Resource USUM Playstyle Analysis

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Mannat

is a Tutoris a Community Contributor
Won SPL Predictions

SM OU Playstyle Analysis
OP by LL
Approved by Gary
Inspired by previous version ran by Stan Soojung
goat banner by Cryoam

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This thread will be a project in which there will be weekly stages in which there will be one member of a fairly large group this forum's most knowledgeable contributors that will hopefully post a guide each Friday for users to look back on and see how individual playstyles are broken down and built. This thread is meant to both be a resource in which newer players can better grasp building some of the most prevalent playstyles in the metagame. Everyone is free post their thoughts and criticisms on the guides posted every week, but try to limit your posts in this thread by making sure you have all your thoughts in one post so that people can more easily find the guides. I intend for this thread to be a guide for new players to follow so that they can get a better grasp of these playstyles. If you have any questions or discussions that you want to start about the playstyle of the week, feel free to post in the thread or dm me on discord n_n
 
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Mannat

is a Tutoris a Community Contributor
Won SPL Predictions
Trick Room

With the release of USUM, we have been gifted with the new Ultra Beast Stakataka, so Trick Room has seen a lot more focus lately after falling off a bit near the end of SM. I wanted to have a more obscure playstye for the first week of this thread while the dust of the metagame settles following the Naga ban, so I hope you guys enjoy this week!
 
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Trick Room has already seen a massive resurgence in SM, and Stakataka being gassed up to the ends of the earth only helps that. I don't get to play much these days, so seeing TR on the ladder is a rarity, but I do want to see how certain Stakataka cores play out in the new meta, especially this one:


Stakataka @ Rockium Z
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Lonely Nature
IVs: 15 Def / 0 Spe
- Superpower / Earthquake
- Stone Edge
- Gyro Ball
- Trick Room

Cresselia @ Colbur Berry / Mental Herb / Kasib Berry (LUL)
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 248 HP / 252 Def / 8 SpD
Relaxed Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Trick Room
- Ice Beam
- Moonlight
- Lunar Dance
Stakataka hits like a truck and can take most physical hits aimed at it without much issue, repeated chip damage notwithstanding. It helps that it can muscle through Lando-T even after Intimidate with either Continental Crush after moderate chip damage or 2 Gyro Balls. That being said, it gets completely dicker-daddied by any stray Ground or Fighting move due to its unfortunate defensive typing. Cresselia, at least theoretically, should help with both of those weaknesses while packing Ice Beam for Lando-T/Zygarde/the rare Gliscor, as well as packing its own Trick Room and Lunar Dance to mitigate how easy it is to wear Stakataka down.

Going forward with this core, as with most TR setter cores, needs to account for the fact that the setter (Cresselia in this case, though Uxie is relevant in teams before this meta) is passive as all hell, making it prime bait for things like M-Gyara (Taunt and non-Taunt sets alike), Specs Ash-Gren, Weavile with Low Kick, Blacephalon, BandTar, and the uncommon Air Balloon Heatran. Strong Dark/Fight or Ghost/Fight coverage in general tends to hurt this core, so countermeasures need to be taken, either by trying to squeeze out a TR with Colbur or Kasib Berry to eat a hit, or packing a teammate that can eat strong Dark-type hits repeatedly (to say nothing of the other powerful coverage those threats inevitably have).
 
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While TR got a cute tool in Stakataka, it's also important to note some really prominent threats to the archetype.


Blacephalon @ Choice Specs
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Fire Blast
- Shadow Ball
- Trick
- Mind Blown

--OR--

Blacephalon @ Ghostium Z
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Substitute
- Calm Mind
- Fire Blast
- Shadow Ball

Specs Blacephalon is very threatening, as it anti-leads every standard TR setter and has a dual stab that's near impossible for the archetype to switch into. Sub + cm sets are even more devastating, because now TR is forced to sacrifice precious breakers in order to hit the sub, and it is also able to set up on mawile's sucker punch. Sub as a whole gives TR problems, due to it shutting down memento and forcing TR breakers to take hits they cannot afford to eat even with max hp.



Gyarados-Mega @ Gyaradosite
Ability: Mold Breaker
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Substitute
- Dragon Dance
- Waterfall
- Earthquake / Crunch

Heracross-Mega @ Heracronite
Ability: Skill Link
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Close Combat
- Pin Missile
- Rock Blast
- Substitute / Earthquake

Zygarde @ Leftovers
Ability: Aura Break
EVs: 188 HP / 140 Atk / 180 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Substitute
- Protect / Toxic
- Dragon Dance
- Thousand Arrows

Sub Gyarados-M freely sets up on uxie and cresselia, and has annoying levels of bulk to check crawdaunt and marowak-a, while also wasting precious TR turns. Heracross-M is a classic destroyer of TR once it gets the opportunity to either sub or be in vs the team when TR goes down, capable of heavily damaging TR breakers and setters while wasting TR turns as well. Sub zygarde is less threatening due to cresselia countering non-toxic variants, but it can waste a lot of TR turns (especially with the subtect variant) while also being able to dent most TR abusers.

As for interesting counterplay from TR to combat these recent trends...



Mimikyu is something I've noticed pop up on TR more, to set up TR on the aforementioned threats mentioned above, while also providing a check to them to either break subs without much cost or use shadow sneak to ko blacephalon.

That's my two cents based on what I've observed, so aspiring TR players should keep said counterplay in mind when building new TR squads.
 

Mannat

is a Tutoris a Community Contributor
Won SPL Predictions
Rain
Rain hasn't received any significant buffs in USUM; although, it did gain a new toy in Araquanid. Overall, rain has been a fairly consistent ladder playstyle this generation that's also been a great matchup pick in tours, gaining many wins from team preview and being a very aggressive playstyle overall. Last week's activity was a bit less than I'd like, so let's try posting a bit more this week guys! I'm always on the lookout for innovation, so feel free to post more niche rain Pokemon or sets this time around Vertex
 
not much has changed. archive this until someone makes a sufficient post: http://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/play-style-analysis.3612080/#post-7470094

i suggest making this thread a resource rather than a project. i just don't think it makes sense to have a weekly project version of this thread, and every iteration since ORAS has had poor activity when treated this way. i'd just make it so the thread is open to guides whenever someone wants to post them.
 
Balance is meant to live up to its name, being able to balance the the task of effectively walling out Offense while still being able to provide enough offense itself to deal with bulkier teams like stall. Balance can struggle to excel at both jobs but a well-made Balance team should be able to handle any match-up if used properly.

Making an Offensive Core

Building Balance generally starts off with an offensive core and a defensive core; as an example, I'll start off with Mega Lopunny and Choice Band Hoopa-Unbound.



Mega Lopunny is very good at breaking past Hyper Offense teams, which generally have Pokemon such as Smeargle, Tapu Koko, Greninja, Azelf, Mega Diancie or Excadrill. Lopunny can Power-Up Punch many of these Pokemon after a Fake Out, or use Ice Punch to hit Zygarde and Landorus-T, and after damage from hazards or initial damage from Fake Out, Lopunny can KO many Pokemon on Hyper Offense.



Choice Banded Hoopa-Unbound has very limited switch-ins, and once it comes in it is most likely going to KO something. Hoopa-U's most common switch-ins are Magearna, Tapu Bulu, Landorus-T, Clefable, and Tyranitar, which can also be 2HKO'd by Hyperspace Fury or OHKO's by Hoopa-U's abundance of coverage moves. Hoopa-U can also Gunk Shot Clefable and Tapu's, which are pretty much the only Fighting resists in the tier, aside from Landorus-T, which doesn't appreciate a Banded Ice Punch at all. Hoopa-U has Drain Punch for Pokemon such as Tyranitar, who can switch into a Banded Hyperspace Fury and Pursuit trap Hoopa-U. Other moves that can be used in the last slot over Drain Punch are; Fire Punch for Ferrothorn and Magearna, Zen Headbutt for Toxapex and Mega Venusaur (both are 2HKO'd by Hyperspace Fury but the OHKO can be very nice), Trick can be used to cripple threats, but that's not realy Hoopa-U's niche.

Making a Defensive Core

Now that an offensive core has been made, a defensive core, preferably with VoltTurn, would help the team hold together against offensive teams.

A notable defensive core is Landorus-T and Magearna, which also provides slow(ish) VoltTurn's for Hoopa-U to get in and wreck havoc.



Defensive Landorus-T can deal with Pokemon such as opposing Landorus-T, Zygarde, Mega Lopunny, Tapu Koko, and Mega Scizor, which are Pokemon that give our offensive core a lot of trouble. Earthquake is strong STAB that hits a majority of the meta-game, and Pokemon who can switch in to Earthquake are taking a decent chunk from Hidden Power Ice or give you momentum as they get hit with a U-Turn. Stealth Rock will help Lopunny and Hoopa-U, doing 8-50% to incoming Pokemon, making it even harder to switch into the two. Landorus-T pairs well with Magearna, because while Magearna can take Ice type attacks and just strong Special attacks like Psychic from Tapu Lele or Hydro Pump from Greninja, Landorus can switch into Ground type attacks for Magearna, and deal with Pokemon like Heatran who threaten Magearna.



Magearna is a very bulky, strong, and unpredictable Pokemon. This Magearna will be used to absorb strong hits and Volt Switch out to provide momentum for our offensive core, while also packing excellent coverage. With an Assault Vest, Fleur Cannon and Volt Switch are almost a necessity, but you could change Fleur Cannon to Dazzling Gleam or even a different coverage move. Flash Cannon or Iron Head are used as another consistent strong STAB move, Flash Cannon works better with Magearna's great Special Attack stat, but Iron Head lets Magearna deal with Calm Mind Magearna and Clefable more consistently. Volt Switch is a must and for the last move, Hidden Power Fire can be ran to deal with Mega Scizor and Ferrothorn, but Energy Ball can be a niche move to hit opposing Mega Swampert and Gastrodon, while Shadow Ball can be used as a lure for the new threat of Blacephalon, and the dwindling-in-usage Alolan Marowak, which can otherwise deal with Magearna. Ice Beam can be used to hit Landorus-T, or Aura Sphere can be used to hit Heatran. Hidden Power Fire is by far the best best move in many people's opinions, but Shadow Ball is also a fairly viable option.

Adding Allies for Synergy

Once a solid Offensive core and Defensive core are established, it's good to just look at how your team matches up against different play styles. The team could struggle to break Hyper-Stall, and Rain is a very huge threat, as well as Volcarona. After seeing these, possible partners could be Tapu Bulu to deal with Rain, and depending on the set, break Stall. Another possible partner could be Scarf Greninja, which not only gives much-need speed control, it also deals with Volcarona with Rock Slide. Something else the team needs is hazard control, a role that can be fulfilled by Latias or Latios, who can deal with some Volcarona sets. The last 2 members will be changed and tailor-made to fit your play-style and whatever does best against what is popular and viable.



This is my first time doing basically anything on here, and I didn't really have a clear goal in mind, but hopefully this can help people get a solid understanding of how Balance works.
 
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Mannat

is a Tutoris a Community Contributor
Won SPL Predictions

Shoutouts to The Hunters Prowl for the epic banner

Sorry this took so long guys, but I've finally gotten to writing this after Vertex bailed on me to pursue his rap career. Rain is a playstyle that everyone in the competitive community is familiar with and one that's pretty polarizing. Some people believe that rain is a fantastic playstyle and one that can bust through the vast majority of teams while others believe that it's inconsistent and a matchup pick at best. Regardless of which end of the spectrum you fall under, I believe that you might be able to pick up a thing or two from this guide for rain teams overall. Without further delay, here's my rain guide!

Sample Team
Pelipper @ Damp Rock
Ability: Drizzle
EVs: 248 HP / 32 Def / 228 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 6 Spe
- Defog
- Roost
- Scald
- U-turn

Tapu Koko @ Tapunium Z
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Thunder
- Nature's Madness
- Taunt
- U-turn

Hawlucha @ Electric Seed
Ability: Unburden
EVs: 156 HP / 224 Atk / 4 Def / 124 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Drain Punch
- Swords Dance
- High Jump Kick
- Acrobatics

Swampert-Mega @ Swampertite
Ability: Damp
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Waterfall
- Earthquake
- Ice Punch
- Stealth Rock

Kingdra @ Choice Specs
Ability: Swift Swim
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Surf
- Draco Meteor
- Ice Beam
- Hidden Power [Electric]

Ferrothorn @ Chople Berry
Ability: Iron Barbs
EVs: 252 HP / 120 Def / 136 SpD
Relaxed Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Gyro Ball
- Power Whip
- Knock Off
- Spikes
The Setter:

Pelipper is the only automatic rain setter that rain teams tend to run in the tier, with some occasional rain sweepers like Swampert running Rain Dance for late game situations, but I'm going to be focusing on Pelipper here since it's the main setter. Pelipper makes a fantastic setter for rain teams because it's an effective defensive pivot, with a slow U-turn that allows you to pivot into your rain sweepers without them having to take damage first, Roost to stay healthy throughout the match, and Defog to deal with entry hazard control for teams.
Miscellaneous Defensive Pivots

Ferrothorn is the most standard pivot on rain teams besides Pelipper due to it being able to successfully stack up entry hazards against opposing teams and pivoting into Electric-types and Grass-types that threaten the main components of rain teams. Additionally, Ferrothorn pressures opposing Ferrothorns by spamming Knock Off vs them and wearing them down, which is huge for many of the main rain abusers. Overall, Ferrothorn is probably the best pivot outside of Pelipper on rain teams and provides a ton of utility overall.


While Ferrothorn is the main defensive pivot that most rain teams use, Assault Vest Magearna can also be used to great effect on rain teams due to its incredibly high specially defensive bulk coupled with its fantastic typing allowing it to switch into basically every special attacking threat that annoys rain teams while doing a much better job than Ferrhothorn at maintaining offensive momentum. However, Magearna brings much less overall utility to the table and can't switch into Tapu Koko as well, so it's usually a worse option on rain teams than Ferrothorn.
Water-type Abusers

Mega Swampert is a borderline mandatory rain abuser simply because of the perfect combination of defensive and offensive utility that it provides rain teams. Foremost, it provides an electric immunity for rain teams, stopping Choice Specs Tapu Koko from spamming Volt Switch and threatening to completely bust through rain teams. Additionally, Mega Swampert pressures and dispatches Toxapex with STAB Earthquake and is an excellent choice vs bulkier team in general due to its unique combination of bulk and power that's unmatched on rain teams. Obviously, there are a couple other mons that can take up the mega slot like SD U-turn Mega Scizor that can make good additions to rain teams, but Mega Swampert's potential contributions to rain teams are almost always too good to ignore.

Ash Greninja is another excellent edition to rain teams due to its insane power from the special attacking end in conjunction with its ability to free up a moveslot on Ferrothorn with Spikes. Additionally, Water Shuriken can be extremely useful in matchup vs problematic anti-rain Pokemon such as Choice Scarf Kartana and Mega Alakazam and is a great move for cleaning up weakened teams late game. Aside from setting up hazards and being able to nuke teams with its useful Water-type moves, Ash Greninja can also break through defensive teams due to Dark Pulse pretty much being unresisted by Water-type resists on defensive teams bar Tapu Bulu in conjunction with the hazard pressure it can provide. Ash Greninja obviously can't outspeed basically the entire unboosted metagame with Swift Swim, but its unique features and abilities as a breaker more than justifies its placement on rain teams.

Kingdra is another Swift Swim user that can both compliment Mega Swampert offensively and threaten offensive teams insanely. Kingdra's main merits over Ash Greninja is its significantly higher speed tier under rain, which allows it to pose much more of a threat vs offensive teams as well as its fantastic secondary STAB in Draco Meteor that allows it to completely nuke a lot of common threats to rain teams. Finally, Kingdra can run some more niche options such as HP Electric and Toxic to lure threats to rain teams, but it still usually ends up being less effective than Ash Greninja in the long run due to being significantly less powerful and not providing hazard support to rain teams.

Finally, on the more niche end of things, we have Qwilfish, who is actually a very underrated pick for rain teams. Qwilfish has a myriad of unique features that allow it to be an effective member of rain teams such as absorbing Toxic Spikes, being able to dispatch annoying Grass-types, and wallbreaking vs teams that have mons that are normally very hard for rain teams to deal with, and being an insanely threatening late game cleaner with Swords Dance + Life Orb boosted Liquidation in rain. However, Qwilfish is still reasonably niche and won't be used on the majority of rain teams.
Complimentary Offensive Threats

Tapu Koko is an excellent edition to rain teams due to its ability to pressure bulky Water-types like Toxapex and Mantine that normally put a stop to opposing rain abusers like Ash Greninja and Mega Swampert respectively. Additionally, Tapu Koko can use Tapuinium Z in conjunction with Natures Madness to lure in and heavily cripple Ferrothorn in particular so that it can't pivot into Kingdra and Swampert anymore and Tapu Koko also benefits from rain by having a 100% accurate Thunder to abuse vs teams without a solid Electric-type immunity.

Hawlucha is another great anti-offense Pokemon that can be used on rain teams, in conjunction with either Tapu Koko or Tapu Lele due to its ability to sweep through teams with Swords Dance in conjunction with its deadly dual STAB combination. Aside from being able to set up and sweep offensive teams along with some ill prepared defensive teams, Hawlucha can dispatch annoying Grass-types that normally wall the majority of rain teams and provide a key revenge killer for significant threats like Volcarona and Mega Gyarados.

Additionally, Swords Dance Kartana can be used on rain teams in order to provide an offensive breaker that can succeed vs opposing balance teams with its insane attack stat in conjunction with Beast Boost. Obviously Kartana is very frail and thus requires a second Steel-type on the team for pivoting purposes, but it's a very threatening breaker and can successfully take down teams that are oftentimes hellishly difficult matchups for rain teams. Kartana can also run a Choice Scarf set in order to have a better matchup vs the Psychic Spam teams that traditionally trouble rain teams while simultaneously taking pressure off of Pelipper to Defog away hazards.

Tapu Lele is another offensive threat that can be used on rain teams for wallbreaking purposes, as it has a myriad of potential offensive threats that can be difficult to discern from team preview. Similarly to Tapu Koko, Tapu Lele can use a Fightinium Z offensive set to lure in Ferrothorn for rain teams while still maintaining its threatening offensive presence and can potentially run a Choice Scarf set for checking key offensive threats when the rain isn't up, but Tapu Lele's lackluster speed tier and relative frailty makes it a less common option for rain teams.

Finally, Landorus-T is the final offensive breaker that is oftentimes used to compliment the sweepers that rain teams are based around. Landorus-T is mandatory on rain teams that elect to use a different mega than Mega Swampert like Mega Scizor, but these teams are few and far between. However, Landorus-T can still function as an effective member of rain teams by providing Stealth Rock support so that Ferrothorn and Swampert don't have to run it. Additionally, Landorus-T can use Swords Dance in conjunction with Z Fly to lure in Grass-types that normally annoy Mega Swampert and other rain sweepers like Tangrowth and AV Tapu Bulu especially while providing a threatening breaker to dismantle defensive teams.
Threats to Rain

Bulky Grass-types like Ferrothorn and Tapu Bulu are notable nuisances towards rain, as they resist their Water-type STAB moves and can threaten them out by either removing their item, stacking up entry hazards, or just being able to KO them.

Pokemon that have access to weather somewhat invalidates rain as a whole. Mega Charizard-Y in particular can weaken Water-type attacks and KO the offensive Water-types that abuse the rain that Pelipper sets up. However, Mega Charizard Y has to be wary of using Solar Beam as Pelipper switches in because of Pelipper resetting rain and stopping Solar Beam. On the other hand, Tyranitar can offset rain and make offensive threats that its traditionally paired with, such as Swords Dance Kartana run through rain teams, especially if it's able to Pursuit Trap Pelipper.

Bulky Water-types can tank eat up Water-type attacks and outright wall some members of rain teams. Mantine in particular is immune to Water-type attacks, while hard walling Swampert. Toxapex is also very annoying for rain teams to deal with because it's able to pivot in and out vs a myriad of the Pokemon on rain teams with Regenerator in conjunction with its insane bulk, stalling out precious rain turns while also setting up Toxic Spikes to cripple Mega Swampert and other rain sweepers. Gastrodon deserves a mention here because it also has an immunity to Water-type attacks and unlike the two previous threats, stops Tapu Koko cold because of its Ground-typing.
Well that concludes my guide on rain as a playstyle. I hope that you guys enjoyed the guide and found it very informative. I'll try to either have someone else type up a guide on bulky offense by next Sunday or type it up myself. There may be a delay because of the holiday season, but it'll be up at some point. Also, please respond to the thread with any additional comments or concern you have with my guide. I'll be happy to respond to them either in the thread or in discord dms n_n​
 
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get papa imsorrylol to do trick room and aurora veil and have njnp do webs. Or maybe just put these all under one post about all the different hyper offense styles. Get ABR to do balance since he is the OG master of balance. Have some stall lord like Tele or Bengay do stall.

add garbage manaphy and keldeo to rain abusers and maybe torn and zap. you could talk about mega scizor on wack teams that don't use swampert or alakazam like on that one team.

In my opinion, you should 2-3 rather than one sample team on each analysis to show different things that have worked. http://pokepast.es/86409f85650f682d
http://pokepast.es/d8d80c77356f9a95
http://pokepast.es/83ddadb16ef6d277
there are some rain teams
LL said:
This thread is meant to both be a resource in which newer players to better grasp building these playstyles.
maybe fix that sentence too.
 
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Bulky Offense

Bulky Offense has long reigned as the cream-of-the-crop playstyle due to it's immense versatility and room for creativity. What differentiates bulky offense from other offensive playstyles, predominantly hyper offense, is the use of bulky Pokemon that function as defensive pivots to fall back on rather than the traditional "sacking" (sacrificing the Pokemon on the field). Listed above are just a few examples of common components of bulky offense. Each Pokemon has a remarkable degree of bulk, usually in tandem with a recovery option via move (Synthesis, Recover) or item such as Leftovers. One also notices that each exemplar usually carries strong utility moves such as Stealth Rock, Volt Switch, (Toxic) Spikes, Defog, Knock Off or just functions as an overall excellent catch all to a wide variety of threats. These traits, as well as others, makes such teammates highly valuable and well worth the slot.

Here we have just a few examples of Pokemon that benefit tremendously from bulky offense team structures. Under normal circumstances, most of these Pokemon are unable to stomach repeated attacks barring resists. This makes completing the mission of defeating the opposition a bit harder than it has to be. However, by implementing defensive backbones, these Pokemon are able to thrive when their checks and counters have countermeasures in place.

Core Examples

Kartana has long risen to stardom as one of the most terrifying breakers to ever grace the tier, so you may be wondering why I decided to pair it with Ferrothorn. Considering the fact that Kartana does not meet the standards of your typical bulky Steel-types, you're required to stack another with it. Objectively speaking, Ferrothorn is one of the best possible Steel-types you could fit onto your team due to the immense defensiveness and utility it brings. Spikes, Stealth Rock, Knock Off, Leech Seed, its hard to go wrong when using it. Kartana greatly appreciates the presence of Spikes and auxillary damage via Leech Seed, as well as having a teammate that's capable of handling threats like Choice Scarf Tapu Lele, Tapu Koko, and (Ash) Greninja.

Hoopa-U is also on a rise and its Nasty Plot set gains more popularity by the day. However, like all Pokemon, it has its share of weaknesses. Not only is it rather slow for an offensive threat, it also lacks defensive potential considering it has no resistances and its overall defenses leaves a lot to be desired. Assault Vest Magearna fits as a splendid teammate as it brings immense defensive aptitude with its excellent typing, and Volt Switch support to bring Hoopa-U into play.

Role Compression, Momentum, and Counterplay

Many a time, new players consistently fall into this trap; the belief that all teambuilding should follow the set, inaccurate formula of Defensive Wall / Physical Sweeper / Special Sweeper / Specially Defensive Wall / Revenge Killer / Wallbreaker or similar setups. This way of thinking has a very high chance to doom you to failure before you've even started building. What truly matters when building bulky offense or any non-formulaic playstyle for that matter can be summed up to three concepts.

The first concept, and most important, is role compression, which is the use of Pokemon that are able to take on many roles at once so you get more bang for your teamslot. For example, Defensive Landorus-T functions as a defensive pivot to approximately 50% or so of the metagame, while also setting up Stealth Rock fantastically well, thus being a good addition to most teams in terms of role compression. One could argue that Chansey does all this as well, so why can't I use Chansey?

Well, that ties into my next point: momentum. One thing Defensive Landorus-T has that Chansey doesn't, is the ability to maintain and regain momentum. Momentum, as simple as I can explain it, is the tide of the battle. If you can control how the opponent has to play, you have the upper hand, which is momentum. Chansey saps away all momentum you may have gained due to its passiveness, so almost anything can come in on it and capitalize off of it. Landorus-T's nowehere near as passive as Chansey is and has a useful tool in U-Turn to pivot out of incoming threats.

The last concept I'd like to touch on is counterplay, which can be lumped together with the idea of revenge killing. It's frankly impossible to counter every single threat in the metagame with only six teamslots, so that's where counterplay begins. Counterplay can be defined as the idea of being able to deal with the most common of threats without having a direct counter to said threats. A well-known way we utilize counterplay can be accredited to our use of a Choice Scarfed or strong, naturally fast Pokemon to deal with offensive threats that you can't afford to run a different Pokemon to completely counter it.

To further my point, say you have a partially complete team of 5 Pokemon and you realize that Volcarona can be overbearing to face against. Volcarona doesn't exactly have any counters for all of it's possible sets that are easy to place on teams. You also see that Mega Charizard-X can be overwhelming at times as well. Both of those Pokemon have vastly different checks, but similar forms counterplay. So it'd be profitable to use Choice Scarf Latios as it is able to revenge kill both of these threats and more, while also bringing a significant amount of role compression to the mix.

Sample Team by starry blanket

Hoopa-Unbound @ Fightinium Z
Ability: Magician
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Nasty Plot
- Psyshock
- Dark Pulse
- Focus Blast

Tapu Koko @ Choice Specs
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Thunderbolt
- Dazzling Gleam
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Volt Switch

Kartana @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Leaf Blade
- Smart Strike
- Sacred Sword
- Defog

Landorus-Therian @ Leftovers
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 248 HP / 240 Def / 16 Spe
Impish Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- U-turn

Magearna @ Assault Vest
Ability: Soul-Heart
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Def / 252 SpD
Sassy Nature
- Iron Head
- Fleur Cannon
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Volt Switch

Toxapex @ Payapa Berry
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Def / 252 SpD
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Toxic Spikes
- Haze
- Recover
- Scald

Here we have a team put together by my friend starry blanket, originally posted in the USUM Teambuilding Workshop. This team is a great example of bulky offense as it utilizes a very strong defensive backbone in Assault Vest Magearna, Defensive Landorus-T, and Toxapex, the former two functioning as excellent pivots. Alongside the backbone we have two offensive behemoths: Choice Specs Tapu Koko and Nasty Plot Hoopa-U, with Choice Scarf Kartana as supplementary speed control and support. Overall, a great example of your classic bulky offense archetype.

Conclusion

Overall, bulky offense is simply one of those playstyle where you, usually, can't go wrong with it. It provides you a remarkable amount of room for experimentation for whatever Pokemon you'd like to use within reasonable boundaries and is very effective, sustainable, and generally consistent as a playstyle, sometimes even needing but a few tweaks at most to keep up with changing trends.

~reposted and edited this since it's a nice guide :)​
 

Mannat

is a Tutoris a Community Contributor
Won SPL Predictions

Huge thanks to AnnaKartanna for helping me write this​

Introduction
If you looked at the beautiful image 2 inches above this block of text, you probably already know that this guide is about one of the most hated and dreaded playstyles in the game. You can easily tell when you encounter a team like this, as you will be facing 6 fat mons at team preview. The principal of this archetype is to outlast your opponent’s team until they eventually die from a combination of passive damage and weak hits from your own Pokemon. This is done through consistent and reliable ways of running down opposing HP, usually with entry hazards or status. Stall has usually had a “most effective” team that is standard, but ever since dugtrio’s ban, stall has been a lot less reliable. There has not been a specific team or build that is known to be “most effective”, so people will have to create their own team compositions. This can prove difficult, as being able to wall the entire tierwith only 6 pokemon can be hard. Hopefully, after reading this guide, you will have a better understanding stall as a playstyle overall.

When starting to build, there are a few key things to keep in mind while selecting your pokemon before anything else. First of all, the vast majority of your pokemon have to all have some form of reliable recovery. The only exceptions would be trappers (like Tyranitar, Alolan-Muk, Weavile, etc), and more offensive oriented pokemon (like Heatran, Tapu Bulu, etc). If you look at any stall team, pretty much every member will have wish, recover (or any of its equivalents), and/or Regenerator. The reason for this should be obvious, and that is that you want to be able to last as long as possible, and pokemon without reliable recovery are easily chipped down. By the end of the build, the team should cover as many of the tier's most threatening offensive Pokemon as it can, while ensuring that it isn't weak to certain styles. Some of the Pokemon from the top stall mons section of this guide should provide a solid starting point for your build or support to a central concept of a unique stall Pokemon that you want to use and building off from there can work out. While the stall Pokemon that I included as top stall Pokemon are by no means mandatory apart from Chansey on stall, they're very solid overall and can certainly help you out. After having your central core built out along with some top mons to support it, then it's best to use complimentary stall mons that fit your team in order to ensure that you have the most optimal build possible. I haven't included a section on other complimentary stall mons because there's an insane amount of things that I could include there and it's best to explore and find out what works best on your team in paricular. One thing that I want to place emphasis on more than anything else because it's an incredibly common mistake that people make when teambuilding with stall especially is that you need to ensure that your team isn't stretched too thin, more specifically using one mon to check 10 different things that are commonly paired together just for the sake of role compression generally tends to cause stall teams to become largely ineffective and stall teams that can fall back on multiple pivots to check threatening Pokemon are usually more effective in the long run. Stall is intended to be a matchup pick, so don't try to beat everything when you can't, trying to fit a round peg into a small hole is one of the worst things you can do to yourself as a teambuilder. Lastly, don't be afraid to innovate when using stall teams! Straying from the standards for using techs that people aren't used to seeing on stall teams can catch your opponent off guard and end up winning games for you due to being able to surprisingly beat a threatening opposing Pokemon.

Sample Team
Sableye-Mega @ Sablenite
Ability: Prankster
Shiny: Yes
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Def / 252 SpD
Careful Nature
- Will-O-Wisp
- Knock Off
- Protect
- Recover


Chansey @ Eviolite
Ability: Natural Cure
Shiny: Yes
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Seismic Toss
- Soft-Boiled
- Heal Bell
- Toxic


Magearna @ Leftovers
Ability: Soul-Heart
EVs: 248 HP / 116 Def / 136 SpD / 8 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Volt Switch
- Pain Split
- Heart Swap
- Flash Cannon


Hippowdon @ Leftovers
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 252 HP / 144 Def / 112 SpD
Impish Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
- Slack Off
- Whirlwind


Zapdos @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Discharge
- Heat Wave
- Roost
- Defog


Alomomola @ Leftovers
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 40 HP / 216 Def / 252 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Scald
- Toxic
- Wish
- Protect
Stall Team Checklist (Keep in mind that most of these are strong recommendations rather than requirements for all stall teams and they aren't the only things that stall teams require to be successful)
  • At least 2 Pokemon with some form of hazard control
  • Chansey
  • Heal Bell/Aromatherapy user
  • Fallback for setup sweepers (Unaware / Ditto)
  • Lele answer
  • Koko answer
  • Heatran answer
  • Kartana answer
  • Ground Check
Top Stall Pokemon

Chansey is the one Pokemon that stall teams cannot function without. Its versatility to function as either a cleric, rocker, wishpasser, or lure for physical attackers, being able to be tailored to whatever the team needs is incredibly useful for stall teams and it generally takes pressure off of teammates to check some of the most threatening offensive Pokemon in the tier. Some of the most notable example include: Tapu Koko, Magearna, and Ash Greninja. There's not much else to say other than this thing checks a fuckton of different Pokemon and can be incredibly frustrating for opposing teams to deal with.

Zapdos is a fantastic Pokemon on stall teams overall and what I think is the second best mon on stall nowadays due to its ability to remove entry hazards, check top offensive threats that usually tear apart stall teams otherwise, as well as respectable offensive presence to pressure opposing teams. While we're on that point, pressure is a fantastic ability for stall teams because it allows Zapdos to rapidly deplete the PP of opposing teams vs mons like Choice Band Tyranitar and Heatran in particular because they rely on low PP moves to function. This thing is also very unique in that it can check mons that would otherwise be very threatening to stall teams like SD Kartana (needs to be physdef and requires that rocks be off), Life Orb Tornadus-T, and SD Scizor (non quag teams).


With its newfound access to Defog in USUM, Gliscor quickly became a fantastic member of stall teams, being able to check the previously annoying Heatran while simultaneously keeping hazards off the field for its teammates. Gliscor's access to Poison Heal allows it to be a lot less pressured by passive damage, even functioning as a status absorber, and opposing Pokemon in general compared to most other stall mons, making it a very effective Defogger. Additionally, Gliscor can soft check the widely feared Mega Mawile due to its ability to switch into Play Rough and still live a Sucker Punch afterwards while also being able to threaten it out with Earthquake. Gliscor doesn't provide the insanely wide threat coverage of Chansey or the PP draining power of Zapdos, but its combination of unique traits makes it a fantastic addition to most stall teams.

I'm grouping all three of these mons together because setup sweepers have always been a powerful way of breaking through bulkier teams, dating back to Pokemon such as SD Lucario in DPP. Unaware as well as Ditto both function as a way to beat these powerful setup sweepers that would otherwise run a train on stall teams, with Clefable checking mons like Manaphy (albeit poorly), SD Kartana without Smart Strike (s/o sedertz), and CM Reuniclus. Meanwhile, Quagsire can check mons like SD Mega Scizor, SD Landorus-T (after Z-move is used), and Mega Charizard X. Ditto can obviously check any setup sweeper as long as they don't wall themselves, but it's more niche than Quagsire and Clefable for obvious reasons.

Mega Sableye is probably the best mega on stall teams and while people often ditch it for stuff like Mega Scizor or just regular Pokemon that better fit their stall teams, its fantastic and what it does for stall teams can't be replicated by anything else. Stall teams have traditionally been broken down by Taunt users, entry hazard stacking, and status spreaders in conjunction with Pokemon that force many switches to wear away at the walls until they're in the range of the team's offensive breakers. Mega Sableye is insanely valuable to stall teams because it stop all these methods of stallbreaking dead in their tracks and can give its user a huge advantage in both the hazard game and overall be a nuisance for enemy teams. Aside from jamming up traditional methods of stallbreaking, Mega Sableye also shuts down archetypes that are insane threats to stall teams otherwise like Mega Medicham Spikes stacking offense. Overall, Mega Sableye is incredibly useful for stall teams and can straight up win many games at preview.
Well this concludes my guide to building stall teams! I hope you guys found this informative and got inspired to go out and build a stall team of your own. Thanks for reading and have a nice day n_n
 
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It's sad to see the father of stall being shit this gen. Chansey basically is cheating on skarmory with gliscor, zapdos and scizor. what a hoe
 
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Huge thanks to AnnaKartanna for helping me write this​

Introduction
If you looked at the beautiful image 2 inches above this block of text, you probably already know that this guide is about one of the most hated and dreaded playstyles in the game. You can easily tell when you encounter a team like this, as you will be facing 6 fat mons at team preview. The principal of this archetype is to outlast your opponent’s team until they eventually die from a combination of passive damage and weak hits from your own Pokemon. This is done through consistent and reliable ways of running down opposing HP, usually with entry hazards or status. Stall has usually had a “most effective” team that is standard, but ever since dugtrio’s ban, stall has been a lot less reliable. There has not been a specific team or build that is known to be “most effective”, so people will have to create their own team compositions. This can prove difficult, as being able to wall the entire tierwith only 6 pokemon can be hard. Hopefully, after reading this guide, you will have a better understanding stall as a playstyle overall.

When starting to build, there are a few key things to keep in mind while selecting your pokemon before anything else. First of all, the vast majority of your pokemon have to all have some form of reliable recovery. The only exceptions would be trappers (like Tyranitar, Alolan-Muk, Weavile, etc), and more offensive oriented pokemon (like Heatran, Tapu Bulu, etc). If you look at any stall team, pretty much every member will have wish, recover (or any of its equivalents), and/or Regenerator. The reason for this should be obvious, and that is that you want to be able to last as long as possible, and pokemon without reliable recovery are easily chipped down. By the end of the build, the team should cover as many of the tier's most threatening offensive Pokemon as it can, while ensuring that it isn't weak to certain styles. Some of the Pokemon from the top stall mons section of this guide should provide a solid starting point for your build or support to a central concept of a unique stall Pokemon that you want to use and building off from there can work out. While the stall Pokemon that I included as top stall Pokemon are by no means mandatory apart from Chansey on stall, they're very solid overall and can certainly help you out. After having your central core built out along with some top mons to support it, then it's best to use complimentary stall mons that fit your team in order to ensure that you have the most optimal build possible. I haven't included a section on other complimentary stall mons because there's an insane amount of things that I could include there and it's best to explore and find out what works best on your team in paricular. One thing that I want to place emphasis on more than anything else because it's an incredibly common mistake that people make when teambuilding with stall especially is that you need to ensure that your team isn't stretched too thin, more specifically using one mon to check 10 different things that are commonly paired together just for the sake of role compression generally tends to cause stall teams to become largely ineffective and stall teams that can fall back on multiple pivots to check threatening Pokemon are usually more effective in the long run. Stall is intended to be a matchup pick, so don't try to beat everything when you can't, trying to fit a round peg into a small hole is one of the worst things you can do to yourself as a teambuilder. Lastly, don't be afraid to innovate when using stall teams! Straying from the standards for using techs that people aren't used to seeing on stall teams can catch your opponent off guard and end up winning games for you due to being able to surprisingly beat a threatening opposing Pokemon.

Sample Team
Snatch the team from this game because it's been proven to work in a high level tournament game and I'd rather provide you guys with a proven team rather than something I've made myself.
Stall Team Checklist (Most of these are strong recommendations rather than requirements for all stall teams)
  • At least 2 Pokemon with some form of hazard control
  • Chansey
  • Heal Bell/Aromatherapy user
  • Fallback for setup sweepers (Unaware / Ditto)
  • Lele answer
  • Koko answer
  • Heatran answer
  • Kartana answer
  • Zygarde answer
Top Stall Pokemon

Chansey is the one Pokemon that stall teams cannot function without. Its versatility to function as either a cleric, rocker, wishpasser, or lure for physical attackers, being able to be tailored to whatever the team needs is incredibly useful for stall teams and it generally takes pressure off of teammates to check some of the most threatening offensive Pokemon in the tier. Some of the most notable example include: Tapu Koko, Magearna, and Ash Greninja. There's not much else to say other than this thing checks a fuckton of different Pokemon and can be incredibly frustrating for opposing teams to deal with.

Zapdos is a fantastic Pokemon on stall teams overall and what I think is the second best mon on stall nowadays due to its ability to remove entry hazards, check top offensive threats that usually tear apart stall teams otherwise, as well as respectable offensive presence to pressure opposing teams. While we're on that point, pressure is a fantastic ability for stall teams because it allows Zapdos to rapidly deplete the PP of opposing teams vs mons like Choice Band Tyranitar and Heatran in particular because they rely on low PP moves to function. This thing is also very unique in that it can check mons that would otherwise be very threatening to stall teams like SD Kartana (needs to be physdef and requires that rocks be off), Life Orb Tornadus-T, and SD Scizor (non quag teams).


With its newfound access to Defog in USUM, Gliscor quickly became a fantastic member of stall teams, being able to check the previously annoying Heatran while simultaneously keeping hazards off the field for its teammates. Gliscor's access to Poison Heal allows it to be a lot less pressured by passive damage, even functioning as a status absorber, and opposing Pokemon in general compared to most other stall mons, making it a very effective Defogger. Additionally, Gliscor can soft check the widely feared Mega Mawile due to its ability to switch into Play Rough and still live a Sucker Punch afterwards while also being able to threaten it out with Earthquake. Gliscor doesn't provide the insanely wide threat coverage of Chansey or the PP draining power of Zapdos, but its combination of unique traits makes it a fantastic addition to most stall teams.

I'm grouping all three of these mons together because setup sweepers have always been a powerful way of breaking through bulkier teams, dating back to Pokemon such as SD Lucario in DPP. Unaware as well as Ditto both function as a way to beat these powerful setup sweepers that would otherwise run a train on stall teams, with Clefable checking mons like Manaphy (albeit poorly), SD Kartana without Smart Strike (s/o sedertz), and CM Reuniclus. Meanwhile, Quagsire can check mons like SD Mega Scizor, SD Landorus-T (after Z-move is used), and Mega Charizard X. Ditto can obviously check any setup sweeper as long as they don't wall themselves, but it's more niche than Quagsire and Clefable for obvious reasons.

Mega Sableye is probably the best mega on stall teams and while people often ditch it for stuff like Mega Scizor or just regular Pokemon that better fit their stall teams, its fantastic and what it does for stall teams can't be replicated by anything else. Stall teams have traditionally been broken down by Taunt users, entry hazard stacking, and status spreaders in conjunction with Pokemon that force many switches to wear away at the walls until they're in the range of the team's offensive breakers. Mega Sableye is insanely valuable to stall teams because it stop all these methods of stallbreaking dead in their tracks and can give its user a huge advantage in both the hazard game and overall be a nuisance for enemy teams. Aside from jamming up traditional methods of stallbreaking, Mega Sableye also shuts down archetypes that are insane threats to stall teams otherwise like Mega Medicham Spikes stacking offense. Overall, Mega Sableye is incredibly useful for stall teams and can straight up win many games at team preview.
Well this concludes my guide to building stall teams! I hope you guys found this informative and got inspired to go out and build a stall team of your own. Thanks for reading and have a nice day n_n
Minor nitpick, Hazard setter should be added to the checklist. Possibly trappers as well but thats a bit on and off. Also an importable of the sample team or at least A sample team would be nice.
 

Zokuru

The Stall Lord
is a Tiering Contributor
Minor nitpick, Hazard setter should be added to the checklist. Possibly trappers as well but thats a bit on and off. Also an importable of the sample team or at least A sample team would be nice.
There's no hasards mendatory in stall, you will really often prefer to play without them on both field rather than with them on both, and when your opponent can't setup hasards anymore you won anyway.
 

Mannat

is a Tutoris a Community Contributor
Won SPL Predictions
Minor nitpick, Hazard setter should be added to the checklist. Possibly trappers as well but thats a bit on and off. Also an importable of the sample team or at least A sample team would be nice.
Zokuru covered the hazards point pretty well, but trappers are far from required or even commonly used on stall, seeing as neither of the stall teams used so far in SPL have had one. I'm afraid that my response to this request is gonna have to be a no.

LL put heatran answer on the checklist right now wtf is this?

also someone needs to remake the 10 more minutes mom image with like pex and tangrotwth and other wack stall mons like bulu, magearna, buzzwole, avalugg, celesteela n trappers (which is only ttar and weavile.)

I still hold my case that you should provide multiple sample teams

On the subject of trappers there's like 1 good 1 (weav) and 1 bad 1 (tar) and 2 banned ones. (duggy and goth) Weavile is great imo since it traps a ton of threats like subCM blace, cm latias, cm reuni, lele and hoopa.
  • Heatran has been added seeing as its one of the biggest threats to stall and slipped my mind when typing up the threatlist.
  • If some clown wants to hit me up with a new cover image for the stall guide I’d be more than happy to include it.
  • The sample team section is mainly just intended to provide a sample to people what the playstyle looks like moreso than give a basis to build off of. Additionally, there's a second rain team in the sample teams atm and several bulky offense teams, and there's also going to be an updated stall team added soon. 2 sample teams isn't really needed because between the sample teams thread and team showcase section of the forums, there's more than enough places to find solid, reliable teams.
  • See my above point for trappers.
 
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Shoutouts to The Hunters Prowl for the epic banner

Sorry this took so long guys, but I've finally gotten to writing this after Vertex bailed on me to pursue his rap career. Rain is a playstyle that everyone in the competitive community is familiar with and one that's pretty polarizing. Some people believe that rain is a fantastic playstyle and one that can bust through the vast majority of teams while others believe that it's inconsistent and a matchup pick at best. Regardless of which end of the spectrum you fall under, I believe that you might be able to pick up a thing or two from this guide for rain teams overall. Without further delay, here's my rain guide!

Sample Team
Pelipper @ Damp Rock
Ability: Drizzle
EVs: 248 HP / 32 Def / 228 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 6 Spe
- Defog
- Roost
- Scald
- U-turn

Tapu Koko @ Tapunium Z
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Thunder
- Nature's Madness
- Taunt
- U-turn

Hawlucha @ Electric Seed
Ability: Unburden
EVs: 156 HP / 224 Atk / 4 Def / 124 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Drain Punch
- Swords Dance
- High Jump Kick
- Acrobatics

Swampert-Mega @ Swampertite
Ability: Damp
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Waterfall
- Earthquake
- Ice Punch
- Stealth Rock

Kingdra @ Choice Specs
Ability: Swift Swim
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Surf
- Draco Meteor
- Ice Beam
- Hidden Power [Electric]

Ferrothorn @ Chople Berry
Ability: Iron Barbs
EVs: 252 HP / 120 Def / 136 SpD
Relaxed Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Gyro Ball
- Power Whip
- Knock Off
- Spikes
The Setter:

Pelipper is the only automatic rain setter that rain teams tend to run in the tier, with some occasional rain sweepers like Swampert running Rain Dance for late game situations, but I'm going to be focusing on Pelipper here since it's the main setter. Pelipper makes a fantastic setter for rain teams because it's an effective defensive pivot, with a slow U-turn that allows you to pivot into your rain sweepers without them having to take damage first, Roost to stay healthy throughout the match, and Defog to deal with entry hazard control for teams.
Miscellaneous Defensive Pivots

Ferrothorn is the most standard pivot on rain teams besides Pelipper due to it being able to successfully stack up entry hazards against opposing teams and pivoting into Electric-types and Grass-types that threaten the main components of rain teams. Additionally, Ferrothorn pressures opposing Ferrothorns by spamming Knock Off vs them and wearing them down, which is huge for many of the main rain abusers. Overall, Ferrothorn is probably the best pivot outside of Pelipper on rain teams and provides a ton of utility overall.


While Ferrothorn is the main defensive pivot that most rain teams use, Assault Vest Magearna can also be used to great effect on rain teams due to its incredibly high specially defensive bulk coupled with its fantastic typing allowing it to switch into basically every special attacking threat that annoys rain teams while doing a much better job than Ferrhothorn at maintaining offensive momentum. However, Magearna brings much less overall utility to the table and can't switch into Tapu Koko as well, so it's usually a worse option on rain teams than Ferrothorn.
Water-type Abusers

Mega Swampert is a borderline mandatory rain abuser simply because of the perfect combination of defensive and offensive utility that it provides rain teams. Foremost, it provides an electric immunity for rain teams, stopping Choice Specs Tapu Koko from spamming Volt Switch and threatening to completely bust through rain teams. Additionally, Mega Swampert pressures and dispatches Toxapex with STAB Earthquake and is an excellent choice vs bulkier team in general due to its unique combination of bulk and power that's unmatched on rain teams. Obviously, there are a couple other mons that can take up the mega slot like SD U-turn Mega Scizor that can make good additions to rain teams, but Mega Swampert's potential contributions to rain teams are almost always too good to ignore.

Ash Greninja is another excellent edition to rain teams due to its insane power from the special attacking end in conjunction with its ability to free up a moveslot on Ferrothorn with Spikes. Additionally, Water Shuriken can be extremely useful in matchup vs problematic anti-rain Pokemon such as Choice Scarf Kartana and Mega Alakazam and is a great move for cleaning up weakened teams late game. Aside from setting up hazards and being able to nuke teams with its useful Water-type moves, Ash Greninja can also break through defensive teams due to Dark Pulse pretty much being unresisted by Water-type resists on defensive teams bar Tapu Bulu in conjunction with the hazard pressure it can provide. Ash Greninja obviously can't outspeed basically the entire unboosted metagame with Swift Swim, but its unique features and abilities as a breaker more than justifies its placement on rain teams.

Kingdra is another Swift Swim user that can both compliment Mega Swampert offensively and threaten offensive teams insanely. Kingdra's main merits over Ash Greninja is its significantly higher speed tier under rain, which allows it to pose much more of a threat vs offensive teams as well as its fantastic secondary STAB in Draco Meteor that allows it to completely nuke a lot of common threats to rain teams. Finally, Kingdra can run some more niche options such as HP Electric and Toxic to lure threats to rain teams, but it still usually ends up being less effective than Ash Greninja in the long run due to being significantly less powerful and not providing hazard support to rain teams.

Finally, on the more niche end of things, we have Qwilfish, who is actually a very underrated pick for rain teams. Qwilfish has a myriad of unique features that allow it to be an effective member of rain teams such as absorbing Toxic Spikes, being able to dispatch annoying Grass-types, and wallbreaking vs teams that have mons that are normally very hard for rain teams to deal with, and being an insanely threatening late game cleaner with Swords Dance + Life Orb boosted Liquidation in rain. However, Qwilfish is still reasonably niche and won't be used on the majority of rain teams.
Complimentary Offensive Threats

Tapu Koko is an excellent edition to rain teams due to its ability to pressure bulky Water-types like Toxapex and Mantine that normally put a stop to opposing rain abusers like Ash Greninja and Mega Swampert respectively. Additionally, Tapu Koko can use Tapuinium Z in conjunction with Natures Madness to lure in and heavily cripple Ferrothorn in particular so that it can't pivot into Kingdra and Swampert anymore and Tapu Koko also benefits from rain by having a 100% accurate Thunder to abuse vs teams without a solid Electric-type immunity.

Hawlucha is another great anti-offense Pokemon that can be used on rain teams, in conjunction with either Tapu Koko or Tapu Lele due to its ability to sweep through teams with Swords Dance in conjunction with its deadly dual STAB combination. Aside from being able to set up and sweep offensive teams along with some ill prepared defensive teams, Hawlucha can dispatch annoying Grass-types that normally wall the majority of rain teams and provide a key revenge killer for significant threats like Volcarona and Mega Gyarados.

Additionally, Swords Dance Kartana can be used on rain teams in order to provide an offensive breaker that can succeed vs opposing balance teams with its insane attack stat in conjunction with Beast Boost. Obviously Kartana is very frail and thus requires a second Steel-type on the team for pivoting purposes, but it's a very threatening breaker and can successfully take down teams that are oftentimes hellishly difficult matchups for rain teams. Kartana can also run a Choice Scarf set in order to have a better matchup vs the Psychic Spam teams that traditionally trouble rain teams while simultaneously taking pressure off of Pelipper to Defog away hazards.

Tapu Lele is another offensive threat that can be used on rain teams for wallbreaking purposes, as it has a myriad of potential offensive threats that can be difficult to discern from team preview. Similarly to Tapu Koko, Tapu Lele can use a Fightinium Z offensive set to lure in Ferrothorn for rain teams while still maintaining its threatening offensive presence and can potentially run a Choice Scarf set for checking key offensive threats when the rain isn't up, but Tapu Lele's lackluster speed tier and relative frailty makes it a less common option for rain teams.

Finally, Landorus-T is the final offensive breaker that is oftentimes used to compliment the sweepers that rain teams are based around. Landorus-T is mandatory on rain teams that elect to use a different mega than Mega Swampert like Mega Scizor, but these teams are few and far between. However, Landorus-T can still function as an effective member of rain teams by providing Stealth Rock support so that Ferrothorn and Swampert don't have to run it. Additionally, Landorus-T can use Swords Dance in conjunction with Z Fly to lure in Grass-types that normally annoy Mega Swampert and other rain sweepers like Tangrowth and AV Tapu Bulu especially while providing a threatening breaker to dismantle defensive teams.
Threats to Rain

Bulky Grass-types like Ferrothorn and Tapu Bulu are notable nuisances towards rain, as they resist their Water-type STAB moves and can threaten them out by either removing their item, stacking up entry hazards, or just being able to KO them.

Pokemon that have access to weather somewhat invalidates rain as a whole. Mega Charizard-Y in particular can weaken Water-type attacks and KO the offensive Water-types that abuse the rain that Pelipper sets up. However, Mega Charizard Y has to be wary of using Solar Beam as Pelipper switches in because of Pelipper resetting rain and stopping Solar Beam. On the other hand, Tyranitar can offset rain and make offensive threats that its traditionally paired with, such as Swords Dance Kartana run through rain teams, especially if it's able to Pursuit Trap Pelipper.

Bulky Water-types can tank eat up Water-type attacks and outright wall some members of rain teams. Mantine in particular is immune to Water-type attacks, while hard walling Swampert. Toxapex is also very annoying for rain teams to deal with because it's able to pivot in and out vs a myriad of the Pokemon on rain teams with Regenerator in conjunction with its insane bulk, stalling out precious rain turns while also setting up Toxic Spikes to cripple Mega Swampert and other rain sweepers. Gastrodon deserves a mention here because it also has an immunity to Water-type attacks and unlike the two previous threats, stops Tapu Koko cold because of its Ground-typing.
Well that concludes my guide on rain as a playstyle. I hope that you guys enjoyed the guide and found it very informative. I'll try to either have someone else type up a guide on bulky offense by next Sunday or type it up myself. There may be a delay because of the holiday season, but it'll be up at some point. Also, please respond to the thread with any additional comments or concern you have with my guide. I'll be happy to respond to them either in the thread or in discord dms n_n​
Why is there a qwilfish and not omastar, seismitoad, or even kabutops? Qwilfish is a meme and its kind of getting a bit annoying how obsessed you are with it. I suggest that you replace this with a more commonly used rain abuser instead of trying to promote your "movement" as you call it. Also nowhere in the threat list do you mention mega Alakazam, Rotom-W, Tapu Fini, or Mega Venusaur. Also I would add Kyurem-Black and TORNADUS THERIAN FORME (why is that not there smh) to the misc sweepers part and Mega-Gyarados to the water abusers part.
 

Mannat

is a Tutoris a Community Contributor
Won SPL Predictions
Why is there a qwilfish and not omastar, seismitoad, or even kabutops? Qwilfish is a meme and its kind of getting a bit annoying how obsessed you are with it. I suggest that you replace this with a more commonly used rain abuser instead of trying to promote your "movement" as you call it. Also nowhere in the threat list do you mention mega Alakazam, Rotom-W, Tapu Fini, or Mega Venusaur. Also I would add Kyurem-Black and TORNADUS THERIAN FORME (why is that not there smh) to the misc sweepers part and Mega-Gyarados to the water abusers part.
  • Omastar, Seismitoad, and Kabutops are all unranked on the OU Viability rankings and have lower usage than Qwilfish. It's more than just a meme and has legitimate use on rain teams that no other rain team can really replace. Sure Kabutops can spin away Toxic Spikes, but it hataes switching into scald and hates getting burnt. The improved matchup that Qwilfish gives versus Toxapex teams along with its ability to bust through bulky grasses also makes it a good deal better than the other two.
  • Mega Venusaur falls under fat grass types
  • Rotom-Wash and Tapu Fini fall under bulky water types
  • I do admit that missing out on Alakazam-Mega under threats was an oversight and I'll edit that in.
  • I've literally never seen a rain team with Kyu-B, so I'm not putting that under misc abusers, but I'll edit in Torn-T right now.
 
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