Resource OU Playstyles

Status
Not open for further replies.
OU Playstyles
Approved by Aragorn the King
OP originally made by LilOuOn​

Welcome to the OU discussion of the different playstyles! The main purpose of this thread is to choose a playstyle every week (I'll choose it) and you, (yes, you), are going to be able to comment, give your opinion and suggest pokemons that should be considered when making a team around the style [posting teams is also allowed, just keep in mind that this is not the RMT forums, so if you want to post a team try to make it short and use sprites of pokes, explain how does the team work and post replays if possible]. Obviously, your comments must have connection with the chosen style, as well as solid arguments of why your comment(s) are valid. With this, newer players can decide what playstyle they like most and, of course, more experienced players can also expand their knowledge. Remember to be friendly with other people; if you disagree with someone's opinion don't slam with an aggressive response, just let everyone know what you think in a kind way.The links to discussions of each playstyle will be posted in the OP so everyone can read it at anytime!


Rules
  • Make quality posts. No one-lined posts.Your comments must be about the weekly playstyle chosen.
  • No gimmicks. If you decided to post a team (or pokemon) don't suggest using pursuit Tauros to trap Latias and Latios while there is an overall better option named Tyranitar or Bisharp.
  • Comment how the chosen style affects the current metagame and how it fairs in it.
  • Support your team's posts with replays if possible. Explanation of them are a must.
  • If you are comfortable, feel free to post one of your own teams and explain the process of making the team.
  • Having a wide point of view is needed. Don't post that stall sucks because you always lose to it.
  • Your new ideas must have strong arguments of why them should be considered.
  • This one is important: We don't want this to become a debate of: "this metagame is stale and has no diversity due to X Pokemon/Playstyle". This thread is here to make a discussion about the different playstyles, not to discharge all your hate against weather. Please, incoherent posts will be deleted and possibly penalized, so think about what are you going to write.
  • For reference see the past OU Playstyles projects to guide you on what to discuss.
 
Last edited:

Week #1 - Balance


Balance teams provide a, well, balance between offense and defense, being able to wall and pivot against common offensive threats while still providing enough power to win against powerful wallbreakers. Balance teams are currently considered to be one of the best archetypes right now. What makes balance so strong in the current meta? Who are the go-to mons for these kinds of teams? What are some problem mons that these teams tend to face?
 
Alright, may as well start of with some common problems for balance:

I think in general balance hates wall breakers; Pokemon with powerful moves or great coverage that are able to break down the defensive cores that provide a backbone for balance team and switch-ins to a lot of common threats.


Kyurem-Black @ Life Orb
Ability: Teravolt
EVs: 20 Atk / 252 SpA / 236 Spe
Mild Nature
- Ice Beam
- Earth Power
- Fusion Bolt
- Roost / Outrage / Substitute

...The monster himself. KB is one of the meta's most potent wallbreakers. Boasting incredible 170/120 offensive stats and an incredible movepool to back it up, there isn't really much more you could ask for in a wallbreaker. Although, he has to be wary for powerful priority and a few mons such as chansey, and ferro.



Heracross @ Heracronite
Ability: Moxie
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Close Combat
- Pin Missile
- Rock Blast
- Swords Dance

I may as well add another example of a wallbreaker, Mega-Heracross. With a ridiculous attack stat of 185, good coverage, and high base power moves (all of which are at least 120BP), and access to swords dance to boost that attack stat to insane levels, Mega Hera is another great wallbreaker. It's only real counters are lando-T and gliscor (both of whom are 2HKO'd at +2), flying-type attacks from pretty much anything that out speeds, and will-o-wisp.
 

p2

Banned deucer.

Medicham @ Medichamite
Ability: Pure Power
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Fake Out
- Bullet Punch / Ice Punch
- High Jump Kick
- Zen Headbutt

Outside of Slowbro, Sableye, and physically defensive Mew, Balance has no switch ins for this. Medicham has the highest attack stat in OU and its HJK just completely breaks anything neutral to it. It's one of the most threatening balance breakers aside Mega Heracross and KyuB and can get around Slowbro by running Thunder Punch. Medicham pairs very well with Bisharp because Bisharp can handle Slowbro and Sableye for Medicham, while Medicham can break right through mons such as Skarmory, Quagsire, and Poliwrath that can stop Bisharp.
 

Malley

Dominachu
I feel like the defining feature of balance in this rather overpopulated metagame is its need to condense so many roles into a limited number of teamslots. While offence can spread out its ability to break any team over six members, and stall can do the same with its ability to wall, balance has to pack enough offensive pressure to break through fatter builds while also having reliable switch-ins to all common threats. Add the need to fit Stealth Rock and hazard removal onto the team as well, and building can become pressured very easily.

This is why established (primarily defensive) cores are such a big part of balance, because they are proven ways of effectively condensing these roles. FWG (Fire-Water-Grass) and DFS (Dragon-Fairy-Steel) cores are two of the most famous core styles, but what I've noticed more recently is Hippowdon balance, with cores of (something like) mixed wall Hippowdon + SpDef Skarmory + SpDef Talonflame. This gives the team switch-ins to Bisharp, Charizard X, Excadrill, Raikou, Manectric, Lopunny, Latios, Latias, Thundurus, Alakazam, Clefable, Gardevoir, Charizard Y, Gengar, and other things that are generally less threatening to balance, while also providing rocks (Hippowdon), Defog or Spikes (Skarmory) and stallbreaking + a good setup sweeper (Talonflame).

Hippowdon @ Leftovers
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 252 HP / 144 Def / 112 SpD
Impish Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
- Slack Off
- Stone Edge

Skarmory @ Leftovers
Ability: Sturdy
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SpD
Careful Nature
- Defog
- Iron Head
- Roost
- Whirlwind

Talonflame @ Leftovers
Ability: Gale Wings
EVs: 248 HP / 252 SpD / 8 Spe
Careful Nature
- Brave Bird
- Roost
- Taunt
- Bulk Up


The problem this brings to balance - not just this core - is that a reliance on a limited number of cores naturally leads to a vulnerability to certain sets on certain 'mons that can reliably rip these cores new ones. The most obvious example is how Kyurem-B destroys FWG cores. Venusaur + Heatran + Rotom-W walls a lot fairly effectively, but as soon as it comes up against a Kyurem-B it comes under massive pressure and gives the user a bad match-up from the off. Kyurem-B + Azumarill + Mega Scizor as a DFS core has a similar problem with SpDef Will-O-Wisp Mew, and Hippo balance - while not so well-established, and therefore not so easily exploitable - generally has at least one thing that destroys it depending on the exact core, simply because there are so many powerful threats in OU now. This core, for example, also has nothing for a well-played Kyurem-B, and if Clefable is run in place of Skarmory the core loses its hazard removal and becomes vulnerable to Gyarados, especially Sub DD variants. Latios also becomes considerably more threatening. Of course these weaknesses should be addressed by the rest of the team, but that is exactly where balance struggles, as if Clefable is run in addition to the above core only two teamslots remain for the more offensive side of the team, and so opposing defensive teams become more problematic just as a weakness to opposing offensive teams is patched up.

Offensive and defensive teams do not have this issue in the same way, and so this - this attempt to balance threat management and offensive power - is what makes balance as a playstyle what it is.
 

Dr Ciel

Banned deucer.

Manaphy @ Leftovers
Ability: Hydration
EVs: 96 HP / 252 SpA / 160 Spe
Modest Nature
- Tail Glow
- Scald / Surf
- Ice Beam
- Energy Ball / Psychic / Hidden Power Fire

This set is the exact reason why every single balance team in existence absolutely needs to carry 2 - 3 checks to it. Tail Glow + 3 Attacks Manaphy is the absolute bane of stall if you don't carry a check to it. At +3, there are no switch-ins to this thing. If running the standard TG / Scald / Ice Beam / Energy Ball, every Water type is covered and Mega Venusaur is the main check to it. However, if it runs Psychic, Mega Venusaur is no longer a problem, and if it runs Hidden Power Fire, Ferrothorn is easily taken care of. However, pending a Scald burn, most of these Pokemon will get worn down very quickly, as most Manaphy checks lack reliable recovery. So a tip for all you who use balance; as stated above, carry a good 2 checks to this thing if you don't want it to overwhelm you.
 
One of the biggest strengths of balance is that it doesn't determine the win condition. Most teams will contain at least a sweeper, a wall breaker, and a couple of defensive mons, giving the team a way to beat other prevalent play styles. Balance is happy to rely on a couple of walls to wear down HO teams, or to use wallbreakers to punch a hole in bulky offense, or to set up and sweep after taunting a wall - the play style in general is happy to win in whichever way the opponents team doesn't want.

On the flip side, cramming so many diverse pokemon onto a single team means that balance teams tend to rely on 2-3 key mons in each match up. Often the removal of these big threats leads to a swift defeat, for example, if a balance team loses a skarmory and a hippo cheaply to a HO team, its pretty much all over, as the other pokemon aren't designed to handle that style of play.
 

-Voltage-

OTTN5
is a Pre-Contributor
Out of all the playstyles, in my mind Balance suffers the most from a matchup based meta. As previously noted by many of the users who've already posted, the idea of Balance right now is to pack a bunch of roles into 2/3 pokemon. This alone creates a variety of problems for anyone playing when they lose a mon. As opposed to losing just one slot, by condensing multiple roles, you effectively lose at least 2 roles. Or it's like losing 2 Pokemon for the price of one, whichever you prefer. That said, team preservation is vital to winning, and if a team is well preserved, then it will have success, it's as simple as that.
 

Manaphy @ Leftovers
Ability: Hydration
EVs: 96 HP / 252 SpA / 160 Spe
Modest Nature
- Tail Glow
- Scald / Surf
- Ice Beam
- Energy Ball / Psychic / Hidden Power Fire

This set is the exact reason why every single balance team in existence absolutely needs to carry 2 - 3 checks to it. Tail Glow + 3 Attacks Manaphy is the absolute bane of stall if you don't carry a check to it. At +3, there are no switch-ins to this thing. If running the standard TG / Scald / Ice Beam / Energy Ball, every Water type is covered and Mega Venusaur is the main check to it. However, if it runs Psychic, Mega Venusaur is no longer a problem, and if it runs Hidden Power Fire, Ferrothorn is easily taken care of. However, pending a Scald burn, most of these Pokemon will get worn down very quickly, as most Manaphy checks lack reliable recovery. So a tip for all you who use balance; as stated above, carry a good 2 checks to this thing if you don't want it to overwhelm you.
We've started to see a rise in usage of AV Tornadus-T, one of the main reasons is the rise in usage of it is because of pokemon like SubCM Keldeo and Manaphy. Tornadus-T not only checks them well but also functions as a nice pivot for the team because of access to U-Turn and Regenerator, making it a commonly seen and one of the more splashable mons in balanced teams.
 
Dunno. I'm not a big fan of balance cuz I find it's too weak offensively to break stall cores efficiently unless it's a zard y balance it's something. And its too easy to overwhelm with HO bc defensively it relies on a small defensive core to handle a bunch of threats. And offensively, most balances are too slow and rely choice scarf mons like keld or landt to make up for it. Choice scarf is a bit risky and can lose the momentum and give away a free turn. Which can lead to a free setup for bd azu, talon or manaphy.

One of my favorite balance breaker is Thundurus. Its fast, strong and can break balance cores without much trouble. It has a variety of coverage to use ( Hidden powers, psychic, g knot, Knock off, nasty plot, sludge wave, super power) so it can get kills easily. It also has priority t wave to pressure set up sweepers.
Normally in offensive teams you can setup something and let it get parad at the cost of taking down their thundurus so another sweeper can go inturupted. Balance is really pressured to do this since they don't have sweepers that can just setup right after each other.
 
As primarily a balanced player, I feel like I should post my thoughts on balance atm.
In my opinion, balance really, really sucks right now compared to the other playstyles. There are just too many pokemon that are balance breakers in the meta right now, and all of them are viable. The problem with balance right now imo, is just the playstyle itself. It tries to do way too much in 6 slots, you need a solid defense backbone, a stealth rocker, a defogger/spinner, a sweeper, a wallbreaker, and maybe a cleaner. Balance tries to be a mix of both offense and defense, and in my experience, fails miserably at both. Common balance pokes/cores usually aren't fat enough to take repeated assaults from offensive teams with threats like megazam and kyubes having very little in the department of switch ins, and usually the offense cores of balance aren't powerful enough or versatile enough to break stall monsters like chansey or msableye. However, balance does have certain advantages, because unlike stall, it doesn't run the risk of being 6-0'ed instantly if the wrong mon appears, and unlike offense, it has decent switch ins to stuff. That's my assessment of balance right now, and unless we get some good blanket checks next gen, balance looks to stay bad and fall out of style.

In the area of classic balance mons, clefable and mega venusaur immediately come to mind, as well as a few others such as charizard x or hippowdon. Most people know this, but generally what makes a good balance mon is something that offers good defensive synergy, while also being able to contribute either offensively, or carrying rocks/spikes/defog/spin/t-wave. For this reason, mons like clef and hippo are very popular on balance because they generally offer good defensive synergy and contribute in some other way (wish support/SR/Twave). Other mons like mega venusaur or tornadus-t offer good defenses and decent offensive power, allowing the pokemon to be part of the defensive core and lay some hurt on opposing team members. Finally, the last type of mon generally seen on balance is one of two sub-types. The first type is a boosting sweeper. Popular choices right now are zard x, volcarona, and of course mega alt. The other type is a fast scarfer, such as landorus-t or keldeo. This last type of pokemon is meant to clean up the game. These are the types of mons I generally see on balance teams.

For threats to balance teams, where to begin lol. There are so many threats to balance its funny. Stuff like kyubes, thundurus, megacross, megacham, megazard y, manaphy, LO torn-t, and many others can threaten balance with their outright power or coverage. Others like mew or spdef talonflame can be difficult for balance to break as they can usually shut down the defensive parts of the team, leaving the balance player to risk their offensive mons by bringing them out earlier than wished. Balance does have ways around these big threats, but preparing for some of the threats leave you open to usually at least one other. Another big problem for balance is full/semi stall, because team builders (myself included) can sometimes forget a pokemon to help break stall, usually because balance has to cram a lot of roles into 6 slots, and a stallbreaker/powerful wallbreaker can sometimes be forgotten or overlooked in favor of something with more defensive synergy. Skilled builders/players most likely won't make this mistake, but its still something to be wary about.

Well, those are my thoughts on balance in the current meta.
 
Last edited:

Unlucky Desperado

Banned deucer.
I used to use balance a lot. By a lot I meant I was only comfortable to balance. Now I have tended to use Hyper Offense more on the ladder and tend for fatter teams in tournament play. The reason balance is one of the more favored playstyles is because it leaves you lots of margin for error. On stall, each Pokemon is designed to take care of a specific threat. This isn't the case on balance, which tends to use more blanket checks and bulkier offensive mons, such as Assault Vest Tornadus-T, or bulky SD Mega Scizor. Similarly balance does not need to rely on powerful attackers like LO Thundurus. Instead it can also play a more passive role with its walls.

A lot of the times when I play the balance vs offense matchup, I feel like balance is too "predictable" so that the opponent is able to predict very obvious switch ins and dismantle your cores. Additionally sometimes balance doesn't have enough to keep up with all the hard hitters on offense. Balance tends to get bad match ups. Maybe 1 in 20 games it will find the one set that fucks it over. This is why balance has become what I believe, fat shit featuring pink blobs. We can look at Tele 's team archive. They tend to be bulky ass shit. Yes those teams work because of how well built they are, hence I think it is more semi stall, and why I sometimes say, balance is dead. What used to be balance where teams with visible offensive and defensive cores, having lots of synergy. Now in ORAS, we tend to use our blanket checks and fat pokemon to simply not lose to the plethora of offensive threats. What shoudl be balance has to accept its bad matchups and is therefore not reliable.

Balance versus is balance/stall is one of the more interesting games to play, because whereas versus offense you can find yourself being controlled by the actions of the offensive player, in this matchup balance has to play a more aggressive role in order to break the opposing team's defensive cores and shit. Usually this leads to over 100 turns but I think it is one of the harder and more rewarding matchups to play.

To conclude, I think that balance has degenerated to a more semi stall style of play that relies on lots of fat shit to set up, like SpDef Gliscor, SD Scizor, and Clefable. Rather than actually pose some offensive presence balance becomes a more read and react situation. It becomes more predictable and inevitably has bad matchups. At the cost of some bad matchups, balance does allow the user to play more predictably because of its defense along with offensive threats, and there is certainly more margin of error than there is in offense or stall.
 

Week #2 - Hyper Offense
Hyper offense teams take an aggressive approach to battling, focusing on pressuring defensive cores through wallbreakers and overlapping attackers. Thanks to the nature of the Pokemon on these teams, they often lack defensive synergy, relying on revenge killing fast threats through priority or speed boosting capabilities. HO teams tend to run heavy offensive hazard support, as the additional damage helps get a lot of kills, and HO's fast paced nature means that opposing teams can struggle to find time to remove hazards. Where do you guys think Hyper Offense stands in the current meta? What trends hinder or enable it?
 


Sand offence teams featuring excadrill give HO huge problems because of Excas massive speed in sand which allows it to bypass the speed advantage that HO mons have and is free to fire of powerful life orb boosted stab attacks which devastate HO due to a lack of switchins and most of the time needing to sack something in order to bring another mon in to deal with it. Priority is always a good way to deal with Exca as he is weak to aqua jet and mach punch. The only other reliable way of dealing with exca is to kill the sand setter. Basically Exca has an ideal matchup against HO and a well played Exca will always be a threat to HO.
 
In a similar vein rain teams also pose a huge threat to hyper offense. Even most scarfers are outspeed by rain sweepers. Mega swamp can beat thunderus, Kabutops/Omastar beat talonflame. Usually hyper offense's best option vs rain is azumarill which can tank water hits and hit hard with rain boosted aqua jets.
 


Mega Lopunny, like Sand Drill and Rain offense, devastates HO through its powerful STABs and incredible speed. Generally, Return and HJK are the spammable moves while it often runs Fake Out for a free Mega. This bit of chip damage allows it to pick off a variety of pokemon on offense, such as Latios (as Return KO's after Fake Out). Offense frequently has headaches when facing it, making a priority user or two, especially Mach Punch, a bit more important. It can pick off many fast but frail pokemon on offense, such as Weavile and Alakazam.
 
+


This core dismantles a lot of HO teams. M-Manectric outspeeds almost the entire tier, this core's primary idea is for M-Manectric to Volt Switch on its checks such as the Lati twins, and then Pursuit-trap them with Weavile. Since the duo outspeed a lot of the metagame, cover each others' threats well, and gain a lot momentum, this makes them an absolute horror for HO teams to face.


My overview of HO:
Hyper Offensive teams rely on essentially two things- hazard stacking and momentum. Hazard stacking is provided by hazard setters such as Klefki, Garchomp, and Landorus-T. These kinds of teams often have a Bisharp waiting in the back to take advantage of Defog through its ability, Defiant. Hazard stacking teams mostly have a spinner for hazard removal as it is pretty contradicting to set up so many hazards and defog them away yourself but it's not uncommon to use Defog as a means of hazard removal on a hazard stacking team although Rapid Spin is generally preferred.

Momentum is gained through moves like Volt Switch and U-Turn, hence the name VoltTurn is given to teams that incorporate this into their goal. This is a great strategy to use because of the fact that the player can threaten an opposing pokemon out by coming in on it and then Volt Switch/U-Turn on the switch-in. This generates a lot of momentum which is essential in an HO Team. This is pretty much the reason why you won't see pokemon like Hippowdon on an HO team as they are extremely bad momentum killers, speaking of which, Hippowdon is an excellent answer to pretty much any VoltTurn team out there because of being neutral to U-Turn and being immune to Volt Switch. VoltTurn teams pretty much win by residual damage from hazards/ VoltTurn and then having a fast pokemon (M-Loppuny for example) to clean up.

One of the most threatening pokemon to Hyper Offense include M-Manectric, Weavile, and M-CharizardX. Sand Offense and Rain Offense also pretty much run through so many HO teams.

This is why Azumarill and Raikou are slapped onto so many HO teams. Azumarill checks the likes of Sand and Rain teams, Weavile, and M-CharizardX pretty well while Raikou is primarily placed to check Thundurus-I, M-Manectric, and pretty much any other threatening specially offensive threat.
 
Last edited:
HO is like the only playstyle I like using. :/ Being in control of the momentum of the match is the most important part of playing HO.
Since you don't have any walls, most HO teams will have a pivot mon that can switch into attacks and take the momentum (without death foddering) by forcing the other mon out. Then you can either use a strong move like draco meteor, eq, whatever. Or can predict and put a new teammate out by using u Turn/bp/volt switch/double switch.

Pivots are very important for HO some pivots are:

Latias @ Life Orb
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 72 HP / 184 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Defog
- Draco Meteor
- Psyshock
- Healing Wish

Switches into most keld, venu, zardy, eqs. Latias has healing wish and is a little bulkier so it is able to defog more reliably. Usually my go-to defoger if I can't fit a spinner.

Latios @ Life Orb
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Draco Meteor
- Psyshock
- Hidden Power Fire/Earthquake
- Defog/Roost/Earthquake/Tailwind
Like Latias with more versatility. Mostly because of its offensive pressence cuz hp fire and eq work really well. If I need defog, I'll usually take Latias over him cuz I feel like it's a waste of slots to run defog/roost on a HO. Especially since 4 atk latios breaks steels hard.

Landorus-Therian @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Earthquake
- Stone Edge
- Knock Off
- U-turn

Can be any landt set tbh but I usually use Garchomp of I need rocks cuz it deals with lop, bish, talon more efficiently I guess. All 3 are some of the biggest threats to HO imo.

Garchomp @ Rocky Helmet
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 252 HP / 164 Def / 76 SpD / 16 Spe
Impish Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
- Dragon Tail
- Fire Blast/Endure
Deals with a lot of shit and sets rocks. Very efficient mon since it does damage without attacking pretty much.

Keldeo @ Choice Specs/Scarf
Ability: Justified
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Scald
- Secret Sword
- Hydro Pump
- Icy Wind
Switches into dark and Fire moves pretty well.

Tyranitar @ Smooth Rock
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 248 HP / 80 Def / 180 SpD
Relaxed Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Stone Edge
- Pursuit
- Ice Beam

Switches into talon and latis. Sets rocks and sand for excadrill.

Definitely some more but you get the idea.
 

Week #3 - Stall / Semi-Stall
Stall teams play the long game, relying on defensive synergy, chip damage, and recovery in order to grind out an enemy team. They tend to rely on forms of passive damage to break other teams. Stall's main issues stem from the enormous number of offensive threats in the current meta, which make it difficult to cover all relevant threats. The team's passiveness also tends to leave them helpless against a variety of stallbreakers, who have ways of mitigating the passive damage. As a result, many stall teams have adapted to semi-stall, a more assertive form of stall that features a win condition and some offensive presence. Which Pokemon are effective on these kinds of teams? What threatens them? Does pure stall have a way to stay viable, or has semi-stall become the new standard for defensive teams?
 
Stall's no fun for anybody. With hazards and other forms of chip damage out there, many ill-prepared players can be caught in its trap.

One Pokemon introduced in ORAS that's been bugging me since it's release is mega-sableye (deserving to be chased by Link above). One sadistic core came into my head while messing around on teambuilder. A Chansey, Mega-Sableye core.




Sableye @ Sablenite
Ability: Prankster
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature
- Will-O-Wisp
- Foul Play
- Knock Off/Taunt
- Recover


Chansey @ Eviolite
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Def / 252 SpD
Bold Nature
- Soft-Boiled
- Heal Bell / Toxic
- Stealth Rock
- Seismic Toss


This is the basis for a stall team core I would personally use. Mega-Sableye magic bounces toxic or any other hazards to weaken the core and burns any physical attackers. Chansey is a special tank and support for Sableye that deals with hard hitting special hitters such as latios/lati@s.

The biggest problem with this core will be set up fairies and hard hitting physical fire types.

The biggest threats I see with this are:




This brings me to my next point in stall: Should a team really be constructed with 5-6 stallmons and a stall core?

While matchups may heavily impact this question, I do believe that multiple defensive cores stacked on each other aren't the way to go. I think semi-stall is the most optimal path. Basing a team off pure stall will lead to destruction against mons that set up and have a solid offensive core.
So going back to the team: What can I do to counter this? I think the best way to create a stall team is to start out with a core like this and build a personal body guarding unit for it that eliminates threats and packs power in extra areas needed. The first mon I would add would be a heatran to give all 4 of the above threats some trouble


Heatran @ Air Balloon
Ability: Flash Fire
EVs: 248 HP / 252 SpA / 8 SpD
Modest Nature
- Ancient Power
- Earth Power
- Flash Cannon
- Lava Plume



Now the team has a defensive core with a threat eliminator. To avoid making this seem like an RMT I'll just go and get to the point and try to incorporate this half team build into a final stall analysis.

Analysis: The key to running a good stall team is preparation. Stall teams can be weakened by mons that set up, use weather of some kind, are wallbreakers, etc. Killing one pokemon in a stall team can ruin a whole core, the longer the stall this the longer a crit is waiting to happen. That's why I believe stall can be competitive at any level in any tier as long as it's slightly balanced between balance and stall.
 

SketchUp

Don't let your memes be dreams
I don't play stall too often but I love to use gimmicky semi-stall teams. Instead of trying to counter all the threats the metagame has to offer, I think having a strategy that gives you the best matchup against standard teams is the most rewarding. This semi-stall team was featured in last weeks Team Study and it pretty much shows how I think semi-stall teams are used most effective. While the team is weak to both forms of Charizard (which is something I would definitely change though) it has a good matchup against common teams. Being able to stay healthy with 3 Regenerator mons and 3 mons with a recovery move and having great hazards control with exca + sableye + infernape is a very effective way of dealing with common balanced teams. Another example is Whitequeens Hex Gengar team; the idea of the team (spamming status with a defensive core and breaking walls with an offensive core including hex on gengar) gives it a good matchup against common teams, but it still struggles against pokemon like Charizard-X and LO Tornadus-T. Of course issues like this can be helped with changing a few movesets (or even a few pokemon) to deal with these threats better, but the original idea of the team in spamming status will be gone and common balance breakers will give the team more troubles.
With this given I think there are some very interesting pokemon on semi-stall that work amazingly on teams with a main goal.
Specially Defensive Victini with Taunt + Wisp + VCreate + Bolt Strike is not only an awesome way of dealing with threats like Clefable, Charizard Y and Mega Gardevoir, but also helps on hazards based (wisp lures in many hazards setters like Landorus-T and Taunt stops slow defoggers) and status based teams. Even though Victini needs some support (wish, hazards removal, pursuit weakness) it is really effective in winning the hazards war early in the match and continuing to beat some very dangerous threats like Mega Metagross and Mega Altaria later in the match.
Another pokemon that really shines on hazards based semi-stall teams, but needs support in wish and a way in dealing with bulky grass and water types. Its typing is very bad for a pokemon in OU, but it is very useful to help deal with pokemon like Zard X, Talonflame, Tornadus-T and Togekiss. A physical defensive spread is often prefered to check Bisharp and Zard X better, but I think a more specially bulky spread works best because it also helps dealing with electric types. A spread of 248 HP / 204 Def / 56 SpD with a Careful nature allows Rhyperior to always survive two +1 Adamant Dragon Claws from Zard-X, two LO Thundurus HP Ice after rocks and two Specs Raikou HP Ice after rocks. LO Tornadus-T can only 4hko you with this spread and AV Tornadus-T (who uses Focus Blast) needs to hit twice and have good rolls to 2hko you (assuming no stealth rocks on the field) Even when unboosted, Rhyperior hits really hard and Stealth Rock + Roar is great support for every semi-stall team.
Most of the time SpD Dragalge is overshadowed by its offensive set, but with great 65 / 123 special bulk, Dragalge is able to switch in against many special attackers such as Gengar, Zard Y, Thundurus and Keldeo and fire off a powerful Draco Meteor or Sludge Bomb. Toxic Spikes are really useful on semi-stall teams that don't spam status as it wears threats like Mega Lopunny down extremely quickly. Dragon Tail, Scald and Haze are great options for the fourth slot for obvious reasons. Dragalge doesn't need Wish support as much as Victini and Rhyperior does, as it is not weak to rocks and is not that quickly forced to switch (and it can also spam DTail to get some chip damage + black sludge recovery) but because it's often the main switchin to pokemon like Gengar, wish support is really appreciated.
Bulky Salamence is pretty fun to use but I prefer a more bulky spread than the analysis currently uses. Intimidate and Defog are both great niches (and you can even go gimmicky and use Wish, Toxic or Dragon Tail) The former helps Salamence check pokemon like Scizor, Lopunny and Excadrill and the latter is nice because nobody likes rocks. I haven't used Salamence that much because it is honestly pretty bad, but Roost+Defog+Fireblast+filler (depends on the team but Earthquake, Hydro Pump, Wish, Toxic, Dragon Tail and Roar are all decent) is not that terrible and is also the only set you should run on Salamence in OU.
 

Week #4 - Trick Room
Trick Room is one of those playstyles that sees little use, despite the huge effect that the move can have against fast teams. Using Trick Room allows for slower Pokemon to move faster than faster mons in the same priority bracket, allowing slow, bulky, and powerful mons to outrun almost every offensive threat. Trick Room sees little usage on both the ladder and in tournaments, which has a lot to do with how difficult it is to set up, as well as the 5-turn duration, which leaves a lot to be desired when compared to Politoed's instant 8-turn rain. However, Trick Room has a wider variety of users and abusers, which allows for more creative teambuilding. How do Trick Room teams fair in the current meta? Which Pokemon are able to use the move effectively, and which ones make for good abusers?
 

Dr Ciel

Banned deucer.
I don't play a lot of Trick Room because of, ahem, how tricky it is to play (No pun intended.) Support is key here, as you need 2 or three Trick Room setters, two or three abusers, then tack on a Scarfer on the end for when Trick Room runs out. Anyways, here are some solid TR Setters and Abusers.

Slowbro
: Slowbro can be used as an excellent setter, thanks to it's amazing 95 / 110 / 80 Bulk and Regenerator allows it to Set up Trick Room multiple times over the course of a match. It's no slouch offensively as it's base 100 Special Attack coupled with Life Orb can do some serious damage to Pokemon that don't resist it's moves. With a solid offensive move-pool consisting of two solid STAB moves in Psychic / Psyshock and Surf provide pretty solid coverage on most Pokemon in the meta. Ice Beam and Shadow Ball are solid coverage moves to hit those threats that resist its coverage moves (e.g. Lati's, Hydreigon, opposing Slowbro, Celebi). Fire Blast is also a good option for OHKO'ing Ferrothorn.

Dragalge
: Thanks to a fantastically frightening STAB combo, a modest 97 Special Attack, and a wide move-pool, Dragalge can be used as an insanely powerful wall-breaker in Trick Room. Draco Meteor hits insanely hard when boosted by Choice Specs and Adaptability, being able to do heavy damage to, if not OHKO any Pokemon in the meta that isn't a Steel type, Fairy type, or a Pink Blob. Sludge Wave is an excellent backup STAB, nailing Fairy Types for super-effective damage. Focus Blast and HP Fire are viable moves for hitting Steel types, the former mainly for hitting Heatran. Scald is a solid move for checking Heatran if not running Focus Blast, and can also be used to fish for a burn on Jirachi, and Mega Metagross, common Dragalge switch-ins.

Cresselia
: Thanks to insanely high physical bulk and a move that sets it away from all other Trick Room setters, Cresselia is a prime choice for Trick Room teams. Lunar Dance is what sets Cresselia apart from every other Trick Room setter, as it fully heals a partner Pokemon (along with restoring the PP to all their moves I believe), in order for them to get a second chance at wall-breaking and / or sweeping. Psychic is a solid move for nailing Gengar and Mega Lopunny, while Psyshock nails Pokemon with a higher Special Defense stat. Ice Beam handles Thundurus, Garchomp, and Dragonite, which otherwise handles Cresselia. Mental Herb is a one-time item that prevents Cresselia from becoming Taunt bait, while Colbur Berry weakens damage fro Dark type moves because of the Dark-type weakness TR teams can stack up.

Cofagrigus
: Thanks to a solid Ghost typing, an excellent ability in Mummy, access to Nasty Plot, and perfect coverage in just two moves, Cofagrigus is one of the more interesting choices for TR Teams. Thanks to Mummy, Cofagrigus deters Pokemon whom attack physically from hitting it, Cofagrigus becomes a solid physical tank, much like Slowbro. Access to Nasty Plot alloys Cofag to bolster it's solid 95 Special Attack to moderately high levels, allowing it to become a threatening wall-breaker in TR. Shadow Ball is an excellent STAB move on most of the meta. Will-O-Wisp works perfectly in conjunction with Mummy to cripple Physical attackers. Hidden Power Fighting on the other hand allows Cofag to get perfect coverage on the meta.

Crawdaunt
: With a base 120 Attack stat coupled with Adaptability along with some insanely powerful moves, Crawdaunt is a prime physically-based Trick Room wall-breaker. Crabhammer is an insanely powerful STAB move that has 260 BP, which is guaranteed to put a dent in anything that doesn't resist it. Knock Off, the best move in the game, is used for Knocking Off items, obviously, and crippling Pokemon that rely on their item to be efficient. Superpower is an insanely powerful move that nails Heatran and Bisharp, without having to rely on Crabhammer's 90% accuracy. Swords Dance is an amazing move that allows Craw to do insane damage to Keldeo in TR, which otherwise walls it completely. Finally, Aqua Jet gives Craw a nice priority move that can put a dent in several Pokemon, and can be used to pick off weakened foes.

I blame Recreant for making me type so much. But yeah, Trick Room is a pretty cool and underrated playstyle that more people need to use.

Sorry if I missed any info, btw. I'm tired.
 
I feel like Aromatisse is deserving of a mention as a Trick Room setter and cleric which can't be crippled with Taunt. Trick Room setters tend to be weak to Ghost and Dark attacks, so a Fairy-type is a much-needed boost in variety.
 
All the good trick room setters have already been mentioned so I'll just list a few trick room abusers. I've tried out trick room on the ladder and it can really screw over offensive teams. Balanced and bulkier teams are tougher but still perfectly beatable given the sheer power of some trick room abusers. The style is very play-heavy so it's very important that you plan ahead. Trick room is a fun style to use and can be very dangerous.

Hoopa-U: Hoopa unbound is fantastic under trick room. It is difficult to revenge kill under trick room and can easily overwhelm defensive cores. By investing in bulk it can take special attacks quite well, tanking even powerful hits like Latios' draco meteor in a pinch. Hoopas main flaws are low defense and lack of priority. Still, under trick room hoopa can shine against any playstyle.

Conkeldurr: Sheer force conk is almost a staple on trick room teams thanks to it's impressive power, coverage and low speed. The fighting/ice/poison/fire coverage allows it to beat many popular mons with little trouble. If you are using trick room, chances are that conk is your main physical attacker and should not be wasted. This is one of those pokemon that can take out one mon for every turn of trick room.

Camerupt-Mega: The obvious choice for a mega under trick room. Base 145 special attack with sheer force to make up for the lack of life orb and low speed makes it an ideal fit for trick room. Fire/ground/rock coverage covers most of the metagame and it can OHKO a great deal of offensive mons.

Talonflame: On a trick room team powerful priority is a great asset to have. If your trick room runs out and something powerful sets up against you, priority like talonflame's banded brave bird can be a life saver. It's not really a trick room abuser but fits in very well on trick room teams. The most annoying thing about using talonflame on a trick room team is that it is very easy to set up SR against a TR team.

Ferrothorn: Ferro is surprisingly powerful with it's 120 bp STAB attacks while providing excellent defensive synergy with common setters. Bulldoze takes care of heatran. It can set up stealth rock thanks to its bulk and resistances. Curse can also be used, just don't forget to attack before trick room ends.

Azumarill: Azu is a great mon outside of trick room and it is even better under trick room. BD, LO, Banded, AV... most sets work. The most common way of dealing with azu is to outspeed it with something that can take an aqua jet. Under trick room there is little stopping it from wreaking havoc and taking out half of your opponent's team before TR runs out. Seriously, try it.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 1, Guests: 0)

Top