Featured OU RMT

Team by Lady Bug, with commentary by Reverb. Art by Cartoons!.
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As everyone knows, Pokémon Black and White came out like 2 weeks ago. This means I will probably never play Generation 4 again unless it's for tournaments (like SPL). With all the new Pokémon and items, I doubt that hail is going to work; you never know though!

Anyway, with the Black and White release, with this team being my best one, and with a lot of people knowing this team now, so why not make a RMT?

Abomasnow Skarmory Nidoqueen Blissey Spiritomb Starmie

The Team

PartyStarter (Abomasnow) (M) @ Leftovers
Ability: Snow Warning
EVs: 252 HP / 32 Spe/224 SpD
Sassy nature (+SpD, -Spe)
- Wood Hammer
- Blizzard
- Protect
- Leech Seed

You will see an Abomasnow in any hail team, of course. I'm leading with it because I want to start hail ASAP—6% damage every turn to the opposite Pokémon is really good, especially considering that Ice-types aren't really common in OU. 32 Speed EVs are there to outspeed Swampert leads and OHKO them with Wood Hammer before they set up rocks; even though Swampert leads are very rare these days, I'll keep the 32 Speed EVs, adding them to SpD isn't really going to help me anyway.

Without Abomasnow this team will have a really hard time against stuff like CroCune, and the 1-x comebacks with Curse Snorlax or Curse Tyranitar. With Leech Seed Abomasnow is almost always at full health, Leech Seed also helps me against the popular Abomasnow switch-ins like Scizor, Leech Seed + Protect + SR and Spikes make stuff like it to die before they do any damage to the team.

Sugarcult (Skarmory) (M) @ Leftovers
Ability: Keen Eye
EVs: 252 HP / 24 Def / 196 SpD / 36 Spe
Impish nature (+Def, -SpA)
- Whirlwind
- Brave Bird
- Spikes
- Roost

As I said before, I only made this team because my old team needed a Steel-type, so I chose Skarmory. It's not there only because it's a Steel-type; it is also one of the best Spikes user and Scizor switch-ins.

This spread is used to make it bulky in both Defense and Special Defense. The 36 Speed EVs are there to let it outspeed CB Tyranitar and other Skarmory. Spikes is really helpful for this team—it lets me kill stuff like Roar Heatran and Swords Dance Scizor, who can do some damage to this team, easier.

That's it, really. Skarmory might not do much stuff, but it is really helpful for this team.

New Day (Nidoqueen) (F) @ Leftovers
Ability: Poison Point
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 6 Spe
Relaxed nature (+Def, -Spe)
- Toxic Spikes
- Stealth Rock
- Fire Blast
- Earthquake

Nidoqueen, like any other member of this team, is really important. Without it, I lose to things like SD Roost Scizor.

Stealth Rock to hurt anything that switches in (duh). Toxic Spikes helps me against stuff that I can't Toxic with Blissey because they will weaken/kill it if I do, like Tyranitar, who is really a problem for this team, especially DD and the mixed versions, who get screwed by Toxic Spikes. Fire Blast is obviously for Scizor and Forretress, who can set up on this team.

This my counter to Lucario, and if Nidoqueen dies before Lucario it means I have to burn it with Spiritomb, which isn't really the best way to deal with Lucario. Nidoqueen is also my Trick switch-in, as she doesn't really mind being Choiced.

Stacy's Mom (Blissey) (F) @ Leftovers
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 148 HP / 252 Def / 108 SpD
Bold nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Wish
- Toxic
- Protect
- Seismic Toss

Wish support, walling most of the special attackers, and Toxic. That is pretty much what Blissey does for this team.

With Wish I can heal Abomasnow and Nidoqueen, Abomasnow doesn't really lose a lot of its health most of the time, but Nidoqueen is mostly at low health. Without Blissey, Zapdos can dominate this team. If I see a Zapdos I never take risks with Blissey that cause killing her; otherwise I have to burn it and stall it out with Spiritomb, who usually dies to other stuff. Toxic helps against anything that isn't a Steel or Poison-type, obviously, with hail damage and poison it makes stuff die faster.

Always (Spiritomb) (M) @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
EVs: 252 HP / 30 Def / 228 SpD
Careful nature (+SpD, -SpA)
- Will-O-Wisp
- Pursuit
- Rest
- Sleep Talk

Spiritomb is one of my favorite Pokémon, but that isn't really the reason I'm using it for. I'm using it mainly because it's a Ghost who can block Rapid Spin, and because of Gengar, who I couldn't touch at all with the previous team.

Starmie is already a good spinner, but with this thing Pursuiting ghosts like Rotom-A, it will be an even better spinner. Though, I rarely Pursuit Rotom-A with this, but at some points it is really needed. Pursuit is also for the biggest threat to my old version of the team, Gengar. I literally didn't have anything for Gengar with the previous version. Will-O-Wisp is to cripple things like Scizor, who sometimes switch in on Spiritomb for some reason, it also helps me against DD Tyranitar with Lum Berry (after Toxic Spikes activate it). Rest and Sleep Talk are there to heal it and remove status.

Paralyzer (Starmie) @ Leftovers
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 252 HP / 120 Def / 136 Spe
Bold nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Surf
- Thunderbolt
- Rapid Spin
- Recover

My team needs a spinner, so I decided to use Starmie for multiple reasons, not to spin only. It also counters Gyarados, who can be a problem to this team without Starmie.

I'm using Bold nature with max HP and a lot of Defense to take physical attacks better. With this spread, Scarf Tyranitar can never OHKO me with Crunch/Pursuit on the switch, which has helped me in a lot of battles. Without Starmie, as I mentioned before, Gyarados can be a big problem to this team. I have to watch out for CB Gyarados who can Payback me on the switch though, but thankfully, it's rare. With Pursuit Spiritomb, Starmie spins much easier.

Closing Words

I'm really going to miss using this team and hail teams in general in Generation 5. I'm also going to miss Generation 4, as it is the first generation that I played Pokémon competitively in. Again, goodbye Generation 4~

With Generation IV drawing to a close, I thought it'd be interesting to examine an unconventional team. In a metagame where teams seem to be looking more and more alike, seeing a successful team that rejects the accepted standard is refreshing. For some reason hail stall has been overlooked by many top battlers. The team retirement's comes on the heels of Lady Bug's Smogon Tour victory. With 'Team Hail Stall #2,' Lady Bug shows that this teamstyle is viable and can be used at the highest echelons of play.

The team leads off with the infamous Abomasnow, a staple on any hail team. He provides the crucial hail, which hits non-Ice-types for 6.25% each turn, allowing Lady Bug to wear his opponent's Pokémon down. Wood Hammer is the first STAB attack, which is great for disposing of bulky Water-types. While the 1/3 recoil damage is off-putting, one must keep in mind that it's a small price to pay to be able to neutralize many of the team's biggest problems. Blizzard is the second choice of STAB; with its base 120 power and 100% accuracy in hail, it is an excellent attacking option. Protect is given a slot on the moveset so Abomasnow can scout, since it matches up poorly with many of the metagame's top threats. The last move, Leech Seed, preserves Stealth Rock-weak Abomasnow's longevity along with providing team support. The EVs give Abomasnow special bulk, so it can reliably switch in to many of the game's special threats, since the most common physical attackers run moves that score super effective hits against the sentient Christmas tree.

Lady Bug follows up with Skarmory, one of the best spikestackers in the game. With Spikes in his arsenal, Skarmory can severely limit the opponent's switch options, doing up to 25% damage to each Pokémon that comes in. With that in mind, Whirlwind is a natural fit on this set. Whenever Skarmory is in an advantageous position, he can phaze Pokémon, further weakening the opposing team. To preserve its longevity, Skarmory runs Roost. With this move Skarmory is capable of nursing attacks that fail to 2HKO while setting up Spikes. Rounding off the set is Brave Bird, which is useful for stopping Pokémon like Lucario and Breloom, who would otherwise set up against Skarmory. The EV spread balances out Skarmory's defensive capabilities. A physically defensive giant, Skarmory is vulnerable to special attacks. In this case, Lady Bug weakens Skarmory's ability to sponge physical attacks so he can give it decent special bulk. This proves to be quite useful as what were once 2HKOs become 3HKOs, allowing Skarmory to execute its deadly stack and heal combo.

Usually relegated to UU, Nidoqueen makes an appearance as the team's utility user. Toxic Spikes is designated for the first move slot, as it is incredibly useful. Since there are very few Poison-types in OU, it is overwhelmingly likely that something on the opponent's team will be poisoned. Pokémon that normally enjoy longevity are suddenly crippled, unable to stay in for more than a few turns. Lacking room on the rest of his team, Lady Bug gives Stealth Rock to Nidoqueen. Stealth Rock has been a staple on any competitive team, and with good reason. The pointed stones hit everything in the game (besides Clefable) for residual damage, thus placing a tax on switching. To deal with Forretress and Scizor, Nidoqueen runs Fire Blast. It should also be noted that opposing Skarmory will be 2HKOed, thus preventing the iron bird from setting up Spikes with ease. Finally, Nidoqueen runs Earthquake, an excellent STAB move that also enables Nidoqueen to be a reliable Lucario counter. It is EVed in HP and Defense to allow it to act as a physical tank.

No Pokémon is more common on stall teams that Blissey, and with good reason. She's by far the best special wall in the game. Besides sponging special attacks, Blissey serves an important support role on the team. Since many of Lady Bug's Pokémon lack reliable recovery, Blissey is given Wish, preserving their longevity and healing herself. Because it takes a turn for Wish to activate, Blissey runs Protect. Protect is crucial to the set, eliminating the turn delay and allowing Blissey to Toxic stall opposing Pokémon. Blissey runs Toxic for non-grounded Pokémon, such as Zapdos, who would otherwise pose a reasonable threat to the team. The last moveslot is designated for Seismic Toss, so Blissey can exact direct damage on opposing Pokémon should it be necessary.

Spiritomb is the team's spinblocker of choice. Normally thought to be outclassed by Rotom-A, it fits well with the rest of the team. Will-O-Wisp is the status move of choice, cutting the attack of opposing Pokémon in half. This can be especially useful against opposing Lucario and Scizor. A more unique move is Pursuit, which allows Spiritomb to remove opposing Psychic- and Ghost-types with ease. To give Spiritomb a way to heal itself, Lady Bug utilizes the popular Rest / Sleep Talk combination. This is great for PP stalling when used in conjunction with Spiritomb's Pressure ability. Spiritomb is EVed to be concentrated in special bulk, since it will want to be able to handle the ever-common Life Orb Rapid Spin Starmie.

Rounding off the team is Lady Bug's spinner of choice, Starmie. He forgoes a more offensive set in favor Defensive capability and Leftovers recovery. Surf is the STAB move of choice, favored over Hydro Pump for its higher PP and accuracy. Plus, since Starmie is the team's primary Infernape response, it wants to be able to reliably eliminate the deadly sweeper. Thunderbolt is chosen because it offers excellent coverage with Surf, hitting Water-types for super effective damage. Rapid Spin is a must-have, as it removes the opponent's entry hazards. It should be noted that Rapid Spin gives Lady Bug a decisive edge over opposing stall teams. To make sure Starmie sticks around, the final move slot is designated for Recover, giving Starmie 50% of its HP back, since it can be worn down by hail.

While 'Team Hail Stall #2' is certainly a great team, it has a few drawbacks. Dragon Dance Dragonite poses a significant threat to the team, as a +1 Life Orb-boosted Outrage OHKOs everything on the team besides Skarmory, who fears a Fire-type auxiliary attack. Another problematic Pokémon is Wish Calm Mind Jirachi, who can set up effortlessly, being immune to Toxic damage. These threats aside, Lady Bug does a good job at being a leg up on the metagame. The strange team structure gives him a psychological edge, throwing many opponents who aren't used to hail stall off. Ultimately, through a combination of factors, Lady Bug has showed us that hail stall should be feared, creating a team that has undoubtedly left its mark on the game.

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