Metagame USUM Metagame Discussion

On the topic of rain, I feel it has got a boost from the shift in the meta at least at the moment. Bulky grasses are not on every team any more and ferrothorn being rain's go-to grass type now has the main drawback of picking it in not beating zygarde well gone. Heatran also feels like the best mon in the meta at the minute as zygarde was the most splashable check to it for offensive teams and it gets turned into almost a dead slot against rain. Just these two trends alone are massive boons for rain and from my experience of middish ladder, it feels like positive match ups are much more common.

On the flipside, I feel like once the meta settles, rain may have new problems. Megazam and ttar I think will become more common as answers to heatran for offence or perhaps mega lati, the former of which in particular would be bad news for rain. Also I think toxapex will see more usage now with zygarde gone and toxapex+bulu feels like a tough core to break at the moment from my experiences of playing around with Sciz+pex+bulu with golem to trap tran and steela, though admittedly I was playing around with this pre-ban and it still was effective. It will be interesting to see how tornadus usage goes as well because the height of its popularity seemed to be when it was making regen cores with tang. This core will probably see less use with zygarde gone but I think tornadus could either drop due to bulky grasses not being on every team or maybe it will rise as it serves as a better ground switch-in now. Who knows, but if it gets more popular then that will also be bad for rain. Interesting to hear what others think will get better with meta trend predictions.

The X factor I think at the moment in the meta is what's going to happen with gren now that its most common answer in bulky grasses are more redundant. If it ends up being that gren runs the meta and everyone is running pex again to beat it then it will be very unwelcoming for rain.
 
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Colonel M

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For those commenting on my post, I meant more specifically for the Z sets as they are the one's that require that extra firepower
I would still advise against it even with Z Crystal sets. Those sets could still run Roost as an option to help conserve Tapu Koko's health to continue reliably checking some of the threats it is faster against since 2/3 (between Gren Weavile Torn-T) have a priority attack as well.

Also, consider Serperior which can be rather annoying to revenge kill. If it's not behind a Substitute, Tapu Koko can finish off a weakened Serperior under emergency circumstances.

I'm not saying you can't run Modest (or any Atk/SpA boosting nature), and if there are certain KO benchmarks Modest can hit over Timid it may be worth considering, but you should always ask yourself if the extra power is worth losing in Speed versus these threats, which under most circumstances I would not personally take the risk.
 
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I would still advise against it even with Z Crystal sets. Those sets could still run Roost as an option to help conserve Tapu Koko's health to continue reliably checking some of the threats it is faster against since 2/3 (between Gren Weavile Torn-T) have a priority attack as well.

Also, consider Serperior which can be rather annoying to revenge kill. If it's not behind a Substitute, Tapu Koko can finish off a weakened Serperior under emergency circumstances.

I'm not saying you can't run Modest (or any Atk/SpA boosting nature), and if there are certain KO benchmarks Modest can hit over Timid it may be worth considering, but you should always ask yourself if the extra power is worth losing in Speed versus these threats, which under most circumstances I would not personally take the risk.[/QUOTE
Tapu Koko outruns Serperior with neutral nature but I agree that maybe you should stick to a + Spd nature if you don't have any pokes who can check the ones you mentioned. However, being able to ohko a Chansey 75% of the time with rocks up seems like something to consider to me
 
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Felixx

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Okay, so let me give some of my thoughts on a few Pokemon in particular that could benefit from this Zygarde-less meta, specifically SD / Helmet Garchomp, SD Gliscor, and a new standard spread for Clefable.


Garchomp (M) @ Rockium Z
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Swords Dance
- Stone Edge
- Earthquake
- Stealth Rock / Substitute

Garchomp (M) @ Rocky Helmet
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 252 HP / 100 Def / 156 Spe
Impish Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Toxic
- Fire Blast / Dragon Tail / Roar
- Earthquake

Although they didn't occupy the exact same roles on a team, Garchomp did share its great typing with Zygarde, and its Stealth Rock + Swords Dance set is and will continue to be an absolute menace in the metagame, especially since it has even less competition for a teamslot now. Essentially, a +2 Z-Stone Edge is able to nuke a lot of Garchomp checks, such as Tapu Bulu, Celesteela, and AV Tangrowth. If the team already has a Stealth Rocker, then Garchomp can opt to use Substitute; it allows it safe setup against Toxapex, and against Rotom-W and Celesteela if you predict their respective status moves. It also helps versus predicted sacks from the opponent, as smart sacks can make you waste your Z-Move. That's not all Garchomp as to offer though, as TankChomp is still a viable set that provides a defensive Stealth Rocker that checks Heatran, Zard-Y, and Mega Scizor, and Rough Skin + Helmet chip is super nice for U-turners like Lando, Torn-T, and Tapu Koko, as well as getting important chip on Mega Mawile, Mega Medicham, and Kartana.

Gliscor (M) @ Toxic Orb
Ability: Poison Heal
EVs: 244 HP / 44 Def / 108 SpD / 112 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Swords Dance
- Earthquake
- Ice Fang / Knock Off / Facade
- Roost

With Zygarde's ban, Swords Dance Gliscor could make a return, as it deals with similar Pokemon that SubCoilGlare Zygarde could abuse; Toxapex, Ferrothorn, Heatran, and even Celesteela somewhat. Gliscor gives a lot of Balance teams a great stallbreaker that also provides defensive utility to the team, especially since the viability of Buzzwole and Avalugg is sure to go down without the presence of Zygarde, Buzzwole maybe not so much as it's still a great answer to SD Garchomp and SD / CB Tapu Bulu and Kartana on stall teams. Another perk of Zygarde not being in the tier is the fact that Gliscor no longer needs to creep Adamant max Speed Zygarde (290), and only needs to creep up to Timid Tran (279).

Clefable (F) @ Leftovers
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 HP / 168 Def / 88 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Moonblast
- Soft-Boiled
- Thunder Wave / Knock Off / Filler

I think Sp. Def Clef will become the standard spread, as Phys. Def Clef won't really be needed w/o Zyg in the tier, I mean the investment helped versus Mega Medicham and Mega Heracross, but it's such a subpar check to them anyways due to Zen Headbutt / SD. Other perks Phys. Def Clef has includes taking less than half from Ferro's Gyro and Kartana's Leaf Blade, and it definitely sucks for Ferro but Leaf Blade has a high critical hit rate and living 2 hits is only helpful if the Kartana's Scarf. Anyways, Sp. Def Clef has the ability to handle strong special attackers such as Mega Alakazam and Mega Latios, as well as Mega Diancie if it's not max Attack (Also btw, if the Mega Alakazam it's trying to check is Modest, then Psychic still only has a 9.8% chance to 2HKO). It also avoids the 2HKO from Tapu Koko's max Special Attack Thunderbolt and 148 Attack Scarf Lando's EQ, but Z-Move / Specs on Koko and max Attack Scarf Lando can fuck w/ those calcs. Furthermore, Clef can still take on Mega Lopunny, as Return only has a 5.9% chance to 2HKO. Definitely a cool spread to use on teams if you need its specific defensive utility.
 
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Tapu Koko outruns Serperior with neutral nature but I agree that maybe you should stick to a + Spd nature if you don't have any pokes who can check the ones you mentioned. However, being able to ohko a Chansey 75% of the time with rocks up seems like something to consider to me
Sounds really niche to me. Like killing Chansey is awesome, but I feel like + speed nukes everything else just as hard anyways. Like nothing that isn't a ground type or chansey is eating giga from koko regardless. Meanwhile outspeeding pre-bond gren and torn-t and speed tie-ing with mirror makes it just not worth it.

Now if Chansey is a huge problem for you and you want a lure then I could see it but that's a specific build.
 
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Sounds really niche to me. Like killing Chansey is awesome, but I feel like + speed nukes everything else just as hard anyways. Like nothing that isn't a ground type or chansey is eating giga from koko regardless. Meanwhile outspeeding pre-bond gren and torn-t and speed tie-ing with mirror makes it just not worth it.

Now if Chansey is a huge problem for you and you want a lure then I could see it but that's a specific build.
Something to consider is +atk nature on scarf builds. Gives you a great u-turn pivot that outspeeds ash gren and all the speedy megas, with the ability to 2hko chansey after rocks. Scarf koko is definitely an underrated threat.
 

Finchinator

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good venusaur set
Venusaur-Mega (M) @ Venusaurite
Ability: Thick Fat
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 SpD
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Leech Seed
- Giga Drain
- Synthesis
- Sludge Bomb
stall heal set
Can you explain why you feel this set is optimal? It seems fairly odd to use max Special Attack on this set. Leech Seed has always been a respectable niche option on Mega Venusaur, so I'm interested to hear how valuable you think it is now, too. Generally, we only posts sets here if we can explain why they are relevant to discussion of the current metagame or perhaps underrated/overlooked.
 
Finchinator, allow me to elaborate. The EV spread is currently set-up for macro-efficient healing in the face of Venu's greatest chipping weaknesses - that being Sand Stream, which greatly impedes the efficacy of Synthesis, as well as Nature's Madness from Fini which is a fairly easy way to chip Venu's health by 50% on the switch-in and gradually wear it down with either hazards or PP stall in a longer game.

The low HP investment combined with high Special Attack not only ensures a higher percentage-HP heal from Giga Drain and Leech Seed to counteract percentage-HP based damage like rocks, sand, and Nature's Madness, but also hits switchins harder than expected, putting an opponent who may think they can take certain hits on the back foot and severely disrupt their gameplan. Above all, though, you must try this set for yourself and see what an unexpected powerhouse it is.
 
Pyukumuku saw a rise in usage last year since WCOP on. It was always a dark-horse pick throughout SM that saw success, but imo, the continued innovation in Zygarde sets spooked off Pyuku users for good into instead favouring physical walls that actually had a reliable and threatening MU against Zygarde.

With Zyg gone, will the little blob be remembered again? :fukyu:

Speaking of pyuk - I always thought the block spite set was always average at best: it did ok in eliminating a single mon, but in stall mirrors was always liable to trapping itself against Mega Sableye, not to mention that unless it was also running taunt its gimmick was likely not able to be re-usable as needed - and at best - the opponent could catch onto what was going on and frustrate the pyuku user by discarding PP of unimportant moves before at last being forced into sacrificing attacking PP.

If players start feeling ambitious enough again to use pyuk, hopefully this time they consider other options pyuku has to pressure opposing teams, because those are definitely out there and worthwhile to use.
 
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Alright, moving on, I'd like to talk about one of lesser appreciated mons imprisoned in the pit of UUBL:



That's right! Salamence.

After Zygarde's ban, this thing got a little better, and I really feel it is under appreciated, so I'm going to talk about a couple of sets I've been using and what they do, how they work, etc.

First off, standard DDance.

Salamence @ Flyinium Z
Ability: Moxie
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Fly
- Earthquake
- Dragon Claw / Outrage

This is your standard DDance Salamence. Dances, then nukes with Z Fly, pretty simple. Decently effective vs offensive teams without a fat fairy or Ferrothorn. Dragon Claw is probably a better option then Outrage cuz locking yourself into it could let said fairies in and let them settup (Bulu, Magearna, Lele). Moxie allows Mence to potentially clean up lategame.

Next set is something I have been introduced to until a couple months ago:

Salamence @ Life Orb / Dragonium Z
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 4 Atk / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
- Draco Meteor
- Earthquake
- Fire Blast / Hydro Pump
- Roost / Dragon Claw / Hydro Pump / Outrage

Mixmence was one of the scariest things to face in DPP OU before it was banned. Now with power creep, you'd think it'd be bad right? No. This set can actually check Heatran (non steelium varients) if carrying roost. Life Orb Draco Meteor coupled with Fire Blast hits everything par Chansey very hard. Fire Blast blows back anything that would want to come in on Draco Meteor. The Mix part comes with Earthquake. Earthquake smacks Heatran, Assault Vest Magearna, Assault Vest Magnezone (is that even a set?), etc. Hydro Pump is another option that Salamence only has access to when it comes to the dragons. Hydro Pump deals with most alot of physically defensive ground types, such as defensive Landorus Therian. Fire Blast is usually better though. Roost is what makes Salamence last longer throughout the game, as it scares Heatran and everything else it can threaten out, which allows it to roost. With some more attack investment, Dragon Claw and Outrage are options to hit specially defensive threats such as Chansey and (a weakened) Gliscor. Dragonium Z Draco Meteor can also snipe Rotom Wash after rocks. Heres some calcs of this set vs top OU picks:

4 Atk Life Orb Salamence Earthquake vs. 248 HP / 0 Def Magearna: 216-255 (59.5 - 70.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252 SpA Life Orb Salamence Fire Blast vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Ferrothorn: 359-426 (101.9 - 121%) -- guaranteed OHKO
252 SpA Life Orb Salamence Fire Blast vs. 248 HP / 252+ SpD Assault Vest Tangrowth: 203-239 (50.3 - 59.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252 SpA Life Orb Salamence Hydro Pump vs. 244 HP / 152 SpD Gliscor: 294-346 (83.5 - 98.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Poison Heal
252 SpA Life Orb Salamence Hydro Pump vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Landorus-Therian: 335-395 (87.6 - 103.4%) -- 25% chance to OHKO after Leftovers recovery
252 SpA Life Orb Salamence Draco Meteor vs. 248 HP / 0 SpD Zapdos: 269-317 (70.2 - 82.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
4 Atk Life Orb Salamence Earthquake vs. 248 HP / 0 Def Magearna: 216-255 (59.5 - 70.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
4 Atk Life Orb Salamence Earthquake vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Heatran: 463-546 (119.9 - 141.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO
4 Atk Life Orb Salamence Outrage vs. 248 HP / 252+ Def Eviolite Chansey: 289-341 (41.1 - 48.5%) -- 72.7% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Salamence Devastating Drake (195 BP) vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Rotom-Wash: 268-316 (88.1 - 103.9%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery

If it seems Im trying to sell Salamence as the best mon in the OU tier, its not. It's rocks weak and it's ddance set is kinda a worse Dragonite. I just feel it can do so much more, it just needs exploring. Now with Zygarde gone (thank goodness), I feel Salamence could become viable in OU once more.
 

Colonel M

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Next set is something I have been introduced to until a couple months ago:

Salamence @ Life Orb / Dragonium Z
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 4 Atk / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
- Draco Meteor
- Earthquake
- Fire Blast / Hydro Pump
- Roost / Dragon Claw / Hydro Pump / Outrage

Mixmence was one of the scariest things to face in DPP OU before it was banned. Now with power creep, you'd think it'd be bad right? No.
Honestly, MixMence doesn't really impress me in SM OU.

Let's make one thing clear - Salamence's claim to fame (if any) is DD Moxie. The set has smaller competition and actually has opportunities to snowball if it can get a free Dragon Dance off. While it's definitely a flawed set, Z Crystal gives it a small push.

The biggest issue with MixMence is simple - Hydreigon does everything better by a clear mile. For starters Hydreigon doesn't even have to go mixed to accomplish things such as checking Heatran and has a viable secondary STAB that it can use (Dragon is rather rough to use sometimes when Fairies invade the tier...). Best of all, Dark Pulse / Earth Power / Flash Cannon covers just about everything MixMence was attempting to cover without many issues (while also sporting a benefit in keeping its defenses intact). Hydreigon also has decent bulk and just good enough of a Speed tier to do its thing. Without a jankier set, MixMence just screams absolutely inferior to Hydreigon under the majority of circumstances.
 
Honestly, MixMence doesn't really impress me in SM OU.

Let's make one thing clear - Salamence's claim to fame (if any) is DD Moxie. The set has smaller competition and actually has opportunities to snowball if it can get a free Dragon Dance off. While it's definitely a flawed set, Z Crystal gives it a small push.

The biggest issue with MixMence is simple - Hydreigon does everything better by a clear mile. For starters Hydreigon doesn't even have to go mixed to accomplish things such as checking Heatran and has a viable secondary STAB that it can use (Dragon is rather rough to use sometimes when Fairies invade the tier...). Best of all, Dark Pulse / Earth Power / Flash Cannon covers just about everything MixMence was attempting to cover without many issues (while also sporting a benefit in keeping its defenses intact). Hydreigon also has decent bulk and just good enough of a Speed tier to do its thing. Without a jankier set, MixMence just screams absolutely inferior to Hydreigon under the majority of circumstances to Hydreigon.
I agree to extant, but Salamence has some things over Hydreigon.

1. Intimidate: Intimidate allows Salamence to come in on alot more, where Hydreigon has to wait for an opening such as a stray psychic attack or ground attack or something it resists, etc. However, if it isnt immune, It's going to be forced to roost after taking a strong physical hit. Mence, while still pretty frail, can come in on alot of physical attackers, stomach the hit, and scare it out.

2. The ability to actually run a mixed attacker set: Hydreigon cannot run both physical and special attacks on the same moveslot, hell it doesn't even run physical attacks ever unless you're running some wack Z superpower set to lure chansey. Salamence has both a usable special and physical attack stat, which it can abuse both. You can switch in your chansey on an expected Z draco meteor only to catch a z outrage and then these hands. That's a very niche and kinda unfair example, but it's the only thing i can think of atm. Also, Salamence has EQ and can actually break Spdef Heatran, unlike standard Hydreigon.

3. Sorry to be blunt, but this:
Salamence's claim to fame (if any) is DD Moxie. The set has smaller competition and actually has opportunities to snowball if it can get a free Dragon Dance off. While it's definitely a flawed set, Z Crystal gives it a small push.
is wrong.

Salamence (sad to say) is horribly outclassed as a ddancer by Mega Gyarados, Normal Gyarados, Dragonite, and even freaking Mega Tyrannitar. All of the pokemon have something that just make them better than Salamence, whether it be Multiscale, a better defensive typing, or access to the elemental punches which cover a large chunk of the metagame. This is why MixMence in theory would probably be the defining factor that sets these all apart. Yea, these mons can dance, but can they just get around physical walls by just throwing off a high-powered special attack? I think not. If I missed any points here, please tell me so I can explain my reasoning further.

Overall, well it may appear Hydreigon and this version of Salamence may do similar things, as a whole, Salamence is not the same as Hydreigon. If you have anything else you want to discuss, feel free to catch me on Showdown or PM me on my profile.

Respectfully written and best wishes,
Sickist.
 

Colonel M

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I agree to extant, but Salamence has some things over Hydreigon.

1. Intimidate: Intimidate allows Salamence to come in on alot more, where Hydreigon has to wait for an opening such as a stray psychic attack or ground attack or something it resists, etc. However, if it isnt immune, It's going to be forced to roost after taking a strong physical hit. Mence, while still pretty frail, can come in on alot of physical attackers, stomach the hit, and scare it out.
I decided to pull a random physical Pokemon (Mega Scizor) to demonstrate how this can be pretty false barring situations where Mence might resist something better (think Bulu Wood Hammer):

0 Atk Technician Scizor-Mega Bullet Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 102-120 (31.3 - 36.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Stealth Rock

-1 0 Atk Technician Scizor-Mega Bullet Punch vs. 0 HP / 4- Def Salamence: 82-97 (24.7 - 29.3%) -- 99.5% chance to 3HKO after Stealth Rock

Factoring in Stealth Rock and Salamence's Hasty nature they take about the same damage from a neutral unresisted physical hit. While you could go Naive and have slightly better physical bulk, you're sacrificing a bit of special bulk as well (which also makes you softer vs Heatran). Hydreigon never has that issue - its defenses remain intact and takes hits about as well when Stealth Rock is factored into the equation.

Before you say U-turn, keep in mind some Mega Scizor run Knock Off Bullet Punch, which Z Hydreigon would have no issues with (while LO MixMence actually can be put into dangerous ranges if it swapped into Knock Off and Stealth Rock). I also know you'll say something of Salamence having a Fire Move for Mega Scizor. The point isn't who beats Mega Scizor anyway. The point is they have comparably physical bulk when Stealth Rock is out.
2. The ability to actually run a mixed attacker set: Hydreigon cannot run both physical and special attacks on the same moveslot, hell it doesn't even run physical attacks ever unless you're running some wack Z superpower set to lure chansey. Salamence has both a usable special and physical attack stat, which it can abuse both. You can switch in your chansey on an expected Z draco meteor only to catch a z outrage and then these hands. That's a very niche and kinda unfair example, but it's the only thing i can think of atm. Also, Salamence has EQ and can actually break Spdef Heatran, unlike standard Hydreigon.
Hydreigon's base 105 Attack is suitable enough for mixed sets (it's done this since Gen 5, but Specs and special sets are just more powerful). I also dont understand the sentence of not being able to break SpD Heatran...

244 SpA Hydreigon Earth Power vs. 252 HP / 128+ SpD Heatran: 292-348 (75.6 - 90.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

:pikuh:

I mean I might have given more credit against Assault Vest Magearna which can withstand an Earth Power and fire off Fleur Cannon, but Mence isnt OHKOing either with Earthquake. There are also circumstances where Tapu Bulu cuts Earthquakes power in half, so another thing that has to be considered.

3. Sorry to be blunt, but this:

is wrong.

Salamence (sad to say) is horribly outclassed as a ddancer by Mega Gyarados, Normal Gyarados, Dragonite, and even freaking Mega Tyrannitar. All of the pokemon have something that just make them better than Salamence, whether it be Multiscale, a better defensive typing, or access to the elemental punches which cover a large chunk of the metagame.
Many of these DDers have their own share of problems and dont have some qualities Mence has either. All but Mence are outspeed by Scarf Landorus-T, a common Pokemon on a lot of teams, and they need extreme circumstances to survive. Mega Gyarados is the slightly better of the bunch against it, but if Dragonite's Multiscale is broken and Gyarados is only +1 they're likely dying to HP Ice or Stone Edge. While DDMence is honestly not very good, it has niches.
This is why MixMence in theory would probably be the defining factor that sets these all apart. Yea, these mons can dance, but can they just get around physical walls by just throwing off a high-powered special attack? I think not. If I missed any points here, please tell me so I can explain my reasoning further.
I mean... some of these mons have different roles (Mega Tyranitar), are almost as niche as Salamence (Dragonite), Gyarados duo dont really need Special Attackers but can have outside support if they cant overcome some checks or just mons that wear them down.
Overall, well it may appear Hydreigon and this version of Salamence may do similar things, as a whole, Salamence is not the same as Hydreigon. If you have anything else you want to discuss, feel free to catch me on Showdown or PM me on my profile.

Respectfully written and best wishes,
Sickist.
I mean you havent really proven it to me otherwise, and it's difficult to really argue anything when there are 6 slashes for just one set. Your set is a perfect example of what a Pokemon can do in theory but often crumbles in practice due to being outclassed and missing moves that it may desperately need in certain scenarios. Hydreigon's beauty is that its coverage is suitable enough to do almost what your Salamence is doing but better without taking extreme risks such as Devastating Draking into a Clefable. Hydreigon isn't a Mixed Attacker, but in your "normal" set (Draco/EQ/Fire Blast/Roost) they're both accomplishing about the same thing, with Hydreigon not needing as much team support to do its job. It may fail to break Chansey, but MixMence does too unless it takes big risks.

Your options of Fire Blast or Hydro Pump leave Mence in very dicey scenarios. You risk being walled completely by Tapu Bulu, something that's actually kind of humorous. You also have an even more difficult time overcoming Ferrothorn, which doesn't give a damn about Dragon moves nor Earthquake. Lacking Roost leaves you very susceptible to being worn down easily because Stealth Rock chips at Salamence pretty damn hard. Adding on Life Orb recoil and potential weather or other status ailment such as Toxic and Salamence is just going to bleed itself badly. Burns can also suck. Hydreigon can be an okay middle ground sometimes versus mons such as Rotom-W whereas Salamence has to avoid burns at all costs to consistently use Earthquake or Outrage. While Dragonium Z sounds nice in practice, one thing you'll become frustrated at is never breaking Clefable whatsoever and giving it a free opportunity to lay Stealth Rock or Thunder Wave. Your set basically assumes the best case scenario for everything when it is extremely flawed in practice.
 
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I decided to pull a random physical Pokemon (Mega Scizor) to demonstrate how this can be pretty false barring situations where Mence might resist something better (think Bulu Wood Hammer):

0 Atk Technician Scizor-Mega Bullet Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Hydreigon: 102-120 (31.3 - 36.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Stealth Rock

-1 0 Atk Technician Scizor-Mega Bullet Punch vs. 0 HP / 4- Def Salamence: 82-97 (24.7 - 29.3%) -- 99.5% chance to 3HKO after Stealth Rock

Factoring in Stealth Rock and Salamence's Hasty nature they take about the same damage from a neutral unresisted physical hit. While you could go Naive and have slightly better physical bulk, you're sacrificing a bit of special bulk as well (which also makes you softer vs Heatran). Hydreigon never has that issue - its defenses remain intact and takes hits about as well when Stealth Rock is factored into the equation.

Before you say U-turn, keep in mind some Mega Scizor run Knock Off Bullet Punch, which Z Hydreigon would have no issues with (while LO MixMence actually can be put into dangerous ranges if it swapped into Knock Off and Stealth Rock). I also know you'll say something of Salamence having a Fire Move for Mega Scizor. The point isn't who beats Mega Scizor anyway. The point is they have comparably physical bulk when Stealth Rock is out.

Hydreigon's base 105 Attack is suitable enough for mixed sets (it's done this since Gen 5, but Specs and special sets are just more powerful). I also dont understand the sentence of not being able to break SpD Heatran...

244 SpA Hydreigon Earth Power vs. 252 HP / 128+ SpD Heatran: 292-348 (75.6 - 90.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

I mean I might have given more credit against Assault Vest Magearna which can withstand an Earth Power and fire off Fleur Cannon, but Mence isnt OHKOing either with Earthquake. There are also circumstances where Tapu Bulu cuts Earthquakes power in half, so another thing that has to be considered.


Many of these DDers have their own share of problems and dont have some qualities Mence has either. All but Mence are outspeed by Scarf Landorus-T, a common Pokemon on a lot of teams, and they need extreme circumstances to survive. Mega Gyarados is the slightly better of the bunch against it, but if Dragonite's Multiscale is broken and Gyarados is only +1 they're likely dying to HP Ice or Stone Edge. While DDMence is honestly not very good, it has niches.

I mean... some of these mons have different roles (Mega Tyranitar), are almost as niche as Salamence (Dragonite), Gyarados duo dont really need Special Attackers but can have outside support if they cant overcome some checks or just mons that wear them down.

I mean you havent really proven it to me otherwise, and it's difficult to really argue anything when there are 6 slashes for just one set. Your set is a perfect example of what a Pokemon can do in theory but often crumbles in practice due to being outclassed.

Your options of Fire Blast or Hydro Pump leave Mence in very dicey scenarios. You risk being walked completely by Tapu Bulu, something that's actually kind of humorous. You also have an even more difficult time overcoming Ferrothorn, which doesn't give a damn about Dragon moves nor Earthquake. Lacking Roost leaves you very susceptible to being worn down easily because Stealth Rock chips at Salamence pretty damn hard. Adding on Life Orb recoil and potential weather or other status ailment such as Toxic and Salamence is just going to bleed itself badly. While Dragonium Z sounds nice in practice, one thing you'll become frustrated at is never breaking Clefable whatsoever and giving it a free opportunity to play Stealth Rock or Thunder Wave. Your set basically assumes the best case scenario for everything when it is extremely flawed in practice.
I'm going to try and round this off so the mods don't end up blacklisting Salamence and giving me an infraction.

First off, you make a fair point about the whole scarf thing, that was my bad.

The slashes are set options. I really should've specified that Hydro Pump shouldnt be used on every set, only when the team really needs it. You should always technically be running Fire Blast, which means you are not walled by Bulu. Another option could be DDance with Iron Tail over Dragon Stab on DDance if you really hate Clef that much, or just have a way to break it a little before you start dancing with Salamence. However, Clefable is annoying to any dragon dancer par the rare sub Gyarados. I personally feel due to this that it was unfair to include Clefable as your basis, as it annoys essentially everything that doesn't straight up beat it, but thats your choice not mine.

The Mega Scizor point was kinda off point for where I was trying to go in my opinion. I see what you're saying, but no Salamence is going to hard into Scizor, especially when its boosting, as Salamence is still rocks prone, and still frail. Going back to the slashes, the idea is that you choose what moves would benefit your team the most. You also shouldn't be using Salamence as your main answer to these physical attackers anyways, as was stated before: frail, not that great of a defensive typing, and rocks weak. Toxic damage with weather is also going to chip alot more things then just Salamence, so no clue as to why that is there besides showing LO isnt "practical".

Hydreigon isnt running physical sets this generation. No way no how, unless its some weird Tour set or a lure. And even with Bulu's terrain, as long as you are running Attack investment (which should be done if you're running Outrage/Dragon Claw, you're still 2HKO'ing Heatran, so that really doesn't matter.

4 Atk Salamence Earthquake vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Heatran in Grassy Terrain: 176-208 (45.5 - 53.8%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery and Grassy Terrain recovery

4 Atk Life Orb Salamence Earthquake vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Heatran in Grassy Terrain: 229-270 (59.3 - 69.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery and Grassy Terrain recovery

As stated before: with attack investment or with LO, Heatran is still a 2HKO, so that point makes no sense to be there imo. I'll end the whole Salamence thing with this statement:

It's an option. Not trying to say its the best thing, or if its even worth using over Hydreigon on most teams. All I'm saying is that it is an option, a mon that can use some exploring, and has a ton of potential if used well. If you have any further issues or are still wondering about something I forgot to address here, Colonel M , Feel free to PM on Smogon. I have no life and am on here too much anyways, so I can get back to you quite soon. Anyways, good day to you.
 
with the death of Zygarde the tier can finally have a breath of fresh air since aside from unpresidented Heatran + Toxapex spam the meta seems to be shifting from a 'who punches harder' based offense with some random defensive mon thrown in

honestly for me the best part of this tier is that i can FINALLY feel safe in running actual bulky teams. previously i had to deal with zygarde shenanigans all the time since very few things deal with zygarde consistently due to sub spam so hey ty for that

on top of that koko has been seeing play constantly since it shits on two of the high tiers (Heatran and Tox) and it has tools to forego scarfed ground mons like Lando and garchomp

ive been using skarmory lately and it feels pretty clutch so maybe magnezone might see more play again? it switches in constantly on anything but specs koko so idk
 

Colonel M

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Also a lot of teams were going a bit more balanced/ bulky towards the end of Zygarde's era. Not only did Mega Mawile create a lot of issues for those teams, but Mega Medicham could also run through the 6 if Clefable or a few other Pokemon were chipped. Though I could potentially see why you would assume bulkier teams feel safer without Zygarde, those two menaces beg to differ.
 
I've noticed that both Mega Charziards are much better in this meta. Toxapex is becoming rarer as it only fits on stall teams, while Steel types are becoming more common due to Zygarde's ban, which of course get obliterated by both Zard's (Heatran can't stomach Earthquake or Focus Blast). Tapu Bulu pairs up well with both of them, as it appreciates their ability to break through stuff like Magearna, Celesteela and Skarmory. Overall, despite being against the Zygarde ban personally, I am enjoying this new meta.
I agree that they're both getting better but saying that toxapex is only played in stall teams is not true, but Indeed they're both interesting and especially the X imo which has no really big switch in
 
With the Zygarde ban the metagame is bound to drastically change and I think that one of the big winners is Rotom-Wash.



Rotom is now a valid Ground-resist tanking things such as Flyinium-Z Landorus, Mamoswine and Gliscor. Grasses like Tapu Bulu, Tangrowth and especially Ferrothorn will still be relevant, however, despite Finchinator forgetting about it in his narration Rotom does still get Will-o-Wisp which not only chips away at those Pokemon for the rest of the game but also renders the physical ones completely worthless against teammates such as Tornadus-Therian. In addition to this utility move Rotom's Volt Switch generates unmatched momentum for your team as Ground-types (except the fallen angel Gastrodon) hate switching into Hydro Pump and even if they predict correctly and switch into the electric move, unlike vs Koko, they still lose the 1v1 decisively.

Besides being a Ground-resist Rotom is also a great answer to a plethora of completely different typings such as Flying (Flyinium-Z Gyarados, Mega-Pinsir, Tornadus-Therian) Fire (Heatran, Victini) and Water (Mega-Swampert, Azumarill). The only thing that outnumbers the amount of Pokemon Rotom can counter is the number of Pokemon Rotom checks. Things like Keldeo, Ash-Greninja, Blacephalon and most physical attackers in the tier get forced out by the threat of Will-o-Wisp or Rotom's STAB allowing you to be this momentum generating machine.

Rotom is also extremely flexible as you can choose the right amount of defense/offense you need on it. For example 108+ SpA allows you to OHKO 56SpD Gliscor 100% of the time and OHKO Toxapex 56% of the time or 100% of the time after Stealth Rock / Burn damage with z-Thunder as well as getting past physically defensive Clefable with any 110 Stab into z-move, leaving you with plenty of EV's to invest into speed and bulk.
 
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