Top 5 OU Pre-Bank Pokemon! Prepare for the UUTC!
What’s up my inspired readers? For this issue of “In the Meta 2.0,” I’ll be discussing what I perceive to be the best Pokemon currently in the Over Used Singles Meta. Over the past two weeks, I’ve poured over 10 hours into the Showdown simulator in order to get a good taste of what to expect, and this article will reflect my experiences in getting to ladder ranking 1500. When preparing your teams for the Ultimate Underground Tournament of Champions starting in January, think about how you’re going to deal with the threats in this article, or maybe even decide to use them yourself! In addition to the normal reading experience, there will be a giveaway of a “5 IV Impish Love Ball Vullaby with the Foul Play Egg Move” to all readers who comment with what Pokemon they think is best in OU and why at the bottom of this page.
#5 Tapu Lele – This Psychic-Fairy makes its way into my top 5 of this list for several reasons, but perhaps the most simple and compelling of them all is its 130 base Special Attack stat. Combine that ability with its monstrous ability in Psychic Surge, and one thing has been made painfully clear to me, this Pokemon was meant to seek hearty vengeance as what we in the trade like to call “A Revenge Killer.” Psychic Surge turns the battlefield into a weird area that prevents any priority moves from being used, so be careful if by some chance you also wanted to run Golisopod, Scizor, or Mamoswine. It has a base 110 Special Defense and 95 base Speed, so this Pokemon can pull off this fun role against a wide variety of Pokemon. Here is the set I think we’ll be seeing the most of, though you can run a variety of different ones.
My Scarf is Fly and So Am I
252 Special Attack / 252 Speed / 4 Defense
Item: Choice Scarf
Ability: Psychic Surge
Moves: Psychic / Psyshock, Moonblast, Focus Blast, Hidden Power Fire
The choice of Psychic or Psyshock is one of power or versatility, as the latter can hit special walls such as Chansey for immense amounts of damage, but the former hits more things for more damage. Either one is a good option, as Psychic Terrain will boost their power by 50%. The following two moves are pretty obvious picks, but having HP Fire is pretty integral in Lele’s overall viability. Without it, adequately countering threats like Scizor becomes nigh impossible, and this move will prove even more integral once Bank is released and we see Ferrothorn re-emerge from the shadows. If you can’t get HP Fire though, Energy Ball is a decent replacement.
Mandibuzz has always been annoying to deal with in the OU metagame, and it has come back for third-helpings this generation. While Mandibuzz won’t be dishing out too much damage itself, it can form insane cores with a plethora of Pokemon, and counter common threats such as Alolan Marowak and Mimikyu with Foul Play. While it can’t run Knock Off until Bank comes out with Farfetch’d, it can still serve a dynamic role as a pivot that’s always there for you. With this Pokemon, serendipity will ironically be on your side. 😉
Impish / Bold Nature
252 HP / 252 Defense / 4 Special Defense or Speed
Moves: Foul Play, Roost, Defog, Toxic
Mandibuzz can do a lot of work with just Foul Play and Roost, so the other moves are really just icing on the cake. Defog support is incredibly relevant in the current meta due to the next Pokemon on my list and Lycanroc, so keep reading to find out what that is. Toxic can be insurance against Pokemon near fainting that you think might switch. Unfortunately, it’s not as useful as say Knock Off would be, but we’ll have to make do for a while.
In the current meta, Mamoswine is perhaps one of the most reliable leads out there. Only a few Pokemon can even hope to stop it from setting up Stealth Rocks in the current metagame, and all three of them can be easily checked by Mamoswine’s other moves. If you’re facing one of these behemoths, you’re better of thinking about how you’re going to get rid of the rocks than how you’re going to stop them. In addition to its role as a Rocks setter, Mamoswine can function nicely as a priority glass cannon with Ice Shard, and has powerful Same Type Attack Bonuses in Icicle Crash and Earthquake. It’s worth noting that Mamoswine’s set will likely change once Bank comes out and Freeze Dry becomes more relevant.
Snowball from Animal Farm
Adamant or Jolly Nature
252 Attack / 252 Speed / 4 HP
Item: Focus Sash
Ability: Oblivious (Thick Fat is unavailable)
Moves: Earthquake, Icicle Crash, Ice Shard, Stealth Rock
One of the best Pokemon to deal with Mamoswine is undoubtedly Ash-Greninja, as a transformed one can get a guaranteed OHKO it with Water Shuriken. Mega Scizor has a decent shot at knocking it out with Bullet Punch as well. When using Mamoswine, the most common Defoggers / Spinners you’ll see nowadays are Mandibuzz; Skarmory; Tapu Fini; and Komala, so be sure to bring insurance against them.
Celesteela is basically the Ferrothorn of this generation, except without entry hazard support and with Flamethrower instead. Celesteela has very solid defenses, attacks, and has some recovery in the form of Leech Seed. As good as this Pokemon is though, it is not without its counters, and I think Game Freak made a wise decision in not giving this monster Roost, else we experience the Armageddon of team creativity as we did with Landorus-T. While it can also run an Autotomize set, this is the set I think we can expect to see far more frequently.
Yes. They ARE Flamethrowers.
252 HP / 252 Special Defense / 4 Defense
Item: Leftovers / Shed Shell
Ability: Beast Boost
Moves: Heavy Slam, Flamethrower / Toxic, Leech Seed, Protect
Weighing in at 2,200 pounds, Celesteela deals major damage with Heavy Slam to the disappoint of the many Fairy-types running around in Alola currently. Flamethrower provides nice coverage as well as an excuse to turn on its enormous arm cannons, while Toxic can be more damaging in the long run and force frequent switches. Leech Seed and Protect are the core of this Pokemon’s move set though, somewhat relegating it to the mid to late game, but providing great power at those levels. Celesteela can run Shed Shell to prevent being trapped by a Magnet Pull Magnezone; though I would say a far better counter to fast electric types like Magnezone, Tapu Koko, and Xurkitree would be Alolan Dugtrio with Arena Trap, making it an excellent team complement.
#1 Alolan Marowak
After years of living in its Mother’s Shadow, Marowak has finally decided to up its game and turn its mother’s shadow into a mystical flame that smites its enemies. So far, this seems to have been paying off for it. Alolan Marowak can pretty much go on any team, and will prove immensely useful with its great typing and ability in Lightning Rod. With its exclusive item, Thick Club, Marowak can dish out immense damage even while focusing its EVs and Nature into becoming a defensive force to be reckoned with. With the ability to OHKO Skarmory (After Stealth Rocks), Celesteela, and Tapu Bulu; Alolan Marowak is not a Pokemon one can afford to underestimate in this metagame. Additionally, it can switch into common Pokemon like Tapu Koko, Magnezone, and Xurkitree with almost no repercussions due to its ability.
Dance Dance Revolution
Careful or Adamant Nature
252 HP / 252 Special Defense or Attack / 4 (The Other Stat)
Item: Thick Club
Ability: Lightning Rod (Rock Head CAN work if you run max Attack investment)
Moves: Flare Blitz, Shadow Bone, Earthquake or Bonemerang, Will-O-Wisp
With an already great Defense stat and a plethora of other defensive tanks to support it, Marowak has no real need to pump that up beyond its natural level. Flare Blitz is immensely powerful at the expense of recoil damage, and will be the primary attack used. Shadow Bone is a powerful STAB attack that will mainly be used against other Marowak (For the purpose of countering other Marowak, consider sticking some additional EVs into Speed). Earthquake is better if running a Careful Nature since it will lack the power to OHKO some Pokemon with Sashes. If running an Adamant Nature, Bonemerang can break some Focus Sash Pokemon and KO them in the same turn. Will-O-Wisp is a good move to use on Switch-Ins if you aren’t sure on the opponent’s next move. Be careful though, as some Pokemon would prefer a burn to getting toxic poisoned due to the burn nerfs.
Remember to comment what Prebank OU Pokemon you think is best and why at the bottom of the article for a chance to win a 5 IV Impish Love Ball Vullaby w/ Foul Play! I will contact the winner next week through the site’s messaging system. Start getting your teams together for the Ultimate Underground Tournament Champions in just under a month!