Metagame Metagame Discussion Thread

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freezai

Live for the Applause
is a Tiering Contributor


Nidoqueen @ Life Orb
Ability: Sheer Force
EVs: 180 HP / 252 SpA / 76 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Sludge Wave
- Ice Beam
- Stealth Rock
- Earth Power
With the new beasts, an influxx of fairy dominance is clearly apparent. Tapu Koko in particular is a dominating force among fairies. To combat these trends, I have tried Nidoqueen and am pleasantly suprised. It serves as a Tapu check with a lot of key resistances as well as decent power in conjuction with Life Orb Sheer Force. The set is self explanatory yada yada give it a try n_n
 
A-Marowak is surprisingly good. Obviously hits like a truck, with a very good movepool (can use either bonemerang or low kick to kill Heatran), and checks some serious threats like Xurkitree, M-Manectric, M-Scizor, M-Mawile, Buzzwole, Tapu Koko & Bulu and even Pheromosa! It obviously is very slow to do any serious damage, but it is a good revenge killer and I'd say definitely better than its normal counterpart.
 
Oh yeah. My bad then. Speaking of whick, is there any promising Z-Moves right now? It doesn't seem like most mons would just throw away their item for an one-time nuke
You're right, most mons wouldn't really want to.
Offensive Z-Moves
These are mainly going to be used only to lure in specific threats and one-shot them.

At most, a regular Z-Move will give a 2x damage boost. When you compare it to LO or Band over a few turns, it loses effectiveness fast.

Z-Crystal
Turn 1: 2x - Total: 2x
Turn 2: 1x - Total: 3x
Turn 3: 1x - Total: 4x
Turn 4: 1x - Total: 5x

Life Orb
Turn 1: 1.3x - Total: 1.3x
Turn 2: 1.3x - Total: 2.6x
Turn 3: 1.3x - Total: 3.9x
Turn 4: 1.3x - Total: 5.2x

LO essentially equals Z-Crystal in 3 turns and overdoes it in 4.

Choice Item
Turn 1: 1.5x - Total: 1.5x
Turn 2: 1.5x - Total: 3x
Turn 3: 1.5x - Total: 4.5x
Turn 4: 1.5x - Total: 6x

Band equals Z-Crystal in 2 turns and flies past it in 3.
And of course, Band and Life Orb let you boost all your moves rather than just one (even if you take recoil or have to switch out occasionally). So unless you're trying to take down a very specific threat or your Pokemon's only supposed to use one damaging attack before it gets KO'd, you're usually better off with LO/CB.

There's a couple special cases though:

Self-Stat Lowering Moves
  • Z-Close Combat (1.58x boost) lets you avoid the defense drops. You lose power on the second usage when compared with Band, but this could definitely be used to avoid a few revenge kills.
  • Z-Superpower (1.58x boost) works similarly and you even have the same power as Band Superpower over the second turn thanks to the avoided Atk drop, but Superpower isn't as susceptible to revenge kills so there's little reason not to just use Band.
  • Z-Leaf Storm, Z-Draco Meteor and Z-Overheat (1.5x boosts) may occasionally be used instead of Specs so that you don't have to switch out immediately and can switch moves without the 2 stage drop affecting them. If you're using any of those moves though, they're probably used as nukes, and Specs is important because it lets you regenerate your nukes.
  • Z-V-create deserves a special mention as probably the worst Z-Move ever. Life Orb V-Create BP: 234. Z-V-create BP: 220. Yeah. (At least you avoid the speed drop)


Recoil Moves

Z-Recoil moves are actually decent. Most get a 1.58x boost, about the same as Band, but you take NO recoil damage. That's actually pretty big, since Banded Recoil moves usually self-injure a LOT.

After Two Turns of Recoil Moves:
  • Z-Recoil Move: 2.58x Damage Dealt, 0.33x Recoil received.
  • LO Recoil Move: 2.6x Damage Dealt, 0.86x Recoil received + 20% HP Lost
  • CB Recoil move: 3x Damage Dealt, 1x Recoil received

Z-Recoil moves will definitely find a spot on some movesets, though they probably won't be the norm since they still give up the opportunity to boost other moves.



Supportive Z-Moves
These will probably see a bunch of use, as long as the move was already on the moveset (with exceptions).

Attack Up
  • Z-Taunt (+1) is amazing for Suicide Leads, and in general any Pokemon that would normally carry Life Orb (or appreciate Choice Band) and not switch out.
  • Z-Curse / Z-Bulk Up (+1) MAY see use instead of Life Orb, but most Pokemon that run these would rather Leftovers.
  • Z-Splash (+3) may see novelty use on LC sets like Poliwag or Buneary, but unlikely anywhere else.

Special Attack Up
  • Z-Gravity (+1) could potentially see some use in the lower tiers, or on Starmie (+1 100% Accurate Hydro Pumps anybody?)
  • Z-Heal Block (+2) might be used on the occasional Latios.

Speed Up
  • Z-Encore (+1) may be used on Setup Sweepers who were already running Encore + Sword Dance / Nasty Plot.

All Stats Up
  • Z-Conversion (+1) will obviously see use.
  • Z-Geomancy (+1) will probably be one of the only Z-Moves in Ubers, though Power Herb Geomancy still does the job well.
  • Z-Purify (+1) may see use in Doubles for Bulky Clerics (even better if you have a Toxic/Flame Orb Partner).

100% Heal
  • Z-Belly Drum can definitely be used on anything that would normally have run it and Sitrus Berry - while you won't have as much HP after Belly Drum as you would have with Sitrus Berry, actually getting off a Belly Drum becomes significantly easier
  • Z-Stockpile is neat and can help set up a Bulky Attacker, though it probably won't be too common.
  • Z-Haze and Z-Refresh are useful, but it competes for other item slots if the user already has Recover.

100% Heal Replacement
  • Z-Parting Shot is amazing - it's Healing Wish + Memento with the only sacrifice being an item slot - how many Pokemon would give up their own item slot for an instant 100% heal and offence reduction on the opponent? The only problem is the distribution is... lackluster (Pangoro, Silvally, Smeargle, A-Persian).
  • Z-Memento will probably see some use since it's on Arena Trap Dugtrio.

Draw Attention
  • Z-Destiny Bond may get used a bit in doubles.

Defense Up, Special Defense Up, Accuracy Up, Boosted Critical Hit Ratio, Removing User Debuffs
  • Any Pokemon that would like these effects would rather Leftovers, Life Orb, Lum Berry, or even Assault Vest.

I'm very wary of these. There's not many (read: NO) Pokemon that regularly carry Detect, Smokescreen, Sand Attack, or Flash. So you're giving up a slot for a one use move that doesn't even net you a kill.

But even a single boost in Evasion is so abusable. You can Stall even better since you're not getting hit all the time. The boost can be Baton Passed to a sweeper or a wallbreaker *coughLandoruscough*. Haze can be Taunted. Defog can be Taunted AND blocked by Sub. Hell, you can BP Evasion boost AND a Sub.

Hopefully nothing comes of these, but I won't be surprised if Z-Crystal + Evasion Boosting Status Move is banned.
 
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Anybody been using Marshadow? Looked fairly potent, but it's a bit hard to gauge effectiveness right now with all the broken stuff around.
 
I was going to come into this thread and talk about how great Mega Swamper is atm but then we learned that he is not quite in the game yet... Without all of these Megas that we're used to seeing around, do we suspect anything is going to rise in usage? My suspicion is the things that are broken (Aegislash, Pheromosa) will be even more broken than yesterday due to lack of checks like Lopunny and Venu
 
Also Baton Pass Clause [Which is active on the OU Beta ladder] prevents passing Speed+Another stat. So EvoboostPass is banned anyway.
That's a strange and complicated clause.

I'm surprised there doesn't seem to be much consideration of exploring cleaner options, especially this early on in a new gen.
 
That's a strange and complicated clause.

I'm surprised there doesn't seem to be much consideration of exploring cleaner options, especially this early on in a new gen.
It was very justified at the time, because Baton Pass teams were literally the only viable competitive option at the highest level of play. Rather than banning Baton Pass in its entirety (which would have been "cleaner"), a complex ban was enacted so that non-broken Baton Pass would still be an option.
 
It was very justified at the time, because Baton Pass teams were literally the only viable competitive option at the highest level of play. Rather than banning Baton Pass in its entirety (which would have been "cleaner"), a complex ban was enacted so that non-broken Baton Pass would still be an option.
That doesn't sound any better than the proposal to only ban King's Shield so non-KS Aegislash is still an option. If Aegislash is broken, Aegislash should be banned, not arbitrarily nerfed. If Baton Pass is broken, Baton Pass should be banned, not arbitrarily nerfed.

And again, this is a different generation with a different metagame.
 
Quote from the Suspect thread: "It is said that Baton Pass chains exacerbate the match-up component of the game, to the point where you either have a full counter to the strategy (i.e. a Pokémon like Sableye) or you're doomed to lose to it, unless a lucky crit occurs when the opponent isn't behind a Substitute. While the last point applies to many other Pokémon/strategies, it's an undeniable fact that preparing for full Baton Pass teams severely limits team building, given the very few full-counters to this strategy. It's no surprise that many teams at the top of the ladder are full Baton Pass teams."

It was pretty cancerous at the time and Baton Pass teams were taking up a higher and higher percentage of the top ladder spots as time went on.

The original Suspect thread is here if you want to read the full 94 pages of discussion...
 
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I've found pretty good use out of SpDef Decidueye. It's typing is fairly solid against move special attackers, and things like Tapu Koko's Thunder does like 30. And with access to Roost as well as Defog and U-turn, it does have some decent support options. Spirit Shackle also basically denies the opponent of a double switch, allowing you to grab momentum immediately right after.
 
I don't exactly get what everyone's problem with complex bans is. They're a very pragmatic, if a bit inelegant, solution. Baton Pass teams don't centralize the meta anymore and niche strategies like slow Baton Pass that are in no way broken are still allowed. Everyone (except purists craving simple rules) is happy.
 

November Blue

A universe where hot chips don't exist :(
is a Contributor Alumnus
Tapu Koko is incredibly good. Deceptively powerful despite base 95 Special Attack, I wouldn't be surprised if it were the strongest Electric-type in OU. Terrain-boosted Volt Switches and Thunders hit incredibly hard, to the point where Tapu Koko can actually sweep/clean. Its speed tier makes it a bit of a blanket check for the whole tier, and it's really splashable because of this.

Aegislash is superglue. It's one of the best defensive checks in the tier, and will valiantly protect you from half the damn meta. It feels like a bit of a necessary evil at this early point in time, when there are so many things to prepare for. I don't agree that Aegislash is centralizing everything around itself, it feels more like it's holding the tier together, with help from Toxapex and a few others.

Speaking of Toxapex, this little crown-of-thorns starfish that could is a godsend. It checks Pheromosa. It checks Greninja. It checks Genesect. It checks Water-types, some Fairies, etc. Haze is a must, I've already had Mimikyus and Kommo-os try to use it as set-up bait. I'm still working on movesets and EV spreads, it has too many useful moves. You definitely want Scald, Haze, Regenerator, Recover, and either Baneful Bunker/Toxic/Toxic Spikes. Rocky Helmet and Lefties are both good for sustain, and you kinda want to slot a Poison-type move in there somewhere, because Scald does almost nothing to most Fairies. Max physical defense for the EV spread seems like an easy choice, but you could make a sorta-argument for some special defense investment; I've run into a bunch of players that lead with Toxapex and leave it in against Tapu Koko, where it gets taken out on turn 1. Not sure what's happening there, but it keeps happening.

Shiinotic is something that more people need to try. It's got a lot of special bulk, and a huge list of useful resistances. Pair it up with Heatran or Toxapex for a useful defensive core. Access to Spore is always helpful (watch out for Electric Terrain), but Strength Sap is the real eye-opener. It patches up Shiinotic's physcial defense a little, and gives it rocket-powered healing. What the move seems to do is take the target's Attack stat, and transfer that number directly into Shiinotic's HP. You're looking at 65% health restored bare minimum, unless you're fighting a Pyukumuku of something.

Primarina is performing quite well. I'm currently using an Assault Vest set with max Special Attack + HP investment, and it's a surprisingly sturdy special tank. Primarina's Special Attack is only 3 points lower than Keldeo's, so it's got plenty of power. In comparison to Tapu Fini, Primarina has much better offense, while Tapu Fini offers more bulk, Misty Terrain, and Defog for the team. They're both quite balanced; one doesn't feel clearly superior to the other.

Wishiwashi has an incredibly potent bulky Specs set. Pound for pound, it's the strongest Water-type in the tier. Boosted Scalds and Hydro Pumps hit incredibly hard, and it has the bulk to take hits and force switches. Mono-Water STAB is a little lacking, but U-turn helps you keep momentum. Solo form sucks, but it's a slow mon with less than 25% HP. It's dead at that point anyway.

Zygarde is going to be insane once people start using it. Dog form has base 115 Speed, and is a decent revenge killer/check for certain mons. A Coil set with Sitrus Berry uses half the metagame as setup bait, and is unstoppable lategame unless the enemy team has a strong special attacker. Transforming to complete form gives it a huge health/healing boost, and a few Defense boosts make it nigh-untouchable with physical attacks. The lowered Speed makes it kinda vulnerable to fast special attackers, but Extremespeed can mitigate this, provided you have 2 or 3 Attack boosts. Dragon Dance or Salac Berry could also help, maybe Life Orb too. It kinda reminds me of Scrafty. There are a few different ways to run it, depending of how much you want to focus on offense or defense.

Until Thousand Arrows is useable, it's countered by Celesteela. Really wish they'd fix this. Earthquake sucks when Ground and Dragon immunities are everywhere.

Xurkitree is a bloody pain. I haven't tried it yet, but it's given me trouble on multiple occasions. You need an Electric immunity or it's going to rampage. Scouting to see if it's Scarf or Tail Glow gives me a headache, and it feels like it can snowball and sweep way too easily, sometimes without warning. I don't know if it's just me using lots of Water-types or something, but this thing gives me nightmares unless I have Lightingrod Alolan Marowak or Shiinotic.

Alolan Marowak is actually kinda anti-meta. Lightingrod with Ghost/Fire typing lets it check a bunch of stuff, including Pheromosa and Tapu Koko. Thick Club is a must, but I'm not sure if it'd be better to invest in Attack or defenses. Just remember that it's slower than Aegislash.
 
I don't exactly get what everyone's problem with complex bans is. They're a very pragmatic, if a bit inelegant, solution. Baton Pass teams don't centralize the meta anymore and niche strategies like slow Baton Pass that are in no way broken are still allowed. Everyone (except purists craving simple rules) is happy.
There are two big problems with this particular one. The first is that the goal of stopping the specific Baton Pass chain strategy could have been dealt with via an enormous number of complex options, each with different impacts on other, non-broken strategies, so the choice between them is extremely arbitrary. The second is that it targets in-battle actions rather than team construction.

Something simpler like banning Baton Pass itself or specific broken users like Espeon would have been a far cleaner solution, avoiding all of those issues. And I certainly don't think anyone who thinks it would be inappropriate to nerf Aegislash with a King's Shield ban as an alternative to banning it outright can reasonably be in favor of carrying over the Baton Pass clause into Gen 7.
 
I've been using LO Mamoswine for a while now and I can only say that it's extremely powerful right now.

Mamoswine @ Life Orb
Ability: Thick Fat
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Icicle Crash
- Earthquake
- Ice Shard

There are a lot of Poison, Ground, Dragon, Fire, Steel (and many more) pokemon running around right now, and Mamoswine punishes all of them with its strong Ground and Ice STAB. Ice Shard picks of weakened opponents or straight-out kills pokemon like Lando-I.
 
I found this suprising hyper-Mega revelations:

-Pokemon Bank doesn't allow items (many of you would know). All of the items needs to be in the game to be usable in the Gen VII.

The thing is that more than half of the Mega Stones aren't in Sun and Moon. In theory, there's a method to obtain Mega Stones when transferring... and I'm saying this because as of now...

ALL THE MEGA EVOLUTION ITEMS ARE UNAVAILABLE EXCEPT THE ONES FOR POKEMON IN THE ALOLA DEX!!!!

That's right. Right now, and until further notice, only the Mega Evolutions of Alolan Dex Pokemon has been discovered. I supposed that there's a method to obtaining the Mega Stones of Bank pokemon but because it isn't guaranteed, all of those Mega Stones should be banned for all tiers where Marshadow are unallowed. And with it, the HA of Starters, Ash's Pikachu (and it's Z-Move), Mew's Z-move, etc.
 
Alolan Marowak sounds great so far in the curent metagame, but I fear its speed might hinder its qualities once everyone will be able to join the party in January.

I'm surprised not many people brought up the topic of Silvally, I was suprised to see that its stats weren't that crazy, but I feel it's decent enough to play certain roles in a UU (or call me crazy, even OU) team build, what do you think ?
A lot can be discussed !
 
The first is that the goal of stopping the specific Baton Pass chain strategy could have been dealt with via an enormous number of complex options, each with different impacts on other, non-broken strategies, so the choice between them is extremely arbitrary.

Something simpler like banning Baton Pass itself or specific broken users like Espeon would have been a far cleaner solution, avoiding all of those issues
The whole foundation of Smogon seems pretty arbitrary and open to discussion, doesn't make it a bad system.

And simple solutions aren't always the best ones. I'd have to read the threads leading to the BP ban again, but I can vaguely remember that BP chains seemed to be broken even if you were to ban Espeon, so that doesn't work. Which leaves a full BP ban, screwing over a dozen Pokemon that make good use of the move but aren't broken themselves. The current solution already avoids all the issues, it leaves maximal freedom and a healthy meta. If it ain't broken don't fix it.

You think it's hypocritical to complex ban BP and then oppose an Aegislash complex ban. That's reasonable. Honestly you're absolutely right, it is hypocritical, but it's also convenient. More complex bans lead to more work for the mods and polarise the community, so why not enjoy the status quo? Keep the BP ban as it is and reject weird complex bans in the future. Seems fine to me.

PS: Sorry for the late answer, was grocery shopping.
 

November Blue

A universe where hot chips don't exist :(
is a Contributor Alumnus
Alolan Marowak sounds great so far in the curent metagame, but I fear its speed might hinder its qualities once everyone will be able to join the party in January.

Marowak struggles with its speed, yeah. It's consantly put in the position where it has to take a hit before it can attack, which really whittles it down. I'm honestly considering a defensive EV spread, maybe 252 HP 252 +Def and let Thick Club provide the damage.
 
Something to clarify I guess, Is this thread only for Post-Bank (that is, the main OU once it's official in January) discussion?
If it's for both, maybe we could get a separate thread for pre-bank OU?
 
Something to clarify I guess, Is this thread only for Post-Bank (that is, the main OU once it's official in January) discussion?
If it's for both, maybe we could get a separate thread for pre-bank OU?
The ladder is post-bank, without a shadow of a doubt. If you need proof, look up a transfer-only move on Serebii, and put that into the teambuilder and hit the validate button (ex. Zen Headbutt on Emboar).

I honestly don't know if there's going to be a pre-bank ladder this gen; part of the reason the ladder even exists is to provide a completely unrestricted, time-irrespective battle format (bar unreleased Pokemon), and a pre-bank ladder runs counter to that idea. It makes sense if there's a demand for a ladder that only has Alola mons, but at that point, either the majority of people don't really want that, or VGC would be your recourse here.
 

p2

Banned deucer.
pre-bank meta exists on the ladder and as a challenge format for those that want to get bent over by phero without aegi available to use

pre-bank also suxx and is a big waste of time because it needlessly gimps developing the actual meta which we're getting in a couple of months. having both formats is fine anyway
 

Martin

(citation needed)
is a Smogon Discord Contributoris a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
I've just thought about something that could work. I've not tested it yest because I just thought it up 10 seconds before starting typing this and just wanted it recorded somewhere so I don't forget it, but Z-Parting Shot is a very interesting move that could see some niche use on Pangoro. To quote the pastebin of status Z-moves:
Code:
Parting Shot                    Restores replacement’s HP 100%
This means that Parting Shot has really nice utility alongside something Zygarde-Complete, which needs to be weakened to change forme and can use Parting Shot's drops to ensure that it gets a Sub up and can begin Coiling for a win with it's completely disgusting 216/121/95 bulk. This is super nice because it also provides a way of grabbing momentum before you are ready to use the Z-move, and Panda has enough in it's movepool to be a passable 'mon on it's own.
Pangoro @ Darkinium Z
Ability: Scrappy
EVs: 236 HP / 252 Atk / 20 Spe or maybe something faster, idk whatever floats your boat. This just creeps Aegi and Clefable
Adamant Nature
- Parting Shot
- Knock Off
- Gunk Shot
- Drain Punch / Superpower

Zygarde @ Leftovers
Ability: Power Construct
EVs: 200 Def / 252 SpD / 56 Spe
Careful Nature
- Substitute
- Coil
- Thousand Arrows
- Dragon Tail

That said, I don't think it will see much use outside of lower tiers, but I think it will be strong there and it's pretty interesting regardless. Z-Memento has the same Z effect as Z-Parting Shot so I've been theorymonning potential users and the best I've come up with is Whimsicott or maybe Uxie. It's a really cool effect with criminally-low distribution which is super sad.
 
Honestly I think Alola Persian has more potential as a (Z-)Parting Shot abuser than Pangoro does. 115 speed, Fur Coat, Taunt, STAB Foul Play are all awesome assets and make it a lot better than the shitmon I was expecting it to be after seeing its stats. I was messing around with it yesterday and managed to Z-Parting Shot my Mega Charizard X (RIP) back to full after it used a few Flare Blitzes to soften up the opponent's team and it was one of the most decisive Pokemon victories I've ever had.

Also, does Z-Parting Shot restore status? It did when I used it yesterday, but I feel like that might be a bug. I'm pretty sure I've only seen it described as healing HP.
 

Vague

Banned deucer.
Tapu Koko + Phero / Genesect is absolutely bonkers (the latter two are broken btw). They gain momentum so easy due to how much of a threat they are in their own right it's insane. Pheromosa is just stupid and Genesect is still amazing, of not still over the edge. Specs Tapu Koko is super good when literally anything you hit with Tbolt that isn't immune or super bulky is KO'ed the next turn. Volt Switch is not fun to switch-in to and its coverage is actually pretty darn decent. It might actually turn out to be too overwhelming once the tier is situated.

Speaking of the Tapus, they're all nothing short of amazing. Fini will probably find its place as one of the best defoggers while functioning as a good bulky CMer. Bulu is pretty good on stall due to its bulk + ability and its a deceptively potent breaker with Choice Band Horn Leech / Wood Hammer and Bulk Up isn't too bad. Lele is just incredible with its great typing offensively and defensively. Choice Specs just decimates nearly everything that comes in and CM isn't too bad either. Scarf is pretty cool with its ability preventing priority from stopping it. Very solid mons and great additions that make the meta really fun.

Shift Gear Magearna is a threat. The +2 in speed in tandem with Soul Heart and impeccable coverage makes it very scary to face and clean up very nicely. Minior has a lot of potential with a Shell Smash set when paired with Spikes. Cleans up very nicely and reminds me of Cloyster. Mental / White Herb are the most useful items for setting up (Mental is cool for bypassing Taunt) and I use a physically offense set rather than mixed most of the time and +2 STAB Acrobatics is legit scary.

Nihilego is a pretty good Rock setter that doesn't give stuff like Manaphy (super scsry) free turns. It's also offensively capable with its nice STAB combo. Buzzwole has seen a ton of use as a shaky Pheromosa check as well as other things with a defensive set, but I feel it works better as a powerful attacker with Band or BU. I think Kartana is a bit overbearing but not blatantly broken like another specific UB. SubSD + Salac sets are are pretty much gg after setting up, but it isn't that easy for it to setup. Scarf seems to be the most consistent. Celesteela is going to be a defensive staple with its amazing typing, defenses, and modest offenses so it isn't too passive. No consistent recovery sucks but it's really useful overall and should be a staple for BO, Balance, and Stall. Xurkitree is pretty balanced too, not too fast so TG isn't an instant win and a pretty shallow movepool. Pretty good though with a Scarf set.

Overall these Pokemon are all huge game changers. I can confidently say the Pokemon this gen may be some of the best we've ever gotten. This is looking to be a promising metagame.
 
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