OU Sword and Shield OU Discussion Thread

sol

formerly Mac3
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnus
op stolen from here
SS OU Discussion Thread
This thread is dedicated to the discussion of the SS OU metagame. Discussion topics span from such things as metagame developments, set innovations, and general observations you have noticed as of late. You are welcome to post anything you like as far as the metagame goes, with a few simple rules.

Rules:
  • Do not ask simple questions here; instead, post them to our "Simple Question, Simple Answer" thread.
  • Do not post one-liners that contribute nothing to the discussion. We do not ask that you write giant paragraphs with each post; we simply ask that you ensure your post has substance and adds to the discussion.
  • Posts should bear in mind the standard clauses, mods, and bans that are in place for the SS OU metagame:
Clauses
Species Clause: Limit of one on each Pokemon.
OHKO Clause: OHKO moves are banned.
Moody Clause: Moody is banned.
Evasion Moves Clause: Evasion moves are banned.
Endless Battle Clause: Forcing endless battles is banned.
Dynamax Clause: You cannot dynamax.

Mods
Sleep Clause Mod: Limit one foe put to sleep
HP Percentage Mod: HP is shown in percentages

Move Bans
Baton Pass

Ability Bans
Arena Trap
Power Construct
Shadow Tag
Sand Veil
Snow Cloak

Item Bans
King's Rock

Here are some prompts to help guide your thinking:
  • What are your personal favorite Pokemon to use in the metagame, and why?
  • What current cores do you find to be strong or fun to use?
  • Do you like the current metagame, or find it to be well balanced? Why or why not?

Remember that at any point, moderators have the discretion to intervene or remove posts as necessary.
 
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Great to see the discussion forum up and running! I'm extremely invested in this metagame, so it's great to have a place to nerd about this with others.
Anyway, for the sake of sniping the first post starting a discussion, I thought I'd bring up an interesting observation I've come across.

:Ferrothorn: What's the Deal with Airline Food Spikes Anyway?:Skarmory:
(Neon talks about Spikes for a wall of text like a total goober)

Personally, I've felt Spikes are extremely underrated in the current metagame, and would even argue they're even better than Stealth Rocks! Only seriously held back by their limited distribution.
So why bring this up? Well I'm glad you asked reader who definitely did not ask this!
Well, to put it bluntly, I think the impact of Spikes is more felt than that of Stealth Rock in the current metagame.
I'm not saying this as a good or bad thing, just an observation I've made.
To illustrate my point, it's not exactly a secret Flying, Ice, and Fire Types Run Boots in a majority of cases because they're Stealth Rock weak, big woop(er). But what about Pokemon running boots for Spikes? Yes there are a few that do this, like Blissey, Gastrodon, Zeraora, Tapu Koko, and even occasionally Hippowdon and Slowbro. But an overwhelming majority of the Pokemon in the tier do not do this, for the basic reason that they prefer other items.
What this means is that on average, Spikes may do more heavy lifting than Stealth Rocks do! If you don't believe me, just look at the VR and think of how many of those Pokemon Stealth Rocks make substantial progress against are using boots, and how many Pokemon Spikes are making substantial progress against that are using boots. You'll notice there's a massive gap in how many Pokemon do that, and that far more Pokemon run boots for Stealth Rock than they do Spikes, Which leads me to the conclusion that, while Stealth Rocks should still be used on every serious team, people haven't been giving Spikes the respect it deserves in the builder this generation.
This is especially prevelant because of the new wave of Defogless teams popping up because of these boots, with these teams usually getting absolutely crushed by Spikes teams because of their inability to remove them, and the lack of True Knock Off "Absorbers" in the tier bar Clefable, who is very easily overwhelmed by the Pokemon it must absorb Knock Off from, and can't even safely absorb knock from every Pokemon, which only makes these Defogless teams have an even harder time against Spikes teams.
Of course it's important to address that most of these Defogless teams use Spikes themself to attempt to force their opponent to Defog for them, however in a lot of cases VS Opposing Hazard Stack this only serves to detriment them further, as most Spikes teams will already be well equipped to handle hazards with Defog relegated to Emergancies, or even just not have Defog at all and just Spam Boots on every Pokemon!

With all that said, Spikes deserve much more attention than they have gotten because of their overall far more sizeable impact on a game to game basis than that of Stealth Rocks at the current moment, as well as providing an excellent matchup into Defogless teams that have been on the rise recently. If you stuck around and read through this entire thing, thank you, and I hope you're more convinced to experiment more with Spikes, and claim that sweet sweet 25% on every grounded target.​
 
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pulsar512b

ss ou fangirl
is a Pre-Contributor
FuturePort (and 'build your own FuturePort'): An Introduction and Explanation Of It's Virtues and Abusers

Introduction and Basic Facts


Let's start with the basics - what is futureport, what does it do, and what mons use it and how? FuturePort is the combination of Future Sight and Teleport, usually on Slowbro or Slowking.

Future sight is a 120 base power 100% accurate psychic move, with the interesting mechanic of hitting 2 turns after it's used. This was kinda never really an OU-viable thing before gen 8. It's most frequent users are Slowbro, AV Slowking-Galar, Slowking, and most scarfed Tapu Lele sets.

Slowbro and Slowking use it in combination with teleport and huge offensive threats such as Urshifu-RS and Weavile (often that struggle with toxapex). Specifically (assuming no meaningful interaction from the opponent, maybe they're setting up hazards or whatever), the primary point is to future sight, teleport into the threat, and then attack with the threat. Ideally, this puts the opponent in a situation where they will lose a pokemon, as they either have to go to toxapex and die to future sight after taking a hit or go to something that can't really take the breaker's hit. Unfortunately, Slowking-Galar and Tapu Lele can't learn teleport (and anyway their sets would not accommodate it), and as such you must do what i like to think of as 'build your own FuturePort' where you instead just hard switch your pivot in. This is obviously not ideal and you have to be careful, but nevertheless it's powerful.

This may seem quite narrow and altogether too much work to just break through toxapex, but it's actually much more versatile than that. More generally, it can help these breakers defeat checks. A simple example is buzzwole, where it basically works the same way. A more nuanced example would be Tapu Fini for Weavile and Urshifu-RS, where on their own it takes a while to wear it down. However, with future sight support it can let them swiftly blow through. For instance, it only takes a small amount of chip for band shifu + slowbro future sight to blow through fini (with 2 cc's). Even if you don't immediately blow through, it's heavily weakened to the point where it'll struggle to check it reliably in future (particularly with hazard damage etc).

252 Atk Choice Band Urshifu-Rapid-Strike Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 216 Def Tapu Fini: 108-128 (31.3 - 37.2%) -- guaranteed 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 Atk Urshifu-Rapid-Strike Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 216 Def Tapu Fini: 72-86 (20.9 - 25%) -- possible 5HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 Atk Weavile Triple Axel (40 BP) (3 hits) vs. 252 HP / 216 Def Tapu Fini: 69-81 (20 - 23.5%) -- approx. possible 6HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 Atk Weavile Knock Off (97.5 BP) vs. 252 HP / 216 Def Tapu Fini: 55-66 (15.9 - 19.1%) -- possible 6HKO
0 SpA Slowbro Future Sight vs. 252 HP / 40+ SpD Tapu Fini: 91-108 (26.4 - 31.3%) -- 15.3% chance to 4HKO after Leftovers recovery

Some other examples (specifically talking about Urshifu-RS here, who I believe is the best single abuser) include future sight support meaning pads variants consistently 2hko defensive zapdos from full, and band variants straight up killing and eliminating dragapult as a possible offensive temporary swap-in. Clefable is another example that's quite similar (but is blown through more instantly) for pads shifu/weavile, where it lets them grab a consistent KO.
0 SpA Slowbro Future Sight vs. 248 HP / 0 SpD Zapdos: 142-168 (37 - 43.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
252 Atk Choice Band Urshifu-Rapid-Strike Surging Strikes (3 hits) vs. 248 HP / 220 Def Zapdos on a critical hit: 252-300 (65.7 - 78.3%) -- approx. 2HKO
252 Atk Urshifu-Rapid-Strike Surging Strikes (3 hits) vs. 248 HP / 220 Def Zapdos on a critical hit: 171-201 (44.6 - 52.4%) -- approx. 8.6% chance to 2HKO

0 SpA Slowbro Future Sight vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Dragapult: 163-193 (51.4 - 60.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252 Atk Choice Band Urshifu-Rapid-Strike Surging Strikes (3 hits) vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Dragapult on a critical hit: 177-207 (55.8 - 65.2%) -- approx. 2HKO

0 SpA Slowbro Future Sight vs. 252 HP / 56+ SpD Clefable: 121-144 (30.7 - 36.5%) -- guaranteed 4HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 Atk Urshifu-Rapid-Strike Surging Strikes (3 hits) vs. 252 HP / 200 Def Clefable on a critical hit: 192-228 (48.7 - 57.8%) -- approx. 46.9% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 Atk Weavile Triple Axel (40 BP) (3 hits) vs. 252 HP / 200 Def Clefable: 192-228 (48.7 - 57.8%) -- approx. 46.9% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

What about other abusers?

Generally, pretty much anything walled by pex appreciates the support. Really, all sorts of wallbreakers can abuse this - even the ones who don't need specific pex help appreciate the slow pivoting of teleport bringing them in safely and the ability to wear down their checks more easily. For instance. Zeraora is a surprisingly good abuser due to future sight helping it wear down ground types far faster. A short (and noncomprehensive) list of abusers would certainly have to include in addition to Weavile and Urshifu-RS would certainly include Buzzwole, Kartana, Melmetal, CB TTar, Volcanion, Terrakion, Zeraora and many others.

What teams can I use this on?
Typically, this finds a natural place on offensive teams (often held together by cores such as slowbro+spd lando+melmetal), but really it can fit on anything that can fit the pairing (more than once i've been building a balance team of some sort and slowbro happened to fit as a last, not even primarily for the synergy but more to check important physical threats).

What counterplay exists?

With most teams, you have to play aggressively and disrupt this, by either not telling slowking safely teleport, or going to something that can outspeed and kill the threat (such as Tornadus-Therian for Urshifu-RS). This will be evident in the replays. Typically, you'll only get one or two chances to actually pull off the proper combo, but that's enough to have a huge impact. It's also worth noting that even if you can't get the combo off, you can still make great use of the individual pieces and get chip from future sight and great slow pivoting from teleport.

On stall and similarly defensive structures, this is often impossible. Thus, over time stall adapted to handle these ideas by running light screen or even payapa toxapex (so it can set up light screen on the future sighter to not die to the combination of the breaker and fs, or take less from future sight due to the berry). In addition, shedinja can help especially vs specifically shifu +fs. Generally, futureport teams can still break through these teams with careful play, but it makes the matchup infinitely more even. Without these adaptions, the matchup is hellish for the stall player, as you can almost just repeat the combo over and over and just win.

Replays (SPL)

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8ou-680819 slowking-based, with Weavile and Melmetal as abusers
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8ou-680812 mirror, slowking-g based with melmetal as abuser vs scarf lele based with melmetal and shifu as abusers
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8ou-669392 slowbro-based, buzzwole and weavile as abusers

These are all fantastic replays that between them show off all the forms, and how you can find counterplay.


Hopefully this will make this playstyle a little more understandable to new players, and maybe encourage them to build their own or try out various futureport teams. I'm hoping to make these sorts of posts more regularly (both to stir up discussion here and to make it easier for newer players to ease their way into this fantastic and balanced metagame), so if you have any subjects you'd particularly like a post on feel free to message me. Similarly, if you have any questions feel free to do this (either here on the forums or on discord, PulsieTheDulsie#3895 feel free to ping me on the SS discord or just dm me). Have a fantastic rest of your day <3
 

pulsar512b

ss ou fangirl
is a Pre-Contributor
https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/team-archive-by-craing-_-7.3673784/

:urshifu::pheromosa::spectrier::magearna::cinderace::kyurem:
any1 else thinks this was peak SS and more fun to play than current?
i dont think most ppl enjoyed kyurem just murdering everything, anything to do with pheromosa, urshifu-dark murdering everything, spectrier somewhat requiring you to always have a normal/dark (and even then sometimes it sweeps you anyway because it beats mandi or whatever), or every team just losing to some 4 moves on magearna and you just have to hope its not the one that beats you.

on the other hand, the volt-turn offense structures at the time were certainly enjoyable to play with, and i have good memories from the time. however u can still replicate this with offensive structures today, or (for example) playing kokolucha stuff in sm ou
 

Red Raven

I COULD BE BANNED!
https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/team-archive-by-craing-_-7.3673784/

:urshifu::pheromosa::spectrier::magearna::cinderace::kyurem:
any1 else thinks this was peak SS and more fun to play than current?
Not me. I think peak ss was when that damn robot bunny got banned. Magearna was absolute cancer stage infinity. It ran like every set you can dream of and still succeed. It was ridiculous. After Magearna got banned however, I think that was when the tier was at its peak and I also think that the tier has degraded since Kyurem got banned. Now, I do think that Kyurem was ridiculous because it just fucks up everything but personally, I'd choose that over the toxic and knock off spam that tier has become these days
 
Recently got back into gen 8, and I gotta say, this gen is as fun as ever. I really enjoy the very positional matches gen 8 has to offer, in opposition to the faster paced, high energy high risk matches of gen 7 or 9. While very fun, they feel less "thought out" sometimes.

Anyways, I just got #4 on ladder with my trusty hail balance. Here are some interesting replays I caught along the way:
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1886718979-w8z0zl89c8t8vmi94la8vuh7bjguovvpw
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1886697399-f9e990b4tptghk0cxf08cvgtsjwe40epw
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1886674693-2pash1ji0cfb24zw9tpdh3yc8w9cuk7pw (vs stall)
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1886768449-j30lf7pgqc26ss7jb84e3ydffgogo9rpw (vs shed stall)

It's kinda sad to see this gen so neglected. Wish more people would come back and play :)
 
Saw some talk about HO Leads today and I figured it would be cool to talk about them a bit since there are so many of them, and its a pretty cool topic imo. Will only focus on the hazards ones. Some stuff in section 4 might arguably deserve to be in section and vice versa, but I hope this helps a bit.

:ss/mew:

Notable moves: Stealth Rock, Spikes, Taunt, Thunder Wave, Will-O-Wisp, Explosion, Close Combat.
Notable items: Colbur Berry, Focus Sash, Kasib Berry, Mental Herb.
Notable EVs: Most use max HP and max Speed, though 112 HP + 144 SpDef + 252 Speed allows you to live a Shadow Ball from Modest Specs Dragapult.
Notable interactions:
  • Colbur Berry is arguably the best item thanks to Mew's natural bulk allowing it to take on super effective attacks from most other Pokemon, and with Colbur you take on Knock Off from Choice Band Weavile and Kartana. However the other items have neat benefits listed below.
  • Mental Herb lets you shrug off Taunt from Tornadus-Therian, opposing Mew, or other leads like Cobalion and Lycanroc. Of course when using this you usually want Thunder Wave or another move that lets you cripple them in return, else they can just Taunt you for the second time.
  • Kasib Berry lets you do well in a particular scenario, that being Landorus/Corviknight/Rotom-W clicking their pivot move into a Ghost.
  • Focus Sash lets you take on both Shadow Ball and Knock Off, but can be annoyed by the interaction described above.
  • None of these help you against Beat Up Weavile trying to counter lead you. However for that you can try an anti-lead Choice Scarf Close Combat Mew set as described here. Keep in mind this set is more of an anti-lead than a lead itself.
  • Other Pokemon that can be annoying without the right move are Blaziken, Volcarona, Rillaboom, and Excadrill. For the former two Thunder Wave helps a bit, while the latter two get crippled by Will-O-Wisp. Calm Mind Tapu Koko can also sometimes decide to win on the spot; Explosion can help chip it an get out of the field asap.
Some sample sets:

Mew @ Colbur Berry
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 112 HP / 144 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Spikes
- Taunt
- Will-O-Wisp

Mew @ Colbur Berry / Mental Herb
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Taunt
- Stealth Rock
- Spikes
- Thunder Wave / Will-O-Wisp
:Landorus-Therian:
Landorus-Therian (M) @ Focus Sash / Normal Gem
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Swords Dance
- Earthquake
- Explosion / Smack Down
- Stealth Rock

You set up rocks and threaten big damage. Imprison and Rock Tomb are also fine options.

Focus Sash :Excadrill:
Excadrill @ Focus Sash
Ability: Mold Breaker
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
- Rapid Spin
- Steel Beam / Rock Tomb

Sets up hazards against Magic Bounce users, and Rapid Spins other hazards away.

Custap Berry :Skarmory:
Skarmory @ Custap Berry
Ability: Sturdy
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Spikes
- Taunt
- Brave Bird / Steel Beam

Abuses its typing + Sturdy to set up hazards, often times 2.

Taunt :Cobalion:
Cobalion @ Focus Sash
Ability: Justified
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Thunder Wave / Close Combat
- Taunt
- Steel Beam / Close Combat

Its a lead that resists both of Weavile's stabs and is faster than Mew so it can Taunt it. Other items like Mental Herb and Rocky Helmet can be tried since it has the bulk and Speed to afford them.

:Mamoswine:
Mamoswine @ Focus Sash
Ability: Oblivious
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Endeavor
- Earthquake
- Ice Shard

Oblivious ignores Taunt + Stealth Rock + Endeavor + solid damage in Earthquake + priority Ice Shard. Thick Fat is also okay, notably against Choice Band Weavile clicking Triple Axel.
Air Balloon :Heatran:
Heatran @ Air Balloon
Ability: Flame Body
EVs: 248 SpA / 8 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Magma Storm
- Earth Power / Will-O-Wisp
- Taunt

Heatran can also run more physical bulk and function great in these kinds of teams, as its a big help against Scarf Kartana, Tapu lele, and Weavile. See this team for example.

Meteor Beam :Nihilego:
Nihilego @ Power Herb
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 80 Def / 176 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Meteor Beam
- Grass Knot / Sludge Wave
- Power Gem / Sludge Wave

It isnt scared of Torn-T and can chip down Corviknight or Landorus-T if needed. Fairy resist is nice against Tapu Lele.

Offensive :Landorus-Therian:
Landorus-Therian @ Soft Sand / Leftovers
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Earthquake
- U-turn / Smack Down / Knock Off / Explosion
- Defog / Swords Dance / Knock Off / Explosion
- Stealth Rock

No need to sack Lando turn 1. It has a good offensive and defensive profile to threaten/check something midgame.
:Jirachi:, :Mesprit:, and :Clefable: all have great utility moves in Stealth Rock, Healing Wish, Thunder Wave, Trick and can be disruptive enough to set up Stealth Rock and do something else in most games.

:Lycanroc-Dusk: and :Scolipede: set up hazards and Endeavor. Former has Taunt and Priority, the latter has Speed Boost, both of which can be rather annoying to play against.

Focus Sash :Nidoking: can set up Stealth Rock and force the opponent into weird spots thanks to its offensive presence.

Stealth Rock :Necrozma: can be used similarly to Nihilego. Its way slower and cant actually take on choiced super effective attacks even with Prism Armor, but It can actually chip steels with Heat Wave.

:Azelf: clicks Stealth Rock, Explodes and is faster than Mew and most Tornadus-T. Still slower than Jolly Weavile and doesn't have the bulk to both keep its Speed and live some hits like Mew does.

:froslass: can spike, Taunt, Thunder Wave, Wisp, and most notably Destiny Bond. It is also immune to Excadrill and Regieleki's Rapid Spin.

:Aerodactyl: is blazing fast, actually faster than Weavile, and can Taunt and Stealth Rock.

non Focus Sash :Mamoswine: can often times lead as its typing is rather threatening.

:Omastar: and :Cloyster: can be fun thanks to Shell Smash making them threatening enough and force the opponent into weird spots early game.

Stealth Rock on Pokemon like :Bisharp: can be a cool one off surprise.
 
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airfare

is a Tutoris a Tiering Contributoris a Site Content Manager Alumnusis a Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
OUPL Champion
dumping some of the teams i made for sspl
https://pokepast.es/f3e3173389b649d9 --> https://pokepast.es/65946baf57432354
made this into one last kiss with some knowledge that they like to bring fat. i think np gking is insanely good in that it has a lot of flexibility with its item slot + moveset letting it get consistent value vs offense and its typing + ability letting it combat obesity better than michelle obama. the original idea was just trying to make gking + heatran + volc work because they're super strong offensively together vs special walls/grounds and have a lot of nice defensive synergy. i eventually just changed the volc to dnite solely because of urshifu but they have a pretty similar defensive profile in that their main thing is just checking grasses in an emergency and setting up on some specific things to sweep. the team has an interesting defensive core but im not sure how well it really works in practice. in the game rob used it in we couldn't break through dnite + rest tran but i still think the team is ok

https://pokepast.es/8b134193e7aa5476 / https://pokepast.es/ff599bc5ad4e4d43
another attempt for a more offensive np gking six but im not a huge fan of how it turned out cuz of the pult matchup. it seems pretty easy with this team to get taken advantage of as pult comes in vs gking/buzz/zapdos and u just lose to shadow balls. i edited the 2nd version thinking of bringing it vs sylveon used calm mind because all they use is ho but chose not to cuz of the team below

https://pokepast.es/ab742d7603e74f46
this shit is broken!! there's not a lot you lose to on mu and quaggy gives u a lot of flexibility vs a lot of annoying offense staples, basically beating everything cm clef does with a few small exceptions (grasses, cm clef). i like it a lot though because it compresses gastro + clef into one slot while making some matchups much better (ho with things like blaziken/lo weav/lo chomp, zeraora, and some other things that typically annoy stall like melmetal and cb tar) while giving you the flexibility of the last slot here which i chose to be slightly fat koko, giving you some more insurance against offense builds and the option of twaving shit like cm clef (which corv can flinch down lol)/grasses/setup gking/other miscellaneous sweepers in the moment. chose np gking for some final insurance vs grasses with colbur, guaranteed progress vs other fat and because there's not really any need for vest here. it won pretty easily in the game i brought it in.. mg clef or buzzwole or torn or something in the last slot that gives a nice mu vs grasses/lele/something specific like that probably works nice too but koko has worked well for me so far
im gonna use this as an opportunity to say why i think pex sucks balls: the power level is slightly too high for it to do things consistently and in a gen with stupid crazy breakers that can come in and force things whenever they want, it's hard to make pex work. unless you're using it on really fat teams or something like that successful grassy terrain team that saw use in spl it's impossible to cover all of weav + pult + melm + all the other random shit its supposed to check while simultaneously not losing momentum (and the game) to shifu lele or future sight strats. ur p much forced to go all in with it and acknowledge you need to beef the team up to cover its flaws. it's usually easier to combine the other waters or steels with offensive pressure to handle these everpresent offensive threats instead of just using pex and losing to all of them. after pex switches in it's the goat but it can't come into shit safely. i tried to experiment with things like this which finch brought in spl or this which i built for wcop 22 but they all still had some worrying matchups into things like slowtwins, garchomp, or tran that made me kind of doubtful. ended up making this
https://pokepast.es/677f355fe78134ca
the flexman 5 plus np gking, who would've guessed... spdef clef is an interesting touch that kind of secures you vs pult and tran (this clef + hippo only really loses to taunt toxic tran) but it obviously still has some problems defensively. i think spdef clef is a cool partner that solves some problems alongside pex but the core still requires plans vs things like lele and fs ingame. tldr pex's passivity makes it such a bitch to try and build around; its 43% winrate in spl and 35% winrate in sspl (lowest of all mons with 10+ uses) should kind of tell how it's been doing recently
https://pokepast.es/50835d98932c59bc
made this 6 for wcop 2022 but i just touched it up for semis a bit editing the zone and weavile to be viable sets. it's a nice 6, the custap activated in the semis game rob won with it so we didn't need to risk weav, which was awesome and having three steels makes u a lot more comfortable vs scarf lele/kart or melm or clef or a bunch of other shit where some teams with only zone or kart zone would fail

https://pokepast.es/980713a43f6029e4
this looks like some ladder offense you'd see at 1320 elo but the focus was trying to make lele + volc ho and somehow me skypenguin and qwily made it work. lele usually forces at least a kill and something like garchomp or pult or weav comes in to revenge but if you can snag an extra kill afterwards it's nice considering it doesn't need its item slot on this set a ton. hdb swarm offensive volc is nice because you can qd twice on things like garchomp or lele and immediately win games and with psyterrain priority blocking/ddpult to punish shifu jet you can become really threatening really fast. roseli chomp ideally gets a fairy out of the way for pult and stops scarf lele from revenging every mon. steela can snipe a heatran after you miss focus blast with lele and sometimes sweeps but it's mostly here for the defensive bulk and typing so we aren't immediately losing to lele and kart. mncmt could've won in semis with some more favorable luck but the matchup wasn't super ideal and we could've maybe sequenced some stuff better but i like the team

most of our other teams were just recycled or stolen :heart:
ggz necrozmas was fun to prep for u guys robjr mncmt RaiZen1704 and thanks for helping tofa pulsar512b
 
Given that the tier is now mostly held up by ladder activity from consistent players, tournaments, and general community activity, the metagame has slowed down a lot. Unfortunately, this means that it's difficult to track metagame shifts, usage stats, and trends properly. But now that we have this thread we can express what we've seen in the metagame for the last few months and what we'd like to see.

Obviously, we've seen a lot more sample teams being used than not. They're generally pretty consistent bar some of the more advanced teams which require more practice, time, and skill to use before they are successful. Given this, I'd like to ask what teams which are not samples have been more common? Are there any teams that have been successful like this? I'd also like to suggest that we revive the sample submissions and try to include more teams that match underground metagame changes that occur.

Speaking of underground changes, I'd just like to take some time to address a personal interest and ask: how do you guys think the meta has changes since the end of SS OU? Last I was involved, Blaziken, Clefable, Gastrodon, Melmetal, and Rillaboom were on the rise. Additionally, Dragapult and Dragonite were becoming increasingly more common on hazard stack and bulky offense teams. Dragapult with Modest was becoming less uncommon even when Weavile's usage remained the same. Heatran also used Flame Body more frequently.

Are there any new sets, EV spreads, or cores that you have seen recently?

Lastly, I'd like to ask how those of you responding would rate the current metagame. Is it still enjoyable to you? Do you feel there is something that needs addressed?

Really glad to see that we're getting some discussion back into the metagame after being dead for so many months. I'm extremely tired of gen9ou lol.
 
1690040354248.png

These 6 keep being used a lot to no one's surprise. Sometimes with Eject Button Landorus-T or changes to Melmetal's Speed or nature in Lele or Dragapult but same idea, version clean shared a year ago. Similar offenses can be found all over replays threads, with for example Kartana or RIllaboom.

1690040624025.png

These 6 also keep being used a lot. Less so during the seasonals and championship, but was used a fair bit in SPL and Smogon Tour weekends. Torn-T runs the original 4 moves, Hurricane, Superpower, etc. Ninetales also changes moves and spreads often. Arctozolt can run Freeze Dry but the original 4 are fine if you dont find a Gastrodon. Original shared version.

1690040850945.png
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Not the best of win rates but also got a lot of use.

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1690041154122.png

The 6 in Grassy Terrain that airfare mentioned above (first pic) but also just Torn-T, Garchomp, Rilla teams in general. You also see xray's team, or Zapdos, Kartana, Slowking-Galar, and Rotom-Wash in one of the slots.

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Just in general Rotom-W Lando Clef Steel core. You also see them slot in Blacephalon, Kartana, and Dragonite.

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Torn-T Sand which also slots in Buzzwole, and Toxapex. Of course also Empo Sand and Gking Sand.

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Yee

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This composition has one of the worst win rates yet it keeps being used. Really fun though. Damien actually gave it a win (the first I can recall) recently so s/o to them.

1690042925732.png

These 6 got a fair bit of usage particularly in Smogon Tour weekends. Here is Vert and Mimikyu Stardust's version that got lost at some point during sample edits. Though Clef is usually Rocky Helmet > Sticky Barb.

Ladder
Vert already made a rant about this and other stuff regarding gen8, and even if you disagree with the tone, he is right in that the ladder is really really bad. It doesnt even allow you to get the feel for a team you want to try cause of its nature: Wonky rain, TR, Psyspam, lots of Stall, and very low activity. Try to search for games outside of ladder.
 

Attachments

pulsar512b

ss ou fangirl
is a Pre-Contributor
.

Ladder
Vert already made a rant about this and other stuff regarding gen8, and even if you disagree with the tone, he is right in that the ladder is really really bad. It doesnt even allow you to get the feel for a team you want to try cause of its nature: Wonky rain, TR, Psyspam, lots of Stall, and very low activity. Try to search for games outside of ladder.
the rest of this is great & well written and pretty much said everything I wanted to, but I would generally argue that this ladder is not really that awful. at the end of the day it’s still a ladder and you’ll get these matchups, yes- but I think that’s sort of to be expected. I definitely agree that you should seek out other games but I personally don’t think this ladder is especially bad. It’s possible I just have a high tolerance for bs but I do ladder and enjoy it a lot. (i also disagree w a lot of that vert post & generally a lot of his takes are rancid imo but that's neither here nor there)
 
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Well, I have to agree with Vert on a lot of that. I definitely don't respect the tone it's set in, but at the very least it's straightforward and addresses a lot of issues with the tier and its popularity (or lack thereof). Ladder especially, I don't think it's entirely as bad as he said but it's definitely filled with cheese and Pinkacross-related RMT's. The meta slowing down definitely seems to have hurt ladder. Obviously some of what he says is very flawed regarding SS OU, but other points on its level of attention and somewhat stale nature were relevant.

On a related note, what he said about Tera was very based.
 

pulsar512b

ss ou fangirl
is a Pre-Contributor
Lastly, I'd like to ask how those of you responding would rate the current metagame. Is it still enjoyable to you? Do you feel there is something that needs addressed?

Really glad to see that we're getting some discussion back into the metagame after being dead for so many months. I'm extremely tired of gen9ou lol.
the rest of the questions here either have already been answered or otherwise addressed, but this one is something that I feel very strongly about.

SS OU is a fantastic metagame. There are almost no issues with it - some people complain about it being 'too slow' ignoring the immense number of games that end up being offense mirrors (the farthest thing away) and the relative rarity of these slow grindy games. I mean, for a start, there's a debate if this is even a bad thing (slow, long games are in some ways better than these fast offense mirrors, they just demand different skills), but it is just not true. sometimes people point to individual long games but those exist in every metagame that isn't LC speed levels. There will always be stall mirrors.

Another complaint (that was actually mentioned in the vert post earlier, tho i haven't really heard it before) is that things are having to be only checked by flame body/static which is just nonsense. There is one static (zapdos) and 2 flame body (heatran, volcarona) mons in the tier, and the things you check with them (primarily grasses and kinda urshifu? for zap, weavile and grasses for heatran/volc) that are punished by those abilities would still be pretty reasonably checked. In addition, most teams have better checks or otherwise patch up their matchups in such a way that even if those abilities never trigger they would still be able to play a reasonable game. If you are solely relying on getting flame body activations to check major threats, that's kind of just skill issue. I'm not saying these factors don't help check said mons, i'm saying that they are not the whole story.

I don't really mind HDB, I think it's fine.

Quick claw/quick draw is fucked. ban it. please. I'm not like heartbroken over it but I think it's something that should be brought up again @ some point in PR at least (I might make a post about it @ some point, we'll see)

The one other thing I don't necessarily love about SS is that modest specs pult has a tendency to just break through it's normal answers with ease. Many clef spreads simply get 2hkod (sometimes on a roll), many melm spreads get 2hkod (and if they have to protect to get out of ko range that is easily abusable). And of course, sometimes it just gets a spd drop and you lose. There is definitely still substantial counterplay (stacking checks, playing around it, revenge killing it) but it can feel pretty absurd at times. Pult is definitively the best mon in the tier - the raw power isn't even all it has for it. It still has quite a reasonable bit of defensive utility from it's typing, allowing it to serve as a check on offense for shifu for instance. I think if anything thats not qc/qd would be suspected, this would be a good idea. I'm not convinced I would personally vote yes, but I could.

In general, I am very sad that this forum has been neglected to such a degree, with few forum projects (it's getting better now with teambuilding, cores, and next best thing all being up, but it's still not great), a horribly out of date VR (no shade to the maintainers, there haven't been a ton of noms and it's a daunting task to basically redo half of it - I'll be probably making a post soonish about the changes I think need to be made). I would strongly encourage anyone to run a forum project - it's really not particularly hard. Even just regularly posting in any thread here I think is very nice and hopefully as more people participate this forum will slowly blossom. The outdated nature of the sample teams also sucks, and I do think it would be very nice to have that be more updated. Similarly, I think the analyses for this tier are almost always either nonexistent or extremely outdated, which puts a huge barrier to entry.

Otherwise, I think the metagame is a great and overhated metagame (i swear every other page of half the sv ou discussions on this site someone dumps on SS). I also think the SS discord has started to become more active and have better and better discussions about the tier, which is very cool and great. It'll take time for us to build up a proper and solid community, but we're on this path.
 

cyberacc

formerly Suckingmoreducks
the rest of this is great & well written and pretty much said everything I wanted to, but I would generally argue that this ladder is not really that awful. at the end of the day it’s still a ladder and you’ll get these matchups, yes- but I think that’s sort of to be expected. I definitely agree that you should seek out other games but I personally don’t think this ladder is especially bad. It’s possible I just have a high tolerance for bs but I do ladder and enjoy it a lot. (i also disagree w a lot of that vert post & generally a lot of his takes are rancid imo but that's neither here nor there)

One thing I can state on SS's ladder is that a lot of this "garbage" (its' ladder. The quality will always be worse than in Tourney.) we see sort of dies out at around the 1500 mark with some sparse good teams showing up from the mid 1400s. Its' not as dire as it seems nor nearly as horrific as Vert claims but it is annoying for people testing teams going into tournament circuits. My footnote on why this is the case is pretty simple: The samples are all outdated. I've seen all these teams for a year straight and they still suck, all of them have issues with what people are actually running in tournaments. If you go in and edit the samples and make them more modern this forces the new players who are looking for samples to use teams that aren't flat out dead in tourney. And since fixing samples is easier than us all trying to fix the vaguer than hell analyses it will go a long way in procuring interest in the tier since at least the ladder heroes are forced to use good structures.

One of SS's strongpoints as a generation is how loose the builder actually is once you become comfortable with the tier and showcasing what people can do with the OU roster and a good chunk of the UU roster helps give new players (and ladder heroes) an idea of what you can build and win with in SS and the current samples sort of fail at that imo.

Some teams we should highlight:
German offense. The team is popular and the game plan is very, very simple. Press knock off once, maybe twice, from the Landorus then kill them before they get a chance to slow the game pace into their favour. The Borat boom team of SS at the moment.

1690091981790.png


Solid hail. The original Ox Hail sample is horrible for beginners and I will say outright that the team not having rocks at all is something that just does not work with the three basics of SS: "Have a ground type. Have one knock off user. Have a stealth rocker. Legitimately have 5 ZU mons and a Landorus Therian and you can somehow win."
1690092263271.png


Solid rain. I think Rain while a bit "too" beginner friendly should be highlighted since it is a popular archetype but the sample variety of Rain is not it, at all. The ones you see sparsely in tournament are way more rigid in their focus of abusing Crawdaunts nuclear damage to steamroll through bulky offense or have their tempo game way more paced around Barraskewda being incredibly hard to deal with as offense. Oh, and Seismitoad sucks. Pre-Kyurem meta relic mon. Urshifu-R should be used here since that nowadays is slotted over Crawdaunt: The mon hits like a truck and adds even more tempo into the rain cycle. I've even seen Lando + Shifu to fold the Stallbreak approach and just say "fuck it the tempo game is mine", rain dosen't have to be sample bad to be alright.

1690093510252.png


Solid sand. Hippowdon + Drill, Bandtar + Drill, anything works really. Sand is incredibly consistent and popular and I feel like the sand teams available are giving a skewed take of what sand can do in SS, the only one I see in the current sample pool I would consider fine is the Storm Zone one and that team is incredibly bland in a very old and weird way (That Mew set. What the actual fuck.)
1690093222818.png


Solid stall. Ox stall sample sucks. Its so easy to bully its' not even funny. The ones we have seen in tournament have been varieties of the Torn T NP team (doomstack, bench team, whatever you've randomly gotten NP torned turn 1 and felt like a dummy its' a part of SS as a tier) or Zapdos + Corviknight to completely shut down any fun most offenses and balances attempt to do by having 96 effective PP worth of hazard removal.
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Good Buzzwole teams. I loaned this one from Queen of Bean . Buzzwoles "glow up" in SS is noteworthy from someone coming from SM into SS and can be good to showcase, I feel the current sample Zwoles are all sort of misguided in what Buzzwole actually does.

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More Rillaboom teams.
Another team taken from Queen of Bean . Rillaboom is integral to the offense pool in SS and I think that showcasing more teams that show how much shit you can do with the mon helps a lot.
1690095941216.png


Procuring good samples procures good ladders. Look at GSCs sample thread as the example to follow.
 
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cyberacc

formerly Suckingmoreducks
Excuse the double posting, may as well give my thoughts on SS at the moment and on the whole.

Lastly, I'd like to ask how those of you responding would rate the current metagame. Is it still enjoyable to you? Do you feel there is something that needs addressed?

Really glad to see that we're getting some discussion back into the metagame after being dead for so many months. I'm extremely tired of gen9ou lol.
Oh man, SS. The tier I came back to serious competitive for.
A bit of a history treck; BW ladder spammer, ORAS sampler, SM tryer, gave up on all 3 tiers and played Ubers instead, came back in SS after seeing one single team variety I thought was completely dead in competitive in a metagame as hostile as possible to its' very existence: Stall. More specifically this team and its' ten trillion variations: https://pokepast.es/e2b7ec3efed9c1da

I hated SS for a long time. The dex cut was horrid to me, the introduction of HDB completely fucked with my logic and what I am used to in singles ("why is the Torn T not dying I set rocks and have caved its' skull in for 30 turns") and I came into the tier during one of the worst eras I have ever seen: Early , mid , late Kyurem meta. The metagame sucked fucking ass. There's no real way to quantify how god damn boring Kyurem meta was: All of high ladder was horrid cheese offense horrid MU fish stall horrid Kyurem abuse Scizor "balance" that just sucked to pilot and every single avenue you faced and dealt with felt like it was a slow burn from turn one due to how god damn awful the builder was with Kyurem in the picture.
After the Kyurem ban the metagame was... Bad, people where still just running horrid "bulky offense" (6 tanks, no cleric, no wincon.) and nobody knew what to actually do. Everyone was just confused at what to do now that they didn't have to set the game pace at cruising speed.

...Then there was a shift. I don't exactly know when or why but the game suddenly just like. Settled. People started seeding the roots for the incredibly flexible offense structure when we all got the gist of the auto-includes in SS ("knock off ground rocks or ur team sux") and teams where starting to be made that where allowed to just like, be good. Be fast. Be tanky. Be fast, tanky, good. You saw people like fusien peak with garbage like Boltund just because the tier was allowing you to do that. Its' as if on a weekend everyone realised "wait I can make anything work in this tier. I have 3 baby requirements to fill then I can go hog wild." And it continued going on all throughout the gen until the generation ended. It was like going from autumn rain straight to July sun.

And I am proud to say that I actually love SS OU because of what we left it at. SS OU is my 2nd favorite generation of OU bar none, I can't think of a tier that has hit the itch as much as this one does. Any shit excuse you have for a joke idea can probably win. The dex is so flexible you could slap together 6 mons at random and it would probably be playable. The amount of variety you can use and potentially win with is staggering and I don't think we have even begun to explore it enough to say we truly get it. We get the fundamentals sure but the amount of shit you can do is probably not even a tenth of the way there.

SS OU is a tier with one of the worst histories in balancing that had to be beaten, stabbed, broken, twisted and mangled into a functional metagame and in spite of how people bemoan its' passivity the metagame is offensive in mind. Its' just not offense that behaves like its' sister generations. And I feel it should be respected for that: Its' a pixie gen dex with a playstyle similar to an old gen. I fail to see how someone could be flamed for liking SS OU if you frame it like it ACTUALLY plays from turn 1. Lovely tier, every time I que it I realize just how much I like it.


TL:DR I enjoy SS OU. Its' sitting at a solid arbitrary score out of a lot and it has a lot of potential to be a great old gen.

My issue lately has been one of two things: One is that Pult is super, duper annoying if its' modest. It is really not that hard to build it well and it feels really dumb to deal with even if you're going into the matchup with a full front Edralda-like counter team stall. You smash shadow ball from turn 1 and if you get the slightest bit pressured, oops, just switch and defog. Repeat the process until your whole team is dead to a 72% hp Heatran that got knocked turn 3 because they tried to magma trap a shed shell Pex.

The other is that I seriously doubt the necessity for HDB. Do we need to remove it? Nah. Should we do it just because its' sort of boring to have the early game be dictated on knock off nailing the right target before rocks? Its' preferential. If enough people get annoyed in the future it will probably be suspect tested and banned and I would care nil about it. "Oh no, my Torn T is not immortal anymore" is the most my concerns would sit.

SS has a lot going for it amongst its' sister generations and I am excited to be a part of the process of the tier settling as an old gen.
 

Red Raven

I COULD BE BANNED!
Since people seem to be praising the state of the meta, what is the meta right now anyway? Does it still involve a lot of Landorus, Garchomp, and Heatran, all spamming toxic and knock off users spamming knock off or has its pace gotten a bit faster and more offensive like gen 9 ou?
 

cyberacc

formerly Suckingmoreducks
Since people seem to be praising the state of the meta, what is the meta right now anyway? Does it still involve a lot of Landorus, Garchomp, and Heatran, all spamming toxic and knock off users spamming knock off or has its pace gotten a bit faster and more offensive like gen 9 ou?
Sort of. Comparing SV OU to SS is something ill advised and trying to make examples that co-relate the two tiers isn't exactly relevant to the discussion aimed in this thread.
As far as "spamming knock off and toxic":
Its' still methodical if that is what you are referring to. SPL finals for SS this year showcased this with TDNT bullying out one of the more bemoaned tactics in the tier (Regen core + hazard + breakers) with Twave Clef Dragonite Ferro Koko spikes to close out his series.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen8ou-684413

What we know works wins. Get rid of the timbs, wear down their walls, win by never giving them room to make sure they can't just outlast you. Thats' always going to be fine in SS and that is not going to change no matter how much faster we'd want the tier to go.
 

pulsar512b

ss ou fangirl
is a Pre-Contributor
One thing I can state on SS's ladder is that a lot of this "garbage" (its' ladder. The quality will always be worse than in Tourney.) we see sort of dies out at around the 1500 mark with some sparse good teams showing up from the mid 1400s. Its' not as dire as it seems nor nearly as horrific as Vert claims but it is annoying for people testing teams going into tournament circuits. My footnote on why this is the case is pretty simple: The samples are all outdated. I've seen all these teams for a year straight and they still suck, all of them have issues with what people are actually running in tournaments. If you go in and edit the samples and make them more modern this forces the new players who are looking for samples to use teams that aren't flat out dead in tourney. And since fixing samples is easier than us all trying to fix the vaguer than hell analyses it will go a long way in procuring interest in the tier since at least the ladder heroes are forced to use good structures.

One of SS's strongpoints as a generation is how loose the builder actually is once you become comfortable with the tier and showcasing what people can do with the OU roster and a good chunk of the UU roster helps give new players (and ladder heroes) an idea of what you can build and win with in SS and the current samples sort of fail at that imo.

Some teams we should highlight:
German offense. The team is popular and the game plan is very, very simple. Press knock off once, maybe twice, from the Landorus then kill them before they get a chance to slow the game pace into their favour. The Borat boom team of SS at the moment.

View attachment 537103

Solid hail. The original Ox Hail sample is horrible for beginners and I will say outright that the team not having rocks at all is something that just does not work with the three basics of SS: "Have a ground type. Have one knock off user. Have a stealth rocker. Legitimately have 5 ZU mons and a Landorus Therian and you can somehow win."
View attachment 537104

Solid rain. I think Rain while a bit "too" beginner friendly should be highlighted since it is a popular archetype but the sample variety of Rain is not it, at all. The ones you see sparsely in tournament are way more rigid in their focus of abusing Crawdaunts nuclear damage to steamroll through bulky offense or have their tempo game way more paced around Barraskewda being incredibly hard to deal with as offense. Oh, and Seismitoad sucks. Pre-Kyurem meta relic mon. Urshifu-R should be used here since that nowadays is slotted over Crawdaunt: The mon hits like a truck and adds even more tempo into the rain cycle. I've even seen Lando + Shifu to fold the Stallbreak approach and just say "fuck it the tempo game is mine", rain dosen't have to be sample bad to be alright.

View attachment 537111

Solid sand. Hippowdon + Drill, Bandtar + Drill, anything works really. Sand is incredibly consistent and popular and I feel like the sand teams available are giving a skewed take of what sand can do in SS, the only one I see in the current sample pool I would consider fine is the Storm Zone one and that team is incredibly bland in a very old and weird way (That Mew set. What the actual fuck.)
View attachment 537110

Solid stall. Ox stall sample sucks. Its so easy to bully its' not even funny. The ones we have seen in tournament have been varieties of the Torn T NP team (doomstack, bench team, whatever you've randomly gotten NP torned turn 1 and felt like a dummy its' a part of SS as a tier) or Zapdos + Corviknight to completely shut down any fun most offenses and balances attempt to do by having 96 effective PP worth of hazard removal.
View attachment 537112

Good Buzzwole teams. I loaned this one from Queen of Bean . Buzzwoles "glow up" in SS is noteworthy from someone coming from SM into SS and can be good to showcase, I feel the current sample Zwoles are all sort of misguided in what Buzzwole actually does.

View attachment 537115

More Rillaboom teams.
Another team taken from Queen of Bean . Rillaboom is integral to the offense pool in SS and I think that showcasing more teams that show how much shit you can do with the mon helps a lot.
View attachment 537116

Procuring good samples procures good ladders. Look at GSCs sample thread as the example to follow.
i generally agree with a lot of this, but the one thing i'll also add is dragapult particularly specs and modest needs way more samples - this mon is the best mon in the tier easily to me and it only has 2 samples and one is dd.
Since people seem to be praising the state of the meta, what is the meta right now anyway? Does it still involve a lot of Landorus, Garchomp, and Heatran, all spamming toxic and knock off users spamming knock off or has its pace gotten a bit faster and more offensive like gen 9 ou?
gen 9 is just so fundamentally different than gen 8 that comparison is impossible. however theres definitely been a bit more of a realization that stuff like german offense and generally teams based around stuff like modest pult are better, and the stereotype of SS being slow is definitively a stereotype. You can play with slow teams, sure. You can do that anywhere that's not LC.
 
I would agree, you can't change what works in a tier regardless of how much you enjoy it or not. This generation slowed down a lot with some dex cuts from Generation 7, and comparing SS to SM or SV is an impossible task. If you were to compare SS to a tier, I think it would have more in common with Generation 3 or Generation 4 where the metagame had a similar pace. There are certainly some significantly different mechanics skipping four or five generations over, but the progress of the average game is fairly methodical. Honestly I don't have many specific and direct comparisons myself, I've grazed Generation 3 and Generation 4 lightly. BKC does a much better job explaining them than I do, and I have found a lot of similarities in the tiers because of his content.

A bulkier metagame has resulted in a lot of room for Dragapult to experiment offensively, and an increase in the usage of Tapu Koko and Clefable- in addition to the steady use of Weavile- hasn't overly influenced it. As a result, it's easier to build with and much harder to manage Modest. Even well prepared teams faulter to STAB Modest Shadow Ball or Draco quickly, and they can't prevent SpD drops bar Blissey.

Do I find it to be that much of a problem? No, not really. However, I think it is super annoying and requires more thoughfulness from the teambuilder.

That said, how much more do you think about it as a legitimate threat to the teambuilder and what kinds of tools are you using to manage it better? How successful have they been?
 
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pulsar512b

ss ou fangirl
is a Pre-Contributor
That said, how much more do you think about it as a legitimate threat to the teambuilder and what kinds of tools are you using to manage it better? How successful have they been?
It is the thing I think about most in the builder and am consistently the least happy with how my teams manage it. One angle is to just play stall because Blissey stonewalls it most of the time. Another angle is to stack checks. A third angle is something like AV melm or tran (possibly w grassy terrain support) as something that can check it over some time. Not perfect, but it goes a long way. Somewhat of a fourth angle (which for instance German offense uses a lot) is to focus on revenge killing it and out offensing it and hope that something like a protect melm can stave it off for long enough. I think these 4 are the main ways you should be thinking about managing pult - none are perfect but they will do a lot for you.
 
Hey @/everyone,

Will be working on some SS analyses this weekend and was looking for people to help out. It will be a small thing for now and it can hopefully grow a bit more if there's enthusiasm / we gather enough people.

Main idea right now is to only mess with small fixes like removing Kyurem mentions, adding slashes like Freeze Dry Arctozolt, optimizing EVs like making Defog Torn 168 EVs instead of max Speed etc... No writing at all for now.

If you are interested in helping out please reach out to me here or in discord at setsustsna c: Ty!
 
Hey @/everyone,

Will be working on some SS analyses this weekend and was looking for people to help out. It will be a small thing for now and it can hopefully grow a bit more if there's enthusiasm / we gather enough people.

Main idea right now is to only mess with small fixes like removing Kyurem mentions, adding slashes like Freeze Dry Arctozolt, optimizing EVs like making Defog Torn 168 EVs instead of max Speed etc... No writing at all for now.

If you are interested in helping out please reach out to me here or in discord at setsustsna c: Ty!
Happy to help, I think I've still got a lot of spreads loaded and I'm sure we all have sets to contribute. Just let me know what you have.
 
hey! I wanted to make a fun post about a Pokemon that I find to be really fun in the metagame, hope the people enjoy :D


:sv/Tapu Koko:

Tapu Koko's transition over from SM to SS is one that surprises no one, even with the nerfs that it received in the loss of Hidden Power and the boost reduction of Electric Terrain, it has remained as a key offensive piece for all kinds of teams. Tapu Koko is an amazingly versatile Pokemon in terms of team composition and sets, playing a central role in the tier by enabling offensive teams while being a powerful force in of itself, being able to punch through opposing teams who aren't well prepared for it. In this post I'd like to talk about what it excels in and some of my favourite teammates that work well with it, showcasing Tapu Koko's fantastic potential in the tier.

One of the first things that may jump out at you is the excellent combination of offensive tools like Volt Switch, U-turn and Calm Mind, its excellent speed tier, and its solid offensive typing. Tapu Koko is infamous for both its pivoting sets, which capitalise on its synergy with a vast amount of offensive threats to position them into the battlefield on a Pokemon it can easily take advantage of, and the terrifyingly effective Calm Mind variants, able to sweep through teams with ease thanks to access to Roost for reliable recovery and longevity. Tapu Koko's typing not only gives it fantastic offensive abilities, but solid defensive capabilities as well as a check to Zapdos, Tornadus-T and Zeraora, as well as solid enough bulk to be able to successfully revenge kill Weavile, Dragapult and Moltres-Galar. To say that Tapu Koko hasn't had an effect on the metagame would be a serious understatement, as its one of the main reasons why many defensive pieces such as Slowking-Galar, Forretress, Gastrodon and Seismitoad are as good as they are, or are considered in the first place. This doesn't mean that Tapu Koko is some unstoppable force of nature though, as its offensive stats aren't as impressive as they seem to be and its passable bulk does still force it to Roost to keep itself healthy, but this is what I love about Tapu Koko competitively: It's a strong, rewarding Pokemon to use if you know how to play well, but still makes sure you keep humble in your play.

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Fire-types will always love what a powerful Electric-type is able to bring to the table, and Tapu Koko is one of the strongest there will ever be. Probably one of the most common offensive partners with Tapu Koko, Victini is an invaluable partner for the guardian deity, with Tapu Koko almost always forcing in either an opposing Ground-type - normally either Landorus-T or Excadrill in this case, Slowking-Galar or Ferrothorn. Victini is able to blows all of these Pokemon apart with a deadly V-create, able to puncture massive holes into a team for Tapu Koko to eventually clean up later from with its checks removed or severly damaged. This isn't a one sided relationship either, with Tapu Koko handling any Water- or Dragon-types that may wish to come in on them, bar the likes of the almighty Garchomp or Dragonite if it hasn't taken any kind of prior chip. Heatran functions very similar to Victini in this matter, and acts as a better option for the Bulky Offense teams it typically finds itself on to take full advantage of its fantastic utility, while also being able punish both of the aforementioned Dragons with a nasty Toxic.

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I feel like in this tier you simply can not go wrong with pairing a powerful offensive option with the best pivot in the tier. Landorus-T will always find a way to support its teammates with the help of the ever-present Stealth Rock and fantastic Knock Off support, being able to lure in Pokemon that may feel safe around it such as Tapu Fini, Slowbro or Tornadus-T for Tapu Koko to switch in and immediately threaten them back, or with enough chip, start setting up Calm Mind for an eventual sweep, clean or break. Simply put, Landorus-T is king and never won't be in this gen.

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I feel like I don't need to say it again, but one more time for those in the back: Tapu Koko is one of the greatest offensive pivots in the metagame, and pairing it with just about any kind of breaker that has solid synergy with it will never be a bad thing, and even more credit to it if the teammate is able to use a pivoting move as well. Dragapult pairs greatly with Tapu Koko, being able to overwhelm their shared checks like Tyranitar, Blissey and Ferrothorn due to sheer damage output, with both of them offering a fantastic speed tier to add to a team and powerful breaking potential, as well as the possibility to spread status with Pivot Dragapult's access to Thunder Wave and Will-o-Wisp. Urshifu-R does similarly to Dragapult, but instead of overwhelming Tapu Koko's checks it is able to outright OHKO them with a nuclear Close Combat, as well as being able to handle Landorus-T and Excadrill with its signature move, Surging Strikes, while Tapu Koko conquers the ursine's biggest fear in Tapu Fini. Rillaboom adds an insane amount to the offensive core: a powerful breaker and pivot, a strong Knock Off user, and the addition of another terrain to a team. Dual Terrain teams are far from bad, as being able to control which Terrain is active is always valuable if you can play it correctly. Rillaboom also invites Corviknight in freely, so being able to abuse Corviknight's passivity for Tapu Koko to come in and click is greatly appreciated.

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That's all from me for now! Expect another post like this sometime in the next week though, as well as a new thread being put up later!

have a lovely day, and stay fresh

 

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