OU RBY OU Viability Ranking (2016 to 2020)

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Golem was better than Rhydon as long as PhysLax was the moveset of choice for Snorlax: you may talk about all of the differences you want, but it all comes down to this very simple rule of thumb and in the current state Golem is almost outclassed.
That's also why we didn't realize immediately that Rhydon was better: Physlax was still pretty common in the early stages of the new mechs.

Raichu's power level is pretty low and it also has a bad case of 4MSS: it struggles against Chansey and Exeggutor, and it has some troubles against Tauros and Snorlax too. It could be listed on par with Hypno and other pokemon below Porygon and above the rest.
Maybe Submission (which is a terrible move, a CH can't OHKO a fresh Chansey and it will deal about 50% to you which puts you into Tauros' range) can somewhat help against Chansey, at least if Raichu is unstatused and your opponent doesn't have an unstatused Alakazam.
I assume the moveset is TWave/TBolt/Submission/Surf (which makes it walled by Exeggutor almost so badly as Zapdos/Jolteon vs Rhydon though): i like being walled by Egg better than letting Rhydon in, but Raichu is nowhere near as dangerous as the other two even with the right setup.
 
It's been fun to go through this thread after having not touched pokemon for so long. That said, going through SPL usage stats I'm wondering. Are Lapras, Vic and Slowbro OU material? Vic is bit of a newcomer since it gobbled up previous standard teams but since players adapted opinions of Vic seemed to have fallen and Lapras and Slowbro have been on a slow but steady downtrend for such a long time that I question wether they even have definitive role in OU. They seem to be more in Golem's territory than Gengar's (as in, they used to have key niches but can't consistently perform because the meta went against them). Lapras especially seems harsh since it has so many good qualities but Starmie and Cloyster seem to do what Lapras does better that you rarely find yourself picking Lapras over either of them.

Granted RBY OU is already so barren that it might not even matter and I'm not even sure if those three will drastically change UU since Wrap is so good there (no idea though and that would be a different conversation). Not to mention using SPL usage comes across a bit too reactionary but it's no secret RBY is a incredibly centralized metagame where the competition is so high you are almost guaranteed to have 4 or more slots for S-A ranks unless you are feeling brave so these niche mons sometimes don't feel all that relevant.

Though this post is less of a nomination and more to get some opinions if you have one.
 
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It's been fun to go through this thread after having not touched pokemon for so long. That said, going through SPL usage stats I'm wondering. Are Lapras, Vic and Slowbro OU material? Vic is bit of a newcomer since it gobbled up previous standard teams but since players adapted opinions of Vic seemed to have fallen and Lapras and Slowbro have been on a slow but steady downtrend for such a long time that I question wether they even have definitive role in OU. They seem to be more in Golem's territory than Gengar's. As in, they used to have key niches but can't consistently perform because the meta went against them). Lapras especially seems harsh since it has so many good qualities but Starmie and Cloyster seem to do what Lapras does better that you rarely find yourself picking Lapras over either of them.

Granted RBY OU is already so barren that it might not even matter and I'm not even sure if those three will drastically change UU since Wrap is so good there (no idea though and that would be a different conversation). Not to mention using SPL usage comes across a bit too reactionary but it's no secret RBY is a incredibly centralized metagame where the competition is so high you are almost guaranteed to have 4 or more slots for S-A ranks unless you are feeling brave so these niche mons sometimes don't feel all that relevant.

Though this post is less of a nomination and more to get some opinions if you have one.
The community was definitely hasty in promoting Victreebel to OU. It's been about six months since it happened, and already it's back to being a niche pick. I would support moving it back down to UU, since it was only a mid-tier threat there anyway.

Lapras and Slowbro are more difficult, since they've never been in UU before, and they seem way too strong for it. There's a renewed interest in RBY lower tiers though, so if we're going to discuss dropping them to UU or UUBL, now's the time to do it.
 

Amaranth

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I don't think Victreebel's promotion was hasty, he was easily earning enough usage for that. 17 appearances in SPL10 (12th place) is definitely OU material at the time. It's just that metagames shift and sometimes things that were comfortably good enough can drop off a cliff as people learn to play the game a different way (Golem after the mech changes, Victreebel, Slowbro and Lapras lately, etc), and things that were considered pretty bad or inferior to alternatives can be discovered to be much better as you explore their niche (Cloyster, Jolteon, Gengar, etc)

RBY lowtiers have always been a bit of a mess with no real established protocols, and no real need to make ones either because there was never a great amount of interest for them (outside of PokemonPerfect, which ran a good lowtier program for a while). I'm not sure how we want to go about it, I think currently all three of Slowbro, Lapras, and Victreebel aren't really doing enough to deserve OU status but who knows what sorts of policy issues we'd have to sift through to arrive at a decision. RBY lowtiers need an Earthworm type figure who just got up one day and decided that GSC NU would be a thing, and worked his ass off to make it a thing
 
It's been fun to go through this thread after having not touched pokemon for so long. That said, going through SPL usage stats I'm wondering. Are Lapras, Vic and Slowbro OU material? Vic is bit of a newcomer since it gobbled up previous standard teams but since players adapted opinions of Vic seemed to have fallen and Lapras and Slowbro have been on a slow but steady downtrend for such a long time that I question wether they even have definitive role in OU. They seem to be more in Golem's territory than Gengar's (as in, they used to have key niches but can't consistently perform because the meta went against them). Lapras especially seems harsh since it has so many good qualities but Starmie and Cloyster seem to do what Lapras does better that you rarely find yourself picking Lapras over either of them.

Granted RBY OU is already so barren that it might not even matter and I'm not even sure if those three will drastically change UU since Wrap is so good there (no idea though and that would be a different conversation). Not to mention using SPL usage comes across a bit too reactionary but it's no secret RBY is a incredibly centralized metagame where the competition is so high you are almost guaranteed to have 4 or more slots for S-A ranks unless you are feeling brave so these niche mons sometimes don't feel all that relevant.

Though this post is less of a nomination and more to get some opinions if you have one.
First of all I feel like we need a different approach to tiering RBY pokemon, which should be based on the purpose of tiering: I like contributing to the process, but the ultimate goal is beyond me. Making a pokemon OU or not looks nothing more than an honorary title.
PersonalIy I like RBY Ubers criterias: Mew and Mewtwo are clearly good in Ubers and they would be too good for OU - the current criteria aims at making every pokemon viable in one tier (nothing more, nothing less than one) but it gets outsped by trends sometimes anyway.

At the time Victreebel was declared OU I was against that: it wasn't broken in BL nor UU and it was very clear that it was at its best in that specific situation of the OU metagame which was not going to last forever.
That being said, it's still viable and dangerous in OU with proper setup even though I feel like it would have a win rate below 50% today (we have no data from SPL actually...).

Lapras is very effective in many scenarios, imagine simply trading Egg for their lead or statused Chansey and sending Lapras against Egg or Snorlax (even better).
Lapras is viable: TBolt and Sing are enough to justify picking Lapras over Cloyster and Sing plus the better bulk, Hyper Beam and STAB Blizzard are enough to justify picking Lapras over Starmie (yeah Starmie is better overall, but it's one of the best 5 pokemon in the tier and they have different gameplans anyway).
Slowbro has OU power level too, but it's harder to justify its OU status simply because it's not easy to make it work: it can't hit and run. Nowdays it feels like players are trading sleep early in the game, Zapdos is at an all-time low and the same could be said about TBolt Chansey so it could be a good time for someone to achieve good results using Slowbro.
When is the next relevant tournament, though?
 
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Raichu is actually pretty much unviable. The only thing going for it is that Rhydon won't switch into it (because no sane person would leave Rhydon in against Raichu), and if you can keep alive and unpara'd it beats it last mon don. In exchange, you lose pretty much all physical offensive pressure, which means that Chansey, Amnesia Lax, Egg and Jolteon all hard check it. Raichu also has to choose between getting completely walled by those mons or running agility, which makes late game cleaning even more difficult. And even if you're ok with all of that and you're one hundred percent confident your opponent will use Rhydon, Raichu can't even switch into Rhydon, because if Rhydon Earthqyakes or Subs then Raichu will die. If Rhydon uses Body Slam and Raichu gets para'd then Raichu dies. It's a really cool mon that has a really interesting niche, but unfortunately that niche is just not enough to make Raichu even make the list, imo.
Fair reasoning.
 
I don't think Victreebel's promotion was hasty, he was easily earning enough usage for that. 17 appearances in SPL10 (12th place) is definitely OU material at the time. It's just that metagames shift and sometimes things that were comfortably good enough can drop off a cliff as people learn to play the game a different way (Golem after the mech changes, Victreebel, Slowbro and Lapras lately, etc), and things that were considered pretty bad or inferior to alternatives can be discovered to be much better as you explore their niche (Cloyster, Jolteon, Gengar, etc)

RBY lowtiers have always been a bit of a mess with no real established protocols, and no real need to make ones either because there was never a great amount of interest for them (outside of PokemonPerfect, which ran a good lowtier program for a while). I'm not sure how we want to go about it, I think currently all three of Slowbro, Lapras, and Victreebel aren't really doing enough to deserve OU status but who knows what sorts of policy issues we'd have to sift through to arrive at a decision. RBY lowtiers need an Earthworm type figure who just got up one day and decided that GSC NU would be a thing, and worked his ass off to make it a thing
Is it a problem that you feel Slowbro, Lapras, Victreebell aren't good enough to challenge OU in their own niches even if used, or that they aren't used enough to warrant Smogon's standard of OU? I know Smogon likes to keep each tier as everything used until the 3.41% usage mark if I remember correctly, and Slowbro and Lapras see 10%+ usage (using Jan-March 1500+ELO stats). So just the numbers alone show that experienced players are using it consistently and that should be reason enough to keep them.

Now if you're basing it off the SPL XI usage where they were barely used, that's something else. Since by comparison Articuno and Sandslash can be compared to their usage stats and have about the same win%.

On the other side, throwing Lapras and Slowbro down to 2U (UU) will be entertaining to see. Tentacruel alone will have its status threatened, as will Hypno which can affect so much more.
 

Oglemi

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What is Machamp's niche? Beating up Normals?
zf's post in the find a niche thread:



Machamp
- Submission
- Body Slam
- Hyper Beam
- Counter

teal discussed machamp paired with egg lead vs opps who predominantly use t-wave psychic leads + reflect normals during wcop. the idea here is that your egg lead will sleep the psychic in exchange for para, which 1) sleeps a machamp check 2) lets your para'd egg soft check opposing egg. machamp abuses the shit out of chansey and lax when it comes in vs recovery and won't struggle to generate a free turn. body slam for catching lastmon psychics and eggs, counter for general utility. ultimately, teal discarded this concept because of submission's unreliability and large recoil, but 130 atk + STAB that hits 3/4 big 4 super-effectively is nothing to scoff at.
short and long, ya it beats up the normals and is hard to switch into, ultimately it's typing and speed just means it's unreliable but i'm not an rby goon so i'll stop there
 
zf's post in the find a niche thread:



short and long, ya it beats up the normals and is hard to switch into, ultimately it's typing and speed just means it's unreliable but i'm not an rby goon so i'll stop there
Never seen it tried with Egg lead like that before. It seems interesting and I'm interested in trying that later.

The more "standard" version that I've seen/played is:
Machamp
Ability: None
- Low Kick
- Body Slam
- Hyper Beam
- Earthquake

I really really hate to do this, because it feels so conceded to me, but I did analysis write-up on Machamp a while ago and it still (mostly) holds up.
 

Hipmonlee

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I think Counter is a pretty important move for Machamp. The goal is to get it in against a normal type that has just used a normal move (the easiest way is a normal type that just KOed something with hyperbeam ideally). Then that normal either has to risk taking a Submission, or your opponent has to switch and risk taking a counter.

Plus you have Lapras, Cloyster and Rhydon which all are weak to Submission too. A lot of teams these days will have 4 or 5 weaknesses to submission and only 1 resist. For instance Stamie, Chansey, Snorlax, Cloyster, Jolteon, Tauros is a fairly common lineup.

Here's a log showing how hard it can be to deal with Machamp when you only have one psychic.
 
Has anyone ever started to update the niche Pokemon's pages for RBY? Would be nice to see updated analysis for Hypno, Sandslash, Persian, etc
 
I think Counter is a pretty important move for Machamp. The goal is to get it in against a normal type that has just used a normal move (the easiest way is a normal type that just KOed something with hyperbeam ideally). Then that normal either has to risk taking a Submission, or your opponent has to switch and risk taking a counter.

Plus you have Lapras, Cloyster and Rhydon which all are weak to Submission too. A lot of teams these days will have 4 or 5 weaknesses to submission and only 1 resist. For instance Stamie, Chansey, Snorlax, Cloyster, Jolteon, Tauros is a fairly common lineup.

Here's a log showing how hard it can be to deal with Machamp when you only have one psychic.
If Counter can cause a desync on cartridge under any, and especially common conditions, then it doesn't need to be mentioned since it needs to be banned like Psywave.
  • If the opponent uses Counter and the last move you had highlighted was different to the last move used, a desync will occur if one can be Countered and the other cannot. This can occur if you fully paralyse, or if you enter the move selection menu, then change your mind and switch instead
 
Sorry for the bump but I wasn’t sure if this warranted a separate thread or not.

I’ve been out of touch with the meta for awhile and apparently a lot has changed. Starmie is now considered better than Zam? Eggy is being dropped? For what Pokémon? What sets are chanseys and laxes running now?

If anyone could provide a summary of the new meta that would be greatly appreciated. Not just for me but it’d helpful for new players too, because all the old resources refer to the old meta of big 4 lead and filler, which is outdated now.
 
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Amaranth

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Sorry for the bump but I wasn’t sure if this warranted a separate thread or not.

I’ve been out of touch with the meta for awhile and apparently a lot has changed. Starmie is now considered better than Zam? Eggy is being dropped? For what Pokémon? What sets are chanseys and laxes running now?

If anyone could provide a summary of the new meta that would be greatly appreciated. Not just for me but it’d helpful for new players too, because all the old resources refer to the old meta of big 4 lead and filler, which is outdated now.
Over the last two years people have started looking for ways to counter the 'we click thunder wave turn 1 every game' meta and one of the most potent counters that has popped up as a result is switching to a Sing Chansey on the incoming Thunder Wave on the first turn, often guaranteeing you both sleep and a reliable sleep block, while also keeping your lead unparalyzed for the mid and lategame - securing a very powerful game state from the start. All the things you mentioned are pretty much a result of that (except Mie > Zam, that was already consensus before this, but I would say it got even more Mie favored for sure): Starmie can now lead and also remain unparalyzed to be a Tauros answer in the mid and lategame, while Alakazam cannot do that even if it doesn't get twaved; Chansey being used as a sleeper frees up the Exeggutor slot to be any number of things (Cloysters, Jolteons, Alakazams, etc).

This has gotten common enough for people to stop clicking TWave turn 1 undiscriminately; you will now see a lot more Psychics, hopeful Blizzards, or even switchbacks to Exeggutor to prevent the game from slipping out so early. I would go as far as saying that a Turn 1 Chansey switch has become the expectation moreso than just an antimeta line, though it is definitely not as dominant as the old stuff used to be when the old stuff was dominant. Sometimes people switch non-Sing Chansey T1 on TWaves as well, though that is a little hopeful as it will often just get forced out by Psychic drops (or, god forbid, it gets caught by a Sing Chansey switchback and has to switch out immediately and take the L)

Lax sets tend to overwhelmingly favor Body Slam + Reflect + Rest + filler nowadays, with filler being most commonly Ice Beam or Self-Destruct, sometimes Earthquake or Hyper Beam, though you also still see the ol' four attacks (Slam EQ HB Boom, sometimes dropping eq or hb for counter). Both of the formerly common Chansey sets (Reflect+SToss and BoltBeam) are still common whenever people aren't running Sing Chansey; when they are running Sing Chansey the most popular set is Sing + Ice Beam + Counter + Soft-Boiled, as it allows it to have Freeze threat on opposing unparalyzed Chanseys while not being complete Snorlax fodder, though Ice Beam is sometimes replaced by Seismic Toss and Counter is sometimes replaced by Thunder Wave - sets can vary depending on the team's match ups, eg. a team with Cloyster or Gengar doesn't have as much use for Counter, and a team that struggles against Starmie and Alakazam might appreciate the SToss damage a lot more than the freeze chance.

These lead changes have had a massive cascading effect on the 'B-tier' mons and their viabilities as well, but that's analysis that would deserve its own thread. If you have a good grasp on Sing Chansey devilry you have a decent understanding of the recent metagame changes anyhow.
 
Over the last two years people have started looking for ways to counter the 'we click thunder wave turn 1 every game' meta and one of the most potent counters that has popped up as a result is switching to a Sing Chansey on the incoming Thunder Wave on the first turn, often guaranteeing you both sleep and a reliable sleep block, while also keeping your lead unparalyzed for the mid and lategame - securing a very powerful game state from the start. All the things you mentioned are pretty much a result of that (except Mie > Zam, that was already consensus before this, but I would say it got even more Mie favored for sure): Starmie can now lead and also remain unparalyzed to be a Tauros answer in the mid and lategame, while Alakazam cannot do that even if it doesn't get twaved; Chansey being used as a sleeper frees up the Exeggutor slot to be any number of things (Cloysters, Jolteons, Alakazams, etc).

This has gotten common enough for people to stop clicking TWave turn 1 undiscriminately; you will now see a lot more Psychics, hopeful Blizzards, or even switchbacks to Exeggutor to prevent the game from slipping out so early. I would go as far as saying that a Turn 1 Chansey switch has become the expectation moreso than just an antimeta line, though it is definitely not as dominant as the old stuff used to be when the old stuff was dominant. Sometimes people switch non-Sing Chansey T1 on TWaves as well, though that is a little hopeful as it will often just get forced out by Psychic drops (or, god forbid, it gets caught by a Sing Chansey switchback and has to switch out immediately and take the L)

Lax sets tend to overwhelmingly favor Body Slam + Reflect + Rest + filler nowadays, with filler being most commonly Ice Beam or Self-Destruct, sometimes Earthquake or Hyper Beam, though you also still see the ol' four attacks (Slam EQ HB Boom, sometimes dropping eq or hb for counter). Both of the formerly common Chansey sets (Reflect+SToss and BoltBeam) are still common whenever people aren't running Sing Chansey; when they are running Sing Chansey the most popular set is Sing + Ice Beam + Counter + Soft-Boiled, as it allows it to have Freeze threat on opposing unparalyzed Chanseys while not being complete Snorlax fodder, though Ice Beam is sometimes replaced by Seismic Toss and Counter is sometimes replaced by Thunder Wave - sets can vary depending on the team's match ups, eg. a team with Cloyster or Gengar doesn't have as much use for Counter, and a team that struggles against Starmie and Alakazam might appreciate the SToss damage a lot more than the freeze chance.

These lead changes have had a massive cascading effect on the 'B-tier' mons and their viabilities as well, but that's analysis that would deserve its own thread. If you have a good grasp on Sing Chansey devilry you have a decent understanding of the recent metagame changes anyhow.
Thanks for the write up

So if chansey is not always running twave, then who is paralysing psychics? And who takes sleep on your team? I’m guessing it’s starmie.
 

Amaranth

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Thanks for the write up

So if chansey is not always running twave, then who is paralysing psychics? And who takes sleep on your team? I’m guessing it’s starmie.
No one takes sleep, the paralyzed Chansey blocks it. If it's not paralyzed because the opponent didn't TW on turn 1, then you can generally just sleep sack it, though sleep sacking the lead is fine too depending on match up.

The psychics don't get paralyzed a lot, because people are absorbing TWaves on their Chanseys as much as possible now more than ever, so they don't need to stay in to take para all too often. Sometimes psychics will trade thunder waves later on in the match or sometimes Tauros BSlam or Zapdos will manage to force it on them, but really it's not something you can force on your opponent in most games so it's not something you openly plan for. You play based on what your opponent gives you. Also in most cases the psychics - at least the leads - will just be sleeping from the Sing, so no need to paralyze them
 
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No one takes sleep, the paralyzed Chansey blocks it. If it's not paralyzed because the opponent didn't TW on turn 1, then you can generally just sleep sack it, though sleep sacking the lead is fine too depending on match up.

The psychics don't get paralyzed a lot, because people are absorbing TWaves on their Chanseys as much as possible now more than ever, so they don't need to stay in to take para all too often. Sometimes psychics will trade thunder waves later on in the match or sometimes Tauros BSlam or Zapdos will manage to force it on them, but really it's not something you can force on your opponent in most games so it's not something you openly plan for. You play based on what your opponent gives you. Also in most cases the psychics - at least the leads - will just be sleeping from the Sing, so no need to paralyze them
Ok but what I’m not understanding is that even before the paraslam change, if the opponent lead star or zam the optimal play was always to go chansey turn 1 to hopefully eat a twave. At worst they read it and switched to egg, in which case you double back to your lead and eat the sleep. But you still have chansey and your own sleeper awake.

So if people are only starting to do this now then no one will be throwing out twaves turn 1. Do people really let their chanseys get slept nowadays? In the old days it was considered too important to get slept, and you only ever let your lead get slept. Man so much has changed lol
 

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Mostly not, it's still the psychic that gets slept most often.

And youre right, things are much more like before the paraslam change nowadays. Except Snorlax usually has rest and Chansey is much better. The psychic clicking twave line was pretty universal for a while there though.
 
:Kingler: Kingler D -> E+

As far as I can tell, Kingler hasn't been seriously used since before the mech change and is only in D Rank because of the good vibes it gave off in the past. However, Kingler doesn't do enough to justify it being in the D rank anymore, imo. It gets Swords Dance, and a huge attack stat, but its lack of STAB means that it needs to get to +4 to start OHKOing moderately bulky mons like Tauros and Starmie. 75 speed isn't that helpful since it still needs a lot of para support for mons like Alakazam (and in this meta,, paralyzing isn't happening like it used to). Kingler does get Crabhammer to help mitigate its terrible 50 special, but it's still a 3HKO against Refelct Lax and that 85% accuracy is less than ideal.
Kingler is definitely closer to Pinsir and Venusaur than Sandslash and Hypno, so I think it should be the same rank with them. However, if you guys have replays or something of Kingler rocking out, then please share them, I'd really like to make this Kursty Krab work.

Also can we please change E+ to E. It's not like anything less viable than Gyarados is worth mentioning.
 
I agree that kingler is garbage, but I’d say venusaur is closer to sandslash than it is to pinsir and kingler.

Venusaur and sandslash at least offer some form of utility, that’s why they’ve always been more common than the other two. Venusaur has sleep, and sandslash has defensive utility with twave immunity and checking electrics.

Kingler’s biggest problem is that it has no defensive utility, so it struggles to find opportunities to switch in, and once it gets in it needs to stay in because it doesn’t have the immediate threat of a rhydon or the normals.
 
I'd say Kingler is better than Kabutops but not by enough where it deserves to be a tier above it. That said, Kabutops still offers enough of a difference to warrant a ranking.
 
I'd say Kingler is better than Kabutops but not by enough where it deserves to be a tier above it. That said, Kabutops still offers enough of a difference to warrant a ranking.
Outside of OU (I consider Venusaur to be the cut-off for OU) there really only needs to be two tiers. A tier for stuff like kingler, raticate, machamp etc. stuff that is bad but at least has some kind of niche use . Then another tier for hot trash like golbat that should never be used at all.

Honestly there's never a reason to use anything outside of OU, there's never going to be a team where kingler is the optimal pokemon to counter it. But pokemon like kingler can at least have battles where they fulfil their win condition and are impactful. Whereas if you're winning with something like golbat in a tourney you just got good RNG/your other pokemon did all the work for you.
 
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Outside of OU (I consider Venusaur to be the cut-off for OU) there really only needs to be two tiers. A tier for stuff like kingler, raticate, machamp etc. stuff that is bad but at least has some kind of niche use . Then another tier for hot trash like golbat that should never be used at all.

Honestly there's never a reason to use anything outside of OU, there's never going to be a team where kingler is the optimal pokemon to counter it. But pokemon like kingler can at least have battles where they fulfil their win condition and are impactful. Whereas if you're winning with something like golbat in a tourney you just got good RNG/your other pokemon did all the work for you.
I'd say D is truly the cutoff for viable Pokemon. Example is Sandslash is a good Ground-type Sword Dance Pokemon, which is a unique niche that can be useful. Obviously, it has its issues but its still capable of doing something genuinely admirable with that niche whereas you'd be stretching to use a Pokemon like Poliwrath
 
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