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

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
I want to only to add a bit more to the discussion, that all of those Pokemon are going to be written up eventually and thus, in order to be published on the website, they have to:

a) be quality controlled (and fact-checked, but that's part of QC)
b) have their grammar and prose checked (twice) in order to satisfy Smogon's spelling and grammar standards.

And with that said, by the time of writing this post, the GP team is currently suffering a shortage of active contributors, so, ideally, the amount of write-ups should be reduced to minimum and, therefore, should be the amount of cases where we tier variations of Pokemon based on availability. This is why I am against tiering Blackthorn Dratini and similar things, because it's better to reduce the workload, especially when one of the two C&C areas isn't doing well with the amount of active contributors. This is why I suggested to not branch those Pokemon (like Dratini) if you can just fit them with one sentence into the better version's write-up
 
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?
Okay, I'm gonna address both of these.

Primo Egg versus Mareep: This shouldn't ever be a distinction. There is simply no need to hatch an Egg as opposed to catching one normally, considering both come in at the same time. Same with Wooper, as clock manipulation is allowed. The only thing Primo matters for is Slugma as you literally cannot catch it in Johto. Even then Slugma is so awful (I've actually used one) it will be lucky if it's not a E. I may have not tried Fire Blast but I just don't see ANY reason you should go Slugma over one of the Fire types post-Goldenrod.

Heracross: This is going to be caught at the earliest opportunity (read: Azalea Town, so minor backtracking). Don't see any reason why you would wanna miss Whitney.

Slowpoke line: Slowpoke itself is likely not being tiered, instead it is likely being tiered assuming you are catching Slowbro and Slowing later post-Morty. They will be deemed as Slowpoke (Slowbro) and Slowpoke (Slowking). Early Slowpoke when you get it pre-Bugsy is painful (you get Water Gun at 11 and Confusion at 15, but neither hit hard due to Slowpoke's 45 Special Attack - even Chikorita hits harder).


I want to only to add a bit more to the discussion, that all of those Pokemon are going to be written up eventually and thus, in order to be published on the website, they have to:

a) be quality controlled (and fact-checked, but that's part of QC)
b) have their grammar and prose checked (twice) in order to satisfy Smogon's spelling and grammar standards.

And with that said, by the time of writing this post, the GP team is currently suffering a shortage of active contributors, so, ideally, the amount of write-ups should be reduced to minimum and, therefore, should be the amount of cases where we tier variations of Pokemon based on availability. This is why I am against tiering Blackthorn Dratini and similar things, because it's better to reduce the workload, especially when one of the two C&C areas isn't doing well with the amount of active contributors. This is why I suggested to not branch those Pokemon (like Dratini) if you can just fit them with one sentence into the better version's write-up
Echoing this. If we can, let's try and keep these entires as concise and unbranched as possible. QCing and GPing does take a lot of time (it took Ryota and I literal months to have BW1 approved).
 
Speaking of Entei and Raikou, where we gonna tier them? If anyone has any experience first hand using them in game lmk,
Don't use Entei. You have better Fires available to you anyway. Entei is shafted by its stats really. I'm not saying that his Sp. Attack is bad, but almost every other Fire type has a higher Sp. Attack and can use the moves better than Entei. As for Raikou, that's a pretty good mon. The issue with it is the roaming aspect. It requires Shadow Ball, ThunderDance, Charge Beam. So I could see C at the lowest for it. It is worth noting you can get Quick Balls from the lottery.
 
I want to only to add a bit more to the discussion, that all of those Pokemon are going to be written up eventually and thus, in order to be published on the website, they have to:

a) be quality controlled (and fact-checked, but that's part of QC)
b) have their grammar and prose checked (twice) in order to satisfy Smogon's spelling and grammar standards.

And with that said, by the time of writing this post, the GP team is currently suffering a shortage of active contributors, so, ideally, the amount of write-ups should be reduced to minimum and, therefore, should be the amount of cases where we tier variations of Pokemon based on availability. This is why I am against tiering Blackthorn Dratini and similar things, because it's better to reduce the workload, especially when one of the two C&C areas isn't doing well with the amount of active contributors. This is why I suggested to not branch those Pokemon (like Dratini) if you can just fit them with one sentence into the better version's write-up
Fair enough. Will do sample write ups for Spearow and Gyarados with that in Mind.




Gyarados to S

Availability
: Magikarp can be found as early you get the Old Rod but doing this means you have to baby Magikarp around until level 20. The Red Gyarados comes in at level 30 mid way through the game at the Lake of Rage. This is objectively the stronger version of the Pokemon, so keep that in mind when considering it for your team.
Stats: Magikarp is awful. Gyarados however has amazing stats across the board. It's lowest stat is its special attack, which is still decent at 60 for the early game. Gyarados has outstanding bulk and power and an amazing ability in Intimidate.
Typing: Magikarp is pure Water, while Gyarados is Water and Flying. That Flying Stab will not be used in game, but does help defensively.
Movepool: Magikarp is useless with Splash until level 15 where it gets Tackle. Once it evolves at Level 20 Gyarados gets Bite. Dragon Rage at 23 will basically 2HKO for most of the mid game. Gyarados learns Leer at 26 and Twister at Level 29. The Red Gyarados comes with all of the past four moves. Ice Fang at 32 is amazing, and will help you deal with Dragons later in the game while being good coverage. Aqua Tail at 35 is a good STAB option to use Physically. Rain Dance and Hydro Pump come at 38 and 41 respectively. The real kicker is Dragon Dance at 44, which boosts Gyarados's Attack and Speed and lets it singlehandedly sweep the Elite 4. TM and HM Wise Surf can be used on Gyarados but comes from its less powerful Special Attack. Waterfall however will be your main Stab once it is obtained.
Major battles:
Bugsy: The first three gym leaders assume that you did choose to raise Magikarp up. Outside of switching in to gain exp, Magikarp is close to useless in this gym. If your Magikarp has Tackle it can take on Metapod and maybe Kakuna if it does not get poisoned. You will never beat Scyther.
Whitney: Magikarp is useless here. If you do have Gyarados though it does strongly here. If your Gyarados is Female, the only concerns you should have against Miltank is Rollout and flinches. You are very bulky and Intimidate does weaken Miltank a lot.
Morty: Bite Gyarados can take on everything here. It does get outsped due to how fast Gengar and Haunter are, but it has the power to quickly take them down and eat a shadow ball if needed.
Chuck: From this point onward, you have access to the Red Gyarados. It will preform the same except it is probably higher level. Gyarados resists both Primeape and Poliwrath's fighting STAB. Watch out for Primeape's Rock Slide and Poliwrath's Water Absorb.
Jasmine: Do not send Gyarados out against the Magnemites. Against Steelix you can kill it faster than it kills you with Surf or Aqua Tail.
Pryce: While Gyarados does not resist Ice Beam, it is bulky enough to tank any hits needed and attempt to muscle through with Bite and Dragon Rage if it still has it.
Clair: Ice Fang and your massive stats let you tank any hits that would come your way. It is advised not to lead with it against her own Gyarados due to its own Intimidate. The only real cause for alarm is Kingdra, who quadruple resists your Water attacks and can spam Smokescreen. You still are strong enough physically to push onward with Ice Fang.
Will: Dragon Dance up on his lead and click Bite.
Koga: Dragon Dance up on his lead and click Waterfall
Bruno: Dragon Dance up and click Waterfall again
Karen: Dragon Dance up and click Waterfall and Ice Fang
Lance: I think there might be a pattern here. DD up and click Ice Fang and Waterfall.
Additional Notes: If you are not using the Red Gyarados, it makes an amazing HM Slave. It's access to Surf, Strength, Rock Smash, Whirlpool, and Waterfall make it a strong HM Slave to help get around Johto.




Spearow to S
Availability
: Spearow can be found as early as Route 33, but it is advised you speak to the guard outside of Goldenrod City on Route 35. He gives you his Spearow, Kenya, hoping that you will get his friend on Route 31. This man will accept the letter on any Pokemon and not keep them if they are not Kenya, so feel free to add Kenya to your team! Kenya comes with a trade bonus of exp and at level 20, making it quite strong and close to evolving!
Stats: Solid offensive stats. In game that attack and speed is decent enough. Bulk wise it leaves some room to be desired, but is still passable.
Typing: Normal Flying is good in game, since there are so few Rock and Steel types to resist your main stab.
Movepool: Kenya will come with Leer, Fury Attack, Aerial Ace, and Pursuit. Leveling it up one level causes it to Learn Mirror Move and evolve. From there, the only stand out moves are Assurance at 35, Roost at 41 (which you have the TM for), and Drill Peck at 47. TM wise, Spearow is an amazing choice for Return, since it gives it an amazing normal STAB. Fly can be used to give Spearow another STAB option besides Aerial Ace. U-Turn is decent coverage if needed. Steel Wing is also decent but it comes too late to really be useful.
Major battles:
Bugsy: This is the only fight without Kenya. Spearow needs to grind a bit since it only comes at level 6, but it does decently against Bugsy. Scyther hits hard but it is still manageable.
Whitney: Kenya is always a female, so there is no Attract shenanigans. Clefairy is easy provided it does not get lucky with Metronome. Miltank though is a different beast. Even when evolved Kenya will have issues here, since Miltank is so bulky and has Rollout.
Morty: Your normal type will make it so Morty does not spam Shadow Ball, letting you have a strong matchup. Just make sure to switch when he Curses Kenya.
Chuck: Aerial Ace does good work here. However, both mons have their own tricks up their sleeve to deal with you. Primeape's Rock Slide is dangerous, while Poliwrath's Hypnosis is a death sentence. Keep in mind that you do not resist their Fighting STAB as well.
Jasmine: Kenya ain't doing jack here.
Pryce: While you deal good damage with Return, Pryce can easily 2hko you at worst with Dewgong and Pilowsine.
Clair: Do not lead against Gyarados. That Intimidate will make Kenya so much weaker. Kenya can easily take on the Dragonairs, although being parylyzed is annoying. Kingdra is interesting, as Aerial Ace does help you avoid her inevitable Smokescrean, but her Hydro Pump and Dragon Pulse will be devastating for you.
Will: Your weak Assurance is not going to sweep him. You can easily beat everything but Slowbro by just clicking Return and your STAB against Exeggutor.
Koga: Stab spam again, just watch out for Forretress. Crobat also has the dubious honor of being one of the few pokemon that reliably outspeeds you.
Bruno: Against everything except Steelix you should do well provided you are not super underleveled. Just click your stab and clean house.
Karen: Stab spam works ok here. Gengar and Vileplume are your best matchups.
Lance: You will not 1v1 any of the Dragonites. You only can beat Charizard.
Additional Notes: If you choose to use non Kenya Spearow, be advised it is weaker and does not have that sweet trade bonus exp. Kenya is an outstanding Route clearer as well.


Ryota Mitarai that look good?

BTW here is what imo the S Tier should look like

Totodile
Gyarados
Cyndaquil
Alakazam
Heracross
Spearow
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
Fair enough. Will do sample write ups for Spearow and Gyarados with that in Mind.


well, other than the fact this has to be shortened a lot when we get to write-up phases, I was meaning more to put the notes in Additional Comments. So your AC would include:

Additional Comments: You can also catch a Magikarp with an Old Rod almost anywhere, as normal Gyarados does well against Whitney and Morty, but requires a lot of effort to evolve and thus will take away a lot of experience from your teammates.

You can also apply similar thing to Spearow (though I do question the nomination to S, I have used it and it's not even that close to A, in all honesty, but I'd need to check my logs to see how it performed).
 
Fair enough. Will do sample write ups for Spearow and Gyarados with that in Mind.




Gyarados to S

Availability
: Magikarp can be found as early you get the Old Rod but doing this means you have to baby Magikarp around until level 20. The Red Gyarados comes in at level 30 mid way through the game at the Lake of Rage. This is objectively the stronger version of the Pokemon, so keep that in mind when considering it for your team.
Stats: Magikarp is awful. Gyarados however has amazing stats across the board. It's lowest stat is its special attack, which is still decent at 60 for the early game. Gyarados has outstanding bulk and power and an amazing ability in Intimidate.
Typing: Magikarp is pure Water, while Gyarados is Water and Flying. That Flying Stab will not be used in game, but does help defensively.
Movepool: Magikarp is useless with Splash until level 15 where it gets Tackle. Once it evolves at Level 20 Gyarados gets Bite. Dragon Rage at 23 will basically 2HKO for most of the mid game. Gyarados learns Leer at 26 and Twister at Level 29. The Red Gyarados comes with all of the past four moves. Ice Fang at 32 is amazing, and will help you deal with Dragons later in the game while being good coverage. Aqua Tail at 35 is a good STAB option to use Physically. Rain Dance and Hydro Pump come at 38 and 41 respectively. The real kicker is Dragon Dance at 44, which boosts Gyarados's Attack and Speed and lets it singlehandedly sweep the Elite 4. TM and HM Wise Surf can be used on Gyarados but comes from its less powerful Special Attack. Waterfall however will be your main Stab once it is obtained.
Major battles:
Bugsy: The first three gym leaders assume that you did choose to raise Magikarp up. Outside of switching in to gain exp, Magikarp is close to useless in this gym. If your Magikarp has Tackle it can take on Metapod and maybe Kakuna if it does not get poisoned. You will never beat Scyther.
Whitney: Magikarp is useless here. If you do have Gyarados though it does strongly here. If your Gyarados is Female, the only concerns you should have against Miltank is Rollout and flinches. You are very bulky and Intimidate does weaken Miltank a lot.
Morty: Bite Gyarados can take on everything here. It does get outsped due to how fast Gengar and Haunter are, but it has the power to quickly take them down and eat a shadow ball if needed.
Chuck: From this point onward, you have access to the Red Gyarados. It will preform the same except it is probably higher level. Gyarados resists both Primeape and Poliwrath's fighting STAB. Watch out for Primeape's Rock Slide and Poliwrath's Water Absorb.
Jasmine: Do not send Gyarados out against the Magnemites. Against Steelix you can kill it faster than it kills you with Surf or Aqua Tail.
Pryce: While Gyarados does not resist Ice Beam, it is bulky enough to tank any hits needed and attempt to muscle through with Bite and Dragon Rage if it still has it.
Clair: Ice Fang and your massive stats let you tank any hits that would come your way. It is advised not to lead with it against her own Gyarados due to its own Intimidate. The only real cause for alarm is Kingdra, who quadruple resists your Water attacks and can spam Smokescreen. You still are strong enough physically to push onward with Ice Fang.
Will: Dragon Dance up on his lead and click Bite.
Koga: Dragon Dance up on his lead and click Waterfall
Bruno: Dragon Dance up and click Waterfall again
Karen: Dragon Dance up and click Waterfall and Ice Fang
Lance: I think there might be a pattern here. DD up and click Ice Fang and Waterfall.
Additional Notes: If you are not using the Red Gyarados, it makes an amazing HM Slave. It's access to Surf, Strength, Rock Smash, Whirlpool, and Waterfall make it a strong HM Slave to help get around Johto.




Spearow to S
Availability
: Spearow can be found as early as Route 33, but it is advised you speak to the guard outside of Goldenrod City on Route 35. He gives you his Spearow, Kenya, hoping that you will get his friend on Route 31. This man will accept the letter on any Pokemon and not keep them if they are not Kenya, so feel free to add Kenya to your team! Kenya comes with a trade bonus of exp and at level 20, making it quite strong and close to evolving!
Stats: Solid offensive stats. In game that attack and speed is decent enough. Bulk wise it leaves some room to be desired, but is still passable.
Typing: Normal Flying is good in game, since there are so few Rock and Steel types to resist your main stab.
Movepool: Kenya will come with Leer, Fury Attack, Aerial Ace, and Pursuit. Leveling it up one level causes it to Learn Mirror Move and evolve. From there, the only stand out moves are Assurance at 35, Roost at 41 (which you have the TM for), and Drill Peck at 47. TM wise, Spearow is an amazing choice for Return, since it gives it an amazing normal STAB. Fly can be used to give Spearow another STAB option besides Aerial Ace. U-Turn is decent coverage if needed. Steel Wing is also decent but it comes too late to really be useful.
Major battles:
Bugsy: This is the only fight without Kenya. Spearow needs to grind a bit since it only comes at level 6, but it does decently against Bugsy. Scyther hits hard but it is still manageable.
Whitney: Kenya is always a female, so there is no Attract shenanigans. Clefairy is easy provided it does not get lucky with Metronome. Miltank though is a different beast. Even when evolved Kenya will have issues here, since Miltank is so bulky and has Rollout.
Morty: Your normal type will make it so Morty does not spam Shadow Ball, letting you have a strong matchup. Just make sure to switch when he Curses Kenya.
Chuck: Aerial Ace does good work here. However, both mons have their own tricks up their sleeve to deal with you. Primeape's Rock Slide is dangerous, while Poliwrath's Hypnosis is a death sentence. Keep in mind that you do not resist their Fighting STAB as well.
Jasmine: Kenya ain't doing jack here.
Pryce: While you deal good damage with Return, Pryce can easily 2hko you at worst with Dewgong and Pilowsine.
Clair: Do not lead against Gyarados. That Intimidate will make Kenya so much weaker. Kenya can easily take on the Dragonairs, although being parylyzed is annoying. Kingdra is interesting, as Aerial Ace does help you avoid her inevitable Smokescrean, but her Hydro Pump and Dragon Pulse will be devastating for you.
Will: Your weak Assurance is not going to sweep him. You can easily beat everything but Slowbro by just clicking Return and your STAB against Exeggutor.
Koga: Stab spam again, just watch out for Forretress. Crobat also has the dubious honor of being one of the few pokemon that reliably outspeeds you.
Bruno: Against everything except Steelix you should do well provided you are not super underleveled. Just click your stab and clean house.
Karen: Stab spam works ok here. Gengar and Vileplume are your best matchups.
Lance: You will not 1v1 any of the Dragonites. You only can beat Charizard.
Additional Notes: If you choose to use non Kenya Spearow, be advised it is weaker and does not have that sweet trade bonus exp. Kenya is an outstanding Route clearer as well.


Ryota Mitarai that look good?

BTW here is what imo the S Tier should look like

Totodile
Gyarados
Cyndaquil
Alakazam
Heracross
Spearow
I have no issues Gyarados. What I do have issues with is Kenya, Quil, and Dile. Those are not S mons. Kenya by far being the weakest candidate for S of these Noms. Trade XP is nice, but at the same time, Muscle is earlier, is also female for Whitney, and had Foresight for Morty. So, by this logic, Muscle is also S. Which it is not.

You should not have a level 47 Fearow anyway, making Drill Peck almost unobtainable for E4. It's just way too high and requires a lot of grinding even with 4 mons. The bare minimum that you should be at is 42-44. You have 10 free Candies. Ryota provided the location for them. Being on par with Lance is almost an impossibility.

Once again, Route Clearing is not grounds for inflated noms such as Kenya. Every mon can do this, so it is not unique to Kenya.

Dile and Quil are under retests to see if they truly belong in S. If you've got logs or any past tests, feel free to post them so that we can use those in consideration to their placement.
 
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I have no issues Gyarados. What I do have issues with is Kenya, Quil, and Dile. Those are not S mons. Kenya by far being the weakest candidate for S of these Noms. Trade XP is nice, but at the same time, Muscle is earlier, is also female for Whitney, and had Foresight for Morty. So, by this logic, Muscle is also S. Which it is not.

You should not have a level 47 Fearow anyway, making Drill Peck almost unobtainable for E4. It's just way too high and requires a lot of grinding even with 4 mons. The bare minimum that you should be at is 42-44. You have 10 free Candies. Ryota provided the location for them. Being on par with Lance is almost an impossibility.

Once again, Route Clearing is not grounds for inflated noms such as Kenya. Every mon can do this, so it is not unique to Kenya.

Dile and Quil are under retests to see if they truly belong in S. If you've got logs or any past tests, feel free to post them so that we can use those in consideration to their placement.
In terms of thorough logs, I do not have any on me. But I have played through the game a dozen times and can say that Feraligatr belongs in S at the bare minimum. Its basically Gyarados with no bad period. You do not get the sheer highs of Gyarados DD ing through the Elite 4 but you get what is hands down the best mon you can get in the early game. Nothing compares until Abra and Magikarp evolve outside of Heracross. It can do work in any gym no matter what due to its solid bulk and power. Effectively, you trade some of the sheer stats Gyara has for ease of access. I never have been let down by Totodile, it has had a strong performance every one of the dozen times I have used it. The only real downside is that Gyara stacks weaknesses. And that is it. There is basically no opportunity cost to using this thing other than not being able to use Quil and making Gyara a shakier pick. I can elaborate further on this thing if needed.

Cyndaquill is a bit harder to say. On one hand, it is the best Fire type available, Charcoal Fire Blast is a nuke and a half for the early game, and it does well enough in most major fights outside of Clair and Lance. But if Route clearing is not on the table then its a bit shakier. Part of what makes cyndaquil so good is that spamming Charcoal flame wheel for the mid game is just so solid. I guess for me it teeters on the lower end of S as a result.

Kenya is probably A tier, my logs from last time were probs a bit too favorable towards it. A tier though for sure, Return spam is just so solid.

I guess here is how I would tier my list if I was pressed.

S for sure
Totodile
Gyarados
Heracross (seriously this thing is amazing throughout the whole game and puts in work in almost every fight)
Abra

Low S/Top of A
Cyndaquill

A
Kenya
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
final logs of my run:

Team: Butterfree(37), Crobat(37), Girafarig(37), Slowbro(38)

Butterfree: bad matchup. Everything takes little from its moves and you need to be extremely lucky with Sleep Powder. Not to mention the Dragonair have Shed Skin
Crobat: bad matchup. Just Return is 3HKO on Dragonair and they hit hard and paralyze you too. You are unlikely to beat anything here.
Girafarig: Gyarados outspeeds it and 2HKOs with Bite. Specs Psychic 2HKOs Dragonairs, but they 2HKO with Dragon Pulse, so you are likely taking down only one.
Slowbro: Specs Blizzard OHKOs Dragonair, if it hits. Unlike Slowking, Slowbro is 3HKOed by Kingdra's Dragon Pulse, so Slowking is better here.


Team: Butterfree(39), Crobat(40), Girafarig(40), Slowbro(40)

Butterfree: Sneasel and Butterfree 2HKO each other. Magneton and Gatr beat this, unless you muscle through with Sleep + attacks. Golbat and Haunter outspeed it and are only 2HKOed by Psybeam. It does deal with Kadabra, though.
Crobat: Return 3HKOs Golbat and 2HKOs Sneasel, while Bite deals with Haunter and Kadabra.
Girafarig: Specs Psychic OHKOs Golbat and Haunter. Stomp deals with Kadabra if healthy enough. You can also try muscling through Magneton.
Slowbro: Specs Surf OHKOs Kadabra, Magneton, Sneasel, and Haunter, though the latter two hit it hard with super effective moves. Golbat is 2HKOed by Specs Surf and OHKOed by Specs Confusion


there are apparently 11 Candies, there's one on the route east of New Bark Town (requires Surf), discounting Mt. Mortar

Team: Butterfree(42), Crobat(43), Girafarig(43), Slowbro(43)

Butterfree: Bug Buzz 2HKOs Slowbro and OHKOs Exeggutor. The rest are not good matchups, 2HKOing Butterfree
Crobat: Bite 2HKOs Xatu and Crobat survives one Psychic. You can do this against Eggy too, with Wing Attack, but you are beating only one threat.
Girafarig: Specs Shadow Ball 2HKOs everything. However, Girafarig is not super reliable in this fight, as the Xatu confuse it and Jynx puts it to sleep (though if you have Early Bird, it won't be too much of a problem). So you need to be lucky. Eggy and Bro are not a problem, though
Slowbro: Specs Shadow Ball 2HKOs everything at worst, with both Xatu being rolls. First Xatu hits hard with Me First Shadow Ball, though, so avoid it. Unless Jynx lands a Lovely Kiss, you may not even have to heal, assuming you just skip first Xatu.


Levels are the same

Butterfree: relies too much on Sleep Powder, as most things 2HKO it at worst. Psybeam is a 2HKO at best against frailer threats such as Ariados
Crobat: Wing Attack 2HKOs Venomoth and Ariados. You can also muscle through Forry with Fly / Wing Attack. Muk and Crobat are too much of a hassle to be worth it
Girafarig: Specs Psychic 2HKOs Muk and OHKOs the other Poison-types. However, both Muk and Crobat can use Minimize and Double Team, respectively, making this fight not 100% reliable
Slowbro: Specs Confusion 2HKOs Crobat and Muk and OHKOs the other Poison-types. Honestly, it faces the same issues as Girafarig, in that evasion can screw it up.


Same levels, but Slowbro is level 44


Butterfree: everything hits it hard and it deals too little damage with Psybeam
Crobat: Fly OHKOs Hitmontop and Hitmonchan, while Wing Attack OHKOs Lee. Avoid Machamp due to No Guard. Onix is to be avoided as well.
Girafarig: spam Specs Psychic and you will win. Only hope Lee uses Focus Energy, as Machamp lives one Psychic and puts Girafarig in red with Cross Chop
Slowbro: Specs Confusion 2HKOs everything, but Hitmonchan and Machamp hit somewhat harder than the rest, so you may need to heal. Best to just skip Hitmonchan.


Levels are the same

Butterfree: Bug Buzz without Specs is a 3HKO on Umbreon. You are not accomplishing much else, though.
Crobat: Wing Attack 2HKOs Vileplume and Murkrow, while Bite 2HKOs Gengar.
Girafarig: Specs Psychic kills Gengar and Vileplume
Slowbro: Specs Surf OHKOs Houndoom and can live one Dark Pulse. You can also OHKO Murkrow if you are healthy and deal with Gengar, though it can Destiny Bond you.


Crobat is level 44, levels are same otherwise

Butterfree: why did I even bother
Crobat: same question as above. If you want more details, everything just lives and hits it hard back.
Girafarig: falls flat here
Slowbro: Slowbro's Specs Surf OHKOs Aero and Zard, while Specs Blizzard will OHKO any Dragonite it hits. You are not taking out more than one threat without switching out and healing, though.


noms:

Caterpie -> D / C
Performance-wise, Caterpie is a D-tier. All of its positive matchups are reliant on sleep counter being in your favor and mid-game onwards loses the power it had early-game. It can be given a tier of C if you take into account its utility, as it can provide a faster way of hunting for items thanks to Thief + Compoundeyes along with 97% Stun Spore / Sleep Powder, not only crippling opponents, but also making catching Pokemon easier. But tl;dr, use this only early-game and don't use it later on. I need Turdterra to give me a quick rundown of how much we weigh "utility" (here and in general)

Zubat -> D / C
A bit doubled here. The version where you catch it later so you can catch it with Friend Balls should be D. Other than the fact you have to grind it (houh you could skip trainers and take Return and grind a bit easier), it's still gonna take some time and Zubat doesn't have many good matchups; Morty, to an extent Koga, to an extent Bruno, and to an extent Karen, are its only good matchups. Chuck proved unreliable, given the DTeam + Rock Slide Primeape and Poliwrath being 3HKOed without minding berry made this incredibly luck-based. All in all, Zubat doesn't belong to any of the high tiers.

Girafarig -> B
This is definitely a B-tier. I am not really sure about A-tier, given Girafarig is unreliable in any matchup where it doesn't have type advantage and even in the E4 it faced some reliability issues, as it didn't prove powerful enough to beat things before they could potentially hax it. So I think B-tier is good compromise; it still does well in most matchups with type advantage.

Slowpoke (Slowbro) -> B-tier, (C-tier at worst)
In all honesty, Slowbro and Slowking have almost the same performance if you use them the most optimal way; for Slowbro, just catch one, for Slowpoke, backtrack to Slowpoke Well and repel trick a level 25 Slowpoke and later evolve it with a King's Rock from the same room. What diffenetrates Slowbro from Girafrig is that Slowbro is more useful in matchups where it doesn't hit super effectively, most notably Jasmine, Pryce, and Clair's Dragonairs. It faces the same issues as Girafarig at the E4, for most parts, so I think they should be the same tier. As for Slowking, despite having a good matchup against Clair's Kingdra, it can also prove unreliable due to Smokescreen. So I guess there's no much difference between both Slowpoke evolutions. Slowking's NP doesn't change a lot, given you use it only for the E4, and Bro does somewhat ok against the E4 anyways. I could see some people doubting a nom to B, so I have included a possibility for C-tier, should one want to discuss this for this tier.


What mons do you want me to test next? Turdterra
 
E4 matchups. I feel like I´m slightly underleveled because I used five Pokemon instead of four. I used a couple of rare candies on Gyarados for dragon dance though.

Arbok (38): specs sludge bomb left Exeggutor on 1 hp. You can fish for a poison proc on Slowbro because you outspeed. Other than that, everything outspeeds and OHKO's with psychic. Terrible matchup.

Steelix (38): Xatu tends to waste a lot of turns spamming me first, which allows you to set up six curses fairly reliably. At +6 attack, Steelix OHKO's everything with earthquake or ice fang. You need a passio berry to survive Slowbro's water pulse. Jynx is also a problem because it has lovely kiss, though its phychic is only a 4HKO. So yeah, you can sweep but you definitely need some healing support. An x special defense is helpful as well.

Dunsparce (38): Xatu is annoying because you can't glare it thanks to synchronise. Rollout is unreliable as well because Xatu has confuse ray and Jynx can stop the sweep with lovely kiss. Your best bet is to paraflinch any of Will's Pokemon except for the first Xatu. Overall, not great, not terrible. Neutral matchup really.

Dragonair (38): specs fire blast doesn't even OHKO Jynx and Exeggutor, and everything 2HKO's you with psychic. Needless to say, Dragonair is just too weak here. I have noticed though that Slowbro wastes a lot of time setting up curse, so you can beat it with dragon rage or dragon pulse. Overall, bad matchup.

Gyarados (44): runs through Will's team with just 2 dragon dances. Great matchup.

Arbok (38): cheeses the fight with stockpile. Ariados is absolutely helpless against Arbok, so you're free to set up. I recommend also using two x attacks to speed up the sweep a bit. Once you're set up, you can run through Koga's team with earthquake and ice fang for Crobat. Great matchup, but you do need some item support.

Steelix (38): walls Koga's entire team so you're free to set up curse and sweep. You might need a hyper potion though, since Ariados' giga drain actually does some damage.

Dunsparce (39): fire blast comes really close to OHKO'ing Ariados. If you get the burn, it does actually OHKO. It also OHKO's Forretress, which Koga ALWAYS brings out directly after Ariados. Fire blast is a 2HKO on Venomoth as well, but you need to be at full HP to beat it.

Using fire blast makes you helpless against Muk and Crobat, so I think rollout is actually better, but also less consistant. You'd think that Foretress would stop this strategy with protect, but it always uses toxic spikes twice. With defense curl + rollout and shell bell, you can roll through Ariados, Forretress and Muk. From there, you can heal up and paraflinch Venomoth and Crobat to death. Overall, inconsistant but pretty good matchup

Dragonair (39): specs fire blast OHKO all the fire-weak mons on Koga's team. Dragonair is bad against muk and Crobat though. Overall, decent matchup.

Gyarados (44): sweeps with dragon dance. Easy

Arbok (38): this fight can also be cheesed with stockpile. Hitmontop does have dig, but that actually gives you more setup opportunity. Sludge bomb should take care of all of Bruno's fighting types, and eartquake should deal with onix. Again, Arbok can sweep, but it needs item support to do it. It's pretty good even without stockpile though, so good matchup.

Steelix (40): Hitmontop isn't very strong, so you can safely set up on it. With a couple of curse boosts, only a crit can break through Steelix' defense. Earthquake OHKO's everything but Machamp. Good matchup, though Machamp is definitely a problem with cross chop.

Dunsparce (39): Hitmontop never uses triple kick, so the matchup against it is actually neutral. Hitmonchan doesn't have a fighting STAB either, so you can paraflinch both of them. Onix isn't directly threatning to Dunsparce, so you can beat it with blizzard if you really need it to. Hitmonlee and Machamp are a no-go. All things considered, this isn't bad at all for a slow normal type. It's not even bad in general.

Dragonair (39): it fails to 2HKO everything but Onix with STAB specs dragon pulse, which is just sad. You can beat Onix with surf, and that's it. Bad matchup.

Gyarados (44): sweeps with dragon dance, to no one's surprise.

Arbok (39): It can beat Murkrow with intimidate and ice fang if you get a free switch in. It can also beat Gengar with crunch since Gengar has only focus blast as offensive move (and lick lol). It does take Arbok out with destiny bond though. Umbreon and Houndoom can't be beaten. Overall, mediocre matchup.

Steelix (40): the only thing it can do here is beat Murkrow and stall Umbreon. Pretty bad matchup.

Dunsparce (39): it can't beat Umbreon and Gengar, but everything else can be parahaxed. Houndoom is kind of scary though, since you can only take one hit max. Therefore, you HAVE to hit glare, and you have to flinch it every time. Overall, not great, not terrible, like all of its E4 matchups.

Dragonair (39): specs blizzard OHKO's murkrow and 2HKO's Vileplume. It's too weak to beat Umbreon, Gengar and Houndoom though. Mediocre matchup.

Gyarados (44): sweeps with dragon dance again, though Umbreon can be kind of annoying with double team and confuse ray. You can use roar or taunt to get around this.

Arbok (39): It can use ice fang on a dragonite if you use a haban berry, but that's it really. It's not even enough to OHKO anyway. Terrible matchup.

Steelix (40): It can only beat aerodactyl and the Dragonite with thunder reliably. Everything else isn't a great matchup, especially the Dragonite with fire blast. Overall, it's mediocre, but that's already kind of impressive against Lance.

Dunsparce (39): it can paraflinch Charizard. It needs a haban berry to survive the dragonnites, and it can use either glare or blizzard here. Blizzard actually has a high chance to freeze, so you might be able to cheese one of the Dragonites. Overall, mediocre matchup.

Dragonair (39): lol

Gyarados (45): it can sweep with dragon dance. Really impressive.


And now to the nominations:

Ekans -> C


Pros: comes early, useful utility, good movepool, stockpile niche
Cons: mediocre typing, no physical STAB, mediocre stats


Onix (trade) -> A

Pros: insanely good early game, great typing, incredible bulk, above average E4 performance, bonus exp gain.
Cons: slow and prone to being haxed, bad route cleaner, many of its moves are inaccurate.


Dunsparce -> C

Pros: two extremely potent gimmicks, good matchup spread, amazing movepool, versatile
Cons: bad case of 4MSS, sometimes reliant on luck, mediocre stats.

Personally, I would actually put it in B based on my run. Dunsparce was consitantly useful and it never really fell off. However, I think more people should test it first for me to do such a nom. Maybe I just got lucky with a good IV spread or something.


Dratini -> D

Pros: dragon rage niche, colorful movepool
Cons: game corner time sink, reliant on tm's, reliant on specs, falls completely flat against the E4, it's just not worth all the effort.


Red Gyarados -> S, maybe A

Pros: overleveled at catch, amazing stats, flawless E4 matchups thanks to dragon dance niche
Cons: questionable gym matchups, awkward movepool at catch
 
Hello. I'm infrequent on Smogon, but I thought I'd give my two cents on how I believe a select few Pokemon perform so far.

Quilava: Managed to evolve from Cyndaquil during Sprout Tower. The advantage which it had against the amount of Bellsprout there meant that it was overleveled enough to take care of the gym without much effort.

Mareep: While having to wait until level 10 to learn Thundershock is annoying, being able to deal 2x damage on Falkner's team meant that it had a solid matchup. The low speed wasn't an issue as the amount of Tackle spam meant that Static eventually triggered. However, as Static has a 30% chance of occurring, I'm not sure how reliable it is to consider. If the player doesn't get any Static rolls, then it will most likely be a slower fight should the Pidgeotto start using Roost.

Zubat: The main moves it will know are Leech Life, maybe Astonish if you've kept it at a good level, and the inaccurate and generally unreliable Supersonic. It will only get past the Pidgey with a hefty amount of luck.

Quilava: Almost a complete cakewalk. While the Scyther may take a few more hits to go down, it still won't be able to survive long enough to cause problems for Quilava.

Flaaffy: Even with Static, Scyther will eventually outdamage it. Considering how both Quilava and Flaaffy have a base Special Attack stat of 80, I'm going to assume that levels are the key difference here.

Zubat: Scyther outdamages it far worse than it does Flaaffy. Astonish is too weak to do any damage, and Supersonic isn't a reliable option to fall back on.

Quilava: The Gastly and Zubat are easy to deal with, it will require some Smokescreen luck to get past Croconaw.

Flaaffy: If you started Cyndaquil, this will be its best matchup so far. Gastly isn't strong enough to do much damage to it, and the other two are both weak to Thundershock. The Croconaw won't have any moves that can outdo Flaaffy.

Zubat: It should have Bite by then, so Gastly and his own Zubat shouldn't be too bad. Croconaw will be a problem though. As usual, Supersonic isn't a reliable option to use to secure a victory.
 
I'd support Red Gyarados being in S tier. It loses Thrash and I find Intimidate slows any future grinding up, but no babying / level-grind stage, no issues with rarity, a somewhat reliable STAB move after 5 levels, physical coverage naturally and potentially Dragon Dance for the E4 give it unparalleled sweeping ability. It doubles up as your Surf and Waterfall user too. Nothing else comes with such immediate usefulness to the team with such a lasting impact. If you drop Surf or Ice Fang for Return you get perfect coverage iirc. What you lose in not having him until after Morty you gain with its effectiveness for the rest of the game.
 
Here are my matchups up to Morty.
Quilava: Very good fight surprisingly. Miltank never once used Rollout, and Stomp wasn't doing enough damage compared to the Fire Blast which you can get at the Department Store. Even without a Special Attack boosting Nature, Fire Blast should 2HKO Miltank. Attract can make the matchup more luck-based though, especially since Cyndaquil has more of a chance of being Male.

Flaaffy: I didn't have enough funds for Thunder, meaning that it wasn't able to get past Miltank. I'm not sure how heavily Thunder will make a difference in the fight. If it just has Thundershock, it will mainly have a good matchup on the Clefairy.

Zubat: Even with Wing Attack, it won't even be able to get past the Clefairy. I never did Route 35 beforehand, so I can't say if whether or not a couple of levels will save the day here.

Quilava: Even with Fire Blast, it's highly unlikely that it can actually win here in its own. Silver's Croconaw will survive two Fire Blasts and cause problems with both Scary Face and Water Gun. When it's low on health and had its speed reduced, Zubat and Magnemite and easily finish Quilava off.

Flaaffy: I actually bought Thunder this time around, so the fight went well for me. Gastly will strike first and can potentially cause problems with Curse, hence why Flaaffy will need Thunder in order to OHKO 3/4 party members. Thunder's low accuracy combined with the chance of Gastly using Curse means that it isn't a reliable matchup without items. This fight will be a trickier affair if you picked Totodile as your starter as Bayleef can stall Flaaffy while it's undergoing a Curse.

Zubat: It can get past Gastly decently, but it won't be able to get past Magnemite. This is disappointing as it has potential if Totodile is your starter. Sadly, Silver will use Magnemite if Zubat was used on Gastly.

Eevee: It won't have any moves that can hit Gastly, let alone defeat it. Therefore making a sweep impossible right from the start.

Quilava: Fire Blast can 2HKO Gengar, but it can outspeed you and 2HKO back with Shadow Ball. Making the fight difficult without item use.

Flaaffy: Similar affair to Quilava, only worse considering how Thunder has far less accuracy than Fire Blast.

Golbat: Probably its first good boss fight. Granted, I needed to level it up at the National Park and Route 43 with the rest of the team in order to stand a chance. It can make short work of everything other than Gengar, which even then won't always go for Shadow Ball against it. Surprisingly, it tried Mean Look after losing half of its health. If it went for Hypnosis or Shadow Ball instead, then I strongly doubt that it would be as good of a matchup. While it was able to perform a sweep, I'd hesitate to say that it's a reliable stop.

Eevee: As with Silver, it won't have anything that can hit the first member other than Struggle.
 
I started another run. This time I'm doing a little team Rocket grunt theme team for funzies. The team I'm using is Raticate, Vileplume, Hypno and Magneton.

Rattata (12): it 2HKO's Pidgey with bite. If you're feeling greedy, you can set up focus energy and then pray Pidgey doesn't use sand-attack. My Rattata actually outsped Pidgeotto, and it broke through roost spam thanks to a flinch on bite. Without that good look, you need some healing support, but it's a pretty good matchup overall.

Rattata(18): hyper fang comes really close to being a 2HKO on Scyther. Scyther is faster though, and it almost always uses leer on turn 1, which turns U-turn into a OHKO. Rattata OHKO's the cocoons with hyper fang. Neutral matchup.

Oddish(14): poison powder is pretty helpful against Scyther. Acid doesn't deal much damage though, and U-turn is way too powerful for Oddish to handle. It does beat the cocoons with acid. Mediocre matchup.

Raticate(20): Hyper fang gets Clefairy in red, which is great because it forces Whitney to waste her potion. Hyper fang is about a 3HKO, so Raticate can't beat Miltank without help. Scary face is very useful utility against Miltank because it can prevent headbutt flinching. Pretty good matchup.

Oddish(18): it can beat Clefairy with sleep powder and acid. Miltank 3HKO's with stomp, so if you don't flinch at all, you can use stun spore on Miltank. Acid damage on Miltank is negligable. Mediocre matchup again.

Drowzee(18): confusion is a 4HKO on Clefairy. Drowzee can disable Clefairy's only reliable attack in doubleslap though, so it isn't so bad. Drowzee can take two stomps from Miltank. Disable can be useful to stop Miltank from flinching you to death with stomp, and it can also stop rollout before that gets out of hand. Overall, mediocre matchup.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
yo dudes, I started run with the team Turdterra gave me. Keep in mind that levels for Morty were done by going west and east completely (you can go east through Mt. Mortar), though I still was on par with the next major fights anyways. IVs are at the bottom of the post.

Just to note, I caught Krabby, Tauros, and Snubbull all in Friend Balls and taught them Return (I had to hack a bit, but hey, I did nothing else)

Team: Drowzee(21)

Drowzee: If you spam Meditate to max, Headbutt becomes a 2HKO on Miltank and OHKO on Clefairy, though you still need some luck to beat Miltank. If you want to, you can try your hands at lottery to get Drain Punch and make the matchup more reliable.


Team: Drowzee(23), Tauros(23), Snubbull(21), Krabby(21)

Drowzee: Confusion OHKOs Ghost-types and Drain Punch 2HKOs Magnemite. Croconaw has Bite, so this is not winnable.
Tauros: Pursuit OHKOs Gastly, while Return OHKOs or 2HKOs the rest at worst (even Magnemite is 2HKOed)
Snubbull: Bite OHKOs Gastly, Return 2HKOs Zubat, Dig OHKOs Magnemite, and Return 3HKOs Croconaw. Matchup as a whole is sweepable, unless Gastly uses Curse
Krabby: meh, Surf is a 2HKO on Gastly. Magnemite outspeeds and OHKOs with Thundershock. You can also kill Zubat with Return


Team: Drowzee(24), Tauros(25), Granbull(24), Krabby(25)

Drowzee: Confusion OHKOs Gastly and 2HKOs the Haunters. Gengar beats this. The Dream Eater Haunter is an easy kill, as you can have Insomnia and block Hypnosis
Tauros: very good matchup; Payback OHKOs Gastly and level 21 Haunter and also outspeeds them. The rest can only damage it with Sucker Punch (though second Haunter has Curse, but it goes for Sucker Punch mostly), meaning Payback will deal heavy damage, with boosted Payback almost OHKOing Gengar.
Granbull: very good matchup. Bite OHKOs Gastly. Both Haunter just Curse, so Bite will kill them. If you do not have a Curse, Granbull will beat Gengar by 3HKOing it with Bite, as it has only Sucker Punch as source of damage, which can be nullified by Charm + Intimidate.
Krabby: Surf 2HKOs Gastly, but that's it. The rest just beat it.


Team: Hypno(27), Tauros(27), Granbull(27), Kingler(28)

Hypno: Psybeam kills Psychic-types and Drain Punch 2HKOs Raticate.
Tauros: spam Return and you win
Granbull: ^
Kingler: ^


Everything is level 30

Hypno: spam Specs Psybeam for the win, Poliwrath isn't touching it due to Insomnia
Tauros: Return 2HKOs Primeape and 3HKOs Poliwrath. Reliant on luck to sweep.
Granbull: ^, can also dent them with Charm + Intimidate. Reliant on luck to sweep.
Kingler: 2HKOs Primeape with Return and 4HKOs Poliwrath

Note that I forgot to take a Giga Impact TM. Based on rolls, I think both Granbull and Tauros may be able to OHKO Primeape with it.


Hypno is level 31, same levels

Hypno: Drain Punch 2HKOs Magnemites, you are not getting past Steelix, though
Tauros: Funnily, Specs Fire Blast actually works here.... it OHKOs Magnemite and 3HKOs Steelix, though you are unlikely to beat Steelix
Granbull: Dig OHKOs Magnemite and takes time to beat Steelix, though you can dent it with Charm + Intimidate, it also just spams Iron Tail instead of Screech.
Krabby: Dig OHKOs Magnemite and Surf muscles through Steelix, 3HKOing it.


Current thoughts on members so far:

Hypno
This is looking like a C-tier for me, mainly cause it's just a worse Girafarig / Kadabra, though it can boast with a better matchup against Jasmine than those two. But it doesn't feel super powerful before Specs.

Tauros
This is super hard hitting. If you manage to catch it in a Friend Ball and teach it Return, it becomes a beast that obliterates even resists (Magnemites are 2HKOed on an ordinary basis). I feel like its sheer power may allow it to land in B, not any higher, because of encounter rate + not being easy to capture.

Granbull
In all honesty, once this evolves, it becomes a better Tauros. Not only it hits harder, but Charm + Intimidate allows it to dent any physical attacker that it cannot beat. I can see potentially B-tier for this as well, as right now, its 1% encounter rate is its only weakness (though it's super easy to catch)

Kingler
This is likely ending up in C-tier. Other than the fact Krabby fails majorly in major fights before evolving, its SpA is simply terrible and doesn't allow it to use Surf efficiently, relying more on Return (thus, Surf is "coverage"). It's been worse Tauros on my team, in all honesty.

drowzee.jpg
tauros.jpg
snubbull.jpg
krabby.jpg
 
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My matchups up to Pryce. Keep in mind that my progress was a bit messy at this point. It went as follows:

Lake of Rage (for the Choice Specs) -> Rocket Hideout -> Routes 38 and 39 -> Lighthouse -> Sea routes -> Chuck -> Jasmine -> Pryce

Sadly I never read the OP properly until writing this post, so I never knew that the Rocket executives other than Hideout Ariana counted. So you won't be getting any writeups about them until the Radio Tower events.

Quilava: Two Fire Blasts will take down Primeape before it can beat you with Rock Slide. It will never get past Poliwrath though.

Ampharos: Because both Pokemon outspeed it, Ampharos will eventually get worn down by the time it can face Poliwrath. What doesn't help things is the Hypnosis + Focus Punch combo which is favoured here.

Crobat: Wing Attack won't OHKO either of the Pokemon; meaning that it will have to take a Rock Slide from Primeape and will go down after a Surf from Poliwrath.

Umbreon: To my surprise, the matchup was inconsistent rather than outright bad. The Primeape will always use Focus Punch, meaning that Umbreon can just wear it down with ease. Poliwrath will either do the same, netting you with a victory, or make short work of it by using the Hypnosis + Focus Punch combo. And because the Poliwrath has Vital Spirit, Synchronise won't be able to save the day.

Quilava: Fire Blast will OHKO everything in Jasmine's team. One of its best matchups since Bugsy.

Ampharos: If given Focus Blast from the Department Store and the Choice Specs from the Lake of Rage, then this should be as easy of a sweep as Quilava. It may not be able to OHKO Steelix, but it can't do much to Ampharos in return.

Crobat: The first Magnemite has Thunderbolt, and it lacks moves that can even do neutral damage to it.

Umbreon: Depends on Dig to get past the Magnemite. It can't do much on Steelix, and it will eventually get worn down by Iron Tail.

Quilava: Strength will allow it to eventually outmuscle the Seel. Fire Blast won't OHKO the Piloswine, and it will make use of the Icy Winds favoured by Seel to outspeed and 2HKO it with Mud Bomb.

Ampharos: A decent, if unreliable matchup. Thunder will OHKO Seel, Focus Blast will 2HKO Piloswine and it has the bulk to survive a few Mud Bombs, beating Dewgong depends on the amount of Mud Bombs which needed to be endured. If it had to take several due to either the low speed or Focus Blast misses, the Dewgong can finish Ampharos off with Aurora Beam. Otherwise, it should be as simple to take down as Seel.

Crobat: A couple of Wing Attacks should stop Seel easily, but the Dewgong will sponge any attacks and 2HKO Crobat with Aurora Beam.

Umbreon: Can outmuscle Seel with STAB of either Payback or Bite, but Piloswine can use Blizzard to make short work of it. Especially if Seel survived long enough to get a Hail in.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
continuing with my run:

Everything is level 31

Hypno: It needs at least 3 Meditates to do consistently well here, as then Drain Punch becomes a 2HKO (3HKO on Piloswine if you include berry) on everything and deals enough damage to heal off what they throw at it. You also need an Ether, as DPunch is only 5 PP this gen.
Tauros: 2HKOs Seel line with Return. You aren't beating Piloswine, as it 2HKOs with Blizzard and you 3HKO only.
Granbull: Return OHKOs Seel and 2HKOs Dewgong. As you won't have taken as much damage and there won't be hail, it is possible to beat Piloswine, but you need some luck
Kingler: Return muscles through Seel and Dewgong, though Piloswine beats it as it hits hard with Mud Bomb


Team: Hypno(31), Tauros(32), Granbull(33), Kingler(33)

Hypno: Specs Psybeam runs through his team
Tauros: Return 2HKOs Koffing and 3HKOs Weezing. The more you don't miss, the more Koffing you will take out
Granbull: 2HKOs everything. At best, you are taking out 4 threats, including Weezing
Kingler: same deal as Tauros, though it doesn't take Sludge well, so it will faint pretty quickly


Team: same as above, but Hypno is level 32

Hypno: meh, only beats one threat at most in a timely fashion, mainly Golbat by 2HKOing it with Specs Psybeam
Tauros: Return 2HKOs Golbat, OHKOs Sneasel, and 3HKOs Feraligatr. Fire Blast OHKOs Magnemite and Payback almost OHKOs Haunter. If you are lucky, you may be even able to sweep.
Granbull: Return OHKOs Sneasel, almost OHKOs Golbat and 2HKOs Gatr. Dig kills Magnemite and Haunter (which outspeeds Granbull) is killed by Bite. Again, you need luck to sweep.
Kingler: 2HKOs Golbat with Return, OHKOs Magnemite with Dig, and OHKOs Sneasel. Gatr and Haunter beat it, generally


Team: Hypno(33), rest(34)

Hypno: Specs Psybeam runs through his team
Tauros: spam Return for the win
Granbull: spam Return for the win (though it's slower than Golbat so it risks confusion)
Kingler: beats Golbat with no problems, but struggles with Weezing due to Sludge hitting it hard.


everything is level 34

Hypno: beats Arbok and Vileplume with Specs Psybeam
Tauros: beats Arbok and Murkrow with Return, dies to Vileplume afterwards.
Granbull: spam Return and you win, even at -1, you 2HKO at worst.
Kingler: OHKOs Murkrow with Return and 2HKOs the rest, if Vileplume doesn't use a Grass move, you win. Hyper Cutter blocks Arbok's Intimdate


team: Kingler(35), rest(34)

Hypno: 2HKOs Houndour and Koffing with Drain Punch and Psybeam, respectively
Tauros: spams Return and beats Koffing and Houndour. Houndoom is beatable if you heal after one Return
Granbull: spams Return and beats the Houndour line, although barely living after taking two Fire Fangs
Kingler: OHKOs Houndour and 2HKOs the rest with Return. If you never miss any attack, you win


current thoughts on members so far:

Hypno
More convinced this is C-tier. Not only is this much more reliant on hitting super effectively than Girafarig, but also takes a lot of time in some cases to win. Its inability to OHKO some threats, such as Petrel's Weezing, show that it's not on the same level of power as its competition in higher tiers.

Tauros
This is either C or B. I am going to let the E4 decide for me. It still spams Return mostly, but hasn't been able to sweep anything at all, though it can sweep Silver if you are lucky.

Granbull
Convinced at this point that it's a better Normal-type than Tauros. It hits much harder than it and Charm + Intimidate can still prove useful if you need it (e.g. against Silver's Feraligatr). Tauros is 4% encounter, so it's not all that different. I can still see B-tier being possible, but I will let the E4 decide for me.

Kingler
C-tier. It cannot really use Water STAB at all, so it's really just a worse Normal-type. It also has problems taking on special attacks, which not only proves problematic, but will prove problematic in the future.
 
Tauros
This is either C or B. I am going to let the E4 decide for me. It still spams Return mostly, but hasn't been able to sweep anything at all, though it can sweep Silver if you are lucky.

Granbull
Convinced at this point that it's a better Normal-type than Tauros. It hits much harder than it and Charm + Intimidate can still prove useful if you need it (e.g. against Silver's Feraligatr). Tauros is 4% encounter, so it's not all that different. I can still see B-tier being possible, but I will let the E4 decide for me.
Did you catch Tauros on Route 38/39 or 48?

I wonder how much you lose by waiting until the Safari Zone is open to catch him, assuming you do the Lighthouse, surf to Cianwood City, defeat Chuck and then fly back to Olivine. You wouldn't be using him to battle Chuck anyway, so outside of a bit of grinding through the Lighthouse do you lose much with him waiting for a better rarity percentage and higher level?
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
I wonder how much you lose by waiting until the Safari Zone is open to catch him, assuming you do the Lighthouse, surf to Cianwood City, defeat Chuck and then fly back to Olivine. You wouldn't be using him to battle Chuck anyway, so outside of a bit of grinding through the Lighthouse do you lose much with him waiting for a better rarity percentage and higher level?
I caught it as early as possible. I am not sure if catching it from Safari Zone is better, because its catch rate equals approximately 12% (18% with Safari Balls). The earlier one is harder to find, but on the other hand, you can status it and damage it as much as you like, making it easier to capture. You can also check its ability much more easily if you are willing to get Intimidate one and earlier one comes for Morty, who is a good matchup.

e: earlier Tauros can also be caught in Friend Ball, making Return powerful right off the bat
 
I caught it as early as possible. I am not sure if catching it from Safari Zone is better, because its catch rate equals approximately 12% (18% with Safari Balls). The earlier one is harder to find, but on the other hand, you can status it and damage it as much as you like, making it easier to capture. You can also check its ability much more easily if you are willing to get Intimidate one and earlier one comes for Morty, who is a good matchup.

e: earlier Tauros can also be caught in Friend Ball, making Return powerful right off the bat
I think Robcore was asking about Route 48, not the Safari Zone. Tauros has a 21% encounter chance on Route 48, which is more than 5 times the chance on Route 38.
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
I think Robcore was asking about Route 48, not the Safari Zone. Tauros has a 21% encounter chance on Route 48, which is more than 5 times the chance on Route 38.
must've missed that (I am borderline dyslexic so excuse any misreadings I perform, I am trying my best)

I guess if you don't care about Morty matchup, you can go there. Though Morty isn't notably easy so I am not sure how much it would knock it down.
 
I completed my run with Typhlosion / Quagsire / Jumpluff / Heracross / Mamoswine / Raikou (bumped into it while getting a Heart Scale for Mamo, replaced Girafarig)


Typhlosion: This was the worst Quilava/Typhlosion I've ever experienced. I'm not sure if I had shit tier IVs across that board or what. Charcoal Fire Blast is a nuke in the mid game but falls off late, hell Charcoal Lava Plume from lv 40 Typh failed to OHKO Will's Jynx. Mine was also impossibly frail, almost every hit was a 2HKO if not outright OHKOing. In the past I'd only ever had the kind of positive experiences that suggest S rank but knowing that this travesty is very possible makes it clear that Cyndaquil should be A rank.

Quagsire: I'd commented earlier that the only thing it has going for it is what it is (Water / Ground), not what it does. Turns out what it is is enough. After it made it through the (very bad) Wooper period I kept waiting for Quagsire to fall off but it never really did. Surf kept its power output steady, its typing complemented its passable bulk well enough and it was able to keep comfortable chugging along. Had some reasonable contributions against Bruno (Hitmonlee giving it Swagger) and Karen (valuable answer to Houndoom), and combined with a solid mid-game gym set (Jasmine and Pryce) this ends up at a solid B, even with the awful Wooper period.

Jumpluff: This was way better than you might expect. The worst part was actually getting it from ~level 27 as a Skiploom to evolution as a Jumpluff - to the point I dumped a few Rare Candies into it to get it over the hump - and of course the Splash period as a Hoppip. Aside from that this was everything I asked of it. It had reasonable enough power with Tackle and Bullet Seed as a Hoppip, reasonable enough power with Solarbeam and Silver Wind as a Jumpluff, and unparalleled success as a supporter with its crazy fast Sleep Powder/Leech Seed. Jumpluff soloed Claire's Gyarados and Kingdra both and would have bagged one of her Dragonair too if not for an untimely Dragon Pulse crit. Put in strong work wherever I asked it to (Chuck and Bruno come to mind) and even leveled up quickly to offset its limited offensive capacity. Won't be more than what it says on the box, but a very strong C performance.

Heracross
: A tier. 'Nuff said. Trains itself from acquisition on level 5, contributes or sweeps literally every gym bar Falkner and Claire, puts in good supporting performances against a decent chunk of the E4 (unfortunately useless vs Lance). Excellent Pokemon, clear A tier.

Mamoswine: Tough placement. Only realistically comes after Claire, requires significant training investment, requires backtracking for a Heart Scale and the move relearner, but is also pretty damn awesome. Earthquake/Avalanche off of 120 base attack and very good bulk is a bit nutty. Answers both of Will's Xatus, beats his Jynx and Egg if you want, cleans Koga's clock if you so desire, Muk and Crobat at the least, contributes vs Karen, and will always take one hit from the non-Fire Blast Dragonites to clean them up. Definitely no worse than E tier and I think you can make an argument for D tier with its strong late game performance.

Raikou
: A tier. Don't care how late it comes, don't care how tough it can be to get. Specs Thunderbolt absolutely destroys the end game. My IVs were pretty average, min speed, decent bulk, 16 SpA, corresponded to a base 50 HP Flying for a moveset of Thunderbolt/HP Fly/Hyper Beam (Shadow Ball was taken by Girafarig). Literally I pointed it at anything in the E4 and it died. Trashed Will, trashed Koga, did well vs Bruno, did well vs Karen, trashed Lance (killed Gyara/Zard/Aero/and two shot a Dragonite while eating a hit from it). Monster performance, forget the caveats, its an A tier.
 
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I completed my run with Typhlosion / Quagsire / Jumpluff / Heracross / Mamoswine / Raikou (bumped into it while getting a Heart Scale for Mamo, replaced Girafarig)


Typhlosion: This was the worst Quilava/Typhlosion I've ever experienced. I'm not sure if I had shit tier IVs across that board or what. Charcoal Fire Blast is a nuke in the mid game but falls off late, hell Charcoal Lava Plume from lv 40 Typh failed to OHKO Will's Jynx. Mine was also impossibly frail, almost every hit was a 2HKO if not outright OHKOing. In the past I'd only ever had the kind of positive experiences that suggest S rank but knowing that this travesty is very possible makes it clear that Cyndaquil should be A rank.

Quagsire: I'd commented earlier that the only thing it has going for it is what it is (Water / Ground), not what it does. Turns out what it is is enough. After it made it through the (very bad) Wooper period I kept waiting for Quagsire to fall off but it never really did. Surf kept its power output steady, its typing complemented its passable bulk well enough and it was able to keep comfortable chugging along. Had some reasonable contributions against Bruno (Hitmonlee giving it Swagger) and Karen (valuable answer to Houndoom), and combined with a solid mid-game gym set (Jasmine and Pryce) this ends up at a solid B, even with the awful Wooper period.

Jumpluff: This was way better than you might expect. The worst part was actually getting it from ~level 27 as a Skiploom to evolution as a Jumpluff - to the point I dumped a few Rare Candies into it to get it over the hump - and of course the Splash period as a Hoppip. Aside from that this was everything I asked of it. It had reasonable enough power with Tackle and Bullet Seed as a Hoppip, reasonable enough power with Solarbeam and Silver Wind as a Jumpluff, and unparalleled success as a supporter with its crazy fast Sleep Powder/Leech Seed. Jumpluff soloed Claire's Gyarados and Kingdra both and would have bagged one of her Dragonair too if not for an untimely Dragon Pulse crit. Put in strong work wherever I asked it to (Chuck and Bruno come to mind) and even leveled up quickly to offset its limited offensive capacity. Won't be more than what it says on the box, but a very strong C performance.

Heracross
: A tier. 'Nuff said. Trains itself from acquisition on level 5, contributes or sweeps literally every gym bar Falkner and Claire, puts in good supporting performances against a decent chunk of the E4 (unfortunately useless vs Lance). Excellent Pokemon, clear A tier.

Mamoswine: Tough placement. Only realistically comes after Claire, requires significant training investment, requires backtracking for a Heart Scale and the move relearner, but is also pretty damn awesome. Earthquake/Avalanche off of 120 base attack and very good bulk is a bit nutty. Answers both of Will's Xatus, beats his Jynx and Egg if you want, cleans Koga's clock if you so desire, Muk and Crobat at the least, contributes vs Karen, and will always take one hit from the non-Fire Blast Dragonites to clean them up. Definitely no worse than E tier and I think you can make an argument for D tier with its strong late game performance.

Raikou
: A tier. Don't care how late it comes, don't care how tough it can be to get. Specs Thunderbolt absolutely destroys the end game. My IVs were pretty average, min speed, decent bulk, 16 SpA, corresponded to a base 50 HP Flying for a moveset of Thunderbolt/HP Fly/Hyper Beam (Shadow Ball was taken by Girafarig). Literally I pointed it at anything in the E4 and it died. Trashed Will, trashed Koga, did well vs Bruno, did well vs Karen, trashed Lance (killed Gyara/Zard/Aero/and two shot a Dragonite while eating a hit from it). Monster performance, forget the caveats, its an A tier.
Please post your logs. This has very little to go on as is and as a result, I personally feel that I cannot use these effectively as I could with the logs.

Moving onto some things that I have spotted.

Quil not managing to OHKO a Jynx with Charcoal and Fire Blast is....interesting. The only thing that comes to mind is your level, so Logs here would have been nice. Does not detract that the fact it is A, which seems to be where it is likely to head into.

Quag in B is....interesting. From my last test, it was just....there. I would need to do a retest and see if it truly is B or C.

Raikou is not A. The amount of resources wasted to catch as EARLY as possible is one that you will not recover from. Quick Balls are mandatory as Ultras are in Olivine and Quick is just better. (Quick Balls are from the Lottery which can be repeated as many as times possible). Even then, at 1% HP, asleep, and using Quick Ball, you have about a 9.3% chance (rounded up) catching it. Additionally, Thunderbolt was used. In the OP I stated that those were not going to be weighed as a negative. Almost a full tier. 10,000 GC coins without a purchase option is the biggest timesink in HGSS and thus, not optimal.

At this point, I think this needs to be called. I am blacklisting the GC TMs. Every nom that has been questionable/inflated has had a mon with a GC TM. We are under the assumption that the player is playing on the cartridge. These take hours to get and you can just go and get the more powerful yet inaccurate versions of them. I have updated the OP to show this change.
 
Please post your logs. This has very little to go on as is and as a result, I personally feel that I cannot use these effectively as I could with the logs.

Moving onto some things that I have spotted.

Quil not managing to OHKO a Jynx with Charcoal and Fire Blast is....interesting. The only thing that comes to mind is your level, so Logs here would have been nice. Does not detract that the fact it is A, which seems to be where it is likely to head into.

Quag in B is....interesting. From my last test, it was just....there. I would need to do a retest and see if it truly is B or C.

Raikou is not A. The amount of resources wasted to catch as EARLY as possible is one that you will not recover from. Quick Balls are mandatory as Ultras are in Olivine and Quick is just better. (Quick Balls are from the Lottery which can be repeated as many as times possible). Even then, at 1% HP, asleep, and using Quick Ball, you have about a 9.3% chance (rounded up) catching it. Additionally, Thunderbolt was used. In the OP I stated that those were not going to be weighed as a negative. Almost a full tier. 10,000 GC coins without a purchase option is the biggest timesink in HGSS and thus, not optimal.

At this point, I think this needs to be called. I am blacklisting the GC TMs. Every nom that has been questionable/inflated has had a mon with a GC TM. We are under the assumption that the player is playing on the cartridge. These take hours to get and you can just go and get the more powerful yet inaccurate versions of them. I have updated the OP to show this change.
RE: Typhlosion; Lava Plume. Not Fire Blast. And I stated it was at level 40. The log was: switch in, use Lava Plume, don't kill, get KOed by Jynx's crit Psychic
1592001940836.png


RE: Raikou; forget trying to catch it as early possible, that's not the point. Wait for the Master Ball and stomp all over the end game.

RE: Voltorb Flip; I'm sorry you suck at sudoku (done with thinking and a solver for the hard ones you can get a GC TM inside of 30-45 mins)


I'll thank you not to call my noms questionable, I've been at this far longer than you
 
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Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Smogon Media Contributor
RE: Voltorb Flip; I'm sorry you suck at sudoku (done with thinking and a solver for the hard ones you can get a GC TM inside of 30-45 mins)
I wanna chime in and say that this contradicts my experience. I've played VFlip on actual cartridge and it has taken me hours (no, really, it did take hours) to obtain just ONE TM. Afaik, the online solver isn't really good either (first time I used it, it told me to flip a card that turned out to be a Voltorb...). Emulator players can easily get them because of states (and hacking in coins) but any cartridge player is gonna suffer.

Also, Voltorb Flip is definitely not sudoku, sudoku doesn't put you into 50/50s scenarios 4 times per level (this actually happens in higher levles, you get pitted in a lot of 50/50s, sometimes even worse). If you get a bad grid on later level where it's pretty much impossible to predict which row or column is safe to risk on, you can easily lose and go back to level 1 (if you have flipped less cards than the current level, you drop to the level that equals the amount of cards you flipped before losing).
 

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