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

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I didn't even notice how long it's been since I last updated my run lol

Update #2: Bianca (2), Cheren (2), and Chili
Team: Snivy Lv14, Panpour Lv10 (temporary)

Bianca: Easy fight for Snivy as expected. Snivy 3HKOed Lillipup with Vine Whip (very close to 2HKO) and also took out Oshawott in three hits because she used a Potion. This battle is so easy that it's almost not worth talking about for any starter.

Cheren: Fire Pokemon are very hard for Snivy so I did this with and without Gift Panpour for testing. On its own, Snivy can only get past Tepig if it can set up Growth (or spam Leer) while surviving multiple Embers from Tepig and not get burned AND using at least one Potion. Getting burned basically makes this fight impossible because of the Attack drop. With Panpour, it's easy, as you probably expected. Snivy can beat Purrloin in 3 hits with high enough Attack and no Growl spam from Purrloin.

Chili: While this fight is possible with Snivy solo, it is very difficult and not worth the hassle imo. Pansear has a Speed stat of 26 as noted when it speed tied with Snivy. Basically, the only way to pull this off is to spam Growth and hope to Arceus all Lillipup and Pansear use is Work Up. If you time his Potion use correctly, you can get an extra Growth off while he heals. Pansear always 2HKOs Snivy at +1 SpAtk with Incinerate, and Lillipup can potentially beat Snivy in as few as 3-4 turns. Vine Whip is a 4HKO at +1 Attack on Lillipup at most Attack ranges. Panpour is obviously good against Pansear but doesn't like being slower.

Extra Section To Avoid Double Post: I made a rule that for my run, I could only grind to the level of the next Gym Leader's ace. That being said I plan on testing Pidove but am not sure what to do as Lenora's Watchog is Lv20 and Pidove evolves at 21 if I recall. What should I do? (Also expect Lenora and the others to have slightly longer analysi. Yes, that technically is a real word.)
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Chili: While this fight is possible with Snivy solo, it is very difficult and not worth the hassle imo. Pansear has a Speed stat of 26 as noted when it speed tied with Snivy. Basically, the only way to pull this off is to spam Growth and hope to Arceus all Lillipup and Pansear use is Work Up. If you time his Potion use correctly, you can get an extra Growth off while he heals. Pansear always 2HKOs Snivy at +1 SpAtk with Incinerate, and Lillipup can potentially beat Snivy in as few as 3-4 turns. Vine Whip is a 4HKO at +1 Attack on Lillipup at most Attack ranges. Panpour is obviously good against Pansear but doesn't like being slower.
Funny thing, Snivy can actually beat Pansear, but that's cause of the AI derping, not cause Snivy is actually that good

Basically, if you start spamming Growth on Lillipup, it will respond by spamming Work Up. If you get it to +6 before Lillipup starts attacking, you can just spam attacks.

Extra Section To Avoid Double Post: I made a rule that for my run, I could only grind to the level of the next Gym Leader's ace. That being said I plan on testing Pidove but am not sure what to do as Lenora's Watchog is Lv20 and Pidove evolves at 21 if I recall. What should I do? (Also expect Lenora and the others to have slightly longer analysi. Yes, that technically is a real word.)
Honestly, not sure why you have to limit yourself with that rule, when being 2 levels above the Gym's ace is perfectly acceptable, simply because not being so is really difficult, considering the Exp. curve. If you are able to get Pidove to level 21 with route trainers, then you are free to use it. But in most cases, it's really hard to get above level 20 before Lenora, only a starter can do that from my experience.
 
Okay, so I know it’s been about 12 days since I’ve last updated my run. I apologize for the long wait, but I got burnt out given how strenuous it is to test the Elite 4 with a full team of six on cartridge. Nevertheless, the tests are done and I am moving onto the final fights where my mons will be level 52 all around. I apologize that there are ordering inconsistencies between the matchups but I just want them up at this point.

Everyone is level 50.

Musharna: I outsped and used Yawn on Cofagrigus. Cofagrigus’s Shadow Ball did 91 damage, leaving me at 99 HP (just around half). I then used Calm Mind while Cofagrigus went for Will-O-Wisp and missed next turn, and Cofagrigus fell asleep. I boosted up to +4 Special Attack and Defense until Cofagrigus woke up and landed a burn successfully, but due to Syncronize it wears him down too. One turn of boosts later, I am at critical health, so I Full Restore as Cofagrigus uses Shadow Ball taking me to 165/191 HP. Now at +5 I finish off Cofagrigus. Out comes Jellicent, whose Shadow Ball takes me to 139 HP and drops my Special Defense to +4. It gets OHKOed. Next is Chandelure. I eat the Shadow Ball to land at 98 HP and the game gets another Special Defense drop as I OHKO Chandelure to level up to 51, bringing me to 102 HP. Sadly, Golurk crits with the physical Shadow Punch to kill.

Attempt 2. I boost without Yawn this time. Turn one she burns while I CM. CM turn two into Shadow Ball, and the Attack and burn bring me to 97 HP. CM to +3 but the game gets a Special Defense drop. I heal next turn, and Shadow Ball brings me to 141/191 HP. Shadow Ball to kill. Jellicent’s Shadow Ball takes me to 93 HP while my Shadow Ball barely fails to kill at +3 (probably would’ve been an OHKO with Spell Tag as it brought it to red HP). Bring it to red HP again and drop it’s Special Defense with Shadow Ball which Cursed Body disables. I then crit next turn with Psychic to kill as Shauntal heals again, and level up to 96 HP. I live Chandelure’s Shadow Ball at 24 HP, but +3 Psychic barely lets it live at like 1 HP. I heal while Shauntal whiffs Fire Blast. Chandelure’s Shadow Ball brings me to 128 HP, but I level up and grow to 132 HP. Golurk uses Curse and I kill it with Shadow Ball.

Testing with Spell Tag and 1 X Speed now. I CM twice while Cofagrigus uses Shadow Ball and then misses a burn twice in a row (lol). She FINALLY lands the burn, and now I am at +4. I use X Speed, then heal as Cofagrigus knocks me to 155 HP. I get the jump on Jellicent but CURSED BODY!

Onto Chandelure, which +4 Psychic 1 shots (didn’t outspeed). Now at 108 HP. I outsped and one-Shot Golurk. Suprisingly good matchup with Calm Mind, assuming you dodge crits. You only need 2 item uses if you go X Speed.

Without boosting you 2 shot Cofagrigus and barely fail to 2HKO Jellicent who finishes you in 2 shots with Brine (though this depends on how much damage Cofagrigus does). Used Spell Tag.

Gigalith: Rawst Berry. You outspeed and 2HKO Cofagrigus with Stone Edge., while Shadow Ball does under half your HP. Golurk outspeeds and kills you with EQ though. If you crit Stone Edge (achievable with Scope Lens, you crit 1/4 of the time) you OHKO Cofagrigus, though this requires a lot of luck. Golurk EQ does about 100 damage, I was left at 57/161 HP, while the best thing you can do is Toxic it (or Bulldoze then Toxic it). Unless you do silly strats like setup Iron Defense on Cofagrigus for one mon, I’m gonna safely say you lose to Golurk as you can’t really touch it. Chandelure can live a Rock Slide if you don’t use Hard Stone, while you take well over half HP from Shadow Ball. With Hard Stone, Cofagrigus dies to Rock Slide and Stone Edge combo.

Darmanitan: Charcoal. Belly Drum brought me to 88/175 HP, and Cofagrigus’s Shadow Ball brought me to 13 HP. I OHKOed next turn with Fire Punch while Mummy removed Sheer Force. Golurk comes out and is outsped and OHKOed by Fire Punch. Jellicent was outsped and 1 shot by Fire Punch (!!) Chandelure was outsped (notable as I’m Brave natured) and 1 Shot by Fire Punch. Another attempt; I am brought to 24 HP this time from Cofagrigus. Went down the same as the first attempt otherwise.

Unboosted you can OHKO Cofagrigus with neutral Flare Blitz but without Charcoal it seems unlikely. Even without Sheer Force you still OHKO Golurk which is absolutely insane. You 2HKO Jellicent with Flare Blitz. I do think I was generally wrong on the last about the OHKO on Cofagrigus without Charcoal, but this is still a great matchup.

Golurk: Spell Tag. EQ 2HKOs Cofagrigus, who sends you to 1/3 HP with Shadow Ball. I outsped and OHKOed Jellicent with Shadow Punch; same with Shauntal’s Golurk. Funnily enough, in another attempt, I crit Shadow Punch to kill Cofagrigus, and Mummy didn’t really affect me killing things with Shadow Punch despite lacking Iron Fist. Against Chandelure, Golurk survived Shadow Ball at 1 HP (!) and I EQed back to kill, then killed Shauntal’s Golurk again. Later testing proved Cofagrigus is a range to OHKO with Spell Tag Shadow Punch, and given how my Golurk is Naughty with a 31 Attack IV, I’d wager the average robot couldn’t do it.

Samurott: Mystic Water Surf is a range to 2HKO Cofagrigus. Chandelure Shadow Ball hurts, but you can live and OHKO back. You outspeed and OHKO Golurk with Surf. You can 2HKO Jellicent with Fling using a Dusk Stone, but it is one time use so lol. Interestingly, Fling with a Fossil and Grass Knot kills Jellicent, but you have to get lucky with heal ranges or you lose. Notably, you have a pretty good chance of surviving a crit Energy Ball from Jellicent in red (does just less than half with a non-crit).

Sawk: Rock Slide 2HKOs Chandelure, who you can live a Psychic from in high red and did not proc Sturdy. Believe it or not, Sawk can actually sweep here if you can lure in Golurk. Bulk Up let’s you take EQ for less than half. Bulk Up again, then use BlackGlasses Payback to OHKO Golurk. Rock Slide Chandelure to avoid Flame Body. Then Payback Jellicent to OHKO. This method is so obscure that it shouldn’t be in favor of Sawk though. Now I’m using Rawst Berry. As for Cofagrigus, it is not even OHKOed by +2 Payback (they have to burn you, then if they Psychic you are at half IIRC. Burn may have missed on the second use though if there was one, can’t remember). You can kill it and then Chandelure, but both Golurk and Jellicent are ranges at +2 without BlackGlasses.

So just take on Chandelure unless you’re exceedingly daring and avoid the others.

Grimsley (Darmanitan is close to 52, everyone else is 50).

Darmanitan: Had Lucky Egg on initially. Scrafty can barely live a Superpower. Belly Drum is very risky. My Darmanitan couldn’t outspeed Krookodile due to Brave nature, so I had to X Speed and Drum while taking two Sand-Attacks. I missed and I died to Krookodile. Ryota said he outsped Krookodile (Darmanitan’s Speed is 95 to Krookodile’s 92) so it is possible. Now trying Expert Belt; you OHKO Scrafty with Superpower; the stat drop is irrelevant if you are switching out of Krookodile. You outspeed and OHKO Bisharp with Fire Punch. Liepard can knock you down to about half HP with Fake Out and Night Slash, but the latter is only really problematic if it crits. Pretty good matchup, though Belly Drum depends on Speed IV. Flare Blitz is pretty much unneeded here. Standalone unboosted you OHKO Liepard with Fire Punch barring Attract hax.

Samurott: Even with no Mystic Water and a bad Special Attack IV I was able to OHKO Krookodile (EQ does just under half). You can live Bisharp’s Night Slash in red but a crit will kill you; however you OHKO with Revenge. Liepard obviously revenges you at that point so I reset to test some against Scrafty. It tends to Sand-Attack turn 1, so Revenge looks like a 4HKO unboosted. However, if you are hit by Scrafty next turn, you 2HKO if after the first Revenge. Crunch only does like a little over 1/4 of your HP. Out comes Krookodile, who should put you into Torrent range with EQ. And then Surf misses. RIP.

Okay, back at Bisharp, this time with Mystic Water on because it could mean the difference in killing Bisharp. In this attempt, Scrafty used Crunch first turn and was 2HKOed to what seemed to be a range from Mystic Water Surf. Torrent Mystic Water Surf comes very close to OHKOing Bisharp, but giving my lacking Special Attack I’d imagine any other Samurott can kill it. In a later attempt, Mystic Water Surf is indeed a range to 2HKO Scrafty (I missed it in other words) at least for me. Boosted Revenge takes out 3/4 of Scrafty’s HP if it’s at full, so two attacks should beat it. With no item standalone Samurott takes Liepard on fine (Night Slash crit does half but you OHKO with Megahorn).

Musharna: Obviously useless at first glance, but hear me out. Scrafty’s Crunch should not 2HKO you unless he gets a Defense drop or good ranges (one range I got was 95/191, then I lived another a 9 HP the next turn. Also had him roll to 101 HP and then to 5 HP). Thus, you can get up a Reflect and a Yawn for an incoming party member. Interestingly enough, if you Reflect and then Yawn the turn after, he actually uses Brick Break to shatter the Reflect. This surprised me. This strat is very safe on Krookodile because it spams Foul Play which does almost no damage. Bisharp does about 147 out of 191 with Night Slash so you can get one move off assuming it does not crit.

Golurk: Initally I was gonna use Expert Belt (which I did in the first attempt) but I changed to Soft Sand. Replaced Low Sweep with Substitute for protection against crits and Intimidate for the second attempt too: Iron Defense makes Scrafty do 1/3 of your HP with Crunch. EQ is a 2HKO (probably need Soft Sand on any non-optimal 31 Attack Naughty Golurk to do so otherwise). With some luck you should be at max Defense and get at least 1 EQ in before you heal and kill Scrafty, though Sand Attack can be annoying. Foul Play from Krook crit and killed me (incidentally, it OHKOd cleanly without Defense buffs or crit in another attempt). One bad luck attempt later, here we go. Was able to setup a sub at +6 Defense to live two Crunch uses and heal as my sub faded. Setup another sub which stayed in as I crit through Scrafty. Intimidate was stopped by Sub, so Soft Sand EQ took Krookodile to red. I then crit with Shadow Punch to take him down to half health (was chipping so EQ could kill) as Foul Play took me to 54 HP. Liepard comes out, I live Night Slash at 28 HP and OHKO with EQ. Bisharp comes out and I heal. Night Slash does 36-38 each through two uses as I OHKO with EQ. Now let’s try the unboosted matchup. You should 2HKO Scrafty with EQ while it 2HKOs with Crunch (assuming you outspeed this is favorable). Krookodile is a no go without a sub so I avoid it. One-on-one against Bisharp, it goes for Night Slash leaving me at 13 HP while I OHKO back with EQ. Another attempt I lived at 1 HP so it might be a range to kill.

Gigalith: Use Rocky Helmet. Switch out Rock Slide for Rock Smash for this fight only, to have a move set of Substitute, Iron Defense, Stone Edge and Rock Smash. As Scrafty can often use Sand-Attack first turn, take advantage of this to setup an Iron Defense. Even if he crits you from full HP, you live with 53 health; normally he does roughy 1/3 of your HP. At max Defense even Krookodile’s EQ does 31 damage lol. Now onto the actual attempt. Depending on stats, even though Scrafty crit me on turn 1 with Brick Break (I think to 51 HP) and used Brick Break for two turns after, as long as you Iron Defense two turns in a row you should live the third Brick Break at like 3 HP. Now at max Defense, heal up, and Brick Break should only do like 14 damage now. At this point, Scrafty should Brick Break you down to about 133 HP or so, and you Substitute to end up at around 93. NOW you start attacking. Rock Smash looks to be a 4HKO with no Defense drops, while 3 Brick Break’s don’t even break your Sub. Intimidate from Krook doesn’t work as you have a Sub up; you 3HKO him with Rock Smash. He EQs to take you down to about 67 HP, and you Sub to get into red at 27 HP. Stupidly, Bisharp got the Metal Claw Defense buff and lived Rock Smash while breaking Sub. I now 2HKO him, but I had to heal a second time before the final blow. Funny thing is, even though Defense drops trigger Defiant he can’t meaningfully hit you hard with Metal Claw. Liepard dies to a Stone Edge. Another attempt brought me close to 3 heals, but I didn’t use a third item. The above method is inconsistent due to Sand-Attack but it can work. Do note that you shouldn’t try Bulldoze on Bisharp; it triggers Defiant and you don’t even outspeed after a debuff. EQ OHKOs Liepard while it leaves you at 1/3 HP from Night Slash at full.

Sawk: You outspeed and OHKO Scrafty and Bisharp with Close Combat (though the latter can be beat with Brick Break). Liepard can cause problems with Attract if Sawk is male, and since it also has Fake Out it makes you easier pickings for Krookodile’s EQ, because it breaks Sturdy and you have weakened Defense due to Close Combat. In a Golurk attempt, I found Sawk with no Defense drops takes slightly over half from Krookodile’s EQ, and it can’t take Liepard if it comes after due to Fake Out and Aerial Ace. Then I tried Expert Belt, Bulk Up and Sub which goes MUCH better. +2 Brick Break OHKOs Scrafty. Fake Out won’t flinch due to Sub, which is still up for Krook. EQ shatters Sub IIRC and Krook dies to +1 Brick Break, and Bisharp obviously dies to +1 Brick Break.

Also swept this with Lucky Egg at +2 with Brick Break, ending at 18 HP. I tested this later with Lucky Egg. You only need a Sub up and need to be at +1 to sweep Grimsley with Brick Break. Krookodile always comes out last so you can Close Combat it, though +1 BB kills (Intimidate is nullified by Substitute).

Caitlin (everyone is 50 save Sawk which is 52 and Darmanitan who is less than 300 EXP away from 52).

Musharna: Spell Tag. Absolutely destroys her. Caitlin can’t handle this: you boost up to +6, not even using Yawn, while she has to hit with Thunder. Even while paralyzed, I got to Gothitelle before I healed (and with the damage I received next turn not killing me after all, I could’ve swept without healing). You’ll need one item at most. Her mons are hard walled due to your buffs. You should sweep at +3 via Calm Mind (I did so with Lucky Egg and slight luck, without using an item).

Golurk: Spell Tag. Much to my shock, Golurk outsped and OHKOed Reuniclus with Shadow Punch. You eat an Ice Beam from Sigilyph with about 1/3 HP left and OHKO back with Shadow Punch. Musharna is outsped and OHKOed just like Reuniclus was. Sadly, Gothitelle stops your sweep due to being faster and Shadow Ball doing well over half your HP. Great matchup overall. I took off Spell Tag and the matchup went virtually identical until the part where Shadow Punch failed to kill Musharna by leaving it in yellow, and it killed me back. Upon testing it a third time, Reuniclus was consistently left in red by Shadow Punch while Energy Ball did about the same damage as Reuniclus’s Ice Beam. So you should at least take on Reuniclus and half of Musharna, as given my 31 Attack IV some normal Golurk might have trouble OHKOing even with Spell Tag. Or one and a half mons in general.

Gigalith: Sigilyph’s Psychic does about half your HP while you OHKO back with Stone Edge. Using Rocky Helmet here. Against Gothitelle, Stone Edge does a little less than half (it went for Calm Mind, then killed me). Now for the real attempt, with Hard Stone. You can just get the 2HKO on Reuniclus with Rock Slide (even with a low roll), while it tries to Focus Blast you (you can even setup a Sub here but I didn’t). Overall, you have a pretty good chance to come out on top here due to 30% flinch chance and Focus Blast’s 30% chance to miss. Hard Stone Rock Slide OHKO’s Sigilyph. At around just under half health, my Gigalith tanked Gothitelle’s Psychic with 3 HP and got off a Bulldoze for chip damage. I then missed Stone Edge and I died. Hilariously, this time I redid the matchup and lived from Gothitelle, only to crit Rock Slide to kill it, then crit again to bring Musharna down to like 1 HP and then I died to a Psychic. In another attempt, Rock Slide seemed to indicate it cleanly 2HKO’s Gothitelle.

Samurott: Expert Belt. I used Substitute while dodging Thunder turn 1. Then I missed Megahorn while Thunder broke Sub. 1 turn later Sub is up safely. Megahorn suprisingly OHKOed Reuniclus, and brought Gothitelle to red HP. I used Sub while Caitlin healed to get into Torrent range, where Surf 2HKOed Gothitelle. Megahorn brought Musharna to red, and I died to Charge Beam. Torrent Surf also cleanly 2HKOs Reuniclus. Another attempt seemed to show that Megahorn is a range to OHKO Reuniclus; assuming she misses Thunder you get a free Sub as she heals. After dying to Gothitelle, I realized this matchup is fairly luck-based; you have to hit Megahorn, you have to get good ranges and you need to get them to miss moves to be effective. I mean, you can use X-Scissor but why would I want to over the higher power of Megahorn?

Darmanitan: Flare Blitz OHKOs Reuniclus but seems to be a range on Gothitelle and Musharna without Charcoal. You do 2/3 of Reuniclus’s HP with non-Charcoal Fire Punch (you are 2HKOd by Psychic). Charcoal Fire Punch does about 2/3 to Gothitelle while you avoid the 2HKO from Psychic. Sigilyph always seems to be OHKOed by Charcoal Fire Punch; it needs Charcoal to do it however, as it is left in red by non Charcoal Fire Punch. I think you need to be around 110 Speed to safely outrun Sigilyph (my Darm at 108 was outsped, but I am Brave). The “Flare Blitz range to OHKO with Charcoal” seems to be supported by these calcs with 15 IVs on Darmanitan, 0 EVS, and Caitlin having 30 IVs, with both mons having neutral natures.

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Reuniclus: 177-208 (99.4 - 116.8%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Musharna: 159-187 (86.8 - 102.1%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Gothitelle: 139-165 (95.8 - 113.7%) -- 75% chance to OHKO

Bear in mind my EVs might be making the 1 shots more likely, as in this instance where I’d otherwise miss the KO:

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Sigilyph: 105-124 (74.4 - 87.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

I didn’t test Rock Slide but here’s the calc:

0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Sigilyph: 118-140 (83.6 - 99.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Sawk: BlackGlasses unboosted Payback misses the 2HKO on both Reuniclus and Gothitelle. Yeah, don’t try this matchup for the most part. However, I did outspeed Sigilyph and 2HKO with Unboosted BlackGlasses Payback (plus I was only brought down to 10 HP by Psychic).

Sawk and Darmanitan are level 52, Samurott is close to level 52 and my others are all level 50.

Samurott: Suprisingly good. Mystic Water Surf 2HKOs Throh and Sawk. Throh goes for Stone Edge I believe but it only does 1/4 of your HP. Sawk seems to Stone Edge which does under half. If you get into Torrent when Conkeldurr comes out, you can actually OHKO it with Surf (notable, as my Special Attack IV is pretty garbage). You’ll likely fall to Mienshao though. Tested this twice.

Gigalith: Rocky Helmet. Throh is kinda unviable for Iron Defense; it goes for Storm Throw if you buff once. Normally,

Return does about a third, while Throh goes for Stone Edge doing less than 1/4 with each hit. Sending Gigalith in at full health on Sawk proved better results, Karate Chop does less than a third while you do 2/3 with Return. Next turn, Karate Chop crit and I lived at 3 HP, dropping Sawk to heal range as I used Iron Defense. He healed while I used Iron Defense to get to +4. I healed as he went for Stone Edge, which did 13 damage. Karate Chop took me to 128 HP as I luckily crit Sawk to death with Return. Conkeldurr did about 48 with Hammer Arm taking me to 80 HP. Rocky Helmet and Return put it at high yellow, so I healed to secure the 2HKO with Rocky Helmet Chip damage. Now at 117 HP, Mienshao comes out. Jump Kick takes me to 75 HP as I do slightly over half with Return, putting it at middle yellow thanks to Rocky Helmet. I live another Jump Kick at 31 and kill Mienshao.

Darmanitan: Charcoal boosted Flare Blitz OHKOed Throh, though it is a range for most Darmanitan (I am Brave so that might be why it happened):

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Throh: 159-187 (85 - 100%) -- 6.3% chance to OHKO

I consistently OHKOed it three times. You can Sub on either Sawk or Throh (both go for Stone Edge which you can abuse with a miss to set up Substitute (you can relearn Superpower/Belly Drum later). Sometimes though, Sawk goes for Karate Chop, which without a crit does less than half your HP. Amazingly, my Darmanitan OHKOed Conkeldurr with Flare Blitz, though it is again a range for most Darmanitan:

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Conkeldurr: 145-172 (83.8 - 99.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Both calcs above had neutral natures, Darmanitan at level 50 with 15 IVs, and Marshal having 30 IVs. Other calcs have you 2HKOing even Conkeldurr and Throh with Charcoal Fire Punch so I see no need to confirm this in-game. Notably, even my Brave Darmanitan outsped all but Mienshao in this fight. Mienshao will typically revenge kill you and end the sweep though. Good matchup if you think outside the box, though not as malleable as the other E4 members (Belly Drum isn’t reccomended, Sawk has Sturdy which can only be countered with Rocky Helmet if it doesn’t go for Stone Edge, Mienshao is faster unless you use an X Speed and you already need one Stone Edge miss as is to do things).

Musharna: Psychic knocks Throh to red, where you Charge Beam as he heals. Mienshao comes out and you can barely eat a boosted Retaliate from like half HP. Heal up on Sawk who does around a third with Stone Edge. Be careful though, if Sawk hits with Stone Edge and then crits the next turn you’re likely dead. Now to try Expert Belt. Throh does like 1/4 with unboosted Payback (sorry for not mentioning it earlier) and you should kill it. Mienshao came out and used Rock Slide twice to get me down to 45 HP, so I healed as Sawk came in. After some moves I healed again and eventually killed Sawk, now at 85 HP for Conkeldurr. I lived Stone Edge at 15 HP and killed it. I’m hesitant to test Reflect due to Stone Edge. I’ll say this matchup is good, though rather shaky. You should at least kill two mons without healing.

Golurk: Throh does a lot with Payback initally, but you can boost up to max with Iron Defense before healing. Expert Belt Fly (lol) almost knocks Throh to red. We both healed up. Plain old EQ 2HKOed Throh, but that might be to 31 Attack IV and Naughty. Sawk comes out while I am at 123/151 HP. It goes for Stone Edge which does nothing while EQ knocks it to red. Shadow Punch 2HKOs it as well. EQ also 2HKOs Conkeldurr(!). I easily took Stone Edge from it and Rock Slide from Mienshao. Only had to heal once (on Throh). Tried again without Expert Belt. Throh used Bulldoze on me to drop my Speed, then Payback to crit and drop me to 23 HP with Iron Defense while I got to +4 Defense. I healed...and Throh crit AGAIN and killed me. Reset, this time with Substitute and Lucky Egg (I’ll relearn Shadow Punch later). I repeatedly Sub and Bulldoze until after healing once and using Sub, I am at 72 HP. Fast forward a bit; I have taken two Payback uses from Throh and one Stone Edge from Sawk, and Substitute is still up. I kill Sawk with EQ and it breaks my Sub with a second Stone Edge. Conk comes out, outspeeds and goes for Stone Edge. I Substitute and get down to 26 HP. I do about 3/4 of Conkeldurr’s HP with a Fly, and kill with EQ. Mienshao lives a Fly in red HP, but then dies next turn with Substitute still up. I also did an attempt without Sub spamming Fly most of the time; I only missed once and ended the fight at 30 HP (prior to leveling up to 52) without using healing items at all. Fantastic matchup!

Sawk: Using Rocky Helmet. This matchup is hard to describe, so I’ll break the mold and do it in a general sense. Bulldoze Speed drops from Throh can screw you over, which is very bad because you need 2 Bulk Ups to OHKO both Throh and Conkeldurr with Close Combat. If Throh goes for Storm Throw instead you take slightly under half of your HP from it, which you need due to the necessity to use Close Combat on Throh and Conkeldurr. There’s also other things like being slower than Marshal’s Sawk with a Speed drop, and Karate Chop which can go through buffs (I used Low Sweep to counter this though). Substitute can help as Throh does almost no damage except with a Storm Throw after a Bulk Up (I swept with one item usage at +4) but you still have to go the whole match without crits which can happen, and are especially bad when you are outsped. Bulk Up also prompts Throh to Storm Throw more. Given how non-linear this matchup can go (Speed drops, Defense drops from Close Combat which you have to use to kill half the team, crits from Marshal) I’d say it’s only slightly favorable to fairly average (you 2HKO both Conkeldurr and Throh with unboosted Close Combat, while Low Sweep is likely fine for the others). In another attempt at +3, I got to Mienshao before they crit and I died (only used Close Combat once). Why do crits matter more for Sawk than they do for Golurk, you may ask? Because Throh can be a 50/50. If he uses Storm Throw, you waste a Substitute and valuable HP. But if you go for the throat without Substitute, Bulldoze leaves you as prey for the other mons that can crit you, which isn’t an issue for Golurk as the only high-crit move they can use it naturally resists anyway, and it only needs to dodge crits for about 1 turn or so.
 
Last edited:

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Hi so I am doing a new run, team is gonna be Pansage, SuPidove, Moxie Scraggy, Cobalion, an Tirtouga, those mons could go with more testings.

At Lenora, I had only Pansage and Pidove and you know how the matchup would go so I am not gonna bother making an entry for them. Scraggy's matchups should be similar to my S rank run. Also, offensive IVs for all mons are appropriate

Simisage(24): +1 Bite is a 2HKO on rolls on Whirlipede. Whirlipede is by far the most threatening mon, due to 3HKOing with Poison Tail, which has a higher crit ratio. Dwebble is OHKOed by +1 MS Seed Bomb and Leavanny is 3HKOed by +1 Bite, but its Struggle Bug is only a 3HKO, so if you healed, you are not gonna have much problems here.

matchup: rather good

Scraggy(24): Whirlipede is 3HKOed by Faint Attack and its damage output is laughable due to Eviolite. Leavanny's Razor Leaf is around a 4-5HKO and is 3HKOed by +1 Faint Attack, I had to throw in a Super Potion to win this. +2 BB is an OHKO on Dwebble.

matchup: rather good, there's also Razor Leaf critting

Tranquill(23): Air Cutter is a 2HKO on Whirli, if you have Scope Lens and Super Luck, you have 1/3 chance to crit. Dwebble is 3HKOed and you can easily Roost throughought the battle. Leavanny is 2HKOed if the hit is not a crit. However, you might have to use Roost a lot of times throughought Burgh battle.

matchup: pretty good


Simisage(29): +1 Rock Tomb is an OHKO on both Emolgas, and Simisage outspeeds them. Aerial Ace is generally a 3HKO on Simisage. Zebstrika is OHKOed by +1 MS Seed Bomb.

matchup: positive

Tranquill(28): Emolga's Volt Switch almost OHKOed Tranquill and its Return is only a 2HKO. Zebstrika is obvious here. All of her mons also outspeed.

matchup: horrific

Tirtouga(28): Volt Switch is a 2HKO on Eviolite Tirtouga. However, Tirtouga can take down a switching Emolga with Rock Tomb and Aqua Jet, provided Rock Tomb doesn't miss.

matchup: bad

Scraggy(28): (+1) Rock Tomb is a 2HKO on Emolgas, with +1 putting in potion range. Aerial Ace is a 4HKO on Eviolite Scraggy. Zebstrika is OHKOed by +2 Brick Break and 4HKOes with Spark. In some instances, you might need an item, but in some instances, you won't.

matchup: positive


Scraggy(31): Swagger is annoying, but if you are able to pull through, you are OHKOing everything. Put Eviolite for extra defense.

matchup: rather good, Swagger is swingy though

Tirtouga(32): Scald is an OHKO on Krokorok. If you got Swaggered, +2 Aqua Jet is a 2HKO on Palpitoad, while its Muddy Water is a 3-4HKO from full with Eviolite (couldn't tell exactly if 3 or 4HKO). Exca is 2HKOed by +2 Jet, you win if it tries to set up Claws

matchup: rather good, Swagger

Unfezant(32): (assume no crits) Return is an OHKO on Krokorok, in addition Unfezant is faster. Exca can actually be beaten; it's outsped and its Rock Slide is only a 2HKO, when super effective. Therefore, if you time your Roosts correctly, you will be unkillable. Return is a 4HKO generally, but you can take advantage of Leer (correction from my future self: it can apparently learn Work Up, lol) to avoid potion range. Palpitoad is almost OHKOed.

matchup: positive

Simisage(31): Miracle Seed Seed Bomb is an OHKO on Krok and Palpi. Exca is 2HKOed by it. It will Bulldoze and may try to Rock Slide, in which case you just pray it doesn't flinch.

matchup: positive


Everything is 37

Carracosta: OHKOes Swoobat with Crunch and 2HKOes Swanna and Unfezant with Smack Down. They aren't able to touch either.

matchup: positive

Scraggy: Swoobat 2HKOes with Acrobatics, even if you have Eviolite. Swanna is 3HKOed by Rock Tomb and its Air Slash is a 2HKO. You only win this if Rock Tomb doesn't miss and you don't flinch at any point. Unfezant is 2HKOed with +1 Brick Break, but its Air Slash is a 3HKO from full.

matchup: rather shaky, but can work.

Unfezant: You can set up 3 Work Ups on Swoobat, whose Acrobatics is around a 3HKO or 4HKO, not sure, while Roosting the damage. +3 Return is an OHKO on everything, no crits involved.

Simisage: +1 Bite is an OHKO on Swoobat, but its Acrobatics deals a lot of damage. You need to heal against Unfezant, as it will try to finish you off with Quick Attack. +1 Rock Tomb puts it in potion range, and you can use the potion turn to set up another Work Up. Keep in mind that Air Slash is also an 2HKO, and that it will put you in range for Quick Attack. +2 Rock Tomb is an OHKO on Unfezant, while +2 Seed Bomb is a OHKO on Swanna. Held item is Expert Belt

matchup: good


Cobalion(42): Can set up a Work Up on Vanillish and outspeed and OHKO everything with +1 Sacred Sword. Beartic is 2HKOed by unboosted one.

matchup: positive

Simisage(41): Outspeeds and OHKOes Vani and Cryo with EBelt Rock Slide. Beartic is 2HKOed, but you need to pull through Swagger or not die to Icicle Crash.

matchup: pretty good

Unfezant(41): Outspeeds and OHKOes Vani and Cryo with non-crit Return. If you are able to set up 2 Work Ups on Vani (through the Roost shenanigans I used on Clay), you can also OHKO Beartic, otherwise hf dealing with Swagger.

matchup: between pretty good and positive

Carracosta(41): Set up 2 Shell Smashes on Vanillish, even -2 SpD doesn't prove problematic against it. +4 Waterfall is an OHKO on everything. You can Aqua Jet Cryo if you are worried it will outspeed, it's also an OHKO.

matchup: positive

Scrafty(40): HJK is an OHKO on +2 Vani, with BB being a 2HKO. Beartic is outsped and OHKOed by +1 BB. Cryogonal is OHKOed obviously.

matchup: positive


Everything is 45

Cobalion: +3 Sacred Sword is an OHKO on everything. Fraxure doesn't threaten you anytime soon.

matchup: positive

Simisage: Can set up 2 Work Ups on Fraxure. +2 Acrobatics is an OHKO on it and 2HKO on Druddigon, putting it in red. Simisage can survive a boosted Revenge after Rough Skin damage, thus it can set up another Work Up while Drayden is healing, as +3 Acrobatics is an OHKO both on it and on Haxorus.

matchup: positive

Unfezant: Can set up 2 Work Ups on Fraxure, with +2 Return being an OHKO. It can then try to set up one more on Druddigon in order to secure an OHKO on it and Haxorus.

matchup: positive

Carracosta: Set up 2 Shell Smashes on Fraxure and OHKO everything with Rock Slide. They can't do much to you even with -2 Defense.

matchup: positive

Scrafty: HJK is an OHKO on Fraxure. +1 HJK is almost an OHKO on Druddigon, but you can go for Crunch + Rock Slide or BB if you are fearing crash damage. Haxorus is OHKOed by +2 Blackglasses Crunch.

matchup: positive


Everything is 50

Unfezant: Although needing some potions (at least 1, at most 2), if Unfezant sets up 3 Work Ups, it's able to outspeed and OHKO everything with non-crit Fly. (Coffin's Psychic is a 3HKO)

matchup: rather good, also relies on Fly not missing.

Cobalion: It can flawlessly beat Cofagrigus by spamming SD and then Iron Head (and preferably 1 Full Restore), but the rest of the matchup is reliant on flinching. Resists are 2HKOed by Iron Head, with Chandy troubling Cobalion if it doesn't flinch.

matchup: good

Simisage: You can set up a Work Up on Coffin, just hope it doesn't debuff your SpD. You might need to heal once here. +1 EBelt Bite is a 2HKO on Coffin. Chandy is outsped and OHKOed by +1 Rock Slide. Jellicent and Golurk lose to Seed Bomb.

matchup: pretty good

Carracosta: +4 Rock Slide is an OHKO on Coffin and Jellicent, while +2 is a 2HKO on them. +4 is possible if it misses WoW. Chandy and Golurk generally lose to it, esp if it already has used Shell Smash, although it can use Golurk for set up fodder, should it go for Curse (or anything if it has Sturdy).

matchup: good

Scrafty: Can set up 1 Work Up on Coffin and OHKO it with +1 Blackglasses Crunch. Everything is also OHKOed, but keep in mind Golurk and Chandy are faster and can teamly take you down. Jellicent doesn't threaten you, even if you have no boosts, so you win.

matchup: pretty good


Scrafty is 51, everything else - 50

Scrafty: His Scrafty is faster, but you can OHKO with HJK and OHKO the rest with boosted BBs. Keep in mind you will need to heal it up, as it will be worn down during the matchup.

matchup: pretty good.

Unfezant: +1 Fly is an OHKO on Scrafty, be careful of Sand-Attack though. Krookodile and Liepard are 2HKOed by unboosted Returns, but are both OHKOed by boosted ones. Bisharp is a bit problematic, but with enough investment, you are able to kill it. Even without Bisharp, you will likely need a healing item.

matchup: good

Simisage: +2 BB is an OHKO on everything, just be careful of Scrafty's Sand Attacks. Also, its Poison Jab is a 2HKO on Simisage, so there's that too.

matchup: rather good, screw accuracy drops.

Carracosta: It can set up 2 Shell Smashes against Scrafty, due to being able to eat 2 attacks, one being at -1 Defense. Scrafty generally jumps to BB it. You can use Dig here for Bisharp, as it is capable of surviving a +3 Waterfall (due to Krook's Intimidate), but it's on rolls.

matchup: positive

Cobalion: Swords Dance on Scrafty, which will go for BB which is a 3HKO, and OHKO everything with Sacred Sword.

matchup: positive


Same as above, but Coba is 51

Cobalion: Reuni OHKOes with Focus Blast (keep in mind Coba's SpD and HP IVs weren't really high, not more than 7, HP being 1). Sigilyph 2HKOes on rolls with Psychic my Coba (with higher IVs, it'd be a guaranteed 3HKO), but is 2HKOed by +2 Iron Head, also Sigilyph is outsped. +3 X-Scissor is OHKO on Goth and Musharna.

matchup: I am going to say "rather good" because of IVs.

Scrafty: 2HKOes Reuni with unboosted Crunch, is left at red zone from Focus Blast. Sigilyph will generally finish you off, as Air Slash is 2HKO. Goth and Musharna aren't able to do much to you, so you can freely crush them.

matchup: pretty good

Simisage: Can 2HKO Reuni with EBelt Bite, surviving a Psychic, though Sigi will generally finish you off, unless you flinch it with Bite. Goth can be beaten, as it will go for CM and you can use it to set up a Work Up. +1 Psychic is a 2HKO, while Bite is a 2HKO as well. Musharna can also be beaten, but only if you flinched Goth, as its Psychic is a 2HKO.

matchup: rather good

Unfezant: Reuni and Sigi are 2HKOed, but Thunder is an OHKO on Unfezant. From full, it can survive an Ice Beam. Goth and Musharna generally beat this, as it 3HKOes them, while they can either 2HKO (Musharna's Psychic) or OHKO you (+1 Thunderbolt), however, Goth is vulnerable to Return crits.

matchup: eh

Carracosta: Reuni is OHKOed by +2 MW Waterfall, though it wins only with Sturdy, as it has Energy Ball. Goth is able to survive such attack and OHKO back. Sigilyph can also outspeed and 2HKO it. Musharna 2HKOes with Psychic and survives a +2 MW Waterfall (you need to set up again due to Goth and Sigi).

matchup: bad


Same as above, but Simisage is 51

Simisage: +1 Acrobatics is an OHKO on rolls on Throh. It will Bulldoze you, however. Mienshao will generally U-turn and bring in Sawk, which is 2HKOed, and you will need to heal up. Luckikly, Chop + Stone Edge don't OHKO. Conk is 2HKOed by unboosted Acrobatics, but OHKOes with Hammer Arm. Mienshao will generally finsh you off.

matchup: eh

Scrafty: You can at most kill Throh (with 2 HJKs, on rolls), after that, everything outspeeds and kills you (though Conk is slower, but Hammer Arm is an OHKO). Sawk is perhaps the only thing you can beat as well, if you switch out and heal.

matchup: bad

Carracosta: Can only beat Sawk if at full HP, as it eats 2 Karate Chops and 2HKOes with MW Waterfall, the rest either survives a +2 Waterfall or is still faster than it (Mienshao)

matchup: bad

Unfezant: 2HKOes Throh with Fly, it will generally go for Payback after using Fly. Sawk OHKOes with Stone Edge. Mienshao is outsped and OHKOed by Fly. Conk is 2HKOed and OHKOes with Stone Edge

matchup: eh

Cobalion: +2 Sacred Sword is an OHKO on Throh, and can take multiple Bulldozes. The rest is only 2HKOed or outspeed it and finsh it off.

matchup: bad


Everything is level 51

Unfezant: All of his mons beat it in some way, due to type advantage; Vani has Blizzard, Zekrom has Fusion Bolt and everything else resists. Zoroark outspeeds and 2HKOes with its attacks, before Unfezant can knock it out.

matchup: terribad

Simisage: Can't do much against Zekrom. Archeops destroys with Acrobatics. Carracosta is defeated, for obvious reasons. Vani will generally OHKO with Blizzard. Zoroark OHKOes with Flamethrower. Klinklang is 2HKOed by Brick Break, but you win this if you are healthy enough.

matchup: bad

Cobalion: It can set up a Swords Dance on Zekrom and 3HKO it with Sacred Sword. Its Fusion Bolt is a 3HKO, but you will need to heal up once nonethless. It will generally try to also set one Light Screen, thus free turn. Everything else is outsped and OHKOed by either Sacred Sword or Iron Head, but you need to heal up against Carracosta, as you will likely be on red HP after Zekrom.

matchup: pretty good

Scrafty: HJK is an OHKO on everything it hits super effectively, bar Carracosta. Carracosta is 2HKOed by it instead, even unboosted. Zoroark's Focus Blast is manageable, Klinklang generally goes Metal Sound if you are healthy enough and Vani sets up Hail. Archeops's Acrobatics ruin its streak though. Carracosta doesn't do much to you, as long as you are healthy. Zekrom 2HKOes with Fusion Bolt.

matchup: rather good, might require few items

Carracosta: Zekrom beats this, obviously. Zoroark outspeeds even at +2, and eats an Aqua Jet, so if it hits a Focus Blast, you lose. Klinklang 2HKOes with Thunderbolt and outspeeds even at +2. You can set up a Shell Smash on Carracosta and 2HKO it with Waterfall, it can eat 2 Stone Edges, with one being with debuffed defense. Then Archeops can be OHKOed by +2 Aqua Jet and Van is OHKOed by Rock Slide, who will generally outspeed and put Hail.

matchup: 1/2


Cobalion and Carracosta are level 52, everything else is the same

Cobalion: Set up 3 Swords Dances on Coffin and heal up once, then 2HKO it with Iron Head. Then you outspeed and OHKO everything with your most powerful STAB.

matchup: pretty good

Simisage: Can set up 2 Work Ups on Coffin to 2HKO it with Bite. You need to heal up once, though. Hydreigon outspeeds and OHKOes it. Seismitoad is OHKOed by Seed Bomb, Bouffalant OHKOes with Head Charge, Eelektross OHKOes with Acrobatics, and Bisharp is OHKOed by Brick Break.

matchup: 1/2

Unfezant: You can spam Work Up on Coffin while you heal up with a Full Restore or 2. +3 Fly is a 2HKO on it. +3 Return is a 2HKO on Bisharp and can be exploited into wasting its Stone Edges with Roost strats. Bouffalant, Seismitoad, and Eelektross are all OHKOed by +3 Return. Hydreigon outspeeds and generally finishes it off.

matchup: rather good

Scrafty: +2 Crunch is an OHKO on Coffin, but Hydreigon generally kills you with Focus Blast. Should it miss, +2 BB is an OHKO and you can try sweeping the rest of his team. In a more normal scenario, HJK puts Bouffalant into the "kill yourself with recoil" range, so you can't take Moxie. Eelektross is notably faster and you can only eat one Acrobatics if you are at green (which is not happening due to Bouffalant). Seismitoad is 2HKOed and 2HKOes with rain Muddy Water, you win this if HJK doesn't miss. Bisharp is obviously OHKOed.

matchup: 1/2

Carracosta: If you are able to set up 3 Shell Smashes, you win, as Rock Slide is an OHKO on Hyd and Waterfall is an OHKO on everything else. Setting up happens by exploiting Protect, Toxic, and some healing items.

matchup: rather good


Noms !!!!

Pansage has a not so good period as Pansage, but once it evolves, it becomes a great asset to your team, as it has much more immediate power than say, Snivy, relies less on set up moves, and has a much higher movepool (from TMs). Along with the Pansage period, some matchups tend to be worse than its others, which is why I think B is fine for it. Since no one is challenging this to my knowledge, I am not gonna touch it too much.


Pidove does surprisingly great, much better than D rank mons. Keep in mind that it also comes early, meaning it can easily gain EVs throughout your journey. It also has one thing that no other Flying-type has access to normally: Roost. Roost allows it to play shenanigans on what would be checks, such as random Boldores and Excadrill, due to the removal of the Flying-typing, thus allowing it to beat them actually. Its Return is pretty powerful as well, with Work Up complementing it even more. Finally, Unfezant is a great Fly user, as it uses it both offensively and as an HM, thus not actually wasting a moveslot. It also has a surprisingly decent matchup against the E4 and partially Ghetsis, if luck is on your side.


Just don't use Shed Skin please, you don't deserve this. HJK is still an issue, but doesn't make much problem with Moxie boosts making you less reliant on it. Nothing much to say here that has not already been mentioned in the past.


Has a bad start, due to Elesa and partially Clay (relies on luck to beat it due to Swagger) and is often reliant on items end-game to do its things correctly (such as against Shauntal, where you also need WoW to miss). Not to mention that you need to set up lots of times in order to outspeed, as Carracosta is sometimes outsped even at +2. Not to mention its set ups are sometimes possible only with Sturdy, as Solid Rock doesn't prevent OHKOes at all. Half of its E4 matchups are bad, with N being a 1/2. Sweeping Ghetsis is cool, but Tirtouga is too circumstance-reliant to be at B imo. Its movepool early game isn't all that great either, its strongest move being Scald (a special move) once you obtain it before getting Rock Slide or Waterfall.


Although its matchup against Marshal and Shauntal are less than ideal, Cobalion is able to swiftly sweep everything else, generally requiring not more than 1 item. Its Steel typing is amazing defensively, as it gives it lots of opportunities. Being able to sweep Black N (though it's not hard to just use something else as set up fodder) and Ghetsis one after another is definitely nice and I am giving it bonus points for doing that. Its Exp. growth isn't an issue, and can be fixed with Lucky Egg anyways.
 
LONG post incoming.

So I've finished my run. This post will contain my N and Ghetsis matchups, my final rankings of my mons used, what me and Ryota think of Darumaka, and why I think Sawk shouldn't be S rank. The analysis of the latter two will be very in-depth and I hope this will settle where these mons go. Edit: I will try and get the recent noms done sometime soon. Just wanted to get this monster post off my chest.

N: Everyone is level 52 thanks to a few Rare Candies, save for Musharna which is 53 due to me intentionally losing against N which involved fainting Zekrom to speed it up, and since it was so close I used wilds to get to 53.

Golurk: Zekrom went for Light Screen while I set up Iron Defense. At +2 Zen Headbutt does like 31 damage, and I got up to +4. 1 turn later I am at max Defense with 107/157 HP. I go for Substitute and then heal up as I eat a Zen Headbutt. Zekrom stupidly sets up another Light Screen while Soft Sand EQ takes Zekrom to red HP. I Low Sweep on the Full Restore, but still eat a Zen Headbutt next turn due to being slower. I kill it with Substitute still up and out comes Vanilluxe. I knock it down to about middle yellow with Low Sweep after it crits with Blizzard to finish off my Substitute. Out comes Carracosta. I’m able to set up a Substitute on Waterfall (lol) and EQ knocking Carracosta to Sturdy as it breaks my Substitute. I EQ to kill off Carracosta, now at 120/159 HP. Crunch from Archeops takes me to 94 HP while Low Sweep does 1/4 to Archeops. I unfortunately crit the Archeops as Acrobatics takes me to 64 HP. Zoroark comes out disguised as Klinklang and uses Night Slash taking me to 33 HP. Klinklang comes out: N’s final mon. I heal up as Flash Cannon does 1/3 of my HP AND gets a Special Defense drop. Golurk lives the next Flash Cannon at 28 HP and OHKOs Klinklang, finishing the fight with I think only 2 items used.

Sawk: Weirdly, Zekrom outspeeds (to be fair it has 5 points higher in raw Speed). Bulk Up anyway, you should eat a Fusion Bolt at about 60 HP before the Bulk Up. Sadly, Sawk doesn’t survive the subsequent Fusion Bolt even after a Bulk Up, so you can’t exactly setup on Zekrom unless you heal repeatedly. So I tried a new strategy after being taken to 47 HP next attempt; Bulldoze. Sadly, Bulldoze only does about 1/4 of Zekrom’s HP, and the subsequent Close Combat (the attempt when it didn’t crit at least) only takes it down to low yellow. Weirdly, in all my testing, Zekrom never used Zen Headbutt, instead preferring to spam Fusion Bolt. You outspeed and OHKO Vanilluxe with Close Combat and although Klinklang outspeeds you OHKO with CC. Zoroark outspeeds and stops your sweep with Flamethrower. However, you can get crafty and use an X Speed on Klinklang or something (that’s a pretty outside-the-box tactic though, even though I did use an X Speed on Shauntal)

I tested 1 Bulk Up and it went pretty well. You OHKO Vanilluxe and Klinklang with Brick Break (without an item like Expert Belt Vanilluxe is a range to OHKO with Brick Break), though Klinklang can outspeed and Metal Sound you which is very bad if Zoroark lands a Focus Blast (you won’t be at full HP due to Hail). Zoroark dies to Brick Break and Carracosta will always be 2HKOed as it comes out after Archeops, though you should beat it.

Gigalith: A great pick for Zekrom. Fusion Bolt only does about 50 of my 167 HP, translating to roughly a 3HKO. Bulldoze 4HKOs Zekrom, and after 3 uses you outspeed it. Zoroark comes out next (disguised as Klinklang). It goes for Focus Blast and misses while I go for Stone Edge and hit (suck it accuracy) to OHKO Zoroark. Carracosta comes out, and takes two uses of Waterfall to break my Substitute, and I land 1 Stone Edge between the turns which 2HKOs it. Vanilluxe comes out and I miss while it goes for Hail. I OHKO it with Stone Edge as it breaks my sub with Blizzard next turn. At 109 HP Klinklang finishes me off with Flash Cannon. So 4 members swept. Didn’t test this extensively due to tedium and doubt that it will extensively affect Gigalith’s final tiering.

Darmanitan: TLDR version; it doesn’t sweep. See below for why. However, it CAN beat Vanilluxe (outspeeds) Klinklang (Darmanitan was slower but you take a hit fine) and Zoroark (Focus Blast is a 2HKO while you OHKO with Fire Punch).

(Failed strategies):
I used Rocky Helmet I believe. Lure out Vanilluxe and use Sub while it goes for Hail. Next turn, Belly Drum while it goes for Frost Breath to break your Sub; you should be at about 24 HP after Hail. Healed up and Flash Cannon and Hail dropped me to 142 HP and a special defense drop. Used an X Speed while Vanilluxe dropped me to 68 HP with Frost Breath. Fire Punch to kill. Carracosta comes out next and kills me with Aqua Jet. Reset. I get to Vanilluxe and Belly Drum on Hail, now at 80 HP. I X Speed and Flash Cannon and Hail take me to 43 HP and drop Special Defense again (10% chance btw). I’m gonna save you the trouble and say that attempt ended in failure. Now I’m fully setup at 107 HP (Blizzard doing about 1/3 HP). Carracosta comes in when I am 96 HP, and Aqua Jet still kills me sadly.

Fresh attempt, using Rocky Helmet, with Sunny Day and Substitute strats. X Speed and Belly Drum are set up, and Flash Cannon and Hail has taken me to 143 HP after one item use. I set up Sunny Day while Vanilluxe takes me to 129 HP. I kill Vanilluxe with Fire Punch. Then Carracosta. It Stone Edges while I Substitute. It hits and breaks Sub. I Sub again and Waterfall breaks Sub. Now I am at 22 HP. Carracosta goes for Aqua Jet while I heal and takes me to 134 HP, taking Rocky Helmet damage to break Sturdy, and the sunlight fades. However not even +6 FIre Punch OHKOs (does like half IIRC) so RIP. You can Superpower but you need moveslots for Sunny Day, Belly Drum and Substitute.

Samurott: Obviously, it loses to Zekrom, and would probably have trouble with Reshiram due to 120 Special Defense the latter has. Anyway, you can sub on Vanilluxe as it misses Blizzard or goes for Hail. Revenge is likely a 3HKO if you straight up attack (unboosted 4HKOs, but you can’t really take advantage of this well unless you use an X Item. Mystic Water Surf is also like a a 4HKO (that may have been due to Light Screen though). Klinklang comes out with Tbolt who knocks you to critical HP while you do 3/4 with boosted Revenge. Surf does about the same as Revenge due to Klinklang’s 115 base Defense. So yeah, pretty meh on those two mons.

Musharna: Used Expert Belt early on but Rocky Helmet and then Quick Claw later as I realized you hit nothing super effectively with Psychic anyway. Zekrom is improbable; it is a range to 2HKO with Fusion Bolt while you clumsily 4HKO with Psychic, which gets even worse if Light Screen happens. I am playing Black so I can’t see how it stacks up against Reshiram; however I did a calculation which I oddly am having a hard time copy-pasting on phone; just know that without Special Defense boosts Reshiram has an 87.5 chance to 2HKO with Fusion Flare. You can try to setup on Vanilluxe, but Blizzard hurts a lot, coming barely shy of a 2HKO; thankfully Calm Mind and Blizzard’s 70 accuracy (unless Vanilluxe goes for Hail) prevents it being a real threat. However, Frost Breath does exist so watch your HP (later I used Yawn, got to +4 and healed up. I waited around a bit both to heal and be at near full HP and see if Vanilluxe would ever go for Frost Breath, and it didn’t the first attempt (it turns out it does I think about 60damage, which is a 3HKO). Next is Carracosta, who outspeeds and 2HKOs with Crunch; you only win this with Hail Up. I Yawn my way through another attempt and get to Carracosta. It goes for Stone Edge which looks to be roughly just shy of a 2HKO non-crit. I put it to bed with Yawn and healing item number 3; I kill it and am at 162 HP. Archeops does about 111 with Acrobatics leaving me at 55 HP as I level up to 54. The actual Klinklang comes out as I heal up to 195 (it used Tbolt and Metal Sound which are inconsequential at this point). You know what’s hilarious though? After not really coming in handy the whole fight, Quick Claw activated and I kill Zoroark with Charge Beam. The sad thing is that despite sweeping, this matchup still sucks, and here’s why:

A) You have to lure out Vanilluxe specifically to set up on with Calm Mind and you have to set up to +6; see the calculations below for why. Klinklang has Metal Sound so don’t get cute.
B) Musharna is stupid slow so it will be taking hits, even from Carracosta (note I am Timid which boosts Speed, however U have a 2-11 Speed IV though)
C) Massive Potion spam needed (4 items!)
D) A whopping three team members have Dark moves (Crunch and Night Slash) and I’d wager they 2HKO based on Acrobatics from Archeops and Crunch from Carracosta 2HKOing respectively. Zoroark also 2HKOs with Night Slash (again see the calculations below).
E) Even if you go for the oddball strat of relearning Defense Curl to set up on Vanilluxe (you forego Yawn) there are still the high-crit moves of Stone Edge and Night Slash, which in the former’s case also come from Pokémon packing Crunch. I mean, you can Substitute over Yawn too, but I didn’t go for that, and Carracosta will likely break it anyway.
F) It is still a range to OHKO Zororark at 6 unless you use something like Magnet (I didn’t calculate this, but I feel Quick Claw is more useful anyway against the team in general). Damage calculations for Zoroark (Musharna has 15 IVs, Zoroark 31, both neutral natures).

0 SpA Musharna Charge Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Zoroark: 30-36 (22.2 - 26.6%) -- 18% chance to 4HKO

+6 0 SpA Musharna Charge Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Zoroark: 117-138 (86.6 - 102.2%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO

(you need 148 Special Attack EVs to guarantee the OHKO)

0 Atk Zoroark Night Slash vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Musharna: 102-120 (53.6 - 63.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

So you die if you get slammed by a critical hit; great to know. About as meh as Musharna’s other pre-E4 matchups.
Golurk (54, was close to 55 due to testing on the attempt I deliberately lost on to make testing easier): Soft Sand. EQ 2HKOs Cofagrigus, so I’d imagine Shadow Punch co do it too. Weirdly, he went for Shadow Ball, then Toxic, then Shadow Ball again. I laughed as he missed Toxic as I used EQ in another attempt. Then I subbed on his Protect and was able to beat Sesmitoad through Low Sweep (though it and EQ don’t 2HKO). You live a Surf from Hydriegon in red. Another attempt I am at level 55 with 125 HP against Sesmitoad with a Sub up. I avoid a Muddy Water as EQ knocks Seismitoad to red. Sesmitoad breaks Sub then faints. Coming back in with 125 HP later, I do 3/4 of Bouffalant’s HP with EQ while he does like...1/3 HP to me with EQ (felt pathetic). You outspeed and 2HKO Eelektross with Shadow Punch (only barely though, most will maybe need a Spell Tag). In another attempt, Eelektross Crunch did about 120 HP (2HKO) while I didn’t even 2HKO with Shadow Punch (non-Spell Tag).

Musharna (53): You aren’t even 2HKOed by Hydriegon, so you can Calm Mind and Defense Curl all you want. I’m not gonna do the latter though because 12 turns setting up is kinda dumb. Anyway, Cofagrigus. I’m not gonna factor in Toxic misses here aside from the Golurk attempt above (it was my losing attempt). So it uses Toxic, and you use Substitute while it gets poisoned as well. Sadly, you don’t outspeed it, not even 50 Speed does so (I used a Rare Candy once to see if it made the difference). Once you have a Substitute up, Cofagrigus just repeatedly tries and fails to Toxic you to no effect. Soon Ghetsis will have to Full Restore; by now you should be at +4 and easily OHKO Cofagrigus with Psychic. +4 Hyper Beam leaves Bisharp in red while Night Slash 2HKOs you without a critical hit. A while later I am at Bisharp with +6 Special Attack and + 5 Special Defense with one X Speed used, full health, no Sub. Night Slash takes me to roughly 1/3 of my HP, I kill it and Eelektross comes out, finishing me with Crunch.

Now, the best moves to use are (you need to have over 200 HP for this, I have 201):
X Speed turn 1 as Toxic fails to do anything due to Pecha. Turn 2 Sub on Toxic. Turn 3 I used Calm Mind he crit with Shadow Ball (for like the third time across attempts) so I set up another Sub on turn 4. Turn 5 I Calm Mind to +2 as he fails to break my Sub, then he heals as I use Calm Mind on Turn 6. Turn 7 I Calm Mind to +4 as he finally breaks my Sub. I Sub on Toxic turn 8 and then CM turn 9. Turn 10 he goes for Protect as I CM to +6. I X Speed turn 11 as Shadow Ball breaks my Sub. Turn 12 I Sub on Protect to 1 HP then heal on turn 13 as Cofagrigus goes for Psychic; turn 14 I kill with my own Psychic at full HP with a Substitute up and +2 in Speed. I outspeed and OHKO Bisharp. Eelektross uses Crunch but it only breaks my Sub; I outspeed and OHKO with Psychic next turn. I Substitute on Hydriegon’s pitiful Dragon Pulse (don’t outspeed) and am now at 136/209 HP due to leveling up to 55. Ghetsis’s last mon, Seismitoad, comes out and breaks my Sub with EQ while I recharge. I outspeed next turn and OHKO with Psychic to finish the fight.

Gigalith (52): Hydreigon’s Surf/Focus Blast procs Sturdy but you can get a Toxic off on Hydriegon, or 2HKO with Hard Stone Stone Edge.Gigalith 2HKOs Cofagrigus with Hard Stone Stone Edge (doesn’t outspeed though). Shadow Ball does about 60 damage (1/3 of your HP). Protect can make predicting with Substitute or attacking with Stone Edge awkward. You wall Eelektross completely (it doesn’t do ANYTHING significant, not even a crit Crunch 2HKOs). Stone Edge should 2HKO just fine (same attempt as Golurk Shadow Punch with slight Wild Charge recoil). Bisharp comes out while I’m at +4 Defense, 79 HP. I Iron Defense, now at 63 HP. Bulldoze 3HKOs but I swear I didn’t see the Defiant prompt. Bouffalant 3HKOs with EQ, which you can abuse to Bulldoze, outspeed and kill with Stone Edge (2HKOs even without Bulldoze).

Darmanitan (52): Can barely live a Surf from Hydriegon at 8 HP (likely a range). Belly Drum time. Substitute, then X Speed as Cofagrigus tries to Toxic. Belly Drum and outspeed and sweep through his whole team with Charcoal-boosted Fire Punch. Note Mummy removes Sheer Force even through Sub but you can still OHKO everything easily.

Testing Flame Charge without Charcoal. Sub on Toxic, then Belly Drum as Cofagrigus goes for Toxic again. Now at 46 HP, I Fire Punch to OHKO as Mummy removes Sheer Force. Out comes Bouffalant. OHKO with Fire Punch. Seismitoad actually lived a Fire Punch at like 1 HP and broke Substitute with Sludge Wave! Even then, Ghetsis healed like a dummy as I abused that with Flame Charge (which 2HKOs it). Bisharp was OHKOed by Fire Punch. Hydriegon lived a Fire Punch in red, but missed a Focus Blast; it died. Eelektross was OHKOed by Fire Punch. Won.

Testing non-Charcoal Superpower without X Speed. Everything goes as usual for Cofagrigus; at 46 HP with a Substitute up. Bouffalant dies to Fire Punch. Seismitoad is OHKOed by Superpower this time. Bisharp dies to Fire Punch. Hydreigon outspeeds and breaks Substitute with Dragon Pulse but is OHKOed by +5 Superpower. Eelektross is OHKOed by +4 Fire Punch. So yeah, I did with literally no items or healing, Darmanitan is S.

Samurott (52): 2HKOed by Hydriegon’s Dragon Pulse, and you cleanly 2HKO with Megahorn. Against Cofagrigus, Substitute, then Surf which 2HKOs for most people (it was a range for me as I have bad Sp. Atk). Oddly, Cofagrigus went for Protect turn 1. Next comes Bouffalant, who you 3HKO with Surf while it breaks Substitute with Wild Charge. Sadly you can’t take another Wild Charge at 2/3 HP (I went for Revenge) but it’s likely you’ll see Bouffalant fall in a double KO. Hilariously in another attempt I was bold and went for Surf-and Toxic missed-then I subbed to 127 HP and Coffin survived. Anyway, speed ahead a bit and I have an X Special at full HP and a sub up, with Coffin above half HP. I kill it. Bouffalant goes for Head Charge which does nothing back to it. Revenge off Substitute doesn’t even knock it to yellow (you have to be damaged for the boost) but Surf knocks it to red. Head Charge does 2/3 of my HP and kills off Bouffalant. Now in Torrent at 43 HP, I crit Eelektross and kill it. In another attempt, I 3HKO Seismitoad with Surf. However, Seismitoad misses the EQ 2HKO and knocks you into Torrent letting you come out on top.

Sawk: Lucky Egg. 2HKOed by Hydriegon’s Dragon Pulse. Close Combat OHKOs Hydreigon and knocks Seismitoad to middle yellow (you also outspeed it). Obviously beats Bisharp so not testing that. You should generally 2HKO everything you don’t hit a weakness on with Close Combat. Maybe could sweep with Sub but I’m too tired to test this, especially since you need to be close to full HP for Hydreigon which is hard when his mons are mixed, and you won't have Sturdy due to Mummy. Regardless, Sawk is pretty good here, you should generally take at least three mons (I didn’t test Bouffalant or Bisharp but I think it’s reasonable to assume they faint to Close Combat if Hydreigon did).

Final rankings:
One of the best mons in A, and easily a top 10 mon for sure. This mon starts off well, as almost everything is physical or resisted earlygame as Roggenrola, letting it deal with Rock Blast's dubious reliability (2 to 5 hits, with accuracy the same as Rock Slide at 90). Rock Blast is fine despite the uneven power, as Lenora and Burgh can't touch Roggenrola after it buffs with Iron Defense anyway. If you wait for Rock Slide at 27 and then evolve twice for Elesa, it is well worth it, as this thing stomps her. It can even be useful in some matchups like Clay with sleep support (you can Rock Smash Excadrill). Everywhere else, it either has a type advantage or can abuse Iron Defense most of the time save a few endgame opponents, which are not enough to deter it's incredibly solid performance for the other 85% of the game. Rock Slide's accuracy generally isn't a big issue for this mon as it tanks everything. Just when Rock Slide starts getting meh, you get Hard Stone Stone Edge, which is brutally powerful, 2HKOing everything it needs to neutrally and keeping it relevant despite a neutral to meh endgame on paper. Reasons why it isn't S are obvious; it sorely wants an offensive boosting move like Curse, limited moveset (though it allows you to run Iron Defense, Bulldoze and Return fine), the usefulness taking a noticeable hit endgame where it can't rely on type advantages much, and slowness).

To recap, it 3HKOs everything as a Munna. Pretty meh Gym matchups, and it absolutely needs Eviolite to do anything of note soon after Psybeam starts falling off around Pinwheel Forest. It's a long road to Psychic Musharna, but one worth taking if you are patient; this mon does pretty decent endgame. I wouldn't reccomend this mon to the average Joe, but it has some decent niches (comes early as one of the few Yawn users, which pairs well with Screens) and Calm Mind makes it pretty good against Shauntal and Caitlin. You will probably chug items with this line constantly, but early arrival makes it hard to lump it in with the sad sacks in D, so I am rising it to C (I don't think anyone has used it with Calm Mind yet save me).

Not much to say here. Always reliable at every stage in the game, with only minor downsides unlike most other Water types not named Panpour. Coverage is fairly limited, lack of Work Up kinda sucks, and it's endgame is only decent, but those aspects are not enough to drop it from A. Try Torrent out-it shreds things with Water STAB if you have the foresight to pull it off (see: Marshall).

Might be controversial, but I believe this robot has a place among the C tiers. I know; it comes pretty late and has a lot of weaknesses, but hear me out. Maybe it’s just my 31 Attack IV with Naughty talking, but Golurk was a tour de force endgame. It OHKOed and 2HKOed everything I needed it to. But even disregarding that, I think it’s a pretty safe bet that this mon sweeps N in Black and Marshal in both versions, either of which is really hard to find on any mon, much less both. It has a solid resume against Shauntal and Caitlin as well, and can even be decent against Grimsley with some luck without Sand-Attack and crits. STAB EQ is also wonderful, with the only other Ground that has access to it being Excadrill (Krookodile gets it at 54 which is pretty unlikely for the average player to reach). Solid coverage and Iron Defense round out the package, with Low Sweep being pretty critical against N’s Vanilluxe for it to have a successful sweep.

Sawk often requires Work Up or Bulk Up in major battles, along with moves like Rock Tomb (mostly for Elesa but can be helpful for Skyla’s Swanna) or Retaliate in the case of Burgh. It is difficult to catch with a 45 catch rate, and if you go for the highest leveled Sawk at level 17, it can easily decimate the average team with Low Sweep. You only have one Ultra Ball at this point, though you can buy Great Balls or use the one Dusk Ball you have at night, but I digress.

“But it beats Grimsley, N and Ghetsis pretty easily!”

Grimsley, aside from Scrafty’s Sand-Attack and Liepard’s potential Attract hax (guaranteed for Sawk, it is always male), is generally the easiest E4 member and most straightforward fight out of the four.

Let’s review:

Shauntal’s Cofagrigus can cripple physical attackers, and the other mons are either bulky to potentially live a hit (Jellicent) or have decent bulk and hit hard (Golurk and Chandelure, which can generally live non-STAB super-effective moves).

Caitlin hits hard with all her bulky mons with her good coverage, and has tricky moves like Yawn and Calm Mind on Musharna and Gothitelle respectively. Marshal is pretty much unable to be walled if your name is not Golurk; Stone Edge/Rock Slide and Payback put the hurt on many potential counters (even if you are slower multiple hits add up with Payback). The Fighting types who could use Bulk Up to counter Marshall have an awkward lead to set up on in Throh and Karate Chop from Marshal’s Sawk.

What does Grimsley have? A Liepard, a Bisharp who dies to Brick Break, a Scrafty without Hi Jump Kick, and a Krookodile with just Intimidate (his only threat and even then it’s weak to a ton of things).

N is admittedly better for Sawk as it sweeps half the team.

“But it kills Hydriegon though!”

So does any other Fighting type. The following calcs are done with 15 IVs for each Pokemon facing Hydriegon. Hydriegon has perfect IVs and max Speed and Special Attack EVs.

Look at Level 52 Conkeldurr:

Hammer Arm vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 158-188 (87.7 - 104.4%) -- 31.3% chance to OHKO

Conkeldurr guarantees the OHKO with Expert Belt:

0 Atk Expert Belt Conkeldurr Hammer Arm vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 190-226 (105.5 - 125.5%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Conkeldurr tanks a hit:

252 SpA Hydreigon Dragon Pulse vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Conkeldurr: 118-141 (65.9 - 78.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Focus Blast does slightly less but roughly the same damage. Most of the other moves aside from like an 18% chance on Surf are guaranteed to 2HKO.

“But look at this calculation of Scrafty with no item!”

0 Atk Scrafty High Jump Kick vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 134-158 (74.4 - 87.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

“And Scrafty is more or less OHKOed!”

252 SpA Hydreigon Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Scrafty: 136-162 (99.2 - 118.2%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO

As for your attack, you should be coming into Hydriegon with one boost from Moxie, which guarantees the OHKO:

+1 0 Atk Scrafty High Jump Kick vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 200-236 (111.1 - 131.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Throh can also chunk or even kill Hydriegon as proved by Ryota.

You should have some Special Defense and HP EVs from the general adventure and a few of the Elite 4 members you just beat up. Also, accuracy; if we count it for Darumaka we count it for Hydriegon; and nothing is stopping you from having a Substitute up from Cofagrigus previously as you wall it easily with Substitute. Accuracy with HJK is not an issue considering you get a free X Accuracy on Route 4 and you are drowning in money lategame, and you can easily use one as you walk Cofagrigus. Scrafty is 2HKOed by Dragon Pulse. With Expert Belt and no boosts you have a 37.5 chance to OHKO, as well.

“But Fighting types are the only stop to Hydreigon!”
Nope. Whimsicott has priority Stun Spore. All of the Psychic types have Special bulk to set up Light Screen, and none are hit super effectively by Hydriegon’s moves. Two out of three starters can nail Hydriegon with a super-effective hit, which why it probably won’t kill will weaken it so other mons can faint it.

“But it sweeps half of N and Ghetsis’s teams!”

This is negated by the rather meh performance in the Elite 4. I mean you can beat Chandelure and maybe Sigilyph on Shauntal and Caitlin’s lineups but that’s about it. Marshall, as stated above, is shaky for Bulk Up mons. Combine this with Sawk’s heavy reliance on Bulk Up (both Scraggy and Darumaka/evolutions generally stop relying on setup post-Elesa aside from Belly Drum, which Darm doesn’t need to kill 2/3 of Skyla anyway). Of the matchups, only three really need Belly Drum to be effective (Drayden, Shauntal and Ghetsis). Sawk meanwhile needs setup for pretty much every gym, and even some mooks lategame as the bulk stops being superior to evolved mons. Combine this with most other S tiers only needing 1 turn of setup and occasionally an item when Sawk typically needs 2 boosts and it gets shaky.

A tier is very good guys. It’s still the equivalent of “highly recommended.” I just feel the issues confirm the hunches I had long ago; people treat Sawk as great for Grimsley, N and Ghetsis, in addition to Sawk’s Disc One Nuke nature, without looking closer and seeing the flaws that hold it back.

Darumaka will be in the following post.
 
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Intro: The Nirvana of Fire Types

Hello. If you’ve been around this thread for a long time or even the last 5 pages, you’ve probably noticed the discussion on the rampaging infernos of pain known as Darumaka and Darmanitan. This post, similar to Ryota’s post on page 16, is going to be evaluating the line through an entire playthrough, from their stats, major battles, evolution threshold and endgame.

Availability: Darumaka comes in at the Desert Resort from levels 14-18 at a 40% encounter rate, prior to the third gym with a bit of walking. It has a catch rate of 125 (24.9% with a Poke Ball at full health). Not super easy to catch, but nothing Great Balls and the traditional weakening cannot accomplish.

Stats (Darumaka):



As you can see, Darumaka has exemplary Attack. The only non-legendary, non-fully evolved mons that outclass Darumaka in Attack prior to evolution at 35 are Pignite, Sawk, Throh, Gurdurr, Conkeldurr, Boldore, Gigalith and Archen. Notice how aside from Pignite, the only lines that outclass it in Attack are all A or S tiers. An acceptable 50 base Speed is not great, but on the other hand, it can get the jump on some things like Swadloon, Whirlipede, Petilil, Scraggy by two points. You should likely evolve around Celestial Tower if you level Darumaka properly.

70 HP with 45 bulk on both sides is glassy, but let’s look at a neutral matured level 17 Darumaka with 15 IVs across the board (average one). This calculator is found at http://www.psypokes.com/dex/stats.php.

View attachment 182318
Since these images are hard to read I will insert the stats into folders.

HP: 53
Attack: 38
Defense: 22
Special Attack: 12
Special Defense: 22
Speed: 24

Along with this calculator, I calculated both HP and Attack stats for the same leveled Darumaka on paper using formulas for post-Gen 3 IVs found on Bulbapedia. The HP was roughly 0.9 higher at 55.9 and the Attack was only 0.1 higher at 40.1. I can provide proof via pictures but I doubt you guys wanna read my handwriting.

Thus I assume the calculator is mostly accurate. Let’s compare Darumaka’s bulk to the standard bulky unevolved mons that can be found nearby in Scraggy, Yamask and Trubbish (the latter two of which are slightly higher leveled at 19).

View attachment 182313 . View attachment 182315 View attachment 182317
HP: 46
Attack: 33
Defense: 31
Special Attack: 19
Special Defense: 31
Speed: 23
HP: 53
Attack: 38
Defense: 22
Special Attack: 12
Special Defense: 22
Speed: 24
HP: 50
Attack: 26
Defense: 31
Special Attack: 23
Special Defense: 31
Speed: 32

With Eviolite, Darumaka’s bulk becomes roughly 33 Defense and Special Defense, on par with Scraggy’s regular bulk caught at the same level and Trubbish’s bulk when caught a few levels later. Darumaka’s 55 HP makes the few points Yamask has higher in Defense mostly moot, and Darumaka’s base HP (70) is also 20 points higher than the base HP of 50 Scraggy and Trubbish have.

Now let’s look at Darmanitan’s stats:


When you evolve at level 35, you become one of the best sweepers in the game. Excadrill? Beaten by 5 points in Attack and 7 in Speed. Gigalith and Terrakion also cry looking at Darmanitan’s Attack, being 5 and 11 points lower than it respectively. Darmanitan also outclasses pretty much any Special sweeper with its offense via Attack being higher than anything bar Chandelure whose Special Attack is 145, but the chandelier’s Speed is 15 points lower and it evolves later than Darmanitan. (Reuniclus, Beheeyem and Hydreigon tie for the second closest at 125 Special Attack; the hydra is slightly faster than Darmanitan by 3 points).

The only other things that match Darmanitan or exceed Darmanitan’s Attack are Conkeldurr (ties with it at 140), Archeops (also ties, and is one of only a handful of mons that outpace Darmanitan) and Haxorus, who beats it by 7 points in Attack and two in Speed. Obviously Reshiram and Zekrom exceed Darmanitan with their relevant 150 offensive stats, but both are naturally slower.

As for other faster mons that hit less harder; Emolga, Zebstrika and Swoobat outpace you but can’t take a Fire Punch well, Accelgor (from only one mook on Route 10) dies to STAB and does nothing to you anyway, Marshall’s Mienshao can’t take a hit (though it threatens you with Rock Slide) and Sigilyph is likely 2HKOed by Fire Punch or OHKOed by Flare Blitz (and despite Sigilyph’s higher 97 Speed, you have a decent shot of outpacing it if you keep up in levels). Cryogonal, Whimsicott and Serperior outpace you but they can’t do beans. Galvantula is only an optional mook around Dragonspiral, and it’s weak to you. Simisage, Simipour, and Simisear also outpace you at 101 speed but Simipour is the only real threatening one. The monkeys, however, are also semi-common on mooks late-game, with three rival fights and a few mooks having them around Mistralton, Victory Road, and the stadiums with many badges. Swanna is a threat but it’s only really held by one boss in Skyla (I think Ducklett appears like twice on mooks) and Swanna is held in some stadium fights. Volcarona at 100 Speed is only held by the Champion postgame and thus is irrelevant. The same goes for Tornadus, Thundurus, Victini and Genesect who aren’t held by trainers, and you have to go out of your way for the former two, and the latter two are event exclusive.
Emolga: 8
Zebstrika: 3 (Blitzle: 8)
Swoobat: 9 (Woobat: 10)
Cryogonal: 4
Sigilyph: 8
Simipour: 7 (not counting the Breeder on Route 3, along with the Route 17 Swimmer, counting Rival encounters)
Simisage: 8 (same as above)
Simisear: 8 (same as above)
Whimsicott: 2 (Cottonee: 3)

So, to recap:
-Darmanitan is in a 3-way tie for third highest Attack in the game, including legends. Special-wise, only Chandelure and Reshiram outclass it offensively but just barely.
-Only about 10% of the dex outspeeds you, only a few of which like Sigilyph, Emolga and the monkeys are common (Zebstrika is fairly common too, being held by a few midgame/stadium mooks).
-From both of these facts, Darmanitan has some of the greatest Speed to Attack ratio of offense you can get in the game, along with a reasonable evolution level of 35 (which is on par with plenty of stuff like Ducklett, the starters, Yamask, Dwebble and Joltik by being equal or one level away from all of them). Only a handful of faster mons can truly threaten you, most of which are in one boss encounter each aside from Sigilyph.

Again with permission from Ryota, I am going to post his rebuttals to what some detractors might believe weigh against Darumaka. I will give my thoughts on his musings with opinions from my own experiences. Onto Ryota:

I made sure to find the more common arguments for Darumaka and I found around 3 only, so I will start by countering all of them:

"Hustle makes it miss so much :(((" (the sad face is just for fun exaggeration)

-It could do it, but in most cases, it's not fatal. For example, against Burgh's Dwebble, you are only 3HKOed by Smack Down if you have Eviolite so the first 2 turns it is not really a big deal if you miss or no. Same deal with most of Elesa's mons, missing one doesn't mean you are losing because their damage output is manageable with Eviolite. The only case where they are indeed problematic is against Clay, which is its last fight as Darumaka. Even then, if it hits, Darumaka bops Krokorok and Palpitoad, so it kind of contributes again.

Drumsticks: I agree with this. As I stated in my matchups with Elesa, her mons 3HKO you with Volt Switch with Eviolite on, so Darumaka takes a hit just fine. Accuracy is not only an issue for Darumaka here, but for the average physical mon, as their best option to beat Emolga is the 80% accurate Rock Tomb - the same accuracy Darumaka has when using any 100% accurate move, as Hustle drops it down to an equal 80%. Even disregarding this one fight, it’s not like lower accurate moves are uncommon among the top tiers. The Petilil line has 75% accuracy with Sleep Power, which it relies on to sweep in some scenarios. Scraggy has Hi Jump Kick, which it relies on to dent Clay and Drayden effectively, among others. Gigalith has Rock Blast and Rock Slide. Samurott has Megahorn. While most aren’t as inaccurate as 80%, it’s not like everything else is using 100% accurate moves all the time. I actually made a count of Hustle when I raised Darumaka. The finishing count upon evolution was 4 opponent misses and 20 I had post capture until Darmanitan. Remember that Eviolite Darmanitan takes a neutral boss’s (in this case Elesa) STAB attacks just fine, so it can definitely handle average mooks.

Back to Ryota.

"Darmanitan can't beat its resists to fire, such as Drayden and etc."

-That's incorrect, as shown in my logs against Drayden, Darmanitan can actually beat Drayden and anything that resists Fire moves. It can also survive quite a bit neutral hits even from half, which means that setting up Belly Drum isn't as rare as a blue moon. Don't even make mention how Darmanitan was able to bring Swanna to red HP zone with an unboosted Flare Blitz.

Drumsticks: Belly Drum is viable and even allows Darmanitan to shred resistors of it in half. Darmanitan’s 105 HP often lets it survive a decently powered neutral STAB attack from things with roughly 95 offense, or non-STAB moves from Pokémon with higher offenses. Belly Drum allows it to sweep Ghetsis with pretty much no items aside from a X Speed.

"Flare Blitz's recoil is just too much for the poor Darmanitan"

-In most cases, Flare Blitz isn't needed and Fire Punch does more than enough, especially if you use Belly Drum strategies, which as I mentioned earlier, are not only possible, but actually viable. If you are gonna use Flare Blitz, in most cases, it's gonna be from full to OHKO something, which will be nothing.

Drumsticks: Yeah, Flare Blitz is utterly busted. You should be using it fairly often endgame; Even at worst endgame, you can still rip through half a team, often OHKOing a lot of mons. Nothing has the immediate power Darmanitan does with Sheer Force Flare Blitz; it hits 234 power after STAB and Sheer Force off 140 Attack, needless to say not much lives.

Ryota: The only case where I don't consider Darmanitan a broken thing is against Marshal and half of N's team, but in N's case, it eats alive the other half without any problems. Due to my arguments about Hustle, it practically allows Darumaka to steamroll early game, and as Darm, well, it also steamrolls. I really can't find more words to describe its viability, other than "it destroys 95% of the game". I mean, it literally swept 5/6 of Ghetsis's team, if I have to mention that. If you want an elaborate details on each matchup, you can check my logs here, but everyone agrees it's a monster and I considered it more important to disconfirm the arguments that were used to drop it.

Drumsticks: I agree. This mon laughs at the game, to the point where once you get Darmanitan the game might as well just fold to you right there. Nothing eats the line's attacks, even with a Speed lowering nature it still outsped everything I needed it to, and it is superb everywhere.

Both me and Ryota have used Darumaka. With his permission, I am posting both of our matchups, with mine being first and Ryota’s being second for each boss.

Burgh:
Drumsticks (with Amulet Coin): As long as Hustle wants you to, you OHKO Whirlipede and Leavanny. Leave Dwebble to something else; it outspeeds Darumaka and 2HKOs if you don’t have Eviolite. You seem to Speed tie with Whirlipede if you have 28 Speed. You should be okay even if you miss once; you can finish the fight in low green health if you don’t whiff Fire Punch.

Ryota: level 23 (result of Route 4). Fire Punch is an OHKO on both Whirlipede and Leavanny, and they do not threaten it in return. Dwebble is 2HKOed and its Smack Down is only a 3HKO with Eviolite, thus a miss while in green HP range isn't fatal at all and Hustle only helps here practically (thus you can heal if needed).

conclusion: Amazing matchup overall

Elesa:

Drumsticks (27): With Eviolite, Volt Switch doesn’t 3HKO you (even from Zebstrika). It’s debatable if you should setup or not, due to Static and potential Hustle misses. Note this might be due to my Brave nature and Attack IV range of 20-25, but Darumaka OHKOed both Emolga with Fire Punch without Charcoal. If you Dig on a Volt Switch to Zebstrika you OHKO it.

So the fight should go like this:
Emolga Volt Switch to Emolga which you OHKO turn 1.
Emolga Volt Switch to Zebstrika while you Dig to OHKO next turn.
You eat another Volt Switch from Emolga and kill turn 4.
Note I didn’t use Facade strats here, but they seem to be acceptable based on Ryota’s experiences.

Ryota: level 29 (result of Desert Resort, N, and some Route 16 trainers). Thrash is an OHKO on the Emolgas and a 2HKO on Zebstrika. If you are able to trigger Static on Darumaka, you are able to OHKO Zebstrika with Facade. With Eviolite, the damage Darumaka takes is acceptable and perfectly manageable. Hustle misses are only fatal if Darumaka is in range, thus if it's healthy enough, misses aren't really bad.

conclusion: Also really decent

Clay:

Drumsticks (29): If you hit through Swagger, you kill Krokorok. Surprisingly without Eviolite, you can actually live a Muddy Water from Palpitoad at full HP! Problem is though: hurting yourself in confusion does around half your HP (you can rarely live if you hit yourself twice).

I eventually got annoyed at hitting myself in confusion in like 4 consecutive attempts (remember I’m playing on cart with no speed-up toggle) so I tried testing the other members to avoid Swagger. Against Palp, Thrash knocks it to red and seemingly almost OHKOs it with a good roll; few levels higher might close the gap but then again I am running Brave. You auto-lose to Excadrill regardless of Eviolite, Bulldoze OHKOs. Probably the only matchup Darumaka isn’t stellar, but you can at least chunk Palpitoad.

Ryota: level 31 (Cold Storage, Charles, some trainers from Route 6 (I think 6? The one for Chargestone Cave). Krokorok is annoying due to Swagger, so here it's a 50/50; if you manage to hit with Thrash, you are killing it. Palpitoad is OHKOed by a +2 Thrash as well and seems to speed-tie my Darumaka (+Spe 48). Unboosted Thrash is almost an OHKO and leaves it with very few HP. Exca OHKOes Darumaka

conclusion: Wishy-washi, it's really luck dependant and doesn't even win it all.

Skyla:

Drumsticks (37): Belly Drum. Swoobat can be dumb and go for Amnesia twice. My Darm is outsped by Swanna (thanks Brave) but seeing as BubbleBeam only does half you could feasibly Flare Blitz. Problem though; Swoobat 3HKOs with Acrobatics. If you can get lucky and survive both Acrobatics and BubbleBeam you actually OHKO Swanna with Charcoal-boosted Flare Blitz.

Interestingly, without using Belly Drum, my Darmanitan hit Swanna into low red with a Flare Blitz which speaks for itself. You 2HKO Swanna with Fire Punch. You also outspeed Unfezant even with Brave. So with this knowledge I reset once more. To guarantee victory (not using Belly Drum), you need Swoobat to Amnesia turn 1 and Swanna to Aqua Ring on turn 1 (this would probably change if my Speed was higher than Swanna’s). Swoobat and Unfezant are OHKOed by Fire Punch, so even disregarding Swanna this matchup is still good.

Ryota: level 37 (Chargestone Cave, some trainers from inside and outside Celestial Tower (Lucky Egg)). Darm not only wins this flawlessly, but there are 2 ways you can do it. The first one is setting a Belly Drum (since you outspeed everything on Skyla's team) and just click Fire Punch and enjoy (Swoobat will mostly try to set up an Amnesia). The other is just click Flare Blitz. Flare Blitz OHKOes Swoobat and Unfezant unboosted, while it also puts Swanna in the red HP range. Swanna tries to set up an Aqua Ring on the first turn, generally. Fire Punch is a 2HKO on both Swanna and Unfezant. So yes, Darm has multiple ways of beating this. Note that Darm was holding Charcoal as item, obtainable at Nacrene for saying you picked Tepig as starter.

conclusion: The fact it beat Skyla in 2 different ways speaks something about itself, eh?

Brycen:

Drumsticks (40): The most lopsided battle EVER. Three Fire Punches and you win. Cryogonal outspeeds but does jack. You don’t even need Charcoal (OHKO on Beartic might be due to Brave, but you have more than enough health to Flare Blitz him anyway).

Ryota: Darm: level 39 (Twist Mountain + some Brycen trainers). Outspeeds and OHKOes everything with Fire Punch. If you are worried of Beartic surviving a Fire Punch (which it has done in a previous playthrough years ago), then click FBlitz, I suspect it will do the job even if Darm were level 35.

Drayden:

Drumsticks: Charcoal. Anyway, first match was lopsided because I crit Fraxure and Haxorus; Fraxure DD’d while I used Belly Drum. Presumably everything went for Dragon Tail, and all were OHKOed. Next attempt: Belly Drum on DD again, everything seemed to be OHKOed without crits while they all seemed to use Dragon Tail.

Tested without Charcoal. Both Fraxure and Drudd died easily, and I was around 60 HP due to Rough Skin (IIRC the HP I was at in the other matches too). Haxorus used Slash to kill me (it didn’t crit either). Tested again without Charcoal; this time it OHKOed everything.

Testing without Belly Drum while using Charcoal. Darn cleanly knocked Fraxure into 1/3 health with Fire Punch; considering mine is Brave this should be a 2HKO for any Darmanitan. Fraxure DDed twice like a dummy allowing me to kill it. My Darmanitan crit Druddigon to low red with Fire Punch, and took Night Slash while remaining in green HP even from Rough Skin damage. You 3HKO Drudd with Fire Punch sadly, and it can tank through you with items and Rough Skin damage; even it missing Dragon Tail once didn’t let Darm prevail over it (though wasted two healing items and got it to red again).

Next attempt Fraxure went for Dragon Rage turn two. Flare Blitz did like...2/3 of Druddigon’s HP, and it killed me with Revenge. Another attempt revealed Fraxure does about 70 HP with +1 Assurance (slightly under half HP). Druddigon went for Chip Away while a combo of Fire Punch + Flare Blitz killed it. One more attempt spamming Flare Blitz showed me OHKOing Fraxure (and doing about as much damage in recoil as Dragon Rage would. Flare Blitzed Drudd and I lived a Night Slash AND Rough Skin damage from Fire Punch next turn. Died to Haxorus Assurance though.

Tested unboosted without Charcoal. You STILL 2 shot Fraxure and Drudd with Fire Punch and Flare Blitz respectively (tho I’m Brave natured). When I tested with Work Up, i again crit Fraxure and Haxorus to OHKO with Fire Punch and Flare Blitz respectively. Drudd was OHKOed off a non-crit Flare Blitz. So the general consensus is; if the Ai derps and uses Dragon Tail on 2/3 turns, you should win if using Belly Drum. Even without boosting you should take down everything save Haxorus with a little luck against Druddigon and Fraxure.

Ryota (43): I used the strat everyone knows, which is Belly Drum on Fraxure while it tries to set up a DD. +6 OHKOes Fraxure line and Flare Blitz OHKOes Druddigon (you survive after Skin damage and recoil and you outspeed everything).

matchup: positive.

So, pre-Elite Four, Darumaka and Darmanitan only really have one bad matchup in Clay, and can put in plenty of work if not sweep the other fights. Being bad against one gym isn’t exclusive to Darumaka either: Scraggy is iffy against Skyla and Drilbur is shaky against Burgh.

Shauntal:
Darmanitan(50): I did 2 scenarios. The first is setting up BDrum. If you are able to survive Cofagrigus's Shadow Ball (which you can) and heal up with Full Restore, you can OHKO Golurk and Cof with Fire Punch. Jellicent and Chandy are picked up by +6 Dig. Also, Chandy also loses to +6 Flare Blitz. If you decide to go unboosted, you are only OHKOing Cofagrigus and Golurk (despite lacking Sheer Force). Jellicent always beats this and Darm will always be worn out and be finished off by Chandy.

conclusion: If you BDRum, matchup is decent, if not, it's 50/50 for beating half the team.

Grimsley:
Darm(50): If you set up Belly Drum, you outspeed and OHKO everything with Fire Punch. Scrafty first turn, however, hits you with the annoying Sand Attack so you might miss and lose. For the record, even with a -Defense nature, my Darm was able to take a Crunch from Scrafty even after a BD.

matchup: Almost perfect, due to Sand Attack bullshits.

Caitlin:
Darm(50): Charcoal Flare Blitz can outspeed and OHKO everything on her team. There was one instance of Goth barely surviving one though so I think Musharna, Reuni and Goth are based on rolls. Sigilyph is also almost OHKOed by Fire Punch if you are too low on HP.

conclusion: If my assumption is correct, you are winning this pretty easily if you get favorable rolls (considering I got only one unfavorable roll, only on Gothitelle, we can assume the unfavorable ones are lower).

Marshall:
Darm(50): Charcoal Flare Blitz can either be an OHKO or a 2HKO depending on rolls. Sawk OHKOes with Stone Edge and there's the Sturdy meme. If you are able to chip it, FBlitz is an OHKO. Conk is 2HKOed by Flare Blitz and hits back pretty hard. Mienshao is outsped and OHKOed.

conclusion: The only time I wouldn't be amazed at Darm's brokenness.

N:
Darm(50): Zekrom almost OHKOed my Darmanitan and in turn it can't do much to it, so it basically loses here. Vanilluxe and Klinklang are OHKOed by Fire Punch and are outsped. Zoroark is outsped and OHKOed by Flare Blitz. Carracosta and Archeops defeat Darmanitan for obvious reasons.

conclusion: 50/50 matchup, since it crushes one half and loses badly to the other.
Ghetsis:
Darm(51): Set up a Belly Drum on Cofagrigus, which will try to Toxic you. If it hits, you just Full Restore. After that, you OHKO Cofagrigus, Bisharp, and Bouffalant with Charcoal Fire Punch and Seismitoad with Superpower. Hydreigon beats Darmanitan, as it will generally be at half HP. If it goes for Focus Blast and misses, however, Superpower will kill it. Eelektross is OHKOed by unboosted Flare Blitz. Also, only Hydreigon outsped Darmantan, everything else was slower.

conclusion: Um this thing basically swept 5/6 of Ghetsis' team and with luck sweeps completely lol. I think "decent" is too weak to describe this matchup.

N:<br />
Darmanitan: TLDR version; it doesn’t sweep. See below for why. However, it CAN beat Vanilluxe (outspeeds) Klinklang (Darmanitan was slower but you take a hit fine) and Zoroark (Focus Blast is a 2HKO while you OHKO with Fire Punch).

(Failed strategies):

I used Rocky Helmet I believe. Lure out Vanilluxe and use Sub while it goes for Hail. Next turn, Belly Drum while it goes for Frost Breath to break your Sub; you should be at about 24 HP after Hail. Healed up and Flash Cannon and Hail dropped me to 142 HP and a special defense drop. Used an X Speed while Vanilluxe dropped me to 68 HP with Frost Breath. Fire Punch to kill. Carracosta comes out next and kills me with Aqua Jet. Reset. I get to Vanilluxe and Belly Drum on Hail, now at 80 HP. I X Speed and Flash Cannon and Hail take me to 43 HP and drop Special Defense again (10% chance btw). I’m gonna save you the trouble and say that attempt ended in failure. Now I’m fully setup at 107 HP (Blizzard doing about 1/3 HP). Carracosta comes in when I am 96 HP, and Aqua Jet still kills me sadly.

Fresh attempt, using Rocky Helmet, with Sunny Day and Substitute strats. X Speed and Belly Drum are set up, and Flash Cannon and Hail has taken me to 143 HP after one item use. I set up Sunny Day while Vanilluxe takes me to 129 HP. I kill Vanilluxe with Fire Punch. Then Carracosta. It Stone Edges while I Substitute. It hits and breaks Sub. I Sub again and Waterfall breaks Sub. Now I am at 22 HP. Carracosta goes for Aqua Jet while I heal and takes me to 134 HP, taking Rocky Helmet damage to break Sturdy, and the sunlight fades. However not even +6 FIre Punch OHKOs (does like half IIRC) so RIP. You can Superpower but you need moveslots for Sunny Day, Belly Drum and Substitute.

Ghetsis:
Darmanitan (52): Can barely live a Surf from Hydreigon at 8 HP (likely a range).

Belly Drum time. Substitute, then X Speed as Cofagrigus tries to Toxic. Belly Drum and outspeed and sweep through his whole team with Charcoal-boosted Fire Punch. Note Mummy removes Sheer Force even through Sub but you can still OHKO everything easily.

Testing Flame Charge without Charcoal. Sub on Toxic, then Belly Drum as Cofagrigus goes for Toxic again. Now at 46 HP, I Fire Punch to OHKO as Mummy removes Sheer Force. Out comes Bouffalant. OHKO with Fire Punch. Seismitoad actually lived a Fire Punch at like 1 HP and broke Substitute with Sludge Wave! Even then, Ghetsis healed like a dummy as I abused that with Flame Charge (which 2HKOs it). Bisharp was OHKOed by Fire Punch. Hydriegon lived a Fire Punch in red, but missed a Focus Blast; it died. Eelektross was OHKOed by Fire Punch. Won.

Testing non-Charcoal Superpower without X Speed. Everything goes as usual for Cofagrigus; at 46 HP with a Substitute up. Bouffalant dies to Fire Punch. Seismitoad is OHKOed by Superpower this time. Bisharp dies to Fire Punch. Hydreigon outspeeds and breaks Substitute with Dragon Pulse but is OHKOed by +5 Superpower. Eelektross is OHKOed by +4 Fire Punch. So yeah, I did with literally no items or healing, Darmanitan is S.

Let’s look at some calcs versus the Elite 4. Darminitan is level 50 for all of these with Charcoal equipped, 15 IVs, Hardy nature and no EVs. Each Elite 4 member will be given 30 IVs and a Hardy nature. I will give it Expert Belt on some of the occasions where it has to use Superpower or Rock Slide, but also show calcs with just Charcoal.

Shauntal:
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Cofagrigus: 64-76 (50 - 59.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Cofagrigus: 102-121 (79.6 - 94.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Golurk: 105-124 (66.8 - 78.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Golurk: 168-198 (107 - 126.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Jellicent: 58-69 (34.5 - 41%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Jellicent: 93-110 (55.3 - 65.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Jellicent: 66-78 (39.2 - 46.4%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Chandelure: 46-54 (34 - 40%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Chandelure: 72-86 (53.3 - 63.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Chandelure: 102-122 (75.5 - 90.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Expert Belt Sheer Force Darmanitan Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Chandelure: 122-146 (90.3 - 108.1%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO

Grimsley:

0 Atk Expert Belt Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Scrafty: 130-154 (97 - 114.9%) -- 81.3% chance to OHKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Scrafty: 78-93 (58.2 - 69.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Scrafty: 124-147 (92.5 - 109.7%) -- 56.3% chance to OHKO

Don’t even need Expert Belt for Liepard;

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Liepard: 150-177 (112.7 - 133%) -- guaranteed OHKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Liepard: 238-282 (178.9 - 212%) -- guaranteed OHKO
0 Atk Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Liepard: 204-242 (153.3 - 181.9%) -- guaranteed OHKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Bisharp: 168-200 (120 - 142.8%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Even at -1 (generally not possible as Krook comes out last):

-1 0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Bisharp: 114-134 (81.4 - 95.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
-1 0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Bisharp: 180-212 (128.5 - 151.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO
-1 0 Atk Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Bisharp: 156-184 (111.4 - 131.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO

For Krookodile, you both Speed tie at 107 Speed with my calculation setup. Given how I have no EVs, it’s possible to outspeed, though my Brave one didn’t. Onto the damage at -1 Attack:

-1 0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Krookodile: 70-84 (42.9 - 51.5%) -- 6.3% chance to 2HKO
-1 0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Krookodile: 111-132 (68 - 80.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
-1 0 Atk Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Krookodile: 96-114 (58.8 - 69.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
-1 0 Atk Expert Belt Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Krookodile: 115-137 (70.5 - 84%) -- guaranteed 2HKO


If you bring Darmanitan in with no Attack drop:

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Krookodile: 168-198 (103 - 121.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO
0 Atk Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Krookodile: 144-170 (88.3 - 104.2%) -- 25% chance to OHKO
0 Atk Expert Belt Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Krookodile: 173-204 (106.1 - 125.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Caitlin:

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Reuniclus: 109-130 (61.2 - 73%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Reuniclus: 177-208 (99.4 - 116.8%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO

Against Sigilyph, it has 112 Speed with 30 IVs compared to your 107 Speed with 15 IVs. Given how my Brave one outspeed it, this should be possible to outspeed.

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Sigilyph: 105-124 (74.4 - 87.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Sigilyph: 168-198 (119.1 - 140.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO
0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Sigilyph: 118-140 (83.6 - 99.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Expert Belt Sheer Force Darmanitan Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Sigilyph: 142-168 (100.7 - 119.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Musharna: 100-118 (54.6 - 64.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Musharna: 159-187 (86.8 - 102.1%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Gothitelle: 88-105 (60.6 - 72.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Gothitelle: 139-165 (95.8 - 113.7%) -- 75% chance to OHKO

Marshall:

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Throh: 100-118 (53.4 - 63.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Throh: 159-187 (85 - 100%) -- 6.3% chance to OHKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Sawk: 109-130 (75.6 - 90.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Sawk: 177-208 (122.9 - 144.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Note the second calc likely won’t happen due to Sturdy but I thought I’d mention it anyway. You outpace Sawk’s 101 Speed.

Also:

0 Atk Sawk Stone Edge vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 150-178 (87.2 - 103.4%) -- 25% chance to OHKO

Darm can live this and kill with two uses of Fire Punch if it faces Sawk at full most of the time. Also miss chance, which you can abuse with Substitute.

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Conkeldurr: 93-109 (53.7 - 63%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Conkeldurr: 145-172 (83.8 - 99.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Mienshao: 126-148 (90 - 105.7%) -- 37.5% chance to OHKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Mienshao: 201-237 (143.5 - 169.2%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Mienshao has 125 Speed compared to your 107. You would need 148 Speed EVs to outpace it. However:

0 Atk Mienshao Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 124-146 (72 - 84.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Let’s tally up the OHKOs with favorable rolls using Charcoal (higher than 50%):
Shauntal (1)
Grimsley (3): Besides Krookodile you should sweep if you get the roll on Scrafty.
Caitlin: (3): Musharna will likely live.
Marshall: (1): Technically 2 if Sawk misses with Stone Edge.

So since there are 16 mons in total, Darmanitan is literally useful against half, or 8 of the Elite 4s mons with no EVs. As we aren’t using Belly Drum (which we have proved is viable against Shauntal) this is very impressive. As no mons avoid a 2HKO from Darmanitan with Fire Punch (or Flare Blitz on resists) aside from Krookodile with Intimidate (and even then you have a 6.3% chance), I would classify this as “overwhelming.”

N I am assuming 31 IVs because he’s part of the final boss. Here I am assuming Darmanitan is level 52. Note you are slower than both Reshiram and Zekrom by 3 points (they have 114 Speed) but at least 28 Speed EVs fix this.

For this fight I will assume you are level 52. I know I have four moves overall but bear with me, it is for the sake of calcs. Assuming you aren’t using Belly Drum or fighting Zekrom, I’d generally assume a moveset of Fire Punch/Flare Blitz/Rock Slide/Superpower:

Darmanitan Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Reshiram: 94-112 (51.6 - 61.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Bulldoze vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Zekrom: 66-78 (36.2 - 42.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

Reshiram typically can’t kill you in two turns, though I hope it doesn’t go for Reflect:

0 SpA Reshiram Hyper Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Darmanitan: 142-168 (79.3 - 93.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 SpA Reshiram Extrasensory vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Darmanitan: 77-91 (43 - 50.8%) -- 3.9% chance to 2HKO

Zekrom is worse but you can at least get off two attacks if using Bulldoze:

0 Atk Zekrom Fusion Bolt vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 144-169 (80.4 - 94.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Zekrom Zen Headbutt vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 77-91 (43 - 50.8%) -- 3.9% chance to 2HKO
0 Atk Zekrom Giga Impact vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 142-168 (79.3 - 93.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

You outpace Klinklang’s 110 Speed by 1 point:

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Klinklang: 156-186 (115.5 - 137.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Klinklang: 248-294 (183.7 - 217.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Vanilluxe: 200-236 (136.9 - 161.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Vanilluxe: 318-374 (217.8 - 256.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Zoroark has 125 Speed under these parameters, just like Mienshao. However, Darmanitan should be fine against Zoroark.

0 Atk Zoroark Night Slash vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 72-85 (40.2 - 47.4%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
0 SpA Zoroark Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Darmanitan: 90-107 (50.2 - 59.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

And you have a good chance to kill Zoroark:

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Zoroark: 130-154 (96.2 - 114%) -- 81.3% chance to OHKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Zoroark: 208-246 (154 - 182.2%) -- guaranteed OHKO


0 Atk Darmanitan Brick Break vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Carracosta: 60-72 (40.2 - 48.3%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
0 Atk Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Carracosta: 94-112 (63 - 75.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Carracosta Waterfall vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 168-198 (93.8 - 110.6%) -- 62.5% chance to OHKO

I’m generally gonna assume you lose to Carrcosta as it has Aqua Jet with this damage:

0 Atk Carracosta Aqua Jet vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 84-102 (46.9 - 56.9%) -- 75% chance to 2HKO

Also Stone Edge is a guaranteed kill if it hits.

Meanwhile:

0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Archeops: 138-164 (92 - 109.3%) -- 56.3% chance to OHKO (if you can dodge a Stone Edge)

Darmanitan lives an Acrobatics, notably:

0 Atk Archeops Acrobatics (110 BP) vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 142-168 (79.3 - 93.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

So Darmanitan beats at least half of N’s team comfortably. Arguably it can beat 4 with some luck (no DragonBreath para from Reshiram, Stone Edge miss from Archeops). I couldn’t calc the former because I couldn’t find the move.

Onto Ghetsis. I’m assuming you are level 52, as not many hit level 54 for Ghetsis.

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Cofagrigus: 61-73 (44.2 - 52.8%) -- 28.5% chance to 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Cofagrigus: 99-117 (71.7 - 84.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Generally you should be able to setup Belly Drum here unless you get exceedingly unlucky:

0 SpA Cofagrigus Shadow Ball vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Darmanitan: 76-91 (42.4 - 50.8%) -- 3.1% chance to 2HKO

Remember Cofagrigus generally prioritizes Toxic and Protect, which should let you Belly Drum and heal. For the other matchups I’m assuming no Belly Drum.

Generally you should beat Bouffalant at full HP, though you need to have Sheer Force: (Superpower doesn’t OHKO it):

0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Bouffalant: 88-105 (50 - 59.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Bouffalant Head Charge vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 130-154 (72.6 - 86%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Bouffalant Earthquake vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 146-172 (81.5 - 96%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Don’t Flare Blitz here obviously. I will assume you have Sheer Force for the others too.

I’m generally going to assume Hydreigon beats you as it has 127 Speed with no EVs, though note these calcs:

0 Atk Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 122-144 (67.7 - 80%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Charcoal Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 71-84 (39.4 - 46.6%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

Even with Expert Belt you can’t OHKO with Superpower:

0 Atk Expert Belt Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 146-173 (81.1 - 96.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

0 SpA Hydreigon Surf vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Darmanitan: 158-188 (88.2 - 105%) -- 31.3% chance to OHKO
0 SpA Hydreigon Dragon Pulse vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Darmanitan: 112-133 (62.5 - 74.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 SpA Hydreigon Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Darmanitan: 106-125 (59.2 - 69.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

So Darmanitan loses to Hyrdriegon unless you do something funky with Mummy + Flame Charge or an X Speed (Darm with a +1 boost hits 166 Speed for reference).

0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Seismitoad: 70-83 (37.4 - 44.3%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
0 Atk Darmanitan Superpower vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Seismitoad: 73-86 (39 - 45.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

Superpower doesn’t even 2HKO Seismitoad so don’t try. As EQ kills you cleanly, the only relevant calc is this:

0 SpA Seismitoad Muddy Water vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Darmanitan: 158-188 (88.2 - 105%) -- 31.3% chance to OHKO

You can sometimes live but this is not recommended. Seismitoad has 98 Speed.

0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Eelektross: 84-100 (50.6 - 60.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Sheer Force Darmanitan Flare Blitz vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Eelektross: 135-159 (81.3 - 95.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
0 Atk Eelektross Wild Charge vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Darmanitan: 102-121 (56.9 - 67.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

So Darmanitan cleanly beats Eelektross.

0 Atk Expert Belt Sheer Force Darmanitan Fire Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Bisharp: 168-202 (115.8 - 139.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Darmanitan also beats Bisharp.

So final total without Belly Drum:

8 Elite Four mons + 3 N mons + 2 Ghetsis mons = 13/28, or roughly half endgame, with no boosts unlike all the other S tiers. With Belly Drum it is assuredly more than half. Only a few resists will usually avoid the 2HKO from Darmanitan’s Fire Punch or Flare Blitz (Reshiram, Zekrom, Hydriegon, Seismitoad, Carracosta), and of those 4 (counting both legendary dragons as one mon between version) only 2 have a chance of outspeeding it. The other things that outspeed Darmanitan outside of Archeops (and, if it gets the flinch hax, Mienshao) generally can’t beat it; the only thing that you could feasibly outspeed that would beat it aside from the above 4 mons) is Krookodile due to Intimidate.

Total with Belly Drum is 19/28 due to you sweeping all of Ghetsis's team.

Conclusion: Darumaka OP plz nerf
 
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Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Drumstick's Bible
I was a proposer for Sawk for S, but at this point, I would not mind a drop to A. I tested Throh and Conk and both were solid A mons for end-game matchups. Sawk kind of performs the same, except it sets up Bulk Ups more reliably, so I think it's fair if we drop Sawk to A if we are keeping other Fighting bros in A rank.

Regarding Golett, I personally wanna test it myself, because you did mention you have 31 IVs in Attack (and +Attack nature? I am not sure here) and it'd be worth to see if that has any influence whatsoever

You know me about Darumaka so I am not gonna elaborate on it, unless you have questions for me

Munna is OK for C, it performs in almost the same manner as Elgyem, which is a contender from my side for C rank placement.

Also, lemme post my logs while I am at here

Made another run, with Patrat, Ducklett, Sewaddle, Golett, and Virizion as members. I was able to get Patrat to 20 with route trainers, I doubt anyone here doesn't know how Patrat matchup would go against Lenora if I didn't evolve it.
Watchog(20): +1 Crunch is an OHKO on Herdier, can eat a Take Down. Watchog is 3HKOed by unboosted Crunch, but you either sack it out or Detect (I removed it for Confuse Ray) to avoid Retaliate. It will spam Hypnosis mostly.

matchup: rather good


Everything is 25

Watchog: +2 Retaliate is an OHKO on Whirlipede, it has no problems setting it up. Dwebble is OHKOed by +3 Crunch (its Smack Down is a 3HKO even at -3 Defense) and Leavanny is OHKOed by +3 Retaliate. +2 puts them into red HP zones.

matchup: positive

Swadloon: It can't beat Whirlipede due to typings (its strongest move for it is Tackle). Dwebble is 3HKOed by Razor Leaf and its Smack Down doesn't deal much damage with Eviolite. Leavanny is 2HKOed by Bug Bite and its Struggle Bug is pitful. You can theoritically need to heal up if you get critted though.

matchup: pretty good


Everything is 29, also I was able to evolve Swadloon into Leavanny

Leavanny: Outspeeds and 2HKOes Emolga with Return, it can eat one Aerial Ace. It will generally be finished off by something else.

matchup: eh

Watchog: Return is an OHKO on Emolgas and 2HKO on Zebstrika, although all of them outspeed and 3HKO with Volt Switch, so you need to heal up (twice).

matchup: rather good


Watchog is level 32, the rest is 31

Ducklett: MW Scald OHKOes Krokorok but must be careful of Swagger. Exca's Rock Slide is an OHKO with no Eviolite, while +1 would be an OHKO even with Eviolite. No MW Scald is only a 3HKO. Papitoad is 3HKOed by MW Scald, but its Muddy Water is manageable.

matchup: rather good

Leavanny: Outspeeds and OHKOes Krokorok and Palpitoad with Bug Bite and Razor Leaf, respectively. Exca is only 3HKOed by MS Razor Leaf and can OHKO with +1 Rock Slide.

matchup: pretty good

Watchog: Return is an OHKO on Krokorok and 2HKO on Palpi, with +1 being an OHKO on the latter as well. Exca is OHKOed on rolls by +1 Soft Sand Dig, it generally tries to set up before attacking.

matchup: positive.
 
Okay, I think 80% of Ryota’s and my recent noms have been moved. The exceptions are Pidove to C (I will be testing it) Sawk to A (waiting to see if anyone objects to this under a reasonable timeframe) and Darumaka (waiting to see if anyone objects).

I will be starting a new run soon. It will likely be my final testing run. This is because this tier list, at least in mine and Ryota’s opinions, is nearing the point where most tiering has been settled, aside from a few runs people are doing (take your time as it ensures accuracy in tiering, and this is not an insult to anyone).

I will be using Pidove, Pansear, Sandile, either Deerling, Escavelier or Ferrothorn, and Alomomola or Jellicent most likely. I might scale back the number of attempts in testing that I do, as is obvious from my last run, I may have been a little too detailed and this attention to detail wears on me.

I appreciate every person that has contributed to this tier list. Thank you.
 

DHR-107

Robot from the Future
is a Community Leaderis a Community Contributoris a Live Chat Contributoris a Pokemon Researcheris a Smogon Media Contributor
Orange Islands
Can I get a solid explanation as to why you are "exhaustively" testing every Pokemon's ability to sweep every other team in the game? Is it just to get more information on every single possible matchup/combination? It will only lead to huge burnout after just a few runs. Play the game normally. What you are doing isn't normal. It may have been somewhere in the last 20 pages, but a quick re-iteration would be good. Also, considering this is supposed to be a community project, why do you still feel the need to test every single Pokemon yourself? Trust others. Its also scaring people away from nominating things as they require so much more work.

I think exhaustively testing everything vs everything else is a waste of time. I'm so confused about the obsession with this. Have a crack and swap your team around a bit. Not everything has to be able to solo everything. I just grab a few mons and have a crack at the game. Just putting it out there, no one has to do the exhaustive testing. It might give you slightly more information on a Pokemon, but your general "feel" is pretty good intuitively too. We're all veteran players/runners here. I'm not sure how using Yawn/Calm Mind is inherently efficient as well, but Munna is down in D tier anyway, so that point is kinda moot.

I think you're honing down too narrowly on what you think Efficiency means in regards to these lists. If you use crap Pokemon, of course your gametime is going to be longer/fights that much more difficult. If you need to evolve Pidove to stand a chance vs Watchog, it sucks balls. End of story, goodnight. It's not efficient grinding it to 21 to have a remotely small chance of winning on its own. It does however far much better on its own vs Burgh (Dwebble not withstanding). And that's fine too! The problem is now, that you are Lv 21 and the next gym ace is 23, and you have all of Pinwheel forest to do, so you're going to end up overlevelled imo. And that in an of itself makes a Pokemon look massively better than it might actually be. Same applies to mons who need a few turns to set up. Maybe 1/2 turns for a 4+ mon trainer at most, otherwise it starts plummeting in terms of efficiency imo.

Also: There is a typo/mistake in your Darumaka post in regards to Yamask's stats. I think you CP'd the wrong thing there. Also, what move did you use to "OHKO Palpitoad" cause I can't think of anything that lets you hit SE and Palp is relatively fat. Thrash is close I guess, might be a roll with some EVs. Unless it Aqua Rings T1/or you already have Drum up (in which case its faster unless you have a bunch of speed EVs) OR you got Swaggered and survived Korokorok, you are usually KO'd from 50% HP if it uses any offensive moves. I guess you'd never realistically use Darumaka in this fight anyway, so it makes little difference. I'm still on the fence about Hustle (and how squish Darumaka is) vs Darms insane power, but I think S is probably right for it.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
I have my own comments to make about DHR's post. Keep in mind none of them are intended to attack anyone's opinion and I will try my best to avoid wording my sentences as any attacks.

why do you still feel the need to test every single Pokemon yourself?
This is only an assumption from my side (albeit a reasonable one), but the reason why he (and also me) tests everything ourselves is because no one else is willing to test. I understand some people are still put off by the way Drumstick did some things, which is probably why the activity in the thread has dropped significally, but I can guarantee anyone that he has changed for the better (if he didn't, he would have just moved Darumaka to S way earlier without trying to convice people that it's S rank material). It's not about people being burnt out from doing runs so much than people deciding that this thread is not worth it "with such leader", because the activity clearly dropped after the drama things happened.

Not to mention this thread is "flowing" of activity. But for real, there have been numerous cases where I would have double posted, even after reasonable amount of time (say 3-7 days) have passed. When the thread is clearly dying, why not take it in our hands, the ones that care about the thread and wanna do something out of it.

Can I get a solid explanation as to why you are "exhaustively" testing every Pokemon's ability to sweep every other team in the game? Is it just to get more information on every single possible matchup/combination? It will only lead to huge burnout after just a few runs. Play the game normally. What you are doing isn't normal.
"Normal" is a very subjective word to use. Why would [X] constitute "normal" but [Y] no? As far as I can speak, we are aiming to obtain as much data about a Pokemon as possible. What would "normal" constitute on first place anyways? Using mons only in matchups that look favorable? There are cases like Scraggy doing more than okay against Elesa, despite looking like it would lose. I find such method of testing inefficient in terms of accuracy and will only lead to faulty results. Of course, I am only assuming that's what you mean; should that not be the case, I am open to hear what your definition of "normal" way of playing the game is.

And to answer your question as to why we try different combinations of strategies, I personally do it because sometimes I think there might be a more effective and/or optimal strategy that brings success to the Pokemon I am testing. Of course, I am not gonna test things like special Darumaka, but sometimes, an idea about how to win the matchup can pop up in my mind and I could try it to see if the Pokemon does perform much better when utilizing the strategy against the major fight. I can say all of us are aiming for creating an accurate tier list and we are obviously gonna aim to get the best out of our Pokemon. There's no reason why we would use "worse" strategies when a better one is optimally available (not saying spam X Items on mon and call it successful, but e.g. teaching some unusual TM to your Pokemon (e.g. Protect)).

And honestly, I don't think the way the thread has been run since the drama stuff has caused any issues for whoever remained to test; virtually no one ever complained about the amount of matchups and details they supposedly were forced in; they willingly went with it. They could have burnt out after this, but they never blamed this on the system or anything; they simply stopped doing tests after they got tired. Most of the remaining testers aren't scared of Drumstick (and were willing to step in for Drumstick when he actually got unneeded attacks), so I am pretty sure they would have spoken up if they had an actual issue with the amount of detail we go in for the matchups. So I personally do not see the issue myself.

If you need to evolve Pidove to stand a chance vs Watchog, it sucks balls. End of story, goodnight. It's not efficient grinding it to 21 to have a remotely small chance of winning on its own. It does however far much better on its own vs Burgh (Dwebble not withstanding).
Not sure why this example is used; no one was actually willing to evolve their Pidove into Tranquill before Lenora. If it's referring to a comment I said, it was in response to their wish to limit themselves to some rules, despite being 1-2 levels higher being perfectly acceptable. I even commented that reaching level 20 on its own is very hard with route trainers, starters barely do it (along with Patrat and Drilbur). However, there has yet to be someone to admit that they use Audino grindings (for example) to get at even levels. Everyone admits that they reach their levels using only route trainers. I believe all testers in this thread are competent enough that even if they overlevel, they are gonna be no more than 1 or 2 levels above.

And that's fine too! The problem is now, that you are Lv 21 and the next gym ace is 23, and you have all of Pinwheel forest to do, so you're going to end up overlevelled imo.
We are getting to 23-25 level range against Burgh because we are exactly playing optimally; when you reach Castelia, you can go for Battle Company and Route 4. Not going to any of those places is unoptimal and goes against the purpose of any tiering list. Why wouldn't an average player go to both locations? Why should they limit themselves in such way, when they easily have access to route trainers that they can use to grind? The Exp. curve is made in such way that you aren't going to be ridiculously overleveled. No one has ever used Audino to reach those levels. I have made numerous runs and I can guarantee all those levels happen solely because of fighting route trainers. Not to mention we actually have a level policy, which makes people not go beyond 2 levels above the ace's mon, so it's not like people liberally feel like going 6 levels above the ace.

Small thing, Exp. curve is made in such way that the game catches up to you in the end-game anyways. Being massively underleveled (say level 45) for the Elite Four isn't really a better option imo.

Munna is down in D tier
It's actually C

Same applies to mons who need a few turns to set up. Maybe 1/2 turns for a 4+ mon trainer at most, otherwise it starts plummeting in terms of efficiency imo.
I am confident we actually use this as argument against mons that need to set up so many times. The only reason Snivy is not B despite Coil strategies is because it sets up like 4 or 5 to start being threatening. So not sure what are you trying to say here.

I tried to read your post many times and make sure that I have read everything correctly. Please keep in mind I am not the best person in communicating and I tried my best to make my long sentences as clear and straight as possible, so if you feel I misunderstood your thoughts, feel free to hit me up. I try to understand your concerns (despite posting my opinions which are conflicting) and I would appreciate if you also tried to understand our ways of playing. I also think some things in your post must be defined in order to fully flesh out things (e.g. what constitutes "normal" way of playing? Is it something you personally believe? Is it something that's accepted by the masses? Why would that be normal and not the other thing?). Finally, I want to say that I do not like the idea of potentially copying the playstyle of other tier lists (or otherwise forced on us) (both current and past ones). Our way of playing inherently is not wrong in my opinion, neither is theirs. All tier lists choose how to play and the consequences of accuracy are their own responsibility. You can let them do it however they want, and you can let us do it however we want to, if I have to put it in few words.

Again, I am not intending to attack you or your opinions. I apologize if you feel I have attacked you in any way and know that I have not intended to do so. Just like other (former) testers here, we are aiming to create as accurate tier list as possible. We care a lot about it and are willing to break our limits if needed just to accomplish it.
 
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I see nothing wrong with the way the folks here have gone about testing different strategies, it's much the same as I and others have done with the RSE thread. Exploring options that previously received little consideration is of clear value. For example, my run with Ralts revealed the value of Double Team as a main set option where previously the standard might be Reflect or Magical Leaf, something that ended up directly contributing to Gardevoir's capacity to solo otherwise losing matchups.

Giving these guys shit for putting in the time and effort that gives them the greatest understanding of what they're doing is as destructive and defeatist as is imposing prerequisites for contribution.

Also darumaka is S
 
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I’ve talked about this recently on Discord, as some of you may know. I agree with Texas and Ryota’s points above.

I just want to say this: Ryota and I are clearly doing this because we care a lot about this tier list. Do I get burnt out? Yes, I do. I kind of sigh internally when I get to major battles. But I keep going. Why? Because determining the viability of many different things can be very fun. It’s fun to test Pansear and go from a slog to “wow this thing OHKOs almost everything, and it’s glorious.” It’s fun that while Munna may be a slog for Psychic, come E4 I have a decent return on investment thanks to Calm Mind.

It’s fun that while Tranquill can’t kill stuff easily due to having a bad stat spread (and my likely 5-12 Special Attack IV), Work Up is okay enough with Roost. Before anyone brings up “healing is always preferable to an item,” it’s not like Roost or Moonlight or Recover are universal moves, as none are TMs in Gen 5. Only the Pidove line and the Ducklett line get Roost naturally, and both have a limited movepool where their only real options are their respective STABs. You might run Air Slash, Surf and Brave Bird on Swanna, but that leaves one slot for Roost. (Blizzard is too niche outside of Drayden, and you aren’t getting Hurricane at level 55 so Rain Dance is pretty meh). Pidove meanwhile has Gust to Air Cutter to Air Slash/Fly, and Quick Attack to Return, and literally nothing else so it has room to run both Roost and Work Up. Yes, items are always better, but Roost can be viable against stuff like Burgh’s Dwebble who 3HKOs, or Lenora’s Herdier who you can wear down with it’s own recoil for free, and since most things do under half until Chargestone where everything evolves (by which time Unfezant is equipped) I don’t see the problem here. You know another time Roost is useful? Against Marshal, when 3 of his mons pack Stone Edge. If he misses, you get free healing. If he hits, the damage is lessened due to Roost removing your Flying type for the turn. You also outspeed all three mons with Stone Edge (Throh, Sawk and Conkeldurr). Mienshao has Rock Slide and is faster and more accurate so it’s less good for it specifically.

Only the Solosis line, the Frillish line, the Elgyem line, the Shemet line and Cryogonal get Recover naturally.

Solosis, yeah it’s better to use items in major battles as it’s slow with no real boosting moves. HOWEVER, the line is pretty bulky with Eviolite, so Recover can at least useful consistently on routes since Solosis doesn’t have many moves early and you can always TM Reflect/Light Screen on when they are respectively needed for major fights.

Frillish might want to run moves beyond basic STAB (like Will-o-Wisp + Hex for Drayden or Marshal) but Recover can help in some matchups, like Brycen who can’t break past Frillish/Jellicent’s resists and bulk. Level 40 to evolve is reasonable at Brycen; it’s only one level over his strongest mon, Beartic (Eviolite Frillish is susceptible to Frost Breath). Might not be useful for Shauntal or Caitlin because they have super effective moves, but at least it’s helpful temporarily.

Elgyem line can use Recover well as shown by Ryota’s E4 matchups against Marshal IIRC.

Accelgor and Cryogonal are hard to justify than the others ecause they learn Recover late at level 49. Accelgor has bad bulk so you don’t wanna Recover with it even if you use Yawn. I can see Cryogonal potentially making use of Light Screen and Recover to outheal Caitlin (watch out for Reuniclus’s Focus Blast), but nothing on the physical side.

Only Munna gets Moonlight. As a Munna you will be relying on Yawn a lot to sleep things before doing damage, and Eviolite allows it to tank many hits. Thus, you can easily use Moonlight on the turn before it falls asleep to have health when you start dishing out damage with Psybeam. You can also use Moonlight if you use Nightmare strats on Excadrill like I did IIRC, as Munna’s kinda bad in that matchup otherwise, unless you wanna kill Palpitoad or something.

All of these mons save the Solosis line are C or D tier so it’s not like I’m using them to justify a top tier mon. Even without Roost, Pidove has possibility in C because it at least comes early and can counter Burgh, who you have relatively few options to hit super-effectively outside of Pansear and Darumaka (don’t use Woobat). Munna is C for the same reason of being the only Psychic sans Woobat until you get around the desert and being decent endgame fully equipped. Getting early Musharna at the Dreamyard or at the end of Pinwheel would also make it viable until about Clay so I think it’s best to dictate them all in C.



Here is how my earlygame matchups have gone in my current playthrough, along with how bad Pansear was to give users perspective on why Pansear might be held back from B tier (I’m leaning toward B but both that, buying a TM, and a questionable endgame based off hitting Fire Blast make me hesitate a bit but we will see when my testing comes to a close):

I soft reset until I got this Serious Pansear:
1C698833-8380-433D-8330-206ED335B8C7.png


Let’s run with this. I backtracked and fought Youngster Roland on Route 3 with his Level 7 Lillipup. Was able to 3HKO it with Incinerate. Next up is Cheren at the Trainer’s School. I outspeed and 2HKO Snivy and Purrloin with Incinerate, though it seemed like a close range on the Purrloin. Next is the Waiter in the Gym. I fight the one with the level 11 Lillipup and do slightly less than an assured 3HKO. Yep, the problems immediately start to show. Despite being a well above average Pansear. Ironically I won without healing due to an opportune crit...with me living at one HP.

Next is the Waitress with 2 level 10s. I 4HKO Patrat and Purrloin and only live due to the AI being dumb. Ugh.

I take on Cilan at level 12 and even though I crit Lillipup with Incinerate it was still in green.
You cannot beat the Lillipup if he heals it with a Potion unless you heal yourself. I didn’t so I died with the Lillipup in yellow. I go and grind to level 13; I can’t even OHKO Level 4 Lillipup. I remove Leer for Fury Swipes. This time, I use Tail Whip with Oshawott on Lillipup with an Oran Berry on Pansear. Normally I wouldn’t do this but I’m using Pansear so I kinda have to if I want to gain EXP in any capacity. I Tail Whip Lillipup to -6 with Oshawott. I waste a turn when Oshawott lives at 5 HP because I want Pansear to do most of the work as it can. Cue it not OHKOing Lillipup with 2 hit Fury Swipes and leaving it in red. I kill it and Pansear comes out; I’m at 18 HP. You should 3HKO Pansage with Incinerate. I say “should” because I used Lick 4 times for the 30% paralysis...and I didn’t get it, leaving it around 2/3 HP and then killing with 4 Incinerates because of the Potion. I used a Potion myself. Pansage does about 5 damage at +1 with Vine Whip.

Plasma Grunts. I hit the Patrat with Incinerate for a 3HKO...but then he crits taking me to half, ouch. Grow to level 14. I thankfully 2HKO the Purrloin and win despite being at 11 HP. Purrloin Double Battle is 4HKOed by Incinerate. Yay.

I Work Up twice on Cheren’s Snivy. +2 Incinerate leaves Snivy in red and 2HKOs Purrloin. I think I 3HKO the Plasma Patrat with Incinerate. Bide left me at half though. I took the Plasma Double on okay thanks to Snivy’s Leer and Work Up, though I did have to use a Potion. Got my level 13 Pidove and proceeded to train it.

In regard to Pansear, I couldn’t OHKO a Pansage 5 levels lower with Incinerate. 10/10. I 3HKO a Blitzle mook and like 4HKO a Woobat mook with Incinerate. I can’t kill a Patrat at +3 with Incinerate, but I can OHKO a Pidove and 2HKO Roggenrola so I guess that’s nice.

Yeah it kinda sucks.

Fast forward near Pinwheel (had Pidove beat N). Have Charcoal from the lady who asks what starter you have (I lied). Did okay vs a Munna, with a 4 hit Fury Swipes (1 of which crit) and Incinerate killing a Munna at +1. Almost beat a Roggenrola but lol Sand Attack. OHKOEd Venipede and almost killed a Lillipup with 4 hit Fury Swipes. In the gym I used Work Up and 2HKOed the Patrat mook. Used Yawn and then Rock Smash to 3HKO the Herdier mook. Used Work Up twice on the final mook to OHKO two mons with Rock Smash, replaced it with Bite (Flame Burst at 22 does more than a super effective Rock Smash) to flinch and kill the Lillipup the following turn. Had an unlucky crit from the first Lillipup but still beat the battle without fainting. Now to grind to 22 (do you really expect me to take on Lenora with Pidove and Incinerate Pansear? I grinded off Audino from my current levels of 18-19 or so until I got to 22).

Lenora: Both mons are 22, with me having Tranquill now.

Pansear: Replaced Yawn for Work Up. Take Down is a range to 2HKO, which you can abuse with Yawn. If it uses Leer then Take Down you should live. Once at +3 I finished off Herdier. Watchog outspeeds and kills you off though. So here’s what you do. You Yawn, then switch to starter as fodder to sack to Take Down. Now that Herdier is asleep, get to +2 and finish it off. Then Watchog derps around with Hypnosis and used Leer like 2 times. I woke up and knocked it to red with Flame Burst (procing a Super Potion) while it just barely didn’t kill me with Retaliate. I somehow managed to technically sweep Lenora, and no I don’t know how I pulled it off. Testing without boosts I 2HKOed Herdier with Flame Burst (barely) and 3HKOed Watchog. Retaliate shouldn’t 2HKO you (unboosted) so you can probably get off a Yawn or something. You outspeed Herdier and are outsped by Watchog. Decent, but you really need Flame Burst.

Tranquill: Okay. Used decoy Oshawott for first attempt for Intimidate, but found out this was kinda unnecessary in the second attempt. Herdier’s Take Down doesn’t 2HKO and has shaky enough accuracy that it can miss fairly often. Roost can stall Lenora into Super Potion range which gives you another free turn to setup. At +5 you OHKO Herdier with non-crit Air Cutter and knock Watchog into red with Quick Attack. You outspeed Herdier but fail to outpace Watchog. In another attempt, +6 Air Cutter didn’t quite OHKO Watchog (low red) who goes for Hypnosis on the first turn typically (easily countered with a Chesto and even then it can miss). If you miss the kill, that is what Quick Attack is for. Pretty easy solo if Watchog doesn’t Retaliate. Also you can Detect from Retaliate if Level 23 but I was not and that is the full extent of Detect’s usefulness aside from Toxic and Fly.

Pansear OHKOed most of the neutral mooks it fought in Pinwheel with Flame Burst aside from the resistors and the Herdier lady, though I left a lot for Sandile later.

Burgh: Sandile and Tranquill are 24, Simisear is 23 (only really went out of my way to get Amulet Coin, the Quick and Timer Balls and the Scope Lens, which involved fighting the Basculin guy who bleeds EXP).

Sandile: Eviolite. You outspeed and 3HKO Whirlipede with Bite. Struggle Bug does like nothing. You should be able to beat Whirlipede without healing yourself even he wastes both his Hyper Potions; Leavanny comes out and wrecks you afterwards. Decent, but don’t expect a sweep with Moxie by any stretch given Leavanny outspeeds you.

Tranquill: Scope Lens. I couldn’t OHKO either Whirlipede or Dwebble at +1, but Roost makes up for that, as you can easily Roost to win anyway. Whirlipede barely does any troubling damage with Poison Tail (it’s like a 6HKO). Even if you boost to +2 Dwebble isn’t dropped to red frequently, though even then you can win without Roost. Smack Down can do about 1/3 of your HP so you can still take on Dwebble. Obviously Leavanny is OHKOed. Pretty manageable. I recommend boosting up to +3, Roosting up, then sweeping. Watch out for Poison Tail’s crit chance though. This was usually without critting much too.

Simisear: With Charcoal it’s fantastic. Everything is outsped and OHKOed. Without Charcoal, Dwebble lives, so Work Up once on Whirlipede to secure the OHKO on Dwebble (you don’t want to leave it alive due to Sand-Attack). Poison Tail is once again a 6HKO, Smack Down does slightly over 1/3 of your HP. Easy.
 
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Codraroll

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Replying to some of DHR's thoughts here, mostly to elaborate what I think.

Can I get a solid explanation as to why you are "exhaustively" testing every Pokemon's ability to sweep every other team in the game? Is it just to get more information on every single possible matchup/combination? It will only lead to huge burnout after just a few runs. Play the game normally. What you are doing isn't normal. It may have been somewhere in the last 20 pages, but a quick re-iteration would be good.
The way I see it, exhaustive tests are fine as long as the contributor has the energy for it/thinks it is fun, but I agree it should not be required. It is a massive job, it takes a lot of time, and it doesn't necessarily change our perspectives much, but if people want to do so, we should let them. We just shouldn't demand that it should be done for every 'mon, otherwise we end up in the classic "Perfect is the enemy of good" quagmire and don't get anywhere. But the balance point here is a little delicate, at least in how this is conveyed to users. We don't want people to be intimidated by the need to be thorough, but we appreciate thoroughness too, even though it may not always bring much to the table...

Uhh... just have fun, okay? I think that's the key takeaway.

I think you're honing down too narrowly on what you think Efficiency means in regards to these lists. If you use crap Pokemon, of course your gametime is going to be longer/fights that much more difficult. If you need to evolve Pidove to stand a chance vs Watchog, it sucks balls. End of story, goodnight. It's not efficient grinding it to 21 to have a remotely small chance of winning on its own. It does however far much better on its own vs Burgh (Dwebble not withstanding). And that's fine too! The problem is now, that you are Lv 21 and the next gym ace is 23, and you have all of Pinwheel forest to do, so you're going to end up overlevelled imo. And that in an of itself makes a Pokemon look massively better than it might actually be. Same applies to mons who need a few turns to set up. Maybe 1/2 turns for a 4+ mon trainer at most, otherwise it starts plummeting in terms of efficiency imo.
I've held for a while a bit of an inverse view on efficiency in terms of tiering. Instead of focusing on what a Pokémon can do, we could consider what it can't do and what measures need to be taken to overcome that. Measure resistance, not voltage, if you get what I mean. For instance, overleveling in the early game is a pretty significant measure, and if it's required for a Pokémon to succeed, it is a sign the Pokémon shouldn't be tiered very highly. Same goes for using turns to boost up in every battle, it is a time-consuming measure that also dictates a certain playstyle, and both of those count as resistance against smooth "flow". S-tier Pokémon skip almost effortlessly from battle to battle without requiring specific measures to be taken (at least not very often), F-tier Pokémon eat every Vitamin, Rare Candy, Berry, Potion and TM in your bag and still find themselves struggling to win.

Another thing to consider with overlevelling is that it skews the performance of the Pokémon in the rest of the run (and as such, the data gained from using it), so it's a "dangerous" measure to apply. To use an example from GSC, if you overlevel your Raticate to beat Jasmine's Steelix 1v1, its inevitable success in the upcoming Pryce battle probably shouldn't count much towards its tiering. I agree with DHR's Pidove example, if you boost so much above the game's level curve to beat one trainer, for ideal testing purposes you might as well catch a new Pidove at a more reasonable level to use for a while.
 
Replying to some of DHR's thoughts here, mostly to elaborate what I think.



The way I see it, exhaustive tests are fine as long as the contributor has the energy for it/thinks it is fun, but I agree it should not be required. It is a massive job, it takes a lot of time, and it doesn't necessarily change our perspectives much, but if people want to do so, we should let them. We just shouldn't demand that it should be done for every 'mon, otherwise we end up in the classic "Perfect is the enemy of good" quagmire and don't get anywhere. But the balance point here is a little delicate, at least in how this is conveyed to users. We don't want people to be intimidated by the need to be thorough, but we appreciate thoroughness too, even though it may not always bring much to the table...

Uhh... just have fun, okay? I think that's the key takeaway.



I've held for a while a bit of an inverse view on efficiency in terms of tiering. Instead of focusing on what a Pokémon can do, we could consider what it can't do and what measures need to be taken to overcome that. Measure resistance, not voltage, if you get what I mean. For instance, overleveling in the early game is a pretty significant measure, and if it's required for a Pokémon to succeed, it is a sign the Pokémon shouldn't be tiered very highly. Same goes for using turns to boost up in every battle, it is a time-consuming measure that also dictates a certain playstyle, and both of those count as resistance against smooth "flow". S-tier Pokémon skip almost effortlessly from battle to battle without requiring specific measures to be taken (at least not very often), F-tier Pokémon eat every Vitamin, Rare Candy, Berry, Potion and TM in your bag and still find themselves struggling to win.

Another thing to consider with overlevelling is that it skews the performance of the Pokémon in the rest of the run (and as such, the data gained from using it), so it's a "dangerous" measure to apply. To use an example from GSC, if you overlevel your Raticate to beat Jasmine's Steelix 1v1, its inevitable success in the upcoming Pryce battle probably shouldn't count much towards its tiering. I agree with DHR's Pidove example, if you boost so much above the game's level curve to beat one trainer, for ideal testing purposes you might as well catch a new Pidove at a more reasonable level to use for a while.
Is 2 levels above fine or no? This has been asked before and no issues have come up until recently.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Done with this run

Everything is 37

Leavanny: Everything OHKOes it with a Flying move and you fail to OHKO any of them, though a lot of them do take serious damage from its attacks

matchup: terribad

Swanna: Scald is a 2HKO on Swoobat and Unfezant, though Swoobat will generally spam Acrobatics. Unfezant goes for Razor Wind if you are healthy enough, which makes it easy to KO. Air Slash is a 2HKO on her Swanna. You might need to use Roost at one point though

matchup: pretty good

Watchog: +1 Crunch is an OHKO on Swoobat and Watchog takes Acrobatics easily. Unfezant is outsped and 2HKOed by +1 Return (putting it in red), but it generally goes for Razor Wind. Swanna is OHKOed by +1 Return.

matchup: positive


Watchog and Leavanny are 41, Virizion is 42 (haven't ever used it once), and Swanna is 40

Watchog: +1 Silk Scarf Return puts +2 Vanillish into red HP, you can use the healing to use another Work Up if you feel like it. +2 Return is a 2HKO on Vani even at +3. Beartic and Cryo are OHKOed by +2 Return, though Cryogonal outspeeds, but its Aurora Beam is only a 3HKO from full.

matchup: positive

Leavanny: Outspeeds and OHKOes Cryo and Vani with MS Leaf Blade. Beartic is 2HKOed and only wins if Swagger doesn't kill you, it misses, or the AI derps (it sometimes uses Slash instea of Crash).

matchup: pretty good

Virizion: Outspeeds and OHKOes everything with +2 Sacred Sword. Vani's Acid Armor is rendered useless due to SSword ignoring opponent's stats.

matchup: positive

Swanna: Surf is a 2HKO on Vani, it generally spams Acid Armor. Beartic is 3HKOed by Surf, but it generally spams Icicle Crash and much less Swagger, thus here you can Roost to reduce Crash's damage. If you obtained a +2 boost from Beartic and healed it off, you can use Fly to OHKO Cryo, since you outspeed.

matchup: rather good


Swanna is 44, everything else is 45

Golurk: Soft Sand EQ is an OHKO on Fraxure and 2HKO on the rest. You might want to set up an Iron Defense on Fraxure, as it generally outspeeds and goes for Assurance. Should it use DD at any point, you can consider yourself a winner. Druddigon's Night Slash crit can be problematic. Haxorus's Assurance shouldn't cause problems if you are at +2.

matchup: positive

Watchog: Outspeeds and OHKOes everything with +1 Silk Scarf Return. Fraxure will generally go for more than 1 DD, allowing you to set up once safely.

matchup: positive

Virizion: +3 Sacred Sword is an OHKO on everything, Fraxure generally sets up 3 DDs before actually attacking.

matchup: positive

Leavanny: X-Scissor is a 2HKO on Fraxure and 3HKO on the rest (though they can become 2HKOes with Silverpowder). Keep in mind that you are not able to sweep this, as Haxorus will generally finish you off after Druddigon (Druddigon doesn't seem to want to go for Dragon Tail).

matchup: pretty good

Swanna: Air Slash is a 2HKO on Fraxure and 3HKO on the rest (same with Fly). Druddigon sometimes chooses to Dtail so be careful here, its attacks are mostly 3HKOes. Haxorus will generally will finish you off.

matchup: rather good


everything is 50

Watchog: +2 BlackGlasses Crunch outspeeds and OHKOes everything on her team. Cofagrigus's Psychic is generally a 3HKO, but you gotta heal up if you get WoWed. Also be careful of Chandy's Flame Body. Also, Jellicent's Surf is only a 2HKO, so if you got a burn, you can heal it up against it.

matchup: pretty good actually

Swanna: Coffin si 3HKOed by any of Swanna's attacks and 2HKOes with Shadow Ball. If at full, Swanna beats Jellicent by 2HKOing it with BB and surviving a Shadow Ball + recoil. Chandy is outsped and 2HKOed by MW Surf, put in red HP. You need to be healthy to win this. Golurk is OHKOed by Surf.

matchup: 1/2 guaranteed kills

Leavanny: +2 MS Leaf Blade is an OHKO on rolls on Cofagrigus, it can eat a Shadow Ball (and you've gotta play games with WoW). Chandy is OHKOed by +2 Shadow Claw, Golurk and Jellicent are OHKOed by +2 Leaf Blade, but be careful of Cursed Body.

matchup: pretty good

Virizion: +2 Giga Drain is a 2HKO on Cofagrigus, its Psychic is manageable due to GDrain recovery. Chandy will generally force it out. You can set up a Work Up on Golurk, which will generally Curse, then OHKO it with Giga Drain. Jellicent is 2HKOed by +1 (OHKOed by +2) Giga Drain and its Shadow Ball + Curse don't threaten Virizion.

matchup: pretty good

Golurk: Earthquake is a 2HKO on Coffin (to avoid losing Iron Fist). You need to use a X Speed to kill Chandy, as it outspeeds and OHKOes with Shadow Ball. Chandy, however, is OHKOed by EQ, and the rest by Shadow Punch.

matchup: rather good, also requires healing on Coffin.


Golurk is 51, rest is same

Golurk: Can set up Iron Defenses on Scrafty. Scrafty is 2HKOed by Soft Sand EQ. Liepard and Krook are 2HKOed by -1 EQ, but Golurk has to be careful of Night Slash crits (and misses due to dropped accuracy). Unboosted EQ is an OHKO on Bisharp. The matchup is overall really luck dependant, as you also need to heal up while dealing with misses.

matchup: luck

Watchog: If you have Keen Eye, Scrafty will try to Sand-Attack you to no avail, and you can set up a Work Up. +1 Return is a 2HKO on it. Krook generally comes in and finishes Watchog off, as it outspeeds. Liepard outspeeds, but its Night Slashes do not 2HKO, and you can 2HKO with Return, which puts it in red HP. Low Kick outspeeds and puts Bisharp in red HP, but OHKOes with Expert Belt.

matchup: rather good, gotta switch out and heal.

Leavanny: You can set up 2 Swords Dances on Scrafty, whose PJab is a 3HKO, interestingly, and outspeed and OHKO everything with the appropriate move (Leaf Blade/X-Scissor). Be careful of not misisng though

matchup: pretty good

Swanna: Fly + MW Surf will kill Scrafty. MW Surf is an OHKO on Krook but it's outsped by it, but FPlay doesn't 2HKO, luckily. Liepard is OHKOed by Surf on rolls. Bisharp is 2HKOed, but will generally finish you off, as you are likely weakened.

matchup: rather good

Virizion: Sub + SD + Sacred Sword = gg. I don't need to explain here, I think it's clear what happened

matchup: positive


Viriz is 51, rest is same

Virizion: +2 X-Scissor is an OHKO on Reuni, it can survive a Psychic. Sigilyph will generally finish it off. You can resetup on Goth (which generally CMs if you are at full) and OHKO it with +2 X-Scissor. Musharna is OHKOed on rolls.

matchup: pretty good, remember, healing and switching

Golurk: Spell Tag Shadow Punch outspeeds and OHKOes Reuniclus. It can eat an Ice Beam from Sigi and OHKO it with Shadow Punch. Musharna is put in red HP but will generally finish it off, as Golurk will be at low HP. Goth is 2HKOed and Golurk can eat a +1 Shadow Ball from full.

matchup: pretty good

Watchog: OHKOed by Reuni's Focus Blast, Crunch is only a 2HKO. +1 Crunch is an OHKO on Sigi (you outspeed as well and eat a Psychic). The rest is generally 2HKOed even by +1 Crunch, so you don't really do much in there, as they will finish you off.

matchup: meh

Swanna: OHKOed by Reuni's Thunder, Goth's Thunderbolt and falls to Musharna's Charge Beam. It outspeeds and 2HKOes Sigi with BB, however.

matchup: meh

Leavanny: Outspeeds and OHKOes everything with +2 X-Scissor. Eats a Psychic from Reuni, allowing it to set up a SD.

matchup: positive


Leavanny - 51, everything else is same

Leavanny: +2 Leaf Blade puts Throh in potion zone, then set up another SD, and OHKO it with another Leaf Blade. Throh will generally Bulldoze you twice though. Can eat from full a Stone Edge from Conk and almost OHKO it with +2 Leaf Blade. Sawk generally wins, as Leavanny will be too slow due to the Bulldozes and Sturdy. Mienshao is outsped and 2HKOed by unboosted Leaf Blade, and Leavanny can eat a Rock Slide if healthy enough.

matchup: 1/2

Golurk: Set 3 Iron Defenses on Marshal and win. Soft Sand EQ is a 2HKO on everything. At most, you might need 1 healing item due to Sawk knowing Grass Knot.

matchup: pretty good

Watchog: lol

Virizion: You can solo this by setting up few Work Ups while Throh Bulldozes. Most Giga Drains will heal you (preventing Conk's Hammer Arm to OHKO you) and put Throh in red HP, which means you can set up again (I reached 5). Then I OHKOed everything, while eating attacks with no problems.

matchup: rather good

Swanna: Surf + Fly is a KO on Throh, it eats a Stone Edge. The same method can be used to kill Sawk, if you are on full HP (Conk OHKOes with Stone Edge). Mienshao is outsped and OHKOed by BB.


Everything is 51

Watchog: Loses to Zekrom. +1 Return fails to OHKO Vanilluxe (unboosted Return has to deal with Ice Body Hail, which makes the 2HKO into 3HKO) and Blizzard is an OHKO. Carracosta and Archeops win for obvious reasons. Klinklang doesn't take anything from Low Kick. Zoroark outspeeds and OHKOes with Focus Blast.

matchup: horrible

Swanna: Loses to Zekrom. Vanilluxe's Blizzard puts it in red HP (BB recoil will kill it as BB achieves the 2HKO, Surf does nothing). Carracosta and Archeops win this matchup. Klinklang OHKOes with Thunderbolt. Zoroark outspeeds and 2HKOes with Night Slash.

matchup: horrible

Leavanny: If you are able to set up 3 SDs on Zekrom (it sometimes doesn't go for Giga Impact at all, and you can heal if you expect it), you are able to outspeed and OHKO Zoroark, Vani, and Archeops. Zekrom is also OHKOed. Carracosta wins due to Sturdy. Klinklang is OHKOed by +4 Leaf Blade as well, but Leavanny wins only if Klinklang Metal Sounds once and clicks Hyper Beam, as -2 Leavanny can eat barely a Hyper Beam from full.

matchup: rather good (depending on how Zekrom acts). Obviously, you can't pull it off against White N

Golurk: 2HKOes Zekrom with Earthquake, can set up Iron Defenses if needed. Vanilluxe OHKOes with Blizzard. Carracosta wins due to Sturdy. Archeops can be put into Defeatist range with Shadow Punch, but its Acrobatics is a 2HKO (you can set up Iron Defenses though). Klinklang is almost OHKOed by Earthquake (and is outsped). Zoroark will generally finish it off with Night Slash.

matchup: eh

Virizion: Zekrom 2HKOes with Zen Headbutt, while +2 Sacred Sword is only a 3HKO. Vani is 2HKOed by unboosted Sacred Sword and can eat a Blizzard. Archeops outspeeds and OHKOes with Acrobatics. Carracosta is defeated due to it lacking moves to hit Virizion. Klinklang is outsped and 2HKOed by unboosted Sword and OHKOed by a boosted one. Zoroark outspeeds, but Virizion can eat a Flamethrower and OHKO it with Sword (but it dies if at -2 due to Klinklang's Metal Sound).

matchup: 1/2


Watchog: +2 Crunch fails to OHKO Cofagrigus and generally Toxic stalls it to death. Hydreigon outspeeds and OHKOes with Focus Blast. Bouffalant OHKOes with Head Charge. Seismitoad is only 3HKOed by Return and 2HKOes with Muddy Water. Eelektross 2HKOes with Wild Charge and is only 3HKOed by Return. Bisharp can be taken care of with Low Kick.

matchup: bad

Swanna: Toxic stalled to death by Coffin. OHKOed by Eelektross. 2HKOed by Hydreigon's Dragon Pulse. OHKOed by Bouffalant's Wild Charge. Seismitoad is 2HKOed under its rain. Bisharp OHKOes with Stone Edge.

matchup: bad

Virizion: Toxic stalled to death, as well. Seismitoad is OHKOed by Giga Drain. Hyd is OHKOed by +2 Sacred Sword and Virizion can eat a Fire Blast if healthy enough. Bouffalant is also OHKOed. Eelektross OHKOes with Acrobatics, and Bisharp is OHKOed by Sword.

matchup: rather good

Golurk: 2HKOes Coffin with Shadow Punch, dies to Hydreigon and Seismitoad. Bouffalant can be beaten with Earthquake, as it lacks strong moves for Golurk. Eelektross can be set up on with Iron Defense and 3HKO it with Shadow Punch and Bisharp is OHKOed by Earthquake, assuming Golurk is healthy or has boosts.

matchup: good

Leavanny: +3 MS Leaf Blade is an OHKO on Coffin, Hyd will outspeed and finish it off. Seismitoad is OHKOed by Leaf Blade, Bouffalant will OHKO with Head Charge (unless you have like +4 boosts to OHKO it before it does). Eelektross OHKOes with Flamethrower. Bisharp has Stone Edge and 2HKOes with it, X-Scissor is only a 3HKO.

matchup: eh


Saved end-game by Swords Dance, allowing it to sweep some E4 pokes. Friendship evo this gen isn't that bad. Not much to really say that's not known already, really. I will elaborate more if needed


The thing with Virizion is that it requires 2 different detours, which is, um, not really cool. Also, Virizion relies on huge boosts almost every fight (see +3 just for Drayden) and is reliant on healing end-game. Cobalion can theoritically do some of its things without Swords Dance due to its typing, but it just makes it faster, but I wouldn't object if someone wanted to drop Cobalion to C. You also need to spam it up with vitamins to get EVs, as Virizion will likely be lacking considerable amount of EVs.


Patrat and Pidove function almost the same way, both are shit early stages, become good for mid-game and fall off end-game. I think if Pidove raises to C, then Patrat should as well, but if it doesn't, it should not.


Most of Drumstick's experience with that broken Golurk also happened to me, which means that those huge IVs did not play such a role. Thus I would firmly support a rise for Golett


Swanna is an okay-ish mon. It's not bad, but it's not good either, like Gothita. Though it does have the advantage of being a good HM Slave with Fly and Surf. Pretty much average to be honest.


Next run will consist of: Intimidate Stoutland, Accelgor, Mienfoo, Joltik, Axew, and Panpour (so I have something early game that is not just 1 mon). Lucky Egg should cover levels for me (and probs Stadium to round them up to 50 for E4). Let me know if something urgently needs testing, I can freely drop something like Axew. I am not testing Terra, because it's obvious how it's gonna do.
 
Moved Axew, Petilil and Sawk to A. Moved Darumaka to S and Sigilyph to B. Axew will become clear from Ryota’s next post as I agree with it. I’m in the Elite Four now and will post my remaining matchups once done with my run.
 
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Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Mons I am using this run: Lillipup, Panpour, Joltik, Mienfoo, Accelgor, Axew

Panpour loses here, we all know it

Herdier(19): +2 Take Down OHKOes Herdier, but Watchog will finish off with Retaliate, so you have to sack in something (normal Take Down is 3HKO). Intimidate helps a lot here.

matchup: pretty good


Everything is 25

Simipour: MW Scald is a 2HKO on Whirli and an OHKO on Dwebble. Leavanny can only be beaten with Bite flinches.

matchup: pretty good

Herdier: It can OHKO Whirli with +2 Take Down and 2HKO Dwebble with +2 Crunch (OHKO if +3). Leavanny is OHKOed by +4 Take Down, as its Razor Leaf deals quite a lot of damage, even though I had Eviolite.

matchup: pretty good, takes out 2 mons with no problems


Everything is 29

Simipour: +1 MW Scald outspeeds and OHKOes Emolgas and OHKOes Zebstrika on rolls, but Zebstrika outspeeds. If Simipour is at full, it can eat a Volt Switch.

matchup: pretty good

Herdier: +1 Return is an OHKO on everything, Zebstrika being a roll. Their Volt Switches do laughable damage when holding Eviolite. No healing required at all.

matchup: positive


Stoutland is 32, Simipour is 31

Simipour: MW Scald is an OHKO on Krokorok and Excadrill (on rolls); burn will kill Exca for sure. Its Bulldoze is only a 3HKO. Palpi is 2HKOed and is outsped even at -1.

matchup: positive

Stoutland: Outspeeds and OHKOes Krokorok and Palpitoad with Return (Palpi is on rolls). Exca is 2HKOed by Soft Sand Dig, putting it in potion range. Bulldoze is a 3HKO.

matchup: positive


Galvantula is 36, everything else - 37

Stoutland: +1 Return is an OHKO on Swoobat, although Swoobat outspeeds, but with -1 Attack, you have nothing to worry about. Unfezant is outsped and 2HKOed by +1 Return, but it generally goes for Razor Wind. Swanna is outsped and OHKOed by +1 Return.

matchup: positive

Simipour: +1 Shadow Claw is an OHKO on Swoobat and +1 MW Scald is an OHKO on Unfezant. Swanna is 3HKOed by those moves (and presumably 2HKOed by +1 Rock Tomb), but Swanna doesn't threaten Simipour in any, so it doesn't matter. Simipour outspeeds everything.

matchup: positive

Galvantula: Outspeeds and OHKOes everything with Magnet Electro Ball.

matchup: yes


Fraxure(40): For some reason, the AI is incredidbly dumb, it never clicks Frost Breath (I was holding Yache Berry anyways, the game might be detecting it and going for the "more optimal" solution). If you get it to +3, you are able to OHKO Beartic and Cryogonal with Dragon Claw. Vanillish is generally 2HKOed even if it has 2 stages Defense more than you.

matchup: um positive I guess? But like, I could never trigger it to use Frost Breath (in one test run, it went for 5 Mirror Shots in a row, never Frost Breath)

Mienfoo(40): +1 Jump Kick is an OHKO on +2 Vanillish. Beartic is also outsped and OHKOed, and put in red with +1 Drain Punch. It generally goes for Swagger. Cryogonal is OHKOed by Drain Punch as well, and its Aurora Beam is only a 3HKO even without Eviolite.

matchup: positive

Accelgor(40): Yawn + Protect on everything, then Acid Spray + MS Giga Drain them. Beartic can be problematic due to Swagger, but running Persim Berry might be worth instead of MS, but it doesn't matter; they can't OHKO you, and that's enough.

matchup: positive

Galvantula(39): Magnet Thunder is an OHKO on Vanillish on rolls. Beartic and Cryogonal are outsped and 2HKOed, but Beartic swaggers. However, its Icicle Crash is only a 2HKO, meaning you can easily use a Full Heal. Cryogonal's Aurora Beam deals pmuch nothing.

matchup: pretty good

Simipour(39): +1 Surf is an OHKO on Vani, but you want to set up 2 Work Ups, it doesn't threaten you anyways, as only +2 BB is an OHKO on Beartic. Cryo is also OHKOed.

matchup: positive

Stoutland(39): +2 Return is an OHKO on everything (unless Vani has +3 Defense, but it doesn't threaten it much), but Cryo outspeeds, but it also does not deal much.

matchup: positive


Everything is level 45

Stoutland: +1 Silk Scarf Return is an OHKO on everything. Haxorus outspeeds but you will likely be at full and won't be threatened.

matchup: positive

Accelgor: Silverpowder Bug Buzz is an OHKO on everything after an Acid Spray drop. Just be careful not to die. Fraxure, in particular, goes for DD generally, and Druddigon has that weird tendency of misusing Revenge like hell. Haxorus's Dtail should be a 2HKO if you are healthy enough. You are able to spread sleep status with Yawn as well (if Haxorus goes for DD while you Yawn and then Protect, you win, as you outspeed even if it's at +1).

matchup: positive

Simipour: If you use an X Accuracy, you are able to outspeed and OHKO everything with Nevermelt Ice Blizzard. Fraxure does its DD stuff as usual

matchup: pretty good

Galvantula: Magnet Thunder is a 2HKO on Fraxure and a 3HKO on the rest. Galvantula eventually falls to them, however, as they are able to damage it heavily (or in Drud's case, weaken it for Haxorus to finish off).

matchup: eh

Mienfoo: +2 Jump Kick is an OHKO on Fraxure, while a +3 one is an OHKO on the rest (otherwise they are left at potion range, although you can use Drud's potioning as a set up opportunity). All of them are outsped, but you rely a lot on Jump Kick not missing

matchup: rather good, Jump Kick + 3 Work Ups is hmm

Fraxure: Sweeps Drayden with a +1 Dragon Claw. His Fraxure does not attack immediately.

matchup: positive


Everything is level 50

Accelgor: Acid Spraying and Bug Buzzing isn't really effective here, because Accelgor doesn't really have the bulk to survive here. Not to mention Chandy even OHKOes this thing. You need to switch out and heal up constantly to perform them successfully. You can take down Coffin though

matchup: meh

Stoutland: +2 Blackglasses Crunch outspeeds and OHKOes everything, just heal up in case WoW hits you. Be careful of Flame Body burning as well.

matchup: positive

Galvantula: Magnet Thunder is a 2HKO on Coffin and an OHKO on Jellicent. Chandy is 2HKOed but will OHKO back with Fire Blast. Golurk resists Signal Beam, so it generally wins.

matchup: 1/2

Haxorus: +2 (from SD) Shadow Claw was an OHKO on everything. +1 (from DD) fails to OHKO Coffin, but it OHKOes the rest. Just be careful of Flame Body burnings for both. You only ever need to heal up to remove a burn, not because they wear you out (in fact, Jellicent and Coffin's attacks are 3HKOes).

matchup: positive

Mienshao: Loses to everything, as it either needs to set up once to 2HKO, but in turn gets 2HKOed by attacks or is OHKOed outright by something (Chandelure in particular). Rock Slide can beat Chandy if you land a flinch.

matchup: bad

Simipour: +3 Shadow Claw is an OHKO on Jellicent and +3 Surf is an OHKO on the rest. You need +3, as +2 is OHKO only on rolls on Jelli and Coffin. Simipour can eat barely 2 Shadow Balls from Coffin.

matchup: rather good, you might also need to heal.


Simipour is 51, rest is same

Simipour: +2 Surf is an OHKO on everything, +1 doesn't OHKO Bisharp. You might need to heal up against Liepard to avoid Fake Out KOing. Also, you need to play mind games with Scrafty to avoid Sand-Attack with Substitute (sometimes it just proceeds to Crunch you).

matchup: rather good

Galvantula: Magnet Thunder is a 2HKO on Scrafty and is 3HKOed by Crunch. Krook is 2HKOed by Signal Beam, but it generally goes for Foul Play, which it can survive, as long as it's in green. Bisharp is 2HKOed by Thunder, but you need to heal up against it, as you will be at red. Liepard is OHKOed by Signal Beam but you have to heal up again.

matchup: good, relies on Thunder as well.

Stoutland: -1 BB 3HKOes Stoutland, but +2 Return fails to OHKO Scrafty (+1 would be a 2HKO and can defeat it but *shrug*). Liepard can be defeated easily. Krook debuffs you with Intimidate and harms you greatly with EQ, it also outspeeds. Bisharp's Defiant is triggered if you send Stoutland in from your team, and unboosted Dig is only a 3HKO, while Bisharp 2HKOes.

matchup: meh

Accelgor: -2 Scrafty is OHKOed on rolls by Silverpowder Bug Buzz, but Crunch deals a lot of damage. Krook and Liepard are OHKOed by Bug Buzz. Bisharp OHKOes with Aerial Ace, but it can be Yawned for a teammate.

matchup: pretty good

Haxorus: +2 BB OHKOes everything, only Liepard outspeeds, but it doesn't deal much. If you have the Dragon Claw TM from Victory Road, you can teach Substitute instead of DClaw to avoid Scrafty's Sand-Attacks.

matchup: positive

Mienshao: Jump Kick is an OHKO on everything. Krook can eat a -1, but Mienshao can also eat an Earthquake if at full (which is hard with Liepard's Fake Out).

matchup: pretty good, since Jump Kick missing is...


Same as above, but Mienshao is level 51

Mienshao: lol

Stoutland: +2 Blackglasses Crunch outspeeds and OHKOes everything, but Reuniclus' Focus Blast is a 2HKO, so you have to hope it misses once. Goth is OHKOed on rolls only. +1 is mostly a 2HKO on everything.

matchup: rather good

Haxorus: +2 X-Scissor is an OHKO on everything, eating a Psychic from Reuniclus. If you fear you might be outsped by Sigilyph, you can go with DD and OHKO evertyhing again, but you need EBelt for Musharna to be OHKOed. For safety measures, use Dragon Claw on Sigilyph.

matchup: positive.

Simipour: Reuni OHKOes with Thunder. Sigi is 2HKOed by Surf and Simipour can eat an attack from it. Goth finishes it off with Tbolt and can eat even a +1 Surf. Musharna also generally beats this, as Psychic is a 2HKO and Simipour can't 2HKO unboosted.

matchup: meh

Galvantula: Signal Beam is a 2HKO on everything bar Sigi and Thunder OHKOes Sigi. Reuni and Sigi can be taken out reliably, the rest will generally finish you off, as you will be in range for a Psychic.

matchup: 1/2

Accelgor: Silverpowder Bug Buzz is an OHKO on rolls on Reuniclus. Sigi is 2HKOed by Bug Buzz, but it can survive an Air Slash. Then something else finishes it off, as Musharna and Goth are 2HKOed only.

matchup: 1/2


same as above

Accelgor: Everything OHKOes it with a Rock move.

matchup: lol

Simipour: Acrobatics is a 2HKO on Throh, its Bulldoze can't break your Substitute from 1 hit. Sawk generally OHKOes back due to Sturdy. Conk is also 2HKOed, and Simipour can eat a Hammer Arm if healthy. Mienshao is put in red with Acrobatics, but will generally finish you off if you are not able to kill it.

matchup: eh

Stoutland: +2 Return is almost an OHKO on Throh. You need to set up lots of Subs to stay behind one after killing Throh (its Bulldoze doesn't remove Sub from 1 hit). Conk is OHKOed, Mienshao outspeeds, but is dealing with the sub, and dies to a +2 Return. Sawk wins due to Sturdy.

matchup: A lot of Substitutes and Work Ups and a healing item.

Galvantula: Thunder is a 2HKO on Throh, which will generally Bulldoze you. Sawk is also 2HKOed, but will Stone Edge. Conk and Mienshao do the same, the latter with Rock Slide instead.

matchup: meh

Mienshao: +1 Acrobatics is an OHKO on Throh and Conk. Sawk kills it due to Sturdy. If you have no Speed Drops, you outspeed and OHKO his Mienshao with an unboosted Acrobatics..

matchup: rather good

Haxorus: +2 Dragon Fang Dragon Claw is an OHKO on everything, with Throh being on rolls. Against Throh, you want to Substitute (can replace X-Scissor or whatever your other attacking move is) as its Bulldoze doesn't break it either.

matchup: positive


Same as above, but Haxorus is 51

Haxorus: Set up BOTH DD and SD to make sure you outspeed Archeops while having power. Zekrom generally uses Fusion Bolt then Light Screen, giving you perfect opportunity. Then OHKO everything with Dragon Fang Dragon Claw, with Klinklang being OHKOed by Brick Break (if you believe it might be Zoroark, just BB again). You don't need to heal at all.

matchup: positive !!

Simipour: Dies to Zekrom. Can set up 2 Work Ups on Vani and OHKO it with MW Surf on rolls. Klinklang is also OHKOed. Zoroark will outspeed and finish you off with Focus Blast, but if it misses, you are gonna OHKO with Surf. Carracosta KOes with Stone Edge, due to Sturdy, and Archeops will also finish you off, but if you are at full, you can survive and OHKO it with Surf.

matchup: eh

Accelgor: Dies to Zekrom as Fusion Bolt is an OHKO (you can Yawn it or Acid Spray it though). Vani is OHKOed by Silverpowder Bug Buzz after an Acid Spray, as Vani generally sets up Hail. Klinklang, Carracosta, and Archeops all beat it, the latters due to Rock moves. Zoroark is outsped and OHKOed by Bug Buzz.

matchup: 1/3

Mienshao: Loses to Zekrom, but OHKOes Vanilluxe, Klinklang (on rolls), and Zoroark with Jump Kick. Carracosta kills with Waterfall + Jet, while Archeops is obvious.

matchup: 1/2

Galvantula: Loses to Zekrom, Carracosta, and Archeops (outspeeds and OHKOes with Stone Edge). Vani and Klinklang are 2HKOed by Thunder, and Galvantula can eat a Blizzard. Zoroark is OHKOed by Signal Beam.

matchup: 1/2, with healing in case too weakened against Klinklang.

Stoutland: +3 Return is a 2HKO on Zekrom, but you need to heal up once. Zoroark outspeeds, but if FBlast misses, you OHKO with Return. Vani is OHKOed. Klinklang is 2HKOed on rolls. Archeops and Carracosta win due to obvious reasons.

matchup: not really impressive, literally won due to luck.


Everything is level 51

Haxorus: Set up a SD and DD on Coffin, and heal up in case poisoned. After that, OHKO everything with Dragon Fang Dragon Claw, with Bouffalant and Bisharp being OHKOed by BB.

matchup: positive !!

Galvantula: Thunder is a 2HKO on Coffin and Bisharp, but Bisharp OHKOes with Stone Edge. Hydreigon outspeeds and OHKOes with Fire Blast. Bouffalant OHKOes with Head Charge, and Seismi and Eelektross obviously win this.

matchup: meh

Mienshao: loses to Coffin. Hydreigon outspeeds and 2HKOes with Dragon Pulse, Jump Kick is a 2HKO only. Bouffalant is put in red from Jump Kick and kills itself with Head Charge, as it's an OHKO. Eelektross OHKOes with Acrobatics. Seismitoad is 2HKOed, can eat an attack from Seismi if healthy enough. Bisharp is OHKOed by Jump Kick.

matchup: meh

Stoutland: Coffin's AI derps and spams Toxic and Protect even on Substitute. If you set up 4 Work Ups, you OHKO everything with Return. Hyd can't touch you if you are behind a sub. Bisharp is only 2HKOed, but +5 Return would be an OHKO.

matchup: um positive? Again, the AI derped just like Brycen against Fraxure.

Accelgor: Coffin Toxic stalls, but you can put it to sleep with Yawn, Acid Spray it twice and then Bug Buzz it. Hyd OHKOes with Fire Blast and the rest also OHKO Accelgor with some powerful move, with Accelgor being unable to OHKO them.

matchup: meh

Simipour: Coffin derps on Simipour as well (Tries to toxic it behind a sub). +3 MW Surf is an OHKO on everything bar Hyd, which you can Brick Break safely, due to being behind a sub. Hyd is the only thing that outspeeds you.

matchup: pretty good ?



There is only one nomination that changes a Pokemon's tiering that I want to make and that is Axew for A

Although Axew comes late, catching is worth it, because it sweeps absolutely any battle in participates in, including Brycen with his dumb AI (before you tell me that it is not reliable enough, lemme tell you that I did 3 test runs, of which none of the like 20 attacks was Frost Breath). Haxorus is the only Pokemon that can truly sweep the E4 (because Sturdy Sawk lol), and, on top of that, N AND GHETSIS. So yeah, Axew can basically sweep one after another all major battles that are left. Its Exp. growth rate is not really an issue, because you have Lucky Egg. Axew also has a really flexible movepool, as it can constantly rotate its 4th move to need one's team's' needs. Even if it comes late, I think being able to sweep the E4 and N/Ghetsis one after another, along with whatever's left from Gyms, can warrant its placement in A.

Why the rest of the mons don't need to change tiering:

The reason why this thing should not be S is because it needs to spam Work Up end-game, but like, 2-3 in a row to get them. However, it is still a consistent mon, and contributes greatly to the E4 and N/Ghetsis, which is why I think it's A rank. Not to mention it's extremely early and shows its usefulness right away. Intimidate also offers great team support. Lillipup is also easy to train, because it gets Exp. rather fast. Thus, it is perfect in A.


Similar issue to Lillipup, becomes Work Up addict in end-game. However, it differs a lot from the other monkeys, as it doesn't use its coverage as much as the others (e.g. it doesn't use Rock Tomb for Skyla). It gets away with the powerful Scald. Thus, A is fine for it.


Joltik is kind of noob's trap, it looks great, but it's not really something that can go up higher. It does clean route trainers pretty well with high Speed, SpA, and Compound Eyes Thunder. I think B is fine. It can also contribute somewhat to the E4, but never sweep cleanly.


Mienfoo is honestly not so powerful, insta-losing against 2 E4 members when coming just before Brycen is honestly meh. Not to mention it doesn't contribute much to Ghetsis. I think D is fine, not useless by rather niche. Just use Throh/Sawk/Conk.


Accelgor has this fun strategy with Acid Spray + Bug Buzz (or whatever its attacking move is) and Yawn + Protect. It does contribute sometimes nicely, but it's not enough to push it to C. AcidBuzz doesn't work on certain battles as well. D is fine, not useless, but rather gimmicky.


Also I want to question as to why Terrakion is D rank. As far as I see it, it comes literally at the end of the game (End of Victory Road) at level 42. To get it to level 50, you need to dump in 8 rare candies (which you might not even have if you are not candy hunting like me) and you likely will need those 8 candies for other teammates as well, unless you are running like 3-4 mons team prior that. Also, coming at the end means it will no have EVs, unless you dump in all your vitamins you have. On paper, it can only beat Grimsley and fall to the rest (Marshal and Caitlin seem to be autoloses). I have never used it, but if Virizion stays in D, I am not sure why would Terra be considered on the same level as it considering those flaws.

Also, Coba might be C mon actually, I kind of don't feel B is right for it. I did mention it can stay in B, but honestly, it also suffers from EV issues. Virizion might also be a C mon as well, but it def should not be in the same tier as Terrakion imo.


EDIT: I gave my Axew nom to DMS in private as to not double post. I am posting logs for reference.
EDIT 2: Something went wrong when I posted and it posted it 2 times, I apologize for that.
 
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Okay! My latest run is finally complete! That means that it should be time for writeups to start moving forward, even though a few people need to finish their runs still.

Here are my matchups from Clay onward. The Elite Four was done in reverse order (Marshal to Shauntal) even though they will be listed from Shauntal-Marshal. Also, I tested both Krokorok and Krookodile against the last two Gym Leaders.

Everyone is 31 save Unfezant at 32:<br />
Unfezant: Persim Berry. Work Up until Krokorok goes for Swagger (for me it was turn 2) then sweep through Clay with Return. At least that’s what you would think if Excadrill doesn’t outspeed you and live a Return at +4. It generally goes for Hone Claws then finishes what Krokorok started with Rock Slide. At least you can outspeed and OHKO Krokorok and (depending on if you roll the right damage range) Palpitoad.

Krokorok: Initially used Persim Berry. Dig outspeeds and knocks his Krokorok to red. Problem is you want to OHKO it before it gets Bulldoze off (so you can outspeed and handle Palpitoad). So I switched to Soft Sand. Unfortunately this still fails to kill Krokorok, so sweeping is pretty much out of the question. That being said, if you do get the Moxie boost off a mon, you OHKO Palpitoad with your STAB move of choice. Note that Excadrill does outspeed (the other mons don’t). Soft Sand Dig is a range to kill Excadrill unboosted, although a favorable one (it seems to go for two Hone Claws). A creative way you can solve this is by using Rock Tomb for the chip and Speed drop on Excadrill, then using Dig to outspeed and kill. Decent, especially if you can avoid Bulldoze as speed drops can screw up your matchup against Palpitoad.

Simisear: Krokorok can just barely live a Charcoal-boosted Flame Burst. Same with Excadrill. Miracle Seed Grass Knot seems to OHKO Palpitoad at least. It’s kill or be killed here. Shaky.

At least, that’s what I thought until Ryota convinced me to try Expert Belt. With it, Krok and Palp fall to an OHKO by Grass Knot, and assuming Exca goes for Hone Claws first turn (again, you can’t quite kill it in one hit) you win. Good.

Escavalier: Really good with Persim Berry. Krokorok goes for Swagger and you OHKO with Fury Cutter. Palpitoad goes for Aqua Ring like a moron, while Fury Cutter knocks it to red. Clay heals while you now kill with a more powerful Fury Cutter. Excadrill goes for Hone Claws while you kill with your fourth Fury Cutter. I was tempted to say this matchup was great...until on the second attempt Krokorok went for Torment turn 1, which throws any Fury Cutter strats out the window. There is also the humiliating possibility of missing Fury Cutter turn one, being hit by two Swagger uses and two shotting yourself (I rolled my eyes when this happened). +2 Rock Slide from Excadrill 2HKOs, while you 3HKO with +2 Headbutt, making Fury Cutter strats the optimal way to go. Good, but you need a fair amount of luck with Krokorok and Fury Cutter not missing.
Everyone is Level 36 save Escavalier at 37:<br />
Simisear: Charcoal. Strangely I outspeed Swoobat who wastes turns with Amnesia. I Work Up to +2 and 2HKO with Flame Burst (Acrobatics does less than half). Swanna comes out and barely lives Rock Tomb while it uses Aqua Ring. I use Flame Burst to chip (actually a 3HKO at +2, lol) and kill with Rock Tomb next turn. +2 Flame Burst OHKOs Unfezant. So yeah, even playing sub-optimally (I know I could’ve used Expert Belt as well as Rock Tomb on Swoobat) you can still win this. Next I tried Expert Belt Shadow Claw at +1, which OHKOs Swoobat (Heart Stamp does like 20%). Sadly, +1 Shadow Claw is a range to 2HKO Swanna made unlikely by Aqua Ring. So now for Expert Belt with Rock Tomb and Bite. +2 Bite OHKOs Swoobat, and +2 Flame Burst still OHKOs Unfezant, while +2 Rock Tomb is a guaranteed OHKO on Swanna. Great.

Krokorok: Eviolite. Swoobat’s Acrobatics 3HKOs while you OHKO with Crunch. Swanna again goes for Aqua Ring so you can Rock Tomb and outspeed (you 2HKO with Rock Tomb) to kill with Crunch on the next turn. Unfezant derps and sets up Razor Wind while you knock it to red with +2 Crunch. Razor Wind only does like 25 damage (a 4HKO) leaving me at 37 HP post level up (plus she can’t heal if she goes for Razor Wind). Interestingly, I tested this again and discovered you can barely live a BubbleBeam at like 6 HP (read: a 2HKO on you) if you miss a Rock Tomb. Unfezant sadly finishes you off with Quick Attack though. Better than expected!

Escavalier: Tested without Quick Claw out of curiosity. You OHKO Swoobat with X-Scissor while it goes for Amnesia. Next, Unfezant comes out and uses Leer and Air Slash while you do about 3/4 with Iron Head (leveled up to 37 specifically to get Iron Head for Unfezant btw). Now I’m at 90/109 HP for Swanna. Slash is a 3HKO on Swanna but Aqua Ring is kinda annoying (shouldn’t prevent you from 3HKOing though). Aerial Ace does like 40 to me thanks to the Defense drop, but I was able to finish the battle without healing at 15 HP post-level up. Good. Interestingly, you can also sweep with Fury Cutter; Swoobat is taken to red on the second one; you kill on turn 3 with Fury Cutter. Both Unfezant and Swanna are then 2HKOed by Fury Cutter. Notably, I finished with more HP than the original method this way (26 HP).

Unfezant: Scope Lens. Used Work Up on Swoobat’s Amnesia to boost to +1. Swoobat does like a 4HKO with Acrobatics so lol. I crit to kill Swoobat. Unfezant comes out, which I outspeed and OHKO with +1 Return. Swanna goes for Aqua Ring while I crit to OHKO with Return. I retested and confirmed that all 3 mons are OHKOed by +1 Return even if you don’t score critical hits, and I still swept even when Swoobat went for 2 Acrobatics. Even if you don’t boost you have a solid shot at sweeping (as you 2HKO Swanna you should 2HKO everything with Return unboosted, not to mention you have a high chance to crit and OHKO stuff). Swanna 3HKOs with Air Slash.
Krokorok (39, about to hit 40): Before I move on with the test, I’m testing both, but holding of on evolving otherwise so Krookodile gets EQ at 48 (this will be the same for Drayden too). Using Eviolite initially, though I know it won’t do much good with Frost Breath. Rock Slide takes Vanillish to red and flinches it. I use Crunch on the heal which 2HKOs and grow to 40. I flinch Beartic again (clean 2HKO). Then Cryogonal comes out and uses Aurora Beam which 2HKOs thanks to Eviolite, but I kill it with Crunch (crit but I doubt it mattered with Moxie boosts).

Did some calcs out of curiosity, 15 IVs for Krokorok, 30 for Brycen, Krok at 39, neutral natures:

0 Atk Expert Belt Krokorok Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Vanillish: 62-74 (65.2 - 77.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

+1 0 Atk Expert Belt Krokorok Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Beartic: 74-89 (55.2 - 66.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

With no boosts, Cryogonal:

0 Atk Expert Belt Krokorok Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Cryogonal: 74-89 (63.2 - 76%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

0 SpA Cryogonal Aurora Beam vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Krokorok: 102-122 (100.9 - 120.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO

My Krokorok barely lived Vanillish’s Frost Breath at 17 HP from full (not quite killing it with Expert Belt Rock Slide), so I’d wager you can take a mon and a half. My Expert Belt +1 Rock Slide knocked Beartic to red.

Krookodile (40): Expert Belt. Rock Slide OHKOs Vanillish. Weirdly, Beartic went for Swagger as I missed Rock Slide. One reset later I’m testing Brick Break. Krook destroyed him OHKOing everything; Cryo’s Aurora Beam did less than half.

Seems to be pretty favorable with calcs:

+1 0 Atk Krookodile Brick Break vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Beartic: 98-116 (76.5 - 90.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

+1 0 Atk Expert Belt Krookodile Brick Break vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Beartic: 118-139 (92.1 - 108.5%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO

0 Atk Beartic Icicle Crash vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Krookodile: 104-126 (78.7 - 95.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Unfezant (39): Scope Lens. Vanillish seemed to want to go for Acid Armor while I boosted to +1 and used Return, which 2HKOed (don’t think the crit would’ve mattered second turn). I crit Beartic and OHKOed. Cryogonal died to a non-crit Return. Unboosted Return does not 2HKO Beartic unless you use Silk Scarf. With Silk Scarf I OHKOed Vanillish, supported by:

0 Atk Silk Scarf Unfezant Return vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Vanillish: 84-99 (88.4 - 104.2%) -- 25% chance to OHKO

My Unfezant lived a Crash but:

0 Atk Beartic Icicle Crash vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Unfezant: 120-144 (102.5 - 123%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Even then, you can sub and Roost until Beartic misses Crash or goes for Swagger, which gives you protection against Cryogonal after you 2HKO Beartic (it used Swagger twice in a row). With Reflect, you knock Cryo to red with Return but the best it does before you kill it is break your Sub. You need a little luck, but you can easily do it (if Vanillish goes for Frost Breath spam Roost to heal up to green).

Jellicent (40): Mystic Water Surf knocks Vanillish to low yellow red on Acid Armor. Given my almost perfect Special Attack I’d wager this is a 2HKO with most Jellicent. Astonish (lol) from Vanillish should do like 20 damage (14 to me but I have a good Defense IV). You should outspeed Beartic but there is a problem: even with good IVs I still 3HKO. The one time Icicle Crash hit it criticaled me and was disabled from Cursed Body. Cryogonal can’t do much at all to you with Ice STAB and you 3HKO. Only had to use Recover once due to good luck with confusion. Vanillish and Cryo outspeed but do nothing of note, hopefully you should outpace Beartic but it’ll be close. Icicle Crash does like...35 damage I think. Here’s a calc with 15 IVs:

0 Atk Beartic Icicle Crash vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Jellicent: 33-39 (24.2 - 28.6%) -- 94.5% chance to 4HKO

Even without Mystic Water you can likely 3HKO (guaranteed with it):

0 SpA Jellicent Surf vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Beartic: 42-51 (31.3 - 38%) -- 85.8% chance to 3HKO

Testing with Rain Dance without Mystic Water. You OHKO Vanillish and 2HKO the others, supported by calcs:

Jellicent Surf vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Beartic in Rain: 76-90 (56.7 - 67.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

0 SpA Mystic Water Jellicent Surf vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Cryogonal in Rain: 52-63 (44.4 - 53.8%) -- 33.2% chance to 2HKO

Cryo is a range but it can’t do beans to you (I didn’t need to Recover when testing Rain Dance).

If you REALLY want to break this fight wide open though, use Substitute and Recover (tested this without Mystic Water). Not posting results because I’d either crit, he would miss Crash or spam Swagger (in other words, about as good as Rain Dance).

Escavalier (40): Persim Berry for Swagger. Everything dies to Iron Head, and they did less than 20 damage to me. Vanillish does absolutely nothing with Frost Breath and Beartic does like 20 damage or so with Icicle Crash. Even with Reflect Cryo is OHKOed by Iron Head. Easy sweep.

Simisear (39): Expert Belt. Flame Burst OHKOs Vanillish, Fire Blast OHKOs Beartic, and Brick Break OHKOs Cryo. With Persim you still OHKO Vanillish and 2HKO Beartic and Cryo with Flame Burst. Great matchup.

Cobalion (42): Picked this up mostly unplanned to cement it’s tiering. You outspeed everything even with my 0 Speed IV, but:

0 Atk Expert Belt Cobalion Sacred Sword vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Beartic: 110-132 (82 - 98.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Was originally seeing if Iron Head could OHKO everything on its own but Beartic is even left alive by Sacred Sword so I went Persim Berry. Beartic is left in red from Sacred Sword. Swagger and Brycen’s healing allow you to OHKO as he heals. Both Vanillish and Cryogonal are outspeed and OHKOed by pretty much any STAB move. Used Lucky Egg in winning attempt where Beartic went for Brine and died lol.
I’m not doing the full party deposit this time save for Jellicent.

Simisear (44): Silk Scarf Return 2HKOs Fraxure, even outspeeding it after a DD. Simi 3HKOs Druddigon with Return. Night Slash only 3HKOs with no crits. So you have to be crafty. Go for one Return, then one Flame Burst to knock it in range of another Return to kill. You should hopefully live even after Rough Skin damage. You should outspeed Haxorus and you can Return or Will-O-Wisp it. Sometimes Drudd can use Revenge and get you down to low health-you should generally take a mon and a half at the very least, or sometimes have a double KO with Druddigon. Tested twice, decent.

Unfezant (43): Very good. Unboosted Silk Scarf Return knocks Fraxure to red and Druddigon/Haxorus to about mid yellow. Fraxure tends to DD twice, which can even let you Work Up once and OHKO Fraxure. You also have a decent chance to OHKO the others with some EVS (Haxorus is shaky but then again it tends to DD then DTail.

+1 0 Atk Silk Scarf Unfezant Return vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Druddigon: 109-129 (86.5 - 102.3%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO

+1 0 Atk Silk Scarf Unfezant Return vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Haxorus: 103-123 (78.6 - 93.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

This gets even more solid if your Unfezant is at level 44 with Featherdance (temporarily replace Roost). You simply Featherdance once, boost twice and easy sweep. Tested Featherdance twice, and Fraxure just seemed to DD repeatedly. In both attempts, the only damage I took was from Druddigon’s Rough Skin. Tested the other two methods (unboosted and Work Up) once each.

Escavalier (43): Quick Claw. Not bad generally. You 2HKO Fraxure easily and 2HKO Druddigon. I’m using Iron Head for reference but I think Insect Plate X-Scissor would secure the ranges with an average Escavalier (mine has a perfect Attack IV). Fraxure goes for DD letting you kill it, Druddigon fails to do much of note with Night Slash. You should be at about half HP when Haxorus comes out (I was at 65/125 HP). You 2HKO Haxorus who goes for Dragon Tail which does nothing. Second time I crit Fraxure turn 1 (believe it went for DD, may have gotten Quick Claw) to kill. Drudd went for Chip Away even though I got a pointless QC activation. Night Slash next turn meant I was at 66 HP this time. Haxorus went for DD and the Dragon Tail this time letting me kill it. You can also Iron Defense, but that generally works best with one Pokémon; given how good Gigalith and Golurk were with it I’d assume Escavalier is even better due to resisting their STAB. Two attempts, great both times.

Krokorok (43): Eviolite. Sadly, Bulldoze and Crunch don’t quite kill off Fraxure, but since it keeps DDing and healing you have a good chance for a Crunch Defense drop anyway. +1 Crunch then does half to Druddigon who OHKOs you even through Eviolite with boosted Revenge. So now we go for BlackGlasses and Substitute (though I didn’t actually use the latter, lol). Interestingly enough, Fraxure just DDs twice leaving no real need to Bulldoze, and you do about 3/4 of both Fraxure and Druddigon’s HP with BlackGlasses Crunch. Weirdly, Druddigon used Night Slash this time which did nothing. I finish Drudd off with a Bulldoze, now at +2 Attack and 76 HP. Haxorus goes for Dragon Tail and is OHKOed by +2 Crunch before it gets Dragon Tail off.

Krookodile (44): BlackGlasses Crunch knocks Fraxure to red; you can Bulldoze on the heal to finish it off. Druddigon lives +1 Crunch in red, so if it doesn’t go for Revenge you should be okay. Haxorus went for DD and was OHKOed by +2 Crunch. On the second attempt, I confirmed Fraxure outspeeds at +1 Speed (used Dragon Rage) so Bulldoze is imperative (though I am Brave natured so that may have something to do with it). Ironically, I used Rock Slide to flinch Druddigon so Crunch could kill, and I rolled a critical hit and OHKOed it. I then crit Haxorus next turn so lol. Now having tested twice, I can confirm this matchup is good as long as Druddigon doesn’t use Revenge on you.

Jellicent (45 due to heavy focus for Hex at level 45 and a couple wilds on Route 10): Spell Tag. Fraxure goes for DD as you burn it (you outspeed turn 1). Then goes for DD again as you finish it off with Hex. I missed Will-O-Wisp on Druddigon...but Jellicent took a non-crit Night Slash well (does about 74 damage, I’d wager a 2HKO on most Jellicent) and disabled it with Cursed Body. Druddigon went for Dragon Tail and missed. My souped up Hex knocked Druddigon to low yellow, and it used Dragon Tail to force me out. After killing Druddigon with another mon and healing Jellicent up, I send it in to face Haxorus, who DDs as I successfully burn it. It then DDs twice more as I 2HKO with boosted Hex, again knocking Haxorus to low yellow on the first use like with Druddigon. In a couple other tests I discovered both Druddigon and Haxorus are 3HKOed by Spell Tag Shadow Ball and Fraxure is 2HKOed (knocked into red). Fraxure Assurance does about as much as Druddigon’s Night Slash.

This was the only mon I tested with Jellicent as the sole party member in two other tests with a set of Recover, Will-O-Wisp, Hex and Substitute with Spell Tag. WOW hit turn 1 against Fraxure, who used Assurance to do 31 of my 150 HP. I go for Sub while Fraxure goes for DD, then Assurance as I Recover to full. I use Hex to kill as Fraxure puts me at 101 HP. I burn Druddigon who uses Dragon Tail to take me down to 80 HP. I use Substitute next turn and Night Slash does not land a critical hit, therefore not breaking my Substitute. Druddigon goes for Dragon Tail as I use Recover. Now, Druddigon is at about 2/3 of it’s HP while I am at 118/150. I knock Druddigon to 1 HP while it used Dragon Tail to take me to 98 HP. I burn Haxorus whose Dragon Tail takes me to 65. I Recover on Dragon Tail which takes me to 107. Haxorus’s HP is about at the gender symbol; Hex crits to kill next turn. I end the fight at 110 HP.

Next attempt, Fraxure goes for DD as I burn, then DD next turn as I kill with Hex. I miss the Burn on Drudd who takes me to 80 with Night Slash. Next turn I burn and Night Slash takes me to 50. I use Sub as he misses Dragon Tail, and Recover to 88 as he misses another Dragon Tail. I Recover to full as he misses a third consecutive Dragon Tail (1/1000 chance). Then I kill at full HP with my Sub still up. Haxorus goes for DD as I burn it. Notably, Dragon Tail breaks my Sub as Haxorus has essentially DDed off the Attack debuff from Burn. He then spams Hyper Potions as I spam Hex to get him to low yellow. He uses Assurance (again unboosted essentially) to take me to 88 HP (which is slightly under half of my total HP) as I kill him with Hex. Decent matchup, but arguably inefficient. Not testing Blizzard because that’s literally for this matchup only and Jellicent can arguably do things without it (hitting about as hard with Shadow Ball as Samurott did with Return). Only reason I tested Blizzard there was because Oshawott is one of the higher tiers and needs more scrutiny.

Cobalion (44): Fraxure isn’t even OHKOed by +1 Sacred Sword (used Work Up). Druddigon is 2HKOed (it used Dragon Tail to eject me). In another attempt,+2 OHKOs Fraxure, and while I crit Druddigon, Haxorus was left alive leaving me to believe Druddigon lives as well (it does). Weirdly in another attempt, I got to +2, knocked Druddigon to red, and it used Night Slash, giving the power I needed to punch through Druddigon post-heal and Haxorus...oh wait it STILL barely lived at +3. 2HKO Fraxure and 3HKO Druddigon and Haxorus unboosted. I tested with Substitute twice. Fraxure tends to buff to +4 or +5, letting you get in at least 3 boosts. It was in the second attempt I confirmed Druddigon is ALSO a range at +3. So despite being a favorable matchup on paper, in reality this is a slog. I’m not testing this alone because you boosting to +4 seems assured if needed (Fraxure only does roughly 40% at +4 with Dragon Claw according to damage calcs with a level 43 Cobalion with 15 IVs).
Simisear (50): Best moveset for this fight is Work Up, Fire Blast, Shadow Claw and Rock Slide/Dig (in case Cursed Body disables Shadow Claw on Jellicent). Without Expert Belt you likely aren’t killing Cofagrigus with Shadow Claw (I’m using Lucky Egg for the extra EXP, first try knocked Coffin to red). This is where Fire Blast comes in to hopefully OHKO Coffin at +2 (seems to be a range). Golurk comes out next which you OHKO with Shadow Claw. You OHKO Jellicent with Shadow Claw but Cursed Body is annoying, but that’s why you have Rock Slide or Dig for Chandelure. Easy sweep as long as both Shadow Balls from Cofagrigus don’t crit or lower your Special Defense (which I think is fairly reasonable). You could probably remedy the +2 Shadow Claw on Cofagrigus with Expert Belt too.

Unfezant (50): Sharp Beak Fly 2HKOs everything, while some things like Cofagrigus’s Psychic and Jellicent’s Surf come close to a 3HKO and a 2HKO respectively. Chandelure is probably the worst of the bunch to take on because Flame Body sucks and Fire Blast will hurt (the latter killed me after a Psychic from Cofagrigus). If anything, Unfezant is the best against Golurk as it doesn’t hit for much with Brick Break and you can Taunt to stop it from using Curse on you. Even better is that Fly 2HKOs, and when you come back down if Golurk uses Curse it faints itself. Watch out for Will-O-Wisp from Cofagrigus if you lead, though it’s a 50/50; sometimes it will go for Psychic over Will-O-Wisp and vice versa assuming you aren’t burned already. Also takes on Jellicent fairly well, since you 2HKO with Fly and you can easily Roost off the rough 2HKO Surf has on you if Cursed Body triggers.

Cobalion (51): Substitute, then Swords Dance up to max Attack, then spam Metal Coat-boosted Iron Head while Coffin spams Will-O-Wisp to no avail. Stupidly enough, Chandelure lives in red, but thanks to a flinch Sub was still up. I looked away for a moment and when I looked back I was burned; apparently Flame Body can even go through Substitute. Thanks to the burn, Golurk was also left in red. Jellicent came out and I used a Full Restore. Even +6 and no dropped Attack, Cobalion STILL failed to OHKO Jellicent, knocking it to red. Adding insult to injury, Cursed Body disabled Iron Head. It was at this point I closed my 3DS in disbelief and reconsidered my life choices. I then subbed and clumsily healed once more before I wasn’t disabled anymore and finally secured the kill. Ew. On the second potential attempt Coffagrigus went for Psychic repeatedly which breaks Sub, then burned when I was at low health. I see no further need to test; just avoid. Also I think Jellicent’s Surf is a 3HKO.

Escavalier (52): Use Lum Berry in case of Flame Body. Notably, you’ll want to do this matchup once you are done with Marshal and Grimsley (like with Caitlin) because you will be temporarily replacing Iron Defense with Substitute (you’ll need it to protect against Chandelure’s Fire Blast).

Substitute on Will-O-Wisp (which Coffin spans like a moron even on Substitute) then Swords Dance to max Attack. Iron Head for the OHKO. If two Shadow Ball uses break your Sub, Sub again. Chandelure breaks Sub but you OHKO with Iron Head. Golurk knocks you down to under 40 HP (read: 2HKOs you) with EQ (assuming you used only one Sub for Coffin) while you kill back with Iron Head. You’ll probably heal against Jellicent, but don’t worry, Surf is like a 3HKO anyway while you OHKO with X-Scissor. Notably, Escavalier’s weakest E4 member, but doable with a little luck, and you should at least take Cofagrigus as long as you outspeed it. Do note you will be susceptible to crits after killing Cofagrigus due to Mummy. In my second attempt, Golurk used Curse on me, taking me down to roughly half health after I killed it. This is good, since you won’t have to if you aren’t in range of Jellicent’s Brine (I didn’t seem to be but only barely).

Jellicent (51, but essentially 52 since it was close to a level up due to using Lucky Egg against Marshal): Spell Tag does about 3/4 to Cofagrigus. Weirdly it went for Will-O-Wisp on me. Spell Tag Shadow Ball does 1/2 to Shauntal’s Jellicent, which fires back with Energy Ball. Hilariously, Cursed Body can go both ways, but her Shadow Ball does just under half to you, probably half though with an average Jellicent. Energy Ball from her Jellicent is a 4HKO on you. So you can easily Recover until you can fire off a Shadow Ball to kill. Golurk can just live a Spell Tag Shadow Ball, as can Chandelure. You should live a Shadow Punch from Golurk in red. You live Chandelure’s Shadow Ball at about 1/4 HP from full. Though you can’t quite OHKO Golurk unless you roll a good range or Chandelure (avoided the OHKO three times as Shauntal healed it) with Mystic Water Surf, you can at least put them in red so another mon can pick it off. Okay, but not spectacular (I guess you could outspeed and burn Golurk to ensure the kill but meh).

Krookodile (52): BlackGlasses Substitute on Will-O-Wisp or Shadow Ball and 2HKO Cofagrigus with EQ so you don’t spoil Moxie via Mummy. Crunch Jellicent to OHKO. If you get disabled by Cursed Body, +2 EQ OHKOs Golurk anyway. EQ OHKOs Chandelure. You outspeed everything even with a Speed-lowering nature and this matchup is virtually identical with Soft Sand.
Grimsley:
Unfezant (50): Sharp Beak. You can boost and OHKO Scrafty with Fly but Krook comes out to lower your Attack and finish you off. Testing with Silk Scarf Return, you 2HKO Scrafty who 4HKOs with Crunch. You come close to a 2HKO on Krook with Return even through Intimidate but Foul Play likely kills you. You can favorably take on Scrafty and Liepard though without healing much probably. I crit the Liepard but it also does like no damage with Night Slash either. Avoid the others.

Jellicent (51, but essentially 52 since it was close to a level up due to using Lucky Egg against Marshal): You reliably beat Krookodile. Usually goes for Foul Play which does about half and you kill with Surf even without Mystic Water. Avoided the others.

Cobalion (50): Expert Belt. Hey, you know Scrafty’s Sand-Attack? That’s the only thing stopping a sweep with SD. However, if you give Cobalion Taunt (found via TM in Victory Road if you go out of the way) this matchup goes loads more smoothly. You Taunt, SD and sweep. Scrafty only 3HKOs with Brick Break, doing about 60 damage thanks to Cobalion’s good Defense. Both Scrafty and Krookodile live if you go unboosted, and you should be in red by the time Liepard comes out third who outspeeds and finishes you off (tho I have bad speed). I didn’t test this but you should be able to finish the match in low yellow if Scrafty gets two Brick Breaks off without healing. Pretty easy.

Krookodile (50): Tested a few times. I doubt my experience is conclusive due to Krook’s Speed lowering nature. However, I still swept even when Scrafty went for Sand-Attack finishing the fight at 8 HP. Scrafty’s Brick Break and Krookodile’s EQ knock you into yellow, slightly around half to 2/3 of your HP. You 2HKO Scrafty with EQ. Expert Belt Low Sweep barely 2HKOs Scrafty (you can run Brick Break which should ensure it).

Simisear (50): Was gonna use Charcoal but when +2 Brick Break failed to kill Scrafty I stopped, thought for a moment, and switched to itemless Acrobatics which is a range to OHKO Scrafty at +1. If you miss the range, simply waste his healing items and boost up to +2 as he uses his second item. Scrafty barely fails to 2HKO with Crunch, but watch out for Defense drops. +1 Fire Blast OHKOs Krookodile which you outspeed. +1 Flame Burst OHKOs Liepard and Bisharp. +1 Fire Blast does 2/3 to Scrafty and Krookodile without Charcoal for reference unboosted. +2 Flame Burst leaves Krookodile in red for reference. So boost to +1 or +2 and hope you don’t get Sand-Attack hax. Itemless sweep if everything falls into place.

Escavalier (50): SilverPowder. Iron Defense, then Swords Dance. Hope you don’t get hit with Sand-Attack because it sucks, though you could use Guard Spec. (I didn’t). You OHKO Scrafty with X-Scissor at +2 and OHKO Krookodile at +1. You should be at about half HP once Krookodile falls, and 61 HP when Liepard gets eviscerated by an OHKO. Bisharp goes for Aerial Ace which does like 20, and you knock him to red with +1 X-Scissor. Swords Dance on the heal and kill; you should finish the fight in red. You can Iron Defense twice for less damage but that runs the risk of more uses of Sand-Attack, ugh. Still fantastic.
Unfezant (50): Silk Scarf. Reuniclus is do or faint as Thunder OHKOs. However, unboosted Return still 2HKOs so if they whiff a Thunder you come out on top. Sigilyph knocks you to red with Ice Beam while Return does 3/4 of Sigilyph’s HP. You 2HKO Gothitelle and Musharna. You can generally take 1 Psychic and kill a mon and a half.

However, you CAN sweep this matchup at +2. Substitute as Reuniclus comes out, hope they miss Thunder (she did). I boost to +1 as she misses Thunder again. I OHKO next turn with Return. Sigilyph comes out next turn, outspeeds and breaks Sub with Ice Beam as I OHKO with Return. Gothitelle goes for Calm Mind as Return knocks it to heal range. As it heals, I boost to +2 to OHKO with Return. Musharna is OHKOed by +2 Return. No healing required. However, upon failing this in another attempt, I’d say this is still pretty unlikely as you need pretty great luck with Thunder misses. So generally you kill a mon and a half per the above.

Escavalier (52): SilverPowder. What a massacre. Reuniclus and Musharna are outsped (tho I have a high Speed IV).and OHKO. Gothitelle goes for Calm Mind and dies. You knock Sigilyph into heal range with X-Scissor. You can do this fight unboosted but it’s not reccomended because of Air Slash from Sigilyph (which does slightly less than a third of your HP) having a 30% flinch chance. You can even solo without SilverPowder after one SD.

Cobalion (51): SilverPowder. Swords Dance X-Scissor OHKOs everything save Sigilyph, who you outspeed like the rest. Used Iron Head for Sigilyph which knocks it to about red at +2. As long as you dodge a Focus Blast from Reuniclus you should sweep. Even if you don’t you can just BARELY live a Focus Blast sometimes:

0 SpA Reuniclus Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Cobalion: 144-170 (91.1 - 107.5%) -- 50% chance to OHKO

Given how you only need one real miss to easily sweep the team I’d say this matchup is great.

Jellicent (51, but essentially 52 since it was close to a level up due to using Lucky Egg against Marshal): You outsped Reuniclus and Spell Tag Shadow Ball does a lot to it, putting it in red while Thunder missed and I killed after Caitlin healed. I also outsped Gothitelle and knocked it closely to healing range with Shadow Ball, but not quite while it used Calm Mind and I killed next turn. Shadow Ball from Musharna does about a third, but was disabled due to Cursed Body. After a few turns of Recover I’m at 115 HP for Sigilyph. Shadow Ball again does about a third while I OHKO it back. Tested the fight again and won without Recover even though Musharna got a Special Defense drop from Shadow Ball (lived in red from Sigilyph’s Shadow Ball and OHKOed it again). Wouldn’t say this is an effortless solo, but still a pretty great matchup.

Simisear (50): Spell Tag Shadow Claw 2HKOs Reuniclus while occasionally missing the 2HKO on Gothitelle (1 level would probably fix this).Musharna looks to be roughly the same. Not gonna test this more as both sides clearly 2HKO; neutral.

Krookodile (50): Sigilyph outsped me and 2HKOs with Ice Beam, but you OHKO it anyway (it comes out second). You should probably have a shot to outspeed it if you don’t have a Speed-lowering nature. You outspeed and OHKO everything else with BlackGlasses Crunch, even Reuniclus. Easy sweep.
Unfezant (50): Silk Scarf. This one’s tricky but doable with proper planning. You want Substitute, Return, Featherdance and Work Up for this battle. Roost will be used in other fights most likely, but remember you can do this fight last and relearn it once E4 is complete. I’m not using Fly because that can miss, drag the fight out even more with After two uses of Featherdance, Throh can’t break a Substitute with non-crit Stone Edge. I abused this to get to +2 at red health, with I believe every Stone Edge hitting (though I think Throh went for Payback at least once). Anyway, as I’m healing, Throh drops me to 139/153 HP with Payback. Storm Throw takes me to 82 with Payback (67 HP dealt since it always crits) and thus a 3HKO while I pump in an X Speed for Unfezant (to outspeed Sawk and Mienshao as I am -Speed nature). I OHKO Throh with +2 Return; Sawk comes out. I Substitute on Return taking me to 44 HP while Sawk misses Stone Edge. I knock Sawk to Sturdy with a crit as he misses Stone Edge again. After Marshall spams healing items I kill Sawk with my Sub still up and at 44 HP. Conkeldurr comes out. I OHKO fine (no crit or anything) as supported by this calc:

+2 0 Atk Silk Scarf Unfezant Return vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Conkeldurr: 159-187 (91.9 - 108%) -- 50% chance to OHKO

Remember 15 IVS and no EVs so that chance is generally higher. Mienshao comes out; I outspeed and OHKO.

Next attempt. I Featherdance on Throh’s Payback as it takes me to 129 HP. Next turn he hits Stone Edge taking me to 95 as I Featherdance. I Sub to 57 HP, which Stone Edge doesn’t break. I Work Up to +1 as he breaks my Sub with Stone Edge. I Substitute again taking me to 19 as he hits Stone Edge again. I use X Speed as he breaks my Sub. I heal again, then Work Up as Payback and then Storm Throw take me to 88 HP. Return OHKOs Throh. Sub to 50 HP as Sawk misses Stone Edge. Return knocks Sawk to Sturdy (without crit) as he breaks my Substitute. Conkeldurr comes out; I outspeed and OHKO without crit from Return. Same with Mienshao. You should probably at least kill or dent one mon if not using these strats. One and a half if Stone Edge doesn’t crit.

Krookodile (50): You need Soft Sand EQ to 2HKO Throh. It may storm throw or Bulldoze. Conkeldurr comes out next and you almost OHKO it with a neutral EQ (!) but then you die to Hammer Arm. If Throh goes Bulldoze, don’t worry as you still outspeed Conk either way. You can OHKO Conk but you need a high roll, good IVs and Attack buffing nature to do it so I’m not considering it realistically that you one shot. Jump Kick from Mienshao outspeeds and OHKOs you though. In the individual sense, Krookodile outspeeds Sawk even with a speed lowering nature (something the similar speed lowering Unfezant didn’t). You should live Karate Chop pretty easily if it doesn’t crit.

Simisear (50): Itemless Acrobatics 2HKOs everything but one Stone will end you, save for Throh where you can live in red. You might outspeed Mienshao (I did) but Acrobatics is a range to OHKO; thankfully she only puts you in red with Rock Slide so you should beat it. Didn’t test this much because it seems pretty clear-cut unless you abuse Substitute, which, while it can be productive for mons like Unfezant who can heal themselves, doesn’t seem needed in this matchup. Sometimes Throh goes for Bulldoze but you’ll still outspeed (though it will kill you outspeeding Sawk and Mienshao).

Jellicent: (50): Mystic Water. I was quite impressed. The matchup vs Throh is shaky as you 3HKO with Surf (Hex can be used to avoid Marshal healing to chip it down where another Surf can kill) and you don’t want to burn due to Guts. You can do Recover shenanigans to disable Payback but there is still the option of Stone Edge crits. That said I beat both Throh and Sawk in my first attempt without using an item (Conk finished me off). Jellicent takes on Sawk very well though, not being 2HKOed by non-crit Stone Edge and Payback doesn’t matter much due to Jellicent moving second. Once burned, Sawk is easy to Recover spam on but do note burn-boosted Hex doesn’t even come close to OHKOing it once Sturdy is broken. Grass Knot shouldn’t even 4HKO you either, which they generally only use of Stone Edge is disabled and they are burned. Conkeldurr is outsped and burned (it has Sheer Force) and like Sawk it can’t do much, so Recover away. Burn Hex again is a 2HKO. Mienshao only has Rock Slide to hit you with, which only does like 50 even when it isn’t burned. Mystic Water Surf is a 2HKO. You can even Recover until Cursed Body triggers and then all Mienshao has is U-Turn which is like a fly versus a tank. Surf 2HKOs Conk who you can easily live a non-crit Stone Edge from. Generally you should beat Mienshao without the burn given Rock Slide’s 90 Accuracy and Cursed Body chance, though flinches can be kinda annoying. You can use Spell Tag in this matchup but I don’t think it will change too much; plus this is the only matchup Hex is viable in so I don’t think it’s super great as you 2HKO all but Throh anyway. Avoid Sawk but this matchup should be pretty easy if you can land Will-O-Wisp (you probably have room to X Accuracy after burning Sawk the first time, and since Jellicent doesn’t need other items for this matchup much, it wouldn’t affect it majorly).

Escavalier (52 for Swords Dance): Using Metal Coat to buff Iron Head. Absolutely amazing with Battle Armor and Iron Defense. Boost up to max and he can’t touch you at all, doing like 12-20 damage. Did this fight first try at 12 HP, no healing. Might need one item but this is one of the best Marshal counters out there. Swarm might be better for the other bosses in the E4, but I generally consider Battle Armor superior for how much it destroys this matchup and for how many hits Esca will take in general. Also did second attempt without healing. Generally Throh goes for Stone Edge turn 1 which does about less than a third of your HP, but once you get that first Iron Defense off he stops being a challenge.

Cobalion: Metal Coat. Bad; After Throh uses Bulldoze twice even Conk outspeeds and kills you, though do note I have a Speed IV of 0. You can 2HKO Throh after a Swords Dance Iron Head, but that’s about it. Throh went for 2 Bulldozes in a row in two different matchups so don’t setup on Throh at all. Also Sacred Sword unboosted is a hilariously bad 4HKO on Throh. Don’t try and setup on Sawk either; a Karate Chop crit brought me to low yellow, and both Chops crit me twice in a row which is possible with a 12.5% chance. If one crits and the other doesn’t you still die. The saving grace of this matchup is outspeeding everything including Mienshao with a 0 Defense IV. Mienshao kills you with Jump Kick if you’ve taken about 40 HP of damage. You can barely 2HKO with Iron Head (Sacred Sword seems to be a range unboosted) So in conclusion, you can pretty much take one mon.
Everyone is level 52.

Unfezant: Even Vanilluxe outsped the bird (Speed lowering nature lol). The only one it has an even remote chance of taking on is Zoroark, and even then:

0 Atk Silk Scarf Unfezant Return vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Zoroark: 114-135 (84.4 - 100%) -- 6.3% chance to OHKO

0 Atk Zoroark Night Slash vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Unfezant: 52-63 (33.9 - 41.1%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

0 SpA Zoroark Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Unfezant: 90-107 (58.8 - 69.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Yeah it’s shaky.

Cobalion: Even at +6 Sacred Sword is a range to OHKO Zekrom, but at least Fusion Bolt 3HKOs. Zekrom outsped but that was likely due to my 0 Speed IV. Eventually healed up to full a second time while Zekrom healed. While Zekrom used Light Screen I killed it. Zoroark comes out, outspeeds and whiffs Focus Blast as I kill. Klinklang is outsped and OHKOed. I flinch Carracosta with Iron Head, then kill it. Outspeed Vanilluxe and OHKO. Archeops’s Acrobatics doesn’t even 2HKO and I kill with Iron Head. Second try with Reflect went smoother on Zekrom with Reflect, but not 2HKOing with +2 Sacred Sword is demoralizing. Zoroark you absolutely have to be at full HP for, you can barely live Focus Blast and Flamethrower very cleanly 2HKOs (IIRC does 3/4). Okay matchup but since you need to be so precise with the healing, it’s not a guaranteed sweep. 3HKOs Carracaosta unboosted which 2HKOs with Stone Edge. I imagine you easily beat Vanilluxe unboosted. I swept offscreen with a few items and an X Speed to compensate for my Speed IV. Waterfall from Carracosta looks close to 3HKO.

Escavalier: Metal Coat. Iron Defense to +6 on Zekrom. Fusion Bolt does a solid 2/3 of your HP before you can buff which is awkward. Healed to full as Zekrom used Light Screen. Now Fusion Bolt is less than a 3HKO. Problem is I discovered that thanks to Teravolt, Zekrom can crit which will kill you at any HP, even full. I realized since Zekrom tends to go for Light Screen turn 2, there is a distinct possibility you can boost up to +6 before having to heal. Solid problem though; Zekrom will come out afterwards and always OHKOs with Flamethrower. Can take Archeops on one-on-one at about full as Acrobatics leaves it at 1/3 HP.

Krookodile: Soft Sand. Substitute to on what is considered 129/172 HP on my Krookodile. on Zekrom’s Light Screen. Giga Impact does about 2/3 for reference. Giga Impact breaks Substitute and Soft Sand EQ seems to be a range to kill Zekrom. Regardless if you hit the range, Vanilluxe comes out next, which you outspeed and smash with EQ. You can barely live a Focus Blast from Zoroark (I lived at 15 HP) but Aqua Jet from Carracosta will pretty much finish you off.

I discovered an alternate solution though; Soft Sand Bulldoze 2HKOs Zekrom and drops Speed, and since Zekrom pretty much always goes for Light Screen turn 1, you can kill it and remain at full HP. With no boosts vs. Carracosta, you can smack it with an EQ and even live Waterfall, but again Aqua Jet picks you off. You outspeed and OHKO Klinklang with EQ even with a Speed lowering nature. One-on-one against Archeops, you need Low Sweep and Rock Slide to win (Rock Slide puts it in red from full), while Acrobatics easily 2HKOs you.

Simisear: Charcoal. Outspeeds and OHKOs Zoroark, Vanilluxe and Klinklang with Fire Blast if Light Screen is not up. You are only 2HKOed by Zoroark’s Focus Blast which it spams on you for whatever reason. You do not outspeed Archeops, and Acrobatics seems to be a range to OHKO you based on Defeatist damage.

Jellicent: Mystic Water. Takes on Klinklang like a boss as you are not 2HKOed by Thunderbolt while you 2HKO back with Surf. Can take a Crunch with about 1/3 HP remaining from Archeops at full (and likely Acrobatics by extension) and OHKO back with Mystic Water Surf. You can screw Carracosta over with Will-O-Wisp and kill it (neither Crunch nor Stone Edge 2HKOs after this). Based on damage post burn you might even be able to kill it with just brute force as it seems to survive non-crit Stone Edge and Crunch at the very least, at least from my predictions. Not gonna test this because I waste enough time on N already, and since facing off against Carracosta leaves you at low enough HP for Archeops to pick you off. Takes on Vanilluxe very well even if Light Screen is up, as while it’s a slower kill it struggles to break your bulk.
Everyone is 52 save Cobalion who is about 2000 EXP off from Level 54.

Unfezant: Sharp Beak. Taunt Cofagrigus every few turns so it doesn’t Toxic or Protect. Use Fly on Taunt 1 and 2 to waste four PP of Psychic. Now in yellow, Taunt 3 and then use Roost twice. Taunt 4 was actually when it used Psychic, but I was able to live and Roost repeatedly. Taunt 4 wears off and it starts going for Shadow Ball around this time, so as long as you Taunt repeatedly you can boost and Roost all you want. I was at 117/158 HP at this time so I healed to full, used an X Accuracy for Fly and then boosted up (Cofagrigus was around 1/3 HP at this time). Calcs (15 IVs for Unfezant, 31 for Cofagrigus, neutral natures, both Level 52):

0 Atk Sharp Beak Unfezant Fly vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Cofagrigus: 48-57 (34.7 - 41.3%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

0 SpA Cofagrigus Psychic vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Unfezant: 58-69 (37.9 - 45%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

Once at +6, Taunt should expire again; Taunt him once more so he can’t Protect on Fly and then kill next turn. Bisharp comes out but is outsped and OHKOed. Same with Bouffalant and Eelektross. Hydreigon outspeeds and does 2/3 with Dragon Pulse but is OHKOed by Fly. Seismitoad is outsped and OHKOed by Fly and I win.

Tested it again and aside from 1 Full Restore use on my part, me derping on Taunt and a few crits from both it still went fine. Even if Hydreigon does crit, it comes out 5th so you still sweep 3/4 of the team. Not testing the others individually because you know how that’ll go (they will overpower it).

Jellicent: Mystic Water Surf outspeeds and 3HKOs Cofagrigus and Bouffalant. Once you burn Seismitoad it can’t do much to you (EQ seems to be close to a 2HKO but not quite normally). Me and Eelektross Speed tied at 79 Speed: Mystic Water Surf was a 3HKO. Surprisingly, Jellicent can live Wild Charge I believe from near full and puts Eelektross in range to die to Surf, so you could actually beat it. Jellicent barely avoids the 2HKO from Hydriegon’s Dragon Pulse, so you can Toxic and Recover spam until Cursed Body screws it over (shouldn’t touch you otherwise). I avoided Bisharp for obvious reasons. Though in another attempt, Jellicent actually survived a non-crit Night Slash in red.

Simisear: Charcoal Fire Blast seems to 2HKO Bouffalant from the damage I used it at (at 2/3 HP I took it to red) while Head Charge OHKOs. Against Hydreigon, you can barely live a Surf and knock it to red with Expert Belt Low Sweep to outspeed + Brick Break. Fire Blast 2HKOs Eelektross (who 2HKOs with Wild Charge) and Bisharp dies to Brick Break. Fire Blast seems to be a range to 2HKO Cofagrigus without Charcoal. Outspeeds and OHKOs Seismitoad with Expert Belt Grass Knot.

Cobalion: Can sometimes live a Focus Blast from Hydreigon (I lived at 5 HP at level 54) but you only put Hydreigon in red with Expert Belt Sacred Sword. As for setting up on Cofagrigus, Shadow Ball is a 4HKO, but to sweep you need a Sub up on Hydreigon which is really only possible if you use an X Special Defense or you predict and use Substitute while he goes for Protect. You outspeed and OHKO everything but Hydreigon at max Attack. Even without boosts this is still fairly good, you 2HKO Bouffalant even without Expert Belt while it fails to 2HKO with EQ. You outspeed and 3HKO Seismitoad unboosted, so eh. You should obviously beat Bisharp fine so I’m not testing that.

Escavalier: SilverPowder. I used Substitute on Cofagrigus’s Protect, then an X Speed for Eelektross. I boost up to max and get a sub up at full HP. Hydreigon comes out and breaks Sub, dying to X-Scissor. Eelektross comes out and still outspeeds me, OHKOing with Flamethrower. So yeah, a sweep isn’t quite viable here. However, you can take on Seismitoad pretty well, barely 2HKOing with unboosted X-Scissor while you barely avoid the EQ 2HKO. Bouffalant is also pretty good; you 2HKO it while it really can’t do much of significant to you. You 2HKO Bisharp with X-Scissor, and it 3HKOs you with non-crit Stone Edge. Also watch out for Metal Burst. I healed Escavalier up before facing off against the above 3, but it does well against them (I kind of wanted to test them all in one attempt). Iron Head seems to be a 3HKO on Cofagrigus (appears to kinda be ranges without an item, albeit ones I achieved.

Krookodile: Soft Sand. Substitute and he hopefully shouldn’t go for Shadow Ball twice in a row (he went for Ball, then Toxic on me weirdly. In the second attempt he didn’t break Sub either). Hydreigon comes out and breaks your Substitute, but Low Sweep lets you outspeed the following turn and 2HKO. Seismitoad is outsped and dies to EQ. Bisharp is outsped and dies to Low Sweep, as is Bouffalant. Eelektross dies to Crunch. Also, Cofagrigus can live even BlackGlasses Crunch, so going for EQ has pretty much no loss in effectiveness here.
Cobalion is C tier. While having some decent sweeps lategame, if you look at some of my matchups, ranges are a constant problem with this mon. 90 base Attack just sucks unless you are hitting super-effectively, and while I can see some B tier attributes (ready to go out of the box with STAB/X-Scissor, high level of 42, decent defensive type), both the detour and quite a few awkward moments in matchups just kill the thing from being as great as it could be (see: Drayden, Shauntal, Marshal, partially N, and Ghetsis where it has to hard predict a Substitute on Protect unless you use an X item).

Pansear could arguably be B tier, but I think C can work for it, solely due to the early period being pretty dreadful. After that though? It was extremely useful throughout the game, only really being kinda meh against Marshal and Caitlin. Not too reliant on Fire Blast, and since you’re swimming in money lategame it’s not much of an issue (Flame Burst still kills the lategame mooks it needs to).

Pidove is widely hated for sure. I can definitely see why people want D. Pre-Unfezant is kinda bad for this thing outside of Burgh, but once you have an Unfezant at Clay you have a pretty solid option for the next four gyms. It’s not amazing endgame, usually killing a threat and a half if it’s lucky, but it’s not completely useless there either. Sweeping Ghetsis without Substitute or excessive healing (needs an X Accuracy and maybe one healing item thanks to Roost as long as you don’t get hit by 10% Special Defense drops from Psychic) is very notable, and I believe one of the only mons to do it without Substitute abuse. Outside of that, Return and Fly are very serviceable STAB moves and it should 2HKO or even OHKO anything not particularly bulky, and it generally only needs one Work Up to do things in Gyms IIRC. It could go either way, but I’m gonna wait for Tenshi to finish his run before I decide on a conclusive placement.

Moxie Sandile is busted, A rank. Definitely wait on evolving to let Krokorok learn EQ at 48, it’s still decent in the last two gyms anyway with Eviolite. Sandile can be a little rough early on though. Not much to say, no wonder not many questioned this thing.

Jellicent is a pretty easy D tier. Coming late and underleveled undermine it’s otherwise decent showing endgame (notably beating Marshal and Caitlin). I can almost picture C but the lacking power and it being acquired late and underleveled make it a clear D. Don’t think it’s quite as useful as Golurk is as a lategame Ghost type, though Will-O-Wisp and Recover is a pretty great combo. Catching Frillish or a 5% Jellicent is a tossup on which is better/efficient really.

Karrablast (trade) is one of the most fun Pokémon I’ve ever used in-game. This thing is absolutely INSANE. You get Escavalier and it immediately puts in work everywhere despite questionable moves early on. Get a Level 26 one with Fury Cutter for Clay, and make sure you have Shed Skin as Karrablast to get the great Battle Armor Ability when you evolve, as it’s pretty crucial with Iron Defense spam over Swarm which is situational (you’ll only get one hit off boosted by Swarm since this thing is slow). The slowness mandates Quick Claw on it at all times until endgame (not too bad yet notable), but the resistances help. This could go in A bit it’s kinda late and a little slow, so you could argue B despite how much work it puts in (Ghetsis is pretty much the only real bad matchup). Wouldn’t mind seeing what others think on this thing’s placement.
 
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Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
We have moved to write-up phases. Please bring all matters to tiering of Pokemon in the new thread, where we will also be working on the write-ups.

Note that the OP is also in WIP so expect (massive) changes to it, while we flesh out things.

This may be locked now, as it is now nothing more than a resource and reference list.

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