can you feel the tension rising?
Hi again all, it's been a bit since our last one of these. As many of you have expressed recently, the tier is generally well-balanced and enjoyable, but there is one outlier in the otherwise solid state the metagame is in - that outlier is Thundurus.
Thundurus has been in the tier for a long time at this stage but for a while it took a back seat - it had to compete with the extremely omnipresent Zeraora for a teamslot, a fight it usually ended up losing. This mean that it wasn't really seen and dropped to RU as a result, but once Zeraora left for OU, Thundurus came roaring back with a vengeance and established itself as one of the premier offensive Pokemon in UU.
Thundurus has two main sets. The first is its pivot set, usually running Thunderbolt, Psychic, Knock Off and U-turn, but it has other options like Grass Knot and Focus Blast if it wants. This set has no counters outside of the niche Gastrodon; it will force progress against everything else, and is incredibly punishing against the tier's standard Electric resists in Amoonguss, Tangrowth and Zarude. This makes it a bit of a headache to prepare for because it also has a strong matchup against most of the tier's Ground-types - Krookodile just gives it a Defiant boost and takes a ton from U-turn, the Nidos can't take Psychic, Mamoswine can't take any of its attacks bar Thunderbolt, Rhyperior can check it for some time but all of these hate losing their item more than anything else and they're just U-turn fodder until they're in range.
Thundurus is also faster than most offensive Pokemon - it blazes past the likes of Keldeo, Mienshao, and Salamence, making it quite difficult to check offensively. The few Pokemon that naturally outspeed it in Starmie, Noivern, and Zygarde-10% are niche options due to them facing competition from things like Primarina, Salamence, and Krookodile, while priority from the likes of Lycanroc-D and Mamoswine is helpful but nothing Thundurus can't outlast thanks to its hazard immunity and their reliance on Life Orb to do damage. It's even capable of EVing itself to live their attacks as we've seen recently. This means that dealing with Thundurus both offensively and defensively is a very tall task.
This is all just the pivot set as well; Thundurus happens to have access to Nasty Plot, which it can run to turn matchups against typical checks like SpDef Amoonguss and Gastrodon on their heads while also being an insanely difficult breaker to deal with on offense teams, with utility as something that can resist revenge killing attempts from the likes of Choice Scarf Jirachi and Mienshao thanks to its great typing while also providing an immunity to Ground.
With all that said, Thundurus is no OHKO machine - it hardly knocks out anything in one shot at all. It's very possible for Pokemon like Kommo-o, Salamence, and Nihilego to trade blows with it in worst case scenarios, though Thundurus can simply U-turn out of the matchup to put them in range later. While they're very, very niche, we've seen some innovations on bulkier teams like Gastrodon and Flygon which can outlast Thundurus for most of a game. In addition, threats like Lycanroc-D and Mamoswine are in good positions in the meta at the moment, and their strong priority makes it possible to keep Thundurus at bay for a while. Thundurus is certainly an extremely powerful Pokemon, and community outcry for a suspect test has been growing, so here it is!
The voting requirements are a minimum GXE of 80 with at least 50 games played. In addition, you may play 1 less game for every 0.2 GXE you have above 80 GXE, down to a minimum of 30 games at a GXE of 84. As always, needing more than 50 games to reach 80 GXE is fine.
Other than that, the test will operate as always. There will be no suspect ladder. Instead, the standard UU ladder will remain open. Those who wish to participate in this suspect test will instead use a fresh, suspect-specific alt. All games must be played on the Pokemon Showdown! UU ladder on a fresh alt with the following format: "UU9T (Nick)." For example, I might register the alt UU9T Lily to ladder with. You must meet the listed format in order to qualify.
Participants will have until Saturday, September 4th at 7:00 PM GMT -4 to meet voting requirements and post in the Alt Identification Thread. PLEASE DO NOT POST YOUR CONFIRMED SUSPECT RESULTS HERE - there is a dedicated thread for identifying your suspect results. Happy laddering!