Rain in NU



In OU, because of Drizzle making rain's effects permanent and the Swift Swim + Drizzle ban, rain is primarily a defensive weather. In lower tiers, however, Rain Dance is almost always used offensively as you only have 7 turns to abuse its effects.

Down in NU, many powerful rain abusers reside. Rain is considered a very powerful play-style and is not to be taken lightly. There are various abusers and good setters to compliment rain... but there are also various checks!

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The two most common rain abusers are Gorebyss and Ludicolo.



Gorebyss, an incredibly threatening threat outside of rain, is even more dangerous with Swift Swim boosting its low Speed stat and increasing the power of its Water-type attacks. One of Gorebyss' biggest flaws is the lack of Speed before setting up; however, with rain up, this is not an issue. To top it off, a +2 Gorebyss in the rain is very hard to stop.



Ludicolo's Hydro Pump is very powerful under the rain. While its Special Attack is lower than Gorebyss and it lacks Hydro Pump, it's not inferior to Gorebyss. It has access to STAB Giga Drain allowing it to easily run through Water-types, along with better overall bulk and Speed. It also has the room to run Rain Dance if your other setters have fainted or if you have no time to bring them in.

Now, this is definitely not the end to the list of rain abusers; there are plenty more out there! Some other options include Floatziel and Seismitoad, as well as non Swift Swimmers such as Jynx, who can abuse the rain with her Dry Skin ability. What rain abusers do you like the best? Feel free to share... there are quite a lot of possibilities!

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Of course, there is more to rain than abusers... you also need Pokemon that can set-up rain. The best rain setter is the one that has recovery, great bulk, U-turn/Volt Switch/Explosion, resists Grass and Electric, and can support the team with other moves such as Stealth Rock, Heal Bell, and Healing Wish. What Pokemon can do all of that? None of them; which makes deciding the weather starter to use in the team makes using rain all the more fun! Some good weather setters include Ampharos, who is bulky, resists Electric, has Volt Switch, and can use Heal Bell; Gardevoir, who is bulky, has Taunt, is fast, and has Taunt and Healing Wish; and Miltank, who has Stealth Rock, Milk Drink, and great bulk and Speed.

Of course, that's not all. I've seen and used various other weather setters. Probopass, Electrode, Volbeat, and Rotom-S are also pretty good weather setters.

What is your personal favorite weather setter? Ampharos? Gardevoir? Miltank? Volbeat? Something not on the list? Why!

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Even if you don't like to use rain, it's still something that's in the meta -- you have to prepare for it! Some good weather checks include Gardevoir and Ludicolo, which can also be found on some rain teams themselves (especially Ludicolo). A lot of the time you have to resort to just stalling out the rain turns... or prevent the opponent from setting up rain in the first place! 7 turns may not be much, but it's enough for the opponent to potentially sweep you... unless you have anything to do about it.

How do you usually deal with rain? How much do you dedicate your team to it? What kind of weather checks do you use?

Another interesting thing to consider is what rain would be like without Damp Rock. Would dedicated rain teams disappear completely and only be used on ORD users such as Ludicolo (Offensive Rain Dance users)?
 

Endorfins

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Seismatoad is a great Swift Swim abuser as it gets Sludge Wave to deal with Ludicolo and Tangela and has great STAB moves to sweep the opponent. It's also bulky enough to take an Absol's Sucker Punch unlike Floatzel and Gorebyss after a Shell Smash.
Another underrated Rain abuser is Ampharos, not only is it bulky enough to setup rain, but it can also abuse a 100% accuracy Thunder coming off 115 base Special Attack. It also has a slow Volt Switch to get a frail sweeper in safely.
 

jake

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Bulky Ludicolo is by far the best stop to most of the Rain abusers, imo. Giga Drain wrecks nearly all of them (uhh not counting like Swift Swim Armaldo? Even then...), and Rain Dish recovery is really awesome when dealing with stuff like LO Modest Gorebyss. But anyway, I really hope that Ludicolo picks up as the most prominent check to Rain teams... so I can abuse Swanna. >:D

One of the biggest problems with offensive Rain teams, imo, is the inability to take Absol's priority, like Endorfins pointed out. Sun teams can bypass Absol with like Sawsbuck's Nature Power or by simply setting up a Substitute or something with Charizard, whereas with Rain teams, Jynx is generally the only Pokemon who can bypass Absol's priority via Substitute. How do you guys handle Absol?
 
Why cant you put Substitute on Ludicolo or Gorebyss? Substitute/Surf/Giga Dain/Ice Beam is definitely fine coverage for Ludicolo and Gorebyss can get away with Substitute/Surf/Shell Smash/HP Rock or Bug. Or use Floatzel, or one of the Rock/Water types that can take a Sucker Punch. Or have your Rain Starter be something that can beat Absol.
 
Samurott is also another possible Rain abuser, and he can easily outmaneuver Absols that don't run max. speed with SD and Aqua Jet.
 

tennisace

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In every other tier except NU, Rain always trumps Sun, since that 50% boost to Swift Swim-ers' Water-type moves always helps, because every Pokemon with Swift Swim is a Water-type ('cept Armaldo)! However, Sun boosts Fire-type moves 50% and every Pokemon with Chlorophyll is Grass-type, and needs to rely on either Weather Ball or HP Fire to truly take advantage of that.

However, in this round of NU, Sun has almost always beaten Rain, and is much much much more commonly seen. Is it because Sun has better abusers? Is it because the rest of the Pokemon in NU like Sun better than rain, so it's easier to fit them on sun teams (like Regirock or Absol)? Or is it just because of the diversity sun teams can have, unlike rain? I'm curious as to what everyone thinks, since on paper, Rain looks better, except that every Pokemon is at least part Water-type (except Armaldo, which admittedly scares away SpD Ludicolo). Could it just be that Water isn't that great a type to have right now?
 

nyttyn

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In every other tier except NU, Rain always trumps Sun, since that 50% boost to Swift Swim-ers' Water-type moves always helps, because every Pokemon with Swift Swim is a Water-type ('cept Armaldo)! However, Sun boosts Fire-type moves 50% and every Pokemon with Chlorophyll is Grass-type, and needs to rely on either Weather Ball or HP Fire to truly take advantage of that.

However, in this round of NU, Sun has almost always beaten Rain, and is much much much more commonly seen. Is it because Sun has better abusers? Is it because the rest of the Pokemon in NU like Sun better than rain, so it's easier to fit them on sun teams (like Regirock or Absol)? Or is it just because of the diversity sun teams can have, unlike rain? I'm curious as to what everyone thinks, since on paper, Rain looks better, except that every Pokemon is at least part Water-type (except Armaldo, which admittedly scares away SpD Ludicolo). Could it just be that Water isn't that great a type to have right now?
I personally believe the problem is twofold. Firstly, water as a attacking type in NU suffers from two flaws. One: Bulky Water and Grass dominates the tier, and two: specially bulky types are very common. It certainly does not help that fire, rock, and ground types who do not have a backup resist who are commonly played without sun dance don't exist in abundance in the meta.

Two: The rain abusers in the tier are mostly crap, even by NU standards. Gorebyss, Carracosta, Ludicolo, and possibly Armaldo? Armaldo ironically is actually hurt more by rain then he benifits, as it's already weak to water types, and it doesn't get Aqua Tail with Swift Swim. Plus he's not going to outspeed much even post swift swim.

So, resists are common, they don't have much to hit for supereffective damage, they are extremely predictable, and there are almost no viable rain abusers.

It can work, it's just that Sun has so many more abusers. Plus two of the most popular walls are Alomomola and Tangela, who counter rain pretty hard. True, Gorebyss runs HP Grass most of the time, but it's not going to do crap against Tangela or most of the special walls in the tier. Really all things considered Ludicolo is the best rain dance abuser, as it can eliminate bulky water and bulky grass, both of which are usually issues to rain teams. But we still have a astonishing ammount of counters who counter rain without even trying. If rain gets popular, expect Cryogonal usage to skyrocket.

Oh yeah, and trace Gardevoir trolls swift swim to hell and back by both outspeeding every swift swim user as well as being able to pack thunderbolt so there's that.
 
Ludicolo's Hydro Pump is very powerful under the rain. While its Special Attack is lower than Gorebyss and it lacks Hydro Pump, it's not inferior to Gorebyss.

I presume it lacks Shell Smash :P
 

Django

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Just want to point out that Tangela is pretty much useless against rain, as every abuser and its mother carries Ice Beam.

I think the reason Sun appears to be better atm is that all of its abusers can destroy a Rain team outside of the weather, which immediately puts the Rain team at a disadvantage. Charizard, Exeggutor, Sawsbuck and Victreebel all hit stupidly hard outside of Sun, and Rain teams struggle to fit solid answers to them on their team along with all the abusers they need to be effective.
 
Rain abusers are generally frailer than Sun abusers, and don't have a niche outside of trying to hit hard.

Most Sun abusers have better secondary typings, better natural coverage without having to resort to Hidden Power, most have the stats to use mixed sets, have huge supporting movepools with many attacks unique to Grass types and most of them can heal themselves too. Ludicolo is the exception of course but take one look at Sawsbuck, Exeggutor, Victreebel, Shiftry, Leafeon, Charizard, Magmortar, Rapidash and it reads more like a list of the fastest and most powerful Pokemon in the tier rather than a niche set of abusers.

Taking a look at the rain abusers like Ludicolo, Gorebyss, Floatzle, Seismitoad, Lapras, Carracosta, Armaldo, Relicanth... most of them have shallow coverage options and support movepools which makes them extremely predictable. A lot of them have commonly seen hard counters and they don't have the tools to support the team in any other way. Ludicolo is probably the only one that has the bulk, mixed stats, and an unpredictable offensive and support movepool to make it a real threat offensively and defensively.

The main thing is probably the fact that most of the Sun abusers have the typing and bulk to counter specific threats themselves so they have a much easier time switching in and grabbing free turns. The rain abusers in general don't have the varied typing to make themselves useful defensively so they pretty much only function as glass cannons, the team having to carry them as a burden.
 
I'd say rain's biggest problem is the bulky grasses, imo. Besides Gorrebyss (who really needs a smash to be a huge threat) all of the swift-swimmers lack power. Things like the trending Vileplume take jack shit from a Ludicolo's ice beam. And many people carry things to outspeed +2 Gorrebyss. I will say though that if you can get a smash in the rain, it's basically GG, because surf rapes everything.

The sun abusers just have a lot more kick than the rain ones. I prefer rain, tbh, because I hate sun, although I play weatherless for the most part.

Ludicolo is still one of my new favs, I must say. I prefer bulky variants to be used as a rain check. Anti-Meta play, FTW!
 

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