VGC Where do you think you're going?



Hey guys, new user here and this is my very first RMT post (it's also my very first post in general but whatever), and it's about a possible VGC 18 team.
So, the basic idea of the team is to gain advantage by using Shadow Tag, a powerful ability that forbids the opponent to switch his Pokèmons. This can lead to enormous advantages, such us locking them against Pokèmon that they cannot severly damage, giving me free turns to boost, or allowing me to kill dangerous threats.
Introduction given, here is the team:








Gengar-Mega (M) @ Gengarite
Ability: Shadow Tag
EVs: 244 SpA / 12 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Shadow Ball
- Sludge Bomb
- Taunt / HP Ice
- Protect
This is the Pokèmon that gave me the idea of the team's strategy: he is an extremely powerful sweeper and the fastest Ghost Pokèmon, and is a threat to all the Tapus, even if he has to watch out for Scarf Lele.
The 12 Evs in SpD allow him to survive a Draco Meteor from Timid Naganadel, while still having enough power to sweep the enemies.
Shadow Ball and Sludge Bomb are his primary way of damaging the enemy, being two powerful STAB moves.
Taunt provides a nice support as it shuts down Tailwind and Trick Room setters and possible setup baits, while HP Ice is used to OHKO Landorus-T and Mega Salamence.





Gothitelle (F) @ Mental Herb / Leftovers
Ability: Shadow Tag
EVs: 252 HP / 92 Def / 164 SpD
Bold Nature
- Calm Mind
- Psychic / Psyshock
- Charm / Taunt
- Heal Pulse / Thunder Wave
This girl is my second Shadow Tag user, but she's more support-oriented than her buddy.
The given EVs allow her to survive the OHKO from Modest Mega Gengar's Shadow Ball, Adamant Mega Tyranitar's Crunch, Adamant Pheromosa's Lunge and Modest Volcarona's Bug Buzz.
Leftovers obviously provide a nice recovery, while Mental Herb avoids her from being locked on Psychic / Psyshock, making her impossible to boost and forcing her to switch, which means no more Shadow Tag.
Calm Mind boosts both her SpA and her SpD, making her stronger but at the same time harder to kill.
Psychic is her only way of damaging the enemy, and it can be pretty useful after just one boost from CM, after which she 2HKOs Toxapex. Psyshock can be used too if we want to eliminate annoying enemies like Snorlax or Nihilego, who both have a pretty good SpD but a low Def.
The third and fourth moves are the support ones: Taunt, as said before, shuts down many strategies; Charm gives Gothitelle even more bulk, making her extremely difficult to kill since after one use it allows her to survive even Blackhole Eclipse STAB from Adamant Tyranitar.
Heal Pulse is really useful at is lets our allies stay healthy while boosting themselves, since trapping disadvantaged enemies allows us to take extra turns while receveing little to no damage. Thunder Wave can be preferred over Heal Pulse to kneecap faster enemies.





Tapu Bulu @ Life Orb
Ability: Grassy Surge
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Protect
- Horn Leech / Wood Hammer
- Zen Headbutt
- Swords Dance​

In a world full of dangerous Landorus-T, when our Gengar is weak to STABed Earthquakes, nothing is better than a Terrain that halves those damages. Not only that, but our loved Bulu can also take advantage of Shadow Tag, boosting his Attack to extremely high levels.
Life Orb is necessary to give Bulu as much damage as possible.
Horn Leech gives us a sweet recovery and, after a SD boost, it can seriously damage everything, 2HKOing defensive Lando-T (Intimidate included). Wood Hammer is a really solid alternative, OHKOing everything that Horn Leech doesn't after SD (such as defensive Lando-T, Intimidate included, and Toxapex).
Zen Headbutt hits super effectively every dangerous poison Pokèmon, notably OHKOing Naganadel.





Tyranitar (M) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Stone Edge
- Crunch
- Rock Slide
- Ice Punch / Superpower
Tyranitar is an absolute beast, with access to Stone Edge and Crunch which are extremely powerful STAB moves and check dangerous Psychic, Fire and Flying Pokèmon who threat all the other three guys.
Choice Scarf with maximux investment in Spe allows him to outspeed Charizard, Landorus, Blaziken-Mega, Bulu, Latias and Latios. I've played both Band and Scarf, but I prefer the latter as Tyranitar already has enough power to kill primary targets, he only needs the speed to do so.
Sand Stream gives Tyranitar a nice SpD bonus, while also providing control against weather-based teams.
Rock Slide is useful as a global attack against Pokèmons that are weak to it, nothing more to say.
Ice Punch OHKOs Landorus and Salamence, except when Intimidate comes in. Superpower can be used against other Tyranitars, Snorlax and Steel Types.





Excadrill (M) @ Focus Sash
Ability: Sand Rush
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Iron Head
- Drill Run
- Swords Dance
- Protect​

Excadrill is a great physical sweeper, checks and eliminates Electric, Fairy and poison types and makes an awesome work when paired with Tyranitar's Sandstorm, as it outspeeds every non-boosted Pokèmon in the tier. Not only that, but he possesses a really good Atk stat and two really good STABs in Iron Head and Drill Run (I prefer not to run Earthquake as it is incompatible with Gengar, Tyranitar and Bulu's Terrain).
He gains advantage over Shadow Tag's trapping by boosting even more his Atk with SD, after which only bulky Pokèmons like Fini can resist it.




Thundurus-Therian @ Electrium Z
Ability: Volt Absorb
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Nasty Plot
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Thunderbolt
- Protect​

After all these physical attackers, a nice special one is needed. In particular, Thundurus-T checks Earth, Electric and Flying types, while also eliminating water types.
HP Ice OHKOs Offensive Lando-T and 2HKOs his defensive counterpart. Also, after a Nasty Plot boost, he is able to OHKOs Defensive Zapdos with Thunderbolt Z, while that same damage OHKOs Specially Defensive Celesteela.
There isn't much to say about him.




THREATS



PRANKSTER TAILWIND SETTERS: Taunt is useless against these guys, since they have priority and can just set Tailwind with ease. The team lacks a Fake Out user and, while it has the damage to kill any Tailwind setter, it can't do anything to prevent it.

PHEROMOSA: This UB has a movepool that allows her to OHKO almost everyone in the team. Drill Run against Gengar and Excadrill, Lunge against Gothitelle, Poison Jab against Tapu Bulu, High Jump Kick against Tyranitar and Excadrill and Ice Beam against Thundurus-T. Our saviors here are Excadrill under Sand, as he outspeeds her and can OHKO her with Iron Head, and Gothitelle, since she resists any of the aformentioned moves and can OHKO her with Psychic.

DARK TYPES: even if Bulu has access to Superpower and can resist them, Dark remains a huge threat for the team as it destroys my Shadow Tag users.

MENTAL HERB TRICK ROOM SETTERS: This is almost the same problem as the Prankster setters: they're not fast, but Taunt is useless on them. The only solutions are:
-killing them before they set Trick Room (difficult, as it may be a Mimikyu or its ally may have Follow Me);
-double taunting them (I put Gengar on a really risky situation by doing this);
-giving Gothitelle Trick Room to eliminate it (it's kind of a double-edged sword, because if the enemy predicts that, he can bait a free Trick Room for himself).




So, here it is! What do you think of the team? How can I improve it to at least partially fight the aformentioned threats?
Let me know and thanks for reading :)
 
Last edited:
I really like the idea of a Shadow Tag team without perish song, but there is something you need to be aware of.

Ghost types can easily switch in and out because they are immune to Shadow Tag. This means that fast ghost types, such as scarf Gengar and Aegislash and Mimikyu under Tailwind, are super threatening. Mimikyu is especially problematic because it can take any one hit and either kill one of your pokemon or will-o-wisp one of your pokemon. I don't know what you would replace to resolve this, but a good pokemon to check these threats could be a physically defensive Milotic. It can take hits and slow down the faster pokemon with Icy Wind, allowing Gengar, Thundurus or your sand core to finish them off. Milotic is also slow, meaning it can keep up with trick room setters.

Regarding your actual members, I like what you were thinking, as Bulu with superpower is great against dark types. Try switching Bulu to a scarf set, as it can outspeed most dark types and knock it out. Because of item clause, you would have to switch Ttar's item. I would recommend an AV, which can help it check opposing Mega Gengar and psychic types. It doesn't even need investment to live a Modest Specs Moonblast from Tapu Lele, which is insane!

This is just my opinion, so feel free to disregard this post. Have fun playing with your awesome team bro! :)
 
Really quickly, sorry for the one liner-

On Bulu you have Zen Headbutt, to 2HKO Naga. Naga OHKOs with Sludge Wave. Why would you run it?

Edit- Lol Misread
 
Last edited:
252+ Atk Life Orb Tapu Bulu Zen Headbutt vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Naganadel: 322-382 (112.1 - 133.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Your calcs are wrong, unless you are inferring naga has a sash on it. Scarf Zen Headbutt could also be used to almost KO Mega Gengar. The fact that these moves don't OHKO is fine, as either sand damage or a rock slide from excadrill could easily finish them off.
 
Hey guys, thanks for the tips! I actually made wrong calculations about Bulu's Zen HB (I forgot to add Life Orb in the calcs... shame on me), and I edited it in the post.
I could definitely try Milotic, but I still have to figure out which mon I'm gonna replace (probably Thund since I have Bulu for water-types and Ttar for flying ones, but I'm not sure since I lose a nice Celesteela coverage)
On the other hand, I really like the idea of playing Scarf Bulu to get rid of Dark-types, and I already wanted to try an AV set Ttar so I'm definitely gonna try that :,D
Thanks again!
 

Level 51

Test CT, Please Ignore
is a member of the Site Staffis an official Team Rateris a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Top Smogon Media Contributoris a Battle Simulator Moderatoris a Past Smogon Snake Draft Champion
Moderator
Hey Zhaxean, real quick rate from me since I'm on phone atm. For starters: this team is really cool! I really enjoy playing with Shadow Tag, since it really helps with locking down the opponent throughout the battle. However, I think your approach could do with a little tweaking: to me, the main draw of Shadow Tag is that it lets your team take advantage of its solid defensive synergy, since you'll more often than not have the correct Pokemon to deal with whatever's currently on the field. Furthermore, if you're going super hard into Shadow Tag, it's notable that you do still need to deal with the two Pokemon in the back. Something like Tapu Bulu just isn't optimal here due to its awkward speed tier and plethora of fairly common weaknesses (Poison, Steel, Fire, and Flying, just to name a few), which is exacerbated by its poor offensive coverage. If your opponent has something like Aegislash or Ferrothorn in the back, you'll be hard-pressed to beat it, Shadow Tag or no.

Most notably right off the bat, Gothitelle doesn't really fit with the other 5 Pokemon, which generally play rather offensively. I think Gothitelle is best reserved for teammates like Snorlax, which have the offensive prowess (Belly Drum + TR) to pick up the slack on damage output since Gothitelle is pretty lacking. It's forced out a lot due to its relatively poor bulk and awful offensive coverage by a lot of Pokemon like Tyranitar and Aegislash, so a CM set is also a poor choice on it.

What I do like, however, is the Gengar + Sand core. I think it's worth considering something like Scarf Staraptor or Celesteela to bolster this core - Scarf Staraptor deals with problematic opponents like Tapu Fini, Rotom-W, and Scarf Landorus-T with a quick Final Gambit, made better by the fact that the opponent can't switch out to take the it better due to Shadow Tag. On the other hand, Celesteela can wall a number of offensive threats such as Landorus-T. It also brings Wide Guard, which I feel is highly beneficial to a team, as you can trap e.g. a Landorus-T locked into Earthquake / Rock Slide or a Tapu Fini in, and remove their main source of damage output with Wide Guard spam. I think one of these Pokemon could be a good replacement to Gothitelle, providing valuable offensive/defensive support as well as another solid check to Landorus-T, which threatens the entire Gengar + sand core.

Next, few minor adjustments could be considered to better your matchup against bulky Steel-types, especially Ferrothorn, which can wall your team with a little Intimidate support. One fun tech I've been looking into is Fightinium Z Thundurus-T with Focus Blast, which lets it get a surprise OHKO on Ferrothorn. This synergises well with Gengar, of course, since Ferrothorn can't switch out even if it knows what's coming. I think using this over Nasty Plot makes sense, since Thundurus-T has neither the requisite bulk nor speed to take full advantage of NP. Superpower over Zen Headbutt on Tapu Bulu could also be considerable; with Sand Rush Excadrill and Tyranitar and Mega Gengar, I don't see Naganadel as a huge problem for this team (and you would just get Sludge Bombed anyway).

Finally: perhaps consider Heat Wave Zapdos over Thundurus-T? It provides Tailwind support to help your team not only match opposing Tailwinds but also beat opposing weather more easily, especially Rain. With a bulky Grassy Seed / Wiki Berry spread it's generally far better than Thundurus-T due to the utility and added longevity it brings to the team, or you could even use an Electrium set.

Quick recap:
- Gothitelle -> Staraptor / Celesteela
- Thundurus-T -> Z-Focus Blast or Heat Wave Zapdos
- Zen Headbutt on Bulu -> Superpower

If you'd like EV spreads or movesets or clarifications feel free to tag me and I'll see if I can provide any. Good luck with the team!
 
Last edited:
Hey Zhaxean, real quick rate from me since I'm on phone atm. For starters: this team is really cool! I really enjoy playing with Shadow Tag, since it really helps with locking down the opponent throughout the battle. However, I think your approach could do with a little tweaking: to me, the main draw of Shadow Tag is that it lets your team take advantage of its solid defensive synergy, since you'll more often than not have the correct Pokemon to deal with whatever's currently on the field. Furthermore, if you're going super hard into Shadow Tag, it's notable that you do still need to deal with the two Pokemon in the back. Something like Tapu Bulu just isn't optimal here due to its awkward speed tier and plethora of fairly common weaknesses (Poison, Steel, Fire, and Flying, just to name a few), which is exacerbated by its poor offensive coverage. If your opponent has something like Aegislash or Ferrothorn in the back, you'll be hard-pressed to beat it, Shadow Tag or no.

Most notably right off the bat, Gothitelle doesn't really fit with the other 5 Pokemon, which generally play rather offensively. I think Gothitelle is best reserved for teammates like Snorlax, which have the offensive prowess (Belly Drum + TR) to pick up the slack on damage output since Gothitelle is pretty lacking. It's forced out a lot due to its relatively poor bulk and awful offensive coverage by a lot of Pokemon like Tyranitar and Aegislash, so a CM set is also a poor choice on it.

What I do like, however, is the Gengar + Sand core. I think it's worth considering something like Scarf Staraptor or Celesteela to bolster this core - Scarf Staraptor deals with problematic opponents like Tapu Fini, Rotom-W, and Scarf Landorus-T with a quick Final Gambit, made better by the fact that the opponent can't switch out to take the it better due to Shadow Tag. On the other hand, Celesteela can wall a number of offensive threats such as Landorus-T. It also brings Wide Guard, which I feel is highly beneficial to a team, as you can trap e.g. a Landorus-T locked into Earthquake / Rock Slide or a Tapu Fini in, and remove their main source of damage output with Wide Guard spam. I think one of these Pokemon could be a good replacement to Gothitelle, providing valuable offensive/defensive support as well as another solid check to Landorus-T, which threatens the entire Gengar + sand core.

Next, few minor adjustments could be considered to better your matchup against bulky Steel-types, especially Ferrothorn, which can wall your team with a little Intimidate support. One fun tech I've been looking into is Fightinium Z Thundurus-T with Focus Blast, which lets it get a surprise OHKO on Ferrothorn. This synergises well with Gengar, of course, since Ferrothorn can't switch out even if it knows what's coming. I think using this over Nasty Plot makes sense, since Thundurus-T has neither the requisite bulk nor speed to take full advantage of NP. Superpower over Zen Headbutt on Tapu Bulu could also be considerable; with Sand Rush Excadrill and Tyranitar and Mega Gengar, I don't see Naganadel as a huge problem for this team (and you would just get Sludge Bombed anyway).

Finally: perhaps consider Heat Wave Zapdos over Thundurus-T? It provides Tailwind support to help your team not only match opposing Tailwinds but also beat opposing weather more easily, especially Rain. With a bulky Grassy Seed / Wiki Berry spread it's generally far better than Thundurus-T due to the utility and added longevity it brings to the team, or you could even use an Electrium set.

Quick recap:
- Gothitelle -> Staraptor / Celesteela
- Thundurus-T -> Z-Focus Blast or Heat Wave Zapdos
- Zen Headbutt on Bulu -> Superpower

If you'd like EV spreads or movesets or clarifications feel free to tag me and I'll see if I can provide any. Good luck with the team!
Hey, thanks for the tips! Sorry to answer so lately but I've been busy with exams :,D I really like your advices, even if I have to ask you a couple questions
First, I agree that Goth is too passive, but her main role is as a disruptor/support who still has Shadow Tag, so I don't know if I should give up on her so easily
Bulu is there to put Grassy Terrain since my main core (ex + geng + ttar) is highly weak to earthquake, and that move is spammed a lot in this meta. Also, I can remove other's terrains
However I do like the idea of putting a WG Celesteela and Zapdos, they actually put a lot of support that can help me a lot, I'm definitely gonna try that one!
I'm a bit doubtful about Final Gambit Staraptor, but I guess I could try that one out if I won't be needing Bulu anymore
Also, playing sand means that opposite Ferrothorns and Celesteelas gain a +1 SpD, so I have to play around some SpA Evs to assure as much damage as possible. Pheraps you have some advices about this?
Let me know and thanks again for the tips! :D
 

Level 51

Test CT, Please Ignore
is a member of the Site Staffis an official Team Rateris a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Top Smogon Media Contributoris a Battle Simulator Moderatoris a Past Smogon Snake Draft Champion
Moderator
Hi there
First, I agree that Goth is too passive, but her main role is as a disruptor/support who still has Shadow Tag, so I don't know if I should give up on her so easily
I think the team benefits a lot more from an offensive trapper than it would from a disruptor. Thunder Wave is a much, much weaker move than before since it only drops speed to 50% instead of 25%, and the rest of the team wants to output damage at a much faster rate than Gothitelle is capable of handling, so I'd definitely drop it haha
Bulu is there to put Grassy Terrain since my main core (ex + geng + ttar) is highly weak to earthquake, and that move is spammed a lot in this meta. Also, I can remove other's terrains
I recently gave Bulu a spin on a Gengar team and I gotta say, I'm a fan. It has good neutral coverage on a lot of important threats, but just make sure the team has a way to hit Ferrothorn (Heat Wave Zapdos would be good lol). For the record, I'm using Choice Band Tapu Bulu with Wood Hammer / Horn Leech / Superpower / Rock Tomb. But I've never clicked anything besides the first two moves LOL
Also, playing sand means that opposite Ferrothorns and Celesteelas gain a +1 SpD, so I have to play around some SpA Evs to assure as much damage as possible. Pheraps you have some advices about this?
Sand doesn't boost Steel-types, only Rock-types. Zapdos or Thundurus-T would still be able to check these perfectly well, provided they have the appropriate coverage moves for Ferrothorn (Focus Blast or Heat Wave). Zapdos beats both of them one-on-one if it has Roost, too.
 
Hi there

I think the team benefits a lot more from an offensive trapper than it would from a disruptor. Thunder Wave is a much, much weaker move than before since it only drops speed to 50% instead of 25%, and the rest of the team wants to output damage at a much faster rate than Gothitelle is capable of handling, so I'd definitely drop it haha

I recently gave Bulu a spin on a Gengar team and I gotta say, I'm a fan. It has good neutral coverage on a lot of important threats, but just make sure the team has a way to hit Ferrothorn (Heat Wave Zapdos would be good lol). For the record, I'm using Choice Band Tapu Bulu with Wood Hammer / Horn Leech / Superpower / Rock Tomb. But I've never clicked anything besides the first two moves LOL

Sand doesn't boost Steel-types, only Rock-types. Zapdos or Thundurus-T would still be able to check these perfectly well, provided they have the appropriate coverage moves for Ferrothorn (Focus Blast or Heat Wave). Zapdos beats both of them one-on-one if it has Roost, too.
So, I dropped Gothitelle and I've been using this:

Gengar (M) @ Gengarite
Ability: Cursed Body
EVs: 244 SpA / 12 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Shadow Ball
- Sludge Bomb
- Taunt
- Protect

Tyranitar (M) @ Assault Vest
Ability: Sand Stream
EVs: 252 HP / 164 Atk / 20 Def / 4 SpD / 68 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Rock Slide
- Crunch
- Low Kick
- Stone Edge

Excadrill (M) @ Life Orb
Ability: Sand Rush
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Drill Run
- Iron Head
- Rock Slide
- Protect

Tapu Bulu @ Fightinium Z
Ability: Grassy Surge
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Adamant Nature
- Wood Hammer
- Superpower
- Substitute
- Swords Dance

Zapdos @ Grassy Seed
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 236 HP / 116 Def / 76 SpA / 4 SpD / 76 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Heat Wave
- Thunderbolt
- Tailwind
- Roost

Staraptor (M) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 HP / 72 Atk / 184 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Final Gambit
- Brave Bird
- Close Combat
- U-turn

I must say- it's really fun! Zapdos covers much weaknesses I couldn't deal with before and the Gengar Shadow Tag + Staraptor Final Gambit is crazy, it assures me a kill 90% of the time
I didn't know Sandstorm boosted only rock-types, you shocked me :,D but now I can play better against some mons knowing that
I've been using Orb Excadrill and Fightium Bulu, it has worked for now but I was thinking about trying Groundium Excadrill and Band Bulu (just like you do)
Likely I don't feel much the absence of Goth, you were right :,D
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 1, Guests: 0)

Top