Middle Cup ORAS

Mazz

Call it a comeback
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Previous leader: ryan. Original thread owner: unfixable.

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Middle Cup

Middle Cup is a metagame that follows one simple premise: only middle evolutions are allowed. This metagame was originally by ryan, however, the thread is a bit outdated and so I decided to revamp it to spark ORAS discussion and get this super cool metagame more well known! In this format, all Pokemon are set to Level 50 and are only allowed to be used if they are NFEs; do note that any NFE Pokemon not in the "NFE" tier is still allowed to be used, Chansey being an example of this. The tier isn't exactly the largest, only having 84 Pokemon in the tier; however, with ORAS came many new changes in moves through move tutors and such. For example, Swadloon can now run Sticky Web and Magic Coat on the same set; Floette can now run Synthesis for quick recovery; Gothorita can now run Shadow Tag alongside Heal Bell; and so much more!

To keep the tier from being over centralized, Eviolite is banned. Otherwise, the tier would revolve around stall with Pokemon such as Dusclops, Chansey, Roselia, and Rhydon all being incredibly tough to break through because of the lowered levels. This ban has been around since the introduction of the metagame and keeps it fresh and exciting! We can always unban it at a later time, but this is unlikely and for the time being it will be staying banned.

Banlist:​
  1. The following Pokemon are banned: Magneton, Combusken, Kadabra, Electabuzz.
  2. The following abilities are banned: Contrary, Protean.
  3. The following items are banned: Eviolite, Light Ball.
To play this format, challenge anyone on any server with a team of Level 50 Pokemon! Go out and have some fun with this middle metagame!

Currently Retesting: Chansey

Code:
    {
        name: "Middle Cup",
        desc: ["&bullet; <a href=\"https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/3524287/\">Middle Cup</a>"],
        section: "Other Metagames",

        searchShow: false,
        maxLevel: 50,
        defaultLevel: 50,
        onValidateSet: function (set) {
            let template = this.getTemplate(set.species || set.name);
            if (!template.prevo || !template.nfe) {
                return [set.species + " is not the middle Pokémon in an evolution chain."];
            }
        },
        ruleset: ['Pokemon', 'Standard', 'Team Preview'],
        banlist: ['Chansey', 'Combusken', 'Kadabra', 'Magneton', 'Eviolite', 'Contrary', 'Protean']
    },

Resources:
Speed Tiers by Threw
Teambuilding Compendium by Threw
Moveset Compendium [WIP] by Take an Azelfie
Viability Rankings (Below)
Analyses (See VR)
 
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Mazz

Call it a comeback
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
Viability Rankings 2.0
This list will sort Pokemon in Middle Cup according to viability in the current metagame. Viability within a rank will be based on the order of Pokemon in that rank (temporarily in Alphabetical order). Much like every other viability ranking on Smogon, S-Rank features the best Pokemon in Middle Cup (if there are suspects they will come from here), and then viability descends throughout the rankings.

Analyses to Middle Cup Pokemon can be found by clicking on that Pokemon's name.

Current discussion points:
  • A and B-Ranks
  • Chansey
S-Rank:

A-Rank:

A-High

Croconaw
Doublade
Fletchinder
Fraxure
Frogadier
Gurdurr
Piloswine
Rhydon
Togetic
A-Low

Golbat
Haunter
Krokorok
Lampent
Magmar
Monferno
Prinplup
Roselia
Seadra
Sliggoo
Staravia
Whirlipede​
B-Rank:

B-High

Dragonair
Duosion
Dusclops
Gabite
Grovyle
Machoke
Marill
Marshtomp
Quilladin
B-Low

Clefairy
Gothorita
Herdier
Klang
Lombre
Pignite
Servine
Swadloon
Vibrava
Vigoroth
Zweilous​
C-Rank:

C-High

Charmeleon
Gloom
Ivysaur
Loudred
Metang
Nuzleaf
Pidgeotto
Pikachu
Sealeo
Shelgon
Weepinbell​
C-Low

Braixen
Dewott
Eelektrik
Floette
Graveler
Grotle
Lairon
Luxio
Nidorina
Nidorino
Palpitoad
Poliwhirl
Vanillish​
D-Rank:

D-High

Bayleef
Boldore
Flaaffy
Kirlia
Pupitar
Quilava
Skiploom
Tranquill
Wartortle​
D-Low

Jigglypuff
Spewpa
Kakuna
Metapod
Cascoon
Silcoon​
 
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Will this still be eligible for OM of the month in January?

I wonder if Gunk Shot Frogadier will be viable even though its Attack is much lower than its Special Attack. It takes quite a bit of Attack investment (196 EVs) to 2HKO 4 HP / 252+ Def Chansey and 252 HP / 252 Def Chansey after SR, and has a 43.8% chance to do so with 252 HP / 252+ Def. However, U-turn is the only other physical move really worth using in this tier, so that Attack investment seems like a waste. With less investment though, it still gets the Fairies (Clefairy, Floette, Togetic and Marill) and some Specially Defensive Pokemon. Something to think about/play around with.
 

wishes

party for one
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
To kick this thread into a new generation, I'm calling to suspect Chansey and Frogadier. Chansey is on practically every Middle Cup team you see, and for a good reason; its astounding bulk, even without Eviolite, is nearly impossible to break through. Furthermore, it 3HKOes the entire tier via Seismic Toss and can stall practically all of it as well. It's just too bulky for the tier. Frogadier is a mini-Greninja of a sorts and I believe it needs to go because it outspeeds most of the metagame, has all the right coverage, and now can break through a lot more via Gunk Shot. What are your guy's thoughts?
 
To kick this thread into a new generation, I'm calling to suspect Chansey and Frogadier. Chansey is on practically every Middle Cup team you see, and for a good reason; its astounding bulk, even without Eviolite, is nearly impossible to break through. Furthermore, it 3HKOes the entire tier via Seismic Toss and can stall practically all of it as well. It's just too bulky for the tier. Frogadier is a mini-Greninja of a sorts and I believe it needs to go because it outspeeds most of the metagame, has all the right coverage, and now can break through a lot more via Gunk Shot. What are your guy's thoughts?
I feel like this is the right way to go if we want to make Middle Cup (MC?) into a serious meta. Chansey, at least on paper, makes special attackers more or less a liability. No special attacker that can't go mixed really has a hope of breaking through it's insane special bulk, and this is really compounded by the lack of super good Psyshock users like OU has. Only Kadabra with a Life Orb and Haunter (immune to S.Toss and Tox, has sub, split, and taunt) really have a chance of ever beating Chansey, which is kind of absurd. While Chansey is checked by stuff like Gurdurr, Doublade, etc. it synergizes extremely well with the variety of other bulky mons that can all soak up its fighting weakness, such as Togetic, Dusclops, Doublade.

Frogadier is incredibly fast relevant to everything else, and can more or less toss on the appropriate coverage move to at worst 2hko whatever it pleases. Stall and Offense both get destroyed by it's raw combination of speed, power, and coverage. The absolute bulkiest mons in the tier literally just die in two shots, bar Chansey which is also being suspected. Don't believe me? Observe:

252 SpA Life Orb Protean Frogadier Dark Pulse vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Dusclops: 81-96 (55.1 - 65.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 SpA Life Orb Protean Frogadier Ice Beam vs. 248 HP / 252+ SpD Togetic: 109-127 (67.7 - 78.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
4 Atk Life Orb Protean Frogadier Gunk Shot vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Floette: 94-112 (58.3 - 69.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
4 Atk Life Orb Protean Frogadier Gunk Shot vs. 248 HP / 0 Def Prinplup: 86-101 (50.5 - 59.4%) -- 81.3% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 SpA Life Orb Protean Frogadier Dark Pulse vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Wartortle: 79-95 (47.5 - 57.2%) -- 50.4% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 SpA Life Orb Protean Frogadier Grass Knot (60 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Croconaw: 96-117 (55.8 - 68%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

these are the BEST things I can think of to check this monster that a stall team can conceivably run, besides Gurdurr which seems like it's only true check.

This isnt even the DPP Garchomp case of "it has every coverage move, lum, scarf, orb, and has a DD up", it can acomplish everthing it wants too with H.Pump/Ice Beam/Gunk Shot/Dark Pulse, besides failing to 2hko Croconaw. Grass Knot is an option for Croc, and perhaps Prinplups/Wartortles that try and invest to survive you, but beyond that those 4 moves are all it needs.

On, offense, everything not named Electabuz, Kadabra or Gurdurr is getting outsped and in a worst case scenario 2hkoed. Granted, offense can scarf random mons, so they do fair much better against it. The only really viable checks im seeing here are Electabuzz, Kadabra and Gurdurr, none of which can even switch in more than a single time. Everything else either gets outsped and OHKOed or cant hurt Frogadier enough to prevent it from 2hkoing them.

So yeah, I'm very in favor of these two suspects.
 
Legal Mons List
Ivysaur
Charmeleon
Wartortle
Metapod
Kakuna
Pidgeotto
Pikachu
Nidorina
Nidorino
Clefairy
Jigglypuff
Golbat
Gloom
Poliwhirl
Kadabra
Machoke
Weepinbell
Graveler
Magneton
Haunter
Rhydon
Chansey
Seadra
Electabuzz
Magmar
Dragonair
Bayleef
Quilava
Croconaw
Togetic
Flaffy
Marill
Skiploom
Piloswine
Porygon2
Pupitar
Grovyle
Combusken
Marshtomp
Silcoon
Cascoon
Lombre
Nuzleaf
Kirlia
Vigoroth
Loudred
Lairon
Roselia
Vibrava
Dusclops
Sealeo
Shelgon
Metang
Grotle
Monferno
Prinplulp
Staravia
Luxio
Gabite
Servine
Pignite
Dewott
Herider
Tranquill
Boldore
Gurdurr
Palpitoad
Swadloon
Whirlipede
Korkorok
Gothorita
Duosion
Vanillish
Klang
Eelektrik
Lampent
Fraxure
Zweilous
Quilladin
Braixen
Frogadier
Fletchinder
Spewpa
Floette
Doublade
Sliggoo


Legal SR Setters
Clefairy
Jigglypuff
Graveler
Rhydon
Chansey
Piloswine
Pupitar
Lairon
Metang
Grotle
Monferno
Prinplup
Gabite
Boldore
Palpitoad
Korkorok


Legal Hazard Removers
Wartortle
Pidgeotto
Golbat
Togetic
Nuzleaf
Vibrava
Prinplup
Staravia


Legal Spikes Setters
Roselia
Whirlipede
Quilladin
Frogadier
 
Legal Mons List
Ivysaur
Charmeleon
Wartortle
Metapod
Kakuna
Pidgeotto
Pikachu
Nidorina
Nidorino
Clefairy
Jigglypuff
Golbat
Gloom
Poliwhirl
Kadabra
Machoke
Weepinbell
Graveler
Magneton
Haunter
Rhydon
Chansey
Seadra
Electabuzz
Magmar
Dragonair
Bayleef
Quilava
Croconaw
Togetic
Flaffy
Marill
Skiploom
Piloswine
Porygon2
Pupitar
Grovyle
Combusken
Marshtomp
Silcoon
Cascoon
Lombre
Nuzleaf
Kirlia
Vigoroth
Loudred
Lairon
Roselia
Vibrava
Dusclops
Sealeo
Shelgon
Metang
Grotle
Monferno
Prinplulp
Staravia
Luxio
Gabite
Servine
Pignite
Dewott
Herider
Tranquill
Boldore
Gurdurr
Palpitoad
Swadloon
Whirlipede
Korkorok
Gothorita
Duosion
Vanillish
Klang
Eelektrik
Lampent
Fraxure
Zweilous
Quilladin
Braixen
Frogadier
Fletchinder
Spewpa
Floette
Doublade
Sliggoo


Legal SR Setters
Clefairy
Jigglypuff
Graveler
Rhydon
Chansey
Piloswine
Pupitar
Lairon
Metang
Grotle
Monferno
Prinplup
Gabite
Boldore
Palpitoad
Korkorok


Legal Hazard Removers
Wartortle
Pidgeotto
Golbat
Togetic
Nuzleaf
Vibrava
Prinplup
Staravia


Legal Spikes Setters
Roselia
Whirlipede
Quilladin
Frogadier
Note that Frogadier can only learn Toxic Spikes. Spikes is exclusive to Greninja.
Thanks for the list. ^_^
 
Anyone else think that Shelgon might be a big player here?

Shelgon @ Leftovers
Ability: Rock Head
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Substitute
- Dragon Claw / Double Edge
- Fire Fang / Brick Break

Dragon Claw is a great STAB that you can spam. Use Double Edge if you want to take advantage of rock head. Sub is for dealing with revenge killers/status, fire fang is for steel types, Brick Break if needed. Use
 
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Ununhexium

i am groot
is a Contributor Alumnus
Eviolite is banned.

Anyways I probably wouldn't run Double Edge because Dragon Claw is equally powerful factoring STAB and Normal doesn't get much notable coverage.
 
Double Edge would be needed to hit Fairies... Unless Shelgon learns something like Iron Hean or Poison Jab (i think that learns Iron Head but I'm on my phone right now!).
Cya!
 

Ununhexium

i am groot
is a Contributor Alumnus
Magnezone is going to be a monster in this metagame. Choice Specs + Analytic will smash almost every wall ever.

252+ SpA Choice Specs Magneton Flash Cannon vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Roselia: 88-105 (56 - 66.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252+ SpA Choice Specs Analytic Magneton Flash Cannon vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Roselia: 115-136 (73.2 - 86.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

252+ SpA Choice Specs Magneton Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Dusclops: 73-87 (49.6 - 59.1%) -- 69.9% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252+ SpA Choice Specs Analytic Magneton Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Dusclops: 93-111 (63.2 - 75.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

252+ SpA Choice Specs Magneton Thunderbolt vs. 248 HP / 8 SpD Gurdurr: 202-238 (105.7 - 124.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO (not a defensive behemoth but still a threat)

252+ SpA Choice Specs Magneton Flash Cannon vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Shelgon: 114-135 (66.2 - 78.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252+ SpA Choice Specs Analytic Magneton Flash Cannon vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Shelgon: 148-175 (86 - 101.7%) -- 12.5% chance to OHKO

252+ SpA Choice Specs Magneton Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Eelektrik: 79-93 (45.9 - 54%) -- 6.6% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252+ SpA Choice Specs Analytic Magneton Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Eelektrik: 102-121 (59.3 - 70.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery


Only one true counter

252+ SpA Choice Specs Analytic Magneton Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Chansey: 109-129 (30.5 - 36.1%) -- guaranteed 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
252+ SpA Choice Specs Magneton Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Chansey: 84-100 (23.5 - 28%) -- possible 5HKO after Leftovers recovery
 
What do y'all think about Sligoo as an offensive special tank? Obviously nowhere near as good as Chansey, but it has a very good Special Defense and some actual offensive presence.
 
Duosion @ Life Orb
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD
IVs: 0 Spe
Quiet Nature
-Trick Room
-Calm Mind / HP Fighting
-Psychic
-Shadow Ball

Unfortunately there's no way to hit Dark-types or Steel-types hard bar HP Fighting since only Reuniclus learns Focus Blast, but you've got yourself a really powerful Trick Room special attacker who can set up Calm Minds as well.
 
Ooh, Middle Cup! I remember when I played this back in early XY.
Has anyone tried using Lairon? Given the distinct lack of Fighting and Ground types, I feel like this would be a good chance for it to shine. Some thing like this:

Metalmouth (Lairon) @ Leftovers/Rocky Helmet
Ability: Rock Head
EVs: 168 HP / 184 Atk / 156 SpD
Adamant Nature
- Head Smash
- Iron Head
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
(the evs are modifiable, i just gave it enough for decent spdef and attack)

Of course, the two types mentioned before still exist (especially as coverage moves). But you know what is immune to both of them?

sp00k (Haunter) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Shadow Ball
- Dazzling Gleam
- Sludge Bomb
- filler (i prefer psychic but there are other options)

frogadier completely bops both of them but w/e
 
Ooh, Middle Cup! I remember when I played this back in early XY.
Has anyone tried using Lairon? Given the distinct lack of Fighting and Ground types, I feel like this would be a good chance for it to shine. Some thing like this:

Metalmouth (Lairon) @ Leftovers/Rocky Helmet
Ability: Rock Head
EVs: 168 HP / 184 Atk / 156 SpD
Adamant Nature
- Head Smash
- Iron Head
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
(the evs are modifiable, i just gave it enough for decent spdef and attack)

Of course, the two types mentioned before still exist (especially as coverage moves). But you know what is immune to both of them?

sp00k (Haunter) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Shadow Ball
- Dazzling Gleam
- Sludge Bomb
- filler (i prefer psychic but there are other options)

frogadier completely bops both of them but w/e
And then you realize this takes care of both of them

Machoke @ LO
No Guard
-Dynamic Punch
-Earthquake
-Stone Edge
-Bullet Punch
 
And then you realize this takes care of both of them

Machoke @ LO
No Guard
-Dynamic Punch
-Earthquake
-Stone Edge
-Bullet Punch
And this is why you have teams of 6 and not 2. It's also why I slashed Psychic.
252+ SpA Haunter Dazzling Gleam vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Eviolite Machoke: 178-210 (48.9 - 57.6%) -- 96.1% chance to 2HKO can't even switch in for shame
252 SpA Haunter Psychic vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Eviolite Machoke: 180-214 (49.4 - 58.7%) -- 99.6% chance to 2HKO yeah nope

EDIT: I just realized it was Eviolite Machoke.
252+ SpA Haunter Psychic vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Machoke: 296-350 (81.3 - 96.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
and it's modest b/c i'm pretty sure scarf haunter outspeeds everything in this tier and almost every scarfer besides
 
And this is why you have teams of 6 and not 2. It's also why I slashed Psychic.
252+ SpA Haunter Dazzling Gleam vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Eviolite Machoke: 178-210 (48.9 - 57.6%) -- 96.1% chance to 2HKO can't even switch in for shame
252 SpA Haunter Psychic vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Eviolite Machoke: 180-214 (49.4 - 58.7%) -- 99.6% chance to 2HKO yeah nope
Remember that eviolite is banned... Which means that actually Machoke can't switch in At all since it can even be OHKO'ed with just a little bit of prior damage! Sadly, unless you predict an incoming Dynamic punch, Haunter can't switch in easily also...
 
[quote="Arcticfoxkeh, post: 5924227, member: 224685"
EDIT: I just realized it was Eviolite Machoke.
252+ SpA Haunter Psychic vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Machoke: 296-350 (81.3 - 96.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
and it's modest b/c i'm pretty sure scarf haunter outspeeds everything in this tier and almost every scarfer besides[/quote]
Yeah I caught that. I think it's like a 16% chance to OHKO with rocks up, which Lairon usually gets a chance to set up.
 
Magmar is looking like the best Fire types in the tier, and maybe one of the best Pokemon in general.

Magmar @ Life Orb
Ability: Vital Spirit / Flame Body
Level: 50
EVs: 60 Atk / 196 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
- Fire Blast
- Cross Chop
- Thunder Punch
- Hidden Power [Grass]

Magmar hits pretty hard in this tier, with 95 attack and 100 special attack, mixed offenses that very few that match. And with a decent enough movepool, it has very few switch-ins. Fire Blast is because STAB+High Power equals every non-resist isn't going to like it bar Chansey, but Cross Chop is there for it anyway. Thunder Punch is to 2HKO specially defensive Prinplup without rocks, and HP Grass is for things like Rhydon and Water/Ground types. Ability is up to you, Vital Spirit is to counter sleep users, and Flame Body can be used to punish priority users or cripple psychical threats.
 

Ununhexium

i am groot
is a Contributor Alumnus
Arcticfoxkeh Lairon seems like it would be okay but there is the aforementioned Machoke along with Gurdurr, Piloswine, and Krokorok (which is a surprisingly solid offensive SR setter because good abilities + STAB Knock Off and Earthquake). Piloswine has good Attack, awesome STAB combination (including priority), and Stealth Rock. Gurdurr has a good chance of being the premier Fighting-type in MC because STAB priority + STAB Drain Punch + Knock Off makes for a solid tank sweeper thing.

That got sort of derailed a bit but yeah they're good Pokemon try them out.
 

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