With both Typhlosion and Feraligatr getting their fancy new hidden abilities in Flash Fire and Sheer Force, some may be forced to wonder if using Meganium is even a remote possibility anymore. The answer is yes. Meganium and its pre-evolution, Bayleef, are both incredibly overlooked Pokemon.
With their biggest downfall being their awful defensive typing, their surprisingly high defensive stats are overlooked. Meganium boasts a reasonable base HP of 80 and defenses both of 100, while Bayleef has a lower HP stat of 60, and doubled base 80 defenses while holding an Eviolite. While not using attack moves or running it on a Trick Room team, Bayleef is the better option here due to naturally lower speed and less HP to lose from frequently switching into entry hazards. Meganium, however, has a higher Special Attack and a free item slot to put either Leftovers or Light Clay in, instead of Eviolite. Surprisingly, there are actually quite a few sets for these two, so PUCL up.
A Bayleef or Meganium running a stall set will use Eviolite and Leftovers respectively. The moves for this set are pretty straightforward, with a heavy focus on HP stabilization and team support. The most important move is Synthesis, since this increases these Pokemon’s longevity to annoying levels. Leech Seed complements this annoying behavior and provides an effective way to deal damage to the opponent. Toxic is necessary, as this is what prompts switches and allows stalling to occur. The final move should be Aromatherapy, so that you can heal your and your team’s statuses. This is really the only set to run their hidden ability in Leaf Guard, since it may prove useful if you or your opponent is using a sun team.
Sadly, Bayleef is no longer relevant competitively when thinking about direct damaging moves. Assume from this point on that I’m talking about a Meganium with the ability Overgrow unless I say otherwise. A damaged Meganium can deal massive damage with an Overgrow-boosted STAB Giga Drain, so this is its staple attacking move. When used, about half of the time, it’s a screen-set Meganium. That means both Reflect and Light Screen are run with Light Clay as the held item. The last move is almost entirely up to the user, though the front runners seem to be Synthesis, Aromatherapy, or Magic Coat. Magic Coat is my personal choice since it provides an opportunity to reverse entry hazard set-up, and the opponent will often never see it coming. This general outline constitutes most Meganiums out there.
I have heard Meganium sets that use Counter with other moves such as Giga Drain, Ancient Power, or Aromatherapy. Held items on something like this could even be something as obscure as a Maranga or a Kee Berry. The chances of encountering a set like this are low.
Now for the real reason I chose Meganium as this week’s Pokemon. Doubles Viability. I mean, thinking about how fantastic Meganium could be in Doubles gets me excited. With a Sap Sipper team mate, and access to Petal Blizzard, think of all the chip damage and boosting that can occur! Not to mention, Meganium gets Heal Pulse so that you can rest your hard-hitting companion up to pristine condition. Other support moves like Aromatherapy and a screen of your choice can also be greatly beneficial.
Basically Any Meganium or Bayleef
Calm or Bold Nature
252 HP / 252 Sp. Defense or Defense / 4 in other defensive stat (Sp. Atk if Basic Meganium)
Bayleefs or Meganiums on a Trick Room Team
Sassy or Relaxed Nature
252 HP / 252 Sp. Defense or Defense / 4 in other defensive stat
Meganium and Bayleef really are team players, and love to assist your other Pokemon, especially those weather related. Trick Room teams can greatly benefit from the support provided by Screens from these Pokemon. Sun teams assist Stall sets in removing self-status, via Leaf Guard. I know that I would run Meganium with a Charizard Y and Sableye, so that Meganium can set up screens after Drought triggers, and then proceed to set up with my dear friend Sableye. Watch out for the plethora of Pokemon that deal super effective damage to Meganium, but also keep in mind that Meganium can in fact take quite a few hits before going down, except maybe a STAB Brave Bird.
Meganium is often under looked due to the success of its comrades, but it is not a Pokemon to be rejected and forgotten. It can be to the player’s advantage to use a Pokemon like Meganium, often consigned to the dark underbelly of Johto in order to bewilder their opponent. The most important thing to note though, is that Meganium is a Pokemon that genuinely wants to help you and your team out, as long as you feed it plenty of plant food and water it daily. Remember this Puclonians, and your Meganium will be the very best.