ST6 Empoleon

cim

happiness is such hard work
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ST6 Empoleon

So I lost ST6 Round 1 like I thought I would have, here's the team I was going to use for it.

Here's my notes on the team. I apply a slightly modified iterative engineering design process to team building. The reason I included them is because I've always seen the "Team Building Process" portion of RMTs, puzzled. Do people actually build teams one Pokemon at a time, until they get 6, and they end up perfect on the first try? Not for me at least. So here's my team building process.

Goal: Sweep with Empoleon.
Requirements: Reliably eliminate Latias from play.
Weaken Blissey, Vaporeon, Suicune, Salamence enough for Empoleon to sweep.
Build a defensive core able to play for long enough to allow Empoleon an opportunity to sweep.
At least one fast attack to clean up after Empoleon punches sufficient holes in a team.
A method to counter common stalling tactics incorporated within the above.
Chosen Specifications: A Pursuit user, Sand Stream, Stealth Rock, Toxic Spikes, Ghost, Antistall, (added later) Wish

The Team:


Roserade (M) @ Focus Sash
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 4 HP/252 Spd/252 SAtk
Timid nature (+Spd, -Atk)
- Sleep Powder
- Toxic Spikes
- Leaf Storm
- Hidden Power [Fire]
---
Specifications Met: Toxic Spikes

Roserade lead is nothing new. I've used almost exclusively Aerodactyl in the past and am too used to the reliability and suicide nature of said lead. Keeping Roserade around for the midgame is something I should do more often, as it does have decent Special Defense to take a Water hit now and again. Anyway, Roserade provides a layer of Toxic Spikes, and the wonderful thing about it is that you can usually tell if a team is stall oriented from the beginning and thus whether you need one or two layers. Sleep Powder is handy if a bit too unreliable for my tastes, so I'm more likely to use Leaf Storm against Azelf just for reliability's sake. Not the best lead I've ever used but something good usually comes out of it.

Fuck Metagross. I'm just saying.

It's not often that I keep Roserade around for very long, but as for synergy I occasionally use it to absorb Surfs and to force out Vaporeon or Suicune, both of which take more damage in the process allowing Emp to set up on them later.


Gliscor (M) @ Leftovers
Ability: Sand Veil
EVs: 252 HP/40 Def/216 Spd
Jolly nature (+Spd, -SAtk)
- Earthquake
- Taunt
- Roost
- Stealth Rock
---
Specifications Met: Stealth Rock, Antistall

A surprisingly useful Pokemon, Gliscor is a big help to the team. It easily buys a turn for Stealth Rock use. Taunt decimates some Blissey, Skarmory, and pretty much anything stall related, and Gliscor is fast enough to make use of it versus other Taunt Skarmory. It's also an important Metagross, Lucario, Tyranitar, SD Scizor, and Leftovers Salamence check (you Taunt it before it DDs, then go to Jirachi and force it out, racks up SR damage, shit goes down). It's hard to put down the number of times I've been able to hold off for a few turns with the fast Roost and Sand Veil to kill something with Toxic Spikes damage, or drain a Skarmory of Brave Bird PP, or something similar with Gliscor. It's really stall's worst enemy.

Gliscor on the team can play off of Scizor and Fighting-type moves being thrown Tyranitar's way, while enjoying his Sand Stream. Ground attacks aimed at Jirachi are fairly easily absorbed by Gliscor as well.

- i actually really want this plush
Jirachi @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Serene Grace
EVs: 80 HP/252 Atk/176 Spd
Adamant nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
- Iron Head
- Wish
- U-turn
- Trick
---
Specifications Met: Wish, Antistall

Jirachi plays a lot like Scizor here. I actually used Scizor in a previous iteration, but a few differences led me to Jirachi. Mainly, I wanted a bit of extra healing support to help the "core" of the team hold itself together a few more turns before I find a window to blow holes with Empoleon. It wasn't too bad, as I wasn't using U-turn on Scizor nearly enough anyway. Iron Head and high speed helps with a few trouble Pokemon as well as generally making the end game much easier to deal with. Jirachi is my post Outrage-sacrifice DD LO Salamence check, as Adamant Iron Head with SR, Sand, and LO will KO (and Jolly Jirachi isn't often faster than Salamence anyway). I don't give Salamence many opportunities to set up other than Gliscor, which I can use either him or Rotom to force an Outrage and then revenge with Jirachi. Trick I use very sparingly as it destroys my Salamence checking process, but if it's clear they don't have a late game Salamence in the wings and I'm up against a slower team, Tricking something is a good way to give Empoleon an entry (i.e., trick Suicune, Suicune later comes in and tries to Surf / Ice Beam Gliscor, Empoleon can set up for free).

Jirachi's Steel type is important to taking Dragon attacks. The high Special Defense allows it to take very occasional Surfs and many Ice Beams and Grass Knots directed at Tyranitar or Gliscor.

+

Rotom-h @ Leftovers
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 252 HP/164 Def/92 Spd
Bold nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Thunderbolt
- Overheat
- Reflect
- Shadow Ball
---
Specifications Met: Ghost

Rotom is a big punching bag on my team. It's sad because it's not really that bulky and I'm bound to it, but I bring it in a lot to force opponents to use specific types of moves. Reflect helps it be less Tyranitar bait, and in the early game it makes Gliscor setting up Stealth Rock or Jirachi doing anything much easier on the team. Shadow Ball lets it touch Swamperts and other Rotom, mostly. It's probably the weakest link on the team, and one I wouldn't mind replacing too much provided something roughly as bulky that can handle Metagross and Scizor is still around. Thunderbolt lets it check Gyarados a little bit, which actually has difficulty setting up on a lot of the team (Gliscor is faster and can Taunt it before it gets a DD).

Rotom switches into Ground moves aimed at Tyranitar and Jirachi rather easily. It also occasionally takes a Surf hit for the team.


Tyranitar (M) @ Choice Band
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 164 HP/252 Atk/92 Spd
Adamant nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
- Crunch
- Stone Edge
- Pursuit
- Earthquake
---
Specifications Met: Pursuit, Sand Stream

Choice Band Tyranitar. Almost exclusively used for the powerful Pursuit hit offensively, defensively it's used as the main special attack sponge for the team. I rather carefully throw it into Rotoms and Latiases, quickly dispatching them with Pursuits. The added offensive Crunches are also nice for when I just want to punch big holes in Bulky Waters, scouting for Swamperts or Suicunes. Of course, the biggest reason Tyranitar is here other than Scizor is because of Sand Stream, which makes Empoleon versus Salamence, Gyarados, etc. much easier. Overall basically just a solid Pokemon that helps add a bit of Fire protection as well as general Snorlax-like special bulk.


Empoleon (M) @ Petaya Berry
Ability: Torrent
EVs: 12 HP/12 Def/232 Spd/252 SAtk
Modest nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
- Agility
- Substitute
- Surf
- Grass Knot
---

Empoleon is the basis of the team. It's much easier to kill Latias before bringing in Empoleon than it is to kill a variety of Bulky Waters, especially because you want to keep the latter around as set up fodder, so I stick to Grass Knot as a secondary move choice. Empoleon's actually shockingly bulky; it can take unboosted, unSTAB Earthquakes with enough health to spare. It can also take two Vaporeon HP Electrics without the need to Substitute, allowing for consecutive Grass Knot hits on what should be a poisoned Vaporeon to kill it. I could go on forever with all the neat tricks Empoleon can do that you don't know about. Unlike other Empoleon team users (Seven Deadly Sins), I'm more prone to bring him in a little earlier than I'm comfortable with and only kill 2 or 3 Pokemon with it, cleaning up with Jirachi; especially because it's not that often you get a good set up window for Empoleon.

Previous Iterations:
The original iteration of the team was basically identical to SDS's original Empoleon team: Aero / Tenta / Scizor / Rotom / Tyranitar / Emp. I found Aerodactyl was a fine lead and all, but Tentacruel didn't really pull weight as a team member. It could set up on Suicune, yeah, but then Cune would have 3 CM's and I'd be fucked. It was hard to get a layer in with Tentacruel and often didn't pull weight as a team member, so a second iteration was made with the only other Tspiker. Roserade / Gliscor / Scizor / Rotom / Tyranitar / Emp was the new team, and it was much better despite the still shaky Toxic Spiker. Gliscor also contributed more to an antistall team than Tentacruel ever did; Taunt was way more important than Toxic Spikes absorption ever could be. The core very occasionally had trouble sticking around for a long period of time, especially Rotom, so a Wisher was desired. Scizor was mostly put in the team because it fits in any team and could check Salamence and Latias, so a switch to Jirachi was tried experimentally, adding Wish and a further anti stall tactic in Trick. This results in the team there is today.

I think this team has significant drawbacks that, while they can be played around, are rather difficult for my team. The Water vulnerability isn't as bad as it seems, since I really only need to force a bulky Water out once or so before I can just bring Empoleon in on it. Gyarados and Infernape are almost pesty enough to make me put QA Scizor in. The rather tight core unravels itself with slight misplays, which I rather often make. Any suggestions are appreciated, though I've had a lot of fun playing with the team, and that's what I sought out to do...
 
I like those pants, I wear skinny jeans myself hehe. Anyway, the main problem for such a cool looking team is definitely Jolly DD Salamence. Obviously, if you lock it into Outrage you can kill it with Empoleon, but everything on your team dies to a +1 Outrage or Earthquake. The only thing I can suggest is probably to go with Ice Punch over U-turn, and up the speed to 252. This would help with Salamence so at the worst you can tie with it. The other problem I see is Gyarados to an extent, the reason being your Rotom doesn't have recovery of its own. Something like Tyranitar comes in and just Pursuits, slowly whittiling your health down. Once Rotom is down, seeing as you lack Thunderpunch on Jirachi, then Gyarados really looks like a potent threat. Thankfully you give few oppurtunities for these monsters to set up, but to help with Gyarados a bit more I'd run Thunderpunch somewhere, although I'm not sure where seeing as you really need all of your moves. I hope this helps even though this is a short rate, and good luck!
 

cim

happiness is such hard work
is a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
I like those pants, I wear skinny jeans myself hehe.
ftr that's Gen. Empoleon, lovable user

Anyway, the main problem for such a cool looking team is definitely Jolly DD Salamence. Obviously, if you lock it into Outrage you can kill it with Empoleon, but everything on your team dies to a +1 Outrage or Earthquake.
Well, it can't use both at the same time, right?

Salamence appearing does guarantee the death of one of my Pokemon if it comes in on Gliscor. Basically, I send in Rotom or keep in Gliscor to force it to Outrage, then revenge it with Jirachi (Iron Head does enough to KO, as I said in the analysis, and Jirachi takes a single Outrage fine if over 50%). I agree Salamence is a bitch, especially Specs as it'll come out of nowhere and DM something; luckily that lets me Pursuit it with Tar or better yet, come in with Empoleon. Fuck mence.


The other problem I see is Gyarados to an extent, the reason being your Rotom doesn't have recovery of its own. Something like Tyranitar comes in and just Pursuits, slowly whittiling your health down. Once Rotom is down, seeing as you lack Thunderpunch on Jirachi, then Gyarados really looks like a potent threat. Thankfully you give few oppurtunities for these monsters to set up, but to help with Gyarados a bit more I'd run Thunderpunch somewhere, although I'm not sure where seeing as you really need all of your moves. I hope this helps even though this is a short rate, and good luck!
Gyarados is indeed a huge problem, and one I'm considering Thunderpunch over U-turn on Jirachi for. The main reason I haven't yet is 1) Gliscor Taunts Gyarados, it can't set up, then Rotom beats it just fine 2) it needs to come in on Pursuit or EQ from Tar to set up safely. It's still probably the biggest threat on my team, and I'll throw Thunderpunch on Jirachi if it fucks me up more than once. Iron Head flinches are surprisingly helpful, albeit unreliable.

Thanks for the rate!
 
Hey I've got a pretty similar team actually, but I started with the goal of sweeping with CM jirachi rather than empoleon. Empoleon just happened to fit in :naughty:

Anyway, I have a couple ideas I think you should consider, and here they are:

Roserade makes a great lead, but for this team you might want to consider removing it from the lead position, considering empoleon doesn't really need TS down until late game when it's trying to set up. A gliscor in the lead spot would work well to taunt metagrosses etc, and against azelf you could just switch ttar into the taunt or reflect and massacre it anyway.

Speaking of, a jolly choice scarf ttar would be awesome, outspeeding said azelf and latias for the tidy KO. You still have jirachi to take out latias if ttar goes down, which is good.

The jirachi makes great glue for this team, providing needed resists and revenging dragon dancers. Maybe add tpunch over trick for taking down gyara, which would sweep with a DD and LO. I actually use a scarf latias for this purpose on my team, which is kind of nice for actually outspeeding all +1 jolly mences. Changing this to CM sub jirachi would add more ways to slowly wear down those bulky waters and blissey, but would force you to add a different revenger.

Depending on what you do with Gliscor, giving it SD and roost would be very cool, considering your team could actually use an additional bulky set-upper to take advantage of the Tspikes. I loved SD gliscor on my team before I realized that both mence and gyara easily swept with one DD and replaced him with that CSlatias.

Overall, my suggestions will shift the majority of damage you do from equal mid and late game to largely late game. It is for this reason that if you keep roserade as lead, I'd stick with the tanks, if you move it out of the lead spot, add a couple more set up sweepers and a taunt lead like gliscor or ttar.



Edit: SDS's original Empoleon team: Aero / Tenta / Scizor / Rotom / Tyranitar / Emp. <----could you show me a link to this original team? =D
 

Seven Deadly Sins

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I never published that team, just the version with Shaymin-S over Tyranitar.

Anyway, that seems like a solid team, though you pretty much take it in every orifice from Jolly DD/Scarf Mence (especially with dclaw > outrage), so that might be something to look at.

Anyway, to be actually useful instead of annoying, here's an actual suggestion: Use CB Gyarados instead of CB Tyranitar.

Gyarados (M) @ Choice Band
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 72 HP / 252 Atk / 184 Spe
Adamant nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
- Waterfall
- Earthquake
- Stone Edge
- Payback
---

It takes care of your Heatran issues in a way that doesn't rely on getting boned by Earth Power, and instead of Pursuiting the obnoxious bastards, you can Payback on the switch and usually catch Latias and the gang unawares. It also helps against Crocune, which all Empoleon teams greatly dislike, as Crocune is 3koed clean by Earthquake.
 
Just a note, Will-O-Wisp could be used over Reflect on Rotom-H. This way, you can permanently cripple Pursuit users that switch into Rotom.
 

cim

happiness is such hard work
is a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
Anyway, I have a couple ideas I think you should consider, and here they are:
And thanks for posting them

Roserade makes a great lead, but for this team you might want to consider removing it from the lead position, considering empoleon doesn't really need TS down until late game when it's trying to set up. A gliscor in the lead spot would work well to taunt metagrosses etc, and against azelf you could just switch ttar into the taunt or reflect and massacre it anyway.
Gliscor lead isn't a bad idea, but not why you said. Technically I don't need anything Empoleon uses down until the late game... so that logic doesn't make too much sense. Regardless, it's something to consider; the primary reason Roserade is a lead is because it's fragile.

Speaking of, a jolly choice scarf ttar would be awesome, outspeeding said azelf and latias for the tidy KO. You still have jirachi to take out latias if ttar goes down, which is good.
No, Latias needs to die immediately as dead as possible. Pursuit needs to be mega strongth to do this. Tyranitar doesn't really need to outspeed many Latias either...

[quote\The jirachi makes great glue for this team, providing needed resists and revenging dragon dancers. Maybe add tpunch over trick for taking down gyara, which would sweep with a DD and LO. I actually use a scarf latias for this purpose on my team, which is kind of nice for actually outspeeding all +1 jolly mences. Changing this to CM sub jirachi would add more ways to slowly wear down those bulky waters and blissey, but would force you to add a different revenger.[/quote]

Well, yes, CM Jirachi would further wear doen everything, but then there's no Salamence check anymore. Scarf Latias is cool but I didn't want my primary Salamence check to be a Pursuit away from worthless.

Overall, my suggestions will shift the majority of damage you do from equal mid and late game to largely late game.
You've pretty much suggested giving all of my Pokemon more damaging attacks, so I don't quite see how that's true....

It is for this reason that if you keep roserade as lead, I'd stick with the tanks, if you move it out of the lead spot, add a couple more set up sweepers and a taunt lead like gliscor or ttar.
Eh, this team isn't really meant to play like an offensive mega team. It's designed to set up Empoleon, and running set up moves everywhere would dilute that purpose. For example, running SD Gliscor would take away SR or Taunt, which I need both of. Wishless Jirachi wouldn't support the team no more. Etc...

Just a note, Will-O-Wisp could be used over Reflect on Rotom-H. This way, you can permanently cripple Pursuit users that switch into Rotom.
Nope. Toxic Spikes.

I never published that team, just the version with Shaymin-S over Tyranitar.

Anyway, that seems like a solid team, though you pretty much take it in every orifice from Jolly DD/Scarf Mence (especially with dclaw > outrage), so that might be something to look at.

Anyway, to be actually useful instead of annoying, here's an actual suggestion: Use CB Gyarados instead of CB Tyranitar.

Gyarados (M) @ Choice Band
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 72 HP / 252 Atk / 184 Spe
Adamant nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
- Waterfall
- Earthquake
- Stone Edge
- Payback
---

It takes care of your Heatran issues in a way that doesn't rely on getting boned by Earth Power, and instead of Pursuiting the obnoxious bastards, you can Payback on the switch and usually catch Latias and the gang unawares. It also helps against Crocune, which all Empoleon teams greatly dislike, as Crocune is 3koed clean by Earthquake.
Good suggestion. If I do this, I'd still need a method of guaranteeing Latias dies, so I'd switch Jirachi to Scizor. Wish would be sorely missed, but it's the price I'd have to pay. :/
 

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