ZU ZeroUsed

I'm going to advocate for a new pokemon to move up a tier. This time it's Armaldo

View attachment 136716 This little guy is normally off meta, but lately I've found a new use for this guy. Armaldo can almost always kill Stoutland in a 1v1 situation.
Usually, a banded Stoutland uses superpower, which does 54.2 - 63.8% to an Armaldo with no defense investment. After a knock-off, the Stoutland will be unable to kill Armaldo, who can retaliate with a stone edge to pick up the KO.

Armaldo is also tied with Sandshrew as one of the best rapid spinners in the tier. However, statwise, Armaldo is superior in every single area except for special defense. Armaldo can also carry stealth rocks for even more hazard control.

The last thing I'm going to point out is the versatility of the Plate Pokemon. It gets Aqua Jet for priority, Swords Dance to boost, Knock Off for, well, knocking off, as well as a lot of coverage moves. Yes, Armaldo can suffer from 4 move slot syndrome, but that's because it has so many options and can fill so many roles.
Issue is you're looking at the Stoutland match up in a vacuum, and this scenario is actually not very realistic in an actual match. Sure 1v1 it can win but when are both going to be facing off at full health? Realize Armaldo can't switch in, especially with rocks up, aka the very rocks you are trying to spin, which ties into the next point. It may have comparable/better stats than Sandslash but being weak to rocks and being resistant to them is honestly a big difference. Sandslash also threatens Mareanie more immediately to keep T-spikes off the field and fares far better against Golem, which is everywhere. You also list all these roles Armaldo can potentially do, but frankly it's underwhelming in most of them and really needs to stick to Rapid Spinning, as Rapid Spin is quite unique and rare in ZU. I wouldn't say it even ties with Sandslash as a spinner, even if it does have some redeeming qualities.
 
Got my reqs.
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Here are the teams I used.

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https://pokepast.es/4d4ef777b92ded30

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https://pokepast.es/aba47a638a49bee4

I used the hyper offense team for the first 20 games or so and then switched to the second build once I got higher on the ladder and needed something more reliable. Both teams are relatively easy to use but the second team is definitely much easier.

I didn't face a ton of Stoutlands and when I did they were easy to handle with Golem or just by keeping momentum with pivots (2nd team). I would definitely say that Rotom-F is still the best Mon in the tier with Stoutland coming up second.

I do agree that it's somewhat difficult to reliably check every threat in the tier but that's how every tier is. No team can handle every threat or always have a perfect matchup.

No ban for me
 

"You can't teach an old dog new tricks." -Proverbial saying
Stoutland is an old dog, and doesn't have any new tricks to show us. Can't teach an old dog new tricks, I guess. That being said, Stoutland doesn't need new tricks, what it has is enough. Stoutland can warp the entire metagame, both offensive and defensive, around dealing with itself and there is not a surplus of ways to do this that are successful. This is the most important thing to recognize about Stoutland, there is defensive answers to it but very few of them are actually successful because of the way the metagame is shaped, even fewer of them can actually switch into Stoutland after Stealth Rock. Even then, fewer than that switch in safely.

Stoutland's Switch-Ins:
Starting from the top, we have Stoutland's best defensive answer. This is possibly the only consistent and good answer to Stoutland... as long as the Tangela carries Sleep Powder. Without this move, Work Up Z Stoutland can actually set up on and break a Tangela. A hazard stack team would also get around this after enough hazards with Band Stoutland.
Next on the list is one of Stoutland's best known checks. Mawile can eat even a Choice Band Stomping Tantrum after Stealth Rock and not be 2hko'd 99.6% of the time with Leftovers. Pain Split, Seismic Toss and Toxic together punish a Stoutland attempting to set up on Mawile. Unfortunately, Mawile's ability to match up to Stoutland directly is the extent of the good news involving it. Mawile is fairly fragile on the special side and, most importantly, Stoutland was granted the best Magnet Pull support it could have asked for in Probopass, which traps and annihilates Mawile.
Carbink and Shuckle are able to switch in to Stoutland multiple times through a physically defensive set, but Carbink cannot switch in on Choice Band Superpower twice on Stealth Rock and come out on top unless it carries Rest, preferably with Chesto Berry. Shuckle just can't come in on Stealth Rock twice against Superpower and has to Rest immediately, making Chesto Berry a requirement. It's also important to acknowledge that Carbink and Shuckle are incredibly passive and would have to rely on Toxic in order to do damage. A large problem for Carbink and Shuckle is also they are incredibly vulnerable to Lurantis, which has Aromatherapy and Synthesis to beat Toxic and can use them as setup fodder while KOing them and threatening switch-ins. These two also largely struggle with Golem and Probopass, two common Pokemon in a Stoutland metagame, and special attacking Pokemon with super effective STAB such as Silvally forms and Simipour.
Like Carbink and Shuckle, the other two Rock/Bug Pokemon maintain the capability to utilize physically defensive sets with Protect or Rest in order to switch into Stoutland multiple times. Armaldo and Crustle have to use physically defensive investment to ensure that they can do this after Stealth Rock even once, but in return are not as vulnerable to Lurantis as Carbink and Shuckle are. They can carry Earthquake to threaten Probopass, but Golem is still able to put out too much damage for them to be able to safely take it on and they are weak to special attackers. The two can also be rendered insufficient for answering Stoutland in the case of a double switch by the opponent while Stealth Rocks are up.
Bronzor, Metang and Probopass all handle Stoutland's STAB a few times with fair ease, but a mispredict into a coverage move can be potentially catastrophic. They also struggle heavily with the problem of Stoutland partnering with offensive Probopass, since Bronzor and Metang lose most of their HP to it at best and Probopass has to hope it's faster than the opposing Probopass or it will be annihilated. It isn't even a problem if Bronzor or Metang survive Probopass by a fraction of their HP because Stoutland learns Pursuit to finish them off if all of its other teammates aren't guaranteed to. An opposing Golem-Alola could also cause this trouble for the Steel types while most certainly coming out on top of Probopass, but is overall less viable than Probopass itself. Probopass can use Shed Shell to overcome this issue without entering a speed creep cold war with other Probopass, but loses out on recovery from Leftovers and has to rely on Pain Split if it wants to restore its health. Bronzor and Metang have to rely on Rest if they need health restoration.
Golem and Cradily have the capability to switch in on Stoutland's STAB multiple times and don't suffer from trappers ruining their day, but still suffer massively from Choice Band Stoutland's Superpower and prefer to use physical defensive investment just to have a decent chance at dealing with this issue. Even then Cradily should run Chople Berry because of how overwhelmingly much it takes from Superpower. Golem can get away with eating 1 Superpower and not switching right back out with a well tailored Mago Berry set, but will be firmly 2hko'd otherwise if it doesn't have either Leftovers and Protect with full defensive investment (which only reduces it to a chance of KO after Stealth Rock) or Chople Berry. None of this allows them to safely switch into Superpower multiple times.
Physically defensive Granbull is able to come into any of Choice Band Stoutland's moves at least once and either chip at it or potentially risk using Thunder Wave on it, and has Z-Heal Bell to fully restore its health. Unfortunately, Granbull cannot come in on Stoutland's STAB more than once without restoring its health with Z-Heal Bell, otherwise Stoutland will likely KO it.

Evaluation of Stoutland's other checks:
Other checks exist, such as physically defensive Lurantis and Mean Look Dusclops, but they suffer from being unable to switch in on Stoutland after hazards or being below B- rank in viability. Even those below B- in viability do not come in on Stoutland's coverage moves safely anyway, putting them in no better of a position than Cradily or Golem. There are also some Pokemon that Stoutland can either just plow through despite their bulk or allow itself to be burned in order to give it STAB Choice Band Facade and become even stronger with its STAB in return for its coverage moves.

252 Atk Silvally-Fighting Multi-Attack vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Stoutland: 258-306 (82.9 - 98.3%) -- 62.5% chance to OHKO after Stealth Rock
252 Atk Electivire Cross Chop vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Stoutland: 228-270 (73.3 - 86.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Stealth Rock

Unfortunately the situation isn't particularly better when it comes to offensive checks because of how overwhelmingly bulky Stoutland actually is. Silvally-Fighting can't even guarantee an OHKO with a super effective STAB move after Stealth Rock, despite its status as an offensive check to Stoutland. Electivire, one of our most threatening attackers, can't OHKO Stoutland with coverage unless it boosts its attack with a Life Orb at minimum and gives up Choice Scarf, an item which is key to making it one of the best offensive Rotom-Frost checks in the metagame. Stoutland is also often able to eat a good neutral hit or two per game and retaliate with a stronger neutral hit as well as just highly limiting the choices for offensively checking it. Fighting types especially can struggle to actually get at Stoutland effectively because of the rise of Mareanie to the top of the metagame.

Sand Rush Stoutland in particular is also incredibly hard to stop with the shape of the metagame, carrying the ability to tear through teams because of its great power without requiring setup (although it can use Work Up) and wear down the opposing team through the use of Sand and Stealth Rocks. This also patches up Stoutland's speed issue and allows it to remove offensive most checks as a concern, further pushing the metagame towards the answers above that are so easily taken advantage of. This strategy may suffer from Abomasnow's presence, but even then it has to utilize Choice Scarf in order to threaten Stoutland.

Stoutland's effect on the viability of the Pokemon around it:
Stoutland also has a couple of other very unfortunate effects on the meta. Most notably is that, because Stoutland puts so much strain on the ability to check it in particular as a normal type, it enables other Normal type Pokemon with different counterplay to become more viable than they otherwise should be. Examples of this are Bouffalant, Chatot and Vigoroth, who each take advantage of Stoutland's presence to overcome common things that Stoutland forces into the metagame for free wins. A Tangela, for example, is often a liability against Vigoroth or Bouffalant. A Monferno can't do enough damage to a Chatot with its Mach Punch and is often an opportunity for a free KO or momentum for Chatot. All three of these Pokemon especially appreciate that Stoutland's presence removes Ghost type Pokemon as perceived valid answers for dealing with Normal type Pokemon and punishes players utilizing them.

It's also unfortunate that a lot of Stoutland's defensive checks or counters are actually beaten with fair ease by offensive partners such as Lurantis, Rotom-Frost or specially offensive Silvally forms such as Silvally-Water. Lurantis uses most of them for setup fodder and Rotom-Frost or Silvally-Water just tear most of them apart with their offensive coverage, STAB or not. Lurantis in particular is a notable effect Stoutland has had on the meta, since some of Lurantis's answers such as Muk and Roselia do not appreciate Stoutland's inclusion in the metagame as a commonplace threat while Pokemon that Stoutland encourages such as Golem and Probopass are generally mere fodder for Lurantis.

Conclusion:
Overall, it seems to me that while Stoutland alone isn't necessarily broken the metagame just can't be reasonably expected to adapt to its influence. The lack of unconditional switch ins to Stoutland and form the defensive meta is forced to take with the switch ins available are highly exploitable factors for the offensive threats in the metagame to take advantage of because of Stoutland's threat toward their usual checks and counters, and most of Stoutland's few reliable offensive checks suffer from other pieces of the metagame or just can't break a common partner to Stoutland. Stoutland can also just be used on Sand teams to overcome these offensive checks in return for greater vulnerability to its defensive checks. Stoutland just does not seem to be an element that can be reasonably expected to integrate into our metagame in a healthy manner, so I will be voting to ban the old dog.

Side Note: You don't need to put your reqs in this thread, we'll be doing something for that later.
 
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I like this ZU tier a lot, so I figured I might try voting on a suspect. Got my reqs (not posting them here as the post right before this said that will be done elsewhere) using this team, going 36 and 6:
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Stoutland @ Choice Band
Ability: Scrappy
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Return
- Facade
- Superpower
- Pursuit

Pinsir @ Lum Berry
Ability: Moxie
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Swords Dance
- X-Scissor
- Earthquake
- Quick Attack

Arbok @ Darkinium Z
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Coil
- Gunk Shot
- Earthquake
- Sucker Punch

Kadabra @ Focus Sash
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
IVs: 0 Def
- Counter
- Psychic
- Shadow Ball
- Encore

Golem @ Leftovers
Ability: Sturdy
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
- Stone Edge
- Sucker Punch

Silvally-Water @ Water Memory
Ability: RKS System
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Defog
- Surf
- Flamethrower
- Parting Shot


The team is very straightforward, just apply as much pressure as possible and save kadabra for anything dangerous setting up. Kadabra has 0 def ivs to ensure flame charge from silvally lets kadabra ko back with counter. Darkinium Z arbok hits bronzor and bulky ghosts like dusclops hard. Pursuit on stoutland lets it be useful even in games where opponents have strong switch-ins.

I fought a lot of teams using probopass + tangela to handle stoutland, so having double set up mons with super effective stab on tangela and earthquake to destroy probopass worked very well. Pinsir and arbok also work very well against popular stuff like mareanie and muk. I never lost against any slow teams if I'm not mistaken, but something like avalugg stall could probably give this team trouble. It tended to have coinflip matches against other fast aggressive teams and weather offense (sand and rain). Kadabra helped a lot, but sometimes wasn't enough by itself.

I am leaning toward ban on stoutland, simply because its presence will kill diversity. Slow teams will be forced to use a small number of defensive answers to stoutland that don't even put the stoutland user at too much of a disadvantage if present. Those small number of defensive pokemon are pretty easily exploitable in team building. I think teams will either abandon their slower, bulkier, and weaker elements or add more defensive pokemon and become a stall team.

Stoutland is not unbeatable, but its unmatched combination of bulk, power, and coverage demands that a team either have good switch-ins or just be very fast and aggressive (hopefully with lots of fighting attacks). ZU is a pretty decentralized meta (bar rotom-F) from what I've seen, and I would prefer not have stoutland cut out or at least heavily restrict balanced playstyles.

I could be wrong about stoutland. Its presence doesn't actually invalidate putting any pokemon that are otherwise viable onto a team. It's possible that the answers to stoutland and diverse enough to withstand exploitation by other threats, but that has not been my impression so far.
 
Having trouble breaking out of the low ladder for reqs? Fear not, for I am here to save the day with a ridiculous-looking HO team that has just enough tech and cheese to beat the nonsense you run into. It obviously falters against more experienced players and/or well-balanced teams, but I did nab a few surprise victories against well-known players.
Omanyte @ Focus Sash
Ability: Weak Armor
EVs: 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Spikes
- Toxic Spikes
- Surf

Monferno @ Fightinium Z
Ability: Iron Fist
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Swords Dance
- Flare Blitz
- Close Combat
- Mach Punch

Trevenant @ Choice Band
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Adamant Nature
- Shadow Claw
- Wood Hammer
- Earthquake
- Trick

Purugly @ Silk Scarf
Ability: Defiant
Happiness: 0
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Fake Out
- U-turn
- Frustration
- Stomping Tantrum

Kadabra @ Focus Sash
Ability: Magic Guard
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Counter
- Psychic
- Shadow Ball
- Energy Ball

Muk @ Assault Vest
Ability: Sticky Hold
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Adamant Nature
- Power-Up Punch
- Thunder Punch
- Gunk Shot
- Shadow Sneak

I won't go into too much detail about the team since there isn't a ton to say and it doesn't hold up to intense scrutiny, but I will highlight a few reasons it demolishes low ladder players/teams.

SD Monferno absolutely demolishes unprepared players, often with very little chip or setup needed. Purugly and spikes/tspikes support more than provide this for him, and he wins a lot of games very quickly. Against balance teams, this is your wincon.

Purugly is really the key. Not only is it a good mon right now because it thrives in offensive meta games and performs wel against Golem and Probopass with Tantrum, but because of how little usage Silvally-Fighting and Lurantis get in low-ladder. They are the only two standard defoggers that can really dissuade you from coming in, nabbing a +2, then raising Hell until something comes in which can stop it. Oftentimes, though, people don't have the means to actually stop a 500 attack, 355 speed monster with a spammable 122 BP STAB.

Banded Trev is there to stop Slash from spinning and generally nuke things (you should run some calcs on resisted Wood Hammer hits- they are not pretty) and provide a way to Trick eviolites away from annoying mons and stop walls from making your life miserable.

The AV PuP Muk is a set I used in the Seasonal to be a GSI to Frostom and become immediately threatening. It functions really well as a catch-all and offensive momentum preserver.

Sash Countee Kadabs is the bomb. Nuff said.

And last but not least, our adorable little suicide lead. Why not Crustle or Whirlipede? Because helix. Also because Surf hurts a LOT and almost always allows omanyte to beat Golem. Also because, when you only get hazards up once, it is nice to be able to choose literally any two sets you want.

Go in with the mentality that the hazards probably won't be up for long, but when they are removed, Purugly can cause enough mayhem that the rest of the team will find a way to break through.

Happy stomping!
 
I feel like Xayah shouldn’t be TL of ZeroUsed. I have barely ever actually seen her play the meta, and when she does, I’ve only seen her beaten (not counting ladder battles). There are much better players, who are both more active and more helpful (thank you 5gen), and who actually respond to PMs. Xayah has ignored me all but once when I’ve tried to PM her. 5gen is very helpful when he isn’t afk, as I was surprised to find out when I asked him to help me build. The only one who I think wouldn’t do a better job is Aaronboyer (sorry) as he is deliberately unhelpful, but even he is active a fair bit. Sorry if I’ve offended anyone, but I think Xayah should be replaced for Durza or Froasty.
You can't literally steal the copypasta insulting me that I made and post it here. That's illegal.

Seriously though, can we please keep the shitposting in here to a minimum? We have our #off-topic on Discord if you wanna do that. Let's focus on metagame discussion in here, such as the current ongoing Stoutland suspect.
 
Recently got done getting reqs so I wanted to get this out there since the end of this suspect is fast approaching. I want to put my two cents out there on why Stoutland should not be banned. I didn't want to go over every single aspect of Stoutland so I decided to just go with the aspects that have been talked about most in general.
1) The first thing I feel that should get across to people is that Stoutland isn't broken. Many have said it in the discussion already, but I just want to reiterate that Stoutland doesn't 6-0 teams and it doesn't one shot every mon under the sun.
2) That being said Stoutland does have very few switch ins. I won't go into this too much since others like Froasty have done a great job of explaining this. I just wanted to add that while Stoutland checks can be worn down over time, Stoutland too is easily worn down. Between having no recovery and leftovers not being great on it, Stoutland is often either forced out or made to take a major blow from faster threats.
3) Speaking of faster threats, Stoutland suffers from it's speed tier. While its not bad by any means, it just isn't to the level that it needs to dominate the meta. It is a slightly faster than normal wall breaker. You don't deal with a wall breaker by sending in walls, you deal with it by using faster threats and revenge killers. That and plenty of mons can stomach a hit to dish out some damage.
4) Most importantly, I want to talk about Stouts impact on the metagame. All new pokemon to tiers usually change the metagame in some ways. The way it's being argued here makes it seem that Stout warps everything in the metagame in an unhealthy way. While I do agree that Stout somewhat warps the metagame, I don't believe it's as bad as it's being argued here. Stout makes the meta lean offensive, which depending on what style you like to play is either a good or bad thing. It however doesn't make any other style of play irrelevant, except for maybe stall but that's already been dead for a while so beating a dead horse isn't too bad. Is balance harder to play and build, yeah. Are bulkier teams being made to be somewhat faster, yeah. These and other teams are changing, they aren't being made useless or irrelevant. I also just want to say that Rotom-F warps the metagame much more than stoutland ever has. That's a topic for a separate post but yeah just wanted to point that out.
5) Lastly an over saturation of threats shouldn't be a reason to ban Stout, it shouldn't be a scapegoat for said over saturation. Tuthur made a great point earlier in this thread where he brought up that uncommon sweepers are hard to deal with because of how unprepared for them teams are. Banning Stout just so that there's one less threat to prep for is just bad reasoning. I could understand banning a mon that required an extreme amount of team prep to check, which Stoutland just doesn't do. Half your team doesn't need to be dedicated to beating just Stout. There will always be threats that teams just aren't prepped for, you can't build for everything, if your team no longer has to worry about Stout then it'll just be another threat that sweeps you, obscure or not.
I can't tell the future. For all I know Stout a month from now may very well end up being a cancerous mon that every team must use to have a decent chance of winning. For now however that just isn't the case, between Dusclops making me want to rip my teeth out and the rise of Fightvally, the meta is already (at least for now since drops are like 2 weeks away and will shakeup the meta again) on it's way to adjusting to it's influence. We don't tier the future so we shouldn't ban something that hasn't broken the meta yet. If Stout ends up being too much then everyone can rest their heads easy and ban it without worry. If however it doesn't end up being busted, then we lose a unique mon that offers a lot. Therefore I'll be voting NO BAN and I hope I have given you enough reason to also vote No Ban.
 
In response to Calucha, Stoutland doesn’t invalidate stall at all, since stall is a playstyle that can fit counters to Stoutland pretty easily. Its very unusual for choiced “wallbreakers” like Stoutland to be a serious problem for stall. Generally set up pokemon, taunt pokemon, frail but truly uncounterable pokemon, and hazard setters that beat their removers give stall the most trouble. Pokemon like Stoutland excel at beating balance that can’t wall the breaker by abusing the passivity of some members of the team to rain assured destruction. I like to think of "wallbreakers" as pokemon that break your team for having a wall or two, rather than a pokemon that will break all walls that try to stand in its way.

Stoutland "wallbreaks" exceptionally well, using pokemon like Muk, Mareanie, Roselia, Lurantis, Dusclops, Beheeyem, Bouffalant, and really almost anything slower than it to pose a serious threat. Critically, Stoutland does this while still being at least decent against offensive mons due its bulk. This along with its decent speed sets it apart from other similar attackers like Toucannon and Marowak. Stoutland + pivoting moves + hazards = trouble for slow teams that aren't full stall. Against fast teams, it eats a hit and ohkos back with return. Everything faster than stoutland is ohked by return bar Silvally, fast bulky Rotom, fast bulky Misdreavus, and Slaking. Sometimes Alolan Dugtrio lives one. Of those, really only Silvally is that significant, since the others struggle to do much to Stoutland or are Slaking.

Is it a good idea to have a bulky pokemon sitting halfway between fast and slow ohko everything faster than it with one move with no drawbacks? Return's spammability is unparalleled, and superpower handles most answers to it while still ohkoing most fast pokemon.

In practice Stoutland hasn't felt too oppressive on ZU's short ladder, but I think given time it will be. The low opportunity cost of Stoutland combined with its strength against certain teams will eventually make it push out or at least cripple whole playstyles. Sure, you can just use offense, but if Stoutland makes the tier just offense, that's a problem.

I think Stoutland is very unhealthy for ZU's metagame. I don't know what "broken" means exactly, but Stoutland hurts being slow way too much for my taste. It's also a really boring pokemon to have as one of ZU's best. At least Rotom-F has more than one set and clicks more than one move.


All this doesn't touch on sand (sand rush Stout is basically a different Pokémon), which I haven't explored much but seems very strong. Shifting toward offense may work well when dealing with scrappy stoutland, but sand rush destroys fast teams. I'd like to hear someone's opinion on sand rush who has played it a decent amount. I could see sand teams being problematic, but the teams I have faced haven't been.
 
What are everyone's experience with other Normal-types? Theoretically, SubSD Bouffalant, Chatot, and Vigoroth thrive much better in an environment where trends that adapt to Stoutland run rampant. They capitalize heavily on preparations to Stoutland, with checks such as Tangela, Mawile, and Probopass being exploited by the three to varying degrees.

The reason I ask is because it's no denying that such trends are dominant right now. Anti-ban people have stated how oversaturation isn't a reason to ban something, but the point about bringing up other Normal-types is to show how Stoutland's presence is forcing additional steps in order to keep all threats of a single typing in check. This hinders defensive Pokemon and playstyles in a way that can't be brushed off so easily. The same also applies to special attackers, where Pokemon like Lurantis, Oricorio-Baile, NP Mime, and Simipour, abuse anti-Stoutland trends in similar ways.

If banning Stoutland to free up slots for more defensive teams to check threats isn't a valid reason, then what are alternate solutions? I'm interested in especially the no-ban's stance since "There's always threats that teams can't prep for" seems to be commonly brought up. If it can be argued that a particular threat is exacerbating the oversaturation issues, then why shouldn't the pro-ban side consider this a reason to remove said threat?
 
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I hate long posts so I'm gonna be kinda brief and just throw out my thoughts on why I'm anti-ban (for now at least)

What negative impact has Stoutland had on team building? Not even kidding. A normal check was already borderline a necessity due to mons like Chatot, Bouff and to a lesser extent Vig. Now that Stoutland is here sure you may have to use a different normal check than before but it still doesn't require the huge strain that many imply. Golem, Mawile, Crustle, and Carbink (Trick Room) were already on the majority of teams and all switch in reliably.

Also, Stout doesn't get a ton of opportunities to switch in and click moves without getting worn down or revenged due to only hitting 259 Spe.

People have also made the argument that it makes it hard to build fat teams but really fat teams have already been somewhat subpar compared to bulky offense, in my opinion. I haven't personally seen how they have gotten much worse than they already were.

Another random thought. Every time I put Stoutland on a team I end up changing it for something with more utility (resists, momentum, set up opportunities) because it actually competes with other breakers and normal types that can make winning a game a little easier thanks to the multiple roles they fill.

Sorry if I'm all over the place
 
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It's that time


Over the course of the suspect, I've kept quiet and tested Stoutland a considerable amount. By doing so, I wanted to genuinely see whether Stoutland was broken or not. Long story short, I do not feel that Stoutland is a broken Pokemon.

Stoutland is without a doubt a fantastic wallbreaker with its Choice Band set and a great offensive Pokemon with its Sand Rush set, but both of these sets have inherent downsides that can hold Stoutland back. More unorthodox sets such as Work Up+Z-move are considered when talking about Stoutland, but are clearly a notch below CB or Sand Rush.

I know it's weird to think that Choice Band - the predominant set that defines Stoutland as an S-rank - has its downsides and makes Stoutland a manageable threat, but I will argue that it is true. Choice Band Stoutland has to deal with the influx of Normal-resists in the tier. As Froasty pointed out, Stoutland can nail most of its checks with coverage. However, that is a double-edged sword in this meta where a CB Return can be stomached (subsequently forcing Stoutland out), and forcing Stoutland to lock itself into a coverage move (which makes it considerably less difficult to pivot around). Hence, Choice Band Stoutland is a prediction reliant Pokemon a lot of the time, even with Scrappy+Base 110 Attack. Conversely, Stoutland always carries the threat of nailing a switch-in via prediction and can chip down its check with its STABs. However, it is extremely important to note that the increased usage of Protect on Normal resists makes it easy to scout out Stoutland, and that Normal resists are most often paired with Pokemon that can switch into Stoutland's coverage options.

Much like Rotom-Frost, NP Mime, LO Electivire, Specs Beheeyem, Specs Chatot, etc...Stoutland is a Pokemon whose defensive counterplay is typically dependent on pivoting and making the right calls. We should not look at Stoutland in a vacuum and discuss how it breaks certain teams or Pokemon in the right circumstances. From my testing and from what I've seen, Stoutland does not have an easy time getting itself into an ideal situation. A large degree of Stoutland's capabilities are often attributed to how many Pokemon can pair well with it and help remove its checks. For example, Probopass to trap Mawile, Roselia to counter Tangela, Oricorio-Baille to check Fighting-types and bust through Steel-types and Tangela, Rotom-Frost to bust through Tangela, Golem, and bring Stoutland in safely off of Volt Switch, etc. Personally, what this says to me as a builder and a player is that Stoutland is to a certain degree dependent on its teammates to be successful; it is completely manageable as a standalone Pokemon. Hence, I am not convinced that Stoutland is a broken Pokemon who removes skillful play, nor is it consistent enough to plow through things on its own.

Moreover, another argument that is commonly made from the pro-ban side is how Stoutland's checks are worse in this meta than the last time it was around. While this is arguable due to Abomasnow, Kecleon, Rapidash, Pinsir, and Probopass' impact on the viability of Tangela, Mawile, Carbink, and other Stoutland checks, I believe the metagame can still adequately prepare for Stoutland defensively. For example, Golem and Bronzor are two top tier Pokemon who already give Stoutland trouble. Moreover, although those aforementioned offensive threats do pressure many of Stoutland's checks, the metagame has reached a kind of equilibrium in my opinion. What I mean is, Abomansow, Kecleon, Rapidash, Pinsir, Probopass, and whoever else threatens Stoutland's checks have their own counterplay that keeps them in check. It is not as though these Pokemon completely invalidate Tangela, Mawile, Carbink, Golem, Bronzor, Metang, etc. On the contrary, these Pokemon more or less can effectively play their niche in the meta whilst acting as a check to Stoutland (admittedly Stoutland can be a big part of the niche). Lastly, I want to touch on Probopass trapping. Truth be told, Probopass is underwhelming as a trapper. It doesn't guaranteed beat Bronzor or EQ Metang (can run extra creep or bulk for Probo), and it has poor defensive synergy alongside Stoutland. Consistently beating non-Shed Shell Mawile is fantastic though.

I'd also like to note that I've tested stall thoroughly in this metagame and I have found that it is possible to check the influx of threats. Stall is not a great playstyle, but for people to think that Stoutland broke the camel's back so to speak, just is not true.


An issue I have with arguments about Stoutland is the emphasis on defensive counterplay, so I will talk about Stoutland outside of that vacuum. Stoutland is a unique Pokemon in ZU in the sense that it has good natural bulk for an offensive Pokemon. The downside though is its middling Speed tier. Strictly discussing CB Scrappy, Stoutland is not a Pokemon who can usually outpace a foe and revenge kill it. That isn't its job. CB Scrappy Stoutland is a wallbreaker and is not difficult to outpace, which results in many situations where Stoutland is forced to switch out against an offensive Pokemon or make a trade by eating a hit and firing back. Moreover, Stoutland does not have many opportunities where it would want to switch in, because it will be chipped down. The primary use of its bulk is used when it is already on the field, facing a foe. Hence, CB Scrappy Stoutland is a wallbreaker who can be difficult to straight up OHKO, but it can definitely be forced out or at least heavily weakened for the rest of a game. All in all, Stoutland definitely has its fair share of offensive checks due its 259 (or 284) Speed tier.

But what about Sand Rush? Sand Rush can definitely invalidate most forms of revenge killing and clean through offensive teams. Moreover, Stoutland is not nearly as prediction reliant with a Life Orb. This set plays as a late-game cleaner and revenge killer whenever sand is up, but the effectiveness of sand in the current meta is really what holds this set back. Hippopotas is not a great Pokemon in this metagame, and it struggles to keep up weather in a metagame where Abomasnow is prevalent. Also, if Hippopotas faints, then Stoutland becomes that much worse. Moreover, LO Sand Rush Stoutland has an additional counter in Gourgeist-Large, is noticeably weaker than its Choice Band counterpart, and is easier to wear down due to Life Orb recoil. Priority from Monferno, Shiftry, Fake Out Kecleon, and even Golem can help chip down Stoutland. Furthermore, Stoutland usually has to be preserved for the late-game and cannot be brought out very easily due to that. Although LO Sand Rush gives Stoutland a better matchup against offensive archtypes and counterplay, it is still a fairly limiting set due to the viability of sand, LO recoil, and introduces more defensive counterplay.

This is not to say that Sand Rush Stoutland is a bad set, as it is still a good set in this meta. What I do believe though is that it does tip Stoutland into being broken in tandem with CB Scrappy.

The last notable set I will talk about here is Work Up+Z-move. The appeal of these kinds of sets is that Stoutland can lure in its checks such as Tangela, Mawile, or Bronzor for example, proceed to setup, and then blast them with a Z-move coverage option like Fire Fang. In practice, these sets are not that effective. For one, you trade Stoutland's immediate wallbreaking power for setup, which just makes the whole process of breaking longer. Secondly, Stoutland doesn't have many opportunities to even setup because of its Speed tier and defensive typing. Work Up Z-move sets can work, but they are definitely one of the more niche sets for Stoutland.


What are everyone's experience with other Normal-types? Theoretically, SubSD Bouffalant, Chatot, and Vigoroth thrive much better in an environment where trends that adapt to Stoutland run rampant. They capitalize heavily on preparations to Stoutland, with checks such as Tangela, Mawile, and Probopass being exploited by the three to varying degrees.

The reason I ask is because it's no denying that such trends are dominant right now. Anti-ban people have stated how oversaturation isn't a reason to ban something, but the point about bringing up other Normal-types is to show how Stoutland's presence is forcing additional steps in order to keep all threats of a single typing in check. This hinders defensive Pokemon and playstyles in a way that can't be brushed off so easily. The same also applies to special attackers, where Pokemon like Lurantis, Oricorio-Baile, NP Mime, and Simipour, abuse anti-Stoutland trends in similar ways.

If banning Stoutland to free up slots for more defensive teams to check threats isn't a valid reason, then what are alternate solutions? I'm interested in especially the no-ban's stance since "There's always threats that teams can't prep for" seems to be commonly brought up. If it can be argued that a particular threat is exacerbating the oversaturation issues, then why shouldn't the pro-ban side consider this a reason to remove said threat?
Tangela is not a Normal resist; It's a physically defensive Pokemon that can wall Stoutland in most scenarios. It isn't a surprise that Tangela fails to adequately check Bouffalant, Viggy, or Chatot, and a team with Tangela should not use it purely as a Normal check. Just wanted to get that out of the way. With Mawile and Probo, like you said those Pokemon exploit them to varying degrees. Mawile can usually beat Vigoroth, Probopass can usually beat Chatot, and Bouffalant thrives in this meta and can beat all three of Probo, Tangela, and Mawile. Aside from those Pokemon, what I've seen from Normal-types is much of the same as before. Bronzor was such a prevalent Pokemon, Golem is as good as ever, and Pokemon like Gourgeist-L and Dusclops have a notable niche, so I believe the additional of Stoutland has actually opened up some doors for these Pokemon. Hence, aside from Mawile, I do not feel as though Stoutland's presence is forcing additional measures to check Normal-types.

Again, from what I've tested with fatter playstyles, I don't believe Stoutland places an unbearable strain in tandem with other Normal-types. This is because much of the same counterplay to Normal-types exists now as it did before. I just think that players will have to adapt in the builder and that the meta has enough measures in place to deal with these threats. The whole metagame dynamic can be inspected on this point that Stoutland's presence allow for certain Pokemon to capitalize off of trends, but that could be said about any recent drop, arguably to a lesser degree than Stoutland. For example, when Abomasnow dropped, Bronzor became much better. When Kecleon dropped, Silvally-Fighting became better. The list can go on. The major difference in this case is that Pokemon whom abuse anti-Stoutland trends arguably help Stoutland itself, since its checks are being taken advantage. Conversely, those same Pokemon can apply pressure to Stoutland (to a lesser extent), so it isn't like Stoutland benefits left and right from metagame trends.

Personally I view alternate solutions as metagame development. Stoutland has only been here for ~three weeks and the metagame has turned out to be balanced imo. I'm not of the opinion that "There's always threats that teams can't prep for" as a reason to not ban Stoutland, because that's really flawed logic and is an excuse for not covering a threat adequately. Over-saturation of threats is also not a reason to ban something imo because that's sort of a cop out. If something is individually broken, then it has a reason to be banned. In this case, Stoutland is not individually broken imo.

Stoutland's effect on the viability of the Pokemon around it:
Stoutland also has a couple of other very unfortunate effects on the meta. Most notably is that, because Stoutland puts so much strain on the ability to check it in particular as a normal type, it enables other Normal type Pokemon with different counterplay to become more viable than they otherwise should be. Examples of this are Bouffalant, Chatot and Vigoroth, who each take advantage of Stoutland's presence to overcome common things that Stoutland forces into the metagame for free wins. A Tangela, for example, is often a liability against Vigoroth or Bouffalant. A Monferno can't do enough damage to a Chatot with its Mach Punch and is often an opportunity for a free KO or momentum for Chatot. All three of these Pokemon especially appreciate that Stoutland's presence removes Ghost type Pokemon as perceived valid answers for dealing with Normal type Pokemon and punishes players utilizing them.
Responded to this for jklioe, but I'll mention it again. Due to the diverse and varying movesets of the tier's Normal-types, it is almost impossible to have a single Normal resist to check all Pokemon. Of course, Scrappy Stoutland slims down that list, but Ghost-types lost to Taunt Toxic Vigoroth. Knock Off Kecleon, and could be screwed over by Encore Chatot. I'm not denying that Stoutland exacerbates the problem, but even before there was no catch all Normal resist.

It's also unfortunate that a lot of Stoutland's defensive checks or counters are actually beaten with fair ease by offensive partners such as Lurantis, Rotom-Frost or specially offensive Silvally forms such as Silvally-Water. Lurantis uses most of them for setup fodder and Rotom-Frost or Silvally-Water just tear most of them apart with their offensive coverage, STAB or not. Lurantis in particular is a notable effect Stoutland has had on the meta, since some of Lurantis's answers such as Muk and Roselia do not appreciate Stoutland's inclusion in the metagame as a commonplace threat while Pokemon that Stoutland encourages such as Golem and Probopass are generally mere fodder for Lurantis.
I agree that these Pokemon put pressure on Stoutland's checks and counters. However, Stoutland's checks and counters have teammates as well that can mitigate their weaknesses. This argument goes hand in hand with metagame development, and as I've said before in this post, I feel as though the metagame can and has adapted to all these threats. On a larger note, the point of teambuilding and exploring our options is to push this meta forward. What makes teambuilding so fun for me in this meta in particular is the ability to craft teams that has counterplay to Stoutland+Lurantis or Frostom or Silvally-Water, and so on.

Conclusion:
Overall, it seems to me that while Stoutland alone isn't necessarily broken the metagame just can't be reasonably expected to adapt to its influence. The lack of unconditional switch ins to Stoutland and form the defensive meta is forced to take with the switch ins available are highly exploitable factors for the offensive threats in the metagame to take advantage of because of Stoutland's threat toward their usual checks and counters, and most of Stoutland's few reliable offensive checks suffer from other pieces of the metagame or just can't break a common partner to Stoutland. Stoutland can also just be used on Sand teams to overcome these offensive checks in return for greater vulnerability to its defensive checks. Stoutland just does not seem to be an element that can be reasonably expected to integrate into our metagame in a healthy manner, so I will be voting to ban the old dog.
I disagree with the sentiment that the metagame cannot adapt to Stoutland's influence. It is a highly effective wallbreaker, but it has key flaws such as a middling Speed tier, lack of switch-in opportunities, reliance on teammates, and reliance on prediction hold it back from being broken imo. The form the defensive meta has taken is not overbearing in relation to Stoutland and its partners. The previous meta had its fair share of Normal-resists, Lurantis checks, Frostom counterplay, Silvally counterplay, etc. I also find it hard to believe that there are few reliable offensive checks to Stoutland seeing as how most offensive threats faster than 259 Speed can force it out or dent it. And in the case of Sand Rush, that set has its own counterplay via pivoting, priority, and taking care of sand. Furthermore, Stoutland and its partners typically have poor defensive synergy, so I don't see how breaking a common partner to Stoutland can be hard. Contrary to popular opinion, I'm actually really enjoying this metagame as I feel that Stoutland has opened up both room for creativity and also forced teams to once again pack their Return switch-ins.
 
It's that time


Over the course of the suspect, I've kept quiet and tested Stoutland a considerable amount. By doing so, I wanted to genuinely see whether Stoutland was broken or not. Long story short, I do not feel that Stoutland is a broken Pokemon.

Stoutland is without a doubt a fantastic wallbreaker with its Choice Band set and a great offensive Pokemon with its Sand Rush set, but both of these sets have inherent downsides that can hold Stoutland back. More unorthodox sets such as Work Up+Z-move are considered when talking about Stoutland, but are clearly a notch below CB or Sand Rush.

I know it's weird to think that Choice Band - the predominant set that defines Stoutland as an S-rank - has its downsides and makes Stoutland a manageable threat, but I will argue that it is true. Choice Band Stoutland has to deal with the influx of Normal-resists in the tier. As Froasty pointed out, Stoutland can nail most of its checks with coverage. However, that is a double-edged sword in this meta where a CB Return can be stomached (subsequently forcing Stoutland out), and forcing Stoutland to lock itself into a coverage move (which makes it considerably less difficult to pivot around). Hence, Choice Band Stoutland is a prediction reliant Pokemon a lot of the time, even with Scrappy+Base 110 Attack. Conversely, Stoutland always carries the threat of nailing a switch-in via prediction and can chip down its check with its STABs. However, it is extremely important to note that the increased usage of Protect on Normal resists makes it easy to scout out Stoutland, and that Normal resists are most often paired with Pokemon that can switch into Stoutland's coverage options.

Much like Rotom-Frost, NP Mime, LO Electivire, Specs Beheeyem, Specs Chatot, etc...Stoutland is a Pokemon whose defensive counterplay is typically dependent on pivoting and making the right calls. We should not look at Stoutland in a vacuum and discuss how it breaks certain teams or Pokemon in the right circumstances. From my testing and from what I've seen, Stoutland does not have an easy time getting itself into an ideal situation. A large degree of Stoutland's capabilities are often attributed to how many Pokemon can pair well with it and help remove its checks. For example, Probopass to trap Mawile, Roselia to counter Tangela, Oricorio-Baille to check Fighting-types and bust through Steel-types and Tangela, Rotom-Frost to bust through Tangela, Golem, and bring Stoutland in safely off of Volt Switch, etc. Personally, what this says to me as a builder and a player is that Stoutland is to a certain degree dependent on its teammates to be successful; it is completely manageable as a standalone Pokemon. Hence, I am not convinced that Stoutland is a broken Pokemon who removes skillful play, nor is it consistent enough to plow through things on its own.

Moreover, another argument that is commonly made from the pro-ban side is how Stoutland's checks are worse in this meta than the last time it was around. While this is arguable due to Abomasnow, Kecleon, Rapidash, Pinsir, and Probopass' impact on the viability of Tangela, Mawile, Carbink, and other Stoutland checks, I believe the metagame can still adequately prepare for Stoutland defensively. For example, Golem and Bronzor are two top tier Pokemon who already give Stoutland trouble. Moreover, although those aforementioned offensive threats do pressure many of Stoutland's checks, the metagame has reached a kind of equilibrium in my opinion. What I mean is, Abomansow, Kecleon, Rapidash, Pinsir, Probopass, and whoever else threatens Stoutland's checks have their own counterplay that keeps them in check. It is not as though these Pokemon completely invalidate Tangela, Mawile, Carbink, Golem, Bronzor, Metang, etc. On the contrary, these Pokemon more or less can effectively play their niche in the meta whilst acting as a check to Stoutland (admittedly Stoutland can be a big part of the niche). Lastly, I want to touch on Probopass trapping. Truth be told, Probopass is underwhelming as a trapper. It doesn't guaranteed beat Bronzor or EQ Metang (can run extra creep or bulk for Probo), and it has poor defensive synergy alongside Stoutland. Consistently beating non-Shed Shell Mawile is fantastic though.

I'd also like to note that I've tested stall thoroughly in this metagame and I have found that it is possible to check the influx of threats. Stall is not a great playstyle, but for people to think that Stoutland broke the camel's back so to speak, just is not true.


An issue I have with arguments about Stoutland is the emphasis on defensive counterplay, so I will talk about Stoutland outside of that vacuum. Stoutland is a unique Pokemon in ZU in the sense that it has good natural bulk for an offensive Pokemon. The downside though is its middling Speed tier. Strictly discussing CB Scrappy, Stoutland is not a Pokemon who can usually outpace a foe and revenge kill it. That isn't its job. CB Scrappy Stoutland is a wallbreaker and is not difficult to outpace, which results in many situations where Stoutland is forced to switch out against an offensive Pokemon or make a trade by eating a hit and firing back. Moreover, Stoutland does not have many opportunities where it would want to switch in, because it will be chipped down. The primary use of its bulk is used when it is already on the field, facing a foe. Hence, CB Scrappy Stoutland is a wallbreaker who can be difficult to straight up OHKO, but it can definitely be forced out or at least heavily weakened for the rest of a game. All in all, Stoutland definitely has its fair share of offensive checks due its 259 (or 284) Speed tier.

But what about Sand Rush? Sand Rush can definitely invalidate most forms of revenge killing and clean through offensive teams. Moreover, Stoutland is not nearly as prediction reliant with a Life Orb. This set plays as a late-game cleaner and revenge killer whenever sand is up, but the effectiveness of sand in the current meta is really what holds this set back. Hippopotas is not a great Pokemon in this metagame, and it struggles to keep up weather in a metagame where Abomasnow is prevalent. Also, if Hippopotas faints, then Stoutland becomes that much worse. Moreover, LO Sand Rush Stoutland has an additional counter in Gourgeist-Large, is noticeably weaker than its Choice Band counterpart, and is easier to wear down due to Life Orb recoil. Priority from Monferno, Shiftry, Fake Out Kecleon, and even Golem can help chip down Stoutland. Furthermore, Stoutland usually has to be preserved for the late-game and cannot be brought out very easily due to that. Although LO Sand Rush gives Stoutland a better matchup against offensive archtypes and counterplay, it is still a fairly limiting set due to the viability of sand, LO recoil, and introduces more defensive counterplay.

This is not to say that Sand Rush Stoutland is a bad set, as it is still a good set in this meta. What I do believe though is that it does tip Stoutland into being broken in tandem with CB Scrappy.

The last notable set I will talk about here is Work Up+Z-move. The appeal of these kinds of sets is that Stoutland can lure in its checks such as Tangela, Mawile, or Bronzor for example, proceed to setup, and then blast them with a Z-move coverage option like Fire Fang. In practice, these sets are not that effective. For one, you trade Stoutland's immediate wallbreaking power for setup, which just makes the whole process of breaking longer. Secondly, Stoutland doesn't have many opportunities to even setup because of its Speed tier and defensive typing. Work Up Z-move sets can work, but they are definitely one of the more niche sets for Stoutland.


Tangela is not a Normal resist; It's a physically defensive Pokemon that can wall Stoutland in most scenarios. It isn't a surprise that Tangela fails to adequately check Bouffalant, Viggy, or Chatot, and a team with Tangela should not use it purely as a Normal check. Just wanted to get that out of the way. With Mawile and Probo, like you said those Pokemon exploit them to varying degrees. Mawile can usually beat Vigoroth, Probopass can usually beat Chatot, and Bouffalant thrives in this meta and can beat all three of Probo, Tangela, and Mawile. Aside from those Pokemon, what I've seen from Normal-types is much of the same as before. Bronzor was such a prevalent Pokemon, Golem is as good as ever, and Pokemon like Gourgeist-L and Dusclops have a notable niche, so I believe the additional of Stoutland has actually opened up some doors for these Pokemon. Hence, aside from Mawile, I do not feel as though Stoutland's presence is forcing additional measures to check Normal-types.

Again, from what I've tested with fatter playstyles, I don't believe Stoutland places an unbearable strain in tandem with other Normal-types. This is because much of the same counterplay to Normal-types exists now as it did before. I just think that players will have to adapt in the builder and that the meta has enough measures in place to deal with these threats. The whole metagame dynamic can be inspected on this point that Stoutland's presence allow for certain Pokemon to capitalize off of trends, but that could be said about any recent drop, arguably to a lesser degree than Stoutland. For example, when Abomasnow dropped, Bronzor became much better. When Kecleon dropped, Silvally-Fighting became better. The list can go on. The major difference in this case is that Pokemon whom abuse anti-Stoutland trends arguably help Stoutland itself, since its checks are being taken advantage. Conversely, those same Pokemon can apply pressure to Stoutland (to a lesser extent), so it isn't like Stoutland benefits left and right from metagame trends.

Personally I view alternate solutions as metagame development. Stoutland has only been here for ~three weeks and the metagame has turned out to be balanced imo. I'm not of the opinion that "There's always threats that teams can't prep for" as a reason to not ban Stoutland, because that's really flawed logic and is an excuse for not covering a threat adequately. Over-saturation of threats is also not a reason to ban something imo because that's sort of a cop out. If something is individually broken, then it has a reason to be banned. In this case, Stoutland is not individually broken imo.


Responded to this for jklioe, but I'll mention it again. Due to the diverse and varying movesets of the tier's Normal-types, it is almost impossible to have a single Normal resist to check all Pokemon. Of course, Scrappy Stoutland slims down that list, but Ghost-types lost to Taunt Toxic Vigoroth. Knock Off Kecleon, and could be screwed over by Encore Chatot. I'm not denying that Stoutland exacerbates the problem, but even before there was no catch all Normal resist.


I agree that these Pokemon put pressure on Stoutland's checks and counters. However, Stoutland's checks and counters have teammates as well that can mitigate their weaknesses. This argument goes hand in hand with metagame development, and as I've said before in this post, I feel as though the metagame can and has adapted to all these threats. On a larger note, the point of teambuilding and exploring our options is to push this meta forward. What makes teambuilding so fun for me in this meta in particular is the ability to craft teams that has counterplay to Stoutland+Lurantis or Frostom or Silvally-Water, and so on.


I disagree with the sentiment that the metagame cannot adapt to Stoutland's influence. It is a highly effective wallbreaker, but it has key flaws such as a middling Speed tier, lack of switch-in opportunities, reliance on teammates, and reliance on prediction hold it back from being broken imo. The form the defensive meta has taken is not overbearing in relation to Stoutland and its partners. The previous meta had its fair share of Normal-resists, Lurantis checks, Frostom counterplay, Silvally counterplay, etc. I also find it hard to believe that there are few reliable offensive checks to Stoutland seeing as how most offensive threats faster than 259 Speed can force it out or dent it. And in the case of Sand Rush, that set has its own counterplay via pivoting, priority, and taking care of sand. Furthermore, Stoutland and its partners typically have poor defensive synergy, so I don't see how breaking a common partner to Stoutland can be hard. Contrary to popular opinion, I'm actually really enjoying this metagame as I feel that Stoutland has opened up both room for creativity and also forced teams to once again pack their Return switch-ins.
A few things I need to correct here:
"Over-saturation of threats is also not a reason to ban something imo because that's sort of a cop out."
This is actually listed on the Tiering Policy Framework as a situation in which bans may be applied, not a matter of opinion. We have also actively applied this philosophy before in the situation of the Throh + Passimian metagame, which had the same type but drastically different answers. The Stoutland + Multiple other Normal types metagme suffers from this even worse than that metagame did, and this issue is a result of the inclusion of Stoutland to the metagame.

" Of course, Scrappy Stoutland slims down that list, but Ghost-types lost to Taunt Toxic Vigoroth. Knock Off Kecleon, and could be screwed over by Encore Chatot."
This implies that any of the listed Pokemon did not suffer from flaws significantly more crippling than Stoutland's that kept them from being an issue. The closest thing we had to Stoutland's features was Choice Band Bouffalant, which due to its own flaws of recoil and poor speed was unable to muster the same level of bulk as Stoutland as well as having to deal with additional immunities. Taunt+Toxic Vigoroth is a set with its own crippling flaws in the form of knock off, poison damage (which Stoutland actively benefits from) and opposing breakers, and its answers are significantly different from Stoutland's. Chatot suffers from cripplingly poor bulk. Kecleon suffers from a speed tier that leaves it slower than nearly the entire metagame and poor physical bulk, and is also not a true normal type because of Protean.

"I disagree with the sentiment that the metagame cannot adapt to Stoutland's influence."
This line grossly misrepresents what you are quoting. The specific wording was that I believe that the metagame cannot reasonably be expected to adapt to Stoutland in a healthy manner. Considering the over-saturation of threats we're dealing with, healthy adaptation has not taken place thus far.

"What I mean is, Abomansow, Kecleon, Rapidash, Pinsir, Probopass, and whoever else threatens Stoutland's checks have their own counterplay that keeps them in check. "
Can a player reasonably be expected to be able to stand up to each core that Stoutland can form? Can a player beat Stoutland+Lurantis, Stoutland+Vigoroth, Stoutland+Mareanie, Stoutland+Rotom-Frost, Stoutland+Rapidash, Stoutland+Probopass, and many other combinations that can be made all in one team or are they destined to lose to a particular Stoutland combination no matter what if they don't play full offense? I have not found the fulfillment of this expectation to be the case.

"This set plays as a late-game cleaner and revenge killer whenever sand is up, but the effectiveness of sand in the current meta is really what holds this set back"
On the contrary, during my laddering after which I achieved reqs I saw sand teams repeatedly, and they were highly effective. None of them used Life Orb either, instead preferring to use Choice Band and leave the move switching to SD Sandslash.

"Truth be told, Probopass is underwhelming as a trapper."
I used it on almost every single team I used to get reqs, and it was almost always highly effective, particularly when Stoutland learns Pursuit to guarantee the finish on Metang (which actually does not OHKO Probopass in return and therefore loses 1v1) and full SpD Bronzor. Probopass's best use was actually trapping other Probopass to allow Stoutland to freely abuse its STAB. Probopass created many situations for me where I only had to predict right once in order to remove my opponent's ability to stop my Stoutland from getting free KOs.

"It is a highly effective wallbreaker, but it has key flaws such as a middling Speed tier, lack of switch-in opportunities, reliance on teammates, and reliance on prediction hold it back from being broken imo. "
Most of these applied to Ursaring, but the momentum based shape of the metagame and available speed control options made Ursaring quickban worthy. Stoutland too takes advantage of the momentum based shape of the metagame and has speed control options (despite not needing it nearly as much). Stoutland is faster and bulkier than Ursaring in return for the preference for good prediction (which for most of its 'checks' it only has to predict right once against). In this case, the ease with which a player can abuse Stoutland with momentum options in combination with Stoutland's support options creates many times where a player can win while being less skilled simply by making the right play once in a game.
 
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A few things I need to correct here:
"Over-saturation of threats is also not a reason to ban something imo because that's sort of a cop out."
This is actually listed on the Tiering Policy Framework as a situation in which bans may be applied, not a matter of opinion. We have also actively applied this philosophy before in the situation of the Throh + Passimian metagame, which had the same type but drastically different answers. The Stoutland + Multiple other Normal types metagme suffers from this even worse than that metagame did, and this issue is a result of the inclusion of Stoutland to the metagame.
What I found in tiering policy that applies to your argument about saturation of threats is section IV.) Unhealthy, which states that "elements that are neither uncompetitive nor broken yet are deemed undesirable for the metagame such that they inhibit "skillful play" to a large extent". It also states that using this as ground to ban an element should be a "last-ditch, subjective catch-all, and tiering arguments should focus on uncompetitive or broken first". As I've argued, I do not see Stoutland as a broken Pokemon who is too good relative to the rest of the metagame, nor do I think that it is uncompetitive and inhibits skillful play. This is because Normal resists are plentiful in the tier, scouting Stoutland is not overly difficult, and Stoutland itself is prediction reliant. Yes, it can nail its defensive checks with coverage moves, but that is somewhat mitigated through the use of Protect to scout and utilizing Pokemon such as Tangela, Mawile, Metang, Bronzor, Carbink, etc, that can take a coverage move. Realistically though, those checks will have a harder time taking CB Return, but it isn't like Stoutland does not get chipped down either. Furthermore, I believe that the metagame can in fact adapt to the number of offensive threats available, but I'll address that more deeply in your other point.

I looked through discussions and ban reasoning from the Throh and Passimian, and they were deemed uncompetitive and broken. They weren't banned because of an over-saturation of threats. I apologize if I'm missing the point or something, because it's kind of unclear whether the claim is that Stoutland is also uncompetitive and broken, or if it's only the metric of "unhealthy". Even the ban reasonings from back then don't cite "unhealthy", rather they use "broken" and "uncompetitive" as basis for argument. http://zutier.boards.net/post/60/thread. Lastly, dealing with threats in this meta is more manageable than in Throh+Passimian meta, because those Pokemon had comparatively less counterplay than the current Normal-types in the tier. Even with Stoutland around, Chatot, Bouffalant, Vigoroth, Silvally-Normal, etc are still manageable because it's possible to utilize a Normal-type resist and pack Pokemon who can pressure them offensively or at least tank coverage.

" Of course, Scrappy Stoutland slims down that list, but Ghost-types lost to Taunt Toxic Vigoroth. Knock Off Kecleon, and could be screwed over by Encore Chatot."
This implies that any of the listed Pokemon did not suffer from flaws significantly more crippling than Stoutland's that kept them from being an issue. The closest thing we had to Stoutland's features was Choice Band Bouffalant, which due to its own flaws of recoil and poor speed was unable to muster the same level of bulk as Stoutland as well as having to deal with additional immunities. Taunt+Toxic Vigoroth is a set with its own crippling flaws in the form of knock off, poison damage (which Stoutland actively benefits from) and opposing breakers, and its answers are significantly different from Stoutland's. Chatot suffers from cripplingly poor bulk. Kecleon suffers from a speed tier that leaves it slower than nearly the entire metagame and poor physical bulk, and is also not a true normal type because of Protean.
I realize the Pokemon I mentioned have inherent flaws. I wasn't trying to imply that their flaws are less than Stoutland's, the point I was making was more so that Pokemon such as Bouffalant, Vigoroth, and Chatot also benefited in the last meta from the lack of Ghost-types. I'm not denying that Stoutland makes Ghost-types even worse now as potential answers to Normal-types, just that the previous meta also wasn't too kind to Ghosts.

"I disagree with the sentiment that the metagame cannot adapt to Stoutland's influence."
This line grossly misrepresents what you are quoting. The specific wording was that I believe that the metagame cannot reasonably be expected to adapt to Stoutland in a healthy manner. Considering the over-saturation of threats we're dealing with, healthy adaptation has not taken place thus far.
Perhaps my own wording didn't fully get my point across. I do believe that the meta can reasonably be expected to adapt to Stoutland in a healthy manner, even with the high saturation of threats we're dealing with. For example, teams can run a Pokemon to check Stoutland such as Golem, Bronzor, or Mawile, and then pack secondary checks to the tier's other Normal-types. For the record, I've made a stall team that could effectively deal with Stoutland, Viggy, Chatot, Bouffalant, etc. It's possible to play around all of these threats, so I disagree with the belief that healthy adaptation has not taken place thus far. Pokemon such as Golem, Bronzor, Mawile, and Tangela have risen to check Stoutland, and we've still got options to check the other Normal-types in the tier via other Pokemon like Silvally-Fighting, Dusclops, Granbull, and Machoke (those are just some examples).

"What I mean is, Abomansow, Kecleon, Rapidash, Pinsir, Probopass, and whoever else threatens Stoutland's checks have their own counterplay that keeps them in check. "
Can a player reasonably be expected to be able to stand up to each core that Stoutland can form? Can a player beat Stoutland+Lurantis, Stoutland+Vigoroth, Stoutland+Mareanie, Stoutland+Rotom-Frost, Stoutland+Rapidash, Stoutland+Probopass, and many other combinations that can be made all in one team or are they destined to lose to a particular Stoutland combination no matter what if they don't play full offense? I have not found the fulfillment of this expectation to be the case.
Yes. It is possible to expect a player to be able to all those Stoutland "cores". Take this with a grain of salt because I'm not claiming that one can beat all of these combinations all of the time, rather that it's possible for a player to comfortably prep for these scenarios. For example, most of these cores lack defensive utility and force a player to accommodate stacked weaknesses (i.e Fighting-type weakness, inability to repeatedly take hits, lack of Speed or revenge killing, or just being weak to certain offensive threats).

"This set plays as a late-game cleaner and revenge killer whenever sand is up, but the effectiveness of sand in the current meta is really what holds this set back"
On the contrary, during my laddering after which I achieved reqs I saw sand teams repeatedly, and they were highly effective. None of them used Life Orb either, instead preferring to use Choice Band and leave the move switching to SD Sandslash.
Sand is not a style which is consistently good by virtue of Abomasnow being in the tier and Hippopotas being a relatively niche Pokemon that doesn't serve as much defensively utility by going Smooth Rock>Eviolite. Obviously it can be highly effective at times, but I haven't found it to be a dominating playstyle that pushes Stoutland over the edge.

"Truth be told, Probopass is underwhelming as a trapper."
I used it on almost every single team I used to get reqs, and it was almost always highly effective, particularly when Stoutland learns Pursuit to guarantee the finish on Metang (which actually does not OHKO Probopass in return and therefore loses 1v1) and full SpD Bronzor. Probopass's best use was actually trapping other Probopass to allow Stoutland to freely abuse its STAB. Probopass created many situations for me where I only had to predict right once in order to remove my opponent's ability to stop my Stoutland from getting free KOs.
"It doesn't guaranteed beat Bronzor or EQ Metang (can run extra creep or bulk for Probo), and it has poor defensive synergy alongside Stoutland. Consistently beating non-Shed Shell Mawile is fantastic though." I admit I forgot to mention that it can trap opposing Probopass. There's no denying that trapping a Steel-type opens up the door for Stoutland to spam its STAB. However, it's more complicated than only having to predict correct once because the opposing Probopass can also win Speed tie and KO with Earth Power, the Metang can be faster than Probo, 2HKO it, and then force Stoutland to play a 50/50 with Pursuit, and Probo has to play around Psywave rolls vs Bronzor. Probopass also faces many issues in this meta, so although it can be a good trapper, I don't think it helps make Stoutland unmanageable.

"It is a highly effective wallbreaker, but it has key flaws such as a middling Speed tier, lack of switch-in opportunities, reliance on teammates, and reliance on prediction hold it back from being broken imo. "
Most of these applied to Ursaring, but the momentum based shape of the metagame and available speed control options made Ursaring quickban worthy. Stoutland too takes advantage of the momentum based shape of the metagame and has speed control options (despite not needing it nearly as much). Stoutland is faster and bulkier than Ursaring in return for the preference for good prediction (which for most of its 'checks' it only has to predict right once against). In this case, the ease with which a player can abuse Stoutland with momentum options in combination with Stoutland's support options creates many times where a player can win while being less skilled simply by making the right play once in a game.
I understand the comparison to Ursaring, but they play relatively differently. Stoutland does not match the same level of power as Ursaring or freedom to switch up moves, so I don't think it's fair to place them in the same boat.

Your point about momentum and how Stoutland can be brought in is a great point to make. I concede that it's true, but Stoutland still has to make the right calls when attacking. In other words, it can either keep up that momentum or make a wrong prediction and halt that momentum. Yes, I understand that even a mispredict can result in Stoutland chipping away at something. Also for the record, this logic works for most wallbreakers; it's just that Stoutland is a premier wallbreaker atm. For these reasons, I don't believe that Stoutland takes away skill and should be banned.
 
With 7 votes having been submitted, the result can no longer be changed. With a 70% majority, Stoutland is now banned from ZU.
Tagging The Immortal and Kris to implement and to ban it from OM Snake finals. Thanks for laddering and voting everyone! To see precisely who voted what, see the hide tag below. It will be updated as the last few votes come in.
Froasty: Ban
Union Caboche: Ban
love chants: Ban
Absolute Infinity: Ban
Jmash324: Ban
RawMelon: No vote
LordST: No vote
Amphareixon: Ban
LightPinkYoshi: Ban
Calucha: Do Not Ban

Have fun in a now dogless meta!
 
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I'm going to explain my vote on Stoutland, I wanted to vote Abstain first but that wasn't really possible (it was the same de facto than a vote No Ban), so I finally voted Ban. I dont think Stoutland was broken in itself. The problem of the small number of switch ins has been very exaggerated, common core such as Mareanie+Golem were in practise totally able to deal with Stoutland if the opponent didnt do perfect double switchs every turn. In the same way, the increase of normal spam during the Stoutland suspected was true only for Vigoroth, Chatot was more powerful only thanks to the Probopass presence and Bouffalant has always been a monster, it was just underplayed during months and its usage in SSNL made it hyped. It was legitimately less powerful during the Stoutland suspect thanks to the important number of normal resists runned by teams (Tangela isn't a normal resist). At the contrary, Stoutland had a healthy presence on some aspects in decreasing the viability of boring threats which were generally not taken into account in the teambuilding such as Purugly, Bibarel, Pawniard or Ninjask. The bulk and the reasonnable speed of Stoutland allowed to check decently these threats in bringing in the same way teams far more prepared to physical threats. In this perspective, the presence of Stoutland was a good thing. I want to point also that Stoutland wasn't really in itself an anti-meta mon (even if it's true it was more powerful now than few months ago). Sure, it abused toxic spikes with Facade but it suffered also a lot for the lose of staying power. Mons which were unable to revenge kill it could do it after toxic spikes damages.

To summarise, I dont think Stoutland was broken in itself, it had also a positif impact on the meta and it wasn't anti-meta either. So, why did i vote ban ? Simply because some cores with Stoutland were broken, unhealthy, uncompetitive. Stoutland + Frosttom, Stoutland + Vigoroth, Stoutland + Lurantis, Stoutland + Probopass were very difficult to handle for whatever team not called offense/stall. Some people will argue that it's just the necessary support which makes a S rank Pokémon good but there is an important difference to notice here. Frosttom, Vigoroth, Lurantis and Probopass have all a little unhealthy presence in the meta. Frosttom was already suspected in the past and wasn't banned by one vote, a lot of criticisms have been adressed to vigorth since it's in ZU (and it was banned in ORAS PU), Lurantis is a monster which if it becomes stronger in the futur will deserve a suspect and the trapping ability of Probopass is uncompetitive. All these mons aren't arguably banworthy at the moment, but if you add one of them with Stoutland it does a toxic milkshake which exploses in the face. Balance teams were impossible to build without being 6-0 by one of this core or being unviable against the rest of the meta.

ZU has the particuliarity to dont have a strong stall playstyle due to the lack of a good unaware mon. It stays a correct playstyle (i used that the last battles of the suspect) but not as viable as in other tiers to be spammed. So the last option in the optic to keep Stoutland was definitely a meta 100% offense. I personnally dont like this perspective in itself but I can understand people support that. However, i think the restriction of a no balance playstyle meta was too important to ignore this in my vote. ZU has also the particularity to have strong special teams anti-offense such as Weather, Screen, Webs, TR already powerful without offense being the only playstyle viable. If Stoutland was still ZU, it would make finally the battles far more match-ups biased than nowadays. That wasn't an healthy perspective for the ZU meta and would have maken it less competitive than it actually is. That's why I voted Ban Stoutland.

But lets be honnest, the result of the suspect wont have normally a big impact, Stoutland will very probably rise in PU in October. It was an annomaly that it was ZU this month.
 
Usage Based Tier Updates have been released (They're right this time)! The ZU Meta is still getting flipped on its head!

Lurantis 3.601%
Ninetales 3.718% (RU)
Rotom-Frost 4.318%
Altaria 3.161%
Floatzel 3.002%
Gourgeist-Super 2.389%
Komala 2.647%
Pyukumuku 3.215%
Swanna 3.392%
Zangoose 3.275%

Kabutops 7.228%
Ludicolo 4.696%
Stoutland 3.707%
Type: Null 3.439%
 
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Usage Based Tier Updates have been released (They're right this time)! The ZU Meta is still getting flipped on its head!

Lurantis 3.601%
Ninetales 3.718% (RU)
Rotom-Frost 4.318%
Altaria 3.161%
Floatzel 3.002%
Gourgeist-Super 2.389%
Komala 2.647%
Pyukumuku 3.215%
Swanna 3.392%
Zangoose 3.275%

Kabutops 7.228%
Ludicolo 4.696%
Stoutland 3.707%
Type: Null 3.439%
Confirming all of these. Also...


The council is voting on Zangoose! This monster just dropped and is incredibly strong. With Toxic Boost sets breaking apart our entire meta and Belly Drum + Quick Attack sets running through teams with ease, we're not wasting time with letting this obviously broken threat sit around. If it does get banned, we have the option of retesting in the future, but with Fall Seasonal going on, the council decided to immediately spring into action.

Each of the council members will submit a vote and the results will be announced as soon as they are known. A simple majority (50%+1) is required to ban Zangoose. See below for a list of current council members:

That's about it for what I have to announce, so for some quick, rushed stray personal thoughts:
  • Oh my god Frosttom left. This is the thing I've been hoping for the entire time.
  • Seems PU also realized Stout was busted down here. Thanks for the help guys, little late though.
  • Gourgeist-Super is gonna do what Large did but better. Cool
  • Floatzel is actually my favourite of the drops. A fast Water-type breaker after Frosttom left? Cool, very cool
  • SCRATCH THAT WE'VE GOT SLEEPY BOI. I love Komala so much. From wallbreaking sets with U-turn for some momentum and Sucker Punch for priority to fat sets with WishTect+Rapid Spin, this mon is gonna be really cool and I'm glad PU FINALLY let it drop.
  • Pyukumuku is here so stall is good again.
  • Swanna... can PU stop letting it's A-ranks drop? This could be very scary with no more Elec mon at the top of the tier.
  • Lurantis left... poor thing. It'd been rising here the entire time, people (including myself) really realizing its full potential, and then PU takes it. That's rude to poor plant boi.
  • Ninetales left. This is unfortunate as it was actually a very nice anti-meta breaker, but we can live without it.
All in all, stall got better and no more Frosttom. Curious to see where this goes.
 
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Usage Based Tier Updates have been released (They're right this time)! The ZU Meta is still getting flipped on its head!

Lurantis 3.601%
Ninetales 3.718% (RU)
Rotom-Frost 4.318%
Altaria 3.161%
Floatzel 3.002%
Gourgeist-Super 2.389%
Komala 2.647%
Pyukumuku 3.215%
Swanna 3.392%
Zangoose 3.275%

Kabutops 7.228%
Ludicolo 4.696%
Stoutland 3.707%
Type: Null 3.439%
These changes look like Icevally is finally gonna get to C- maybe. Ninetails and Frostom leaving and Altaria and Supergeist dropping are really gonna help. Come on guys you know it deserves it lol.
Other than that holy cow this really changes the meta, and aside from pyuku needing to die now, these are all pretty interesting and I'm excited to see where the meta goes.
 
With almost all of our council members voting, the result can no longer be changed. With a fully unanimous 100% majority, Zangoose is now banned from ZU. Tagging The Immortal and Kris to implement this. For individual votes, see below (though they aren't exactly interesting):
Diagnostic: Ban
Xayah: Ban
5gen: Ban
Aaronboyer: Ban
DurzaOffTopic: Ban
Froasty: Ban
jklioe: Ban
LightPinkYoshi: Ban

Thank you for playing and I hope you enjoy this new, now much healthier metagame!
 
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I guess I'll be the first to discuss the rises and drops in-depth from these recent shifts

Rises

Lurantis- This mon leaving just as stall has become good again is quite unfortunate. It was the best defogger in the tier aside from certain Silvally-formes. It was also a solid check to threats such as Golem, Leafeon, and most importantly, Vigoroth due to Contrary Superpower However, I will say this mon has become increasingly annoying to prep for, requiring a dedicated check such as Oricorio-Baile, Roselia, Silvally-Poison, etc to deal with it. Overall losing this pokemon is unfortunate though.


Ninetales- Didn't expect to lose Ninetales but I don't follow the RU metagame in the slightest. Ninetales was always an underappreciated and underestimated pokemon while it was in ZU, as it was quite threatening due to its access to both Calm Mind and Nasty Plot and its pretty high speed tier. Another pokemon that is unfortunate to miss, though I don't think losing it is as impactful as the other two pokemon we lost.


Rotom-Frost- Oh boy. I think most of knew of the possibility for Frost Rotom to rise to PU after its usage began to rise last month, beating out Floatzel in usage. However, I don't think many expected it to be this soon. Frost Rotom has always been a controversial pokemon in the tier due to its dual STAB combination, solid bulk, and utility and while I never personally thought it was too overbearing, I'd be lying if I wasnt interested in seeing what pokemon can get their chance to shine both offensively and defensively without the fridge around.

Drops


Altaria- Altaria is going to be an extremely solid pokemon for Balance and other defensive playstyles. Its solid typing, mixed bulk, and access to reliable recovery allows it to check threats such as Silvally-Fighting, Monferno, and Combusken. It provides solid utility with moves like Defog, allowing it to become one of the best hazard removers in the tier. Its ability Natural Cure greatly increases its longevity and allows it to absorb toxic for teammates such as Pyukumuku on Stall (Lickilicky, Pyukumuku, Altaria, Bronzor is gonna be a really good stall core in this meta.). Defensive Dragon Dance also seems like an interesting option to experiment with.

Floatzel- This pokemon is absolutely fantastic. It has good mixed offensive stats, an insane speed tier (outspeeding scarf abomasnow single-handedly makes rain good again), and a solid movepool make this pokemon incredibly hard to deal with. It has few switch-ins and many possible switch-ins such as Pyukumuku and Mareanie can be crippled with Taunt or Switcheroo sets. Definitely the best offensive pokemon we have gotten in this shift (bar Zangoose), and arguably the best pokemon of the shifts period.

Gourgeist-Super- Essentially a better gourgeist. I expect to see this being a solid option on Balance teams and maybe even stall. This isnt a game-changing drop but a welcome one regardless

Komala- Komala is a pretty solid wallbreaker due its high attack stat backed by a good amount of coverage options such as Earthquake, Knock Off, U-Turn, Sucker Punch, Close Combat and more. Its ability Comatose is pretty solid, preventing it from being statused. It can provide decent utility such as the rare Rapid Spin and Wish, though the latter is somewhat questionable due to mediocre defensive stats. Aside from the wallbreaking Choice Band set, I suspect Assault Vest will be a solid option, even if it does compete with Kecleon to an extent.

Pyukumuku- Lickilicky's partner in crime is finally back and ready to roll. Along with Altaria, Pyukumuku is gonna make Stall an A tier strat again.

Swanna- Swanna is an incredibly potent offensive threat with the nearly unresisted water flying STAB combination backed by good special attack and speed stats. Its typing also allows it to serve as a servicable Monferno check on offensive playstyles. Swanna also provides good utility as being an offensive defogger, one of the few in the tier. Frost Rotom's exit from the meta is also benefital for this mon.
 
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ok so giving my opinion on shifts with winners and losers:
Note:they may or not be accurate since this is day 1 of new meta
754.png

Winners:
I'd say water/rock types get a "win" from lurantis getting out,many things arent gonna need to worry about switching into Leaf storms or supower

losers:
Oricorio baile,Poison vally,Roselia and some others get less chance to be used due to lurantis leaving

038.png

Not that huge tbh but:

Winners:
Grass types in general get better with one more fire out,fire competition is also smaller

losers:
Nine's checks lose a bit of viability,although they will continue being used due to other fires

479f.png

well this one is the most important:
Winners:
Well to start out,a huge part of the meta likes frost's departure,as it could either VS / Blizzard / Trick them,bar some exceptions the meta will probably appreciate frost out,Electrode Zebs and electivire love its departure too
Losers:
SEAKING,Grumpig,frost specific checks,etc
Seaking main use was normally as a frostom counter,and with frost getting out seaking will have a huge drop in viability probably


334.png

Wins:
Stall,Balance teams are gonna appreciate a dragon type defogger with recovery,Alt was good in the past and probably will be this time as well

Losers:
Offense gets kinda cucked by Alt,it's typing does check some common offense mons and i'd say they hate alt being back,apart of that Grass types hate her as well bar Abomasnow i'd say

711.png

Winners: Basically what wins with Large gourgeist
Losers: Basically the same losers as Large Gourgeist


771.png

<3 <3 <3 <3
STALL,Bulkier balance teams,Pyu is just a stall staple a while ago and it will continue being,Bulkier balance teams also will probably like having a check to multiple setup sweepers

Losers:
Basically every setup sweeper loses with Pyu back,Unaware is incredible


419.png

winners:
Offense is likely gonna appreciate a new water type which can setup on Mareanie and with a great speed tier,it is probably gonna succeed
losers: Cant imagine one rn,but would say other offensive waters due to competition

581.png

Winners:
Offense will likely use swanna a Water type deffoger instead of water vally,it was good before and will likely be now as well
Losers:Water vally gets to compete with Swanna for a slot now,grass types also dont appreciate getting into spammable Hurricanes/B bird


Couldnt save img but
(Komala)
wins: ghosts since they will likely check komala,principally gourgeist,balance will probably like wish tect spinner as well
loses:i'd say normals ironically,bc there is now one more spot on competition
 

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