Resource SM OU ULTRA Cores v2


approved by Finchinator
banner by Bummer | hosted by Jordy , OP mostly copied from Bloo/adapted from sedertz


A strong core is one of the single most valuable things to form when creating a new team. Cores are typically made up of a group of Pokémon that, when used together, work excellently toward accomplishing a specific goal, and any good player uses them, intentionally or not. The majority of cores have varying characteristics that allow them to triumph in different areas, and depending on your team, cores can be built to succeed offensively or defensively. An offensive core is a group of Pokémon that are both focused towards and designed to enable the team to break through most other team styles while being balanced for general play. A defensive core is a group of Pokémon chosen to give a team a solid set of resistances and the ability to switch into many of the common and threatening attacks in the metagame, allowing it to stick around long enough to win the match. Overall, cores function as a fantastic base or starting point for a wide range of teams and they are commonly used while teambuilding to achieve a specific goal.

Posting Guidelines
  • Any person can post a core in this thread. The cores are broken down into four categories: offensive cores, balanced cores, defensive cores, and weather cores. When posting your core, please make sure to state which one of these categories your core falls under.
  • Although the way your core works may be obvious to you, this may not be the case for others. As such, when posting a core, please make sure to explain how the core operates and any other details you think are important to include. The explanations don't have to be essays; as long as your post has some substance and conveys the main idea behind the core, it's all good. Here are some things you may like to include when explaining your core:
    • Offensive Core: Should your core be an offensive one, such as Kyurem-B + Tapu Koko, you could explain how those two Pokemon work together to break down their similar checks and any other synergistic traits. You could also mention any weaknesses the core has and any partners you believe work well with the core.
      • Here is a good example of what we look for taken from the ORAS iteration.
    • Defensive Core: Should your core be defensive, such as Landorus-T + Ferrothorn, you could explain their typing synergy allows them to cover problematic Pokemon for one another, or any other synergistic attributes you feel are relevant. You could also mention any weaknesses the core has and any partners you believe work well with the core.
      • Here is a good example of what we look for taken from the ORAS iteration.
  • This goes without saying, but do make sure your post includes the sets your core is using. In addition, please try to include an explanation of any EV spreads deviating from the standard 252 / 252. Replays are also very helpful and highly encouraged when posting cores.
  • Please do not post a core that has more than 3 Pokemon because cores bigger than this can restrict building immensely.
  • Please be respectful of the cores people post in this thread. If someone posts a core that you think is ineffective or just plain bad, there is no need to jump at their throats. With that said, constructive criticism is welcome and encouraged - simply be nice!
Core Selection Process
  • This thread is being run by Jordy. We will carefully monitor the cores posted in this thread. When the time comes, we will discuss the posted cores together and decide which ones will be featured in the archive.
  • While the selection of good cores can often be subjective, we will take into consideration a variety of aspects before deciding which cores are featured in the archive. This includes quality of explanation, effectiveness of the core in the current metagame, and so on. We will carefully discuss everything and seek feedback from others to ensure the selected cores are of high quality.
  • When we decide which cores will be featured in the archive, we will try to announce them and provide brief explanations behind why certain cores were selected and why certain cores weren't. This feedback can potentially help give people a clearer picture of what we are looking for.
  • If a core is originally rejected from the archive, we can definitely provide some tips on how a set or spread can be tweaked so the core meets the standards we look for.
  • Just like with anyone else who posts a core, please feel free to bring up any concerns you might have with our posts and/or the cores we select! However, please be sure to be polite, and if it is a simple question/concern, we'd prefer it being directed to us in a PM.
So, let's commence the Cores. (WORK IN PROGRESS)

Offensive Cores


Balanced / Defensive Cores
 
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Felixx

I'm back.
Offensive Core

M-Latios is able to switch-in to Toxapex, Tangrowth, and Keldeo, while Earthquake and HP Fire respectively allow M-Latios to smack other Ash-Greninja checks such as Assault Vest Magearna and Ferrothorn, while also soft-checking Shuca Tapu Koko. In return Ash-Greninja is able to provide Spikes which allow M-Latios to KO the aforementioned Magearna and Ferrothorn with less chip and less prediction needed, and its ability force out Psychic-types such as Reuniclus and Mew proves useful too.


Defensive Core

Gastrodon shields Gliscor from Ash-Greninja, M-Latios, Tapu Koko, and the occasional HP Ice M-Alakazam, and Gastrodon's ability to potentially Toxic Tangrowth and Tapu Bulu can let SD Gliscor have a better chance of breaking through the two, while Gliscor deals with other Grass-types such as Ferrothorn and Scarf Kartana, and also takes on Clefable and Toxic Toxapex.


Offensive / Balanced Core

Weavile's ability to threaten out Tangrowth and Tapu Bulu is a blessing for Gliscor, and it's also able to trap another annoyance in M-Latios, which is able to 2HKO Gliscor with Psychic and live a +2 Facade, or straight up OHKO with Ice Beam if it's running that. In return, Weavile enjoys Gliscor's ability to switch-in to Heatran, Clefable, and Toxapex.




Also why is Landorus + Magearna considered an offensive core if both are running defensive sets?
 
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talah

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Also why is Landorus + Magearna considered an offensive core if both are running defensive sets?
The LandoGear archetype, whilst outdated at this point, is almost always offense; both defensive Lando and AV Gear are defensive pivots that generate momentum for the team's other members. Their aim is to be able to maintain the flow, unlike something like Clef + Ferro, which aims to set hazards and drag out the game, or a VenuSteela which relies mostly on reactive playing. It's not a core you can throw on a balance team and be able to switch into a good a portion of the meta, which(most) of the other defensive cores do.

(hopefully I worded this right)
 
Tapu Bulu.gif
magnezone.gif

Offensive Core
Really solid & straightforward core, SD Spdef Tapu Bulu is a defensive & offensive threat while magnezone traps all of Tapu Bulu's popular checks such as Celesteela & Scizor while resisting Psychic & being immune to poison.

tyranitar.gif
tornadus-therian.gif

Offensive Core
One of my favorate cores, Tornadus can pivot and & Uturn on Flying Resists such as Zapdos & Heatran & to bring in Banded Tyranitar, Banded Tyranitar can Pursuit Trap & Weaken a number of Tornadus's Checks such as Zapdos, Heatran & even Tapu Koko as they commonly run Shuca Berry & if they are any other set tht doesnt run roost Tapu Koko doesn't have recovery anyway, Tyranitar can also break down steel types such as Magearna with Banded Stone Edge.
 
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Offensive Core

Mega Pinsir and Choice Band Zygarde is a decent offensive core to build around. These two Pokemon can overpower each other's checks quite easily. Zygarde can break down Celesteela and Skarmory and it can switch in on Rock and Fire attacks that could trouble Pinsir. Meanwhile Pinsir enjoys double switching into bulky Grass types (such as Tangrowth or Tapu Bulu) that are often used to check Zygarde. Most of the time it can also switch in on Clefable (be careful about Thunder Wave) and set up Swords Dance against it. Earthquake is the preferred last move on Pinsir, but Stone Edge can be used if you are worried about Zapdos with HP Ice (Zapdos without Ice coverage is easily handled by Zygarde).
Pinsir-Mega @ Pinsirite
Ability: Hyper Cutter
Happiness: 0
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Swords Dance
- Frustration
- Quick Attack
- Earthquake

Zygarde @ Choice Band
Ability: Aura Break
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Thousand Arrows
- Outrage
- Extreme Speed
- Iron Tail
 
Bulky Offensive (Balanced) Core
Wish Clef + Heatran + Zygarde



Extremely powerful Fairy/Dragon/Steel core that can dismantle balance teams really well. The combination of Heatran and Zygarde can handle all common Clef switch-ins like Magearna, Celesteela, Heatran, Mawile-M, Ferrothorn. In return, Clef can keep them healthy by passing fat wishes and finding opportunities to set up Stealth Rock, easing Heatran/Zygarde's job at breaking down teams.

The Heatran and Zygarde sets can be changed to suit the rest of the team's needs. Pack a ground immunity or a second solid ground resist. Water resists make for great teammates too, notably Bulu.
Heatran @ Leftovers
Ability: Flash Fire
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Magma Storm
- Earth Power
- Taunt
- Toxic

Clefable (F) @ Leftovers
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Moonblast
- Soft-Boiled
- Wish

Zygarde @ Choice Band
Ability: Aura Break
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Thousand Arrows
- Outrage
- Extreme Speed
- Iron Tail
 
Offensive Core
Explosion Mega-Diancie + Fly-Z Gyarados

Diancie @ Diancite
Ability: Clear Body
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
- Moonblast
- Diamond Storm
- Explosion
- Stealth Rock

Gyarados @ Flyinium Z
Ability: Moxie
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Waterfall
- Bounce
- Earthquake

This core uses a tweak of the standard Diancie set to serve as a great partner for standard Gyarados. Typically Diancie runs Moonblast/Diamond Storm/Stealth Rock/coverage (either HP Fire or Earth Power, typically). This set ditches the coverage move for Explosion, which allows Diancie to lure in several checks it shares with Gyarados and either KO or severely damage them, as well as providing momentum to set up your Gyara clean. Some Pokemon that Diancie can surprise with Explosion are Clefable, Gastrodon, Toxapex, and AV Bulu. The fully-invested Diamond Storm also lets Diancie hit harder against Celesteela and Chansey (Diamond Storm + Explosion is 96% to Chansey with double min rolls). Meanwhile, since there's no coverage move, Diancie loses effectiveness against things like Ferrothorn, Mega-Scizor, Magearna and Tangrowth. But Gyarados can punch through these Pokemon with Earthquake and Supersonic Skystrike, as well as having some minor defensive synergy with Diancie by resisting Bullet Punch and dodging Earthquake.

Softening up Ferrothorn helps this core (since +1 Supersonic Skystrike doesn't KO and Ferro might have Protect), and Celesteela is also a significant problem, so Magnezone is an obvious partner. If the situation calls for it, Diancie can even boom aggressively against various Steel types to bring Magnezone in safely. Building into Spikestack is also not a bad idea, as Diancie is a solid offensive SR user that, with good prediction, can help to win a hazards war, and Spikes damage will significantly help Gyarados in cleaning. AV Tangrowth is a good pivot to pair with this core, as it counters many fast Pokemon that force out Gyara (like Scarf Kartana and Mega-Alakazam) while knocking off Lefties from Ferro/Celesteela and the like.

This replay isn't the best b/c the team I'm using is pretty bad and I misplayed with Gyara, but it demonstrates Diancie's ability to hit hard with Diamond Storm and lure in Gastrodon to set up Gyara well: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7ou-778180677
Another example: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7ou-778271415
 
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I'd Like to submit a pseudo-copypaste from Ubers cores as I've found its working really well in OU.

Balance

Buzzwole+ Muk-Alola




Muk-Alola @ Assault Vest
Ability: Poison Touch
EVs: 248 HP / 136 Atk / 28 Def / 92 SpD / 4 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Knock Off
- Pursuit
- Poison Jab
- Fire Punch

Buzzwole @ Leftovers
Ability: Beast Boost
Shiny: Yes
EVs: 248 HP / 184 Def / 76 SpD
Impish Nature
- Hammer Arm
- Toxic
- Roost
- Earthquake

Muk takes care of fairies and psychic types that have been rising in popularity recently and covers Swole's weakness, and Buzz is good against non-Flyinium-z Landorus, Zygarde, Kartana, MeGyarados, and other physical attackers that eat up Muk. Buzzwole can actually take Psyshocks pretty handily after a boost which I thought was neat.

I like using The Pex in conjunction as T-Spikes help both mons do their job and takes hits from fire moves, and clerical support fits on this core too. Strong hazard control is very good with this core as well.

EDIT: Quick replay that shows the power of Buzz: http://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7ou-781603058
 
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This is one of my favorite cores. Mega Scizor and Zygarde have outstanding synergy together, as Mega Scizor deals with Fairy-, Ice-, and Grass-types such as Tapu Bulu, Weavile, Mamoswine, and Tangrowth, which are commonly used to check Zygarde. It can also pivot Zygarde in against Fire-types that commonly switch into Mega Scizor, such as Heatran. Zygarde can really use any set here, as any of them synergise very nicely with Mega Scizor, but I like Choice Band Zygarde in particular, as it has immediate offensive presence. Zygarde can pivot into Fire-types like Heatran consistently throughout the match if it's coupled with a Wish user, such as Chansey or Clefable, and it also puts pressure on Toxapex, which can always answer Mega Scizor.

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Reuniclus + Toxic Spiker is a core i also really like using in this meta. The Double Dance Reuniclus set is walled by Dark-types, such as Weavile and Tyranitar. When coupled with Toxic Spikes, from either Toxapex or Greninja, it can outstall these Dark-types if it manages to get up an Acid Armor safely.
 
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https://pokepast.es/aab3587539400554
This core is probably my favourite offensive core aside of Heatran + anything inmune to ground/Bulu. Fightinium Z boosted Low Kick is enough to bring Ferrothorn into low health, Gunk Shot takes care of Clef and Bulu, Ice Beam OHKO Lando, and Spikes, well, are Spikes. Anything from Choice Band boosted Zyg hits like a truck, and Espeed cover faster treats if they're are weakened. Magnezone can be used for Mega Scizor & Kartana, since they don't fear anything from both mons (the latter can receive serious damage from All-out Pummeling, if an opposing Ferrothorn is absent, or was already removed) and can use them as setup fodder. Pretty simple stuff here.
 
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Sprslm768.gif
gliscor.gif
or
7a52c701-de1f-486a-9c4e-c27f92522ffa.gif

Defensive/Balanced core: Golispod+Gliscor/Landorus-T
this is a more defensive type of core, but it's power is in offensive teams. Golispod is underrated in my opinion, it's takes pivoting into the next level. Landorus or Gliscor has good type synergy with Golispod, so you can use them to bait ice/water attacks or other attacks that Golispod can take and use Golispod ability to get in an offensive threat such as Kartana,Alakazam, Keldeo or other frail threats that could revange kill without sacrfice. Landorus or Gliscor also has acsses to Defog rocks that can disrupt Golispod pivoting.
 

The idea of this core is that Ash-Greninja can force in Pokemon which Mega Mawile can use as setup bait or as a free Knock Off opportunity, it also provides Spikes support which weakens Sucker Punch resists and consistently wears down Heatran. Additionally, Mega Mawile can take care of Ferrothorn and Toxapex, which Ash-Greninja struggles against.


I'm honestly surprised this isn't on here yet. It's the most standard Regenerator core you could think off. Toxapex absorbs Toxic Spikes for Tangrowth, can set up Toxic Spikes itself or spread Toxic, and can also switch into Fire-type attacks from Pokemon not named Heatran. In return, Tangrowth switches into Pokemon such as Tapu Koko and Zygarde which threaten Toxapex and provides additional Knock Off support.


Rotom-W and Tornadus-T form a very interesting VoltTurn core together that's pretty solid. Running Tornadus-T alongside Rotom-W frees up a slot on Rotom-W to run Pain Split, which makes it much harder to break down. Tornadus-T also patches up Rotom-W's susceptibility to many Grass-types in the tier, namely Tangrowth, Tapu Bulu, and Ferrothorn.


Mega Medicham is a frightening breaker that puts a lot of pressure on Fairy-types such as Clefable, which Hydreigon is annoyed by, as they usually force it to use Flash Cannon. Mega Medicham is walled by fat Psychic-types such as Mew and Reuniclus, which Hydreigon can take care of.
 
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Egor

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click on sprites
Zard-Y is a powerful wallbreaker capable of KOing bulky Grass- and Ground-types like Tang, Ferro, Gastro and Lando that walls Koko. Koko in return threatens Pex, one of the few Zard-Y counters, generates momentum with U-turn and keeps SR away from field with Defog for Zard-Y.​
 
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Old Version:

Hello Pokémaniacs !!

Today I post a great defensive core that many stall teams use. Although many people is not conscient about it, Skarmory + Quagsire is a great physical defensive core stopping a lot of threats in the current and past metas. Let's get started!


Click the pics to see the pokepaste :]
(btw, they are planning how to beat you, do not blame them)

Synergy:

We have just to take a look in their typing. Water&Ground + Steel&Flying. Quagsire is weak to Grass type attacks (very weak due to 4x). They are totally resisted by Skarmory (1/4x) and if it is running Brave Bird it can just threat them with its not negligible physical attack.

On the other hand, Skarmory is weak basically to Electric and Fire type attacks that are totally stopped by Quagsire (immune against Electric type and 1/2x against Fire attacks). Afterwards, Quag can threat them with Scald + Earthquake + Toxic (expecting them to switch out). Moreover, Quagsire can just take attacks from boosted Pokémons due to Unaware. Skarmory can help here if it is running whirlwind too.

Moveset:

In the pokepaste that I have added, I wrote down the sets that I normally use. However, there are many different ways to play with them. Just below I will add a pokepaste with different sets that I have found or I have used in different teams. Check them !


Click the pics to see the pokepaste :]
The Quagsire's last set is a more offensive one from a RMT made by BanDisnDatnMe (s/o to him, a great teambuilder and a greater person). Btw, check out its teams if you want to enjoy new competitive ways to play.

Skarmory's sets are pretty equal basically changing Rocky Helmet or Shed Shell as objects. Rocky Helmet allows you to hit other offensive Pokémons just if they touch you (very cool indeed), but Shed Shell is quite important too to avoid being trapped against Magnezone. The last set is quite nice due to the fact that, you do not have Spikes but you can stop MMawile with Iron Defense + Counter + Rocky Helmet. It was pointed out by Aurella so any shoutouts to it. In the Underrated thread it explained very well the set :], pretty formidable.

Weaknesses:

In that point, I will just focus on the physical threats due to the fact that, of course, they cannot stop any special attacker practically (Quagsire some electric ones by the way).

Major threats:

- MMawile can 2HKO with Thunder Punch and, with good rolls, Fire Fang. At +2 can 2HKO with Knock Off too, far beyond that OHKO with the two first attacks. Quagsire loses against it if it is not able to burn it with Scald or faint it with Earthquake (2HKO with Play Rough). However, if you ran Aurella's Skarmory you have a way to stop it.

Skarmory calcs:
252+ Atk Huge Power Mawile-Mega Thunder Punch vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 176-208 (52.8 - 62.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252+ Atk Huge Power Mawile-Mega Fire Fang vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 152-180 (45.6 - 54%) -- 44.9% chance to 2HKO
+2 252+ Atk Huge Power Mawile-Mega Knock Off (97.5 BP) vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 226-267 (67.8 - 80.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Quagsire calcs:
252+ Atk Huge Power burned Mawile-Mega Play Rough vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 111-131 (28.1 - 33.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

- Oh dude. This is a monster itself. It is slow, frail... But it hits as a track. As Mimolette pointed out in a fabulous RMT, Craw can 2HKO both Skarmory and Quagsire if it is Choice Band. You can play around it with other Pokémons, but it is highly difficult to deal with in a Stall Team.

Skarmory calcs:
252 Atk Choice Band Adaptability Crawdaunt Crabhammer vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 176-208 (52.8 - 62.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Quagsire calcs:
252 Atk Choice Band Adaptability Crawdaunt Crabhammer vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 248-292 (62.9 - 74.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

- MMedicham is a great threat to Stall teams. Of course, you can play around it with MSableye, Skarmory and Quagsire (among others). But if the opponent predicts your moves then it is over.

Skarmory calcs:
252 Atk Pure Power Medicham-Mega High Jump Kick vs. +2 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 102-120 (30.6 - 36%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO

Quagsire calcs:
252 Atk Pure Power Medicham-Mega High Jump Kick vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 283-334 (71.8 - 84.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

- Z-Icium Kyurem-Black it is a great threat in Stall teams. You can deal with it using other Pokémons (i.e. Chansey). With Skarmory and Quagsire, it can get a kill (2HKO) with the Z-Move Subzero Slammer. With Fusion Bolt then it can hit a lot to Skarmory.

Skarmory calcs:
252 Atk Teravolt Kyurem-Black Subzero Slammer (200 BP) vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 228-268 (68.4 - 80.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Quagsire calcs:
252 Atk Teravolt Kyurem-Black Subzero Slammer (200 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 321-378 (81.4 - 95.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

- Kartana can deal with Quagsire easily. If it runs SD and Sacred Sword, there are some opportunities to 2HKO Skarmory.

Skarmory calcs:
+2 252 Atk Kartana Sacred Sword vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 143-169 (42.9 - 50.7%) -- 2.3% chance to 2HKO

Quagsire calcs:
252 Atk Kartana Leaf Blade vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 612-720 (155.3 - 182.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Minor threats:

- MCharizard X is a great offensive Pokémon that can be stopped by Quagsire. However, if there are hazards in your field and Quagsire switches in and take some damage then it can go down with Dragon Claw. However, there are ways to prevent it (keeping it healthy and no hazards in your field).

Skarmory calcs:
252 Atk Tough Claws Charizard-Mega-X Flare Blitz vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 290-344 (87 - 103.3%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO

Quagsire calcs:
252 Atk Tough Claws Charizard-Mega-X Dragon Claw vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 136-162 (34.5 - 41.1%) -- 56.6% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock, 3 layers of Spikes, and Leftovers recovery

- Alolan-Marowak can hit very hard to Quagsire and it can hope for a defense Drop due to Shadow Bone. Of course, it can deal with Skarmory pretty easily. However, Quagsire can deal with it too.

Skarmory calcs:
252+ Atk Thick Club Marowak-Alola Flare Blitz vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 354-416 (106.3 - 124.9%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Quagsire calcs:
252+ Atk Thick Club Marowak-Alola Shadow Bone vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Quagsire: 177-208 (44.9 - 52.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery

Conclusion:

To sum up, I truly think that this two Pokémons are great as a core. However, there is practically only one style in which they can fit together: Stall. In the balance landscape, you would use one of them. Normally you will choose Skarmory to provide a physical defense wall + Defog + Spikes. However, Quagsire is a great option in the offensive set as was pointed out by BanDisnDatnMe.

Many of you probably know this core. However, I hope you find useful the trheatlist, the calcs and some sets that I have posted here. I love playing the stall playstile due to the fact that I enjoy being on the defensive part. Thus, this core is on of my favourites to use in general. It works in SM OU, ORAS OU and DPP OU.

Thanks for everything and see you all next time Pokémaniacs :D

 

Mega Lopunny and Ash-Greninja form a powerful core together. Together they have a very good matchup against a majority of play styles, ranging from hyper offense to balance. Mega Lopunny is walled by Psychic-types such as Reuniclus and Mew, which Ash-Greninja tends to take advantage of. Ash-Greninja also sets up Spikes for Mega Lopunny which makes it harder to switch into.
 
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Garchomp and Ash Greninja form a potent offensive core that is based around breaking one another's checks. Garchomp is able to break down many of Greninja's checks, including bulkier grasses such as Tangrowth and Ferrothorn, as well as other mons that like to pivot into Greninja, including bulky waters such as Toxapex and Rotom, as well as other bulky pivots, including Chansey, Magearna and Tyranitar, while Greninja is able to pressure many of Garchomp's defensive checks, including Slowbro, Celesteela and Landorus. Both mons are also able to heavily pressure shared checks, including and not limited to Tapu Bulu through the entry hazards that both are able to provide for each other, which also possess the added benefit of aiding in their breaking capabilities.

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Garchomp greatly appreciates the ability to have Celesteela and Scizor to be removed in order to break bulkier builds, which is where Magnezone comes in. Magnezone is able to easily trap the aforementioned steel types in addition to other problematic steel types, including Skarmoy, Kartana and even Mawile (as Sucker Punch damage can be detrimental) while also potentially providing Garchomp with Volt Switch support.

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Much like any other bulky Water, Slowbro heavily appreciates the ability to deal with Grass and Electric-types, in addition to troublesome Dark-types, thanks to its additional psychic typing. Tapu Bulu is consistently able to handle threatening breakers such as Greninja, Tapu Koko, Mega Alakazam and even Mega Latios for Slowbro, in addition to providing Slowbro with invaluable Grassy Terrain support. In return, Slowbro is able to provide Bulu with an answer to Medicham, Heatran and Kyurem-B, while also allowing Tapu Bulu to run Swords Dance. Heatran appreciates both Bulu and Slowbro's ability to threaten many of its checks, whilst providing the core with a Toxic Immunity and an answer to other problematic breakers, including Tornadus and Magearna.

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This core is very similar to the core above, this simple pivot-based defensive core walls a notable number of mons in the meta. Heatran serves a similar role in this core as in the core above, while Rotom provides the core with a reliable answer to Pinsir, Tornadus and Protean Greninja, while Tangrowth provides this core with a reliable answer to Zygarde, Tapu Koko, Protean Greninja and providing this core with Knock Off support.

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This core focuses on wearing down one another's checks. Both Medicham and Gallade breaks past bulkier steels such as Celesteela, Ferrothorn, Heatran and Magearna for Lele, while Lele is able to break past Medicham / Gallade's usual checks, including Tornadus, Scizor and in the case of Medicham, Mew. Psychic Terrain also protects Medicham and Gallade from common priority moves, most notably aiding them from Mawile's Sucker Punch. Gallade also removes Kartana for Tapu Lele, which makes its breaking capabilities much more efficient.

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Bulky Volcarona and a Toxapex abuser - in this case a Reuniclus - form a potent core, both offensively and defensively. Offensively, the ability to abuse Toxapex as setup fodder and remove it is incredibly beneficial for Volcarona for obvious reasons. Volcarona also removes more annoying Steel and Dark types, such as Tyranitar, Magearna and Mawile in order for Reuniclus to effectively break fatter builds. Defensively, Volcarona is able to threaten Reuniclus' offensive checks, including Mawile, Kartana and Weavile, while Reuniclus can easily threaten Medicham, Zygarde and Hawlucha, which would otherwise threaten Volcarona.

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This is a fairly straightforwards defensive core, with Toxapex and Celesteela possessing the ability to threaten the majority of the team's offensive threats, while Reuniclus is able to cover threats such as Medicham, Kyurem-B, Zygarde and Mega Latios, with it also possessing the ability to turn these mons into setup fodder. Toxapex provides Toxic Spikes for both variants of Reuniclus to cripple the majority of its checks, while Celesteela's Leech Seed also providing the crucial chip damage (and subsequent recovery) for it to operate.

 

Martin

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Massive core dump incoming:


Medicham @ Medichamite
Ability: Telepathy
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- High Jump Kick
- Zen Headbutt
- Ice Punch
- Fake Out / Bullet Punch

Weavile @ Choice Band
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Knock Off
- Pursuit
- Icicle Crash
- Ice Shard
An age-old core from the age-old meta that is ORAS, MediVile is a nice core in general on offensive teams as it does a really good job of punching holes into a lot of balanced teams, and for good reason. Weavile is capable of trapping the bulky Psychic-types that give Medicham a headache—that means Mew and Reuniclus—and also does a good job of helping to overwhelm Pokemon like Clefable that are typically used to keep Medicham in check. Still need to be kinda careful of MSableye but that's nothing that a good stallbreaker can't fix. Really solid core in general, and super easy to use provided that a person has even a shred of aggression in their playstyle.


Chansey @ Eviolite
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 Spe
Bold Nature
- Soft-Boiled
- Seismic Toss
- Heal Bell / Stealth Rock
- Toxic

Skarmory @ Shed Shell / Leftovers
Ability: Sturdy
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 Spe
Bold Nature
- Spikes / Defog
- Roost
- Counter
- Whirlwind
Classic SkarmBliss (or ChanSkarm ig). Kinda surprised that this isn't in the thread already tbh; sure, Skarmory has kinda fallen off a bit this gen, but it's still a really annoying Pokemon and this is one of the most cookie-cutter cores in the game. Chansey's special bulk is collossal but it leaves something to be desired on the physical side, and Skarmory does a great job of covering that with its titanic physical bulk. Spikes balance is pretty rad so having something that can compress some of Celesteela's defensive role into your spiker is just a really nice boon to have if you have adequate responses for Psychic-types, which Chansey covers reasonably well outside of Lele (and obviously Medicham). And then of course it's also kinda decent on stall and I don't need to explain why, altho imo it's usually better left for defensively inclined balance squads.


Slowbro @ Leftovers / Slowbronite
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 252 HP / 176 Def / 80 SpD OR 252 HP / 96 Def / 160 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Scald
- Slack Off
- Ice Beam
- Toxic / Thunder Wave / Flamethrower / Psyshock

Ferrothorn @ Leftovers
Ability: Iron Barbs
EVs: 252 HP / 92 Def / 164 SpD OR 252 HP / 168 Def / 88 SpD
Careful / Sassy / Impish / Relaxed Nature
- Spikes
- Leech Seed
- Power Whip
- Gyro Ball / Knock Off / Thunder Wave / Protect / Hidden Power [Fire]
FerroBro is a solid core for a number of reasons; both help stack the ability to check Pokemon like Zyg and Greninja nicely, which helps to relieve pressure from one another, while also covering a number of Pokemon that each has difficulty with—Ferrothorn struggles with Mega Medicham, Mega Lopunny, Hawlucha etc. that Slowbro just sits in front of meanwhile Slowbro has headaches against Tapu Koko, Ash Greninja and Kartana, which Ferro is able to at least pivot into with some degree of reliability and it's also immune to Toxic, although obviously you can't just pivot into Tran willy nilly. Pretty much a staple core for Spikes balance atm, shouldn't be rocket science to any of you. Pair with something that can soak up or otherwise remove TSpikes for Bro and you're golden.

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Jirachi @ Leftovers
Ability: Serene Grace
EVs: 248 HP / 196 SpD / 64 Spe
Careful Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Iron Head
- U-turn
- Healing Wish

Charizard @ Charizardite X
Ability: Blaze
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Flare Blitz
- Outrage
- Earthquake

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Jirachi @ Leftovers
Ability: Serene Grace
EVs: 248 HP / 196 SpD / 64 Spe
Careful Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Iron Head
- U-turn
- Healing Wish

Gyarados @ Flyinium Z / Waterium Z
Ability: Moxie
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Waterfall / Aqua Tail
- Bounce / Substitute / Taunt
- Earthquake / Substitute / Taunt

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Jirachi @ Leftovers
Ability: Serene Grace
EVs: 248 HP / 196 SpD / 64 Spe
Careful Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Iron Head
- U-turn
- Healing Wish

Gyarados @ Gyaradosite
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Crunch
- Waterfall / Ice Fang
- Earthquake / Taunt
All of these cores work using one line of logic: Gyarados and Charizard want to be able to wallbreak early game without infringing on their ability to sweep, and as such they take excellent advantage of Healing Wish. Of course, this isn't all that Jirachi offers these Pokemon—it provides Stealth Rock support while offering a consistent response to Lele and is helpful for getting them in safely against Pokemon it baits out, such as Heatran. Jirachi's also useful for Mega Gyarados as it provides a reasonably consistent response to Tapu Bulu that also actively takes advantage of the terrain it summons. But yeah, what this allows all of these Pokemon to do is punch holes early game, providing the leeway to maybe take a gamble that leaves Gyarados burned or to click Flare Blitz over and over without having to worry so much about it preventing future setup attempts, and then is able to effectively give them a second chance to wreak havoc later in the game, potentially cleaning up in the process.


Charizard @ Charizardite X
Ability: Blaze
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Flare Blitz
- Outrage
- Earthquake
- Roost / Dragon Dance

Ferrothorn @ Leftovers
Ability: Iron Barbs
EVs: 252 HP / 92 Def / 164 SpD OR 252 HP / 168 Def / 88 SpD
Careful / Sassy / Impish / Relaxed Nature
- Spikes
- Leech Seed
- Power Whip
- Gyro Ball / Knock Off / Thunder Wave / Protect
Zard X appreciates how Spikes wears down the opposing team efficiently and also benefits from added chip on the sheer number of switches it forces vs Pokemon like Tangrowth. Ferrothorn also gets something out of the bargain here, namely Zard's ability to put Heatran under solid pressure. They do other things for each other but this core's pretty cookie cutter so moving on.

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Charizard @ Charizardite X
Ability: Blaze
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Flare Blitz
- Outrage
- Earthquake
- Roost / Dragon Dance

Greninja (M) @ Fightinium Z / Groundium Z / Waterium Z
Ability: Protean
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpA / 252 Spe OR 4 Atk / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
- Spikes
- Low Kick / Dig / Hydro Pump
- Gunk Shot / Hidden Power [Fire]
- Ice Beam

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Charizard @ Charizardite X
Ability: Blaze
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Flare Blitz
- Outrage
- Earthquake
- Roost / Dragon Dance

Greninja (M) @ Choice Specs
Ability: Battle Bond
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Hydro Pump
- Dark Pulse
- Spikes
- Water Shuriken
Similar to Zard+Ferro but more offensively inclined. Gren provides a nice offensive way of setting spikes+appreciates Zard's ability to piss Ferrothorn and Tangrowth the FUCk off while DD variants can also remove Pex, which gives Greninja a massive headache, thanks to EQ dealing a massive chunk of damage to it at +1 even if it's running full PhysDef EVs or whatever.


Charizard @ Charizardite X
Ability: Blaze
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Flare Blitz
- Outrage / Roost
- Earthquake / Roost
- Dragon Dance / Roost

Tapu Bulu @ Leftovers
Ability: Grassy Surge
EVs: 252 HP / 252 SpD / 4 Spe
Careful Nature
- Swords Dance / Bulk Up
- Horn Leech
- Superpower
- Protect / Synthesis
OK last Zard X core. Bulu's Grassy Surge is something that Zard appreciates a solid amount; it helps it deal with Lando-T a bit better, being able to take a hit from Scarf variants comfortably if you haven't managed to get to +1 yet for whatever reason, as well as circumventing the poor matchup vs sand offense, and it also provides passive recovery to help ease off that nasty Flare Blitz recoil. Bulu itself also helps with the matchups against Ash Greninja, Slowbro, Pyukumuku etc. nicely. In exchange, Zard puts Heatran under pressure and breaks through common Bulu stops like Tangrowth and Ferrothorn without so much as batting an eye.


Magnezone @ Choice Scarf / Choice Specs
Ability: Magnet Pull
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid / Modest Nature
- Thunderbolt
- Flash Cannon
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Volt Switch

Kyurem-Black @ Icium Z / Life Orb
Ability: Teravolt
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpA / 252 Spe OR 4 Atk / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Naive / Naughty Nature
- Ice Beam
- Freeze Shock / Roost
- Fusion Bolt
- Earth Power / Substitute
Bog standard stuff once again; Kyurem-B struggles vs Scizor, Kartana, and to a lesser extent Ferrothorn, meanwhile Magnezone traps them and removes them from the picture, helping Kyurem break consistently. Still need to be aware of Jirachi though.


Landorus-T @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 244 Atk / 68 Def / 196 Spe
Jolly / Naive Nature
- Earthquake
- U-turn
- Explosion / Hidden Power [Ice]
- Stone Edge / Sludge Bomb / Hidden Power [Ice]

Garchomp @ Dragonium Z
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
- Outrage
- Swords Dance
Scarf Lando+Dragonium Chomp make for a rlly cool Ground-spam core for a few reasons; Garchomp does a good job of pressuring things like Tangrowth and Landorus-T with the threat of Z-Outrage while generally forming the muscle of the type-spam formula (i.e. breaker+cleaner), and once targets like that are gone there really isn't a whole lot to stop Lando just kinda EQing everything with its high speed+high atk stat outside of, like, Tapu Bulu. In addition, the types of teams that Garchomp functions best on are generally appreciate having an offensive pivot—a role that Lando fills nicely, and if you're desparate+are in a position where Chomp can clear up, Lando even has the option to click boom to remove a slightly weakened Bulu as it switches in. Make sure to pair it with other stuff that can lure or otherwise pressure Bulu and ur golden. BTW Sludge Bomb is a tech that's pretty decent in Lando's filler slot for its ability to nail Bulu (KOs after Rocks most of the time if Naive) and poison stuff like Tang too which is chill af.
 
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Excuse me, but how the heck does Slowbro check Greninja?!? Psychic vs. Dark is designed to end very poorly for the Psychic-type!!!
 

Finchinator

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Excuse me, but how the heck does Slowbro check Greninja?!? Psychic vs. Dark is designed to end very poorly for the Psychic-type!!!
He said that Slowbro has a headache with Ash Greninja, which Ferrothorn checks, thus showing the defensive synergy of the core. He did not suggest that Slowbro checks Greninja. With that said, Slowbro actually does check Protean Greninja more often than not, but it is hard to assume that is the set until you see it click a move, thus making Ferrothorn a better immediate pivot into it and answer in general, of course.
 

Egor

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M-Dia appreciates bulky Volc's ability to check dangerous Steels like M-Sciz and Kart, while Volc really appreciates Magic Bounce, keeping rocks away from field and bouncing back status moves like Glare, Thunder Wave, and Toxic, and M-Dia's ability to break Heatran. Mons that are capable of breaking Pex and Chansey are good teammates.


Strong breaking core. M-Cross appreciates Fairies being pressured with Zyg's strong attacks, Zyg's ability to beat Heatran 1v1 (Adamant M-Cross loses 1v1 to Timid variants even before mega), and Extreme Speed to pick off weakened faster threats, as M-Cross is pretty slow. Zyg appreciates mons like Bulu, Ferro, Bro, and Tang being smashed with M-Cross if run Pin Missile and Pyuku, Bro, Fairies like Clef and Fini, and Quag being fucked if run Bullet Seed. Speed control is necessary to run with this core, since it's slow. Additional pressure on Fairies is needed if run Pin Missile on M-Cross, and ways to beat Grasses and fat Psychics are necessary with Bullet Seed M-Cross. Also Bulu is one of the best partners for Bullet Seed M-Cross, as Grassy Terrain gives M-Cross a pseudo-STAB on Bullet Seed, allowing it to easily beat Fairies when boosted.
 
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lydian

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Heracross-Mega (F) @ Heracronite
Ability: Skill Link
EVs: 136 HP / 216 Atk / 4 Def / 152 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Pin Missile
- Close Combat
- Bullet Seed
- Rock Blast
Tapu Bulu @ Leftovers
Ability: Grassy Surge
EVs: 248 HP / 20 Atk / 76 Def / 104 SpD / 60 Spe
Careful Nature
- Horn Leech
- Superpower
- Bulk Up
- Protect
I’ve been using this core a lot lately and it’s been working out phenomenally. There’s no such thing as a switch-in to Mega Heracross under Grassy Terrain (no, Mega Altaria and Doublade don’t count) so you’ll usually break your opponent’s team pretty easily with these two, including Stall. Between the two of them you also don’t need to worry about Zygarde because you have two solid checks to it. And while this core is a bit tricky to build around, it’s still a deadly one nonetheless. Four attacks Mega Heracross might not be ideal at a glance because Swords Dance is nice for stall, but Mega Latias and Reuniclus are a bitch, so you really want Pin Missile for them.
Mega Heracross
  • Outspeeds Rotom-W.
  • Bulk to better check Kartana.
  • Jump point on Attack.
Tapu Bulu
  • Speed for Mega Mawile
  • Defense for two Psyshocks from Choice Specs Tapu Lele after Stealth Rock and two rounds of Leftovers plus Grassy Terrain, courtesy of Protect.
  • Attack for Mega Alakazam.
  • Rest in SpDef to better take on Ash-Greninja etc.
 
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DKM

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Offensive Cores

303-m.png 635.png
Mawile-Mega @ Mawilite
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 92 HP / 252 Atk / 164 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Play Rough
- Thunder Punch
- Ice Punch
- Fire Fang

Hydreigon @ Darkinium Z
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 244 SpA / 32 SpD / 232 Spe
Timid Nature
- Dark Pulse
- Earth Power
- Flash Cannon/U-turn
- Roost

4 attacks M-Mawile, which is almost impossible to switch into, appreciates Hydreigon's ability to force in bulky fairy types such as Tapu Bulu and Clefable, bulky steel types such as Ferrothorn and Celesteela, and other Hydreigon counters such as Chansey and Toxapex. In addition Hydreigon can check Heatran for M-Mawile and can punish ground types such as Choice Scarf Landorus and defensive Garchomp going for Earthquake. Hydreigon appreciates M-Mawile's ability to break bulkier teams that it struggles with and to switch into weaker fairy type attacks such as Clefable or Tapu Fini's Moonblast.


214-m.png 497.png / 718.png
Heracross-Mega @ Heracronite
Ability: Moxie
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Swords Dance
- Close Combat
- Rock Blast
- Pin Missile

Serperior @ Leftovers
Ability: Contrary
EVs: 56 HP / 200 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Leaf Storm
- Glare
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Substitute

Zygarde @ Leftovers
Ability: Aura Break
EVs: 236 HP / 160 SpD / 112 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Thousand Arrows
- Glare
- Coil
- Substitute

M-Heracross + GlareSpam is a strategy that has seen usage in recent tournaments (especially OLT). M-Heracross is very hard to counter defensively, after a boost it OHKOs most of the meta and 2HKOs pretty much anything else. It doesn't even need a boost to pose a threat to offensive teams, but due to a poor speed stat it's usually prone to being revenge-killed, which is why Serperior and/or Zygarde with Glare are good partners. Thanks to Substitute they're able to force out most passive pokemon, allowing them to paralyze the more offensive ones which give Heracross trouble. Typing-wise Serperior doesn't offer much defensively, both are weak to fire and flying, both resist ground. Zygarde on the other hand resists fire and can switch into Heatran which forces Heracross out if it hasn't been paralyzed. Heracross also appreciates Zygarde's ability to force in bulky grass types that give it a free switch in such as Tapu Bulu and Tangrowth.

M-Heracross + Zygarde was posted as a core already, but the reasoning and the set are mostly different.​
 

Ophion

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Charizard Y+Tyranitar/Weavile
Charizard @ Charizardite Y
Ability: Blaze
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Flamethrower
- Solar Beam
- Focus Blast
- Roost

Tyranitar @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 8 HP / 252 Atk / 44 SpD / 204 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Stone Edge
- Crunch
- Pursuit
- Earthquake

Weavile @ Choice Band
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Icicle Crash
- Knock Off
- Ice Shard
- Pursuit

This core is simple: Charizard Y is a great wallbreaker that has some awful matchups like the Lati twins or Chansey which Tyranitar and Weavile trap, or, in weavile’s case, knock off. The dynamic of how you play this core changes a bit depending on which pursuot user you choose to use. Tyranitar makes the core decently slow but helps pressure Chansey a lot, which is usually the only Charizard Y counter for stall teams as well as pressuring Moltres to a degree. It’s also able to switch directly into Latios and Latias as long as it watches for EQ from Latios on the switch. It more effectively traps Chansey due to the stronger pursuit and isn’t weak to rocks. Weavile, on the other hand, allows for this core to play more fast and precise. Weavile’s leg up in speed allows for effective fast traps and it’s ice typing comes into play vs things like Latias, which dont die to knock off and can give good middle ground vs cores like Clefable/Ferrothorn (if you’re trying to hit both for good damage and or after a knock on both). Knock off is another thing that may make Weavile the preferred partner on a team as it can knock things like Toxapex, thus making them easier to wear down via hazards.
 

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