Resource USM LC Viability Rankings (VR Update @ #227)

I apologize for the double post but I thought there would be some discussion and after actually reading some of the earlier nominations I came across one that I'm honestly a bit confused by.

Chespin ---> B+: Disagree
I think that a case could have been made for chespin being B+ maybe when foongus/onix teams were really good, but since alternatives have become more popular and the meta has shifted I think that chespin is matchup dependent at best, and just bad at worst. It is far and away the worst defensive grass type and really should not be a consideration for most high level teams.

Even when the opponent has a foongus/gastly chespin is not guaranteed to completely shut down the opposing foongus and gastly, especially not in the long term. The existence of Vullaby on so many high level teams especially those that run foongus is really what is holding it back here. Generally, and especially against Vullaby, it simply doesn't have the offensive presence to warrant its use and doesn't have the necessary tools to make this lack of presence worth it (like what regenerator and spore are on foongus). Even when you're using it in a matchup where it should be fine if your opponent plays well it can end up being a huge momentum sap, and this loss of momentum is even worse than it used to be considering that vull counters are worse than ever. Letting in Vullaby so easily is simply too great a defensive risk to make this mon good.

And this is assuming that foongus/gastly/onix are being used; when they aren't being used chespin gets even worse, defensively and offensively weaker than foongus and just doing very little in the match. It can shine in some matchups, sure, but it is far, far, far too inconsistent to be B+ (I would even go so far as to drop it to B- but I think that would be a bit controversial). In a meta where vullaby is the best Pokemon, chespin really struggles.
 

Merritt

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Update time!

The VR council as a whole voted on and redid the entire rankings from top to bottom to better reflect the current meta. Accordingly, there's a massive number of changes. A summary of all the new rankings is below.


Mienfoo: Remains S
Vullaby: Remains S


Abra: Remains A+
Diglett: Drops from S to A+
Foongus: Drops from S to A+
Pawniard: Remains A+

Gastly: Remains A
Onix: Drops from A+ to A
Ponyta: Remains A
Spritzee: Remains A
Timburr: Drops from A+ to A
Trapinch: Rises from A- to A

Ferroseed: Drops from A to A-
Magnemite: Drops from A to A-
Mareanie: Drops from A to A-
Mudbray: Remains A-
Snivy: Drops from A+ to A-
Tirtouga: Remains A-


Bunnelby: Rises from B to B+
Carvanha: Drops from A- to B+
Doduo: Remains B+
Frillish: Rises from B to B+
Grimer-A: Drops from A- to B+
Staryu: Drops from A- to B+
Surskit: Rises from B to B+

Chespin: Remains B
Clamperl: Remains B
Corphish: Remains B
Croagunk: Drops from A- to B
Dwebble: Remains B
Meowth: Remains B
Omanyte: Remains B
Shellder: Drops from A- to B
Slowpoke: Drops from B+ to B
Vulpix-A: Drops from B+ to B

Elekid: Drops from B+ to B-
Kabuto: Drops from B to B-
Munchlax: Remains B-
Pumpkaboo-Super: Drops from B to B-
Rufflet: Drops from B to B-
Salandit: Remains B-
Scraggy: Drops from B+ to B-
Snubbull: Drops from B+ to B-
Taillow: Remains B-
Wynaut: Drops from B to B-


Archen: Drops from B- to C+
Amaura: Drops from B- to C+
Chinchou: Drops from B+ to C+
Cottonee: Drops from B- to C+
Honedge: Rises from Unranked to C+
Larvesta: Drops from B+ to C+
Pikipek: Remains C+
Spinarak: Rises from C to C+
Stunky: Rises from C- to C+
Zigzagoon: Drops from B to C+

Budew: Remains C
Dewpider: Drops from B- to C
Drilbur: Drops from B- to C
Koffing: Drops from C+ to C
Lileep: Remains C
Pancham: Drops from B- to C
Pumpkaboo-Small: Drops from C+ to C
Sandshrew-A: Remains C
Venipede: Rises from C- to C

Anorith: Drops from C to C-
Axew: Drops from C to C-
Cranidos: Remains C-
Deerling: Remains C-
Hippopotas: Remains C-
Natu: Drops from C to C-
Sandile: Remains C-
Snover: Drops from C+ to C-
Trubbish: Drops from C to C-


Lickitung: Drops from C- to Unranked
Magby: Drops from C- to Unranked
Sandshrew: Drops from C- to Unranked
Tyrunt: Drops from C to Unranked


Points of note:
  • S rank has been cleared up to only contain Mienfoo and Vullaby, with Diglett and Foongus moving down to A+. A+ has been adjusted accordingly, with many of its prior residents moving down as well.
  • The B ranks have undergone a heavy (and long overdue) cleaning, with less viable Pokemon moved down to an appropriate rank.
  • Despite the general lowering of rankings, Trapinch still moves up to A rank to reflect its hugely increased viability over the past few months.
  • Chinchou and Larvesta have been nuked from B+ to C+.
Please feel free to discuss the changes and make nominations.
 

tcr

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tcr thoughts:

So the presumed assumption is that we're ranking the Pokemon based on each other. With that said, I feel that there are some certain Pokemon after these shifts that just don't really mesh all too well with the others.

Staryu and Magnemite IMO need to swap tiers. Staryu right now is far better. Magnemite has issues facing a Ground-type on practically every single team and Trapinch on tons of teams (not to mention the weird revival in Webs). Just in looking at the A ranks, it loses to pretty much every single A rank bar Spritzee, and happens to trap Ferroseed, both of which have not been amazing lately. I think Magnemite could drop further as long as Trapinch is getting incredible usage. Staryu, on the other hand, is far better than things like Frillish, Carvanha, or Grimer-A. Staryu has 19 Speed, which lets it tie or outspeed AbraGas, beats Trapinch Ponyta cores, helps to stop things like Webs, and has seen many cool different sets to allow it to fit on many teams, like Reflect Type Staryu or things like Whirpool Staryu as demonstrated by Shrug. I think it should be on equally viability as things like Mudbray or Tirtouga, while Magnemite imo fits more on the same level as things like Bunnelby.

I think Surskit should rise up to A-. Webs is not a wacky, gimmicky strategy, but a real one that needs to be prepared for and seems to see increasing usage to deal with Abra teams. The discovery of Icy Wind on Surksit, things like Scarf Surskit, or rare Icium Surskit gives it some ability to have more utility than in the past, helping to drop things like Vullaby's Speed or opposing Surskit, get Webs up immediately in a psuedo suicide lead, help ease matchups for things like Mienfoo leads, etc. I think that Surskit's defining style is worth a look at A rank teams, and I think that if you were to see recent usage of the past 2-3 weeks that a lot of top players seem to be using webs (for example Heysup has used webs, Serene has used webs against me recently, there have been several instances in LCWC where there were webs mirrors). The meta currently fits Webs imo, because there are instances where you can just have things like Z Steel Pawniard rampage through teams as it beats everything including Gastly and Vullaby (unless you lose the tie like i did against Luthier ;;).

Not sure how I feel about Bunnelby being in the same rank as Grimer but I'm not entirely certain if one should move up or Grimer move down. I'd like to see more discussion on both from other players.

tl;dr
Staryu --> A-
Magnemite --> B+
Surskit --> A-

EDIT: I FORGOT ABOUT RIOLU

Ok you dicknips Riolu is a quality Pokemon with excellent niches that I believe it should be at the very LEAST ranked. I think with things like Abra Gastly, Webs, that Riolu has a niche in its own unique way, as Prankster Copycat lets it set up against things like Surskit and help to beat down opposing Webs teams, or Uturn around / revenge kill things like Sashed Abra or slightly chipped Gastly. The downfall in usage of Pokemon like Foongus and Spritzee definitely help it out because it's not as forced to run things like Meteor Mash or Blaze Kick and can forgo it for Protect. It has many sets it can run, from the Eviolite bulkyish set that I used on that one RMT to a SD Protect mono fight set, to Z Fightium Riolu, to Z Copycat Riolu. Jox has put me on the wave to this cool af Vaccuum Wave set that I plan on trying out as well. I ALWAYS find a use for it on ladder games, feel comfortable enough bringing it to tournament games, and feel that it should be ranked. I laddered to 91.4 GXE with a Riolu team and had tremendous success using it. I believe that it should be at the least B rank in usage, and would consider it on the same level as things like Meowth and certainly better than things like Croagunk (which im surprised is ranked so high...). Please consider it, if you've used Riolu before or know, please post or give your thoughts. riolugang out
 
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Altariel von Sweep

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This new VR is sooo fresh, but I will give my cents on possible changes:

B+ -> A-
Webs is back at the track again, and more strong than ever, with a big usage of it during Semifinals of LCWC, putting as battles examples what tcr showed above. Icy Wind is one of its greatest things, being able to slow down not grounded Pokémon such as Vullaby to outspeed it; Choice Scarf to ensure 100% setting Webs in the lead, and my favourite of all, Eviolite Protect, which can scout for stuff and act as a very reliable lead to set Webs up. With the rise of GastBra, not only trapper teams got better, but this hyper offensive archetype has the potential to cheese through these common teams to the point where HP Fighting Defog Vullaby is one of its best answers. All in all, Webs is an archetype that should start getting some preparation against, so Surskit should rise.

Moving on to Bunnelby, this little guy breaks through any Pokémon with relative ease thanks to an insanely high Attack stat + Life Orb to break through many things with ease, meaning that even resists can get severely weaneked by STAB Return, or picked off by Quick Attack (e.g. weakened Pawniard). It is true that priority poses a threat, but it only needs Timburr out of the game, as Pawniard is almost always likely to not OHKO it. It can even also act as a decent offensive pivot with U-turns that will at least get a chunk of the opponent's life out. Coverage may change depending on what you need to hit, either Stone Edge as an option to quickly KO Vullaby without triggering Weak Armor variants, or Iron Head to hurt Spritzee, but almost always you will want to spam STABs, which makes it really good. Outside of its positive traits, I want to consider its spot in Webs. The utility Surskit provides is very great for Bunnelby, as it can help deter Vullaby fairly well with Icy Wind, for instance, so spamming STABs is easier than recurring to a very obscure coverage option. Echoing tcr's Alolan Grimer dilemma, seeing both Bunnelby and this mon in the same rank is quite annoying given the metagame state we're in, and thus should rise to reflect this.

And finally, going with Staryu, tcr is absolutely right. Staryu's drop was very unjustified given the wonders it can actually do, being able to fight back GastBra and PonyPinch teams with sets such as Analytic Recover + 3 attacks, or act as a pseudo trapper with Whirlpool that can use Z-Moves to trap Pokémon such as Foongus or Mienfoo, like Shrug did. I would not underestimate it and put it back where it was.

Now, in regards to the less viable Webs setters:

Swap ranks
As we can see, both of them are the only viable-ish bulky Webs setters in the metagame, but there is something that bugs me here, and it's Spinarak. Why is it ranked higher than Dewpider? The constant fall of Foongus is making it's niche as a Web setter that uses it as fodder lesser with the continuous growth of GastBra and other viable Foongus checks such as Overcoat variants of Vullaby, as well as the drop of usage on threats that it used to check such as Spritzee. Its typical drawbacks are a lack of real bulk, easy to get pivoted on and weak attacking options, whereas Dewpider excels, offering actual offensive pressure as a Webs setter with strong Liquidations or Scalds, and even offering more utility in Magic Coat to yeet on Webs mirror matchups and other hazard setters. There should be a change to clarify this, but I will let this open to discussion for everyone.
e: Snivy was also an important part of Spinarak's success, but since the rise of threats such as Ponyta and Gastly, it started to get reduced usage to the point where the niche is not valuable.

A- -> B+
Absolutely agree with this nomination. Magnemite is totally out of the wave with the dominance of Trapinch in the metagame, which makes its existance pain, as well as other Ground-types such as Mudbray. Drop it asap.

B+ -> B
Alolan Grimer just hates this metagame state where it's forced to fight one Ground-type trapper per team, meaning it is not as godd as it used to be. However, I feel kind of uneasy on this nomination, as while Alolan Grimer still offers the possibility to better manage special attackers such as Staryu and the aforementioned GastBra, Arena Trap means bad things for it. I think it should drop in that case, but I need some more feedback from the others.

B -> B+
I think Corphish should rise, and reasons are very justified for it to do so. Firstly, the drop in usage of both Ferroseed + Spritzee and Foongus means a lot of good things to it, as it can now break teams with much more ease making use of the SD set. Given how common Trapinch builds are, with GastBra being frail offensive Pokemon, Corphish just cheeses through them like they were butter, as almost nothing cannot take boosted Crabhammer and +2 Aqua Jet KOes most of the offensive threats that are seen. Rise it.

UR -> B
I don't know what happened to Riolu, but this ain't it chief. Copycat sets are more popular than ever in a metagame where Webs are considered another threat aside from Trapinch teams, as tcr points above. Being able to setup with SD while your foe's Surskit sets Webs means that this Pokémon can ravage a whole team if the conditions given are favorable. The drop on stuff such as Spritzee and Foongus means it can forgo some coverage options to make use of others such as Zen Headbutt or Crunch. I also agree on tcr's point of view, which by the way...

B -> B-
The ultimate disliker of this metagame. Fighting-types like Mienfoo pivoting on it to get eventually trapped by Diglett or Trapinch, failing to beat Trapinch, the commonality of GastBra and Vullaby. If that wasn't enough, not even investing Speed EVs will save it from being easily trapped, bulk even invested keeps being underperforming, gets severely weakened by Knock Off and even strong resisted attacks, and lack of actual firepower to act as a wincon doesn't help either. In the hypothetic scenario that Riolu gets ranked again, let's not see them together in the same rank.

This should be all from me for now.
 
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Serene Grace

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You cannot talk about Riolu without mentioning the opportunity cost of it not being a Mienfoo or Timburr. It's only redeemable set is the SD Hjk chaining set but that takes 2 turns to set up and doesn't actually get past any fighting resists. Riolu should never and will never be B rank.(not to mention its literal 0% usage rate in any relevant tour game)
 

tcr

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The opportunity cost isn't there because Riolu has wildly different uses than just being a Fighting spam Pokemon, and honestly if the only use you can find for Riolu is SD HJK chaining then you're using very little of what it can actually do.

To give you some common scenarios I find myself running into: Being able to hard switch into Surskit / Vulpix-A and counter set up either Webs or Aurora Veil, being able to switch into Dwebble and set up your own Entry Hazards, being able to get a priority U-turn on voltturn teams, being able to lure in and OHKO Vullaby with two different common sets, being able to beat Spritzee with minor chip, being able to revenge kill tons of random things from Psychic Gastly to Sashbra or other fast threats.

I don't think an opportunity cost is there and have found success using Riolu on teams as a solo Fighting type or as a backup Fighting type alongside things like Mienfoo. Riolu's biggest niche is mind games abusing Prankster Copycat and fiddling around with the correct revenge kills, has received enormous ladder success (one alt with 91.4 gxe, and three alts in the top 1,2,3 spots concurrently). Tour success would be nice but every time I've convinced myself to bring it Levi told me not to. Regardless the VR rankings are not designed to rank Pokemon according to use with the experienced player who already knows the metagame, but rather the newcomer player. I think that putting it in B rank accurately reflects its rank, as I would be open to using it alongside Pokemon such as Corphish or Frillish. Certainly I would use it above Croagunk, and even if it's not B rank and people find it lower then it should at the very least be ranked considering that Croagunk is ranked and Riolu is infinitely better than Croagunk. Have you used Riolu before? It seems odd for someone to say its only niche is to SD HJK chain. Here is a replay where Riolu counter sets up a layer of Spikes and SR to help me wear down problem Pokemon such as Pawniard and Mienfoo. I'd post other replays but during my most recent ladder run I didn't save any of them :shrug: I think you should try out Riolu for yourself rather than just dismissing it as some other HJK spam Pokemon, because it provides a middling speed answer to things like Sashbra or Webs, and Prankster Copycat is a great niche to beat a Speed filled metagame. It has decent enough bulk to allow it to pivot around and gain momentum through other U-turn / Voltturn users, and has more power than the common defensive Foo. I don't think there is a tradeoff to using Riolu in that "you could be using Timburr" because Riolu's niche isn't just 'Fighting type' like something like Pancham's is, it's hugely versatile, provides decent matchups against cheese teams like Aurora Veils and Webs teams, and is the absolute ultimate revenge killer.

196+ Atk Riolu High Jump Kick vs. 0 HP / 76 Def Vullaby: 24-28 (104.3 - 121.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO - All Out Fighting Riolu vs Vullaby, a more common scenario then you would think would happen, especially when many teams rely on offensive pressure with Gastly / Vullaby to deal with Fighting types like Mienfoo

196+ Atk Riolu Meteor Mash vs. 212 HP / 196+ Def Eviolite Spritzee: 10-14 (37 - 51.8%) -- 88.7% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock - Minor chip or one HJK and you start to KO Spritzee, which is something that neither Mienfoo nor Timburr can boast (i mean if they ran Pjab i guess? but lol who is out there running pjab Foo?)

196+ Atk Riolu Blaze Kick vs. 124 HP / 160+ Def Eviolite Foongus: 10-14 (40 - 56%) -- 99.6% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock - Riolu has options to even deal with Foongus, OHKOing with very minor chip (3 HP)


edit: ftr, not once have I used a Riolu team and thought "man this slot would be so much better with a Mienfoo instead" because they fill different roles, have different playstyles, and are able to do vastly different things
 
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Fiend

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I want to just add another bit of vocal support for Riolu:

Deceased -> B-
I've been messing around with Riolu some; he's interesting. I think metagame trends are generally unfavorable to him due to Prankster mechanics, which forces Riolu to be a supporting attacker instead of a sweeper. Simply looking at B-, Riolu is about as good as anything there, maybe a bit better. The bigger issues with Riolu are how difficult it can be to pilot Riolu into position to do all the things you want it to do (especially since this can be dependent on the opponent not being spastic...). Riolu also has an innate issue of being a lackluster switch in to anything and everything, hence making it a completely incomparable Pokemon to every other viable fighter. I think I prefer Eviolite with Protect over anything else, due to greater consistency and your ability to make mistakes. Though Z moves on Riolu are cool, pulling the trigger aptly makes or breaks the game half the time, which is unfortunate and really leads me to wanting Riolu ranked around mid B, though I'm inclined towards B- due to the quirks of using Riolu. This thing really should be ranked though.
 
now that abra stays I'll make some noms, but first I'll address some previous nominations

TCR and AvS beat me to the punch with a lot of these nominations, so I won't really go into them as they explained them pretty well, but I agree 100% with all of the above nominations with one exception. Before I get into the exception I want to particularly support the most obvious nomination for me, which is magnemite. While it has niches on certain archetypes, its use is far too narrow because of the rise of pinch to warrant use on most teams, and does not belong in A-.

The exception to my agreement with the above is the nomination for Riolu to B. I could understand maybe mid C, but to nominate a Pokemon with virtually no tournament use to B is a bit ridiculous, if it gets usage in LCPL I could see this nom in a few months, but for now it doesn't belong anywhere near B.

Most of these noms have been regarding Pokemon in B and A ranks, but I think the top of the meta has changed enough to make what might be some more controversial nominations, the first one being diglett to A. I think that Trapinch matchups sufficiently limit diglett currently and put it solidly below the other Pokemon in A+, and that it makes more sense for it to be in the same rank as Trapinch.

Diglett's departure from A+ rank leads me to my second controversial nomination: Mienfoo to A+. It might be difficult to imagine mienfoo in any rank but S because its been there for so long, but a couple factors have really pushed it farther and farther away from S in my eyes. For a long time the rise of fighter less teams have shown that fighters are not as necessary as they once were, but recently its been serious competition from timburr that has been threatening mienfoo's place as the premier fighting type. I think this phenomenon is somewhat revealed in the usage stats for exhibition, where mienfoo's normally clearly high usage was virtually even with timburr, largely due to the massive utility of mach punch over priority that can be nullified by protect. In addition to its high competition from timburr, its S rank counterpart Vullaby has only gotten better, rising to what is very clearly the best Pokemon in the meta, enough so to warrant its own rank in my opinion. It is far more in line with the likes of abra pawniard and foongus than it is with Vullaby.

Now for the mid A ranks, where I think that mareanie and onix should be switching places. The former has benefitted massively from the fall of diglett and the rise of timburr, as it gives significant trouble to Pinch meta teams as the usage rates in exhibition very clearly show boasting an unbelievable ~80% win rate last time I checked. The latter is the opposite, being more and more hindered by the existence of pinch and no longer above tirtouga as the premier bird check.
 

Altariel von Sweep

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Let's see if I don't mess up this time. After the suspect, the metagame shifted in a way some Pokémon that couldn't shine before Trapinch's influence in the metagame are getting better and better. I'm going to nominate some Pokémon that should be talked about. Here goes nothing:

B+ -> A-
So here is the deal. The constant falling in usage of Onix due to Trapinch's influence has led to the use of HP Fighting on Vullaby to deal with Pawniard, as Trapinch is a way more reliable way to deal with Onix and thus HP Grass isn't needed at all, right? Not only Vullaby has gotten better in the metagame, but Doduo has improved, too. That's where I should start to consider a Doduo rise. This Pokémon appreciates the constant falling of Onix and Tirtouga, as well as the rise of Panwiard as the best soft check to Flying-types to wreck havoc against opposing teams by spamming its STABs and coverage options, while being paired very well with Trapinch, which is its best partner as of right now. Berry Juice sets do a fine job dealing with Pawniard and ensure you can beat one or two members of the opposing team, and Scarf has a lot going for it right now being able to freely spam Brave Bird. Hell, even SD sets pose a big threat to many unprepared teams that use Pawniard as the main Flying-type check. For these reasons I think it should rise, but I'd like people to discuss it.

B -> B+
Dwebble enjoys this metagame state, even if Staryu and Snivy's usage keep hindering it. Its job as a hazard setter has improved due to the factor that both SturdyJuice and Weak Armor Eviolite do a great job at ensuring hazards and putting pressure by removing items. Mainly, the reason it enjoys the metagame is because of the Trapinch teams that are running as of right now in the metagame. My personal take on Dwebble was trying 18 Defense Dwebble as a hazard lead, and it did an insane job at setting hazards up and knocking off Trapinch's Eviolite, and what turns out to be is that Trapinch teams are reliant to keep the momentum up through changes, hence why Dwebble can simply set hazards up without any fear or Knock Off the threat it has in front of it. That way, many offensive Pokémon that have been rising such as Steelium Z Pawniard, Staryu or Timburr can take advantage of the big damage it causes to put the opposing team against the strings. Interesting fact, Dwebble can easily Knock Off Trapinch, set Stealth Rock and a layer or two of Spikes while resisting EQ + Giga Drain + Feint combination. Rise it.

A -> A+
The rise of Timburr's presence on more offensive archetypes, ranging from hazard spam to Webs has been notable, and is a better last resource if choosing a Fighting-type than Mienfoo used to be. It enjoys the prominence of Trapinch teams by cheesing through a lot of common threats with its coverage options and hits strong enough to put frail threats into Mach Punch range. It can also choose which defensive spread to use, being 10 Speed variants the best with the metagame shift into benefitting slower threats. In that way, Timburr can hit hard, can handle some of the rising and the biggest threats right now such as Ponyta, Foongus, non Psychic Gastly... Rise up.

C+ -> B-
Seeing Honedge ranked lower than Munchlax is not okay, considering how well it actually fares in a metagame where Abra + Gastly is common and it's the only Pursuit trapper that can not be trapped by Trapinch and Diglett, a trait that Munchlax does not possess and that gives Honedge the upper hand. While its use is very erratic, the niche it possesses shouldn't go overlooked as its the best Abra check out there. It can nae nae Counter sets, handles every single attack bar Shadow Ball (uncommon) and can either Pursuit trap or knock out Pawniard with Sacred Sword in a predicted switch-in. While it does a decent job, Abra + Gastly usually run HP Fire and Honedge lacks of a decent recovery option, it often has to rely on Spritzee's Wish to keep itself healthy and be able to check the core throughout the match. This fact alone makes me think if it really deserves to rise, so I'd discuss it first.

C+ -> B-
The drop in usage of Onix and Diglett, and the rise of fighterless teams and Pawniard has actually benefitted Larvesta to act as a bulky pivot that doesn't fear getting trapped, and can pose a threat to Trapinch, as nothing is willing to take a Will-O-Wisp and can force some threats out in order to regain momentum. Stealth Rock problems are still present, but Vullaby standing as probably the best Pokémon in the meta means it will get circumvented thanks to its hazard removal.

B- -> C+
I don't think this deserves to keep at B- at all. The continuous influence of Trapinch in the metagame, the rise of threats such as Staryu and Mareanie and the slow but steady drop of Ferroseed + Spritzee as a defensive core, along with the strength of Gastly + Abra in many offensive archetypes has made Salandit fall in viability a lot more than it should. Really weak, coverage options fail to reach OHKO (for example, HP Grass on Onix and Tirtouga), Stealth Rock frail... I'd drop it.

Add in B/B+
Torchic is back! But, not in the best of the ways, as the Baton Pass ban has provoked it to be far worse than before. It cannot pass boosts to any Pokémon now and faces strong competition from Ponyta as the Fire-type in the tier thanks to a better coverage for Fire-types, bulk and utility. It maintains the same problems as before, being severely weakened by priority, which means that the rise of both Pawniard and Timburr does not benefit it; the It also has to deal now with the continuous rise of Staryu and, particularly, Mareanie, which competely shuts down Torchic and is doing well in the metagame with the constant falling of Diglett. Still, it can pack quite a punch and can be considered as the best offensive threat in the B rank, even having a slight hint to reach the B+ ranks. I'd consider adding it in B as its offensive potential keeps remanent and can be considered as a niche pick on archetypes such as Webs.
 
This is all ladder- rather than tour-based, but I feel Staryu's drop to B+ is unwarranted - its speed tier makes it very good against AbraGast and the return of Doduo, all but the most defensive sets can get a free move on Pinch, and it has very relevant coverage options. Foongus, Ferroseed, Snivy and Magnemite falling off all favour it as well. The biggest issue I see with Staryu atm is its inability to reliably 1v1 Pawniard, which limits its utility as a Rapid Spinner. The rise of Timburr also doesn't particularly help Staryu, but I don't see that as a strike against it since it's not meant to be a primary Fighting check anyway.
 
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REMORAID SHILL
remoraid unranked ---> c-
I vaguely remember nomming remoraid a while back. feel free to delete this if that's not cool.
Remoraid deserves a spot among deerling and anorith. Remoraid's scarf waterspout set provided by its analysis is garbage and does not warrant discussion. Remoraid works best as an anti lead. Hustle coupled with z-bounce one shots mienfoo, foongus, and timburr.
236 Atk Hustle Remoraid Supersonic Skystrike (160 BP) vs. 124 HP / 160+ Def Eviolite Foongus: 26-32 (104 - 128%) -- guaranteed OHKO
236 Atk Hustle Remoraid Supersonic Skystrike (160 BP) vs. 232 HP / 196 Def Eviolite Mienfoo: 26-32 (113 - 139.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO
236 Atk Hustle Remoraid Supersonic Skystrike (160 BP) vs. 0 HP / 156 Def Eviolite Timburr: 26-32 (108.3 - 133.3%) -- guaranteed OHKO


This same remoraid set beats weak armor onix with an uninvested scald. Run bullet seed if you're looking to more reliably beat sturdyjuice, or your team struggles with tirtouga for some reason. Be mindful of bullet seed's 80% accuracy.
0 SpA Remoraid Scald vs. 76 HP / 0 SpD Eviolite Onix: 28-40 (133.3 - 190.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO. A water type beating onix is not particularly noteworthy. I'll leave it here regardless.

Less reliably, remoraid has access to rock blast. It's less than a coin flip, but should remoraid speed tie surskit and win the 64% accuracy check, surskit fails to secure webs. More importantly, rock blast kills vullaby if it hits three times.
236 Atk Hustle Remoraid Rock Blast (3 hits) vs. 0 HP / 76 Def Vullaby: 24-30 (104.3 - 130.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO
Should you want a guaranteed shot at vull, uninvested z rock blast outspeeds and kills vull 100% of the time.
0 Atk Hustle Remoraid Continental Crush (140 BP) vs. 0 HP / 76 Def Vullaby: 26-32 (113 - 139.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO

This set allows remoraid to invest specially, where it can do things like
236 SpA Remoraid Fire Blast vs. 84 HP / 228 SpD Eviolite Ferroseed: 20-28 (90.9 - 127.2%) -- 93.8% chance to OHKO

Remoraid gets a lot of weird moves. Run T Wave if your're not keen on phishing for scald burns. Z- gunk shot can break through spritzee or snubbul, which is incredibly valuable on fighting spam. If you flip through the VR, you'll struggle to find a mon that remoraid can't be specialized to take a shot at. Hustle boosted z moves give remoraid the power to break staple lc threats, while retaining offensive pressure in its fine offensive stats and wide movepool after the z move is exhausted. If not a rank, remoraid merits some discussion.
 

Fiend

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With trapinch banned, I think one movement is fairly agreeable;

Magnemite from A- back to A
Without Trapinch being around, clicking Volt Switch is far less punishable. The steel trapping sets are a tad better though as niche as ever, BJ is more or less the same thought with one less common hard counter, and Scarf is back to being a large threat. Nothing has really changed about Magnemite or what it does, instead no Trapinch just means you can worry far less about Magnemite being shut out with one misplay.

Diglett can probably stay where it is in A+ due to being the same as ever, while Ponyta might be better dropping a subrank. However I think a bit more metagame developments is needed to shake out other reactionary metagame movements.

Quick comments on other potential movements:
Riolu still should be in mid B!
Torchic is mid B or B- until further notice; he's unpromising.
Dwebble is fine where it is in B, despite Staryu being a little worse right now than even 3 weeks ago. Not much is really improving for him.
Corphish can rise to B+ if only for being better than the rest of B.
Alolan Grimer should fall to B still due to a smaller shift away from Abra&Gastly spam and being generally on par with that subrank.
Larvesta is really bad and should never leave C+ again.
Croagunk is probably fine to drop but I don't have much experience with or against him in the last week or so.
 
Since this thread has not been active for like a month and a half, I thought I would share some noms given the current meta. The current vull meta has really allowed some mons to shine and other mons to rise from the shadow. Here are some of the potential rises:

Staryu ( B+ to A-)
Staryu was a mon that I thought could benefit from the Trapinch ban. Sadly, it wasn’t that good for a brief period after the ban. However, it has really come into fruition as a corebreaker and lure. Evio Analytic 3 Atks + Recover is great but the set it has been piloting the most seems to be the Psychium Z set. The set keeps the versatile movepool coverage of Staryu while sacrificing a bit of bulk for the power to lure and kill the defensive poisons (Foongus & Mareanie) and fighters (Foo and Timburr) after a bit of residual chip.

Corphish (B to B+)
The other offensive water in the meta and mon better than its peers in the B tier. The lobster boi is probably one of the best wallbreaker and late game cleaner in the tier. Nothing in the tier likes taking Adaptability boosted Crabhammers. Combined that with Knock Off to cripple its checks and Aqua Jet to provide priority, it has a stable spot in the meta . Most common set is the Evio SD + 3 Atks but sets like Waterium Z and LO does have a limited niche in the meta. B+ is a good spot for the lobster, considering that its usual 14/15 speed is not the greatest speed tier.

Doduo (B+ to A-)
The birb is the last of my noms. Not much to say about this mon other than that it is really good in meta. All of its sets work well in the current meta: BJ SD + 3 Atks, Scarf, and even All-out attacker.. It is a staple of the popular flying spam team. Doduo’s movepool and coverage is great with tech HP Grass to weaken its checks like Onix and jump kick to hit the annoying pawniard, allowing Doduo to spam brave bird across the tier.

Some future rises to consider:
Timburr (A to A+): Fighters are amazing and Timburr’s bulk plus guaranteed priority separates it from Foo.
Mudbray (A- to A): A rocker that isn’t weak to fighting and can take hits from vull is always good.
Magnemite (A- to A): Fiend pretty much covered it’s utility in his post. It has become way better with Pinch gone and fares well against the popular spritzee.
Vullaby (S to S+ if it ever happens): Pretty much the defining poke of this meta. With Pinch gone, it has become even more versatile, running sets like Flyinium and Scarf instead of just being the usual Sp. Def set (which is still really good).

Thanks for reading and sorry if this post sounds like a repetition of the earlier posts in this thread.
 
Possibly controversial, but

Gast A to A-
Still definitely no slouch, and the general tendency towards bulk doesn't bother it much, but the specific trends of the post-Trapinch meta don't do Gast any favours. Vully is more prominent than ever (and that's saying a lot), and every set can at least revenge kill Gast. Pawniard is (as always) kept in check by the popularity of fighters, but everything else about the current meta favours it, and Gast straight up dies to it (unless it carries sub + coverage, which makes it a prediction game). Gast also can't revenge kill most Diglett sets, unlike it used to do to Pinch. Finally, Corphish and Staryu are both doing comparatively well, which is bad news as well - Psychic-carrying Eviolite Staryu straight up beats Gast, Psychium Staryu revenge kills it, and uninvested Eviolite Corphish can revenge kill Gast while sneaking in a boost. As another minor point, Timburr is almost as popular as Mienfoo right now (87 LCPL appearances vs 110 from Mienfoo), and while neither can switch into Gast at least Timb can click its stab move without having to fear for its life.

Speaking of Staryu,
Staryu B+ to A-
Too many options and too much utility to ever be bad. This thing has been discussed in detail already, and I'm still in favour of raising it to A- again.
 
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Vullaby
S -> S+

it may seem useless to create an S+ tier just for Vullaby but it's clear that it's the most influential mon in LC as of rn.
Vullaby isn't necessarily broken in every game but its good typing, boosting two immunities to two of the most threatening types in Psychic and Ground, solid stats and great movepool let it be an extremely versatile mon, to the point where it is arguable to say that a team
Sure, it has its checks, but it can work around them so easily, and it's almost impossible to be prepared for every variation of Vullaby, like having Onix or Tirtouga getting wrecked by the Mixed set or by the NP set. It can hit everything in the tier, it just can't hit everything all at once, which makes it fit on virtually any team.

Mantyke
Unranked -> C+, possibly even B-

this dood is extremely underrated imo.
It's an incredibly powerful rain sweeper that can hit everything in the tier for at least neutral damage, except Chinchou, which limits your teambuilding and gets trapped, and Helioptile, which is straight up unviable.
Now, it might be hard to justify using a rain sweeper, since there is no Drizzle user in the tier, but I think of Mantyke as a set-up sweeper. Once it gets in to soft-check Fighting types it can set up rain and clean everything. Plus it can tank special hits with its massive 120 base SpDef, which is huge. Also, under rain only base 80+ speed scarfers can outspeed.
To give you an idea about its potential, here are some calcs:

200+ SpA Mantyke Hydro Vortex (185 BP) vs. 116 HP / 156+ SpD Vullaby in Rain: 30-36 (120 - 144%) -- guaranteed OHKO
200+ SpA Mantyke Air Slash vs. 124 HP / 156 SpD Eviolite Foongus: 14-18 (56 - 72%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
200+ SpA Mantyke Air Slash vs. 124 HP / 156 SpD Foongus: 18-24 (72 - 96%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
200+ SpA Mantyke Hydro Pump vs. 212 HP / 76 SpD Eviolite Spritzee in Rain: 15-18 (55.5 - 66.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
200+ SpA Mantyke Hydro Vortex (185 BP) vs. 212 HP / 76 SpD Eviolite Spritzee in Rain: 24-28 (88.8 - 103.7%) -- 37.5% chance to OHKO
200+ SpA Mantyke Hydro Vortex (185 BP) vs. 212 HP / 76 SpD Spritzee in Rain: 33-40 (122.2 - 148.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO
200+ SpA Mantyke Hydro Vortex (185 BP) vs. 0 HP / 236 SpD Munchlax in Rain: 27-33 (90 - 110%) -- 62.5% chance to OHKO

Pancham
C -> B+/A-


I don't get why this is ranked so low, like literally.
It has better stats than Timburr, access to the same ability and Drain Punch, and the ability to run a 24/15/12 bulk, or 24/22/18 with Eviolite, something Timburr can only dream about. On top of that, Pancham's higher base speed lets it outspeed Timburr with just 12 EVS in Speed.
The only advantage Timburr has over Pancham is having a priority in Mach Punch, which is definately than Pancham's Parting Shot, however Parting Shot isn't a move to laugh at. Let's say you and your opponent both run a Foongus, a pretty common scenario. If Pancham Parting Shots the other Foongus, then your Foong will win the war, since the other one is at -1 SpAtk.

-1 0 SpA Foongus Sludge Bomb vs. 124 HP / 160 SpD Eviolite Foongus: 4-6 (16 - 24%) -- possible 5HKO

Other than that, Pancham can run an SD set to great success, since it's able to hit both Foongus and Mareanie with Zen Headbutt, as well as Spritzee with Gunk Shot:

+2 180+ Atk Mold Breaker Pancham Zen Headbutt vs. 124 HP / 160+ Def Eviolite Foongus: 20-24 (80 - 96%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
+2 180+ Atk Mold Breaker Pancham Zen Headbutt vs. 196 HP / 100 Def Eviolite Mareanie: 20-24 (83.3 - 100%) -- 6.3% chance to OHKO
+2 180+ Atk Mold Breaker Pancham Gunk Shot vs. 212 HP / 196+ Def Eviolite Spritzee: 26-32 (96.2 - 118.5%) -- 81.3% chance to OHKO

Overall I think Pancham has a fine niche in this metagame. It has an easier time running 15 def, which I find very important, plus the sheer power of the SD set. I of course don't think it's any better than Timburr, since the latter can nap a K.O on a weakened Abra/WA boosted Vullaby, but I do think the panda deserves some love.
 
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fran17

aka eterno
ive been using rain a lot and i can assure both lotad and mantyke are incredible rain sweeper, but they should be ranked only C-.
they need too much support between rain setter, koff support, and the fact that you have to build a team around them. you can of course slap it on a standard team, but it wont be effective as it is in a rain team
also LO>z move, it gives you more power through the battle, it gets kinda easy to stall the rain without the LO
 
ive been using rain a lot and i can assure both lotad and mantyke are incredible rain sweeper, but they should be ranked only C-.
they need too much support between rain setter, koff support, and the fact that you have to build a team around them. you can of course slap it on a standard team, but it wont be effective as it is in a rain team
also LO>z move, it gives you more power through the battle, it gets kinda easy to stall the rain without the LO
Koff support is fairly easy to get since every team has at least 2 knockers. I agree that they aren't that versatile and not easy to slap on a team tho.
Also the choice between LO and Z depends on the team, LO Air Slash lets you OHKO a knocked Foongus which is pretty important but Z gives you the ability to remove one mon that doesn't resist Water and it doesn't put you on a timer. I tend to dislike LO because rocks + recoil put it in range of strong priorities but I think both items are even.
 
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Luthier

Don’t get mad, get even.
is a Tiering Contributor
Hey guys. tazz, Ninjadog13, and Corporal Levi did me a huge favor and decided to be a part of my video yesterday. It's a really long video but I think it does a pretty good job covering what exactly should be moved up or down and it has discussion on both sides. Below is that video, but for those of you who really don't have the time to watch it, I have included a list of all the conclusions we came to in the video. Enjoy!




PS: This might be a nice video to watch for anyone that isn't completely confident in the LC tier. People trying to learn for LC open might find this video helpful in learning a bit about the tier .




Mienfoo S -> A+
Tirtouga A- -> B+
Bunnelby B+ -> B
Pseudo Drops:
Ferroseed A- -> Bottom of A-
Snivy A- -> Bottom of A-
Slowpoke B -> Bottom of B


Timburr A -> A+
Magnemite A- -> Bottom of A
Mudbray A- -> A
Doduo B+ -> A-
Staryu B+ -> A
Corphish B -> top of B+/Bottom of A-
Shellder B -> B+
Clamperl B -> B+
Rufflet B- -> B
Dewpider C -> B
 
Let's say you and your opponent both run a Foongus, a pretty common scenario. If Pancham Parting Shots the other Foongus, then your Foong will win the war, since the other one is at -1 SpAtk.
I'm actually a big Pancham fan but I dont actually see this as a good example because knock into Iron fist Ice punch kills Foongus so yeah there's not much need to parting shot in most scenarios.
But as I said I think Pancham can be good to even move to B or B+ because of the fact it can run two or three sets effectively:
1 - Bulky pivot w/parting shot, not much to say about this one it has the bulk to tank hits and gain momentum with parting shot and keep itslef healthy with drain punch
2- SD w/ fight coverage + gunk shot, this one is my favourite cause it allows you to break cores like Ferroseed + Spritzee and in combination with ice punch can also hit foongus. Under webs, and considering that it hits 14 speed (so it outspeeds any non-flying non-scarved mons) it can be pretty decent, but it doesnt need webs.
3 - 4 attacks bulky There's really not much need to run this set over Timburr but it can be used if you want to have a strong gunk shot over mach punch.
Considering all this I would say Pancham deserves B rank, but definetly not more than B+ because of the fact that Timburr does basically the same than the panda (with small but not so relevant differences) but better except for the 2nd set I mentioned.
 

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