The Most Buffed Threats in XY OU

By ScraftyIsTheBest. Art by Bummer.
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With the dawn of the new generation of Pokémon, there are Pokémon that have improved significantly, as well as some whose viability has fallen. Within XY OU, there are several who have received significant improvements, and have risen from once obsolete Pokémon to prominent threats in the OU metagame. While new stars such as Aegislash, Greninja, and Talonflame hit the spotlight, the old improved threats should definitely not be forgotten, and this article will go in-depth about them.


Type: Bug / Poison
Abilities: Poison Point / Swarm / Speed Boost
Base Stats: 60 HP / 100 Atk / 89 Def / 55 SpA / 69 SpD / 112 Spe

Kicking off the list is the giant manly centipede known as Scolipede. In BW, Scolipede started off with a brief stint in NU; and it was a top-tier threat there in its early days. After that, however, Scolipede resided in the RU tier for most of the generation, rarely seeing the limelight of OU. While it was far from the best Pokémon in the tier, it was a very solid Pokémon—it had a great Speed tier by RU standards, albeit falling short of threats such as Sceptile and Cinccino. This was complemented by its excellent movepool; its access to Spikes made it a great fast offensive Spiker that could provide a strong offensive presence with its decent Attack stat, STAB Megahorn, and great coverage options. Swords Dance also made it a great physical sweeper; and with its Speed and coverage, it could more than successfully pull off such a set. However, despite how solid Scolipede was in BW RU, it made an unfortunate fall to NU in April 2013. It was a dominant threat in the tier, with all of the qualities that made it solid in RU allowing it to become one of the best Pokémon in NU, especially its fast usage of Spikes in a tier where the spinners ranged from mediocre to bad. Eventually, its impact was realized to be too powerful for NU, and within the time of XY, it was given the boot. Overall, however, Scolipede made for a solid pick in lower tiers, even in UU.

An interesting twist of fate happened when Scolipede received two significant buffs in XY. Its merely passable base 90 Attack has been boosted to a respectable 100, and it has also received a new ability in Speed Boost. The latter is especially notable, since with its fantastic new ability, Scolipede has made a name for itself in the XY OU metagame. Scolipede can make for a solid utility Pokémon, providing entry hazard support in Spikes and Toxic Spikes, while it can also use Baton Pass to pass on the Speed boosts it attains each turn. It can also function as a pure Baton Pass user, and its access to Swords Dance and Iron Defense also give it extra utility on full Baton Pass teams; Scolipede is basically everything Ninjask was in past generations but better. If you want to try, Scolipede can also function as a pure outright sweeper, using Attack and Speed boosts to sweep teams with its great coverage—its STAB Poison Jab can also prove helpful to hit new Fairies such as Clefable, Azumarill, and Sylveon for noteworthy damage. Overall, despite not seeing the limelight of OU in BW, the buffs Scolipede received this gen have made it a solid Pokémon in XY OU.


Type: Dark / Flying
Abilities: Big Pecks / Overcoat / Weak Armor
Base Stats: 110 HP / 65 Atk / 105 Def / 55 SpA / 95 SpD / 80 Spe

Mandibuzz had a somewhat similar story to Scolipede within its life in BW. It resided in RU throughout the majority of the generation; and it was quite the defensive threat back in its time. It could counter many prominent threats with its combination of high bulk, excellent defensive typing (barring a Stealth Rock weakness), and a good supportive movepool. It was especially useful in BW1 with past threats such as Cofagrigus running amok, and its ability to pester walls with its bulk and a fast Taunt was very well appreciated. However, as BW2 rolled along, in came Nidoqueen and hail teams, two of the most controversial RU metagames, and Mandibuzz was hit hard. It simply couldn't stand up to the strongest threats in the metagame, and its Stealth Rock weakness and the offensive nature of the tier pulled Mandibuzz's usage down, and it eventually found itself in NU towards the end of BW2. However, it did shine there, as the best defensive Pokémon in the tier, as its qualities that allowed it to perform well in BW1 RU made it a great Pokémon in NU. It also regained some of its effectiveness in RU after Nidoqueen and Snow Warning were gone, serving as a nice counter to many threats.

With the advent of XY, Mandibuzz got a couple of significant buffs that have pulled it from the depths of RU and NU into the top 20 in OU. One of the most significant of these is the buff to Defog. Since Defog can now remove hazards from your side of the field, it has become one of the most useful moves in the game, and Mandibuzz's great bulk makes it one of the most reliable users of it. In addition, Overcoat is also a very good ability now that it also blocks powder moves, so Mandibuzz makes a comfortable switch-in to sleep users such as Mega Venusaur. With the generation transition, the OU metagame has also shifted greatly in Mandibuzz's favor, as its typing makes it the best Aegislash counter in the OU metagame. Mandibuzz takes fairly little from most of the sword's moves and can retaliate with Foul Play. This is in addition to the fact that Terrakion has declined a bit in usage and is no longer the extremely dominant force it was in BW. All in all, Mandibuzz is definitely one of the most improved Pokémon this generation, and if you are in need of a bulky Defog user or a good switch-in to a number of threats, Mandibuzz is the Pokémon for you.


Type: Dark / Steel
Abilities: Inner Focus / Defiant / Pressure
Base Stats: 65 HP / 125 Atk / 100 Def / 60 SpA / 70 SpD / 70 Spe

One of the most unique Pokémon around, Bisharp resided in UU for the entirety of BW. Overall, it was a decent Pokémon in the metagame. Its unique Dark / Steel typing provided it with a myriad of resistances, and along with Swords Dance and STAB Sucker Punch coming from a high base 125 Attack, it was capable of being somewhat formidable. However, its dreadful weaknesses to Fighting and Fire, two of the most popular offensive types in the tier, was a major letdown. This also gave Bisharp some difficulty in achieving a Swords Dance boost. In addition, Sucker Punch was very unreliable, so if used with poor timing, Bisharp could prove a liability. It wound up low in usage, even bordering the RU cutoff in late BW1 and early BW2, but it did receive enough usage to remain in UU. All in all, Bisharp was nothing spectacular in UU last generation, and struggled to compete with the top threats of the metagame.

Interestingly enough, the modifications to the type chart have helped Bisharp in the best ways; Steel no longer resists Dark, and the new Fairy-type is hit super effectively by Steel-type moves. This makes Bisharp much more lethal, as it has notably better coverage in just its STABs alone. The buff to Knock Off has also benefited Bisharp, giving it a reliable STAB move that also strips opponents of their item while having great power. The XY OU metagame has also shifted so that Bisharp's ability, Defiant, is incredibly useful. With Defog, Sticky Web, and Intimidate all seeing use in OU, a free +2 boost to Attack is very good, and Bisharp can easily take advantage of it with its STAB Sucker Punch and Knock Off. These factors have made Bisharp a staple on Spikes stacking hyper offense teams, and overall, if you are in need of a Pokémon who can sweep and take advantage of the common stat dropping moves, Bisharp is truly a formidable choice.


Type: Bug / Electric
Abilities: Compound Eyes / Unnerve / Swarm
Base Stats: 70 HP / 77 Atk / 60 Def / 97 SpA / 60 SpD / 108 Spe

Galvantula was RU for the entirety of BW, and it was no slouch there. It possessed a unique and effective dual STAB combination; Bug and Electric together could hit many of the Pokémon in RU for at least neutral damage. In addition, it had a very unique weapon at its disposal—Compound Eyes Thunder—so it had a strong, reliable attack to hit hard with; the paralysis rate also came in handy at times. Its combination of Speed and power made it a very potent sweeper overall. However, its frailty and Stealth Rock weakness prevented it from being top tier, so it could fold to any neutral hit, especially if it failed to OHKO something. In addition, Galvantula was very one dimensional, and could not do much more than sweep, and faced competition from Rotom-C and Manectric as an Electric-type. Nonetheless, Galvantula had a place as a potent lower tier special attacker.

Galvantula got one move that has improved it quite a lot: Sticky Web. This move alone has given the spider a unique niche in the OU metagame as the only decent offensive user of it. Its high Speed allows it to quickly apply the hazard in battle, and its decent (but not great) power also allows it to do something aside from setting up Sticky Web. Its good coverage in its STABs alone and high Speed can allow it to do some damage to the opposing team. Its only true competition as a user of Sticky Web is Smeargle, who has its own problems such as its lack of offensive presence. Unfortunately, Galvantula is still somewhat weak and frail, and it is still fairly one dimensional. It is also generally outclassed by Thundurus as an Electric-type. Sticky Web itself also has limitations, such as the fact that certain Pokémon are immune to it, and Bisharp is also quite common. Nonetheless, if you need a Pokémon who can provide easy Speed control, Galvantula will have no trouble filling that role.


Type: Fighting
Abilities: Guts / Sheer Force / Iron Fist
Base Stats: 105 HP / 140 Atk / 95 Def / 55 SpA / 65 SpD / 45 Spe

Conkeldurr has a rather different story from the other Pokémon on this list. In fact, Conkeldurr was OU for the entirety of BW. When the BW OU metagame started, Conkeldurr made a splash hit. Its amazing Attack stat combined with respectable physical bulk made it a formidable user of Bulk Up, especially with its access to both a recovery and a priority move to use. However, its poor Speed and mediocre special bulk let it down a lot, and it couldn't stand up to other Fighting-type powerhouses such as Terrakion, Keldeo, Breloom, and Lucario. By the end of BW2, it did have a niche as a Sheer Force attacker, using its STAB Drain Punch and Mach Punch alongside BoltBeam coverage to pack a punch, but it generally got the shaft in OU.

Conkeldurr got a select few buffs that have turned it into a staple of XY OU. The most notable of these is the new item known as the Assault Vest. This patches up Conkeldurr's mediocre special bulk and allows it to be a formidable tank, taking hits while packing quite a bit of power. The buff to Knock Off has also given Conkeldurr a useful coverage move to use, hitting threats such as Aegislash and Latias for heavy damage. The nerf to weather and some special attacks also help Conkeldurr in its ability to function as a tank. The rise of Fairies such as Azumarill and Clefable does get in Conkeldurr's way, but when it comes to a bulky Fighting-type, there is no Pokémon like Conkeldurr.


Type: Water / Fairy
Abilities: Thick Fat / Huge Power / Sap Sipper
Base Stats: 100 HP / 50 Atk / 80 Def / 50 SpA / 80 SpD / 50 Spe

Back in Azumarill's debut in GSC, it was one of the worst Pokémon in the game. Although it possessed pretty decent bulk, its offensive stats were absolutely terrible. Being unable to deal any significant damage made Azumarill condemned to disuse. RSE introduced abilities, and Azumarill got Huge Power to make its Attack stat respectable, but its lack of an effective STAB to use didn't really help it. It wasn't until DPP that Azumarill truly became a competitively viable Pokémon, with two great STAB moves to use in Waterfall and Aqua Jet, and along with the rest of Azumarill's movepool and its bulk, it was a fine wallbreaker in DPP UU, pestering bulky Pokémon such as Spiritomb, Chansey, and Registeel. It was also perfectly capable in BW UU as a Choice Band wallbreaker, using its power to deal heavy damage. However, Azumarill's horrendous Speed was its greatest downside in both metagames, so it was relatively easy to revenge kill, especially by Grass-types. Overall, however, Azumarill was still a perfectly viable wallbreaker, and it also had a decent niche in BW OU as a rain-based attacker.

Azumarill's newfound Fairy typing has instantly made it a staple in OU. Its remarkable power makes it an excellent wallbreaker, while its new typing grants it a valuable immunity to Dragon as well as resistances to Fighting and Dark, all relatively common offensive types. Between Waterfall and Play Rough, Azumarill can be difficult to wall, with one of its few counters being Mega Venusaur. Azumarill also has access to good coverage moves such as Knock Off and Superpower to pester other Pokémon such as Aegislash and Chansey, while its priority Aqua Jet is useful as well. In addition, the new breeding mechanics have made Belly Drum legal with Aqua Jet, meaning Azumarill can function as a setup sweeper, and at maximum Attack, Azumarill can be very hard to stop unless the opponent has an Unaware Clefable or Quagsire. Despite its poor Speed and it being vulnerable to common threats such as Thundurus, its combination of typing, power, and bulk have made it a top-tier threat that every OU team should keep in mind.


Type: Fairy / Flying
Abilities: Hustle / Serene Grace / Super Luck
Base Stats: 85 HP / 50 Atk / 95 Def / 120 SpA / 115 SpD / 80 Spe

Togekiss made its debut in DPP as an additional evolutionary stage to the Togepi evolutionary line. It was a great improvement to the mediocre Togetic, as it had great stats all around, unlike its pre-evolution. It started off in its debuting generation as an OU threat, being a relatively versatile Pokémon, able to function as a nice team supporter, sweeper, and an annoyer in one. Its respectable bulk and power made it pretty good at this as well, and Togekiss also had a colorful movepool to use as well. It descended to UU in the following generation, as BW OU was much too unkind to it. However, it was still a formidable threat in UU, supporting its team with Thunder Wave and Heal Bell while being annoying with its Serene Grace Air Slash. Its paraflinch strategy was very effective, and combined with great bulk and a respectable defensive typing, it was a top threat that forced most teams to carry at least two checks to it. A weakness to Stealth Rock and some common offensive types did hamper Togekiss, but its qualities made it quite a great Pokémon back then.

Togekiss has gotten a couple of gains that have allowed it to make a comeback in OU. The most notable of these is that Togekiss has gained the new Fairy typing in exchange for its bland Normal typing. This has given Togekiss an additional immunity to Dragon as well as some good resistances in Fighting and Dark. Togekiss can check some threats such as Latios, Landorus, Garchomp, and Keldeo thanks to its typing and bulk. In addition, Togekiss can still utilize paraflinch to function as an annoyer thanks to Serene Grace and Air Slash. Togekiss can also afford to go offensive with Nasty Plot, and it has good coverage options such as Flamethrower and Aura Sphere to hit Aegislash and Tyranitar, respectively. However, weaknesses to some common types, including Stealth Rock, do prevent Togekiss from reaching the top, and Togekiss also has to compete with other Fairies such as Clefable and Sylveon. However, if you need a well rounded Fairy-type who can provide you some bulk and simultaneously annoy the opponent, Togekiss will make a fine pick for your team.


Type: Fairy
Abilities: Cute Charm / Magic Guard / Unaware
Base Stats: 95 HP / 70 Atk / 73 Def / 95 SpA / 90 SpD / 60 Spe

Clefable has always been a somewhat average Pokémon; it had a relatively bland typing in Normal, and its stats were not exactly remarkable, so it didn't really stand out. However, what made Clefable see use was its versatility. Its colorful movepool and just the right stat spread to pull if off were both fairly good traits that gave Clefable a reason to be used. This was especially the case in DPP UU, where it was quite the threat, being either a good support Pokémon or a simple wallbreaker. This continued into BW RU, where it was a viable jack-of-all-trades Pokémon, and was also one of the few clerics available in the tier. Although its average stats did hold it back a lot, Clefable's versatility made it a decent lower tier Pokémon in the past generations.

Clefable was another one of those Pokémon to gain the new Fairy-type, and it sure makes good use of it. Clefable can make effective use of its newfound resistances thanks to its decent bulk and excellent movepool. Clefable's Special Attack stat was also buffed from an average 85 to a fairly respectable 95. Clefable is arguably the most dangerous user of Calm Mind in OU, and can run either Unaware to bypass boosting sweepers such as Dragon Dance Dragonite, or Magic Guard to not mind status such as Toxic. Clefable has great coverage options in Moonblast, Flamethrower, and Thunderbolt, and also has reliable recovery in Moonlight and Soft-Boiled. Clefable's bulk and typing also make it very hard to defeat unless it's facing moves such as Iron Head from Bisharp. Clefable can also function as a cleric, having a Fairy typing to differentiate it from Chansey, while Unaware allows it to stand out from Sylveon. With Clefable's combination of typing, bulk, and movepool, it is a very formidable Pokémon in XY OU that everyone should carry at least a check to.

Honorable Mentions


Unlike other Pokémon who got improvements, Krookodile's buffs aren't quite as noticeable as the others. Krookodile got a slight buff to its Defense to a usable 80, and along with Intimidate, it can function well defensively. The Knock Off buff also gives Krookodile a stronger Dark-type STAB to work with, making it a more formidable offensive Pokémon. These give Krookodile the tools it needs to function in OU, but Krookodile has not really made a name for itself in the metagame. It faces competition from Landorus-T as a Ground-type with Intimidate and Stealth Rock, as the latter has access to U-turn and more valuable resistances to utilize. Offensively, while it can function well, its Speed is a bit too low to pull off a sweep, and its power is a little lacking. To be fair though, Krookodile is a pretty decent Pokémon to use in OU and can do quite a bit of work; it just doesn't have an easy time standing out.


Entei has always been a relatively mediocre Pokémon, as it lacked the tools to effectively utilize its high Attack stat prior to DPP, and was outclassed by other Fire-types. It was a great Pokémon in BW RU thanks to it having good power, decent bulk, and being difficult to switch into, but never made it past that. The simple addition of Sacred Fire to Entei's movepool has improved it a lot, since it has a move that can hit very hard, and has a very high chance to induce burns, which can be really annoying to would-be checks and counters. This makes Entei a decently formidable threat in OU, since it can hit Aegislash and Bisharp very hard, while Pokémon that would otherwise be decent checks, such as Terrakion, struggle to safely switch in. However, its Stealth Rock weakness, relative predictability, and competition from other Fire-types prevent it from seeing real use.


Crawdaunt has always been a pretty poor Pokémon since its debut as it lacked the bulk or Speed to work effectively, and was outclassed by many of the other Water-types available. It received Adaptability in BW, which pushed it to RU in that generation, but its lack of bulk and Speed prevented it from being a superb threat in the tier. However, access to priority in Aqua Jet as well as Knock Off were both immense buffs to Crawdaunt, so it can now fire off Adaptability Aqua Jets and Knock Offs from its base 120 Attack backed by a Choice Band to do quite a bit of damage. Having good overall coverage does help it. Its immense frailty and poor Speed do hold it back from reaching OU, but it's still a decent Pokémon to use.


Exploud has typically been a terrible Pokémon, as its overall disappointing stats made it a poor option compared to others. However, it did gain access to Boomburst, which is immensely powerful coming from Exploud, and when combined with Scrappy, the move can be quite painful to take. Exploud also has all the coverage options to hit anything that can take a Boomburst, namely Overheat to hit Aegislash and Ferrothorn. However, its relative frailty and low Speed really prevent Exploud from being excellent, so it can be fairly easy to revenge kill. Regardless, access to Scrappy Boomburst and nice coverage options still give Exploud a niche, so if you need a such niche, go ahead and use Exploud.


Well, there you have it, the most improved Pokémon in the sixth generation, and hence in XY OU. As with every generation transition, some former obscurities can become OU stars, and some former OU stars may take a massive fall. That's all I have to say, so go try out some of these Pokémon for their niches in the OU metagame.

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