Pokemon Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald In-Game Tier List Discussion

Jumping back in. Posting mainly to say that Tate and Liza were a cakewalk with more optimized movesets. Altaria set up a DD, Absol critical killed the Xatu with Shadow Ball, and then SBall and Steel Wing killed both Lunatone and Solrock before they could act before Absol dropped to a third Earthquake. Altaria flew, Breloom Giga Drained for a third before dying to a Psychic, Fly did a third, and Beautifly cleaned up the last third off Claydol.

Time to redo the entire water route grind .cri
Oh man, hope it’s not too much of a slog!

I’m curious though, what did you replace with Giga Drain on your Breloom? And do you think you’ll keep it until the endgame?
 
Oh man, hope it’s not too much of a slog!

I’m curious though, what did you replace with Giga Drain on your Breloom? And do you think you’ll keep it until the endgame?
Just finished up, back at the Aqua Hideout. I replaced Mega Drain with Giga Drain via TM which was only mega drain for so long cause I mistakenly thought it learned it naturally lol. I don't see any reason not to keep it, Grass stab is still useful enough and there's not really much else Breloom needs or has beyond fighting stab/bulk up/strength
 
Just finished up, back at the Aqua Hideout. I replaced Mega Drain with Giga Drain via TM which was only mega drain for so long cause I mistakenly thought it learned it naturally lol. I don't see any reason not to keep it, Grass stab is still useful enough and there's not really much else Breloom needs or has beyond fighting stab/bulk up/strength
I guess I’ve always found that Leech Seed is such an OP move in-game, where opponents almost never switch. The passive recovery gives you more opportunities to set up with Bulk Up, whereas Giga Drain off a base Sp. Atk stat of 60 doesn’t seem very useful, especially with only 5 PP. You might experience things differently though.
 
I guess I’ve always found that Leech Seed is such an OP move in-game, where opponents almost never switch. The passive recovery gives you more opportunities to set up with Bulk Up, whereas Giga Drain off a base Sp. Atk stat of 60 doesn’t seem very useful, especially with only 5 PP. You might experience things differently though.
At this point sky uppercut is so strong nothing lives long enough for leech seed to matter and anything that it might matter against nis killed by another party member
 

Punchshroom

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I figured you'd have kept Mach Punch instead; its absurdly high PP makes it a good route-cleaning tool, and its priority can come in handy when securing clean sweeps with Bulk Up, particularly against Sidney
 
I dont value set up and sweep the same way you do, I'd rather pivot between my mons as necessary and go for OHKOs with whatever is best suited. I don't think anything Sidney has can live a sky uppercut anyway if I'm not using beautiful. As far as route cleaning is concerned strength is more than sufficient backup.

Though I suppose this reinforces the Breloom S arugment when we see legitimate versatility in how it can be used and still be dominant
 
At this point sky uppercut is so strong nothing lives long enough for leech seed to matter and anything that it might matter against nis killed by another party member
I guess I didn’t express my point very well: I agree that Sky Uppercut slaughters basically anything that doesn’t resist it, even without setup, but then what does Giga Drain actually do? I’d rather have another Normal move like Secret Power, for PP purposes, or try and see if my Breloom has a useful Hidden Power like Ghost or Flying.

Of course if you’re still finding Breloom to be great then, as you say, it doesn’t really matter what random 4th move you choose, which is a testament to its versatility.
 
I guess I didn’t express my point very well: I agree that Sky Uppercut slaughters basically anything that doesn’t resist it, even without setup, but then what does Giga Drain actually do? I’d rather have another Normal move like Secret Power, for PP purposes, or try and see if my Breloom has a useful Hidden Power like Ghost or Flying.

Of course if you’re still finding Breloom to be great then, as you say, it doesn’t really matter what random 4th move you choose, which is a testament to its versatility.
Well to this point I've been running through the water routes and have Juan to come so doesn't make much sense to switch it out for anything yet

If there's a suggestion of something that actually makes sense I'm all for it I just have no impetus to change right now, PP isn't a concern between Skuppercut and Strength
 
If there's a suggestion of something that actually makes sense I'm all for it I just have no impetus to change right now, PP isn't a concern between Skuppercut and Strength
I've never used Breloom before, but I always thought sludge bomb is Breloom's best non-fighting-type attack. Sludge bomb is better than strength, at least. Breloom's best moveset would probably be something like sky uppercut, sludge bomb, bulk up, stun spore/mach punch/leech seed.
 
I've never used Breloom before, but I always thought sludge bomb is Breloom's best non-fighting-type attack. Sludge bomb is better than strength, at least. Breloom's best moveset would probably be something like sky uppercut, sludge bomb, bulk up, stun spore/mach punch/leech seed.
Realisticallly Breloom is the member of your party who can get the most usage out of a neutral base 80 move so the difference between as base 95 and a base 80 move that hit most the same types is negligible
 
I've never used Breloom before, but I always thought sludge bomb is Breloom's best non-fighting-type attack. Sludge bomb is better than strength, at least. Breloom's best moveset would probably be something like sky uppercut, sludge bomb, bulk up, stun spore/mach punch/leech seed.
The only issue with Sludge Bomb is that it’s NVE against Poison-types, like Sky Uppercut is, so you don’t always get that strong neutral coverage.
 

Punchshroom

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I've never used Breloom before, but I always thought sludge bomb is Breloom's best non-fighting-type attack. Sludge bomb is better than strength, at least.
Silk Scarf-boosted Strength's 88 BP is pretty much equivalent to Sludge Bomb's 90 BP already. Sludge Bomb doesn't help against most of the things that hardwall Fighting, such as Zubats and Ghosts, while Strength (as well as Headbutt) can dispatch of Zubats and Bugs easily, not to mention their earlier access compared to Sludge Bomb. There is little reason to use that TM unless you really wanna kill Winona's Tropius :/

Also, since Breloom's last moveslot is customisable, one could probably even consider putting Rock Smash on it for the whole game, or carry it up until you clear Victory Road, by which point you can delete it and get back some other move. Honestly though, the only move you'd consider at this point for the E4 are either Giga Drain (for the sole underwhelming purpose of OHKOing Wallace's Whiscash; useless in RSE) or Mach Punch, which can matter against Sidney's Swagger Sharpedo and Aerial Ace Absol as well as offering some pinch priority.
 
Merritt As the all-important OP of this thread, would you please share your opinion(s) on some of the recent nominations? I probably forgot a bunch of them, but the ones I can remember are Swablu to D, Lileep to F, Baltoy to E, Slugma to F, Numel to C, Spoink to B, Heracross to B, Meditite to C, Makuhita to A, Anorith to E, and Nincada (Ninjask) to F. Which ones did I forget?
 

Merritt

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Merritt As the all-important OP of this thread, would you please share your opinion(s) on some of the recent nominations? I probably forgot a bunch of them, but the ones I can remember are Swablu to D, Lileep to F, Baltoy to E, Slugma to F, Numel to C, Spoink to B, Heracross to B, Meditite to C, Makuhita to A, Anorith to E, and Nincada (Ninjask) to F. Which ones did I forget?
Personal opinions below.

Swablu to D: i guess? i think it's a little better than that but I can totally see D, it's one of the worse C ranks

Lileep to F: Hell no. Did a run recently and Bullet Seed+Sludge Bomb+Secret Power are actually pretty strong, more than making up for Lileep's mediocre attack. An upgrade to Strength and Giga Drain when it becomes Cradily after Winona make it legitimately strong and really difficult for the opponent to take down. Toxic means that Lileep/Cradily also works as a "delete difficult opponent" button, it's not what you should be using as your main way of taking down opponents but it means you can beat opponents who would normally beat your team without grinding to beat them that way. If you're worried about getting Lileep online, Bullet Seed lets Lileep grind extraordinarily easily in the desert.

Baltoy to E: no comment, but it's not moving right now considering that we've got some people saying drop others saying rise

Slugma to F: same run I did Lileep I did slugma and this thing is awful, weak, bad, stupid, ugly, the worst (overheat is pretty strong and learning flamethrower by level up is nice but it's pretty bad so I lean towards yes)

Numel to C: personally I disagree but w/e

Spoink to B: I've commented on this already. I disagree. And please stop using Psywave and soft resetting for good damage rolls as a legitimate strategy.

Heracross to B: A little concerned about the lateness and kind of mediocre major battle matchups but Heracross is a good pokemon so sure.

Meditite to C: that's a really rough meditite period and before brick break meditite's got that risk of missing HJK that's pretty scary. i lean towards no but not strongly.

Makuhita to A: no real comment, think that's a bit high but sure

Anorith to E: i think this is underrating anorith somewhat, secret power provides it with a "strong enough" option and while it's not really using much in the way of stab moves it's got a fine physical TM movepool that backs up its good attack. it's not bad it's just not great which is what D tier says to me

Ninjask to F: ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh naw, i think ninjask is strong enough even if it's rather frail that it can contribute fine for the most part. it does drop off a decent amount, but it comes back very lategame with sd+baton pass allowing you to take on the elite four pretty easily with an even moderately good physical attacker. the nincada period sucks but ninjask isn't bad enough to be F imo
 

Merritt

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You forgot the most important one, Breloom to S
Waiting until you finish the E4 to give an opinion on that because Loom's got an okayish matchup against the E4 in general (full win over Sidney, usually beats Glacia, terrible against Phoebe, mediocre against Drake usually, good vs Steven/Wallace)
 
Spoink to B: I've commented on this already. I disagree. And please stop using Psywave and soft resetting for good damage rolls as a legitimate strategy.
I looked at pages 15 and 16 of this thread, and your only comment on Spoink was that the TM29 psychic was expensive. If that was your "I disagree" comment, then I'll say that Grumpig performs great in the second half of the game regardless of whether it learned psychic before or after Norman. (at least it did when I compared it to Sharpedo and Heracross) And just because I used psywave in 1 battle doesn't mean that it's "legitimate strategy" or that I founded my entire argument on it.
 
Nominating Wurmple (Dustox) for D Tier (rising from E).

Dustox doesn't OHKO or 2HKO many opponents with Sludge Bomb (would need a TM that is generally better on other mons), Silver Wind (comes very late) or Psybeam (I generally prefer this one for killing Poison/Fighting types who can't do much to Dustox; TM Psychic would be possible but is generally better off elsewhere). While it doesn't take much damage back from any opposing Grass- Fighting or Poison-type attack and beats these types fairly handily in general, its plethora of weaknesses mean it is a very situational 'mon by default.
Its main niche over many of its competitors (including Beautifly, who is bad) is Toxicstall. Dustox is basically predestined to fill this niche given it learns all of Toxic, Protect, Moonlight and Whirlwind by level-up and its defenses and speed are not half bad (especially considering this is an "early bug" mon). Pick the moves you like (I usually go Psybeam/Toxic/Protect/Moonlight; though you can drop either Moonlight or Protect for HM Flash or Silver Wind if you don't mind using items) and win important match-ups against defensive and hard-to-beat-otherwise mons. Prime examples include Juan's/Wallace's Milotic, Phoebe's Dusclops and Glacia's Walrein. (Also Norman's Slaking, which gets trivialized thanks to Protect, but I don't consider that a very difficult opponent)

I'd like to see Dustox in the same tier as Gulpin and cahoots.
 

Merritt

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Nominating Wurmple (Dustox) for D Tier (rising from E).

Dustox doesn't OHKO or 2HKO many opponents with Sludge Bomb (would need a TM that is generally better on other mons), Silver Wind (comes very late) or Psybeam (I generally prefer this one for killing Poison/Fighting types who can't do much to Dustox; TM Psychic would be possible but is generally better off elsewhere). While it doesn't take much damage back from any opposing Grass- Fighting or Poison-type attack and beats these types fairly handily in general, its plethora of weaknesses mean it is a very situational 'mon by default.
Its main niche over many of its competitors (including Beautifly, who is bad) is Toxicstall. Dustox is basically predestined to fill this niche given it learns all of Toxic, Protect, Moonlight and Whirlwind by level-up and its defenses and speed are not half bad (especially considering this is an "early bug" mon). Pick the moves you like (I usually go Psybeam/Toxic/Protect/Moonlight; though you can drop either Moonlight or Protect for HM Flash or Silver Wind if you don't mind using items) and win important match-ups against defensive and hard-to-beat-otherwise mons. Prime examples include Juan's/Wallace's Milotic, Phoebe's Dusclops and Glacia's Walrein. (Also Norman's Slaking, which gets trivialized thanks to Protect, but I don't consider that a very difficult opponent)

I'd like to see Dustox in the same tier as Gulpin and cahoots.
Toxicstall is a very slow strategy. For context, the belief that Lileep could only do Toxicstall (and it does that significantly more effectively than Dustox does) got it nominated to F tier. While Dustox has a great Brawly matchup and does decently against Norman, the ability to toxicstall isn't particularly impressive, and honestly neither are self recovery moves since RSE gives you plenty of money for the far more effective healing items.

I looked at pages 15 and 16 of this thread, and your only comment on Spoink was that the TM29 psychic was expensive. If that was your "I disagree" comment, then I'll say that Grumpig performs great in the second half of the game regardless of whether it learned psychic before or after Norman. (at least it did when I compared it to Sharpedo and Heracross) And just because I used psywave in 1 battle doesn't mean that it's "legitimate strategy" or that I founded my entire argument on it.
Are you ok (this is a link to my Spoink run where I was pretty definitive on my belief that it was a C rank mon and definitely not a B rank).
 
That was the comment you were talking about? I thought you were referring to a response to my Spoink run. But if you want to talk about that then sure.
It seems pretty obvious that your Spoink was a whole lot worse than mine, even though yours had a better nature. For example, after we both went to Route 120, my Grumpig was apparently able to solo Winona with no items. And then for the rest of the game I had calm mind and you didn't, so my Grumpig pretty much had to do better. Aside from calm mind, what else can explain this big difference in the performances of our two Spoinks? If the answer is experience, did your Spoink get too little experience or did mine get too much?
 
That was the comment you were talking about? I thought you were referring to a response to my Spoink run. But if you want to talk about that then sure.
It seems pretty obvious that your Spoink was a whole lot worse than mine, even though yours had a better nature. For example, after we both went to Route 120, my Grumpig was apparently able to solo Winona with no items. And then for the rest of the game I had calm mind and you didn't, so my Grumpig pretty much had to do better. Aside from calm mind, what else can explain this big difference in the performances of our two Spoinks? If the answer is experience, did your Spoink get too little experience or did mine get too much?
Reading back over your log of your Spoink adventures, yours got too much experience, but not in the way you think. When you caught it, you grinded it up six or so levels before facing off against Flannery, and then 12 levels from capture to facing off against Norman. This let it bulldoze its way through those gym fights, but at the cost of taking quite a bit longer than normal to get it into that kind of fighting shape, which for an efficiency run hurts. For efficiency, you want to use mons that take as little grinding to get up and running as possible, and with an ideal roster of four mons+ 2 HM slaves, that ensures your levels are at an ideal point. With Spoink being at the level it is, it is on the backfoot from minute 1, and takes heavy damage unless you go and grind it up, which again hurts how efficient it is.
 
Reading back over your log of your Spoink adventures, yours got too much experience, but not in the way you think. When you caught it, you grinded it up six or so levels before facing off against Flannery, and then 12 levels from capture to facing off against Norman. This let it bulldoze its way through those gym fights, but at the cost of taking quite a bit longer than normal to get it into that kind of fighting shape, which for an efficiency run hurts. For efficiency, you want to use mons that take as little grinding to get up and running as possible, and with an ideal roster of four mons+ 2 HM slaves, that ensures your levels are at an ideal point. With Spoink being at the level it is, it is on the backfoot from minute 1, and takes heavy damage unless you go and grind it up, which again hurts how efficient it is.
I realize that Spoink can't "efficiently" beat Flannery or Norman. But after Spoink reaches level 34, learns psychic, and evolves, it becomes a good route clearer and gets all the experience it needs just by being a good route clearer. So why did my Spoink do so much better than Merritt's during this part of the game?
 

Merritt

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I realize that Spoink can't "efficiently" beat Flannery or Norman. But after Spoink reaches level 34, learns psychic, and evolves, it becomes a good route clearer and gets all the experience it needs just by being a good route clearer. So why did my Spoink do so much better than Merritt's during this part of the game?
It didn't with a single exception.

Your levels were still significantly higher all the way through Winona (you went in with a level 40 and I went in with a level 35) which allowed Grumpig to basically do the thing that'd be expected. In addition, my Grumpig didn't lose to Winona or anything, it just struggled a little with Altaria. It certainly didn't OHKO almost anything though.

Everything until Tate&Liza was nearly identical for the two of us, and I'd say that Tate&Liza were nearly identical - I had Grumpig use Shadow Ball weaken things while you had the objectively inferior in virtually every concievable way Psywave weaken things while the rest of the team carried for the most part.

The one (1) exception is with Juan. I'm not sure if it's because your Spoink was female, if you ground soot for a flute, or if you just had the patience to sit there and get through attract but I spent far too many turns hitting myself in confusion and being in love to deal with it. While Golduck did take the calm mind TM from Grumpig, nobody else on Juan's team really offers particularly safe setup either.

In the Elite Four.

Me: Grumpig vaguely contributed against Phoebe but not really. Grumpig took on both Sealeo and Walrein, albeit requiring far too many healing items due to Attract. Grumpig did a somewhat helpful contribution against Drake, specifically Kingdra. Grumpig beat 2 and 1/2 of Wallace's Pokemon, including Tentacruel.

You: Grumpig didn't do anything until Glacia, where it could not sweep but did quite well I think. Grumpig made a somewhat significant contribution against Drake after getting simultaneously lucky and unlucky since Sharpedo was underleveled and unable to contribute as effectively as it should. Grumpig beat Tentacruel and helped with Ludicolo.

I do not believe that any of your run aside from Juan was indicative of a better performance by Spoink that isn't explained by the significant level boost that it was given in the time from catching to Norman (a total of 12 levels) which set Grumpig up nicely.
 
I do not believe that any of your run aside from Juan was indicative of a better performance by Spoink that isn't explained by the significant level boost that it was given in the time from catching to Norman (a total of 12 levels) which set Grumpig up nicely.
All I did was try to give the same amount of experience to each Pokemon. Even if I let Spoink lag behind until its initial useless period ended, it would still have caught up eventually and become a good late-game battler. (by the way, my Grumpig swept Glacia's entire team except the explosion Glalie) Was I wrong to try to give the same amount of experience to each Pokemon, even after all of them were out of their initial dead periods and were able to pull their own weight?
 
Finished her off, game play summary of remainder

Quick note that the only items I bought in the entire game prior to the E4 was roughly 40 Max repels for the water routes and victory road (did not notice when redoing the post-Lilycove that I didn't get a Volt Absorb Chinchou but instead an Illuminate one. Swear I thought my emulator was broken with how many fucking Pokemon I was running into). I purchased 40 Hyper Potions and 25 Revives, roughly standard for my runs, and had enough money left over to buy that amount 1.5 times over again.

Aqua Grunts and Archie were handled by the usual cast of rotating crew, in this case Beautifly, Absol, and Lanturn. Beautifly was surprisingly effective as the point man in clearing out this area. Next up was Sootopolis with some catch up grinding on Breloom (who I'd been keeping underleveled relative to the team), I'd intended to set up Loom on Luvdisc and sweep but I left Lanturn in the lead by accident so I did it on Whiscash instead, correctly figuring I'd only need 2 Bulk Ups to sweep. Unfortunately I missed my first Sky Uppercut vs Sealeo and so while Breloom tanked the ensuing Ice Beam it lost too much health to survive the follow up Ice Beam from the outspeeding Kingdra. Kingdra was a stall fest of me sitting Lanturn in front of it and missing attacks because of Double Team waiting for it to burn out it's Ice Beam, at which point I brought in Altaria for the sweep. Victory Road was business as usual but with one exception, Beautifly performed very well against the trainers it faced (~30% as lead, teaching it the Psychic team in Victory Road which was very helpful in giving it a comparable nuke vs things like the end area Slakings) and, surprisingly, Absol dominated. It had been quietly effective since it finalized its moveset but it was at this point that it really shined which it would carry through the E4. I'll note that I didn't end up using Claydol much because I kept feeding it Rare Candies that I found but when I did use it, and from the spread of enemies, Ground/Psychic typing and stab is fantastic here.

Sidney was straightforward, Breloom OHKOed Mightyena, Lanturn 2HKOed Absol, Beautifly OHKOed both Shiftry and Cacturne and 2HKOed Crawdaunt. I did not use any healing items post fight.

Phoebe was another area where Absol shone, 2HKOing the first Duslops and OHKOing the first Banette, Beautifly was surprisingly the choice to take on Sableye despite losing in a straight damage race because this Sableye likes to use Double Team a lot which plays right into Beautifly's Aerial Ace, Absol 1v1ed the second Dusclops at this point but was weakened and thus surprisingly KOed when the second Banette survived a Shadow Ball (rip Timid nature), Beautifly coming in to clean up. I did not use any healing items post fight.

Glacia could have easily been a Breloom clean sweep if I bothered to give it an X Speed or if I'd brought it in above level 47. As it was, it set up a Bulk Up and KOed both Sealeo before Walrein came in an KOed with an outspeeding Ice Beam. Lanturn finished off the remainder with its bulk and type advantage using a couple Hyper Potions to tank Glalie attacks with the rest of my team out of commission. I fully healed the team at this point.

Breloom had another opportunity to clean sweep had I bothered to use an X Speed (fuck that noise) as it was easily able to set up to +6 on Shelgon before being KOed by Flygon (remember, still at level 47). I decided Claydol was the best choice to handle Flyong before getting smacked by a Crunch, at which point I decided to troll and Flash it to -6. Thus followed the epitome of why Altaria is simultaneously great and blows ass, setting up to +6 on Flygon (see: any Pokemon that can't particularly touch it of which there are many) and subsequently failing to OHKO it with Fly. Conversely however, it was able to get two attacks off vs the following Salamence as it lived a Dragon Claw from roughly 90% and would have been capable of 2HKOing if not for the Sitrus Berry. (Also Drake's Altaria exists although I legitimately forgot about it weith how quickly it died to my own Altaria.) Thus, it fell to Absol to demonstrate its worth once again, surviving the Salamence Dragon Claw and using Ice Beam to KO the biggest threat in da lee. The second Kingdra of the way was next and posed a much more significant threat with Dragon Dance boosted Body Slams and Lanturn's Thunderbolt baaaaaarely missing out on a 3HKO (pretty sure I low rolled the damage roll rng twice!) but managed a paralysis on the fifth Thunderbolt to secure the win, Beautifly serving as death fodder to Max Revive the fish when the first DDed Body Slam caught me off guard. Drake was down and the team fully restored before the Champion fight.

I lead Absol vs Wallace intending to Thunderbolt it quickly and devalue the Water Spout, a strategy that went to plan as Absol outsped, damaging for about 40% and surviving the ensuing Spout. Not wanting to trigger a Hyper Potion and thinking ahead, I elected to Shadow Ball instead of Thunderbolting as a follow up which backfired as I critical hit driving Wailord into the red, thus triggering a Full Restore, but then benefitting me as it also procced a Special Defense drop, allowing Lanturn to come in and OHKO Wailord on the Full Restore. Surprisingly, Wallace chose to follow up with Gyarados instead of Whiscash (desirable) or Ludicolo (target #2) as follow up. Fortunately a full health Lanturn was my secondary response to this (Absol being first) and it was able to live an Earthquake (barely) and OHKO the biggest enemy threat with Thunderbolt. Ludicolo then made an appearance, responded to by Altaria. You can imagine how this went. Double Team Leech Seed staller vs DDer with inaccurate SE STAB but vs enemy with only NVE attacks. DDed four times then went to attacks to minimize exposure to seeds, but Ludicolo mostly elected to attack instead at first (Surf did marginal damage, 5HKO). Altaria almost ended up dying without getting a hit because 1/8 per turn is kind of a lot when your STAB takes two turns to use but survived to OHKO on the 5th attempt. Tentacruel followed, survived the Fly (~65%), and killed Altaria. Such is bird life. Claydol made its first entrance here to clean up but was summarily killed by a crit Hydro Pump (I think it would have killed anyway). Breloom was selected as death fodder for a Hyper Potion on Lanturn (leaving Beautifly alive) and was not OHKOed by Ice Beam which Tentacruel decided to use for some reason instead of Sludge Bomb. C'est la vie. The Lanturn show returned to finish off Tentacruel, taking a Sludge Bomb (33%) in the process (also first level 50 here!). It was at this point that I remembered why I wanted Breloom alive when Wallace sent out Whiscash and so I trade off the live of Beautifly for Breloom (Fly would have 2HKOed with Giga Drain, pending choice of move. Did live a Surf, would probably not have survived Hyper Beam). Thus, I set up Breloom for the last time fully expecting it to die to Milotic. Whiscash was quickly dispatched, being slow enough that only a critical Hyper Beam (or Surf) was a threat, barely 2HKOing even at +0 (damage roll), and then Milotic appeared, confiming my suspicions and OHKOing the (still level 47) Breloom. And so, it fell to Lanturn to finish off a commendable late game performance, winning the war of attrition vs the inferior fish with its (Ether replenished) Thunderbolts driving the Milotic to the ground.

I may or may not have gotten home to my computer in the middle of the Drake battle.

And so, the final results (incl. HMs because I'm lazy and don't like wasting exp opportunities in Victory Road):


Breloom, level 47, Impish nature @ Miracle Seed
HP: 130 / Atk: 153 / Def: 99 / SpA: 71 / SpD: 67 / Spe: 89
Sky Uppercut / Strength / Rock Smash / Bulk Up

- I maintain my assertion that this should be S. Dominating early and mid game, very strong late game with the capacity to clean sweep 4 members of the Elite Four with either overlevelling or X Speed support, and ability to OHKO approximately 25% of the E4 without either of those things. A far better choice than Blaziken in my opinion who suffers from much weaker performance in the early-to-middle of the game.


Beautifly, level 49, Bold nature @ Lax Incense
HP: 138 / Atk: 86 / Def: 71 / SpA: 107 / SpD: 62 / Spe: 90
Silver Wind / Aerial Ace / Giga Drain / Psychic

- In my opinion, a clear D rank. Much better than given credit for despite its flaws. As mentioned before, excellent route cleaned which will consistently 2HKO enemies or OHKO them in the right matchup and will rarely by threatened by opposing attacks due to decent bulk. Limited major fight capability, dominating Brawly and the Team Aqua fights, and providing support vs Tate/Liza and Juan, capacity as primary fighter vs Sidney. Underrated component is how fast it grows, means its able to pick and choose spots much more easily without falling behind. Questions arose over its late game performance, but I found it to be more than capable with Silver Wind and Aerial Ace finding plenty of targets from the Team Aqua cavern and Victory Road. I expect its performance would have been even stronger had I given it my Psychic TM after Flannery pre-Norman, as there was a very noticeable power spike when I gave it the Victory Road Psychic.


Claydol, level 48, Quirky nature @ Hard Stone
HP: 121 / Atk: 87 / Def: 115 / SpA: 87 / SpD: 128 / Spe: 86
Psychic / Dig / Ancientpower / Flash

- Definition of consistently OK. As before, fat, hits good enough, good typing, awful initial training period, has limited ability to contribute in late game major fights. I still think it's a comfortable D but there's an argument to be made that's its E on basis of the awful Baltoy stage and it doing nothing vs team Aqua / Juan / Sidney / Glacia / Drake / Wallace. Rocks Victory Road though.


Altaria, level 47, Hasty nature @ Quick Claw
HP: 147 / Atk: 81 / Def: 85 / SpA: 84 / SpD: 116 / Spe: 95
Fly / Steel Wing / Dragonbreath / Dragon Dance

- Nothing more to say about this. It has its niche of being fat with a good typing that lets it set up Dragon Dances while also being pretty fuckin' weak. Stick in C or D, I don't really care. I guess a partial selling point is that you don't really have to train it much after Level 40 because it will do exactly the same at 45 vs 55, if something can't touch it it's still going to set up at either level and so more or less the same give or take a KO or two (Flygon). Sad thing to note is that Dragonbreath was noticeably stronger vs most of the late game enemies than Fly.


Absol, level 49, Timid nature @ King's Rock
HP: 141 / Atk: 131 / Def: 76 / SpA: 91 / SpD: 75 / Spe: 93
Shadow Ball / Ice Beam / Slash / Thunderbolt

- No longer unsure about the placing here, this is definitively C with a strong argument for B. It does require heavy TM investment but with Shadow Ball / Ice Beam / Thunderbolt it takes off and never looks back. I spoke about how it has an immediately accessible training platform in Fortree gym, and nothing else in the game can really stand up to Absol, with Slash or Strength for Normals. Fantastic type coverage for route cleaning, fantastic movepool for hit and run sniping of dangerous enemies with Ice Beam and Thunderbolt in particular (Gyarados, Salamence, etc), and with Shadow Ball a terrifically strong STAB that can pretty much invalidate Phoebe on its own, to say nothing of its strength that I demonstrated vs Tate and Liza. I alluded to this earlier, I was mostly unsure of Absol's placement because it went very unnoticed in how quietly effective it would cut through matchups and it was only when I got to Victory Road and starting facing consistently strong enemies that I could see first hand just how effortlessly it was cutting through things. So considering it's fairly readily available just before the 5th gym and has a ready made training spot, I think the only question to be answered here is does the high TM investment (3 TMs in high demand, albeit ones with multiples) factor as enough of a cost to keep Absol out of B?


Lanturn, level 50, Rash nature @ Sea Incence
HP: 199 / Atk: 69 / Def: 78 / SpA: 105 / SpD: 81 / Spe: 91
Surf / Thunderbolt / Waterfall / Dive (Spark prior to Waterfall)

- I said before that Chinchou and Lanturn should probably be C rank. I could not have been more catastrophically wrong. I don't care how late you get this thing, it is definitively an A rank because this is the single best end game Pokemon available, bar none. It has literally everything you could ever ask for from every standpoint. Incredible bulk. Incredible typing. Fantastic ability (assuming you get Volt Absorb...). Amazing STAB combo. No less than 5 separate routes immediately available to it solely existing for easy, efficient catch up training; ergo zero grind period. Incredible matchups vs the following: Team Aqua, Team Magma, Juan, Victory Road, Glacia, Wallace, and good to great matchups (depending on if you teach it Ice Beam) vs Sidney, Phoebe and Drake (bulk and typing to 1v1 one or two Pokemon per enemy on typing and bulk alone, i.e. Absol, Kingdra, Duslops, Banette, Crawdaunt, other Dragons if given Ice Beam). And as the final cherry on top it even serves as an incredibly efficient HM slave at the same time as being an incredible fighter, taking on the crucial Surf and the two most difficult HMs to fit in Dive and Waterfall. This was my first time using Lanturn and I could not have asked for a better, more dominating performance, outperforming even a Starmie on basis of its incredible bulk. The single factor holding this back from being among the very best Pokemon is its severely delayed acquiring, and even then just barely. It's that good.

tl;dr: some fairly radical suggestions but ones that I think well reflect their performance
- Breloom to S (100%)
- Lanturn to A (1000%)
- Altaria to C/D (50%)
- Claydol to D (70%)
- Beautifly to D (90%)
- Absol to B (80%, 20% to C)
 
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