Metagame SS OU Metagame Discussion Thread v7 (Usage Stats in post #3539)

Clone

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TL;DR for those who don't wanna read a wall of text: fire type good. Make opponent sad. Make you happy if you use them so use them!

Hello everyone, today I wanted to talk about something that's been on my mind for a while, being the Fire-type and it's place in the OU metagame. Ever since I was a kid I found the Fire-type to be the coolest in the game, and after playing SS OU for several months now, I feel it is arguably one of, if not the best offensive types in the metagame. I'd like to use this post to explain my reasoning and maybe shed some light on some trends I've seen a bit lately. I'll break this into two parts: the type itself, and the relevant Fire-types in OU. First, the type itself.

It's no secret that the Fire-type is very strong offensively. It has only three resists outside of itself, being Rock, Dragon, and Water. Defensive Water-types are rampant in the tier, with all of Tapu Fini, the Slowtwins, Lord Pex, and even Swampert seeing significant usage. Needless to say, in one form or another, defensive Water-types are pretty much staples on most viable team structures. So what about the other two types? Let's start with Rock-types in OU. Tyranitar... and that's it. No other Rock-types reach OU usage. On top of that, Tyranitar is quite uncommon, especially in tournament play and the higher ladder. Unfortunately the removal of Pursuit hurt Tyranitar greatly. Not to say it's bad, but from this point on you'll start to see a trend with the rest of this post. So let's move on to the Dragons in OU. Dragonite, Garchomp, Hydreigon, and Dragapult are the four that made the cut. They all happen to be pseudo-legendaries too, so clearly they're quite strong by BST alone. However, if you take a closer look, you might see that pattern that I'm trying to show with this post. Of these mentioned, Dragapult is infamously an offensive demon, and while it has very useful resistances, it's defenses are lacking and often cannot switch in more than once on anything stronger than a resisted attack from a defensive Pokémon. Hydreigon stands out as a bulky pokemon with good resistances and typing, but it has an awkward place in the metagame at the moment and isn't the most used pokemon out there. Dragonite also falls into this category too. Good bulk and defensive typing, but its days of being a defensive Pokémon are basically behind it once people realized that it's a complete momentum sink. It's still a threat offensively with its DD set that shouldn't be slept on, but it's still uncommon on most team structures. Finally we get to Garchomp. Not counting Dragapult, Garchomp is clearly the best of these, and also the most versatile. Do you want a sweeper that can clean weakened teams with ease? SD Scale Shot. Do you want a Stealth Rock setter that makes physical attackers sad with contact moves? PhysDef Rocky Helmet. Hell, I've even played around with a specially defensive spread with Protect to keep heatran in line and disrupt special attackers with some success. Garchomp is a mon that has stood the test of time generation after generation and has found a way to be a staple in the metagame every time.

All that being said, lets circle back to the Fire-type. Quickly I wanna mention that being super effective against grass and bug types is cool but the most important type is steel, given how you'll find at least one on every team, and it's the only type that's 4x SE against both Scizor and Ferrothorn, 2 mons notorious for their longevity.

Back to the resistances, there's a pretty clear trend I noticed (sidenote: I'm omitting Fire-types here because I'll get to all the mons below in pt 2), outside of bulky Water-types and Garchomp, and Heatran with Flash Fire, there aren't a lot of mons that reliably resist Fire-type attacks. Some more uncommon mons like the dragons I mentioned and TTar come to mind, but finding a resist for a Heatran Magma Storm or Blacephalon Overheat that isn't a Water-type is pretty hard. They exist, sure, but those that play regularly know how hard these mons are to switch into due to common answers getting worn down and the coverage moves these mons regularly carry.

And therein lies the point I'm trying to make. Finding reliable switch-ins to these mons can be difficult. Toxapex doesn't fit on every team structure and has to be wary of Future Sight support. Tapu Fini is great, but it's downfall is the lack of reliable recovery it has outside of Leftovers and it is often prone to being worn down over time. The slowtwins are great (yes, including Slowking. Fite me), but aren't the most used and dislike the prevalence of all the Ghost and Dark moves being thrown around. Swampert is kinda meh, and the least seen in higher level play. Funny enough, Dragonite and Hydreigon are two of the more durable resists out there, but as I stated above, they're not terribly common and can sometimes have trouble finding a teamslot. I don't want to downplay their usefulness, as all these mons are very good and integral to many team structures, but we're starting to see the limits of reliable fire resists.

Edit: noticed I forgot Gastrodon. It's a good defensive mon but really only fits on fat teams and can be a momentum sink. Suffers from low usage as well.

So what about non resists? You have mons like blissey, the catch all for special attackers, but even she can get overwhelmed through U-Turns and double switches and often has to choose between teleporting or healing itself. Hippo is a durable ground type with reliable recovery and scares these mons out with SE EQs, but it's not much of a threat to anything that can eat its Earthquakes and doesn't fit on every team. Even OU Overlord Lando T has problems with being a catch all, as it can be overwhelmed and is prone to being worn down over time. Tornadus-T can take a hit usually but often cannot repeatedly switch in, and it's forced out to regenerate its health after it knocks an item usually. Good mon, but it's not repeatedly eating magma storms or overheats. Urshifu can take physical hits well, but it's poor special bulk means it has one or two switchins at best, and doesn't like the common coverage moves seen on mons like blacephalon and volcarona. It's excellent offensively though and if it gets in safely it almost always forces them out. Finally we reach Galarian Slowking, the pinnacle of BO special pivots. It's great, and one of the best mons in the tier, but it can't reliably handle any fire type. The special attackers like heatran and Blacephalon just punch past it, and it's not known for its physical bulk. If it carries EQ it can beat Heatran if healthy, but aside from this specific interaction it's a suboptimal moveslot.

So to conclude this long wall of text, the Fire-type is excellent offensively. While having a common resist in water, coverage moves and teammates can pressure them greatly (anyone notice how well Fire-types synergize on hail? Look at the best Hail teams. You'll see one). Furthermore metagame staples that can take hits have drawbacks such as passiveness and proness to being worn down. The lack of common resists outside of the water type goes heavily in the favor of Fire-types and as such are seeing a lot of success currently.

I don't want to do a deep dive into Fire-types defensively, as I'm focused on their offensive prowess in this post, but I would like to quickly mention that they have a very useful resist to fire(!!!) and Ice, Heatran is one of the best mons in the tier, and Boots mean that Stealth Rock isn't as much of a worry for things like Victini or Volcanion like it used to be in years past. Not the best defensive typing out there, but not the worst. I'd say solidly average with some really nice upsides.

So now I'd like to dive a bit into the Fire-types that see usage in OU. This list isn't in a particular order, but I'll try to keep the ones that are OU by usage at the top.

:heatran: The metagame defining threat that makes players tremble in fear on team preview, we'll start with the S- threat in Heatran. It's no secret that Heatran is one of the most oppressive threats in the tier. It's staple spdef Stealth Rock set is not only one of the most consistent defensive mons in the tier, but it is also offensively threatening as well. Magma Storm is notorious for being difficult to switch into repeatedly, which is often relegated to fat waters and grounds. However, even these have to be careful of being overwhelmed, as it's not uncommon for heatran to power through them. Assuming all its moves hit, of course. Capable of fitting on basically any team structure, it's only true downside is its lack of recovery outside of Leftovers. Even then, it has surprising longevity if it doesn't get knocked off given the amount of switches it forces. It's even seen wearing some fashionable specs every once and a while and nuking shit with Eruption. Probably the best showcase of this was when Ox the Fox used it in WCoP finals to great success and it claimed over half the opponents team. And it wasn't even on a sun team! Another thing I'd like to note I that I believe Heatran is one of the best Future Sight abusers in the tier. Hydreigon, Slowking, and Tyranitar are the only mons capable of stomaching this combination repeatedly, as typical switch ins like Pex and Garchomp get nuked by the impending Future Sight. FS is notorious with Urshifu, but I think Heatran is slept on as an abuser and I wouldn't be surprised to see the combo popping up more and more.

:Volcarona: The infamous matchup moth is back in OU once again, all thanks to its shiny new boots. Cries for a ban rang across the tier a few months ago, as it terrorized teams (and my dreams) far and wide. It only really has one true counter in heatran, as everything else can be accommodated in its moveslots. Unfortunately hidden power got nuked, but that hasn't stopped Volcarona from finding its place in the meta. The metagame adapted to it, and it's usage fell quite a bit recently, but some recent SCL games showed some new techs that proves its capable of adapting to what OU throws at it. It's always a threat, and lives up to its moniker. If one isn't careful, it's just one Quiver Dance away from sweeping your team. Sidenote: it's probably the only true Kyurem counter in the game with its bulky QD set.

That's it for Fire-types OU by usage, but there are still several more seen in the tier.

:Blaziken: The Blaze Chicken was finally freed from Ubers after a long decade in the abyss. Cinderace took its place as the Fire-type starter to be banished, and Blaziken has done its best in OU. It's obviously the coolest mon ever and an S++ mon and everyone should use it. Moving on.

I kid, but I do feel Blaziken is slept on right now. It probably won't 6-0 a team turn 1 like it could in the past (though I have done that before), but it got some cool new toys in SS like Close Combat, U-turn, and Knock Off(I think it was gen 8?). Close Combat forgoes 10 BP in favor of 100% accuracy and not losing half it's health on missing HJK. Both Choice Band and Swords Dance are viable, though the latter is more consistent in my opinion. Landorus-T moving to SpDef, the relatively low usage of Slowbro, and offense being the predominant playstyle all work in favor of Blaziken. It's not the most consistent mon, but if it gets a free turn it can often claim a kill or two. Fire/Fighting STAB is incredible, and Speed Boost on top of it makes revenge killing difficult outside of priority. All that being said, Blaziken often kills itself with LO + FB recoil on top of Rough Skin/Rocky Helmet shenanigans, so it's staying power is limited. Furthermore, it needs a Jolly Nature to outspeed metagame staples such as Dragapult and Koko at +1, which hurts its damage output. It can also struggle at times with some current fat cores and doesn't always have an opportunity to set up. It's no longer the Uber worthy threat it was in years past, but I do think it's a mon worth exploring in the current metagame. I've had a lot of fun with it recently and I think others will too (RMT coming soon)

:blacephalon: The faceless clown has seen a spike in usage thanks to people realizing that Fire/Ghost coverage is resisted by only TTar and Hydreigon, and form an very potent STAB combo. While blace has piss poor defenses and is Stealth Rock weak, it nukes something any time it gets a free turn with its specs set. Furthermore, beast boost means it's capable of snowballing out of control quickly. It has a very good offensive matchup vs offense as they often lack a switch in, so positioning sacks becomes paramount facing it. Furthermore, scarf is a pretty good late game cleaner thanks to it not fearing many priority moves and an excellent speed tier. It's not the best mon out there because it doesn't really switch in on anything and dies to a sneeze, but it's still a threat nonetheless.

:victini: Probably the most versatile on this list, it's very much a jack of all trades, master of none type of mon. It can nuke shit with Banded V-Creates, or be a potent pivot wearing its favorite boots and U-Turn. It's often seen as a physical attacker, but recently Glaciate has caught on to lure in Garchomp, Landorus-T, and Dragonite. I've also seen people experiment with special sets that make use of expanding force paired with Lele, and even some FS shenanigans since it forces a decent amount of switchins. Victini does suffer a bit from disappointing power output aside from V Create and SE coverage, and its defensive typing, while useful, leaves it prone to being forced out by some metagame staples. A reliance on Boots means it has no recovery and cannot afford to get knocked off at all. Despite these flaws, however, I wouldn't be surprised to see it reach OU usage soon given its positive traits.

:Volcanion: A very recent development in OU, Volcanion sees a majority of its usage on weather based teams. It's a nuke under rain with specs and it synergizes very well with Hail, which is evident in the infamous Ox Hail team (I'm starting to see a trend here :blobthinking: ). I've also seen it pop up on general offense and balance teams. Both boots and specs are useful and I've seen both used to great effect. On top of that, Fire/Water is a sneaky good defensive typing and 80/120/90 bulk is nothing to scoff at. It's a very recent metagame development and I'm not sure if it's a passing fad or here to stay, but I'm interested in seeing its usage develop over SCL.

:torkoal::darmanitan: I'm lumping these two together since they're only ever seen on Sun teams, but Torkoal is the only good sun setter and has excellent utility with rocks, rapid spin, and shit like yawn and lava plume to not be completely passive. On top of that its physical bulk is really good and it can even be EVed to hit hard, as seen in some Sun RMTs that are floating around. Unfortunately, rest is its only recovery and its weak to rocks so it doesn't have the most longevity, but it's often able to set up the sun at least twice a match and enable some powerful mons.

Darmanitan is simple: Fire Gorilla go ham with Banded Flare Blitz in sun. Even resists are crying after taking sun boosted attacks from this demon. It sucks outside of sun teams and has no longevity at all, but it nukes things with its attacks and can be scary to face. Remember how I said fire resists aren't terribly common outside of fat waters above? This mon makes fat waters look like grass types with the damage it does. It's a fun mon to try on sun and seeing the damage output is insane.

:moltres: Pls don't use this mon it sucks.

I might be missing some niche mons but I think I've covered all the common ones.

All of the mons I mentioned are good, and some are incredible. I wanted to bring everything together and conclude this wall of text by saying that I think the common denominator for all these mons is a lack of consistent resists for their main STABs and coverage aside from a few select pokemon, which I touched on in the post. Hopefully my post was coherent and I was able to explain why I think the Fire type might be the best offensive type in the game. I realize that Ghost, Fighting, and Ground are all incredible and have cases for the best offensive types (along with Dark they're certainly in the top 5) in my opinion. I glossed over its super effective coverage pretty quickly, but SE coverage of Grass and Steel in one typing is incredible and something that should not be taken lightly. I'd elaborate further, but I think this post is long enough. To conclude, for the reasons I explained I believe that the combined traits of several prominent STAB users, lack of resistances, great neutral coverage among STAB users, good SE coverage, and the fact that many mons carry Fire-type coverage in their own arsenals make for the best offensive typing in the tier.

If you made it this far, thanks for reading :)
 

Abhi

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Hello,
(hi clone very cool post, but you forgot that the main reason heatran is good is cuz its cute)

I have two mons id like to bring up, that being Tyranitar and Nidoking.
Both are Pokemon that I've used extensively recently and have had success with, mostly because both of them pair up fairly well against the current metagame. Both are also pretty hard to check at the moment, either because of their extensive coverage or simply their checks becoming irrelevant (ie. Slowking, Blissey losing tons of usage). In the case of Nidoking, most teams in the metagame are also incredibly unprepared for it.

:ss/tyranitar:
Tyranitar @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 40 HP / 252 Atk / 48 SpD / 168 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Crunch / Assurance / Lash Out
- Stone Edge / Rock Blast
- Heavy Slam
- Fire Punch


You can run Ice Punch on this too, but in my time using it, I havent felt the need for it. Choice Band Tyranitar is incredibly strong 2HKOing Skarmory, Corviknight AND Landorus-T, talk about a powerhouse amiright. Its weather is also a great asset (not to set it up for others but more so for itself) making it great against Hail and Rain teams alike, especially because of its ability to pressure both of their setters with its Rock-type STAB. The SpDef boost is also pretty useful for it, since with it it can act as a soft check to Dragapult, Kyurem, Heatran and Blacephalon, and a bunch of the Fire-types mentioned in the above post. It pairs exceptionally well with hazards of any kind making it a since it very easily pressures Defog-users and very much appreciates the chip its short term checks receive from them. It also really likes anything and everything that forces damage onto Buzzwole, Corviknight, Landorus-T, and Skarmory, so things like Weavile and other physical breakers are a natural fit. Tyranitar has got the ability to lose momentum easily however, which is something i personally dislike, although its not been too big a problem in my experience. Assurance and Rock Blast are alternatives over the basic STABs Ive tried and theyre both good, although I prefer the immediate power from Crunch / Stone Edge, although in teams where this isnt fully nescessary both are great options since Assurance pairs exceptionally well with Hazard Stack and Rock Blast if the team struggles with Substitute mons like Kyurem or is in need of a Arctozolt revenge killer. The EVs above are something that curiosity provided me they live a +1 Bug Buzz from Offensive Volcarona and a Choice Specs Moonblast from Tapu Lele. Choice Band Tyranitar at the moment is currently very slept on since AFAIK there havent been any major uses of it in tours, although there have been a few in high ladder gameplay. I would very much like if more people used it because in my opinion its awesome right now, and does pretty well against the metagame as a whole being a formidable breaker, soft check to a lot, and breaking gaping holes into teams that can be very easily abused.

Heres a team I made with it:
:tyranitar::weavile::ferrothorn::garchomp::tornadus-therian::tapu-fini:
CB Ttar + SD Weavile (Dark Spam)

Ruft i heard you like Nidoking

:ss/nidoking:
Nidoking @ Life Orb
Ability: Sheer Force
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Sludge Wave
- Earth Power
- Flamethrower
- Ice Beam


The Kings back in business, and unlike King from OPM this guy kills his monsters himself. Nidoking is honestly great right now, the amount of teams that it 6-0's in team preview is baffling. Most teams do not prepare for it since it simply isnt used enough to warrant that, but I think its time people start using it. We've even seen Nidoking in action in a SCL game (talah vs robjr) in which, although Nidoking was not able to grab many KO's it is very apparent the amount of pressure it was putting on talah the entire game. And in my experience using it, its far more teams than just talahs team here, its pretty much every team without one of Slowking / Gastrodon / Blissey / Assault Vest Tornadus-T (which is also smth you should try it, its good now trust me) which is a LARGE majority of Bulky Offenses atm, although some are running AV Torn which can be problematic, but isnt a complete roadstop for Nidoking. Its large coverage also threatens almost every defensive threat supereffectively, in my opinion Flamethrower and Ice Beam are nescessary since replacing them gets you checked by things like Ferrothorn or Landorus-T which isnt very great. Being Knocked Off is still a great fear of Nidoking since, theres still a lot of Knock Off users in the tier. Mostly thats not been a problem for me since you can usually play around that and have something to pressure the likes of Tornadus-T so it cant double in vs Nidoking to pressure it out with Knock Off. Nidoking also has somewhat of defensive utility since although it may not have perfect defenses or HP it can switch into Heatran, Tapu Koko a few times, although its not a complete roadstop to either so... guess you cant expect much from uninvested 81/77/75. Either way, Ive found it works best with physical breakers that can pressure whatever few checks it has which usually ends up being Weavile for me, since it also likes that Nidoking can double in vs Weaviles checks and be able to fire off a free attack. Pivot spam also works pretty nicely with it since it really likes being able to switch, like trust me everytime Nidoking switches in for free it more often than not claims a kill, or at the very least, forces serious damage onto targets. Nidoking also coincidentally likes Spikes and Stealth Rocks since it can also pressure the major Defog-users of the tier being Tornadus-T, Corviknight and Landorus-T.
Heres a team I made with it:
:nidoking::weavile::ferrothorn::landorus-therian::tornadus-therian::urshifu-rapid-strike:
Nido-Weavile Offense (ft. AV Tornadus-T)

Anyway thats all I had to say ( or so I think ) See ya
:blobwizard:
 
Hello,
(hi clone very cool post, but you forgot that the main reason heatran is good is cuz its cute)

I have two mons id like to bring up, that being Tyranitar and Nidoking.
Both are Pokemon that I've used extensively recently and have had success with, mostly because both of them pair up fairly well against the current metagame. Both are also pretty hard to check at the moment, either because of their extensive coverage or simply their checks becoming irrelevant (ie. Slowking, Blissey losing tons of usage). In the case of Nidoking, most teams in the metagame are also incredibly unprepared for it.

:ss/tyranitar:
Tyranitar @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 40 HP / 252 Atk / 48 SpD / 168 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Crunch / Assurance / Lash Out
- Stone Edge / Rock Blast
- Heavy Slam
- Fire Punch


You can run Ice Punch on this too, but in my time using it, I havent felt the need for it. Choice Band Tyranitar is incredibly strong 2HKOing Skarmory, Corviknight AND Landorus-T, talk about a powerhouse amiright. Its weather is also a great asset (not to set it up for others but more so for itself) making it great against Hail and Rain teams alike, especially because of its ability to pressure both of their setters with its Rock-type STAB. The SpDef boost is also pretty useful for it, since with it it can act as a soft check to Dragapult, Kyurem, Heatran and Blacephalon, and a bunch of the Fire-types mentioned in the above post. It pairs exceptionally well with hazards of any kind making it a since it very easily pressures Defog-users and very much appreciates the chip its short term checks receive from them. It also really likes anything and everything that forces damage onto Buzzwole, Corviknight, Landorus-T, and Skarmory, so things like Weavile and other physical breakers are a natural fit. Tyranitar has got the ability to lose momentum easily however, which is something i personally dislike, although its not been too big a problem in my experience. Assurance and Rock Blast are alternatives over the basic STABs Ive tried and theyre both good, although I prefer the immediate power from Crunch / Stone Edge, although in teams where this isnt fully nescessary both are great options since Assurance pairs exceptionally well with Hazard Stack and Rock Blast if the team struggles with Substitute mons like Kyurem or is in need of a Arctozolt revenge killer. The EVs above are something that curiosity provided me they live a +1 Bug Buzz from Offensive Volcarona and a Choice Specs Moonblast from Tapu Lele. Choice Band Tyranitar at the moment is currently very slept on since AFAIK there havent been any major uses of it in tours, although there have been a few in high ladder gameplay. I would very much like if more people used it because in my opinion its awesome right now, and does pretty well against the metagame as a whole being a formidable breaker, soft check to a lot, and breaking gaping holes into teams that can be very easily abused.

Heres a team I made with it:
:tyranitar::weavile::ferrothorn::garchomp::tornadus-therian::tapu-fini:
CB Ttar + SD Weavile (Dark Spam)

Ruft i heard you like Nidoking

:ss/nidoking:
Nidoking @ Life Orb
Ability: Sheer Force
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Sludge Wave
- Earth Power
- Flamethrower
- Ice Beam


The Kings back in business, and unlike King from OPM this guy kills his monsters himself. Nidoking is honestly great right now, the amount of teams that it 6-0's in team preview is baffling. Most teams do not prepare for it since it simply isnt used enough to warrant that, but I think its time people start using it. We've even seen Nidoking in action in a SCL game (talah vs robjr) in which, although Nidoking was not able to grab many KO's it is very apparent the amount of pressure it was putting on talah the entire game. And in my experience using it, its far more teams than just talahs team here, its pretty much every team without one of Slowking / Gastrodon / Blissey / Assault Vest Tornadus-T (which is also smth you should try it, its good now trust me) which is a LARGE majority of Bulky Offenses atm, although some are running AV Torn which can be problematic, but isnt a complete roadstop for Nidoking. Its large coverage also threatens almost every defensive threat supereffectively, in my opinion Flamethrower and Ice Beam are nescessary since replacing them gets you checked by things like Ferrothorn or Landorus-T which isnt very great. Being Knocked Off is still a great fear of Nidoking since, theres still a lot of Knock Off users in the tier. Mostly thats not been a problem for me since you can usually play around that and have something to pressure the likes of Tornadus-T so it cant double in vs Nidoking to pressure it out with Knock Off. Nidoking also has somewhat of defensive utility since although it may not have perfect defenses or HP it can switch into Heatran, Tapu Koko a few times, although its not a complete roadstop to either so... guess you cant expect much from uninvested 81/77/75. Either way, Ive found it works best with physical breakers that can pressure whatever few checks it has which usually ends up being Weavile for me, since it also likes that Nidoking can double in vs Weaviles checks and be able to fire off a free attack. Pivot spam also works pretty nicely with it since it really likes being able to switch, like trust me everytime Nidoking switches in for free it more often than not claims a kill, or at the very least, forces serious damage onto targets. Nidoking also coincidentally likes Spikes and Stealth Rocks since it can also pressure the major Defog-users of the tier being Tornadus-T, Corviknight and Landorus-T.
Heres a team I made with it:
:nidoking::weavile::ferrothorn::landorus-therian::tornadus-therian::urshifu-rapid-strike:
Nido-Weavile Offense (ft. AV Tornadus-T)

Anyway thats all I had to say ( or so I think ) See ya
:blobwizard:
BandTar is indeed a beast. I like to pair him with Slowbro for the defensive synergy and to give him a free Teleport in, especially with Future Sight. The main drawbacks Tar has are a lack of speed and Stone Edge's annoying accuracy issues, but TTar is absolutely a formidable wallbreaker worth using with the right support.
 
Hello,
(hi clone very cool post, but you forgot that the main reason heatran is good is cuz its cute)

I have two mons id like to bring up, that being Tyranitar and Nidoking.
Both are Pokemon that I've used extensively recently and have had success with, mostly because both of them pair up fairly well against the current metagame. Both are also pretty hard to check at the moment, either because of their extensive coverage or simply their checks becoming irrelevant (ie. Slowking, Blissey losing tons of usage). In the case of Nidoking, most teams in the metagame are also incredibly unprepared for it.

:ss/tyranitar:
Tyranitar @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 40 HP / 252 Atk / 48 SpD / 168 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Crunch / Assurance / Lash Out
- Stone Edge / Rock Blast
- Heavy Slam
- Fire Punch


You can run Ice Punch on this too, but in my time using it, I havent felt the need for it. Choice Band Tyranitar is incredibly strong 2HKOing Skarmory, Corviknight AND Landorus-T, talk about a powerhouse amiright. Its weather is also a great asset (not to set it up for others but more so for itself) making it great against Hail and Rain teams alike, especially because of its ability to pressure both of their setters with its Rock-type STAB. The SpDef boost is also pretty useful for it, since with it it can act as a soft check to Dragapult, Kyurem, Heatran and Blacephalon, and a bunch of the Fire-types mentioned in the above post. It pairs exceptionally well with hazards of any kind making it a since it very easily pressures Defog-users and very much appreciates the chip its short term checks receive from them. It also really likes anything and everything that forces damage onto Buzzwole, Corviknight, Landorus-T, and Skarmory, so things like Weavile and other physical breakers are a natural fit. Tyranitar has got the ability to lose momentum easily however, which is something i personally dislike, although its not been too big a problem in my experience. Assurance and Rock Blast are alternatives over the basic STABs Ive tried and theyre both good, although I prefer the immediate power from Crunch / Stone Edge, although in teams where this isnt fully nescessary both are great options since Assurance pairs exceptionally well with Hazard Stack and Rock Blast if the team struggles with Substitute mons like Kyurem or is in need of a Arctozolt revenge killer. The EVs above are something that curiosity provided me they live a +1 Bug Buzz from Offensive Volcarona and a Choice Specs Moonblast from Tapu Lele. Choice Band Tyranitar at the moment is currently very slept on since AFAIK there havent been any major uses of it in tours, although there have been a few in high ladder gameplay. I would very much like if more people used it because in my opinion its awesome right now, and does pretty well against the metagame as a whole being a formidable breaker, soft check to a lot, and breaking gaping holes into teams that can be very easily abused.
I have to agree with this. The lack of pursuit really hurt Tyranitar since it would become very fat from devouring the Dragapults running around and Spectriers from before but its stab are really nasty. The only common ones that can resist it is Garchomp and Ferrothorn, neither of which are that keen to switch into the wrong move. Urshifu could count but it's not as common as the other two thanks to its role as a breaker. Aside from Tyranitar's typing that leaves it vulnerable to pretty much all of the offensive mons, the biggest issue with Tyranitar is that stone edge is more accurate than aura sphere when your opponent uses it and is less accurate than fissure if you use it which can easily make or break a game

I do want to ask, is there anything that Tyranitar needs to outspeed?


While on it, I might as well share a little change that I did that can really mess up the opponent. I never made a post about it in detail so I'll take this one to explain why. That pokemon is of course, sharky boi






I've always spoke highly about Garchomp this generation and in the end, it really is among the best pokemon in ou. I wanna talk about the reasons why I think our sharky boi is doing so great. There are two reasons for this and they go hand in hand. Also, I've been using this as a dedicated setup sweeper because let's be real, this thing fails horribly as a dedicated wall breaker and unlike other setup sweepers, Garchomp can also act as a backup wall breaker and aid your own dedicated one thanks to swords dance, which also allows it to come online much earlier than other sweepers

First off is the reduced level of power. I think it is fair to say that current gen eight ou has a significantly lower power level when compared to last gen. This makes a huge difference and allows one of Garchomp's unique qualities, it's stats, to actually matter since without z moves, it won't be on its last legs if it is forced to eat a hit. The other quality that makes it so potent is its typing which offers some unique qualities. Now, before I continue, let's grab a snack. Only berries are available and there are only three choices. So, take your pick. :yache berry: :lum berry: :roseli berry:. If you don't like those, go buy a burger or something

Garchomp's stealth rock resistance is once again coming into play and thanks to its typing, you really cannot afford to run a choice item for most of the time. These two combined allows Chomp to have more freedom in its item choices and tailor it to beat what you want it to beat. Lefties is the standard on Garchomp but with how the meta keeps changing, I would think that it's a huge waste because one time snacks can easily allow Garchomp to go out of control. All of these are pretty are straightforward and yache berry should pretty much be obvious. Apparently gamefreak did their homework because hammerhead sharks really don't live in cold waters. With the rise of Weavile, a stray ice shard can easily spell doom for Chomp's attempt rip apart an enemy team. Well, with yache berry, you completely turn the tables against that. Garchomp's stats also play a huge role. I mean

252+ Atk Weavile Ice Shard vs. -2 0 HP / 0 Def Yache Berry Garchomp: 284-336 (79.5 - 94.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

That is after two scale shots and adamant Weavile still fails to stop Garchomp. If an opposing team's only method of dealing with Chomp is a Weavile revenge kill, they're in for a nasty surprise. Although don't do this against specs Kyurem. Its ice is literally from Antarctica and it powers thru the yache berry

While I believe yache is the best item for our sharky boi, I would say that lum is also a perfectly viable option. The most common way to not get rekt by Garchomp is by slowing it down and aside from Landorus' intimidate, the other common way is to poison it with something like a ballsy Heatran or fishing for burns with Toxapex. With lum berry, these desperate moves suddenly become completely wasted as now, Garchomp gets a swords dance and threatens to kill something or just straight up sweep. All in all, lum berry just ensures that a desperate Lando or Heatran trying to poison you won't slow you down. Compared to yache, I think lum is a better item because Weavile isn't on every team while toxic is almost always on every team

Lastly, is roseli berry. I haven't had enough experiments with this yet but scarf Lele is a thing and it revenge kills everything that isn't a scarf Kartana. Like with the other two, it should be straightforward. Stay in against a Lele murder attempt and kill it right back. Hell you can even stay in against specs variants and kill it right back. Of course, Lele isn't the only victim since you can also stay in against specs Koko and get rid of the opponent's speed control. Out of the three snacks, I would say that roseli is too specific since if you get that scale shot boost, neither of these two will be a problem but it could come in handy if the only thing standing between your team and the opponent's is that speedy fairy

However, despite these items, Garchomp almost never runs stone edge anymore which means that it is completely hard countered by Mandibuzz and Togekiss. On the other hand, Mandibuzz is incredibly rare while Togekiss is basically non existent and even if they are used, they have major opportunity costs so in the end, things aren't too bad. Despite all this, Garchomp's sweep will be stopped by choice band Rillaboom. Take note because anything that isn't banded grassy glide is not a guaranteed kill

252+ Atk Life Orb Rillaboom Grassy Glide vs. -1 0 HP / 0 Def Garchomp in Grassy Terrain: 325-383 (91 - 107.2%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO

To conclude this, the freedom of item choice Garchomp has allows one to tailor it to beat whatever your team needs to be gone and create an opening to exploit. Perhaps most important of all, is its own above average defensive stats for an offensive pokemon allows it to take even super effective hits unlike most of its fellow offensive mons and I've mentioned this in the vr but I'll add more details to it here. Let's compare it to a scenario that isn't too unreasonable to happen. Take for example, the third kick on a triple axel from a Weavile missed that Corviknight or you miscalculated your Koko's dazzling gleam on that Hippowdon. If that happens, those two are gonna die. Garchomp on the other hand, if its earthquake failed to kill that Fini, you can still eat the incoming moonblast and finish it off. I'm not saying Chomp is necessarily better since the point here is that Garchomp is more forgiving to mistakes, both your own and if its some rng nonsense. That is something that is very useful since everybody makes mistakes and while Garchomp doesn't really offer that much compared to its fellow offensive mons, this one quality can have a huge impact in the battle

While I've shared some items that makes Chomp much more threatening, it is possible that there might be more so if anyone has, share it
 
I have to agree with this. The lack of pursuit really hurt Tyranitar since it would become very fat from devouring the Dragapults running around and Spectriers from before but its stab are really nasty. The only common ones that can resist it is Garchomp and Ferrothorn, neither of which are that keen to switch into the wrong move. Urshifu could count but it's not as common as the other two thanks to its role as a breaker. Aside from Tyranitar's typing that leaves it vulnerable to pretty much all of the offensive mons, the biggest issue with Tyranitar is that stone edge is more accurate than aura sphere when your opponent uses it and is less accurate than fissure if you use it which can easily make or break a game

I do want to ask, is there anything that Tyranitar needs to outspeed?


While on it, I might as well share a little change that I did that can really mess up the opponent. I never made a post about it in detail so I'll take this one to explain why. That pokemon is of course, sharky boi






I've always spoke highly about Garchomp this generation and in the end, it really is among the best pokemon in ou. I wanna talk about the reasons why I think our sharky boi is doing so great. There are two reasons for this and they go hand in hand. Also, I've been using this as a dedicated setup sweeper because let's be real, this thing fails horribly as a dedicated wall breaker and unlike other setup sweepers, Garchomp can also act as a backup wall breaker and aid your own dedicated one thanks to swords dance, which also allows it to come online much earlier than other sweepers

First off is the reduced level of power. I think it is fair to say that current gen eight ou has a significantly lower power level when compared to last gen. This makes a huge difference and allows one of Garchomp's unique qualities, it's stats, to actually matter since without z moves, it won't be on its last legs if it is forced to eat a hit. The other quality that makes it so potent is its typing which offers some unique qualities. Now, before I continue, let's grab a snack. Only berries are available and there are only three choices. So, take your pick. :yache berry: :lum berry: :roseli berry:. If you don't like those, go buy a burger or something

Garchomp's stealth rock resistance is once again coming into play and thanks to its typing, you really cannot afford to run a choice item for most of the time. These two combined allows Chomp to have more freedom in its item choices and tailor it to beat what you want it to beat. Lefties is the standard on Garchomp but with how the meta keeps changing, I would think that it's a huge waste because one time snacks can easily allow Garchomp to go out of control. All of these are pretty are straightforward and yache berry should pretty much be obvious. Apparently gamefreak did their homework because hammerhead sharks really don't live in cold waters. With the rise of Weavile, a stray ice shard can easily spell doom for Chomp's attempt rip apart an enemy team. Well, with yache berry, you completely turn the tables against that. Garchomp's stats also play a huge role. I mean

252+ Atk Weavile Ice Shard vs. -2 0 HP / 0 Def Yache Berry Garchomp: 284-336 (79.5 - 94.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

That is after two scale shots and adamant Weavile still fails to stop Garchomp. If an opposing team's only method of dealing with Chomp is a Weavile revenge kill, they're in for a nasty surprise. Although don't do this against specs Kyurem. Its ice is literally from Antarctica and it powers thru the yache berry

While I believe yache is the best item for our sharky boi, I would say that lum is also a perfectly viable option. The most common way to not get rekt by Garchomp is by slowing it down and aside from Landorus' intimidate, the other common way is to poison it with something like a ballsy Heatran or fishing for burns with Toxapex. With lum berry, these desperate moves suddenly become completely wasted as now, Garchomp gets a swords dance and threatens to kill something or just straight up sweep. All in all, lum berry just ensures that a desperate Lando or Heatran trying to poison you won't slow you down. Compared to yache, I think lum is a better item because Weavile isn't on every team while toxic is almost always on every team

Lastly, is roseli berry. I haven't had enough experiments with this yet but scarf Lele is a thing and it revenge kills everything that isn't a scarf Kartana. Like with the other two, it should be straightforward. Stay in against a Lele murder attempt and kill it right back. Hell you can even stay in against specs variants and kill it right back. Of course, Lele isn't the only victim since you can also stay in against specs Koko and get rid of the opponent's speed control. Out of the three snacks, I would say that roseli is too specific since if you get that scale shot boost, neither of these two will be a problem but it could come in handy if the only thing standing between your team and the opponent's is that speedy fairy

However, despite these items, Garchomp almost never runs stone edge anymore which means that it is completely hard countered by Mandibuzz and Togekiss. On the other hand, Mandibuzz is incredibly rare while Togekiss is basically non existent and even if they are used, they have major opportunity costs so in the end, things aren't too bad. Despite all this, Garchomp's sweep will be stopped by choice band Rillaboom. Take note because anything that isn't banded grassy glide is not a guaranteed kill

252+ Atk Life Orb Rillaboom Grassy Glide vs. -1 0 HP / 0 Def Garchomp in Grassy Terrain: 325-383 (91 - 107.2%) -- 43.8% chance to OHKO

To conclude this, the freedom of item choice Garchomp has allows one to tailor it to beat whatever your team needs to be gone and create an opening to exploit. Perhaps most important of all, is its own above average defensive stats for an offensive pokemon allows it to take even super effective hits unlike most of its fellow offensive mons and I've mentioned this in the vr but I'll add more details to it here. Let's compare it to a scenario that isn't too unreasonable to happen. Take for example, the third kick on a triple axel from a Weavile missed that Corviknight or you miscalculated your Koko's dazzling gleam on that Hippowdon. If that happens, those two are gonna die. Garchomp on the other hand, if its earthquake failed to kill that Fini, you can still eat the incoming moonblast and finish it off. I'm not saying Chomp is necessarily better since the point here is that Garchomp is more forgiving to mistakes, both your own and if its some rng nonsense. That is something that is very useful since everybody makes mistakes and while Garchomp doesn't really offer that much compared to its fellow offensive mons, this one quality can have a huge impact in the battle

While I've shared some items that makes Chomp much more threatening, it is possible that there might be more so if anyone has, share it
I personally still like running Stone Edge on Chomp because I like Stealth Rock + Swords Dance for role compression. It's not really a threat to sweep itself without Scale Shot boosts, but if it can break the opposing Defogger while keeping Rocks up it can open up holes for something else. Chomp is still easily one of the best mons in the tier and offers so much at once, and the main reason it's not standard on most teams is because of how silly and splashable Lando-T is. But it is good to think about Chomp's item, because while Leftovers is always nice, it may not be the best option depending on what Chomp is trying to do. Lum for example doesn't do much if you're running Stone Edge + EQ coverage alongside Fini, but could be very useful on other kinds of teams. And Berries that let Chomp tank a SE hit from a revenge killer or shrug off a status can be decisive in pulling off a sweep and do fit well with Chomp's offensive nature and respectable defenses.
Edit: Speaking of YacheChomp, Yache Berry letting you tank random Ice Punches and the like while chipping away at checks with Rough Skin is so satisfying. Breaking a mostly healthy defensive Buzzwole like this is a nice feeling. [Gen 8] OU replay: YOungarcinine vs. heavylobster43 - Pokémon Showdown (pokemonshowdown.com)
 
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I personally still like running Stone Edge on Chomp because I like Stealth Rock + Swords Dance for role compression. It's not really a threat to sweep itself without Scale Shot boosts, but if it can break the opposing Defogger while keeping Rocks up it can open up holes for something else. Chomp is still easily one of the best mons in the tier and offers so much at once, and the main reason it's not standard on most teams is because of how silly and splashable Lando-T is. But it is good to think about Chomp's item, because while Leftovers is always nice, it may not be the best option depending on what Chomp is trying to do. Lum for example doesn't do much if you're running Stone Edge + EQ coverage alongside Fini, but could be very useful on other kinds of teams. And Berries that let Chomp tank a SE hit from a revenge killer or shrug off a status can be decisive in pulling off a sweep and do fit well with Chomp's offensive nature and respectable defenses.
Yeah I was talking about sweeper Chomp. Imo, the sd edgequake sr set on Garchomp is very hard to justify. Without life orb, you don't two shot Corviknight which is a huge issue and we all know how horrible stone edge accuracy is if you're the one using it. Aside from tank chomp, which I still don't get the point since there is no more Cinderace to bully, the only good rocks Garchomp is mixed since it doesn't need to set up and can reliably get rid of all defoggers not named boots Tornadus

That's why I just resorted to using Garchomp as the main sweeper on my teams because it can really be hard to stop and it benefits from every wall breaker in the tier. Other setup sweepers like Dragonite or Volcarona just require far more support than Garchomp does and even pokemon that rely on their natural speed to sweep such as Pult, Koko and Weavile don't have the freedom of item that Garchomp has nor are they as capable of eating strong hits

Personally, I find Landorus and offensive Garchomp to be distinguishable enough that I legit use them on every single team on the slots of utility and dedicated sweeper respectively, unless of course my team that vulnerable to a certain threat in which case I replace Lando with another mon, usually Heatran. On how I build my teams, I can usually afford another mon for speed control which can also act as a backup sweeper. Usually this is Dragapult because Pult is crazy good but as a setup sweeper, I just don't think any mon is gonna top Garchomp's consistency
 
Yeah I was talking about sweeper Chomp. Imo, the sd edgequake sr set on Garchomp is very hard to justify. Without life orb, you don't two shot Corviknight which is a huge issue and we all know how horrible stone edge accuracy is if you're the one using it. Aside from tank chomp, which I still don't get the point since there is no more Cinderace to bully, the only good rocks Garchomp is mixed since it doesn't need to set up and can reliably get rid of all defoggers not named boots Tornadus

That's why I just resorted to using Garchomp as the main sweeper on my teams because it can really be hard to stop and it benefits from every wall breaker in the tier. Other setup sweepers like Dragonite or Volcarona just require far more support than Garchomp does and even pokemon that rely on their natural speed to sweep such as Pult, Koko and Weavile don't have the freedom of item that Garchomp has nor are they as capable of eating strong hits

Personally, I find Landorus and offensive Garchomp to be distinguishable enough that I legit use them on every single team on the slots of utility and dedicated sweeper respectively, unless of course my team that vulnerable to a certain threat in which case I replace Lando with another mon, usually Heatran. On how I build my teams, I can usually afford another mon for speed control which can also act as a backup sweeper. Usually this is Dragapult because Pult is crazy good but as a setup sweeper, I just don't think any mon is gonna top Garchomp's consistency
I've mostly been leaning towards Lando-T over Chomp on my recent teams for that reason in terms of a utility Rocker with offensive presence anyways. Mixed Chomp is cool as a Rocks setter and lure even if Landos have been trending more specially defensive and tanking Dracos better. And it is true that Corviknight is a huge pain for Stone Edge Chomp, if I run that I usually want something else that can exploit Corv. Stone Edge Chomp I think still has use clearing out stuff like Zapdos and Mandibuzz on Magnezone + Kartana teams or something similar to that. But all-out Sweeper Chomp is usually the best set for the various reasons you mentioned, as it's very threatening and has item versatility. I love me some Volcarona sweeps, but it can only run Boots, can't do much while Heatran's in play, etc. Garchomp is bulky enough to be able to switch in freely and consistently put dents in stuff and threatens sweeps without ever feeling like dead weight.
 
I have to agree with this. The lack of pursuit really hurt Tyranitar since it would become very fat from devouring the Dragapults running around and Spectriers from before but its stab are really nasty. The only common ones that can resist it is Garchomp and Ferrothorn, neither of which are that keen to switch into the wrong move. Urshifu could count but it's not as common as the other two thanks to its role as a breaker. Aside from Tyranitar's typing that leaves it vulnerable to pretty much all of the offensive mons, the biggest issue with Tyranitar is that stone edge is more accurate than aura sphere when your opponent uses it and is less accurate than fissure if you use it which can easily make or break a game

I do want to ask, is there anything that Tyranitar needs to outspeed?
I do want to add that urshifu has issues switching in if it's only 90% health or less, since It can't reliably switch in more than once to Stone edge, especially if hazards are up. I admit that it's a bit specific but I feel like it's worth noting
Regarding the speed, from experience I find that ttar needs to have the speed surpass mostly corvi and skarmory
Those 2 rarely run speed tough, so It's not hard to reach the benchmark needed to outspeed them
The spread Abhi posted also assures that ttar can outspeed Heatrans with no investment on speed as well, which is something that can really be helpful imho
 
:sm/tornadus-therian:

hello there, since we are in the mood of sharing good mons/sets currently, I'd like to share some thoughts on what is slowly becoming one of my favourite pokèmon to use in ou teams: tornadus-therian. this human-bird has been annoying ou players since gen 6 due to its knock off / uturn + regenerator antics, but in this gen it has gained two pretty big tools: a pair of timberlands and the ability to boost itself with malicious intent.
despite that, its gen 8 ou history hasn't been as brilliant as everyone thought it would at the beginning, but as time went on everyone has finally acknowledge its greatness.
HOWEVER, what I want to showcase is a set that I haven't seen nearly as much as the regular pivot and nasty plot sets, which is assault vest.
This set is fantastic at being a quick utility pivot that can sponge a suprisingly vast amount of special attacks and just be annoying af with its trusty uturn+knock off+regenerator asset. unfortunately, the downside of assault vest is requiring hazard control because stealth rock undercuts regenerator value and tornadus' effective bulk by 25% which is a lot, but without hazards this set becomes one of the most annoying pokèmon to bring down.

:assault vest:
Tornadus-Therian (M) @ Assault Vest
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 224 HP / 64 Def / 52 SpD / 168 Spe
Timid Nature
- Hurricane
- Heat Wave / Icy Wind
- Knock Off

- U-turn

this is a spread I came up with starting from this calc...

252 SpA Choice Specs Dragapult Shadow Ball vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 112-133 (31.5 - 37.4%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Stealth Rock

...and completing it with its precious speed tier beating base 110s and adamant weavile, which of course includes top tier threats and tornadus victims in kartana and urshifu-r. the remaining defense is to maximise odds of surviving a boosted life orb grassy glide from rillaboom after rocks which is relevant because hurricane ohkos uninvested rillaboom with hurricane.

+2 252+ Atk Life Orb Rillaboom Grassy Glide vs. 224 HP / 64 Def Tornadus-Therian in Grassy Terrain: 230-270 (64.7 - 76%) -- 12.5% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock

this set also works wonders in dealing with other top tier special attackers (even ones tornadus is weak to) like kyurem and tapu lele and more underrated ones like the aforementioned nidoking. it does not outright counter any of them, but it helps so much dealing with them, eases a lot of predictions and allows the tornadus user to take more risks in difficult situations.
the move choice between heat wave and icy wind comes down purely to team structure and if you need a hit vs steel types or vs the many x4 weak to ice threats in ou. it also makes you beat pult 1v1, even if you switch into it locking shadow ball with rocks up, which is wild. is also helps with koko trying to switch in, being slown down and safely uturned on.

VS :dragapult:

252 SpA Choice Specs Dragapult Draco Meteor over 2 turns vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 276-325 (77.7 - 91.5%) -- not a KO
252 SpA Choice Specs Dragapult Shadow Ball vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 112-133 (31.5 - 37.4%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Choice Specs Dragapult Thunder vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 206-244 (58 - 68.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Choice Specs Dragapult Thunderbolt vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 170-200 (47.8 - 56.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock

you can always switch in with or without rocks to at least scout. if it locks shadowball, it's forced out unless it wants to lose its specs. from full hp you can also always switch into one of its stabs or coverage moves (flamethrower deals no damage considering how low the specs shadowball calc is). the shadowball calc also means that, without rocks, if the first one drops your special defense, the second one will never ko tornadus.

VS :kyurem:
252+ SpA Kyurem Ice Beam vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 222-264 (62.5 - 74.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
200 SpA Kyurem Freeze-Dry vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 152-182 (42.8 - 51.2%) -- 5.5% chance to 2HKO

the ice beam calc shows that you can stay in on either scarf (bad set don't use it) or specs and remove its item and live ice beam, in case you need it.
also, removing a specs from kyurem if it predicts the steel type with epower of blast is game-changing, and you would only consider doing that if you could live a modest ice beam.

VS :tapu lele:
252 SpA Tapu Lele Psychic vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian in Psychic Terrain: 132-156 (37.1 - 43.9%) -- 98.4% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Tapu Lele Moonblast vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 108-127 (30.4 - 35.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Tapu Lele Psyshock vs. 224 HP / 64 Def Tornadus-Therian in Psychic Terrain: 189-223 (53.2 - 62.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

252 SpA Choice Specs Tapu Lele Psychic vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian in Psychic Terrain: 198-234 (55.7 - 65.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Choice Specs Tapu Lele Moonblast vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 160-190 (45 - 53.5%) -- 38.7% chance to 2HKO
252 SpA Choice Specs Tapu Lele Psyshock vs. 224 HP / 64 Def Tornadus-Therian in Psychic Terrain: 283-334 (79.7 - 94%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

specs pult's shadowball dealing less than scarf lele's psychic is funny, but that's not the topic. tornadus can switch in on scarf lele without rocks with no issue, even tanking two moonblast with rocks up, and process to take its scarf off which could be immense for a potential teammate like weavile. the specs psychic calc means that tornt can at least switch in once or twice, only really fearing modest psyshocks, but most importantly, means that it can always stay in if it is at 75% and take lele's item, which is massive, especially if it is scarf lele.

VS :nidoking:
252+ SpA Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Sludge Wave vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 149-177 (41.9 - 49.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
252+ SpA Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Ice Beam / Thunderbolt vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 190-224 (53.5 - 63%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252+ SpA Life Orb Sheer Force Nidoking Flamethrower vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian: 95-112 (26.7 - 31.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Stealth Rock

nido doesnt 2hko with sludge wave without rocks and can't ohko it with rock even if it clicks the supereffective move. also a quick knock off would cut its damage output massively.

VS :tapu koko:
252 SpA Tapu Koko Thunderbolt vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian in Electric Terrain: 212-252 (59.7 - 70.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock
+1 252 SpA Tapu Koko Thunderbolt vs. 224 HP / 52 SpD Assault Vest Tornadus-Therian in Electric Terrain: 320-378 (90.1 - 106.4%) -- 37.5% chance to OHKO

I personally wouldn't try to deal with koko using a tornadus lol but these are useful interactions to remember especially if you're running icy wind. you can survive a clutch thunderbolt and slow the koko down. these interactions are pretty rare but can win you a couple of lost games.

tl;dr use assault vest tornadus-t. it's amazing.

BONUS SETS
Knock Off + Nasty Plot

Tornadus-Therian (M) @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 188 HP / 148 SpA / 172 Spe
Timid Nature
- Knock Off
- Nasty Plot
- Hurricane
- Heat Wave


knock off + nasty plot is a very useful combination that allows torn-t to bring utility early game and wallbreaking potential mid-to-late game. hurricane is bad enough so dont plague yourself with focus miss, you'll wear heatran and ttar down eventually and it's much better to safely drop kartana and other steel types. the spread jumps standard torn-t spread by 1 point, guarantees to ohko defog corvi after rocks with heat wave, leaving the remaining evs to hp for overall bulk increase.
+2 148 SpA Tornadus-Therian Heat Wave vs. 248 HP / 92 SpD Corviknight: 350-412 (87.7 - 103.2%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock

Taunt "Stallbreaker"

Tornadus-Therian (M) @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Timid Nature
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 136 HP / 204 Def / 168 Spe
- Hurricane / Heat Wave
- Knock Off
- Taunt
- Toxic / Defog


taunt tornt is a big mofo because it messes with slower cores, especially with the combination of toxic + knock off. heat wave is better for pressuring steel types such as ferrothorn, corviknight and kartana, but hurricane deals more damage to common defensive staples like pex and clef, two very prominent pokèmon to use taunt against. this spread isn't mine, I got it from here and it lives zeraora's plasma fists from full hp.
 

Windingsss

good 4 you
is a Top Social Media Contributoris a Contributor to Smogon
"When life gives you Corviknights, you Fire Blast 'em" - Me apparently
RELEASE THE MIXCHOMP
:bw/garchomp:

Hey all! As other people have done this kind of posts recently, i've decided i should make one too. It has been a few months since my last Metagame Discussion post but this time i've decided to showcase this Garchomp set i've been using for a while. In this post i'll explain the set, why would you use it, some of it issues and i'll also leave a couple of teams and replays! Lets get into it.

1. The set

Garchomp @ Life Orb
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 4 Atk / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Naive / Hasty / Serious Nature
- Draco Meteor
- Fire Blast
- Earthquake
- Stealth Rock

This has been my favorite Garchomp set since the Zama-C meta because Garchomp has great stats and an ok special movepool, and it can catch opponents predicting a SD set. As Garchomp answers are usually Steel-types like Corviknight and Ferrothorn (among others like Buzzwole), it can take advantage of it and run Fire Blast with Life Orb to damage them severely. Draco Meteor is used because its a great option against neutrals like Landorus-T and Tornadus-T (For example, it can heavily chip the former one with Fire Blast while it switches into Draco Meteor). I picked Earthquake as its Ground STAB move since its useful even after Draco Meteor's SpA reduction. Last but not least, we have Stealth Rock, which you can set when predicting a Corviknight or Ferrothorn switch, or after luring and damaging these ones as they switch out. You can pick between a Naive and Hasty Nature, since i think you always need max Speed with Garchomp to get the jump on stuff like Shifu-R, but a Serious Nature is OK if you dont want decreased bulk. Rough Skin can come in handy vs the likes of Landorus-T and Zeraora.

2. Ok but... Why should i use it?

Great question. As i've mencioned before, this set works as a lure for the likes of Corviknight, Skarmory, Ferrothorn, Buzzwole, Scizor, etc; removing these from the equation can benefit breaking teammates like Weavile, which can lead into a devastating win with the right predictions, and its Life Orb-boosted Earthquake and Draco Meteor can dent opponents like Toxapex and Tornadus-T respectively into your teammates' KO range. This set isnt hard to fit into a team either; Bulky Offense teams that appreciate this threats being removed from the game addore it, and it also offers Stealth Rock and a semi-Ground, so you dont really need to fit these ones later.

3. What are some good teammates?

So, this set is very linear and i've explained it over the past paragraphs so instead of making various other paragraphs for a lot of teammates i'll just put all of them in the same and explain overall!

Wallbreakers
:ss/kartana: :ss/weavile: :ss/dragapult: :ss/melmetal: :ss/scizor:

These are the biggest beneficiaries from this set, as they appreciate their checks being removed from the matches. Kartana can go wild with its Choice Band and Scarf sets after the Steel birds are chipped or removed; Weavile gets more setup opportunities after Buzzwole and Corv are dead; Dragapult appreciates the chip Mixchomp offers on Pokemon like Tapu Fini and Tornadus-T; and similarly to Kartana, Melmetal and Scizor are steels that usually get walled by the Steel birds, but not anymore! They also appreciate Garchomp's Dragon typing, as it can take on certain Fire-types like Victini and Heatran with the right predictions.​

4. D-does it come without issues!?

Sorry to let you down, but it doesnt. This set can struggle vs the likes of Clefable and Tapu Fini as its attacks can't deal enough damage, and Life Orb can wear it down through the match; this can be dangerous if you're using Garchomp as your main answer to Electric-types. Plus, even though Garchomp has an above-average Speed tier, its usually not enough to use this set in a more offensive way against opponents like Kartana, so its usually forced to take Steels out and then try to chip the opponent's team as much as it can.

5. Alright, do you have teams, or replays, or something???

Yeah! I'll list two teams below and a replay where this set worked!

First team: (click sprites for paste!)

I built this team for CPL (Cosmic Premier League) Week 6, where i was facing damflame. I had the idea of building something around IronPress Melmetal and decided this was the team after creating different, more passive versions. I went with double trapper here as i thought it'd have a great matchup vs fat teams and could support Melmetal enough, and Heatran + Fini is a nice defensive core too. I added Tornadus-T as i needed speed control, hazards control and a pivot, and it worked decently. Plus, i needed a Ground inmunity. Garchomp was next; it could break the stuff Melm and Weav had problems against and provided rocks too. Finally, Weavile abused the trapping core and Garchomp, gave me a bit more of Speed control and its a threatening sweeper as a whole.

Second team: (click sprites for paste!)

This is a team i submitted to Teambuilding Competition that i had from before, and you can see an explanation of the team here, since im too lazy to write it again.

Replay: Vs Damflame

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1396025607

This is a match from CPL week 6 showcasing first team! First thing i noticed here was that i was facing a fat team, and that my opponent probably didnt expect my sets (Trapper Fini, Mixchomp, IronPress Melm), so i thought i had an edge over them here. I tried to weaken their main defensive staples (Corviknight and Toxapex) with a decent success, and with Rotom-H poisoned, Melmetal would have a better time overall long-term. However, it got owned by Quagsire, so i quickly noticed i needed it out of the match. I sent the Trapper Fini, and it worked. From there, i thought i had a clear advantage over my opponent.

I tried to deal as much chip as i could with Fini before it died, and then decided to send the Ironpress Melm. I started pressuring the Rotom-H with Garchomp and Heatran some turns after, and pretty much got it out. This allowed me to paralyze the Toxapex and start flinching it down to death, but i decided i should try to get more chip with Rocks, so i sent Garchomp, and after my opponent sacked their Corviknight, my Weavile had a very smooth path to clean. Pex switched in once again, and after getting it low, my opponent decided to preserve it and let Buzzwole take an attack.

At that moment, i thought Weavile could give me the win, so i tried to play around the Blissey, and finally, decided to sack my Heatran after chipping it. Some SDs and paralysis later, i won.

Overall, the trapping core + Mixchomp had a great matchup against this team; Garchomp specifically took out Corviknight and dealt with Heattom, two roadblocks to my team, and could also threaten Buzzwole, but my opponent decided to not risk it after revealing the set.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I hope you enjoyed this post! If you haven't tried Mixchomp, you should give it a spin on ladder, or even bring it to a tournament. If you have any doubts, you can post a message on my wall or DM me on Discord (Windingss#8996). See you all later! :blobwizard:
 
everyone's doing this so uhhh i guess its time for me to write up something!


Melmetal @ Leftovers
Ability: Iron Fist
EVs: 252 Atk / 244 SpD / 12 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Protect
- Double Iron Bash
- High Horsepower
- Thunder Wave

This is a criminally underrated set, with most of the attention being diverted towards variants with protective pads, AV, or choice band. This set allows melmetal to somewhat address it's problems with recovery, at the cost of less power, less special bulk, and being annoyed by rocky helmet.

While these are certainly significant problems, I think that this set still works pretty well. In particular, if paired with a grassy terrain user, it gets a frankly absurd amount of recovery with just one protect. It also happens to be nice to lower the power of earthquakes. Naturally, you'd want to run high horsepower in these cases. This doesn't make any significant difference in my experience- the most annoying thing is the 1/20 chance for it to miss, which is almost completely irrelevant. if it learned stomping tantrum there would be a case for using it for funny interactions where something swaps into melm protecting and then gets stomping tantrumed with double power In any case, the additional recovery lets it easily check threats such as Arctozolt, grass types, and approximately every physical attacker not ground type (and even those sometimes!) over the course of a game. Even if lefties gets knocked, you can still abuse grassy terrain recovery. While this should probably not be your sole check, it can serve quite well as a backup.

The decision between twave and toxic depends on your team- if your team traps steel types (especially corviknight) well, and otherwise doesn't really want twave support for other reasons, toxic may be better to allow it to break through bulky waters and Tangrowth better. However, twave has the huge advantage of allowing melm to lure in Corviknight, and twave it, allowing other pokemon such as Hex Dragapult to more easily overcome it. It's also generally useful for other stuff- twaving a setup sweeper like Dragonite or a scarfer like Kartana makes them far less effective at their job, while twaving stuff like ferrothorn helps you overwhelm it with pokemon like (again) Hex Dragapult. Protect is also generally useful for scouting various choice locked mons, allowing you to more easily pivot around them. There's also some para flinch shenanigans you can do, but be aware of your low pp.


here's a team if you want to try this out- https://pokepast.es/63201c1529df6de3

replays:
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1418135560 melm did a thing against sun. what. kyurem swapped out of it the first time since i had played my opponent before and they saw protect on melm.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1417704838-p5p72598cj0ad802z0f4gl17tlbwsf5pw para flinching corv down 26-28

i dont have many replays bc like an idiot i forget to save wins lol

thank you for reading this, here is a meme i made:
 
"When life gives you Corviknights, you Fire Blast 'em" - Me apparently
RELEASE THE MIXCHOMP
:bw/garchomp:

Hey all! As other people have done this kind of posts recently, i've decided i should make one too. It has been a few months since my last Metagame Discussion post but this time i've decided to showcase this Garchomp set i've been using for a while. In this post i'll explain the set, why would you use it, some of it issues and i'll also leave a couple of teams and replays! Lets get into it.

1. The set

Garchomp @ Life Orb
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 4 Atk / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Naive / Hasty / Serious Nature
- Draco Meteor
- Fire Blast
- Earthquake
- Stealth Rock

This has been my favorite Garchomp set since the Zama-C meta because Garchomp has great stats and an ok special movepool, and it can catch opponents predicting a SD set. As Garchomp answers are usually Steel-types like Corviknight and Ferrothorn (among others like Buzzwole), it can take advantage of it and run Fire Blast with Life Orb to damage them severely. Draco Meteor is used because its a great option against neutrals like Landorus-T and Tornadus-T (For example, it can heavily chip the former one with Fire Blast while it switches into Draco Meteor). I picked Earthquake as its Ground STAB move since its useful even after Draco Meteor's SpA reduction. Last but not least, we have Stealth Rock, which you can set when predicting a Corviknight or Ferrothorn switch, or after luring and damaging these ones as they switch out. You can pick between a Naive and Hasty Nature, since i think you always need max Speed with Garchomp to get the jump on stuff like Shifu-R, but a Serious Nature is OK if you dont want decreased bulk. Rough Skin can come in handy vs the likes of Landorus-T and Zeraora.

2. Ok but... Why should i use it?

Great question. As i've mencioned before, this set works as a lure for the likes of Corviknight, Skarmory, Ferrothorn, Buzzwole, Scizor, etc; removing these from the equation can benefit breaking teammates like Weavile, which can lead into a devastating win with the right predictions, and its Life Orb-boosted Earthquake and Draco Meteor can dent opponents like Toxapex and Tornadus-T respectively into your teammates' KO range. This set isnt hard to fit into a team either; Bulky Offense teams that appreciate this threats being removed from the game addore it, and it also offers Stealth Rock and a semi-Ground, so you dont really need to fit these ones later.

3. What are some good teammates?

So, this set is very linear and i've explained it over the past paragraphs so instead of making various other paragraphs for a lot of teammates i'll just put all of them in the same and explain overall!

Wallbreakers
:ss/kartana: :ss/weavile: :ss/dragapult: :ss/melmetal: :ss/scizor:

These are the biggest beneficiaries from this set, as they appreciate their checks being removed from the matches. Kartana can go wild with its Choice Band and Scarf sets after the Steel birds are chipped or removed; Weavile gets more setup opportunities after Buzzwole and Corv are dead; Dragapult appreciates the chip Mixchomp offers on Pokemon like Tapu Fini and Tornadus-T; and similarly to Kartana, Melmetal and Scizor are steels that usually get walled by the Steel birds, but not anymore! They also appreciate Garchomp's Dragon typing, as it can take on certain Fire-types like Victini and Heatran with the right predictions.​

4. D-does it come without issues!?

Sorry to let you down, but it doesnt. This set can struggle vs the likes of Clefable and Tapu Fini as its attacks can't deal enough damage, and Life Orb can wear it down through the match; this can be dangerous if you're using Garchomp as your main answer to Electric-types. Plus, even though Garchomp has an above-average Speed tier, its usually not enough to use this set in a more offensive way against opponents like Kartana, so its usually forced to take Steels out and then try to chip the opponent's team as much as it can.
The greatest advantage of mix Garchomp is that it completely burns Corvibirb, the most common defogger while handling Tornadus at the same time. Tornadus will prove to be an issue since even after rocks, it doesn't die to draco so you need some chip on it. I would say that mix Garchomp is the second best stealth rocker in the tier, only beaten by Heatran since it can play the long game against Tornadus via toxic, not to mention that using a different Garchomp set means you won't be using the sweeper one. Imo, it should be added to Garchomp's analysis page since mix Chomp is very annoying especially when its teammates can put pressure on the fairies

While on the topic on mix Chomp, I've personally been using a spread of 40 Atk / 252 SpA / 216 Spe or 32 Atk / 252 SpA / 224 Spe with a naive nature. The first one is to get the jump on Urshifu while the second is on Hydreigon. Since our Hydra friend is rare, I've mostly been using the first and using it to support mons like scarf Kartana. Dumping the rest into attack is just to improve the odds against the ever irritating faries and the even more irritating Toxapex. Since there is no Medicham or Charizard anymore, I don't see the need to max out speed


thank you for reading this, here is a meme i made:

This meme is so accurate lmao. Lele and Kyurem are just screaming murder at every single turn and Corviknight just mocking Skarmory is fucking hilarious. And that is why I hate using Volcarona lmao. It's completely helpless against Heatran
 
This meme is so accurate lmao. Lele and Kyurem are just screaming murder at every single turn and Corviknight just mocking Skarmory is fucking hilarious. And that is why I hate using Volcarona lmao. It's completely helpless against Heatran
for corviknight, i meant it to be like contemplating how much better skarm is and the new competition
But this is the beauty of art- we can all take different perspectives on the same meme
 

clean

formerly Fumes
Hello everyone, I would like to share a very underutilized set that needs more attention.


:dragonite:
Dragonite @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Multiscale
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Relaxed Nature
- Earthquake
- Ice Beam
- Roost
- Heal Bell​

Defensive/Utility Dragonite is a fantastic mon that is able to blanket check a lot of threats in the current OU meta. It can reliably switch in to Heatran, Urshifu (lacking Ice Punch), Kartana, Rillaboom, Victini, etc. Is also a hardstop to most rain/sun teams. Can absorb any hit from Barraskewda, even without multiscale intact. While not only providing amazing defensive utility, access to Heal Bell allows Dragonite and his teammates to safely absorb status without many repercussions.

By no means is this set perfect. It beats choice locked variants of Kartana for example, but will have a lot of trouble dealing with SD variants without support from teammates. Dragonite is also not a late game wincon with this set as he is when running dragon dance.

I have been using the dragonite on bulky offense teams a lot lately, but probably has quite a bit of potential to round out stall teams needing to check various offensive threats.

I don't have a ton to write about, but I'll provide a replay of a game I played recently where Dragonite put in major work removing status from his teammates and being a great magma storm absorber.


https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1420900696-hocc211tr466vmx9pptygnvg9ae8py0pw
 
Hello :D another trash sam post is coming soon [tm] and id like to talk about cp mew,gastrodon,volcanion and terrakion. Now it might look like 3 uu mons and an annoying mon which has well low usage. also gastro isnt uu i think but this is ou. GASTRODON Gastro is a complete goat. Beats things like melmetal and barraskewda if physdef and like volcanion,kingdra , heatran, cm clef if clear smog otherwise. and well its good for the ppl like me who get cted by hailcanion. I just invented something. Yay. Calcs go here- MELMETAL 252+ Atk Choice Band Melmetal Superpower over 2 turns vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gastrodon: 352-415 (82.6 - 97.4%) -- not a KO 0 SpA Gastrodon Earth Power vs. 32 HP / 0 SpD Melmetal: 258-306 (61.5 - 73%) -- guaranteed 2HKO Barraskewda 252+ Atk Choice Band Barraskewda Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gastrodon: 189-223 (44.3 - 52.3%) -- 17.6% chance to 2HKO
0 SpA Gastrodon Earth Power vs. -1 0 HP / 0 SpD Barraskewda: 237-279 (90.1 - 106%) -- 37.5% chance to OHKO
252+ Atk Choice Band Barraskewda Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Gastrodon: 189-223 (44.3 - 52.3%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery HEATRAN oh and sun and modest=death

252+ SpA Choice Specs Heatran Eruption (150 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Gastrodon: 165-194 (38.7 - 45.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
0 SpA Gastrodon Earth Power vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Heatran: 340-408 (105.2 - 126.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO KINGDRA
252+ SpA Choice Specs Kingdra Draco Meteor over 2 turns vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Gastrodon: 344-407 (80.7 - 95.5%) -- not a KO
just toxic it. smh. recover into toxic.
CLEFABLE +1 0 SpA Life Orb Clefable Moonblast vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Gastrodon: 156-185 (36.6 - 43.4%) -- 98.6% chance to 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
clear the smog Volcanion 252+ SpA Choice Specs Volcanion Earth Power vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Gastrodon: 132-156 (30.9 - 36.6%) -- guaranteed 4HKO after Leftovers recovery DIE 0 SpA Gastrodon Earth Power vs. 248 HP / 8 SpD Volcanion: 198-234 (54.5 - 64.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO


COSMIC POWER MEW.- with a weakness policy it can bait pex into knocking. You can run body press to hit mr heatran and dark types. you can run speedy taunt to not get status but completely get walled by darks unless your roostless which is bad.
You can beat unaware clef unless cm. Got a bunch of replays. Replays-https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1416499988-fdqw4rk9swbxy6zupd2aavxxxjxh918pw https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1418407237-08cfi3kt1wvf6o3xputtyy2vjs55oncpw
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1413772675-959dx42sbc8js7jwepypub6rianvisipw
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1411246551-898yw9llb13iipupr42smlm25rvisf0pw
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1408060031-l9pzen3jz4nu4dza2rjlemjdadw0tqqpw Really an mu fish. Also have 8 replays where i won but i got crit but we dont need that do we ? Also peaked 1800 something
b.PNG
Terrakion- This mon is really just murderous. With band it can 2hko corviknight and with fs has 1 counter in prediction.It can 2hko the majority of landos who are spdef and can clean up with close combat. It outspeeds blacpehelon and is goated. I dont have any replays here cause im not proud of semi stall. It also can act like a rocker on ho or a set up sweeper with sub sd stone edge cc or sd rock polish stone edge cc. Volcanion- It became popular with the rise of Ox Hail and is a great rain mon being able to 2hko fatass blissey and fat toxapex in rain. It also beats the few hail switchins. I shall make a post on via rank later by which i mean a week later. Anyways thats all have a great night/evening/afternoon/mornin. SAM OUT :D.
 
Last edited:

TailGlowVM

Playing Black 2 Dexit Challenge
is a Pre-Contributor
As has always been the case with OU, Ground-types continue to dominate the tier, and are considered mandatory for virtually any viable team. The historical reason for this has always been that you needed a Ground-type to deny Volt Switch from the various Electric-types, but the three main Electric-types almost never run Volt Switch, and less-used options like Zapdos and Magnezone don't always use it either. Only Rotom-W and the rare Toxtricity are really guaranteed to be running it, and both easily beat all the most important Ground-types anyway. So, what has happened?

The first explanation is that Electric-types still have to be checked - since in past metas they usually ran Hidden Power Ice to hit the most important Ground-types, usually this needed a defensive Grass-type to do properly. However, various factors have caused the various defensive Grass-types to be unviable in this meta (other than Ferrothorn, which does not check Bulk Up Zeraora and is vulnerable to bring trapped by Magnezone), forcing specially defensive Ground-types to take over this role. There are some other Pokemon that check certain Electric-types well, such as Magnezone for Tapu Koko and Buzzwole for Zeraora, but none are able to deal with all of them, they will almost certainly need support from a Ground-type. (I could go on about the Ground vs Electric matchup for paragraphs longer, but I know that airfare wanted to do a post about Electric-types, so I'll leave that to him and go back to Ground-types only.)

The other big reason that I believe Ground-types have continued to remain mandatory is the ever-important Stealth Rock. I didn't actually think about it before checking stuff for this post, but we have surprisingly few other Pokemon to set Stealth Rock - only Clefable, Heatran, Tyranitar, Skarmory, Blissey and Ferrothorn can viably do so out of relevant Pokemon, and most of them would rather run other moves or completely different sets most of the time.

Checking Ground-types is, in itself, not the simplest task to do. They are the main reason why you see a Flying-type, typically with Defog, on every single team, be it Corviknight, Skarmory, Landorus-T itself (though, somehow, I've never thought of Landorus as a "real" Flying-type - probably because it isn't checked by Electrics and doesn't resist Grass), Tornadus-T, Dragonite, Zapdos or even Hawlucha. The only other Ground-type resistances are Buzzwole, which is generally far too easy to overwhelm to be the team's only Ground-check, Hydreigon, which fails to switch into every relevant Ground-type, or the occasional Tangrowth. The best Ground-types have ways to pressure nearly all of them, though, since nearly every Flying-type hates the ever-prominent Knock Off and can quickly wear them down with hazards, and several of them carry Toxic or a Rock-type move.

Finally, Ground-types are useful offensively into common Pokemon such as Toxapex, Galarian Slowking, and Steel-types, especially Heatran.

So, now that I've analysed the type as a whole, I thought I'd do a more in-depth summary of each Ground-type.

:landorus_therian: We all know what Landorus does, but sometimes I don't think about why it so consistently remains good (other than "It's Landorus-T lol"), even in metagames where Weavile and Urshifu-R are everywhere or those where hail rises out of the nothingness to the A-ranks. Landorus remains crucial to many team structures in every metagame as it provides the important Ground and Electric-type immunities, can either set or remove hazards, wallbreak, revenge kill, and will always find a way to check nearly half the tier (at least temporarily). While specially defensive sets with Stealth Rock or Defog are the most common set (mainly because they fill those important roles I talked about in previous paragraphs), it can also run Swords Dance, specially defensive Bulk Up, choiced sets, or occasionally suicide lead sets on hyper offense.

:garchomp: Ever since Zygarde's ban in the early days of the Crown Tundra, Garchomp has proven itself an important part of OU. It mainly uses Swords Dance sets with Scale Shot that are able to combine both wallbreaking and sweeping or defensive Stealth Rock sets that can temporarily check nearly everything in the tier with its massive bulk and Rough Skin chip damage. Recently, Garchomp has began to fall off a little, though. It very often lacks the versatility and utility that Landorus-T can provide, and it finds itself unable to utilise its Ground-typing to check Tapu Koko. There are a number of trends against it as well, such as the return of Buzzwole, hail, Weavile, and Slowbro steadily becoming better. Still very much a relevant and important threat to consider, and maybe it will rise up again to the top 5 some day.

:hippowdon: Previously considered heavily outclassed without Cinderace in the tier, Hippowdon managed to make a resurgence with specially defensive sets, which let it check Dragapult, Volcarona and Heatran, and most importantly deal with the various Electric-types better. Unfortunately, its passivity restricts it only to bulkier balance and stall teams, and it usually finds itself the most easily pressurable Pokemon on the planet, making it often check Electric-types a bit less well than it first seems it should. Give me back Gliscor now Game Freak

:nidoking: Nidoking was, for a considerable length of time, probably the most unwallable Pokemon in the tier, courtesy of Urshifu-S, Pheromosa and co demanding Clefable/Toxapex/Zapdos type defensive cores. While currently we are not quite as favourable towards it, it is often extremely good at breaking down balanced teams and forcing trades versus bulky offense now that Slowking has all but disappeared from the tier and Blissey is rare. Its mediocre bulk, lacking speed and occasionally underwhelming power do hold it back, but when built with carefully Nidoking can still be highly rewarding.

:excadrill: It doesn't feel like long ago that Excadrill was A-rank, back in the Magearna meta. Now it lies forgotten, ready to drop to UU in a few days time (I can imagine some older gen players crying right now if they were able to see that we managed to kill all of Skarmory, Tyranitar and Excadrill's streaks in OU in the same generation...) While clearly Excadrill is long beyond its prime days, I think some people underrate it a bit: it's a good Arctozolt check and the only Ground-type that checks Tapu Koko long-term. We'll have to see if it manages to make a comeback at some point..

:gastrodon_east: Gastrodon is used on bulkier teams mainly for its ability to be the best Heatran check in the tier, and it is also the only Pokemon that can check Choice Specs Volcanion in rain. Unfortunately, it is often difficult to justify on teams due to its extreme passivity and lack of momentum, and Light Screen Toxapex is often preferred as a Heatran-checking Water-type on balance teams.

:swampert: Once the initial hype of a starter getting a cool new move died off, we realised that Flip Turn didn't really do that much for Swampert, it still is a Stealth Rock setter that has a good typing to check a lot of things but terrible longevity. It can still work fairly well on certain teams as a pivot and rocker, usually structures such as Grassy Terrain teams.

:mamoswine: I tried Mamoswine a bit a while ago and wasn't sold on it - it's walled by Corviknight (not usually a good start), provides near zero utility and doesn't have a lot to stand out offensively. Maybe I'm using it wrong though, if anyone more experienced with it thinks they can make it work then good luck.

:quagsire: Quagsire is an alternative to Unaware Clefable on stall teams, providing more physical bulk to better check Pokemon like Melmetal and Tyranitar and the ability to be a secondary Heatran check. Its viability ends up constrained mainly because of stall's limited viability in general.

:seismitoad: While defensive Seismitoad from the days of Dracovish has not lasted, it is a solid option on rain teams, providing Stealth Rock so you don't need it on Ferrothorn as well as an extremely useful Electric immunity. There have been some different things seen on it, like Focus Punch to lure in Ferrothorn and Blissey.

I'd finally like to mention a few things I think people should use to take advantage of Ground-types. We've already seen things like Volcanion, Arctozolt and Weavile rise up partly for their favourable matchup into the various options, and I think there might be a couple more underexplored Pokemon to try:

:heatran:
Heatran @ Air Balloon
Ability: Flame Body
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid / Modest Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Magma Storm
- Earth Power
- Will-O-Wisp

This Heatran set is supposed to be a lead for hyper offense, where it can attempt to force in and cripple the various Ground-types with Will-O-Wisp, and it can do other useful things to: it can fish for burns against Weavile and Urshifu, which can help out other Pokemon on hyper offense, and it easily keeps Stealth Rock up against the most common Defoggers.

:tapu_koko:
Tapu Koko @ Choice Specs
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Thunderbolt
- Dazzling Gleam
- Volt Switch
- U-turn

I have found Grass Knot on Choice Specs Tapu Koko to be a waste: you don't OHKO Swampert, Gastrodon or Hippowdon, and all are pretty easy to pressure with your other Pokemon. I'd instead run double pivot moves: U-turn lets you pivot out of Landorus-T and Hippowdon, and is useful when you don't want to have to risk Volt Switch or Dazzling Gleam when playing against a team with something like Garchomp and Ferrothorn. Where Choice Specs Tapu Koko is most effective is against cores like Garchomp + Heatran, where Volt Switch easily forces a lot of damage onto Heatran. Choice Specs also guarantees the 3HKO on Landorus-T and Hippowdon with Dazzling Gleam after Stealth Rock, meaning you can pressure them much better as well.

:tyranitar:
Tyranitar @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe (can also run some bulk)
Adamant Nature
- Stone Edge
- Crunch / Assurance
- Fire Punch
- Ice Punch / Heavy Slam

To be honest I don't have much to say about Tyranitar that Abhi hasn't above, other than that most potential switch-ins are the now-forgotten physically defensive Ground-types, making it near unwallable in the present meta.
 
As has always been the case with OU, Ground-types continue to dominate the tier, and are considered mandatory for virtually any viable team. The historical reason for this has always been that you needed a Ground-type to deny Volt Switch from the various Electric-types, but the three main Electric-types almost never run Volt Switch, and less-used options like Zapdos and Magnezone don't always use it either. Only Rotom-W and the rare Toxtricity are really guaranteed to be running it, and both easily beat all the most important Ground-types anyway. So, what has happened?

The first explanation is that Electric-types still have to be checked - since in past metas they usually ran Hidden Power Ice to hit the most important Ground-types, usually this needed a defensive Grass-type to do properly. However, various factors have caused the various defensive Grass-types to be unviable in this meta (other than Ferrothorn, which does not check Bulk Up Zeraora and is vulnerable to bring trapped by Magnezone), forcing specially defensive Ground-types to take over this role. There are some other Pokemon that check certain Electric-types well, such as Magnezone for Tapu Koko and Buzzwole for Zeraora, but none are able to deal with all of them, they will almost certainly need support from a Ground-type. (I could go on about the Ground vs Electric matchup for paragraphs longer, but I know that airfare wanted to do a post about Electric-types, so I'll leave that to him and go back to Ground-types only.)

The other big reason that I believe Ground-types have continued to remain mandatory is the ever-important Stealth Rock. I didn't actually think about it before checking stuff for this post, but we have surprisingly few other Pokemon to set Stealth Rock - only Clefable, Heatran, Tyranitar, Skarmory, Blissey and Ferrothorn can viably do so out of relevant Pokemon, and most of them would rather run other moves or completely different sets most of the time.

Checking Ground-types is, in itself, not the simplest task to do. They are the main reason why you see a Flying-type, typically with Defog, on every single team, be it Corviknight, Skarmory, Landorus-T itself (though, somehow, I've never thought of Landorus as a "real" Flying-type - probably because it isn't checked by Electrics and doesn't resist Grass), Tornadus-T, Dragonite, Zapdos or even Hawlucha. The only other Ground-type resistances are Buzzwole, which is generally far too easy to overwhelm to be the team's only Ground-check, Hydreigon, which fails to switch into every relevant Ground-type, or the occasional Tangrowth. The best Ground-types have ways to pressure nearly all of them, though, since nearly every Flying-type hates the ever-prominent Knock Off and can quickly wear them down with hazards, and several of them carry Toxic or a Rock-type move.

Finally, Ground-types are useful offensively into common Pokemon such as Toxapex, Galarian Slowking, and Steel-types, especially Heatran.

So, now that I've analysed the type as a whole, I thought I'd do a more in-depth summary of each Ground-type.

:landorus_therian: We all know what Landorus does, but sometimes I don't think about why it so consistently remains good (other than "It's Landorus-T lol"), even in metagames where Weavile and Urshifu-R are everywhere or those where hail rises out of the nothingness to the A-ranks. Landorus remains crucial to many team structures in every metagame as it provides the important Ground and Electric-type immunities, can either set or remove hazards, wallbreak, revenge kill, and will always find a way to check nearly half the tier (at least temporarily). While specially defensive sets with Stealth Rock or Defog are the most common set (mainly because they fill those important roles I talked about in previous paragraphs), it can also run Swords Dance, specially defensive Bulk Up, choiced sets, or occasionally suicide lead sets on hyper offense.

:garchomp: Ever since Zygarde's ban in the early days of the Crown Tundra, Garchomp has proven itself an important part of OU. It mainly uses Swords Dance sets with Scale Shot that are able to combine both wallbreaking and sweeping or defensive Stealth Rock sets that can temporarily check nearly everything in the tier with its massive bulk and Rough Skin chip damage. Recently, Garchomp has began to fall off a little, though. It very often lacks the versatility and utility that Landorus-T can provide, and it finds itself unable to utilise its Ground-typing to check Tapu Koko. There are a number of trends against it as well, such as the return of Buzzwole, hail, Weavile, and Slowbro steadily becoming better. Still very much a relevant and important threat to consider, and maybe it will rise up again to the top 5 some day.

:hippowdon: Previously considered heavily outclassed without Cinderace in the tier, Hippowdon managed to make a resurgence with specially defensive sets, which let it check Dragapult, Volcarona and Heatran, and most importantly deal with the various Electric-types better. Unfortunately, its passivity restricts it only to bulkier balance and stall teams, and it usually finds itself the most easily pressurable Pokemon on the planet, making it often check Electric-types a bit less well than it first seems it should. Give me back Gliscor now Game Freak

:nidoking: Nidoking was, for a considerable length of time, probably the most unwallable Pokemon in the tier, courtesy of Urshifu-S, Pheromosa and co demanding Clefable/Toxapex/Zapdos type defensive cores. While currently we are not quite as favourable towards it, it is often extremely good at breaking down balanced teams and forcing trades versus bulky offense now that Slowking has all but disappeared from the tier and Blissey is rare. Its mediocre bulk, lacking speed and occasionally underwhelming power do hold it back, but when built with carefully Nidoking can still be highly rewarding.

:excadrill: It doesn't feel like long ago that Excadrill was A-rank, back in the Magearna meta. Now it lies forgotten, ready to drop to UU in a few days time (I can imagine some older gen players crying right now if they were able to see that we managed to kill all of Skarmory, Tyranitar and Excadrill's streaks in OU in the same generation...) While clearly Excadrill is long beyond its prime days, I think some people underrate it a bit: it's a good Arctozolt check and the only Ground-type that checks Tapu Koko long-term. We'll have to see if it manages to make a comeback at some point..

:gastrodon_east: Gastrodon is used on bulkier teams mainly for its ability to be the best Heatran check in the tier, and it is also the only Pokemon that can check Choice Specs Volcanion in rain. Unfortunately, it is often difficult to justify on teams due to its extreme passivity and lack of momentum, and Light Screen Toxapex is often preferred as a Heatran-checking Water-type on balance teams.

:swampert: Once the initial hype of a starter getting a cool new move died off, we realised that Flip Turn didn't really do that much for Swampert, it still is a Stealth Rock setter that has a good typing to check a lot of things but terrible longevity. It can still work fairly well on certain teams as a pivot and rocker, usually structures such as Grassy Terrain teams.

:mamoswine: I tried Mamoswine a bit a while ago and wasn't sold on it - it's walled by Corviknight (not usually a good start), provides near zero utility and doesn't have a lot to stand out offensively. Maybe I'm using it wrong though, if anyone more experienced with it thinks they can make it work then good luck.

:quagsire: Quagsire is an alternative to Unaware Clefable on stall teams, providing more physical bulk to better check Pokemon like Melmetal and Tyranitar and the ability to be a secondary Heatran check. Its viability ends up constrained mainly because of stall's limited viability in general.

:seismitoad: While defensive Seismitoad from the days of Dracovish has not lasted, it is a solid option on rain teams, providing Stealth Rock so you don't need it on Ferrothorn as well as an extremely useful Electric immunity. There have been some different things seen on it, like Focus Punch to lure in Ferrothorn and Blissey.

I'd finally like to mention a few things I think people should use to take advantage of Ground-types. We've already seen things like Volcanion, Arctozolt and Weavile rise up partly for their favourable matchup into the various options, and I think there might be a couple more underexplored Pokemon to try:

:heatran:
Heatran @ Air Balloon
Ability: Flame Body
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid / Modest Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Magma Storm
- Earth Power
- Will-O-Wisp

This Heatran set is supposed to be a lead for hyper offense, where it can attempt to force in and cripple the various Ground-types with Will-O-Wisp, and it can do other useful things to: it can fish for burns against Weavile and Urshifu, which can help out other Pokemon on hyper offense, and it easily keeps Stealth Rock up against the most common Defoggers.

:tapu_koko:
Tapu Koko @ Choice Specs
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Thunderbolt
- Dazzling Gleam
- Volt Switch
- U-turn

I have found Grass Knot on Choice Specs Tapu Koko to be a waste: you don't OHKO Swampert, Gastrodon or Hippowdon, and all are pretty easy to pressure with your other Pokemon. I'd instead run double pivot moves: U-turn lets you pivot out of Landorus-T and Hippowdon, and is useful when you don't want to have to risk Volt Switch or Dazzling Gleam when playing against a team with something like Garchomp and Ferrothorn. Where Choice Specs Tapu Koko is most effective is against cores like Garchomp + Heatran, where Volt Switch easily forces a lot of damage onto Heatran. Choice Specs also guarantees the 3HKO on Landorus-T and Hippowdon with Dazzling Gleam after Stealth Rock, meaning you can pressure them much better as well.

:tyranitar:
Tyranitar @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe (can also run some bulk)
Adamant Nature
- Stone Edge
- Crunch / Assurance
- Fire Punch
- Ice Punch / Heavy Slam

To be honest I don't have much to say about Tyranitar that Abhi hasn't above, other than that most potential switch-ins are the now-forgotten physically defensive Ground-types, making it near unwallable in the present meta.
Not sure if you need both u turn and volt considering you have gleam. But I feel I am wrong
 
As has always been the case with OU, Ground-types continue to dominate the tier, and are considered mandatory for virtually any viable team. The historical reason for this has always been that you needed a Ground-type to deny Volt Switch from the various Electric-types, but the three main Electric-types almost never run Volt Switch, and less-used options like Zapdos and Magnezone don't always use it either. Only Rotom-W and the rare Toxtricity are really guaranteed to be running it, and both easily beat all the most important Ground-types anyway. So, what has happened?


:gastrodon_east: Gastrodon is used on bulkier teams mainly for its ability to be the best Heatran check in the tier, and it is also the only Pokemon that can check Choice Specs Volcanion in rain. Unfortunately, it is often difficult to justify on teams due to its extreme passivity and lack of momentum, and Light Screen Toxapex is often preferred as a Heatran-checking Water-type on balance teams.
Rereading this again, now I'm confused. Aside from Koko and Zeraora, who is the third main electric type? And I'm probably missing something here but doesn't Gastrodon just get toxiced and its ability to check Heatran becomes limited just like Slowking?

Not sure if you need both u turn and volt considering you have gleam. But I feel I am wrong
Its not needed but at the same time, it's not exactly a bad idea. Tailglow already mentioned the reasoning on why not to run grass knot and using both switch moves gives Koko flexibility. Satan forbid if you click u turn straight into a rocky helmet Garchomp and rocks are on the field. You straight up lose thirty percent of your hp in just one turn and that number increases to forty two the next time you come in if rocks are on the field. Volt switch would also be boosted by Koko's terrain and stab and isn't a contact move so the other irritation in Ferrothorn won't be able to chip you
 

TailGlowVM

Playing Black 2 Dexit Challenge
is a Pre-Contributor
Not sure if you need both u turn and volt considering you have gleam. But I feel I am wrong
Volt Switch is used to do much more damage to stuff like Heatran, Galarian Slowking, and Clefable, and avoid Iron Barbs chip from Ferrothorn, while U-turn lets you pivot out of Ground-types.
not OP but i'd assume they were talking about Arctozolt :arctozolt:
Yes.
 
Since everyone’s been highlighting underrated sets, I thought I’d do the same.

Protect Blaziken :blaziken:

As people who have seen my VR posts are no doubt aware of, I think blaziken is criminally underrated in the current metagame. Swords dance is an excellent set for hyper offence, but outside of that archetype it can be difficult to find opportunities to safely set up with its initially poor speed and frailty. I believe the key to synergize blaziken with standard offensively inclined teams is protect. Here is the set I’ve had most success with.

:bw/blaziken:
Blaziken @ Life Orb
Ability: Speed Boost
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Protect
- Flare Blitz
- Close Combat
- Knock Off​

Life orb is essential to maintain Blaziken’s impressive damage output despite forgoing swords dance. Ability and evs are standard (my unique ev spreads won’t work for non sd blaze). A jolly nature is chosen to 1v1 zeraora and dragapult in conjunction with protect. Stabs are mandatory as usual. I experimented with sd+protect, but it struggles to break through its checks and knock off is much more useful for ohkoing pult unboosted, getting strong damage on slowtwins+victini, removing lefties from checks that rely on them like lando and fini, and general utility.

Why use this set?
The two primary reasons to use this set are speed control and lategame cleaning. A free +1 Blaziken is faster than all relevant non scarfed forms of speed control outside of weather. This provides the average offense team an exceptional tool vs some of the mons it struggles with the most, namely dragapult and zeraora. Protect is also useful for scouting out sets like twave ferro and scarf fini(check for hydro pump). This set also shines in lategame cleaning thanks to protect because it lessens the difficulty the sd set has with finding a mon to outspeed and ko lategame to kick off a sweep, since u can stay in on numerous offensive mons and take advantage of their vulnerability to blaziken’s stabs/knock off after a boost.

Cons of this set:
The biggest flaw in this set is the lack of breaking power. Toxapex and Fini come in considerably easier on attacks from this set rather than taking a +2 thunder punch, although fini can be worn down after knocking lefties. The second biggest con, and I am not joking, is the dumbass plays you will certainly make vs Urshifu-RS. “I’ll just scout with protect in case it doesn’t use aqua jet.” I cannot handle myself. I know what shifu’s ability does, I know I have a switchin, but for some reason I protect anyway.

Good teammates:
Anything that lures in pex (tpunch shifu, unexpected trappers like fire spin victini, etc.) Water switchins are useful, ferrothorn in particular can set spikes to wear down blaziken’s checks and check fini and lando. Double fire cores with banded victini I’ve been having considerable success with thanks to bolt strike’s high damage output on shared checks. A solid ground switchin is necessary to use this core (I’ve been quite liking blaziken/victini/corviknight). Fs users also pair well with protect blaziken since they can help it to beat pex, slowbro can check offensive grounds as well. Rotom-w is brilliantly paired with blaziken, bringing a water resist and electric moves, flying resist, ground immunity, pivot move, and blaziken appreciates it’s ability to bring it in on ferrothorn and other mons it forces out easily.

The end

Edit: changed to the bw sprite cause that’s my vibe rn
 
Last edited:
Since everyone’s been highlighting underrated sets, I thought I’d do the same.

Protect Blaziken :blaziken:

As people who have seen my VR posts are no doubt aware of, I think blaziken is criminally underrated in the current metagame. Swords dance is an excellent set for hyper offence, but outside of that archetype it can be difficult to find opportunities to safely set up with its initially poor speed and frailty. I believe the key to synergize blaziken with standard offensively inclined teams is protect. Here is the set I’ve had most success with.

:ss/blaziken:
Blaziken @ Life Orb
Ability: Speed Boost
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Protect
- Flare Blitz
- Close Combat
- Knock Off​

Life orb is essential to maintain Blaziken’s impressive damage output despite forgoing swords dance. Ability and evs are standard (my unique ev spreads won’t work for non sd blaze). A jolly nature is chosen to 1v1 zeraora and dragapult in conjunction with protect. Stabs are mandatory as usual. I experimented with sd+protect, but it struggles to break through its checks and knock off is much more useful for ohkoing pult unboosted, getting strong damage on slowtwins+victini, removing lefties from checks that rely on them like lando and fini, and general utility.

Why use this set?
The two primary reasons to use this set are speed control and lategame cleaning. A free +1 Blaziken is faster than all relevant non scarfed forms of speed control outside of weather. This provides the average offense team an exceptional tool vs some of the mons it struggles with the most, namely dragapult and zeraora. Protect is also useful for scouting out sets like twave ferro and scarf fini(check for hydro pump). This set also shines in lategame cleaning thanks to protect because it lessens the difficulty the sd set has with finding a mon to outspeed and ko lategame to kick off a sweep, since u can stay in on numerous offensive mons and take advantage of their vulnerability to blaziken’s stabs/knock off after a boost.

Cons of this set:
The biggest flaw in this set is the lack of breaking power. Toxapex and Fini come in considerably easier on attacks from this set rather than taking a +2 thunder punch, although fini can be worn down after knocking lefties. The second biggest con, and I am not joking, is the dumbass plays you will certainly make vs Urshifu-RS. “I’ll just scout with protect in case it doesn’t use aqua jet.” I cannot handle myself. I know what shifu’s ability does, I know I have a switchin, but for some reason I protect anyway.

Good teammates:
Anything that lures in pex (tpunch shifu, unexpected trappers like fire spin victini, etc.) Water switchins are useful, ferrothorn in particular can set spikes to wear down blaziken’s checks and check fini and lando. Double fire cores with banded victini I’ve been having considerable success with thanks to bolt strike’s high damage output on shared checks. A solid ground switchin is necessary to use this core (I’ve been quite liking blaziken/victini/corviknight). Fs users also pair well with protect blaziken since they can help it to beat pex, slowbro can check offensive grounds as well. Rotom-w is brilliantly paired with blaziken, bringing a water resist and electric moves, flying resist, ground immunity, pivot move, and blaziken appreciates it’s ability to bring it in on ferrothorn and other mons it forces out easily.

The end
I usually dont run knock on blaze since pult is dying to plus two blitz after rocks and some chip. And there is not other relavant ghost in ou at the moment. You could possibly go tpunch to get coverage on fini and pex. But ig u can still be useful by knocking
 
I usually dont run knock on blaze since pult is dying to plus two blitz after rocks and some chip. And there is not other relavant ghost in ou at the moment. You could possibly go tpunch to get coverage on fini and pex. But ig u can still be useful by knocking
I've never tried blaziken in this gen but I feel like tpunch is too weak unboosted and with pex's regen the damage is unremarkable (barely 2hko spdef pex after rocks). life orb + helmets + blitz really wears down blaziken trying to catch pex switchins, especially with lando who can intimidate and dissuade the use of tpunch. Knock off is still useful against bulky cores but most importantly because protect blaziken is more effective against faster cores, which means koing pult is huge.
Tpunch is more useful on SD sets or at the very least alongside tapu koko for that x1.3 extra power that makes it a sound 2hko on pex from full.
 
I usually dont run knock on blaze since pult is dying to plus two blitz after rocks and some chip. And there is not other relavant ghost in ou at the moment. You could possibly go tpunch to get coverage on fini and pex. But ig u can still be useful by knocking
The usefulness of being able to outspeed and ohko pult lategame cannot be understated, because specs pult is perhaps the best cleaner in ou. I also find knock off useful for making progress vs teams with dnite, since protect blaziken with tpunch is doing nothing in those games, and getting rid of dnite’s boots makes it easier to break through it. I actually find knock off to be better vs fini than tpunch, since unboosted tpunch is really not impressive damage and fini has no recovery outside of lefties and draining kiss(which is rly unreliable) making it easy to wear down after a knock. The obvious sacrifice imo is the rain mu, since u essentially let peli in for free(although knocking off damp rock is helpful). Tpunch is obviously still an option, but knock off offers more consistency on a game to game basis imo.
 
The usefulness of being able to outspeed and ohko pult lategame cannot be understated, because specs pult is perhaps the best cleaner in ou. I also find knock off useful for making progress vs teams with dnite, since protect blaziken with tpunch is doing nothing in those games, and getting rid of dnite’s boots makes it easier to break through it. I actually find knock off to be better vs fini than tpunch, since unboosted tpunch is really not impressive damage and fini has no recovery outside of lefties and draining kiss(which is rly unreliable) making it easy to wear down after a knock. The obvious sacrifice imo is the rain mu, since u essentially let peli in for free(although knocking off damp rock is helpful). Tpunch is obviously still an option, but knock off offers more consistency on a game to game basis imo.
I get it now. But i am a regular user of tpunch blaze on HO. My blaze is just the standard sd three attack lorb. It was weird to see knock. Glad you clarified :)
 

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