Resource SS OU Viability Ranking Thread [Pre-DLC]

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Move aside Pangoro, you're irrelevant (let's just be honest with ourselves). Instead, introducing Vikavolt, who I'd nominate for B-
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Vikavolt @ Choice Specs / Heavy Duty Boots
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 56 HP / 252 SpA / 200 Spe
Serious Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Bug Buzz
- Volt Switch
- Thunderbolt / Roost
- Sticky Web / Roost

Why does this have a niche in OU? Think of it as a bug-rotom form that has 145 spatk, sticky webs, but unfortunately really slow

No pun intended, but it's an absolute pest for common balance cores - none in the top tier are able to resist both STABs bar Kommo-o who is free webs. Top tier offensive switch ins also hate this thing, and it allows you to get a lot of chip. Here is a list of all A+ and S tier ranks:

Balance Core:
Clefable: need specs to 2HKO, but applies plenty of pressure without specs. apply webs on protect. 252+ SpA Vikavolt Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Clefable: 135-160 (34.2 - 40.6%)
Corviknight: toast
Ferrothorn: free switch. 252+ SpA Vikavolt Bug Buzz vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Ferrothorn: 154-183 (43.7 - 51.9%)
Hippowdon: toast. free switch. 252+ SpA Vikavolt Bug Buzz vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Hippowdon: 229-270 (54.5 - 64.2%)
Kommo-o: free webs, volt switch out
Seismitoed: free switch. 252+ SpA Vikavolt Bug Buzz vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Seismitoad: 220-261 (53.1 - 63%)
Toxapex: toast
Mandibuzz: toast

Offensive:
Zeraora: zera is forced to switch out, gets OHKO'd by specs. 252+ SpA Vikavolt Bug Buzz vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Zeraora: 211-249 (66.5 - 78.5%)
Hydreigon: can't switch in
Conkeldurr: can't switch in. OHKO'd by specs tbolt. 252+ SpA Vikavolt Thunderbolt vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Conkeldurr: 247-292 (70.3 - 83.1%)
Dragapult: lovely chip. 252+ SpA Choice Specs Vikavolt Volt Switch vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Dragapult: 129-152 (40.6 - 47.9%)
Aegislash: KO'd if blade form, specs aegi cannot OHKO back
Rotom-Heat: lovely chip. 252+ SpA Choice Specs Vikavolt Bug Buzz vs. 248 HP / 0 SpD Rotom-Heat: 123-146 (40.5 - 48.1%)
Excadrill: lovely chip. 252+ SpA Choice Specs Vikavolt Bug Buzz vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Excadrill: 186-219 (51.5 - 60.6%)

What this thing will accomplish for you:
  • Applies pressure and weakens common defensive AND offensive cores early/mid game. An absolute pest for the first 10-20 turns
  • Punishes every ferrothorn, hippowdon, seismitoed, toxapex switch. Chips Dragapult to put it in shadow sneak range. Weakens Rotom-H so it can't pressure you back.
  • People are too focused on webs that they forget the power. I've had Mews and Mandibuzz use taunt on me before getting KO'd
  • The bug is surprisingly hard to KO. Everything that can KO the bug doesn't like switching into it. Unique typing + ability means not a ton of super effective moves
  • Gets amazing chip or straight up trades. If your opponent keeps Zeraora in on this thing, by all means
  • Amazing web user since it creates so many switches and destroys all common defoggers. But honestly, from my experience, the sheer damage output outweighs the utility of webs that you're better off spamming STABs unless your team is built for webs
  • Maintain momentum with (specs boosted) volt switch. No ground type likes to switch in except excadrill, who I love getting chip on. Drill can't OHKO back
  • Specs tbolt / bug buzz are stronger than Kyurem's modest specs ice beam and specs shadow ball aegislash
  • Meta-wise, people are less familiar with this and will misplay you
  • NOT a suicide lead. Don't do that. It's bad. Suicide lead alone deserves to be unranked
Drawbacks: There is a lot of competition for slow wallbreakers, like specs Aegislash and Conkeldurr. And there are pokemon that are slightly weaker but faster like Kyurem, Chandelure. However, there is still a viable niche because of Vikavolt's unique STAB combination that is particularly good against the meta, its access to webs that differentiates it against the aforementioned threats, ability to maintain momentum with volt switch (which none of the aforementioned can do either) and defensive typing that actually finds its uses. Overall, I think B-
 
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Move aside Pangoro, you're irrelevant (let's just be honest with ourselves). Instead, introducing Vikavolt, who I'd nominate for B-
My main issue with the Choice Specs set, is that there's more protect spam this gen. Combine that with a SR weak mon, and specs looks better on paper than in practice to me.

For a wallbreaking role, having access to a +2 boosting move (like SD or NP) is a major factor to determining viability imo
 
My main issue with the Choice Specs set, is that there's more protect spam this gen. Combine that with a SR weak mon, and specs looks better on paper than in practice to me.

For a wallbreaking role, having access to a +2 boosting move (like SD or NP) is a major factor to determining viability imo
It's true. BUT you could use webs or just spam STABs anyways as even a resisted specs bug buzz will do huge damage against offensive switch ins with resistances like Rotom-H, Dragapult, and Excadrill, so protect is less annoying than you think. From team preview you'll know whether the bug will get 1-2 kills right away. If your opponent has protect users + ground type + corviknight (4x bug resist), then the bug is pretty screwed.

I should have listed HDB first and Specs second, because I think HDB is more viable. HDB does not care about protect since you can webs against it and just spam volt switch. No ground type likes switching in except Excadrill, which will get worn down quickly

I don't think you should look at Vikavolt as just a wallbreaker. As just a wallbreaker, it might be C- or unranked. Where Vikavolt gets viability is its ability to maintain momentum with volt switch or hit with webs, with no other wallbreaker can do. Vikavolt volt switch on a Rotom-H switch in, allowing you to get a free rocks or knock off with Seismitoed, etc.
 
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I agree that Vika is underrated, but Choice-locked Electrics without Trick are pretty much unviable at the moment (on which note, LO Toxtricity > Specs). Stick with HDB Roost, it absolutely shits on standard Clef/Pex/Corv or Ferro/Ground-type builds and is right up there with SubTox Salazzle and the aforementioned Encore Sableye as a genuinely good set just waiting for its turn in the spotlight.

(By the way, Is Dracovish Banned Yet?, you put a Serious nature instead of a Modest one. =P)

EDIT: So I just realised I'm in the viability ranking thread, not the meta discussion thread. Oops. Uhm. In that case, I agree with Vika and Sableye being ranked at C- to start off with pending further playtesting by people who aren't me, and I strongly agree with Salazzle jumping straight into the big leagues at A-. I've been waiting for my Corrosive girl to get noticed since last gen and I'm so glad it's finally happened. <3 I'm not so sold on Pangoro, though; it's certainly usable (and fun), but it's just so thoroughly outclassed by Conk and Sirfetch'd that I don't think it has a place on what's supposed to be a resource for new players. Vika and Sab might be niche, but at least their niches are unique.
 
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I think that Durant should be raised from C- to at least C+

I don't think that Durant is a top threat, but I certainly don't think that it's on the same viability as Shedinja.

Hustle is a solid ability that goes well with Max Moves, and Hone Claws makes up for the accuracy drop as well as giving more power coming off a relatively scary 109 attack stat (It also makes up for the attack drop on Superpower). Bug Steel is a good type especially in this meta since the only two fire types in OU are Cinderace and Rotom-Heat, both of which are huge problems for Durant, but not enough to warrant C-. Durant's speed tier is also great, it won't be outspeeding any scarfers, but it's still faster than threats such as Non-Scarf Terrakion, Excadrill and Hydreigon, as well as all sets of Kyurem, Kommo-o, and many more, the speed is important because Iron Head's 30% chance to flinch. There's more reasons but I think the point has been made.

I will say I don't spend a huge portion of my time playing competitive, so I might sound like a complete idiot, but if Durant is indeed garbage, I want to know why.
 

Ausma

Bonafide Monafide!
is a Pre-Contributor
I think that Durant should be raised from C- to at least C+

I don't think that Durant is a top threat, but I certainly don't think that it's on the same viability as Shedinja.

Hustle is a solid ability that goes well with Max Moves, and Hone Claws makes up for the accuracy drop as well as giving more power coming off a relatively scary 109 attack stat (It also makes up for the attack drop on Superpower). Bug Steel is a good type especially in this meta since the only two fire types in OU are Cinderace and Rotom-Heat, both of which are huge problems for Durant, but not enough to warrant C-. Durant's speed tier is also great, it won't be outspeeding any scarfers, but it's still faster than threats such as Non-Scarf Terrakion, Excadrill and Hydreigon, as well as all sets of Kyurem, Kommo-o, and many more, the speed is important because Iron Head's 30% chance to flinch. There's more reasons but I think the point has been made.

I will say I don't spend a huge portion of my time playing competitive, so I might sound like a complete idiot, but if Durant is indeed garbage, I want to know why.
Despite how your Max Move point doesn't hold ground anymore in a post-Dynamax meta, I do want to use this as an opportunity to advocate for Durant again, maybe not for C+ but at least C. Because, despite the support it's gotten, I do kind of want to go more in depth about Durant and its potential in our current metagame.

:ss/durant:

Prior to the Home meta, Durant already had some things going for it. It had STAB First Impression, Hustle, an amazing Speed tier for an offensive Steel type, surprisingly potent coverage, and more of an offensive niche with Scizor gone through Dexit. I've expressed a few times before about the sheer potency of this thing offensively, and how it possesses some fairly admirable traits that are fairly effective in this metagame; however, the poster above me mentioned a variable that I completely forgot about until now: Hone Claws.

While Durant is more generally consistent running Choice sets for the immediate power that First Impression is able to launch, Hone Claws variants are surprisingly strong balance breakers that--with Hustle, its speed tier, and coverage--are able to at least punch huge holes in the opposition. Due to the threat of Choiced First Impression, these variants are able to feign the more widespread set and snag a free Hone Claws boost on the switch. With Rock Slide, Thunder Fang, Stomping Tantrum, Crunch, and Superpower at its disposal, even things that are supposedly good checks against it defensively fold majorly on the switchin. It works decently well on Balance, but it especially shines on Screens HO and appreciates the safer, more consistent HC boost. It synergizes fantastically with common HO cleaners such as Kommo-O or DD Pult due to its ability to greatly weaken the opposition and threaten Clefable.

Though, what makes this set surprisingly potent doesn't just come through the power boost, but also the accuracy boost and Durant's speed tier. Not only is getting the jump on most non-scarved threats barring Zeraora/Pult/Gengar is an absolute boon for it by itself, however, offsetting the accuracy fault of Hustle mostly erases the inconsistent drawback that made it a more C- worthy Pokemon. Its offensive typing also goes without saying; thrashing Clefable in this metagame is a pretty big factor.

Durant @ Life Orb
Ability: Hustle
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Hone Claws
- Iron Head
- Rock Slide
- Superpower / Thunder Fang

This is the set I've tended to run, and this set definitely does work. The two coverage moves are generally interchangeable, but I most enjoy Rock Slide and Superpower, as nailing Seismitoad and Rotom-Heat is fairly good given that they both trouble it offensively otherwise, and that Corviknight is hit neutrally by both. Even without Crunch, Gengar/Pult fold to Iron Head on the switch-in regardless, but you shouldn't be hard switching either of them in unless they're 10% confident you're going to First Impression them, which is another reason I really enjoy Hone Claws variants. You lose out to either Seismitoad or Physically defensive Corviknight one way or another, however.

Additionally, I greatly enjoy this set as well, but it's much more gimmicky and inconsistent than Hone Claws/CB.

Durant @ Life Orb
Ability: Hustle
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- First Impression
- Iron Head
- Rock Slide / Superpower
- Hone Claws

This thing is extremely weird; First Impression with Hone Claws? It's super weird, but it is an absolutely fantastic bluff. Having a great Revenge Killing option on top of having a great boosting move to use after baiting a switch once you pull out the priority move is solid for punching holes. Though, this thing is more suit for Balance teams than anything else for its revenge killing and loss of a coverage move. But, it's an option nonetheless if you want to spice up your OU game.

Anyway, here are some relevant HC based calcs against the defensive behemoths of the tier.

+1 252 Atk Life Orb Hustle Durant Superpower vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Seismitoad: 291-343 (70.2 - 82.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Hustle Durant Thunder Fang vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Corviknight: 255-302 (63.7 - 75.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Hustle Durant Iron Head vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Hippowdon: 218-257 (51.9 - 61.1%) -- 94.9% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Hustle Durant Superpower vs. 248 HP / 0 Def Rotom-Heat: 318-376 (104.9 - 124%) -- guaranteed OHKO
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Hustle Durant Superpower over 2 turns vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Corviknight: 470-554 (117.5 - 138.5%) -- guaranteed KO in 2 turns after Leftovers recovery

While none of these calcs demonstrate OHKOs, the sheer power that comes through these moves is a horrifying threat, and generally has the opponent struggling to switch-in against it.

However, despite Hone Claws' balance breaking potential, its AOA/choiced variants remain strong, and provide it with a tried and true offensive method of which to break cores. STAB Hustle-Boosted First Impression is ungodly, and it goes without saying that having such a powerful, priority STAB move that is not only great for breaking but Revenge killing (most notably Zeraora) is incredibly good for it.

All in all, Durant has a lot of potential, and thanks to Hone Claws, has more options and attributes that give it an offensive niche in the current OU metagame, especially on HO. I would nominate it for C/C+, however, not any higher than that for its general inconsistency and frailty.
 
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Pangoro is also slower than every aforementioned pokemon... thus meaning it cannot switch in reliably if the opponent can predict correctly. Sure, it can switch in AFTER a teammate dies, but at this point why not just use a choice scarfer? No real logic here, but alright

Yes, it pivots in on ghost stab well, but any mon exists to force 50/50 is kind of unreliable, especially when it is prone to chip. And when ghost stab runs off of 70/80 BP moves (shadow claw and shadow ball), often making the secondary stab more threatening.

Not to mention all 3 dragapult, aegislash, and gengar have non specs sets that eat up pangoro for breakfast, and are nearly as viable, if not more viable than their specs counterparts. CB sets from aeigslash, will-o-wisp sets from gengar or dragapult (or even chandelure, really), or dd sets from dragapult all fit this criteria, and all can easily bypass the assault vest with powerful nuetral stab or just wisp pangoro and leave.

All that being said, i do agree pangoro should go to B-/B, since thats where all the ladder only garbage is (like crawdaunt).
Do you know what a check is?
 

Finchinator

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Having another slate now simply is not worth it; I made the above post before the starter HAs and release date where made public knowledge. Cinderace would likely be somewhere within the top 10 Pokemon and Rillaboom is probably high Bs or low As as it currently stands in my personal opinion for all of those who asked, but we are not having a vote or an update until post-DLC. Once DLC happens, we will resume normal updating!
 
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