Metagame National Dex AG Metagame Discussion

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Chloe

is a Community Contributoris a Top Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Site Content Manager Alumnusis a Community Leader Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
NUPL Champion
innovation extraordinaire /s chloe back with a bunch of junk that i've tried and succeeded with. every pokemon here has broken top 5 from below 1650. no guarantees that any are good, but they might inspire people to try stuff i guess. Just be grateful I'm not nominating anything here for the VR yet.

Darkrai
:sm/darkrai:
Darkrai @ Life Orb
Ability: Bad Dreams
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Nasty Plot
- Dark Pulse
- Blizzard / Ice Beam
- Hidden Power [Rock] / Sludge Bomb

Darkrai is pretty much outclassed by Yveltal, that being said, it does come with a few nifty perks. Its speed tier is much better than Yveltal's, and it boosts the necessary coverage to OHKO many of the top used Pokemon in the format such as Zygarde-Complete, Ho-Oh, Necrozma-Dusk-Mane. Darkrai has access to many coverage options so you could run it similarly to Yveltal if you pleased. It does get straight up walled by Zacian-C unless you're running Max Airstream + Max Flare but I'd probably advise against that. An alternative set you could run includes:



Darkrai @ Blunder Policy
Ability: Bad Dreams
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Hypnosis
- Dark Pulse
- Incinerate
- Ice Beam / Blizzard / Hidden Power Rock / Nasty Plot

This ensures you outspeed or put Zacian to sleep on switch-in, and then can Dynamax to take it and the remainder of the tier out if you please.

Tangrowth
:sm/tangrowth:
Tangrowth @ Shed Shell
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpA
Relaxed Nature
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Sleep Powder
- Knock Off
- Grass Knot

Tangrowth is the best Zygarde-C check in the game, deals with everything Zygarde attempts to throw at it bar Substitute sets after multiple Max Quake (use your Flying type to prevent it getting more than one SpD boost if they choose to waste their Dynamax). It also prevents Ferrothorn from recovering health due to Knock Off and Leech immunity. It does substantial damage to Primal Groudon and Primal Kyogre switch ins with Grass Knot, it can Sleep Powder incoming Ho-Oh, Yveltal and whatnot; and it has natural bulk to survive a lot of random physical hits.

Mega Steelix
:sm/steelix-mega:
Steelix-Mega @ Steelixite
Ability: Sturdy
EVs: 252 HP / 16 Def / 240 SpD
Careful Nature
- Fissure
- Body Press
- Iron Defense
- Rest

This looks like garbage, and it is for the most part but it's really important not to underestimate how strong Mega Steelix Body Press is. This Pokémon is able to tank common physical threats after a single boost like Necrozma-Dusk-Mane, Zygarde-C, Mega Rayquaza. 2000 Def Body Press is really difficult for the majority of the tier to handle. Additionally, Fissure is able to bust through the majority of Pokemon that Body Press can't dent such as Defensive Lunala, or special attackers attempting to switch in such as Kyogre.

Necrozma-Dawn-Wings
:sm/necrozma-dawn-wings:
Necrozma-Dawn-Wings @ Life Orb
Ability: Prism Armor
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Def / 252 SpA
Quiet Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Trick Room
- Calm Mind
- Moongeist Beam
- Power Gem

Yes, I know, the shitty Lunala. But I've found it to be quite a competent Trick Room sweeper. The majority of teams rely on Ho-Oh as a special wall, which Dawn Wings beats. It also has the capability to Dynamax and overwhelm most offensive or balance builds rather easily. With Yveltal being prominent I'd watch out on using this too early in the game, and I'd still not nominate it for the VR, but it's definitely something I'd recommend for people to try.

Xurkitree
:sm/xurkitree:
Xurkitree @ Life Orb
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Tail Glow
- Thunderbolt
- Grass Knot
- Hidden Power [Flying]

This Pokemon is really rather good if given the opportunity to use Tail Glow. It boosts Speed with Hidden Power Flying and then ruins pretty much everything. This set in particular struggles with Eternatus to an extent but you can run alternate coverage if you feel as if it needs to hit that. It does struggle to set up Tail Glow unless it forces Ho-Oh or another particularly weak Pokemon to switch out.

Zeraora
:sm/zeraora:
Zeraora @ Fairium Z
Ability: Volt Absorb
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Bulk Up
- Substitute
- Plasma Fists
- Play Rough

Underrated pick vs defensive builds. Plasma Fists + Substitute allows it to prevent Lugia, Giratina, Ho-Oh phazing, while using Bulk Up whenever it can afford to. Twinkle Tackle off of Play Rough allows it to lure in Zygarde and other Dragon-types. Not the most useful thing here by a long shot though, I wouldn't use this on any serious team.

A bunch of random gimmicks I don't care enough to allocate their own paragraph.
Gengar-Mega @ Gengarite
Ability: Shadow Tag
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Hypnosis
- Nasty Plot / Double Team
- Substitute
- Shadow Ball

Ribombee @ Focus Sash
Ability: Sweet Veil
EVs: 248 HP / 8 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Sticky Web
- Sweet Scent
- Quiver Dance
- Baton Pass

sweet scent lowers opposing evasion, hypnogar traps (set up mgar before sending in bee).
Diancie-Mega @ Diancite
Ability: Magic Bounce
EVs: 4 Atk / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
- Magnet Rise
- Diamond Storm
- Moonblast
- Earth Power

Nice anti-PDon lead, not much switches in (defensive Dusk Mane takes just about half from EP). You could probably slot SR on here somewhere if you wanted.
Kingler-Gmax @ Life Orb
Ability: Sheer Force
EVs: 120 HP / 252 Atk / 136 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Swords Dance
- Liquidation
- High Horsepower
- Guillotine / Superpower

Nothing switches in bar like MRay. Superpower can be run over Guillotine to bop Ferrothorn easier. You can dynamax a lot of random garbage and get away with it. Wouldn't advise this on any serious team.
Toxtricity-Gmax @ Assault Vest
Ability: Punk Rock
EVs: 252 HP / 252 SpD / 4 Spe
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Thunder
- Sludge Bomb
- Boomburst
- Snarl

Same logic, acts as a Xerneas check. Gets bopped by Max Quake if Xerneas carries it (it shouldn't), should be paired with Ditto to revenge opposing teams with Xerneas if need be. Wouldn't advise this on any serious team.
Alomomola (F) @ Shed Shell
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Def
Impish Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Soak
- Toxic
- Wish
- Protect

Spam Toxic, switch into physical attacks, solid PDon (not SD), Ho-Oh and Necrozma-DM check.
Blaziken @ Flyinium Z
Ability: Speed Boost
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Protect
- Mirror Move
- Stone Edge
- Baton Pass

This was a thing last generation. The main reason it sucked was because everyone knew the gimmick but now everyone's forgot about it so abuse it I guess. OHKOs PDon and MRay with Z-Mirror Move onto their strongest attacks. It's kind of just shit though.

My mind is a trainwreck, feel free to try these sets and gimmicks and experiment with them. Hopefully, this encourages people to post the other stuff they've been using, and/or to try what I've posted here. Thanks for reading.
 
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Not sure where to ask this but I'll try here: I'm new to Gen 8 and I'd like to run a team based around Ultra Necrozma. How would I build around it? What are 'mons that deal with its threats?
 
Not sure where to ask this but I'll try here: I'm new to Gen 8 and I'd like to run a team based around Ultra Necrozma. How would I build around it? What are 'mons that deal with its threats?
In the future, try:
https://www.smogon.com/forums/threa...ormation-and-simple-questions-thread.3656427/
Ultra Nec struggles a ton with the current metagame tbh. It gets absolutely destroyed by Zacian-C, Xerneas, Yveltal, Necrozma DM and Zygod. Which are the best 5 mons in the game rn. The fact it cannot Dynamax is a pain for it, as Z moves are pretty bad by comparison, especially for sweepers. More often than not if you use Ultra Nec, you'll prefer to not Ultra Burst it and leave it as Nec-DM in order to check powerful mons, but its inability to Dynamax prevents it fully checking Xern. Which means you'll probably end up running a second Necrozma DM to check these mons better (Though don't be tempted to run Nec DW, it is tragically bad). I'd say the best use for it is as a cleaner lategame, when mons can no longer Dynamax to live Light That Burns the Sky. Though you'll probably have to leave it as Nec-DM in order to set up, and its speed tier leaves something to be desired by comparison with our lord Zacian. If I was to use it, it would be a set like this:
Necrozma-Dusk-Mane @ Ultranecrozium Z
Ability: Prism Armor
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Photon Geyser
- Rock Slide/Rock Blast
- Sunsteel Strike/Outrage
Sunsteel Strike so you can actually check Xern and Zacian in the slightest in base form, Outrage is probably better and it prevents Zygod walling you to hell as long as there's no Fairies left. Rock Slide KOs Ho-Oh at +1, so you don't need Stone Edge (Though I have seen Rock Blast used to get around Lugia's Multiscale).
 
Got tired of lurking, figured I’d actually post something, have this really, really niche arceus set I’ve been running for a bit
Gaea (Arceus-Grass) @ Meadow Plate
Ability: Multitype
EVs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD
Modest Nature
- Judgment
- Defog
- Thunder Wave
- Fire Blast/Filler
Only things it really does is ruin Smeargles day, get rid of rocks for Ho-Oh, and occasionally revenge kill Pogre if it’s chipped. If you run fire blast you can chunk a Zacian-C or DM Necrozma on a switch in, that’s about it though.
Honestly have no idea what to do with Arceus at the moment, I was considering running Rock to mess with Ho-Oh because my team is weak to it ATM, but I’m not sure rn.
 
How do I lose less to dynamax Yveltal without running a Ditto? sos
Pulling a couple of quotes from the VR:
SS Yveltal is more broken and twice as hard to prepare for than ORAS Darkrai. Perhaps an exageration; however, to anyone who's played this metagame, it's abundantly clear that Yveltal is "The Threat". Dynamax Yveltal has no certain switchins unless you opt for an entirely unviable set, its most reliable check being Tyranitar, which is removed by Focus Blast or Choice Band variants which are both incredibly justifiable. A well played Dynamax Yveltal will struggle to remove less than two Pokemon from a match, and post-Max Airstream setup be difficult to stop. This movement [to S] should be a surprise to no one.
Not only does Yveltal have 0 counterplay (ttar? focusblast bye. chansey? taunt/koff bye. AV tapukoko? okay) but the best thing to do in order to have the best matchup possible vs it is... using your own yveltal and being the last to dynamax. I dont think i need to explain more, Yveltal is the most broken thing that ever touched a Smogon metagame (nvm forgot eternamax in PH) and is ridiculously good, let's stop hyping xerneas because it has geomancy, yveltal doesn't need setting up, max airstream does it for free while KOing something. If i could i would ban yveltal, what it does to all teams is just insane and you can't do nothing about it except having ur own yveltal
And btw, Ditto is not a Yveltal answer. If neither is Dmaxed, LO Yveltal Oblivion Wings it to death while healing enough to live, if both are Dmaxed it's just speed ties.
 

Ktütverde

of course
is a Top Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Former Smogon Metagame Tournament Circuit Champion
Negative Charge here's my answer to 'how to handle yveltal'.

theotherguy did a wonderful job at highlighting how stupid yveltal is, but you can still find counterplay, and that's the reason I'm posting.

First of all, i'd like to stress that building in AG must be done with a holistic approach, that is, considering your team as a whole instead of separate parts interacting. Justice doesn't exist in AG and some things like zacian and yveltal are... too much. What you have to do, is finding a way of building that let's you keep them in check, or pressured, for the entire game, or for most of the game at least. It's quite clear for zacian: teams run pdon+duskmane+zygarde+ho-oh which all keep zacian in check, so even if it can break past all of them, it very often never gets an opportunity to do so.

Offensive pressure
A good way of.. checking yveltal is using offense, with either your yveltal or xerneas. For example if you have rayquaza+pogre+zacian+dmax yveltal/xern, yveltal can never do much vs you without taking massive damage in the process. Using spdef pdon helps survive a hit from yveltal, you can even run rock tomb or twave if yveltal really annoys you too much.

Dynamax wasting techniques and soft checks
The biggest problem is when using Balance, because Zygarde and defensive duskmane are easy preys for yveltal. A good way of dealing with yveltal is having a combo like ttar+ho-oh: indeed ho-oh forces yveltal to dynamax, so you can predict the max darkness, go into ttar, and dynamax so you easily tank max knuckle and retaliate with a powerful max rockfall. Don't worry about losing your ttar or ho-oh if that's what it takes, very often you can play the rest of the game without them if the opposing yveltal is gone too.

Use Zacian
Try to use zacian as much as possible too, it's a great check to yveltal. How so? Well you can send it on a max darkness and KO with behemoth blade, and if you can't prevent the max airstream, zacian still revenge kills once dynamax is over provided yveltal couldn't set up the sun beforehand.

Protect
A special mention goes to a nice tech in Protect. Protect zacian is a great set (makes ur ditto matchup 100x better and can waste a dmax turn) and protect ho-oh is usable too to waste dmax turns (get rid of defog if u have spikes in ur team or remove whirlwind if u have something else for smeargle/coil zygarde).

Chansey?
Finally, spdef chansey is a cool niche mon (that i dont recommend at all because it's very easy to pressure it: any physical attack dents it beyond repair, even weaker ones like ho-oh sacred fire), but chansey is a HARD COUNTER to non-taunt/knockoff dynamax yveltal and Xerneas.
A calc: +2 252+ SpA Fairy Aura Xerneas Moonblast vs. 248 HP / 252+ SpD Eviolite Chansey: 291-343 (41.3 - 48.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

you just have to spam seismic toss vs xerneas and toxic stall yveltal!

I hope my post helped!
 
Protect
A special mention goes to a nice tech in Protect. Protect zacian is a great set (makes ur ditto matchup 100x better and can waste a dmax turn)
100% agree with this. In fact, I've run Swords Dance Protect Zacian to break down teams while being Imposter-proof. Mega Gar Improofs your Fighting move, then you just choose another move your team can handle (I like Wild Charge for very easy Improofing and you don't miss a STAB that much when firing off Swords Dance boosted moves). Though I would also avoid chansey, as to make it a decent check you have to not invest in your physical side, which means one unexpected coverage move eats you alive.
 

Kate

Metamodernity
is a Past SCL Champion
Hey, so I've been thinking about this for ~3 days now, and I think this is something I want to put out there. There's been a lot of talk about Yveltal, but obviously as AG, we can't rly do anything about it. This mon warps the meta so much it's kinda insane, shit like ttar and chansey are horrible, horrible mons that get most of their niche from Yveltal. Oh, by the way, it can easily beat both with a given set, and band curb stomps both of them. It's easily the worst thing AG has ever seen, and y'all know how I think of ORAS. There's basically two schools of thought here and one is what I would prefer:

1. Do nothing/wait for DLC
This is what we're currently doing, and honestly it's p much all we can do. As AG it rly sucks to be put in this position but it's not as if we can ban Yveltal. Right?

2. "Smeargle" Clause
As you all may be aware of, Smeargle(especially last gen) is an incredibly uncompetitive mon, and most high level tourn matches would usually gentleman to not bring it. It may not always be said, but the fact is no one was bringing smeargle cheese even if it could net them a free win. Part of this is that smeargle ruins the fun of a match; no one likes a game p much being out of their control from turn 1. It also ruined spectating a game. High level tournament matches are stuff people love to watch, and seeing someone bring bp and have the game be monotonous with absolutely no plays being made is stupid. Essentially what I'm saying is we should be more open-minded to agreeing to no Yveltal in tours. It's completely different than Smeargle yet you can draw a lot of parallels. People are kinda hesitant to do this because it seems like a "legit" mon, but deep down we all know how you're already preparing to lose some mons to it once you see it at preview. Obviously this isn't fixing much, but I hope by introducing this "clause" more in tournaments, we can seek to have matches that more accurately reflect the better player.
 
Hey, so I've been thinking about this for ~3 days now, and I think this is something I want to put out there. There's been a lot of talk about Yveltal, but obviously as AG, we can't rly do anything about it. This mon warps the meta so much it's kinda insane, shit like ttar and chansey are horrible, horrible mons that get most of their niche from Yveltal. Oh, by the way, it can easily beat both with a given set, and band curb stomps both of them. It's easily the worst thing AG has ever seen, and y'all know how I think of ORAS. There's basically two schools of thought here and one is what I would prefer:

1. Do nothing/wait for DLC
This is what we're currently doing, and honestly it's p much all we can do. As AG it rly sucks to be put in this position but it's not as if we can ban Yveltal. Right?

2. "Smeargle" Clause
As you all may be aware of, Smeargle(especially last gen) is an incredibly uncompetitive mon, and most high level tourn matches would usually gentleman to not bring it. It may not always be said, but the fact is no one was bringing smeargle cheese even if it could net them a free win. Part of this is that smeargle ruins the fun of a match; no one likes a game p much being out of their control from turn 1. It also ruined spectating a game. High level tournament matches are stuff people love to watch, and seeing someone bring bp and have the game be monotonous with absolutely no plays being made is stupid. Essentially what I'm saying is we should be more open-minded to agreeing to no Yveltal in tours. It's completely different than Smeargle yet you can draw a lot of parallels. People are kinda hesitant to do this because it seems like a "legit" mon, but deep down we all know how you're already preparing to lose some mons to it once you see it at preview. Obviously this isn't fixing much, but I hope by introducing this "clause" more in tournaments, we can seek to have matches that more accurately reflect the better player.
This is stupid
 
Hey, so I've been thinking about this for ~3 days now, and I think this is something I want to put out there. There's been a lot of talk about Yveltal, but obviously as AG, we can't rly do anything about it. This mon warps the meta so much it's kinda insane, shit like ttar and chansey are horrible, horrible mons that get most of their niche from Yveltal. Oh, by the way, it can easily beat both with a given set, and band curb stomps both of them. It's easily the worst thing AG has ever seen, and y'all know how I think of ORAS. There's basically two schools of thought here and one is what I would prefer:

1. Do nothing/wait for DLC
This is what we're currently doing, and honestly it's p much all we can do. As AG it rly sucks to be put in this position but it's not as if we can ban Yveltal. Right?

2. "Smeargle" Clause
As you all may be aware of, Smeargle(especially last gen) is an incredibly uncompetitive mon, and most high level tourn matches would usually gentleman to not bring it. It may not always be said, but the fact is no one was bringing smeargle cheese even if it could net them a free win. Part of this is that smeargle ruins the fun of a match; no one likes a game p much being out of their control from turn 1. It also ruined spectating a game. High level tournament matches are stuff people love to watch, and seeing someone bring bp and have the game be monotonous with absolutely no plays being made is stupid. Essentially what I'm saying is we should be more open-minded to agreeing to no Yveltal in tours. It's completely different than Smeargle yet you can draw a lot of parallels. People are kinda hesitant to do this because it seems like a "legit" mon, but deep down we all know how you're already preparing to lose some mons to it once you see it at preview. Obviously this isn't fixing much, but I hope by introducing this "clause" more in tournaments, we can seek to have matches that more accurately reflect the better player.
Anything Goes

I'm honestly here for the cheese, overcentralization, and broken shit. Literally every other tier other than Pure Hackmons and VGC/BSS has helicopter moderation and tiering. Please no. This is the sandbox tier, leave it alone.
 
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It's honestly a shame Steel Beam isn't being distributed automatically to Steels, since they seem to all be able to learn it much like Dragons learn Draco Meteor...

Anyway, once it does drop, this set should be interesting:
Dialga @ Adamant Orb / Life Orb
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 248 HP / 252 SpA / 8 SpD
Quiet Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Trick Room
- Steel Beam
- Roar of Time / Draco Meteor
- Fire Blast / Stealth Rock

As a Trick Room abuser, Dialga brings perfect neutral coverage in Steel-Dragon-Fire coverage and a defensive typing with weaknesses that are easily anticipated and worked around given Dialga moves first and strikes with enough power to KO the foe with a STAB attack or super effective Fire Blast.
Unfortunately, my experience with TR Dialga thus far has been disappointing thanks to the shitty power of Flash Cannon and Dragon Pulse compared to moves that other more popular mons use, and dropping flash cannon means that you're effectively wasting its ideal steel-dragon-fire combo. Well, Steel Beam changes everything:
  • Dialga has the most powerful unboosted Steel Beam of all Pokemon that can Dynamax courtesy of its 150 Special Attack, the highest Special Attack of all Steel types.
  • Steel Beam allows Dialga to kill itself to gain momentum while taking a nasty dent out of pretty much any mon that's unfortunate enough to have to take it. If it kills itself directly after setting Trick Room, you can just send in another abuser for free.
  • Dynamax allows Dialga to circumvent Steel Beam's unfortunate drawback in order to use it as a temporary sweeping tool.
  • With a powerful spammable Steel STAB, Dialga can more easily afford to run less spammable but much more powerful Dragon-type STAB moves to complement it. To boot, Dynamax finally gives Dialga a way to remove Roar of Time's crippling recharge penalty while retaining all of its power, allowing it to be actually considered for a set for once.
Here, Steel Beam is used as a powerful Steel-type special move that hits significantly harder than Flash Cannon ever could, and a powerful Dragon-type STAB move is used to maximize Dialga's power under Dynamax. Because Dialga does not set terrain or weather in order to help it sweep, it needs maximum power on its moves in order to effectively pick up kills, and Roar of Time and Draco Meteor are fine options to complement the power of Steel Beam. Roar of Time offers a 150 BP Max Wyrmwind, but Draco Meteor can instead trade power for being at all practical to use outside of Dynamax and 1v1 scenarios, though some benchmarks are lost unless Life Orb is ran.

Adamant Orb boosts Dialga's main nukes without incurring recoil, potentially letting it use more Steel Beams. Life Orb can still be used, and picks up many kills that would otherwise require Stealth Rock without the hazard needing to be up while also powering up Fire Blast, something that Adamant Orb doesn't do.

Outside of Dynamax, Dialga should aim to set up Trick Room before KOing itself with Steel Beam.

252+ SpA Adamant Orb Dialga Steel Beam vs. +2 0 HP / 0 SpD Xerneas: 342-404 (87 - 102.7%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Adamant Orb Dialga Steel Beam vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Zacian-Crowned: 297-351 (91.1 - 107.6%) -- 81.3% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Adamant Orb Dialga Steel Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Yveltal: 340-402 (86.5 - 102.2%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock

252+ SpA Adamant Orb Dialga Steel Beam vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Tyranitar in Sand: 320-380 (79.2 - 94%) -- 50% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Adamant Orb Dialga Steel Beam vs. 240 HP / 0 SpD Arceus: 286-337 (64.8 - 76.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

252+ SpA Adamant Orb Dialga Roar of Time vs. 252 HP / 8 SpD Groudon-Primal: 388-457 (96 - 113.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Adamant Orb Dialga Roar of Time vs. 252 HP / 52 SpD Ho-Oh: 237-280 (56.9 - 67.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

252+ SpA Dialga Fire Blast vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 204-241 (51.2 - 60.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery

252+ SpA Life Orb Dialga Steel Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Dynamax Xerneas: 741-873 (94.2 - 111%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Life Orb Dialga Steel Beam vs. 240 HP / 0 SpD Arceus: 309-367 (70 - 83.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252+ SpA Life Orb Dialga Roar of Time vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Yveltal: 395-465 (100.5 - 118.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO
252+ SpA Life Orb Dialga Roar of Time vs. 252 HP / 220 SpD Groudon-Primal: 339-399 (83.9 - 98.7%) -- 75% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
 
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zacian band.jpg

Has anyone had any success with Choice Band Zacian? It obviously requires quite a bit of prediction but the calcs are quite nice

+1 252+ Atk Choice Band Zacian Play Rough vs. 0 HP / 168 Def Fairy Aura Xerneas: 426-502 (108.3 - 127.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO VS
252+ Atk Choice Band Rayquaza-Mega Dragon Ascent vs. 0 HP / 168 Def Xerneas: 364-429 (92.6 - 109.1%) -- 56.3% chance to OHKO (this calc is more to demonstrate the power of a neutral stab than merit vs Crowned which would just use Behomoth Blade)
------------
+1 252+ Atk Choice Band Zacian Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 56+ Def Groudon-Primal: 187-221 (46.2 - 54.7%) -- 61.3% chance to 2HKO VS
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 56+ Def Groudon-Primal: 153-181 (37.8 - 44.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO (this is a super nice calc but I also have no idea what the normal fat Pdon spreads are rn)
------------
+1 252+ Atk Choice Band Zacian Crunch vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 196-232 (49.2 - 58.2%) -- 64.8% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery VS
+1 252+ Atk Zacian-Crowned Crunch vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Prism Armor Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 160-190 (40.2 - 47.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
 
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MZ

And now for something completely different
is a Site Content Manager Alumnusis a Top Team Rater Alumnusis a Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Community Leader Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Top Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Top Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
+1 252+ Atk Choice Band Zacian Play Rough vs. 0 HP / 168 Def Fairy Aura Xerneas: 426-502 (108.3 - 127.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO VS
252+ Atk Choice Band Rayquaza-Mega Dragon Ascent vs. 0 HP / 168 Def Xerneas: 364-429 (92.6 - 109.1%) -- 56.3% chance to OHKO (this calc is more to demonstrate the power of a neutral stab than merit vs Crowned which would just use Behomoth Blade)
Fairy Aura boosts all the Pokemon on the field. If you simply change Xerneas's ability or calc vs a better neutral target, it's clear that CB Zacian is strong but not as strong as Megaray.
Since posts that only nitpick are bad, in the time I did spend playing this meta I found that CB Zacian and similar wallbreakers just weren't all that amazing outside of Dynamax mixups, which this doesn't get to use. When you have a meta with bonkers sweepers like Yveltal or DD Unecro or whatever running around, the need to always predict perfectly is compounded by the fact that even if you do call out their Necrozma-DM with coverage Crunch, that's leaving you setup fodder for a lot of mons. Other choice wallbreakers just don't quite incur the same risk because they can Dynamax to swap moves, have better STABs so comparatively few things set up on them (lots of random stuff resists Play Rough), or their coverage is also stupid strong so it doesn't matter (like CB Ray V-Create). I'm fairly sure there's some kind of niche for this thing, it looks usable anyway as long as your team can handle it being setup fodder to a wide variety of threats, but I think leaving its problem as just one of prediction is overselling this. Even if you predict perfectly there may not be a right answer.
Yes I wrote all of this to justify the Fairy Aura thing really bothering my nitpick sensibilities.
 
zygarde gogs.jpg

So is Safety Goggles Zygarde generally the best anti-cheese? Immune to Spore and Nuzzle and can run Haze or Dragon Tail. In a tier with no sleep or species clause I'm sure we've all bumped into random Smeargle Spore / Baton Pass teams that can generally wreck normal meta builds. Should we be building in something for cheese on normal teams? What have you guys been doing? People who run cheese, what generally stops your strategy cold?
 
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Geysers

not a sphere
is a Community Contributoris a Team Rater Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
View attachment 230368
So is Safety Goggles Zygarde generally the best anti-cheese? Immune to Spore and Nuzzle and can run Haze or Dragon Tail. In a tier with no sleep or species clause I'm sure we've all bumped into random Smeargle Spore / Baton Pass teams that can generally wreck normal meta builds. Should we be building in something for cheese on normal teams? What have you guys been doing? People who run cheese, what generally stops your strategy cold?
Bread Sandwich I think this question is aimed at you. So this isn‘t a 1 liner, I tend to run goggles haze rest glare arrows zyg on basically every team I build for natdex ag. The sheer volume of smeargles renders this a near-necessity, and it’s an incredibly effective way of preventing cheese. Imo, this is its best set, at least for ladder. And yes, if you’re playing on ladder or playing vs bread guy, you definitely need to build for cheese.
 
Let's talk about Z-moves! I feel like there plenty of room for innovation. Here's Zacain using Black Hole Eclipse to blow up Dusk Mane. Most people assume you're banded if you're running regular Zacain so they try and switch around, giving you free SDs. Zacain would have 6-0'd in the second game if not for Play Rough miss.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1085834966
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1085843969

many games I don't see either player use a Z-move! There's obviously more risk this gen in wasting a Z-move because almost everything can potentially Dynamax and/or use Max Guard but the other way of looking at it is you can make your opponent waste their Dynamax early.

has anyone had any success with anything beyond Solganium Z or Ultranecrozium Z?
 
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Kate

Metamodernity
is a Past SCL Champion
Heatran v2 (Yveltal) @ Life Orb
Ability: Dark Aura
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpA / 252 Spe
Naughty Nature
- Sky Attack
- Knock Off
- Steel Wing
- Hidden Power [Ice]

I've gone ahead and created another insanely good Yveltal set. Basically, I combined both Band and regular LO to create a set that demolishes all of their checks. Sky Attack and Koff form a potent dynamax combo that can be seen with the regular set. Steel Wing is here for TTar, plus it allows you to beat zacian if you have acquired a speed boost by virtue of the defense boost on Steelspike. Hp Ice is here for Zygod. There's legit no way to stop this from getting kills most games, counterplay is once again reduced to using your dmax or stalling it out and hoping your support arc is healthy enough. Hopefully easier to use than Band, and offers a mix up from the standard set. Hope you all enjoy!
 
Let's talk about Z-moves! I feel like there plenty of room for innovation. Here's Zacain using Black Hole Eclipse to blow up Dusk Mane. Most people assume you're banded if you're running regular Zacain so they try and switch around, giving you free SDs. Zacain would have 6-0'd in the second game if not for Play Rough miss.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1085834966
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8nationaldexag-1085843969

many games I don't see either player use a Z-move! There's obviously more risk this gen in wasting a Z-move because almost everything can potentially Dynamax and/or use Max Guard but the other way of looking at it is you can make your opponent waste their Dynamax early.

has anyone had any success with anything beyond Solganium Z or Ultranecrozium Z?
On a subject I thought of earlier...
List of viable Z-move users
Eternatus
(Cannot Dynamax, so Z moves are its best bet for blowing past the sturdiest walls, and it has a truly Devastating Drake. However, it often prefers to outlast/slowly overwhelm opposing walls rather than blow through them.)
Arceus-Ground (Not a good Dynamaxer, but often needs to in order to defensively check certain threats/not get trapped by Mega Gar. From a purely offensive standpoint, Tectonic Rage is natural, but the consistent power of a Plate is good.)
Lunala (Another weak Dynamaxer, with a signature Z move, but usually needs to hold Boots rather than Lunaluim Z)
Arceus-Ghost (Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure a Z move coming off Shadow Force is the only reason this thing's offensive sets are ok. Edit: I'm wrong lol, even this is listed as Spooky Plate in the set compendium.)
Necrozma-Ultra (Forced to)
Other Arceus forms (Can't be bothered to list every one of them with an offensive set, same story, they like other items more.)
Zacian (Again, cannot Dynamax, but is better off Choiced on most offensive sets. Swords Dance to go with it sounds neat though, but this is theory.)
Kyurem-B (Already niche mon and a bad Dynamaxer.)
Would run a Z move, but prefers Dynamax
Yveltal
(Darkium/Flyinium weren't terrible last gen, but weren't exactly optimal. With Max Air being as OP as it is, this should never run a Z move again.)
Necrozma-Dusk-Mane (Solgalium Z is waste of this thing's surprisingly potent semi-defensive Dynamax. With Max Guard to stall out opposing Dynas, Weakness Policy to exploit its ability to take absurd SE hits while Dyna'd, QuakeSpike {copyrighting that right now} to raise both its defences... Yeah. This thing is the 3rd best Dyna mon in the game, which makes Ultra Nec sad.)
Excadrill (QuakeSpike compensates for its terrible defenses, Rockfall lets it set its own sand... Yeah. While it's mainly on the VR as a suicide lead, the Sand Rush set can be a good sleeper pick in the right situations, probably D rank level. SD 3 Attacks blows holes in pretty much everything not called ZyGod under sand. Hard stopped by Primals and Mega Ray though. Dyna or a Z move is pretty mandatory to do anything to tougher opposing mons.)
Kartana (pretty self-explanatory if you looked at OU when Dyna was legal.)
Dugtrio (needs Dyna or a Z move to actually trap things lol)
Naganadel (Yep.)
And that's the lot. Tell me if any of this is inaccurate or there's any mons I missed, because I really want a clear picture of how good/bad Z moves are RN.
 
I haven't played the gen 8 meta too much yet, but I wanted to give some initial thoughts.

Dynamax Abusers:
:yveltal: Oh wow, Yveltal is insane this gen. It is by far the best user of the new mechanic, as everyone else has said. Max Airstream is broken on its own, but add in a nuke in Darkness Aura Max Darkness and it's not even fair. With Max Flare to cover otherwise problematic mons it's almost unwallable... which still leaves it with one flexible slot to play with. Sucker Punch let's you pick off weakened Dusk-Mane and Ultra Necrozma, while also nuking Chansey if you're Dynamaxed ( 4 Atk Life Orb Dark Aura Yveltal Max Darkness vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Eviolite Chansey: 967-1139 (137.3 - 161.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO ). Focus Blast is pretty much only useful for Tyranitar, but it's one of the very, very few mons that could otherwise wall you. Then you also have more niche options like Hidden Power Rock for Spdef Ho-Oh, but that doesn't seem worth it at first glance. Dark Pulse is still a 3HKO and I'm sure anyone who played against Ash-Greninja in OU last gen knows what that means.
Banded seems like a worse choice overall, but still tremendously powerful. It's probably more threatening to defensive builds, since it blitzes through stuff like Tyranitar.

:xerneas: Ok, so Max Starfall is an insane nuke that allows you to smash Primal Ground and status immunity is incredible... but Yveltal is just so broken that running this feels quite underwhelming by comparison. It has way more checks depending on your last move (typically HP Fire) and unlike Yveltal, who just starts killing everything in sight, Xerneas needs to find a nice, comfy setup opportunity. In a meta game filled with Dusk-Mane, Mega-Rayquaza and Zacian-Crowned, that is not so simple. Speaking of Dusk-Mane, it is still the best Xerneas check in the game. Defensive, Trick Room and DD can all check it with different levels of consistency, and that pokemon is everywhere.

:necrozma-dusk-mane: Weakness Policy Dusk-Mane has always been a thing, but it was mostly passed over by Solganium-Z. Now with Dynamaxing, it certainly seems like the superior choice, with how bulky this pokemon already is. I have to say, I am pleasantly surprised by how effective the Trick Room set is. Not only can it reverse sweep weakened teams at a drop of a hat, it can setup a kill on Dynamaxed Xerneas without using up its own, thanks to the effects of Trick Room letting Zacian-Crowned/Mega-Rayquaza come in and finish the job.
Unrelated to Dynamaxing, but the defensive set is even more amazing than before, now checking Zacian-Crowned on top of everything it already did. Ultra Necrozma seems... eh, as it did last gen.

Sweepers/Wallbreakers:
:rayquaza-mega: This may not be the top mon anymore (thanks Yveltal), but I do genuinely think it is the second best mon in the tier, slightly above Dusk-Mane and Zacian-Crowned. There is nothing in the entire game that safely switches in on this, with the DracoQuaza (why is it called mixed when it runs one special attack?) and even the Banded sets being virtually unwallable. It also 1v1s pretty much every mon, with a couple of exceptions such as Zacian-C, of course. As for the sets themselves, from best to worst:
DracoQuaza: Easily its best set. Dragon Ascend+V-Create+Draco Meteor tear the meta-game apart, while not having to worry about being locked into the wrong move. Smashes Pdon, Zygarde, Ho-Oh, Dusk-Mane, SupportCeus and so on, while forcing defensive Dynamaxing more than any other pokemon (very abusable, as I'm sure we all know). ExtremeSpeed can pick off post-Dynamax Yveltal, opposing Mega Rayquazas, Ultra Necrozmas, ...
BandQuaza: Similar, but not as consistent in my view, due to the prediction reliance.
DD: Eh, not feeling it in the current meta-game. It's usually better off just firing an attack then attempting to sweep. Still really good, nonetheless.
SD: Pretty janky pick, but can catch people off guard I suppose.
Scarf: Why is this a thing. It wasn't good in gen 6, it wasn't good in gen 7 and it still isn't good. It trades off so many advantages for what? Outspeeding Zacian-Crowned and letting the opponent switch to a SupportCeus with no fear?

:zacian-crowned: Absolutely incredible. Outspeeds and kills almost everything in its path. In all honesty though, I don't get the hype for Sub, like, what are you even setting up on? Ferrothorn and... yeah that's it (and that pokemon shouldn't even get as much usage as it does). I get that it helps with the Ditto matchup, but I don't think it's something you can count on. It can technically go for it if you read a switch, but that can be unreliable, as opposed to the prospect of having 4 coverage moves to make your opponent crumble. Protect seems like a more reliable option, although still inferior to 4 attacks. Speaking of that, Play Rough or Crunch? One stomps Zygarde, the other helps with defensive Dusk-Mane (but be careful to scout and not to use it on an offensive one and get reverse swept by Weakness Policy lol).

Defensive Glue:
:zygarde-complete: Yup, stil a beast defensively. I have been really liking the new meta pick of Safety Goggles with Thousand Arrows/Glare/Rest/Haze, but other people have already talked about why it's so good. I just wanna echo what has been said and claim this as the second best defensive mon, besides Dusk-Mane of course.
I still find the offensive set (Thousand Arrows/Dragon Tail/Dragon Dance/Substitute) to be underwhelming and overly reliant on bad building decisions (like running 2 Supportceus, neither with Ice Beam or Will-O-Wisp). It's not bad, but overhypped.

:ho-oh: Best Deffogger in the business. It can struggle to keep rocks off against Defensive Dusk-Mane, but it pretty much beats every other Rock Setter in the long term, if you play it safe. Also soft checks a lot of top threats, including Zacian-Crowned (you have to be really, really healthy though). It can sometimes be a bit unreliable in the checking department however, thanks to the nuisance that is Stone Edge.

:groudon-primal: Is it just me or is this somewhat underwhelming this gen? It can technically check Zacian-Crowned, but if your opponent is smart enough to run Adamant, you can get into kill range very easily. It also struggles at checking Dusk-Mane, since the defensive set beats it long term (you can run Rest, but that is very exploitable on this mon) and the offensive sets can tank a hit and happily receive a Weakness Policy boost. Couple this with the weakness to Mega Rayquaza and, while a very strong pokemon, I do not think it is as essential as last time.

Still as good as ever. I'll go against the norm and say it is currently the best Supportceus. Judgment/Ice Beam/Will-O-Wisp/Recover is looking really nice, though there's certainly room for discussion moveset wise (Toxic and Defog say hi), as there always is with this pokemon.

Really good, but it's a very shakey answer to all the things it is supposed to check not named Zygarde.

My Initial Rankings:


S+
:yveltal:

S
:rayquaza-mega:
:necrozma-dusk-mane:
:zacian-crowned:

A+
:zygarde-complete:
:xerneas:

A
:ho-oh:

A-

:groudon-primal:
:ditto:
 
One of my favorite things about AG is messing with species clause. Obviously most people think Arceus but I've done a lot of experimenting on combos of dual Zacian-C and/or regular Zacian. I really like running an Adamant and Jolly Zacian C (Can we just use the name ZaCian?)on the same team, it almost feels unfair. The Adamant one is four attacks and the Jolly one has Substitute for random cheese/ random Darkrai/ random Mewtwo Y. Having two is also super nice because you can play really aggressively. In general, overloading your team improves your matchup with some builds at the cost of others but I feel like Zacian-C really is a no-compromise mon, what was GF thinking! In general my only complaint with Zacian-C is how sometimes you're a bit fucked if your opponent has a live ditto and your Dusk-Mane is weak/dead. I'm praying GF goes totally insane and gives it Double Iron Bash for an event. Plz GF.

As a side note, more people should run ferrothorn. It's just a good glue and really annoys support arceus, defensive dusk mane & kyogre. It draws in Ho-Oh and Pdon easily and you can knock/ seed em /toxic on the switch so you don't lose momentum. Use this thing more! It's also a nice insurance mon for random passive blobs late game like Chansey or Lugia. Having something naturally spore-proof is also good because there are so few usable grass types.
 
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gen 7 thread is locked so i have to post in the inferior meta thread

:mimikyu::cottonee::solosis:How To Build Fear (for gen 7):pineco::togedemaru::taillow:

k so full fear is a strat. also it is bad, let me explain how you can take this garbage playstyle and make it good. think of it as an agl rmt.
first, we're gonna explain why the standard 6 rat strat is bad
:rattata::rattata::rattata::rattata::rattata::rattata:
Rattata @ Focus Sash
Ability: Run Away
Level: 1
EVs: 228 Atk / 100 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Endeavor
- Quick Attack

Rattata @ Focus Sash
Ability: Run Away
Level: 1
EVs: 228 Atk / 100 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Endeavor
- Quick Attack

Rattata @ Focus Sash
Ability: Run Away
Level: 1
EVs: 228 Atk / 100 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Endeavor
- Quick Attack

Rattata @ Focus Sash
Ability: Run Away
Level: 1
EVs: 228 Atk / 100 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Endeavor
- Quick Attack

Rattata @ Focus Sash
Ability: Run Away
Level: 1
EVs: 228 Atk / 100 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Endeavor
- Quick Attack

Rattata @ Focus Sash
Ability: Run Away
Level: 1
EVs: 228 Atk / 100 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Endeavor
- Quick Attack
"standard" fear, also it loses to everything, you don't want your fear to autolose the second priority, hazards, a ghost, or a multi hit user appears. you can do better. hazards are on like every team and if they don't have hazards it's a random ash team so they have ashgren or decidueye. priority guaranteed kills a rat unless it's sneak and if they guarantee kill a rat it's an autoloss because there is no way for a rat to claim multiple kills without the opponent making mistakes. if they have a bad team you might wanna keep playing tho in case they do. even if it's not an autoloss mu the opponent can random proc a poison or burn and win. you definitely don't want that.

anyway let's learn about the two different fear archetypes and the potential fear mons we can use

Standard Fear
standard fear is you know standard. i'll explain what standard is later when we get into the mons.

Sand Fear
you abuse sand with stuff like aron and togedemaru and beat the opponent to death, prob the best fear archetype. make sure all your mons are sand immune tho

let's talk about the mons now, starting with mons on standard fear

:mimikyu::solosis::banette-mega:
the first thing you need on standard fear is a suicide lead tr setter, tr setting is very important to kick up momentum and activate your wincon, it's a suicide lead setter because suicide leads allow safe switches. also the suicide lead must have all of tr, dbond, and taunt, or a way to threaten the opponent otherwise

mimikyu.gif

Mimikyu @ Focus Sash / Mental Herb
Ability: Disguise
Level: 1
EVs: 236 SpD
Sassy Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Trick Room
- Destiny Bond
- Taunt
- Infestation / Pain Split

mimi is the best suicide lead on standard fear because of disguise. disguise allows a free hit even after status chip, which is legendary. it gets the perfect movepool to abuse tr lead as well, notably having pain split, which allows mimi to go back to sash after status chip and punish switchins. infestation is better though because instead of punishing switchins you can just trap the mon in front of you. infestation should always be used with focus sash because by the time they get you to sash you have a free turn to use taunt/infestation. also a lot of leads like to set rocks on mimi so you have a good opportunity to infestation. pain split should be run with mental herb cause you spend your free turn doing nothing

solosis.gif

Solosis (M) @ Focus Sash
Ability: Magic Guard
Level: 1
EVs: 236 SpA
Sassy Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Trick Room
- Endeavor
- Infestation
- Magic Coat

solosis is an option over mimikyu for two reasons. the first being magic guard, and the second being magic coat. solosis can also potentially claim several kills but it can't guarantee a kill like mimi can. magic guard makes you immune to all of the toxic wow seed that gets spammed against leads which is really nice and allows for free turns cause a lot of people forget that solosis has magic guard. magic coat bounces taunt and rocks and is super rewarding and also lets you beat lead aero a lot easier.

banette-mega.gif

Banette @ Banettite
Ability: Cursed Body
Level: 37
EVs: 244 Atk / 20 Def / 244 Spe
Jolly Nature
IVs: 0 HP / 0 Atk
- Trick Room
- Destiny Bond
- Taunt
- Infestation

bane is really inconsistent and predict heavy and shouldn't really be used on standard fear but it has the ability to defeat every multi hit user except ash greninja and some priority users with prank dbond, which no other pokemon can do reliably. bane rarely gets the actual tr up and is just used to get a free kill but w/e. only use bane if you know exactly what you're doing

:solosis::pineco::donphan::bounsweet:
next you need the spin combo for hazards. this involves solosis and a rapid spin user. the solosis set is literally the exact same thing as above, so i won't repost it. the point of the strat is to use trick room with solosis, endeavor at 1 HP, die and bring in your spinner, then use spin and go first and kill them and also remove the hazards.

pineco.gif

Pineco (M) @ Berry Juice
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 1
EVs: 156 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Toxic
- Toxic Spikes
- Rapid Spin
- Pain Split

pineco is the best spinner in the game. this is because it has sturdy pain split, which allows it to heal after being hit by rocks by going first and using pain split. tspikes is also the main wincon for pineco. you want to set 1 because base poison will do 12% on the first hit compared to toxic which will do 6% on the first hit. toxic is to hit the thing that you just set tspikes on because it lets pineco kill that too. no witnesses allowed.

donphan.gif

Donphan @ Chesto Berry
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 25
EVs: 244 HP / 244 Atk / 20 SpD
Adamant Nature
- Endeavor
- Knock Off
- Rapid Spin
- Rest

on fear donphan can do all sorts of stuff and isn't restricted to being a spinner. donphan's main advantage is killing opponents much quicker, with some side stuff like knock and one time status heal. chesto rest is required otherwise donphan just gets killed because rocks. endeavor and spin are obvious, and knock off removes leftovers which is a really big deal because lefties prevent chip. especially if the lefties mon is immune to poison. and no you can't use phanpy it doesn't get spin

bounsweet.gif

Bounsweet @ Focus Sash
Ability: Oblivious
Level: 1
EVs: 20 Spe
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Endeavor
- Rapid Spin
- Toxic / Feint
- Synthesis

bounsweet is an available option if you want an oblivious spinner. synthesis is there to heal off rocks chip. toxic is for the finishing residual damage in case they use status moves. feint gives bounsweet utility outside of trick room. i'd say toxic is better but the choice is yours.

:togedemaru::aron:(:magnemite::cottonee::pineco::morelull::smeargle:)
now you need a wincon so all of that buildup meant something. togedemaru and aron are the only real wincons, but i put the ones that you can win with but aren't really wincons in parentheses. these will be discussed later.

togedemaru.gif

Togedemaru @ Shell Bell
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 1
EVs: 1 HP
Jolly Nature
- Fake Out
- Endeavor
- U-turn
- Spiky Shield

this little rodent is the best fear wincon easily. it's also the one you're going to use the most, considering it's the best one. the point of this set is that togedemaru takes an attack, survives due to sturdy, then uses endeavor and heals back to full because of shell bell. due to the toxic spikes that have been laid, the opponent dies from the poison. togedemaru can actually bypass stealth rock, as it deals 1 damage due to togedemaru resisting rocks. then it can use fake out and heal 1 hp, getting back to full health. you can also use fake out to get two guaranteed protect turns if you need to toxic stall. spiky shield allows you to pick up a kill on the other side even without tspikes, and also you can use it if you need to stall. u-turn is just for when you need to confirm a kill end game, and allows a safe switch as well.

aron.gif

Aron @ Shell Bell
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 1
EVs: 36 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Endeavor
- Protect
- Sandstorm / Roar
- Toxic / Roar

there are a couple tools aron has over togedemaru. the main niche over togedemaru is that aron isn't reliant on tspikes, as it can set sandstorm. it also has roar to force opponents out, though toxic is a generally better choice. you can put roar over sandstorm however if you don't have a defogger such as cottonee. besides this aron pretty much plays exactly how togedemaru plays except without fake out utility.

:pineco::cottonee::taillow::donphan::magnemite::maractus::probopass::swinub::tsareena::morelull::smeargle::salandit:
then you realize you have two more slots, and with these two slots you have to fill up as much utility as possible. get ready. not reposting pineco but if you picked donphan or bounsweet as your spinner use pineco in one of the utility slots to set toxic spikes.

cottonee.gif

Cottonee @ Focus Sash
Ability: Prankster
Level: 1
EVs: 196 Def / 148 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Leech Seed
- Substitute
- Encore
- Endeavor / Defog

leech seed is nice. fix togedemaru after a uturn, guarantee magnemite kills something, etc. prank encore is god because free hard switches. endeavor lets cottonee kill stuff in 2 turns like a gamer but defog is defog and sometimes you just gotta use it

taillow.gif

Taillow @ Focus Sash
Ability: Scrappy
Level: 1
EVs: 236 Atk / 36 SpD
Jolly Nature
- Endeavor
- Quick Attack
- Toxic
- Pursuit

it's rattata but with scrappy. this makes a huge difference as taillow is one of the few fear mons that can 1v1 mega gengar and aegislash. random anti ghost is the best thing fear could have ever asked for.

donphan.gif

Donphan @ Rocky Helmet
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 25
EVs: 244 HP / 244 Atk / 20 SpD
Adamant Nature
- Endeavor
- Ice Shard
- Knock Off
- Toxic

as said before donphan can be more than just a spinner. here its niche lies in sturdy helmet and knock off. we already know what knock off does, but rocky helmet sturdy makes killing stuff like ferrothorn actually plausible. and no you still can't use phanpy it doesn't get sturdy

magnemite.gif

Magnemite @ Berry Juice
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 1
EVs: 116 Def / 236 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Toxic
- Protect
- Recycle
- Volt Switch

we all know magnemite. it trashes everything that isn't immune to toxic. on fear it's especially useful with volt switch to pivot out and not be completely wasted like togedemaru, and it forms a very strong core with cottonee, only missing out on ferrothorn, mega venusaur, and mega gengar. again volt switch, because it gives teammates free switchins and everything that does that is good.

maractus.gif

Maractus @ Focus Sash
Ability: Water Absorb
Level: 1
EVs: 140 SpD / 196 Spe
Careful Nature
- Endeavor
- Sucker Punch
- Knock Off
- Leech Seed / Toxic

maractus only reaches true potential when paired with mega banette, but mega banette sucks and you can definitely use this without it. the purpose of it is to beat water shuriken greninja with water absorb. maractus was specifically chosen because it is the only pokemon that has a water-immune ability, endeavor, a priority move, and can legally be level 1. it also has a leech seed immunity which is pretty nice. speaking of leech seed, it gets that too, so you can support your electric steels with it.

probopass.gif

Probopass @ Berry Juice
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 2
EVs: 116 Def / 76 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Pain Split
- Magic Coat
- Toxic
- Taunt

probopass is a sturdy pain split man. there are three reasons to use probopass over pineco. the first is that it gets taunt and magic coat. this means that it can stop opposing status. the second one is that it's immune to poison. this prevents toxic chip and also saves you if you get your toxic bounced. the third reason is that it is immune to sand, though the explanation for that one is for another time. the problem is that it doesn't have tspikes and spin so you need someone else to do the spin combo, and pineco is probably going to be doing the spin combo. this means that you would be stacking sturdy pain split, which is not good. if they choose to use donphan or bounsweet as their spinner, pineco will be a utility mon to set tspikes, making it even worse. this makes probopass usually not worth using.

swinub.gif

Swinub @ Focus Sash
Ability: Oblivious
Level: 1
EVs: 36 SpD
Impish Nature
- Endeavor
- Ice Shard
- Sandstorm
- Toxic

swinub is a standard endeavor priority toxic set, but with two standouts. the first one is an immunity to taunt. this lets it be a potential fear pivot switching into taunt, which is big. the second one is that it can get chip on poisons with sandstorm, something most other mons can't do. besides that it's just a regular little fear man. also look at that adorable sprite.

tsareena.gif

Tsareena @ Focus Sash
Ability: Queenly Majesty
Level: 19
EVs: 252 SpD
Careful Nature
- Endeavor
- Feint
- Toxic
- Knock Off / Rapid Spin

tsareena completely stops prio users from existing. besides that it's all the stuff phan does with knock and shit, you can run emergency spin but knock is better cause random lefties is the bane of fear. you might wonder why maractus and banette even exist when you look at tsareena, but bane is supposed to beat multi hit and maractus uhh gets leech seed. and no tsareena doesn't get leech seed just cause it's a grass type

morelull.gif

Morelull @ Focus Sash
Ability: Effect Spore / Rain Dish
Level: 1
EVs: 236 Def / 76 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Spore
- Leech Seed
- Recycle
- Substitute / Protect / Swagger / Strength Sap / ...

morelull is god, it's like magnemite but it can target poisons and steels with leech seed. also unless this gets outside support via trick room or leech seed or whatever, this is going to be reliant on sleep turns. effect spore is usually the ability of choice but you can go rain dish if you don't like your spore being interrupted by a random para. the last move can be a lot of things as long as it helps give free turns

smeargle.gif


i'm not even listing a set there are so many. you get the gist tho, smeargle having access to every move in the game is obviously going to make for some cool stuff. you could do like spore leech seed recycle trick room, spore leech seed endeavor trick room, spore rapid spin toxic spikes strength sap, etc etc because smeargle's potential is limitless.

salandit.gif

Salandit @ Focus Sash
Ability: Corrosion
Level: 1
EVs: 60 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Protect
- Toxic
- Knock Off
- Swagger

salandit is a unique mon in the sense that it has no way of dealing flat damage (endeavor, pain split etc) and can only damage opponents via chip, and yet it is viable. every other mon in this group would be immediately deemed unviable, but salandit stands out with the ability to toxic stuff like mega gengar, aegislash, celesteela, and ferrothorn that are generally huge threats to fear. it comes armed with knock off as well to take their leftovers, making it even harder for them to push through the poison. swagger and protect generate free turns to toxic stall.

did you think we were done? no. we are not. see, we haven't talked about sand fear yet.

Sand Fear

:aron::donphan::probopass::swinub::corsola:
sand setting is extremely important, because sand is what makes the team flow. you want at least two of these for sure, because if you lose your sand, you become really vulnerable.

aron.gif

Aron @ Smooth Rock
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 1
EVs: 36 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Sandstorm
- Endeavor
- Protect
- Roar

best sand setter, you can fool the opponent into thinking you're shell bell and get off a sandstorm easily. even if they aren't fooled you can just click it anyway, sturdy will protect you. roar is to force out ghosts cause ghosts suck. it lets you escape mgar too.

donphan.gif

Donphan @ Smooth Rock
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 25
EVs: 244 HP / 244 Atk / 20 SpD
Adamant Nature
- Endeavor
- Knock Off
- Rapid Spin / Ice Shard
- Sandstorm

big boy donphan comes back once again, doing pretty much the same thing as aron: tanking a hit and setting sand. donphan has knock off but more importantly he has rapid spin so he can be part of the spin combo. if you don't want him to be part of the spin combo there's always ice shard for that sweet priority. sand setter donphan doesn't really care about getting hit by hazards since he's in tr already. that means he can set sand easily.

probopass.gif

Probopass @ Smooth Rock
Ability: Sturdy
Level: 2
EVs: 116 Def / 76 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Pain Split
- Magic Coat / Taunt
- Toxic
- Sandstorm

out of all of his moves, probopass wants taunt the least. if you do want taunt you can put it over magic coat tho. probopass is worth using over something else because it can potentially get back in the sand setting game with a well timed pain split. magic coat also bounces stupid cringe taunt, also probopass doesn't care about toxic being bounced. he's just that chad.

swinub.gif

Swinub @ Focus Sash
Ability: Oblivious
Level: 1
EVs: 36 SpD
Impish Nature
- Endeavor
- Ice Shard
- Sandstorm
- Toxic

swinub can't hold smooth rock like the others but his niche comes in the form of oblivious. taunt immunity is really nice because the other sand setters either need to play magic coat mindgames or can't even protect themselves at all. shorter sand hurts though.

corsola.gif

Corsola @ Focus Sash
Ability: Natural Cure
Level: 1
EVs: 236 Atk
Careful Nature
- Endeavor
- Sucker Punch
- Magic Coat / Recover
- Sandstorm

finally corsola has a purpose. corsola is here for two reasons. the first one is that i thought it would be funny, and the second one is that it can escape status with natural cure. recover is to give corsola a chance to get back in the game after status chip. this mon is pretty bad and i would not advise using it

:solosis::donphan:
yes, you still need spin combo. no, i am not reposting the solosis or the donphan set. they are the same as the most recent solosis and donphan sets that i posted, except donphan always has spin.

:probopass::mimikyu:
next up is your anti ghost. you're only really gonna use probopass here i just wanted another example

mimikyu.gif

Mimikyu @ Focus Sash
Ability: Disguise
Level: 1
EVs: 36 Def / 236 SpD
Sassy Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Trick Room
- Destiny Bond
- Pain Split
- Curse

this set is really bad i just didn't want poor probopass to be all alone, don't use this

:aron::togedemaru::magnemite:
finally your wincons. you need two of these. i'm not even gonna try to squeeze in niche mons these are the only ones you can use. no i am not posting the sets because i already posted them but i will say that magnemite got buffed because it can reach poison types now, except for nihilego, nidoking, and nidoqueen.

here are a few fear teams to help you get started:
:mimikyu::pineco::solosis::salandit::taillow::togedemaru:
a standard fear team featuring salandit, who really helps in the hard matchups vs poisons and especially steels. i already talked about him tho, every other part of the team is really basic.
:banette-mega::pineco::solosis::tsareena::taillow::togedemaru:
a standard fear team featuring the core of mega banette, tsareena, and taillow. this core beats every multi-hit use, every priority user, and every ghost. solosis pineco is the standard spin combo and togedemaru is the standard wincon.
:aron::donphan::solosis::aron::probopass::togedemaru:
a sand fear team featuring two arons: one as a sand setter, and one as a wincon. this is as standard as it gets for sand teams.

thank you all for reading this very long post, and have a good day! :psyglad:
 

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