M&M Mix and Mega Suspect #2: Gengar

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xavgb

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S/O Chloe


The Mix and Mega council has decided to suspect test Gengar's ability to hold Mega Stones.

Reasoning:
Gengar was on the council's radar at the beginning of the generation for potential suspect tests, however due to various metagame factors it was deemed a good but not overpowering threat. Despite this, the council now feels that Gengar is worthy of a suspect test, with the post-Home metagame being much more favourable to it.

Gengar's main strength comes from its Lucarionite set. Thanks to a fantastic STAB combination with almost perfect neutral coverage, as well as its access to Nasty Plot, Gengar is capable of breaking through most of the metagame with just three moves, which has given rise to some newfound options within its movepool. The most common choices for Gengar's 4th slot are Energy Ball and Will-O-Wisp, which can harm potential checks such as Rhyperior, Gastrodon, and Gyaradosite Toxapex. Gengar's solid speed tier and good typing (that notably resists Altarianite Extreme Speed users) can also make it difficult to check offensively, with a limited pool of mons that can revenge kill it. Gengar can occasionally surprise some of these revenge killers with a Diancite set - however this is much less common and a much less reliable set overall.

The main reason that Gengar has benefitted from the post-Home metagame is that there's many new ways to support Gengar and help it exploit its already limited checks. Some examples of this can be found in the sample teams. Sablenite Mandibuzz struggles to check Gengar if it's paired with good Stealth Rock support; which is why these teams carry SR Terrakion and SR Ampharosite Clefable. More offensive teams often support Gengar with pivoting, which mitigates one of its weaknesses in that its bulk isn't particularly impressive, while baiting in targets such as Manectite Mew and Lunala that Gengar can force out in order to gain free turns. Another interesting core that is featured on the samples is the combination of Will-O-Wisp/Scald users (Mew, Lunala, Jellicent) and Hex Gengar; This is pretty effective at baiting in Gyaradosite Toxapex to take a burn, at which point it's no longer a safe switchin to Hexgar. One other fairly common core that isn't featured on the sample teams is the core of Gengar + CM Lunala. This double Ghost core is very potent due to the general lack of solid Ghost checks in the metagame, and one can often cripple or break through their checks for the other, which is very hard to deal with defensively without resorting to Gyaradosite Toxapex. All of the cores mentioned here feature very good mons in the metagame, and are generally easy to fit as a result, while placing a lot of pressure on the limited number of Gengar checks.

The metagame has still made some developments to counteract the rise of Gengar. The main change that hurts Gengar is Toxapex's shift from Banettite sets to Gyaradosite sets, which is also Gengar's most reliable defensive check. Gyaradosite Toxapex is also capable of handling some of the cores involving Gengar, such as the double Ghost core, without losing to the other cores such as Ampharosite Clefable + Gengar. A more aggressive way of handling Gengar would be Sablenite Corviknight + a breaker that can force out Gengar, such as Zeraora - this aims to take Gengar's momentum and turn it into momentum for their breakers at the cost of a chunk of HP from their defensive pivot. There are some alternative defensive answers for Gengar in Tyranitar (mainly Gyaradosite) and SpDef Sablenite Hippowdon, both of which are bulky enough to take a boosted Energy Ball and retaliate with a STAB move for an OHKO; it should be noted that neither of these sets are particularly common however.
Another rarer pick that is worthy of a mention is Choice Scarf Ditto, which can prevent Gengar from setting up for fear of Ditto counter-sweeping with +2 Shadow Ball. Ditto still does not constitute defensive counterplay to Gengar on its own, but it can help the matchup massively in tandem with Sablenite Corviknight.

Gengar will be allowed to hold stones on the ladder during this suspect test.

Requirements:
Reqs can be achieved by getting 82 GXE with 30 or more games on the Mix and Mega ladder. Alternatively, reqs can be achieved by reaching the finals of either of the Mix and Mega daily tours in the Other Metas room, which will be happening at 6pm EST on Tuesday 24th March and Tuesday 31st March (watch out for European clocks changing on the 29th). You must use a fresh alt with the sequence "GAR" anywhere in it, but not separated.

Example:
Skysolo on gartic (Eligible)
Stresh is a gamer (Ineligible)

The deadline for this suspect will be just over two weeks from now, concluding on April 1st at 11:59 GMT (6:59 EST).

Voting:

Once the suspect period is over, everyone who has obtained reqs by this point will be tagged by The Immortal. They will then outline a process of blind voting, which will be clarified once this time arrives. For now, follow the above "Requirements" subheading to ensure that you've posted your reqs correctly. If this is difficult to understand, please message me on my Smogon profile and I will clarify it for you. You must post in this thread in order to be tagged if you've achieved reqs via laddering, however you do not need to include your vote on this thread.

A super-majority of 60% ban is required for Gengar to be banned from holding stones in the metagame.

TL;DR:
- Gengar is allowed on the ladder during its suspect test.
- The GXE requirement is 82, and you must play at least 30 games on a fresh suspect alt containing the sequence "GAR". Alternatively you can achieve reqs by reaching the finals of one of the two Mix and Mega daily tours in the Other Metas room, which will happen at 6pm EST on Tuesdays.
- You must post your reqs in this thread, though the voting process will happen in a separate thread. You are not required to state your vote in this thread.
- The suspect test will conclude at 11:59pm GMT (6:59pm EST) on Wednesday April 1st.
- A ban vote of 60% is required to remove Gengar's ability to hold Mega Stones.


Tagging The Immortal to set up the suspect alert for ladder games.
 
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I was 25-0 but then lost twice in a row to pins exca luring lopzera :( , honestly I did play 24 games in a row on mnm ladder and that might now have been a good idea for my brain.
Specs Lunala has been really hot because I literally have seen 0 gyara pexs so it always did a lot of work, I'm slightly in the no-ban side for now, but I do have a lil gyara pex fetish so it's partly because of that too, my pc is about to die so expect me to edit the actual reasoning either tomorrow or this evening.

Lunala @ Choice Specs
Ability: Shadow Shield
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Thunderbolt
- Future Sight
- Moongeist Beam
- Moonblast

Corviknight @ Sablenite
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Def
Relaxed Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- U-turn
- Brave Bird
- Roost
- Bulk Up

Mew @ Manectite
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature
- U-turn
- Roost
- Defog
- Psychic

Toxapex @ Gyaradosite
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Def / 252 SpD
Careful Nature
- Payback
- Toxic Spikes
- Toxic
- Recover

Clefable @ Ampharosite
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Moonblast
- Wish
- Stealth Rock
- Soft-Boiled

Zeraora @ Lopunnite
Ability: Volt Absorb
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Volt Switch
- Plasma Fists
- Taunt
- Close Combat
no this is not from an anime, I'm not a weeb :(
edit:
so I was just wondering, if gengar gets banned would you really change your defensive cores?My guess is no, really all gengar checks such as mandibuzz, gyarapex or sab corvi are also used as lunala checks and you can't really remove them easily. If Gengar gets banned I'd assume mewtwo would get used more since right now it's just outclassed by gengar, as such the aforementoned pokemon will still be used a lot. What I mean is Gengar doesn't really put that much strain on teambuilding, as all it's checks are not deadweight against other matchups and overall good pokemon in the current meta, mentioning Gman post, gyarapex usage did not spike only because of gengar lol. [I think you're underselling lunala way too much, it's S for a reason, if it loses Shadow Shield it doesnt mean you already killed it, you mention corv as a good check but, just like it can't switch too many times into gengar, if rocks are up and Metronome Lunala hits it twice, and Corv u-turns then it can't switch into lun anymore; having sand up only means you bust shadow shield not that you beat lunala, Rhyperior cant switch in if unmegad, and doesnt like switching into lunala even if megad, and mandibuzz doesnt beat metro lun if we assume rocks are up, which you also did with the gengar vs mandi scenario. You guys should use specs Lunala more too really, its only real switchin is gyarapex and it can be p deadly against those who only use corv as check :( ];
while you're right it really likes mew and clef high usage, it also doesnt like gyara pex, mandi, spdef sab hippo rise as good checks and zera and pins luc as rkiller, it often manages to get a kill or two against a team without good checks but what would you expect? It's A+ for a reason too, it obviously is gonna be threatening if you dont have reliable checks. Honestly everytime I use it, Gengar doesnt really do that much, and when I'm against it, it either doesnt do too much because I use actual gengar checks, or it eventually becomes a trade of kills when I dont have em, you may say something like "do you really wanna use either mandi or gyarapex on every balance (offense can usually easily pressure gengar)" and well.. do you remember gen7mnm? when Mandibuzz was p much a staple on balances to beat Lunala? No one complained too much, because mandibuzz was still a useful mon outside of checking Lunala, the same applies for gyarapex or sab hippo this gen. For the last paragraph, if your team doesnt have reliable checks you can usually still manage gengar decently with a bit of predicts (i.e. gengar nasty plots, you go corv, he shadow balls, you u-turn into lop zera, he switches into mew, you volt switch into sab corv and roost the damage back, this can usually work twice until they realize what you're doing and there will be actual mindgames, stacking checks to gengar such as corv + dia hydrei also gives you a one time chance to hard hydrei once and avoid damage on corv (maybe even more than once if they wanna nasty plot), it may not work that well but it still is your fault for not bringin better checks :blobglare:


edit 2: if you have replays of gengar being brok could you send em? I'm still open to changing opinion lol
 
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Got reqs on my first run (something that had not occurred in a while ^^). S/o to xavgb for being the catalyst of my salty venting. Would probably have punched my fist through a wall otherwise.. I'm decisively pro-ban, for these reasons:

Gengar puts a definitive strain on the builder:
The fact that common Ghost-type answers like Mandibuzz lose to Lucarionite Gengar on switch-in means that there is a relatively restricted pool of theoretic counters to Gengar. Nonetheless, with simply 2 moves (Energy Ball and Will-O-Wisp), Gengar can overcome them all. Would be counters like Gastrodon and Rhyperior cannot be considered such, as Energy Ball invalidates them. Will-O-Wisp, on the other hand, cripples the not so viable Tyranitar and the very much viable Gyarapex. Furthermore, Gyarapex's spike in viability is singlehandedly due to Gengar, as it is its only semi-reliable defensive answer (Lunala, which Gyarapex also counters, arguably more reliably, can be dealt with in many other ways, including sand, status, fast pivoting, Mandibuzz, Corviknight, and breakers faster than 322).

Disruptive effect on the metagame:
With a great STAB combination for this generation, Gengar capitalizes on the viability of Altarianite Arcanine, Mew, Clefable, Lunala, and Jellicent on balance teams, all the while still pulling its weight vs any slower offensive threat (and seen as Gengar's slowest set hits 399 Speed, there are a lot of slower threats). As such, it has many occasions to threaten switches and dent/KO a switch-in/sack with a coverage move, or set-up and potentially end the game then and there.

A true Sword of Damocles:
In-game, while it won't easily 6-0 teams, it will put quite a pressure on every move of the opponent. If one lets it just a slight of momentum, it can dent teams in ways that few other mons can (and those other mons, like Terrakion and Kyurem, are way easier to revenge-kill seen as they're vulnerable to Pixispeed and slower). Admittedly, as long as you predict everything correctly, you can manage to stay on top of Gengar with slow U-Turns + Fast breakers. However, as stated, there are only select faster breakers that are viable, and the pivots tend to be chipped and eventually overwhelmed by Gengar's strong STABS. And again, one single slip up means a sack at best, and a whole core dismantled at worst. To me, it feels like playing with a figurative Sword of Damocles hanging over my head at every turn, and that is why I'll be voting ban.
 

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You might be wondering how I lost my 1 game. Was I outplayed? Have bad match up? Haxed perhaps? Alas you would be wrong, because didn't lose a single match. I was cruising and halfway through I wanted to check my progress.... and there was my 1 loss, just chilling there, completely uninvited to the party. Truly unfortunate way to miss out on the 30-0, but thems the breaks.

I agree with a lot of Gman's major points regarding Gengar but the biggest thing I want to harp on here is the stress Gengar puts on teambuilding in this meta. This mon is an actual nightmare to check defensively and forces the same cores on teams over and over with little room for flexibility. Because I agree with so much of Gman's post and Multi seemed to disagree with much of what he said, I wanted to take this opportunity to address some of the points Multi made because frankly I strongly disagree with a lot of it.

I'm not sure what is being classified as deadweight here and I don't think it's that black and white either. Yes, Gyara Pex checks Pokemon besides Gengar and is a fairly good mon in the meta. But it is also incredibly passive and can be a huge momentum sink for teams that are properly prepared for it (which every team that is packing Gengar should be). It is now and has always been an extremely exploitable mon and I think we will see that exploitation continue to develop if Gengar is allowed to remain in the meta. Just because a Pokemon used to check the threat in question isn't completely useless at checking things other than that threat doesn't mean that threat isn't extremely constraining and problematic in the builder. Sure, it was too far to say the Gyara Pex usage spike is ONLY due to Gengar but let's not pretend like it isn't a massive reason it's on so many teams right now as I think we agree that Gyara Pex is the only reliable switch in to Gengar right. The assertion that Gengar doesn't really do much for you or against you is also a statement that fully hinges on subjectivity because I would argue Gengar has done a lot for and against me in my games. Are you right or am I? That's why I think it's better to focus on what the Mon can do or the strain that it causes in preparation rather than "This isn't that hard to deal with because I say so."

I say this for a variety of reasons but mainly the mediocre speed tier, inferior STAB combo, less explosive setup, item choice dilemma, and reliance on Shadow Shield. If you break Lunala's Shadow Shield you haven't killed it but you have seriously crippled its function and dramatically limited what it can switch in on therefore, sand, status, and fast pivoting are all serious hinderances to Lunala performing at its best and shouldn't be written off. As for the mention of specs Lunala, I think that set presents a few key drawbacks for Lunala in favor of exploiting a few matchups. It has no recovery so it's extremely prone to being worn down, no Heavy Duty Boots so you're susceptible to rocks, and frankly from a switch-in perspective I feel like Metronome or Helmet break a lot of the things that Specs does and provide more utility on top of that. If we want to discuss some of the niches for specs like Future Sight that's fine but you addressed switching in as the main perk of specs and from a breaking perspective, that set can require quite a bit of prediction to make it work and I think it pales as a breaker in comparison to Gengar. Gyara Pex wouldn't disappear in the event Gengar goes because like Multi said, it's the best Lunala answer as well. But let's not kid ourselves here Gengar is a SIGNIFICANTLY harder Mon to answer than Lunala and the way offense cycles around checks with pivoting vastly favors a mon like Gengar to Lunala because Gengar just makes progress faster.

I'm really tired of people acting like putting a Sablenite Corviknight on your team means that you don't need to fear Gengar anymore. There are so many things that can go wrong in that exchange Shadow Ball already does a good chunk on switch in so the moment Corviknight switches into a Gengar it's already playing a losing mindgame. Is Corviknight going to Roost on the next Shadow Ball which has basically no drawback for the Gengar user and also has a good chance to drop its Sp Def one of those two times and force you to take a massive chunk the next turn or is Corviknight going to predict them to Nasty Plot and U-turn into a revenger. If it Roosts on the Nasty Plot max sp def is taking 58 min meaning it doesn't function as a Gengar check anymore and probably can't properly check a lot of the other specially offensive mons in the meta anymore. Corviknight is a very splashable pivot so that means it wants to switch into a large range of things to tank hits and pivot into something that swings momentum it's very easy to burn it with Scald, wear it down with any other mon it needs to check, or just win that mindgame I mentioned above once to beat it. I've broken past a lot of Corviknights with Gengar... Trust me it's not that hard and it's a really lousy answer.

I feel sp def Sablenite Hippowdon erases many of the great uses for that mon in favor of checking one thing. One of the primary perks of defensive Curse Sablenite Hippowdon is that it's a bouncer that beats Rhyperior because it's bulky enough to tank a +2 Earthquake, Curse up, and then it's essentially set because it continues Slacking Off and every time they SD again it Curses until it gets far enough in the exchange to where they give up and switch out or Hippo gets bulky enough to tank hits easily and kill them with its own boosted Earthquake. If Hippo invests in special defense it suddenly get overwhelmed by +2 Earthquake when you switch in and it also loses to every SD Excadrill in existence, struggles horribly against Terrakion, it sacrifices checking so many important things I would rather run physically defensive Hippowdon and risk getting lured by Energy Ball rolls than run sp def. I haven't really seen a rise in Pinsirite Lucario and I don't think people are running Pinsirite Lucario on their teams to revenge Gengar I think they're running it to try and exploit passive mons like Gyaradosite Toxapex that serve as an easy catalyst for a sweep the following turns. So instead of Lucario oppressing Gengar in this meta i'd argue it is BENEFITTING from Gengar's ability to abuse common checks like Manectite Mew and its ability to blast through entire teams using Gyaradosite Toxapex as a catalyst.

No I don't think we do... Offense is also highly unreliable and I don't think the style is good right now. So if you want consistency right now the best bet is balance. That essentially means Mandi or Gyarapex on EVERY consistent team in the near future unless you want to go one of the unconventional routes like Corviknight + Diancite Hydreigon or there's an unforeseen meta shift so no I certainly don't want that. I also don't feel comfortable with Mandi as my Gengar check either because I still don't think it's a very good mon as it can easily lose to the two primary things it's looking to check in Gengar and Lunala.

The rank of a mon has nothing to do with whether that mon should be suspected or banned. Shuckle was a B+ rank mon when it got banned. Gengar is so problematic BECAUSE it has very restricted reliable checks so it's very difficult to properly prepare for it without falling back on Gyara Pex over and over again and again and I would certainly argue it's also a worse situation than Lunala in Gen 7. You're also mistaken about the conversation concerning Mandibuzz and Lunala in Gen 7 people DEFINITELY complained about how constraining Lunala was and how they didn't like running Mandibuzz or passive checks for Lunala on every team. Because those guys were easy to build for and made Lunala highly abusable in combination with a partner that abused Mandibuzz or other passive checks this has been the narrative for awhile now and I feel Gengar exploits this dynamic even harder this Gen considering offensive cores make use of pivoting to pressure checks and Gengar's set up and immediate power dwarfs Lunala's.

I'm not really a fan of how the assumption is made that the person using the Gengar doesn't realize there are game-changing mindgames available at the start before a couple cycles of what you listed happen. The statement to "bring better checks" once again falls back on the problem Gengar presents when building. What better checks? Gyarapex again? The combination of Corviknight and Diancite Hydreigon is one of the better alternatives for offensive revenging and the lack of confidence in that core shows how hard pressed we are for Gengar checks right now. People want variety in teambuilding so they aren't predictable and it remains fresh so it's no surprise this is used when the "better check" is the same passive exploitable mon over and over again.

In the first part of this post I've said numerous times that Gyara Pex was very passive and exploitable. But what does this mean, why is it important? Basically it boils down to Payback being a difficult STAB to work with as it doesn't have the continuous threat of a burn that Scald provides and Gyarapex is a mon that isn't able to threaten significant damage against anything that isn't weak to Payback. So Pokemon like Weakness Policy Necrozma-Dusk-Mane, Terrakion, Excadrill and Lucario are examples of Pokemon that repeatedly harass Toxapex and make it fear using Payback. Mamoswine, Taunt Kommo-o, and Defog or Bulk Up Corviknight are some more examples that are less effective because if Toxapex manages to Toxic them on the switch it immediately becomes harder for them and Corviknight needs a fellow abuser to fully force Toxapex out. However, they are still capable of forcing Toxapex out and thus capable of exploiting is passivity. The main point i'm trying to make here is that while Toxapex may be a fairly solid mon in the metagame, it is a very predictable and thus exploitable wall and the mons I listed are all capable of doing so.

Stresh mentioned how teams centered around spreading burn on mons like Corviknight and Gyaradosite Toxapex have begun popping up and I feel this trend will continue to be developed in the event Gengar stays as it is a strategy that is very rewarding for the meta's best breaker. Spamming Scald already has next to no drawback after the removal of Red Orb and this dynamic ruled a significant portion of the pre-home meta and is recently returning with the prevalence of fat balance teams. In light of this, an abuser like Hex Gengar is even more ominous considering burns swing the game in its favor so dramatically. However, another key interaction I wanted to touch on here is Gengar's ability to singlehandedly harass Gyarapex by carrying 4th move Wisp. I don't think people realize how significant the 6% Toxapex takes every turn and the halved damage of Payback are when it is checking Gengar as +2 Sludge Wave does 37-44 so if Toxapex ever gets into a situation where it has to recover after it switches in on Gengar it is able to Nasty Plot again and effectively muscle past Gyaradosite Toxapex.
This may seem like a difficult interaction to pull off from Gengar's perspective but it actually favors the Gengar user. Again, the minimum roll for +2 Sludge Wave is 37.8 so if Toxapex ever gets into a scenario where it is at 88% or below the process of switching into Gengar becomes problematic because after taking burn damage it is at 82% so it is in range of getting 2HKO'd by +2 Sludge Wave when it takes a turn of additional burn damage in between those two turns. This means it HAS to recover or risk losing to Gengar and when that happens, Gengar is able to Nasty Plot a second time bringing Sludge Wave damage up to 56.5 min and allowing Gengar to muscle past Toxapex the following turns. 12% chip on a burned mon is not a difficult task the turn the Gar lands the wisp + the following turn the Toxapex attacks is already 12.5% at the hand of burn so it only takes one additional switch in to already put Toxapex at a dangerous percent for getting overwhelmed by Gengar and even if the Gyarapex user is aware of the danger this chip poses and insists on recovering when they are about to reach that dangerous percent, that is a massive handicap for a mega'd Toxapex because that burns through Recover PP so quickly. Overall, I feel Gengar running Will-O-Wisp for itself has less explosive potential than Hexgar paired with partners that spread status for it. However, it is an example of how Gengar's best defensive counter is easily forced into uncomfortable situations where it has to make plays to beat one of Gengar's common sets. There are also multiple other niche sets capable of cheesing past Gyarapex if Gengar wishes to exploit that particular matchup.

All of this boils down to the fact that I feel Gengar is too difficult to check in this meta and is therefore too big of a threat in the builder. Teams that have Sablenite Corviknight and Gyaradosite Toxapex are still losing mons to Gengar because of Scald burns allowing Gengar to rapidly plow through multiple checks. It is a fantastic partner for the majority of the offensive meta because once again, Dark-Types are quite mediocre and so many offensive mons enjoy their forced use at the hands of the Ghost-spam meta, enough is enough I think Gengar is an unhealthy presence on the meta, has potential to present an even bigger problem than it currently poses, and its removal would be quite beneficial.

It isn't my intent to try to tear down Multi or anyone who disagrees with my thoughts and feels Gengar shouldn't be banned, but I think discussion like this is beneficial for a suspect thread considering some people who have gotten reqs still don't have a clear opinion on the mon and its impact in the meta.
 
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xavgb

:xavgb:
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnus
OM Grand Slam Winner
The first suspect tour has ended, with Dragonillis and SectoniaServant reaching the finals. This gives both of them reqs, though Sectonia has already achieved reqs through the ladder. You (Dragonillis) will be tagged in the voting process even if you don't post, but if you have something to say about Gengar, you're more than welcome to post your thoughts in this thread having achieved reqs.
 
Well well,

I don't know what i'm doing here, but i can vote for this suspect test.
I became interested in SwSh Mix and Mega last week, when i learned i'd fight Andyboy for the POs, But :
During my battles, i noticed gengar (especially with Lucarionite) can completely destroy stall, specially is gengar is accompanied by a support pokemon (like a slow pivot) for his job. And if a pokemon can annihilate a team style, and forces to have 1 or even 2 counter to it, this pokemon is a problem for this format.
To finish my opinion, Gengar have WoW, for counter/weaken certain of his counters (hello toxapex@gyaradosite).

This is why I'll probably vote ban about gengar.
 
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xavgb

:xavgb:
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnus
OM Grand Slam Winner
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Gonna vote ban on this one I'm p sure, I generally agree with what gman and andy said (andy claimed his post was an essay but he actually split it into digestible chunks, so just read whatever section you'd like explained). The main thing I don't like about Gar is that it's just way easier to support it in a way that exploits its checks than it is to run teammates that stop your own Gar check from getting exploited, largely because Dark just isnt a great typing in this meta and outside of the Dark typing there aren't many options that are consistent against the Gar sets.

Gyara Pex is also the kind of mon which will dictate a large part of your building if you want success with it, you've pretty much settled into the fact that you're running fat balance and you're gonna give away a lot of free turns, and there's a lot of different scenarios to account for where common things just become annoying to play against. There's a bunch of physical threats you just don't want to be near, so you'll likely need 2 of the blanket physical checks in the meta, neither of which can be Banettite Pex for obvious reasons. Outside of Gar and Lun Gyara Pex doesn't check much on the Special side either, it can relieve stress on the rest of the team by checking those two mons but it's not that useful as a pick in terms of what you can switch in to.

Last gen Gyara Pex was similarly ineffective at checking offensive threats, but the difference was that you could support your team through Toxic Spikes, which put a lot of big offensive threats that were otherwise hard to chip on a timer, making them easier to deal with for teammates. Right now you can still try to set Toxic Spikes with your Pex, but this gen's meta features Excadrill as common removal, as well as two very good Poison types and a very handy Steel type in Corviknight that also happens to be a Defogger and a pivot. This means that even with free turns, Gyara Pex often just doesn't get to set Tspikes because it's actually pretty hard to put cores like Corviknight + Pex and even Corviknight + Gar to an extent into positions where you both have Tspikes up and you have a threat in that stops Corviknight from using its pivoting capabilities to bring in a Poison type. There's much less of an immediate reward and you don't get to influence the flow of the game nearly as much as last gen, where Pex was a much rarer mon and the common Defoggers were all prone to Toxic. The other issue is that while Pex could take advantage of the defensive meta last gen, this is a much less clear cut dynamic in this meta. Mew carries Will-O-Wisp, Pex and Jellicent carry Scald, Clefable can be paired very naturally with a way of handling Tspikes and it will get Rocks out of that exchange. Accepting burns with Pex is pretty risky when trying to beat Gar, so typically there's a lot of running away from that scenario and much less of Gyara Pex doing one of the only things it can do well considering its limited defensive utility. The fact that Gyara Pex is still so prevalent just makes me think Gar doesn't have enough counterplay available to justify alternatives, even though there are plenty of reasons why you do not want to be forced into running this.


Sab Corv is a more reasonable mon to fit on a team, but as Andy has pointed out this still does not make you safe from Gar. When running Sablenite Corv as your check you are usually looking to win a sack war later in the game, because Sab Corv itself does not beat Gar. Again this is a lot to ask in the builder, because you're basically looking for ways to have enough offensive pressure that Gar doesnt come in, while also running a team such that Corviknight doesn't get chipped by anything else it likes to tank and then U-turn. Corv U-turning into a breaker is pretty decent at handling Gar in the same way that it's decent at handling a few things that you don't bring checks for, but this also means you're leaving yourself with a weakened Corviknight if you have to handle anything else. I would say just slapping this on your BO team and trying to deal with Gar in that way is lazy and inconsistent but truthfully depending what your opponent runs it may be the best option.


Firstly, Mandibuzz just isn't a great Gar switchin. It requires very specific support to keep Rocks off in the first place, and if they do go up Mandibuzz becomes powerless to stop Gar pretty quickly. Secondly, Gengar actually lives Foul Play. If muscling through Mandibuzz is what Gengar wants to do, it can do it pretty early in the game and it's much harder to respond from the other side without taking large risks by leaving in things that die to Gengar. Thirdly, even if the first two options fall through and Gengar can no longer muscle through Mandibuzz, double Ghost builds can give Mandi a really hard time by forcing it to commit to just one of the Ghosts even though it was put on the team to check both. I mentioned that it was easy to support Gar earlier on, and this is just another example of how Gar being easy to use and fitting into cores with other good mons impacts its counterplay, by setting higher standards for how to beat it in game.

Andy covered everything I needed to say about Spdef Hippo, but in general Hippo can be chipped due to how important its other roles are and it really wants to be dealing with other stuff.

Ttar and Umbreon are far from easy to fit in the meta (Umbreon's also not fully consistent here for some of the same reasons that Mandi struggles)

Ditto's good at making Gar's life difficult when the Gar is on HO or BO, but it can struggle with Gar balance due to Gyara Pex being on most of those teams, which is a usable improof.

"Who needs checks lol" can be run without immediately dying to Gar because its initial power is somewhat lower than other suspectable mons, but this doesn't really help people who are trying to optimize their teams in the meta as it's still a fairly negative matchup.


Overall I think that Gengar's an unhealthy force in the metagame for the influence it has on builds, but I also think that it's pretty broken considering how its checks are largely situational and don't account for the range of Gar support that is out there.
 
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I found 2 gengars in the 33 games, 1 was the unlucky game that took so long to find I went AFK and forgot about it and came back to a defeat screen. The 2nd just let me kill it turn 1 so I don't know what to think. Ghosts seem super busted this gen and dark types don't hold up to them (till someone finds a way to make bulky hydreigon work, rip red orb that'd have been a fun set this gen) so I'm leaning into a Ban so it doesn't push the other ghosts over the edge since they all jerk each other off complement each other well with cripples and coverage.

Zeraora @ Metagrossite
Ability: Volt Absorb
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
- Plasma Fists
- Close Combat
- Volt Switch
- Grass Knot

Rotom-Wash @ Manectite
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Hydro Pump
- Volt Switch
- Thunderbolt
- Will-O-Wisp

Clefable @ Ampharosite
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SpA / 252 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Moonblast
- Stealth Rock
- Soft-Boiled
- Aromatherapy

Corviknight @ Sablenite
Ability: Mirror Armor
EVs: 248 HP / 164 Def / 96 SpD
Impish Nature
- Iron Head
- Roost
- Defog
- U-turn

Arcanine @ Altarianite
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 132 HP / 252 Atk / 124 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Extreme Speed
- Flare Blitz
- Morning Sun
- Howl

Necrozma-Dawn-Wings @ Choice Specs
Ability: Prism Armor
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Moongeist Beam
- Photon Geyser
- Earth Power
- Power Gem

Zera's awesome
Rotom-W set is outdated.
Clef is awesome.
Corvi is corvi.
Arc is awesome.
Still trying to find a reason as to why Dawn-Wings is here, I'll update the moment I get it, for now just click Beam like it's a Lunala.
 
Screenshot (50).png
Whoooo boy this laddering attempt was cursed, but I finally got the reqs needed.

Opinions on Gengar: Still not entirely sure about it, but leaning a more towards the ban side of things. Ghost typing is super favorable this gen due to a lack of really solid dark type answers to it, and gen 8 MnM has done nothing but be kind to Gengar, with Nasty Plot granting it the boosting option it's always wanted, and a meta full of psychic, ghost, and fairy type pokemon for Gengar to throw STAB at; Gengar definitely feels hella strong. While it has answers, most of them are somewhat unreliable even at the of best times simply because of how hard it hits even unboosted, and most of its checks can't answer it at all when rocks are on the field or if Gengar already has a Nasty Plot under its belt. With the sole exception of Gyara Pex, which suffers from massive passiveness issues, Gengar has no counters at all. At the end of the day, most teams even if they're prepared for Gengar are still at risk from it due to its relatively healthy number of coverage options and ability to neuter physical checks potentially for the rest of the game with Wil-O-Wisp. Overall, probably a little too strong for the current meta, but might be worth looking into again once the DLC pokemon drop.



Mandibuzz (F) @ Sablenite
Ability: Overcoat
EVs: 252 HP / 28 Def / 228 SpD
Sassy Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Defog
- Roost
- Foul Play
- U-turn

Necrozma-Dusk-Mane @ Leftovers
Ability: Prism Armor
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Impish Nature
- Swords Dance
- Sunsteel Strike
- Earthquake
- Morning Sun

Kyurem @ Lucarionite
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Freeze-Dry
- Draco Meteor
- Ice Beam
- Roost

Excadrill @ Metagrossite
Ability: Sand Rush
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- High Horsepower
- Swords Dance
- Iron Head
- Rapid Spin

Hippowdon @ Altarianite
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Atk / 252 SpD
Careful Nature
- Body Slam
- Earthquake
- Slack Off
- Stealth Rock

Mew @ Manectite
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpA
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Roost
- Teleport
- Psychic
- Heal Bell
 
F8C74407-D929-4B08-AFEC-F68EA65F4E68.jpeg


s/o to Gmansour20 for the teams I used.

Like Mark I really didn’t see many gars on ladder. However, it’s pretty clear that this meta doesn’t have the tools to handle it. MnM still suffers from its ghost problem from gen 7: any ghost resist is practically guaranteed to be destroyed by -atespeeders, making them hard to fit on teams. However, Gengar’s counters are significantly less splashable than other ghosts. As mentioned in the thread, Gengar really has only one true counter in Gyara Pex (which it can still beat lol), and it can just muscle through the others (Corviknight, Mandibuzz, etc.). With how exploitable and passive Gyarapex is for standard balance teams, Gengar’s presence is simply unhealthy if teams consistently have to fall back on it to stop Gengar. So, I will be voting ban.
 
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Just a reminder that the second and final suspect tour will be later today. If you don't have reqs from the ladder yet, reaching the finals of this tour will be an alternative way to get reqs. The deadline for laddering is also on Wednesday so if you don't have time to ladder but want to vote this tour may be your chance.

Europeans changed clocks last weekend so to avoid any confusion with the timing, the suspect tour will be in 5 hours and 25 minutes from the time of this post.
 
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