ground-type for its defensive reliability and splashability, but Alolan Dugtrio is a close second for its offensive prowess, especially with the newly popularized Sub set. Gengar is a ridiculous wallbreaker and especially the best way to enable Alakazam, but it isn't tied to Zam teams and can be amazing no matter what style it's on. Alolan Muk happens to be the best answer, and it's generally an invaluable mon defensively while never really struggling to threaten the opponent like Lax or Chansey very often do.
A- Rank: Dragonite can struggle with forced Outrages but it's still an extremely potent sweeper. Cloyster doesn't really sweep many teams but it's great at abusing Grounds and leaving dents in the opponent's team in a way little else can, Zam especially loves it. Mega Venusaur can be really horrible to try and play around with its ability to spread residual and sleep while never taking any damage and healing it all off over time. Poliwrath has a godly defensive typing in a tier filled with Melmetal, Gyara, Aero, Grounds etc. but is held back from being a mainstay by its relative passivity, still a very reliable mon though.
B+ Rank: ZardX is pretty much the only good Fire-type in a tier where that's a really strong offensive typing, and it's complemented perfectly by Dragon and its overall decent longevity via Roost. Dragon Tail off ZardX's 130 attack actually hits hard and makes switching around it pretty much a no-go so you have to take its hits head on, but the mon is pretty crippled by Toxic and its Rocks weakness so it's hard to use. Starmie is kinda weak and not that bulky but it can be really useful for more offensive builds as a Ground and Melmetal check that doesn't let up on Speed. Don't run Surf or Scald, they deal no damage. Nidoking doesn't have Nidoqueen's bulk or Super Fang but it's pretty solid offensively and very, very versatile. Sandslash is a really reliable rocker thanks to its minimal weaknesses and not being weak to Ground is unique to it among viable Ground-types. Rhydon is an atrocious rocker but it's absolutely bonkers offensively and can still be a nice check to Aero, Bee etc.
B Rank: Snorlax doesn't answer Alakazam anywhere near as well as Alolan Muk and it can struggle to make much progress without blowing itself up due to mediocre STAB and being outsped by Melmetal but it's still nice sometimes, its lack of a Ground weakness especially can get it a spot on teams over Muk. Alolan Exeggutor is the only real Ground resist in the tier and is really solid offensively too, VERY underutilized mon. Starter Eevee occasionally completely takes over a game but it's usually pretty underwhelming- still, it does some irreplaceable things that you might be looking for. Golem is like Rhydon but it can blow itself up for a strong hit + momentum and can outspeed standard Sassy Alolan Muk if it wants, generally most noteworthy for the former though. Regular Aerodactyl is really good at getting Stealth Rock up, makes for a passable revenge killer, and, of course, gives your team a secondary Mega option in a pinch. Ranking base formes is really awkward in most cases but regular Aero absolutely has to be mentioned for its own merits.
B- Rank: This one is pretty messy but oh well. Alolan Persian is deceptively good, Foul Play + Taunt + U-turn can force damage that sticks on lots of Pokemon and even deny Stealth Rock sometimes, fits very nicely on Bee teams. The Nasty Plot set is pretty fun too, catches people off guard and has really good coverage for lategame cleaning + hypnosis cheese >:). Mega Blastoise can perform way above this ranking but it's generally less optimal than Mega Gyarados from my experience, I could see this going up if it got used more though. Dodrio and Omastar are matchup monsters that can absolutely shred slower or surgically opened teams with Swords Dance and Shell Smash respectively. Omastar can also provide Stealth Rock which is actually pretty cool for Hyper Offense. Clefable is a very neutral Stealth Rock setter that doesn't struggle to set the hazard, but it doesn't really counter anything so it's hard to justify as one of your 6 Pokemon most of the time. Chansey is awful but also by far the best answer to Mega Alakazam so it has to be ranked here at minimum.
C Ranks: Pretty unimportant and veeeery loosely ordered. Starter Pikachu is underrated, it revenge kills the fast Megas from very commonly achieved ranges e.g. Alakazam after Mew U-turn + Rocks, Aerodactyl after Beedrill U-turn + Rocks. Literally nothing else reliably revenge kills all 3 so this is actually... really impressive. It still has negative defensive utility though, so keep that in mind. You could persuade me to put any of the mons in this section anywhere else in this section realistically. Notably I think that Mega Pidgeot deserves ranking now, has potential in two ways via either pairing with fast breakers as an offensive pivot or making use of its great Speed, typing, decent bulk and ability to melt Melmetal for a unique Toxic + Roost stall set.
Hi heres mine

S
Melmetal
Mew

Two essential Pokémon, I put Melmetal over mew because I think Mewless teams are more successfull than Melmless teams, the latter faces incredibly hard matchups vs Bee and sometimes Zam.

S-
Zapdos

Zapdos is on the level of every Mega without taking a mega slot. It has a great matchup with melmetal, and is always incredibly threatening after the electric immunity is dealt with. There's several zapdos paragraphs on this thread that echo and elaborate on this, but it deserves its rank above the A+ megas

A+
Mega Alakazam
Mega Aerodactyl

Mega Alakazam and Mega Aerodactyl are incredibly tight in my eyes and my opinion on which one is better is subject to change. Right now I do think zam is more scary though, it just requires very little done throughout a match before it can just outright win.

Mega Gyarados

Mega Beedrill

Mega Beedrill is a bit of a step below the other A+ Megas due to how easily it is delt with offensively sometimes, but I think its still absolutely an A+ pokemon due to how crushing and oppresive it is in certain matchups

A
Nidoqueen
Alolan Dugtrio
Dragonite
Alolan Muk
Gengar

Gengar is incredibly threatening, and could be seen as a special Alolan Dugtrio, it terms of viability. Very little pokemon can switch into it and those who can have poor lengevity or are vunerable by burn. I can't wait to see more about it and I definitely feel its on par with dragonite, queen, and muk, the wholesome staples of the tier.

A-
Mega Charizard X
Mega Venusaur
Starmie
Rhydon

Only change I made to A- from the current vr is dropping poliwrath, I think it's just a little too passive, and even when it offers great utlity defensively against Melmetal, its very easy for your opponent to go into fighting resists like Mew or Zapdos and make progress against you with U-turn. It's still very valuable vs Mega Gyara and can mitigate its issues with status and coverage though, I feel B+ is a good spot for it, it's rather like Snorlax in viability.

B+
Poliwrath
Snorlax
Cloyster
Nidoking
Sandslash


:sm/cloyster: B+ > B Cloyster is riding the wave of special cleaners like Gengar and Mega Alakazam very well, showcasing very well recently what it excels at, abusing mons like Mega Gyarados, Nidoqueen, and Dugtrio-A to Shell Smash up and force your opponent to use defensive counterplay. Cloyster can reliably put your opponent into unwinnable positions by leaving them no option but to use a Pokemon like Mew, Melmetal, or Alolan-Muk to sponge a hit and KO it, and when you combine this removal of a Alakazam check with the normal wear and tear the opposing team will experience throughout the game, it's very difficult to not lose to Alakzam after Cloyster successfully sets up, with some outs being Hydro Pump missing a crucial target Melmetal or making the very risky play of switching out a Snorlax or Muk-A into something more suitable for taking a Self-Destruct. Cloyster's synergy with other fast offensive Pokémon is very unexplored as well, as it's primarily spammed alongside Mega-Alakazam or Starmie, we don't even know the full extent of its utility when used alongside Pokemon like Dugtrio or Mega Aerodactyl, or any other Pokémon over base 100 speed that very much appreciates Mew/Melmetal being cut down to 20-40% health. It's very possible that Cloyster's viability is not even fully realized, and I think B+ works much better for it at the moment.
B
Alolan Exeggutor
Omastar
Aerodactyl
Eevee (Starter)
Alolan Persian
Chansey
Clefable

The above pokemon are a bit off meta but all very usable in my eyes. Anything not listed on this VR I'd only use as a counterpick or if i was feeling a little cheeky. Not that they can't work well though, they're all ranked for a reason.
 

Lilburr

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UU Leader
I meant to do this a while ago but here's a current personal VR:



Eve's VR has a lot more stuff on it than I do, as does Collette's, which is primarily because I don't do a ton of exploration of more niche stuff in this meta. I tend to just stick with what's good and do my best to win with it. That said, here is my reasoning for most of the placements that I feel aren't self explanatory.

S+
Melm and Mew being here should be obvious, I personally believe both are absolutely mandatory on any competitive team but I have seen a few functional Mewless teams. I do not believe that dropping Melmetal in any circumstance is truly a viable choice and you are shooting yourself in the foot by doing so as it is the single most important defensive Pokemon in the tier while also being the best wallbreaker, you will lose to the Megas without it and there's really no getting around that. Both should be on >95% of teams.

S
Zapdos is not mandatory but it's damn close to it. It is the single most punishing Pokemon to face if you don't pack a dedicated answer to it; there are virtually no Electric resists that aren't Ground-types and running a team without a Ground means you are weak to Zapdos no matter what, even if you have something like Snorlax or Chansey. Couple that with the fact that it's pretty much the best (or at least most commonplace) Melmetal switch-in the tier has to offer while also being incredibly fast and providing great utility and you've got a Pokemon that should always be at the forefront of your mind when building.

S-
These two Mega Evolutions are straight up ridiculous. The reason I rate Zam and Aero so high specifically is because of their phenomenal playmaking ability; you can pretty much compensate for any matchup deficit by having one of these two on your team because they are so reliable and lethal due to their massive wallbreaking / cleaning prowess in addition to the fact that only Electrode outspeeds them and the only even semi-common priority that'll annoy them is Alolan Duggy's Sucker Punch and Starter Pika's Zippy Zap. They are pretty much why Melmetal is mandatory on every viable team. Other Megas, Beedrill and Gyarados especially, are both very good, but you really should have good reason to not be using one of these two on your teams.

A+
Gengar has cemented itself alongside Zapdos as the type of Pokemon that feels like a Mega despite not taking up the Mega slot. Its only switch in, Alolan Muk, gets smashed by Will-O-Wisp and is tasked with handling its partner in crime - Mega Alakazam - so often that it'll pretty much always get worn down instantly if you play well. It's the only non-Mega Pokemon that is capable of outspeeding Mew while threatening it for insane damage outside of the fringe viable Alolan Persian, which is immensely valuable on teams that don't want to deal with the cat through Toxic. Mega Beedrill and Mega Gyarados are both insanely good mons that are really only held back by the fact that you're not using Mega Aerodactyl or Mega Alakazam when you put them on a team. They can be considered for a lot of teams and Gyara in particular has a tendency to just 6-0 unprepared teams while also being pretty slept on.

A
Nidoqueen is the most reliable Zapdos counter and happens to get em up quite easily while threatening pretty much the entire tier with EQ + Toxic. Great switch in to Alolan Muk and often forces trades with Melmetal, making it an extremely effective member on special spam archetypes featuring Mega Zam / Gengar / Cloyster and friends. Alolan Dugtrio also abuses Zapdos but in a different way by being a pretty lethal wallbreaker and forcing progress in its own right, making it a big threat on offensive teams that provides some extremely important defensive utility despite its shitty bulk. Also lives one from Zam which is cool. Starmie is pretty slept on, the Hydro variant really tears into a lot of teams and it's got great defensive utility as something of a Melm counter and a way to force Cloyster to explode while also switching into the Grounds pretty well. Its Speed is also soooo helpful against Gengar.

A-
Cloyster is an enormous threat that blows shit open for Mega Zam extremely consistently and abuses the hell out of Nidoqueen and Sandslash so it gets a decent ranking. I've never been high on Alolan Muk but its presence has to be respected; it's pretty much the only truly viable Zam/Gar counter but it's pretty shoddy into both of them w/ permarocks and their coverage as well as burns. It's also really annoyed by Mew despite wanting to check it. Dragonite is a very scary cleaner and breaker in one slot that also provides some pretty cool defensive utility as something that can pretty handily switch into most Ground-types (albeit at the cost of getting Toxiced) and actually threatening them for damage in return, and its generally good bulk lets it trade against most stuff favourably. Sandslash is a bit worse than Nidoqueen as a rocker but it has its place on teams that really don't want the extra Psychic weakness and it's a much better Aero check (tho it's still not a great one).

B+
Mega Charizard X is a nightmare to play against and is again one of the mons that's really only hampered by the fact that you can't use another Mega alongside it; fitting speed control gets hard and it forces awkward team comps so I don't find myself using it too often but in general it tends to dismantle standard teams easily if played well. Mega Venusaur has a lot of cool defensive utility for something that hits so damn hard with Petal Dance but again, really hard to build with bc of the deficit caused by not using other Megas. Poliwrath checks some stuff but tends to be an on-paper mon, I like the SToss+Toxic sets that have been popping up a bit lately but 4 attacks is not really viable at all. Rhydon is a cool rocker / sub user on offensive teams that doubles as what is probably the strongest pure wallbreaker in the tier - nothing handles it defensively at all - but it's awfully slow and threatened by so much so it can be really hard to play with. Nidoking is another strong breaker with some cool defensive utility but I tend to rate it lower than Nidoqueen just because the trades it forces are less valuable, but it does have a lot of immediate presence that must be respected. Snorlax would be so much better if it outsped Melmetal, DIB flinches suck ass, but it's really annoying to switch into and has great defensive utility as a strong Zam / Gar check that isn't passive as all hell like Alolan Muk.

B
Less to say about these guys, Starter Pika has nothing going for it defensively but it's great at revenge killing the faster Megas so I consider it viable enough. Primeape is honestly really good bc it's the main Fighter that actually annoys Mew but it tends to create awkward Timid Zap matchups when used as a breaker. Venomoth is broken but only I use it so I can't put it too high. Clef is a cool rocker and the only real Fairy which isn't that important because there's nothing you really need a Fairy for in this tier but it's got great coverage and can dent a lot of teams before going down. Chansey sucks ass and takes 40 from Zap's U-turn but there are some teams that really want the Zam counter. Don't use Toxic on it if you don't wanna get 1v1d by Gengar. Omastar is budget Cloyster but it works as a second Cloyster so it can be fun to mess around with it for that purpose. Alolan Sandslash has such a disappointing damage output but it can be a threatening breaker after an SD thanks to its perfect coverage, permanently walled by stuff like Starmie though which really sucks for it. Starter Eevee exists and Swirls and is a general residual pain in the ass but is definitely the worst case of an on-paper mon in the tier.

Anything lower than this is probably viable but I don't have adequate experience to really talk about their place in the current meta so I'm just not going to, but I encourage anyone who hasn't yet to put their personal VR here since I know Eve wants to get an update out for this pretty soon.
 
my-image.png


[i am not ranking mega and base forms separately, other than beedrill almost every mega has reasonable effectiveness in base form to make dual mega a potential option and i dont know how to capture that in a ranking system.]

S, S-

as everyone above has said, melm's defensive and offensive presence esp vs fastest megas is basically mandatory to any team, and mew maybe isnt needed but theres rarely if ever a reason not to use it.
zapdos is a huge offensive threat if specific checks are gone as well as being the only defensive melm check in the tier. it has the choice between a pivot set to gain momentum for the team or a substitute set which many of its standard checks struggle with or even outright lose to. teambuilding wise, zapdos has excellent synergy with gyarados as collette described extensively here https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/lets-go-overused-discussion-resources.3667865/#post-8588321 [and similarly blastoise], it is mandatory on m-bee teams as well as an additional pivot, and also supports zam and aero very well due to their poor melmetal matchups. so it fits well on the majority of teams
i would also be okay with mew being in zapdos rank rather than melm rank

A+

to me there isnt enough of a gap between any of the top four megas to justify separating any of them in different ranks. i dont rly have anything substantive to add to others' descriptions above.
i do tend to agree with lily that zam and aero are a bit above gyara and bee, but imo not by a full rank.

A

almost every team right now should have a ground type, and these are the first two to consider. if you want a ground type that sets stealth rock, u usually want nidoqueen, which has enough bulk to set rocks in front of almost anything if needed, checks pivot zapdos, and is sufficiently threatening with eq toxic and super fang. it also has the option to run jolly to outspeed the crowded 80-81 base speed tier, particularly on zam teams to eg get a super fang on mega gyarados, or to run dragon tail to prevent setup (cloyster) and punish switches; and maybe some other possibilities like sludge bomb for substitute zapdos, cloy, and the poison chance in general.
if you are using something else (ie mew) to set stealth rock, then dugtrio-a generally has the most to offer with its speed tier, ability to check all zapdos variants, and its steel typing which most notably makes it the only ground with a favorable matchup with alakazam. the sub + toxic sets that are increasing in usage can be very hard to deal with as dug-a sets a substitute freely against any zapdos without drill peck, while sucker punch provides rare priority that is useful against beedrill and zam. fitting all three moves and dropping rock slide could maybe be possible, as substitute sets often dont have any need to damage zapdos directly anyway, but this would prevent dug-a from being an effective switch-in to zapdos that run substitute.

A-

~ alolan muk is the tier's best general special tank, and dark is an excellent offensive type so it can be hard to switch into. however as lily said it gets worn down by zam/gar that it wants to check, hates burn, and really is not a good switch-in to almost any mew variant despite its typing; and also is generally forced out by every earthquake user other than melmetal, so it has momentum issues. foul play (does more damage to grounds and aero), acid armor or maybe self destruct are potential ways to improve its worse matchups or momentum, but for now i dont think it can be justified a higher ranking.
~ dragonite can sometimes be a dangerous sweeper, but tends to have issues with being forced to lock into outrage. an eq immunity is generally very desirable in this tier, but it cannot switch into either nidoking or aerodactyl so this utility is inconsistent. running fire blast lets it do much more damage to melm but requires dropping roost or eq on the standard set. dragonite has a very different toxic stall set (fire blast, toxic, roost) which can also run dragon tail in the fourth slot to force a lot of damage, which i encourage people to try. i think dnite can potentially rise if its versatility is proven more but right now it is a bit predictable and it is never really sweeping. the 4x ice weakness is very undesirable since ice coverage is common anyway bc of zapdos.
~ gengar is a very dangerous offensive threat as everyone above has elaborated, but it offers nothing defensively and the adequacy of its speed tier is somewhat matchup dependent. gengar has absolutely proven itself as deserving a place on many if not most m-alakazam teams, i haven't seen it to be all that effective outside of zam teams tho and that is the main reason i dont have it ranked as high as lily eve and collette do.
~ venusaur is an interesting mega option, its ability to check pivot zapdos and be a decent check to grounds opens up teambuilding options that other megas do not have. it also can be somewhat effective in base form alongside a fast mega such as alakazam. still, mega evolving venusaur means losing both the sweeping and wallbreaking power of any of the top four megas, while in base form it has poor physical bulk and no longer checks grounds. venusaur is a bit underexplored especially in teambuilding, idk i wasnt rly sure where to put it but toward the bottom of A- felt right for now.
~ poliwrath also feels awkward to evaluate its rank, but against most teams it will be a defensive check to melmetal and at least one other pokemon, and it contributes reasonably consistently as a toxic spreader so i think A- is okay for it. (personally i rarely use it)

B+

~ sandslash and nidoking are the two grounds u are most likely to want to use if not using queen or dug-a. sandslash is generally the best option for mega beedrill teams, where not being weak to earthquake and a favorable aero matchup is very desirable, while unlike rhydon/golem sandslash is still a very reliable rocks setter allowing mew to run a fire type move (which it cannot really do if used to set stealth rock). nidoking can be a good option on mega alakazam teams, as it threatens major damage to zam's checks with earthquake and/or megahorn, and megahorn in particular is very hard to switch into since the tier's common resistances to it have poor nidoking matchups.
~ cloyster is an excellent wallbreaker for zam teams, but it often has to set up on rock slide user which means a 27% chance to be flinched and not accomplish anything, and it faces competition from gengar.
~ persian-a continues to have low usage but excellent performance in tournaments. it has an excellent speed tier and solid stab move in foul play, utility in taunt to deny rocks and/or recovery, and u-turn. it has a bad matchup with the three fastest megas, and as a taunt user it does often depend on 50-50s, but these are really its only deficiencies. at this point it has only really seen use on m-beedrill teams, but imo it has definitely shown greater effectiveness than anything ranked lower and its 'current' placement in B- is far too low.
~ snorlax is an alternative special tank to muk-a, that isnt weak to earthquake and therefore usually has fewer momentum issues, as well as getting stab on self destruct. however, it lacks muk-a's resistances, normal is rly not a desirable offensive typing in the metagame, and it is slower than melmetal. while body slam is annoying to switch into, lax tends to be very dependent on the paralysis chance to be effective.

B

~ mega blastoise is a bit underexplored, it has a number of advantages to gyarados in addition to the primary feature of being a special attacker and therefore doing more damage to melm and not caring that much about burn. one is its lack of weakness to u-turn, which is a way that m-gyarados can easily get worn down, and also eg megahorn from nidoking or rapidash. another is priority aqua jet, which can be hard to fit but does decent damage to the three fast megas and in particular means that the m-beedrill matchup is perfectly fine. running dark pulse allows m-blastoise to run hydro pump without having pp issues against mew, while hydro + aqua jet also kos zapdos after rocks so it cannot switch in; however this comes at the cost of toxic and dragon tail to deal with poliwrath and m-gyarados switchins. the zam matchup is much worse compared to gyara but overall the lack of switchins to hydro pump on teams lacking two specific mons enables m-blastoise to be both a powerful wallbreaker while also providing the defensive benefits of a water type, much like gyarados.
~ i have starmie ranked lower than others do, it seems like it has potential but i need to see more from it. i think e(eve)e addressed its issues, the damage on an unstatused mew isnt rly adequate, water typing is good esp on something that isnt concerned about zapdos but it doesnt rly hit that hard, and it has major 4mss. its recovery is hard to actually use without a screen or status move, but then it tends to be vulnerable to status itself. its ok on zam teams running dual stab and toxic, toxic prevents mew from checking it and therefore can allow it to force damage on a target like muk-a.
~ egg-a is a valuable eq resist for certain teams, tho it doesnt help at all with nidoking so its a bit matchup dependent. it has generally decent matchups and also dragon tail, but outside of teams that specifically want the ground resist u cant rly justify the teamslot. i can see it in B or B-.
~ as lily said, zard x is a terrifying breaker in the tier, with fire stab a wide offensive movepool and also dragon tail to punish switches; but it is very hard to build with since it not only means losing out on one of the fast megas but it rly doesnt have the defensive utility that either venusaur or gyarados/blastoise do. (it isnt a terrible zapdos switch-in, but it does not like taking toxic). dual mega is rly not an option for it and its synergy with most faster non-megas is poor, it def has 'potential' to be higher but as of now its teambuilding issues rly hold it back and id need to see an effective zard x team to rank it higher.

B-

~ i am the only person who uses electrode rn but i absolutely think it has a place in the B ranks. its speed tier is obv very useful enabling it to be a late game cleaner for teams that do not use one of the three fastest megas, and in particular its ability to outspeed and ohko m-beedrill after rocks is excellent for m-gyarados teams. it puts pressure on opposing ground types as its thunderbolt often lacks switchins if the opposing ground is removed; and against m-beedrill teams switchins to foul play are limited allowing electrode to punish a m-beedrill ko and potentially countersweep.
electrode can be a bit prediction dependent as a taunt user tho not as much as persian-a. it is not splashable and it also has to be careful about when it chooses to come into play as bringing out electrode at the 'wrong' time can lead to a loss of momentum or being forced into an unfavorable 50/50. still, it absolutely has a place in the metagame. also to note that trode can be very affected by 'random' meta trends, most obviously adamant vs jolly mega aerodactyl, also adamant vs impish on grounds @ foul play damage.
~ primeape is the most relevant fighting type rn bc of u-turn, and has been getting a fair amount of use on m-bee teams as a pivot that threatens major damage to melmetal with low kick. its nothing amazing but it does its job on those teams and is not extremely niche in the way the C ranks are.
~ rhydon is a strong wallbreaker but it tends to be very prediction dependent bc of its bad speed and worse defensive typing. it is also not a good stealth rock setter, which means using it on a m-beedrill team prevents running fire blast or will-o-wisp on mew. idk, if it has more use and effectiveness with sub + megahorn i can reevaluate if i have dropped it too far lol.
~ rapidash and kingler are sort of similar to me, they are excellent wallbreakers, they really dont switch in and out their job generally is to come in on st they heavily threaten (eg melm for rapidash, ground for king) and force heavy damage. they should not be used to switch into anything and therefore can be a bit hard to fit on teams, but every so often they each offer desirable attributes for a specific team.


C+ (not rly ordered within the ranks after this point)

~ jolteon i find a bit hard to fit on a team, u will generally either be weak to at least one of the three offensive megas, or struggle too much with switching into grounds. if u specifically want an electric type for late game, u are generally better off with electrode's speed despite its ~50% weaker thunderbolt. however, jolt's general speed and power if grounds/venu are removed cant be ignored. jolteon has interesting synergy with aqua jet m-blastoise (dual electric), which rly appreciates screens and also has 'ok' priority for the fast megas.
~ golem has some advantages vs rhydon due to removing itself from play with explosion, eg if wisp mew burns rhydon as it clicks megahorn then it can just roost stall, but if it burns golem as it clicks explosion then mew has taken that damage and can be forced out without a chance to roost. also, golem is a bit less prediction dependent in a sense bc explosion hits everything very hard (except melm or gar which are terrible switchins otherwise), while rhydon tends to need to hit targets with the correct move (tho it can also run sub). regardless, they both have the same central issue of a terrible defensive typing and therefore being bad rocks setters and u-turn switchins.
~ sandslash-a has decent priority for the fast megas (and ofc also zapdos and dnite), and its rare steel typing offers many benefits including letting it check zam. theres decent flexibility for the last two slots after eq + ice shard, swords dance + x scissor is prob the best set 'generally' but eg counter, toxic, ice punch are options. it really is never sweeping without significant paralysis support, but it has the best priority in the tier outside of pika-s while also providing various defensive utility (its sort of like a worse melmetal), and really not having a lot of bad matchups with the exception of poliwrath and some mew variants. slash-a shouldnt switch into anything, and sometimes this mon can feel like u just wish u were using one of the ground types instead. i could see this potentially rising with more usage and if people can find clear team comps for it.
~ clefable feels rlyy awkward rn, a ground type rocks setter tends to be much more desirable due to their ability to practically get free turns vs zapdos, and outside of rocks as i think eve said it has generally decent matchups but it rly lacks any clear role, or reason to put it on a team.
~ eevee-s only gets so many turns and tends to rly struggle with zapdos. as eve said occassionally it looks rly good tho. idk could potentially rise but its sooo inconsistent rn, this feels like where it belongs for the moment
~ raichu-a rly struggles against dug-a teams, but otherwise it has a very spammable electric stab due to its ability to outspeed and hit other grounds/venu hard with psychic, and having options to prevent zapdos/mew roost stalling in encore, calm mind, toxic. it takes more damage than m-zam from u-turns but encore can help with this somewhat (ie if zap/mew comes in, use a damaging move first and then either lock it into roost or it has to pivot out without recovering). its rly inconsistent bc of its dug-a issue so ranking it next to eevee-s feels appropriate

C

~ i have only seen eve use mega pidgeot, its a mon that def has potential with heat wave toxic u-turn roost. (its movepool is tiny so its pretty limited to that, hyper beam is an option for a nuke but cant rly be used against teams with a setup sweeper, air slash can be used for flinch chance esp alongside toxic but otherwise its only a lil stronger than heat wave and coverage wise basically only hits poliwrath.) i think the biggest issue for mpidg is that almost the same set can be run by mew, mpidg having better speed, a slightly stronger fire move (~1.1x damage compared to mew's fblast) and a usually better defensive typing esp on roost turns, while mew has better bulk and is not weak to rocks which is obv important for a toxic stall pivot. personally i use toxic stall mew fairly frequently, but i have found it preferable to use the mew slot rather than the mega slot for that. still, mpidg has easily the best dug-a matchup of any mon in the tier, and def feels like it has enough to be viable tho its effectiveness still needs to be proven in practice
~ victreebel has several interesting features but it can be hard to justify over venusaur, which gets leech seed 'instead of' sd + sucker punch and even in base form is reasonably effective while also providing the flexibility of dual mega. the speed tier difference is also v significant. victreebel has most potential to outperform venusaur with paralysis support, which venu doesnt care about that much due to leech seed, as well as it conflicting with sludge bomb poison, but para support is hard to provide with any consistency in the current meta.
~ pika-s has been getting more usage, i still rly dislike it but it def has more relevance than everything in C-. zippy zap does ~1.5x the damage of sandslash-a's ice shard (which is slightly stronger than (modest) m-blastoise's aqua jet) to the three fastest megas, but its offensive presence is mediocre otherwise and it will rly struggle making progress against at least one of mew, zap, melm, venu, depending on its last two moveslots; and obv it has no bulk. 50% more damage is obv a lot but if u want a priority user to revenge the fast megas, i still think sandslash-a should 'generally' get strong consideration over pika-s since it is much more effective otherwise (its eq is reasonably strong even without stab, and having x-scissor for mew and gyara/mie), and also since it checks m-zam defensively anyway if zam is not in ice shard range. (or m-blastoise if u are ok with a priority user that takes up the mega slot)
~ chansey has been rly declining since mgar ban, i still think sing + teleport is its best set, by a lot, but it is obv inconsistent; and toxic sets cant do anything to gengar other than teleport out while twave leaves u walled by zapdos. (u could try toxic + fire move instead of stoss if u want but . yeah lol. the damage on melm is still pretty bad, and the damage on nidos is worse.) so please use sing if u are going to use chansey. u can beat zam 1v1 just with stoss anyway so u dont have to worry too much about activating sleep clause.
~ hitmonlee/machamp have ~interesting features, but it often feels like youd just rather have a ground type instead. one thing they can do much better than grounds is take on standard scald rocks mew, assuming they run facade (toxic + facade or bulk up + facade). machamp also checks (roost) m-aero, which grounds other than sandslash-k and to a lesser extent goldon do not do, while hitmonlee has a good speed tier. against teams without scald mew, hitmonlee is mostly outclassed by nidoking, while machamp is mostly worse than sandslash-k; the electric immunity is obv extremely valuable and the fighting types offer very little to make up for that. (eg while low kick / hjk do significantly more damage to melm than stab eq, eq generally does more than enough damage to melm to be favorable anyway. the greater damage does however make fighting types much more tolerant of burn, as their stab moves still do >30% to melm)

C-

~ dodrio's thrash is very strong esp at +2, while having jk for melm, but it is so frail and as usual normal is rly not a good attacking type. imo its not even clear that this is better than tauros, which doesnt have to lock in to dedge and therefore can toxic mew/zapdos to prevent roost stalling while also being able to hit melm with eq. anyway, i havent seen dodrio used in a rly long time.
~ pinsir basically requires dual mega, usually with aero, as its effectiveness depends on its ability to either raise its speed tier or keep its good defensive typing in base form. bulk up is still maybe a bit undertested as it can set up on quite a few things but regardless this mon is always going to be niche due to the extreme teambuilding constraints it presents.
~ dugtrio-k's niche (as explained well in collette's nomination) is to either hit 10% harder with adamant or reach a higher speed tier than dug-a can. however esp with the development of dug-a's substitute set(s), which dug-k cannot run as zap's u turn easily breaks the sub, i dont think theres a good reason to consider using this anymore. rly prob should be unranked
~ i put the three fringe special waters together, idk i think they are all a bit hard to justify but they have niches on paper. oma has no coverage for waters but it hits harder than cloy so it isnt truly dependent on shell smash, however unboosted it is just worse than eg vaporeon so it is sort of a weird middle ground. vaporeon prob could rise a bit higher, and it is a water type that can actually run scald if desired since it has shadow ball for mew, and a burned zapdos rly cant stall it either while also not ohkoing due to vaps excellent special bulk. however vap may be kind of hard to justify over eg kingler, which has a much stronger stab against anything other than melm. tentacruel has some interesting features, it is a poison type that outspeeds grounds other than dug-a and hits them hard with its water stab, when healthy it can force out standard zapdos with mirror coat, and counters scald mew. its dual stab has decent neutral coverage but tenta can be very prediction dependent, obv with coat but also in general hitting specific targets with toxic or the correct stab move. also its j very weak, eg hydro pump 3hkos melm. ive gone back and forth on whether it should be ranked, idk.
~ ninetales-a has a million obstacles, its outsped by a lot and also walled by melm, but its prob the tier's best np user besides mew, and it can set up pretty freely in front of muk-a and heavily threatens zapdos. its very questionable lol, if u want to use this consider playing uu instead.
 
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Eve

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Making a small VR update before we get our ROA Spotlight Ladder in August! This purely consists of significant shifts that everybody recent poster here seems to agree on, as well as finally linking the available analyses for every Pokemon.

Rises
:alakazam-mega: A → A+
:gengar: B+ → A-
:cloyster: B → B+

Drops
:kangaskhan-mega: B- → C-

We'll be working on a proper VR update in the near future! If you're an experienced player and would like to participate, please get in touch on Discord.
 

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