Pokemon Heartgold and Soulsilver In-Game Tier List (MkII)

Burned Tower rival:

Fearow (20): One shot Gastly with Aerial Ace, 3HKO Magnemite with Return, would've 4HKO Croconaw if not for Scary Face and Ice Fang, could easily beat Zubat. Can beat 2 maybe 3 Pokémon, B grade.

Quilava (21): 1 shot Gastly with Fire Blast, 3KO Croconaw with Fire Blast after taking one Water Gun and 2 Scary Faces, would've 2KO'd Zubat but for a burn and was confused, 1 shot Magnemite. Good, chance to sweep though not a high one, A grade.

Goldeen (20): 2 shot Gastly with Surf, would've 2 shot Magnemite but for Curse, Thunder Wave AND Supersonic, can't beat Croconaw, 2 shot Zubat. C, can beat one or maybe two of the weaker Pokémon.

Flaaffy (21): outsped and takes a Curse from Gastly, Charge Beam does not proc. Guessing it would've been a 2 shot. 2 shot Croconaw with proc on first and second one. Paralyzed by Zubat but breaks through and annihilates it, then Magnemite beats it. B grade, needs some luck but can do some real damage. Can beat Croconaw and Quilava though guessing Bayleef too much for it.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Speaking of Water types, I wanna hear y'alls thoughts on Slowbro and Slowking. In my opinion, Slowking evolving so much earlier is such a game changer. If Slowbro did not evolve so late it would be better but dang does Slowpoke lag behind hard. I could do a writeup on both, but Slowking would be B and Slowbro would be D or E tier.
I have used Slowking (I am about to use Slowbro) and I'd say it's B-tier (at best). Slowpoke period isn't the best (but it's workable with, reading my short logs) but once it evolves into Slowking, it becomes a beast; it beats Chuck and Jasmine with no problems and deals with Pryce's Seel and Piloswine very well. It's one of the better Pokemon to use against Clair, as it can legitimately check Kingdra and dent it majorly at worst (if you are level 39, you also get Nasty Plot, which is awesome). Its E4 matchup, at least according to my logs, is not bad either, it can easily beat Will due to resistance and Nasty Plot, Koga, and fares well against Bruno (though it was higher than the normal level, being 46, but I doubt it'd have changed a lot the matchup). Against Lance (being level 46 again), +2 Surf should be able to OHKO Zard and Aero, but fears super effective coverage from both
 
I have used Slowking (I am about to use Slowbro) and I'd say it's B-tier (at best). Slowpoke period isn't the best (but it's workable with, reading my short logs) but once it evolves into Slowking, it becomes a beast; it beats Chuck and Jasmine with no problems and deals with Pryce's Seel and Piloswine very well. It's one of the better Pokemon to use against Clair, as it can legitimately check Kingdra and dent it majorly at worst (if you are level 39, you also get Nasty Plot, which is awesome). Its E4 matchup, at least according to my logs, is not bad either, it can easily beat Will due to resistance and Nasty Plot, Koga, and fares well against Bruno (though it was higher than the normal level, being 46, but I doubt it'd have changed a lot the matchup). Against Lance (being level 46 again), +2 Surf should be able to OHKO Zard and Aero, but fears super effective coverage from both
Glad to hear someone had some success with Slowking.

I used Slowbro in a past run, and it was grueling to get to it. Having Slowpoke take forever to evolve was terrible. I can tell that you evolved it at just the right time because from Morty to Goldenrod it was the load to a huge degree. Once it was Slowbro though it wrecked shop. It was incrediably bulky and a Blizzard from it ate things for breakfast. However, the grind to get it all the way to 37 to evolve for most of the game only for it to become good in the eleventh hour for me cements Slowbro as at best D Tier.

Currently right after Violet City with my team so far of Totodile Slugma and Mareep, heres how they faired. Totodile is 16, Slugma is 12, Mareep is 14

Mareep: Ground up in Sprout Tower alongside Slugma. Once it got Thundershock it had a solid record in the gym. Good so far, though the baby experience was rough.

Slugma: Ooh boy was babying this thing annoying. Waiting until level 8 to get Ember was a drag, but after that it puts in work. It is slow and not the bulkiest thing in the world, but it hits pretty dang hard with Ember. So far decent alternative to Cyndaquil, but that late Magcargo evolution looks daunting. So long as it does not fall off too badly I could make a C Tier case if it is doing ok, but if it becomes the load or it lags behind it could go lower.

Totodile: We all know this thing is stupid good.


Also fun fact I have the TRU arceus, so I have played through the game with each of the Sinnoh Legends. Obviously they each would be S Tier if tiered but being locked behind an event/abusing a glitch to get an Arceus in DP and then trading it makes them far from eligible.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
I used Slowbro in a past run, and it was grueling to get to it. Having Slowpoke take forever to evolve was terrible. I can tell that you evolved it at just the right time because from Morty to Goldenrod it was the load to a huge degree.
It's better to just backtrack to Slowpoke Well and catch a Slowbro through repel tricks. It also comes at a high level iirc, so it will be on par with your team. At that point, you will likely be able to catch a Slowbro that is level 26-30.

Also, I checked your other noms and I want to comment on Abra (No Trade). I think it's better off in C or B, in all honesty. Kadabra suffers a lot more than one may think, as it lacks Focus Blast and Calm Mind, unlike Alakazam. I may retest it in the future, but I remember it only did well against Morty, Chuck, Will, Koga, and Bruno (and Team Rocket), but it's at the mercy of anything that resists Psychic. Not to mention it's so frail that anything that isn't OHKOed by its moves legitimately threatens it. If you wanna elaborate on that one, I'd be glad to hear your reasoning
 
Glad to hear someone had some success with Slowking.

I used Slowbro in a past run, and it was grueling to get to it. Having Slowpoke take forever to evolve was terrible. I can tell that you evolved it at just the right time because from Morty to Goldenrod it was the load to a huge degree. Once it was Slowbro though it wrecked shop. It was incrediably bulky and a Blizzard from it ate things for breakfast. However, the grind to get it all the way to 37 to evolve for most of the game only for it to become good in the eleventh hour for me cements Slowbro as at best D Tier.

Currently right after Violet City with my team so far of Totodile Slugma and Mareep, heres how they faired. Totodile is 16, Slugma is 12, Mareep is 14

Mareep: Ground up in Sprout Tower alongside Slugma. Once it got Thundershock it had a solid record in the gym. Good so far, though the baby experience was rough.

Slugma: Ooh boy was babying this thing annoying. Waiting until level 8 to get Ember was a drag, but after that it puts in work. It is slow and not the bulkiest thing in the world, but it hits pretty dang hard with Ember. So far decent alternative to Cyndaquil, but that late Magcargo evolution looks daunting. So long as it does not fall off too badly I could make a C Tier case if it is doing ok, but if it becomes the load or it lags behind it could go lower.

Totodile: We all know this thing is stupid good.


Also fun fact I have the TRU arceus, so I have played through the game with each of the Sinnoh Legends. Obviously they each would be S Tier if tiered but being locked behind an event/abusing a glitch to get an Arceus in DP and then trading it makes them far from eligible.
With respect, why not just catch a Mareep from the grass outside Violet City? Or Wooper from same? Seems like the only one who needs the Primo egg is Slugma, and honestly Slugma probably won't be doing great on the tier list anyways.
 
It's better to just backtrack to Slowpoke Well and catch a Slowbro through repel tricks. It also comes at a high level iirc, so it will be on par with your team. At that point, you will likely be able to catch a Slowbro that is level 26-30.

Also, I checked your other noms and I want to comment on Abra (No Trade). I think it's better off in C or B, in all honesty. Kadabra suffers a lot more than one may think, as it lacks Focus Blast and Calm Mind, unlike Alakazam. I may retest it in the future, but I remember it only did well against Morty, Chuck, Will, Koga, and Bruno (and Team Rocket), but it's at the mercy of anything that resists Psychic. Not to mention it's so frail that anything that isn't OHKOed by its moves legitimately threatens it. If you wanna elaborate on that one, I'd be glad to hear your reasoning
NGL I forgot that it did not get Focus Blast, call it a brain fart. I would still say B is fine for Kadabra though. You hit hard, get Psychic by 40, and outspeed most things. That being said I would put it lower in B, teetering on C.


With respect, why not just catch a Mareep from the grass outside Violet City? Or Wooper from same? Seems like the only one who needs the Primo egg is Slugma, and honestly Slugma probably won't be doing great on the tier list anyways.
I did for Mareep. Babying it was waiting for Thundershock.

Now for a nom of a mon that I went through a playthough or two ago.


Nominating Espeon for B Tier.

I will do a bigger formal write up like I have later, but I wanna push how this thing is kinda...underwhelming. Not getting Psychic until after Lance really hurts this thing's damage output. It has decent matchups I guess, it does well vs Morty if you baby the crap out of it and evolve it, beats Chuck, beats all of Team Rocket except for the three dark type pokemon you meet, it is a good route smasher, and it beats 3 of the 4 Elite Four if you give it Shadow Ball. But backtracking all the way to Goldenrod to get a level 5 pokemon that you need to baby for a good period of time to get...a better budget Alakazam than Kadabra. The investment needed to get this thing good to get a worse Alakazam is something that I can not overstate. That being said, it is still good once it gets there, so idk.

Here are the Pokemon I plan on testing next run btw after I finish my current run.

Cyndaquill
Shellder (Pokewalker)
Magnemite (Pokewalker)
Girafarig
Gengar
 
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NGL I forgot that it did not get Focus Blast, call it a brain fart. I would still say B is fine for Kadabra though. You hit hard, get Psychic by 40, and outspeed most things. That being said I would put it lower in B, teetering on C.




I did for Mareep. Babying it was waiting for Thundershock.

Now for a nom of a mon that I went through a playthough or two ago.


Nominating Espeon for B Tier.

I will do a bigger formal write up like I have later, but I wanna push how this thing is kinda...underwhelming. Not getting Psychic until after Lance really hurts this thing's damage output. It has decent matchups I guess, it does well vs Morty if you baby the crap out of it and evolve it, beats Chuck, beats all of Team Rocket except for the three dark type pokemon you meet, it is a good route smasher, and it beats 3 of the 4 Elite Four if you give it Shadow Ball. But backtracking all the way to Goldenrod to get a level 5 pokemon that you need to baby for a good period of time to get...a better budget Alakazam than Kadabra. The investment needed to get this thing good to get a worse Alakazam is something that I can not overstate. That being said, it is still good once it gets there, so idk.

Here are the Pokemon I plan on testing next run btw after I finish my current run.

Cyndaquill
Shellder (Pokewalker)
Magnemite (Pokewalker)
Girafarig
Gengar
You may want to hold off on Walker testing when a decision is made. We are 2 for 2. Ideally, the only real mons worth testing on the Walker are Khan, Elekid, Doduo, and Murkrow. Testing anything else would just create an entirely separate tier list.

Espeon isn’t even worthy of B imo. You are placing that on the same playing field as Abra (No Trade). Espeon comes in at 5, requires a backtrack, and then requires max friendship during Day. That’s a lot of babying on a mon that as you’ve stated, is a budget Alakazam.

Also we are placing a LOT of emphasis on Route Clearing which isn’t grounds for inflated Noms. (As we have Girafarig in A for that reason as it’s been mentioned twice.) Any mon in D+ can do that as the levels are so under you, it’s a joke. Even Sentret can clear a route in one of the first routes. We do Major Fights for our placements as those hold value.

Babying Mareep isn’t even really true. Sure you get Thundershock at 11, but you have Sprout Tower where the Bellsprouts there give you 53 XP. That’s a good chunk in early game. I got mine at 6. Around the last floor of Sprout Tower I had it at 11.
 
I personally would rather ignore the Pokewalker, mostly because its usefulness varies a lot for different players. Magnemite (Pokewalker) might be anywhere between A tier and C tier depending on how athletic the player is, how the player gets to school or work, the chance of getting the Pokewalker confiscated at school or work, and how much the player is allowed to leave their house during lockdown.
 
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I´m currently running a team of Ekans, Dunsparce, Onix (Rocky specifically) and Dratini. I'm going to evolve Onix once I get a metal coat. I'm also going to catch the red Gyarados to complete my little serpent theme team.

Ekans (10): outspeeds and 2HKO's Pidgey with bite. It can't break through roost spam though. Intimidate is kind of helpful to reduce damage from tackle. Mediocre matchup

Onix (10): completely walls Falkner. Onix actually can't break through roost spam by just spamming rock through, so you have to use screech a couple of times first. Great matchup.

Ekans (14): Intimidate, glare and leer offer great utility against Scyther, but that's where the good things end. Even with intimidate, Scyther 3HKO's with quick attack (2HKO if it uses leer), and Ekans' attacks do negligable damage. I guess it can handle the cocoons too, but that's hardly worth mentioning. Overall, mediocre matchup again, but its team support makes Scyther a lot less threatning to your other team members.

Onix (15): 2HKO's everything with rock throw and walls Bugsy's entire team. Easy matchup.

Dunsparce (14): also has glare support, but unlike Ekans, Dunsparce actually has the stats to back it up. It's ideal to bait Scyther into using u-turn. From there, you can set up defense curls for safety (optional) and start spamming rage against Metapod. Once rage is set up, Dunsparce can clean up. Overall, it takes hits well, has status support in glare and yawn, and it does good damage once you get rage going. Good matchup.

Ekans (17): It can beat Clefairy.... Use screech first to prevent Ekans to be affected by cute charm. It can't ever hope to beat Miltank, but it does have good team support options. With intimidate, Ekans can barely take to stomps, which means you use glare twice if you don't flinch. You can also use screech so you other mons can break through milk drink spam. So same as with Bugsy really, mediocre matchup but great support.

Onix (17): It beats Clefairy as long as it doesn't pull a water or grass type move with metronome. Onix doesn't take much damage from Miltank, but attract + flinching can prevent Onix from doing anything. To remedy this, use rock tomb first to lower Miltanks speed to prevent flinching. Use screech to break through milk drink, and use headbutt to give Miltank a taste of her own medicine. Overall, great matchup, although you might need to use a super potion depending on attract RNG.

Dunsparce (16/17): I tried three different strategies, one with rage, one with defense curl + rollout and one with glare + headbutt. The rage one doesn't have enough power to break through Miltank, so it doesn't really work. The other two strategies work well.

For all of these strategies, I started by setting up some defense curls on Clefairy. Clefairy can't really thouch you unless it uses something dumb with metronome (it used heart swap on me). After setup, use rollout to take down Clefairy. Whitney used her super potion on Clefairy, which was nice. Miltank can't breakt through Dunsparce with some defense curls up, so you're free to spam rollout for massive damage. Alternatively, you can use glare (twice) and start spamming headbutt to paraflinch hax through milk drink spam. Overall, it's a good matchup, but not entirely consistant and you might need a super potion.

Dratini (17): dragon rage is a 2HKO on both Clefairy and Miltank. Miltank outspeeds and 2HKO's with stomp though. However, my Dratini has 0 defense iv's, so I think a more sturdy Dratini with a sitrus berry and/or some extra levels could maybe survive two stomps. So then you'd be able to beat Miltank as long as you don't flinch. Overall decentish matchup.

So here are my overall thoughts so far.

Ekans: It's alright. Early game matchups are pretty rough, but it's decent outside of major fights. It's notably good in the sprout tower and in the battle vs Silver in Azalea town. I hope it will be a little more useful against the upcoming gyms, as it will be fully evolved by then. Intimidate and glare are great utility.

Onix: It beats the first three gyms solo. It also has insane bulk and bonus exp gain from trade. It's not very notable as a route cleaner though, since its attack is nothing to write home about, even this early in the game. I expect it do even better once it evolves.

Dunsparce: this little snake didn't dissapoint so far. It beat Bugsy and Whitney solo, and it has good stats for the time being. It has a very nice, albeit gimmicky movepool with really fun combinations like glare + headbutt and defense curl + rollout. Being a normal type, it has a fantastic tm movepool too, so I'm sure I'm going to have some more fun with this Pokemon. The only bad thing I can say so far is that it's kind of annoying to catch.

Dratini: I have barely used this, but I can already tell that dragon rage is insane. It OHKO's most random trainers, and it 2HKO's everything else. It also comes with thunder wave, which is nice. I can't really say much else so far because I just haven't used it that much yet.
 
Initial Morty testing saw Fearow (23) sweep through his entire team with Aerial Ace. You need a little luck not falling victim to the Hypnosis/Dream Eater combo but it's definitely doable.

Quilava (23) takes out Gastly easily with Flame Wheel so as not to waste Fire Blast HP, missed Fire Blast and came within a whisper of beating Gengar with Blaze boosted Fire Blast. Can't sweep but does fine.

Goldeen (23): One shot by Shadow Ball from Gengar. 2KOs Gastly but then Gengar came in and demolished it. God Goldeen is so bad

Flaaffy (23): Paralyzed by Lick, then misses the Charge Beam proc and gets Cursed. Then gets wrecked by Shadow Ball.

Venonat (22) One shot by Shadow Ball.

Verdict: Fearow does best due to immunity to Shadow Ball and general speed/power, Quilava is B tier due to being able to take on a couple but not sweep, Flaaffy can take on one or two but not sweep, Venonat/Goldeen are pretty useless
 
After beating Whitney, I caught a Caterpie in de bug catching contest and evolved it into butterfree. If you didn´t know, compoundeyes increases the chance of a wild Pokemon having an item. I used this trick to get a magnemite with a metal coat, and I let Onix evolve shortly after.

Arbok (22): It outspeeds and OHKO's Ghastly with crunch. Morty always sends out the Haunter with dream eater second. This Haunter is also OHKO'd by crunch, but it does outspeed. You can use a lum/chesto berry to prevent sleep from hypnosis. Gengar outspeeds and 2HKO's with shadow ball, while crunch is only a 3HKO with sitrus berry. Still, glare is really useful against Gengar, and you should be able to get at least one crunch off as well. So, no full sweep, but still a good matchup.

Steelix (22): payback OHKO's Ghastly and the Haunters, but it's a 3HKO on Gengar, just like Arbok's crunch. It rarely gets to just kill the Ghastly and the Haunters though, since they all have annoying moves like hypnosis and curse. Gengar 3HKO's with shadow ball despite the resist. Overall, I would say it's a decent matchup because nothing on Morty's team is directly threatning to Steelix' bulk, outside of shadow ball at least, and payback does high damage. Still, the matchup is very annoying and inconsistant for Steelix because it constantly gets put to sleep and curse and nightmare wear it down quickly.

Dunsparce (22): it's pretty bad against everything but Gengar, funnily enough. Against ghastly and the Haunters, it has the same problem as Steelix in that it gets haxed a lot. Gengar litterally can't touch Dunsparce though, so you're free to spam rollout there. I got a rollout going on Gengar, which then swept through the Haunters as well. In summary, it consistantly beats Gengar, but it's inconsistant against everything else.

Dratini (22):
It can beat Ghastly and possibly one of the Haunters with dragon rage. Gengar outspeeds and OHKO's it though. It's just too frail and too slow to do anything here. Bad matchup.

Arbok (29): I tried two strategies here, one with specs and one with stockpile. Both can work, but the stockpile strategy relies on getting a poison proc with sludge bomb to get around Primeape's double team, so it's not fully consistant. It's generally a safer strategy if it does work though.

Specs slugde bomb is a 2HKO on Primeape. It's a 4HKO on Poliwrath, factoring in sitrus berry. I recommend switching to a death fodder mon after beating Primeape to proc intimidate against Poliwrath. The stockpile setup takes very little damage from any attack, so you're free to spam sludge bomb. Overall, it's not a fully consistant matchup, but Arbok can definitely sweep if you need it to.

Steelix (29/30): I tried using screech + dig to OHKO Primeape, which almost worked. It left Primeape at a sliver of health, so I needed to use a rare candy to get dig to consistantly OHKO. This still doesn't actually make the fight consistant, since Steelix can always miss because of double team. Poliwrath is a no go. Overall, bad matchup.

Dunsparce (29): this Pokemon is so weird. It either dies to focus punch on turn one, or it sweeps through Chuck's entire team. It's almost impossible to say anything about how good or bad this matchup is, because it depends entirely on RNG.

If you land your glare, you can paraflinch your way to victory. This goes for both Primeape and Poliwrath, though you probably will need to use an ether on headbutt if you want to take on both. Focus punch is always a OHKO if it lands, but it rarely does and oftentimes, Chucks' mons simply won't use it. Overall, the matchup is too inconsistant for me to call it good.

Dragonair (30): Primeape seems to have 81 HP, so dragon rage just barely misses the 2HKO. This is a problem, because Dragonair definitely doesn't have the bulk to take repeated rock slides and it really can't afford to miss. Dragonair outspeeds Poliwrath though, so it's actually kind of decent against it. Dragonair can take two body slams, so you should be able to use dragon rage at least three times. Overall, it's a mediocre matchup. I haven't tested specs thunder, though if I'd have to guess, I think thunder would 2HKO Poliwrath. So that might make the matchup a bit better.

Gyarados (30): specs surf 2HKO's Primeape, but Chuck usually switches to poliwrath after the first surf. You have to switch out to a death fodder mon. This is actually not that bad, because you get to proc intimidate against Poliwrath, after which Gyarados is pretty much indestructable. You can use dragon rage to beat Poliwrath. Overall, good matchup, but Primape can be dangerous if you miss a surf. Gyarados really doesn't like taking rock slides.

Arbok (31): it beats the Magnemites with dig, obviously. Steelix is a terrible matchup, although you can make use of glare and intimidate for support. Allright matchup overall.

Steelix (30): Steelix also beats the Magnemites with dig, though they do have a chance to use sonic boom or supersonic. The opposing Steelix doesn't have a ground move, while yours does. Dig can't OHKO, even after using screech three times, but the opposing Steelix can't really touch you anyway. Good matchup.

Dunsparce (29): specs fire blast OHKO's the Magnemites. The first was slower than Dunsparce, but the second was faster for some reason, though this wasn't really a problem. Fire blast is a 2HKO on Steelix, even considering sitrus berry. Good matchup, but you do have to give up either glare or headbutt to use fire blast.

Dragonair (30): specs fire blast OHKO's the Magnemites. Steelix is a 2HKO, but it can't OHKO you back. Good matchup.

Gyarados (30): I used specs fire blast to OHKO the Magnemites again. It also 2HKO's Steelix. Good matchup as well, though you're absolutely screwed if you miss a fire blast against the Magnemites.

Overall thoughts so far:

Arbok really picked up the pace since it evolved. It has powerful moves in crunch and STAB sludge bomb. Its intimidate and glare utility are useful as ever, and it even has stockpile which can be used to tank through harder fights. Arbok's midgame was pretty good, I'd say.

Steelix has insane bulk. Its attack is still only okay after evolving though, and that coupled with its inaccurate moves and slow speed make it a quite bad route sweeper. It will never die though, which is nice. It's doing fine for the moment, but I really hope that its E4 performance will pick up the pace a little to make up for the bad route cleaning.

Dunsparce is still doing fine. It's stats still hold up, and it's matchups in the mid game were decent, though not very consistant. Serene grace headbutt and glare are still very opressive, and rollout and defense curl do massive amounts of damage in longer fights. It's route sweeping is a bit better than Steelix' thanks to slightly higher speed, a 100% accurate STAB move in headbutt and the damage multiplier of rollout. All that said, I am running into some four move slot syndrome problems. But then again, having so many useful moves is really a luxury problem in this game. If its stats hold out even longer, I can see this end up somewhere in C, I think, maybe B even. It's not nearly as bad as you would expect.

Dragonair is one of my faster pokemon, and the only full special attacker at the moment. Dragon rage doesn't OHKO much anymore, but it is still very useful. Dragonair has a colorful movepool, but most of its tm moves are unreliable. Its matchups have been so-so thus far, and considering its mediocre stats, I'm not too sure if it can hold out in the late game. We'll see; It's decent enough for now.

Gyarados is good, obviously, but its matchups aren't as consistant as I would like them to be. He also has a kind of questionable movepool for now, having to rely on dragon rage and special attacks like surf. Its stats are great though, so I'm sure it will dominate once it has ice fang and waterfall. It better dominate too, because I'm not convinced this is an S tier so far.
 

Jerry the great

Banned deucer.
Can somebody please explain why no trade evolution onix was way down in E tier in the first place? The thing kills pretty much every early game boss. I'd say it's D tier at least.

Falkner: Takes a hit and can deal one. Can easily take care of pidgey and pidgeotto.


Bugsy: Many things struggle with taking his Scyther's U-turn. But not onix! It can easily take it due to it's rock typing and massive defense, and can 2HKO/3KHO it with rock moves depending on your level. Those other two mons are essentially useless, so it easily beats those. But what doesn't honestly.


Whitney: Very little manages to beat Whitney alone. But onix can! It's rock/ground type let's it double resist rollout combined with it's defense, it's of course taking a stomp with that gargantuan defense and rock typing, and it also learns harden and screech to make it even easier! The clefairy is no issue of course, unless it gets something like a water or grass move from metronome.


Rival #2: Easily takes care of zubat, can defeat gastly easily as gastly's only real way of doing damge to onix is curse but that means sacrificing half your HP, and easily beats quilava, but the other two cause problems for it.

It also does good at the later battles as well, though not to the same extent.

Rival #3: Takes care of zubat easily, magnemite as well if you taught it the dig TM you get from national park, with gastly it's the same as before unless you get unlucky with confusion, and well always the same scenario: Don't use onix for the chikorita and totodile line, but do for the cyndaquil line.

Morty: Due to hypnosis, dream eater and shadow ball... You ain't winning against even one Mon with onix.

Chuck: NO. Don't even think about it.

Jasmine: Easily takes care of the magnemites with dig, but fighting steelix is a no go.

Proton: You can easily fight his zubat, raticate, and koffing with onix. Same goes for his later battle where you should beat at least 3 koffings or you could use it to beat the weezing.

Pryce: You can do major damage maybe, but it'll faint before it can make the opposing Mon faint.

Proton: Golbat and weezing. No issues there.

Rival #4: You're not getting much of anywhere vs your rival anymore, except the golbat and magnemite.

Ariana: You will beat murkrow and arbok unless unlucky with glare, but vileplume? NOPE!

Archer: You'd think he'd be an issue, but due to houndoom and hondour using physical attacks you can sweep him.

Past here though, onix is struggling with pretty much everything minus Silver's golbat and magneton, maybe will's xatus, Karen's murkrow, and Lance's Charizard and Aerodactyl.

So yeah it doesn't deserve to be THAT low. At least a good solid D tier. I don't want to go any higher than that just in case C tier is widely considered too high, but if you want to rank it that high I have no issues. Definitely not B, A, and ABSOLUTELY NOT S.
 
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Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Can somebody please explain why no trade evolution onix is way down in E tier? The thing kills pretty much every early game boss. I'd say it's D tier at least.
I am pretty sure Turdterra said he just copied the ranks from the previous thread. Based on logs by testers above, Onix is likely D at worst.
 

Jerry the great

Banned deucer.
I am pretty sure Turdterra said he just copied the ranks from the previous thread. Based on logs by testers above, Onix is likely D at worst.
I was perfectly aware of that when he responded to my delibird nomination for F. I was just nominating it for at least D as I felt like that's where it belonged. Glad someone agrees though
 
One thing that I was thinking of is should we tier Red Gyarados and regular magikarp/Gyarados separately? While they are the same mon, I think there are a few nuances that could affect how we tier. Magikarp needs to be babied for a while once caught, while Red Gyarados comes overleveled. Is the ability to get Gyarados without having to waste time with Magikarp that is on par or above your team worth making the distinction?

Also gonna give my quick thoughts on the other eeveelutions available. Will do a write up on them later.

Vaporeon is good. Surf is a godsend and the Pokeathalon makes stone evolutions less of a curse than in GSC. Blizzard also is a good tm, though you do get Aurora Beam leveling up. The problem is babying it a bit since coming at level 5 is rough. Still a solid water, probs a mid B tier.

Jolteon’s level up moves are trash. Outside of Thundershock you are getting nothing for a long time really since it’s physical attack is weak af. Thunder is required to using it. But having to rely on thunder alone is not something I think a high tier Pokémon should be. C tier at best, I would say D tier.

Flareon is kinda outclassed by Magmar and Arcanine. It does not get many good fire moves leveling up, and it is hard to use it’s high attack. You can use it as a bootleg normal type but idk. I do see potential here due to that. I would put it in C/D Tier and have interest in seeing it tested.

I have used Umbreon in game and it is bad. You struggle to 2hko things neutrally, sometimes even 3hko. Yes you can tank hits for days but it doesn’t matter much. Your damage output is so poor and outside of grinding to hell for Morty your matchups are weak outside of Will. And that does not include the hell that is to evolve it. E tier it is straight up trash.
 
Time to do some more responses.

Dunsparce is still doing fine. It's stats still hold up, and it's matchups in the mid game were decent, though not very consistant. Serene grace headbutt and glare are still very opressive, and rollout and defense curl do massive amounts of damage in longer fights. It's route sweeping is a bit better than Steelix' thanks to slightly higher speed, a 100% accurate STAB move in headbutt and the damage multiplier of rollout. All that said, I am running into some four move slot syndrome problems. But then again, having so many useful moves is really a luxury problem in this game. If its stats hold out even longer, I can see this end up somewhere in C, I think, maybe B even. It's not nearly as bad as you would expect.
B is prob gonna be hard to go for. The issue with Sparce is that its a 1% or 4% primarily. Granted you can get insanely lucky and find it early in. You've shown that it can just be super oppressive thanks to the infamous ParaFlinch. (Don't forget to pick up that King's Rock). From what it sounds like C might be a better fit but I have a feeling it may drop off soon in the last segment of the game. But hey, we could all be surprised by it!

Can somebody please explain why no trade evolution onix was way down in E tier in the first place? The thing kills pretty much every early game boss. I'd say it's D tier at least.
Ryota has it correct, I just copied and pasted the existing list. I've looked into the old thread and I saw no Nom for E. That may have been a personal nom. The only thing that I saw was Onix (Trade) being nommed for Low Tier. When I made the Tiers, I combined the old style of tiering (usually two each) and made the letter Tiers (S/A/B/C/D/E). As a result, Onix (No Trade) may have been inadvertanly place in E. F is only for mons who don't really offer anything. I've moved Onix (No Trade) to D. The above match ups do make sense and personally I feel E is too low for the Rock Snake.

One thing that I was thinking of is should we tier Red Gyarados and regular magikarp/Gyarados separately? While they are the same mon, I think there are a few nuances that could affect how we tier. Magikarp needs to be babied for a while once caught, while Red Gyarados comes overleveled. Is the ability to get Gyarados without having to waste time with Magikarp that is on par or above your team worth making the distinction
These are tiered separately.

Vaporeon is good. Surf is a godsend and the Pokeathalon makes stone evolutions less of a curse than in GSC. Blizzard also is a good tm, though you do get Aurora Beam leveling up. The problem is babying it a bit since coming at level 5 is rough. Still a solid water, probs a mid B tier.
I do believe that Vaporeon is a B. 5 and a timesink to get the Stone bogs it down. The old list did not weight Stones too much against the mon and we will do the same here. Blizzard should be used over Aurora Beam in all honesty, regardless of less accuracy or not. Don't forget it also gets Shadow Ball so giving it Specs would allow it to truck through A LOT of stuff. Potential A maybe?

olteon’s level up moves are trash. Outside of Thundershock you are getting nothing for a long time really since it’s physical attack is weak af. Thunder is required to using it. But having to rely on thunder alone is not something I think a high tier Pokémon should be. C tier at best, I would say D tier.
As with Vaporeon, you have Shadow Ball to use that handy Sp. Attack. You also have Charge Beam available to you if you do not want to bother with low accuracy Thunder. You could use ThunderDance but your defenses may not allow it.

Flareon is kinda outclassed by Magmar and Arcanine. It does not get many good fire moves leveling up, and it is hard to use it’s high attack. You can use it as a bootleg normal type but idk. I do see potential here due to that. I would put it in C/D Tier and have interest in seeing it tested.
I can't really say much on Flareon as I haven't used it under a testing mindset. You are correct in that it is outclassed by every Fire in the game though.

I have used Umbreon in game and it is bad. You struggle to 2hko things neutrally, sometimes even 3hko. Yes you can tank hits for days but it doesn’t matter much. Your damage output is so poor and outside of grinding to hell for Morty your matchups are weak outside of Will. And that does not include the hell that is to evolve it. E tier it is straight up trash.
Tends to happen when you try to use a critically acclaimed Stall Mon to actually attack.
 
One thing that I was thinking of is should we tier Red Gyarados and regular magikarp/Gyarados separately? While they are the same mon, I think there are a few nuances that could affect how we tier. Magikarp needs to be babied for a while once caught, while Red Gyarados comes overleveled. Is the ability to get Gyarados without having to waste time with Magikarp that is on par or above your team worth making the distinction?
These are tiered separately.
A lot of Pokemon play differently depending on how you get them. I thought we already decided to tier every fully evolved Pokemon once, unless it's a trade evolution.
I mean I'm inclined to keep them together and mention that in a writeup if there's such a big difference. At a certain point it gets absurd - do you rank route 106 Tentacool at B and route 111 Tentacool at C and route 126 Tentacool at E until the rankings are filled up completely? Do we need a writeup for each?

Personally, I think that we should take a cue from the competitive tier lists and only rank a mon once for its greatest potential. A Pokemon like Latias isn't put on the UU viability rankings more than once for different sets, but instead is ranked to its highest potential. The exception of course is for trade or split evolutions, but again we can take a cue from the competitive tier lists where different forms of a Pokemon (which is somewhat similar to our trade evolutions) are each ranked.

If Spearow when traded is S rank and when not traded is B rank, put it as S rank because that's what Spearow the Pokemon is, but in the writeup mention that it's best used as Kenya instead of wild caught.
Well, there's some precedent to this question in the RBY tier list. While this part doesn't appear on the list as it is on the main site, the expanded entries in the thread occasionally have comments like this:
Availability: Seel is catchable in the Seafoam Islands, but the best way to obtain this is from the trade on Cinnabar Island. In RB, you trade Ponyta for Seel. In Yellow, you trade Growlithe for Dewgong.
In other words, that list already assumes optimal catching points and it's probably the least likely one to see a revamp, so it'd make sense to use similar assumptions for the others.
 
Guys, we aren’t tiering Magikarp and Red Gyrados similarly. We are tiering them separately.

Calling standard-issue Magikarp an S-tier simply isn’t feasible, because of the grinding needed to get it to level 20. It starts getting okay from then on but...it’s just inefficient compared to grabbing the Red Gyrados at 30, who only needs about 14 levels overall to stay relevant endgame. Compare this to Magikarp being trained from like level 5 or 10, and I think there’s no contest why they should be given different entries.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
lemme post my logs until Pryce:

I go east first, as I have mons that can benefit from Choice Specs. I reach Petrel with the following team:

Team: Butterfree(29), Crobat(27), Girafarig(27), Slowbro(27)

Butterfree: Psybeam gets Poison-types and Silver Wind 2HKOs Raticate
Crobat: Sweeps by spamming Wing Attack. They do not threaten at all
Girafarig: Specs Psybeam 2HKOs Raticate (which 3HKOs with Crunch) and OHKOs the rest.
Slowbro: Specs Confusion 2HKOs Raticate (which 3HKOs with Crunch) and OHKOs the rest.

I don't test Ariana, as stated in OP


I do the Water trainers, Eusine, and the Gym trainers. I end up with the following team against Chuck:

Team: Butterfree(30), Girafarig(31), Crobat(30), Slowbro(30)

Butterfree: Psybeam is a 2HKO on Primeape, regardless of Specs or no, though it OHKOs with Rock Slide and is faster. It has Vital Spirit, so no Sleep Powder. Poliwrath is 5HKOed if you include Sitrus Berry, though you are faster and can just cripple it with Sleep Powder constantly. It may take some time due to Chuck healing it, but if it doesn't land Hypnosis (Surf is a 3HKO), you should be fine against Chuck. Not the most reliable matchup, regardless

Girafarig: Specs Psybeam OHKOs Primeape and 2HKOs Poliwrath even with Sitrus Berry in account. Primeape is faster, however, and its Double Team + Focus Punch can potentially punish Girafarig real hard. If you have Early Bird, Poliwrath should not be an issue.

Crobat: Wing Attack puts Primeape in red, though Rock Slide is a 2HKO and thus you may be punished hard if you miss. Wing Attack 3HKOs Poliwrath (not minding berry) and the Surf + Hypnosis tactic here can punish it badly. So, not the most reliable matchup, in all honesty

Slowbro: Specs Confusion is an OHKO on Primeape and a 2HKO on Poliwrath, not including Sitrus Berry. Unlike the others above, Slowbro doesn't get punished for missing, as most attacks don't deal much to it, though Primeape can debuff its Defense, but Poliwrath won't be expoliting that debuff, at least.


I do the Lighthouse (I didn't do it before Chuck so I can keep my levels somewhat realistic). They don't change my levels a lot, only make everything level 31. Vs Jasmine:

Team: everything is level 31

Butterfree: meh matchup. Everything 2HKOs Butterfree and it relies on sleep too much here. Unless you get an omnibuff from Silver Wind or something like this, you are not getting very far, if I have to make predictions.
Girafarig: also meh matchup. TBolt 2HKOs Girafarig, while Specs Psybeam is only a 3HKO. Steelix is... more than 6 hits so. And it has Iron Tail + Screech
Crobat: terrible matchup, it has no moves to hit anything hard. Gl winning against anything here.
Slowbro: the only one with good matchup. Specs Surf OHKOs everything. It is possible to sweep, but the first Magnemite has to TWave and not TBolt and you have to always land an attack. Though it still beats 2/3 of her team, so not a bad matchup under any circumstances.


I beat his Gym trainers and reach Pryce with the following team:

Team: Butterfree(31), Crobat(32), Girafarig(32), Slowbro(32)

Butterfree: Silver Wind is a 3HKO on Seel and you can put it to sleep with Sleep Powder. Dewgong and Piloswine take way too much time and deal heavy damage with Ice STABs.
Crobat: beats only Seel by 2HKOing with Wing Attack. Don't bother with the rest, as they are bulky and hit back hard.
Girafarig: Specs Psybeam 2HKOs Seel. Piloswine 2HKOs with Blizzard, putting you in range for its Mud Bomb, while Psybeam is around 3-4HKO without minding Sitrus Berry. Dewgong and Girafarig 3HKO each other and Girafarig relies on AI derping in order to win; if Pryce heals Dewgong after 2 hits, you basically lose if you don't heal up yourself. Specs Charge Beam, similarly, 2HKOs Seel and 3HKOs Dewgong, even after you get a boost (you need to switch out, as he sends out a Piloswine). On one hand, CBeam spam will get you SpA boosts, allowing you to overpower Dewgong if Pryce puts it in potion spam, but I missed Charge Beam so much in my tests that it was unbelievable, so I guess you also need to pray you don't miss at all. Overall, CBeam doesn't change that much the outcome of the fight
Slowbro: Confusion is a 3HKO on Seel and Surf is a 2HKO on Piloswine, even with Sitrus Berry. I didn't use Specs here in order to beat more threats without switching out. Avoid Dewgong, as it's a stalemate due to Rest and Confusion dealing too little damage.


current thoughts on members so far:

Butterfree
This thing has fallen off a bit. Not very consistent against Chuck and a bad matchup against Pryce and Jasmine doesn't help either. Honestly. it's either a D or C. I am leaning more towards C, due to the amount of utility it can provide, such as Compoundeyes Thief and 97% accuracy moves, which make it easier to catch Pokemon.

Zubat
Crobat really disappointed me with an unreliable matchup against Chuck. This version of Zubat, at least, is smelling like D-tier for now.

Girafarig
Has been doing great against Chuck. Jasmine and potentially unreliable matchup against Pryce do knock it down a bit. Next segments will determine its ranking.

Slowbro
This has been a beast since its capture. The only one on my team that didn't care about missing against Chuck, being good for Jasmine and being good for Pryce. I can see B-tier at best for this version of Slowbro, even if you were to consider the backtrack, as it also comes at a minimum of level 25, which is likely on par with your team. I am also expecting good matchups at the E4, given its typing favors it there.

slowbro.jpg


re: branching Pokemon for variations, I think it should be a case-by-case thing and any decision taken shouldn't be used as a basis for the next one. For example, I don't think we should give a tier to Blackthorn Dratini, as a simple "you can also obtain a level 15 Dratini with Extreme Speed at Dragon's Den, but it comes too late and too underleveled to be of any use" in Goldenrod Dratini's write-up will be more than enough to cover Blackthorn Dratini. If Magikarp cannot be covered in like one sentence in Red Gyarados's write-up, then perhaps they should be branched. I have used both Gyarados, but I don't remember enough to say what I really support in this case.

Also, I want to make a small note on Magnus0's tests in regards to Gyarados:

Gyarados (30): I used specs fire blast to OHKO the Magnemites again. It also 2HKO's Steelix. Good matchup as well, though you're absolutely screwed if you miss a fire blast against the Magnemites.
Did you try using Specs Surf here? Magnemite isn't really bulky on the special side, so Specs Surf should just OHKO them as well and thus not rely on the inaccurate Fire Blast.

Also, make sure you have it at level 44 by the time you reach the Elite Four. It is vital for its success there and why I believe it should be S-tier (though I'd figure you already knew this, but reminding just in case).
 
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B is prob gonna be hard to go for. The issue with Sparce is that its a 1% or 4% primarily. Granted you can get insanely lucky and find it early in. You've shown that it can just be super oppressive thanks to the infamous ParaFlinch. (Don't forget to pick up that King's Rock). From what it sounds like C might be a better fit but I have a feeling it may drop off soon in the last segment of the game. But hey, we could all be surprised by it!
You can get Dunsparce from using rock smash in the dark cave. It actually has an 80% chance when you do get an encounter, so that´s not too bad. It also shouldn´t be too far behind in levels if you get the highest level one (lv 8). I didn't find it particularly annoying to catch as to affect its rating.

So with this in mind, availability isn't really an issue. If Dunsparce performs well at the E4, I honestly think it could end up in B. Otherwise, C will probably fit it well, as you mentioned.

Did you try using Specs Surf here? Magnemite isn't really bulky on the special side, so Specs Surf should just OHKO them as well and thus not rely on the inaccurate Fire Blast.

Also, make sure you have it at level 44 by the time you reach the Elite Four. It is vital for its success there and why I believe it should be S-tier (though I'd figure you already knew this, but reminding just in case).
yeah, I did test specs surf actually. It wasn't enough to OHKO though, so that's why I had to rely on fire blast. Surf got the Magnemites in red though, so a few more levels on Gyarados would probably make this reliable.

Thanks for the reminder by the way. Though, I might have to grind a bit to get to lv 44 because I'm using five mons. I'll see how it goes.


Arbok (31): you can cheese this fight with stockpile. Seel poses no threat at all so you can freely set up three boosts. At that point, even Piloswines mud bomb doesn't deal much damage, so you can spam sludge bomb and crunch to your hearts content. Iron tail deals the most damage to Piloswine, but it's not absolutely needed. You also have to get a defense drop on Dewgong with iron tail or crunch to break through rest. Good matchup, though you'll probably need a hyper potion or two.

Dunsparce (31): It rolled through Pryce's team with rollout. The first hit on Seel doesn't do much damage, naturally. The second gets Seel in red though, which forces Pryce to use a hyper potion, and the third hit OHKO's. That means that you get to use the fourth hit on Piloswine, which OHKO's as well. The last hit absolutely decimates Dewgong. Be sure to use defense curl to double the damage of rollout. Also use a shell bell to restore enough HP from OHKO'ing Piloswine in order to survive Dewgong's attack. Overall, good matchup, though it is quite specific and very reliant on rollout not missing. Then again, I'm sure Dunsparce would be able to muddle through with glare + headbutt as well.

Steelix (31): It 3HKO's seel with headbutt. Piloswine is quite dangerous because it has mud bomb, but it is also 2HKO'd by iron tail. Dewgong can't touch Steelix, and you can use screech to break through rest spam. Overall, it's a good matchup, but a bit inconsistant thanks to Piloswine having snow cloak and mud bomb which can reduce the accuracy of the already inaccurate iron tail.

Dragonair (30): specs thunder OHKO's seel. Piloswine is much too bulky for Dragonair though, and it OHKO's with either of its ice STABS. You can do one big chunk of damage with specs surf or fire blast though. Dragonair outspeeds Dewgong and does good damage with thunder, but this speed doesn't matter because Dewgong has ice shard to get you on turn two. Not a great matchup overall.

Gyarados (31): You can use dragon rage to get past Seel. I'd recommend switching to death fodder to get to proc intimidate on Piloswine. This also allows you use specs so you can use surf, which is a 2HKO on Piloswine. You have to switch again to use dragon rage again on Dewgong. This is kind of annoying, but Piloswine would be able to outspeed you (because of icy wind) and defeat you with blizzard if you don't switch. Overall, it's a good matchup though.

Arbok (36): Gyarados has dragon rage, so you can't set up stockpile effectively. Gyarados in general is too bulky and powerful for Arbok to handle. The Dragonairs are outsped and 2HKO'd by ice fang or specs sludge bomb, and Arbok can take two dragon pulses. The only thing you can do agianst Kingdra is use glare. Overall, it's a bad matchup, but Arbok isn't entirely useless either.

Steelix (35): it can only beat Gyarados if you use death fodder AND get a quick claw proc on rock throw. The dragonairs are 2HKO'd by nevermeltice ice fang though, and Steelix is bulky enough to tank a couple of aqua tails. Kingdra always outspeeds and OHKO's with hydro pump. Overall, pretty bad.

Dunsparce (35):
you have to pick your targets a bit, but Dunsparce can beat any one of Claire's Pokemon. Gyarados can be beaten by specs thunder. My Dunsparce had 117 HP, so it could have taken 3 dragon rages with one or two extra levels. The Dragonairs are annoying because they have shed skin, so paraflinch isn't very reliable against them. You can also use specs blizzard to 2HKO them, but this isn't reliable either. Dunsparce can always survive one hydro pump from Kingdra. With a bit of luck, you can paraflinch it to death. So yeah, far from a sweep, but being able to beat Kingdra without helps is actually really impressive.

Dragonair (36): Gyarados outspeeds, but it dies to specs thunder. Specs draco meteor outspeeds and OHKO's the opposing Dragonairs. Kingdra outspeeds and OHKO's specs Dragonair with dragon pulse. However, if you use a haban berry, you can survive one dragon pulse and deal massive damage with draco meteor. So if you can put just a little bit of damage on Kingdra with a teammate, you can nuke Kingdra to bypass sitrus berry and hyper potion spam. Overall, Dragonair is really useful here.

Gyarados (35): the ditto against Gyarados isn't a fun fight because you'll both be spamming dragon rage. The matchup vs the dragonairs is much better though, as Gyarados outspeeds and 2HKO's them with ice fang. It can take two dragon pulses from Kingdra, but you don't have very strong moves to use against it. Dragon rage is a 4HKO with sitrus berry, but it also leaves Kingdra in hyper potion range. Overall, the matchup is allright. You definitely need some support and/or some healing items though.
 
You can get Dunsparce from using rock smash in the dark cave. It actually has an 80% chance when you do get an encounter, so that´s not too bad. It also shouldn´t be too far behind in levels if you get the highest level one (lv 8). I didn't find it particularly annoying to catch as to affect its rating.

So with this in mind, availability isn't really an issue. If Dunsparce performs well at the E4, I honestly think it could end up in B. Otherwise, C will probably fit it well, as you mentioned.


yeah, I did test specs surf actually. It wasn't enough to OHKO though, so that's why I had to rely on fire blast. Surf got the Magnemites in red though, so a few more levels on Gyarados would probably make this reliable.

Thanks for the reminder by the way. Though, I might have to grind a bit to get to lv 44 because I'm using five mons. I'll see how it goes.


Arbok (31): you can cheese this fight with stockpile. Seel poses no threat at all so you can freely set up three boosts. At that point, even Piloswines mud bomb doesn't deal much damage, so you can spam sludge bomb and crunch to your hearts content. Iron tail deals the most damage to Piloswine, but it's not absolutely needed. You also have to get a defense drop on Dewgong with iron tail or crunch to break through rest. Good matchup, though you'll probably need a hyper potion or two.

Dunsparce (31): It rolled through Pryce's team with rollout. The first hit on Seel doesn't do much damage, naturally. The second gets Seel in red though, which forces Pryce to use a hyper potion, and the third hit OHKO's. That means that you get to use the fourth hit on Piloswine, which OHKO's as well. The last hit absolutely decimates Dewgong. Be sure to use defense curl to double the damage of rollout. Also use a shell bell to restore enough HP from OHKO'ing Piloswine in order to survive Dewgong's attack. Overall, good matchup, though it is quite specific and very reliant on rollout not missing. Then again, I'm sure Dunsparce would be able to muddle through with glare + headbutt as well.

Steelix (31): It 3HKO's seel with headbutt. Piloswine is quite dangerous because it has mud bomb, but it is also 2HKO'd by iron tail. Dewgong can't touch Steelix, and you can use screech to break through rest spam. Overall, it's a good matchup, but a bit inconsistant thanks to Piloswine having snow cloak and mud bomb which can reduce the accuracy of the already inaccurate iron tail.

Dragonair (30): specs thunder OHKO's seel. Piloswine is much too bulky for Dragonair though, and it OHKO's with either of its ice STABS. You can do one big chunk of damage with specs surf or fire blast though. Dragonair outspeeds Dewgong and does good damage with thunder, but this speed doesn't matter because Dewgong has ice shard to get you on turn two. Not a great matchup overall.

Gyarados (31): You can use dragon rage to get past Seel. I'd recommend switching to death fodder to get to proc intimidate on Piloswine. This also allows you use specs so you can use surf, which is a 2HKO on Piloswine. You have to switch again to use dragon rage again on Dewgong. This is kind of annoying, but Piloswine would be able to outspeed you (because of icy wind) and defeat you with blizzard if you don't switch. Overall, it's a good matchup though.

Arbok (36): Gyarados has dragon rage, so you can't set up stockpile effectively. Gyarados in general is too bulky and powerful for Arbok to handle. The Dragonairs are outsped and 2HKO'd by ice fang or specs sludge bomb, and Arbok can take two dragon pulses. The only thing you can do agianst Kingdra is use glare. Overall, it's a bad matchup, but Arbok isn't entirely useless either.

Steelix (35): it can only beat Gyarados if you use death fodder AND get a quick claw proc on rock throw. The dragonairs are 2HKO'd by nevermeltice ice fang though, and Steelix is bulky enough to tank a couple of aqua tails. Kingdra always outspeeds and OHKO's with hydro pump. Overall, pretty bad.

Dunsparce (35): you have to pick your targets a bit, but Dunsparce can beat any one of Claire's Pokemon. Gyarados can be beaten by specs thunder. My Dunsparce had 117 HP, so it could have taken 3 dragon rages with one or two extra levels. The Dragonairs are annoying because they have shed skin, so paraflinch isn't very reliable against them. You can also use specs blizzard to 2HKO them, but this isn't reliable either. Dunsparce can always survive one hydro pump from Kingdra. With a bit of luck, you can paraflinch it to death. So yeah, far from a sweep, but being able to beat Kingdra without helps is actually really impressive.

Dragonair (36): Gyarados outspeeds, but it dies to specs thunder. Specs draco meteor outspeeds and OHKO's the opposing Dragonairs. Kingdra outspeeds and OHKO's specs Dragonair with dragon pulse. However, if you use a haban berry, you can survive one dragon pulse and deal massive damage with draco meteor. So if you can put just a little bit of damage on Kingdra with a teammate, you can nuke Kingdra to bypass sitrus berry and hyper potion spam. Overall, Dragonair is really useful here.

Gyarados (35): the ditto against Gyarados isn't a fun fight because you'll both be spamming dragon rage. The matchup vs the dragonairs is much better though, as Gyarados outspeeds and 2HKO's them with ice fang. It can take two dragon pulses from Kingdra, but you don't have very strong moves to use against it. Dragon rage is a 4HKO with sitrus berry, but it also leaves Kingdra in hyper potion range. Overall, the matchup is allright. You definitely need some support and/or some healing items though.
Yeah, that's my bad on Sparce. Someone told me after I posted that it was 80% after Violet City.
 
Guys, we aren’t tiering Magikarp and Red Gyrados similarly. We are tiering them separately.

Calling standard-issue Magikarp an S-tier simply isn’t feasible, because of the grinding needed to get it to level 20. It starts getting okay from then on but...it’s just inefficient compared to grabbing the Red Gyrados at 30, who only needs about 14 levels overall to stay relevant endgame. Compare this to Magikarp being trained from like level 5 or 10, and I think there’s no contest why they should be given different entries.
So we're going to have different entries for Primo's Mareep and Route 44 Heracross just because they require a lot more grinding than Route 32 Mareep and Azalea Town Heracross? I'm not saying that they're similar. One method is obviously the best, and that should let us ignore the worse methods.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Thanks for the reminder by the way. Though, I might have to grind a bit to get to lv 44 because I'm using five mons. I'll see how it goes.
if you need some levels, you can get around 10(?) Rare Candies across the whole Johto region.
has all of them (keep in mind the dude forgot to put the Lake of Rage one, I can provide you with a screenshot of the location if you don't know where it is). Around 2-3 require backtracking or sidetracking (I never take the one from Mt. Mortar anyways, but if you want to, nothing is stopping you from doing it) and they are not huge one anyways. Note that Victory Road and the Indigo Plateau also have one Rare Candy each.

Also, I am posting to say I just realized Girafarig learns Charge Beam by TM. If I have a state (I think I have one), I will redo the Girafarig test against Prcyce and see how it performs and edit it in my previous post.

edit: had some more time so I did Rocket Tower

I reach Petrel with the following team:

Team: Butterfree(33), Crobat(34), Girafarig(33), Slowbro(33)

Butterfree: Specs Psybeam OHKOs the Koffing and 2HKOs Weezing. Easy matchup
Crobat: Return is a 2HKO on every Koffing, but Smokescreen makes this fight really... tedious.
Girafarig: Specs Psybeam outspeeds and OHKOs everything. Flawless matchup
Slowbro: Specs Confusion OHKOs everything. You outspeed the Koffing, but not Weezing, which can Smokescreen you. Other than that, solid matchup


levels are the same, but Slowbro is level 34.

Butterfree: Psybeam 2HKOs Golbat, but Golbat is faster and can confuse and 2HKO with Air Cutter, so you need some AI derping and Sleep Powder luck. Haunter is outsped and 2HKOed by Psybem. Sneasel and Butterfree 2HKO each other (Butterfree uses Silver Wind) but since Sneasel is faster, you need another Sleep Powder.
Crobat: Return 2HKOs Golbat and Sneasel. Bite OHKOs Haunter. Gatr generally wins due to it being too damaged and Magnemite is a hassle to get through.
Girafarig: Specs Psybeam OHKOs Haunter and Golbat. Specs Charge Beam 2HKOs Gatr if you get a boost on the first hit. Magnemite is 2HKOed by Specs Psybeam. Sneasel 2HKOs with Faint Attack and is faster.
Slowbro: Specs Confusion OHKOs Haunter and Golbat and 2HKOs Magnemite, whose Spark deals less damage than Sonic Boom... Sneasel can be 2HKOed with Specs Surf. Meganium would not be a good matchup and I'd assume Quilava is easily taken care of with Surf. His Feraligatr has Crunch and may finish off Slowbro if it's too damaged.


Team: Butterfree(35), Crobat(34), Girafarig(35), Slowbro(35)

Butterfree: Specs Psybeam OHKOs Golbat on rolls and 2HKOs Weezing. Takes heavy damage from Wing Attack, though
Crobat: Return 2HKOs Golbat and 4HKOs Weezing, though Weezing doesn't threaten Crobat with low damage output so
Girafarig: Outspeeds and OHKOs everything with Specs Psybeam.
Slowbro: Specs Confusion OHKOs everything.


Everything is level 35

Butterfree: Psybeam 2HKOs Arbok and you outspeed, so you can put it to sleep. Murkrow is 2HKOed by Silver Wind, but outspeeds and deals heavy damage with Wing Attack, so you need to put it to sleep. Vileplume is 3HKOed by Psybeam and also has to be put to sleep if you are too weakened.
Crobat: hassle to beat Arbok, because of Intimidate + Glare, but it beats Vileplume and Murkrow with no problems.
Girafarig:<br />
Slowbro: Specs Confusion OHKOs Arbok and 2HKOs Vileplume, though the latter doesn't deal a lot with Mega Drain. Murkrow is OHKOed by Specs Surf, but you have to switch.


same levels

Butterfree: beats Koffing, but struggles with Houndour unless you put it to sleep.
Crobat: Return 2HKOs Houndour and 3HKOs the rest, though Houndoom may beat you if you are weakened
Girafarig: Stomp outspeeds and 2HKOs Houndour and Psybeam deals with Koffing.
Slowbro: Specs Surf OHKOs Houndour line, but you barely survive their attacks. If Koffing derps and uses Tackle, you can also OHKO it.
 
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Would it be worth differentiating between Pokémon you shouldn't catch in their pre-evolved forms?

Catching a wild Slowbro isn't a massive backtrack and generally worth it as it's still got Chuck, Jasmine's Steelix, Pryce and the Rocket battles where it finds worthiness but I'd not spend any time at all trying to train it up from a Slowpoke because it's got awful Special Attack, it's slow as hell and it evolves far too late in Johto. I.e. I'd rank Slowbro caught wild as potentially C, but Slowpoke I'd have down in E maybe even F.

I'm trying to think if there's any others for what it's worth where the time spent babying the pre-evo really hampers the impact of the final stage and that it'd be easier to delay until the wild version is catchable. Magikarp perhaps?
 
Currently up to Azalea Town. Team right now is Croconaw 18, Slugma 18, Flaffy 16
I am gonna for the main part of this test focusing on Slugma. Everyone and their mother has used Ampharos in this game and we all can agree Totodile is amazing this gen. As such, I think it is best to focus on Slugma for the time being and other mons I test. I will obviously bring up Feraligatr and Ampharos and their performances, but relaying my experiences on those is not as impactful as I think it will be on less tested mons.

Slugma: Against the Rockets and routes so far, Slugma has done...alright. Its Ember hits hard enough and Rock Throw help it through, but already this thing is kinda frail. 40/40/40 is not anything to write home about, and evolving it is going to be a nightmare I worry. If I am worrying about its bulk now, when everything else begins to evolve and get harder stronger better faster it does not look too good for Slugma.

Anywho, Bugsy. Slugma kinda killed it here. Granted, mine had Flame Body, which is far better than Magma Armor in game. I got lucky and Scyther got burned. I did a refight without the burn and it does ok. Ember and Rock Throw both 2hko/3hko Scyther, and U turn is at worst a 3hko/4hko. So far it is doing its job, but I just worry about dragging this thing through Johto unevolved. I will resist the temptation to use all my rare candies on this thing.

Flaffy: Yeah it is doing Flaffy things. It hits hard enough and is bulky enough. I would say it is A/B tier at least from past experiences, and still arguably the most consistent electric type.

Croconaw: HGSS is so easy to Totodile, you kinda just do not face many strong Grass and Electric mons...ever outside of your rival. At worst its coverage on things you beat. Croconaw has consistently muscled its way through everything in its path. Still an easy S tier.

As for tiering things apart, I think there are a few situations in which we should tier apart. First, split evolutions. I know this might sound like a no brainer, but Vileplume and Bellosom for instance are not necessarily going to give the player the same journey going through the game. This really only affects a handful of pokemon, so I doubt it will be too much of a slippery slope. This basically only applies to Slowpoke, Poliwag, Oddish, and Eevee.

The other thing is specific encounters. Tiering Kenya and the Red Gyarados apart makes some sense since instead of advising someone to wait to catch something on another route so to say, it is a one time encounter sort of deal. The difference between saying Kenya and Red are S and Spearow and Gyara are B/A and Tentacool on one route and Tentacruel on another is that this is a clear fine line of a single encounter. Kenya has a clear bonus of being traded and Red Gyara does not ever need to be babied. The circumstances around these two imo are distinct enough that I would be fine with them being tiered separately. Heck, I would even be ok with writing up the separate analysis for the two!


Anywho, some misc noms that I think would not be too controversial and not require extensive testing.

Tyrogue and all its split evolutions to E: Literally eleventh hour when you can get it, it is super underleveled and requires a ton of babying.

Ledyba to E/F. I guess in theory you could deal damage with U Turn, but when your base Attack is 35, Special Attack is 55, and have a movepool that bad, you deserve the honor of worst bug type in the game.

Spinarack to E/F. Night Shade early on at least makes it deal damage unlike Ledyba. Too bad it also is frail and its level up movepool is lacking. It can't even use U Turn.

Deliberd to F: Requires either breeding or a ton of tms to not be a gimmick.

Smeargle to F. I mean, if you really want to catch Entei and Raikou...

Speaking of Entei and Raikou, where we gonna tier them? If anyone has any experience first hand using them in game lmk,
 
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