Tournament Smogon Snake Draft 2019: OU Discussion

TPP

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Snake Draft Introduction
Snake Draft Schedule

Hey everyone! This thread will be used to discuss everything related to Snake - players & rosters, current metagame trends, predictions, etc. Remember to keep the discussion civil & have fun! I'll update this thread as the tournament goes on.



Potential OUers:

Terminus Taipans: ABR, robjr, Mana, Twixtry, ima, le LLiolae, Chaitanya, sjneider
Berry Forest Bushmasters: z0mog, blarghlfarghl, HSA, xtra$hine, Vore Gidal
Black City Mambas: Empo, xray, Rexus, PDC, Eeveeto, Heroic Troller
Celadon City Cobras: Finchinator, Eo Ut Mortus, FMG, UltraBallz, dice, Jytcampbell, KingKdot, Leo
Shinto Ruin Serpents: Star, Sacri', BKC, Bobby Dagen, Corckscrew, yjh971203, soulgazer, Jardem, 0NI
Lanakila Nagas: Tricking, Kory2600, ramboss, Jimmy Turtwig, kebab mlml
Sky Tower Lindworms: Lopunny Kicks, Indigo Plateau, xImRaptor, Relous, imsosorrylol
Ambrette Astrotias: Tamahome, ZoroDark, Cdumas, Santu, false, Updated Kanto, Jrdn, TheAprilFool
Lake of Rage Leviathans: Charmflash, Insult, Welli0u, Valentine, Tace, Corazan, Hayburner
Rumble Hall Rattlers: Soulwind, TDK, Gondra, August, TonyFlygon, teal6, frisoeva, TPP​
 
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TPP

Unspoken Words
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Week 1:
Week 2:
Week 3:
Week 4:
Week 5:
Week 6:
Week 7:
Week 8:
Week 9:
Semi-Finals:
Finals:
 
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gonna try to rank these bc I kept a close eye at last snake and I think this OU pools a lot stronger/more interesting this time around(plus these threads don't get as much attention as they should). lots of personal opinions so yea...

1. Serpents(Star/Sacri'/BKC/yjh97120/Jardem): Starting things off with what may not end up having the best records, but mainly just most consistent. I'm very high on both star and yjh as players, having played star probably a hundred times by now hes very similar to blunder with regards to good positioning and just overall pressure through games. I've watched yjh a good amnt on random tours like oupl and think he's p underrated, personally hyped him up on serpents so hoping to not bite my tongue here, but we will see. Sacri' and bkc obv need no introduction. If things end up dire in some lower tier and they need star somewhere else or someone else just doesn't work out, they have Jardem who had a solid wcop but not much else, still fine for a sub though. Anything can happen but if I were willing to bet on an OU core where everybody went positive, it would be this team.

2. Rattlers(SoulWind/TonyFlygon/Gondra/august/TDK/teal6/TPP): The jerk got big names ready to show what they can do in ZM :retardedpepe:
Gonna start things off here by saying that I think this team has the strongest support base of any, with bro fist+tdk+tpp(heard good things about him) and even Tony when it comes down to EVing(I still pm him for that shit lol). SoulWind is awesome and should be solid esp on this team, same for gondra. Tony's an interesting case because his claim of fame is 1 game but if there's a place for him to start his sm "career" it's this one, plus he's obviously shown solid playing through stuff like classic, and august is kind of in the same boat. I heard tdk is probably uuing but if he has to ou it shouldn't be much of a sweat. The rumblemen are pretty close to serpents but theyre just more volatile through slight lack of sm tour games, if that makes any sense.

3. Taipans(ABR/Mana/Twixtry/ima/LLiolae/Chaitanya/sjneider): You can tell this is a pearl draft through the triple european core. Abr obviously boosts this team up by quite a bit by being the most consistent current ou builder for ages now, should end up with a stunning record as well. I love Mana but he's been very up and down for some time now, but he probably ends up w a positive record nonetheless. Twix had a strong wcop so I'm assuming he does alright too. Last slot is kinda meh.. think ima has better chances of doing well than liolae if he's not needed somewhere else, but at least there's a good amnt of options here so the abrs have a good shot at figuring it out. Don't see taipans struggling much.

4. Cobras(Eo Ut Mortus/FMG/dice/Jytcampbell/Leo/KingKdot/Ultraballz/Finchinator): This one looks like a stack of all the classic finch ou teammates. The ou central+finch friends core starts off super strong with fmg+eo(big fan of both) and then a couple of people with decent showings in the past. I'm guessing last 2 will be leo and jyt with finch and ub needed somewhere else, which is okay, both actually had some good showings in wcop. Maybe dice starts though which would be sick but can't rate him in sm without knowing anything so... Not a strong group but not bad either.

5. Bushmasters(z0mog/blarghlfarghl/HSA/xtra$hine/Vore Gidal): Not too sure on what to say here, zomog is solid, hsa/blargh riding out tour/wcop hype and xtra back to playing but idk how active he is after getting rejected in wcop. always thought it was fun to watch him though. vores wcop games were fine. idk what to expect much but I think they have good chances of actually doing pretty great, so I think 5ths fine.

6. Mambas(Empo/xray/ Rexus/PDC/Eeveeto/Heroic Troller): I think empos actually the best sm ou player nowadays so that moves mambas up a bit. xrays solid and then idk bout the other dudes. Apparently rexus made olt poffs but haven't heard of him and I haven't seen pdc play in ages but would be hype. Eeveetos fine and trollers basically same as pdc, looks shaky personally but at least the first 2 are strong.

7. Leviathans(Insult/Welli0u/Valentine/Tace/Hayburner/Corazan/Charmflash): Wuda ranked this a lot higher w charm in ou but I heard he's in uu so.. Maybe they eventually do cora uu though. Charms building help is gonna be nice alongside suapah's. I actually think Val's fire at playing and interested in insult but haven't seen much from well in ou and dunno anything bout tace/hay. I don't expect anything incredible here though but who knows.

8. Lindworms(Lopunny Kicks/Indigo Plateau/xImRaptor/Relous/imsosorrylol): I mean... idk. fan of lopkicks. I guess indigo plateau had a great ost+uu support but r5 still looked wild, but yeah I'm assuming he's gonna be starting. Relous has been fine in spl/wcop. sorry always seems very hit or miss, and I guess something happened for raptor r7? Love the dude but I don't remember anything that makes him worth it so early. Looked like ip and raptor both went early but if they're considered worth it early by lax/ojama it might mean something.

9. Nagas(Tricking/Kory2600/ramboss/Jimmy Turtwig/kebab mlml) : Tricking and Kory r good but not a fan of having any of the last 3 starting(altho if jimmy really picks shit up maybe it cud be diff). The tricking+es support is nice though.

10. Astrotias(Tamahome/Cdumas/Santu/false/Updated Kanto/Jrdn/ZoroDark/TheAprilFool): Main thing with this team is that it just feels like it lacks someone truly competent at building, with both managers not knowing much about OU either. Tamas obv one of the all time greats but he needs someone for his teams, not sure how cdumas is nowadays but I think that's how it used to be with him too? kind of the same with kanto. don't really know much about jrdn and I assume false is in Pu/zoro lc but not sure, soulraiser getting picked up is cool. If we are being real it's not hard to just steal teams and play or get kanto to ask xtra for a team or something, but I still think it's fair to say this OU core beasting up would be a bit unexpected. (edit: looking pretty wrong on this one already lmao)

s/o ABR for helping w some stuff
 
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Jordy

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To kick this thread off, I'd like to highlight a few things from week 1:
  • Being used 17 times in total, Gliscor had the most usage week 1, followed by Magearna and Landorus-T. It's also notable that a pretty significant amount of these Gliscor were Defog variants, which were previously not seen much outside of stall.
  • After just one week, Victini has already been used about ~half the times it was in WCoP.
 

Jordy

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Here's some highlights from week 2:
  • Continuing the trend from week 1, Gliscor was used another 17 times this week.
  • While Tyranitar did relatively well last week, being used 7 times with a 57% winrate, it was used 5 times this week and had a 0% winrate.
  • Compared to week 1, Ferrothorn has the biggest increase in usage, being used 11 times in total, 5 times more than in week 1.
  • Kartana, on the other hand, declined the most in usage, as it was used only 7 times this week, 5 times less than in week 1, where it was used 12 times.
 

Jordy

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Here are a few highlights from these past 2 weeks and the tour overall:
  • After 2 weeks, Gliscor's usage has been overtaken by Landorus-T, which had exactly 50% usage in week 3.
  • Tapu Fini was used almost 3 times more in week 4 than it was in week 3, being used 13 times total.
  • Ferrothorn was only used 3 times in week 4, while it was used 11 times in both week 2 and week 3.
  • Although it had a 0% win rate in week 1 and wasn't used in week 2 at all, Slowbro managed to get an 80% winrate in week 3.
  • Serperior is slowly but steadily rising in usage: it was used 0 times in week 1, 3 times in week 2, 4 times in week 3, and 5 times in week 4.
  • On the other hand, Victini's been steadily declining in usage: it was used 7 times in week 1, 5 times in week 2, 3 times in week 3, and 1 time in week 4.
  • Continuing the trend from WCoP, Tapu Lele's overall winrate has been very mediocre throughout the tour so far.
  • Contrarily, Mega Scizor has quickly caught on and managed to garner an impressive 75% winrate.
 

Jordy

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To add onto the weekly highlights, we'll also be looking into 1 or 2 games every week from now on!

Here are a few highlights from the past week:
  • In week 5, Grassium Z Greninja was used twice, a pretty unique set that allows it to lure Water-types such as Tapu Fini, Rotom-W, Manaphy, and Gastrodon.
  • In terms of usage, Tornadus-T has almost completely caught up to Landorus-T, which has been used 77 times now.
  • Ferrothorn is the only Pokemon with a winrate above 60% within the top 20 most used Pokemon so far.
~~

1569851162537.png
Sacri vs ima

Looking at team preview, both Sacri and ima brought rather straight-forward teams.

Sacri's team likely revolves around sustaining Landorus-T, Heatran, and Ferrothorn with Wish from Clefable, forming a very solid defensive backbone, while simultaneously looking to stack hazards with Clefable and Ferrothorn in order to pressure the opposition with Ash-Greninja, Mega Latios, and Heatran.

Meanwhile, ima's team is a very straight-forward, yet effective rain team. Pelipper enables both Mega Swampert and Ash-Greninja by setting rain, making them very hard to deal with both offensively and defensively. Rain also enables Tapu Koko to run Thunder and makes Tornadus-T's Hurricane 100% accurate. This team lacks much of a sturdy defensive backbone, but between Pelipper, Mega Swampert, Ferrothorn, Tapu Koko, and Tornadus-T all contributing, it is able to manage a lot of threats such as opposing Tapu Koko, Ash-Greninja, Tornadus-T, and Tapu Bulu.

Sacri's team is considerably weak to Mega Swampert in particular due to the lack of a solid answer to it, with Ferrothorn being the Grass-type of choice, but he definitely has the tools required to turn this matchup around with Ash-Greninja, which can be a major nuisance for ima to deal with. It should be noted that Sacri can check Mega Swampert with Clefable if he manages to drop Mega Swampert's Attack with Intimidate from Landorus-T. Depending on ima's Tornadus-T set, it could also prove to be very annoying for Sacri to deal with.

Starting off the actual match, knowing that ima will most likely lead with Pelipper in order to set the rain, Sacri leads with Clefable. This ends up working out for Sacri and gives him a nice edge by getting the opportunity to set Stealth Rock turn 1. Within the next few turns, Sacri manages to switch his Heatran into play and he makes a nice play by crippling both Tornadus-T and Tapu Koko with Toxic, putting a decent amount of pressure on ima. Sacri manages to catch Tapu Koko's Thunder with Landorus-T and then reveals his Landorus-T to be a Rocky Helmet variant, which ends up being instrumental for him further down the road.

Sacri uses the following turn as an opportunity to switch his Greninja into play and damage ima's Ferrothorn with a Dark Pulse. After that, ima makes a nice switch into his own Greninja, which was a relatively safe play considering Sacri's options against Ferrothorn, granting him some momentum.In the following turns, Sacri's Ferrothorn manages to set up a layer of Spikes, while ima's Pelipper reveals Knock Off, which should make Ferrothorn much easier to wear down for Mega Swampert, Tapu Koko, and Greninja. Within the next few turns, ima manages to remove the hazards from the field with Tornadus-T and also gets 2 timely flinches on Sacri's Clefable with Mega Swampert, leaving him very pressured. To answer this, Sacri switches into his Landorus-T on the last turn of rain, substantially weakening Mega Swampert's moves with Intimidate, while also attaining some chip damage on it with Rocky Helmet, which is vital in order to bring Mega Swampert into range of Sacri's Ash-Greninja's Water Shuriken. ima manages to catch Sacri's Greninja with Toxic, which was great for ima because he was able to put the biggest threat to his team on a timer and limit how long Greninja could afford to stay in. Tornadus-T reveals All-out Pummeling, knocking out Sacri's Ferrothorn. However, Sacri's Greninja now gets a free turn to switch into play. In order to prevent Sacri's Greninja from transforming, he sends Tapu Koko in on a Dark Pulse, and it ends up getting KOed by poison damage, effectively preventing Greninja's transformation.

The following turn, Sacri stays in on ima's Greninja and flinches it with Dark Pulse, which was rather big because it prevented Sacri's Greninja from taking at least 40% worth of damage that turn, which could have left it in Water Shuriken range, or at the least, very limited due to Toxic. Sacri finally manages to transform his Greninja as it KOes ima's Ferrothorn. Because Toxic poison damage was racking up quickly, Sacri is forced to switch out in order to maintain his Ash-Greninja. In the following 2 turns, Sacri manages to KO both ima's Pelipper and Mega Swampert with his Ash-Greninja. In the end, ima's Ash-Greninja is forced to use Dark Pulse because of Sacri's Mega Latios, and because of how low its HP is, Sacri closes the game off by KOing ima's Ash-Greninja with Water Shuriken.
 
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In week 5, Grassium Z Greninja was used twice, a pretty unique set that allows it to lure Water-types such as Tapu Fini, Rotom-W, Manaphy, and Gastrodon.
Holy shit I called it.

Jokes aside, what exactly is contributing to Mega Lopunny's high usage and winrate this week? I don't really follow the tour scene all that closely, but are its inherently anti-offensive traits that desirable at the moment?

Moreover, has Gliscor fallen off significantly this week, or are tournament players just doing a far better job at adapting to its ubiquity from prior weeks? I don't really feel convinced that SpDef SD Gliscor is any less of a threat now considering it still does a damn fine job at what it does on the ladder, but since ladder and tournament play frequently differ in multiple areas I also don't feel as though Gliscor is really as tournament-defining a force now as it was prior.
 
Holy shit I called it.

Jokes aside, what exactly is contributing to Mega Lopunny's high usage and winrate this week? I don't really follow the tour scene all that closely, but are its inherently anti-offensive traits that desirable at the moment?

Moreover, has Gliscor fallen off significantly this week, or are tournament players just doing a far better job at adapting to its ubiquity from prior weeks? I don't really feel convinced that SpDef SD Gliscor is any less of a threat now considering it still does a damn fine job at what it does on the ladder, but since ladder and tournament play frequently differ in multiple areas I also don't feel as though Gliscor is really as tournament-defining a force now as it was prior.
Aside from anti offense Mega Lopunny is able to pressure a lot of bulky offense teams as well being able to chip defensive mons like Lando-T for other offensive stuff like Kart while being more difficult to check, especially with the lack of recover mons that would normally hard wall it like slowbro or clefable <(Most popular set atm being LO), and its also a mon that can cover speed control on top of that with double prio which may make it easier to forgo a scarfer.

SD Gliscor is still as good as always but in a tournament like this where people like to prep a lot using too much of one thing can cause a liability which is why it's probably fallen off. Good chance the usage remains steady heading forward.
 

Jordy

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To start things off, I'd like to thank Blazenix for the amazing graphics!


  • Pyukumuku was used for the first time in snake, winning both of the games in which it was used. It showed off its niche with Innards Out, which allowed it to pressure its opponents into being overly cautious with their wallbreakers and setup sweepers.
  • Another thing to note is Charizard's usage. It was used only 9 times in total prior to this week, but was used 6 times in this week alone.
  • Although Mega Scizor was doing really well earlier on in the tournament, it was used 4 times this week and didn't win a single time.
  • Toxapex has been using Baneful Bunker more often, allowing it to check Ash-Greninja more reliably and also scout choice-locked Pokemon including Tapu Lele and Landorus-T.


Judging from team preview, xImRaptor brought a bit of an unorthodox team, while FMG brought a rather straight-forward bulky offense team.

xImRaptor's team revolves around Pursuit trapping Pokemon such as Mega Latias and Tornadus-T for Kartana and Kommo-o, while also aiming to trap Steel-types for Tyranitar and Kartana. The team is backed up by Seismitoad to set Stealth Rock and to provide the team with an additional check to Pokemon such as Heatran, while Tornadus-T provides valuable Defog support and helps with annoying Grass-types.

FMG's team is a solid bulky offense team that revolves around bringing Mega Medicham, Excadrill, and Tyranitar in with the support of Rotom-W and Tornadus-T. The combination of Rotom-W, Tangrowth, Tyranitar, and Tornadus-T provide FMG's with a lot of solid ways out defensively, while being able to maintain the pressure very well.

Both xImRaptor and FMG have solid wincons in this matchup. xImRaptor could easily overwhelm FMG with Kommo-o and Kartana. Seismitoad also gives him a nice upper hand in this matchup, as it can completely shut down FMG's Rotom-W, giving him much less opportunities to potentially get Mega Medicham into play. On the other hand, FMG has Mega Medicham, which whenever it manages to come in safely, can guarantee a kill. Combined with U-turn support from Tornadus-T, it could be particularly dangerous.

Starting off the game, with both players looking to gain momentum early on, they both lead off with Tornadus-T. Turn 1, FMG simply throws out a Hurricane to see what xImRaptor will do, while xImRaptor unfortunately gets confused turn 1. The next turn, both FMG and xImRaptor go for U-turn. Because FMG used U-turn first, xImRaptor now gets an opportunity to switch his Kartana into play against FMG's Tyranitar in order to force it out. xImRaptor switches into Seismitoad the next turn in order to set up Stealth Rock, while FMG switches his Tornadus-T into play, as it's his best way to answer Kartana early on.

FMG manages to switch his Medicham into play, as xImRaptor sets up Stealth Rock. Because of xImRaptor's lack of a solid Mega Medicham check, he is forced to sack Magnezone, which wouldn't be able to do much in this matchup anyway. xImRaptor uses this as an opportunity to switch his Tyranitar into play after forcing FMG's Mega Medicham out with Tornadus-T. He takes advantage of this position by Pursuit trapping FMG's Tornadus-T, which is very valuable for both Kommo-o and Kartana. FMG attempts to force xImRaptor's Mega Tyranitar out with Rotom-W and attempts to use this as an opportunity to switch his Mega Medicham into the field.

FMG makes a critical error here by choosing to use Zen Headbutt with Mega Medicham rather than simply KOing xImRaptor's Mega Tyranitar, which ultimately leaves him very pressured and forces him to switch into Excadrill. xImRaptor uses this opportunity to switch Kartana into play and ultimately ends up sacking it to FMG's Tangrowth. xImRaptor uses this opportunity to set up with Kommo-o and seals the game with it, truly showing off how terrifying Kommo-o can be in certain situations.
 

Eo Ut Mortus

Elodin Smells
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Just want to point out that Baneful Bunker's increased usage is likely not so much in response to Ash Greninja, who's been in a slight decline as far as I can tell, but to check Mega-Medicham (and to a lesser degree, Mega-Lopunny). With its standard moveset, Medicham cannot attack Toxapex without poisoning itself on Baneful Bunker, which helps a lot to stave it off over the course of a match. This approach is gaining popularity as we see more teams dropping Scarf Landorus in favor of other sets, or otherwise dropping Landorus entirely and leaning on Tornadus and/or Gliscor as their main "offensive" checks to Lopunny/Medicham. Prior to Snake, Baneful Bunker enjoyed a smaller renaissance for the reasons you mentioned, but I view these particular meta shifts as what really caused it to explode in usage.

At any rate, I'm glad there's been some meta discussion going on, because I think this is one of the more unique "stable" metagames we've had over the course of gen 7. Hoping to post some of my own takes at the end of Snake.
 

Jordy

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Apologies for no highlights this week, but there weren't enough to warrant any this time around.


Looking at both teams on preview, tamahome brought a rather simple bulky offense team, while Mana seems to have brought ABR's Mega Lopunny sample team.

Tamahome's team is an interesting bulky offense team that revolves around generating momentum for his Mega Lopunny, Kartana, and Greninja. The team is backed up by a decent defensive core in Rotom-W, Magearna, and Landorus-T, which can take care of a surprising amount of Pokemon, and can generate momentum for the aforementioned Pokemon with Volt Switch and U-turn.

Mana also brought a Mega Lopunny team. However, it takes a much different approach than tamahome's, revolving more around backing Mega Lopunny and Heatran up with a very sturdy defensive core in Gastrodon, Tornadus-T, Clefable, and Celesteela.

Looking at the actual matchup of both teams, tamahome will have a rather difficult time at breaking down Mana's defensive core, as Mana can cover his offensive core pretty well. On the other hand, Mana has a really good matchup here, as tamahome is rather weak to Mega Lopunny and his team has the potential to simply outlast tamahome's team in a long-term game.

To kickoff the game, Tamahome leads with Rotom-W as Mana leads off with Celesteela. In an attempt to slightly cripple Mana's Gastrodon, he uses Will-O-Wisp twice as Mana uses Protect with Celesteela and proceeds to switch into Clefable. After that, Mana switches into his Gastrodon to absorb the Volt Switch from Rotom-W, and then proceeds to switch into Heatran to absorb the incoming Will-O-Wisp. Mana catches tamahome's Rotom-W off-guard with Bloom Doom and proceeds to OHKO it, making Celesteela in particular far harder for tamahome to deal with. Tamahome uses this opportunity to set Stealth Rock with Landorus-T, as he forces Mana to switch into Celesteela. Tamahome switches into Magearna to scout what Mana's Celesteela will do, as it reveals Hidden Power Ice, which is an uncommon move on Celesteela that allows it to deal with Ground-types such as Landorus-T, Garchomp, and Gliscor with much more ease. Tamahome uses the next few turns to Mega Evolve his Mega Lopunny and to get his Kartana in safely. Because Mana absolutely can't afford to lose Celesteela's Leftovers at this stage, he switches into Tornadus-T, as Kartana reveals that it's a Choice Band variant. This is very valuable information for Mana, as it means his Mega Lopunny will be able to outspeed it. Tamahome makes a nice play here and uses Knock Off again as Mana's Tornadus-T uses Defog. This, however, gives Mana an opportunity to switch into his Mega Lopunny, which can be very hard to deal with for tamahome.

Expecting Mana to use either Return, tamahome stays in with Kartana and attains some chip damage with Knock Off as Mana's Mega Lopunny uses Ice Punch in hopes of catching tamahome's Landorus-T. Mana ends up KOing tamahome's Magearna with Mega Lopunny as it comes in on High Jump Kick and is forced into staying in due to tamahome's lack of a solid switch-in, especially now that it has revealed Ice Punch. The next turn, tamahome forces Mana's Mega Lopunny out with his own and makes a nice play by pressuring Mana's Clefable with Frustration. Most likely trying to catch tamahome's Kartana, Mana uses Moonblast with Clefable as tamahome stays in to use Frustration again, effectively forcing Mana's Clefable out the next turn. This was a rather risky play by Mana, as he lost his long-term Mega Lopunny check by doing this. On top of that, Greninja has not revealed its set yet, so if it's Ash-Greninja, Mana might have to sack a Pokemon to it. If this were the case, tamahome could also have pressured Mana a lot more with Kartana.

After Mana switched into his Celesteela, tamahome tries to force it out by switching into Kartana as Mana's Celesteela is forced to use Protect in fear of Mega Lopunny's High Jump Kick. Both players end up switching into Mega Lopunny, and with Mana knowing that he cannot afford much more chip damage on Mega Lopunny, he switches out into Celesteela on Fake Out. Within the next few turns, tamahome's Greninja reveals that it's Protean and manages to get some very important damage on Celesteela with Hidden Power Fire, making it incredibly hard for Mana to check Kartana. Tamahome manages to switch his Kartana in on a Heavy Slam from Celesteela, and because Mana's Clefable and Celesteela are so weakened, it's free to use Sacred Sword here to pick up a KO. Mana then switches into his Mega Lopunny and forces out Kartana. In an attempt to sack Greninja by tamahome, it gets frozen by Ice Punch from Mana's Mega Lopunny, which he tried to catch tamahome's Landorus-T with. Mana actually goes for Ice Punch again the next turn, as tamahome's Greninja unfortunately stays frozen. The next turn, Mana sacks his Heatran to tamahome's Mega Lopunny and uses this as an opportunity to switch his Gastrodon into play, which can guarantee atleast one KO now. It ends up KOing both tamahome's Landorus-T and Mega Lopunny. To wrap up the game, tamahome KOes Mana's Gastrodon with Gastrodon and Mana revenge kills it with Mega Lopunny.
 

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As anyone with eyes could see I did not have a good Snake, but I did have some decent ideas.

:heatran:
I spent a lot of time toying with the uncounterable obscenity that is Heatran. Bloom Doom is one of my favorite sets - revolutionary, I know. It baits in and completely destroys common switchins Rotom and Tapu Fini, which makes it an excellent AshGren partner (especially as Tran can take advantage of the AV Gear/Grasses that check Ash). I like it with Bulu, as Grassy Terrain lets Tran nuke otherwise would-be checks in Gliscor, MegaZam and Mega/AV Tar. Terrain recovery is also great for continuously fending off Tornadus.

Speaking of Gliscor, its popularity as a check led me to using Timid Tran - also revolutionary, I know. Glis checking Tran operates on the premise that it has the bulk to survive Modest Inferno Overdrive while still outrunning it. This means it gets outrun and 2HKOed on the switch by Timid Tran, and if Glis is faster, Z incinerates it. Timid also provides security against other Tran, which is huge given how difficult Tran is to switch into and its Modest set currently shapes the metagame.

:slowbro: @ Future Sight
As awesome as Slowbro is defensively, it's not gonna dish out a ton of damage; Future Sight allows it to generate some offense in tandem with its harder-hitting teammates. Tran can switch into many Pokemon that come into Bro and its follow-up Magma Storm is particularly brutal with Future Sight's extra damage. I also liked Garchomp to potentially turn the tables on Rotom which came in on FSight, but even if you go with a more defensive response the delayed damage can be useful.

:kommo-o: @ Dragon Tail
SD Gliscor is dangerous and uses standard defensive Kommo as completely free setup fodder; with how tough it can be to switch into Glis when your Pokes that hit it hard it aren't particularly bulky, Gren being the most obvious candidate, it's nice to prevent it from setting up on you rather than having to choose between having to play incredibly aggressively and giving it a KO every time you're forced to fall back on Kommo.

:clefable: @ Encore
See above; in general it's a nice way of taking advantage of Clef's usual propensity for allowing setup against Gear, Volc, Reun, whatever.

:kartana: @ CB Return
First of all, Kartana not getting Double-Edge is nonsense on par with Snorlax not getting Slack Off. Anyway, my idea with this was that I rarely ever used Sacred Sword with CB Kart and wanted to be able to potentially 2HKO Knocked Zapdos - however, I was told afterwards that every Zap now ran Static. That said, I still think Normal coverage on Kart is quite nice even without Breakneck Blitz - its ability to slice through FWG cores (it 3HKOs offensive Heatran and pounds Pex, especially with SR) as well as the accompanying Torn-T and MLati@s adds an element of significant pressure that no other move can boast. It's also great to have when you're scrambling for options against ZardY.

:tapu-fini: @ Knock Off
See talah's team's Fini description. I especially love it with Torn-T to Defog, meaning you can run Taunt and even Nature's Madness alongside Knock to be really annoying (though you could also Fog with Fini and drop it on Torn, allowing you to run Taunt Knock U-turn on it, and of course you could do it with both if need be).

:toxapex: @ Gastro Acid
Because eating Pex God Pex's Toxic wasn't difficult enough without Gliscor, Clefable and Reuniclus no longer being able to stand in its way. On a related note, Pex's extensive, obnoxious movepool (such as Baneful Bunker - agree with Eo regarding its use against Medicham, especially if you use Bold Pex that can live ZHB from full, and of course the extra health against a flinch-fishing AshGren is amazing) led me to dropping Scald on a few sets, and I think it can be worth it on the right teams.

:kyurem-black::pelipper:
ZKB is terrific on rain. With the gap opened by its unstoppable Subzero Slammer reliably scoring a KO, Mega Pert and AshGren become even scarier. This is amplified by KB grabbing opportunities against the Grasses that check them and potentially forcing damage on AV Gear. I like Specs as the set on Pelipper, as it's an underappreciated offensive threat given its STAB Hurricane preventing Grass-types from safely switching in to absorb its powerful (stronger than unevolved Gren!) Hydro Pumps. It keeps up with the theme of a forced KO or at least heavy damage to more easily allow cleanup that KB brings to the table, and if there's an annoying Mega Sciz running around, Specs allows Peli to immediately threaten an offensive assault against it. Max SpAtk Damp Rock can function similarly while not getting played around via resists and of course also has the minor benefit of providing extended rain.

:kyurem-black::victini:
Similar idea to the above, meant for use on an extremely fast hyper offense team. Final Gambit Tini grabs a KO, ZKB grabs another, and at this point even the toughest defensive teams have a gaping hole in them, meaning your remaining Pokemon should be able to clean up shop.

:charizard-mega-y::heatran::victini:
I know we recently saw both ABR and Empo bring this trio against each other in OLT, but I didn't jack it from them - I had the idea a month prior to them playing (proof) after being inspired by Star's excellent ZardY + Tran team. The core has gained some popularity since that series because turns out it's quite consistent especially considering how seemingly silly the idea is. It of course leaves you with a lot of necessary roles to fill in a limited number of slots but the upsides are worth it given the unmatched level of nuclear firepower as well as the fact that they actually check a decent portion of the metagame. ZardY runs over a ton of teams and only gets stopped by bulkier stuff that just gets utterly destroyed by Tran's Taunt, while Tran in sun is even more difficult to deal with than it usually is since it utterly crushes its usual water checks and makes Gliscor unable to switch in at all. Tini is similarly deadly while also notably performing its usual important defensive duties that have given it the more widespread usage it has these days; it can have some flexibility with its set depending on the direction you want to take the rest of the team in (CB, Scarf, AV).

:nidoking:
Slams every team without Chansey, especially with rocks up. Gets plenty of opportunity thanks to its useful offensive-defensive properties, with good speed against the more middling area of the metagame and its typing affording it some highly coveted traits - it slaughters Toxapex, Magearna, Koko, Fini, Bulu, Tangrowth and Ferrothorn, all of which is fiercely appreciated by AshGren, as is King's ability to absorb (and maybe even set) TSpikes and block Volt Switch.

:greninja-ash: @ Modest
I know this might seem like it contradicts my earlier claim of having had some decent ideas, but I swear it's actually good. Especially on rain. Just make sure you've got some other speedsters to pick up the slack.

Side note: I don't like OU much atm. I know some people will initially take that as generic current gen hate, but it is not that, nor is it me blaming the tier instead of myself for my record. I have played quite a lot of SM before with decent success, even just a few months ago, and I greatly enjoyed it, finding it to be a skillful tier. However, in this more current time I've found what I find to be an unhealthy level of picking and choosing what you prefer to be weak to given the incredibly wide-ranging variety of threats and the metagame's lack of tools to handle a select few of them at all. Feels like we need some change in this department. I know many players more reputable than myself in the tier feel similarly and have expressed as much. All that said, I'm looking forward to seeing others' takes on the metagame (for example I hope to see Star or Charm or someone talk about support Kart or Sacri to talk about physdef Steelium Gear) that make these threads such a great read.
 
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TPP

Unspoken Words
is a Tutoris a Top Team Rateris a Community Leaderis a Community Contributor
RMT Leader
Here are some of the sets my teammates and I used during snake:

:kommo-o:
Kommo-o @ Leftovers
Ability: Bulletproof
EVs: 252 HP / 240 SpD / 16 Spe
Careful Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Flamethrower
- Earthquake
- Toxic

I think Kommo-o as a whole is a really great mon. Offensive sets are super dangerous because you never know if it's the +1 to all stats z move, or DD with Z-Thunder Punch or Z-EQ or something else. I think it is phenomenal defensively as well because it handles Heatran, Greninja, and Volcarona. There aren't too many solid Volcarona answers, which is why I appreciate having Kommo-o as one that's fairly splashable. As for this specific set, I hated having Drain Punch as the only attack and decided to use what looks like a mixed special defensive heatran set. EQ hits Heatran, and Flamethrower is great for Steels and Grasses, mainly Scizor, Kart and Mawile (after Intimidate). This set usually catches a lot of people by surprise when they try to Spike up with Ferro or keep Rocky Helmet Tangrowth in and get severely weakened by Flamethrower. Regardless of what set you're running, Kommo-o is a fantastic choice in the current metagame.

:mawile-mega:
Mawile-Mega @ Mawilite
Ability: Intimidate
Shiny: Yes
EVs: 48 HP / 252 Atk / 208 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Sucker Punch
- Play Rough
- Fire Fang
- Thunder Punch

I used this in Week 1 and this is my version of an all out attacker Mawile. Personally I feel like Mawile is way harder to deal with if it has Sucker Punch since it becomes much harder to revenge and kept it for that reason. Fire Fang hits Ferro, Scizor and every steel outside of Heatran, which hates Thunder Punch + Sucker Punch anyways. Thunder Punch is mandatory because of Toxapex and Play Rough hits Ground-types like Lando. The reason I had a ton of speed was because I wanted to outspeed Mega Scizor, and because I had a T-wave Magearna on the team. KO'ing Scizor with Fire Fang before they get Roost/Superpower off, or using Sucker Punch before they could use Bullet Punch was what I had in mind. Mawile outspeeds a paralyzed Torn-T by 1 point, which saves you the trouble of having to potentially tank a Heat Wave. You also outspeed a paralyzed Serperior, which can be nice as you avoid the 50/50's between Sucker Punch vs. Sub/Glare and avoid tanking Leaf Storm/HP Fire.

:scizor-mega:
Scizor-Mega @ Scizorite
Ability: Light Metal
EVs: 248 HP / 16 Def / 244 SpD
Impish Nature
- Bullet Punch
- U-turn
- Pursuit
- Roost

Pursuit is a neat option to help trap mons like Mega Latios and Mega Latias and weaken or KO them for breakers/sweepers that are slower than base 110 speed like Kartana and Thundurus-T. U-turn helps keep the momentum going to get your offensive teammates in to wallbreak/set up against mons like Pex/Heatran.

:kartana:
Kartana @ Choice Band
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Leaf Blade
- Sacred Sword
- Knock Off
- Return

As BKC mentioned above, Return is actually pretty nice on CB Kartana because Steels are the only safe switch ins, and even when resisted, they take around or at least 30%. It's a very nice midground for sure thanks to Return + Sacred Sword + Knock Off having fantastic coverage. Smart Strike was the option to drop because you already hit every Fairy-type extremely hard with Leaf Blade or Return. Shoutout to TDK for being the one to suggest it to me.

:greninja:
Greninja (M) @ Grassium Z
Ability: Protean
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Hydro Pump
- Grass Knot
- Ice Beam
- Spikes

Credit goes to Eo or Empo or whoever used Z-Grass Greninja first, but I absolutely loved the idea behind it after noticing how the most common Defog users were Gliscor, Torn-T, Fini and Rotom-Wash. Ice Beam + Grass Knot pressures all of them and having a Spiker that can prevent Defog is great. I debated between Hydro Pump or HP Fire and did consider 4 attacks at one point, but you need Spikes for sure to get the most of Greninja, and it's not too hard to get a teammate to pressure Ferrothorn/Scizor.

:gyarados:
Gyarados @ Normalium Z
Ability: Moxie
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Waterfall
- Bounce
- Giga Impact

First off, it completely slipped my mind that Gyarados got Double Edge and I mainly considered Giga Impact because of how Kartana and Excadrill both utilize it. I mainly wanted Z-Giga Impact on Gyarados to weaken/remove Zapdos/Rotom/Koko and hit Toxapex in a single slot for Pinsir and Hawlucha. Like with Return on Kartana, Normal moves actually have really good coverage since all you need alongside it is the ability to hit Steel-types, which Waterfall potentially can.

:heatran:
This is a small note, but one additional benefit to Timid Heatran, which BKC discussed above, is that you can trap + outspeed Tapu Fini. From there, you can either nuke it with Z-Solarbeam without taking any damage yourself, or you can Taunt them first and prevent Defog while keeping your rocks up and wearing them down.

As BKC did above, I'll go ahead and give my opinion on the metagame. I agree that SM sucks because of how matchup is far more dominating than it should be. The combination of too many threats to check + z moves makes this tier hard. There's a few mons like Greninja, Mawile, Magearna and Kartana that are capable of adjusting their moveset to put in a lot of work against teams that have a handful of checks that normally work. Protean Greninja is capable of using Z-Ground/Grass to get past Steels and Waters respectively, Mawile could be SD, 4 attacks or Sub, Magearna could have Shift Gear with or without Thunderbolt/Focus Blast/Ice Beam, and Kartana could be Z-Normal/Grass/Fighting/Steel/Dark.

If you want an example of a game where the right Kartana set won against a team that had enough checks, then you can see the last game from OLT finals. Latias and Torn-T can potentially take a hit and outspeed to revenge kill. Choice Band and Choice Scarf have a hard time between Latias/Torn/Heatran (Leaf Blade resists), Gliscor/Pex/Clef (Sacred Sword resists), Heatran/Pex (Smart Strike resists), and Gliscor/Pex/Torn (Knock Off switch-ins). While it didn't have a hard counter, LLL's team had multiple ways of dealing with Kartana, but because it was a Speed boosting Kart, it was able to sweep through fairly easily. Tricking did play his Kartana well, so it's not like he doesn't deserve credit for that win.

Having to guess and play around potential sets is tough and can be frustrating because there's a lot of mons that can run multiple sets that require different checks. If you want another example, you can use Z-Garchomp, which could be Z-Stone Edge, or Z-Outrage. Mega Latias can manage against the first one, but not the second one, and Tapu Bulu can't handle Z-Stone Edge, but is perfect against Z-Outrage. Having to think twice about sending in a check that normally works against an offensive mon happens a lot, and it quite frankly sucks. Z moves definetely made this issue bigger, since small lures in previous gens were able to become full sets in this generation.

On the flip side, you could say that having to dance around offensive threats encourages higher level playing, which is great. Timing your Z moves is extremely important because you may end up unable to break past a check you originally could with your Z move. Kyurem-Black being able to 1HKO Gastrodon with Z-Freeze Shock and then Gastrodon walling Kyurem without it is a good example. The side that plays that interaction better will get rewarded, so it's not like Z moves are stupidly easy to use. Z moves also fully open the door of creativity and the potential is neverending. Regarding matchup and having the right set, it's also very possible to have the wrong set for the occasion and run into checks for whom you lack the coverage to blow past. An easy example is having Fleur cannon + Thunderbolt/Focus Blast on Magearna and facing Ferrothorn or Toxapex. Ferrothorn is harder to break through without Focus Blast, and Toxapex will endlessly wall you if you don't have Thunderbolt (unless they lack Haze). Some Protean Greninja sets get walled by Heatran, and Choice locked Kartana could struggle with clicking the right move against a team with sufficient answers for each move. Sub Punch Mawile facing Clefable/Reuniclus is pretty sad to watch, and the list goes on.

I'm honestly not sure how I'd fix this tier. Z moves are good, inspire creativity and require good playing, but they can also add too much uncertainty when trying to handle them defensively. Some mons go from useless to broken depending on the matchup, which is why I sometimes say every team looks good and bad at the same time. As for what's possible, I think Z moves should stay since they are a core component of gen 7. Every gen has something that makes it notable, and I think it should stay that way. Suspect tests are a little tricky since there's no single mon that causes SM OU to be tough by itself. However, I don't think it's too out of the question to start with Kartana and/or Mawile and see how it goes from there. I love offensive mons, so it's frustrating to suggest testing those two, but if it can help make the tier a little more balanced, then I'm all for it. I'd love to hear what others have to say on this since it's a rather interesting topic that hasn't been discussed much. I'm also far from being a great OU player, so I'm sure I might be wrong/less accurate about some stuff I wrote above and would appreciate being corrected on whatever misinformation I have.

Anyways, that's all from me for now. I hope you guys enjoy it and I hope you all have a nice day :)
 

TPP

Unspoken Words
is a Tutoris a Top Team Rateris a Community Leaderis a Community Contributor
RMT Leader
Now that Week 9 has ended, I will tag the OU players from the eliminated teams to share any sets/teams they used and any thoughts on the SM OU metagame or their SM OU snake experience. BKC and I have already posted above so I'll skip us. I didn't tag any managers/helpers, but if you were involved, then I would love to hear what you guys have to say.

Sacri' Star yjh971203 Jardem yoppie frisoeva TonyFlygon blarghlfarghl z0mOG HSA xtra$hine Vore Gidal Empo xray PDC Eeveeto Gilbert arenas xImRaptor Relous Lopunny Kicks Indigo Plateau Eo Ut Mortus FMG Jytcampbell dice

Have a nice night and thanks in advance to those that plan on posting :)
 
Well, at least I have more teams to put here now than in the Wcop. And with a positive result!


Week 1:

https://pokepast.es/39db3b438cc1d204

I was originally a Sub this week, and didn,t even plan to play, however Rexus had some IRL issues, so in the end I had to face one of the strongest ( at least in Wcop) players of Europe, Twixtry.

The team was made this same week while I still was in the bench. I wanted a team with SD Gliscor, which at the time wasn,t too common outside of Spain ( where the bad player Trosko has always liked to cheese with it). The best partner for that Gliscor was Magnezone, and after all the team was finished, I decided to use a Sub-Z set. Even in defensive teams I usually like to put Z Moves, and this particular set is the best one for dealing with Mawile. Speaking of that, I don,t remember how the rest of the team ended up being so defensive, but I think it was the best way, since covering so many threats with a weak unboosted Gliscor and a frail Steel Zone was a dificult task.

Sableye is PDef in this team, which still allows it to check well Zam and M-Latis (except DM). Now, however is much more reliable at stopping Medicham, Zard-X and especially lead Chomp and Lando. It doesn,t switch into Ass Gren anymore, but I have 2 good checks for that.

Toxapex has his best combination of moves and one of my favourite items, Eject Button. I have built many teams across this gen with that Item, whether the trapper has been Dugtrio, Weavile, Alola Golem or Magnezone, like in this team. Eject Button allows me to block U-Turn from Scizor and kill it with Magnezone. The other (and in fact, more frequent) use of Eject Button is allowing Gliscor to enter safely on Tran, without fearing a burn. Now Gliscor doesn,t fear anything from Tran except Firium-Z.

OU Meta has 5 good hazards removers: Tornadus-T, Zapdos, Fini, Gliscor and Excadrill. Right now, I consider Tornadus-T to be the best of the bunch, and he fitted well in the team as a good Kartana and Bulu check.
Ferrothorn also has its best move combination and functions as a Psychic, Electric and Rain check, as well as the rocker of the team.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-454313 < In general, Twix chooses well his teams and plays the same way. This battle was not the case for the former, Shedinja is a horrible Mon that no one should use, there are better ways to stop Rain, even in Stalls, even against Manaphy. Still, I had no Knock Off in Gliscor, so I had to wait some time for Twix to commit a mistake, 82 turns in total. Shedinja finally used WoW against my Sableye and died. Skarmory was trapped by Zone shortly after that and Gliscor destroyed the rest of the team. Unfortunately we lost the week anyway.

Week 2:

https://pokepast.es/da3912846a6475dd

My opponent this week was Indigo Plateau, the same player that finished my run in OST this year. The team I used vs him was built in the 3rd cycle of the Ladder Tour. Like all my arsenal of teams, it failed there, but Snake is an easier tour than OLT, so I had hopes it would do well here. Tests with Empo, Marcop and Xray proved it was a good idea to use it.

I generally don,t like Magearna. Yes, it can sometimes sweep entire teams, but for me its generally too weak, dies fast or can,t cover everything. That was until I invented my own Magearna set, which I call "Killer Magearna". Like I said before, 3 Attacks Magearna with either Shift Gear of Trick Room dies pretty fast. Meanwhile, CM + Pain Split + 2 Attacks is walled by a lot of things. This one is a mix of the 2 sets and uses its wonderful coverage to kill almost everything while healing itself with Pain Split against walls like Chansey, Pex or Ferrothorn. Fightium is the Z Moves I choosed, since it was the move that dealt the most damage to Mawile (which Magearna could be used as a switch-in to), Heatran and Scizor.

This Magearna is very offensive, yet slow, so it needed paralisis support. Zapdos and Serperior are the right Mons for the job. The first one also Defogs and checks flying Mons and Kartana. It has HP Ice, since Gliscor could be a threat, as it outspeeds Magearna and is not OHKOed. Serperior is the other Gliscor check, Defog Fini abusser and potentially a sweeper.

I needed a Rocker and with so many paralisis and weakness to Sand, Mega Chomp was the best. People tend to discard Mega Chomp for its Speed drop, but its not only stronger that unboosted regular Chomp (especially on the special side), its also bulkier. I don,t think I need to explain the set, its the standart mixed Mega Chomp. I just will say that people need to use Mega Chomp more often, its a good Mega.

The last Mon of the team is Reuniclus, I needed a Medicham check and a good Status absorber. This Reuniclus has Shadow Ball, as Jirachi could be annoying for both Magearna and Serperior. The boosted move also does good damage to Lele and every Steel except Bisharp.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-455525 < Indigo Plateau used a Steel SPAM, covered by 2 grounds and an offensive Tornadus-T. In the early game I managed to Status 2 of his Mons and kill other 2 at the only part of Zapdos, but then I threw away the match by sending Reuniclus to a CM + Shift Gear Magearna (I expected every other set except that one). Luckily for me, he also threw the game by not using CM on Reuniclus to get to +6 and by using it on my revealed Haze on Pex. Even some luck turns he had couldn,t save him afterwards and I won this battle too. Mambas won against Lindworms and proved everyone we were a competent team.

Week 3:

https://pokepast.es/187cf4c65fea8f16

Hayburner was my third opponent. I have met Hayburner during the Ladder Tour several times and he was a strong and annoying opponent.

Originally I was going to use a Sun team with Torkoal, Lando, Fini, Venusaur and Mawile. However, after both Marcop and Empo lost to the same Mega Latias Balance, I decided to built something new the very last day of the week. It proved to be a bad decision.

Lando a Fini are a good hazard core. Victini is a good scarfer that checks many thing. Magnezone is a trapper that also pairs well with the core. I don,t have to explain more about these Mons.

That week I have also been experimenting a lot with Dragonite, both Sub-DD and DD + EQ. Extreme Speed Nite is terrible, don,t use it, unless with Band. With Roost and some support (hello Zone) Dragonite is capable of sweeping entire teams. It switches boosts easily on Zard-Y and Dclaw less Zard-X, Tran, Volcarona, Bulu, Kartana, Ass Ninja, everything if it still has Multiscale. Its strong, its bulky and at +1 only Scarfers ( which usually can,t even kill it), weather sweepers and Mega Zam outspeed it. This Dragonite is the Mon around which the team was built.

Mawile is there to have a Mega, a threat to Bulky teams and to punch some Mons before Dragonite comes and sweeps. Gliscor could be a threat (and at that time it already became common), so it has Ice Punch.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-456700 < The team has some important holes, like Lopunny + Hazards, Rotom-W or Standart Lead Chomp. Exactly what Hayburner used. I knew it was imposible to win since the preview, but in the first 6 turns I made the impossible possible. Then, I missed an importat Play Rough and started to choke, losing the game in the end. The same way, Mambas lost this week. The saddest thing was that Venusaur in Sun would have probably this match-up.

Week 4:

https://pokepast.es/ba7bd122ee464a75


Zomog was my 4th opponent and posibly the one considered the strongest that I had. The team was built the week of the battle.

Pelipper, Swampert and Tornadus-T don,t have to be explained, they are always in Rain teams.

Azumarill was the Mon I wanted to build around, he is a good Rain sweeper when there are no Bulu, Lele or Rotom-W annoying it. Kingdra is the special wallbreaker/sweeper. Its much bulkier and faster than Greninja, and more powerful when Greninja is not in the Ass form yet. HP Electric covers the rare Mantine and also hits Fini outside of Rain.

Jirachi is also a good Mon in Rain. It atracts Lando and Tran, and U-Turns to Kingdra on them. It checks Lele, Bulu and Alakazam. It puts Rocks and also can heal a teammate with Healing Wish. It does not check Ass Ninja unlike Ferro, but I have Azumarill and Kingdra for that.

The last 2 times I used Rain in an oficial tournament ( Smogon Tour playofss vs Ima and Wcop vs Ultraballz) I got the same worst possible match-up: Sand team with a bulky Grass and Water core that I could not break. Could it be different this time?

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-457570 < No, it couldn,t. It wasn,t that bad of a match-up like the previous times, but it still was what I feared facing the most. I still could have won the match, but played pretty badly, especially the turn 10, when I withdrew Kingdra from Rotom, fearing TW. Had it TW, I could still heal Kingdra with Jirachi and break Zomog with it, but that is something that I only thought after the match ended. This loss mattered a lot, since Mambas tied the week instead of winning. I swore to not use Rain again in an important match in the remaining of the Gen 7 after this match.

Week 5:

I had to move to another town this week, to start working there. Considering that and my most recent results, sitting on the bench was a good move from my managers. Mambas achieved their most impressive Win, an 8-2 against Cobras.

Week 6:

https://pokepast.es/f4dcfb25e63667aa


This week I was living in the same hotel I was working in. So, I had Internet, although a pretty bad one, and some time to test and battle TonyFlygon, the captain of Europe.

I had time to test and battle, but no so much to build, since work was half of the day and I needed to find a flat where to live starting from the next week. I did build some teams, but they were not good, so I had to choose from the ones I built the previous weeks. This one was built the Week 4 and almost was used vs Zomog and to choose it against Tony my logic was: "I won 2 games using Toxapex, and lost 2 games without using it, so I need a strong team with Toxapex"

The team is a Sand Semi-Stall with one wallbreaker and a sweeper. Hippowdon is a very good Mon in SM OU, but a horrible Rocker that loses to Fini, Gliscor and Tornadus-T, among with some lesser Defoguers (see: Serperior and Kartana). With Toxic + Whirlwind, however, its a very good Wall, especially with Rocky Helmet chipping Zard-X, Mawile, Medicham, etc.

Toxapex has Shed Shell. The team is quite Tran weak, so having the power to switch-in and out to it is useful. Someone had to have a Z-Move, so Tornadus-T was the choosen one. He still has the same bulky set, just without Rocky Helmet. Likewise, some Mon had to have Rocks, as Hippo doesn,t have them. Jirachi not only does that, but also checks a lot of things (Lele, Magearna, Bulu, etc.) and heals the team with Wish.

Kartana has his most deadly set, band. Tyranitar is the Mega that is supposed to sweep. This spread, that I have ripped from somewhere in this forum, is weaker and slower than Standart DD Tar. However, its obsenely Bulky, making it easier to set-up to +2. Without rocks, it will always live Focus Blast from Magearna, it will always live Hydro Pump from transformed Ass Ninja and it will always live +2 Bug Buzz from Volcarona.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-460322 < Tony decided to go the HO route against me. Many of his Mons were stopped by Jirachi, so I abussed that by staying with Kartana against them, predicting his switches. Hippowdon was only needed to stop Gyarados and block Spin from Drill (with Rocky Helmet) and he did both tasks well. The match-up was really good for me, yet I commited a mistake in the end by staying with a paralyzed Kartana vs Volcarona. Had it not moved twice, Tony could have won. Fortunately, it attacked both turns and Volcarona was killed, ending the match 6-0 in my favour. Mambas still lose this weak, though.

Weeks 7, 8 and 9:

After Week 6, I found a flat and moved there. Unfortunately, there was no Internet, and it took 2 Weeks for the Internet company to come here and install it, finally doing it when Week 9 already started. I couldn,t even help my team the Weeks 7 and 8 and when I returned for the final one, it was not enough...

In the end, it was a bitter-sweat tournament for me. I met a lot of nice people and I ended with a positive 3-2 result, but we did,t reach playoffs and I could have done better in the matches I lost :blobsad:


See you (hopefully) in the Galarian SPL!
 
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Going to write a bit too since I know how much I appreciated people in the past in these type of topics too.

Generally, I got mixed feelings about. Obviously I'm very happy with my record and the way I played my games (except for my last game vs YJH) but obviously sad the Rumblers had a very rough 9 weeks with quite a few weeks being decided by luck. Alas that's the game we play, we could have always prepped better. I think we pumped out some pretty cool stuff so here comes. I started playing from week 3 onwards so I'll start from there.

Week 3:

1572288618139.png


Happy with my prep and play this week. General idea was FO + BP Medi since a lot of people nowadays run torn as their medi check which won't really work when rocks are up.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-456966

Week 4:

1572288933132.png


I had prepped some other stuff during the week but wasn't happy with that so decided to just recycle this. Only real big threat is Kart when rocks are up, however, it's outplayable.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-458187
Luckily he didn't bring Kart so all good. Had to play agressively to have a chance still vs the medi + torn, but it worked out.

Week 5:

1572289225797.png


Only realised after this game that I used Rachi 3 times in a row lol. Generally I think scarf Rachi, just like scarf Vic, is super useful on these type of BO offenses since it fullfills a big defensive roll partly (switching into psychics) whilst allowing you to hax through stuff if necesarry and also granting healing wish which is huge for mons like SD Maw, DD ZardX and mMedi. Was a tough time this week, prepping 4 teams vs Tricking who it is impossible to prep vs.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-459053
He made a great play eqing my Mawile and I'm not sure if I could've won vs the zardx even if I hit my Hydro pumps. However, i kinda just lost my fighting chance when chomp could get up rocks and also kill mawile + rotom. Unfort but alas.

Week 6:

1572289715392.png


Felt like xray still didn't know too too much of SM so went with my old and trusted.. Also wasn't happy with what I had prepped beforehand
1572289883340.png

Very cool team, already posted about it here. I'm very happy that pyukumuku, especially innards out, got 2 wins this week. Hope people will use the set more!
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-460572
was free sailing when I burnt Gliscor, not too much to say about here.

Week 7:
Didn't get to play this one rip. Miscommunication from me meant I got subbed out. Unfortunate

Week 8:

1572290431604.png


Wanted to go with safe and trusted since Eternally isn't an OU main. General idea behind this team was sub Zsteel Kart to ease prediction vs for example torn. People often play as if Kart is choice locked which can sometimes give you a free sub.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-461650
Unfortunately, Kart was most likely not putting in too much work since Eternally brought Zapdos. Luckily I still had Diancie with which I could break, which worked out.

Week 9:

1572290657574.png


Idea behind this was just, I want to bring Heatran and Gastrodon, found Tricking had used a team with those 2, so just grabbed that from him.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-462829
Made a heavy misplay in going lati on chomp. Should've known that it was DragonZ to lure latis since I knew the Zam didn't have shadow ball. gg


Message me if you have any questions! See you possibly in spl I hope!:blobthumbsup:
 

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Will of Fire

Bike Thief
is a Tiering Contributor
Hello, I'd like to talk a bit of the prep I've made for Mambas this year.

Week 1

We already started with interesting opponents and it was important to show that we were not to underestimate.

1572315476905.png



I thought it was time to use SD Gliscor, since it started gaining back popularity in this year WCOP and it showed how effective it could be. The ideal team archetype I could see it working in was that one, very "oltish", but effective. Double trapping core in Krookodile+Magnezone and the rest is pretty standard I guess. What I'd like to elaborate on is the magnezone set:

Magnezone @ Custap Berry
Ability: Magnet Pull
EVs: 40 HP / 40 Def / 252 SpA / 176 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Endure
- Thunderbolt
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Sunny Day

I had the idea to use this set in WCOP but I did not get the chance to reveal it in my first game. The speed is enough to outspeed an eventual max speed adamant Mawile and hp and def evs are needed so that magnezone can take a +2 Sucker Punch from full hp from the latter.
This set is very helpful in rain match up, you can get rid of Ferrothorn with sun up and remove rain at the same time. The other important thing you can get rid of is Kartana, even if locked in scarf Sacred Sword. It is also an emergency check to hawlucha but it is not super reliable alone for this threat. In some scenario you can even remove sand against sand rush Excadrill. I guess you can play with the Sunny Day slot, Toxic/Thunder Wave/Flash Cannon are all legit option.

1572317011998.png



This is the other team that has been used week 1, pretty standard offensive one, I thought that making Marcop playing an aggressive team could give him a big advantage. Especially for the fact that he was quite hard to scout in gen 7. I liked the idea of using two good pivots like Rotom and Magearna combined with an annoying protean Greninja and the Tapu+Hawlucha core.
Nothing else in particular to talk about in this team.

Week 2

I needed to prepare 3 teams for week 2, a bit more work compared to last week.

1572317869942.png



I liked the idea to use SG Magearna, a mon that I don't use that often. Supporting it with a Final Gambit Victini was ideal to make it perform better and remove a big threat like Heatran. Not too complicated for the rest.

1572318225189.png



Well, I did not have to do much here besides making Swampert bulky enough so that scarf U-Turn Landorus can't break its sub. I could see that our opponents were pretty rain weak so we could use this to get some advantage.

1572318933470.png



I wanted to make a team around a particular Greninja this time that I thought it would be very effective against our opponents:

Greninja (M) @ Grassium Z
Ability: Protean
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Hydro Pump
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Ice Beam
- Grass Knot

4 attacks protean Greninja is pretty uncoventional these days but with Ferrothorn Spikes support it was just fine. Grassium Z came into my mind since the Rotom and Tapu Fini usage was high and ngl after what happened week 1 to Empo against Manaphy rain I had to make sure he was prepared this time. The coverage here was fantastic and hit well pretty much all of Raptor's team. I've also put Worry Seed on Ferrothorn but it was not revealed. I'm glad other players appreciated this Greninja set and used it in their games.

Week 3

It was time to play the Leviathans.

1572320056319.png



Since Xray asked me a team with a solid breaker I just went with a simple Mawile. The team is a pretty standard BO with pivots giving momentum to help Mawile striking hard. What was a bit unconventional was probably the presence of two z move users in Tornadus and Rotom. Depending on the match up the team could adapt and decide what z move should have been used. Being able to absorb knockoff with z crystal was still fine anyway.

1572320504194.png



I did not want to stop with SD Gliscor. I definitely wanted to build something more unique and personal and so I came up with this. The idea was creating something fat and not being too passive, I don't think you can really go full stall in this metagame, it's too risky. I really wanted to give a shot to Slowbro mega because I really liked to be safe against any kind of ground mon, especially opposing SD Gliscor. Chansey of course was crucial as a special sponge here and Magnezone support in trapping and removing annoying mons like Skarmory for Gliscor and Ferrothorn in general. Scarf Kartana then completed the team with speed control and Defog and jirachi was helpful to handle SD Tapu Bulu with wish pass being a bless for the entire team. The team has seen an evolution in later weeks, I'll talk about it later.

Week 4

3 more teams to talk about here.

1572321436661.png



Blarg was on a streak and I had to help xray to my best so that he could win. I decided that it was time to use broken Serperior. I was very intrigued about the idea of building around Z Nature Power set and to make things more interesting why not giving Serperior a support of 3 potential z moves with the help of the other members. Usually you've seen Serperior with this set in the past paired with Tapu koko, so that you can easily remove Celesteela. Misty Terrain is very good in my opinion for Nature Power set rn, being able to remove threats like Kommo-O, both Kyurem form and Latias is nothing to laugh at.

1572322145980.png



Very similar to the team above but this time Serperior is a Grassiumz Z variant and there is the good old Weavile+Zard Y core. Weavile helps Charizard and Serperior breaking opposing teams with Pursuit trapping and Magma Storm Heatran too, in particular with sun support. Nothing else to say about this.

1572322425205.png



Things start getting very fun here. You might recognize this HO team from the one ABR used to ladder during OLT and you are right, it's that team. Two big changes were applied here though. First, I did not like a lot Volcarona in this archetype, too stealth rock weak for this kind of team and I liked CB Victini more for immediate breaking power and defensive utility against opposing Tapu Lele, then, for second, the Mawile spread:

Mawile-Mega @ Mawilite
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 240 HP / 16 Atk / 248 Def / 4 Spe
Impish Nature
- Swords Dance
- Play Rough
- Thunder Punch
- Brick Break

You can see interesting calcs for this monstrosity in the paste below, it's very team specific and I think that screen HO is where it can perform best.

https://pokepast.es/5e0d8608f9bd084e

The atk evs make sure you always OHKO standard Ferrothorn at +2 from full hp with Brick break and 4 evs in spe make you faster than Chansey with 0 spe evs.

Week 5

This week I was not at home to help with the prep and build new stuff but I had teams ready from past weeks.
For Xray game I've just suggested to use rain again, it looked effective against Eo and that's it.

1572324040835.png



For PDC debut in the competition I wanted to make sure that we were very prepared against fat stuff, especially with Eo support behind the Cobras. It turned out I was right to make him go like this. This team was ready weeks ago and I considered it to be ideal for this match up. Lopunny+Hoopa is not new for sure, very effective combining a fast threat with a slower breaker. Pivots in the back as usual with a decent defensive backbone for an offensive team.

1572324503056.png



Another big debut here with Troller in his first official gen 7 game. The team is very similar to the Lopunny one, but I guess this is even more offensive oriented with the Medicham+Band TTar core. Scarf Rotom gives a bit of speed control together with Trick and Thunder Wave to be more annoying for the opposing defensive cores.

1572324714091.png



This is the only team I could build from mobile during the week. I was not very sure of this one, but Empo trusted it anyway for his game.
I was messing a bit with bulky Bisharp and I wanted to create something effective around it. I was not very happy with the ending result but maybe I'm the only one thinking it since this team has also been used by z0mog in snake and during some smogon tour run.
Hp were crucial on bisharp to win this game resisting band Horn Leech from Tapu Bulu.

Week 6

1572325255068.png



Medicham again here, 3 offensive threats+a common and good defensive core. Orb Kyurem combined with Groundium Z Greninja and Medicham are powerful enough to break whatever you should find opposed to you.

1572325608967.png



Here I wanted to use SD Gliscor in a more balance oriented team with Spikes and Pursuit support, very ORAS like. SD Defog bulky Kartana here helps keeping hazards off for a bit and gives the team more breaking potential together with an additional check to offensive ground mons.

1572325754693.png



I was definitely not satisfied enough with PDC first game so I wanted to make him even scarier as you can see by this team. A stall team with 3 defoggers was something I was considering for the opponent since I've noticed he was not very prepared to break fat teams. Counter Gliscor was probably the star of the match, it was supposed to help against SD Scizor but it turned out to be effective for kartana too. In that slot you can run Toxic or Knock Off, up to your taste.

Week 7

This week was a bit busy for me and I had to be smart to help preparing.

1572326289285.png



Since Xray asked me for weeks to build around Ash Greninja outside of rain I made his wish come true. Heracross was requested by him as well together with Fightinium Z Tapu Bulu. Not an easy task but it was fun building the team. And since I like bulky breaker I've used Impish Heracross here, bulky enough to not be 2HKO from full by Smart Strike of CB Kartana with grassy terrain recovery.

1572326579934.png



Not much to say here, I just thought it was nice to use a randomic Belly Drum Azumarill paired with Lopunny. Team is pretty standard.

1572326780842.png



I had to be smart so I've asked for help to LittleBigPlanet2 and he gave this team to me. I leave to him any description of the team if he wants to spend a few words eventually in a different post. I have to say thanks to him for the support.

Week 8

The week was crucial and my time as usual was limited but I still did my best to support.

Pretty much, here the evolution I was talking about in week 3 has occurred. Empo tested a lot the Slowbro Gliscor Chansey Jirachi team and changed Magnezone and Kartana sets improving the predecent composition, great job by him here. What he did was going scarf Magnezone and making kartana bulky with Defog.

1572327373189.png



This one is not new as you can see. The idea I had for this game was using Toxic Spikes since our opponent did not look that prepared against them. Besides Ditto is always a good call nowadays.

1572327548260.png


LBP2 helped again with this team. As I said before, up to him if he wants to say anything about the team.

Week 9

Last week for us.

1572327798888.png


The only team I could build was this one. Reuniclus with Toxic Spikes support looked fun and I gave it a try. Heracross here helps getting rid of fat cores and I had in mind a very gimmick Greninja set that was not revealed sadly:

Greninja (M) @ Light Ball
Ability: Protean
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Fling
- Toxic Spikes
- Ice Beam
- Hydro Pump

this set supports by paralyzing careless Tornadus or Tapu Lele staying in so that Heracross then should have an easier time doing its job.
It's also helpful to paralyze Toxapex so that Reuniclus does not fear haze ppstall.



I'd like to spend a few words on the current metagame as someone else already did here but I think that the post would become too long and I rather do it in the proper thread.

I want to say thanks to all the Mambas players and supporters of this year and especially to Hogg who accepted to start this adventure with me.
It's sad to not reach playoff for the second time but the season showed our limits and there were weaknesses that we could not overcome.
I definitely had fun and I hope I can be present next year in the competition.
 

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Ophion

It’s about the journey, not the destination
is a Pre-Contributor
Hello, I'd like to show some stuff I came up with throughout this tour when I helped teal and the rumblers out.

Screen Shot 2019-10-29 at 6.46.34 PM.png


This is the team I used for teal when he needed to face Kebab in Week 5. I find Salamence is really slept on at the moment, seeing as anything that isn't Rotom, Skarmory (which can't win in a last mon situation), and Celesteela gets shredded by its phenomenal coverage. The big thing is the first is relatively easy to wear down with rocks damage, taking hits/leeches, among other things while the latter two are trapped by Magnezone and Skarmory can get lured into taking a Knock Off from Kartana or Landorus-T (the latter is the one I elected to run on the team teal used). While teal decided to use Z Outrage, I find Z Fly to be much better overall since its coverage is much better and has a little bit more non-z usability. This team revolved around Magnezone trapping all the mutual checks to Diancie, Salamence, and Landorus so they could go crazy with no Steels in the picture, especially the former two. CeleFini is a tried and true core and Fini enjoys Ferrothorn being trapped. Landorus-T also carried Knock Off to smack any unsuspecting Skarmory so Teal could trap it or even catch Celesteela or Rotom to wearing them down much easier and as a result make the long game in his favor. It also helped if the Magnezone couldn't trap Celesteela.


:Hippowdon: When coming up on week 7, I had suggested Tony a cool Hippowdon set thanks to looking for wacky stuff in the OU underrated sets thread. For an in-depth look on it, check here since it does a really good job going over its niche although I'd like to add it beats all 3 SD Grounds (assuming Garchomp and Landorus are Z Rock).


Screen Shot 2019-10-29 at 6.59.00 PM.png

In Week 8, I suggested to both Friso and Tony the idea of Z Belch Hydreigon to go together with Ash-Greninja, seeing as people had been using some Tapu Fini and Tapu Bulu to handle it throughout the tour, and Z Belch could even lure Tapu Bulu for Tapu Koko and Tapu Fini for Kommo-o. This team also would make it seem like Kommo-o was Z Clanger and Hydrei was a Defog Leftovers set or something like that. On top of that, Tony hadn't touched Ash-Greninja all tour so I figured it wouldn't be a bad idea to have him use it unexpectedly (by that I mean it wouldn't get as overprepped for). This was just an early test idea as we came up with other stuff later but I liked the idea regardless and found it interesting.


Screen Shot 2019-10-29 at 7.11.34 PM.png

When Gary was subbed in to play for Week 8, I passed him this shit with Mega Slowbro and it won. In general, I think Mega Slowbro is a fantastic Pokemon in the current metagame as it shuts down some very popular wallbreakers like Mega Medicham and Kyurem-Black. On top of that, with Ash-Greninja on a slight decline, Heatran being as big as ever, and the rise of SD Gliscor bulky offense/balance, it has a much easier time in the metagame and has made it more appealing to build with in my opinion. This team had a Synthesis SD Kartana to put pressure on bulky teams as well has have some sustain in the long-game so it could break later. Weavile trapped Lati@s, Tornadus, and Alakazam, which the team could have some issues with, while bringing Speed control (helped with the Gambit Vic lead). Kommo-o was the resident Ash-Greninja check/Dark resist and rocks setter while acting as a backup check to Heatran should it have been Z Solar Beam Heatran. Gliscor was the Defogger as it could Defog easily without Ferrothorn to hazard stack on it and was mixed defenses to take on Charizard X and Scarf Victini that didn't Gambit turn 1 while being the Pex stop that it usually acts as. Magnezone was actually Assault Vest to combat any Tapu Leles since hard Weavile is so risky while also acting as a good Koko check and an ok SG Magearna check if it wasn't Focus Blast.

Screen Shot 2019-10-29 at 7.25.46 PM.png

When Teal was supposed to play Lopunny Kicks in Week 7, he asked for a SubCM Latias team, so I passed him this but he decided to use something else last second. He and I both really liked this team, though. The team revolved around Nihilego setting up Toxic Spikes to cripple and wear the majority of SubCM Latias's checks (Tyranitar, Greninja, Weavile) while also being annoying to switch in to. Meanwhile, it had Electrium Z to nuke Toxapex because Haze variants would annoy this team greatly despite their decrease in use with Baneful Bunker seeing a resurgance as well as Tornadus-T. Heatran was the SpDef rocks setter, Flying resist, and also had Toxic to punish things that annoyed this team that weren't hit by Toxic Spikes, like Lati@s. Also, it liked Nihilego+Latias shitting on Toxapex in general since it wasn't Magma Storm and or Taunt. Suicune was a matchup fish but I figured given Teal's general teamstyle, it'd work pretty well and Nihilego+Latias could beat its main counters and Heatran could Toxic Lati@s for it. Tapu Bulu gave Heatran and especially Suicune good sustain and acted as the Ash-Greninja counter. Finally, Landorus-T is such a good glue.

I started helping decently late in the season but working with everyone was super fun and the team's chemistry and charisma was fantastic throughout the tour. Hope I get the chance to help you guys again!
 

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rain.png

https://pokepast.es/efcee8afd2f10d7e
Used this rain team built by z0mOG against Santu, to great success https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-459072
It's a pretty standard rain scaffold but with the twist of using Jirachi as the steel type instead of Ferro. Jirachi takes the role of Stealth Rock setter and also provides Healing Wish support which lets you go brazy with Swampert. Tangrowth takes Ferro's role as the anti-Gren sponge. This game also highlights how troublesome Tornadus-T is, particularly if your opponent doesn't have a flying resist, it can just shred teams while being extremely difficult to put down for good.

mana.png

https://pokepast.es/17499cf2ae189b28
Used a HO build left over from the Oceania WCOP discord to play Mana, false posted it so I assume he just stole the team from Empo or some other Italian. This team would have worked if I didn't go full blarghlfarghl mode and refuse to just click SD twice for the win. I think Hawlucha is still dangerous af particularly with screens support.

fg.png

https://pokepast.es/a89db03629ffd21f
xtra$hine built me this team to play FMG. Although he got the double tect I choked on BBC again at the end as clicking Zen Headbutt twice would have put Celesteela into Superpower range from Bulu, alas. The most notable thing to take away from this is that double prio Medi is the only way to go.

sex.png

https://pokepast.es/9a1f47766673a26e
My final team I used before I retreated back to the bench was also built by xtra, to use against Teal6 https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen7ou-461651 If there's one thing I learned this Snake besides mons is mons is that Ditto is OP. The team features double prio Medi again. Xtra insists on putting HP Fire on all his Landos and with the menace that Kartana is I think it has its place. Z-Belch Hydreigon is a really nifty set as fairies are the obvious switchin to Hydreigon, it also came in clutch in game as it allowed me to kill the Kommo-o I otherwise wouldn't have been able to with the standard 2 Attacks Roost Defog set.

Just wanna give a quick shout-out to the Bushmasters, we sucked but at least we sucked together, my bad for turning a 4-0 into a 2-2. Anti-shoutout to blarghlfarghl for saving replays from test games forcing me to change teams before a game, fucking orangutan.
 

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Eo Ut Mortus

Elodin Smells
is a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Site Staff Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
At the beginning of the tournament, I was planning on phoning it in and relying a lot on others' teams, but I ended up wanting to show off my own stuff.

Week 1
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 1.39.03 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/4b188af57fb4af22

This was the first time I used Kartana. I was deliberately looking to throw off people who would place too much stock in my usage patterns. I ended up making a bunch of Kartana teams this week, another one of which I'd use in Week 8. To further deviate from my usual habits, I went as offensive as possible, but you can still see my some of my defensive tendencies creep in with the triple Steel, just because I tend to be a bit paranoid about LeleZam. The matchup I got vs. Hayburner was pretty good (Spikes VoltTurn into Chansey), but first game jitters got the better of me, and I squandered my advantage with a poor early-game sequence into a bit of bad luck. My Z here was pretty nonsensical as well, but I played the rest of the game proactively enough to be able to grab the win off a flub.


Week 2
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 1.41.23 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/32ddc6cdcaa26298

I spent a good portion of my building this week trying to make rainless Manaphy work, but nothing stuck, so I fell back on a crutch build. Every tournament since Snake 1, I've built something with this same Clefable/Toxapex/Magearna/Zapdos core. My last build had filled the last spots with Zygarde and Landorus. Gliscor was a natural replacement for the former; once again, I think this was a tournament first for me, as I'd spent the majority of SM adhering to the philosophy of "Landorus on every team". Lopunny rounded out the team for some degree of speed control and offensive presence. My final product was a little too weak to Gliscor for my taste, so I ended up using this:

:clefable:
Clefable @ Icium Z
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpA
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Moonblast
- Soft-Boiled
- Ice Beam

This idea came courtesy of Finchinator, and like the man himself, it's cheesy and bad. I even kept Lopunny Ice Punch because I was so unconvinced in this tech ever hitting. It's never going to work again, but it did its job when called upon.

This type of balance is probably weaker than it's ever been, but it wasn't a bad matchup call against the defensive Pex-based build I expected from SoulWind. Beyond that, some revision is needed to keep it meta-relevant, which I think is perfectly doable.

Week 3
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 1.44.29 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/c91d26531e250ba6

I set out to use Mawile this week, but found myself disliking how narrow its windows of opportunity were, so I fell back on my beloved Aggron. Call it a crutch, but I think Aggron runs an all-out-attacking set better. With Aggron, every play is a midground; with Mawile, every play is a hard read, and assessing Mawile's performance on the basis that you'll hit all your offensive reads is analogous to assuming that you'll hit all your Focus Blasts. That said, Aggron's main shortcoming is its poor coverage versus bulky Waters, and Rotom's burgeoning popularity was a large enough concern that most of my Aggron builds paired it with Gastrodon, including this one. Defensive Clefable made a repeat appearance to supply the Wish support I felt was mandatory to enable any semblance of aggressive Aggron play, though I'd later relax my stance on this. I added Tornadus and Slowbro because I wanted to use Tornadus and Slowbro. My final slot was initially Magearna, but then I remember Charizard-Y existed, and all the players on the Nagas were very plausible Charizard-Y users. So despite Magearna synergizing with the team better, I opted for AV Tar instead.

I played the early game fairly solidly, but the later parts too conservatively, and I ended up having to hit a Hurricane to win. Not my sharpest play, but I enjoyed being able to showcase Aggron's power that game; it maintained enough pressure alongside Clefable that its direct counter in Gastrodon had to be sacked for Kebab to make progress in the matchup. While it's at its best as a niche pick due to all the plausible ways to neuter its effectiveness (Rotom, Magnezone, Z-Fight/Heat Wave Torn), with its ability to check Mawile, Kartana, Tornadus, and Gliscor, it's proven its mettle as a solid anti-meta choice right now, even beyond its original home on stall.

Week 4
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 1.45.39 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/e3b5987f8844188f

My initial intention this week was to keep people honest and build some sort of Greninja Spikes offense to offset my slower, fatter builds, but I somehow ended up removing all the offense. Part of it was because my original build contained a third Lopunny, and it felt prudent to save that for a later week (which turned out to be 6). Slowbro + Torn showed up again because I still wasn't sure how to otherwise check the Mega Fighters in a post-Lando/Clef world. Heart Swap Magearna was for Sacri's CMers. For the last two, I waffled between Scizor/Kommo and Venusaur/Gliscor; the latter won out because it "felt better", as tends to be the case with any Gliscor in this meta. I noticed I had no speed control, but I decided it wasn't a big deal. I could've scarfed Greninja, but I really hate Scarf Greninja, and the point of my building this week was to build around a Greninja who could wreak havoc with its spammable coverage, not a perpetual U-turn machine.

Enter Rain. The matchup was discouraging, but I was able to delay rain for a bit and trade chip favorably for setup. When Sacri started bringing in his sweepers, I knew I had generated a slight momentum edge and from that made successful reads as to how he would play his Swampert and Greninja. The Colbur on Slowbro, which I nearly took off before the match, also allowed me to complicate things with one safety stay-in on Greninja. To top it off, I realized I could bluff Scarf Greninja at the end and avoid having to risk a speed tie or flinches.

Week 5
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 1.47.14 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/57a08008da04e361

I didn't have much time to build this week. I waffled between this and some BuluClef and KokoCham builds. This one was based on one of my SPL 9 teams, the one I used vs. Sabella, but with Gliscor over Koko. I'd played around with Scarf Kart > Lando, which would've been better for this matchup, but I kept Lando because I was unhappy about Tyranitar and Hoopa. Z-Grass Greninja was a last minute change to patch a slight Rotom weakness that turned out to prove its worth here; I'd seen Empo use the tech, but it's still something people don't necessarily expect.

I thought I had the capacity to win this matchup, but I played too conservatively, passively assuming I'd be able to win with Scizor as long as I stalled out rain turns. In actuality, while the Scizor was originally physically defensive on my SPL team, I'd since switched to a specially defensive spread. I underestimated how much damage I'd take 1v1ing Pert, and consequentially, my win probability ended up lower than I'd expected. Had I realized beforehand, I'd have made an effort to preserve Landorus. Beyond that, I played to my outs and even had a bit more than 50% shot of winning.

Week 6
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 1.48.04 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/b9d1edfb46daa9d9

Up to this point, I'd avoided using Celesteela because I thought Magnezone would be more prevalent, but it was starting to become clear that this wasn't the case. This week, I set out to build with CelePex, attempting to pair it with various combinations of Tyranitar, Excadrill, and Ditto, just because they were all good meta things that I'd yet to use. None of those builds really caught fire, though, so like last week, I refashioned an older team to be up-to-date with the current metagame. This time, it was my team vs. Gondra from last Snake. I fused it with the Lopunny/Greninja team I built Week 4 to arrive at this. Initially, I was using the FOTM Z/Defog Kartana over Tapu Bulu; however, Gliscor was an issue, so I dropped it for Bulu. As a result, I ended up with no Defogger, which I figured was okay given Pex for Toxic Spikes absoprtion and the option to trade hazard layers with my own Spikes. While it had been a great feeling to have a free Defog on most rockers, I'm not super sold on this Kart set; it sacrifices too much in the way of offense with insufficient defensive coverage to compensate. It feels like a luxury more than anything.

This match could've turned out poorly had I not been aware of the SD/Flame Charge Zard-X set. As luck would have it, I'd seen Leftiez use it in Snake 1 and explicitly prepared for it when I was paired with him in SPL9.

Week 7
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 2.38.39 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/9c62e2fb0a9e2181

I built around Mega Alakazam and double dance Magearna this week; in retrospect, they have less-than-ideal synergy because you are relying one Pokemon to hit its Focus Blasts on the Steels to enable the other to sweep, but I just wanted to use both of them. As with last week, I found my team was once again weak to Gliscor, so I changed Kommo-o from Toxic/Protect to this set:

:kommo-o:
Kommo-o @ Leftovers
Ability: Bulletproof
EVs: 252 HP / 164 Def / 92 Spe
Impish Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Drain Punch
- Ice Punch
- Dragon Dance

Moveset notwithstanding, I ended up running defensive on all my Kommo-o for extra insurance against Bulu/Kartana because I felt like I had Greninja/Heatran adequately covered on all those teams. The 92 Spe was supposed to outrun Tornadus after a DD, except I am just now realizing that I calc'd against a neutral speed nature, and it actually requires 180 Spe, which might not be worth it anymore. The idea is that Gliscor normally switches in on this for free; now, if it does so, you get two boosts and maybe sweep. In a pinch, you can also switch into Gliscor and beat it 1v1, so that's cool. In actuality, this set probably does nothing 9/10 games, but I figure it's worth taking a chance on a Hail Mary-type set given that there are at least 5 meta relevant Kommo-o counters who are immune to Toxic, and its utility is pretty poor beyond that. Out of the three I used Kommo-o against, this team was probably the most likely one it could've swept.

While double dance Magearna had performed well in tests, I ended up changing the set to CM Pain Split because I was afraid of getting my wishes killed by a Chansey. This was a mistake; I was already feeling shaky about the team, and eliminating the main reason I'd liked it left me with no confidence in it. Thankfully, the week had already been decided at this point, but if I have any regrets about my play this season, it's the way I approached this game. That said, I don't think the team is bad, but maybe I'd replace the Zam with a Medicham or Latias or something.

Week 8
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 2.39.36 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/f62f29866cb4ddfd

I was starting to feel a bit fatigued at this point, so I decided to narrow the scope of what I was building against and not concern myself with anything else. Instead of his more recent builds, I focused on what Cdumas had brought vs. me the last times we'd played, which was Hoopa/Lopunny and Latias/Reuniclus. Tyranitar, specifically Mega Tyranitar, seemed like an obvious choice. Based on the events of the last week, I wasn't at my best in orchestrating set-up based sweeps, so I wanted to build with CB Kartana again, the best option on the table with a mega slot filled. To round out my initial core, I defaulted to Slowbro; I didn't want to get wrecked by Medicham again.

As it happened, I'd built a team like this already week 1. I ended up changing Toxapex to Kommo-o and Mega Tyranitar to AV to help versus Kartana and Alakazam, respectively. During Week 1, I'd seen Cdumas himself use Stealth Rock/Leftovers Excadrill, and I stole it for myself; even before Rotom's burst of popularity, I'd found Excadrill a pretty unreliable sweeper and Z-move user. With a slot opened up on Kommo-o, I was given free reign to come up with a new and even better set:

:kommo-o:
Kommo-o @ Leftovers
Ability: Overcoat
EVs: 252 HP / 176 Def / 80 SpD
Impish Nature
- Bulk Up
- Drain Punch
- Toxic
- Protect

The goal of this set is to beat Scizor while offering an avenue for a surprise sweep. I think it might 1v1 Gliscor, but I don't really feel like checking. To play this set, Bulk Up, and then Toxic when they pivot to Tornadus or Landorus. Or something like that. This ended up facing 5 fighting resists, including two poison immunes, and a Skarmory. Dubbed "The Most Useless Kommo-o of All Time" by my faithless team, it surpassed their expectations by surviving a fodder attempt and nabbing a kill.

This also marked the third time I brought Tornadus / Slowbro, which I hadn't realized at the time. This time, the combination's synergy was more apparent than ever, outlasting Toxic Toxapex through Regen stall.

Week 9
Screen Shot 2019-11-02 at 2.40.54 PM.png

https://pokepast.es/b9afcd01f4aaf3b0

This week, I was determined to build a Ditto team; I'd been trying for weeks now. I drew upon p2's RMT for inspiration and nearly ended up using it with Gliscor > Zygrade but decided it was too Tyranitar weak. In testing, I went with Ditto/Tornadus/Pex and rotated between Scizor/Aggron, Kommo-o/Gliscor, and a filler, which ranged from Chansey to Jirachi to even Nidoking after I saw BKC post about it in this thread. In my Aggron builds, I experimented a bit with Healing Wish; as I said earlier, I initially believed Wish support was necessary to support it, but it restricts builds quite a bit. Healing Wish is good because there are plenty of situations where you want Aggron to take a burn/near-fatal trade against the likes of Heatran, Gliscor, and even Medicham/Lopunny. I ended up using both Wish and Healing Wish Chansey, but I still think the latter is an adequate standalone support option worth exploring further. Kommo-o was my Week 7 DD set; once again, it did absolutely nothing but showcase its bulk by killing the Pokemon I was trying to fodder it against. Also, I was lazy and forgot to set my Toxapex spread to survive Swampert EQ, but thankfully, I'd also switched to Toxic Spikes at the last minute to deal with rain for the third time.

Closing Thoughts:

I'm content with the current metagame. It's not my all-time-favorite metagame; I didn't get to run everything I wanted to and had to constantly make compromises on my team's offenses to ensure they were capable of covering all relevant threats. My SPL 9 teams certainly feel way more colorful than the ones I built for this tournament. That said, I view this shift to be an unavoidable consequence of the playerbase optimizing the metagame. All past metagame states should be understood as having been in flux, inevitably moving towards a logical conclusion. Unless we artificially stimulate the metagame at regular intervals, which is a reasonable idea but not one we have the resources or the process to support, we are always going to eventually reach a point of stagnation, where organic changes takes longer, and we end up seeing the same thing for extended periods of time. I would say we're not even at that point yet; the metagame changed a lot over the past nine weeks, proving the transience of the rain/stall extremes felt during OLT and their rippling effects.

One thing I particularly liked about the metagame was that I felt like there was a lot of diversity when it came to balance / bulky offense builds. When I think balance, I think FWG, ft. Bulu/Tang and Heatran. I managed to avoid running that for the most part (which people noticed) :rage:. Other staples that I avoided included Tapu Fini / Latias, whom I consider to be awkward to use. That said, other people made good use of them, demonstrating the wealth of viable approaches currently available. This is all without even getting into more offensive stuff, like Fire-type spam, which I would've assumed Toxapex would singlehandedly shut down before this tournament and OLT playoffs, and all the Ditto teams that are only now just being explored by the playerbase at large.

My biggest qualm with the metagame is Gliscor. I felt like I was weak to it every week and had to invest multiple random slots across multiple Pokemon to deal with it. Even hard counters need two moves to beat it (Tangrowth: STAB + Worry Seed; Slowbro: Scald + Ice Beam). Of course, I don't know how much I can complain when I avoided using Tangrowth, Latias, and Kyurem, but I know I wasn't the only person with this problem. Just look at how many of the techs posted in this thread are devoted to dealing with this thing. It's not something I would ban without first thinking of the larger picture, but if I had a magic wand to get rid of anything without reprucussions, it'd definitely be the first thing to go.

Final note: I've long believed that for me to be a fully complete player™, I have to diversify even further from what I've shown. Entering these tournaments, I usually intend on picking up rain or whatever's the FOTM hyper-offense at the time, but end up never finding the time or motivation to make it happen. Nonetheless, I think I've been able to prove that despite the concerns that Smogon is heading towards a hyperotimized team-sharing, matchup-fishing culture, we're quite not there yet, and there's still plenty of room to find success through strong fundamental play while remaining rooted in your own identity as a player.
 

false

fuck a hater bitch
is a Battle Simulator Administratoris a Community Leaderis a Tutor Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
PS Leader
henlo gamers ٩(๑•◡-๑)۶ please keep making these posts, they are very cool and i like reading them.

i had never really built much of anything before wcop this year, but when i noted that essence was literally the only guy on our cg lineup who made his own stuff (plus i made a very wise decision to start smurf in sm) i came to the realisation that if i didn't provide building support, our team wasnt going to struggle to find teams. from that time onwards i made a concerted effort to take steps to become a better builder. i felt like it was one of the weaker elements of my game anyway, so i was eager to improve.

week 1 // cdumas vs gondra //:tyranitar::toxapex::zapdos::excadrill::latias-mega::celesteela:
gondra seemed to use almost exclusively northeast-style bulky offense (clef/gliscor/pex/tran type backbone), and so i followed the exact same prep i did when facing for robjr in wcop. electrium z zapdos absolutely smokes these kind of builds. i added bandtar to pursuit trap mega latias (another common pokemon on the archetype). from thereon i tried a couple of different options, cdu was insistent on having a really sturdy and consistent backbone to fall back on, so i ultimately landed on celepex + mega latias. excadrill was added as a last bc it was the only way i could cover removal/rocks in on slot, and it fit on the sand-style archetype anyway.

week 1 // updated kanto vs tony //:hydreigon::mawile-mega::tornadus-therian::gliscor::magearna::victini:
kanto and i expected something pretty fat from tony, but we didn't really have much beside that to go off of. hydreigon was a pokemon i just generally liked, and kanto seemed down with it. i went mawile next, because i really wanted to be prepped for a fatter team. taunt torn-t was a nice 3rd addition, providing double defog in order to limit pressure caused by hazards, but also taunt once again to pressure bulkier teams. gliscor and gear came next as pretty basic blanket checks to ur standard breakery stuff, gave rocks too. victini rounded it out, a scarfer able to check zardy and medicham, and also a way to keep up momentum. double defog meant that it rarely had to deal with the hazard chip too.

week 2 // updated kanto vs jimmy turtwig //:lopunny-mega::kartana::rotom-wash::magearna::landorus-therian::kyurem:
kanto wanted lop + band kart this week, so i decided to just go basic and support it with a really easy voltturn backbone of lando rotom gear. i asked him if there was any other breaker he thought would be good, and he said kyurem. turns out he was talking about kyurem-b, but by this point the regular kyurem version was already alive and popping off in tests, so we decided to keep it.

week 3 // tamahome vs bkc //:charizard-mega-y::heatran::slowbro::landorus-therian::tapu-bulu::kartana:
tama wanted to go zardy this week. this was a team i made w1 for santu, but he ended up using something else, so i passed it to tama and he loved it. zardy + tran is standard; the option of water comes down to fini/rotom/slowbro, and if u go slowbro u have to have bulu as an ashgren check (plus it supports tran and bro p nicely). i was obsessed w/ z lando, and bkc seemed to be using only rly generic bulky offenses so i felt like it'd be a good pick either way, especially since u could bluff it as a scarfer (rocks tran) and claim a kill w/ z fly or sd. kart filled out the team nicely, providing secondary defog, and pairing nicely w/ bulu support.

week 3 // updated kanto vs jardem //:medicham-mega::tornadus-therian::ferrothorn::landorus-therian::tapu-lele::rotom-wash:
kantos original opponent was star this week. i spent a while toying around with a scizor/ditto/gliscor thing, but after literally 2 days i realised my brain was just not big enough to be using ditto properly, so i switched to something more my speed: medicham. ferrothorn spikes was a key idea i'd been trying to incorporate all week, so that moved across to the medi version. i rounded it out with rotom, scarf lando, and ashgren/av lele. after a while i realised i could make the team better by turning the lando into my favourite set (sd zfly) and putting scarf on something else. i went w/ scarf lele to give a check to guys like ashgren/lop/medi.

week 4 // cdumas vs ximraptor //:scizor-mega::tapu-fini::heatran::greninja::landorus-therian::kyurem:
cdu wanted protean gren, i thought scizor + kyurem looked good; so i smashed them together and made this. fini/lando/tran are just 3 really simple role-fulfilling pkmn, and check just about everything required in the last 3 slots. u get a top-tier scarfer, hazard removal, checks to lop/medi/gren/maw/lele etc. and 3 pkmn who synergise well with the rest of the team. tran can be used to pursuit trap stuff for sciz and kyurem, and fini provides terrain so that kyurem can find more set-up opportunities.

week 4 // updated kanto vs lopunny kicks //:diggersby::kartana::zapdos::tapu-fini::lopunny-mega::jirachi:
[22:31] Kanto: Lemme use Diggersby
[22:31] Kanto: So I can be Diggersby Punches
[22:39] false: cb diggersby is p cool though

this was the prep for this week. i decided to pair it with sd synth kart because i felt like that was the best way to keep up offensive pressure vs grounds and other fat backbones. double bunny was an obvious pairing, lop provides a great speed tier and is super good at cleaning up the mess that diggers leaves behind. fini zap is a pretty solid backbone, and another nice set to check grounds, and zap gets momentum on stuff like tran to bring diggersby in. lastly i needed a zam/lele check that could set rocks, rachi also has hwish and uturn which seems rly good to help out basically everything on this team, so i dropped it in.

week 5 // tamahome vs z0mog //:magnezone::tapu-fini::landorus-therian::scizor-mega::garchomp::kyurem:
this was another version of the sciz/kyurem team that i built for cdu (w4 vs raptor). tama really seemed to like it, and since cdu didn't end up using it; its free real estate. this version is pretty similar in concept, but goes a bit more dragmag w/ zone > tran, and a second dragon in place of the gren. specs zone is the better zone btw; save ur z for a breaker, and ur zone owns sciz/celes/ferro even more effectively.

week 5 // cdumas vs blarghlfarghl //:tornadus-therian::garchomp::celesteela::excadrill::toxapex::tyranitar-mega:
i really liked dd tar vs blargh. i originally made a sand w/ ddtar + sd chomp and then pex and physdef tang, but cdu wasn't feeing tang, so i changed it to taunt torn-t. then somehow after all these evolutions, we ended back at a celepex backbone again. chomp/exca/tar synergy was still nice though. i liked the team.

week 5 // updated kanto vs xtra //:tapu-koko::hawlucha::magearna::landorus-therian::gyarados-mega::serperior:
there was only one option with prep this week; beating xtra w/ ho. kanto and i threw this team together in like 5 second. we rly wanted to use hawlucha + sg/bolt/beam/focus gear. gyara and serp were added last to handle rain/other cheese. lucha has enough spdef to live clef/fini moonblast after rocks. this made it 10-0 w/ my teams btw! pretty cool :pimp:

week 6 // updated kanto vs charmflash //:heracross-mega::jirachi::tapu-fini::garchomp::zapdos::greninja-ash:
we wanted to be super prepped for charm's fat ditto shit, so i opted for subsd heracross w/ both fini and hwish support. sd chomp and ashgren provided additional breaking power along w/ hazard pressure, zapdos gave u the possibility to paralyse guys like lando/torn to make heracross' setup easier. scarf rachi had trick, and fini dropped water move in place of madness; all additional techs to avoid losing to fat. however, we missed madness and lost to fat anyway :(

week 6 // cdumas vs welli0u //:diancie-mega::kartana::gastrodon::heatran::tornadus-therian::tapu-bulu:
cdu was pretty busy this week, so he just asked for a diancie offense. this is the team i came up with. it has some pretty cool stuff; nature power tran, scarf bulu, grassium synth kart but idk. something about this team just seems bad or forgettable. i mean i forgot i even made this team until i went back and looked over the list. it lost in a pretty sad game, maybe its just bad idk. try it out and let me know!

week 7 // cdumas vs le lliolae //:lopunny-mega::ferrothorn::clefable::gliscor::tornadus-therian::rotom-wash:
cdu wanted ferro spikes w/ lo cm tbolt clef. this team has super heavy oras aesthetic. a little weak to scizor, but cdu faced a sciz in the game, and he still coulda easily won if he got a couple plays right, so i dont think its a particularly terrible matchup. zam can be a threat too. clef has enough def to check lopunny. rotom's speed is for is for the modest tran and stuff trying to creep that.

week 7 // tamahome vs mana //:lopunny-mega::kartana::rotom-wash::magearna::landorus-therian::greninja:
we just took kanto's team from w2 and replaced kyurem with protean gren. originally i had some other changes like eball on gear, but im pretty sure tama had the wrong import during the game, and he ended up facing a gastrodon :(

week 7 // zorodark vs twixtry //:serperior::tapu-fini::scizor-mega::heatran::landorus-therian::kyurem-black:
i made an rmt of this team; go check it out for a more in-depth analysis of this team!

week 8 // cdumas vs eo ut mortus //:landorus-therian::toxapex::blacephalon::clefable::latias-mega::skarmory:
this is a team i rly dont like, but its based around a core i think is really cool. triple cm w/ latias, cm rocks clef, and speed-boosting blacephalon. i made a version of this to play vs eo in ost, but that version had ttar and ferrothorn. this version seems too weak to psychic but cdu seemed to really like it. unfortunately it faced an unwinnable matchup so :pirate:

week 8 // zorodark vs dice //:gliscor::magnezone::latios-mega::weavile::tapu-fini::garchomp:
this was probably my 2nd favourite team after the rmt. cool aesthetic and fun to play. gliscor zone lati was my idea vs dice, and it worked out p well; weavile smashed. specs zone again, because its the good set. timid lati because i'd rather have the bulk, eq still does enough in most cases. sd dragon chomp can be rly key to get rid of a gliscor check, so burn the z wisely. zoro showcased perfect use of z in this one.

week 9 // updated kanto vs empo //:seismitoad::tornadus-therian::lopunny-mega::magearna::tapu-bulu::victini:
kanto and i thought some sort of seismitoad offense would look good vs empo bc he was using a lot of rotom/zap. i paired it w/ physdef z flash mageara, bc obviously seis cant rly do too much as a physical wall, so having gear be able to cover for that provided some cool synergy i reckon. the choice between lop and medi came down to speed tier, we expected a more offensive team, and so lop's speed tier was more valuable. bulu gave terrain for the entire team, and gave a check to ashgren, and also bulk up to handle gliscor, because both of our physdef pkmn so far are just setup fodder for gliscor. torn defogs and check lando/medi etc. i wasnt sure what the best seis spread was, i just went pdef to check victini and zardx. perhaps some spdef would be better.

i still have a lot of room to grow both as a builder and a player. this was my first time in a team environment outside of oceania, and it was a really different and fun experience. shoutout to all the astrotias gamers who made my first experience in snake a good one, and especially to evi and hjad for trusting me despite my awful sheet record.
 

TPP

Unspoken Words
is a Tutoris a Top Team Rateris a Community Leaderis a Community Contributor
RMT Leader
Now that finals are done, I will tag the remaining semi finalists and finalists (outside of false since he posted above) to share any sets they used as well as share any thoughts they have on the current metagame. As I said last time, if there were any helpers/managers that were involved that would like to post, you are more than welcome to do so. Congrats to the Leviathans for winning, good job to the Taipans for their incredible run, and I hope to see you all next year!

Cdumas Tamahome Updated Kanto ZoroDark Santu Tricking ramboss Jimmy Turtwig Kebab mlml Kory2600 ABR ima le LLiolae Mana Twixtry Chaitanya Charmflash Tace Insult Corazan Hayburner Welli0u
 

Tace

formerly TaceBreeze
is a defending Smogon Snake Draft Champion
Didnt use anything overly creative throughout the tour but ill post on something i found generally cool throughout the tour

@ Future Sight

ik people already mentioned future sight slowbro here but i felt like this was a better way at pushing faster forms of progress for mons that really enjoy removal of stuff like toxapex while still being able to keep some of the defensive features of reuni, mainly checking medi decently alongside abusing the aforementioned pex.
252 Atk Pure Power Medicham-Mega High Jump Kick vs. 144 HP / 252 Def Reuniclus: 168-198 (42.3 - 49.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
252 Atk Lopunny-Mega Return vs. 144 HP / 252 Def Reuniclus: 163-193 (41 - 48.6%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
76+ SpA Life Orb Reuniclus Future Sight vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Toxapex: 268-320 (88.1 - 105.2%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock and Black Sludge recovery
0 SpA Heatran Magma Storm vs. 144 HP / 36 SpD Reuniclus: 148-175 (37.2 - 44%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
76+ SpA Life Orb Reuniclus Focus Blast vs. 252 HP / 176+ SpD Heatran: 234-278 (60.6 - 72%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery
0 Atk Ferrothorn Power Whip vs. 144 HP / 252 Def Reuniclus: 117-138 (29.4 - 34.7%) -- 8.5% chance to 3HKO
76+ SpA Life Orb Reuniclus Focus Blast vs. 252 HP / 232+ SpD Ferrothorn: 211-250 (59.9 - 71%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery
252+ Atk Tyranitar-Mega Crunch vs. 144 HP / 252 Def Reuniclus: 324-384 (81.6 - 96.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
76+ SpA Life Orb Reuniclus Focus Blast vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Tyranitar-Mega in Sand: 364-432 (106.7 - 126.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO
 

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