Metagame SS OU Metagame Discussion Thread v7 (Usage Stats in post #3161)

A single Pokémon hard countering a threat gives no assurance that the threat is healthy. It's rather an evidence of the Pokémon being kinda unhealthy, as it forces coinflips in the preview frequently. Stealth Rock has always been a natural check to Volcarona, but now with the Boots Volca is more dangerous than ever. It's another one of the many problems we would solve by banning the HDBs. However, HDBs need a suspect test, so I don't think we have any reason to take action against Volcarona now, considering that they are planned to be tested soon.
plus everyone has had a time where bug buzz spdef drops you or some shit and you lose regardless
 
I have no idea why I'm getting updates from this thread but maybe let's stop simplifying people's arguments. The comparison between bug buzz and the shadow ball drop is not even remotely similar. Aside from the very apparent 10% difference in drop rate, the reason it's so good on pult is because of pult's speed, one drop and suddenly ur entire core is falling apart with limited ways to rk. Not to mention the difference in ghost vs bug's offensive presence. As for looking for broken mons, of course people are going to look for mons that they think make the meta unhealthy. No one likes losing to mu every other game, and it's patently clear some mons force these mus WAY more often than others. You can't objectively assert the meta is in a good place when so many people have legitimate concerns. The argument that the meta has evolved past decent cores/the ability to check mons is so counterintuitive to competitive pokemon as a whole. Im not gonna call for any mons in particular to be suspected or banned but let's keep an open mind
 
Past that, one other thing I saw posted pages back was the idea that we needed to ban Dragapult because “there are too many things to prepare for”. That’s sadly just a outcome of the game lasting for over 2 decades and more and more Pokémon are added. We long pasted that point of there being too many things to adequately cover and games sometimes being little more then matchups that you lose at team preview. That reasoning to just ban things because there isn’t enough slots or you can’t prepare for them with your style of play is poor and if something should be banned, it’s because it’s actually broken or toxic for the meta (kings rock for example).
I don't think this is a particularly charitable reading of the kinds of arguments people use in these sorts of situations. It's not only that there are "too many things to prepare for", rather, that in dedicating a disproportionate amount of resources towards beating a specific threat, you leave yourself fundamentally weakened to other key threats in the metagame. In other words: people are talking about overcentralisation, and saying that alleviating some of this strain by eliminating the worst abusers would help reduce the amount of matchup volatility.

This is a perfectly valid line of reasoning, and one that Smogon communities have used to take tiering action in the past, including this generation with the ban of Arena Trap. The results of the Arena Trap ban, the Spectrier ban, amongst many other examples from previous generations, seem to directly contradict your assertion that it is a foregone conclusion in newer generations for these metagame states to be unsolvable, and actually show that we can take action to reduce the volatility.

I think, if we are to be a competitive community, that eliminating factors that undermine the skill of players either directly (King's Rock) or indirectly (Arena Trap, maybe Pult and the like) should be a no-brainer.
 
Back when I primarily analyzed UU, I did a "small" study about what exactly the usage stats were like in an attempt to predict the next tier shift. With recent discussion of "win-rate" regarding the Slow twins, I naturally got a bit curious about what we might be looking at in terms of use and win rates, and since things have been a bit slow for me this last week, I figured, "Hey, why not just check it out myself?". So, I went ahead and looked at a total of 200 OU games on ladder (the largest round number I could do without risking burn out), looking at the various games and recording the results and teams of the first 10 games to conclude from each check time. Checks were all done at least one hour apart in the hope of not counting the same teams too many times. With the random selection, I observed games from throughout the ladder, looking at 118 low ladder games (sub 1300), 65 mid-ladder games (1300-1500), and 17 high ladder games (1500+); I admit I would have liked more high ladder samples, but that's just the luck of the draw. The interest in doing this is to determine usage trends overall, since as wild as it can be, low-ladder does comprise the majority of players and thus any study without these games would be highly inaccurate. My only condition is that both players had to have a full team, since anyone not using all six slots probably doesn't care too much about winning. And so I have tallied both the usage rates from these games and how successful each mon was in the hopes of getting a good snapshot of current meta trends.

First up, here are the results for usage in the study, divided between the three sections of ladder. With 200 games fought between 400 teams, this list comprises all mons that got at least 2% usage, or 8 uses. The way the distribution fell is noted next to each name (I think you can guess what each letter means).

1. Landorus-T: 31.75% (58 L, 51 M, 18 H)
2. Dragapult: 20.75% (41 L, 32 M, 10 H)
3. Heatran: 19.75% (36 L, 30 M, 13 H)
4. Volcarona: 15% (31 L, 24 M, 5 H)
4. Corviknight: 15% (31 L, 24 M, 5 H)
6. Rillaboom: 14.75% (33 L, 19 M, 7 H)
7. Ferrothorn: 14.5% (29 L, 20 M, 9 H)
7. Garchomp: 14.5% (33 L, 17 M, 8 H)
9. Urshifu R: 13% (23 L, 22 M, 7 H)
10. Clefable: 12.75% (26 L, 17 M, 8 H)
11. Zeraora: 11% (24 L, 16 M, 4 H)
12. Kartana: 10.25% (26 L, 11 M, 4 H)
13. Blissey: 9.5% (24 L, 13 M, 1 H)
14. Kyurem: 9.25% (13 L, 18 M, 6 H)
15. Tapu Koko: 9% (19 L, 12 M, 5 H)
15. Bisharp: 9% (19 L, 14 M, 3 H)
15 Toxapex: 9% (21 L, 12 M, 3 H)
18. Swampert: 8.75% (21 L, 8 M, 6 H)
19. Mandibuzz: 8.5% (14 L, 14 M, 6 H)
19. Tapu Fini: 8.5% (21 L, 8 M, 5 H)
21. Zapdos: 8.25% (14 L, 13 M, 6 H)
21. Tyranitar: 8.25% (24 L, 7 M, 2 H)
23. Dragonite: 7.75% (23 L, 6 M, 2 H)
24. Blaziken: 7.5% (18 L, 11 M, 1 H)
25. Slowking: 7.25% (14 L, 10 M, 5 H)
25. Melmetal: 7.25% (15 L, 12 M, 2 H)
27. Tornadus-T: 7% (13 L, 10 M, 5 H)
27. Nidoking: 7% (19 L, 8 M, 1 H)
29. Skarmory: 6.75% (14 L, 13 M)
30. Glowking: 6.5% (8 L, 14 M, 4 H)
30. Slowbro: 6.5% (13 L, 11 M, 2 H)
32. Hawlucha: 6.25% (14 L, 9 M, 2H)
33. Tapu Lele: 6% (12 L, 10 M, 2 H)
34. Weavile: 5.75% (14 L, 8 M, 1 H)
34. Excadrill: 5.75% (18 L, 3 M, 2 H)
36. Scizor: 5.5% (10 L, 11 M, 1 H)
36. Regieleki: 5.5% (16 L, 5 M, 1 H)
38. Hydreigon: 5.25% (13 L, 7 M, 1 H)
39. Rotom-W: 4.75% (9 L, 9 M, 1 H)
39. Gengar: 4.75% (15 L, 3 M, 1 H)
41. Blacephalon: 4.25% (12 L, 5 M)
42. Pelipper: 4% (8 L, 7 M, 1 H)
43. Gapdos: 3.75% (7 L, 6 M, 2 H)
43. Hippowdon: 3.75% (10 L, 4 M, 1 H)
45. Conkeldurr: 3.5% (11 L, 3 M)
46. Grimmsnarl: 3.25% (11 L, 2 M)
47. Mamoswine: 3% (8 L, 4 M)
48. Barraskewda: 2.75% (6 L, 4 M, 1 H)
Tangrowth: (7 L, 2 M, 2 H)

Salamence: (8 L, 2 M, 1 H)
Azumarill: (10 L, 1 M)

52. Togekiss: 2.5% (6 L, 3 M, 1 H)
Chansey: (7 L, 2 M, 1 H)
Cloyster: (7 L, 2 M, 1 H)
Venusaur: (7 L, 3 M)
56. Dracozolt: 2.25% (3 L, 4 M, 2 H)
Crawdaunt: (5 L, 3 M, 1 H)
Latios: (6 L, 2 M, 1 H)
Espeon: (7 L, 2 M)
A. Ninetales: (7 L, 2 M)

61. Darmanitan: 2% (4 L, 4 M)
Gyarados: (4 L, 4 M)
Krookodile: (5 L, 3 M)
Tapu Bulu: (5 L, 3 M)
PorygonZ: (6 L, 2 M)
Umbreon: (6 L, 2 M)
Charizard: (7 L, 1 M)
Hatterene: (7 L, 1 M)


That usage doesn't look too out of the ordinary, outside of some odd blips, in how mons like Aegislash and Buzzwole surprisingly failed to clear the cut off. I'll touch on some specifics in a bit, but first that second question: But how did these 68 mons do? Well, here we have the win rate of each mon, or how man winning teams contained this mon, again cutting off at 2%, or 4 wins in this case.
1. Landorus- T: 35.5%
2. Heatran: 22.5%
3. Volcarona: 19% (38:60)
3. Dragapult (38:83)
5. Garchomp: 17.5%
6. Ferrothorn: 16.5%
7. Corviknight: 15.5%
8. Rillaboom: 13.5%
9. Clefable: 13% (26:51)
9. Urshifu-R (26:52)
11. Zeraora: 12.5%
12. Blissey: 11.5%
13. Kartana: 11%
14. Tapu Fini: 10% (20:34)
14. Toxapex: (20:36)
16. Swampert: 9.5% (19:35)
16. Tapu Koko (19:36)
18. Skarmory: 9% (18:27)
18. Slowking
18. Tyranitar (18:33)
21. Bisharp: 8.5%
22. Blaziken: 8%
23. Glowking: 7.5% (15:26)
23. Zapdos
23. Mandibuzz (15:34)
26. Hawlucha: 7% (14:25)
26. Slowbro
26. Melmetal (14:29)
29. Weavile: 6.5% (13:23)
29. Tapu Lele
29. Kyurem (13:37)
32. Excadrill: 6% (12:23)
32. Nidoking (12:28)
34. Dragonite: 5.5%
35. Pelipper: 5% (10:16)
35. Rotom-W
35. Hydreigon
35. Scizor
35. Regieleki
35. Magnezone (10:23)
41. Salamence: 4.5% (9:11)
41. Gapdos
41. Hippowdon (9:15)
44. Gengar: 4%
45. Togekiss: 3.5% (7:10)
Barraskewda
Grimmsnarl
Conkeldurr
Blacephalon (7:17)

50. Incineroar: 3% (6:7)
Tapu Bulu
A. Ninetales
Mamoswine (6:12)

54. Thundurus-T (5:6)
Ditto
Dracozolt
Latios
Chansey
Venusaur (5:10)

60. Rotom- H: 2% (4:4)
Pyukumuku
Reuniclus
Tentacruel
Druddigon
Seismotoad
Torkoal
Gyarados
Krookodile
Crawdaunt
Mew
Tangrowth (4:11)


Breakdown
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The top 10 are both mostly consistent between the two lists and mostly what you'd expect the current top 10 to look like: Lando easily leads the pack in terms of sheer numbers, the only mon in this study to surpass 100 appearances, and yet still maintains a respectable win rate of 55.9%. Dragapult is another clear leader in terms of uses, but kind of dropped the ball in terms of winning with a sub-50% win rate; Rillaboom is the only other top 10 to lose more than it wins, but also remains quite prominent. Heatran, Volcarona, Garchomp and Clefable remain very popular and keep those wins a coming, as does Corviknight, its usage staying excellent despite the presence of Magnezone. While some have voiced that Ferrothorn is currently dropping off, the numbers don't reflect that, as the durian remains high in usage and success even with the dominance of Tran and Volc. Finally, Urshifu-R is really coming into its own, a solid game in- game out mon.

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For all the fuss that has arisen around the infamous Slow twins, their presence within the study group was- surprisingly average. Slowking had to settle for 25 in usage, while its brother and doppleganger tied for 30th. All three did notably better in terms of victory, but that still stops with Slowking at 18. It's not as if low-ladder is avoiding these guys, as the vanilla Slow twins saw a good amount of use there, so this is a bit of an anomaly. Glowking, however, is notable in being one of only two OU mons that was significantly more prominent in mid-ladder than in low-ladder, making more appearances there despite the sample including far fewer mid games; this seems to imply that Glowking is significantly more popular with more experienced players, perhaps because newbies prefer regular Slowking because of FuturePort.

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Not much to say, but I wanted to highlight Skarmory for having the highest win-loss ratio of all proper OU mons, winning 2 out of every 3 games it appeared in. Skarmory was on the rarer side, admittedly, but it seems those who do use Skarm are really good at it. Runner up in this department was Volcarona, winning 63.3% of the time.

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As for a less positive mention, Hippowdon was easily the least popular of the OU stable, putting in a pitiful 15 appearances over 200 games, putting it behind quite a few non-OU mons. Sand in general was fairly unpopular in the study group, as seen in Excadrill's similar usage slump, and while Tyranitar mostly weathered this turn, Hippowdon was seen almost exclusively on Sand cores; it is good on those Sand cores, but still not common overall. My best guess is that Hippo largely suffers from competition with other Grounds, namely Lando and Garchomp; sure it has Slack Off, but the prominent Grounds just provide better utility between pivoting, better abilities or just more power. Pelipper has also floundered with the fall of weather, although it is decidedly more popular on mid-ladder compared to Hippo.

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Now, my eagle-eyed readers have likely noticed that despite solid usage, Kyurem really had a tough time this study. The Icy Yandere Dragon had a consistently lackluster win-loss ratio all study, causing easily the biggest drop between the used list and the winner list, from a respectable 14 to just barely scraping the top 30. Alongside Glowking, Rem was notably more popular in higher level-play compared to low-ladder, particularly in mid-ladder, implying that Rem is valued by those with more expertise; the weird thing, though, is that this trend wasn't reflected in where it won. While win rates across the three parts of the ladder were mostly consistent with where a mon was used, Rem, despite being a favorite of mid-ladder players, actually saw notably more success in low-ladder. It's weird because IceYandere was the only mon that saw the greatest number of wins in a part of the ladder where it wasn't the most used. While I unfortunately can't say for certain, I have two guesses as to why this is (barring it just being a coincidence)- first, the higher rungs may not be too hospitable to Rem right now. A lot of good mons can threaten Rem out and experienced players can play around it, but on the flip side few of them actually want to switch into Rem (as Joey points out in this video, most OU mons are inherently weak to Rem, at least on paper) so it seems unlikely that Rem would suffer that much from better prediction alone. My other guess- I think a lot of ladder players may be having difficulty building with Kyurem. What I mean is that players may be either giving Rem suboptimal partners, or just pairing it with cores that are weak to/exploitable by other prominent mons. It could also be a combo of these two factors; this would explain the dichotomy of usage, as more experienced players know how to handle Rem and its partners, while the more experimental/bizarre low-ladder isn't as fixated on staples, meaning that a suboptimal team wouldn't hold IceYandere back as much and/or the enemy would be less likely to be prepared for it. Whatever the reason, it is rather odd.

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As for the non-OU stuff, I was very interested in how these numbers were going to go: Weavile and Scizor have both been on the rise as of late, and the player-base seems to be rediscovering how good Washtom can be. So naturally, with these rises in popularity, the outsider who got was easily the most common in this study was: Blaziken. Yes, Blaziken. Blaziken managed to see more usage than 14 OU staples with a total of 30 appearances, and put up a respectable win-loss ratio of 16/30, although Weavile slightly edges it out in this respect. And it's not like this was a noob-exclusive; HFC saw some decent showings in mid-ladder and even one high-ladder win. My only guess is that the prominence of Steels have made some consider Blaze as a late-game win-con; Blaziken was also very prominent on HO teams. So if Blaziken somehow moves up next tier-shift- I guess you heard it here first. Of course, Weavile still put up a respectable showing as the runner-up, with a solid 13/23 win-loss ratio proving just how sharp-witted this wily weasel can be. Washtom also saw some respectable niche usage, doing Rotom things as always. Scizor, despite a decent showing in mid-ladder, ended up with an underwhelming record overall, probably due to the prominence of mons that naturally give it issue like Volc, Tran and Corv.

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Finally, I just briefly wanted to touch on a few lesser-used mons. Salamence, a rather unexpected pick, somehow ended up with the single best win-loss ratio of the first group, losing only 2 of 11 games it participated in. While it was mostly a low-ladder exclusive, it would appear it is quite good down there. Togekiss, Alolatales and Bulu also did quite well with their limited playtime, especially one Bulu who won two different games with Froslass and Sirfetch'd of all partners. The chad Heattom gets mention for making the win record list by winning every game it appeared in. On the flip side, Espeon was perhaps the oddest blip, especially since it had the worst results of the mons on the first list with 1/9. My guess: low-ladder players just really miss Magic Bounce being a thing in the tier, as Hatterene also packed a spark of usage despite disappointing results.

Now, I want to note that these results probably won't be 100% to the overall meta; as big as it is, 200 games is still just a microcosm of the meta. I would have definitely included way more games in the study if I was mentally capable of doing so. That said, I do think this study provides some insights into the current state of the meta that you probably wouldn't assume from usage stats alone; I know this whole experiment has certainly shown me some things I did not expect. With that said, I hope this has proven at least somewhat insightful for all of you, and this is seriously the last time I'm going to do something like this. Maybe.
 
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AM

GMT-4
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I only skimmed through all that because it's kind of longer read tbh but win-rates are only useful over a longer period of time and data (to me like 6 months) because in smaller windows it can just be what's hot in the moment or player botching an autowin like if they had a volcarona 6-0d from preview and sacked it, thus skewing a win-rate. 200 games is actually a really small sample size relatively speaking though good effort watching 200 games, let alone SS OU x_x. Chances are you're not going to find too many high ladder games to randomly watch unless you follow someone who regularly high ladders because everybody sets there games to private/modjoin now ever since the update.
 

Gravity Monkey

hiyaah!!
is an Artist
118 low ladder games (sub 1300), 65 mid-ladder games (1300-1500), and 17 high ladder games (1500+)
1500.... High ladder............ >_>

Although I highly applaud the efforts put into this post, this makes me kinda consider the seriousness of its results.

Anyway, for this not to be a one-liner, I'm gonna say that I do not support any sort of ban around Teleport or Regen or anything. Smogon has made it clear through years that complex bans are to be avoided, and I think it would be really strange to start now of all time especially for mons that are still kinda manageable in OU? I obviously dislike the the idea of banning single non-mon elements as well (future sight, tp, boots), cuz like it stops other mons from having access to tools that would not have been broken on them. If anything should be banned, it's the slowtwin themselves (only if they're judged oppressive by the community).
 
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This is my first post in this thread, regarding ladder I think 1500s is still mid ladder in OU. High ladder is when you reach top 500 (1700+)

I have many accounts that sits in between 1500 -1600 ladder, only one can reach 1700 (and just for one day, lol). I have mainly use screen HO

In 1500s ladder, everyone know my strategy just by looking at team preview, lando setup rocks then explodes, koko setup screen, u-turn to hawlucha, swords dance, and sweep

The only time I reached 1700 is when I use unpredictable HO without stealth rocks, but after I post the team to RMT forum, now i'm predictable again, lol

I've use another account with different playstyle. BO 1300s, Rain 1200s, Sand 1100s at the average GXE of 70%. I don't even try balance let alone stall because it takes too long to climb the ladder.
 
It's incredibly exhausting to check this thread and see so many users trying to justify bans on X or Y instead of finding appropriate counters. It takes away from useful information and discussion posted. Also, when a metagame becomes apparantly stagnant, it offers the most opportunity for counters.

There are over 700 Pokémon. Quick banning something that you don't know how to beat isn't the answer.
 
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It's incredibly exhausting to check this thread and see so many users trying to justify bans on X or Y instead of finding appropriate counters. It takes away from useful information and discussion posted. Also, when a metagame becomes apparantly stagnant, it offers the most opportunity for counters.

There are over 700 Pokémon. Quick banning something that you don't know how to beat isn't the answer.
What incredible insightful commentary. I'm always baffled that there is a certain genre of people like you that suggest there is all this counterplay we are totally missing but then you leave out what we are clearly missing. Normally, the counterplay ends up not really even being counterplay or is an incredibly specialized counter that only walls that singular mon.

:Dragapult: counterplay :dragapult:

Wigglytuff @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Competitive
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Dazzling Gleam
- Teleport
- Wish
- Protect

So this set hard walls every set of dragapult, including dd or mixed, which blissey can't do. Dragapult isn't broken. Hope this helps.

Except it doesn't actually work that way because wigglytuff does literally nothing except come in on dragapult and is kind of a deadweight vs anything else. If I'm playing against a team without dragapult then I am suddenly playing with 5 mons because wigglytuff is just fodder. That's match-up fishing at best and a throw pick at worst.

And people who maybe haven't been around Smogon long enough don't seem to understand how this meta often changes organically i.e. people just realize something is really good, and there was no ban that lead to it becoming good. Galarian slowking for example fell down a couple of tiers before people realized how nice it could be on some teams. Things like specs tangrowth, and particularly bisharp and weavile were sleeper picks for the longest time until people found out how good they were. If you have some awesome new tech everyone would like to hear what you have to say.

I just think it is super toxic to have an atmosphere where players are called bad or something because they believe that something is unhealthy for the tier, this is a metagame discussion thread so players are discussing what they think is important right now. But anyway, please share your secret techs so everyone can realize that if it isn't a box legendary it isn't broken and that there are no weak pokemon, only weak trainers.

(Also, OU players don't just look at OU to make a team, plenty of lower-tier pokemon offer specific role compression that some teams can really make use of.)
 
It's incredibly exhausting to check this thread and see so many users trying to justify bans on X or Y instead of finding appropriate counters. It takes away from useful information and discussion posted. Also, when a metagame becomes apparantly stagnant, it offers the most opportunity for counters.

There are over 700 Pokémon. Quick banning something that you don't know how to beat isn't the answer.
You can tell this guy doesn't know what they're talking about because they said "over 700" when there's 898 Pokemon right now lol

In all seriousness, just because it counters one threat does not mean it works against the metagame. That's why Seismitoad fell off after Dracovish was banned; it's not a bad mon at all, it's just kind of outclassed at most of the jobs it's called upon to fill.
 
Thats nice and all but when your slotting a piece of shit like Wigglytuff on an OU team for one offensive threat (dragapult), that really says something.

With that being said, I honestly think a suspect test would be really nice - like right about now. Sure, Blissey (which folds to physical sets), Tyranitar (no recovery), Toxapex (if twaved / wisped specs hex just 3 shots), and Clefable (if statused specs hex 2hkos) can probably switch in to a few Dragapult sets, and lose 1v1 to an alternative Dragapult set. This makes it incredibly hard to switch in to, and its access to U-turn and a superb speed tier allows it to support offensive partners like Kyurem (which can 2hko bliss with a specs modest focus miss thanks to the u-turn chip). I think Dragapult is about borderline and a suspect test would be very interesting.
 
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Finchinator

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NU Leader
The SS OU council intends to vote on King's Rock this week. For more, check out this post or this thread.

We are also receptive to the various topics this thread has presented recently and intend to address them via council discussion, potential playerbase surveys, and eventual council minutes posts. Stay tuned for more in the coming weeks. Thanks to everyone for providing their insight on the metagame in the meantime!
 
Finchinator said:
The SS OU council intends to vote on King's Rock this week. For more, check out this post or this thread.

We are also receptive to the various topics this thread has presented recently and intend to address them via council discussion, potential playerbase surveys, and eventual council minutes posts. Stay tuned for more in the coming weeks. Thanks to everyone for providing their insight on the metagame in the meantime!
This is really great to hear, I’m looking forward to not losing to RNG Cloyster flinching in future. Hopefully some of the other totally RNG based strategies like Sand Veil+Bright Powder and Acupressure can be looked at at some point as well.

The Funky Reason said:
:Dragapult: counterplay :dragapult:

Wigglytuff @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Competitive
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Dazzling Gleam
- Teleport
- Wish
- Protect

So this set hard walls every set of dragapult, including dd or mixed, which blissey can't do. Dragapult isn't broken. Hope this helps.
Even this loses to the extremely rare Banded Pult, amusingly.
252 Atk Choice Band Dragapult Steel Wing vs. 252 HP / 4 Def Wigglytuff: 402-474 (83 - 97.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Dragapult has no true counters that can always safely switch in, although yeah Wigglytuff will probably do the job 99% of the time. I think the fact that we’re even considering using Wigglytuff in OU speaks as to how troublesome Dragapult can be, though. As vNatFly outlined, a lot of its checks can easily be overcome over time, by the right set, or with a pinch of team support. Does that necessarily make Dragapult suspect-worthy? I think it does. Since there are no Dragapult hard counters, every team is pressured to run a mosaic of semi-checks to deal with it, which warps teambuilding to a certain extent. Dragapult also has the tools to break past these checks, and outside of maybe some Stall teams it’s almost impossible to craft a defensive core that reliably beats every Dragapult set. Because of this, I think it would be interesting to have a suspect test to see what the player base thinks about Dragapult. It’s less obviously broken than Urshifu-S, Magearna or even Cinderace, and I’m personally not sure whether or not a ban would be appropriate, but a suspect test feels like the right way forward.
 
Thats nice and all but when your slotting a piece of shit like Wigglytuff on an OU team for one offensive threat (dragapult), that really says something.

With that being said, I honestly think a suspect test would be really nice - like right about now. Sure, Blissey (which folds to physical sets), Tyranitar (no recovery), Toxapex (if twaved / wisped specs hex just 3 shots), and Clefable (if statused specs hex 2hkos) can probably switch in to a few Dragapult sets, and lose 1v1 to an alternative Dragapult set. This makes it incredibly hard to switch in to, and its access to U-turn and a superb speed tier allows it to support offensive partners like Kyurem (which can 2hko bliss with a specs modest focus miss thanks to the u-turn chip). I think Dragapult is about borderline and a suspect test would be very interesting.
Clearly you didn't read my post or you wouldn't have literally made the point I was making to "own the noobs" I suggest reading more carefully next time.

So this isn't a one-liner, I actually wanna talk about an interesting breaker I think should be used more.



Golurk @ Choice Band
Ability: No Guard
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Poltergeist
- High Horsepower
- Stone Edge
- Trick

I unironically think this mon is a great breaker in the current OU environment. It has just enough speed to get the jump on walls it 2hkos and boy does it 2hko just about everything in the tier. It has great offensive stabs that are hard to switch into. It has plenty of points of entry in a pivot heavy metagame. Relying on poltergeist kind of sucks as knock off is a great tool to make progress and giving your opponent a golurk immunity isn't optimal either. I think it makes up for that with the plenty of other forms to make progress, namely fsight. Skarm and 252 def landa do a good job walling, but skarm can't even hit you because it usually just has body press, so it doesn't make a great counter as you can just trick on the switch and it is fodder for the rest of the game.
 
It's incredibly exhausting to check this thread and see so many users trying to justify bans on X or Y instead of finding appropriate counters. It takes away from useful information and discussion posted. Also, when a metagame becomes apparantly stagnant, it offers the most opportunity for counters.

There are over 700 Pokémon. Quick banning something that you don't know how to beat isn't the answer.
I decided to look at the sample teams and the winners of the teambuilding competition. I included all the teams currently in the sample teams thread (last updated on the 15th, so should be accurate to the current meta more or less), as well as the winners since Zama-C was kept banned, which is currently just the week 31 team. I will be mainly considering specs pult, but I will note variants if it seems relevant for that team. This is not meant to disparage or attack any of the builders or their teams.

SAMPLES:
Choice Specs Kyurem + Choice Specs Dragapult Bulky Offense - Relies on Bisharp, nothing else can really check pult, and obviously Bisharp is.. not ideal lol
Choice Band Urshifu-Rapid + Swords Dance Weavile Bulky Offense - Relies on Weavile and i guess slowking-galar, same deal not good checks
Sand Rush Dracozolt + Sand Rush Excadrill Sand Balance - Probably one of the best equipped, but this still only has Ttar which is of course not ideal, as it's easily chipped and lacks recovery
Swift Swim Barraskewda + Offensive Zapdos Rain Offense - Uses a weird clef spread for Pult, but Clef loses 1v1 if it gets spdef dropped or chip happens or statused.
252 SpA Choice Specs Dragapult Shadow Ball vs. 252 HP / 64 SpD Clefable: 166-196 (42.1 - 49.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 SpA Choice Specs Dragapult Hex (130 BP) vs. 252 HP / 64 SpD Clefable: 270-318 (68.5 - 80.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
Swords Dance Scizor + Nasty Plot Hydreigon Bulky Offense -
Uses a weird scizor spread that doesn't really work to check pult- note if they ran a standard spdef set it would be better but even then flamethrower exists
252 SpA Choice Specs Dragapult Shadow Ball vs. 248 HP / 172 SpD Scizor: 160-190 (46.6 - 55.3%) -- 17.2% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
Choice Band Weavile + Protect Toxic Melmetal Bulky Offense - weavile is the one check and i dont have to explain why that's not a good answer
Choice Band Bisharp + Calm Mind Clefable Balance - This is the only team I would say has a good Pult MU, and it requires bisharp, zeraora, and spdef Clefable... if you have to put 3 mons to check one threat.. well.
plus anyway, hex specs beats clef if it's statused, zeraora doesnt like swapping in, and bisharp has no recovery, so it's still not trivial
Calm Mind Tapu Fini + Iron Defense Magnezone Balance - Good job, you checked specs pult with Blissey. Bad news, physical pult still goes in, and you have no way of beating it over a long time, considering that Fini, Lando, and Melm have no recovery.
TEAMBUILDING COMP:
Clone volc team - https://pokepast.es/1f5fa6b11aec48c0, Zeraora and Slowking are it as far as counterplay goes.....
So, uh, yeah, none of these really show good ways of dealing with it (other than i guess the Bisharp/Clef Balance kinda, and that requires 3 mons and doesn't even really cover everything). Most teams rely on offensively checking it with Bisharp, Weavile, or Zeraora, which is a sad fact.

So uh yeah, if the best builders can't make teams that can handle pult consistently.... well. That says something.
 

TailGlowVM

I didn't get where I am today without a Manaphy
is a Pre-Contributor
Additionally, we have had counters to a lot of banned Pokemon in the past, and they still got banned even then, because the counters were bad Pokemon or bad sets that nobody used after the broken Pokemon was banned. For example, when Zygarde was banned in SM OU there were lots of changes to sets that made Pokemon more optimal for the rest of the metagame, like Tapu Bulu returning to more offensive sets and Mega Scizor using a more specially defensive spread to better check Pokemon like Mega Alakazam. Even if we didn't think it at the time, I believe Cinderace forcing Slowbro into the metagame was an example of this kind of somewhat unhealthy adaptation too, given Bro was fringe at best to SM OU, found itself almost completely outclassed by Toxapex and dropping off to UU in the late DLC1, and totally outclassed by Slowking now.

While Dragapult definitely hasn't caused the level of out of place Pokemon in the meta of past banned stuff like Urshifu or Spectrier, covering it isn't as straightforward as it was in past metas - we have no Urshifu to OHKO it with Sucker Punch (yes, it has two replacements, but neither is near S-rank). Mandibuzz is almost completely outclassed at the moment by Skarmory and Corviknight and would almost certainly become irrelevant to a Dragapult-less meta. Clefable is still a great Pokemon but not the tier queen like in pre-Tundra. Zeraora has been forced to heavily adjust its sets with all the new Ground-types in the tier.

We have some Pokemon that are played with literally no real counters - nothing in the tier is completely safe from a 2HKO from the five moves used by Choice Specs Tapu Lele except the near-unviable Jirachi. Every supposed "counter" to top wallbreakers like Urshifu-R and Choice Band Kartana falls to Future Sight support. Almost nobody is claiming these Pokemon to be suspect worthy (while Future Sight in some form could be, we haven't seen great support to get rid of stuff that makes it so hard to deal with).

While yes, whether a Pokemon "has counters" should be considered, it should not ever be the only reason to not have a suspect, or we would probably still have Spectrier in the tier with Obstagoon in OU. If we suspect any Pokemon that lacks a widely viable counter, we should just suspect test Tapu Bulu, which has no relevant switch-in at +2 except Tangrowth, Amoonguss, Aegislash or Buzzwole.
 
Additionally, we have had counters to a lot of banned Pokemon in the past, and they still got banned even then, because the counters were bad Pokemon or bad sets that nobody used after the broken Pokemon was banned. For example, when Zygarde was banned in SM OU there were lots of changes to sets that made Pokemon more optimal for the rest of the metagame, like Tapu Bulu returning to more offensive sets and Mega Scizor using a more specially defensive spread to better check Pokemon like Mega Alakazam. Even if we didn't think it at the time, I believe Cinderace forcing Slowbro into the metagame was an example of this kind of somewhat unhealthy adaptation too, given Bro was fringe at best to SM OU, found itself almost completely outclassed by Toxapex and dropping off to UU in the late DLC1, and totally outclassed by Slowking now.

While Dragapult definitely hasn't caused the level of out of place Pokemon in the meta of past banned stuff like Urshifu or Spectrier, covering it isn't as straightforward as it was in past metas - we have no Urshifu to OHKO it with Sucker Punch (yes, it has two replacements, but neither is near S-rank). Mandibuzz is almost completely outclassed at the moment by Skarmory and Corviknight and would almost certainly become irrelevant to a Dragapult-less meta. Clefable is still a great Pokemon but not the tier queen like in pre-Tundra. Zeraora has been forced to heavily adjust its sets with all the new Ground-types in the tier.

We have some Pokemon that are played with literally no real counters - nothing in the tier is completely safe from a 2HKO from the five moves used by Choice Specs Tapu Lele except the near-unviable Jirachi. Every supposed "counter" to top wallbreakers like Urshifu-R and Choice Band Kartana falls to Future Sight support. Almost nobody is claiming these Pokemon to be suspect worthy (while Future Sight in some form could be, we haven't seen great support to get rid of stuff that makes it so hard to deal with).

While yes, whether a Pokemon "has counters" should be considered, it should not ever be the only reason to not have a suspect, or we would probably still have Spectrier in the tier with Obstagoon in OU. If we suspect any Pokemon that lacks a widely viable counter, we should just suspect test Tapu Bulu, which has no relevant switch-in at +2 except Tangrowth, Amoonguss, Aegislash or Buzzwole.
I mean Scizor for Lele, right?

252 SpA Choice Specs Tapu Lele Focus Blast vs. 248 HP / 252+ SpD Scizor: 163-192 (47.5 - 55.9%) -- 25.8% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

Kart there's corv/skarm, urshifu there's slowbro
obviously none of these are perfect, but there's counterplay still.

in any case, this is just a nitpick, and the Proper Point you're making is correct so who cares
 

TailGlowVM

I didn't get where I am today without a Manaphy
is a Pre-Contributor
I mean Scizor for Lele, right?

252 SpA Choice Specs Tapu Lele Focus Blast vs. 248 HP / 252+ SpD Scizor: 163-192 (47.5 - 55.9%) -- 25.8% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

Kart there's corv/skarm, urshifu there's slowbro
obviously none of these are perfect, but there's counterplay still.

in any case, this is just a nitpick, and the Proper Point you're making is correct so who cares
Most Scizor run Heavy-Duty Boots though, and some are using mixed defences now.
 
Aegislash actually walls any Lele lacking Shadow Ball, which is strictly inferior to Thunderbolt and Psyshock, even without investment.

252 SpA Choice Specs Tapu Lele Thunderbolt vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Aegislash-Shield: 110-130 (42.1 - 49.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

Leftovers and King‘s Shield can actually make Aegislash a solid special wall with a strong offensive presence, although this is a bit of a nitpick. I do appreciate the overall point being made here though, and Dragapult needing Specs to be a decent offensive presence does limit it and makes it possible to play around, similar to other strong breakers in the tier.
 
As anyone who has seen the viability thread lately knows, I have become a huge supporter of OU Moltres. As I was doing my latest post on the matter disputing that the flaming turkey should drop, I was surprised when I looked on the Strategy Dex and found a completely different set for Moltres' OU entry. I didn't get it at the time, so I kind of just ignored it since the bulk of that post was actually about Hippowdon; shortly after, TailGlowVM, probably assuming I hadn't seen it, did at least provide some explanation. Still, I was kind of hesitant to embrace it; StrategyDex mostly packs good sets, but there are clunkers (Monotype Bulu, anyone?) and I was cautious given how quickly this sprang up. Later yesterday, I happened to be building a meme team around Hex Toxapex (even with just 8 SpA, it 2HKOs statused Dragapult after just one round of hazard chip), and I figured, "Eh, why not?" and slapped offensive Moltres. And honestly- it did decently well, nothing outstanding but I mostly won. Admittedly, Moltres was definitely the weakest part of this team, but then again this was kind of thrown together and I mainly owe my record to Kart.
Good and Gimmick (pokepast.es) (posting this in case someone wants to make a better team with this stuff)

I didn't get many results for ToxaHex because of course everyone randomly stopped using Pult while I was testing; SpD Pex is kind fire, though. However, what I did get from Moltres inspired me to do a bit of laddering, so after a rename on my alt (which erased all my points on that account and I had to reregister it. Not sure if that's a bug (kind of weird if it isn't) but thought I should mention it), I started fresh and decided to see how high I could get only using teams with Moltres. In the 24 hours I was laddering, I ended up:
I did it.png

Huh. Not quite high ladder, but- did not expect to get that much so soon. Well, onto the breakdown:

Defensive Moltres
Def Moltres (pokepast.es)

Defensive Moltres was what I was accustomed to, so I wanted to have team with defensive Molt to fall back on. Defensive Molt does what you're all probably familiar with- spread burns with Flame Body and Sands, neuter special attacker with Mystical Fire, Roost to keep healthy, Defog because hazards bad. Rillaboom and Slowking got added because Fire/Water/Grass can be intimidating, plus I got a physical breaker, a solid support core and pivoting. Tyranitar came about because I wanted a Dragapult switch in, plus Rocks and TWave for speed control; since I was running Ttar, I naturally ended up adding Excadrill too, granting additional hazard control to alleviate Molt's Knock Off weakness and speed control, plus gave the team a Rock switch in. It's because of Drill I opted for Crunch on Ttar over HH since I mostly don't like doubling up on moves, plus it put more pressure on Pult. Finally, Dragapult was there so I had another breaker with Rilla.

Overall, this team was- pretty damn good, especially during that first stretch. TWave support is lowkey amazing- outside of stall mons, nothing really wants to take a paralysis. Ttar actually likes being partnered with Rilla, as that extra recovery played a pivotal role in several matches, and it ended being the unexpected MVP of the team. For Molt's part, it did pretty well, even if that may be because I'm accustomed and know how to use it. While both the replays for this team are from early on, I feel they demonstrate just what a defensive Molt could accomplish. I tried getting some higher up, but the ladder was doing that thing where it tells you to go f*ck yourself by giving you every bad RNG roll and rewarding the opponent for making stupid plays that should have cost them the game because the universe is a cold, unforgiving place that may randomly decide to screw you over so it can tell you that no matter how good you do bullshit is always just around the corner so- .. Sorry about that. I did actually get some wins on higher ladder, but Moltres didn't have any particularly flashy performances. Anyways, defensive Molt is still solid and I'm sure it could do even better with a more optimized spread.

Moltres the Rain counter (kind of): https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350365216-iv1jdsfzajwovl9kgacx6246ywddoe0pw
Moltres the Volcarona counter: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350370772


Offensive Moltres
Off Moltres (pokepast.es)
After a few goes of alternating between the defensive Molt team and the first team, I figured I should probably get the offensive set a team with more thought put behind it. Excadrill returns because I loved the MoltDrill core, and the two mostly covered each other's weaknesses. Blissey initially got added to be the Pult check and use Aromatherapy to support Molt, but things kind of got reshuffled so Blissey was on Toxic and Drill was on hazard clearing. I presume utility Drill investing in SpD over HP is probably so stuff with draining moves get less recovery, cause otherwise I don't get it. Specs Dragapult is- well, I don't think I need say more. I considered swapping Pult's last move, but kept Flamethrower just in case I could catch Bisharp on the switch. Tangrowth was added specifically for Urshifu (although checking Lando, Kart, Zeraora and the like ain't half bad), as well as having Knock Off support. Tapu Fini was initially pegged as my Shifu check and hazard remover, but opting for Growth instead led to reshuffling of roles, but I decided to keep Fini on so I had one win-con, this set's potential as a stallbreaker, and Misty Terrain made up for having to drop Aroma.

So, after all this testing- yeah, offensive Moltres is kind of great, and also this was my single most successful team. It turns out most of OU has issue switching into strong Flying moves (guess that's why everyone fears Torn even though I never see it), and add Flamethrower to the mix and that list of answers goes down more. While I was initially worried about Heatran, SubPressure ruins its best offensive tool in Magma Storm while sitting on everything else, and that speed allows Molt to outspeed Tran and Sub in its face. Sure, Hurricane is only doing about 20%, but once hazards and Knock Off are in play those little chips start adding up quickly (especially if RNGesus decides to bless you with confusion rolls). Molt isn't too bulky, but it can come in on a lot of defensive mons with little issue (just watch out for Slow twins). Excadrill is a great partner for Moltres, as the two cover each other nicely while Bliss and Growth handle any Water moves. Despite using Infiltrator Pult, I kind of just forgot how much that thing could threaten Molt, so Bliss ended up being an even better partner in practice. Fini also shown in how much it helped with the Heatran matchup, as that spread makes it surprisingly tanky, plus stallbreaking was a godsend for me (seems the community remembered how good Taunt is), and ended up being a star on the team in its own right. Pult and Growth performed about as well as expected, but expected is really good. Still, Moltres had its fair share of great performances, and here are the most notable ones:

Moltres the Heatran counter: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350678407
Moltres the Lando counter: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350684917
Moltres the Trick Room counter: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350745076 (I meant to say gg, but my chat got proxy locked).
Moltres the Garchomp counter: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350751432
Moltres the Everything counter: https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350869097-n6xqv0wcvjaukj08pqh6yz33106bdn6pw

While I maintain that defensive Moltres maintains a solid niche, offensive Moltres takes things to a whole other level and it is surprisingly good. I'd say which Molt you go for largely depends on what team you're building; weirdly, I find that defensive Molt performs better on more offensive teams, while offensive Molt does its best work on bulkier teams. As such, I would particularly recommend defensive Molt to new OU players trying to get off the lowest rungs of ladder (it is still decent after that, just not as flashy), while offensive Molt works better once you have your feet under you; my first experiences with off Molt were kind of rough because it may feel like Molt just can't switch into anything because the low-ladder gimmicks are not kind to its lesser bulk, and I imagine others may also find it takes getting used to. But trust me, offensive Molt is worth the learning curve. Finally, I did also want to leave some highlight by my other team members, because you all need to start using Tangrowth and Fini.

Salty Ramen. https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350860526-9r5vnunirlbti2jkwo00dfgljpyt7trpw
Tyranitar eats a bird. https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350804693
Tapu Finianna has a dream. https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1350924237
 
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It's crazy to me ya'll are really at the point where you're trying to justify banning a mon that needs a combination of 3-4 items, 3-5 different sets, longer game duration and team support to get past all of it's possible checks.

While Dragapult definitely hasn't caused the level of out of place Pokemon in the meta of past banned stuff like Urshifu or Spectrier, covering it isn't as straightforward as it was in past metas - we have no Urshifu to OHKO it with Sucker Punch (yes, it has two replacements, but neither is near S-rank). Mandibuzz is almost completely outclassed at the moment by Skarmory and Corviknight and would almost certainly become irrelevant to a Dragapult-less meta. Clefable is still a great Pokemon but not the tier queen like in pre-Tundra. Zeraora has been forced to heavily adjust its sets with all the new Ground-types in the tier.

Dragapult's moveset, nor used sets haven't really changed much since these past metas...

The only reason it's not as "straightforward" to check now is because of the abundance of additional strong mons to deal with at the moment that are all potent in their own right. Also, for some reason the majority of teams don't seem to want to prepare adequately enough to deal with it as opposed to just..covering the easier threats.
 
Clearly you didn't read my post or you wouldn't have literally made the point I was making to "own the noobs" I suggest reading more carefully next time.

So this isn't a one-liner, I actually wanna talk about an interesting breaker I think should be used more.



Golurk @ Choice Band
Ability: No Guard
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Poltergeist
- High Horsepower
- Stone Edge
- Trick

I unironically think this mon is a great breaker in the current OU environment. It has just enough speed to get the jump on walls it 2hkos and boy does it 2hko just about everything in the tier. It has great offensive stabs that are hard to switch into. It has plenty of points of entry in a pivot heavy metagame. Relying on poltergeist kind of sucks as knock off is a great tool to make progress and giving your opponent a golurk immunity isn't optimal either. I think it makes up for that with the plenty of other forms to make progress, namely fsight. Skarm and 252 def landa do a good job walling, but skarm can't even hit you because it usually just has body press, so it doesn't make a great counter as you can just trick on the switch and it is fodder for the rest of the game.
I actually agree with this. I've been playing around with Golurk a bit from time to time and I feel that this guy have some nice potentiol. Imo Poltergeist is one of the biggest selling points for Golurk even though having to forego Knock or giving them a free immunity is just so so unfortunate. OU has a serious lack of Ghost resists and most of them are SpD because of Pult's existance, and CB Golurk is an absolute beast given 1) it switches in safely and 2) it lands an attack safely. Iron Fist + Punches are also neat and physical attackers would kill for that kind of coverage (like, 90 BP physical Ice coverage? Unheard of). It also gets CC, which is great, and Dynamic Punch, which is stupid but also great. Ground STAB is still Ground STAB, but Golurk has quite a bit of competition in that department, which is why I think that Poltergeist is Golurk's main selling point. Along with two tons of coverage and Trick, of course.

Thing is, its slow and not that bulky, so getting it in and not having it forced out is a problem. But as you said in a metagame with so much pivoting this is less problematic as it seems. Still, Lando and Chomp are often preferred for their defensive presence (and speed tier utility blablabla its Lando and Chomp we're talking about here), but Golurk can fill a super unique (albeit rather narrow) niche as a powerful physical Ghost.

Experimenting with Dhemise a little bit, it strong af and also gets Spin which is pretty neat.

Also, don't use Iron Fist Shadow Punch. Please. Just use Band Aegi at that point.

I haven't posted here for a while but I've still been playing! I'm still a crappy pilot tho. Peace.
 
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Clearly you didn't read my post or you wouldn't have literally made the point I was making to "own the noobs" I suggest reading more carefully next time.

So this isn't a one-liner, I actually wanna talk about an interesting breaker I think should be used more.



Golurk @ Choice Band
Ability: No Guard
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Poltergeist
- High Horsepower
- Stone Edge
- Trick

I unironically think this mon is a great breaker in the current OU environment. It has just enough speed to get the jump on walls it 2hkos and boy does it 2hko just about everything in the tier. It has great offensive stabs that are hard to switch into. It has plenty of points of entry in a pivot heavy metagame. Relying on poltergeist kind of sucks as knock off is a great tool to make progress and giving your opponent a golurk immunity isn't optimal either. I think it makes up for that with the plenty of other forms to make progress, namely fsight. Skarm and 252 def landa do a good job walling, but skarm can't even hit you because it usually just has body press, so it doesn't make a great counter as you can just trick on the switch and it is fodder for the rest of the game.
On a slightly similar vein, I've been appreciating banded Dhelmise since the added attack stat is surprisingly useful, netting a 2hko on basically every defensive wall. Imo Power whip is also even more useful since a 120 base power move also tends to wreck everything.

:swsh/dhelmise:
Dhelmise @ Choice Band
Ability: Steelworker
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Poltergeist
- Power Whip
- Anchor Shot
- Earthquake


Albeit being more slow, with 252 speed it's able to outspeed Corviknights and Skarmory's with no speed investments, and leads to surprising calcs.

252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Corviknight: 208-246 (52 - 61.5%) -- 96.1% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Toxapex: 160-189 (52.6 - 62.1%) -- 98.8% chance to 2HKO after Black Sludge recovery

252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 169-201 (50.5 - 60.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

-1 252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Landorus-Therian: 217-256 (56.8 - 67%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Tangrowth: 184-217 (45.5 - 53.7%) -- 41% chance to 2HKO
 
On a slightly similar vein, I've been appreciating banded Dhelmise since the added attack stat is surprisingly useful, netting a 2hko on basically every defensive wall. Imo Power whip is also even more useful since a 120 base power move also tends to wreck everything.

:swsh/dhelmise:
Dhelmise @ Choice Band
Ability: Steelworker
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Poltergeist
- Power Whip
- Anchor Shot
- Earthquake


Albeit being more slow, with 252 speed it's able to outspeed Corviknights and Skarmory's with no speed investments, and leads to surprising calcs.

252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Corviknight: 208-246 (52 - 61.5%) -- 96.1% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Toxapex: 160-189 (52.6 - 62.1%) -- 98.8% chance to 2HKO after Black Sludge recovery

252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Skarmory: 169-201 (50.5 - 60.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

-1 252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Landorus-Therian: 217-256 (56.8 - 67%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

252+ Atk Choice Band Dhelmise Poltergeist (110 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Tangrowth: 184-217 (45.5 - 53.7%) -- 41% chance to 2HKO
Very interesting mon, I think It should be paired with rilaboom, to make it the strongest grassy glide users, and one that can break the birds.
 
It's crazy to me ya'll are really at the point where you're trying to justify banning a mon that needs a combination of 3-4 items, 3-5 different sets, longer game duration and team support to get past all of it's possible checks.




Dragapult's moveset, nor used sets haven't really changed much since these past metas...

The only reason it's not as "straightforward" to check now is because of the abundance of additional strong mons to deal with at the moment that are all potent in their own right. Also, for some reason the majority of teams don't seem to want to prepare adequately enough to deal with it as opposed to just..covering the easier threats.
Can you tell us what 3-4 items and 3-5 sets you're talking about? I could be wrong but I don't think there's any one pokemon OU (or even good mons below UU) that can deal with both the specs and dragon dance pult sets.
 

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