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Old 06-24-2009, 11:59 PM
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Default A Guide to Team Building in the OU Metagame

Before reading this guide, you need to ask yourself right now: What kind of playing style do you have? Do you believe in a good offense, or do you believe that the best offense is a good defense? Or do you believe in neither of the two and prefer a good balance in a team? If you chose the former, this guide is for you. In this guide I will explain how to build an offensively based team, and make an example team. Now, let’s get started.
The key components of any team are the following:
-Lead
-Physical Sweeper
-Special sweeper
-Mixed Sweeper
-Set-up Sweeper
-A Pokemon to set up entry hazards (I.e., Stealth Rock, Spikes, and Toxic Spikes)
-Wish Support
-Rapid Spinner
-Screener
-Taunter
-Status
-Revenge Killer (a Pokemon to come in after another faints and pick off the opponent’s -Pokemon)
-Late-Game sweeper
-Phazer (A Pokemon that has the move Roar, Whirlwind, or in some cases, Haze)

Now, keep in mind, a team can’t have ALL of these, but the Pokemon that take over these roles depend on what type of team you are using. For example, an offensive team usually has more sweepers, and bypasses a Phazer, or a Pokemon there to set up entry hazards, besides Stealth Rock.
So, let’s start off with the most basic, and sometimes most important, component of a team: Your lead. A lead needs to have a purpose, and should often times set up an entry hazard(s), or status the opponent. Most leads in the OU metagame set up the entry hazard Stealth Rock right off the bat, on the first turn. There are also variations on Stealth Rock leads called “Suicide Leads.” These are Pokemon that can learn Stealth Rock, and are often times frail. Some examples of Suicide leads are Azelf, or Aerodactyl. They lead with Focus Sashes, and set up stealth rock or the first turn, or in the case of Aerodactyl, Taunts, to stop the opponent from setting up. A different style of lead is called an “Anti-Lead.” It is designed to counter the most common leads the opponent would use. Such as Machamp, or Jirachi. Machamp can Encore the opponent’s suicide lead into using Stealth Rock, and set up a Substitute on the switch. From there he can devastate with a 100% Accurate Dynamic Punch, (Assuming you have No Guard) and another move of your choice. Jirachi on the other hand more often than not, has a Choice Scarf, and can use the move Trick, to lock the opponent into their set-up move, forcing them to switch out. From there, Jirachi can set up its own Stealth Rocks, or U-turn. Now, there are many other types of leads besides Anti-Leads and Suicide leads, but I don’t have time to cover them all. I’m going to go over some of the metagame’s best leads and some of their useful moves.

-Metagross- Stealth Rock, Explosion, STAB Meteor Mash
-Azelf: Stealth Rock, Explosion, Taunt, U-turn
-Swampert: Stealth Rock, Roar, Counter, Mirror Coat
-Jirachi: Trick, Stealth Rock, U-turn
-Aerodactyl: Stealth Rock, Taunt
-Infernape: Fake Out, Stealth Rock, Taunt, STAB Close Combat
-Machamp: Encore, Dynamic Punch (with No Guard)
-Bronzong: Stealth Rock, Explosion, Reflect, Light Screen,
All of these are great leads, but for our example team, I’m going to choose Machamp for its bulkiness and access to Encore. Here’s a good lead set that can be found on Smogon:

Machamp@ Lum Berry
No Guard
Adamant
252 HP / 160 Attack / 96 Special Defense
-DynamicPunch
-Payback
-Substitute
-Encore
This Machamp is designed to counter other set-up leads like Bronzong and Aerodactyl, buy Encoring the turn, or the turn after they Stealth Rock, depending if you are faster. Machamp has a Lum Berry to counter Yanmega, whom would normally Hypnosis you first, or Protect first to get a speed boost. Stone Edge can be used over Payback, but Payback does more damage to Dusknoir, as well as OHKO’ing Gengar.

Let’s move on to sweepers. On an offensively based team, you should have at least 3 Sweepers, in my opinion. Sweepers are Pokemon that are rather frail, but have a lot of attacking, or special attacking power, and are designed to pick off the opponents Pokemon in, well, a sweep. A team should have a Physical sweeper, a special sweeper, and a mixed sweeper, if you’re going for 3 sweepers. A set-up sweeper to center your team around is also a good idea. Let’s go over some good physical sweepers found in the OU Tier:
-Scizor: The #1 used Pokemon according to shoddy battle’s statistics, and for good reason. Its got base 130 Attack, with STAB Bullet Punch. It makes a great revenge killer with a choice band, as well as a good set-up sweeper with Swords Dance. It gets some good moves like STAB U-turn, as well as Superpower.
-Lucario: This is about the best late-game sweeper in OU. Its got Swords Dance, STAB Close Combat as well as Extreme Speed to pick off faster opponents.
-Gyarados: Here’s another great sweeper. With 1 Dragon Dance and a Jolly nature, it outspeeds Jolteon, whom is its only non-scarfed thread after it sets up. It gets Waterfall as its main STAB, along with Stone Edge and Earthquake for coverage. It’s also quite bulky.
-Flygon: It may only have base 100 Attack, but with STAB Earthquake and Outrage, only resisted by Skarmory and levitating Bronzong, is a great combo, especially with a choice scarf. Makes a great revenge killer, and has acess to U-turn.
-Salamence: With good speed, and incredible attack, Salamence makes a great set-up sweeper with access to Dragon Dance.
-Tyranitar: as a bulky tank, with monstrous attack, T-tar makes a good addition to almost any team. He can also put continual damage on opponents with sandstorm if they don’t have rock, steel, or ground typing.
There are many more physical sweepers out there, these are just some of the best, and most used. For our team, I’m going to choose Tyranitar, because of his resistances to psychic, and flying, both of which Machamp is weak to. Tyranitar is also going to fill the role of a set-up sweeper with Dragon Dance, so we don’t need to worry about that.

Okay, now it’s time to move on to picking a special sweeper for our team. Here are some of the top OU special sweepers:

-Heatran: Not blessed with the best speed, but amazing special attack, and a good move pool, Heatran makes a good special sweeper for any team, especially when equipped with a Choice Scarf.
-Magnezone: In the same special attack tier as Heatran, Magnezone is another great option for a special sweeper. Its bulky, has two good STAB moves, and has a nifty ability: Magnet Pull, which disallows Steel types from switching out when Magnezone comes in.
-Gengar: With great speed, and better special attack to boot, Gengar makes a great special sweeper with access to STAB Shadow Ball and Focus Blast, to boast perfect coverage.
-Latias: Just moved down from the uber tier in February, Latias is blessed with great all around stats and a great move pool. With access to Trick, Draco Meteor, Calm Mind, and Recover, it makes a great Specs sweeper, or bulky Calm Minder.
-Jolteon: With blazing speed, and good special attack as well, Jolteon makes an especially good Choice Specs sweeper. Not much to be said.

Again, there are many more sweepers to choose from, but these are just some examples. For this team, I think we’re going to choose Latias, for its good typing in tandem with Tyranitar and Machamp, resisting both fighting, grass, and ground. Since we already have a set-up sweeper, a Calm Mind set would be rather redundant, so I think we’re going to go with a Choice Specs set with Trick, to cripple walls like Blissey, and Skarmory, both whom are very common and wall Latias and Tyranitar. Hm.. Now we need a mixed sweeper, to do some wall breaking. Let’s look at some examples:

-Salamence: With great attack, decent speed, and good special attack, along with STAB Draco Meteor, Outrage, Fire Blast, and Earthquake, Salamence is the essence of a mixed sweeper.
-Infernape: OU’s top mixed sweeper, with STAB Close Combat, Fire Blast, and access to Grass Knot, Infernape is one of the best Wall-breakers out there, beating the dreaded SkarmBliss combo.
-Kingdra: Like Salamence, it has a STAB Outrage, and Draco Meteor, along with STAB Waterfall, Kingdra can do some wall-breaking of its own when used correctly.
-Electivire: Often overlooked, and for good reason, Electivire is a seldom used mixed sweeper, because of its inferior stats in comparison to Salamence. Although, it does have a decent move pool, with all the elemental punches, STAB Thunderbolt, and Cross Chop, Electivire can wreak havoc if the opponent doesn’t expect it and you get a motor drive boost off.
All of these are great, but I think I’m going to have to go with Infernape for his sheer wall-breaking power. We also have resistances for all of his main weaknesses.
Now that we have most of our team building done, we need to pick out a Pokemon to set up Stealth Rocks, and a Pokemon to use Roar, to stop an opponents set-up sweeper. A Pokemon that can do both of these is Swampert. Swampert’s sheer bulk can let it survive a +2 Life Orb Gyarados’ Waterfall, and Roar it away without and trouble. We also have Latias as a resistance to his only weakness, Grass.

Alright, now we have 1 extra spot that needs to get filled. With an offensively-based team, you usually have an extra spot like this, so you just want to fill this spot with a Pokemon that will benefit the team the most. Here’s our team so far:

Machamp@ Lum Berry
No Guard
Adamant
252 HP / 160 Attack / 96 Special Defense
-Dynamic Punch
-Payback
-Substitute
-Encore


Tyranitar@ Life Orb
Sand Stream
Jolly
6 HP / 252 Attack / 252 Speed
-Dragon Dance
-Stone Edge
-Crunch
-Aqua Tail


Infernape@ Life Orb
Blaze
Na´ve
64 Attack / 252 Special Attack / 212 Speed
-Close Combat
-Fire Blast
-Grass Knot
-HP Ice


Latias@ Choice Specs
Levitate
Timid
252 Special Attack / 252 Speed / 6 HP
-Draco Meteor
-Surf
-Thunderbolt
-Trick


Swampert@ Leftovers
Torrent
Impish
252 HP / 252 Defense / 6 Special Defense
-Earthquake
-Waterfall
-Stealth Rock
-Roar

All of these here are standard sets that can be found on the Smogon analysis pages, except for Swampert. Max HP/Max Defense is for maximum defensive bulkyness to counter Gyarados and Salamence, whom you can Roar away after they set up. Now, what are we lacking in this team: …A revenge killer! Yes, we have nothing that has blazing speed that can come in and get a kill. Let’s look at some good revenge killers:

-Dugtrio: Knowns as “the ultimate revenge killer,” Dugtrio has the ability Arena Trap, which renders and ground-bound opponent unable to switch out, allowing it to come in, and essentially get a free kill.
-Scizor: With a STAB Technician Bullet Punch, Scizor can come in on just about anything and do something constructive, whether U-turning out, predicting a switch, or just having priority with Bullet Punch.
-Jolteon: Mentioned before, it has great speed and a decent move pool. Jolteon can come in on a lot of things, and get a kill, being faster.

Since on this team we have no Priority users, I think I’m going to pick a Choice Band Scizor. Swampert balances Scizor’s fire weakness, and Scizor balances Swampert’s grass weakness. Alright, so we’ve now added a Scizor to our team, completing it. We’re going to use this set:
Scizor@ Choice Band
Technician
Adamant
252 HP / 252 Attack / 6 Speed
-Bullet Punch
-U-turn
-Superpower
-Pursuit

Okay, so now we need to go over our team, and see if it can handle the top OU Pokemon.

-Scizor: Machamp can hurt it with DynamicPunch, Infernape is a threat to it.

-Salamence: Infernape can pick it off with HP Ice.

-Gyarados: Tyranitar can get it with Stone Edge

-Heatran: Tyranitar takes Earth Power with ease, and can KO with Aqua Tail, and Machamp, and Infernape. Swampert can handle it as well.

-Metagross: Infernape’s got it covered, Machamp hurts with Dynamic Punch, Swampert hurts with Earthquake.

-Infernape: Latias has Infernape covered.

-Lucario: Covered by Swampert, as well as Scizor.

-Tyranitar: Scizor and Infernape cover T-tar.

-Gengar: Scizor gets it with Bullet Punch or Pursuit.

-Swampert: Latias can kill it off with Draco Meteor, or Infernape can get it with Grass Knot.

-Blissey: Infernape and Tyranitar, and Machamp have Blissey covered.

-Skarmory: Infernape Fire Blast’s it into oblivion.

-Latias: Tyranitar scares Latias away and can set up a Dragon Dance, and then kill it off later. Machamp can possibly take a hit as well, and hurt it with Payback. Scizor’s got it covered as well.

-Azelf: Scizor’s got this.

-Starmie: Latias has got it covered, easily living an Ice Beam and hitting back with Thunderbolt.

-Jirachi: Infernape’s got Jirachi for the most part. The team can whittle it down.

So, we have the top 15 OU threats covered. A pretty solid team we’ve built, huh?

Here’s the final team:



Machamp@ Lum Berry
No Guard
Adamant
252 HP / 160 Attack / 96 Special Defense
-Dynamic Punch
-Payback
-Substitute
-Encore

Tyranitar@ Life Orb
Sandstream
Jolly
6 HP / 252 Attack / 252 Speed
-Dragon Dance
-Crunch
-Stone Edge
-Aqua Tail

Infernape@ Life Orb
Blaze
Na´ve
64 Attack / 252 Special Attack / 192 Speed
-Fire Blast
-Close Combat
-HP Ice
-Grass Knot

Latias@ Choice Specs
Levitate
Timid
6 HP / 252 Special Attack / 252 Speed
-Draco Meteor
-Thunderbolt
-Surf
-Trick

Swampert@ Leftovers
Torrent
Impish
252 HP / 252 Defense / 6 Special Defense
-Waterfall
-Earthquake
-Stealth Rock
-Roar

Scizor@ Choice Band
Technician
Adamant
252 HP / 252 Attack / 6 Speed
-Bullet Punch
-U-turn
-Superpower
-Pursuit

Please, do not just rip this team and call it your own. This is merely an example team used as a guide, to give you, the reader a template to make a team of your own. Thank you for reading my guide, and I hope its helped you.
__________________

Last edited by Broderick; 06-26-2009 at 02:19 AM.
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