All Gens The "What If" Thread V2 - The Voting Stage

Typhlito

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Hey guys! Welcome to the new and improved What if thread!
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Thanks Cretacerus for the great banner!

Have you ever considered how your different RBY would be with heal bell or ADV with U-turn? How about maybe DPP with an air balloon? If you haven't, prepare to have your horizons of what is possible expanded! Are these changes fun and interesting addition to the format or completely game-breaking? That's where you come in to decide! Here we will discuss topics new and old and if an idea becomes popular enough, we may have a tournament featuring the mechanic! I will try to limit topics to ideas that can be potentially made into a tournament on showdown but I may still bring up "unplayable" topics if the idea is interesting enough.

The topic will change about twice a week or so so stay tuned!

Topic #1: Roost in RBY
Topic #2: No Hidden Power in GSC
Topic #3: Nasty Plot in ADV
Topic #4: Hydreigon in DPP
Topic #5: Toxapex Line in BW
Topic #6: Z-Moves in ORAS
Topic #7: Teleport in SM
 
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Typhlito

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So for the first topic, how about we start with Roost in RBY?

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Roost is a move that was introduced in DPP as a form of recovery for many flying pokemon. We know how good recover can be in RBY but what if roost was added to the roster? For this, every pokemon that learns roost as of gen 8 can learn roost here. Would this change make a significant difference to the format? You tell me!
 
So potentially relevant to OU would be the legendary birds and Dragonite? Possibly Dodrio? Idk the latter is too easily stopped by every Tauros check plus the Rocks and Electrics. Articuno would I think have the most tangible use out of it trying to fish for freezes against your opponent's Chansey. Dragonite might also get a second lease on life trying a Wrap strategy. Zapdos would improve a lot too as a lot more special attackers would have an issue with it now. Could Roost in front of the Ice types to stall out their moves if Freeze Clause is already active (or even before to preserve Chansey).
 

Hipmonlee

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Well, Articuno for sure rockets straight into the upper tiers of OU. And TBH Moltres probably would too, in particular due to being kinda good against Articuno. Zapdos still can't touch Rhydon, who is also looking pretty good since it can OHKO Arti, although an agility set would be trouble for it.

I think Charizard and Pidgeot would have fairly useful niches too. Zard as a mix attacker, and Pidgeot as a Snorlax check (in a similar vein to Porygon, but with much better stats).
 
Hipmonlee hit the nail on the head tbh, the only notable pokemon I can think of that weren't mentioned are Drio and Dnite

Dnite could potentially be cool in a completely different role to the almost one-dimensional sweeper that it is currently. A defensive set with Roost, TWave, Wrap and probably Blizz could be really interesting. Getting para'd still suuuucks though. It would at least give it some versatility

Drio theoretically doesn't seem all that appealing as a Roost user, since practically everything can 2HKO it, but I daresay Roost would be the kind of move that would be useful in ways that could potentially be unexpected. It's not as though it's competing against amazing moves- Agility is probably Dodrio's best option in the 4th slot normally, and while useful, it is very situational

Also lol Aero- finally gets a decent move but now it must compete with Pidgeot for the role of Normal check
 

Bughouse

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Articuno in particular becomes one of the best Pokemon in the tier and kinda already has the moveslot available since it's often running double Ice STAB anyway. Zapdos and Moltres would both use it sometimes as well, but it wouldn't fundamentally change their checks and counters nearly as much as it does for Articuno.

I think it also partially depends if Roost removes the Flying type or not. If GameFreak could have actually figured that out in RBY, then Roost is even more interesting. For example, it lets Dragonite Roost up on Rhydon's Rock Slides or Chansey's Ice Beam "safely" (obviously, still have to be alert for paralysis, freeze, etc when getting greedy like this lol). I'm sure similar calcs exist for the legendary birds. If it doesn't remove the typing and is just a straight 50% heal, then it's obviously still good, but less so.

I think Hipmonlee's find of Pidgeot as a Lax check is probably the most interesting. It's certainly neat to have a Lax check that's not going to be forced to rest and that's better than Porygon. Pidgeot would probably find legit OU viability. It still loses to Amnesia Lax though and generally risks being Frozen even if it's not Amnesia, and Pidgeot is never going to break through Lax without 2 consecutive crits w Double Edge. Porygon at least threatens the freeze in return.

Venomoth with Double Powder and Roost is actually kinda neat, though likely still not OU. It's probably still too hard to justify bringing a mon that is so purely supportive with stats and typing like Venomoth's.
 
I was going to say Pidgeot outperforms Fearow, but then I realized something:
Snorlax Blizzard vs. Pidgeot: 166-196 (44.9 - 53.1%) -- 30.2% chance to 2HKO

Pidgeot also learns Mirror Move. Which means it can easily switch into Snorlax, use Mirror Move the following turn any time Snorlax uses Amnesia to keep up with it, and keep recovering damage, so unlike Porygon, Aerodactyl, Fearow and Dodrio, Pidgeot counters EVERY Snorlax set. Fearow also learns Mirror Move, but its lower Special bulk makes it a lot harder to wall Blizzard from Snorlax. So, Pidgeot probably would become THE Snorlax wall of OU.

Others have already mentioned Articuno, but one thing that is very nice about Articuno is it takes Tauros 4 turns to KO without getting crits. And Articuno gaining Roost would mean it has instant recovery. It would basically become OU's most durable switch-in to Tauros, and though it wouldn't be consistent due to Tauros hax (2x Body Slam crits or paraslam + FPs can muscle through), it can switch into Tauros, beat it or force it out, and then recover the damage for later. Squeeze Reflect on a set, and Tauros is now praying for double crit slams to break through.

I don't think Charizard would do too well in OU, Slash is not strong enough to deal with Reflect users and Moltres' Fire Blast is scary enough for Gengar/Rhydon that Earthquake wouldn't be enough to give it the edge. It is squishy enough to be 2-3HKO'd by a lot of common stuff that as soon as it takes para, it seems to me that it struggles to pull off Roost effectively. Moltres' bulk is usually enough to add an extra turn to KO it, making it more comfortably able to recover in front of more Pokemon.

I doubt Dragonite would ever use it unless Wrap was banned. Recover doesn't help it do the one thing it is good at, which is Wrap.

In lower tiers, mons like Charizard, Pidgeot, Fearow and Aerodactyl would be quite annoyingly resilient. Dodrio with Roost would be a royal pain in Kangaskhan's neck in UU, Kanga just straight up can't do anything about it unless it hits a crit Hyper Beam. Butterfree's and Venomoth's jobs are primarily to spread status, and typically need both Psychic and Mega Drain in the tiers they end up in, so it might be hard to fit. Scyther often has a 'free' slot so it might want Roost in spite of its mediocre bulk. Golbat could get some use way down the tiering line in dealing with stuff like Hitmonlee and Marowak. Beedrill and Farfetch'd still suck.

Edit: For Zapdos, there's also this calc:
Rhydon Rock Slide vs. Zapdos through Reflect: 108-128 (28.1 - 33.4%) -- 0% chance to 3HKO
which means Zap with Drill Peck, Reflect, Roost could seriously try to slowly peck its way through Rhydons without Rest (which is most of them), provided Rhydon doesn't get lucky with a crit Rock Slide.
 
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Hipmonlee

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Edit: For Zapdos, there's also this calc:
Rhydon Rock Slide vs. Zapdos through Reflect: 108-128 (28.1 - 33.4%) -- 0% chance to 3HKO
which means Zap with Drill Peck, Reflect, Roost could seriously try to slowly peck its way through Rhydons without Rest (which is most of them), provided Rhydon doesn't get lucky with a crit Rock Slide.
Rhydon Earthquake vs. Zapdos through Reflect: 144-170 (37.5 - 44.3%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
Yeah, good point. I think a paralysed Zapdos is still gonna have to switch out of Rhydon, but its not the disaster scenario it used to be. Zapdos is probably straight to S+ tier.
 

M Dragon

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The first thing I thought was Reflect Roost Zapdos.
Reflect Roost Zapdos would become a monster, only stopped by a freeze, by a Rest Ground or by a Rock Slide crit (honestly in a meta with Roost and Zapdos, the only viable Golem/Rhydon sets would have Rest). It would probably be Uber.
Articuno and Dragonite are probably the other 2 big winners.

Pidgeot looks very interesting too
 

Typhlito

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Excellent start. Alright then for our next topic, how about we do No hidden power in GSC?



Hidden power has always been a move that greatly expanded the capabilities of many pokemon. It allows any pokemon to potentially have an attack that hits something that would otherwise wall it. However, what if this move never existed yet here? How would it change the meta? Would it be game breaking? Would Snorlax potentially see a ban? Or maybe not much would change at all. Tell me your thoughts below!
 
The most obvious change would be how much better ground types become without having to worry about HP ice/water. Raichu and electabuzz might become more popular since they carry coverage moves. As for play styles I imagine stall would be better since it's easier to wall common threats (and based on the fact that stall was more popular before the unbanning of HP legends).
 

Yung Dramps

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This seems interesting. Not the biggest old gens nerd but I could give it a whirl

Pokemon that relied on Hidden Power for STAB are in big trouble. In this regard the big loser is Heracross who now has no good damaging Fighting moves aside from the gimmicky Reversal and Seismic Toss which does fixed damage.

In addition to Ground types becoming a lot better as Marow alluded to, Steel types also become sturdier without stray Hidden Power Fire or Fighting to worry about. Steelix in particular is gonna be having a field day as Snorlax checks will be even rarer and its type allows it to doubly benefit from the death of this move.

Also expanding on one of Marow's points, Pokemon with alternate coverage options to substitute certain Hidden Power types will see a boost in viability. Alakazam and Gengar's access to the special elemental punches becomes even more prized while stuff like Raichu or even Lanturn might begin to see use over established Electric types to ward off the Ground types they can no longer do themselves.
 
Pokemon that relied on Hidden Power for STAB are in big trouble. In this regard the big loser is Heracross who now has no good damaging Fighting moves aside from the gimmicky Reversal and Seismic Toss which does fixed damage.
Wait what? Maybe I'm out of touch since it's been years since I played GSC, but is HP Fighting Hera common? I pretty much never encountered it

Agree that Steels get better, though surprisingly few things actually run HP Fire

Egg notably loses the option to dent Steels with HP Fire, but Champ and Wak no longer KO it with HP Bug either.

Forre basically has no attacking options besides boom lol.

There's also a TON of (semi) niche pokemon that need HP for coverage- Jolt and Espeon stand out, and practically every non-Zard Fire type manages to find a way to keep digging past rock bottom, since none of them have adequate movepools even before you remove HP
 
Another way the meta would be affected is that there would be a lot less room for creative techs for specific scenarios - think HP electric on Cloyster for mirror matchups and HP fire on skarm to catch out steels expecting it to be reliant on toxic/drill peck for damage output.

I think lower tiers would be affected even more as there are a number of offensive mons reliant on HP to round out their otherwise underwhelming coverage. For instance, normal types without earthquake need it to get through rocks and steels (which is very powerful without Skarmory around).
 

Jorgen

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This is a funny sort of "what if" because, to a certain extent, it actually was how standard GSC was played for a time (slightly before my time unfortunately, so I can't comment too knowledgeably about it!)

I mean, sure. Jolteon / Machamp / Marowak also lose their coverage. Jolteon in particular suffers, but it was a niche pick to begin with. Machamp and Marowak, meanwhile, frequently use Fire Blast instead of Hidden Power coverage anyway, and are frequently run alongside Explosion or Pursuit support to deal with what Hidden Power would be hitting anyway. The effect of losing Hidden Power is thus felt almost entirely in terms of its absence on Zapdos & Raikou.

Stall reigned back in the day, but I think that has a lot to do with the self-fulfilling prophecy of the reigning conventional wisdom of the time ("GSC is the meme gen, just stall all day lol"). That said, I'd still wager stall would become more powerful if we essentially re-instituted HP legends ban today. Spikes + Thunder is one of the main ways teams force Snorlax to take damage, and Hidden Power is a big part of enabling that strategy. If Grounds can come in totally risk-free to eat Thunders on Snorlax's behalf, it's hard to see any other strategies emerging that enable the same sort of progress to be made against Snorlax. And while there are options to go *around* Snorlax, losing the option to credibly threaten going *through* it has a ripple effect that makes those other options weaker. Plus, offensive teams can no longer rely on Zapdos as part of their Ground defense core (defensive teams, with greater Skarm / Suicune / Starmie usage, aren't as hard-hit by the change), substantially weakening their ability to "keep up" with stalls defensively while also neutering their offense as aforementioned.
 

Mr.E

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Things don't really change that much. Zapdos and Raikou are still far and away the two best Electric-types and ream everything non-Ground, Electric is just a great typing and they have strong stat spreads.
 

Bughouse

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Raikou and Zapdos still have Crunch and Drill Peck respectively so Egg isn’t getting any better really. It actually is worse off. And it also loses some of its possible unpredictability from the loss of HP Fire.

The bigger beneficiary are the grounds, especially Nidoking and Golem.

In a sense spikes probably matter a lot less in a meta without HP given how easily Golem spins, which has its whole own major impacts that others could explain better than I can.
 

Mr.E

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Steelix is the biggest winner among Ground-types, as it's both resistant to Zapdos and Raikou's natural coverage moves (DP and Crunch) in addition to Toxic which I have to imagine would be relatively common on them in this modern "literally Golem is top 10 usage" metagame. To a lesser extent, Marowak also seems significantly more dangerous if it can switch into Electrics without risking being 2HKOed. That's a much bigger gain than what it loses from its own missing Hidden Power.
 
In Ubers Ho-oh manages to get worse due to having practically no physical STAB. It could still work as a Toxic shuffler I guess, but if you want to run Curse, I don't know what your primary attacking option would be, since all of its remaining options have glaring shortcomings.

Also Celebi goes attackless even more now, since it can't run HPFire to snipe Forre, which obviously benefits Forre. Otherwise I don't really think much changes that hasn't already been mentioned
 

Typhlito

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Cool. Let us move on then. How about if Nasty Plot was introduced into ADV?



Nasty Plot is a move that was in DPP that's the special equivalent of Swords Dance. However, what if it was introduced a generation earlier where special attackers had to rely on Calm Mind to boost their power? In this situation, all pokemon that at some point learn the move in future generations gets it here. Would it be game-breaking or can Blissey continue to dominate the format? Would new threats rise while old ones fall? You tell me!
 

McMeghan

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Celebi
Cacturne
Claydol
Crawdaunt
Crobat
Gengar
Jynx
Houndoom
Hypno
Kecleon
Lunatone
Mr.Mime
Misdreavus
Minun
Ninetales
Noctowl
Persian
Plusle
Raichu
Sableye
Slowking
Togetic
That's the list of Pokemons who would get it.

Blissey is still so bulky that it'd still beat Nasty Plotters one-on-one. Nasty Plot does allow its user to be much more dangerous against balanced teams relying on Zapdos, Skarm, Jirachi or Celebi to check Special Attackers though. It would also probably turn the tables around some match-ups vs Offenses where the damage boost is welcomed.

Top-tiers
Celebi would definitely love it. There would still be a debate to use CM on some sets, but Nasty Plot is prob the go-to for pure offensive variants. The boosted damage allows it to break through everything much quicker not to mention bigger Giga Drain heals. Can also Baton Pass them, quite terrific if it's done to something like Kingdra.

Gengar I feel would have trouble finding a slot for it, but it could definitely be toyed with. The speed + coverage could be nightmarish to Offenses in the late-game, and +2 Giga Drain is not terrible to recover some HPs either.

Mid/Low-tiers
Jynx lead set becomes much more dangerous. +2 Ice Beam allows it to be much more of a direct threat to bulky Waters or Steels, it just snowballs harder. Modest can OHKO 0/0 Tyranitar at +2 for example.

Houndoom is less of a one-trick pony but it's held back by its speed tier. It's already a hit&run outside of Pursuit.

Maybe Cacturne can use it to further abuse its shenanigans. Sub/Leech/NP/Hp Dark sounds spicy if you have Spikes elsewhere.

Lunatone can now pass Nasty Plots instead of CMs, making it better probably. I do think that Baton Passing Nasty Plots in general would be quite a good strat, especially against Offense (NP into Starmie/Kingdra just goes in).

Same for Mr.Mime.

New found usage
There is something to say about Crawdaunt being an offensive Water, with Crunch coverage on top to go through Suicune/Milotic but it's so slow and frail. Unfortunately even a Salac set would stay slower than Gengar after a boost.

Minun/Plusle can pass NPs and have reasonnable SpA/Speed to be threatening by themselves, but they're so frail and just a bit too slow to become truely dangerous.

Ninetales probably improves the most ouf of anyone here. It'd be quite risky but it's got the renowned Fire/Grass coverage that is so good in ADV and a 100 speed tier to hang out with the best of them. You even have Hypnosis to get on Blissey or other checks' nerves.

Similary, Raichu is at the right speed tier and is an Electric, so naturally good. It's hard walled by Blissey though, and doesn't have the defensive utility that Jolteon/Zapdos possess. Maybe a Focus Punch/NP set could be worth looking into.

Slowking is bulky and has amazing coverage but probably way too slow to get anything out of it, otherwise CM sets would have found a niche already.

The rest stays trash tier to me.
 
Hahahaha NP Mewtwo are you serious lol

NP Mew would also be pretty cool, though tbh I haven't had much experience with Mew

The only other relevant pokemon to get NP are Gengar and Deoxys. It's difficult to imagine any Deo form pulling off NP better than Mewtwo imo, while Gengar could maybe make use of NP, but I have my doubts- even with NP there are still a ton of things to wall it
 

Oglemi

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NP just completely breaks UU lol, there's nothing fat enough to tank easy +2's from every special attacker, most of which are already great as is, and half of which can now pass that on to a teammate when low on health. Mr.Mime, Hypno, Lunatone, and Girafarig all get NP + BP, meaning they all get significantly better and make their team more threatening. Shiftry also gets it, making it a much stronger sun choice. Misdreavus's old school Imprison set becomes way more enticing with NP spam being a real threat.

NU actually fairs quite a bit better but with Plusle/Minun and Haunter now being borked. I think if you banned those three the tier would be fine. Crawdaunt and Cacturne become moderately more threatening but still too slow to do much, definitely puts them more firmly on the radar tho. Togetic becomes a more valuable team member and just replaces Volbeat for the most part. NP becomes a neat tech option on sableye but you might still get more mileage out of cm tbh. Houndour might actually see some use but it's still way too frail for the most part.
 

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