Metagame National Dex AG Metagame Discussion

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Wow, I really appreciate you guys and your interest. I have been on Showdown for awhile, but I am new to the forums. I am going to try to get it out as soon as possible, all while prepping for college finals.
P.S. I am not going to copy and paste it. I will likely use a link to the google doc or have a downloadable .pdf
 
~last post snip~
Bro how are you gonna post 2 double staka TR teams in there and NOT shout me out :(
Either way I'm kinda sad to see you go (especially just at the same time I'm coming back) but I hope you've moved on to other stuff and you're happy in life and whatnot.

About the metagame, I feel stall has taken a serious hit due to the introduction of Zacian, which can destroy pretty much any phys wall bar quagsire, and Dynamaxing which facilitates sweeping and wallbreaking a lot (especially for mons who have access to Max Airstream and Max moves that set up type-boosting weather/terrain). MGar, which was already a pretty big threat for stall now has access to np and encore which allows it to effortlessly trap and setup on a lot of mons that stalls love to run, which means they have to be extra careful when clicking support or recovery moves else they might just get swept. Personally I just got back into the game today but I did a fair bit of laddering with a pretty bad dual screens HO and there's one set I wanna highlight out here :

mewtwo.png
Dynamax Sweeper (Mewtwo) @ Life Orb
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Nasty Plot
- Psystrike
- Fire Blast
- Hurricane

This thing is incredibly dangerous to a lot of teams. Due to Mewtwo's decent bulk, you can easily dynamax and Max Airstream to boost your speed on a lot of mons without fearing getting OHKOed. You can then proceed to set Psychic Terrain up with Max Mindstorm and just sweep effortlessly. Nasty Plot is there mostly for wallbreaking against stall as you don't even need to boost up to sweep most offence (or balance teams if you did some chip damage before attempting to sweep) due to Mewtwo's sheer power. Here are some calcs to better illustrate Mewtwo's power :

252 SpA Life Orb Mewtwo Max Mindstorm vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Rayquaza-Mega: 337-398 (96 - 113.3%) -- 75% chance to OHKO
252 SpA Life Orb Mewtwo Psystrike vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Rayquaza-Mega in Psychic Terrain: 363-426 (103.4 - 121.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO
252 SpA Life Orb Mewtwo Max Airstream vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Groudon-Primal: 246-290 (60.8 - 71.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO | Max Airstream 2HKOes don while it doesn't do much back :
252 Atk Groudon-Primal Precipice Blades vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Dynamaxed Mewtwo: 136-162 (38.5 - 45.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO (the calc doesn't have an option for dynamax yet but I just cut the damage in half as it doubles your hp)
252 SpA Life Orb Mewtwo Fire Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Zacian-Crowned: 315-372 (96.9 - 114.4%) -- 81.3% chance to OHKO (obviously Max Flare is a guaranteed OHKO)
0%
252 SpA Life Orb Mewtwo Max Mindstorm vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Kyogre-Primal in Psychic Terrain: 337-398 (83.4 - 98.5%) -- 68.8% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Life Orb Mewtwo Max Flare vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 230-271 (57.7 - 68%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock | Even Spdef NDM gets 2HKOed by Max Flare, and OHKOed if you set up a Nasty Plot before.

EDIT: Adding some replays to show how easy it is to sweep with Mewtwo (you're also safe from ditto revenge sweeps if you set up screens):
[Gen 8] National Dex AG replay: MRay Stall vs ProHackerRaj - Pokémon Showdown
[Gen 8] National Dex AG replay: Bunrphenix vs. MRay Stall - Pokémon Showdown
[Gen 8] National Dex AG replay: MRay Stall vs. YaBoiJD - Pokémon Showdown (This one shows how good the set is against stall)
 
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Heres my team for new ag starters
call it gen 8 koko, koko worked fine for in gen 7 so might as well use it this gen, since viv and smeargle still exist =)

Hi Pdon (Arceus-Poison) @ Toxic Plate
Ability: Multitype
EVs: 252 HP / 252 SpD / 4 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Poison Jab
- Recover
- Will-O-Wisp
- Stealth Rock

Hi Koko (Arceus-Water) @ Splash Plate
Ability: Multitype
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Judgment
- Toxic
- Recover
- Defog

Hi Zac (Rayquaza-Mega) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Delta Stream
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Dragon Ascent
- V-create
- Earthquake
- Draco Meteor

Hi Ete (Tapu Koko) @ Choice Specs
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Volt Switch
- Thunderbolt
- Dazzling Gleam
- Grass Knot

Hi Hooh (Zacian-Crowned) @ Rusted Sword
Ability: Intrepid Sword
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Behemoth Blade
- Wild Charge
- Swords Dance
- Close Combat

Hi Xer (Marshadow) @ Life Orb
Ability: Technician
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Naive Nature
- Spectral Thief
- Close Combat
- Shadow Sneak
- Hidden Power [Ice]
 

Iguana

formerly mc56556
Hi, everyone!

I just wanted to share a few sets that I've enjoyed using recently in the Nat Dex Gen 8 AG meta. Enjoy and feel free to ask any questions or comment.

Lunala @ Life Orb
Ability: Shadow Shield
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Agility
- Calm Mind
- Psyshock
- Moongeist Beam

This is an offensive Lunala set I built. I had been excited to try out Agility Lunala, and it's exciting to utilize. Offensive Lunala sets are not the most common right now in the meta (physically defensive Lunala sets seem to be more viable than ever), but I think they are worth considering. I chose an LO set and a non-Z-move variant, but I'm sure Agility, Moongeist Beam, Z-move Lunala can work well. LO Lunala may not at first seem to be a standard set, but I recommend it because it allows you to Dynamax and still keep the added damage boost. This set is weak to Darkceus and Dark-type Pokémon in general, but I haven't seen a significant number of them in the meta (perhaps we'll see a rise in defensive Darkceus sets, though, as DD Ultra rises in viability). Feel free to tinker with this set a bit. I chose Modest nature to maximize the power of the Special Attack moves and because I found after Agility with 252 already invested in Speed, I outsped anything I wanted to outspeed.

Arceus-Ghost @ Spooky Plate
Ability: Multitype
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Judgment
- Magic Coat
- Stealth Rock
- Roar

This is a lead Ghostceus set that I actually transplanted from Gen 7 AG. I won't claim this as an original thought because I'm pretty sure I've seen others use it, and this has probably been around at least for a little while. Nevertheless, it appears that this set may be even more effective in Gen 8 AG. It can effectively counter Smeargle (ironically of course because it is unable to actually hit Smeargle) with Magic Coat to reflect Spore back at Smeargle along with any hazards like Sticky Web and/or Stealth Rocks, and Roar to phaze out Smeargle after a Shell Smash or Baton Pass. Magic Coat can also work well against Pokémon like Primal Groudon or Ho-Oh to send back Stealth Rock/Toxic and Toxic, respectively, while hitting both reasonably hard with a SpA-boosted Judgement. I recommend trying this set out on the right team!

Arceus-Fire @ Flame Plate
Ability: Multitype
EVs: 248 HP / 244 Def / 16 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Thunder Wave
- Recover
- Judgment
- Roar

Okay, so this set I've definitely had fun using (shoutout to HellsRuin for the help with this!). At first glance, it appears to be pretty memey--who in their right mind would use Fireceus? But, consider some things here: Zacian does not have any viable Water- or Ground-type moves available in its movepool, so that in combination with its typing being super effective against Zacian's gives it an implicit advantage. Additionally, with Fairy-type moves being ineffective against Fire types and the moves I listed above, Fireceus can provide a nice soft check to Xern. Thunder Wave is a fantastic status to inflict this gen considering the outrageous speed tiers in the meta (in addition to the potential paralyses also, of course). And Roar is there for Fireceus to phaze out a non-Dynamaxing Xern should it come up against Geomancy. Try this out! At the least, it's a fun, alternative check to some very prevalent offensive threats in the meta.

Thanks for reading, and hopefully some of you can benefit from these sets!
 
In my opinion I feel Dusk-Mane Necrozma should go under dynamax abusers, eternatus, and zacian checks. I'd also just like to talk a little about Necrozma Dusk-Mane overall in National dex AG and it's viability. This generation Necrozma gains access to Dragon dance, which allows it at +1 252+ speed to outpace everything with 140 base speed or less, even if they are 252+ speed build, examples of key pokemon this pertains to in the format include Eternatus, Zacian (base), Mega Gengar, Mega Mewtwo Y (Although it is less common), Marshadow, all Arceus forms, etc. Also good to note it can outspeed adamant Zacian-Crowned. Thanks to it's great bulk, nice defensive typing, and ability it can usually get off a dragon dance pretty safely against a good amount of pokemon, followed by a dynamax the bulk increase makes it incredibly hard to stand up against for a good amount of pokemon.

Necrozma-Dusk-Mane @ Weakness Policy
Ability: Prism Armor
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Sunsteel Strike
- Earthquake
- Rock Blast

Also with taking into account weakness policy you have the extreme bulk to take most supereffective hits and at +1 outspeeding most every pokemon that isn't scarf, also noting scarf isn't too common in National dex AG atm, Necrozma with a dragon dance weakness policy can ohko basically anything it runs into, and with its Max moves boosting defenses, even at only +1 defense it becomes a lot less susceptible to the priority users of Marshadow (252 Atk Life Orb Technician Marshadow Shadow Sneak vs. +1 0 HP / 4 Def Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 101-123 (30.1 - 36.7%) -- 53.7% chance to 3HKO), and Yveltal (4 Atk Life Orb Dark Aura Yveltal Sucker Punch vs. +1 0 HP / 4 Def Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 135-160 (40.2 - 47.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO). This sets it apart from the Ultra counterpart, as well as just having the access to dynamax altogether.

While it is a great new dynamax user and can cause a great deal of havoc it is not without it's faults like everything else. scarf Marshadow with spectral thief can outspeed and ohko, depending on the currents boosts it may be able to reverse sweep, however it cannot ohko against dynamax it still stands a great threat, and you want to keep rock pressure to avoid sash marsh and also help Necrozma consistently ohko more of course, especially nice if it is only +1. Also dynamax yveltal of course is extremely threatening, as is dynamax Arceus-Ground as both can wall and kill it back. So like many sweepers you have to do your best to get the opponent to burn their max first. It is also very important it gets the dragon dance off without taking great deal of damage or worse being ohkod of course, but if left at low hp it is susceptible to priority and also just cannot max as much use of it's bulk. Situationally it can struggle with yveltal, pdon, and Arc-Ground, but it is more situational, you'll have to d max to kill pdon, or have the weakness policy and d dance off, it is recommended you have dynamax for pdon. Bulky yveltal is pretty annoying as well. As can ferrothorn and skarmory. Be weary of scarf v create from mega ray too.

Overall Dusk-Mane could see adding to the lists of Zacian counters, Eternatus counters, and dynamax users due to its handling of a majority of the meta and being an extremely threatening sweeper or even bulky attacker, and Dusk-Mane has many other interestings sets such as trick room, rock polish, swords dance, etc. But the new access to dragon dance seems at the moment a really nice set to play with in national dex AG.

More calcs (not currently dynamaxed)
+1 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Earthquake vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Zacian-Crowned: 332-392 (102.1 - 120.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO
+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Close Combat vs. +1 0 HP / 4 Def Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 130-154 (38.8 - 45.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
+1 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 0 HP / 0- Def Yveltal: 328-387 (83.4 - 98.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock
+1 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Rayquaza-Mega: 280-331 (79.7 - 94.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ Atk Life Orb Rayquaza-Mega Earthquake vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 242-287 (72.2 - 85.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252+ Atk Life Orb Rayquaza-Mega Earthquake vs. +1 0 HP / 4 Def Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 164-193 (48.9 - 57.6%) -- 96.1% chance to 2HKO
+1 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Rock Blast (3 hits) vs. 252 HP / 204+ Def Ho-Oh: 468-552 (112.5 - 132.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Leftovers recovery
+3 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde: 297-349 (70.7 - 83%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
+3 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Zygarde: 399-469 (111.7 - 131.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO
228+ Atk Zygarde Thousand Arrows vs. +1 0 HP / 4 Def Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 108-127 (32.2 - 37.9%) -- 94.7% chance to 3HKO
+1 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Marshadow: 337-397 (104.9 - 123.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO
+1 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 252 HP / 240+ Def Arceus-Ground: 180-213 (40.5 - 47.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
+3 252 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 252 HP / 240+ Def Arceus-Ground: 300-354 (67.5 - 79.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 SpA Earth Plate Arceus-Ground Judgment vs. +1 0 HP / 0 SpD Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 141-168 (42 - 50.1%) -- 0.4% chance to 2HKO
0 SpA Earth Plate Arceus-Ground Judgment vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 211-249 (62.9 - 74.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Replays:
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1026332508
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1026224028
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1026315931
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1026325576
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1026630062
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1026649290
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1026601877

Thanks for reading :D
 
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yes ok

Banned deucer.
Wow, I really appreciate you guys and your interest. I have been on Showdown for awhile, but I am new to the forums. I am going to try to get it out as soon as possible, all while prepping for college finals.
P.S. I am not going to copy and paste it. I will likely use a link to the google doc or have a downloadable .pdf
I would be most interested in studying your treatise upon such a subject !
 
I'am at 14 pages for the Zacian-C and Mega Rayquaza analysis! Half of it also discusses Gen8 AG and Ubers formats. If you guys read it (or skip to the ending), I have a funny meme that states the current meta. :)
Also, as my opinion (which will be elaborated in the analysis), Zacian-Crowned is ON PAR and APPEALING like Mega Rayquaza, NOT SUPERIOR or EQUIVALENT.
 
Just wanted to share a set which has worked for me and (I think) is pretty good in this meta and worth taking a look at:



Arceus-Water @ Splash Plate
Ability: Multitype
EVs: 236 HP / 252 Def / 20 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Defog / Ice Beam
- Will-O-Wisp / Toxic
- Recover
- Judgment

This mon checks so much of the current meta it's kind of scary; here is some explanation (both of the set and why it works):

  • STAB Judgment allows Waterceus to effectively check Ho-Oh and Groundceus
  • A Water typing and good bulk makes it a good check to NDM and helps against Zacian (without Wild Charge)
  • Waterceus can also deal with MRay fairly well (especially when Dynamaxed) and limit MRay (and Zacian's) offensive presence with WoW
  • While it does struggle vs PDon and CM Arcs, in my playtesting so far I haven't really found either of those
  • 20 Speed EVs help Waterceus speed creep other support arcs and 252 neutral base 90's; the rest is invested in HP and Defense
252 Atk Rayquaza-Mega Dragon Ascent vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 160-189 (36.3 - 42.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
4 SpA Rayquaza-Mega Draco Meteor vs. 236 HP / 0 SpD Arceus-Water: 202-238 (45.9 - 54%) -- 48.4% chance to 2HKO
252+ Atk Rayquaza-Mega Dragon Ascent vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 175-207 (39.7 - 47%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
252+ Atk Rayquaza-Mega Extreme Speed vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 79-93 (17.9 - 21.1%) -- possible 5HKO
252 Atk Rayquaza-Mega Extreme Speed vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 71-84 (16.1 - 19%) -- possible 6HKO

+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 171-202 (38.8 - 45.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
+1 252 Atk burned Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 85-101 (19.3 - 22.9%) -- possible 5HKO
+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Wild Charge vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 228-270 (51.8 - 61.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
+1 252 Atk burned Zacian-Crowned Wild Charge vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 114-135 (25.9 - 30.6%) -- guaranteed 4HKO
+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Close Combat vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 153-180 (34.7 - 40.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
+1 252 Atk burned Zacian-Crowned Close Combat vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 76-90 (17.2 - 20.4%) -- possible 5HKO

0 SpA Splash Plate Arceus-Water Judgment vs. -1 0 HP / 4 SpD Zacian-Crowned: 201-237 (61.8 - 72.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 SpA Splash Plate Arceus-Water Judgment vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Zacian-Crowned: 135-159 (41.5 - 48.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

0 Atk Ho-Oh Sacred Fire vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 42-51 (9.5 - 11.5%) -- possible 9HKO
0 Atk Ho-Oh Brave Bird vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 103-123 (23.4 - 27.9%) -- 83.8% chance to 4HKO
252 Atk Ho-Oh Brave Bird vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 126-148 (28.6 - 33.6%) -- 0.5% chance to 3HKO
252+ Atk Ho-Oh Brave Bird vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 136-162 (30.9 - 36.8%) -- 69.8% chance to 3HKO

0 SpA Splash Plate Arceus-Water Judgment vs. 252 HP / 52 SpD Ho-Oh: 200-236 (48 - 56.7%) -- 88.3% chance to 2HKO
0 SpA Splash Plate Arceus-Water Judgment vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Ho-Oh: 206-246 (49.5 - 59.1%) -- 99.6% chance to 2HKO

0 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 51-60 (11.5 - 13.6%) -- possible 8HKO
0 Atk burned Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 25-30 (5.6 - 6.8%) -- possibly the worst move ever
252+ Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 66-78 (15 - 17.7%) -- possible 6HKO
252+ Atk burned Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 33-39 (7.5 - 8.8%) -- possibly the worst move ever
252+ Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Earthquake vs. 236 HP / 252+ Def Arceus-Water: 88-104 (20 - 23.6%) -- guaranteed 5HKO

really I can include more calcs but I'm too lazy to do that lol
Thanks for reading and I hope you find this mon as good as I do.

also I'm trash so no bully me ;-;
 
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Honestly, I don't see the appeal in dd necro-dm when you can just run dd ultra necrozma, which is faster, hits harder, and doesn't use the dynamax slot to do its unholy business of cleaning and breaking shit at the same time. In addition, it still loses to ditto. Outspeeding all scarf users barring ditto is neat, and Neuroforces makes coverage a lot more effective. Light that burns the sky ends zygarde-c and ho-oh.

What I've really found cool is this:
Necrozma-Dusk-Mane @ Weakness Policy
Ability: Prism Armor
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Sunsteel Strike
- Earthquake
- Trick Room
- Swords Dance / Rock Blast

Trick Room allows you to beat ditto 1v1, you can invest in bulk (something only made more apparent if you dynamax), and +2 necrozma-dusk-mane completely murders the meta aside from the occasional wall and zygarde. Swords dance can even be dropped for coverage given how offensive the metagame is right now at the cost of actually breaking through walls. Still doesn't particularly like paralysis thanks to parahax, but takes it much better than dd necro.
 
Honestly, I don't see the appeal in dd necro-dm when you can just run dd ultra necrozma, which is faster, hits harder, and doesn't use the dynamax slot to do its unholy business of cleaning and breaking shit at the same time. In addition, it still loses to ditto. Outspeeding all scarf users barring ditto is neat, and Neuroforces makes coverage a lot more effective. Light that burns the sky ends zygarde-c and ho-oh.

What I've really found cool is this:
Necrozma-Dusk-Mane @ Weakness Policy
Ability: Prism Armor
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Sunsteel Strike
- Earthquake
- Trick Room
- Swords Dance / Rock Blast

Trick Room allows you to beat ditto 1v1, you can invest in bulk (something only made more apparent if you dynamax), and +2 necrozma-dusk-mane completely murders the meta aside from the occasional wall and zygarde. Swords dance can even be dropped for coverage given how offensive the metagame is right now at the cost of actually breaking through walls. Still doesn't particularly like paralysis thanks to parahax, but takes it much better than dd necro.
Personally I like trick room used to love it, the thing with ultra d dance again it is a simple priority kill from things like yveltal and Marshadow as well as extreme speed from Mega Rayquaza. Luckily these aren't as common as they were in Gen 7 AG but mainly I wasn't saying that it is of greater viability and is better in every way than a d dance ultra but Dusk provides the speed to outspeed anything 140 base speed or less that isn't scarf and again the bulk allows it to tank most priority or scarf attacks, it is a fun set that I'd say isn't bad and it is viable enough to try out. D dance dyna Dusk mane has helped bring me to #51 in a day so far. Trick Room is fun but was way more viable in gen 7. The other thing about d dance ultra is you struggle more with opposing dynamax like geo dynamax xerneas you don't get the same bulk to stand up to those forms and hit back the same. Really with weakness policy, the only appeal to d dance ultra would be to conserve a max slot and getting more speed, where as the other way you hit harder and have great bulk. Both are great options though it will be quite interesting to keep watching the meta develop and see what the new moves and dynamax bring, but always fun to explore all possible options.
 

bigtalk

Banned deucer.
Some thoughts, mostly pertaining to balance / bulky offense mons:
  • :ho-oh::zygarde-complete:This is a really solid core since you no longer need to slot Defog on your primary Pdon check.
  • :ho-oh::ferrothorn:This is also amazing since Ho-Oh doesn't care about rocks anymore + abuses Spikes with Whirlwind.
  • :marshadow:Although it competes with Ditto, Scarf Marshadow is still pretty useful glue to revenge stuff like Mega Gengar behind sub and for Pursuit trapping, it's also a decent Dynamax abuser.
  • :kyogre-primal:With the rise of mons like defensive Ho-Oh / Arceus-Ground and Ferrothorn being less splashable, a lot of teams seem to be weak to this.
  • :necrozma-dusk-mane:With Ho-Oh being defensive and this running full physical defense investment more often, this can stay in and Toxic stall / get up rocks on Ho-Oh pretty comfortably. Also a pain to kill if it's Dynamaxed.
  • :gothitelle:I think this has become a lot more effective with Zacian dropping the usage of mons like Giratina / Darkceus; Psychic / Ghost types in general seem to be underprepped for.
  • :arceus:(ghost) This is great on webs to spinblock + be Ditto-proof to an extent, it's also a good Dynamax abuser.
  • :arceus:(ground) Swords Dance sets are probably really good on webs, as a lot of teams seem to be relying on stuff like Ho-Oh / Mega Rayquaza as their sole ground immunity. Calm Mind is practically worthless against Ho-Oh teams, however.
  • :grimmsnarl:This is a very nice dual screener on hyper offense.

  • :ferrothorn:Knock Off is really good on this to remove boots from Ho-Oh + not being a move Mega Gengar can take advantage of.
  • :zygarde-complete:Running Glare on this is bad now since if you paralyze Ho-Oh (as opposed to poisoning it) you're infinitely walled.
  • :groudon-primal:Stone Edge is practically mandatory now to keep rocks up versus Ho-Oh.
  • Stealth Rock isn't that useful anymore since most Pokemon that are weak to it are running boots, it affects only 2 mons on this team for example. I've gotten away with including 0 removal on most of my teams.
 

Kate

Moving In Stereo
is a Tiering Contributoris a Past SCL Champion
RBTT Champion
Here is my extensive analysis on Zacian-C, Mega Rayquaza, and the Meta! I hope you all enjoy reading it, and leave me any feedback so I can edit it.
This is a good Write up, but there are notable errors in it, I'll cover those here:
Ekiller had higher usage than Mray in the two months prior to the release of Marshadow in Early SM (this error is seen on pg 1)
Unaware users don't really come close to checking mray, sure clef can hit it with moonblast, but it takes way too much for it to be considered a reliable check (pg 7)
Scarf Mray was certainly not a rare sight in USUM, it was fairly common in tours and high ladder (pg 9)
The common spreads chart is a mess, and has many exclusions of common sets or rips from Ubers sets which weren't run in AG, prob just delete this (pg 9)
Arceus Steel was extremely relevant around the latter half of USUM, and while it did fall off in the last few months due to the meteoric rise of Ho-oh, it was never irrelevant (pg 9)
I would not say aegi is a good check to zacian or a good mon in general in regular gen 8 AG (pg 10)
This is a strange point saying most walls need to be physically bulky to check Zacian, as it seems to imply that this wasnt the case with trying to check mray in gen 7 (pg 11)
Another problem with the chart, saying quag is an unviable unaware users and implying zacian has few checks that are extremely unreliable is incorrect (pg 14)
Saying it has no counters, "with the exception of unaware users" still means it has counters lol (pg 15)

I enjoyed reading this, and I encourage you to continue writing!
 
This is a good Write up, but there are notable errors in it, I'll cover those here:
Ekiller had higher usage than Mray in the two months prior to the release of Marshadow in Early SM (this error is seen on pg 1)
Unaware users don't really come close to checking mray, sure clef can hit it with moonblast, but it takes way too much for it to be considered a reliable check (pg 7)
Scarf Mray was certainly not a rare sight in USUM, it was fairly common in tours and high ladder (pg 9)
The common spreads chart is a mess, and has many exclusions of common sets or rips from Ubers sets which weren't run in AG, prob just delete this (pg 9)
Arceus Steel was extremely relevant around the latter half of USUM, and while it did fall off in the last few months due to the meteoric rise of Ho-oh, it was never irrelevant (pg 9)
I would not say aegi is a good check to zacian or a good mon in general in regular gen 8 AG (pg 10)
This is a strange point saying most walls need to be physically bulky to check Zacian, as it seems to imply that this wasnt the case with trying to check mray in gen 7 (pg 11)
Another problem with the chart, saying quag is an unviable unaware users and implying zacian has few checks that are extremely unreliable is incorrect (pg 14)
Saying it has no counters, "with the exception of unaware users" still means it has counters lol (pg 15)

I enjoyed reading this, and I encourage you to continue writing!
Okay will do, thanks! I am planning to upload with the edits.
 
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Ropalme1914

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Just wanted to share my thoughts. I wasn't an AG player last gen, but I played quite a few games on this gen and got to top 4 on the ladder with Screens HO, so I wanted to give my two cents.

Tbh, Zacian is super scary and top tier, but I really don't think it's on the level of Mega Ray. First, it has a bad matchup against many top tier Pokémon: Primal Groudon, Necrozma-DM, and Ho-Oh are all super annoying to it depending on its coverage (and in the case of Primal Groudon, not even coverage will save it), and despite its typing being amazing in theory, it doesn't get as many switch-ins as you would expect because almost all offensive Pokémon have Ground or Fire coverage, while Mega Ray has that nice Flying STAB to hit 90% of the meta at least neutrally, while the rest either are weak to Ground or Fire.
Also, Zacian is THE weakest Pokémon to Ditto, to the point that I actually couldn't send it late-game many times. Instant +2 plus Scarf means that it'll do huge damage to anything and outspeed literally the entire meta while it resists Extreme Speed. Substitute helps with that (and I think people should use it more), but it's not perfect.

Mega Rayquaza still is great, although I do favor DD and Scarf sets now over things like Swords Dance and Choice Band.

Mega Gengar is absurd, the only things keeping this in check are Dynamax, Scarf, and Zacian. The fact that you could lose to it instantly if you click Defog is extremely scary, but at least most Pokémon have a way to hit it with a Max Move.

Screens are super nice since hazard control isn't that necessary now, which makes Defog less common. Grimmsnarl and Deoxys-S are both good users, as Grimmsnarl with Prankster (no need for Speed) and Spirit Break makes it slightly more bulky while Deoxys has Stealth Rock.

About Dynamax abusers: Zygarde, Mewtwo, Ekiller, and Necrozma-DM are very nice. Zygarde gets an even more absurd bulk while it boost its Special Defense (it's so absurd that Dynamax Zygarde pre-Complete wins the 1v1 against Zacian). Just to show how powerful it actually is:

+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. +2 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde: 189-223 (45 - 53%) -- 0.4% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. +4 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde-Complete: 127-150 (19.9 - 23.5%) -- possible 6HKO after Leftovers recovery (Zygarde-Complete after one Coil)

+2 is there to simulate double HP, and Behemoth Blade has 200 BP, making it stronger than Play Rough. It also is a boosting Pokémon that isn't weak to Ditto because it doesn't copy its HP, making Coil a good option.

Mewtwo now not only has Nasty Plot to OHKO those targets that before were close 2HKOes, but also can setup Psychic Terrain on its own and boost its Speed. Honestly, Nasty Plot / Psystrike / Fire Blast / Hurricane is all you need to hit every relevant Pokemon hard.

Arceus is also very good with Dynamax due to the bulk and power increase alone. Life Orb Max Quake can OHKO Groudon even if it's invested on Defense while being a roll on phys def Necrozma-DM, while Max Strike can give it that power boost that it needs sometimes, like against other support Arceus, but the real deal is the extra bulk making it very hard to revenge kill. Max Phantasm seems like a decent option too for a strong Ghost move that doesn't take two turns, but I haven't tested it.

Necrozma-DM is unkillable with Dynamax. It's not only the double HP that makes that, but both of its main offensive moves boosts its defenses, making it even harder to revenge kill. Both offensive and defensive sets benefit a lot from it, and Solganium Z still is viable too. Dragon Dance is also another option that opens up a slot for Rock Blast to smack Ho-Oh.

Ho-Oh loves the addition of Heavy-Duty Boots making it immune to every hazard in the game (except Copperajah's hazard lol), not mandating Defog support anymore (although it by itself can be a good Defog user if you want). The Zyg + Ho-Oh core is probably the best balanced core rn, as it covers basically the entire meta. Dynamax was also good for it to my surprise even on defensive sets, as the extra bulk saved me many times and Max Flare + Max Airstream make it have a offensive presence too.

Ditto, as always, is good on offensive metas, and this time is no different. However, I do think that it's better on Ubers than National AG, as some targets are harder to copy and make use here than there, where a copied Zacian 6-0s many teams.

Marshadow changed quite a lot I think. 125 Speed, although still pretty good, isn't as impressive as it was on gen 7, so I'm seeing more Scarf and Sash (although I don't like Sash Marshadow) than Life Orb and Marshadium Z, as they can still steal boost from Pokémon that boost their Speed and revenge kill others, like Mewtwo on Psychic Terrain (although it can't have used Max Airstream before) and Zacian.
 
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Just wanted to share my thoughts. I wasn't an AG player last gen, but I played quite a few games on this gen and got to top 4 on the ladder with Screens HO, so I wanted to give my two cents.

Tbh, Zacian is super scary and top tier, but I really don't think it's on the level of Mega Ray. First, it has a bad matchup against many top tier Pokémon: Primal Groudon, Necrozma-DM, and Ho-Oh are all super annoying to it depending on its coverage (and in the case of Primal Groudon, not even coverage will save it), and despite its typing being amazing in theory, it doesn't get as many switch-ins as you would expect because almost all offensive Pokémon have Ground or Fire coverage, while Mega Ray has that nice Flying STAB to hit 90% of the meta at least neutrally, while the rest either are weak to Ground or Fire.
Also, Zacian is THE weakest Pokémon to Ditto, to the point that I actually couldn't send it late-game many times. Instant +2 plus Scarf means that it'll do huge damage to anything and outspeed literally the entire meta while it resists Extreme Speed. Substitute helps with that (and I think people should use it more), but it's not perfect.

Mega Rayquaza still is great, although I do favor DD and Scarf sets now over things like Swords Dance and Choice Band.

Mega Gengar is absurd, the only things keeping this in check are Dynamax, Scarf, and Zacian. The fact that you could lose to it instantly if you click Defog is extremely scary, but at least most Pokémon have a way to hit it with a Max Move.

Screens are super nice since hazard control isn't that necessary now, which makes Defog less common. Grimmsnarl and Deoxys-S are both good users, as Grimmsnarl has Prankster and Spirit Break makes it slightly more bulky while Deoxys has Stealth Rock.

About Dynamax abusers: Zygarde, Mewtwo, Ekiller, and Necrozma-DM are very nice. Zygarde gets an even more absurd bulk while it boost its Special Defense (it's so absurd that Dynamax Zygarde pre-Complete wins the 1v1 against Zacian). Just to show how powerful it actually is:

252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. +2 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde-Complete: 127-150 (19.9 - 23.5%) -- possible 6HKO after Leftovers recovery

+2 is there to simulate double HP, and Behemoth Blade has 200 BP, making it stronger than Play Rough. It also is a boosting Pokémon that isn't weak to Ditto because it doesn't copy its HP, making Coil a good option.

Mewtwo now not only has Nasty Plot to OHKO those targets that before were close 2HKOes, but also can setup Psychic Terrain on its own and boost its Speed. Honestly, Nasty Plot / Psystrike / Fire Blast / Hurricane is all you need to hit every relevant Pokemon hard.

Arceus is also very good with due to the bulk and power increase alone. Life Orb Max Quake can OHKO Groudon even if it's invested on Defense while being a roll on phys def Necrozma-DM, while Max Strike can give it that power boost that it needs sometimes, like other support Arceus, but the real deal is the extra bulk making it very hard to revenge kill. Max Phantasm seems like a decent option too for a strong Ghost move that doesn't take two turns, but I haven't tested it.

Necrozma-DM is unkillable with Dynamax. It's not only the double HP that makes that, but both of its main offensive moves boosts its defenses, making it even harder to revenge kill. Both offensive and defensive sets benefit a lot from it, and Solganium Z still is viable too. Dragon Dance is also another option that opens up a slot for Rock Blast to smack Ho-Oh.

Ho-Oh loves the addition of Heavy-Duty Boots making it immune to every hazard in the game (except Copperajah's hazard lol), not mandating Defog support anymore (although it by itself can be a good Defog user if you want). The Zyg + Ho-Oh core is probably the best balanced core rn, as it covers basically the entire meta. Dynamax was also good for it to my surprise even on defensive sets, as the extra bulk saved me many times and Max Flare + Max Airstream make it have a offensive presence too.

Ditto, as always, is good on offensive, and this time is no different. However, I do think that it's better on Ubers than National AG, as some targets are harder to copy and make use here than there, where a copied Zacian 6-0s many teams.

Marshadow changed quite a lot I think. 125 Speed, although still pretty good, isn't as impressive as it was on gen 7, so I'm seeing more Scarf and Sash (although I don't like Sash Marshadow) than Life Orb and Marshadium Z, as they can still steal boost from Pokémon that boost their Speed and revenge kill others, like Mewtwo on Psychic Terrain (although it can't have used Max Airstream before) and Zacian.
Hi Ropalme1914, I do like your take and share your opinion, but I think you are missing something out with the Zygarde calcs. The Dynamaxing HP boost is correct, but did you calc Play Rough from a Zacian-C and its Inteprid Sword Boost? Also thinking about Zacian-C (especially Jolly) still outspeeds Zygarde after a DD.
Jolly Zacian-C vs Zygarde-Complete:
+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 338-402 (26.5 - 31.6%) -- 21.4% chance to 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 378-446 (29.7 - 35%) -- guaranteed 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
Adamant Zacian vs Zygarde-Complete:
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 372-440 (29.2 - 34.5%) -- 99.9% chance to 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 414-488 (32.5 - 38.3%) -- 2.2% chance to 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
After a Swords Dance from Zacian-C Jolly:
+3 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 566-668 (44.4 - 52.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
+3 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 626-740 (49.2 - 58.1%) -- 64.5% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
After a Swords Dance from Zacian-C Adamant:
+3 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 690-812 (54.2 - 63.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
+3 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 620-732 (48.7 - 57.5%) -- 50% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

I used this calcs from https://jake-white.github.io/VGC-Damage-Calculator/
 
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Ropalme1914

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Hi Ropalme1914, I do like your take and share your opinion, but I think you are missing something out with the Zygarde calcs. The Dynamaxing HP boost is correct, but did you calc Play Rough from a Zacian-C and its Inteprid Sword Boost? Also thinking about Zacian-C (especially Jolly) still outspeeds Zygarde after a DD.
Jolly Zacian-C vs Zygarde-Complete:
+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 338-402 (26.5 - 31.6%) -- 21.4% chance to 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 378-446 (29.7 - 35%) -- guaranteed 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
Adamant Zacian vs Zygarde-Complete:
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 372-440 (29.2 - 34.5%) -- 99.9% chance to 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 414-488 (32.5 - 38.3%) -- 2.2% chance to 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
After a Swords Dance from Zacian-C Jolly:
+3 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 566-668 (44.4 - 52.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
+3 252 Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 626-740 (49.2 - 58.1%) -- 64.5% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
After a Swords Dance from Zacian-C Adamant:
+3 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Behemoth Blade vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 690-812 (54.2 - 63.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
+3 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Play Rough vs. Dynamaxed 252 HP / 252+ Def Zygarde Complete: 620-732 (48.7 - 57.5%) -- 50% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

I used this calcs from https://jake-white.github.io/VGC-Damage-Calculator/
Yeah, I forgot about Intrepid Sword when I pasted the calc, but my point still stands because I remember from memory: Behemoth Blade against Dynamax Zygarde-50% is a 3HKO.
I also talked about Coil, not necessarily Dragon Dance, as I think ir fits this meta better, but if you really want to use DD, +1 Jolly Zygarde does outspeed Zacian-Crowned. I'll update the calc anyway.

Taking the chance to talk about SD Zacian, I really don't think it's necessary. It already hits hard enough and 2HKO most things, using SD will just make you more vulnerable to Ditto. Substitute or even a fourth coverage move is better IMO.
 
Yeah, I forgot about Intrepid Sword when I pasted the calc, but my point still stands because I remember from memory: Behemoth Blade against Dynamax Zygarde-50% is a 3HKO.
I also talked about Coil, not necessarily Dragon Dance, as I think ir fits this meta better, but if you really want to use DD, +1 Jolly Zygarde does outspeed Zacian-Crowned. I'll update the calc anyway.

Taking the chance to talk about SD Zacian, I really don't think it's necessary. It already hits hard enough and 2HKO most things, using SD will just make you more vulnerable to Ditto. Substitute or even a fourth coverage move is better IMO.
You have a good point there and you are correct with your point still, I just personally find it easy to force out switches and either sub or SD with Zacian-C. Prevents Ditto or OHKOs/2HKOs more targets. And Coil is a great alternative to DD. I wanted to clarify on my comment too: Jolly Zacian does outspeed an Adamant +1 Zygarde, and I forget to clarify it doesn't for Jolly +1 Zygarde. Oh man, it's a little tough transtioning from the USUM meta to the Gen8 meta with the Natdex debate!
 
Sorry for the one—liner, but how is PDon doing in this meta? What are the best mons in this meta? Any viability ranking?
I wouldn't call any ranking yet, but like AnythingGoesLegend says, Primal Groudon is extremely viable in this meta. It checks a large variety of huge threats, like Zacian-C, Xerneas, Primal Kygore, and Arceus Water. Since Ho-Oh and Lugia are more prominent than before, expect to see Primal Groudon run Stone Edge or Toxic, as it does not want to become passive fodder.
It is ultimately subjective to say who are the best Pokemons in this meta, so I can not answer that without introducing bias into that.
I can explain how certain mons influence the tier more than others though, if you want.
 
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Why do we have National Dex AG but not Uber? AG is pointless atm, no mon is broken enough to warrant a ban from Nat Dex Uber.
Well, Mega Rayquaza is certainly broken enough that there has to be a Natdex AG for it to exist. The whole reasoning of AG's creation was the only way to balance and use Mega Rayquaza was to put it in an unbalanced format. In addition, this format was never made to exist in the game, and certain factors of balancing were probably never considered for the cut Pokemon and their formes. This format is comparable to a hacked ROM. However, I also understand your desire for a Natdex Ubers tiers. Would be nice to use all of the Ubers in a tiered and restricted format on the ladder.
 
Well, Mega Rayquaza is certainly broken enough that there has to be a Natdex AG for it to exist. The whole reasoning of AG's creation was the only way to balance and use Mega Rayquaza was to put it in an unbalanced format. In addition, this format was never made to exist in the game, and certain factors of balancing were probably never considered for the cut Pokemon and their formes. This format is comparable to a hacked ROM. However, I also understand your desire for a Natdex Ubers tiers. Would be nice to use all of the Ubers in a tiered and restricted format on the ladder.
Yeah but Mega Rayquaza was banned in Gen 6, he's no longer broken and gets rekt by most Dynamax legendaries one on one. Shouldn't we have started with Natdex Ubers to begin with? All AG has over Ubers now is we can use 6 mons of the same specie. And all Natdex formats (including OU) is a fantasy format with Mega, Z-moves and Dynamax co-existing. I am not in particular for removing AG, but it has no reason to exist when Uber can simply be the top banlist.
 
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