Resource SS DOU Teambuilding Checklists/Frameworks

NotlPrimRose

Tinkaton Supremacy
is a Pre-Contributor
General Checklist


Checking Wincons:

1 CM Fini Check
1 DD Kyurem-B Check
1 Porygon2 Check
1 Landorus Check
1 Diancie Check
1 Meteor Beam Celesteela Check
1 Shift Gear Genesect Check
1 DD Zygarde Check
1 Stakataka Check
1 Weather Check (Mons that give you a Rain/Sand Matchup)
1 Anti-Cheese Measure (Ways to beat Calm Mind Cresselia, Cosmic Power Metagross, Demon Mew, etc.)

General Things to Have:
Ability to beat everything on the Viability Rankings (linked below)
At least 2 switchins to Amoonguss Spore
Switch ins to Heatran/Zygarde in tailwind
Playable matchups into most team styles (semiroom, hyper offense, balance, fullroom, etc.)
1 Spread Move
Ability to beat every sample team (optional)
At least one source of immediate damage (Pokémon that can provide good damage with minimal to no setup)
At least one source of immediate speed (A Pokémon that's as fast or faster than Naganadel)
1 Priority Move

General Tips

You don't have to check everything, just the things people actually use. If a Pokémon sees very low/nonexistent usage at high levels of play, chances are it is not worth your time considering in the builder. It is worth noting that no team will have perfect answers to everything, so it’s important to identify any weak matchups you may have and consider how you’ll play around that in a match. If this is not possible, consider making changes to the team. Also, try thinking about how you want the team to function before you build it and keep that in mind as you build. This can honestly be as simple as "I want to build a balance team" and sticking to that. Not doing this can lead to disjointed teams that don't flow well. You also need to know your team. Spend some time in the builder thinking about how you plan on approaching certain team styles and cores when you play and try to apply this in the test games. Based on how the team feels after you test it you can revise your game plan or maybe even make a few changes to the team. This will also help you get experience with your team, which is very important. A big part of playing a team well is playing a lot of games against varied team styles to get experience with your team and learning how to play it efficiently.

DISCLAIMER

These frameworks are meant to be used as guidelines to help new players make functioning teams on their own. Just because a team deviates from these frameworks a little doesn't necessarily make it bad. These are not meant to be all-encompassing guides to how all teams that fall under a certain team style are required to operate to be considered meta, but rather as a helpful guide to help new players build their first team, or help them analyze meta teams and make sense of how they work on a fundamental level, and play them better as a result.


Rain

Psyspam Rain
(Credit: Nido-Rus)
:tornadus: :pelipper: :urshifu: :ferrothorn: :mew: :tapu lele:
https://pokepast.es/2911b35b2ac03d49
Rain Balance (Credit: Actuarily)
:politoed: :kingdra: :ferrothorn: :zapdos: :tsareena: :urshifu:
https://pokepast.es/c5817e6d6823b845
Shift Gear Genesect Rain (Credit: Nido-Rus)
:kingdra: :genesect: :zeraora: :tornadus: :pelipper: :rillaboom:
https://pokepast.es/3e17996ab760b83b

Framework:

Setter
:politoed: :pelipper:
This can be either Politoed or the occasional Pelipper depending on your team and what you need. Politoed is considered better by most players, but both legal Drizzle mons are completely usable

Abuser :kingdra: :urshifu:
This can be a Swift Swim user like Kingdra but doesn't nesessarily have to be, it can just be a strong water type like Urshifu. You can also run both, it's not like you are restricted to one or the other

Steel type :metagross: :celesteela: :ferrothorn::genesect:
Steel types take advantage of rain removing their fire weakness and resist grass which creates a strong defensive backbone for your team. These Pokémon also act as checks to dragons like Kyurem-B and Naganadel

Tailwind :tornadus: :zapdos: :mew::naganadel:
Usually a flying type like Tornadus or Zapdos but not necessarily. Flying types also have a grass resistance and can deal with grass types like Rillaboom and Tsareena throught their access to the move Hurricane. Zapdos can also check celesteela and volcanion which rain needs

Priority Blocking :tsareena: :tapu lele: :Indeedee-F:
Rain teams are built around pressuring your opponent with fast, strong water types, and priority moves like Fake Out and Grassy Glide can make this quite difficult to do, as they ignore all speed control on the field. This makes Tsareena a great option on rain teams, as it can block priority and also provides utility with Taunt to stop Trick Room teams. Tapu Lele and Indeedee-F are also options

Strong Attacker NOT Reliant on Rain :genesect: :urshifu:
On a rain team you cant always guarantee rain will always be up with just one setter, so a strong attacker/wincon out of rain is also important. This can just be an Urshifu for immediate offense in and out of rain but a late game wincon like Shift Gear Genesect can work as well

Things to check

Rain can struggle with removing water resists/immunities, as the team is built around using rain boosted water attacks to rip through teams. This makes Pokémon like Zapdos/Tornadus are so valuable on rain, as they can remove common grass types like Rillaboom and Tsareena. Volcanion is checked by pokemon like Zapdos/Zeraora on rain, with Urshifu's Close Combat also doing considerable damage to it (Though this is not the best method of checking it, as CC will not kill without chip being done to Volcanion prior to the attack, and urshifu risking a burn from steam eruption if the Volcanion is not chipped beforehand) Naganadel can also be a problem for rain, but Kingdra, Assault Vest Tsareena, Tapu Lele/Mew (In tailwind), Shift Gear Genesect, and to a lesser extent Ferrothorn all can help beating it long term. Lastly, Trick Room can be a struggle for these teams, but you have the tools to kill the most common Trick Room setters (Diancie, Porygon2, Stakataka) as well as Ferrothorn which outright beats most Trick Room Pokémon. Taunt Tsareena can also be used to shut down Trick Room Teams.

Replays
herioctobias vs Givrix: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645337
Crunchman vs SMB: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645522
Lily vs Tenzai: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645087


Semiroom

Amoonguss + Diancie Semiroom
(Credit: Umbry/Nails)
:diancie: :amoonguss: :zeraora: :volcanion: :kyurem black: :landorus:
https://pokepast.es/5e17609ec545e83c
Dragapult Balance/Semiroom (Credit: MajorBowman)
:porygon2: :rillaboom: :volcanion: :metagross: :dragapult: :kyurem black:
https://pokepast.es/1d8adfd2e3564fcf
Stakataka Semiroom (Credit: NotlPrimRose)
:stakataka: :cresselia: :rillaboom: :volcanion: :landorus: :dragapult:
https://pokepast.es/3f7ba857ea46967d
Hazard Stack Semiroom (Credit: Crunchman)
:volcanion: :dragapult: :mew: :diancie: :rillaboom: :porygon2:
https://pokepast.es/6304a3d0563604d8
Lurantis Semiroom (Credit: MADARAAAA and SMB)
:lurantis: :incineroar: :tapu fini: :porygon2: :zygarde: :mew:
https://pokepast.es/0eb5ab18c1cadc0f
Grass Spam Semiroom (Credit: dnagerbdager)
:lurantis: :porygon2: :volcanion: :diancie: :dragapult: :rillaboom:
https://pokepast.es/fd0d558c425e311e
Framework

Trick Room Setter
:diancie: :porygon2: :necrozma: :mew::cresselia: :stakataka:
This slot is usually either Porygon2 or Diancie. Niche options like Trick Room Necrozma, Mew, Stakataka and Cresselia do exist, but are harder to fit on teams than the more common users.

1 form of disruption :mew: :rillaboom: :zeraora: :amoonguss: :incineroar:
A lot of teams will use things like Taunt, tricking choice items, toxic or just killing the setter to stop Trick Room from being set up so having a fake out Pokémon or redirection can help your setter get trick room up more safely. These Pokémon can also redirect for a setup wincon like Lurantis if you choose to run one

1 trick room attacker :volcanion: :celesteela: :metagross: :necrozma::torkoal::lurantis:
This slot is anything that provides immediate offensive pressure in trick room. Good examples are Volcanion and Metagross but other Pokémon like Necrozma, Lurantis, and meteor beam Celesteela can also work

2 attackers outside of trick room :genesect: :zygarde: :dragapult: :zapdos galar: :landorus: :urshifu::nihilego:
These two slots make up the fast mode of semiroom. You generally want at least 1 of these Pokémon to have a pivot move, though this is not necessary. These Pokémon either provide immediate offensive pressure or are a wincon not reliant on getting trick room up first

1 flex slot (preferably with a secondary form of speed control or disruption) :kyurem black: :porygon2: :tapu fini: :incineroar: :rillaboom: :amoonguss::mew:
This slot is relatively flexible on these teams. You generally want this slot to add some sort of defensive utility, such as a secondary speed control user or a secondary source of disruption. Alternatively, this slot can be a secondary win condition, like a Calm Mind Tapu Fini. This slot should be used to cover any weaknesses you may have at this point. If your team looks weak to Urshifu, a flex slot like Mew, Amoonguss, or Tapu Fini would work well for example. If you're having trouble setting Trick Room up consistently, you may want some more disruption in the form of Amoonguss or a secondary Trick Room setter. This slot can pretty much be anything (within reason) as long as it makes sense in the context of the team.

Things to check
Semiroom isn't really a team style that's inherently weak to anything. You just want to make sure you're following the general checklist and have a way to deal with opposing trick room teams. You also want to make sure you have the things that check your trick room setter covered. If you're using Porygon2 you need strong answers to fighting types like Urshifu as well as Focus Blast Landorus and stuff p2 doesn't threaten itself like Kyurem-Black. For Diancie you need a strong answer to steel types like Metagross and Celesteela as well as a way to prevent things that can potentially stop you from sweeping such as Toxic or Spore (blocking Toxic is also important for Porygon2 builds)

Replays
EternalSnowman vs umbry: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645784
Akaru Kokuyo vs AuraRayquaza: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-646471
Lily vs Tenzai: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645086

Psyspam

GAMER NECROZMA
(Credit: emma)
:tapu lele: :necrozma: :zapdos: :urshifu: :amoonguss: :heatran:
https://pokepast.es/7a677a60dc1a89bb
Standard Psyspam
:Indeedee-F: :necrozma: :naganadel: :heatran: :urshifu: :amoonguss:
https://pokepast.es/0b99ffc3b5ebfff0
Pheromosa Psyspam (Credit: Dawobblefet)
:pheromosa: :amoonguss: :naganadel: :tapu lele: :necrozma: :heatran:
https://pokepast.es/393b2fb8ec65327d
Funhouse Frazzle (Credit: NotlPrimRose)
:tapu lele: :necrozma: :volcanion: :amoonguss: :pheromosa: :naganadel:
https://pokepast.es/0cbeb7a036fe0339
Framework

Setter :tapu lele::indeedee-f:

There are only two Pokémon with Psychic Surge, and both are viable depending on the team/playstyle. Indeedee-F offers more defensive utility and use the Eject Button item, while Tapu Lele can run Taunt to shut down trick room and things like Cosmic Power Metagross while providing decent personal damage as well. This decision is mostly user preference.

Abuser :necrozma: :mew:
This is a pokemon that can effectively sit on the field and spam expanding force. Necrozma is the go to in this department but mew is also an option, as it still provides decent personal damage and can compress Tailwind and abusing Psychic Terrain into one slot

Tailwind :zapdos: :naganadel: :mew:
Teams like this want to end the game as fast as possible and tailwind helps you do that effectively. Common setters are Zapdos and Naganedel but as previously mentioned mew provides role compression that allows it to set Tailwind as well as abuse the terrain, so you can actually use a second attacker in this slot in the case of running Mew over Necrozma

Strong Steel Type Answer :landorus: :heatran::volcanion:
Psyspam needs a strong answer to steel types so you can spam Expanding Force, which is your main wincon in the majority of games. Heatran is by far the most common option here, but Volcanion has the added benefit of making the matchup into ground types better (if it chooses to run Shuca Berry) as well as being able to sit on Tapu Fini and force it to pivot, which allows you to temporarily win the terrain war. In theory Landorus could also work in this slot but keep in mind that by virtue of it being a Flying type it is immune to the benefits of Psychic Terrain.

Fighting Types:urshifu::pheromosa:
Urshifu deals with Steel and Dark types and appreciates Psychic Terrain's ability to block priority, making it a staple on these kinds of teams. Alternatively, Pheromosa provides more immediate speed and damage to the team while being able to beat Zygarde and Landorus offensively, which is very important on these teams. It can also add another dimension to the team through it's use of Speed Swap. Additionally, Pheromosa greatly appreciates Psychic Terrain forcing the opponent to either use Pokémon to take hits from it and OHKO back (which is quite a short list) or to outright outspeed it, and equally short list.

Trick Room Stop :amoonguss: :tapu lele:
This is just a slot dedicated to scaring Trick Room setters or preventing it altogether. This can be Amoonguss to threaten fast spores under trick room which is probably your most solid option because it also benefits from psychic terrain removing misty terrain, bur a taunt user like Tapu Lele would also work. You also have the option to run Trick Room yourself on Necrozma to punish your opponent for using speed control carelessly

Things to check
On psyspam you always want to make sure you're checking opposing terrain setters like Rillaboom and Tapu Fini as well as resists and immunities to Expanding Force. Teams like this also tend to struggle with Ground types like Landorus and Zygarde, so be prepared for that as well. Pokémon like Heatran, Volcanion and Landorus scare off Rillaboom wih Landorus specifically additionally being able to beat Tapu Fini, Steel types, and Incineroar. Volcanion also sits on Fini and Incineroar and beats them 1v1 with sludge bomb and steam eruption respectively. Urshifu also helps with this in the sense that it removes Steel types and Incineroar. For ground types using something like Naganadel as a Tailwind setter works as it ohkos Landorus and Zygarde with Draco Meteor. Pheromosa also beats the grounds offensively with its ice move of choice (Triple Axel or Ice Beam). You also need to make sure to play your terrain setter intelligently into double terrain teams.

Replays
Lemurro vs Crunchman: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-646323
MADARAAAA vs Lily: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645954
Lily vs Tenzai: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645091

Setup Spam

:tapu fini: :kyurem black: :landorus: :celesteela: :mew: :incineroar:
Fini + Kyurem-B + Celesteela (Credit: Z Strats and emma)
https://pokepast.es/3ed136f969def75d

:kyurem black: :celesteela: :landorus: :amoonguss: :incineroar: :cresselia:
Cresselia Setup Spam (Credit: NinjaSnapple and Yoda2798)
https://pokepast.es/efffd2b663c281b5
:kyurem black: :celesteela: :zygarde: :incineroar: :amoonguss: :diancie:
Kyurem-B + Celesteela (Credit: Z Strats and emma)
https://pokepast.es/56ed544cca9f118e
:blastoise: :spectrier: :celesteela: :incineroar: :landorus: :naganadel:
Spectrier Setup Spam (Credit: NotlPrimRose)
https://pokepast.es/f48bf0b12a6fc7f2
:celesteela: :tapu koko: :kyurem black: :landorus: :incineroar: :mew:
Tapu Koko Setup Spam (Credit: NotlPrimRose)
https://pokepast.es/e195daeeae1689c1

Framework

2 Setup Sweepers
:celesteela: :kyurem black: :tapu fini:
Setup Spam uses 2-3 Pokémon with some sort of setup move that allows them to function as a win condition. Generally this means picking 2 of Celesteela, Kyurem-Black and Tapu Fini, but some teams opt to run all 3, which can also work.

1 Strong Attacker :landorus: :zygarde: :celesteela:
This Pokémon is here to provide immediate offensive pressure so the team doesn't end up being too passive. Zygarde and Landorus are common options here, and depending on what you consider setup Celesteela can also fill this role.

2 Forms of Disruption :amoonguss: :incineroar: :mew: :rillaboom: :zeraora:
Setup Pokémon generally require 1 or more free turns to actually get set up and be threatening, so having Pokémon with fake out and/or follow me to generate free turns for your wincons to get set up is very important.

At Least 1 Form of Speed Control :mew: :naganadel: :diancie: :porygon2: :zapdos::cresselia:
Most teams want some form of speed control, and setup spam is no different. Most teams will want to have some form of speed control, whether it be Trick Room or Tailwind. Mew is probably the most common tailwind setter for these types of teams but Naganadel and Zapdos are also options. As for trick room, i've seen both Porygon2 and Diancie fairly frequently with Cresselia being a more niche but still viable option

Things to Check
Setup Spam as a playstyle is pretty flexible and isn't inherently weak to anything, just make sure you're covering everything listed in the general checklist and have ample ways to get your win conditions set up. A lot of setup Pokémon usually cover each other's weaknesses anyway though, so this shouldn't be too much of a problem.

Hazard Stack

Choice Band Genesect Hazard Stack (Credit: NotlPrimRose)
:zygarde: :mew: :genesect: :rillaboom: :incineroar: :tapu fini:
https://pokepast.es/37371856f2e435f5

Tyranitar Hazard Balance (Credit: Nails)
:mew: :genesect: :tyranitar: :rillaboom: :incineroar: :tapu fini:
https://pokepast.es/40822fcf9e0c5395
*with description (thanks nails :D)

Tyranitar Hazard Stack Bulky Offense (Credit: dnagerbdager)
:genesect: :urshifu: :dragapult: :mew: :rillaboom: :tyranitar:
https://pokepast.es/53e8ca50e6abc5ed

Tapu Koko + Celesteela Hazards (Credit: Actuarily)
:tapu koko: :celesteela: :kyurem black: :zygarde: :mew: :incineroar:
https://pokepast.es/26dea026c91aa807

Diancie Hazard Stack (Credit: That Dude)
:mew: :zygarde: :rillaboom: :diancie: :tapu fini: :incineroar:
https://pokepast.es/1227c9efa37e01e6

Hex Dragapult Hazard Stack (Credit: NotlPrimRose)
:mew: :incineroar: :rillaboom: :dragapult: :urshifu: :celesteela:
https://pokepast.es/5575bed496747ec8
Hazard Setter(s) :mew: :tyranitar:
Interestingly, you have a lot of options here. You can put Spikes and Stealth Rock on one Pokémon (which is Mew, no other viable Pokémon can run both) or spread out your hazards by putting rocks on something like Tyranitar and only giving Mew Spikes. Both have their benefits/downsides, it's really just user preference

Bulky Setup Wincon :zygarde: :tapu fini:
This pokemon is your mid/late game win condition. These pokemon are generally bulky and appreciate the added chip from hazards making it easier to take KOs. Zygarde for example has good natural bulk, especially when paired with Grassy Terrain, given Leftovers and using Substitute, but has middling offensive stats. It greatly appreciates hazards mitigating this and turning it into a potent offensive and defensive asset.

2 Sources of Disruption :incineroar: :rillaboom: :mew:
These pokemon allow you to pivot around your opponent's pokemon with ease as well as creating space for your win condition of choice to set up. Incineroar and Rillaboom are the go-to Fake Out pivots here, as they provide strong utility outside of their usage of Fake Out, with Intimidate and Strong Priority in Grassy Glide for picking off weakened targets respectively. They also have pivot moves in Parting Shot and U-Turn, which allow you to pivot around your opponent while punishing them for doing the same with hazards. Incineroar specifically has the added benefit of Knock Off, which allows you to remove Heavy-Duty Boots or Leftovers from any pokemon that may have them, making hazards even more potent.

Late Game Cleaner :genesect: :dragapult: :pheromosa:
This slot also has a ton of options. The idea behind this slot is that, after the opponent's Pokémon take the chip from hazards, you can use fast Pokémon/priority to pick things off in the endgame. This slot also provides some immediate damage, and in some cases speed as well. You have a few options here, and all of them have merit. Firstly, Pheromosa provides immediate damage and speed to the team and can easily pick off targets weakened by hazards. The problem with Pheromosa is it really needs to be the fastest thing on the field at all times (which admittedly isn't exactly hard to set up due to it's blazingly fast natural speed) and needs a free switch, as it can't even switch in on some resisted attacks like Rillaboom's Grassy Glide, say nothing of the plethora of neutral and super effective attacks that outright OHKO it if it's not careful. The chip it takes from life orb further narrows down the small list of attacks it can safely come in on, making it hard to use, but rewarding in the right hands. Dragapult on Toxic Spikes teams has the option to run Hex, which hits as hard as Draco Meteor but with no drawbacks and very few safe switchins. It also has a pivot move in U-Turn, allowing it to safely pivot into a bulkier pokemon that can take a hit it would otherwise crumble to. The downside here being it's only really a thing on Toxic Spikes teams, with other options being better in most other teams. Lastly, Choice Band Genesect is a fairly new development, but can singlehandedly tear apart unprepared teams. Extreme Speed is a powerful priority move that allows it to pick off targets late game regardless of the current field conditions, with it's powerful U-Turn heavily chunking any target that doesn't outright resist it while allowing it to safely pivot around until it can win with Extreme Speed spam. The downside being, outside of it's priority, it's not particularly fast, leaving it prone to being outsped and OHKOd if not played carefully. Other niche options like Scarf Urshifu or Zapdos-Galar could work on paper but haven't seen enough use as of now to say for sure.

Flex slot that accentuates the chip from hazards :tyranitar: :ninetales alola: :tapu fini: :celesteela:
This slot is a flex slot that lets you further chip down your opponent in addition to hazards. Tyranitar and Ninetales-Alola can both provide additional chip with their weather condition, with Ninetales specifically providing Aurora Veil, making your team harder to break, while Tyranitar can also run Dragon Tail, forcing Pokémon to take Hazards and Sand chip every turn. Defensive Celesteela can chip the opponent with Leech Seed while making itself extremely difficult to remove in the process, and Choice Scarf Tapu Fini being able to trick choice items to cause further disruption, fire off fast attacks that can do decent damage to neutral targets as well as providing defensive utility in Nature's Madness or Heal Pulse.

Replays
qsns vs Spuriffic: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-652667
Animus vs Nails: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-647240
Ninja vs Z Strats: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-648762
Tenzai vs Nails: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-656075


Sand

Fespy Sand (Credit: Fespy)
:tyranitar: :excadrill: :latios: :zapdos: :tapu fini: :incineroar:
https://pokepast.es/c9862c475c142c5b

Pyramid Peril (Credit: NotlPrimRose)
:tyranitar: :dracovish: :heatran: :tsareena: :zeraora: :mew:
https://pokepast.es/4d54b84186845497

Sand Hazard Stack (Credit: Nails)
:mew: :genesect: :tyranitar: :rillaboom: :incineroar: :tapu fini:
https://pokepast.es/40822fcf9e0c5395

Sand as a playstyle has 3 seperate variations. The first one is hazard stack with Stealth Rock + Dragon Tail Tyranitar, which is covered in the hazard stack section of the thread. The other two are Assault Vest Tyranitar Sand and Choice Band Tyranitar Sand. These two are mostly the same in terms of composition and what this section will be mostly focused on, but the way you play your sand setter is pretty wildly different between the two.

Tyranitar :tyranitar:
Tyranitar is just about the only viable sand setter in the tier. Gigalith and Hippowdon have seen virtually zero high level play, with Gigalith being used, to my knowledge, once in recent tournaments, and Hippowdon having absolutely no usage to speak of. As covered in the explanation above, Tyranitar has 3 major sets, and these sets shape the way you build/play your team. Assault Vest Tyranitar is a bulky sand setter that's more concerned with sticking around for as long as possible and absorbing special attacks than it's personal damage. This set's merit comes from the fact that it can switch in multiple times over the course of the game and sit on every special attacker in the tier, with even Landorus' Earth Power not even scoring a 2hko. Choice Band Tyranitar is a set based around Maximizing Tyranitar's personal damage output by running Stone Edge and Choice Band to tear through teams. It's special bulk doesn't suffer too much as a result of this either. Sure, it's not shrugging off Landorus' Earth Power, but the Special Defense buff from sand makes it's bulk passable enough to switch in and out a few times while taking some hits in the process, while doing massive amounts of damage to just about everything in the tier with it's devastating Stone Edges.

Sand Abuser :dracovish: :dracozolt: :excadrill:
This pokemon is here to abuse sand by providing immediate speed and damage thanks to Sand Rush doubling their speed, allowing them to spam powerful attacks without having to worry about being outsped. There are currently 3 viable options. Dracovish can either run Choice Band to maximize it's damage with Fishious Rend, or Mystic Water to be able to run Substitute and punish switches on the many things it forces out. Dracozolt generally runs mixed life orb sets with Bolt Beak and Draco Meteor for stabs, and functions largely similarly to Dracovish on most teams. Excadrill is extremely strong and has a good stab combination, and even has the option to run Earthquake, an extremely strong spread move when used alongside Flying types or pokemon with Levitate so you don't damage your own pokemon in the process.

Tailwind :zapdos: :mew: :naganadel:
This slot provides non-sand forms of speed control. Zapdos and Naganadel have the added benefit of removing Rillaboom, which is important as your sand setter and most likely abuser as well are weak to Rillaboom. Mew also works and has more defensive utility than the options listed above, but you need another Pokémon like Heatran to cover the weakness to Rillaboom.

Strong Attacker NOT Reliant on Sand :heatran: :naganadel: :latios: :genesect: :celesteela:
This slot can be pretty much anything that provides immediate damage that isn't reliant on needing to set up sand first. The common trend with this slot is that its usually something that beats, or at least doesn't lose to Rillaboom, as sand teams generally struggle with Rillaboom due to Tyranitar having a weakness to sand and Grassy Glide being annoying for most viable sand abusers to deal with.

Form of Disruption :incineroar: :rillaboom: :zeraora:
This is just a pokemon that allows you to pivot around your opponent's Pokémon more comfortably, which is especially important on teams like this as you don't have an Eject Button weather setter and have to frequently bring it back in to reset the weather. Incineroar and Rillaboom are the most common here, but Zeraora also has merit with Taunt shutting down Trick Room teams and Plasma Fists being useful for removing Urshifu and Tapu Fini, two Pokémon that Tyranitar struggles with.

Flex Slot :tapu fini: :tsareena:
There's no clear trend for what this last slot should be on popular sand teams, so this is effectively just a flex slot to patch up any weaknesses to certain Pokémon or matchups your team may struggle with. Tsareena is an option that blocks priority, which is useful for the same reasons it helps rain, and can remove Tapu Fini and Urshifu. Tapu Fini can be a late game win condition on sand that appreciates Pokémon like Naganadel and Heatran removing Rillaboom and Excadrill removing Zeraora and Kyurem-Black, and has good synergy with Incineroar which is a common option for disruption on sand anyway.

Replays
Failbor21 vs JRL: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645156
Actuarily vs NotlPrimRose: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8doublesou-1585990726
Animus vs Nails: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-647240

Ferrothorn Balance

Scarf Mew ID Ferrothorn (Credit: Crunchman)
:mew: :ferrothorn: :naganadel: :incineroar: :diancie: :tapu fini:
https://pokepast.es/a0f709320488b623

Pheromosa ID Ferrothorn (Credit: GenOne)
:tapu fini: :incineroar: :ferrothorn: :mew: :porygon2: :pheromosa:
https://pokepast.es/61dde2742b51b64a

Choice Band Ferrothorn (Credit: NotlPrimRose)
:ferrothorn: :tapu fini: :incineroar: :porygon2: :mew: :zygarde:
https://pokepast.es/cd01bd8a8ceb5530

The Core :ferrothorn: :tapu fini: :incineroar: :mew:

In the current meta, these 4 Pokémon are currently irreplaceable on Iron Defense Ferrothorn balance structures. Tapu Fini is Ferrothorn's best partner, as they have great defensive synergy and cover each other's weaknesses extremely well, to the point where Tapu Fini is found on virtually all variations of this team. Incineroar is the most reasonable Fake Out user, almost every other option performs worse. Lastly, Mew is just an extremely flexible pokemon that has great role compression. It provides some much needed coverage to hit Pokémon like Naganadel with Psychic or Heatran with Earth Power, has the option to run Pollen Puff to heal Ferrothorn or Tapu Fini, and provides speed control in the form of Trick Room or Tailwind. This doesn't mean this can't change as the meta develops, but as of now, these 4 Pokémon form an extremely strong defensive core and are virtually irreplaceable on these teams.

Trick Room :porygon2: :diancie:
One thing all four of the currently established Pokémon have in common is that they all directly or indirectly benefit from Trick Room, with Mew being able to act as a secondary user of the move and all other Pokémon being slow and able to function in and out of Trick Room. Because of this, Diancie and Porygon2 are both very good options

Fast, Strong Attacker :zygarde: :naganadel: :pheromosa:
This team is mostly slow and can get overwhelmed by faster pokemon if Trick Room is not set up. Having a fast pivot that can break holes in your opponent's team or sweep late game helps mitigate this. Naganadel and Pheromosa provide immediate speed and damage to the team, with Pheromosa specifically having U-Turn to pivot into bulkier Pokémon, like Ferrothorn. Zygarde is also an option, but keep in mind that your team will not have as much immediate speed compared to the other variations, and you'll need ways to get around that.

Replays
Lily vs MADARAAAA: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-645951
chlo vs Akaru Kokuyo: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8doublesou-619053


Resources

I'm going to take this time to list some resources i think are important and that you should use if you want to reach your fullest potential.

Team Bazaar: https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/doubles-ou-team-bazaar.3658723
I've posted like 30+ of my own teams here, i'm probably compiling teams to make another post as you're reading this, it's a great resource for finding good teams that aren't sample teams for whatever reason

Viabiltity Rankings: https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/ss-doubles-ou-viability-rankings-v-2.3673519
This thread will help you get a good idea of what's popular in the current meta and what you need to check while building your teams/what to build around

Sample Teams: https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/doubles-ou-sample-teams.3658826
As much as i think its lazy to tell new players "just use sample teams" which is why im making this thread, seriously use these teams, theyre really good. A lot of times, the ability to know what works and what doesn't and what's common in the current meta comes from experience, and the best way to get that experience is to play against good players using good teams, and that's exactly what samples are for!
 
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