Unsee's Sandy Band of Misfits
I believe I started working with this Reuniclus-Tyranitar combo because I was trying to center a team around two Pokémon who worked really well together. I guess I ended up wanting to make a versatile team that can swing either in the direction of speedy or slow, depending on the flow of the battle, with a sprinkle of sand in the mix. Enter Tyranitar, and, later, Reuniclus fit the bill with Overcoat (which I'll get into later), its bulk, and its ability to learn Trick Room and Recover. (I will admit that I haven't really modified my strategy since terrains entered the mix— I am still a little unfamiliar with how to best manage them and would greatly appreciate any advice as to how to navigate this new arena.)
Gastrodon followed, as I was sure Storm Drain would prove a boon, as well as its slow speed, powerful Special Attack, and great movepool.
Bridging the gap between slow and fast is Scizor, whose Bullet Punch can prove useful in any situation, and whose typing and situational bulk allows me to easily switch it in for revenge.
Zapdos and Dragapult kinda entered at the same time as speedy sweepers/pivots who can carry part of the battle if things get speedy. I tend to send one out at the beginning of the battle alongside Reuniclus in order to gauge whether to use Trick Room. They're both fitted with U-Turn, so I'll either switch into Tyranitar or swap Reuniclus out for another attacker.
That's my intro! Without further ado, let's get started with the main course. I will try to be as detailed as I can, though I can't guarantee I'll be able to accurately use technical terminology.
Cytoplasm (Reuniclus) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SpA / 252 SpD
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Trick Room
Reuniclus is awesome. Its primary role on my taem is as a Trick Room setter who is able to last for quite a while on the field before checking out. I've outfitted it with enough bulk to pretty much ensure it takes at least two hits to knock it out, though it's still able to pack a punch when need (often) be. For all the types that resist/are immune to it, I've found that having Reuniclus' sole move by Psychic has benefitted the team, as it's able to counter the likes of Amoonguss, Urshifu, and Zapdos-G and generally knock 'em out instantly, in addition to likely being able to 2KO most neutrally-hit mons in the meta. I spent a long time deliberating between Overcoat and Magic Guard and ultimately decided to take the unconventional route and go with Overcoat. Both protect against Tyranitar's sand, but only Overcoat can protect against Spore. Reuniclus hasn't run into many problems with burns or poison, really, as it's able to easily recover health, and the surprise factor of running Overcoat instead has helped me win several battles against Spore users.
Twitch (Tyranitar) @ Lum Berry
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
IVs: 0 Spe
- Rock Slide
- Ice Punch
Tyranitar is also awesome! I've slowed it down to make sure it sits comfortable in a Trick Room. I shouldn't have to explain Rock Slide's many benefits, but I understand Ice Punch and Superpower are less conventional—why forego Crunch? ...I'll admit that not running Crunch has led me into some sticky corners, but Ice Punch and Superpower have saved my skin even more. Ice Punch mainly serves to counter Landorus, Dragapult, and the like, and Superpower has been immensely helpful in countering other Tyranitar, Heatran, Stakataka, and co. The element of surprise helps here a ton, too. Let's talk about the Lum Berry! I'm a big fan of its catch-all properties—it's wasted many a Yawn, Spore, Toxic, Thunder Wave, and, most importantly, Will-O-Wisp. I would be happy to hear an argument for another item or overall set for Tyranitar.
Gastronaut (Gastrodon) @ Expert Belt
Ability: Storm Drain
EVs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 SpD
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Muddy Water
- Earth Power
- Ice Beam
My dear, dear, aquatic, amorphous pink sea slug. Definitely the reigning clutch MVP of my team, with amazing coverage that is able to batter down at HP bars with great effectiveness. Storm Drain comes in handy against Dracovish and its respective rain teams, and Gastrodon's overall bulk lets it take lots of attacks before it goes down. I believe I used to run Recover instead of Protect on it, but its vulnerability to Pokémon like Rillaboom and others encouraged me to make the switch.
Plural (Scizor) @ Life Orb
EVs: 248 HP / 252 Atk / 8 SpD
IVs: 0 Spe
- Bullet Punch
- Wing Attack
- Bug Bite
Scizor came next, as a liaison between slow and fast. It's still got minimum speed, but Bullet Punch is a great way to take out fairies and faster opponents. Hopefully, if a Heatran is on the field, it'll be accompanied by Gastrodon or Zapdos. Though it does have a notable fire weakness, the rest of the team's lack of one, I think, has helped to make up for it (though I guess it is overall a little helpless, sometimes, when it comes to dealing with Grass Pokémon). Is there any worth in replacing a move with U-Turn on Scizor?
Zapfino (Zapdos-Galar) @ Choice Scarf
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
- Brave Bird
- Close Combat
- Blaze Kick
I honestly first picked Zapdos because I loved its design, but I soon discovered it could be of great use for this team. If I send it out with Reuniclus at the start of the battle, it's able to either start an all-out offensive right then and there or U-Turn into Tyranitar to allow Reuniclus to successfully set up the Trick Room and get an extra turn with the sand. Blaze Kick is a recent convert from Low Sweep: it's allowed Zapdos to have much more well-rounded coverage against Grass-types, and a way to land damage without dropping its stats or HP. And though it's already incredibly fast, the Choice Scarf assures it'll get the first—and, eventually the last—laugh.
Draguchet (Dragapult) @ Choice Specs
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
- Draco Meteor
- Shadow Ball
Draguchet is very much like Zapdos in terms of function: speedy sweeper, just a special attacker, and with different type coverage. I don't think I have anything remarkable to say about it other than that I've chosen Infiltrator over Clear Body because I chose to go special (so Intimidate doesn't matter), and it helps to be able to get a wedge in like that on bulky/shielded opponents. Sometimes, though, it does feel like the two are redundant, and they don't stay alive as long as I'd like them to sometimes. What would you recommend to remedy this situation?
That's it! Thank you so much for even skimming the above. I would be very grateful for any and all comments, tips, or constructive suggestions that you may have that could improve this team's performance. I would be reluctant to remove Reuniclus, Tyranitar, or Gastrodon from the team, but I'm open to anything. Happy battling!