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Quality Control Zapdos (revamp) [QC 2/3]

Egor

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[OVERVIEW]

Good base stats and nice defensive typing let Zapdos check many prominent threats like Kartana, Tornadus-T, and Sand Rush Excadrill. Two useful abilities in Static and Pressure further increase Zapdos's utility by either paralyzing contact attackers like Mega Medicham, Kartana, and Mega Lopunny or stalling out hazard setters like Ferrothorn. In addition, great coverage options in Hidden Power Ice and Heat Wave prevent Zapdos from being a fodder for common threats like Landorus-T, Garchomp, and Ferrothorn. Unfortunately, the weakness to Stealth Rock cripples Zapdos's defensive capabilities and forces it to waste a turn on using Roost more often. Also many common Pokémon have their ways to reliably beat Zapdos, like Garchomp's Continental Crush and Kartana's Swords Dance-boosted Breakneck Blitz, and it makes Zapdos's life harder too.

[SET]
name: Defensive
move 1: Discharge
move 2: Heat Wave
move 3: Hidden Power Ice
move 4: Roost
item: Leftovers / Rocky Helmet
ability: Static
nature: Bold
evs: 248 HP / 188 Def / 72 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

Discharge is preferred to Thunderbolt thanks to the former's higher paralysis chance which can potentially cripple Zapdos's common checks like Heatran and Tyranitar. Volt Switch is also a plausible option on this slot because it lets Zapdos pivot out from unfavorable matchups; however, it makes Zapdos unable to consistently beat threats like Hawlucha. Heat Wave hits Grass- and Steel-types like Ferrothorn, Magearna, Kartana, and Mega Scizor that take on Discharge rather comfortably. Defog can be used on over Heat Wave on more defensive teams, when coupled with Pressure, or if you can't fit any other Defog user in the team, but it makes Zapdos a Spikes fodder for Ferrothorn. Hidden Power Ice complements Zapdos's coverage, hitting Garchomp, Landorus-T, and Gliscor, all of which otherwise set up Stealth Rock for free. Roost is mandatory to keep Zapdos healthy throughout the battle so it can checks threats like Tornadus-T and Kartana consistently.

Set Details
========

72 Speed EVs ensure that Zapdos always outpaces Modest Heatran. Timid nature could be used over Bold to outspeed the rare Timid Heatran, though. Leftovers improves Zapdos's survivability by slightly healing all the chip damage Zapdos receives. Rocky Helmet, on the other hand, chips down contact attackers like the aforementioned Kartana and Mega Medicham but makes Zapdos easier to wear down. Static threatens Pokemon that use contact moves, like Tornadus-T, Kartana, and Mega Medicham, with a possible paralyze, making them easier to deal with. Pressure, on the other hand, is used mainly on stall teams and helps stall out the opposing team. Pressure also synergizes well with Defog and lets Zapdos stall out hazards from Ferrothorn and the likes.

Usage Tips
========

Zapdos's main task is to switch in on Pokémon it checks like Tornadus-T, Kartana, and Mega Scizor. Keep Zapdos healthy throughout the game by using Roost frequently to consistently check Pokémon Zapdos is supposed to. This is especially important if you run Rocky Helmet instead of Leftovers. Be wary of possible strong attacks and coverage options like Breakneck Blitz from Kartana that can heavily damage Zapdos. Discharge is usually a go-to move thanks to its chance of causing a paralysis. Don't afraid to predict if you're playing against Pokémon like Garchomp and Landorus-T that dislike taking Zapdos's coverage moves, though.

Team Options
========

Zapdos fits on a lot of archetypes ranging from bulky offense to stall thanks to its ability to check many notable threats as well as being generally not passive. Bulky Water- and Grass-types can form fairly sturdy defensive cores with Zapdos that can cover most of prominent threats: Water-types like Tapu Fini and Gastrodon can deal with Heatran and appreciate Zapdos checking Grass-types like Kartana and Tapu Bulu, while Grass-types such as Tangrowth and Tapu Bulu can act as a secondary checks to Ground-types and enjoy Tornadus-T being checked by Zapdos. Pokémon with somewhat mediocre Speed tier such as Mega Medicham, Mega Mawile, and Tapu Lele appreciate foes being paralyzed by Zapdos. Zapdos also can potentially bring these Pokémon on the field via Volt Switch. Bulky Steel-types like Magearna and Mega Scizor can pivot on the likes of Tyranitar and Kyurem-B which can easily beat Zapdos. Magearna also enjoys Zapdos's immunity to Ground.

[STRATEGY COMMENTS]
Other Options
=============

An Electrium Z set with Thunderbolt, Heat Wave, Hidden Power Ice, and Roost can be used but it loses on the defensive utility of Zapdos. Toxic can be used to cripple defensive Pokémon like Tangrowth, Mega Latias, and Gastrodon. However, Zapdos struggles to fit this move on its set. Chilan Berry enables Zapdos to beat Normalium Z Kartana but is useless outside of this matchup and thus is inferior to Leftovers and Rocky Helmet.

Checks and Counters
===================

**Rock-type Pokémon and Coverage**: The likes of Tyranitar, Mega Diancie, Rockium Z Garchomp, and Rockium Z Landorus-T overwhelm Zapdos quickly with their super effective Rock-type moves. Tyranitar and Mega Diancie dislike paralysis, however, and Zapdos can potentially stall out Tyranitar's Stone Edge with Roost and Pressure, while Garchomp and Landorus-T are very threatened by Hidden Power Ice.

**Iсe-types**: Kyurem-B and Weavile are capable of inflicting much damage on Zapdos with their Ice-type STAB options. However, these Pokemon hate being paralyzed, and the aforementioned Weavile also drops to Heat Wave.

**Dragon-types**: Pokémon like Mega Latias, Mega Latios, Mega Charizard X, and Hydreigon take a little from Zapdos's attacks and threaten it with super effective moves like Ice Beam or just with naturally strong attacks. None of these Pokemon enjoy being paralyzed, however.

**Ground-types**: Ground-types are immune to Zapdos's Electric-type STAB moves and thus can switch on it more freely. Gastrodon and Hippowdon are especially notable counters to Zapdos, since they can ignore any attack Zapdos throws off and cripple it with Toxic.

**Strong Attacks**: Moves like Heatran's Inferno Overdrive and boosted Kartana's Breakneck Blitz put heavy dent or even completely eliminate Zapdos.

**Chansey**: Chansey just walls Zapdos because of its amazing special bulk and easily stalls it out.

[CREDITS]
- Written by: [[Egor, 439341]]
- Quality checked by: [[, ], [, ], [, ]]
- Grammar checked by: [[, ], [, ]]
 
Last edited:
Egor Nice work :) I have a couple of suggestions:
  • I think you need to communicate Zapdos' niche more clearly in the intro; you pretty much listed a couple of threats it walls and explained what its abilities do, which seems a bit lacking. You should make clear that the threats that it walls are typically extremely hard for balance teams to switch into because of their coverage, ie. Mega Pinsir, Fight Z Torn, Kartana, and that Zapdos' ability to check these threats is what makes it so special.
    • You should mention that Zapdos is good against defensive teams too, because it beats a lot of defensive Pokemon including Tox/Ferro/Celes and defensive Lando.
  • IMO we should stick to having 2 sets, one w/ Defog and the other Roost + 3 Attacks. The Defog set should have a Bold nature so it can better handle physical attackers like MLop/Kartana (for example, Bold lets you survive 2 banded Leaf Blades after rocks even w/ Leftovers knocked off, this is not the case for Timid). The Roost + 3 Attacks set can stay Timid.
  • I would put Volt Switch in OO, mention that it fails to OHKO Hawlucha (also they can just Roost as you volt out) or pressure Toxapex.
  • Mega Diancie should be mentioned in Rock-type Pokemon.
  • Dedicate a new section to Ground-types, like Gastro/Quag/Hippo/Gliscor/Garchomp, since they are immune to Discharge, don't care about Heat Wave and can Toxic stall Zapdos.
  • Dedicate a section to Dragon-types + Heatran/Volcarona, which don't really care about Zapdos' attacks unless they get haxed. Mention they can be paired with Tapu Fini and use Zapdos as setup fodder.
Edits below.


[OVERVIEW]

* Zapdos' unique defensive typing, good base stats, and access to reliable recovery let it wall many threats to balanced and defensive teams, including but not limited to Kartana, Tornadus-T, Hawlucha, Supersonic Skystrike Landorus-T, and Sand Rush Excadrill.

* It can also be hard for defensive teams to properly handle, since it beats common hazard setters such as Toxapex, Ferrothorn, and defensive Landorus-T, and completely shuts down Celesteela.


* Two useful abilities in Static and Pressure further increase Zapdos's utility by either paralyzing contact attackers like Mega Medicham and Kartana or leeching PPs from the opposing Pokémon, helping win the PP war. (save this for Set Details)

* Amazing coverage options make Zapdos not passive and more difficult to take advantage of.
* It is very difficult to switch into safely because of its good coverage options and the fact that its moves come with [a hax chance].

* Its crippling weakness to Stealth Rock limits Zapdos's defensive capabilities and forces it to lose momentum by using Roost more often.

* Pokemon such as Landorus-T or Kartana sometimes run coverage moves in order to muscle past Zapdos, such as Stone Edge or Z-Giga Impact. Many common Pokémon have their ways to reliably beat Zapdos, like Garchomp's Continental Crush and Kartana's Swords Dance-boosted Breakneck Blitz, and it makes Zapdos's life harder too.

[SET]
name: Defensive
move 1: Discharge
move 2: Heat Wave
move 3: Defog
move 4: Roost
item: Leftovers / Rocky Helmet
ability: Static
nature: Bold
evs: 248 HP / 188 Def / 72 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

* Discharge is preferred to Thunderbolt thanks to the former's higher paralysis chance. Volt Switch is also a plausible option on this slot because it lets Zapdos pivot out from unfavorable matchups. (move to OO, mention that it fails to OHKO Hawlucha / they can just roost it off, and you lose the ability to pressure pex)

* Heat Wave hits Grass- and Steel-types like Ferrothorn, Magearna, and Mega Scizor that can take Discharge rather comfortably; it lets Zapdos OHKO Kartana from full health. It can also punish Ground-types like Landorus-T and Garchomp with a burn chance.

* Hidden Power Ice complements Zapdos's coverage, hitting Garchomp and Landorus-T which otherwise set up Stealth Rock for free. Defog can be used over Hidden Power Ice if you can't fit any other Defog user in the team, but giving free turns to Landorus-T and Garchomp is undesirable. (Garchomp doesn't even die to HP Ice, and it outspeeds and OHKOs you back w/ Contintental Crush. You wall Landorus anyway if it lacks Stone Edge)

* Roost is mandatory to keep Zapdos healthy throughout the battle so it can continue to check the threats it's supposed to.

Set Details
========

* 72 Speed EVs coupled with a Timid nature ensure that Zapdos always outpaces Timid Heatran.
* 72 Speed EVs coupled ensure that Zapdos outpaces Adamant Tapu Bulu. It also lets Zapdos outspeed Modest Heatran and Timid Magearna.

* The rest are invested into defenses with a Bold nature, letting Zapdos take on physical attackers such as Kartana, Mega Scizor, Mega Lopunny, and Sand Rush Excadrill better. Notably, it avoids the 2HKO from Choice Band Kartana's Leaf Blade after Stealth Rock, and survives +2 Kartana's Knock Off and +2 Excadrill's Corkscrew Crash after Stealth Rock.


* Leftovers is the preferred item, since it makes Zapdos take on attacks better. Rocky Helmet punishes contact moves from the likes of Kartana and Tornadus-T but the added longevity Leftovers provides is more useful in most cases.

* Static threatens contact attackers like Mega Medicham Mega Lopunny (you shouldn't give people the impression this is a good Medicham switchin since it's 2HKO'd by Ice Punch) and Kartana with a possible paralysis, making them easier to deal with. Pressure, on the other hand, is used mainly on stall teams and helps stall out the opposing team.

* Pressure is used mainly on stall teams, and it contributes to Zapdos' effectiveness as a Defogger on such teams because it ensures that the PP of moves like Stealth Rock, Spikes, and Toxic Spikes depletes more quickly than that of Defog. It also helps stall out supereffective moves like Stone Edge more quickly in tandem with Roost.

Usage Tips
========

* Switch Zapdos in on threats that it walls like Tornadus-T, Kartana, and Mega Scizor, as well as on weak contact moves like U-turn and Fake Out in order to fish for a paralysis chance and potentially punish their users.

* Keep Zapdos healthy throughout the game by using Roost so that it can consistently check the Pokemon it is supposed to.

* Be wary of possible coverage options like Continental Crush from Landorus-T and Breakneck Blitz from Kartana.

* Discharge is usually the most spammable move thanks to its high paralysis chance. Don't afraid to predict if you're playing against Pokémon like Ferrothorn and Landorus-T that dislike taking Zapdos's coverage moves, though.

* (tbh I would just keep the Usage Tips from the old analysis besides the Pressure part at the end, it doesn't seem like it needs changing)

Team Options
========

* Zapdos fits on a lot of archetypes ranging from bulky offense to stall.

* Bulky Water-types like Tapu Fini and Gastrodon appreciate Zapdos' ability to switch into Grass-types like Kartana and non-Choice Band Tapu Bulu. In return, they can take on Fire-types like Heatran and Volcarona.

* Grass-types like Tangrowth and Tapu Bulu enjoy Zapdos taking on Flying-types like Tornadus-T and Mega Pinsir. In return, they can pivot into strong special attackers that overwhelm Zapdos like Ash-Greninja and Tapu Koko, and check Garchomp/Mega Swampert.

* Strong wallbreakers with mediocre Speed tiers such as Mega Medicham, Mega Mawile, and Tapu Lele appreciate Zapdos' ability to spread paralysis and switch into revenge killers like Choice Scarf Landorus-T/Kartana. Zapdos also can potentially bring these Pokémon on the field via Volt Switch.

* (swap this bullet and the previous one) Bulky Steel-types like Ferrothorn, Assault Vest Magearna, and Mega Scizor can pivot into Rock- and Ice-type attacks from the likes of Tyranitar and Kyurem-B, and take on special attackers such as Tapu Lele and opposing Magearna. In return, Zapdos provides them with a pivot into Ground- and Fighting-type attacks.

[insert Roost + 3 Attacks set w/ HP Ice]


[STRATEGY COMMENTS]
Other Options
=============

* An offensive Electrium Z set with Thunderbolt, Heat Wave, Hidden Power Ice, and Agility can be used, but it loses out on all the defensive utility of Zapdos.

* Toxic can be used in place of HP Ice (otherwise Ferrothorn/Scizor wall you) to cripple Pokemon like Mega Swampert, Kyurem-B, and Mega Charizard X which don't mind much from Zapdos' other moves. (Tangrowth isnt the best example since Zapdos 1v1s that anyway)

Checks and Counters
===================

**Rock-type Pokémon**: Tyranitar and Mega Diancie overwhelm Zapdos quickly with their super effective Rock-type moves. Tyranitar also doesn't care about any attack Zapdos throws off outside of being possibly paralyzed by Discharge.

**Iсe-types**: Kyurem-B, Weavile, and Mamoswine are capable of inflicting large damage to Zapdos with their Ice-type STAB moves. However, the former two, especially Weavile, hate being paralyzed, and Weavile also drops to Heat Wave.

**Offensive Ground-types**: Garchomp switches into Zapdos lacking HP Ice with impunity thanks to its immunity to Discharge and resistance to Heat Wave, and can proceed to set Stealth Rock or massively dent it with Continental Crush. Mega Swampert can do the same, but it does not appreciate getting paralyzed by Static. Landorus-T threatens to OHKO Zapdos if it carries Rockium Z, and Choice Scarf variants can 2HKO it with Stone Edge; note that it is completely walled by Zapdos if it lacks a Rock-type move, however.

**Defensive Ground-types**: Gastrodon, Quagsire, and Hippowdon don't mind much from Zapdos and can Toxic stall it. Gliscor gets a special mention, as it cannot be burned by Heat Wave once its Toxic Orb is activated and proceed to Toxic stall Zapdos or setup Swords Dance on it. Roost allows it to stall out HP Ice until Zapdos is forced to switch.

**Dragon-types**: Mega Charizard X, Kommo-o, and the Lati twins fear nothing from Zapdos outside of a Discharge paralysis. If the former two are paired with Tapu Fini, Misty Terrain will prevent them from being statused and they can use Zapdos as setup bait.

**Chansey**: [...]

**Strong Special Attackers**: The likes of Firium Z Heatran, Choice Specs Tapu Lele, and Ash-Greninja can easily overwhelm Zapdos with their powerful special attacks. Heatran in particular doesn't care too much about Zapdos' moves, and can switch in on a predicted Heat Wave to get a Flash Fire boost.


[CREDITS]
- Written by: [[Egor, 439341]]
- Quality checked by: [[, ], [, ], [, ]]
- Grammar checked by: [[, ], [, ]]
 
Last edited:
Not QC but the major reason ice-less Zapdos isn’t the main set is because it invites Garchomp in for free—which means it gets Rocks or a free SD, which is awful. IMO, Bold can be mentioned in Set Details to better check Kart and the likes.

As for the analysis itself, I think you can mention the biggest mon (imo) that Static can cripple, Tornadus-T. That high speed Hurticane is very manageable between its 70% acc move and being shut down for a few turns.

Mention in Set Details that if Zapdos is used on stall teams, it must use Defog and Pressure. You can also mention that the paralysis provided by Static is not ideal for stall teams, because thats a target they cant burn/poison. In addition, mention stall partners in Team Options (Mew, Moltres, Sableye, Chansey, etc.).
 

Jordy

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[OVERVIEW]

* Good base stats and nice defensive typing let Zapdos check many prominent threats like Kartana, Tornadus-T, and Sand Rush Excadrill.

* Two useful abilities in Static and Pressure further increase Zapdos's utility by either paralyzing contact attackers like Mega Medicham and Kartana or leeching PPs from the opposing Pokémon, helping win the PP war. I get no real idea of what "leeching PPs from the opposing Pokemon, helping win the PP war" means, so be more descriptive.

* Amazing coverage options make Zapdos not passive and more difficult to take advantage of. Again, be more descriptive. What amazing coverage options? What does it help Zapdos with?

* The crippling weakness to Stealth Rock cripples Zapdos's defensive capabilities and forces it to waste a turn on using Roost more often.

* Many common Pokémon have their ways to reliably beat Zapdos, like Garchomp's Continental Crush and Kartana's Swords Dance-boosted Breakneck Blitz, and it makes Zapdos's life harder too. Saying something like "Pokemon that Zapdos is supposed to beat, such as x and y, have their ways..." would paint a more accurate picture. Right now it just seems like Garchomp and Kartana are Pokemon that naturally beat Zapdos by the way you're saying, but this isn't really the case, as Zapdos really wants to check them.

[SET]
name: Defensive
move 1: Discharge
move 2: Heat Wave
move 3: Hidden Power Ice
move 4: Roost
item: Leftovers
ability: Static
nature: Timid
evs: 248 HP / 188 Def / 72 Spe

Because Modest Heatran is usually preferred, I think that Bold should be the primary nature. Also, Rocky Helmet should be slashed.

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

* Discharge is preferred to Thunderbolt thanks to the former's higher paralysis chance. Paralysis is really nice because it cripples some common checks like Heatran and Tyranitar, which is definitely worth pointing out. Volt Switch is also a plausible option on this slot because it lets Zapdos pivot out from unfavorable matchups. What are the drawbacks to Volt Switch?

* Heat Wave hits Grass- and Steel-types like Ferrothorn, Magearna, and Mega Scizor that take on Discharge rather comfortably. Kartana is an important target.

* Hidden Power Ice complements Zapdos's coverage, hitting Garchomp and Landorus-T which otherwise set up Stealth Rock for free. Defog can be used over Hidden Power Ice if you can't fit any other Defog user in the team, but giving free turns to Landorus-T and Garchomp is undesirable. Heat Wave is the move you'd drop for Defog, not Hidden Power Ice, since Zapdos can't really afford to be Garchomp bait.

* Roost is mandatory to keep Zapdos healthy throughout the battle so it can checks threats like Tornadus-T and Kartana more consistently.

Set Details
========

* 72 Speed EVs coupled with a Timid nature ensure that Zapdos always outpaces Timid Heatran. Mention Timid as an alternative option to Bold, since that's the main nature now.

* Leftovers is the preferred item, since it makes Zapdos take on attacks better. Rocky Helmet punishes contact moves from the likes of Kartana and Tornadus-T but the added longevity Leftovers provides is more useful in most cases.

* Static threatens Pokemon that use contact moves, like Tornadus-T, Kartana, and Mega Medicham, with a possible paralyze, making them easier to deal with. Pressure, on the other hand, is used mainly on stall teams and helps stall out the opposing team. It's also nice for Defog variants, so that they can actually outlast Pokemon like Ferrothorn.

Usage Tips
========

* Switch Zapdos on Pokémon it checks like Tornadus-T, Kartana, and Mega Scizor as well as on contact moves like U-turn and Leaf Blade in order to scout for a paralysis and potentially punish their users. Scouting for paralysis with your own Zapdos isn't really a thing.

* Keep Zapdos healthy throughout the game by using Roost frequently to consistently check Pokémon Zapdos is supposed to. This should be stressed a bit more, especially if Zapdos is running Rocky Helmet and not Leftovers.

* Be wary of possible coverage options like Continental Crush from Garchomp and Breakneck Blitz from Kartana. I don't think Garchomp's a very good example, since Rockium Z is pretty much always the assumed set.

* Discharge is usually a go-to move thanks to its chance of causing a paralysis. Don't afraid to predict if you're playing against Pokémon like Ferrothorn and Landorus-T that dislike taking Zapdos's coverage moves, though. There's no need to predict against Ferrothorn, since it's slower anyway. It's really only relevant against Ground-types that are switching in to block a possible Discharge / Volt Switch.

Team Options
========

* Zapdos fits on a lot of archetypes ranging from bulky offense to stall. Why?

* Bulky Water-types like Tapu Fini and Gastrodon appreciate Zapdos's ability to switch into Grass-types like Kartana and Tapu Bulu.

* Grass-types like Tangrowth and Tapu Bulu enjoy Tornadus-T being checked by Zapdos.

* Pokémon with somewhat mediocre Speed tier such as Mega Medicham, Mega Mawile, and Tapu Lele appreciate foes being paralyzed by Zapdos. Zapdos also can potentially bring these Pokémon on the field via Volt Switch.

* Bulky Steel-types like Magearna and Mega Scizor can pivot on the likes of Tyranitar and Kyurem-B which can easily beat Zapdos. Magearna also enjoys Zapdos's immunity to Ground.

This section all-around feels a bit lackluster; you should try and expand on everything.

[STRATEGY COMMENTS]
Other Options
=============

* An offensive Electrium Z set with Thunderbolt, Heat Wave, Hidden Power Ice, and Roost can be use but it loses on all the defensive utility of Zapdos. I don't think there's any need to specify that the set is offensive, since Electrium Z fits well on bulkier sets too.

* Toxic can be used to cripple defensive Pokémon like Tangrowth and Mega Latias. Gastrodon is an important target. You could also mention Seismitoad, though it's way more niche. However, Zapdos struggles to fit this move on its set.

Checks and Counters
===================

**Rock-type Pokémon and Coverage**: The likes of Tyranitar, Mega Diancie, Rockium Z Garchomp, and Rockium Z Landorus-T overwhelm Zapdos quickly with their super effective Rock-type moves. Tyranitar also doesn't care about any attack Zapdos throws off outside of being possibly paralyzed by Discharge. Mega Diancie doesn't like being paralyzed either. Garchomp and Landorus-T are also very threatened by Hidden Power Ice.

**Iсe-types**: Kyurem-B and Weavile are capable of inflicting much damage on Zapdos with their Ice-type STAB options. However, these Pokemon, especially Weavile, hate being paralyzed, and the aforementioned Weavile also drops to Heat Wave. Kyurem-B is just as bothered by being paralyzed.

**Dragon-types**: Pokémon like the aforementioned Kyurem-B, Mega Latias, and Mega Latios take a little from Zapdos's attacks and threaten it with super effective moves like Ice Beam or just with naturally strong attacks like Mega Latios's Draco Meteor. Actually, if Zapdos uses Roost on the turn that Mega Latios uses Draco Meteor, Mega Latios will proceed to lose, so this isn't really worth pointing out. Mention Mega Charizard X and Hydreigon.

**Ground-types**: Ground-types are immune to Zapdos's Electric-type STAB moves and thus can switch on it more freely. However, the likes of Landorus-T and Garchomp must be wary of Hidden Power Ice. Again, there is no need to mention Pokemon in different sections in Checks and Counters. Gastrodon and Hippowdon are notable counters to Zapdos, since they can kind of ignore any attack Zapdos throws off and cripple it with Toxic. Kind of? They just can.

**Strong Attacks**: Moves like Heatran's Inferno Overdrive and boosted Kartana's Breakneck Blitz put heavy dent or even completely eliminate Zapdos.

**Chansey**: Chansey just walls Zapdos because of its amazing special bulk and easily stalls out Zapdos.

[CREDITS]
- Written by: [[Egor, 439341]]
- Quality checked by: [[, ], [, ], [, ]]
- Grammar checked by: [[, ], [, ]]
As it stands right now, this analysis is not ready for a QC stamp, it still needs a lot of work.
 

Jordy

is a Tutoris a member of the Site Staffis a Top Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Live Chat Contributoris a CAP Contributoris a Tiering Contributoris a Top Contributoris a Top Smogon Media Contributor
Moderator
comments in purple things to remove in red

[OVERVIEW]

* Good base stats and nice defensive typing let Zapdos check many prominent threats like Kartana, Tornadus-T, and Sand Rush Excadrill.

* Two useful abilities in Static and Pressure further increase Zapdos's utility by either paralyzing contact attackers like Mega Medicham, Kartana, and Mega Lopunny or PP stalling the opposition. Mega Lopunny has recently enjoyed a surge in usage, so it's definitely worth adding. Also, Pressure isn't really for PP stalling like SubRoost Kyurem does, which is what you make it sound like, it's mostly to make sure that Zapdos can effectively remove against Ferrothorn without losing in the long run.

* Amazing coverage options in Hidden Power Ice and Heat Wave prevent Zapdos from being a fodder for common threats like Landorus-T, Garchomp, and Ferrothorn.

* The crippling weakness to Stealth Rock cripples Zapdos's defensive capabilities and forces it to waste a turn on using Roost more often.

* Many common Pokémon have their ways to reliably beat Zapdos, like Garchomp's Continental Crush and Kartana's Swords Dance-boosted Breakneck Blitz, and it makes Zapdos's life harder too.

[SET]
name: Defensive
move 1: Discharge
move 2: Heat Wave
move 3: Hidden Power Ice
move 4: Roost
item: Leftovers / Rocky Helmet
ability: Static
nature: Bold
evs: 248 HP / 188 Def / 72 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
Moves
========

* Discharge is preferred to Thunderbolt thanks to the former's higher paralysis chance which can potentially cripple Zapdos's common checks like Heatran and Tyranitar. Volt Switch is also a plausible option on this slot because it lets Zapdos pivot out from unfavorable matchups; however, it makes Zapdos unable to consistently beat threats like Hawlucha.

* Heat Wave hits Grass- and Steel-types like Ferrothorn, Magearna, Kartana, and Mega Scizor that take on Discharge rather comfortably. Defog can be used over Heat Wave if you can't fit any other Defog user in the team, but it makes Zapdos a Spikes fodder for Ferrothorn.

* Hidden Power Ice complements Zapdos's coverage, hitting Garchomp and Landorus-T which otherwise set up Stealth Rock for free. Gliscor's a very important target now too.

* Roost is mandatory to keep Zapdos healthy throughout the battle so it can checks threats like Tornadus-T and Kartana consistently.

Set Details
========

* 72 Speed EVs coupled with a Bold nature ensure that Zapdos always outpaces Modest Heatran. Timid nature could be used to outspeed the rare Timid Heatran, though.

* Leftovers improves Zapdos's ability to take hits from the likes of Tornadus-T and Kartana. Leftovers is especially nice because it slightly counteracts chip damage from sand and Zapdos's Stealth Rock weakness. It's most likely going to be removed by Tornadus-T and Kartana anyway, since they run Knock Off very commonly, so it doesn't really affect that matchup much. Rocky Helmet, on the other hand, chips down contact attackers like the aforementioned Kartana and Mega Medicham, but makes it easier to wear down.

* Static threatens Pokemon that use contact moves, like Tornadus-T, Kartana, and Mega Medicham, with a possible paralyze, making them easier to deal with. Pressure, on the other hand, is used mainly on stall teams and helps stall out the opposing team. Pressure also synergizes well with Defog and lets Zapdos stall out hazards from Ferrothorn and the likes.

Usage Tips
========

* Zapdos's main task is to switch in on Pokémon it checks like Tornadus-T, Kartana, and Mega Scizor.

* Keep Zapdos healthy throughout the game by using Roost frequently to consistently check Pokémon Zapdos is supposed to. This is especially important if you run Rocky Helmet instead of Leftovers.

* Be wary of possible strong attacks and coverage options like Inferno Overdrive from Heatran and Breakneck Blitz from Kartana that can heavily damage Zapdos. I don't think Heatran is a good example, since it isn't exactly a great idea to stay in with Zapdos against Heatran.

* Discharge is usually a go-to move thanks to its chance of causing a paralysis. Don't afraid to predict if you're playing against Pokémon like Garchomp and Landorus-T that dislike taking Zapdos's coverage moves, though.

Team Options
========

* Zapdos fits on a lot of archetypes ranging from bulky offense to stall thanks to its ability to check many notable threats as well as being generally not passive.

* Bulky Water- and Grass-types can form fairly sturdy defensive cores with Zapdos that can cover most of prominent threats: Water-types like Tapu Fini and Gastrodon can deal with Heatran and appreciate Zapdos checking Grass-types like Kartana and Tapu Bulu, while Grass-types such as Tangrowth and Tapu Bulu can act as a secondary checks to Ground-types and enjoy Tornadus-T being checked by Zapdos.

* Pokémon with somewhat mediocre Speed tier such as Mega Medicham, Mega Mawile, and Tapu Lele appreciate foes being paralyzed by Zapdos. Zapdos also can potentially bring these Pokémon on the field via Volt Switch.

* Bulky Steel-types like Magearna and Mega Scizor can pivot on the likes of Tyranitar and Kyurem-B which can easily beat Zapdos. Magearna also enjoys Zapdos's immunity to Ground.

[STRATEGY COMMENTS]
Other Options
=============

* An Electrium Z set with Thunderbolt, Heat Wave, Hidden Power Ice, and Roost can be use but it loses on the defensive utility of Zapdos.

* Toxic can be used to cripple defensive Pokémon like Tangrowth, Mega Latias, and Gastrodon. However, Zapdos struggles to fit this move on its set.

Add Chilan Berry. It's been seeing some usage recently for Breakneck Blitz Kartana.

Checks and Counters
===================

**Rock-type Pokémon and Coverage**: The likes of Tyranitar, Mega Diancie, Rockium Z Garchomp, and Rockium Z Landorus-T overwhelm Zapdos quickly with their super effective Rock-type moves. Tyranitar and Mega Diancie dislike paralysis, however, Garchomp and Landorus-T are very threatened by Hidden Power Ice.

**Iсe-types**: Kyurem-B and Weavile are capable of inflicting much damage on Zapdos with their Ice-type STAB options. However, these Pokemon hate being paralyzed, and the aforementioned Weavile also drops to Heat Wave.

**Dragon-types**: Pokémon like Mega Latias, Mega Latios, Mega Charizard X, and Hydreigon take a little from Zapdos's attacks and threaten it with super effective moves like Ice Beam or just with naturally strong attacks. None of them enjoy being paralyzed, though.

**Ground-types**: Ground-types are immune to Zapdos's Electric-type STAB moves and thus can switch on it more freely. Gastrodon and Hippowdon are especially notable counters to Zapdos, since they can ignore any attack Zapdos throws off and cripple it with Toxic.

**Strong Attacks**: Moves like Heatran's Inferno Overdrive and boosted Kartana's Breakneck Blitz put heavy dent or even completely eliminate Zapdos.

**Chansey**: Chansey just walls Zapdos because of its amazing special bulk and easily stalls it out.

[CREDITS]
- Written by: [[Egor, 439341]]
- Quality checked by: [[, ], [, ], [, ]]
- Grammar checked by: [[, ], [, ]]
1/3
 
“72 Speed EVs coupled with a Bold nature ensure that Zapdos always outpaces Modest Heatran.”

Not sure if this is a GP thing but this makes it sound like the Bold nature is necessary to outspeed Modest Tran, which is isn’t. I would just say 72 Spe outspeeds Modest Heatran. I’d also add a bullet afterwards saying “the remaining EVs are dumped into Defense with a Bold nature to let Zap comfortably take on mons such as x and x.”
 

Jordy

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Not QC. bigtalk said everything that needs to be said here. Offensive Electrium Z should be a set rather than a mention in OO thanks to Zapdos's typing, high special attack, and the ability to pressure defensive cores.

Zapdos @ Electrium Z
Ability: Static
Nature: Timid
EVs: 4 / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
~Thunderbolt
~Heat Wave
~Hidden Power (Ice)
~Roost

:]

252 SpA Zapdos Gigavolt Havoc (175 BP) vs. 248 HP / 40+ SpD Tapu Fini: 390-462 (113.7 - 134.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO
252 SpA Zapdos Gigavolt Havoc (175 BP) vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Toxapex: 312-368 (102.6 - 121%) -- guaranteed OHKO
252 SpA Zapdos Gigavolt Havoc (175 BP) vs. 248 HP / 232+ SpD Celesteela: 404-476 (101.7 - 119.8%) -- guaranteed OHKO
252 SpA Zapdos Heat Wave vs. 252 HP / 232+ SpD Ferrothorn: 268-316 (76.1 - 89.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
252 SpA Zapdos Heat Wave vs. 248 HP / 252+ SpD Assault Vest Tangrowth: 146-174 (36.2 - 43.1%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
252 SpA Zapdos Heat Wave vs. 248 HP / 48 SpD Tangrowth: 322-380 (79.9 - 94.2%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock and 1 layer of Spikes
252 SpA Zapdos Heat Wave vs. 248 HP / 252+ SpD Tapu Bulu: 150-178 (43.7 - 51.8%) -- 99.6% chance to 2HKO after Stealth Rock, 1 layer of Spikes, Leftovers recovery, and Grassy Terrain recovery
252 SpA Zapdos Hidden Power Ice vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Landorus-Therian: 308-364 (96.5 - 114.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Zapdos Hidden Power Ice vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Landorus-Therian: 308-364 (80.6 - 95.2%) -- 50% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock and Leftovers recovery
252 SpA Zapdos Hidden Power Ice vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Garchomp: 292-344 (81.7 - 96.3%) -- 18.8% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252 SpA Zapdos Hidden Power Ice vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Garchomp: 292-348 (69.5 - 82.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
This set is genuinely never used on high level play so there's absolutely no reason for it to get a set, despite the fact that it has some appeal on paper.
 

GMars

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Talking about Pressure stalling out hazard setters in overview is a bit weird when Defog is talked about so negatively in Moves. Add in the "Defog can be used over Heat Wave if you can't fit any other Defog user in the team..." line that this is also an option for more defensive/stall teams when paired w/ pressure

**Rock-type Pokémon and Coverage**: The likes of Tyranitar, Mega Diancie, Rockium Z Garchomp, and Rockium Z Landorus-T overwhelm Zapdos quickly with their super effective Rock-type moves. Tyranitar and Mega Diancie dislike paralysis, however, Garchomp and Landorus-T are very threatened by Hidden Power Ice.
Can mention that Pressure + Roost gives Zapdos a chance against Ttar

2/3, ready to write it up
 

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