Resource ORAS OU Metagame Discussion

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So now that Hoopa Unbound has been banned and choice band pursuit Weavile stall is running around the meta is shifting in a more defensive direction. Teams will have to adapt without Hoopa-Unbound and the coming of Volcanion. Bulky psychics like mega slowbro and mega latias, dragon types (mega latias again, latios) and Chansey will most likely see an upsurge in viability with the new changes. To combat this here are some meta-game trends I see becoming important:

Dark type wall-breakers: With the banning of Hoopa-Unbound and the rise of pursuit based stalls Dark Type Wall-breakers are becoming increasingly important. There are three Dark type wall-breakers that I think will be very good in the new meta. (I want to point out what Bludz said is correct that we shouldn't focus on just one style of Stall team. However these wall-breakers work well against most stall builds in general and I would like to focus on the ABR Weavile stall because it is extremely popular and imo the best build of stall right now).

Crawdaunt @ Life Orb/Splash Plate/Lum Berry
Ability: Adaptability
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly/Adamant Nature
- Swords Dance
- Crabhammer
- Knock Off
- Aqua Jet

Crawdaunt has been nominated to B+ on the viability rankings and for good reason. Mega Altaria and Mega Venusaur it's two best checks are seeing a decline in popularity and standard ABR Weavile stall (mega Sab, Amoongus, Chansey, Skarmory, Quagsire, and Weavile) has no switch-ins to this monster. While frail Crawdaunt is also not pursuit weak and most Weaviles on stall don't carry low kick so it can switch out or take a hit once:

252 Atk Choice Band Weavile Knock Off (97.5 BP) vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Crawdaunt: 128-151 (47.7 - 56.3%) -- 84.4% chance to 2HKO

and retaliate with a kill or even switch out safely once on a pursuit. At +2 Aqua Jet can even kill Weavile for an added bonus: +2 252 Atk Life Orb Adaptability Crawdaunt Aqua Jet vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Weavile: 304-359 (108.1 - 127.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO
Speaking of boosts after a swords dance everything on stall is destroyed and unaware quagsire can't stomach a hit well either.
+2 252 Atk Life Orb Adaptability Crawdaunt Knock Off (97.5 BP) vs. 252 HP / 136 Def Amoonguss: 585-689 (135.4 - 159.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO
+2 252 Atk Life Orb Adaptability Crawdaunt Crabhammer vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 304-359 (91 - 107.4%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO
252 Atk Life Orb Adaptability Crawdaunt Crabhammer vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Unaware Quagsire: 216-255 (54.8 - 64.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

it may be better to weaken quagsire or knock off it's leftovers first before attempting a sweep. Splash plate is a cool item that means no life orb recoil but a weaker knock off (and you may be able to bluff the somewhat inferior band crawdaunt) and lum berry allows you to avoid a burn on mega sab but has to be run with an adamant nature (adamant crawdaunt gets out-sped by defensive landorus-t and a few other things but is better against full stall) otherwise it is too weak in my experience.

Gyarados @ Gyaradosite
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Waterfall
- Crunch
- Taunt
- Dragon Dance

Mega Gyrados is another water and dark pokemon that I think is great. While the standard offensive Dash Dance set runs substitute I feel taunt is better in this metagame against stall for a few reasons. Taunt prevents Skarmory from whirlwinding you when you're behind a substitute (and completely shuts down whirlwind skarm with brave bird over iron head which is becoming more common) and taunt shuts down curse quagsire which is becoming more common than the toxic variant due to ABR stall. With moldbreaker taunt also avoids the burn from mega sableye and the sub mega gyrados version is not that great against sab either considering foul play has a very good chance at breaker mega gyrados's sub anyways before a dragon dance: 0 Atk Mega Sableye Foul Play vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Mega Gyarados: 81-96 (24.4 - 29%) -- 99.8% chance to 4HKO.

After a dragon dance every member of stall is 2hko'd and mold-breaker goes through unaware which is amazing against quagsire allowing a sweep with just a little chip damage on Amoongus +1 252 Atk Mold Breaker Mega Gyarados Crunch vs. 252 HP / 136 Def Amoonguss: 252-297 (58.3 - 68.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Black Sludge recovery. Plus Mega Gyra is faster than Weavile after a dragon dance so you're at no risk there either.

Tyranitar @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 100 HP / 252 Atk / 156 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Crunch
- Stone Edge
- Superpower
- Pursuit

I will admit here that I have not used this before but there's been a lot of hype around this pokemon in a few different threads so I felt like I should give it a go. This spread from Tyranitar aims at outspeeding most walls including Skarmory and quagsire and smacking them with super powerful stab moves. 252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Stone Edge vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 156-184 (46.7 - 55%) -- 13.7% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
Assuming you can hit both stone edges (which is never a sure thing) Skarmory is 2hko'd after rocks barring some really low rolls.
Some very minor prior damage on Quagsire also may be needed:
252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Crunch vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 177-208 (44.9 - 52.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
What's really cool about this set is it has a super strong pursuit allowing you to severely weaken Chansey if you guess the switch correctly setting up a breaker such as Charizard-Y to sweep.
252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Pursuit(80BP) vs. 4 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Chansey: 292-345 (45.4 - 53.7%) -- 93.4% chance to 2HKO after sandstorm damage and if the opponent stays in and you guess right you can knock them out with a Superpower:
252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Superpower vs. 4 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Chansey: 584-688 (90.9 - 107.1%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO

Some other interesting things I will like to say:

Relying on Hoopa-C to break stall as Hoopa-U did is a really risky proposition. Hoopa-C while being absurdly powerful is blessed with an awful psychic ghost typing leaving it 4% weak to pursuit dying from any pursuit user. This forces Hoopa-C to run substitute to attempt to avoid pursuit and quickly Hoopa-C develops 4mss syndrome having trouble fitting everything it needs to break stall in one set.

Hoopa @ Life Orb
Ability: Magician
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Shadow Ball
- Focus Blast
- Substitute
- Psyshock

This is a set similar to the set commonly run in UU (but without salac berry which would make this set even weaker) but it has some big shortcomings in OU. In particular without Nasty plot Chansey is very hard to break and Hoopa gets worn down very quickly. Specs could be run as well to break Chansey 252 SpA Choice Specs Hoopa Psyshock vs. 4 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Chansey: 288-340 (44.8 - 52.9%) -- 28.9% chance to 2HKO (not as strong as Hoopa-U's that's for sure)
but you can only get one kill per game against any stall team with a scarf tyranitar or choice band weavile. I don't foresee this set being viable in OU at all.

Hoopa @ Life Orb/Salac Berry
Ability: Magician
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Shadow Ball
- Nasty Plot
- Substitute
- Focus Blast

This set is actually decent but has some issues. Not running Psyshock means Chansey is hard to break as relying on focus blast is not a very reliable way to beat it due to miss chances though it does 2hko. +2 252 SpA Life Orb Hoopa Focus Blast vs. 4 HP / 252 SpD Eviolite Chansey: 385-455 (59.9 - 70.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
Not getting walled by every dark type in existence is nice though and I think this set does have some merit against stall though it is still clearly not the breaker that Hoopa-U was.

Speaking of pursuit weak Stall-breakers I have tried Stall-breaker Gengar along the lines of:
Gengar @ Black Sludge
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 8 HP / 248 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Taunt
- Shadow Ball
- Will-O-Wisp
- Hex

It's really awful. It can't beat Mega Sableye, gets pursuit trapped very easily, and loses to specially defensive talon. If you really want to run Gengar as a stall-breaker you need to run substitute but even then I'm not a huge fan of it at the moment.

With the arrival of Volcanion Choice-locked water pokemon will probably get worse and I think Azumarill especailly will get worse. Most stall teams carry amoongus and the arrival of Volcanion may make it even harder to use, though it will still be good just not one of the top pokemon in A+ anymore.

Though I will say Azumarill's Suprpower still does a lot to Volcanion: 252+ Atk Choice Band Huge Power Azumarill Superpower vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Volcanion: 204-240 (56 - 65.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

and sludge Bomb or Sluge Wave cannot ohko in return

252+ SpA Volcanion Sludge Bomb vs. 172 HP / 0 SpD Azumarill: 260-306 (67.7 - 79.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

With the arrival of Volcanion I also think Life Orb and non-choice locked Keldeo sets will become more useful than Specs as being locked into a water move will be very risky.

In conclusion: There are many great Dark-Type Wallbreakers besides Hoopa-U so use them and take advantage of many stall-builds current over-reliance on pursuit (also try to avoid pursuit weak wall-breakers) and be careful with choice-locked water types.
 
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So now that Hoopa Unbound has been banned and choice band pursuit Weavile stall is running around the meta is shifting in a more defensive direction. Teams will have to adapt without Hoopa-Unbound and the coming of Volcanion. Bulky psychics like mega slowbro and mega latias, dragon types (mega latias again, latios) and Chansey will most likely see an upsurge in viability with the new changes. To combat this here are some meta-game trends I see becoming important:

Dark type wall-breakers: With the banning of Hoopa-Unbound and the rise of pursuit based stalls Dark Type Wall-breakers are becoming increasingly important. There are three Dark type wall-breakers that I think will be very good in the new meta. (I want to point out what Bludz said is correct that we shouldn't focus on just one style of Stall team. However these wall-breakers work well against most stall builds in general and I would like to focus on the ABR Weavile stall because it is extremely popular and imo the best build of stall right now).

Crawdaunt @ Life Orb/Splash Plate/Lum Berry
Ability: Adaptability
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly/Adamant Nature
- Swords Dance
- Crabhammer
- Knock Off
- Aqua Jet

Crawdaunt has been nominated to B+ on the viability rankings and for good reason. Mega Altaria and Mega Venusaur it's two best checks are seeing a decline in popularity and standard ABR Weavile stall (mega Sab, Amoongus, Chansey, Skarmory, Quagsire, and Weavile) has no switch-ins to this monster. While frail Crawdaunt is also not pursuit weak and most Weaviles on stall don't carry low kick so it can switch out or take a hit once:

252 Atk Choice Band Weavile Knock Off (97.5 BP) vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Crawdaunt: 128-151 (47.7 - 56.3%) -- 84.4% chance to 2HKO

and retaliate with a kill or even switch out safely once on a pursuit. At +2 Aqua Jet can even kill Weavile for an added bonus: +2 252 Atk Life Orb Adaptability Crawdaunt Aqua Jet vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Weavile: 304-359 (108.1 - 127.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO
Speaking of boosts after a swords dance everything on stall is destroyed and unaware quagsire can't stomach a hit well either.
+2 252 Atk Life Orb Adaptability Crawdaunt Knock Off (97.5 BP) vs. 252 HP / 136 Def Amoonguss: 585-689 (135.4 - 159.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO
+2 252 Atk Life Orb Adaptability Crawdaunt Crabhammer vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 304-359 (91 - 107.4%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO
252 Atk Life Orb Adaptability Crawdaunt Crabhammer vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Unaware Quagsire: 216-255 (54.8 - 64.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

it may be better to weaken quagsire or knock off it's leftovers first before attempting a sweep. Splash plate is a cool item that means no life orb recoil but a weaker knock off (and you may be able to bluff the somewhat inferior band crawdaunt) and lum berry allows you to avoid a burn on mega sab but has to be run with an adamant nature (adamant crawdaunt gets out-sped by defensive landorus-t and a few other things but is better against full stall) otherwise it is too weak in my experience.

Gyarados @ Gyaradosite
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Waterfall
- Crunch
- Taunt
- Dragon Dance

Mega Gyrados is another water and dark pokemon that I think is great. While the standard offensive Dash Dance set runs substitute I feel taunt is better in this metagame against stall for a few reasons. Taunt prevents Skarmory from whirlwinding you when you're behind a substitute (and completely shuts down whirlwind skarm with brave bird over iron head which is becoming more common) and taunt shuts down curse quagsire which is becoming more common than the toxic variant due to ABR stall. With moldbreaker taunt also avoids the burn from mega sableye and the sub mega gyrados version is not that great against sab either considering foul play has a very good chance at breaker mega gyrados's sub anyways before a dragon dance: 0 Atk Mega Sableye Foul Play vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Mega Gyarados: 81-96 (24.4 - 29%) -- 99.8% chance to 4HKO.

After a dragon dance every member of stall is 2hko'd and mold-breaker goes through unaware which is amazing against quagsire allowing a sweep with just a little chip damage on Amoongus +1 252 Atk Mold Breaker Mega Gyarados Crunch vs. 252 HP / 136 Def Amoonguss: 252-297 (58.3 - 68.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Black Sludge recovery. Plus Mega Gyra is faster than Weavile after a dragon dance so you're at no risk there either.

Tyranitar @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 100 HP / 252 Atk / 156 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Crunch
- Stone Edge
- Superpower
- Pursuit

I will admit here that I have not used this before but there's been a lot of hype around this pokemon in a few different threads so I felt like I should give it a go. This spread from Tyranitar aims at outspeeding most walls including Skarmory and quagsire and smacking them with super powerful stab moves. 252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Stone Edge vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 156-184 (46.7 - 55%) -- 13.7% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
Assuming you can hit both stone edges (which is never a sure thing) Skarmory is 2hko'd after rocks barring some really low rolls.
Some very minor prior damage on Quagsire also may be needed:
252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Crunch vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 177-208 (44.9 - 52.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
What's really cool about this set is it has a super strong pursuit allowing you to severely weaken Chansey if you guess the switch correctly setting up a breaker such as Charizard-Y to sweep.
252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Pursuit(80BP) vs. 4 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Chansey: 292-345 (45.4 - 53.7%) -- 93.4% chance to 2HKO after sandstorm damage and if the opponent stays in and you guess right you can knock them out with a Superpower:
252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Superpower vs. 4 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Chansey: 584-688 (90.9 - 107.1%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO

Some other interesting things I will like to say:

Relying on Hoopa-C to break stall as Hoopa-U did is a really risky proposition. Hoopa-C while being absurdly powerful is blessed with an awful psychic ghost typing leaving it 4% weak to pursuit dying from any pursuit user. This forces Hoopa-C to run substitute to attempt to avoid pursuit and quickly Hoopa-C develops 4mss syndrome having trouble fitting everything it needs to break stall in one set.

Hoopa @ Life Orb
Ability: Magician
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Shadow Ball
- Focus Blast
- Substitute
- Psyshock

This is a set similar to the set commonly run in UU (but without salac berry which would make this set even weaker) but it has some big shortcomings in OU. In particular without Nasty plot Chansey is very hard to break and Hoopa gets worn down very quickly. Specs could be run as well to break Chansey 252 SpA Choice Specs Hoopa Psyshock vs. 4 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Chansey: 288-340 (44.8 - 52.9%) -- 28.9% chance to 2HKO (not as strong as Hoopa-U's that's for sure)
but you can only get one kill per game against any stall team with a scarf tyranitar or choice band weavile. I don't foresee this set being viable in OU at all.

Hoopa @ Life Orb/Salac Berry
Ability: Magician
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Shadow Ball
- Nasty Plot
- Substitute
- Focus Blast

This set is actually decent but has some issues. Not running Psyshock means Chansey is hard to break as relying on focus blast is not a very reliable way to beat it due to miss chances though it does 2hko. +2 252 SpA Life Orb Hoopa Focus Blast vs. 4 HP / 252 SpD Eviolite Chansey: 385-455 (59.9 - 70.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
Not getting walled by every dark type in existence is nice though and I think this set does have some merit against stall though it is still clearly not the breaker that Hoopa-U was.

Speaking of pursuit weak Stall-breakers I have tried Stall-breaker Gengar along the lines of:
Gengar @ Black Sludge
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 8 HP / 248 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Taunt
- Shadow Ball
- Will-O-Wisp
- Hex

It's really awful. It can't beat Mega Sableye, gets pursuit trapped very easily, and loses to specially defensive talon. If you really want to run Gengar as a stall-breaker you need to run substitute but even then I'm not a huge fan of it at the moment.

With the arrival of Volcanion Choice-locked water pokemon will probably get worse and I think Azumarill especailly will get worse. Most stall teams carry amoongus and the arrival of Volcanion may make it even harder to use, though it will still be good just not one of the top pokemon in A+ anymore.

Though I will say Azumarill's Suprpower still does a lot to Volcanion: 252+ Atk Choice Band Huge Power Azumarill Superpower vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Volcanion: 204-240 (56 - 65.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

and sludge Bomb or Sluge Wave cannot ohko in return

252+ SpA Volcanion Sludge Bomb vs. 172 HP / 0 SpD Azumarill: 260-306 (67.7 - 79.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO


With the arrival of Volcanion I also think Life Orb and non-choice locked Keldeo sets will become more useful than Specs as being locked into a water move will be very risky.

In conclusion: There are many great Dark-Type Wallbreakers besides Hoopa-U so use them and take advantage of many stall-builds current over-reliance on pursuit (also try to avoid pursuit weak wall-breakers) and be careful with choice-locked water types.
Not unless Volcanion carries Choice Specs:

252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Sludge Bomb vs. 172 HP / 0 SpD Azumarill: 388-458 (101 - 119.2%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Also, I do not think Nasty Plot Hoopa-C is going to work that well, for it has a lot of difficulties setting up and only really flourishes against slower defensive teams. Something like a Life Orb or Choice Specs set is probably going to work better, though it will likely have to be careful because it is even more vulnerable to Pursuit than Hoopa-U.
 
Hey guess what?
check can no longer switch in on it.
You mean: "counters".
Fat waters giving you trouble? Magma+SBeam Tran can lure and trap them and proceed to Solar Beam them. Goodbye switch-in, and its not even like Heatran has bad synergy or is un-splashable with Volc (in fact, its probably one of its best partners due to the offensive synergy).
What synergy?

Hetran have like fire, ground, steel, sometimes rock. Volcanion has water, fire, ground, rock, fighting, steel and poision. Volcanion have everything heatran have and more! best partner lol, they even share ground weakness

And this marveouls solar beam set. Well, someone can scout for solar beam (if one sees team with no way of dealing with water on mid/high ladder he might expect some kind of lure) your only way to deal with it is gone. Double water core (lets say bor/fat fish) and 2 of your mons will have hard time doing anything.

Volcanion is good, Steam Eruption is retardedly good and a lot of trends are shifting in its favor as the meta is getting slower and more BO rather than HO.
Yeah it is good. I'm playint with this and it's looking good. However I see no the ladder a lot of it's checks/counters (lum nite, dd gyra, lati) and it does not work that well.
 
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Eclipse

Like a chimp with a machine gun
is a Contributor Alumnus
And this marveouls solar beam set. Well, someone can scout for solar beam (if one sees team with no way of dealing with water on mid/high ladder he might expect some kind of lure) your only way to deal with it is gone. Double water core (lets say bor/fat fish) and 2 of your mons will have hard time doing anything.
About this part, you don't really "scout" for Solar Beam, as no Heatran player running it is just gonna mindlessly throw out their one Solar Beam, that's why you use Magma Storm with it; you trap the Slowbro, etc. on the switchin with Magma Storm, which means they can't switch out, so then they get bopped by the Solar Beam; it's a very viable set that will do wonders when paired up with Volcanion as it helps eliminate one of its strongest checks, making Heatran+Volcanion a very good core.
 
Got to say, I am loving Volcanion so far. This is the set I've been using:

Volcanion @ Choice Specs
Ability: Water Absorb
EVs: 208 HP / 4 Def / 252 SpA / 44 Spe
Modest Nature
- Steam Eruption
- Fire Blast
- Earth Power
- Sludge Bomb

The EVs give you enough Speed to outrun uninvested Mega Scizor, although you could run more if you wish. Steam Eruption is the main STAB - it hits very hard, and has a great chance to Burn. Fire Blast is the alternate STAB, wrecking the Grass types that resist Steam Eruption. Earth Power hits opposing Volcanion. Sludge Bomb hits Azumarill, although really that slots mostly filler anyway. Choice Specs cranks your Special Attack up to 11. You thought Specs Keldeo was dangerous? This thing's power boggles the mind:

252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Steam Eruption vs. 172 HP / 0 SpD Azumarill: 178-210 (46.3 - 54.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Steam Eruption vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Latios: 136-161 (45.4 - 53.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Steam Eruption vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Keldeo: 161-190 (49.8 - 58.8%) -- 99.6% chance to 2HKO
252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Steam Eruption vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Mega Altaria: 141-167 (48.4 - 57.3%) -- 94.1% chance to 2HKO
252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Sludge Bomb vs. 240 HP / 16 SpD Assault Vest Azumarill: 254-300 (63.3 - 74.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Steam Eruption vs. 0 HP / 236 SpD Assault Vest Conkeldurr: 208-246 (59.2 - 70%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Steam Eruption vs. 252 HP / 24 SpD Slowbro: 173-204 (43.9 - 51.7%) -- 69.5% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery

Pretty much the only thing Volcanion can't 2HKO is Chansey. Water/Fire typing with Water Absorb is really cool too, with 5 resistances with 3 of those being X4 and an immunity.

I'm going to predict A rank.
 

Martin

gamer boy
is a Forum Moderatoris a Live Chat Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon
Moderator
What synergy?

Hetran have like fire, ground, steel, sometimes rock. Volcanion has water, fire, ground, rock, fighting, steel and poision. Volcanion have everything heatran have and more! best partner lol, they even share ground weakness

And this marveouls solar beam set. Well, someone can scout for solar beam (if one sees team with no way of dealing with water on mid/high ladder he might expect some kind of lure) your only way to deal with it is gone. Double water core (lets say bor/fat fish) and 2 of your mons will have hard time doing anything.
The offensive synergy is spectacularly good. They share similar checks and can help break them down easily with their coverage. Solar Beam Heatran is also a highly cobsistent lure. Trap with Magma Storm on the switch-in (which also gets necessary chip damage) and proceed to take them out with Solar Beam. That's a fat water eliminated. Un-scoutable.
 

Albacore

sludge bomb is better than sludge wave
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
So yeah HP Grass as previously mentioned sounds way better, opposing Volcs can be hit by Sludge Bomb anyway, nor do they really check the rain sweepers
Sludge Bomb doesn't OHKO Volcanion after SR damage with Specs or 2HKO from full with Scarf, Gastrodon and Seismitoed will never be common enough to justify being at a disadvantage against what will probably end up being the primary Volcanion check just to hit them, and what exactly does checking rain sweepers have to do with anything?
 
I would try to run enough speed for jolly azumarill at least (172 EVs neutral natured) so volcanion reliably checks it and doesnt drop to superpower after a little prior damage. Jolly azu is rare but you hit tons of other benchmarks with this investment so i think its definitely worthwile
 
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hmmmmm
I can see too much Suicunes switching into Steam Eruptions and Fire Blasts to pressure it out
I see Seismitoads, too much Seismitoads
Alakazam Mega can Switch In Steam Eruption too
 
So far love using the more bulkier variant of volcanion

Volcanion @ Leftovers
Ability: Water Absorb
EVs: 248 HP / 180 Def / 80 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Will-O-Wisp
- Scald
- Toxic
- Haze

Not to sure about the ev's. I just wanted some speed ev's. Double status hurts both physical attackers and bulky waters that try and "check" it. Haze is just there for an extra measure against set up sweepers.
 
So far love using the more bulkier variant of volcanion

Volcanion @ Leftovers
Ability: Water Absorb
EVs: 248 HP / 180 Def / 80 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Will-O-Wisp
- Scald
- Toxic
- Haze

Not to sure about the ev's. I just wanted some speed ev's. Double status hurts both physical attackers and bulky waters that try and "check" it. Haze is just there for an extra measure against set up sweepers.
okay so you shouldnt be running scald when you have steam eruption

but bulkanion is p cool i agree

Volcanion @ Leftovers
Ability: Water Absorb
EVs: 248 HP / 172 Def / 44 SpD / 44 Spe
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk

these are my evs, you outspeed uninvested msciz (stole the speed from chrystalfalchion) and you live a lot of attacks real nicely

252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Secret Sword vs. 248 HP / 172 Def Volcanion: 153-181 (44.6 - 52.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
(153, 156, 157, 159, 160, 162, 165, 166, 168, 169, 171, 174, 175, 177, 178, 181)
216 SpA Life Orb Tornadus-T Hurricane vs. 248 HP / 44+ SpD Volcanion: 164-192 (47.8 - 55.9%) -- 29.7% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
(164, 165, 168, 169, 172, 173, 175, 177, 179, 181, 183, 185, 187, 188, 191, 192)
252 SpA Mega Alakazam Psychic vs. 248 HP / 44+ SpD Volcanion: 148-175 (43.1 - 51%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
(148, 150, 151, 153, 156, 157, 159, 160, 162, 163, 166, 168, 169, 171, 172, 175)
252+ Atk Choice Band Huge Power Azumarill Superpower vs. 248 HP / 172 Def Volcanion: 176-208 (51.3 - 60.6%) -- 91.8% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
(176, 178, 180, 183, 185, 187, 189, 191, 193, 195, 197, 199, 201, 203, 205, 208)
-1 252+ Atk Choice Band Huge Power Azumarill Superpower vs. 248 HP / 172 Def Volcanion: 118-139 (34.4 - 40.5%) -- 49.5% chance to 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 Atk Mega Lopunny High Jump Kick vs. 248 HP / 172 Def Volcanion: 163-193 (47.5 - 56.2%) -- 29.7% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
(163, 165, 168, 169, 171, 174, 175, 177, 178, 181, 183, 184, 187, 189, 190, 193)
 

shartruce

Chartreuse Charmanders/ US WEST 2015!
is a Tiering Contributor Alumnus
So far love using the more bulkier variant of volcanion

Volcanion @ Leftovers
Ability: Water Absorb
EVs: 248 HP / 180 Def / 80 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Will-O-Wisp
- Scald
- Toxic
- Haze

Not to sure about the ev's. I just wanted some speed ev's. Double status hurts both physical attackers and bulky waters that try and "check" it. Haze is just there for an extra measure against set up sweepers.
I've been running 96 speed EVs on defensive volc to outspeed max speed adamant azu so I can haze it if it got a belly drum up. I guess you can run more speed to outpace jolly azu but I don't think the loss of bulk is worth it. Only played a few games with volc so far and I've been using a restalk set with steam eruption and haze, and it's doing ok. Can beat bd azu, talon, has some sort of recovery which is nice, and can haze away cm clef and bro which is cool. Sleep talk also helps with steam eruptions 8 pp. You can use wow over haze to still beat bd azu and be a pretty annoying burn spreader in conjunction with steam eruption.

Just my 2 cents on volc, will probably experiment with more offensive sets later, this will be a noteworthy OU mon for sure
 

p2

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if you're using bulky volc then you should definitely be using scald despite access to steam eruption because not only do you have no pp, you're gonna be really pressed to actually hit things and with the excepted surge in usage of suicune on fat teams, that 8pp is gonna be dropping in an instant. scald is far by the superior choice if you're only using volcanion for its defensive utility because what's the point in using a set that has longevity if it can't even do anything after its main way of exerting offensive pressure is gone
 
A very interesting partner came to mind as I was reading the current discussion.

Rotom-H @ Choice Scarf (Timid)
4 HP/252 SpA/252 SpE
Will-O-Wisp
Thunderbolt
Overheat
Volt Switch

Same offensive synergy as Heatran + Ground immunity and more consistent Tbolt instead of a Solarbeam which will lose its shock factor as VolcTran becomes a thing. With Timid, Scarfed Will-O-Wisp allows you to tag M-Lopunny as well as M-Gyara @ +1, along with all unboosted base 135s. While incredible when paired with Volc's Specs variant, the shared SR weakness (even w/ Defog Latias) became a pain rather quickly:

Rotom-Mow @ Choice Scarf (Timid)
Leaf Storm
Thunderbolt
Will-O-Wisp
Volt Switch

Does everything Rotom-H does while also picking up Solarbeam Heatran's ability to beat bulky waters. You trade the SR weakness for U-Turn while gaining even better offensive coverage. Volcanion checks most of the relevant U-Turn users and Weavile while Rotom-H Leaf Storm OHKOs Gastrodon, M-Diancie, opposing Rotom-W & Swampert while giving you a solid chance at one-shotting Suicune & Landorus-T with rocks up. (Modest Leaf Storm has a 25% chance to OHKO 252 HP Suicune outright) Will have recordings up as I tweak the core further; would also argue that Earth Power is a must for beating out opposing Volc. Momentum control and a useful emergency Will-O-Wisp provide utility that Serperior doesn't.
 
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This is just coming from my experience in a few games on the ladder but with Suicune, Seismitoad and Gastrodon on almost every team, it seems a good idea to pair Volcanion with Thundurus / Breloom. The former lures those Water/Grounds with Grass Knot and Thunderbolts those Suicune and Manaphy while providing Thunder Wave support. The latter offer anti-Sand Offense support while still being good against bulky Waters. Bring something to beat Stall and Lati@s though.
 

Martin

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Been messing around with Volc+HerbTran and I'm absolutely loving it. The offensive synergy between the two is really good due to sharing each-other's checks, and with Heatran being able to lure, trap and eliminate fat waters Volcanion is able to really heavily pressure teams.
 

TMan87

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I really can see Celebi and Jirachi being interesting partners for Volcanion.
Jirachi can spread paralysis to alleviate Volcanion's speed issue and/or lure in Fire-types like Heatran and U-Turn out to the steamy thingy.
Celebi does the same with Baton Pass, but can also somewhat check Electrics and pressure Rock- or Ground-types with Grass STAB.
Not to mention il could BP a NP boost to Volcanion.
 

Gary

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Damn so far Volcanion just seems retarded lol. While I don't think it's going to be broken (need to wait for meta to adapt) the sheer amount of pressure it puts on team building is insane. At least Hoopa-U had a pretty reliable answer to it in Pursuit, but outside of checking Volcanion which isn't that hard to do thankfully, I can't really say that outside of Slowking and Mega Latias there are too many reliable switch-ins. While you can say that Volc technically nerfed Scald, Steam Eruption is so good and spammable that it well makes up for the decline in Scald lol. Here's kinda my take on how I think the meta is going to evolve and what I think will end up being good/bad.

Offensive Ground-types:


The already ever so common Sand Rush Exca, Chomper, and Landorus-T will still be pretty successful in a Volc metagame because of their ability to outspeed and OHKO Volc. Chomp is able to switch into every move bar Steam Eruption (lol when is it not using this though) and retaliate. Defensive Lando-T might fall out of favor a bit in favor for Scarf and offensive sets because Volc is able to outspeed defensive Lando-T and fire off a free Steam Eruption.

Water Absorb and Bulky Waters:


Gastrodon, Seismitoad, and Jellicent can all switch into both of Volc's STAB moves and can punish it heavily if it chooses to spam Steam Eruption anyway. Only issue is that Gastro and Toad have to watch out for HP Grass, and Jellicent is Pursuit bait which is unfortunately really good on Volc teams. Volcanion is also a really good check to itself as it is immune to Steam Eruption and 4x resists Fire Blast. Slowking can proceed to set up with CM and doesn't really mind the burn too much thanks to Regenerator, but Pursuit :/. Tentacruel is able to set up Toxic Spikes on its face which I've noticed a lot of teams really struggle against these days. Suicune can't do jack shit to it, but it can repeatedly switch into it and stall out its moves with Pressure very quickly, making it much easier to deal with throughout the match.

Pursuit:


Pursuit support is very important with Volc because it traps a lot of its common check/switch-ins such as the Latis, Slowking, and Mega Zam.



These Mega evolutions are also going to be pretty useful in the current metagame. Mega Gardevoir gained a check in Volcanion but also an AMAZING partner. Both of them have amazing offensive synergy and can bust through each other common counters; Volc destroys Steel- and Fire-types while Mega Gard softens up bulky Waters and Dragons. Mega Latias is going to be probably one of the best megas in the tier at this point because now there's even more reason to use it, as it can take all of Volc's moves with impunity and doesn't really mind burn that much. Mega Zam is an awesome offensive check to Volc's choiced sets at it is able to Trace Water Absorb and become immune to Steam Eruption, giving it a free turn of set up or to fire off a strong move. Mega Gyarados doesn't like burns, but it still resists both of Volc's STAB moves and doesn't give a fuck about Water Absorb thanks to Mold Breaker, although it's not like Volc can stomach an EQ or Crunch anyway. It can set up on Fire Blast and Sludge Bomb pretty reliably, although it can set up on Steam Eruption it's pretty risky.

There's a lot more shit that will obviously be good such as CB Terrakion and Breloom (amazing partner) but this is what I'm guessing will be the most obvious.
 

Martin

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Yeah I've been adoring SpD Colbur Berry Jellicent as a stop to this thing. This thing is such a good countermeasure to those Specs Volc+BandTar cores which are running around. To put this into perspective:

252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Pursuit vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Colbur Berry Jellicent: 148-175 (36.6 - 43.3%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after sandstorm damage
252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Crunch vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Colbur Berry Jellicent: 295-348 (73 - 86.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after sandstorm damage

It is able to take a hit from bandtar and cripple it with Wisp, and from here it can either switch out safely if it locks itself into Crunch or it can spam Recover and watch Tyranitar die to burn if it Pursuits.

If Tar is Choce Scarf or defensive, it gets stalled even harder than Band does. All in all this thing is disgustingly fat and a great answer to Volcanion.
 
So far I've tried Assault Vest and Choice Specs Volcanion, and Specs has definetly been the better set for me. If it gets a free switch in (pretty easy with its great typing), something is going to die. As I showed with the calcs, even resists take a huge chunk from Steam Eruption, and nothing wants to risk the burn.

What about a Mixed set? Superpower 2HKOes Chansey after Stealth Rock, and it still has Flare Blitz and Earthquake?
 
About this part, you don't really "scout" for Solar Beam, as no Heatran player running it is just gonna mindlessly throw out their one Solar Beam, that's why you use Magma Storm with it; you trap the Slowbro, etc. on the switchin with Magma Storm, which means they can't switch out, so then they get bopped by the Solar Beam; it's a very viable set that will do wonders when paired up with Volcanion as it helps eliminate one of its strongest checks, making Heatran+Volcanion a very good core.
Well, I had no idea.

However I still would prefer more reliable way to deal with bulky water like CM raikou which can set up on switch.

By the way, focus blast is best 4th move on keldeo. Forget about HP bug, icy wind and others. I don't know who created this set (maybe cosine?) but it is amazing!

252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Volcanion: 319-376 (87.6 - 103.2%) -- 25% chance to OHKO
252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 248 HP / 0 SpD Rotom-W: 276-325 (91 - 107.2%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO
252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Manaphy: 292-345 (85.6 - 101.1%) -- 87.5% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Latios: 135-159 (45.1 - 53.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 172 HP / 0 SpD Azumarill: 176-207 (45.8 - 53.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock

Yeah, 70%acc sucks but that opportunity to blow rotom with clean hit... It is just amazing!
 

Josh

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But the difference is Tran actually lures and traps them, with something like Raikou they'll just switch out and come in to check volcanion again later...

Sidenote: love that jellicent is getting attention, it's the best keldeo counter around as well :)
 
I think if you're using defensive volcanion you should still be using Haze. The Haze / Toxic Defensive variant puts a stop to CM Slowbro which is pretty neat.
Well, I had no idea.

However I still would prefer more reliable way to deal with bulky water like CM raikou which can set up on switch.

By the way, focus blast is best 4th move on keldeo. Forget about HP bug, icy wind and others. I don't know who created this set (maybe cosine?) but it is amazing!

252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Volcanion: 319-376 (87.6 - 103.2%) -- 25% chance to OHKO
252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 248 HP / 0 SpD Rotom-W: 276-325 (91 - 107.2%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO
252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Manaphy: 292-345 (85.6 - 101.1%) -- 87.5% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Latios: 135-159 (45.1 - 53.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Choice Specs Keldeo Focus Blast vs. 172 HP / 0 SpD Azumarill: 176-207 (45.8 - 53.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock

Yeah, 70%acc sucks but that opportunity to blow rotom with clean hit... It is just amazing!
FYI it was Destiny Device who brought it under the spotlight in XY, Focus Blast Keldeo, in his RMT archived M-Heracross team a little history lesson if you were interested. At the time it was designed for Alomomola which was gaining popularity during the later XY era after Aegislash ban.

Mega Latias is by far the best Volcanion check you're gonna get that doesn't mandate that you run a Water Absorber, since Life Orb with Superpower isn't bad to hit Chansey. Fortunately it's been good for awhile so it isn't niche and Volcanion is always going to have issues breaking it. The only real way to put a hurt on it is catching it with a Toxic.

I also don't think CM Raikou is a good way to handle waters or is a good set in general seeing as how it's so easy for a water to click Scald and potentially burn it putting it on a timer while you go into something like your tyranitar or check to Raikou to make it a liability.

Cool stuff.
 
volcanion seems pretty cool. i don't think it'll be some insane threat or w.e like a few people do... not every new pokemon that gets released is a broken pos that fucks up the meta. volcanion seems like a really balanced, healthy pokemon for the meta for sure, mainly because it provides more options for offensive waters that provide role compression. it's gonna be a really nice bulky offensive mon thanks to all the stuff it's capable of checking decently: offensive steels (like scizor), azumarill, mega sableye, certain offensive fires, certain offensive waters... it should be clear that the specs set has enough bulk to check these and other things, but not super reliably. if you're using volc for its defensive utility, then a defensive spread would make sense. it gets access to haze / roar, making it a good check to clefable and BD azumarill (not really a switch-in i don't think).

as for stuff that works nicely with volc...


this has already been mentioned enough, but pursuit is really nice with this thing. tyranitar seems pretty great because it does a solid job of checking annoying electrics while providing pursuit support for the lati@s. volc can also check things that annoy ttar like skarmory and mega scizor, while providing an easy switch-in to offensive waters that may pressure ttar.

i mentioned mega metagross under pursuit users, but it's really just a nice partner for volc with or without pursuit. it's capable of checking lati@s, and volc allows you to make a mega meta offense build that isn't 5 physical attackers + keldeo rofl.


speedy electrics can handle bulky waters that really annoy volc (other than the water + ground ones). with thundurus, you can either have thunder wave support to make up for volc's crappy speed, or you can use nasty plot to have a clear wincon when building. volt switch raikou & manectric can show off how volc appreciates voltturn to bring it in while whittling down your opponent. also with raikou, CM provides a good wincon like nastyplot thundy (not as threatening as thund though), and it can help with opposing thunds.

it's also pretty clear that speedy electrics cause a lot of problems for volc :p


offensive grasses do the same thing as speedy electrics in handling bulky waters that volc doesn't like, but they also check gastrodon and seismitoad. both of these provide clear wincons to pair with volc from the start: serp with leaf storm and loom with SD (if you're running SD). loom also provides a decent answer for sand builds which can really annoy volc.


running sab with volc on balanced builds is gonna be really fun. you sorta have the freedom to run either the current "standard" for volc (bulky offensive w/ specs), or you can play around with a defensive set. sab has magic bounce to help keep rocks off your side of the field, really making up for volc's rock weakness, and volc can check azumarill, offensive waters, and offensive fires that sab doesn't like. with a defensive utility volc set, you can more efficiently check this stuff, and you can check fairies that annoy sab (clefable !!!).

volc seems like a really fun and balanced pokemon that provides a bit more variety in teambuilding, definitely making things a lot less stale.
 
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