Metagame NP: USUM Stage 7: Dark Center of the Universe (Guzzlord Suspect Test)

Megazard

The turtle moves
is a member of the Site Staffis a Community Leaderis a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Top Contributoris a Top Smogon Media Contributoris a Battle Simulator Moderatoris a Top Team Rater Alumnus
PU Leader
184478
The PU Council has decided to suspect test Guzzlord. Although we've recently experienced a large change to the metagame with the removal of Mesprit, we also think it's time to evaluate Guzzlord's presence in the tier and see if people still find it too large of an issue. Guzzlord is one of the strongest Pokemon left in PU, with titanic bulk and a sizeable moveset capable of chipping most any switch-in over time or simply OHKOing a large portion of the tier with its respectable offenses. Guzzlord is simply difficult to check, it can 1v1 most of the tier and few Pokemon exist that can reliably pivot into Guzzlord more than once, especially with Knock Off's ability to cripple item-reliant switchins like Assault Vest users. On the flipside though, Guzzlord is slow and has lots of weaknesses. Unlike Alolan Exeggutor it can't ever become a sweeping threat, and there are plenty of options to check it offensively. Many teams will only really need to switch into a hit from Guzzlord once, especially if they use entry hazards to pressure it. It can be argued that Guzzlord is analogous to Drampa or Rampardos, slow wallbreakers which are nearly impossible to wall but very much balanced by their poor speed and mediocre typing albeit with nowhere near the same bulk as Guzzlord. Nevertheless, Guzzlord has a massive presence in the tier and necessitates a good amount of adaptations such as Specially Defensive Gurdurr, Drain Punch Eelektross, or previous usage of Twinkle Tackle Mesprit. Over the next two weeks we'll determine if Guzzlord still has a place in the metagame.

There will be no suspect ladder. Instead we will use the normal PU ladder which will remain open for the duration of the test. A message will pop up at the beginning of ladder games to indicate that the suspect is going on. Anyone who wishes to participate in this suspect test will use a newly-made alt with a suspect-specific tag to indicate that you are trying to achieve reqs. The requirements for this suspect test are the following:
  • All games must be played on the Pokemon Showdown! PU ladder on a new alt with the following format: "GST (nickname)" For example, I might register the alt GST Megazard to ladder with.
  • Do NOT impersonate other people in your ladder alt, do NOT use any usernames which are offensive, flame-baiting, or targeting specific users, and do NOT use usernames which could be interpreted as breaking any of the username rules on Pokemon Showdown! Failure to abide to this will result in you being barred from voting in this suspect, and potential infractions.
  • To qualify for voting, your alt must play 35 games with a minimum GXE of 80.
The suspect test will last for 14 days, ending on Friday July 19th at 10PM EST. Good luck qualifying!
 
184487
While I know the new meta really just began, I also know that I personally believe the meta changes are irrelevant to my thoughts on Guzzlord, as its strengths and weaknesses are not affected by the changes. So to start off, here is a bullet list of pro-ban and no-ban arguments for newer players to have a general idea of the basics of this suspect.

Pro-ban
  • Guzzlord has very limited switchins, often netting a ko for every one to two times it comes in.
  • Guzzlord has a plethora of resistances which allow it to switch in very easily throughout the match
  • It has a multitude of sets which make it impossible to initially know which set it is running, making it a lethal guessing game.
  • Even typical switchins like AV hitmonchan do not get to switch in too many times, especially if the Guzzlord is running Knock Off
No-ban
  • Guzzlord also has a multitude of weaknesses, allowing it to be threatened out fairly easily.
  • Its speed stat is very low, allowing even really slow pokemon to offensively check it.
  • Guzzlord does not get to switch in multiple times in a match if you have entry hazards on the Guzzlord's side of the field.
  • Guzzlord is the same idea as Drampa and Rampardos, having no switch-ins but not being broken.
Now onto my take on all this.

I will personally be voting ban on Guzzlord. What makes this pokemon broke in my opinion is that every time this pokemon switches in, there is overwhelming pressure on your side of the field, and there is a high likelihood that something will either die or be crippled. Yes, Choice Specs is difficult to switch into and yes, dragonium z is the same way. But what makes this too much in my opinion is also having a viable Choice Band set, coverage moves in Heavy Slam and Sludge Bomb, and its stellar typing and HP. You are playing a guessing game the first time it switches in, and even if you do happen to have a counter for both its special set and physical set, if you guess the wrong one on the first time its out you could end up in a drastic disadvantage. Later I will try to compile a list of counters to each set, and it will really show where this pokemon can be out of hand due to its lack of overlaps between counters for each set. It is already a big deal if you are requiring two different counters for one pokemon in teambuilding as well as tech like Drain Punch Eelektross and Dazzling Gleam Jellicent, but it is a huge deal that these counters are different for each set and that this pokemon can get into the game at least three times relatively safely if played right.

Yes, I know it is slow and has weaknesses to be threatened out pretty easily, however does that really matter if you switch in once or twice and have gotten a KO and severely crippled something else? Forcing it out offensively is not the equivalent of an even trade when the opponent's guzzlord has already done its damage. Yes, I know that Guzzlord is very susceptible to entry hazards. However, my opinion is that if you are running a competent Guzzlord team you will have a very consistent hazard control core on your team. If not, I personally think you are running a bad Guzzlord team. A good player with a good hazard control core will do well enough in the game to still have Guzzlord get at least three opportunities to put in work. And yes, I have heard the arguments of it being the same idea as Drampa and Rampardos. However, I think where this argument goes wrong is the fact that neither Rampardos or Drampa also have the combination of stellar typing to get free switches as well as diverse sets to make a guessing game first switch-in. Drampa is very one-dimensional with its only truly difficult to counter set being its Choice Specs set, while, Guzzlord has Specs, Dragonium Z, and Band.

tldr; I will be voting ban on guzzlord due to its plethora of resistances, sets, and lack of reliable switchins. The cons are all workable enough for a Guzzlord user to thrive without sacrificing anything in teambuilding.
 
I feel like the timing of this Suspect is a bit weird but I guess I can give my thoughts here.

So Guzzlord. This thing has Fat bulk, Has very Few switchins, Has Multiple sets that make it nearly impossible to counter, Slow, Never sweeps.

Alright so let’s address these points

It’s Bulk- This thing is OHKOd by almost nothing outside of a Z move or boost.

Has no switchins- This Mon technically has no switchins to every set. Not even bronzor 0_0 shocker. But it is revenge killer Fairly easily tbh with a solid prediction.
Versatility- You can slap any choice move outside or Scarf on here and you have yourself a breaking threat. You can put an AV on it to make it extremely bulky. But a decent prediction and this this thing is venge killed fairly easily.
Speed- This basic set on this is designed to speed creep base 50 speed Pokémon so anything above Base 50 is outspeeding this. It’s a pretty slow mon
Inability to sweep- Guzzlord is a Breaker that picks up a kill or 2 for you and dies allowing a setup sweeper to sweep.

Final Conclusion

While Guzzlord is indeed a fantastic breaker it’s speed drags it down a bit and it is revenge killed easily. I am still on the fence on this Pokémon but right now I am leaning NO BAN
 

Specs

OTF
is a Pre-Contributor
Just gonna go over my early thoughts on the suspect and what I think the result should be.

I'll start with the bulk Guzzlord has, which allows it to 1v1 offensive checks that it should in theory lose to. Primeape, Froslass, Stoutland (It's a roll heavily in Guzz's favor to live Superpower), Cryogonal, Scarf Aurorus, ect. I really don't like this aspect because we just don't have the defensive counter play for Guzz, so a lot of times you have to resort to offensive pressure. This has been a big problem in the tier, not being able to defensively check something and offensively checking not being a reliable option either. A counter point could be that you could just position yourself well to not allow Guzzlord in in the first place, however as we all know things can just not turn out the way you want. With how prevalent fat Volt-turn users are like Eelektross it isn't hard to just force a switch & Volt turn out into Guzzlord to pick up a KO. Or the fact that your whole game shouldn't be "Don't allow Guzzlord in ever." Not saying that every time you face Guzzlord you're that scared or weak to it but with how barren our defensive counter play is I don't think it would be a stretch to say that a lot of games you just can't allow it in. Point being I don't think the argument that you can just position well always pans out as cut and dry as it's made out to be.

The move pool and coverage is also something I think is pretty crazy. The dual stab of Dragon & Dark alone is really threatening in a tier where we have about 2 viable fairy types, making them very spammable on their own. As well as the overall coverage of Dark (Dark Pulse, Knock Off) Dragon (Draco Meteor, Outrage, Dragon Claw) Fighting (Drain Punch, Hammer Arm) Fire (Fire Blast) Poison (Sludge Bomb/Wave) & Steel (Heavy Slam) just make it an insane breaker. The 2 fairy types mentioned earlier being Clefairy & Silvally-Fairy don't switch into Sludge Bomb/Wave, Heavy Slam, or in Clefairy's case also risk getting Knocked which cripples it for the rest of the game. You can obviously only have 4 moves so you're not gonna see it have all of those coverage options on one set, however it's very risky to scout out Guzzlord's set as you cant afford to mess up once. Most of the time you just don't know what the set is by just looking at the team. Special Z, AV, Specs, Band, Physical Z, and to a lesser extent sub toxic & rest-talk are all possibilities and as mentioned before you cant mess around with scouting with how little defensive counter play we have. Overall I just think that the movepool is a bit too much for the tier to handle, and limits a lot of the adaptation we can make. Unless we want to continue to just try our best to offensively pressure it.

I was planning on writing more but I don't really have that much else to say. I don't think Guzzlord is insanely broken or anything of the sort, but I guess just some other points would be that it has taken advantage of a lot of meta trends/shifts like AV Hitmonchan being a lot worse and us getting back Ferroseed which pushes the spikes meta even more allowing Guzzlord to just break easier. It's also a relatively safe switch in for Guzz.

To sum it all up I think Guzzlord has bits and pieces of unhealthiness & brokenness, I'm on the ban side as of now but if my view or opinion changes during the suspect I might make another post replying to my own lol. Hope to see more discussion in here as I think there is a lot to unpack.
 
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I haven't met the requirements yet so I won't be voting, but just wanted to lay out my views on Guzzlord. In the last 5 matches I played, I've encountered it on about four occasions, and only once have I lost *to* Guzzlord per se , in a game where I failed to read the correct set (possibly max attack and speed). On others, I have found it outmaneuvered by a Swords Dance Scyther and Superpower Aggron, among others. For a detailed analysis-
Pros:
•Massive coverage in Poison Jab/Sludge Wave/Bomb, Fire Blast, Heavy Slam and good STAB moves in Draco Meteor,Outrage,Dark Pulse and Knock Off
•Ability to run multiple sets that can offensively take out most of its counters
•HUGE HP. This is a tank that can survive at least one Super effective STAB move at full HP.
•In Beast Boost, an ability that lets it get going and score OHKOes after just one Knockout.
Cons:
•Very poor base speed of 50
•Large number of type weaknesses-Dragon, Ice,Bug,Fairy(4x),Fighting and vulnerable to entry hazards.
•Can never really be used as a sweeper due to lack of speed
As of now, I'm on the fence, but I believe that with the right set, Guzzlord can prove to be a premier offensive threat. It is, however , not without it's share of counters, including a +2 Scyther, Articuno (if Guzzlord does not carry Heavy Slam) and coverage moves from strong offensive Pokemon.


I forgot to add that when correctly predicted , Guzzlord can be revenge killed quite easily as well.
 
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I would still like to share my reasoning for my current stance on whether guzzlord should be banned or not, since I can't seem to make up my mind on whether I want it banned or not. This is coming from someone who mainly plays stall, so I have seen my fair share of what a guzzlord can/can't do to bulkier teams.

Pros:

*It has a decently wide movepool on the physical spectrum, you get to choose a dark and dragon type move and then you can just go wild, it gets earthquake, stone edge, hammer arm and heavy slam/gyro ball for coverage, it also gets weaker versions of the stone edge and hammer arm that punish you less for using them.

*Very few switchins, most mons can't take two attacks from it after rocks, and the few that do usually don't have a very good recovery moves. It always 3hkos max defense, eviolite tangela after rocks without adamant nature and it always 3hkos regirock with an adamant nature. The special walls can do better, but still have to heal up directly afterwards unless they resist.

*It has alot of hp, we're talking third highest in the game, which leads to it not getting ko'd by many neutral or non stab super effective moves (unless they are fairy moves that is).

*Fantastic ability in beast boost, while it can't really use it to sweep, it can use it to break open slower teams.

*it works very well under webs, now that most mons are slow, it's main flaw gets kind of removed.

Cons:

*Invites in U-turners for a free U-turn, potentially giving the opponent alot of momentum and since scyther is a huge pain without stealth rocks, it can come back to bite you.

*Terrible type defensively, fairy(x4), bug, dragon, fighting and ice weaknesses.

*Can be worn down incredibly easily in drawn out battles, unless it breaks you early, it just dies.

*The special sets are very predictable, it's almost always specs (There are much better z mons out there)and it only has 5 viable special moves, ignoring weaker moves of the same type in fire blast, sludge wave, draco, dark pulse and hidden power.

*It's really slow, that 50 base speed let's it get revenge killed super easily.

I am currently for banning guzzlord, but I think I'm just being bias since 1 less breaker means 1 less thing to have to worry about when building a team.

Sorry for bad formatting, this is my first post :/.
 

Skipkan

unplayer
is a Tiering Contributor
You have to post that in the alt identification thread, Shmoo MSnt : https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/usum-pu-stage-7-guzzlord-suspect-test-alt-identification-thread.3652405/page-2

Anyway, here is a very short, low-quality post about my irrelevant thoughts:

I want just to point out that the bulk means it has ability to trade itself for something in almost every game (except vs stall ofc). It can come in and force a situation when its opponent can heavily damage it (basically = get rid of it bc its speed) at the cost of a valuable mon, like Primeape or Stout or sth. Often that valuable mon is too valuable, so opponent has to switch it out and take Guzz's attack. While every wallbreaker can force switches vs defensive mons + a few stronger ones, Guzz can force switches vs almost everything, while its healthy - which is the main thing that sets it apart from other wallbreakers, in my opinion. The meta also shifted a bit and there is nothing that would really force Guzzlords to run the not-banworthy AV set, so specs/Z-move sets do not really have drawbacks. Also its extremely splashable and I do not really like what does teambuilding with Guzzlord in the tier seem to turn into, so i will vote to ban.
 

Megazard

The turtle moves
is a member of the Site Staffis a Community Leaderis a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Top Contributoris a Top Smogon Media Contributoris a Battle Simulator Moderatoris a Top Team Rater Alumnus
PU Leader
It’s Bulk- This thing is OHKOd by almost nothing outside of a Z move or boost.
While Guzzlord is indeed a fantastic breaker it’s speed drags it down a bit and it is revenge killed easily. I am still on the fence on this Pokémon but right now I am leaning NO BAN
The contrast between these 2 statements is actually a good indicator of why I'm leaning ban at the moment. At first you say it's got great bulk and can't be OHKOd by much, but then you talk about it being revenge killed easily, and I don't find those entirely contradictory. The reason for that is that the metagame is trending hard towards the things that can take on Guzz, which are few and abusable. And honestly, I don't like what a Guzzlord-centric metagame looks like. It looks like a tier revolving around this one ridiculously good Pokemon which you can't switch into safely, the handful of things that can OHKO it, the handful of things that pivot into certain attacks, a few setup sweepers and scarfers, and hazards. Pretty much everything I use at this point makes me strongly consider Guzzlord well above any other Pokemon. I want to run Specs Simisear, time to format the rest of the team around Guzzlord. I can fit an Eelektross here, now I have some better pivoting vs special Guzzlord. I'm going to run Spikes support, better format the team so I can use them to pressure Guzzlord. Beyond Guzzlord just being stupid to switch into, I don't think having the PU tier revolve around this one threat is ideal.
 
I will be giving my reason for why I will be voting Ban on this suspect. After playing a bit more on the pu ladder, I have gotten a better understanding on what guzzlord can do against the meta and what it forces teams to do to beat it.

There are a few ways to deal with Guzzlord, the first and simplest way is obviously a fairy type move, the problem with this is that, the best fairy type in the tier, Clefairy, doesn't switch in on the physical variant and also doesn't OHKO with moonblast. Other pokemon with fairy type moves that do deal alot of damage, usually can't switch in, the exception to this is Silvally-fairy, which gets worn down pretty easily.

The safest option to beating a Guzzlord is by wearing it down with residual damage, like status and entry hazards, this is the safest way but it can be worked around. If the opponent has an Alolan-Sandslash, a mon I've started seing alot on the ladder recently paired with Guzzlord, certain counters can ever fold entirely. There are still counters to this strategy, mainly a specially defensive mon combined with a phyically defensive mon, both with knock off to beat all variants of Guzzlord, while knocking off the potential choice item and the alolan sandslashes leftovers, to easily wear it down later. My favourite two mons to do this with are Tangela and Audino, since both get regenerator, they can both safely pivot in on Guzzlord depending on the set, and slowly chip the combo down. This still gets beaten by physically offensive, mixed Guzzlord, since it just fireblasts/flamethrowers the tangela and outrages/knocks the Audino.

The best option, in my opinion, to beating a Guzzlord is just to revenge kill it, relying on one of it's three biggest flaws, it's terrible matchup against volt turn, it's terrible speed and it's horrible defensive typing. This is still not a safe way to beat it however, as stealth rocks can slowly chip down or even entirely beat the two pokemon and if the Guzzlord user has a bulky rocky helmet mon, the u-turner could also easily get chipped down.

I think that forcing a team to prepare this much for a Guzzlord kind of proves how centralising it really is, especially since most counters require two or more mons to even pull off, and a Guzzlord team is usually built around beating those checks. It is versatile enough that you never know what's coming, so it can catch you off guard with a different set than you expected, which can often lead to a fainted pokemon, if not prepared for accordingly.

Here are some calcs to see how much of a beating it can take.

252 Atk Choice Band Scyther U-turn vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Guzzlord: 506-596 (77.8 - 91.6%)
252+ Atk Choice Band Iron Fist Golurk Ice Punch vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Guzzlord: 518-610 (79.6 - 93.8%)
252+ SpA Abomasnow Blizzard vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Guzzlord: 518-612 (79.6 - 94.1%)
252 Atk Primeape Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Guzzlord: 560-662 (86.1 - 101.8%) -- 12.5% chance to OHKO
252 SpA Choice Specs Froslass Ice Beam vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Guzzlord: 528-624 (81.2 - 96%)

Here are some calcs of what it can do to some bulkier pokemon.

252 Atk Choice Band Guzzlord Outrage vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Tangela: 109-129 (32.6 - 38.6%)
252+ SpA Choice Specs Guzzlord Draco Meteor vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Audino: 226-267 (55.1 - 65.1%)
252+ Atk Choice Band Guzzlord Outrage vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 217-256 (55 - 64.9%)
252+ Atk Choice Band Guzzlord Crunch vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Ferroseed: 93-109 (31.8 - 37.3%)
252+ SpA Choice Specs Guzzlord Draco Meteor vs. 248 HP / 252+ SpD Cryogonal: 168-198 (46.2 - 54.5%)

Overall, guzzlord is a menacing force, which few flaws are easily removed with smart play and good teambuilding, which is why I will be voting Ban on this suspect test.
 
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wassup fellads, im gonna make a quick post here to explain my opinions on the guzzinator and some key aspects to consider when voting. As the team with the best SM PUPL record (25-7), we managed to solidly grasp the meta pre-mesprit rising on the dedennes and so when it left, guzz immediately presented itself as an even more broken element than when it started.

The first key issue is how hard it is to revenge kill, we made full use of this in PUPL when a specs froslass did 45 on some weak shit in order to try and revenge kill guzz. In addition to this, its phys def especially when invested is frightening, meaning all the common fighters could never ohko it straight out the box. Given the tier has little to no fairies, with the fairies we do have being unable to switch into guzz and being over-loaded with its role (silv-fairy will want to defog regardless of whether guzz exists or not), its without fail gonna take down a mon with it at the very least. If the team is bulkier and thus getting more breaking opportunities, this effect multiplies and as a result the mon has so little reason NOT to use it. It feels like its always beneficial on every team.

Second key issue is physical vs special. A lot of people in the PU room has refuted that physical existed, but towards the end of PUPL, it was clear zmove guzz (whether phys or special) was getting used a whole lot more to aid breaking. Physical is particularly captivating atm, with knock being a great support move and zoutrage also being great for breaking straight up. special zdraco is not unfamiliar with the tier given drampa can do that, however there is tangible reason to never use drampa given that guzz is so much bulkier and so much harder to revenge kill as well as faster than therefore more efficient-i should add, this feels like the scarf pass vs scarf ape debate when they were in the tier, scarf ape seemed better on paper but once passimian began to get used, it was undoubtedbly superior and was as a result banned due to how hard it was to rk successfully. This mind game makes it inconsistent to play vs, imagine ur guzz check is av eel or av chan like it is on a bunch of teams and u get zoutrage'd, very not good considering PUs mixed def tanks dont exist. guzz has more room than ever to run zmoves as well given its not needed for defensive reasons anymore, and we saw this beginning to leak into PUPL.

last key issue with it is the meta holistically atm. Mesprit leaving, the main utility mon, the main fighting resist, the all-encompassing support mon, the tier has been left with a huge defensive void that is difficult to plug. It was the tiers main fast SRer, and what happens when u dont have that mandatory sr support in a fast medium, slow breakers will tend to thrive. Enter Guzzlord, with the another sr/spiker which it can incinerate called Ferroseed joining the tier and being a great mon to use in every other mu in this tier, guzzlord has more opportunities than ever to break. Add to this that resists to guzz dont actually exist, just checks which fail to rk it reasonably, and then its difficult to see this mon not get multiple breaks a game vs majority of teams, regardless of if they prepped for guzz or not. Best idea is to run spdef regirock and / or eel, make sure u dont over commit vs it and make sure all mons on ur team have a way of making sure they do damage vs it. Any other method of teambuilding basically means u get smoked.

In conclusion, bippy summed it up best in one of the recent untier talks where we talked about guzz. It stopped feeling like av hariyama when lilli was in the tier, and began to feel more like flame orb hariyama. Ideally we'd keep the balanced elements to it, but now it has so much freedom to inflict its misery on the tier, theres very little reason to use the balanced sets over the extremely efficient zmove sets which as we said are basically impossible to revenge kill reliably. its undeniably a strain on teambuilding and given that it plays even better in practice than it does on paper, there is literally 0 reason to keep it in the tier ESPECIALLY given our current scenario with the main boi leaving. BAN
 
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