Powerful Plants: The Grass-types of RU

By Mack the Knife. Art by Magistrum.
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RU has an abundance of Grass-types. When in RU, be prepared to see one because they are on almost every team. When you build a team, you will find that it is actually pretty hard to not fit Grass-types on your team, as many of them fill many different kinds of roles including, but not limited to, walls, revenge killers, and set-up sweepers. If you do not prepare for opposing Grass-types, like many fools who forget to put Fire-, Ice-, Flying-, or Bug-types on their team, you will be demolished by most teams (unless, of course, they're using Whimsicott) and your ladder points probably won't surpass 1250. Now, let's explore these powerful plants (see that, I managed to work the title in). Note: This is ordered in terms of viability ranking from lowest rank to highest rank.



Whimsicott is a rather mediocre Pokémon that has fallen a long way from its glory days. Yes, it may be able to scout, spread paralysis, set up sun, and shut down set-up sweepers via Encore or Taunt, but it still has mediocre bulk, poor offenses, and no reliable recovery. Also, after it has done its job, it's pretty much deadweight,with its only remaining use being as a sacrifice to an Entei's Flare Blitz or something of that sort. This isn't to say that it's totally useless, since it still has a niche as an annoyer. It can also be quite useful on sun teams, being able to almost always set up sun. So use it if you feel the need to have an annoyer on your team, but otherwise most other Grass-types in RU are better. Also, never, ever use SubSeed. It is a very crappy set, and it is outclassed by every other Pokémon in RU that learns SubSeed (well, except for Smeargle).

Whimsicott's main goal is to annoy you by stopping walls and set-up sweepers and spreading status. Good counters that stop it from doing this are Bouffalant, Miltank, and Sawsbuck due to their ability to absorb all of its Grass-type moves with Sap Sipper. Roselia also walls Whimsicott pretty hard and is able to shake off paralysis with Natural Cure. There are a huge amount of Pokémon that can check Whimsicott, so I'll just generalize by saying that practically every offensive Ice-, Flying-, and Fire-type can OHKO Whimsicott with ease. Lastly, Whimsicott hates entry hazards due to its need to switch often, so if you get Stealth Rock and a layer of Spikes up, it will soon be gone.



Even though Ferroseed may be small in stature, it can wall the hell out of a lot of things in RU. You may think it suffers from Munchlax syndrome due to having no Leftovers, since it must run Eviolite, and no reliable form of recovery, but Ferroseed is much, much better than Munchlax in many ways. First off, it is still able to get some health back with Leech Seed, something Munchlax can only dream about while it's wallowing around in its pit within the deep trenches of NU. Other factors that make it better than Munchlax include an immunity to Toxic, 10 resistances, better mixed bulk, a reliable paralysis move in Thunder Wave, and access to both Spikes and Stealth Rock. Also, Ferroseed's ability, Iron Barbs, makes it even better at stalling. Its only other flaw other than a lack of reliable recovery is its low HP stat.Lastly, I must give a note of warning that no matter how much it looks like a tasty nut, you should not try to eat Ferroseed.

Due to its awesome ability in Magnet Pull and resistances to Ferroseed's STABs, Magneton is able to take care of Ferroseed with ease. Additionally, Amoonguss and Tangrowth are great counters because they usually run Hidden Power Fire and are immune to Leech Seed. Clefable is also a good counter due to its excellent ability, Magic Guard, making it immune to Leech Seed and Spikes. Even when it isn't running Hidden Power Fire, Rotom-C is able to mess with our pointy friend by Tricking a Choice Scarf onto it. Manectric may be even better at this with Switcheroo, as it's also able to run Overheat to utterly destroy Ferroseed. Fire-types, such as Moltres and Entei, either force Ferroseed out or flat out OHKO it. Fighting-types like Gallade are able to do the same to a lesser extent. Pokémon with access to Taunt—for example, Drapion—are also able to stop Ferroseed dead in its tracks.



Ah, the mushroom that worked itself up NU into the RU's Top 15. What a boss. This is mainly due to Amoonguss's great bulk, decent offenses, and access to Spore and Regenerator. Unlike Whimsicott, however, after it has Spored an opponent's Pokémon, it's anything but deadweight. It's still able to be an excellent pivot thanks to Regenerator, spread paralysis with Stun Spore, and do some damage to the opponent with Sludge Bomb, Giga Drain, and possibly Hidden Power Fire. Also, it is one of the main reasons why many Pokémon, such as Entei and Emboar, are forced to use Sleep Talk. That is not to say it is only limited to being defensive pivot, however. It's also able to go with an offensive stat spread and do a lot of damage.

Switching in a counter to Amoonguss is quite hard to accomplish to its access to sleep and paralysis. Magmortar is possibly the best switch-in due to Vital Spirit and its Fire STAB. Escavalier, Entei, and Emboar are also solid switch-ins since they have room to run Sleep Talk. Common Lum Berry users, such as Durant and Gallade, are able to switch in and proceed to threaten the fungus with powerful STAB attacks. Roselia can absorb Amoonguss's status moves due to its ability Natural Cure. The hardest part about killing Amoonguss is that it is able to switch and regain 1/3 of its health with Regenerator. Stealth Rock and Spikes help solve this problem and make it a lot easier to deal with. Also, after Amoonguss has put something to sleep, Steel-types, like Aggron and Klinklang, and other Fire-types, like Moltres and Typhlosion, are also able to deal with this notorious shroom.



Lilligant is by far the cutest on this list (Whimsicott just isn't that cute), but she's also one of the most dangerous. Yes, with Quiver Dance and Sleep Powder, Lilligant is able to sweep quite well. Giga Drain is a great move for a Grass-type sweeper, as it helps recover some of the health lost from Life Orb. However, it's not all sunshine and lilies for Lilligant. First off, Sleep Powder has somewhat unreliable accuracy that can spell doom for possibly the whole match. Lilligant's movepool is even more shallow than Rotom-C's, meaning that the plant has to resort to either Hidden Power Rock or Hidden Power Fire for coverage. This means she needs quite a bit of team support to fully sweep. Don't worry though—if you do provide proper team support and play wisely, Lilligant will be a huge asset to your team. Lastly, if you don't want to use her as a sweeper, you can always use her Choice Scarf set, which is able to surprise many opponents and make use of Lilligant's access to Healing Wish, a suicide move that completely heals the next Pokémon to switch in.

Due to Lilligant being able to use only Hidden Power for coverage,her counters depend on if she's running a Rock-type or a Fire-type Hidden Power. If she's running Hidden Power Rock, then Steel-types and Grass-types such as Roselia, Amoonguss, and Escavalier are able to wall Lilligant. Escavalier is notable because it can effectively run Sleep Talk, which lets it absorb sleep and OHKO Lilligant. If Lilligant runs Hidden Power Fire, then most Fire-types will wall her. The most notable example is Magmortar due to its immunity to sleep. Entei and Emboar are also notable examples since they have room for Sleep Talk on their movesets. Druddigon is able to phaze out or downright KO Lilligant, if the plant isn't running the rare Hidden Power Ice. Don't panic if Lilligant is already on a sweeping streak, as priority can be used to stop her. Piloswine and the aforementioned Entei are the best for getting rid of Lilligant with priority Ice Shard and ExtemeSpeed, respectively. Other checks and counters include Primeape, Gallade, Cryogonal, Clefable, Mandibuzz, and Sap Sipper users, such as Sawsbuck, Miltank, and Bouffalant.



As you may have already guessed, this article is just an excuse to write more about this magnificent mower. Rotom-C is an amazing Pokémon with good bulk, great Special Attack, and possibly the perfect Speed for a Choice Scarf set, which is by far its most famous set. Rotom-C is normally used as a hit-and-run Pokémon with Volt Switch and Leaf Storm, but when it's running Thunderbolt, it can also be used to clean up some remaining Pokémon in the late-game. Unfortunately, Rotom-C's offensive movepool is quite limited, as the only other viable offensive move that hasn't been mentioned yet is Hidden Power Fire. However, Rotom-C is more diverse than expected. It is able to be a wallbreaker with a Choice Specs set, and it has a fantastic supporting movepool that can benefit offensive sets, i.e. Trick, which can be used for purely supportive sets, i.e. Rain Dance, Will-O-Wisp, and Thunder Wave.

Countering Rotom-C is quite difficult since it can always Volt Switch out to something that can handle the opponent's Pokémon better, and it is able to blast Ground-types that would usually stop it with Leaf Storm. Amoonguss and Roselia completely wall the Choice Scarf set because even Hidden Power Fire doesn't leave much of a mark. Druddigon is also a good switch-in due to its Dragon-type, which resists Rotom's entire offensive moveset, assuming it's using the usual the Leaf Storm / Volt Switch / Thunderbolt or Hidden Power Fire set. However, if you're not careful, Druddigon can be crippled by Trick. Priority users, such as Entei and Piloswine, are able to revenge kill your carnivorous machine. As for the Choice Specs set, it actually doesn't have any true counters! Don't worry though, because it has quite a few checks, such as Moltres, Accelgor, and Choice Scarf Medicham, due to its mediocre base 86 Speed. It should be noted that other Rotom-C are able to check your own Rotom-C. Against supporting sets, Roselia is a good counter due to its ability Natural Cure, which allows it to repeatedly sponge any status afflicted by Rotom-C. Lastly, Taunt users are able to stop it from performing its job. A good example of this is Drapion, since it resists Leaf Storm and outspeeds Rotom-C.



With a great Defense and good offensives, Tangrowth is an amazing tank. Its amazing ability, Regenerator, helps it stay in the game much longer than usual. Many fearsome physical attackers, such as Gallade and Absol, are completely walled by Tangrowth. It also has access to Sleep Powder and Leech Seed, which are able to help your team in many ways. Giga Drain is another useful move since it does damage and helps it recover even more HP. However, Tangrowth isn't perfect. It has low Speed and Special Defense stats, which many specially-offensive Pokémon can take advantage of. It is fortunately able to patch this weakness up with teammates such as Slowking and Lanturn. Also, Tangrowth isn't just a one-trick-walking-bush thing. It is able to run an effective Choice Specs set, which can blow holes through the opponent's team with Leaf Storm. Due to this set's hit-and-run nature, Regenerator arguably becomes even more useful. All in all, Tangrowth is a great Grass-type that you should always watch out for.

The easiest way to deal with Tangrowth is to take advantage of its low Special Defense. Fire-types, such as Moltres, Typhlosion, and Charizard are able to do this with ease. However, they need to be wary of Sleep Powder if the Sleep Clause hasn't been activated yet, as Tangrowth can otherwise easily take care of them. Choice Band Entei is also able to do a lot of damage to Tangrowth despite not being specially-based, and it is able to cripple potential Tangrowth partners such as Slowking with Toxic. Accelgor is also able to take care of Tangrowth due to its good Special Attack and resistance to Grass-type moves. When dealing with the Choice Specs set, Roselia is a great counter thanks to its ability to able to shake off sleep with Natural Cure and having a 4x resistance to Leaf Storm. The only thing that really hurts Roselia is the uncommon Choice Specs Hidden Power Fire. Clefable is also able to fill the same role despite not resisting Leaf Storm and not being able to absorb sleep. Other counters include Sap Sipper users, such as Bouffalant and Miltank, and Weezing, which is able to deal with the defensive set quite well.



Ah, Sceptile, currently the only Grass-type in the S-tier. It is possibly the hardest Grass-type to defeat due to its versatility and high Speed. Sceptile's most notable set is its Substitute + 3 Attacks set. This set is great due to its coverage and being able to bypass things that would normally hinder it, such as paralysis, sleep, and Sucker Punch (not to be confused with the terrible movie). However, for those who find Substitute inadequate, there's always the All-Out Attacker set, which sacrifices the ability to hide behind a Substitute for more coverage. This also has the option of running Choice Specs instead of Life Orb. Wait a second! You said you don't really need a special sweeper for your team!? Don't worry pal, Sceptile can run a physical Swords Dance set as well! Yes, despite its only okay Attack stat, Sceptile can use Swords Dance to become an excellent physical sweeper. Swords Dance, in tandem with the Speed boost from the Acrobatics + Flying Gem + Unburden combo, allow Sceptile to become both a menacing monster and a speed demon at the same time! Lastly, if you still aren't satisfied with the options presented to you so far (meaning you're probably running stall), Sceptile can run a speedy SubSeed set, which can stall out opposing Pokémon and be a powerful offensive Pokémon. Sceptile, you are one chill lizard.

There is not a single Pokémon that can counter Sceptile as a whole, but each of its sets have specific counters. Amoonguss and Roselia are the safest to switch in, being able to wall any special attack Sceptile throws at them. They need to be careful for Acrobatics though, since it's able to destroy both of them in the blink of an eye. Flareon and Cryogonal can wall all of Sceptile's specially-based sets, but they fail against its physical sets. Remember though: Cryogonal is 2HKOed by Focus Blast, but fortunately Focus Blast has awful accuracy. Altaria is also a great switch-in, as it is capable of taking even Hidden Power Rock from Sceptile. However, if it's running Hidden Power Ice or Rock Slide, then your dragon shall sadly be slain. If Sceptile isn't running any Rock-type moves, then Charizard and Moltres can wall Sceptile till the cows come home. Speaking of cows, Miltank and other Sap Sippers are able to wall it if it isn't running Focus Blast. The same goes for Ferroseed, except it needs to watch out for Hidden Power Fire. Piloswine can OHKO any Sceptile not hiding behind a Substitute with Ice Shard, making it possibly the best revenge killer for Sceptile, since Ice Shard's priority laughs in the face of Unburden's Speed boosts.Another good revenge killer is Entei, which is able to OHKO Sceptile with Flare Blitz and 2HKO it with Extreme Speed when it's at full health if Sceptile lacks any Rock-type moves. Choice Scarf users are also able to revenge kill Sceptile if it hasn't gotten an Unburden boost.

Bonus: Viable Grass-types from NU


What? You thought this article was done? Nope, there are quite a few Grass-types from NU that are very viable! If you've read through this article thoroughly, then you've noticed that in all of the counters sections, Roselia has gotten a mention. With its great ability and a typing that grants it a double resistance to Grass-type moves; it'd be fair to say Roselia is the anti-Grass-type Grass-type of RU. Unfortunately, it has low physical bulk, so most physical attackers can take it out. Exeggutor is able to run a bunch of different sets. Its main set is Sunny Day, which sets up sun so that it can boost its low Speed with Chlorophyll. In the sun, it can be quite an effective sweeper. It's also able to sweep via Trick Room or be a hole-puncher with Choice Specs. That's not all as it is able to support with a Leech Seed set or a set that utilizes Harvest and Lum Berry to be able to use Rest effectively. If you want to counter Exeggutor, Bouffalant is able to absorb all its Grass-type moves and hit it back quite hard. Fast sweepers with Choice Specs, like Typhlosion, are great checks to Exeggutor as well. Ludicolo is a very effective sweeper when in the rain. It has great coverage and is able to finish off teams with ease. Also, it is able to run other sets, such as SubSeed, Swords Dance, and Offensive Tank, which are able to take a bunch of hits and dish out a lot of damage. It's pretty hard to counter Ludicolo in the rain, but Water Absorb users, like Poliwrath and Lanturn, and special walls, like Uxie and Cryogonal, are able to take care of it. Sawsbuck is a pretty good offensive Pokémon, with a great ability in Sap Sipper and the talent to run different sets quite effectively. It is usually seen with the Substitute + Baton Pass set, but it's also able to run Swords Dance or just go with an All-Out Attacker set. Steel- and Grass-types with good bulk are able to deal with Sawsbuck with ease. Good examples are Steelix, Ferroseed, Amoonguss, and Tangrowth.

Torterra is a good Pokémon that has recently become much better due to the banning of hail. It has pretty good offenses, but it has a low Speed stat, sadly. Fortunately, it is able to fix this problem with Rock Polish. After setting up Rock Polish, Torterra can sweep quite decently. If Rock Polish doesn't satisfy you, then you can let Torterra run a Choice Band set, an Offensive Tank set, or a Defensive Tank set. In a quite hilarious way, Torterra is the greatest counter to Torterra, resisting EdgeQuake and not taking much damage from Seed Bomb. Otherwise, Weezing, Flying-types, and Ice-types are good counters to Torterra. Evil Pinocchio Shiftry is one of the rare Pokémon that is able to sweep with either Swords Dance or Nasty Plot. Swords Dance, however, is usually the superior option due to the ability to run Sucker Punch. Tangrowth and Ferroseed are both able to wall the Swords Dance set with ease, while Mandibuzz takes good care of the Nasty Plot set. Strong priority users like Hitmonlee are able to take out Shiftry and bypass Sucker Punch. There are other Grass-types from NU that are also viable, but they have bigger flaws then the ones mentioned above. This includes Cacturne, Cradily, Victreebel, and Serperior. It should be noted that all of the Grass-types mentioned in this section are ranked higher than Whimsicott despite being in a lower tier.


As you see, when you join RU, you will be seeing and using a lot of Grass-types. As we head off into XY, many of these Pokémon mentioned may be parting ways in terms of tiers, but they will always be remembered as an integral part of RU!

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