Rating Basics

There does seem to be increased activity in this thread from newer raters which is nice to see, so I'll try to help you guys out.

@ Leftiez: Looking over your first rate, I'd probably agree with all suggestions you listed. You clearly justified your changes with strong reasoning, but the thing I liked about this rate was how you fixed an additional problem as a result of your suggested change. This is the mentality that a team rater should have, so I'm pleased to see that you're incorporating some of the advice I gave you last time into your rates.

Moving onto your second rate, you picked a very difficult team to rate, that really didn't have that many weaknesses. I can see why you suggested Scarf Salamence to help against Thundurus-T, but honestly it does leave him incredibly prone to most defensive cores as a result. MixMence is on his team to abuse the hazards and sweep late game, which you may argue that Scarf Salamence performs a similar role, but the argument is that his other team mates have some trouble breaking through Salamence counters, meaning Scarf Salamence may just switch in, Outrage, kill one Pokemon before a Steel type comes in essentially rendering Salamence useless. Honestly, I would've had trouble rating this too, but if you wanted a slightly better answer to Thundurus-T, a small suggestion could be to run a little more bulk on Latias. In general though, I think this isn't that big an issue if the user plays smart, as Thundurus-T's only real setup opportunities are against -2 Salamence or if Ferrothorn and Thundurus-T are in at the same time.

As for your third rate, I was kind of torn about your suggestions. I completely agree with your Ninetales suggestions, as they will help the OP to win the weather war more consistently which is more or less his main win condition via Venusaur. I would also agree with the Venusaur change, as one of Venusaur's most common switch-ins is Heatran who otherwise walls his set. The thing I had mixed opinions on was your Donphan suggestion; it does give him an answer for Terrakion and other physical attackers, but he loses his only Dragon resist. This otherwise leaves him prone to stuff such as Life Orb Latios / Latias or Salamence / Dragonite, as everytime they switch in something is taking 50% at least. Another merit of Forretress is that it has Volt Switch, so it isn't losing momentum which is why it is so great for this team. Forretress switches into Physical Attacker, Forretress takes a hit and forces a switch. Switch is obvious so you Volt Switch, go into Terrakion / Venusaur / Kyurem and apply immediate pressure. This seems to be how his team works, and adding Donphan loses any momentum he has prior to switching it in. This is just my opinions though, I can definitely see the logic behind your changes and you should keep rating in this manner!

@ Uomo Solo: Starting with this rate, it's good to see that you're making good changes. You understood that this was a Smash Pass team, and that he's not really getting a lot of use out of some of his team members, namely Donphan and Metagross who are not the best recipients of a +2 / +2 / +2 boost. I agree with your Nidoking and Jirachi suggestions as a result, as they actually give him good Baton Pass recipients. Later in your rate you mentioned Scarf Keldeo as a weakness, but you didn't really patch that weakness up. Changing Jirachi's spread to outspeed Scarf Keldeo is good for when he has successfully passed the boosts over, but this guy literally loses 100% of his battles if he cannot pass said boosts. I really think he would've appreciated a Scarfer on his team, as at least some sort of backup for when he cannot pass boosts. Other than that, I'd probably agree with your changes, as they will fundamentally allow him to sweep more consistently.

As for your second rate, I had mixed opinions on this. you started by replacing his Scarf Scizor with a Choice Band set which is nice because Scarf Scizor isn't the most effective for his team, but after making this change you didn't follow up with the problem you made. As a result of the team losing it's scarfer, it now has no answer to the plethora of speed boosters in OU, and will have some trouble against opposing Scarfers. I think the easiest change would've been to drop Scarf Scizor for Scarf Jirachi, namely giving him a good Dragon check and performing a similar role to Scizor -- chipping down Pokemon with U-Turn to then be put in a position to sweep late game if possible. Every change may open up additional problems, and I think that every single offensive team in BW really needs a Scarfer as a failsafe for the multitude of threats in the metagame right now.

As for your other changes, I'd probably agree with those too. Garchomp doesn't really need a Life Orb to utilize it's Stealth Rock set effectively, while Yache Berry ensures he can get Stealth Rock up against stuff like Mamoswine / Scarf Keldeo. As for the Life Orb > Choice Specs suggestion for Latios, both items have their merits. Life Orb allows him to switch up moves and open up another moveslot for a healing move. Choice Specs gives him a dedicated Special Attacker to make the most of his attacking opportunities. Because his team is so offensive and his only other Special Attacker hitting nearly as hard is Zoroark who has no business switching in on anything, he really needs to make the most of his switches, which Choice Specs does. Honestly both items work, but just be sure to list why Life Orb is better than Choice Specs for this guy's team specifically.

In general, your rates are pretty good stuff. You seem to have a similar problem as some of the other raters posting here -- each change may open up another problem. Your task as a rater is try to patch up those problems, so be sure to take a look at the team after you've made that change and address that if necessary. Good luck rating!

@ ¬Itachi: I can see this is your first time posting in this thread, so I'll try to give you some advice you can incorporate into your future rates. This was an interesting team to rate, primarily because of his moveset choices, but I think your changes likewise were pretty good. The Body Slam change was something I thought about when looking through his team, as he does have a pretty severe Rock Polish Landorus / Agility Thundurus-T weakness, and Body Slam doesn't give them setup opportunities. I also liked how you fitted Stealth Rock onto Jirachi after removing Forretress, as he really does need Stealth Rock for his team to perform the best it can, turning those 2HKOs into OHKOs.

As for your main change which was the Latias suggestion, I'd agree with that too. I'm not sure if the set in particular was most effective given that his team is very offensive, and setting up multiple Calm Minds kinda kills all of his momentum, which his team is very reliant on given the Volt Turn playstyle he is running. I think a Life Orb Latias (112 HP / 144 SAtk / 252 Spe) would work better in that role, mainly because it gives him a balance of offensive power and ability to tank hits -- Life Orb Latias has great offensive coverage, as well as patching up his Politoed / Keldeo / Landorus / Thundurus-T, and most importantly Venusaur who cannot OHKO Latias at +2 with that spread.

@ LucaroarkZ: For your first rate, I probably would agree with your change. On offensive teams like this, some threats can simply be played around, and I think your suggestion would work in practice. In general for this guy's team, I really think he needs to replace his Scarfer, and making Latios a last ditch effort for Keldeo could work, especially as he still retains the ability to cripple common Latios switch-ins with Trick.

Moving onto your second rate, you suggested a Swords Dance Yache Berry Garchomp over his Dragonite set. While it might make much better use of his lack of a Rapid Spinner, it makes him weak to a lot more Pokemon than meets the eye, namely Scarf Keldeo, Venusaur and stuff like Scizor / Rotom-W that Dragonite can continually heal up on. The main difference is here is that Dragonite can perform a defensive role while still being able to work offensively. It helps him against Sun, and is arguably running a much more potent set given that with his set he has the necessary bulk to beat and use Dragonite's "counters" as setup fodder.

These are good efforts, I think your main problem is changing Pokemon / movesets that perform a similar role to patch up one weakness specifically, but you're not factoring in the benefits of that team member. When you rate team, every Pokemon on a team has a specific purpose, and to remove that Pokemon means you lose the ability to perform the role that Pokemon did. Just something to consider, I'm sure your rates will improve in time. Good luck rating!
@ Leftiez

To me your first rate was quite good. You identidied the teams weakness to electric-types like Rotom-W and Thunderous-T quite nicely and you explained why they were threats. However for Rotom-W you only really explained why Breloom isn't a counter to it, rather then explain why it is threatening to his team. Saying something like "Rotom-W is a threat because it can threaten Landorus, Tyanitar and Scizor with Will-o-Wisp and Hydro Pump, while its good special bulk makes it hard for Gengar to take it down as well." After this you could then go on to mention why Breloom can't counter it. You did a perfect job of explaining why Thunderous-T was a threat and the use of damage calcs is very cool. The Latias change was great to handle these two threats and you explained perfectely how Latias helps handle these Pokemon. You could of mentioned how you stilll have to watch out for Rotom-W's Thunder Wave/Will-o-Wisp, but thats just me being nitpicky so don't blame yourself haha. The minor changes at the end were good but when you were mentioning Will-o-Wisp, you didn't explain why SD Scizor was a threat, and you could of also mentioned how Will-o-Wisp opens up more set up oppurtunities for his own Scizor.

regarding your second rate you mentioned Latias, Gyarados, Thunderous-T to all be threats and you explained why which is good. However with your Ferrothorn suggestion while it does help somewhat against these Pokemon, Thunderous-T can still beat it with Focus Blast, and its not a full stop to Latias. I would of suggested a Sub+CM Jirachi in that spot, because it can win the Calm Mind war with Latias due to Psyshock, and after a boost its special defense lets it take on Thunderous-T quite easily. While it doesn't help with Gyarados as much as Ferrothorn behind a Substitute it can still beat it with Thunder and Gyarados is much more rare than Thunderous-T who Ferrothorn has a harder time against. Also your Hp Electric suggestion of Keldeo helps with this weakness as well as Perish Song on Politoed.


Sacred Sword
Ok, i had problems with this team. Scarflando was bad, and the team probably appreciates more double boost lando and scarf keldeo, as well as an another water resistance like Latios instead of alakazam, but you know, i would have changed the team completely. How do you approach with these "bad teams"?


pushing back the tide
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@ Neliel Tu Oderschvank: Yea, that team is indeed bad, and I'm astonished that you took the time to rate it. I agree with most of your rate, but I would have recommended Latios over his Alakazam, due to his lack of Water resistances besides Keldeo. Also, I don't think that your thoughts on changing Keldeo to a Scarf variant (as you mentioned in your post here) are unfounded, considering that his team is practically set up so that Scarf Keldeo can rip the opponent apart in the end-game.

Now, to answer your question on how to approach bad teams. When I see a bad team, I'll see whether or not I can make it better without having to replace more than 2 Pokemon and/or 3 movesets. If I can help it while remaining in my parameters, then I'll do what I can. If I can't do that, I'll leave the team without a rate and move along to another team that could use my time. I set these parameters on myself because I don't want to deviate from the OP's goals with his team.

@ ¬Itachi: Regarding your rate, it's okay, but I think that you changed a bit too much on his team. Your VoltTurn core suggestion was well-made, but that's changing two Pokemon already. Your LO Latias over Landorus-T suggestion robs him of a great switch-in to Terrakion, which is another large threat to his team. All in all though, you did an okay job at trying to improve what obviously is a bad team.

Sorry for being terse with my evaluation. There's not much to say. Both of you tried to improve a team with too many problems to be improved, and you both did a gallant job at it. Maybe with a better team will better rates come out of it, but for now, good job you two. Maybe if the OP of your team would be willing to give up his Wobuffet, it could be improved...


Sacred Sword
Yeah i know that those suggestion were good overall but i felt like i was completely change the team (something like, a change on every poke bar ttar) so i stopped at jirachi + some fix to the sets. Thanks for your clarification btw!
@ Mr. Green

Hi! First of all your rates are improving so good job! Ok so I agree with your suggestions, Wild Charge on Stoutland was good The Latios one was good as well (although you could of just mentioned something over Recover). You explained why he should do these changes to which was good. You didn't really explain why the guy should use a Choice Specs Kingdra. Just because you decided to take it off Latios it doesn't mean Kingdra should get it by default. While the suggestion wasn't bad, you could of explained why Choice Specs Kingdra is a good idea, perhaps saying something like "Choice Specs Kingdra lets you break through physical walls easier then your current set, helping you achieve a Scizor or a Stoutland sweep." My only other problem I had with this rate is while your changes certainly helped the team become more efficient, you didn't really help the team with threats it has. Which is a very important part of rating, because thats what really helps a team win battles it might not of been able to win before. If you are struggling to find threats to a team this is a good resource courtesy of yee http://www.smogon.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4158960&postcount=2 However if you can't find threats to a team, or somebody else has already addressed them listing minor changes like you did are absolutely fine. Usually I like to find threats to a team using the threatlist, solve the problems the team has with the threats and then look for minor changes like moveset tweaks or item changes.

keep it up your improving!
@ ¬Itachi

Hi your rates are pretty good for somone new to rating however there are a few mistakes that I picked up in your rates which I would like to point out. Firstly I feel as if you suggest Pokemon changes a little to easily, and don't properly explain why your are suggesting the changes. As a rater you should try to not make massive changes to a team because after changing two or three Pokemon you could argue that the team is no longer theirs but rather a team which you have built to your liking. I only suggest Pokemon changes if a Pokemon can do a task better than the Pokemon already on the team e.g DD Dragonite>DD Haxorus or if a Pokemon change will significantly help a team with threats it has e.g a team is weak to Dragon-types and sun so using Heatran>Infernape as a Stealth Rock setter because it can help with dragons and sun. Keep in mind with the second example you should take a look and see if your suggestion actually helps the team more than it is hindering it. My example of Heatran>Infernape definitely sounds good, but if the team has 3 other fighting-type weaknesses or it is weak to rain then this change isn't a good idea at all. Don't worry though as you get good at suggesting changes like these in time. While the suggestion on your first rate of Starmie>Jellicent was ok because the team lacked a spinner your suggestions in your second rate of Keldeo>Meinshao I would not agree with. Because you are only adding Keldeo to the team for the sake of the creator having Keldeo+ttar.Likewise suggesting Landorus>Gliscor is not a change you dhould suggest just because Landorus is powerful and Gliscor is not as good as it used to be. Moving on to other things I dont agree with HP Grass on Keldeo. While it does give Keldeo a weapon against Gastrodon, it becomes easy set up fodder for Pokemon like Dragonite. In the first rate I don't see why you didn't suggest Technician Breloom as it is an overall better and more efficient set than the sub punch. My only other problem with your rates and quite possibly the most important thing I have to say, is as a rater you should try and identify threats to a team, explain to the op why they are threats and try to solve those problems. This is arguably the most important part of rating. If you are struggling to find threats to a team then this is a great resource the OU threatlist.

I see you have edited another rate in so I will help you with that too :) Ok so in your second rate I agreed with everything you mentioned. You clearly told the OP why he didn't need HP Fire On Deoxys-D with Heatran providing Fire-type coverage and how Taunt and Magic Bounce will benefit him. The Landorus ev spread was also very good so props on that! However like your first to rates you didn't identify any threats to the team. This is so important because while your changes definitely made the team more effiecient, at the end of the day the team hasn't improved to much because it is still going to have trouble dealing with some Pokemon or team styles even after your changes. To me, just looking at this team I can see rain teams to be a big threat. The team has 2 Water-type weaknesses, no resists and Gengar and Heracross are certainly not capable of boosted Hydro Pumps from rain teams. So suggesting something to help with this would be cool but looking at whay you have done instead of what you havn't done and this rate looks quite good.

I'm sorry if I sounded a bit harsh but I am glad to see you rating and keep it up!
@ Remedy Nice rates!

Your first rate was quite good actually. You realised that the team was Hyper Offense and therefore didn't make any changes that will pull away the team from this theme. You also mentioned a few Pokemon to be threatening to the team, however I feel like you could of elaborated more on why Keldeo, Latios and Terrakion were threats. This is only a real minor problem but its nice to explain to the op why certain Pokemon are threats like Keldeo for instance syaing something like (Keldeo outspeeds your whole team except Heatran and in rain, can do serious damage with your only water resist being the frail Breloom, and Hidden Power [Ice] and Secret Sword providing additional coverage. Although Heatran can outspeed its moves can't do much to Keldeo since it can only hit it super effectively with Earthpower, which won't do much at +1" Similar things could of been said about Latios and Terrakion, because you should explain why they can kill a big portion of the guys team. Your Gengar suggestion was good because it helped the team out while it ultimately didn't change to much. However the amount of changes you made were the maximum you should make imo. After you change more than 2 Pokemon you could argue that a team is no longer theirs and that you have created a new one. Its good to change a Pokemon to help with threats but keep in mind smaller changes are often the best changes. Now with your second rate I didn't have to much problems with however again you suggested a lot of Pokemon changes. You should only try and change what you need to and if a team needs a complete revamp (changing a lot of Pokemon) it is probably not worth rating.

Keep it up!


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Now that I look back at it, it's true that I should have explained why Keldeo was the threat etc. I probably did believe that it was obvious but it's not an excuse since I'm trying to explain my logic the best I can.
For the numerous changes, I totally get your point, however sometimes I can't help but give some leads to improve the team, even if it's too much. I also try my best to lower the number of changes I advise so I guess I'll focus on this point.
Thank you very much.

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