I don’t disagree with any of this. I was incorrectly under the impression that Barreskewda was A rank, which was my primary motivation for suggesting Kingdra at that rank. I was trying assess it in the context of the other Pokémon, and when I reread the viability rankings I changed my mind (as I noted in my comment).
It is true that Kingdra is very good, but it falls short of Pelipper and Seismitoad which it is ranked next to. Try to make a comparison for Pokemon you are nominating to other Pokemon that are ranked on its type. Remember that the viability rankings are all about a Pokemon's viability relative to other Pokemon on the type, and we can use Water as an example here. Let's look at the A ranked Pokemon since you're pushing for Kingdra to rise. Pelipper is the cornerstone of all rain teams, enabling the playstyle entirely and Kingdra's viability to begin with, and Seismitoad is extremely splashable as it fits on both balanced and rain teams as a Stealth Rock setter and an Electric immunity with different sets. Cloyster is mediocre compared to those two, and should drop to B regardless, and fits well with Kingdra there.
Re: future water updates, I agree that Toxapex is hands down the best water type and is the only mandatory include. I feel like Seismi and Peliper are probably next on the list, followed by Keldeo. Frankly, I would be open to Keldeo dropping to B (I think it’s more realistically A-). I would guess that the majority of swift swim teams do not run Keldeo, as Peliper / Seismitoed / Toxapex / Kingdra are the core of SS teams. Sometimes Keldeo is included after that, but it seems to be more common to supplement with physical attackers like Crawdaunt.Spitballing more personal thoughts for the next update too:
Water's rankings should have many changes, as more Pokemon being added shifts a lot of previously good Pokemon lower as a result of there being more competition for slots. Keldeo should drop from S, as Toxapex strikes to me as the best Pokemon on Water period, you can basically just chuck it onto any team bar specific Sticky Web offenses and it'll hold your team together nicely as excellent glue. Cloyster obviously can't compete with the other A ranked Pokemon especially if Keldeo drops, so it should drop to B. B ranked Pokemon like Dracovish and Crawadaunt that have become harder to fit on teams should drop down to C, and that should push down C ranked Pokemon like Gyarados, Golisiopod, Barbarcle and Blastoise that can't really compare to those to D.
Dragalge is simply amazing for Dragon teams in the sense that it covers up many of Dragon's weak matchups very nicely. Toxic Spikes are amazing against Psychic and Fairy, two matchups for Dragon that would be borderline unwinnable otherwise, especially considering it 1v1s Hatterene if it tries to prevent Toxic Spikes using Magic Bounce. Great special bulk combined with a Fairy neutrality and Flip Turn also makes it great glue defensively, as it can switch into many Special Attacks and grab momentum for other Dragons to switch in safely and wallbreak with. Forms a really nice defensive core with Duraludon against the anti-Dragon trifecta of Psychic Fairy and Ice, where both of them provide a solid backbone to switch into all types of attacks. I personally think Dragalge is worth A ranking and noticeably more splashable and better than the B ranked Pokemon, but this is always welcome for more opinions.
The upper half of Steel's rankings are an interesting topic at the moment that would be nice having more input on. Here's the conversation between Floss and I for transparency, but the main issue is Steel's S-B rankings and how to reflect viability accurately. Some Pokemon like Klefki and Duraludon should probably drop down, and that leaves Skarmory, Excadrill, Jirachi, and Bisharp at B. Main question is whether or not there is a clear cut in viability for the B ranked Steel Pokemon, and how to accurately represent that through the S and A ranks if so. Aegislash to S is another topic that can be revisited especially if some of the B ranked Pokemon rise to A, but main question is whether or not it is better than Ferrothorn and as good as Corviknight? Feel free to share your thoughts about it here.
I actually feel like running both Barreskewda and Kingdra is a mistake. The meta is not particularly friendly to Barreskewda right now, and with the ban of Damp Rock you don’t have the ability to maintain rain through both Barreskewda and Kingdra. Theoretically running both gives you more flexibility but I’m not thrilled about Barreskewda inside the rain right now, let alone outside it.
Re: Dragon, what Dragalgae set are you running? I’ve been running with dragon recently and haven’t found a set I particularly like. Though I’m also running an offensive Duraludon set, so maybe I should be asking you about that instead! I see how the pair of them provide a nice core on paper but haven’t gotten it to work for myself yet.
I think you’re overselling Excadrill here, by a lot. Excadrill loses 1v1 to Charizard, Darmanitan, and Torkoal, and can lose to Cinderace with chip or if Cinderace has a life orb. Excadrill also loses to Cinderace and Volcarona if either get a chance to set up (which both can do easily vs. Steel). Frankly, I’m excited to see Choice Scarf Excadrill on the other side of the table, because it loses to the majority of Pokémon on my fire team!I agree with the sentiment of steel’s viability being clouded and less accurate, and after using tons of Steel teams on alts, I think I have some input in regards to mons currently sitting in B.
Excadrill B → A
With the rise of Fire due to Libero Cinderace and the return of Volcarona, Steel has been feeling the effects of lacking Fire tanks such as Heatran more heavily than before. While Excadrill is far from a Flash Fire Steel type, let alone a tank, used effectively, it can sweep almost every option fire has, while providing immense utility that proves to be relevant for numerous other matchups.
Excadrill has exceptional base attack and a solid movepool, allowing it to support for the users team, have solid coverage on current meta mons, and combined with Mold Breaker, allow for sweeps that normally would have been denied if you used any other mon. I covered some basic calculations, highlighting how Excadrill exceeds with scarf, and with Rapid Spin getting the speed boost buff, it allows for the possibility of Excadrill to not be stuck into choice scarf (albeit, I think it’s more optimal to use scarf).The following calcs are made under the assumption Excadrill is running either Choice Scarf, or an item like leftovers, AV, or sash. EV’s being used are 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
252 Atk Mold Breaker Excadrill Rock Slide vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Volcarona: 476-564 (153 - 181.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO
Excadrill being able to carry Rock Slide gives it an edge up as a pokemon, being able to achieve a OHKO against Volcarona and to have options against flying types. All of Fire’s other options, like Cinderace, or Rotom-H, get melted to STAB Earthquake, with the exception of Flying types and..
252 Atk Mold Breaker Excadrill Earthquake vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Torkoal: 192-228 (55.8 - 66.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
No surprise there. Apart from my fire rant, which I do believe can be justified for steel given the heatran-less era that SS mono is in currently, here are some other calcs/facts I’ll just leave here.
252 Atk Mold Breaker Excadrill Earthquake vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Toxapex: 180-212 (59.2 - 69.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Black Sludge recovery
252 Atk Mold Breaker Excadrill Iron Head vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Hatterene: 282-332 (88.6 - 104.4%) -- 31.3% chance to OHKO
it deletes mimikyu with mold breaker
252 Atk Mold Breaker Excadrill Earthquake vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Terrakion: 366-432 (113.3 - 133.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO
Okay, perhaps those last calcs were anticlimactic (just like this entire calc section), but they still validate the utility that a scarf Exca has. However, things get spicy when you attach a life orb.
252 Atk Life Orb Mold Breaker Excadrill Earthquake vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Volcarona: 308-364 (99 - 117%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO
Earthquake has now become capable of OHKO’ing Volcarona, compared to a set 2HKO EQ with a scarf. Can’t say much changes on the torkoal front, as it just becomes 72.6-86% 2HKO, but life orb allows excadrill to OHKO all sorts of mons, such as:
252 Atk Life Orb Mold Breaker Excadrill Iron Head vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Kyurem: 382-452 (97.6 - 115.6%) -- 81.3% chance to OHKO
252 Atk Life Orb Mold Breaker Excadrill Iron Head vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Clefable: 455-538 (115.4 - 136.5%) -- guaranteed OHKO [note on this one, it OHKO’s low HP investment w/out orb]
252 Atk Life Orb Mold Breaker Excadrill Earthquake vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Dragapult: 277-328 (87.3 - 103.4%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO
252 Atk Life Orb Mold Breaker Excadrill Earthquake vs. 252 HP / 4 Def Tyranitar: 400-476 (99 - 117.8%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO
There are TONS of new 2HKO possibilities that are opened due to running Life Orb, I just feel that this calc section’s getting a bit long and could come to a close, as there are still things such as speed tiers that need to be addressed.
Yes, Excadrill has 88 base speed. It has a hard time against pokemon such as scarfzard, and will lose to them unless Excadrill manages to have 2 stacks of speed, or you are running AV and there is no sunlight. However, Excadrills ability to dismantle one of, arguably the hardest steel matchups in the current meta while providing plenty utility for other matchups makes it worthy of a tier upgrade.
As The Dragon Master notes, if you ever get locked into Rock Slide you can be easily exploited by several pokemon, but using EQ sets you up to lose a Pokémon when Charizard gets a free switch in and then you have to sack a Pokémon getting Excadrill out of there. It’s plausible that Excadrill improves the fire MU on Steel specifically, but only because nearly every steel type is awful in the fire MU. The couple percentage points that Excadrill adds are not notable and don’t make the MU even boarderline.
Can you provide replays of beating Fire with Steel that shows off Excadrill being good? I’m frankly having trouble seeing it.