For this game, I faced Justin AKA Justin Clynn AKA Epiclolz. Another long time member of the Justin Flynn/PokemonForever community. Like Alec, who I faced last week. Epic's success during this season has been pretty good. He's definitely one of the top dudes. His team has some threats and some possibility for hidden techs. Like an offensive Technician Roserade with Hidden Power Ice. That would give old Zygarde a walloping. So yeah. I definitely had to keep a bunch of things in mind to play safely around these. Oh! We both also went into this with the same record. 5-3.
The Team Line-ups
My Team: M-Pinsir, Clefable, Zygarde-50%, Empoleon, Arcanine, Hitmontop, Vanilluxe, Dhelmise, Heliolisk, Jellicent, Malamar
Epiclolz53 (Indy Latis): Jirachi, Tyranitar, Milotic, Ninetales-Alola, Jolteon, Typhlosion, Crustle, Roserade, Type: Null, Gourgeist (any form)
Neptune (Empoleon) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 92 Atk / 4 Def / 156 SpD / 4 Spe
- Stealth Rock
- Knock Off
I knew I wanted to stop Alolan Ninetales' Aurora Veil. If that gets left unchecked. Ninetales could rotate around me, setting it up and switching out into something else. It would make tanking hits easier, setting up something like Tyranitar to Dragon Dance sweep. It would make everything harder. The main reason people use Defog might be to clear away field hazards like Stealth Rock and Spikes, but Defog also removes screens. So with Empoleon and it's typing which walls Ninetales' STAB moves, I could easily come in on it and remove Aurora Veil every time. Stealth Rock was put onto Empoleon for chip and potentially removing Focus Sashes. Knock Off could be used to remove some annoying items, as well as a way of hitting Gourgeist for supereffective. And Earthquake, an option for damaging various things weak to Ground on Epic's team, and a way of damaging Ninetales, Roserade, Milotic decently, so they couldn't just spam something like boosted item Hidden Power Ground against my Empoleon or something like that.
Empoleon's special bulk was used to take Hidden Power from Alolan-Ninetales really well, to preserve it. The attack EVs helped Empoleon 3HKO 252 HP Jirachi, as well as damaging some other Pokemon weak to the move better. Knock Off wasn't considered in the calcs because it was more of a hit-and-run option. Remove something's item and switch out, since there would most likely be something to come in that threatens Empoleon. The rest was put into Defense and Speed. The extra speed could help Empoleon speed tie with speed creepers.
- 92 Atk Empoleon Earthquake vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Jirachi: 76-90 (36.7 - 43.4%) -- 99.2% chance to 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
- 92 Atk Empoleon Earthquake vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Tyranitar: 68-82 (38.6 - 46.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO
- 92 Atk Empoleon Earthquake vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Roserade: 53-63 (39.2 - 46.6%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Black Sludge recovery
- 252 SpA Life Orb Ninetales-Alola Hidden Power Ground vs. 252 HP / 156+ SpD Empoleon: 52-62 (27.2 - 32.4%) -- guaranteed 4HKO after hail damage and Leftovers recovery
- 252 SpA Choice Specs Jolteon Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 156+ SpD Empoleon: 162-192 (84.8 - 100.5%) -- 6.3% chance to OHKO
- 252 SpA Choice Specs Typhlosion Focus Blast vs. 252 HP / 156+ SpD Empoleon: 142-168 (74.3 - 87.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
- +2 252+ SpA Jirachi Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 156+ SpD Empoleon: 146-174 (76.4 - 91%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
Oryx (Zygarde) @ Choice Specs
Ability: Aura Break
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
- Core Enforcer
- Earth Power
- Grass Knot
- Hidden Power [Fire]
Something I had in mind since I found out about Sludge Wave as a move option for Zygarde, was a Choice Specs set. 81 base Special Attack isn't anything spectacular, thus the reason I invested in Modest nature, but the power behind Choice Specs and Zygarde's special movepool in this matchup made it seem kind of hard to deny it's usefulness. I didn't want Tyranitar to come in and set up Dragon Dances on my Zygarde after I fired off a Draco Meteor to take something out. So I decided to go with Zygarde's cool new signature move, Core Enforcer. A 100 base power special Dragon type move that nullifies your opponent's ability if they move before you. This could serve some purpose with Modest nature. And it means that I could remove an ability like Serene Grace on Jirachi, Volt Absorb on Jolteon, Competitive/Marvel Scale on Milotic making it less offensive or less bulky, Type: Null's Battle Armor so I may crit it. It just seemed fun to try out. And the animation for the move in-game Kreygasm Earth Power could make use of that massive Ground type weakness I mentioned earlier. It hits so many of his Pokemon hard. Who needs power when you have x2 damage modifiers? And a x1.5 one from Choice Specs. And a x1.5 one from STAB. Yea. That won't hurt Kappa Note: I didn't feel it was necessary to run a physical set with Thousand Arrows this week because my opponent had no Flying types to speak of on his team. Grass Knot was purely for Milotic if it came down to a stand-off between the two. Choice Specs Grass Knot is a 2HKO from Zygarde, believe it or not. I was really impressed by this calc. So I had to include it. Also, because Milotic is so good at stalling with it's bulk and Recover. Hidden Power Fire was mainly for Gourgeist, so I could hit it supereffectively. I considered other supereffective Hidden Powers, but didn't like them for various reasons. Like how Hidden Power Dark would invite in Alolan-Ninetales. Or Hidden Power Ghost was immune against Type: Null. Yes, Typhlosion could be immune through Flash Fire. But who switches a Typhlosion in on a Zygarde in the first place? Whoever does is actually a madman. Please turn them in to your nearest authorities so they may get the help they need.
I was interested in getting the most bang for my earthworm dragon, so I invested all the way into it's Special Attack and Speed, and the last 4 EVs into Defense as it was Zygarde's best natural stat. I just wanted Zygarde to plow through his team. Another reason why I didn't take anything out of Speed was because a Timid max speed Milotic is outsped by non-boosting nature max speed Zygarde by 1 point only.
- 252+ SpA Choice Specs Zygarde Grass Knot (100 BP) vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Milotic: 114-136 (56.4 - 67.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
- 252+ SpA Choice Specs Zygarde Earth Power vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Tyranitar in Sand: 126-150 (71.5 - 85.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO | Curse you, sand boost!
- 252+ SpA Choice Specs Zygarde Earth Power vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Jirachi: 186-222 (105.6 - 126.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO
- 252+ SpA Choice Specs Zygarde Core Enforcer vs. 252 HP / 104 SpD Gourgeist-Large: 115-136 (63.1 - 74.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
IAmLegendary (Arcanine) @ Iapapa Berry
Ability: Flash Fire
EVs: 20 HP / 236 Atk / 252 Spe
- Flare Blitz
- Wild Charge
- Close Combat
So I don't know if you guys know anything about Choice Scarf or Specs Typhlosion Eruption, but it's pretty freaking strong. I gave Arcanine Flash Fire so I could sponge that up into a Fire type attack boost. Without a Choice item, I would've have any real problem going for Flare Blitz, predicting the switch, but could also change it up to go for something else to damage it. Just a really powerful attack that few Pokemon on his team will want to take on. Wild Charge is obviously to help beat down Milotic. The big bulky threat it is. Close Combat helps Arcanine be able to take on Tyranitar and Type: Null, and is actually an attack that doesn't cause recoil for Arcanine. Because of all of these recoil attacks and other chip Arcanine might take, I decided to give it an Iapapa Berry for the one-time use Recover. Toxic would be used to wear things down to ease predictions, so I didn't have to waste HP or be forced to switch out because of stat drops from Close Combat.
I wanted Arcanine's HP number to be divisible by 4 so that hazard switch-ins would allow it to proc at 25%, rather than have it come up short and have my Arcanine put into a difficult situation where my opponent would have an easier time picking it off or I would be forced to come back in later and take another 25% perhaps to activate the berry. I could be at 1% when that happens. That's some risky stuff. Similarly to Zygarde, I didn't want to reduce Arcanine's speed because of Milotic. I took the EVs out of Attack, but still ran with Arcanine very offensively. Even using Adamant over Jolly to break through Epic's Pokemon better.
- 236+ Atk Arcanine Flare Blitz vs. 44 HP / 0 Def Gourgeist: 168-200 (115 - 136.9%) -- guaranteed OHKO
- 236+ Atk Arcanine Flare Blitz vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Jirachi: 200-236 (96.6 - 114%) -- 75% chance to OHKO
- 236+ Atk Arcanine Wild Charge vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Milotic: 84-100 (41.5 - 49.5%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery | Just something to keep in mind. Better to go for Toxic.
- 236+ Atk Arcanine Close Combat vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Tyranitar: 248-292 (140.9 - 165.9%) -- guaranteed OHKO
Geico (Heliolisk) @ Assault Vest
Ability: Dry Skin
EVs: 244 HP / 4 Def / 12 SpA / 156 SpD / 92 Spe
IVs: 0 Atk
- Dark Pulse
- Hyper Voice
- Dragon Tail
Geico is back! Saving you 10% or more on your win chances! One of the Pokemon I was considering when I schemed up the Assault Vest set was Jolteon. My opponent this week just so happens to have Jolteon. I knew I wanted to use this in this battle. Milotic only made it an even easier decision. Thunderbolt would lay waste to it, no problem. As well as hitting a bunch of his Pokemon for good damage. Dark Pulse would help me to hit Gourgeist if he brought it. Also a supereffective option for Jirachi. Hyper Voice was mainly for Jolteon. I needed something to hit it. It could also hit other things well because of the STAB boost. Dragon Tail was an interesting choice. I considered an old set from VGC that @"Heavy" enlightened me on back in 2015. Mirror Coat Milotic. It can take a special attack and double the damage you dealt to it right back. And that goes by HP, so Heliolisk is not surviving that. And I knew that I would not be able to OHKO a bulky Milotic with Thunderbolt at all. Not when I'm using an Assault Vest set. So I could scout for Mirror Coat by taking nothing and forcing it out. I wasn't too afraid of what Milotic might do outside of Mirror Coat so I felt this was fine. Toxic would definitely suck though. Putting my tank on a timer. Though I could keep recovering HP off of Scald's from Milotic due to Dry Skin.
- 12+ SpA Heliolisk Hyper Voice vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Jolteon: 64-76 (45.7 - 54.2%) -- 45.3% chance to 2HKO
- 12+ SpA Heliolisk Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Milotic: 102-122 (50.4 - 60.3%) -- 87.9% chance to 2HKO after Leftovers recovery | I probably could have invested more into Special Attack from Speed.
- 252 SpA Choice Specs Jolteon Thunderbolt vs. 244 HP / 156 SpD Assault Vest Heliolisk: 30-36 (17.8 - 21.4%) -- possible 5HKO
- 252 SpA Life Orb Roserade Leaf Storm vs. 244 HP / 156 SpD Assault Vest Heliolisk: 86-101 (51.1 - 60.1%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
- 252 SpA Life Orb Technician Roserade Hidden Power Fire vs. 244 HP / 156 SpD Assault Vest Dry Skin Heliolisk: 49-58 (29.1 - 34.5%) -- 7.4% chance to 3HKO
- 252 SpA Choice Specs Typhlosion Eruption (150 BP) vs. 244 HP / 156 SpD Assault Vest Dry Skin Heliolisk: 127-150 (75.5 - 89.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
Ludwig (Pinsir) @ Pinsirite
Ability: Hyper Cutter
EVs: 36 HP / 252 Atk / 220 Spe
- Brick Break
- Swords Dance
For Mega Pinsir, I decided to go with a standard Swords Dance set, with a twist. I added Brick Break as another way to break through Aurora Veil. Return was the main STAB attack to hit everything hard. Earthquake hits Tyranitar, Jolteon, Jirachi. And Swords Dance was obviously to give Mega Pinsir the power to crush anything in it's path. I figured it had a pretty good matchup here. It just applies so much pressure to take it out.
Mega Pinsir has enough Speed to outspeed a Jolly/Timid max speed Jirachi. I maxed out Attack for the damage output. And the rest of the EVs fit fine into HP so that Mega Pinsir may switch in on Stealth Rock twice without fainting. Nothing further I really need say on this set.
- +2 252 Atk Pinsir-Mega Earthquake vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Jirachi: 260-306 (147.7 - 173.8%) -- guaranteed OHKO
- +2 252 Atk Aerilate Pinsir-Mega Return vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Milotic: 198-234 (98 - 115.8%) -- 87.5% chance to OHKO
- 252 Atk Aerilate Pinsir-Mega Return vs. 252 HP / 88+ Def Gourgeist-Large: 170-204 (93.4 - 112%) -- 68.8% chance to OHKO
- 252 Atk Pinsir-Mega Earthquake vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Jolteon: 194-230 (137.5 - 163.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO
- 252 Atk Pinsir-Mega Brick Break vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Tyranitar: 180-216 (102.2 - 122.7%) -- guaranteed OHKO
Beyblade (Hitmontop) @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 228 Atk / 20 Def / 4 SpD / 4 Spe
- Mach Punch
- Close Combat
- Aerial Ace
Hitmontop would be my main revenge killer for Tyranitar. A 228 Adamant Mach Punch with a Technician boost would OHKO non-Chople Berry Tyranitar 75% of the time. Perfect for stopping a Dragon Dance sweep or Choice Scarf set (which outspeeds Mega Pinsir unfortunately). And speaking of it's ability, I bet you noticed that both of my Intimidaters were used, but didn't run Intimidate this week. While I did feel that these other abilities were more useful, it was in fact intentional. I didn't want to Intimidate spam against a team with a Competitive mon.
I went with Toxic to wear down bulkier Pokemon like Milotic and Gourgeist, which I couldn't hit super hard. Close Combat was to combat a possible Eviolite Type: Null, which is bulkier base stat-wise than Porygon2. Aerial Ace was a cool move to pair with Technician. It also gave me a way to hit both Roserade and Gourgeist.
I decided to build Hitmontop fairly bulky due to the fact that I wanted to make sure it stayed around, wouldn't get KO'd by Tyranitar really easily, and since it lacked Intimidate helped out it's Defense stat. Fully invested, I noticed that Mach Punch would never OHKO Tyranitar more than 75% of the time with no boosting item. So I decided to lower it's Attack to where I could still keep that chance, but have some EVs left to add to Hitmontop's bulk. I gave Hitmontop max HP and a little bit of Defense investment so it could dependably survive a Choice Band Superpower from Tyranitar, even after Stealth Rock damage and sand (though I think Leftovers goes before sand). Pretty strong hit to take. The 8 remaining EVs were put into Special Defense and Speed. That little bit of speed could help against speed creepers.
- 228+ Atk Technician Hitmontop Mach Punch vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Tyranitar: 168-204 (95.4 - 115.9%) -- 75% chance to OHKO
- 228+ Atk Technician Hitmontop Aerial Ace vs. 240 HP / 0 Def Roserade: 126-150 (76.3 - 90.9%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Black Sludge recovery
- 228+ Atk Technician Hitmontop Aerial Ace vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Roserade: 124-148 (92.5 - 110.4%) -- 62.5% chance to OHKO
- 228+ Atk Technician Hitmontop Aerial Ace vs. 44 HP / 0 Def Gourgeist: 78-92 (53.4 - 63%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
- 228+ Atk Hitmontop Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 0 Def Eviolite Type: Null: 126-150 (62.3 - 74.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
- 252+ Atk Choice Band Tyranitar Superpower vs. 252 HP / 20 Def Hitmontop: 117-138 (74.5 - 87.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after sandstorm damage and Leftovers recovery
- 252 SpA Roserade Sludge Bomb vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Hitmontop: 69-82 (43.9 - 52.2%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery
- 252+ Atk Type: Null Double-Edge vs. 252 HP / 20 Def Hitmontop: 93-111 (59.2 - 70.7%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery
Here is the battle link: http://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen7customgame-576484031
Week 9: Toronto Maple Leafeons (AbruptFury) .vs. Indianapolis Keldeos (Epiclolz53)
Team Justin brought: Jolteon, Jirachi, Milotic, Roserade, Staraptor, Typhlosion
Turn by Turn Analysis
This week, the turns won't be all wonky because we're using Showdown. I will once again guide you through my turns. What I was thinking and stuffs. There is a chat this week, however.
Let's a go!
Turn 0: So I'm sure you were already plunged into confusion because my opponent has a Staraptor. Now you feel how I felt during my battle with him. Turns out, I should've stayed up to date on his team transactions. I built my team like a week or two prior. Staraptor can learn Defog. But I didn't care. I needed that thing gone if it was Scarf or Banded. I sent out Empoleon, banking on Scarf and knowing I could take a Close Combat from that set. He sends out Roserade.
Turn 1: He decides to Leech Seed me as I go for Stealth Rock.
Turn 2: I don't want Roserade stealing all my Empoleon's health, I switch out into Pinsir to try and knock it out or get damage on it, but he also switches. Into his Milotic.
Turn 3: A rather unfavourable matchup for me, I switch into Heliolisk and it slurps up that Scald. Yummy!
Turn 4: Not wanting to risk Thunderbolting it, I use Dragon Tail. As he switches out into Jolteon. He gets sent into Jirachi.
Turn 5: I got no problem with Jirachi so I just go for Dark Pulse as he hits Heliolisk and does nothing. Maybe I should've been more wary of Zen Headbutt.
Turn 6: Wanting to go into something better to take on Jirachi, I switch into Arcanine. As he switches into Typhlosion. That's fine by me. I wall this.
Turn 7: Little did I know, I don't wall this, it had Earthquake. Physical Typhlosion! My opponent is too heat for me! I throw off a Close Combat and it gets Typhlosion low.
Turn 8: I decide to switch into Hitmontop as a sac or a mid-ground play. Without Tyranitar, Hitmontop doesn't have much of a job here.
Turn 9: I finish the Typhlosion off with Mach Punch. One kill for Hitmontop! In comes Staraptor, taking some sweet Stealth Rock damage.
Turn 10: Predicting me to switch into presumably Empoleon, he goes for Close Combat and is taken down by one of my own. Two kills for Hitmontop. It was a pretty risk free play to stay in and Close Combat because, as I said before, Hitmontop had no real purpose this match. But instead, ended up putting in some great work against Justin :D Roserade comes back.
Turn 11: Hitmontop is at less than half HP with two stat drops. It could literally go for anything and probably take me out. So I let him. That way, I could get the free switch into something to revenge kill. FYI, I went for Aerial Ace with Hitmontop ;p Last ditch cheekiness. I send in Pinsir to get the mega evolution off.
Turn 12: Not predicting anything, I go straight for damage. Milotic takes the place of Roserade and takes a ton from Return.
Turn 13: I could've predicted Jolteon, but I don't think Earthquake would've finished off Milotic. And I still had Heliolisk. Mega Pinsir gets it's first kill of the match against Milotic with another Return. In comes Jirachi.
Turn 14: I called the Scarf bluff and Mega Pinsir gets it's second kill against Jirachi. Jolteon comes to counter Mega Pinsir.
Turn 15: I switch into Heliolisk and eat the Thunderbolt.
Turn 16: Roserade comes in and takes a Hyper Voice from Heliolisk.
Turn 17: I decide to stay in and finish off Roserade with Hyper Voices. Roserade uses Sludge Bomb and poisons Heliolisk. Lame.
Turn 18: Heliolisk Hyper Voices Roserade and doesn't quite take it out. Roserade goes for another Sludge Bomb.
Turn 19: Roserade is taken out by Heliolisk. All that remains is Jolteon.
Turn 20: Jolteon knocks out Heliolisk. Noticing that I don't have the best answers left, I decide to bring in Arcanine and IT'S BERRY ACTIVATES. Arcanine goes back up to 75%. A chance at survival.
Turn 21: Unfortunately, Jolteon fails to take out Arcanine and Flare Blitz picks up the knock out. I do lose a differential point because it went down though. Bleh. But I pick up the victory against a formidable opponent! 3-0 in the battle, 6-3 in the season!
Good game Justin ! I feel bad that weren't feeling well the week of our match and hope you are feeling better now. Not sure how much it influenced your decisions in our match. I know you know about the Hitmontop play. We discussed that. How it wasn't really crucial to the matchup. Looking at your team however, I can understand the play, as Empoleon was pretty good against much of your team. Though, I definitely would not let it take the chip damage so that I may survive Close Combat and be able to attack. But I certainly didn't play things flawlessly. My worst mistake was trying to finish off Roserade with Heliolisk because Heliolisk handled Jolteon so well. And the rest of my team did not. If it were choiced, then I could play around it easily, but it was Life Orb.
Thank you for reading through :) I hope you have enjoyed this report and I am glad to have been doing them again. I like being able to look back at what I did and why I did it so that I may become a better player. And maybe help someone else out in which ever format they may enjoy playing. Stay tuned for week 11!
What About Week 10?
My opponent was supposed to be Travis AKA yugiohtrav of the Syracuse Swellows, but he decided to end his season early for unknown reasons. I know he had some personal problems back in season 3 when I took over his team for him. So I hope he's doing alright this time around too.
As dictated by the auto-win rules, I gave 3 of my Pokemon 2 kills and 1 death. I chose Vanilluxe, Zygarde, and Arcanine. My MVP Vanilluxe is now sitting at 11 kills. It is either in or around the top 10. I can't say for sure yet. This puts me at 7-3 going into week 11. Will I be able to grasp the playoffs or will it be just out of reach? I believe that 9-3s are safe and that it might come down to differential if I lose one of my last two matches. Wish me luck D: