Pokemon Black and White In-Game Tier List Discussion (MkII)

(Opening post in-progress, let me know what you think)
Old Tier List: https://www.smogon.com/ingame/guides/bw_ingametiers
Old discussion: http://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/in-game-tier-list-discussion.79041/
Approved by DHR-107
Hello everyone! If you've been around Orange Islands recently, I've shown interest in creating a revival of the Pokemon Black and White In-game Tier List. Now, I know I'm a fairly new user and this is a big undertaking, but I'd love to contribute something to the forums and think I could do it with some help. I think I have the skill to do posts of an acceptable length to keep the thread going (a lot of you seem to enjoy the posts I've made in various threads at least). Plus, Black and White have a very small pool of Pokemon, and a lot of the top tiers are fairly easy to pick out, in my opinion. Also, spoilers for over an 8-year old game.
With all that said, let's start this up!

Pokemon Black / White
In-game Tier List Discussion



Image result for pokemon black and white


What is an in-game tier list?

In-game tier lists rank Pokemon based on their viability and usefulness throughout an entire playthrough of either game. Regarding BW, this constitutes when you begin the game at Nuvema Town from the moment you beat Ghetisis at N's Castle.

What are the tiers?

In this tier list we currently have six tiers. Tiers are based off of the following:

S Tier
A Tier
B Tier
C Tier
D Tier
E Tier

The tier list is alphabetized for convenience. The higher tier a Pokemon is in the more it contributes within an efficient playthrough. You will likely note that this differs from the old tier list in that Top/High/Upper Mid/Mid/Low Mid/Low don't exist (this is because we have gradually shifted from the S-E set of tiers over time, which is one of the reasons why I wanted to update it). In addition, we're tiering Pokemon based on their performance in teams of 3 to 5 Pokemon because those teams are most common among casual players. We will also be having a discussion slate on mons that we are currently testing.

Why is a Pokémon in a certain tier?

Pokemon are ranked under the following 5 factors:

Availability: This is how early a Pokemon arrives in the game and how hard it is to find (read: encounter rate). Does it require backtracking, HM moves, or otherwise have a low encounter rate?

However, Pokemon will be ranked regardless of version (example: Sawk/Throh being available in both games).

Typing - A Pokemon's typing can be of great importance for an efficiency playthrough. How does the typing match-up work against the entire game? If a Pokemon has better typing it is often considered a higher rank.

For example, one Pokemon line i'd point out for typing peculiarity is Sewaddle's family of Bug/Grass types (which I will be referring to Leavanny from here on). On paper, this looks dreadful: Quad weaknesses to Fire and Flying, along with single weaknesses to Bug, Ice, Poison, and Rock are a major hurdle that the user has to accept when picking the cute Pokemon. On the other hand, Leavanny also has quad resistances to Grass and Ground, as well as single resistances to Electric, Fighting (important) and Water. Leavanny doesn't match up well against the gyms save Clay, but it has sweeping potential against 3 of the Elite 4 with Swords Dance. This is definitely a Pokemon I want some of the early discussion focused on as it has some big positives and some huge negatives, unlike Pokemon like Cottonee/Petilil which are more straightforward (leaning toward B Tier myself for reference).

Stats - A Pokemon's stat distribution is crucial for a Pokemon's success. Does the Pokemon have a stat distribution that supplements the Pokemon's movepool and typing? If a Pokemon has a stat distribution that favors its both typing and movepool it will often be higher on the tier list. In general, a Pokemon that is often slower than it is faster will often be ranked lower on a tier list.

One example of stats not matching a movepool are the Pidove line. Despite having a 105 base Attack in Gen V as Unfezant, the line gets almost no physical attacks aside from Quick Attack (level 15) Return (TM) Fly (HM) (U-Turn TM is postgame) while its movepool is specially oriented with Unfezant having a laughable 65 base 65 Special Attack. On the other hand, a lot of people in the old thread said Pidove was actually decent (I think people were saying Upper Mid?) so this is another Pokemon I want early discussion focused on. To a lesser extent, Blitzle has this problem as well.

Movepool - A Pokemon's movepool (both level-up and TM/HM) are crucial for a Pokemon. What moves does the Pokemon naturally get and can possibly obtain? Unlike with past games, TMs are of infinite use, and thus have no opportunity cost. With that being said, if a Pokemon requires a TM found in a detour off the main path (like TM24 Thunderbolt on Route 18 with Surf, or TM47 Low Sweep in lower Wellspring Cave with Surf) this will knock it down a bit.

An example of a Pokemon with a great natural movepool is Darumaka. After the slight rut of Fire Fang for a few levels, Fire Punch at level 22 is pretty much all you need. Belly Drum is mostly overkill at level 30, and Flare Blitz at level 35 is basically “I WILL raze anything in front of me.” Only really bulky resists can take one, but the recoil means it’s impractical against mooks. Dig, Rock Tomb, and Work Up can be taught easily via TM (Work Up is learned naturally at 25 as well), and Headbutt (starting move) is decent until Thrash (level 27) or max power Return via TM. Superpower at level 47 or Brick Break via TM help. In other words, you could feasibly use it even without giving it a single TM, and even if you did, all the TMs it might want are easily accessible.

Major Battles - Major battles consist of Gym Leaders, Team Plasma encounters, Rival encounters, the Elite 4, and N and Ghetsis. How does the Pokemon contribute to major battles? A Pokemon that contributes to many major battles will often be seen higher than those that do not.

A Pokemon that does great in many major battles is Scraggy/Scrafty. Barring Elesa and (aside from maybe Swoobat) Skyla, it can contribute in every major battle with an obscene High Jump Kick at level 31 or Brick Break at only level 20. It can hold it's own against Clay's Excadrill or Krokorok, smashes Brycen, handles the rivals (especially Bianca and N) well, and can help against Drayden (who often goes last with lolDragon Tail). In the Elite 4, Scrafty laughs at all but Marshall by virtue of its Fighting/Dark type alone, and both N and Ghetsis have several Pokemon that fall to Scrafty. This Pokemon in my opinion is an easy A, and maybe even S if you are feeling generous (though I can see the arguments of slow Speed and late evo working against it, though neither have given me much problems when I used it because the movepool is so good).

Which Pokemon are available for the player to use in Pokemon Black and White Versions?
# Pokemon Availability
0 Victini Liberty Garden (requires Liberty Pass)
1 Snivy Starter Pokémon from Professor Juniper in Nuvema Town
2 Servine Evolve Snivy at level 17
3 Serperior Evolve Servine at level 36
4 Tepig Starter Pokémon from Professor Juniper in Nuvema Town
5 Pignite Evolve Tepig at level 17
6 Emboar Evolve Pignite at level 36
7 Oshawott Starter Pokémon from Professor Juniper in Nuvema Town
8 . Dewott Evolve Oshawott at level 17
9 Samurott Evolve Dewott at level 36
10 Patrat Route 1, Route 2, Route 3, Dreamyard
11 Watchog Route 1 (dark grass, requires Surf), Route 7, P2 Laboratory
12 Lillipup Route 1, Route 2, Route 3
13 Herdier Route 1 (dark grass, requires Surf), Route 10, Cold Storage, P2 Laboratory
14 Stoutland Route 10, Cold Storage
15 Purrloin Route 2, Route 3, Dreamyard
16 Liepard Route 5, Route 9, Route 16
17 Pansage Rustling grass in inner Pinwheel/Lostlorn Forest, Gift in Dreamyard if starter was Tepig
18 Simisage Evolve Pansage with Leaf Stone in Castelia City
19 . Pansear Rustling grass in inner Pinwheel/Lostlorn Forest, Gift in Dreamyard if starter was Oshawott
20 Simisear Evolve Pansear with Fire Stone in Castelia City
21 Panpour Rustling grass in inner Pinwheel/Lostlorn Forest, Gift in Dreamyard if starter was Snivy
22 Simipour Evolve Panpour with Water Stone in Castelia City
23 Munna Dreamyard
24 Musharna Shaking grass in Dreamyard
25 Pidove Route 3, Pinwheel Forest
26 Tranquill Route 6, Route 7, Route 12, Pinwheel Forest, Lostlorn Forest, Dragonspiral Tower
27 Unfezant Route 6, Route 7, Route 12, Pinwheel Forest, Lostlorn Forest
28 Blitzle Route 3
29 Zebstrika Route 7
30 Roggenrola Wellspring Cave
31 Boldore Chargestone Cave, Mistralton Cave, Twist Mountain, Victory Road
32 Gigalith Evolve Boldore
33 Woobat Wellspring Cave, Mistralton Cave, Twist Mountain, Victory Road
34 Swoobat Evolve Woobat with high friendship
35 Drilbur Wellspring Cave, Chargestone Cave, Mistralton Cave, Twist Mountain
36 Excadrill Victory Road, Giant Chasm
37 Audino In rustling grass wherever there is grass
38 Timburr Outer Pinwheel Forest, Cold Storage
39 Gurdurr Twist Mountain
40 Conkeldurr Trade Gurdurr
41 Tympole Outer Pinwheel Forest
42 Palpitoad Non-frozen puddles of Icirrus City, Route 8, Moor of Icirrus, evolve Tympole at level 25
43 Seismitoad Surf in Icirrus City, Route 8, Moor of Icirrus, evolve Palpitoad at level 36
44 Throh Outer Pinwheel Forest, Dark Grass of Victory Road, Route 10
45 Sawk Outer Pinwheel Forest, Outdoors Victory Road, Route 10
46 Sewaddle Pinwheel Forest
47 Swadloon Pinwheel Forest, Lostlorn Forest, Route 6
48 Leavanny Lostlorn Forest, Route 6
49 Venipede Pinwheel Forest, Lostlorn Forest
50 Whirlipede Pinwheel Forest, evolve Venipede at level 22
51 Scolipede Evolve Whirlipede at level 30
52 Cottonee (In Black) Pinwheel Forest, Lostlorn Forest, (In White) Trade Petilil in Nacrene City
53 Whimsicott (Black only) Pinwheel Forest, Lostlorn Forest, evolve Cottonee with Sun Stone
54 Petilil (In Black) Trade Cottonee in Nacrene City, (In White) Pinwheel Forest, Lostlorn Forest
55 Lilligant (White only) Pinwheel Forest, Lostlorn Forest, evolve Cottonee with Sun Stone
56 Basculin Surf anywhere with water. Alternate form found in bubbling water
57 Sandile Route 4, Desert Resort, Relic Castle
58 Krokorok Relic Castle, evolve Sandile at level 29
59 Krookodile Evolve Krokorok at level 40
60 Darumaka Route 4, Desert Resort
61 Darmanitan Evolve Darumaka at level 35. Zen Mode Darmanitan - RageCandyBar Relic Castle statues
62 Maractus Desert Resort
63 Dwebble Desert Resort, Route 18
64 Crustle Route 18
65 Scraggy Route 1 (Surf), Route 4, Route 18, Desert Resort, P2 Laboratory
66 Scrafty Evolve Scraggy at level 39
67 Sigilyph Desert Resort
68 Yamask Relic Castle
69 Cofagrigus Relic Castle
70 Tirtouga Revive from Cover Fossil (Obtain from Backpacker in Relic Castle)
71 Carracosta Evolve Tirtouga at level 37
72 Archen Revive from Cover Fossil (Obtain from Backpacker in Relic Castle)
73 Archeops Evolve Archen at level 37
74 Trubbish Route 5, Route 16
75 Garbodor Route 9, evolve Trubbish at level 34
76 Zorua Castelia City if you have fateful encounter Celebi from Relocator
77 Zoroark Lostlorn Forest with shiny Entei, Raikou, or Suicune from Relocator, evolve Zorua at level 30
78 Minccino Route 5, Route 9, Route 16, Cold Storage
79 Cinccino Route 5, Route 9, Route 16, Cold Storage
80 Gothita (Black only) Route 5, Route 16
81 Gothorita (Black only) Route 9
82 Gothitelle (Black only) Route 9
83 Solosis (White only) Route 5, Route 16
84 Duosion (White only) Route 9
85 Reuniclus (White only) Route 9
86 Ducklett Driftveil Drawbridge
87 Swanna Evolve Ducklett at level 35
88 Vanillite Cold Storage, Route 6, Dragonspiral Tower in Winter
89 Vanillish Dragonspiral Tower in Winter, evolve Vanillite at level 35
90 Vanilluxe Evolve Vanillish at level 47
91 Deerling Route 6, Route 7, Dragonspiral Tower
92 Sawsbuck Outside Dragonspiral Tower, evolve Deerling at level 36
93 Emolga (All rustling) - Route 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 16, Dragonspiral Tower, Lostlorn Forest, Route 7 Trade
94 Karrablast Route 6, Route 10
95 Escavalier Trade Karrablast for Shelmet
96 Foongus Route 6, Route 7, Route 10 (fake Poké Ball)
97 Amoonguss Route 10, evolve Foongus at level 39
98 Frillish Surf in Route 4, Route 17, Route 18, Driftveil City, P2 Laboratory
99 Jellicent Surf in Route 4, Route 17, Route 18, Driftveil City, P2 Laboratory, evolve Frillish at level 40
100 Alomomola Surf in Route 4, Route 17, Route 18, Driftveil City, P2 Laboratory
101 Joltik Chargestone Cave
102 Galvantula Evolve Joltik at level 36
103 Ferroseed Chargestone Cave
104 Ferrothorn Evolve Ferroseed
105 Klink Chargestone Cave, P2 Laboratory
106 Klang Evolve Klink at level 38
107 Klinklang Evolve Klang at level 49
108 Tynamo Chargestone Cave
109 Eelektrik Evolve Tynamo at level 39
110 Eelektross Evolve Eelektrik with Thunder Stone
111 Elgyem Celestial Tower (3F-5F)
112 Beheeyem Evolve Elgyem at level 42
113 Litwick Celestial Tower (all floors)
114 Lampent Evolve Litwick at level 41
115 Chandelure Evolve Lampent with Dusk Stone (Mistralton Cave, Route 10)
116 Axew Mistralton Cave
117 Fraxure Victory Road, evolve Axew at level 38
118 Haxorus Evolve Fraxure at level 48
119 Cubchoo Twist Mountain, Route 7, Dragonspiral Tower in Winter
120 Beartic Dragonspiral Tower in Winter, evolve Cubchoo at level 37
121 Cryogonal Twist Mountain
122 Shelmet Route 8, Icirrus City, Moor of Icirrus except in Winter
123 Accelgor Trade Shelmet for Karrablast
124 Stunfisk Route 8, Icirrus City
125 Mienfoo Dragonspiral Tower, Victory Road
126 Mienshao Evolve Mienfoo at level 50
127 Druddigon Dragonspiral Tower
128 Golett Dragonspiral Tower (2F)
129 Golurk Evolve Golett at level 43
130 Pawniard Route 9
131 Bisharp Evolve Pawniard at level 52
132 Bouffalant Route 10
133 Rufflet (White only) Route 10, Victory Road
134 Braviary (White only) Evolve Rufflet at level 54
135 Vullaby (Black only) Route 10, ]Victory Road
136 Mandibuzz (Black only) Evolve Vullaby at level 54
137 Heatmor Victory Road (outer)
138 Durant Victory Road
139 Deino Victory Road
140 Zweilous Evolve Deino at level 50
141 Hydreigon Evolve Zweilous
142 Larvesta Hatch egg from Pokémon Ranger in Route 18
143 Volcarona Evolve Larvesta at level 59, Relic Castle (level 70 postgame version is untiered)
144 Cobalion Guidance Chamber of Mistralton Cave
145 Terrakion Victory Road, must capture Cobalion first
146 Virizion Rumination Field of Pinwheel Forest, must capture Cobalion first
147 Tornadus (Black only) Roaming Unova after seeing it in Route 7
148 Thundurus (White only) Roaming Unova after seeing it in Route 7
149 Reshiram (Black only) N's Castle, or Dragonspiral Tower if party and PC were full in N's Castle
150 Zekrom (White only) N's Castle, or Dragonspiral Tower if party and PC were full in N's Castle
151 Landorus Abundant Shrine (untiered, must have Tornadus and Thundurus)
152 Kyurem Giant Chasm (untiered)
153 Keldeo Event (untiered)
154 Meloetta Event (untiered)
155 Genesect Event (untiered)

What tools are allowed for the player to use?

The player is allowed to use any legitimate means within the cartridge for completing the game efficiently. The player is only allowed to trade to evolve Pokemon and not to receive outside help otherwise. The player is allowed to use items such as X Items, Potions, TMs, and Berries. Keep in mind that items have opportunity costs associated with them and can still contribute to a Pokemon negatively if it requires a multitude of items. Personally, I generally don't bother with X items myself, and I can't think of any mon in Black and White that would need them.

Tier List Key
This signifies what game a Pokemon can be caught in, and whether they need a trade to evolve.
BW: Both versions
B: Black Version only
W: White Version only
(Trade) - Pokemon is ranked based off of trading for its evolution.
(No Trade) - Pokemon is ranked based off of no trade accessible to the player (this does not include in-game trades).
These following Pokemon unless otherwise noted are version exclusive:
Black (B): Gothita (Routes 16 and 5, 30%, Gothorita (Route 9, 30%), Gothitelle (Route 9, 5%, rustling grass)
Tornadus (roamer post eight badges, level 40, male)
Vullaby (Route 10, 30%) and Mandibuzz (you can catch it postgame so it is untiered catching it that way)
Reshiram: N's Castle, forced capture, 2 battles left. Yeah, F-tier because there is 2 battles left and Reshiram is only decent against N (Ghetsis laughs at it).
White (W): Solosis (Routes 16 and 5, 30%, Duosion (Route 9, 30%), Reuniclus (Route 9, 5%, rustling grass)
Thundurus (roamer post eight badges, level 40, male)
Rufflet (Route 10, 30%) and Braviary (you can catch it postgame so it is untiered catching it that way)
Zekrom: N's Castle, forced capture, 2 battles left. Yeah, F-tier because there is 2 battles left and Zekrom isn't quite as decent as Reshiram is against the last two fights (Ghetsis laughs at it).

Gothita vs. Solosis quick review: Both are mediocre IMO. Both can get Screens / Thunder Wave via TMS immediately (which is nice), while Gothita alone can learn Grass Knot. Gothita line has a pretty useless ability but less of a movepool rut than Solosis, while Solosis has the great Magic Guard but a serious lack of good moves besides Psychic STAB. Gothita's slightly higher Speed and useless ability balance out Solosis's lower speed, movepool rut, and Magic Guard, so I could see both at C-tier. If you want a Psychic, just go for Sigilyph; Munna is okay but has movepool issues and Elgyem is late and evolves late).

Tornadus vs. Thundurus: Eh. Yeah, you can Master Ball them, but it's post 8 badges, so there's not much game left, and they don't have amazing endgame matchups. You can TM Brick Break and Sludge Bomb immediately, but I don't see why these would be better than what you already have. If you want an endgame legend, I'd go for Terrakion instead, and if you want a legend in general that isn't terribly late, Cobalion is good but requires a detour (another mon I want discussion on as a lot were praising Cobalion in the old thread). Can't see Tornadus vs. Thundurus going above D-tier at best really.

Vullaby vs. Rufflet: Both suck hard, are crazy late with a dumb evo level. I've gotten Mandibuzz pre-E4. but don't use either, they suck maingame. I would say E-tier, borderline F-tier for both, though Braviary is slightly more useful.

Reshiram vs. Zekrom: See above (both are too late to do much).

Exceptions:
In Pinwheel Forest's Outer area in Black Version, Sawk would get a good nod, as it has an acceptable 10% encounter rate, while you only have a 5% chance to find its counterpart Throh in rustling grass at a 5% rate, in contrast to White where Throh is 10% in the regular and dark grass and Sawk is 5% in the rustling grass. Sawk would be ranked higher in Black but lower in White, and vice versa for Throh. As for a small review, I would say Sawk is better due to Sturdy and sweeper stats, but Throh is probably only a notch below it as while slow, its stats are superior to most other things at the time.

Cottonee (in the wild in Black) and Petilil (in the wild in White). In White, Cottonee can be obtained from trading a Petilil to Dye in the southeastern side of Nacrene City, while in Black, Petilil can be obtained from trading a Cottonee to Dye in in the same area. Regardless of version, the mon you recieve is a female at level 15 with Modest nature and 20/20/20/31/20/20 IVs. As for Abilities, Cottonee has Prankster (what it needs) while Petilil has Clorophyll (worse than Own Tempo, but you could still get by with Giga Drain/switching after Petal Dance).

As for a quick review on which one the player should pick, Petilil is better regardless if you trade or not, as Cottonee just lacks raw firepower to be good even with great IVs. Also, Cotton Guard on Cottonee is kind of overrated anyway (I've used it in Unova myself in BW2 and MAYBE BW1) since Whimsicott is ineffective against gyms past Clay, and even in the E4 you really only have Grimsley and Marshall to set up on, with the former having super effective moves and the latter having Stone Edge on all his mons save Mienshao with a super-effective U-turn. Otherwise, the only other targets you hit are Shauntal's Jellicent and Golurk. Against N and Ghetsis, both mons can only really hit Carracosta and Seismitoad super-effectively, so they are not superstars of endgame, only decent.

Trade evolutions: Gigalith (obtained by catching Roggenrola in Wellspring Cave at 50% encounter rate and evolving to Boldore level 25 or in later areas), Conkeldurr (obtained by catching Timburr in Pinwheel Forest (Outer) at 20% encounter rate and evolving to Gurdurr at level 25 or in later areas), Karrablast (Route 6, 25%, trade Karrablast for Shelmet), Shelmet (Route 8, Icirrus City, Moor of Icirrus, 40% in any season save Winter where its unavailable, trade Shelmet for Karrablast).

Other in-game trades:
Black: Trade Mincinno to Youngster Kyle in Driftveil City: Recieve Red-Striped Basculin, level 25, Sitrus Berry, male, Reckless, Adamant, 20/31/20/20/20/20 IVs.
White: Trade Mincinno to Youngster Kyle in Driftveil City: Recieve Blue-Striped Basculin, level 25, Sitrus Berry, male, Rock Head, Adamant, 20/31/20/20/20/20 IVs.
Note you can get either variant of Basculin in both games. Red-Striped are common in Black while Blue-Striped are common in White, but the opposite version is always found in the respective versions by Surfing into rippling water. Note that while the traded Basculin have good IVs and Nature, I don't recommend these trade Basculin because Adaptability is so much better (albeit gotten after Surf).

Both games: Trade Boldore for Emolga with Hiker Manny on Route 7, Emolga is male, level 30, with Lum Berry, Lax, 20/20/31/20/20/20 IVs.
Meh. You have great moves like Electro Ball and Acrobatics with Emolga at level 30, but it misses out on earlier fights compared to catching it earlier, and Joltik is available around the same time.

Current Tier List Rankings
Here is my opinion on what should be on the tiers so far (with descriptions taken from Its_A_Random's https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/pokémon-x-y-in-game-tier-list-discussion-mkii.3517128/ thread):

S tier: Reserved for Pokémon who possess the highest levels of efficiency of the available options in the Pokémon Black & White versions. Pokémon in this tier are able to OHKO or 2HKO an overwhelming majority of opponents, limiting the amount of attacks used against them, and possess minimal reliance on items to help assist them defeat opponents at like levels. These Pokémon typically show up before the late-game and any flaws they have are absolutely made up by their advantages.
Spr 5b 529.png

Drilbur

Petilil

Sawk
Spr 5b 559.png

Scraggy

A tier: Reserved for Pokémon whose efficiency in terms of completing the game is considered to be very high. Pokémon in this tier are able to OHKO or 2HKO a lot of opponents and are not very reliant on items to succeed, but either have some visible flaws that hurt their efficiency or have their usefulness counterbalanced by a late arrival.
Spr 5b 566.png

Archen
179455

Darumaka

Timburr (trade)

Lillipup

Oshawott

Panpour

Roggenrola (trade)

Sandile

Sigilyph

Solosis

Throh

B-Tier: Reserved for Pokémon whose efficiency in terms of completing the game is considered to be high. Pokémon in this tier are able to OHKO or 2HKO a fair chunk of opponents and may have a bit of item reliance to assist in sweeping opponents. These Pokémon are still very useful but either have several visible flaws holding them back or come fairly late.

Axew

Dwebble

Coballion

Ferroseed

Joltik

Karrablast (trade)

Litwick

Pansage

Timburr (no trade)

Tepig

Tympole

C-Tier: Reserved for Pokémon whose efficiency in terms of completing the game is considered to be moderately high. Pokémon in this tier are able to OHKO or 2HKO a reasonable portion of opponents but are matchup-based enough to need some item reliance to assist in sweeping some opponents. These Pokémon are useful but either have several visible flaws holding them back or barely make up for their late arrivals.

Audino

Basculin

Blitzle

Cottonee

Deerling

Druddigon

Ducklett

Elgyem

Emolga

Gothita

Klink

Mincinno

Munna

Pansear

Sewaddle

Snivy

Tirtouga

Vanillite

Venipede

D-Tier: Reserved for Pokémon whose efficiency in terms of completing the game is considered to be average. Pokémon in this tier are able to OHKO or 2HKO a small amount of opponents and tend to be matchup-based enough to need item reliance to assist in sweeping a few opponents. The usefulness of these Pokémon are typically counterbalanced by many visible flaws or are useful Pokémon that come very late.

Bouffalant

Cubchoo

Durant

Foongus

Frillish

Golett
Spr 5b 509.png

Purrloin

Maractus

Mienfoo

Patrat

Pidove

Roggenrola (no trade)

Shelmet (trade)

Stunfisk

Terrakion

Tynamo

Virizion

Woobat

Yamask

E-Tier: Reserved for Pokémon whose efficiency in terms of completing the game is considered to be low. Pokémon in this tier are generally only able to OHKO or 2HKO specific opponents and suffer from being matchup-based, generally relying on items to assist in sweeping several opponents. These Pokémon either have flaws that outshine its strengths or are otherwise decent Pokémon that come too late to be of any major use.

Alomomola

Cryogonal

Deino

Heatmor

Karrablast (no trade)

Larvesta

Pawniard

Rufflet

Shelmet (no trade)

Thundurus

Tornadus

Trubbish

Vullaby

Untiered: These Pokemon can't be obtained in-game without use of events or come postgame and thus can't be tiered. The exceptions are Reshiram and Zekrom, who are barely in-time for the end of the game.

Genesect

Keldeo

Kyurem

Landorus

Meloetta

Reshiram

Victini

Zekrom

Zoroark

Zorua
Will update more later if more people show interest (should be easier after this opening post is settled).

As for the first discussion slate, what is everyone's thoughts on Munna, Sewaddle, Timburr (both with and without trade) and Coballion? Note that if you have other thoughts, even about the top tiers, feel free to post them; it still promotes discussion even though they aren't the main focus.

Thanks for reading, and happy posting!

Also we do not drop things ever.

We do not drop things ever.

We do not drop things ever.


If you are going to use something, use it the whole game, no exceptions.
 
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Will do, thanks for the advice. Pawniard was so nice I had to list it twice.
Amusing observation: I somehow listed C tier more or less backwards alphabetically, go me.
Tier lists are alphabetical now and organized. If there's any other minor problems please let me know. Might do a run with Timburr, Sewaddle/Venipede (I ran with it before and was underwhelmed, dunno if I was using it wrong) and Tympole on computer (Black cartridge is being used by a friend currently).
Unsure of Joltik being in A though (used it before though). Sure, it's great when you get it, but Signal Beam at the E4 only does so much, even when you have Thunder to fall back on. Has anyone else used Joltik? Is it that much of a world beater to be considered A? It coming fairly late and not having super favorable late matchups unlike Coballion also gives me doubts. What do you all think?
 
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I think I've already tried my best to help you, and I'm likely unable to contribute any more. I still think I'm bad at in-game tiers and still have no idea why anyone would ask me to do anything in-game tier related. Anyways, good luck managing this thread and arguing against those arrogant "theorymonning" noobs. One more bit of advice: If you ever notice that the thread is fraying, then you should tie a small knot so it doesn't fray further.

(in case you didn't know, I helped Drumstick edit the OP)

Also why is Scraggy better than Tepig? I'm curious.
 
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I think I've already tried my best to help you, and I'm likely unable to contribute any more. I still think I'm bad at in-game tiers and still have no idea why anyone would ask me to do anything in-game tier related. Anyways, good luck managing this thread and arguing against those arrogant "theorymonning" noobs. One more bit of advice: If you ever notice that the thread is fraying, then you should tie a small knot so it doesn't fray further.

(in case you didn't know, I helped Drumstick edit the OP)

Also why is Scraggy better than Tepig? I'm curious.
Uh, Tepig is good, but it has a severe movepool rut from Arm Thrust to Brick Break TM or relearned Hammer Arm. Heat Crash is there but it's kinda eh. Compare this to Scraggy who gets Brick Break at only level 20 and Hi Jump Kick at 31 (this is so incredible you can even chunk Elesa's Emolga's with Eviolite most likely, IIRC Scraggy somehow puts in work in that fight). Plus Scraggy's type is great for the E4. That's why it's better (though Tepig isn't horrible).
Edit: Brick Break carries Scraggy to HJK, which carries Scraggy to Crunch, and by then it will evolve to Scrafty in one level. Only slight downside is inconsistent Dark moves prior to Crunch-Faint Attack when you start is fine, but you're justtttt too fast for Payback gotten at level 23 or TM on Route 16 unless you use Macho Brace). Though, to be fair, Psychics are pretty uncommon outside of Celestial Tower. And Moxie makes up for the iffy Dark moves, and even Shed Skin can be nifty (Rest + Shed Skin is an okay combo, and Static is annoying in Nimbassa Gym).
 
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Lillipup to A.
Levels up early (16/32) and gets access to good STAB moves early. Take Down sometime around the second gym, and retaliate as a solid substitute to it. Return is in Nimbasa City and at that point it should at least be approaching 102 bp. The lack of any dedicated rock or steel users makes it easier to spam normal attacks (do the grunts even use those types?), and ghosts are taken out by Crunch. Elemental fangs deal with the rest. Biggest reason why it should rise is because you can get it as your first encounter, which makes up for a lot of its shortcomings.
 
Lillipup to A.
Levels up early (16/32) and gets access to good STAB moves early. Take Down sometime around the second gym, and retaliate as a solid substitute to it. Return is in Nimbasa City and at that point it should at least be approaching 102 bp. The lack of any dedicated rock or steel users makes it easier to spam normal attacks (do the grunts even use those types?), and ghosts are taken out by Crunch. Elemental fangs deal with the rest. Biggest reason why it should rise is because you can get it as your first encounter, which makes up for a lot of its shortcomings.
I'm on the fence about Lillipup, but I appreciate the nomination. Here's what I think.
Lillipup is one of the best mons in general you can catch pre-Pinwheel Forest outer. Pretty much everything else is straight-up bad (Woobat, Patrat, Purrloin) has awkward stats (Blitzle, Pidove) or is outclassed by what you can get later (Roggenrola for fossils and Dwebble, elemental monkeys save Panpour). Back to Lillipup itself, Pickup can help, though Vital Spirit is better because it turns into Intimidate. Even better, right before evolving, at level 15 it learns Take Down, with Crunch not long after. Already, this looks pretty good. It helps the line evolves early unlike 70% of Unovan stuff, and has great rounded stats.
The problem is soon after this power spike at Herdier...I don't know how it holds up as I drop it or it feels eh by then (maybe I have unrealistic expectations, but I have used it the entire game in BW2). Maybe I just don't take advantage of solid Normal STAB Return over type advantages. Psychics aren't common enough to hit with Crunch, most everything else can learn Dig/Rock Tomb (main midgame coverage by a lot of things). Don't bother with the elemental fangs-max Return outdamages them save hitting 4x effectively. Compare this to Mincinno and Deerling (though they DO come halfway through the game), both of which get coverage at Mistralton (though both have a slight dead period till then).
On the other hand, you could argue it makes up for this by being a contributor in every major battle. Let's see:
Triplets: Can take on either mon well.
Lenora: See above, though Watchog might be safer post-Retaliate (Herdier has Intimidate)
Burgh: With Intimidate, can probably beat Whirlipede reliably with Take Down. Leavanny is possible but Razor Leaf crits can wreck you. Eviolite helps.
Elesa: Can help with Rock Tomb and Dig. If possible, it is most effective against her last mon to neuter its Attack (only Special move is Volt Switch on all three IIRC)
Clay: Can probably beat Palpitoad, especially if Stoutland. The others are iffy (Krokorok has Swagger, and you don't want to give Excadrill time to Hone Claws or screw your Speed with Bulldoze, even with Intimidate).
Skyla: Good here, Crunch takes on Swoobat. Arguably the one use for Thunder Fang in the whole game vs. Swanna. Heck, you could maybe sweep with some luck.
Brycen: Sadly, Rock Slide can't be taught to Stoutland. However, you still have a strong Return and could probably beat Vanillish and Cryagonal.
Drayden: Solid here.
Rivals: Solid all around. Can maybe take on Bianca's Munna/Musharna, and various other mons.
Shauntal/Caitlin: Crunch/Wild Charge let's you put in work, though I doubt you'll sweep.
Grimsley: Beats Liepard, others are kinda awkward.
Marshall: The one outright bad matchup. Intimidate can help though, and you could MAYBE beat Sawk if Karate Chop decides to not crit.
Final N: Solid here against legendary and Vanilluxe. The others have Stone Edge (fossils) resist STAB (Klingklang) or are kill or be killed (Zoroark with Focus Blast).
Ghetsis: Actually nice here. You could probably beat Bouffalant and/or Eelektross. Sesimitoad too, but not with the others unless you heal.
There ARE two gimmicks you can pull off with it lategame at level 51. Work Up + Last Resort, and Wild Charge helps. Crunch also is nice for E4, and Intimidate means it can neuter a threat of Marshall's.
Now that I've written this wall of text, I am inclined to move it up to A tier. It could likely 2HKO most mons with Return and isn't reliant on items. Might have to use it completely first before I am completely sold. The main argument is Normal STAB doesn't hit super-effectively, and a few A threats outclass it power-wise (little less than half though). Regardless of what tier it ends up in though, that was a great concise post that was very informed!

(And no, the grunts don't use Rocks or Steels...save N's fourth fight (Boldore, Klink, and Ferroseed)).

What would you guys think is the best Normal type in-game? All of them have pros and cons. Even Bouffalant is one of the better choices for endgame with Megahorn and Head Charge. I would say Stoutland, but Cincinno is also great (makes up lateness in moves with Rock Blast owning Skyla and Brycen, holding its own against the endgame with all of its moves, and Technican being useful (albeit inconsistent). Deerling is good albeit comparatively mediocre (great moves but it can't really sweep Clay, and when you are Sawsbuck the next two gyms ream you).
 
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Why do you say Unfezant's stats are bad? Its physical attack and BST are both higher than Stoutland's, and Tranquill's physical attack is higher than Herdier's. Both get the same STAB 102-power return, and Unfezant gets fly as a different STAB. I know Pidove doesn't get take down, but is that really bad enough to put it in D tier?
 
Unfezant certainly doesn’t have bad stats, but Drumstick’s description of them as ‘awkward’ is pretty accurate. Until you get Return in Nimbasa, its only physical attack is Quick Attack, and all its Flying-type attacks pre-Fly are special, working off its worse offensive stat. Its physical bulk is decent given its power and speed, but its base Special Defense, coming in at 55, is a serious weakness.

Unfezant’s coverage options are also pretty dire. U-turn and Hidden Power are its only non-STAB options in BW without breeding. It basically can’t do anything useful against Rock- or Steel-types.

Its physical attack and BST are both higher than Stoutland's
Hmm am I missing something? I’m pretty sure Stoutland’s BST in BW was 490 and Unfezant’s was 478. Plus, Unfezant’s Sp. Atk is 20 points higher, which mostly goes to waste at the point of the game where Tranquill/Unfezant improves, widening the difference in stats that are actually useful.

Stoutland also has a much more useful ability in Intimidate, effectively making it much bulkier than Unfezant on both sides of the spectrum.

Finally, Pidove doesn’t evolve into Tranquill until Level 21, so it starts to struggle in the couple of levels before then and it can’t contribute all that much against Lenora without grinding a fair bit to get to evolution.

I know this has mostly been a direct comparison, which isn’t good practice for tiering justifications, but I do think the current tier placements make sense.
 
First of all, the difference in 5 points of ATK aren't as big of a deal as you think. In terms of their movepools, Unfezant gets basically nothing but Normal and Flying attacks (mostly Special Flying attacks I might add)... in comparison to Stoutland who gets Crunch, all three Elemental Fangs by the Move Relearner, Dig, Work Up, Retaliate, Strength (for some HM slavery and for this matter also gets Surf), Rock Tomb, Payback, and Wild Charge. Unfezant also has worse defences: 80/80/55 are WAY less impressive than 85/90/90.

Then, we have the abilities. Big Pecks and Super Luck are OK for in game, but DEF drops never seem to occur too often in my experience, and Super Luck rarely happens. Lillipup starts off with Vital Spirit and Pick Up, the former being good for being immune to the ever annoying Sleep, while the latter is a nice way to save some cash in the early game. The evolution to Herdier turns Vital Spirit into Intimidate, a nice way to mitigate some damage, and Pick Up becomes Sand Rush, which would be a cool way to get their Speed higher and deal some chip damage to the enemy, but not even Stoutland can learn Sandstorm so it's pretty much a non ability.

Overall, Unfezant gets hard walled by basically every Steel and Rock, while Stoutland has coverage against them (and if you have Intimidate, even better since all the Steels and Rocks are Physical). I'll concede to Unfezant's +13 Speed being nice, as well as learning Fly, though. However, I never really found a place where Unfezant succeeds. Marshall's Fighters are really freaking strong and have Rock coverage, the Flying immunity isn't so useful in Driftveil Gym when there are a lot of strong Pokemon... I just find Unfezant to be really weak. Stoutland on the other hand is able to be useful throughout the game with its coverage, abilities, and while it doesn't succeed at much, it doesn't fail at much either. I'd probably place Stoutland in C and Unfezant in D, or maybe Stoutland's coverage and overall good stats could be good enough for B.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Pre-Contributor
Lillipup is alright where it is. I agree it's good early-game but with every next gym, it becomes more mediocre. In my playthroughs, the last times where Stoutland was even useful was against Skyla with Thunder Fang, cause I didn't have Electric-types. But before Gym Battles, it doesn't really have high damage output and the only reason I even used it in battles was just so it can keep up with my team's level.

Unfezant line isn't really great altogether, mostly due to crappy stats, horrible typing, and horrendous movepool, as it has been mentioned, so I'm not gonna elaborate much. Unfezant doesn't even beat Marshal as a Flying-type, since they will just Stone Edge or Rock Slide it to dead. If you want a Flying-type, use Sigilyph or Archen, they do not have Pidove's problems.
 

Its_A_Random

A distant memory
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnus
Durant: This should be in C, maybe even B. Even though it comes at the end of the game, it is actually a really good end-game choice, perhaps even the best endgame choice. Swarm/Hustle are good in their own ways (get those X-Accuracies Ready for Hustle...), it handles Grimsley and Caitilin very well, it doesn't do too badly against Marshal, and has a good Ghetsis Matchup (which is helped by its speed being actually very good which allows it to handle Hydreigon). It also gets Crunch which allows it to do something to Shauntal and its N matchup isn't too bad. It comes with Bug Bite/Crunch/Iron Head and maybe Dig and that is good enough to not need TM's and if you overlevel a bit, X-Scissor is an option.

Reshiram / Zekrom: These honestly should be in a special rank or untiered completely instead of being in E Rank. This is because they are literal plot devices that you only get for two fights which they perform okayish in. This is what happened when they did the first iteration of the tier list and honestly should be "out of tier" in this as well since they are such a special case.

There are others that I will want to cover at a later date (and maybe do some playthroughs of BW1), but I do want to note this:
Uh, Tepig is good, but it has a severe movepool rut from Arm Thrust to Brick Break TM or relearned Hammer Arm. Heat Crash is there but it's kinda eh. Compare this to Scraggy who gets Brick Break at only level 20 and Hi Jump Kick at 31 (this is so incredible you can even chunk Elesa's Emolga's with Eviolite most likely, IIRC Scraggy somehow puts in work in that fight). Plus Scraggy's type is great for the E4. That's why it's better (though Tepig isn't horrible).
Worth noting that by the time you get Pignite you should be in Nacrene, which means you have access to the Rock Smash TM. Not much, but definitely an upgrade over Arm Thrust, especially if defence drops happen. Not that it really changes much (I prefer Sawk for Fighting-type coverage, but I'll look closer at the Fighting-type situation later), but it's something for Pignite.
 

DHR-107

Robot from the Future
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Orange Islands
I'll just pop my head in for now and say this: I dropped Unfezant from my original team in Black. It didn't do anything special and it has a truly terrible movepool. I never drop anything in teams (Farfetch'd is the other exception). It doesn't hit particularly hard, it dies to a stiff gust of wind and it's not actually all that fast in terms of Unova mons.

I personally think D rank is appropriate, would be C at an absolute push. Maybe.

I've played Black/White nearly 20 times with teams of all sorts, I'll have a better comb through this list tonight and check my notes for certain Pokemon. I'm pretty sure I remember the experience of Stoutland to be pretty good. Watchog was better than I expected (but still likely E tier), never trained Purrloin but I hate it with a deep passion and it should go to like... Z tier or something.

Also probably worth just taking Zekrom/Reshiram out of the listings entirely because they are effectively not able to be used outside of two fights which they can kinda break (and they still usually lose to Hydreigon).
 
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Lemme start off this post by saying that is some fantastic discusson, everyone. I was a little worried about the tier list falling flat, but then BAM I wake up to a morning of responses-feels awesome.

I saw sumwun's post on Pidove late last night, but I decided to sleep on it. Most of what makes Pidove bad has been covered above comparison wise. The BST in particular, like Cobalt Empoleon said, is different in BW. Stoutland is actually five points higher than Unfezant (its Attack wasn't increased to 115 until Gen VI) and Herdier has three points higher in Attack. Onto Unfezant itself...base 105 Attack isn't horrible, and Super Luck Air Cutter is neat, but...why would you use this over Archen or Sigilyph, or...any other Normal?

Let's look at roles:
Need a Return beatstick? Stoutland, or to a lesser extent Deerling and Mincinno (Tail Slap but w/e).
Need a Fly HM Slave? Ducklett provides both that and Surf.
Need something to beat Burgh? Go catch a Darumaka.
Need a Flying type? Get Archen or Sigilyph, both of which blow Unfezant's two moves away (don't say Roost when self-healing moves have been shot down repeatedly in these threads). On top of this, U-Turn is postgame on Route 13. So it literally has no coverage outside of STAB. Even Ducklett has a better dual STAB and starts with great moves, albeit lacking statwise.

I mean, the base stats aren't horrible, but you get my point. At the best, it might raise to C, but when your competition for worst Flying type is Swoobat, and Herdier Take Down outdamages Pidove's mediocre output. Heck, even Woobat has higher Special Attack (55) than Tranquill (50). Sure, Woobat doesn't hold up over time, but I'd pick it over Pidove; it has the Speed to set up screens (higher than Sigilyph). Heck, even the Fly niche really isn't one, you only need to use Fly like three times in the entire game, all in succession; and Sigilyph could likely spare a moveslot for Fly anyway.

Durant: This should be in C, maybe even B. Even though it comes at the end of the game, it is actually a really good end-game choice, perhaps even the best endgame choice. Swarm/Hustle are good in their own ways (get those X-Accuracies Ready for Hustle...), it handles Grimsley and Caitilin very well, it doesn't do too badly against Marshal, and has a good Ghetsis Matchup (which is helped by its speed being actually very good which allows it to handle Hydreigon). It also gets Crunch which allows it to do something to Shauntal and its N matchup isn't too bad. It comes with Bug Bite/Crunch/Iron Head and maybe Dig and that is good enough to not need TM's and if you overlevel a bit, X-Scissor is an option.
I support this. Durant is a monster, but needing 8 badges to get it when most have filled out their teams is a deterrent. It can stomp the E4. I will raise it to C for now, though B is not out of the question if people provide strong arguments. I have swept Cynthia in BW2 with it, so I know its power, it's just when you have only 7 major battles left in the game and no EVs...also note X-Scissor can easily be TMed on without overleveling.

Reshiram and Zekrom will be untiered. As for the Rock Smash thing, it's nice but 40 BP only goes so far.

Keep up the great work everyone!
 
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Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Pre-Contributor
I am gonna suggest to drop Audino to E rank. While I do understand that it has some bulk and Regenerator... is there a reason to actually catch it? I mean, if I see an Audino, I'd rather KO it for experience. Catching one is actually impractical in my opinion when it's really better just to get mountain of exp. Trying to catch an underleveled one to not get tempted to KO it not only requires detouring, but also means you will have to grind a Pokemon that is already ranked low due to lack of offensive power.
 
I am gonna suggest to drop Audino to E rank. While I do understand that it has some bulk and Regenerator... is there a reason to actually catch it? I mean, if I see an Audino, I'd rather KO it for experience. Catching one is actually impractical in my opinion when it's really better just to get mountain of exp. Trying to catch an underleveled one to not get tempted to KO it not only requires detouring, but also means you will have to grind a Pokemon that is already ranked low due to lack of offensive power.
While Audino is not some offensive behemoth by any stretch and is far from efficient save for EXP hunting, I've used it before till about Mistralton and don't remember it being awful. I think I sidelined a bit more as time went on, but it does have a niche not many other mons in the game can claim: a diverse movepool. I mean, can you think of a Pokemon that has a better movepool with TMs? Grass Knot, Thunderbolt, screens, Dig, Shadow Ball...it can adapt to many situations. Its only contemporary early-game tankwise is Musharna which is rare, and Throh which is also rare if playing Black. On top of this, Secret Power is not a bad move if you run it with Return:
Generation 5
LocationEffectAnimation
In buildings, paved/plain terrain or wi-fi/linked battlesParalysisBody Slam
GrassSleepNeedle Arm
SandAccuracy lowered one stageMud Slap
In caves or rocky terrainFlinchingRock Throw
WaterAttack lowered one stageWater Pulse
PuddlesSpeed lowered one stageMud Shot
Snow or iceFreezingAvalanche
It's not one of the best Normals by any stretch, but if you need a tank until later in the game that can use a lot of moves, it's not bad. I might drop it to E though, but I don't think it's on the level of most of the stuff there.
What's everyone's opinion on Stunfisk? It's not horrible (I have used it) has a unique type in Ground/Electric, and most of the Electrics in the game have questionable viability sans Joltik. Tempted to rise it to D, as even in bad matchups it can contribute with paralysis.
Also added a joke Z tier for Purrloin lol thanks for the idea DHR.
Gonna start a run with Lillipup Timburr and Tympole today. With my tweaked settings, Gurdurr evolves at level 37+ which is fine because I want to see how Eviolite Gurdurr does. If someone wants me to test a fourth member let me know-may test Vanillite or Munna.
 
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Hmm am I missing something? I’m pretty sure Stoutland’s BST in BW was 490 and Unfezant’s was 478. Plus, Unfezant’s Sp. Atk is 20 points higher, which mostly goes to waste at the point of the game where Tranquill/Unfezant improves, widening the difference in stats that are actually useful.
I saw sumwun's post on Pidove late last night, but I decided to sleep on it. Most of what makes Pidove bad has been covered above comparison wise. The BST in particular, like Cobalt Empoleon said, is different in BW. Stoutland is actually five points higher than Unfezant (its Attack wasn't increased to 115 until Gen VI) and Herdier has three points higher in Attack. Onto Unfezant itself...base 105 Attack isn't horrible, and Super Luck Air Cutter is neat, but...why would you use this over Archen or Sigilyph, or...any other Normal?
Yes Unfezant has a lower BST than Stoutland. Apparently I can't read.
 
Started Black playthrough with Lillipup, Tympole, and Timburr - now at Castelia City with the gym open. Quick summary:

Wow, Lillipup is good. If you catch a level 4 one, with one Potion use you can likely solo N's Purrloin (barely did so at 2 HP) and promote to level 7. From there you either 2-shot or one-shot pretty much everythng with Tackle. You can even try for flinches with Bite since Tackle will likely finish off a foe after the first hit. By Cress, I was level 14. I used decoy Tepig to Leer his Lillipup to -3 Defense, then let Tepig faint, brought Lillipup in, one shot with Tackle. Panpour was 3HKOed by Tackle while hitting Lillipup into critical health but I never needed to heal. I leveled up to 14 and got Take Down. One Munna kicking later and I evolved. Herdier still almost one-shots with Tackle here which is great. Take Down is nice albeit inaccurate (plus you take like 8 damage each time you use it) and since you 2-shot anyway it's kinda superfluous. Either way, it pretty much ends things, Even Lenora's Watchog is 2-shot by Take Down (weirdly it doesn't use Retaliate first turn much from my experience).

Tympole is...weird. It was hard to catch despite having a catch rate of 255 (maybe due to level 17 one, but I've had trouble catching it in previous runs too). This offset by the fact you can buy Great Balls at Narcrene City. If you lie like the lowlife me did and give it Mystic Water early...it's eh. Bubblebeam can usually 2 or 3 shot most things, and other moves don't get much use. It can help by slowing down Lenora's Herdier (IIRC it can 3-shot with Bubblebeam, while Tympole may barely live Take Down).
Serviceable, though frail (50/40/40 bulk feels like paper). Base 50 Sp. Atk is a little iffy, though its 64 base Speed is very nice. Catch a level 17 one in dark grass for efficiency.

Timburr is decent, better than Tympole at least. I can't decide on the optimal Ability for it. Guts is nice for random status until you realize that's really rare and usually requires backtracking to pull off. I went with Sheer Force but realized too late this does NOT boost Wake-Up Slap's power like I thought. Still, it'll help later on with Rock Slide/Stone Edge. As for its performance, it two shots most things and takes hits fairly well, and can fight from capture with Rock Smash or Low Kick, Rock Throw, Thief and Work Up via TMs. In dark grass it is only level 15-16 (this threw me off initially) so be wary of that).

Natures and levels:
Herdier: Lax, level 22
Tympole: Naughty, level 23
Timburr: Gentle, level 22

Overall, the team is solid and will post more when I progress further. I'm looking forward to seeing DHR's notes he mentioned.
 
Really appreciate the enthusiasm drumstick is putting in here, keep it up!

Been ages since I played BW but I did use Joltik way back when and it was a good Monday, on the B/A borderline leaning A depending on how you experienced it's bulk/power trade off. Bug does it more benefit than harm and compoundeyes thunder is generally pretty disgusting.
 
Really appreciate the enthusiasm drumstick is putting in here, keep it up!

Been ages since I played BW but I did use Joltik way back when and it was a good Monday, on the B/A borderline leaning A depending on how you experienced it's bulk/power trade off. Bug does it more benefit than harm and compoundeyes thunder is generally pretty disgusting.
To semi-quote Byron from the DP anime: I love Bastiodon ENTHUSIASM!
Anyway, Joltik is quirky. It has a great type, but a lot of the other As come earlier save Coballion. If anything, it's comparable to Axew (wait, how did I put Axew in C tier lol, it is definitely going up to B right now, one of the best mons in-game).

Back on topic, Joltik beats Skyla easy but that's not exactly an accomplishment, because Skyla is a joke with any well-built team. Compound Eyes Thunder isn't immediate either-comes at Iccirus for a hefty $70,000 (shouldn't be an issue with Amulet Coin). The next two gyms are neutral, with Signal Beam probably falling off a bit by Opelucid Gym (remember a big con is no Bug Buzz until level 60 as Galvantula). Rivals are rather good (You can take on Musharna, some of the monkeys, D tier veteran Unfezant and Liepard, as well as 2/3 starters).

In the E4, you could likely sweep Caitlin with Charge Beam luck, though I doubt you can take more than one hit, plus her mons are bulky specially. You could probably take on Grimsley's Bisharp and Liepard. Krookodile is debateable because it has bulk and hits hard. Can also take on Shauntal's Jellicent and likely Cofagrigus. It is okay against N but not phenomonal (Carracosta will live Thunder due to Sturdy and fire back with Stone Edge, Archeops likely outspeeds, Zoroark has Flamethrower, others are neutral). Ghetsis is pretty average (Hydriegon's EVs mean it'll either live or outspeed and one-shot you). Probably can trade with one mon; his mons hit too hard for a frail sweeper to do super well.

I'm not saying Joltik is bad (it's probably the best Electric) but it might be slightly overhyped (Thunder is made a bit moot due to the other A tiers' higher stats, though still a great niche.) The lack of weaknesses DO help it though! B at worst. It certainly fits the description:
B-Tier: Reserved for Pokémon whose efficiency in terms of completing the game is considered to be high. Pokémon in this tier are able to OHKO or 2HKO a fair chunk of opponents and may have a bit of item reliance to assist in sweeping opponents. These Pokémon are still very useful but either have several visible flaws holding them back or come fairly late.

Joltik comes fairly late and in this case item reliance is replaced by forking over a huge chunk of cash (not an issue but no other top tiers require super-expensive TMs). Judging by E4 showing, I define "a fair chunk" as accurate. What do you all think?

Another top tier I'm doubtful on is Coballion. Sure, it stomps the rest of the game but it requires a detour (Axew does too, but you don't need to travel deep in Mistralton Cave and 70 catch rate is a far cry from Coballion's 3) and you do not have the Master Ball yet. The remaining two gyms aren't exactly paragons of difficulty either (lack of type effectiveness against dragons is offset by DD + Dragon Tail lolwut combo). Maybe this can be offset by being good to go level and move-wise (you start with Iron Head and Sacred Sword at level 42, and can TM Poison Jab/Rock Slide/X-Scissor/Reflect and even Volt Switch, which hits fine off of Coballion's 90/90 offenses). I'd like to see what others think.
 
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I'm doing a playthrough of black right now with a team of snivy, audino and blitzle. I'm also planning to use yamask and probably darumaka, but I just arrived in castelia city so I'm not that far yet. Here's a brief summary of their performance so far.

Snivy: snivy is very decent so far. It outspeeds everything and takes little damage, making it an ideal route sweeper in the early game. The matchup against Chili is kind of whatever because panpour trivializes the fight. Even without panpour, it holds its own quite well against pansear though. Leaf tornado is a cool move with a 50% chance of lowering accuracy, which cheesed some fights for me by making the enemy miss. It's pretty powerful as well. It 2HKO'd Lenora's herdier (with a little help from take down recoil). It then got two more leaf tornado's off against whatchog before dying with help from chesto berry strats making Lenora waste a turn with hypnosis. Overall, I'm not let down by snivy at all and I already think C is way too hard on it.

Audino: first of all, it is a bit annoying to catch, but since the encounter rate in rustling grass is almost 100% and it doesn't come very underleveled at all, it's not that bad actually. Once you do get it, it's very strong statwise, with decent offenses and incredibly bulk. I'm at Castelia city and it is still has great stats overall. It's early movepool is lacking, with doubleslap as its only attacking move until retaliate. At level 20 (which it is at right now), it gets secret power which is both very powerful so early and it also has neat bonus effects. Overall, it has been decent despite the fact that I don't have many TM's for it yet. I expect it to only get more powerful when I get it some decent coverage. I hope its offenses will hold up for a while...

Blitzle: this thing surprised me with how strong it is. Its special attack is decent enough and it gets a reliable STAB in shock wave at level 11, which is strong and never misses. This makes it one of the stronger sweepers early on. It is easy to level up thanks to the plethora of pidove and tympole on the outside of pinwheel forest. Ater that little grind it was on level and it effortlesly soloed N, which is not a particularly difficult fight, but still noteworthy. Its early movepool is pretty good, above average really. Charge actually saved my ass against Lenora by turning shock wave into a 120 BP STAB move. This dealt over half of watchogs health which means that Lenora didn't get the chance to use a potion. It gets thunder wave for catching pokemon and flame charge is great coverage in pinwheel forest. Blitzle has been great so far, and with two good matchups coming up in Burgh and Elesa, things are only looking bright for the future.

Overall, my team has been great so far. I will update soon!
 
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Started Black playthrough with Lillipup, Tympole, and Timburr - now at Castelia City with the gym open. Quick summary:

Wow, Lillipup is good. If you catch a level 4 one, with one Potion use you can likely solo N's Purrloin (barely did so at 2 HP) and promote to level 7. From there you either 2-shot or one-shot pretty much everythng with Tackle. You can even try for flinches with Bite since Tackle will likely finish off a foe after the first hit. By Cress, I was level 14. I used decoy Tepig to Leer his Lillipup to -3 Defense, then let Tepig faint, brought Lillipup in, one shot with Tackle. Panpour was 3HKOed by Tackle while hitting Lillipup into critical health but I never needed to heal. I leveled up to 14 and got Take Down. One Munna kicking later and I evolved. Herdier still almost one-shots with Tackle here which is great. Take Down is nice albeit inaccurate (plus you take like 8 damage each time you use it) and since you 2-shot anyway it's kinda superfluous. Either way, it pretty much ends things, Even Lenora's Watchog is 2-shot by Take Down (weirdly it doesn't use Retaliate first turn much from my experience).

Tympole is...weird. It was hard to catch despite having a catch rate of 255 (maybe due to level 17 one, but I've had trouble catching it in previous runs too). This offset by the fact you can buy Great Balls at Narcrene City. If you lie like the lowlife me did and give it Mystic Water early...it's eh. Bubblebeam can usually 2 or 3 shot most things, and other moves don't get much use. It can help by slowing down Lenora's Herdier (IIRC it can 3-shot with Bubblebeam, while Tympole may barely live Take Down).
Serviceable, though frail (50/40/40 bulk feels like paper). Base 50 Sp. Atk is a little iffy, though its 64 base Speed is very nice. Catch a level 17 one in dark grass for efficiency.

Timburr is decent, better than Tympole at least. I can't decide on the optimal Ability for it. Guts is nice for random status until you realize that's really rare and usually requires backtracking to pull off. I went with Sheer Force but realized too late this does NOT boost Wake-Up Slap's power like I thought. Still, it'll help later on with Rock Slide/Stone Edge. As for its performance, it two shots most things and takes hits fairly well, and can fight from capture with Rock Smash or Low Kick, Rock Throw, Thief and Work Up via TMs. In dark grass it is only level 15-16 (this threw me off initially) so be wary of that).

Natures and levels:
Herdier: Lax, level 22
Tympole: Naughty, level 23
Timburr: Gentle, level 22

Overall, the team is solid and will post more when I progress further. I'm looking forward to seeing DHR's notes he mentioned.
Just so you know, Stone Edge doesn't get a Sheer Force boost. Timburr really doesn't have a good move pool to pull off Sheer Force, but Conkeldurr can hit like a truck anyway so it matters little. (if you've got a spare DS/3DS and B/W/B2/W2 lying around for the trade evolution)

I might be inspired to play through my old White game again. I can certainly agree with Drillbur and Darumaka being S tier, as Drillbur can pretty much solo Elesa just fine once it has Rock Slide. (will probably need to set up with Hone Claws though, her Emolga are VERY prone to Double Team spam) I'll probably give Sewaddle a shot, along with Timburr, Oshawott, Darumaka, and Drillbur.
 
I'm doing a playthrough of black right now with a team of snivy, audino and blitzle. I'm also planning to use yamask and probably darumaka, but I just arrived in castelia city so I'm not that far yet. Here's a brief summary of their performance so far.

Snivy: snivy is very decent so far. It outspeeds everything and takes little damage, making it an ideal route sweeper in the early game. The matchup against Chili is kind of whatever because pampour trivializes the fight. Even without pampour, it holds its own quite well against simipour though. Leaf tornado is a cool move with a 50% chance of lowering accuracy, which cheesed some fights for me by making the enemy miss. It's pretty powerful as well. It 2HKO'd Lenora's herdier (with a little help from take down recoil). It then got two more leaf tornado's off against whatchog before dying with help from chesto berry strats making Lenora waste a turn with hypnosis. Overall, I'm not let down by snivy at all and I already think C is way too hard on it.

Audino: first of all, it is a bit annoying to catch, but since the encounter rate in rustling grass is almost 100% and it doesn't come very underleveled at all, it's not that bad actually. Once you do get it, it's very strong statwise, with decent offenses and incredibly bulk. I'm at Castelia city and it is still has great stats overall. It's early movepool is lacking, with doubleslap as its only attacking move until retaliate. At level 20 (which it is at right now), it gets secret power which is both very powerful so early and it also has neat bonus effects. Overall, it has been decent despite the fact that I don't have many TM's for it yet. I expect it to only get more powerful when I get it some decent coverage. I hope its offenses will hold up for a while...

Blitzle: this thing surprised me with how strong it is. Its special attack is decent enough and it gets a reliable STAB in shock wave at level 11, which is strong and never misses. This makes it one of the stronger sweepers early on. It is easy to level up thanks to the plethora of pidove and tympole on the outside of pinwheel forest. Ater that little grind it was on level and it effortlesly soloed N, which is not a particularly difficult fight, but still noteworthy. Its early movepool is pretty good, above average really. Charge actually saved my ass against Lenora by turning shock wave into a 120 BP STAB move. This dealt over half of watchogs health which means that Lenora didn't get the chance to use a potion. It gets thunder wave for catching pokemon and flame charge is great coverage in pinwheel forest. Blitzle has been great so far, and with two good matchups coming up in Burgh and Elesa, things are only looking bright for the future.

Overall, my team has been great so far. I will update soon!
Good choices to test. Blitzle sounds cool but based on chuggaaconroy's playthrough (where it was constantly upstaged by his Krookodile and was easily the most expendable member of his team.) I wouldn't be surprised if it falls off soon. Interested in how Audino turns out.

Snivy at B-tier...oh boy. While it may be one of the better Grass types, I don't think it holds a candle to Lilligant. The good earlygame is offset by contributing jack all to Elesa, Skyla (Swanna...eh) slightly Brycen and Drayden. You have Coil endgame, but at least one mon stops Serperior cold in the E4. Shauntal's Chandelure...Grimsley's Bisharp...Scrafy has Poison Jab, Liepard has Aerial Ace...Marshall is hard in general and has high crit moves everywhere...Caitlin has Sigilyph...N has Archeops, Zoroark, and Klinklang...most of Ghetsis's team can counter it...You can argue Lilligant has issues setting up against the last couple leaders (Brycen w/Frost Breath, Drayden with lolDragon Tail) but it has an arguably better boosting move. IIRC my Lilligant in Black 2 held its own against Elesa. I partially want Snivy to go to B, but I don't see it OHKOing much of anything with base 75 offenses so it's hard to recommend. Would love some input from people who've played with it, as usual.

As for the Sheer Force Stone Edge thing, thanks for the tip. It's weird it isn't boosted. Rock Slide is at least boosted though, as is Low Sweep.

On another note, heading this tier list inspired me to draw some art for it. Maybe it could be a new banner? (Note it was drawn in pen, and I know it's not the best, but I had fun drawing it!)
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Good choices to test. Blitzle sounds cool but based on chuggaaconroy's playthrough (where it was constantly upstaged by his Krookodile and was easily the most expendable member of his team.) I wouldn't be surprised if it falls off soon. Interested in how Audino turns out.

Snivy at B-tier...oh boy. While it may be one of the better Grass types, I don't think it holds a candle to Lilligant. The good earlygame is offset by contributing jack all to Elesa, Skyla (Swanna...eh) slightly Brycen and Drayden. You have Coil endgame, but at least one mon stops Serperior cold in the E4. Shauntal's Chandelure...Grimsley's Bisharp...Scrafy has Poison Jab, Liepard has Aerial Ace...Marshall is hard in general and has high crit moves everywhere...Caitlin has Sigilyph...N has Archeops, Zoroark, and Klinklang...most of Ghetsis's team can counter it...You can argue Lilligant has issues setting up against the last couple leaders (Brycen w/Frost Breath, Drayden with lolDragon Tail) but it has an arguably better boosting move. IIRC my Lilligant in Black 2 held its own against Elesa. I partially want Snivy to go to B, but I don't see it OHKOing much of anything with base 75 offenses so it's hard to recommend. Would love some input from people who've played with it, as usual.

As for the Sheer Force Stone Edge thing, thanks for the tip. It's weird it isn't boosted. Rock Slide is at least boosted though, as is Low Sweep.

On another note, heading this tier list inspired me to draw some art for it. Maybe it could be a new banner? (Note it was drawn in pen, and I know it's not the best, but I had fun drawing it!)
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Sheer Force boosts moves that have secondary effects at the cost of said secondary effects, like a chance to flinch or lower the opponent's Speed. (convenient that the gen this ability was introduced also gave Flare Blitz a 10% chance to burn) It doesn't apply if the effect is a cost to using it or a better critical hit chance. (so no getting around Superpower or Hammer Arm's stat drops, and Stone Edge only has a boosted critical hit chance.

From my experience with it in White 2, Snivy is... awkward. It's fast and can certainly do a fair bit with Leaf Blade/Leaf Storm, and Coil is nice... but good grief is its move pool barren of coverage. Near anything that resists Grass and/or Normal is going to force it to switch, as that's all it gets in its level up pool, and its TM coverage is not much better. I can't imagine Snivy doing any better in the original set of Unova games. (good if you want a challenge, but not for an efficient run)
 

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