PU Debating Session

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majestic pride.
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Credit to Keiran for the banner. | Thread approval from Arcticblast.

Hello everyone.

The idea of a thread as this one has admittedly sparked for quite some time after various discussions that took place into #pu and to a lesser extent, #othermetas that normally constitutes a topic relating of this one. Similarly to the threads that the Overused sub-forum partook on, the purpose behind gathering people to post in this thread is primarily an exercise of your ability to utilize your critical thinking skills and overall knowledge of the tier within a series of PU-related topics. Using your ability to decipher the aspects of the overall PU metagame, this is the poster's opportunity to engage among others with controversial subjects that categorizes from the likes of, but not limited to, playstyle arch-types, tiering-related aspects, components of teambuilding, discussion among the possibility of suspecting a potentially overpowered threat, or even theorizing of more entertaining or miscellaneous that relates to the topic of the metagame.

If you are interested, here's a good insight of how things will work in this thread. On a weekly or so process, I will come up with a subject to talk about that is permitted for everyone to be given their opportunities discuss about said subject. It is included for everyone for select the side that they most feel supportive of such, and taking into account of your prior debating skills and legitimate playing experience of tier should you be qualified to take place of an argument against the opposition based on the topic.

For the sake of reiterating myself, this thread is expected to be consisted upon absolutely nothing but sufficient quality discussion on this thread. If you cannot be bothered towards committing of such and/or just want to inadvertently blurt out fallacies or arbitrarily make statements such as “but PU won't be an official tier so I don't see the point of this thread lolololol”, then it's probably best to not invest your time towards posting here. I do not particularly expect a clear-cut case of dissertation of all of your contribution due to the potential problem of tl;dr johning which can take away potential discussion of thread, but I expect to be very detailed with solid back up on your reasonings to help maintain a healthy discussion.

Here are a number of gorund rules that are a necessity towards abiding to when initiating with this thread:

1. Firstly, try to avoid possessing any signs of a pessimistic mindset regarding the actual tier itself. Not only as this is something that just isn't particularly suited for what this thread is for, but things like this will almost certainly decrease the quality of a good argument while ultimately taking away healthy discussion of the thread.

2. Seeing as fallacies are of something that we generally want to avoid being under the influx of, please take account of reading this before posting.

3. Try to respect all opinions and look at their reasoning behind their argument at a neutral state before making a dedicated response. This should obviously go without saying, but this kind of thing goes out of hand a lot when there's a lot of disagreement going on.

4. Each user involved will be entitled to provide one opening post and one opposing post to respond to per topic of their choice. With that being said, make sure that you're sincerely planned out for those kind of things as the discussion commences.

5. Always stay on topic along the lines of analyzing arguments. This is something that is not to be tolerated and failure of following this rule could ideally result to a near-instant deletion/infraction/edit of the post from an OM moderator, depending of the rest of the quality behind it.

6. Always label and bold your side at the start of your opening argument. On a similar note, quote what you're responding to, one-by-one if necessary.

7. Don't forget that everyone else wants to have their ideas talked about, too. If you see someone's post that has been ignored, feel free to give them a response. Look through the argument, and see if you can find anything interesting to contend to.

8. As long as you have some thought process put into it and is related to the discussion, if you are unsure as to whether or not what you have to say is worth saying, feel free to post it anyways - having a few points to refer towards and talked about is better than having a dead thread.
For the help of new players that are looking to find more in-depth information of the metagame and hopefully inspire them to make quality posts in the future, links to previous discussion topics will be listed below to view the defining arguments as the process goes on.Whether or not I will allow for the rediscussion of these topics is unknown for the time being due to organization-related reasoning, but I will let you if/when this will be permitted.

List of previous debate topics:

Setup Sweepers

Remember that good discussion here (and in other threads) could help put you on the way to your very own
Community Contributor badge. So don't be afraid to give your input here and do your best!


majestic pride.
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus
Here is where I will start with a topic that's relatively straightforward if you have a decent amount of experience with the metagame, along with plenty of things to express among that category. As the banner itself implies, the debate will divide into two sides: Team Jumpluff for posters that support the topic of the argument and Team Combusken who opposes with the concept of the argument. Be sure to label what side that you choose to support on the opening of your post.

First topic:

Subject: Setup Sweepers

Debate: At the current state of the offensive nature of the metagame, teams should honestly be trending towards the use of setup sweepers to take into consideration in terms of making use of and preparing for on every team due to their overall prevalence and dominance of the metagame.

Things to think about that might help you engage in a good analysis of this topic:

1. How much of an impact do they have in the metagame in terms of overall potential? Do you think that threats like Dragon Dance Fraxure, Calm Mind Golduck or Shift Gear Klang should be viewed as threats that are prominent enough to see a common sight on every team? Do setup sweepers pose as much of a threat have an effect in terms of overall viability of other playstyles?

2. What ways of teambuilding strategy does the PU metagame have in terms of keeping the prevalence of these setup sweepers in check? What kind of viable Pokemon can keep specific, dangerous ones in particular in check? Does Stall or Balance, for example, have a good number of ways upon dealing with them? Do you have to resort to an offensive nature in terms of stopping them such as the advent of Choice Scarf users?

3. What role do hazards play in the grand scheme of how much of a threat setup sweepers can be in the current metagame? Do they help setup sweepers achieve 2HKO's that they otherwise wouldn't obtain? Are there ways to counteract with this among the many users of Stealth Rock or Spikes (Rapid Spinning, offensive pressure of some sort, Taunt, etc.)? Do the hazard damage that setup sweepers can take mean any differences in terms of stopping them? What hazard abusers do setup sweepers often benefit from that works?

4. Try to be more open-minded and not limited yourself to these specific ideas, as this is primarily an excercise of your ability to express about setup sweepers in the overall metagame. There may be more to come along.

Commence with discussion. In addition, there could a possibility of hosting PU mini-tournament with various unique restrictions based on the topic, depending on the amount of activity on this thread. I won't be submitting a specific date/time of any sort because I feel that it's going to take a lot of discussion for the time being, but perhaps this would likely happen once that topic has been completed.
This is a fantastic first topic, Agent Dell! Nice work :)

Though it's tough to argue for just one, I say I'm on Team Combusken due to my thoughts on setup being manageable and not necessary in the current metagame.

For starters, Agent Dell is correct in saying that set-up sweepers are prevalent in PU. PU is extremely offensive; the strength tiers and speed tiers are all much lower than in its father meta, NU, making for a diverse metagame with many viable Pokémon, more than you see in higher tiers. In PU, all Pokémon get a chance to shine in some way due to an interesting speed tier system (a fast base Speed in PU is around 70, enough to outspeed Fraxure before a boost, where as base 85 is very important for a Choice Scarf user to outspeed unboosted attackers.), which is very easy to creep up on with a Choice Scarf, similar to LC in a way. Unlike Little Cup, however, is the prevelance of set-up sweepers in PU. Set-up moves are amongst the most commonly distributed moves in Pokémon in general, and with the lowered bulk and power in general in PU, many oft overlooked Pokémon can use their set up moves to get the jump on the opponent's switching. This, truly, is what makes setup so threatening in this tier: giving the opponent a free turn often means curtains. At least, this would be the case, anyway, if we didn't have the appropriate Pokémon to keep them in check.

Setup, while extremely viable in PU for the reasons stated above, can be just as easily controlled if your opponent has built his/her team in preparation for setup. For instance, something as simple as running Roar on your Leafeon can tarnish the hopes of Fraxure and Klang sweeping through your team, rendering all their setup useless. Calm Mind Golduck would love to Hydro Pump the entire tier, but your Choice Specs Raichu naturally outspeeds and Thunderbolts it to death. Arbok Coiling in your face? Golduck has Psychic. While I think setup is very viable in this meta, I wouldn't say outright that every team should be required to run multiple setup sweepers in order to keep up with the other boosters to be competitive, nor do I particularly think that setup discourages other forms of play. For instance, weather is still very good in PU, if not just as good as weatherless, due to all the viable users of Chlorophyll and Swift Swim (along with the usability of NU's most reliable weather setter in Volbeat). These weather teams have much versatility, allowing them to boost in power and speed to naturally outrun the common setup sweepers and hit them hard with super strong Water- or Fire- Type attacks depending on the weather chosen. Hell, setup is usable in weather as well! Pokémon such as Shiftry, Victreebel, and Beartic have much success in Sun and Rain respectively with the use of Growth, Swords Dance, Bulk Up, and the like.

That's not to say weather is the only hope against set up, because its far from it. Balanced teams and Stall also have plentiful answers to setup. On Balanced teams, you have the opportunity to stop setup in its tracks with Choice Scarf users such as Rotom-F and Golduck, and even lesser used ones such as Stantler, who boast great coverage, natural speed, and the raw power to muscle through the boosted defenses of Pokémon like Arbok and Grumpig. Stall has the blessing of phazing moves available on very bulky Pokémon, such as Leafeon. Leafeon is one of the best answers to Fraxure, for example, taking pitiful damage from Outrage at +2, and next to nothing from its coverage moves, allowing Leafeon to get a free Wish off and Roar Fraxure out the next turn. On the special side, Specially Defensive Audino can handily absorb the plentiful Psychic- Type STAB attacks from the likes of Grumpig, Mr. Mime, and Golduck, Wish up, and Toxic stall them. I think all playstyles have decent answers to setup, but that doesn't exactly neuter its effectiveness.

In truth, it still comes down to the player.

All in all, I think setup is perfectly usable in PU and is very good, shown by altering the moves used on popular Pokémon such as Leafeon (in its case, many players run Roar over Return) and even increasing the viability of certain Pokémon (Stantler, for example, has the coverage to handle Arbok and Klang with ease, as well as the speed to effectively dispatch them), but I still think it's manageable and not over-centralizing.

I hope that's what you were looking for in this thread, Dell. Sometimes I miss the point of things :/


I'd rather be sleeping
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ok, didn't want this to die without anyone taking the other side, also I told dell I'd do this but Smogon has been down

Anyways, I'm Team Jumpluff for this issue since I think offense is the dominant playstyle and just about every good offensive team needs to have one, and every good defensive team needs to prepare for the many running around.

I think the above argument is flawed in that it overestimates the defensive capabilities of the Pokemon in the tier and undervalues the strength of some of the sweepers in the tier. For example, take something like Linoone, one of the most threatening sweepers in the tier. Linoone literally has a handful of checks (Klang, Lairon, Graveler) and no counters, so it is incredibly threatening given a turn of setup. It seems like you simply keep your check alive so they can't sweep, right? While that's what would happen in theory, in practice it's very difficult. None of Linoone's checks have reliable recovery and they have easily exploitable weaknesses (for example Linoone's checks are easy prey for a Golduck or Combusken), so it would not take very long to wear them down and setup for a clean sweep of the opposing team.

While it might seem like those are reasons as to why Linoone is powerful after Belly Drum, in reality those same sort of arguments can be applied to most (if not all) of the viable sweepers in the metagame. When you look at the defensive Pokemon in the tier, you'll find that most of them have no form of recovery at all, and of those that do, most of those have semi-reliable methods like Wish+Protect or RestTalk, which can be easily exploited to give your opponent free turns of set-up, especially given the fact that most of these defensive Pokemon aren't strong enough to prevent them from being setup bait. From there, it is easy to rip through a defensive core and clean up with either that same mon or with other members of the team.

I agree that not every team has to necessarily be Hyper Offense to succeed, but the idea that most teams don't need to run a set up sweeper (or have mulitple checks for them on their team if they take the more defensive route) just isn't true from my experience. When you look at many of the most threatening Pokemon in the tier such as DD Fraxure, BD Linoone, RD Golduck, and SD Jumpluff, a common trend is that they require a turn of setup before they wreak havoc. However, when they get that turn of setup, it is easy for them to tear through teams. If most setup sweepers in the tier needed some extra amount of support to grab a boost (such as Dual Screens or Encore support) then maybe the case of Team Combusken would have more weight, but as it stands now it's not hard for most offensive Pokemon in the tier to get a boost (or several against some defensive mons), so it quickly becomes clear that in order to succeed, the vast majority of teams either need to use setup sweepers or keep them in large consideration if they wish to succeed.
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