The Gang Becomes Pokemon (my first team)


After years of being too intimidated by the idea of having to choose 6 Pokemon out of the hundreds available, I finally decided to jump in to Pokemon Online after playing the hell out of Platinum and Black/White recently. I had been using Smogon for ideas for my in-game movesets and so in the process ended up reading just about every analysis on the site even knowing the information was mostly irrelevant - so I figured it's time to put all that reading to good use. I just reached 100 on the Pokemon Online Wifi ladder with this team and am struggling to get much higher so I guess it's time for the minds of Smogon to patch up my team.

The Team

Building Process

After wrecking the entirety of Platinum Enhanced several times with him, one thing was abundantly clear for my first team - it absolutely had to include a Scizor. With this in mind, I also knew I needed someone to soak up the fire attacks he is bound to draw, as well as disposing of the steel types Scizor struggles with. Thus, Heatran (with a balloon) was a natural, if almost too obvious, partner.

The first glaring weakness at this point was water - any Hydro Pump always takes me by surprise with the amount of damage a neutral hit does to Scizor, and Heatran isn't going to be any help there. Also, I wanted a Pokemon who could stay in and pose a threat to almost any Pokemon, as Scizor is always U-Turning out or needing to retreat due to being choice locked. With Spore and Sub/Focus Punch to guarantee at least one crippled Pokemon, Breloom fit right in here, as well as having great type synergy with the other two Pokemon.

At this point, the only weakness uncovered was Heatran's Fighting weakness. Especially fearing Mach Punch users, I chose this Pokemon with only one thing in mind - a 4x resistance to Fighting. It was only then that I decided to look into what moves it was capable of, and I knew I had found the 4th member of the gang - Shinporaa. With an amazing ability in Magic Guard, great bulk and Roost to not only heal but also take away some common weaknesses, and with Cosmic Power becoming essentially a triple boosting move when used with Assist Power, it actually gave me reason to use a Pokemon defensively.

Unfortunately, along with her awesome fighting resistance and a second ground immunity, Shinporaa bought a slew of new weaknesses with it - rock, ice, electric, dark and ghost. Of those though, only rock and electric were serious threats, as much of the rest of my team resisted that combination of types well. Another thing I had to consider was that Breloom and Shinporaa, while very good in their roles, were limited to one direct damage move apiece, and for them to complete their tasks, I needed a Pokemon with excellent coverage and that could set up to break down walls - enter SD Garchomp, packing a Yache Berry to enable it to always get in one SD.

At this point I took a step back and looked at the moves my team were packing, and noticed a few immensely useful types were missing - water, electric and ice (before I gave Heatran HP Ice). This made for a quick choice for my 6th Pokemon - Life Orb Starmie, packing Rapid Spin despite the fact most of my team scarcely fears entry hazards, short of Scizor who U-Turns out and comes back in often enough to die of nothing but stealth rock damage.

With these in place, I hit the ladder and had relative success until a slew of rain teams put me down and made me consider some changes. First of all, Starmie's Thunderbolt, with no boosting moves available, just wasn't OHKOing any water type outside of Gyarados. I decided that I needed extra power in the form of STAB, and so I decided on a Choice Scarf Rotom-W, who also served as an excellent revenge killer, a role I had noticed I lacked.

The addition of a scarf Pokemon made the team entire levels easier to work with - and became something I knew I needed to keep in the team to be able to take care of boosted sweepers. But still, whatever my Rotom did, it would never last forever and when it was gone, rain teams still ran loose on my team. It wasn't enough to figure out a Pokemon who would work in rain - I needed to be able to get rid of rain, and obviously with 2/3rds of my team being immune to SS and Garchomp benefitting from it, sand was the only option. While I did deliberate over Hippowdon, if I was going to be using a sand generator, it was going to be in place of Rotom, and thus it needed to be able to fill Rotom's role of revenge killer. Hence, there was only Tyranitar who could fit. With a Scarf, Ice and Thunder punches for the same coverage as Starmie and Rotom had provided, and Pursuit to stop Politoed from retreating and coming back after T-Tar was disposed of, Tyranitar was my perfect answer to weather teams (except for his annoying weakness to Hydro Pumps even after the rain was ended, but what can you do)

This team satisfied me for a while, but one thing still wasn't working out - even with Sand Veil now working for him even more of the time, and with his Yache Berry weakening one Ice attack, everyone and their dog was carrying Ice moves from Ice Beam to Ice Shard to Hidden Power Ice, and between all that it became pointless to boost Garchomp, which was hampering his wallbreaking abilities (or rather, his being unconscious was hampering his wallbreaking abilities). Thinking back to the role Garchomp was meant to fulfill, there was another perfect fit - electric immunity, rock resistance, swords dance and speedier than slow scarf users, thanks to the new addition of Tyranitar - Doryuuzu. This also brought back my ability to Rapid Spin.

That's where I'm at right now, sitting at 100 on the PO Wi-Fi Ladder.


Green Man (Breloom) (M) @ Toxic Orb Trait: Poison Heal
EVs: 236 HP / 252 Def / 20 Spd
Impish Nature (+Def, -SAtk)
- Spore
- Substitute
- Focus Punch
- Leech Seed

Green Man is my lead more often than any other Pokemon on the team, due to the fact his Spore throws a wrench in most teams plans, and if they don't want to contend with Breloom, whoever gets switched in is eating a Focus Punch more often than not. And once substitute and leech seed are up, since Poison Heal and leech seed combined heal more than the cost of a Substitute each turn, most Pokemon are forced to switch or else simply be stalled to death, even if immune to Focus Punch (Burunegru comes to mind). Finally, the immunity to status after one turn has proved invaluable more often than I care to recall.

Charlie (Doryuuzu) (M) @ Balloon
Trait: Sand Throw
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spd
Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk)
- Rapid Spin
- Earthquake
- Swords Dance
- Rock Slide

Charlie rarely sees play til late in the game, whether it be after taking out the opposing weather controller or the priority users, he needs conditions to be perfect for his sweep. However, he can switch in and set up easilly on Skarmory or a Ferrothorn not carrying Power Whip, and he can easilly take one Power Whip from a weakened Ferrothorn and kill it with a boosted EQ. I've switched back and forth on his item a few times, but right now I like the fact the balloon lets him beat most opposing Dory, which is obviously always a threat. Rapid Spin support only really benefits Scizor, but it's still especially nice because Charlie often ends up contending with Skarmory, and after finishing it, a Rapid Spin makes all it's layers of Spikes null.

Dennis (Tyranitar) (M) @ Choice Scarf
Trait: Sand Stream
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spd
Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk)
- ThunderPunch
- Ice Punch
- Pursuit
- Stone Edge

Dennis, as I explained, serves two purposes - revenge killing and making a sandstorm. Wearing a scarf, and with speed EVs and BoltBeam coverage, he can revenge kill almost anything that has taken a little damage, as well as hitting a fair share of threatening Pokemon (Gliscor, Landorus and Gyarados come to mind) for 4x damage. Pursuit helps to stop Politoed from retreating and raining all over Charlie's parade later on, and Stone Edge is just a very powerful stab. His role is simple but vital - I have however been considering switching to a mixed or special set, or maybe even a bulkier set that will survive longer to make sure my sand outlives their rain.

Frank (Heatran) (M) @ Balloon
Trait: Flash Fire
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk)
- Fire Blast
- Earth Power
- Stealth Rock
- Hidden Power [Ice]

Frank never really gets the kills I thought him capable of, but he excels at switching in on a resisted or often immune attack and forcing a switch, allowing him to set up Stealth Rock easily at any point in the game. I never seem to get to use Flash Fire boosted Fire Blast, as they always switch in some bulky water type as soon as Frank appears, but what secured Frank's place on the team was Hidden Power Ice - combined with his balloon and steel typing, he makes an excellent check for all dragons and ground types, especially Garchomp and Gliscor, who have limited options for popping the balloon - Garchomp often has no choice but to Outrage, locking himself in, and Gliscor uses Facade or Ice Fang for any additional coverage, which barely phase Frank.

Mac (Scizor) (M) @ Choice Band
Trait: Technician
EVs: 248 HP / 252 Atk / 8 Spd
Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk)
- Bullet Punch
- Superpower
- U-turn
- Pursuit

I feel like there's almost nothing I can tell you about this set - CB Bullet Punch hurts everything short of steel types, U-Turn is almost always a safe move to use and again, deal a lot of damage, and thanks to technician, Pursuit kills Lati@s who retreat expecting a U-Turn more often than TTar's Pursuit does. He's my best answer to a number of threats that he doesn't even need type advantages to beat - Bullet Punch makes things dead. And combined with TTar and Sandstorm, he makes a great lead up against Deoxys-S and other frail Pokemon carrying sashes, as Scizor U-Turns, and Sandstorm hits the last 1 HP. Scizor serves me all sorts of roles and switches in and out the duration of every battle.

Sweet Dee (Shinboraa) (F) @ Leftovers
Trait: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 HP / 200 Def / 56 Spd
Timid Nature (+Spd, -Atk)
- Whirlwind
- Assist Power
- Cosmic Power
- Roost

No lies, this Pokemon is the reason I made any real progress on the ladder. There are a number of Pokemon she switches in on easily and can begin setting up Cosmic Powers before the opponent realizes what Pokemon they're even fighting. Most other Shinporaa I see run Psycho Shift with a Flame Orb, but personally I don't think that is half as effective as the Whirlwind set - opposing Pokemon try to boost alongside the Cosmic Powers (Calm Mind Reuniclus most commonly) and just as we both reach max boosts, a whirlwind dismisses all their work and leaves my near invincible Shinporaa to wreck every non-dark Pokemon on the team. I ran Hidden Power Fighting instead of Whirlwind for a while but Whirlwind is completely invaluable - if Stealth Rock is up, I can just use Whirlwind every turn to kill off the Dark Pokemon they switch in to resist AP, and after 6 CPs she will only die to a critical hit. She may become less effective if this set becomes better known, as something that helps a lot is that people keep wasting a turn poisoning, burning or leech seeding allowing me free set up turns, but for now I feel like the Whirlwind set is my secret weapon that allows me to shift the game in my favour almost without fail.

Threat list


Blaziken is only a threat if it gets off 2 speed boosts - after 1 speed boost, Tyranitar can hurt him with Stone Edge and if needed Dory can finish the job in the sandstorm. Infernape hurts me as he pleases, unless they don't lead with him and I can set up Shinporaa first.

Wearing a scarf, this guy wrecks me. His Hydro Pump, boosted by his own rain, does significant damage to anyone on my team, even Breloom who resists it, and so he's going to always take out between one and six members of my team.

I'm sure there are others but these are the ones I remember hurting me most often. I welcome all your advice :)
As you've mentioned, Rain teams and Water pokemon in general aren't kind to this team. Breloom is the only resist and it isn't particularly bulky. I suggest replacing Breloom with a CM Virizion. Same exact typing only Virizion absolutely destroys opposing Rain and Sand teams with a combination of Calm Mind, Giga Drain, Focus Blast and HP Ice. It also has great speed and SpD which your team lacks so it can absorb Water attacks and heal with Giga Drain much better. I also don't think Rapid Spin is really necessary on your team since only Sigilyph is weak to SR and it has Roost anyway. Excadrill is better off with X-Scissor. Overall though pretty good team and welcome to Smogon.
I also don't think Rapid Spin is really necessary on your team since only Sigilyph is weak to SR and it has Roost anyway.
Shinboraa has Magic Guard, so actually nothing on this team really benefits that much from Rapid spin.

I think that ttar can handle a Scarf Hydro Pump under ss O_O. If not you may want to consider some bulk on Ttar.

Other than that nothing else much to say.

Between Excadrill, Tyranitar and Heatran, you have 3 Fighting weaknesses, 3 Water weaknesses and 2 (or 3) Ground weaknesses. Non-Choiced Terakion, Landorus and Excadrill are going to have a field day with your team because you rely exclusively on revenge killing in order to handle them. I don't think a single change can patch this weaknesses, but there definitely a couple of things to consider.

You're going to have to replace Heatran. You mentioned it already, and I would agree that you should try a mixed Tyranitar with Ice Beam as your Stealth Rock user and leave the revenge killing to Excadrill and Scizor. A good alternative in place of Heatran would be Latias, since it helps a lot with your Ground weaknesses and the three problematic Pokemon you listed. She takes Hydro Pumps from Politoed like a champ and is an excellent counter to both Infernape and Blaziken. Although you need to be careful for Stone Edge, you can also usually bring her in against Terakion's Close Combats and Landorus's Earthquakes with little consequence. A Calm Mind Latias set would work nicely since you have a ton of ways of dealing with Tyranitar between Scizor, Breloom and Excadrill, so Latias will have a good shot at a sweep in addition to providing you with a lot of extra support.

Unfortunately this still leaves you wide open to Excadrill, since you need to pray you win the Speed tie against it after you break its Balloon. One way of dealing with this would be to replace Shinboraa with Poison Heal Gliscor, and this would also help a lot against Conkledurr aka Roobushin. If you are unable to part ways with Shinboraa, give it Flame Orb and use Psycho Shift over Whirlwind so that you have a way of hurting Excadrill. Unfortunately Conkledurr still wrecks your team, but at least you have a way of also doing something to Scizor, Tyranitar and the like.
I'm going to try out the Latias suggestion and get back to you. While I'm at it, could someone recommend a better ttar set for the team? I'd really like to keep pursuit on both him and scizor but I'm open to any other change there. I absolutely won't change Shinboraa's set - Her Whirlwind has been useful far more than I could have imagined, and when people figure out that assist power is my only attack, all they can do is switch their dark type into SR time and time again only to be whirlwinded away. And I've never had a problem with Conkeldurr - payback can hurt but if he tries a bulk up on the first turn while I CP then I WW him out - it's not perfect but I haven't had problems from him often enough to make changes to accommodate him, especially if I'm going to be using Latias to reduce the fighting weakness in the first place.
I'm not one to rate much but you are lacking a big weakness to those dirty rain teams. As Iconic said you might want to try using a Latias to help sponge Hydro Pumps and Gliscor will definitely help deal with both Blaziken and Infernape it also deal with both Excadrill (Doryuzuu) and Conkeldurr (Roobushin)

Gliscor (M) @ Toxic Orb Trait: Poison Heal
EVs: 252 HP / 184 Def / 72 Spd
Impish Nature (+Def, -SAtk)
- Earthquake
- Protect
- Fling
- Acrobatics

Latias (F) @ Leftovers
Trait: Levitate
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SDef
Bold Nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Calm Mind
- Recover
- Surf
- Dragon Pulse

Latias (F) @ Leftovers
Trait: Levitate
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SDef
Calm Nature (+SDef, -Atk)
- Roar
- Thunder Wave
- Psychic
- Recover

Latias (F) @ Lum Berry
Trait: Levitate
EVs: 252 HP / 68 SAtk / 176 SDef / 12 Spd
Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
- Surf
- Protect
- Wish
- Draco Meteor

Here are various Latias sets you can test out and mix around for yourself until you get it to compliment your team correctly.

I hope I could help and welcome to Smogon.
So I tried Virizion over Breloom for a while but I really didn't feel like he cut it. While he certainly tanked water hits better, I felt I was missing out on a good consistent lead if there was no obvious lead on the opponent's team, as well as greatly missing the ability to sleep.

Giving tyranitar some SpA EVs and thunderbolt has been a marked improvement, but I've not been comfortable using him without a scarf - having a revenge killer with boltbeam coverage is just too good, especially since my team lacks those types anywhere else.

Latias over Heatran though has proved useful, soaking up Hydro Pumps and Flare Blitzes. I've been using Calm Mind/Recover/Draco Meteor/HP Fire, as I need the fire to kill scizor and bronzong, but realising now that with Calm Mind, I shouldn't be using DM. Dragon Pulse would be a better stab, but considering the purpose of disposing of waters, I'm tempted to go Grass Knot or Thunderbolt.

One thing though, is that I am starting to see threats from Conkeldurr with his Payback, hurting Shinporaa and Latias badly, and while Latias's resistances are nice, I'm not liking having two Psychics that need set up. Is there a better set that would still cover my ass from waters but not waste time setting up? With Shinporaa's Roost able to take away it's Flying type, if I want to spend turns setting up a Psychic it's definitely that one and not Latias. Would a Scarfy Latios with SpDef EVs be able to fill the same defensive role as far as tanking water hits but also be able replace TTar as revenge killer and allow him to take a bulkier role capable of setting up SR? I'm not at a computer right now so I can't test the idea.
So now I'm using Specs Latios instead of Heatran and still using Scarftar but with Tbolt, and it's working well but it leaves me without SR - could someone suggest a set for Latios to take up revenge killing while still tanking those damn Hydro Pumps, and a set for TTar to set up SR and still be formidable in other ways?

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