Scarlet and Violet UU Viability Rankings

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Here is our third VR update of the generation. Before I start, I have to make some announcements. Celebiii has chosen to step down from the VR council. Thank you for your contributions and you are welcome back any time! Also, Twilight has rejoined the VR council. Welcome back! Now, onto the changes!

New Placements
:Greninja: to A: Greninja finds itself in a very solid starting ranking in UU. Phenomenal Speed tier, amazing coverage, and being a rare Toxic Spikes user all lend to its high usage and solid success so far. Both Choice Specs and Expert Belt/Heavy-Duty Boots pivot sets have shown to be strong in the meta so far with its great offensive potential against foes like Pawmot, Salamence, Sandy Shocks, and Gengar, although there’s certainly a unique divide on what is better. However, Greninja has some downsides. It’s still very frail and needs to get many foes like Slither Wing, Alomomola, Scream Tail, and AV Cyclizar low to get past them. It’s fast but still slower than Noivern, Kilowattrel, and Talonflame and gets run over by most setup sweepers if they get a boost. It also is limited in its movepool by having Hydro Pump/Surf + Ice Beam + U-turn locked in and having to choose between Dark Pulse, Grass Knot, Spikes, and Toxic Spikes. Still, it’s a very strong Pokémon that requires a lot of respect in the builder and performs at a great level that lends itself the A rank right now.
:Cyclizar: to A: Cyclizar is good for the reasons you’ve seen like 5 times so far: great utility and a valuable offensive check to foes like Salamence and Pawmot as well as Gengar, Sandy Shocks, and Greninja if using an Assault Vest, notably denying hazards vs the latter two. Offensive sets are also potent with its strong coverage in Overheat and Power Whip. It’s still frail and has trouble deciding between Heavy-Duty Boots and Assault Vest to a minor extent, but it has solidified itself as a tier staple and one of the best Pokémon in the metagame, landing in the A rank.
:Armarouge: to A-: One of the scariest Pokémon with an amazingly high ceiling that single handedly has revived Psychic Terrain. Sheer power, diversity of sets from Calm Mind + 3 Attacks to Choice Specs to Iron Defense + Stored Power, and coverage to wipe out traditional answers like Gastrodon, Slowbro, and Tyranitar all lend to Armarouge’s success. It still offers little defensively, is pretty slow, and generally can be hit or miss, but it’s still a strong option to use that can completely change a game in the right circumstances, yielding a solid ranking in A-.
:Samurott: to C: This ranking may come as a surprise for some, but Samurott does have a solid enough niche as a physical wallbreaker to warrant a spot on the VR. It distinguishes itself from other physical Water-type wallbreakers in its access to Knock Off to hinder switch-ins like Salamence and Quagsire as well as the general ability to target Wo-Chien pre and post tera. It also doesn’t care about Alomomola that much which is unique for a physical breaker. Still niche but enough to be C rank.
:Typhlosion: to D: Self explanatory ranking. We’re all waiting for this to drop in a few weeks.

:Pelipper: to A: Note that this rise captures Pelipper as an individual Pokémon rather than the viability of rain. Rain’s viability is generally considered to be represented by Floatzel’s viability which is in B+. Anyway, Pelipper continues to solidify itself as a powerful wallbreaker with an unresisted STAB combo amplified by the rain. Pivot sets and Choice Specs both see solid usage with the former acting as a great check to Quaquaval and Scizor and the latter nuking the entire tier. Very consistent wallbreaker that moves to A to show how strong it is offensively and the slow pivot value it has while checking massive threats.
:Scream Tail: to A: Fat pink Pokémon that never dies edition 10. Just stat checks so much of our offensive options like Quaquaval, Salamence, Greninja, Iron Jugulis, Pawmot, and Noivern while providing key wish support to enable teammates like Sandy Shocks and Scizor for more longevity to pivot more or Donphan and Rotom-H to offset their lack of recovery. It has experimentation with useful moves such as Flamethrower and Psyshock due to its large movepool, while Encore is still always a safe 4th. The sheer support capabilities it provides more than enough justifies a rise.
:Slowbro: to A: To many, Slowbro is the best defensive pivot in the tier and in general is a strong defensive option to use on many teams. It blanket checks a fair amount of foes like Maushold, Quaquaval, Hawlucha, Lucario, and Water-Tauros while being able to flip the script on threats like Scizor and Mimikyu with Tera. Its vast movepool including moves like Flamethrower, Ice Beam, Body Press, and Thunder Wave allows one tailor Slowbro to fit the team’s needs well. The Pokémon who do switch into it like Gastrodon and Wo-Chien can’t hit it hard back and allows Slowbro to set up a Future Sight for a teammate to wallbreak. It forms potent cores with Pokémon like Salamence, Tinkaton, and Cyclizar, the latter of which also has Regenerator, and can use Calm Mind, Iron Defense, and Nasty Plot boosting sets to great success. Thanks to Lily avarice and Twilight for suggestions on what to include in this write up.
:Decidueye: to A-: The owl is actually pretty cool right now. It provides fantastic utility between its typing and moves like Defog, Knock Off, and U-turn, matching up well against hazard setters like Gastrodon, Hippowdon, and Sandy Shocks. That’s not all, it also keeps Talonflame and Salamence from coming in freely as well as spin block Tsareena and Quaquaval. It has displaced Brambleghast and Tsareena to a fair extent and is just an overall solid Mon that’s potent enough to rise into the A ranks.
:Magnezone: to A-: A rise in Magnezone structures generally means a rise in Magnezone’s viability as well. Beyond trapping and removing Tinkaton, it’s a pretty good wallbreaker right now, crushing teams using Sandy Shocks as their Ground-type and with Tera Grass is able to wipe out Gastrodon, Quagsire, and Hippowdon from the tier. Assault Vest sets are also decent to take hits better from Gengar and Greninja. It’s a potent enabler while being a solid wallbreaker in of itself, justifying a rise into the A ranks.
:Haxorus: to B+: New experimentation with Haxorus on Psychic Terrain as well as adapting X-Scissor into its moveset has made Haxorus appear a lot better into meta trends that makes its current ranking an understatement, justifying a small rise.
:Kilowattrel: to B+: Kilowattrel is quite strong at the moment, getting the jump on new drop Greninja and has seen some experimentation with Tera Blast Grass pivot sets to be a faster but frailer Sandy shocks. It’s grown to become part of the metagame and rises into B+ to reflect that. Not too much else to add that hasn’t been talked about before.
:Polteageist: to B+: Polteageist is a staple on Psychic Terrain hyper offense which has seen a massive rise in usage thanks to Armarouge dropping. It’s a massive threat that can snowball easily with a singular boost and packs a punch with Tera Fighting to wipe out Tyranitar and Wo-Chien. It also excels on popular Ghost-spam hyper offense teams alongside Mimikyu and Gengar to overwhelm Pokémon such as Tinkaton. A rise to B+ better represents its threat potential.
:Hawlucha: to B: Hawlucha undergoes a small rise to reflect its increased potency in the metagame as a key Pokémon on the revitalized Psychic Terrain hyper offense. It’s very important for outspeeding and KOing Floatzel with Unburden activated while Rain is up. In general, it can be very hard to stop with a boost without a select few bulky Pokemon, so the rise shows how it is more potent currently than what B- suggests.
:Golduck: to B: B- was generally an understatement of Golduck’s viability as it has generally proven itself to be a near staple on rain that fulfills an important role in wiping out Gastrodon while being the main special attacking Water-type breaker for the archetype (stop using Specs Greninja in rain!). Its viability is on par with Barraskewda’s and should be ranked in the same rank to reflect that.
:Florges: and :Sylveon: to B: Grouping these two together since they’re basically the same Pokémon. It turns out that fat special Fairy-types are pretty good, especially when they can support their team with Wish and snowball with Calm Mind. Both are potent wincons that can turn unprepared teams upside down if they can give up even a few turns to these threats. Magnezone + Fairy-type structures are generally very potent right now as well, not to mention these Pokémon check very relevant threats right now such as Salamence, Iron Jugulis and Greninja. Rises for both are deserved for sure.
:Indeedee: to B: Psychic Terrain is a lot better now and Indeedee as the setter rises to represent the viability of Psychic Terrain as an archetype.
:Dragalge: to B-: Magnezone structures have become a lot more popular and one variation is to use Dragalge, who becomes a much more potent Pokémon with Tinkaton removed, firing off Adaptability STAB attacks and spreading poison with a combination of Dragon Tail + Toxic Spikes. Evaluating its niche in the current meta and comparing it to the other Pokémon in C+ shows Dragalge is a cut above what it is ranked alongside and makes the move to B-.

:Gastrodon: to A: Gastrodon has generally felt a bit worse in the metagame than in the prior update to drop to be on par with Quagsire and Hippowdon. Gastrodon is worse off with the rise of Decidueye as well as common hyper offense structures that overwhelm it easily. Strong wallbreakers like Tyranitar and Pawmot break past it easily, and foes like Sandy Shocks, Gengar, and Greninja can blast it with coverage. Still very good but a bit worse than before to be on par with Quagsire and Hippowdon.
:Gengar: to A: Gengar is still a very good Pokémon but the drops of Cyclizar and Greninja do not do it any favors, especially since both are massive threats that are very common that outspeed and nail it. Generally it was always something that was considered a mid-low A+ Pokémon and these drops were impactful enough to kick Gengar down to A rank. Still amazing and requires lots of respect but not as good as before.
:Grafaiai: to B+: Grafaiai has a lot less value in the tier right now. Between its general lack of defensive presence and the fact that Psychic Terrain hyper offense is the most common hyper offense around right now which blocks Prankster means this mon is quite to justify. It’s still a solid Pokémon that’s part of the meta, but has more specific traits that are better represented by a B+ ranking.
:Tauros-Paldea-Blaze: to B: A weird Pokémon to fit due to it generally struggling against most of the tier right now and it doesn’t check much in the higher tiers barring Scizor and Mimikyu. Lack of reliable recovery really stings and needs some teammates to fall back on bad matchups. Still a decent Pokémon but not really part of the meta anymore.
:Rotom-Mow: to B: Rotom-Mow might’ve been ranked too highly from last update looking at its current place in the meta. It’s a fine Electric-type pivot but lacks the hazard setting and raw stats of Sandy Shocks and gets beaten out as a Nasty Plot user by Rotom-H. Scarf struggles to be more than a Volt Switch bot as well. Like Fire Tauros it’s a decent Pokémon but not really part of the meta which prompts a drop.
:Gallade: to B-: Gallade’s only real use in the tier is as a Choice Scarf user where it still does a mediocre job. Struggles to safely click anything without making insane predictions and fails to outspeed boosting sweepers like Gyarados and Haxorus even. Offers too little defensive utility as well. Just a mediocre Pokémon that falls down the VR as its niche becomes smaller and smaller.
:Tsareena: to B-: Very mediocre Pokémon right now that we’re no longer forced into using. Actual removal options like Cyclizar and Decidueye means Tsareena doesn’t really have a major use anymore since it didn’t really do anything in games other than be burned by Talonflame. It’ll likely just keep falling down the rankings.
:Weavile: to B-: With Choice Band being practically unusable in the current meta, Weavile has turned to SD + Tera Electric sets. However, general reliance on Tera and somewhat limited wallbreaking even after +2 isn’t great, prompting a drop to B- to reflect it being more niche. Twilight’s post captures it more in depth.
:Grimmsnarl: to C: Talked about this more in my previous post but just really difficult to justify over Espeon for a number of reasons I can’t be bothered to retype. Could even fall into D rank down the line eventually since it got a few votes for that this slate.
:Frosmoth: to UR: There’s just better sweepers to use, even the ones that are reliant on Tera like Polteageist, Gyarados, or Oricorio-Pom-Pom just have a much higher ceiling that leaves Frosmoth to be just outclassed by current threats.
:Heracross: to UR: Just very difficult to justify over Sandy Shocks as an offensive Pokémon that uses Spikes or Pawmot and Tyranitar as physical wall breakers. Doesn’t get usage to really reflect its small niche in the metagame, so the VR council has decided to remove it from the VR.
:Palossand: to UR: lol Idt this has been used since Iron Hands was legal.

The thread is now open for nominations! Please be mindful of the ongoing suspect test for Sandy Shocks when making nominations. Happy posting!

Queen of Bean

is a Community Contributor
UUPL Champion
:mimikyu: i think mimikyu should be dropped down to b+ tier. this mon gets ohkoed by tinkaton gigaton hammer and has to tera to ohko tink back with +2 shadow claw. it also struggles with alot of mon slike physdef hippowdon and talonflame which are extremely common. it gets revenge killed by maushold and cyclizar from low health and grafaiai for any hp range because its shadow sneak cannot touch them, even tera normal scarf toxtricity can revenge it.

:noivern: i think this should also be dropped to b+ or b. yes noivern is a fast pivot thats fun and all but normally you want the defensive utility into things like scizor or fighting types that mence is just way better at providing. sometimes noivern is good if you already have good enough checks to scizor though but normally i want my flying type to check scizor without having to tera. its also a weak mon and flops into alot of common things like tink and ttar which mence has a better time into because of its higher power. also mence is able to break hippo which noiv isnt.

:golduck: golduck is in my iopinion the best rain sweeper in the tier and i think it should be moves up to b+ or a-. once it gets to plus two with a nasty plot boost it can ohko or 2hko the entire metagame with its coverage and strong stab surf in rain. it gets alot of opportunities to set up in front of things that commonly are used to answer rain like gastrodon and then it breaks massive holes or even just sweeps you with +2 grass knot ice beam and surf.

:syvleon: and :florges: sylveon and florges balance teams have become increasingly popular over the past weeks. magnezone enables these sweepers to calm mind without being annoyed by tinkaton and as we have seen, when tinkaton is tinkagone florges and sylveon are pretty insane sweepers who can take the whole game. they can also wish pass to the rest of the team to keep it healthy and are good answers to salamence and special attackers in general barring gengar. i think these are excellent pokemon inthe current meta and should be moved up to b+ or a tier

:toxtricity: i have been using a scarf toxtricity team alot on ladder and in tournament games and i think this pokemon is super excellent. i have been using a tspikes overdrive boomburst volt switch set and i think this is the best set on toxtricity right now. tspikes on a scarfer may seem odd but it lets toxtricity abuse the many switches it forces with its scary offensive presence. tspikes let iot get poison on targets like hippowdon and tyranitar which it does not like. i dont think sludge bomb is neccesary for anything in the meta and i think tspikes has much more reward for running. this pokemon is a great late game cleaner and revenge killer of slower setup sweepers like +1 gyarados and i think it should be moves up to a- or b+ tier.

:weavile: should be moved up to b or b+. Mossy Sandwich showed me the truth

:tsareena: to d tier. this is probably the worst of the shitty spinners in the tier, in my opinion its worse than forretress and toedscruel even. this mon just gets owned by all the fyings and bugs and never gets opportunities to rapid spin, even the new decidueye walls it. it doesnt even check the things its meant to check like sandy shocks and wo chien because of tera :psycry:

:quagsire: to a-. i think generally you want your bulky ground type to check special attackers and mence and quagsire doesnt do that at all so you have to run it with like scream tail and tyranitar if you dont want to lose to those pokemon. the only reason i think this should drop is because ut forces you to run some sorta suboptimal structures imo if you want to not lose to some meta threats

and that wraps up my thoughts, for the most part i agree with the higher tiers of the current vr. thanks for reading my post if you got this far without being bored to death :3
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-> A-

2 reasons

1) its sp. def is crap worsening its MU into gren, jugulis, mence, gard, gengar, etc. Meaning you gotta put more into checking these threats on your team.
2) most physical sweepers have some way of getting past quagsire, tyranitar has sub dd, haxorus has mold breaker, lucario is stupid strong, Quav is strong with CC, and most things can carry tera grass for gastrodon which results in quagsire being overwhelmed easily

like I just do not believe quagsire fits now esp with a lot of top tiers threatening it besides wo chien (can still knock it and giga drain (seen that on rest talk sometimes)), tinkaton (still can be encored into recover/spikes or SD encored on), non wood hammer mimi, bulky wing. Like it struggles to not get overwhelmed sometimes and still defog decid and bike can really make it a pain for it.

-> A-

our fairy resists are pretty shit, its either smth paper thin like gengar, grafaiai, talon, or a steel such as zone, scizor, and tink while they can all fit on a team they all lack recovery and can be worn down, like zone is 1 moonblast away from being unable to switch in from specs gard while scarf can just mash moonblast into it and just do 20% + rocks which can really put a dent into it. Scarf gard is an amazing late game cleaner into many threats and can be esp good into rain.

-> A-

Well a lot changed... CM is pretty nuts on them, they are both good in their own way but I believe both to be A- as they do not differ much but they can both take over a game esp with a tera to turn the tables. Both can wish pass but sylveon has bigger wishes but both fufill the jobs while florges can deal with pokemon such as iron jugulis, mence, gren, and special attackers in general better due to more bulk. It can wear does pokemon that want to switch in and with protect they can scout choiced mons such as gengar, scizor, ttar, toxtricity, gard, etc

At +1 they can even setup on things such as AV zone, can hurt gengar and make it not want to switch in and just get going from there, its really really hard to stop a gard besides status (really really only quagsire which tera steel kinda owns it) or you have to 50/50 a tera


And Slide
is a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributor
Hello I never really ever do much with the VR, but today I would like to change that.

My Flowers (Lilligant) @ Leftovers
Ability: Own Tempo
Tera Type: Ice / Fire
EVs: 40 Def / 216 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Quiver Dance
- Giga Drain
- Tera Blast
- Sleep Powder

I would like to nominate Lilligant to C+ as I believe it is a pretty decent niche pick for hyper offense and potentially even for something like semi-stall (tho the set would probably be a bit different).

Lilligant has always been held back by its lack of movepool, but with the introduction of tera, things have drastically improved for this mon. Quiver Dance is one of if not the best booster move in the entire game which easily allows it to set up on a lot of the fat mons running in the tier. A lot of teams also do not prep for sleep well, as our only sleep user is Brute Bonnett or the rare yawn Espeon. This can be extremely helpful for HO teams as it can neutralize counters without KO'ing them, which means easier time to set up. This support in Sleep Powder + Grass/Ice or Grass/Fire coverage can make for a deadly combination to a lot of popular mons in the tier right now (just be careful of sandy shocks tera guessing game if you go tera fire). I also want to test tera electric, but I think you probably don't kill wo-chien fast enough to justify it as a neutral tera for the tier.

I didn't really expect to make this nom, so I only have 2 replays that kinda show off what I mean. I also used this team to hit 1500s for ladder tournament last night on my twitch channel (shameless plug). Unfortunately I forgot to turn on VOD saving or I would use that to help my case some.

Replay 1 is versus a rain team. Not the best not the worse. As shown I take advantage of lead Gren to set up a Quiver Dance and promptly sweep. Nice little example of how deadly it can be with a free turn.

Replay 2 is versus our beloved pif. I am quickly able to use his switch into Decidueye to get a free turn to Quiver Dance. Sleep hits the armarogue which allows me to keep Quiver Dancing to reduce incoming damage if he stays in. He switches back to Deci which allows me to out stall it then die to tera Steel Scizor. At this point it is a bit too late for him as Quaquaval can come in and clean up after a +1 speed boost. Less convincing of a replay, but nonetheless shows the pressure Lilligant can provide.

Lilligant is a pretty cool mon to use in niche situations to help open up win paths for the team. A lot of Pokemon on HO appreciate tera, but don't necessarily need it which allows you to run something like Lilligant. Mon is still pretty frail and Sleep Powder can miss and suck and sometimes you just can't get anything going. BUT, I do believe it can at least earn itself as a C+ member of the VR as I believe it's about on the same level as the other mons listed there. Maybe I'll make another post about moving mons up and down the VR next time lmao

Melt Gibson

You're sick. You need to come home.
is a Pre-Contributor
keep telling me to Shut The Fuck Up, it will only make my opinions Worse

B+ > A-
Magnezone is good right now and people are finally realizing just how strong offensive Fairies are in the current meta. Our resists are generally pretty frail or easy to wear down and Gardevoir exploits that quality excellently. Scarf is the best set by a mile imo but the raw power on Specs is definitely enough to still make it viable, this thing cranks out numbers like you wouldn't believe. Trace is also a hugely underrated ability, copying Swift Swim is really only the tip of the iceberg as to what you can do with it seeing as there are a lot of very good and exploitable abilities you can copy right now. Intimidate from Salamence and Gyarados, Flame Body from Talonflame, Infiltrator from Noivern, Magic Bounce from Espeon, Storm Drain from Gastrodon, Mold Breaker from Haxorus, etc etc etc. You also completely wall Tatsugiri for what it's worth.

B > A-
Agree with QoB's post here that this is a super duper good breaker and cleaner all in one, Overdrive and Tera Normal Boomburst are absurdly threatening and just put huge dents in a lot of shit. You have to always be ready for the speed jump on Scarf and the power of Specs at the same time and it ends up forcing the opponent into a lot of coinflips that are very unfavorable for them. It's a little slow, but still faster than most of the things it needs to break and revenge killers have to be careful to not get shattered by a sudden 182 base power STAB. TSpikes is very good to capitalize on the things Toxtricity forces out and Sludge Bomb is honestly still fine to hit the Fairies that are on the rise, as well as a nice middle ground for things like Decidueye. Really really really good mon that is criminally underrated right now.

C+ > B-
This little guy is neat! Goro Yagami and I built a team with it and it's surprisingly effective in a lot of the duties it needs to perform as an offensive scarfer. Scrappy frees up your coverage slots and also has the handy bonus of blocking Intimidate, a lot of teams tend to only really be one or two mons away from just allowing Flamigo to click buttons. 115 base Attack is very nice, especially with the same STAB combo as Hawlucha, and 90 Speed, while awkward, is certainly workable. Definitely a used car salesman kind of mon, it needs a choice item to be viable and has some matchups where it's just a complete dud, but it's better than some of the other shitters down in C+.

B > C+
It's not really a secret these days that I'm not a very big fan of Bisharp. So, so much of what happens to be good right now just totally takes a dump on it. The bulls don't really fear it at all even after Defiant procs, Sandy Shocks blasts it straight to hell, PsyTerrain HO (and to an extent, Rain) just completely overwhelm it with the former of the two shutting down Sucker Punch entirely. Pawmot, Heattom, and Talonflame dunk on it. It makes zero progress whatsoever against the fat Grounds + Alomomola, and while having an okay matchup against the Fairy squad, is absolute Magnezone food. There's just nothing whatsoever to really justify Bisharp at its current rank, even Easter Bliss' proposed fix of a Pressure PP Stall set is at best a small niche. This thing suuuucks.
A- ->A
I heavily disagree with the nom to drop Noivern, especially as low as potentially B. The Speed tier is so valuable with how common Greninja and Cyclizar are. From my personal experience, the amount of Choice Scarf users being used is relatively low simply because we don't have many good ones so it is a massive thorn for many teams. Noivern is a revenge killer and it does that job fantastically by forcing the aforementioned Pokemon out and generating momentum with U-turn if needed. The whole wanting a Flying-type to check Scizor seems odd to me because there is only Salamence, Talon, Gyarados, and Pelipper, all of which can actually lose to Scizor anyway or aren't easy to slot onto certain builds. Noivern is at least still bulky enough to live a +2 BP:

+2 252+ Atk Technician Scizor Bullet Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Noivern: 259-306 (83.2 - 98.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

I do agree Salamence breaks Tinkaton better but Tyranitar not as much:

252 SpA Noivern Draco Meteor vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Tyranitar in Sand: 117-138 (34.3 - 40.4%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
252 SpA Salamence Draco Meteor vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Tyranitar in Sand: 127-150 (37.2 - 43.9%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

This is no bulk Tyranitar and there is basically no difference though technically Noivern nets more damage from Draco into U-turn anyways. Against bulkier variants, Noivern technically has a more favorable matchup. Personally, I would nom Noivern up if anything for the above reasons and because with the rise of these bulky Fairies Noivern isn't hindered as much thanks to being able to pivot out into a suitable check/punish. If a rise is out of the question then leave it where it is.

S -> A+
Still a very good Pokemon but I don't consider it to be S rank. The drop of Greninja and Cyclizar did not do Salamence any favors and so I find it is an awkward position where the Speed tier never feels like it is enough at times. It still has a lot of defensive value thanks to the typing + bulk + Intimidate making it an appealing check to Scizor, Taorus, Quack, etc. However, as an offensive special breaker, I think it struggles to be as effective, especially with the rise of bulky Fairies + Tyranitar. I believe it faces competition with Noivern though others may disagree on that.

A+ -> A
It warped the tier into respecting Flame Body and now I find it struggles to do much of anything. The dominance of Water-types is horrible for it and many of the common hazard setters it can't afford to switch into. The prevalence of Tera Fire on certain physical wincons renders Talon's effectiveness mute in many cases too. Slither Wing runs Pads so it no longer fears generating momentum on the Talon switch. Sandy is a huge problem for Talon especially if it's the Spikes variant. It still has value with the Speed tier to revenge kill certain threats and has value on bulkier builds but it is no longer an easy/auto splash onto teams.

A- -> A+
Ridiculous breaking power with CB sets that has plenty of opportunities to find those moments to break. STAB combination is hard to switch into and even most resisted hits do a ton. DD is still amazing and I have started using bulkier spreads on these sets too. It can be EV'd pretty flexibly to meet a team's needs, which is great imo. I have not really used SR Ttar that much but you probably want to run more offensive sets if doing that right now. Quag isn't nearly as common anymore so you also have a bit more flexibility on the DD sets as well.

Personally, I think Sylveon > Florges because most of the Special Breakers Florges checks better, Sylveon still doesn't care that much about anyways so I would rather have the better physical bulk for Tyranitar, Quack, Pawmot, etc. I would just nom Sylveon up myself and leave Florges a tier lower. I have never seen Toxtricity so not sure about that one. I still believe Tauros-A could rise but I don't care too much about that one. Dropping Tsareena to D seems a bit excessive though I agree it sucks and should drop further.

:wo-chien: A+ -> S
Do I need to say any more? This mon is the most infuriating thing to face in the tier right now. Right when you've chipped it down to KO range of some threat on your team, it starts RestTalking and enters the Tera Roulette. Think of how, whenever an offensive Pokemon's viability is discussed, someone almost always brings up how well it can beat Wo-Chien. This mon beats almost everything and makes you always think about it in the builder. S rank for sure.

:gyarados:B+ -> A-/A
This mon is insane. Or, more specifically, one set on it is insane:
"Unfortunate" (Gyarados) @ Leftovers
Ability: Intimidate
Tera Type: Flying
EVs: 252 HP / 104 Atk / 152 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Waterfall
- Dragon Dance
- Tera Blast
- Taunt
Already, it has the fantastic defensive uses of switching into Quaquaval, Floatzel, and Scizor... but it is also one of the best destroyers of defense in the tier. After playing around Foul Play on Wo-Chien, you can run away with a crazy amount of games against anything defensive with this. Not to mention, thanks to your huge bulk, it's not like you crumble to random priority hits like Bisharp's Sucker Punch or especially the many moves you resist. Water + Flying coverage does wonders, especially when you get Adaptability on your flying moves.

Some other nominaitons I support:

:gardevoir: somewhere higher. punishes teams with no or fake fairy resists very hard, and I'd like to mention that it's certainly not 100% magnezone dependent. the huge power for a scarfer, spammable STABs, and utility with Trick / Healing Wish lets you be more versatile than just magnezone teams.
:flamigo: somewhere higher. I think that SD Roost Sharp Beak sets are underexplored, as they sit on Wo-Chien and have crazy calcs vs things like slowbro and spdef or mixed hippo, especially after tera.
:tyranitar: somewhere higher. i'd like to add that DD sets (especially sub DD) are still strong and doing well.
:sylveon: + :florges: somewhere higher. just like garde, I want to add that these two are not zone dependent.
:golduck: somewhere higher. gren outclassed the PU swift swimmer, you love to see it

Mossy Sandwich

Optimizing wacky metas
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UUPL Champion
Feeling inspired to make noms since I now have too much free time and other people have done it, notably might try to give my own thoughts on some of the previous nominations. Might be a bit more scatterbrained than some of my other posts.

:weavile: Weavile B- --> B
I know it just dropped, but having played with it a bit more since then and considering everything else in B-, I don't think Weavile should be this low. I will notably say that I've tried Choice Band again and it has some extremely good traits. Notably, Weavile is a physical attacker that gets through common physical walls or physically bulky pivots very easily. Salamence, Wo-Chien and Hippowdon are popular and generally sturdy options, but all of them are weak to Ice and are forced to switch out or to tera by Weavile. A lot of common Ice resists also don't fare particularly well against Weavile with Tinkaton, Scizor and Quaquaval getting worn down by Icicle Crash very quickly, especially if Weavile decides to Tera and Assurance one shotting Slowbro and Scizor after Rocks if they lack Boots. Its offensive pressure is also not limited to a few defensive mons, there are a lot more slower Ice-weak or generally frail targets such as Sandy Shocks, Cyclizar, Noivern, Pawmot or Gengar that Weavile can just wipe out. Basically, fast and strong Icicle Crash is very good at forcing switches and most of the good resistances can still be risky against Weavile. Obviously, you still have a lot of issues, notably being pretty much unable to properly get through Alomomola or Tauros and having to deal with taking 25% switching in, but I see Choice Band Weavile as an option who can tear apart underprepared teams and, while it can be risky or matchup-fishy, the mere threat of it is enough to classify it as B tier I'd say. This is not all that different from other mons in B-, but Weavile has felt more consistent than these others and its speed gives it crazy potential.

I'd also like to talk about Tera Electric because I find it's a rather interesting set that adds to its viability. Again, one of the more valuable things about this set is how much Ice stab naturally scares out. It's rather easy to grab a boost when so much stuff naturally switches out of you. It's also worth noting that Electric typing can make it kind of a pain to kill. You can take random Hurricanes, Volt Switches and Bullet Punches which can be crucial in wallbreaking or sweeping and it also gives you a paralysis immunity if you run into the rare Thunder Wave users. With all of these combined, I've found it extremely easy to just get Weavile to +2 early and grab 2-3 kills surprisingly consistently. The speed also makes it kind of a pain to revenge kill along with the resistance to what would be common revenge killing options like Talonflame's Brave Bird and Scizor's Bullet Punch. In general, I've seen Tera Electric put a lot of work in and being well worth the Tera due to how much work it can put in.

I'd also like to add that Weavile helps for offensive role compression. It gives you Speed Control, Priority, Wallbreaking and even Sweeping Potential. This is extremely valuable in terms of slotting it on a team, it's unlikely to be useless in any given game due to its speed and priority and can fill some pretty big holes in teambuilding when looking for an offensive mon. You can also take advantage of its bad matchups by using something like Salamence to beat stuff like Tauroses, Quaquaval and Scizor because of Weavile's lopsided matchups as it can otherwise tear through teams lacking those and its tough matchups are pretty easy to address overall, giving your team a surprisingly good matchup spread.

:lycanroc-dusk: Lycanroc-Dusk B --> B+
I like Lycanroc for a lot of the same reasons I love Weavile. It's fairly fast and has priority to keep things in check while also hitting very hard and being able to clean up teams. However, Lycanroc is a bit more consistent overall as, while it doesn't have the incredible super-effective coverage of Icicle Crash, it generally hits harder, has more versatile coverage, allowing it to hit pretty much anything neutrally with Stone Edge+Close Combat and being able to use Crunch to get through Slowbro and Tera Ghost Wo-Chien and doesn't have a rock weakness. However, with Weavile, Icicle Crash was much more spammable than any of Lycanroc's option. Due to lacking a Rocks weakness though, it's completely fine going Life Orb. All of this is backed up by the raw power of Tera Fight CC which allows it to run through most offensive and defensive mons without a Fighting resistance, with the few that do generally being vulnerable to Stone Edge. It's only when you start running into Slowbro, Scream Tail and Alomomola that it starts becoming annoying. Even then, those can still take 50+% from Crunch, Stone Edge and Tera CC respectively and, while they stop you from really spamming, they're not exactly safe against it. That being said, yes you will run into annoying matchups, but this is just another highly threatening offensive pokemon that's just a bit hard to fit on teams and fully make work.

I'd also like to bring some extra attention to Accelerock and even Swords Dance. Any move besides Close Combat can be switched out for Swords Dance and, if you manage to grab a boost on the switch, there's very little that will manage to stand in your way. You're pretty likely to force a tera, but all things considered, that's still pretty good. Slowbro risks getting 1HKO'd by Crunch, you can start hitting Scream Tail for 50% with Accelerock as it Encores and, most importantly, Close Combat becomes an insane nuke that will run through entire teams. It's not even easy to revenge-kill a setup Lycanroc-Dusk as, with Accelerock, it can snipe a lot of priority or faster threats. Greninja is straight up one-shotted, Scizor has to stay near full health to avoid killing rolls and most other faster options are weak to Rock. Swords Dance Lycanroc may have a hole in its coverage, but most of the time, Stone Edge is respected as a threat and people will not try to beat it using a Flying type, not to mention most targets will drop anyway to Accelerock after a boost. This is just another pokemon where the raw power and threat-level it provides is just too insane not to put it higher than it currently is.

As for Accelerock, I think it's worth mentionning that its matchup against a lot of common sweepers is very relevant. As said before, a lot of fast pokemon are Flying types and naturally drop easily to it, but Gyarados, Salamence and Iron Jugulis tend to be very dangerous when they can boost their Speed as well. You also hit Psychic Seed Quaquaval. Most interestingly though, it can cut through Tera Fire users like Mimikyu and Scizor trying to dodge a Will-O-Wisp from Talonflame. Its super-effective coverage is just overall good and, while it's not the strongest priority in the tier, it still deals very good damage.

:quagsire: Quagsire A --> A
Keep Quag where it is. Gastrodon is much easier to slot, but it's pretty much a bandaid solution to most of your problems. Quagsire though, it does not lose to what it's meant to beat. It's harder to fit and you can't really fit it on BO since it needs some bulky teammates, but Balance and Stall really like its ability to hold off some of the main physical sweeping threats well. You may often find yourself needing to Tera to properly handle Trailblaze Scizor and Quaquaval, but being able to handle those two and potentially Lucario, Oricorio and the CM Fairies is just great compression. Toxic is also as threatening as ever and it can even lay down Toxic Spikes if you want. You can also go with the 160 SpDef spread if you want your Ground type to handle Shocks, but that's probably not needed. But yeah basically Quagsire is just not a fit for teams that are more offensively-leaning, but it's still great on bulky teams and, even if those are less popular, it's a very important member of those, moreso than Gastrodon is to bulky-offense, which is why I think it should remain where it is.

:salamence: Salamence S --> S
There's a very simple reason why I think Salamence should remain where it is and that's because it's basically the best anchor for BO which is one of the best playstyles at the moment. I don't think it's important to highlight what it's weak to, but rather what it helps to handle. Stuff like Quaquaval, Scizor, Floatzel, those can apply a lot of pressure to most offensive mons, but Salamence can stand against those. It provides crucial backbone for BO and is one of the main reason the playstyle is as good as it is currently. I'd also like to look into Mence's wallbreaking capabilities, because, while it's not that hard to wall, it's hard to win long term against it. A wallbreaker that can not only take hits, but also stay healthy is insane as that allows you to play the long game against your answers. Mons like Tyranitar work well short-term, but when you have to eat Dracos throughout a game, you're gonna get overwhelmed. SpDef Ground and Fairies are also fine at full health, but when you start taking chip from hazards or handling other threats, Mence starts becoming a bit more of a threat. Those are also very, very vulnerable to Hurricane confusions, one self-hit and Mence can start running around unchecked. Mence has answers, but it applies so much pressure to them that it's actually completely fine for it to be walled as it can just switch into something that beats them and retain its defensive utility while forcing its counters to stay healthy. I've also been playing around with its EV spread, customizing its Speed, Power and Bulk, not to mention other coverage options like Earthquake and Hydro Pump seeing usage; it's a pokemon you can put on BO, have it do whatever it wants and it will be very strong regardless. I'd call it the core of one of the most popular playstyle in the meta which is enough to keep it as an S tier threat.

Slowly moving towards the shorter noms, here we go.

:gardevoir: Gardevoir B+ --> B+
While I agree that fairies are on the rise, Garde doesn't really use the best sets well. B+ matches the strength of Scarf and Specs, but CM Fairies are the strong ones really. Even if you eliminate Fairy resists, Gardevoir doesn't give you an easy path to victory, just a decently strong offensive threat. It also can't really beat Tera'd threats unlike Florges and Sylveon which can get through Tera Steel Mence or Tera Poison Gastrodon for example. It also lacks their defensive utility.

:florges::sylveon: Florges and Sylveon B --> Higher
I'm not the first to talk about those and I've talked about it when talking about Gardevoir, but being a bulky wincon only really stopped by Magnezone-weak mons is pretty crazy. They also generally help handle some scary offensive mons and pass Wish. You go Florges if you want to speed creep stuff, Sylveon if you want bulk and power. I'd say Florges is generally a bit better because Speed is the better stat, but it's kinda hard to put them in different ranks. Most people have already said what has to be said, those mons win very easily and are pretty good when you build around them.

:tyranitar: Tyranitar A --> A+
Tanking Hurricanes is as valuable as ever not to mention it's generally good into generally threatening HO mons like Iron Jugulis, Polteageist and Armarouge. It feels like it can kinda do nothing offensively sometimes, but its defensive utility is unmatched and you have to give DDance and CB a lot of respect. Rocks Twave is a fun set, most of you switch-ins are bothered by para and you get to take special hits even better, though you always want at least a decent amount of Attack investment.

:altaria: Altaria C+ --> B-
Fat Balance and Stall needs a reliable defogger with Tspikes Gren dropping and messing with a good amount of Spinners, so this ends up being a decent alternative to Talon. The status absorption is still useful and you can still stop Shocks from starting voltturn chains if you're willing to just Roost on the Volt. Basically just helps anchor fatter teams and, while it has issues with passivity notably, I've been feeling like I use it commonly enough and it puts in more work than most of the rest of C+ tier.
:altaria: Altaria C+ --> B-
I definitely support this rise. Alt has been such a key part of Balance and Stall in how it handles Quag 1v1, blankets nearly the entire physical meta, and spreads WoW with fluffy grace. Plus, it can surprise Stall with its Perish Trapper set, and overall, it is probably the most solid defogger in the tier along with Deci & T-flame.

Melt Gibson

You're sick. You need to come home.
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:gardevoir: Gardevoir B+ --> B+
While I agree that fairies are on the rise, Garde doesn't really use the best sets well. B+ matches the strength of Scarf and Specs, but CM Fairies are the strong ones really. Even if you eliminate Fairy resists, Gardevoir doesn't give you an easy path to victory, just a decently strong offensive threat. It also can't really beat Tera'd threats unlike Florges and Sylveon which can get through Tera Steel Mence or Tera Poison Gastrodon for example. It also lacks their defensive utility.
I think you do neglect to realize one thing that Garde has over the CM Fairies - It's not nearly as reliant on Magnezone and overall just fits on a lot more team structures as a result. While Florges and Sylveon do function more as wincons, Garde is moreso just one of those mons that's in and out while dealing very large amounts of chip. Trick and Healing Wish (as well as a bunch of other very underexplored support options) also provide very useful support against fat that the other two Fairies can't.

Another point I'd like to make (turning a flat 180 and agreeing with Mossy here) is that Mence should 100% stay S rank. It's such a superb anchor on Balance and Bulky Offense and the set variety between Special HDB, Dragon Dance, and Specs is absurd. I think that comparing it to Noivern is very strange considering that aside from being the same type and running HDB most of the time, their function on teams is entirely different.


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I want to try something different in this post and highlight something important- what has changed since the last vote? A lot of stuff nominated in the thread has been voted on before, about 3 weeks ago for the prior update, so I think it’s important to evaluate these nominations in the context of updates and developments since the last update. It’s a waste really to spend time nominating something but fail to state what has changed since the last update, because otherwise it won’t have an effect on swaying the minds of the VR council. I’ve overlooked this in my posts myself and want to try to incorporate this more in the future and I encourage others to do the same. Sometimes nominations will just be accidental oversights to leave a Pokemon off a vote or a Pokémon didn’t drop/rise far enough (for example, I don’t think Tsareena dropped far enough or Florges/Sylveon rose to where they really should be) so there’s not like an inherent pressure to try and find developments for every nomination made. Still, I’ll try a few right now.

:Tyranitar: to A+: Tyranitar was voted on in the last update and I voted for it to remain in A since I felt Hippowdon’s dominance and its vulnerable typing vs offensive structures kept it from being a consistent A+ Pokémon. However, after building and playing a bit more with Open I have completely turned around on this Pokémon. I’ve begun to really notice that every time I don’t load Hippowdon I fear Tyranitar greatly which is a fair amount since I use both Gastrodon and Sandy Shocks more and I think other users will agree. Choice Band is just so strong and Tera Dark tops the cake with a nuclear Crunch that neutral foes can't switch into. Wish balance structures featuring it are incredibly common shown in open which alleviates longevity issues, allowing it to tank hits from mons like Salamence and Kilowattrel as well as trade with others like Sandy Shocks. Many targets such as Gastrodon, Decidueye, Pelipper, and Slowbro continue to have high usage or have risen to be incredibly common, giving Tyranitar more opportunities to fire off attacks. Dragon Dance sets are also scary and play well into common trends of Tyranitar balance structures, completely turning Quagsire into setup bait and taking advantage of more passive stuff as well. The scary part about dealing with Tyranitar is that both Choice Band and Dragon Dance hide well on BO and Balance thanks to other Pokemon like Sandy Shocks, Gastrodon, and Tinkaton taking up hazard setting duties, and that they both make sense on preview and you won’t know until it’s too late. Quagsire can just be turned into setup bait with Sub DD Tera Flying and now your defensive check is gone and you lose. Its flaws are very easy to alleviate and the sheer danger of both Choice Band and Dragon Dance combined in the meta justify a rise to A+ since it’s a top 3 offensive Pokémon.
:Salamence: to A+: I think Salamence is just a bit worse than before to really be ranked alongside Sandy Shocks which is insane as always. Gastrodon and Scream Tail have shown to be very common in the metagame right now and both handle it well. Tyranitar’s meteoric rise does it no favors as it gets free entry on it without Hydro Pump and doesn’t mind a Draco when it can be patched up with Wish. Florges, Sylveon, Spdef Slowbro, and AV Cyclizar check it well and are also parts of the metagame you can’t ignore. Salamence is still very good but with the developments of the meta I don’t see it above Scizor or the rest of A+ anymore.
:Pawmot: to A: I talked about this in my post in the metagame discussion thread but I’ll formally nominate Pawmot to drop. I kinda felt this way for a while but with the usage stats for open it has given me empirical data to support my stance. It’s still one of the if not the most dangerous Pokémon offensively but its lack of splashability cannot be ignored and how easy it can fit on teams is an important part of viability to me. Between rises in Decidueye and Scream Tail, a bit more phys def Hippo with Gengar declining, and reactive Teras on Slowbro and Wo-Chien, Pawmot isn’t as difficult to handle as before. Of course they’re not super sturdy checks but generally do the job well enough to keep it from being a dominating threat. It’s currently around the mid 20s in usage stats next to like Donphan and Mimikyu, which is very different compared to other A+ Pokémon which are running the top 10. I rate it similarly to Iron Jugulis; very dangerous offensively but have slight splashability and consistency issues that makes it a better fit for A.
:Gyarados: to A-: One of the many sweepers in the tier with insane snowball potential that can auto win given the right turns, and I find Tera Bug to be pretty potent in the metagame with common trends. Taking advantage of common checks like Slowbro and Wo-Chien cannot be ignored and they won’t tera at first because of Tera Bug being unexpected, not to mention Salamence is slightly less popular than before and teammates can capitalize on forced Tera Fairy or Ghost from the aforementioned defensive walls. Removal of the Electric weakness entirely also is great vs a Booster Energy Sandy Shocks which is the lead on hyper offense structures. Gyarados also loves increased Gastrodon usage and targets like Tyranitar, Tinkaton, and Scream Tail being plentiful. I just think a lot of the value it provides like a Scizor, Quaquaval, and Greninja check on hyper offense while posing a large threat to defensive teams can justify a slight rise to A-.
:Hawlucha: and :Indeedee: to B+: Like it or not, Psychic Terrain is here and it’s relevant. It’s the most popular hyper offense archetype right now with insane usage in open and generally makes half the playerbase tear their hair out. I used to hate Hawlucha but I’ve come around on it now with Tera Steel letting it set up on Scream Tail, Cyclizar, and random attacks like an Ice Beam from Greninja or Hurricane from Salamence, and with Gengar declining you’re not forced into Jolly. The archetype is a lot better than rain right now and should be B+ to reflect how influential and potent it can be even if it’s not super consistent. What’s changed is that it just keeps on performing and didn’t rise high enough to now really show its potency and potential. I would also rank Indeedee-F alongside M and just slash them together since they’re the same Pokémon basically.
:Espeon: to B: I think it’s really underestimated how offensively dangerous this is and was an oversight to rise considering how I find it better than all of B- and a few mons in B as well. Psychic + Fire + Grass coverage generally has few walls and with Morning Sun as well as the prowess to threaten Hippowdon and Tyranitar means it has the power to stick around for a while and threaten most defensive cores that lack a Scream Tail. In my open game last week I was shitting bricks vs it and had to Tera my Wo-Chien on turn 3 to account for the possibility of this set. Natural hazard removal is beautiful as well. I think it encompasses the definition of B which is meant for solid Pokémon to use but not entirely part of the tier and should rise to reflect that definition.
:Staraptor: :Oricorio-Sensu: and :Coalossal: to C+: B- is pretty large and these stick out as Pokémon that should drop now that we’ve got a better idea of what’s mediocre vs what’s poor. Staraptor is ass: it does nothing other than die without taking out anything with Rocky Helmet being so common and its attacks killing itself while being rocks weak. It’s been barely used in Open and it’s not hard to see why. Choice Band is at a mid speed tier as well. Just use Pawmot or Tyranitar and don’t bother with this. Meanwhile, Pom pom right now is kinda eh and Sensu is just a worse version of it, shouldn’t be outside the C ranks since it’s very niche and doesn’t really hold a candle to more dangerous sweepers. Lastly I don’t think Coalossal is as bad as the others but it’s nowhere to be seen as the spinners all took a hit when an actually good Pokémon in Cyclizar dropped. It shouldn’t be above altaria and blissey really since I think it’s just as niche as them.
:Grimmsnarl: to D: I kept giving this a chance but last night when laddering it caused me to drop like 150 elo because I was using it and not Espeon which sealed the deal. No reason to use it otherwise, hoping it drops to RU and still be dogshit there. Another case of just didn’t drop far enough from the last update in hindsight.

Melt Gibson

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After testing out a team I'd like to make another nom that I somehow forgot last time:

:iron jugulis:
A > A+
Holy shit this thing is good. I'd specifically like to talk about one set here: Booster Energy Speed. All the benefits of Scarf with none of the drawbacks! While this set mostly excels as a late game cleaner in scenarios where nothing can really switch in to it, it's also just powerful as a midgame breaker in matchups where your opponent has limited to no phasing options or lacks a concrete way to force Jugs out. To accentuate my point, I'd like to show a rather absurd calc:

252+ Atk Choice Band Technician Scizor Bullet Punch vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Iron Jugulis: 184-217 (55.9 - 65.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

To add to this: Flying/Dark/Ground is perfect coverage, and you still have more options on top of that. Flamethrower and Focus Blast are easily workable as options in your coverage slot, and Charge Beam tech isn't a bad decision either. But what I think makes Speed Booster Jugs the strongest compared to other sets is that it allows you to much more effectively use the great utility options that are available. Knock Off and Taunt are excellent for stallbreaking and otherwise stopping shenanigans that would make cleaning out at the endgame much harder, and while still viable on Choice or HDB sets, are much easier to utilize and less prediction reliant with Booster Energy. Very good mon, lot of sets, definitely strong enough to hit A+.
Im new to this so don't go too hard on me for this

:Cyclizar: to A+
The sheer utility this mon provides with regen alongside knock+U-Turn+Rapid spin is crazy, the only spin blocker who usually even wants to switch in is deci and even that can be abused via u turning into something that threatens deci. While the AV may struggle to keep hazards off in long games vs hazard spammy teams with spin blockers, it can slap on boots if that is a concern. Not to mention the fourth move is pretty flexible, draco for just raw power, power whip to try and smack gastro quag and sandy, even overheat if you're worried about a sciz setting up in your face. Overall the utility this mon gives while also still having a flexible move slot to me makes it worth the rise.

:Decidueye: to A
As stated in the part about cyclizar, this mon is an amazing spin blocker, and also packs knock off and potentially u turn if you already have some other form of removal to let you drop defog. A spin blocker with knock is already great, but long reach also lets you click that knock without any concern for things like rocky helmet and flame body. Toxic spikes :greninja: is a great partner for it, as it helps deci win long games against :cyclizar: to successfully win hazard wars by poisoning cyc, as it mostly runs AV to help against things like :Sandy Shocks:.
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Noms (pre-home)

:tauros-paldea-aqua: to A-

Its been really interesting seeing this mon manage to differentiate itself from both :tauros-paldea-blaze: and :quaquaval: in the current meta. Personally, I've found this mon to be much more splashable on bulky offense and balance teams than quavo is; its good bulk, defensive typing + access to intimidate allows it to serve as a good stopgap to metagame threats such CB ttar, non-trailblaze scizor and even some quaquaval sets. Aqua-tauros also excels at forcing (early-)tera responses from checks such as quagsire and gastrodon without requiring much setup turns. Furthermore, it pairs nicely with emerging metagame threats such as offensive pelipper and the CM fairies thanks to its ability to use each other's checks/counters as set-up fodder/ wallbreaking opportunities.
Finally, the prevalence of passive mons like gastrodon, non-encore scream tail and cyclizar + the decline of salamence's dominance gives aqua-tauros many opportunities to snowball games similarly to quaquaval (albeit less reliably).

:Hawlucha: to A

This mon has been a defining feature of the omniprescent psychic terrain teams I've encountered during UULT. Once it has a +2 the counterplay to this pokemon becomes extremely limited and movepool dependent. Common defensive answers like quagsire can beat SD 3 attacks sets, however arent able to touch most sub/taunt sets. Hawluchas access to tera means it can remove its flying type, therefore preventing offensive checks such as scizor and lokix from revenge killing it. As liz mentioned in her post on psychic terrain, sub sets can also fish for hurricane & stone edge misses which can let hawlucha bypass otherwise reliable answers. Often your most reliable counterplay vs +2 hawlucha is to reactively tera mons like wo-chein which often leaves you weaker to its teammates like polteageist. Hawlucha (and psychic terrain in general) is very easy to pilot as it exploits prevalent pokemon cyclizar and gastrodon for free setup turns which often results in it bulldozing through entire teams.

:gyarados: to A-

Another snowbally mon which takes advantage of the passive nature of most walls/defensive staples. Gyara like hawlucha can essentially pick and choose what is able to beat it via its movepool, however I feel that taunt is much more important on gyarados. Tera flying DD gyarados can often run away with games in similar ways to hawlucha, despite this gyarados lacks natural flying coverage and is a bit too tera (blast) reliant IMO so i feel A- is most appropriate for it.

short noms

:lycanroc-dusk: to B+

Slept on lategame sweeper which I've been using on ladder and in tour games recently. With an SD it is able to do severe wallbreaking and has reliable priority for sweeping. Its priority also helps deal with the strong flying types in the tier like gyarados, iron jugulis and kilowatrel.
+2 252 Atk Life Orb Tough Claws Tera Fighting Lycanroc-Dusk Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Hippowdon: 395-465 (94 - 110.7%) -- 62.5% chance to OHKO
+2 252 Atk Life Orb Tera Fighting Lycanroc-Dusk Stone Edge vs. 252 HP / 4 Def Scream Tail: 398-468 (91.7 - 107.8%) -- 50% chance to OHKO
+2 252 Atk Life Orb Tough Claws Tera Rock Lycanroc-Dusk Accelerock vs. 32 HP / 0 Def Scizor: 276-325 (95.5 - 112.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO after Stealth Rock

:Espeon: to B(+) and :Grimmsnarl: to D/Unranked
Will be mostly parroting monky here, but yea espeon has surprising offensive potential as well as great utility options. Espeon is the premier screen setter rn IMO and is a great choice on psy-terrain teams for providing support.
The uprising of psy-terrain has all but killed any viability grimmsnarl screens teams had, espeon is more reliable as a screen setter and has a better ability in magic bounce

:floatzel: to B
Still pretty viable, it just doesn't feel as required on rain teams anymore,it lacks coverage and struggles to get past most water immunities/ bulky waters in the metagame rn.

:Tsareena: to C/D
Really struggle to see what this mons uniquely has to offer anymore, as a spinner it is heavily outclassed by cyclizar who has much better speed + utility and brambleghast who can spinlock, spin and throwup hazards. It still struggles with tflame, it gets spinblocked by decidueye and most tera ghost mons and has very little offensive coverage/ utility to punish with. I don't see it being UU for much longer.

:Toxtricity: to B+

Great stopgap to scizor, has good offensive coverage and can apply pressure with tspikes. its best set is still scarf IMO, however shift gear drain punch sets can punish the rise in ttar usage

:Tyranitar: to A+

CB sets are very scary rn and take advantage of the hurricane spammers in the tier. SUB DD tera flying sets are still very threatening and can snowball games if the opponent lacks solid answers.


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Hello VR enthusiasts, I hope you have enjoyed playing with the new changes from Pokemon Home in OU and other tiers. With today's tier shifts, the VR needs to be cleaned up a bit. The new drops (Chesnaught, Inteleon, Orthworm, and Zoroark-Hisui) have been temporarily added to the New Pokemon section where they will reside until an official vote determines their placement on the VR. Additionally, Pelipper has risen to OU, to the delight of many, so it has been removed from the VR as well. Because their viability depended on rain, Golduck and Barraskewda have been removed from the VR. However, because Floatzel is UU by usage unlike the other two, it has been moved to D rank. Speaking of D rank, because they are no longer UU by usage, Typhlosion and Toedscruel have been removed from D rank and are no longer on the VR. Remember as always to take some time with tier changes before nominating changes on the VR. Rain leaving can impact some builds for many, while Zoroark-Hisui is a strong alternative to Gengar thanks to Flamethrower for Tinkaton and Chesnaught has potential to also have a strong niche. I hope you have fun building and playing in the new meta!


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Hello VR enthusiasts, we are here with a mini update this time around. We have two updates planned for this month. Our large update will be done at the end of the month since the update will reflect the metagame right before the changes from Pokémon home come to UU. However, we didn’t want to wait an entire month to put the new drops (Hisuian Zoroark, Chesnaught, Inteleon, and Orthworm) on the VR, justifying this mini update. To add substance, we also voted on nominations pertaining to Pokémon currently in S, A+, and A. The changes from this mini update are below

New Placements
:Zoroark-Hisui: to A: Hisuian Zoroark, aka The Cooler Gengar, has pretty much taken Gengar’s place in the metagame right now as the premier Ghost-type wallbreaker shown by its takeover in UULT playoffs. Hisuian Zoroark has notable coverage in Flamethrower for Tinkaton and U-turn to have an escape option when you want more than 4 moves, setting itself apart from Gengar by beating its most common check and generally having better utility that is more suited for the metagame, having the potential for a Heavy-Duty Boots pivot set even. Hisuian Zoroark also has an actual ability in Illusion, which is pretty dangerous right now while not being fully optimized even, being able to disguise itself as a Maushold or Quaquaval to beat their answers like Alomomola and Slowbro. Nasty Plot sets are solid as well and despite basically being as frail as Gengar, Illusion can generate more setup chances. Ultimately, Hisuian Zoroark has a lot of great traits for a wallbreaker, even better than Gengar, and has taken its place on the VR to show how Choice Specs Hisuian Zoroark has effectively taken Choice Specs Gengar’s place in the meta.
:Chesnaught: to B: Chesnaught establishes itself a decent niche in the current metagame. Between access to Spikes and its unique typing in UU, Chesnaught serves as both a defensive tank that also can pack a punch while providing hazard setting capabilities to its team. It can threaten the most common remover in Cyclizar which is a big benefit and sits on Wo-Chien to a fair degree. Naturally, it also checks Tyranitar, Quaquaval, and Pawmot, although the former two easily fit coverage to hit it, which ties into why it isn’t ranked high due to its generally poor defensive typing despite its benefits (gets easily 2HKOed by Tyranitar with Rocks up). Without Terastallizing into a better defense type like Steel or Fairy, Chesnaught gets taken out by most of the tier, including by not limited to Salamence, Sandy Shocks, Talonflame, Scizor, Scream Tail, Hisuian Zoroark, Greninja, and Iron Jugulis to name a few from S to A, and that’s just foes regardless of coverage as even something like Slowbro can wall it lacking Wood Hammer. Chesnaught also has a large case of 4MSS, wanting all of Spikes, Leech Seed, Taunt, Wood Hammer, Drain Punch, Body Press, and Stone Edge, and will be very limited regardless of its move choices such as giving free entry to common Pokémon like Salamence and Talonflame without Stone Edge. Moreover, both recovery options in Synthesis and Leech Seed are generally flawed methods of recovery in UU, compounding Chesnaught’s existing flaws. Time will tell whether more experimentation causes Chesnaught to leap in the rankings or fall down the VR, but currently B tier is seen as a decent starting place for this Pokémon.
:Orthworm: to C+: Despite being a rare Steel-type, Orthworm is just not that good in current UU. Its horrid Special bulk and notable passivity fails to make it a check to foes Tinkaton would check including Fairy-types like Sylveon and Florges as well as other wallbreakers like Greninja and Gengar. A Lack of recovery stings for Orthworm, especially when taking on foes it can check such as Choice Band Tyranitar, resulting in one of two results. It either fits Rest, making it even more passive and giving entry to so many Pokémon without Rock Slide, or Wish support which limits the amount of teams it can fit on and forces it into competition for its defensive role against the numerous threats of the tier. Orthworm has a pretty large Tera reliance, needing Tera Poison to really check Pokemon like Pawmot, Quaquaval, and Scizor, where even then it faces competition from something that also uses Tera to defensively handle offensive threats in Wo-Chien who isn’t free entry for half the tier. Regardless of its flaws, Orthworm has decent entry hazard setting capabilities in Spikes and Iron Defense + Body Press isn’t completely terrible, being able to check Tyranitar, Mimikyu, and Maushold to a decent degree, but by no means is Orthworm a tier staple and lands in a niche rank to reflect that. At least RU might enjoy this in the future.
:Inteleon: to D: Will give more than just a “lol” with this reasoning. Inteleon, while much stronger than Greninja, lacks the versatility and utility Greninja has with Spikes or Toxic Spikes as well as Grass Knot to punish bulky waters. The recent Substitute + 3 attacks set hasn’t been convincing so far. The VR team feels Inteleon is just outright outclassed by Greninja, giving no reason to use it, meaning Inteleon has ended up with a spot in D rank.

Changes to existing Pokémon
:Salamence: to A+: The metagame has shifted a lot from when Salamence was first placed into S. We have actual defensive Fairy-types apart from Scream Tail in Florges and Sylveon now in the metagame, all three of which are quite common and very good, hindering the effectiveness of Salamence’s wallbreaking. Cyclizar being extremely common as well mandates Salamence into Draco Meteor to beat it, meaning Hippowdon and Tyranitar can handle it a lot easier without having to worry about Hydro Pump. Other checks like Gastrodon and Greninja still maintain high usage and are thorns in Salamence’s side as always. Salamence is still an amazing Pokémon with a great blend of offensive and defensive capabilities, but it’s a bit less consistent and useful as before to warrant a small drop into A+.
:Pawmot: to A: Pawmot, while extremely dangerous, drops because of a lack of splashability and consistency in the current metagame by a very close vote. It is very strong but also more difficult to fit on teams and lacks meaningful usage to stay on par with the other Pokémon in A+. Between entry hazard chip and Life Orb recoil, Pawmot finds itself having to click Rest often, which can be awkward as relies on forced switches to do so and Pokémon it would normally match well against due to its typing like Wo-Chien and Tinkaton can remove its Life Orb and heavily chip it. Rest also makes it a momentum sink which is not good as it relies on the move a fair bit. More physically defensive Hippowdon, general Speed tiers increasing, hyper offense having tools to easily limit Pawmot, and the continued presence of reactive defensive Tera on Slowbro, Alomomola, and Wo-Chien spell bad news for Pawmot, justifying a drop to A.
:Talonflame: to A: In a very close vote, Talonflame drops to A rank. Despite Talonflame being easy to fit onto teams thanks to its valuable Speed and potent utility through a fast Wisp and U-turn as well as an emergency Defog option, evidenced by its high usage, it also be seen as a U-turn bot against more bulky playstyles featuring Pokémon it cannot break past like Slowbro and Alomomola while being easily taken advantage of by many different sweepers like Calm Mind Slowbro and Armarouge. Talonflame doesn't beat foes like Scizor and Mimikyu reliably as well due to their ability to turn the tables on it with Tera Fire. Talonflame still fulfills an important and valuable niche in the metagame but the VR team recognizes its flaws are enough to knock it out of A+.
:Cyclizar: to A+: There’s nothing much to say about the lizard except that it truly is an insane utility monster reflected by crazy amounts of usage and performance in UULT and UU Open that further exemplify its splashability and potency. To recap on what Cyclizar does, it’s our best remover by far, beating common setters like Sandy Shocks and Gastrodon with ease, and is a great check to many foes like Gengar, Iron Jugulis, and Hisuian Zoroark. It forms great defensive cores with common Pokémon like Tinkaton, Slowbro, and Wo-Chien, acting as a great glue to so many teams that need it. From the time it was first ranked, Cyclizar’s performance in tours since then reflect that it’s a very consistent utility Pokémon that provides a lot in not only the builder but every game it’s in as well, ultimately justifying a rise to A+ to represent Cyclizar is one of the best of the best.
:Tyranitar: to A+: My post here pretty much captures why Tyranitar is such a great Pokémon and how it deserves A+. I don’t want to retype this really lol.
:Gengar: to A-: As established easier, Hisuian Zoroark is a very good Choice Specs and Nasty Plot user. Unfortunately, the former set was Gengar’s main niche in UU, as its amazing coverage, great speed, and sheer power made it a dangerous and controversial wallbreaker. However, with this set being largely outdone by Hisuian Zoroark for the aforementioned reasons in the Hisuian Zoroark section, Gengar turns to Hex sets as it’s main niche in metagame, using Toxic Spikes to be a great progress-maker with Hex and provide support to its team. Gengar also is a better Choice Scarf user than Hisuian Zoroark and generally a good revenge killer thanks to access in an important move in Thunderbolt for Gyarados and Booster Energy Iron Jugulis, two targets expected for it to outspeed and revenge kill. However, these sets are more flawed than Choice Specs, for Hex is less consistent and can take a while to get going while suffering from a less spammable Ghost STAB, and Choice Scarf is a great revenge killer but weak against defensive cores. As such, it drops to A- to reflect its lower consistency and needing to resort to different and less effective sets from the main one that kept it in A in the first place.

As alluded to earlier, we have two updates planned for this month. This first one was to get new Pokémon on the VR and have immediate changes for Pokémon in the higher ranks since they are the most important Pokémon, and our second one will be the main large update right before tier shifts in about two weeks. Be sure to make any nominations to the VR you have before then and stay tuned for the end of this era of the metagame!


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UU Leader
Our final pre-HOME VR update is here. The changes will be as follows (with reasoning for anything B rank or higher; if you want me to elaborate on anything in particular just let me know, but I don't wanna be here all day!):

Voting sheet can be found here.


:talonflame: A -> A+: Has risen a bit more in popularity now that not everything is running Tera Fire specifically to cripple it. The ability to sit on teams is more notable now than it was before, and Talon continues to be an elite defensive presence and form of speed control, so it hangs with the big boys in A+ again.

:gyarados: B+ -> A-: Gyara is a Good Sweeper that's been underranked for a while ever since people started experimenting more with the Tera Blast sets. It hasn't seen too much new usage recently in particular, so this is more of a catch-up inclusion.

:florges: B -> B+: Florges + Magnezone teams have been on the rise for a while now thanks to Florges's great defensive presence and surprisingly capacity to sweep late game once Tinkaton is removed; the only Poison-types in the tier are Gengar and Grafaiai, so if you don't have a Steel, you're a bit Fairy weak, and Magnezone makes sure you don't have a Steel. Sylveon can and does do the same thing, but curiously our rankers chose not to boost its ranking too; maybe it's just down to the lower usage.

:hawlucha: B -> B+: Hawlucha rises in a close vote. It's been seeing more use on Psyspam teams / as a Choice Scarf user and it performs the role decently enough. It's still far from spectacular, but it's a cut above the B grade.

:toxtricity: B -> B+: Choice Scarf Toxtricity has seen a nice rise in usage and is a very lethal Scarfer thanks to its ability to blow open offense and fat alike. It still struggles a bit with its meh Speed tier and poor bulk, but it's definitely a solid choice.

:blissey: C+ -> B: Gaining Heal Bell has given Blissey enough of a buff to make it worth using outside of hard stall, so it sees a modest rise into the B ranks to reflect that.

:altaria: C+ -> B-

:sneasel-hisui: UR -> C+

:maushold: A- -> B+: Increased Ghost usage, Helmet being more common than ever with Hippowdon and Slowbro being so common... it's a tough time for a group of mice. It's frail and doesn't really provide anything defensively too. It's still a fun mon to use and has a good deal of viability thanks to the unique properties provided by Tidy Up, and PopBomb is definitely a team check that you have to respond, but it's pretty reasonable to beat.

:slither wing: A- -> B+: Slither Wing has been struggling for a while now. It just can't really keep up with Talonflame/Noivern/Salamence etc being everywhere and First Impression isn't a good enough revenge killing tool. It is certainly still a viable choice and Choice Band can destroy unprepared teams but it is a tough sell rn.

:grafaiai: B+ -> B: I actually can't explain this one. The drop probably made sense when Pelipper was around since rain was a form of HO that Graf couldn't really handle but now I'm not so sure. It's been seeing really high tournament usage too. Maybe another VR member can speak on this one?

edit: :haxorus: B+ -> B: Been struggling to differentiate itself as a DDer for a while with Gyarados and Salamence tending to do be first choice for the roll. Mold Breaker is still a cool niche though.

:rotom-heat: B+ -> B: Was probably overranked to begin with; it's a big threat when worked around, but can be very Tera reliant, isn't super consistent by any means and isn't a mon you naturally fit on teams.

:brambleghast: B -> B-

:rotom-mow: B -> B-

:bisharp: B -> C+

:brute bonnet: B- -> C+

:dragalge: B- -> C+

:iron thorns: B- -> C+

:oricorio-sensu: B- -> C+

:staraptor: B- -> C+

:coalossal: B- -> C

:tsareena: B- -> C

:drednaw: C+ -> C

:flamigo: C+ -> C

:naclstack: C+ -> C

:orthworm: C+ -> C

:salazzle: C+ -> C

:arboliva: C -> UR

:froslass: C -> UR

:grimmsnarl: C -> UR

As always, if you have any questions, feel free to let me know!
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:tsareena: B- -> C

:drednaw: C+ -> C

what makes these good? tsar loses to talon, bad into sand, and just doesnt do much

drednaw? i thought it was only good on rain with shell smash... what niche does it even have
:Samurott: D ---> UR
This really has zero niche when Gyarados, Quaquaval, and to a lesser extent, Gallade are all available. I play about 70ish games a week and have never, ever seen a Samurott. It brings absolutely nothing to the table except Megahorn and Knock. Somehow manages to be neither strong, nor bulky, nor fast, nor having a usable ability. I don't have much more to add, this isn't a real mon.
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