The Little Suspects

By moocle.
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The Suspect Nominations and Testing

The Little Cup community members wanted an actual suspect test so that they could try to fix the unbalanced metagame. Under the leadership of the new moderator, Vader, they formed a new process. For the first round of nominations, the community nominated many Pokémon, including Misdreavus, Gligar, Wynaut, and Carvanha. The moderators then reviewed the nominations; they chose Gligar and Misdreavus as suspects.

The Times, They Are A-Changin'

On February 20, a giant change to the Little Cup metagame occurred: Misdreavus was banned, while Gligar wasn't. Misdreavus was the most used Pokémon for months: over 70% of teams used it. Many of the Little Cup players longed for this ban, and others wondered what would happen to the metagame.

Would a Ghost Fill the Void of Misdreavus?

Most of the players pondered this question: Could a different Ghost-type Pokémon fill in for Misdreavus? Gastly, Duskull, and Drifloon were common Pokémon before Misdreavus was banned, so could any of them fill the gap?

Unfortunately, no Pokémon has been able to fill the hole completely. Gastly and Duskull usage has increased but doesn't even come close to the usage at which Misdreavus was. Both Gastly and Duskull have access to priority moves like Misdreavus, but they just don't have the excellent stat spread Misdreavus boasts. Duskull has the bulk Misdreavus has, but its offensive prowess is lacking, while Gastly has the offensive power, but it is very fragile.

Common Movesets

Duskull @ Oran Berry
- Shadow Sneak
- Will-O-Wisp
- Ice Beam
- Confuse Ray / Rest
nature: Relaxed
evs: 196 HP / 116 Atk / 36 Def / 36 SpA / 116 SpD

Duskull is able to check a large number of physical sweepers such as Machop, Mankey, and Croagunk. Shadow Sneak can pick off fragile sweepers, while Ice Beam hits Ground-types, specifically Gligar. Duskull still has problems with Houndour and Stunky, who can trap it with Pursuit.

Gastly @ Life Orb
- Shadow Ball
- Hidden Power Fighting
- Sludge Bomb
- Substitute
nature: Timid
evs: 36 Def / 196 SpA / 196 Spe

This is Gastly's main set. Shadow Ball is for a basic STAB attack. Hidden Power Fighting hits Normal-types that are immune to Shadow Ball like Munchlax. The next slot is for what your team needs. Sludge Bomb provides neutral coverage, since Steel- and Poison-types aren't common in Little Cup. Substitute allows it to scout for Pursuit users, like Munchlax and Stunky, and safely switch out while their Pursuit breaks Gastly's Substitute.

State of the Metagame

The metagame has changed slightly from the Misdreavus era. Many successful teams are based on a strong defensive core; in the past, most teams were more offensively based. Rain teams are still highly effective if you play them right. Croagunk has once again risen to the top of the tier now that Misdreavus can't check it anymore. Usually, people use a Nasty Plot set on Croagunk so Wynaut cannot trap it as easily. Gastly is frequently as a lead with Choice Scarf, which allows it to outspeed most leads and either hit them hard with an attack or put them to sleep with Hypnosis.

The set-up sweepers, like Agility Chinchou, Dragon Dance Dratini, and Sword Dance / Rock Polish Gligar, dominate the metagame. Only Munchlax can stop Chinchou. Dragon Dance Dratini can break through walls and pick off fragile sweepers. All of these Pokémon need just one turn to set up and destroy a team - which is why Wynaut has become more popular.

Now that you have a better idea of the Misdreavus-free metagame, go out and play this exhilarating metagame on Doug's Create-A-Pokémon Server!

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