Ubers Cores

By Furai, with help from Go10 and Jibaku. Art by Nastyjungle.
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Creating a team in Ubers can often result in a headache. There is so much to cover: stall teams, Spike-stacking teams, and offensive teams. With extremely hard hitting moves, such as Draco Meteor, Outrage, Thunder, and Fire Blast, lurking everywhere, you must find a way to protect your team from them. The simple solution for making your team solid is building it around a solid core. However, this does not make this any easier, as making up your own core can be problematic! If by any chance you fear a ragequit while making a team, this article is just for you. We are going to showcase some top cores in Ubers, for your own use!

The Old and Powerful Cores


Kyogre, Ferrothorn, and Dialga

This is probably one of the most known cores for an Ubers player. Rain is the most common weather in Ubers, and actually, for a good reason. Kyogre, the ultimate rain summoner (Politoed is just a wannabe), is able to spam the strongest attack in the entire game: Water Spout. Unless you pack a Pokémon that quadruple resists Water, such as Palkia or Kingdra, or that is immune to Water, such as Gastrodon, be sure that something is going to take a ton of damage. This gets even more dangerous when Kyogre is backed up by entry hazards, which is exactly what Ferrothorn and Dialga can do. Ferrothorn enjoys the rain Kyogre summons, as it decreases its Fire-type weakness, and it can also set up Spikes and annoy the foe with Leech Seed, which can also heal Kyogre. Dialga also enjoys the rain as it allows it to spam Thunders, which can potentially paralyze the foe and allow Kyogre to outspeed a lot more Pokémon. Dialga can also destroy Palkia with Draco Meteor, as Palkia cannot OHKO a healthy Dialga.

As good as this core is, it is easy to defeat. Opposing entry hazards, especially Toxic Spikes, weaken Kyogre and make its Water Spout a lot weaker. Thus, Xatu, who can bounce back opposing hazards, or Tentacruel, who can easily absorb and spin entry hazards, pair perfectly with this core. Two-thirds of this core are weak to Fighting-type attacks, so Terrakion and Blaziken are fearsome if they manage to land a hit. Kyogre can't take their Fighting STAB attacks either, as it has no reliable recovery. Giratina and Gliscor are also great teammates for this core, as thanks to their typing, they can easily shrug off any Fighting-type attack. Gliscor is particularly good as it can turn Groudon into setup bait and proceed to annoy the foe with Toxic and Taunt. Giratina's advantage over Gliscor is that thanks to its Ghost typing, it can prevent the opponent from spinning away the hazards you have worked so hard to lay.

Groudon, Ho-Oh, and Forretress

SUUUUUUUNSHINE. This is basically the same case with Kyogre, only with Ho-Oh! Ho-Oh's SubRoost set is extremely devastating; its STABs hit a large amount of Pokémon, and only miss out on coverage on Zekrom, Heatran, and Rock-types, such as Tyranitar and Rock Arceus. But no worries, Groudon to the rescue! Not only does Groudon beat Zekrom and the Rock-types that stop Ho-Oh, it also sets up Stealth Rock, which guarantees that Life Orb Ho-Oh's Brave Bird always OHKOes Choice Scarf Kyogre, and summons the sun that powers up Ho-Oh's signature move, Sacred Fire. Ho-Oh's Stealth Rock weakness is fairly troublesome, and while the recently released Regenerator fixes that a bit, a Rapid Spin user is advised. Forretress makes a perfect partner, as it can set up Spikes to help Ho-Oh on its sweep and it grant a safe switch-in with Volt Switch.

This core suffers badly from Kyogre. It can change the weather to rain, which weakens Ho-Oh's Fire STAB, and simply drown everything on this core with its Water STAB. While it must be wary of Ho-Oh's Brave Bird, it can easily devastate this core with little prediction. Palkia is a great addition to this core, as it can easily switch into Kyogre's Water STAB and hit back hard with Thunder. Specially defensive Giratina also deserves a mention here, as it can take an Ice Beam easily, and also keep the hazards on the opposing side of the field. Because Groudon has no reliable recovery, it will not be able to take repeated hits, so Pokémon such as Salamence, Rayquaza, and Extreme Killer Arceus can become problematic. Salamence and Rayquaza are especially dangerous, as they can hurt Ho-Oh with Outrage and OHKO Forretress immediately with Fire Blast. Choice Scarf Terrakion can help against all three, as it can outspeed all of them and hit them super effectively with its respective STABs. Xatu is also a fantastic addition to this core, as Gliscor easily defeats this core, but thanks to Xatu's Magic Bounce ability and Flying typing, Gliscor can literally do nothing to it. Xatu can also keep hazards off your side of the field, thanks to its unique ability.

Tyranitar, Ferrothorn, and Specially Defensive Giratina

Sandstorm is slowly resurrecting in Ubers. This core possesses perfect synergy between its members: the Fighting weakness of Tyranitar and Ferrothorn is covered by Giratina, the Fire weakness of Ferrothorn is covered by Giratina and Tyranitar, and the Ghost and Dragon weaknesses of Giratina is covered by Ferrothorn and Tyranitar, although the latter needs sand up to take Draco Meteor and Spacial Rend. Dialga, a dominant Pokémon in Ubers, can easily take down Giratina and Ferrothorn on its own; but thanks to the Special Defense boost the sandstorm grants to Tyranitar, its not going anywhere but down! This core puts a lot of pressure on the foe as, along with the additional damage from sandstorm, Tyranitar and Ferrothorn can lay down Stealth Rock and Spikes. Giratina can then continually phaze the foe with Roar or Dragon Tail, stacking up more and more passive damage on its team. The combination of Giratina and Tyranitar also keep Choiced Kyogre in check: in order to hit Giratina, Kyogre must use Ice Beam, and as Ice Beam won't do anything to Tyranitar in sand, Tyranitar can safely switch in and Pursuit Kyogre as it tries to flee. So simple, yet so effective.

SubSD Terrakion and Swords Dance + Lum Berry Groudon easily put a lot of pressure on this core. Thanks to Substitute and Lum Berry, respectively, Giratina cannot burn Terrakion or Groudon, and takes a lot of damage from their boosted STABs. For example, +2 Life Orb Terrakion does 71.37% - 83.89% to Giratina, one of the bulkiest walls in the game, with its STAB Stone Edge. Tyranitar and Ferrothorn will not be able to take a Close Combat or a boosted Earthquake at all. That's why Gliscor can be very effective when it's backed by this core. Gliscor can take a boosted Stone Edge from Terrakion and hit back hard with Earthquake, whereas Groudon's Stone Edge tickles Gliscor. Gliscor also forces a ton of switches and can poison a lot of Pokémon, which makes the most of the damage from entry hazards, sandstorm damage, and poison. Rayquaza is also very dangerous, because it can OHKO everything with its wide movepool. Bulky Arceus formes, such as Grass, Ground, and Rock Arceus, can easily patch this weakness with Ice Beam or Judgment, depending on the forme.

Extreme Killer Arceus & Double Dance + Lum Berry Groudon

Double Dance Groudon can become a shocking sweeper once it has grabbed a boost. Dual boosting options make Groudon a flexible offensive threat: if facing a defensive, slow team, click Swords Dance, and if facing a faster, frail team, click Rock Polish. Yes, it's just that easy. However, Giratina can put a stop to Groudon's run with its high physical bulk and access to Will-O-Wisp. Or can he? Equip Groudon with Lum Berry, and there is nothing Giratina can do after futilely attempting to burn Groudon. +2 Earthquake does 50% minimum to 248/252+ Giratina, and as most Giratina are specially defensive, +2 Earthquake will 2HKO even when burned. Once Giratina is severely weakened, Arceus can come in, and have a field day with the foe's team, as its main counter to the creator is now gone. Fun, isn't it?

This core is heavily dependent on Groudon to succeed. But as Groudon requires three of his moveslots to contain Rock Polish, Swords Dance, and Earthquake, defeating this core depends on what Groudon will have in the last slot. If it doesn't have Fire Punch, then Skarmory walls this duo to infinity and back. If it doesn't have Stone Edge, Lugia can easily set a Reflect and stall this core with Toxic and Roost, while constantly phazing with Dragon Tail or Whirlwind. If it doesn't have Dragon Claw, then Giratina-O can defeat it, but it needs Will-O-Wisp to cripple Arceus. Gliscor can also tank Groudon well, and if running a bulkier spread, can check Arceus too. Grass Arceus also deserves a mention. It might not be able to tank Extreme Killer's ExtremeSpeed very well, but it can dent Groudon with Grass Knot and burn Arceus down.

New and Potentially Powerful Cores

Life Orb Kyurem-W & Tailwind Reshiram

Reshiram: base 150 Special Attack, base 90 Speed, unresisted STABs. The biggest nuke BW introduced to us. In sun, literally nothing is safe from its Blue Flare, unless quadruple resist, of course. THEN, BW2 introduced to us an even bigger nuke: base 170 Special Attack, base 95 Speed, and fantastic, yet resisted, STABs (though that can be easily fixed with a single coverage move). Yes, I'm talking about Kyurem-W. Furthermore, BW2 gave both draconian homies Roost, and gave Reshiram Tailwind. So, basically, the duo can simply nuke every single fool that tries to take them down. With Tailwind, they don't even need to run Timid; why waste that extra firepower when you can outright double your Speed? And with Roost—though this mostly applies to Kyurem-W, as Reshiram prefers additional coverage—it becomes a lot harder to take down. Sunlight is extremely important for this core, as it powers up Reshiram's Blue Flare and Kyurem's Fusion Flare. Kyogre switches in? BAM, Draco Meteor. It might not OHKO, but it surely will leave a mark. Plus, you outspeed it with Tailwind anyway! Tyranitar switches in? BAM, Focus Blast. BAM, BAM, BAM.

This core puts a ton of pressure on the opponent, but be sure, it has its flaws. This core is especially weak to all kinds of hazards; both are weak to Stealth Rock, and both will not enjoy being poisoned. Thus, something to keep hazards off the field is advised, even though the opponent is not likely to have the opportunity to put them down. Forretress is a decent teammate as it can spin and set up hazards, and use Volt Switch to bring the duo in safely. Another way of beating these nukes is to not let Reshiram set up Tailwind. If Tailwind is not in affect, a ton of Pokémon outspeed both Dragons: Palkia, Salamence, Mewtwo, Darkrai, Arceus formes... This core is also dependent on sun, so be sure to play your Groudon carefully!

Expert Belt Mixed Tyranitar & Calm Mind + 3 Attacks Kyogre

Latias, Kyogre's nemesis from the last generation, just got her toy back, Soul Dew. With it she can effectively tank any of Kyogre's attacks, including Water Spout and Ice Beam, and set up a Calm Mind. In return, she can hit back extremely hard with Dragon Pulse, Psyshock or Thunder, winning her the Calm Mind war, while in the process she can Roost the damage off. Ferrothorn can also defeat Calm Mind Kyogre with Leech Seed and its STAB Power Whip, and can easily tank a +1 Ice Beam. That's why, before pulling a Kyogre sweep, getting Latias out of the way is mandatory. And Tyranitar is just the... dragon? dinosaur? what is this thing anyway... Oh wait this is an article. So yeah. Tyranitar excels in defeating Psychic-types, Latias most of all. Thanks to the Special Defense boost from sandstorm, Tyranitar can come in, tank whatever Latias used at him (beware of Grass Knot! But I'll get to that later), and Pursuit her on the switch out. Tyranitar bluffs a Choice item, so once you use Pursuit, the opponent will try to set up hazards all over your side of the field. Tyranitar can take advantage of this surprise factor and possibly land an OHKO with Fire Blast, depending on its EVs and nature.

Oh, and, everything I said here applies to Latios as well, yeah?

This core doesn't have much of a defensive synergy; both are weak to Grass-type moves, and neither can tank Ground- or Fighting-type moves. Offensive Groudon and Terrakion can easily weaken this core, thanks to their high Attack stats and great STAB moves. Latias, or Latios, with Grass Knot can 2HKO Tyranitar on the switch in, and stay alive to tell the tale while also stopping Kyogre cold. Mixed Rayquaza can also punch great holes in this core with its wide coverage and Dragon STAB. It also does not take any damage from sandstorm thanks to its fantastic ability, Air Lock. Grass Arceus can be a massive pain with its high bulk and STAB Grass Knot. It can also burn down Tyranitar with Will-O-Wisp to weaken its attacks, and easily 2HKO it with Grass Knot or Judgment. Steel-types, such as Scizor or Steel Arceus, can take on Latias / Latios, Rayquaza (watch out for Fire Blast and Earthquake!), and Grass Arceus with ease.

Latias & Steel Arceus

"Oh man, another Dragon and Steel core!" Yes, these are actually pretty awesome, especially in Ubers. As mentioned, Latias just got her beloved Soul Dew back, which allows her to tank and defeat all Kyogre versions. Now, Steel-types can take a huge advantage of that as a) Kyogre can drown them with its STAB, and b) Kyogre resists their own STAB. Steel Arceus is the perfect example for that; the Mono-Attacker really enjoys Kyogre gone, as once it is gone, it can simply set up Calm Mind, and proceed to try and pull a sweep. It does not go in one way however; Steel Arceus can support Latias by utilizing Will-O-Wisp in order to cripple strong physical attackers, such as Arceus and Tyranitar, that can take advantage of her lower Defense stat. It can also weaken Ferrothorn's Gyro Balls, that would otherwise hurt Latias badly due to her high Speed stat. They also have a perfect synergy together, and for the ones who are not familiar with their synergy: Latias is immune to Ground-type moves and resists Fighting- and Fire-type moves that Steel Arceus is weak to, whereas Steel Arceus can easily take a Bug-, Dark-, or Dragon-type move, such as U-turn or Outrage. Again, Latios can be used over Latias if you want a more offensive approach.

Basically, any Steel-type can annoy this core, as neither member of the core have something to scare them away. Heatran can Toxic Latias, and hit Arceus hard with its Fire STAB. It can also phaze the two with Roar, taking away all of their Calm Mind boosts. Scizor can Pursuit or U-turn Latias for the kill, and while it needs to stay cautious of Will-O-Wisp, it can hurt Steel Arceus with Superpower. Excadrill in sand can outpace Steel Arceus and land a kill on it with an unboosted Earthquake after some prior damage. Latias also takes a lot of damage from an unboosted Iron Head or Shadow Claw. Thus, Kyogre can be quite a good partner; its ability nullifies Arceus's weakness to Fire, and it can sink these pesky Steel-types with a single Surf or Water Spout, as well as take away Excadrill's Speed by changing the weather.

Now what?

The goal was to showcase for you the top few most successful cores in the current Ubers metagame, and the upcoming metagame influenced by BW2. Give them a shot; they won't let you down, especially if you're trying to get into this remarkable tier. From there, you cannot go anywhere but up! I wish you the best of luck, and I hope to meet you on the ladder!

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