Tuesday, August 2, 2016

CIL Regular S2W6: VS MarvoTrainer

(Artist: Mark331)


Well...going 5-0 is fun, but let's see how far we can push this win streak. 

Anyways during this seasonal Week 6, I started to heavily consider my "final" team, or essentially the last two transactions we'll be making before Week 8. One of the things I've noticed is I haven't used Eelektross all season long, and probably won't even use it at all after considering my "future" matchups. While Eelektross is a great low-tier electric Pokemon, I settled with another Electric Pokemon which was dropped by the FlyingFiona and added Galvantula. Pretty much two word to describe this pick: Sticky Webs. Not much to say, or reveal. 

 For my last transaction, all I knew was that either Nidoking, Celebi, or even Chesnaught was going to be gone. Having another base 100 Pokemon all across the board seemed nice to have, Celebi was going to be potentially dead-weight in the upcoming battles, especially when I have another Grass-type Pokemon in Chesnaught, who's been arguably the one of the best defensive mon for the team. There were still a good amount of undrafted picks from free agency like Feraligatr, Flygon, Rhydon, Meloetta, Machamp, Porygon2, and a bunch more viable Pokemon. 

In the end, Gliscor was the only reasonable choice for me since I have the most experience using this guy during XY OU and in my early days in competitive back in BW2. All I can say is the fact that Gliscor can essentially get back 1/8th of its HP every turn and has Roost is kinda ridiculous as it will almost never die. Once Gliscor is poisoned, well it can take all the incoming status and can live most physical hits with its high base 125 and the constant health back. Once last thing about Gliscor is that this guy is a great stall-breaker and can synergies well with my Empoleon, Chesnaught, Suicune, and Sylveon core as it can take any Electric, Fighting, or Poison hits, and retaliate with STAB Earthquakes. Yes I know that Gliscor is 4x weak to Ice and 2x weak to Water, but I don't think its really a factor when I have stuff to sponge those hits. 

Well there you have it, all my transaction picks have now been chosen, and the team solidified. I still can use Celebi and Eelektross for this last week if I want to, but based on the matchup, Eelektross won't play any games for the Nidokings, which is unfortunate.  With all that said, now we'll focus on our matchup against Marvo Trainer and the Poison Stings. 

Week 6: Vs The Poison Stings

Poison Stings: M-Sableye, Chansey, Breloom, Hippodown, Salamence, Metagross, Scolipede, Rotom-H, Closyer, Regirock, Slurpuff.
LA Nidokings: Charizard X, Latias, Suicune, Weavile, Sylveon, Doublade, Nidoking, Eelektross, Chesnaught, Empoleon, Celebi (Note: Transactions will come to effect next week)

Looking at Marvo Trainer's team, this team is fat. Like seriously fat, defensive, stally, and quite potent  if used correctly. Immediately the biggest threats that were notice was the Mega Sableye-Hippodown-Chansey core since it's incredibly bulky enough to tank most hits from the opposing team, block most hazards thanks to M-Sableye's Magic Bounce, and stall them out with chip damage as the battle goes.  After those three, we have another wall / pivot options in Rotom-H, one of the few Pokemon that can beat out my defensive core if played well thanks to its typing advantage. Breloom was another annoying Pokemon to prep for as if I'm not careful enough, it can wall break as well as put something on my team to sleep. While this was a lower number picked, Regirock stood out as the most capable Pokemon to wall Charizard X thanks to its based 200 Defenses, and even that potential special defense boost from the sand to tank special hits. Salamence, Metagross, and Scolipede round up Marvo's main offense for his team, and to be frank, these aren't threats to mess around with. Salamence can easily setup Dragon Dance and sweep with Moxie boosts, Metagross can act as part of his wall core to take on Empoleon-Chesnaught, and Scolipede can either setup hazards or effectively attempt a sweep when the time is right. The last couple Pokemon, Cloyster and Slurpuff were setup threats, but fortunately for us, we have the proper defensive Pokemon to check them, provided we don't lose them of course. 

Even with all these threats, this was the one week I honestly should have prepared for my opponent, but I didn't prep as much as I wanted to. The reason for the lack of preparation around this time, PFA Finals occurred and had to other plans (work, family gatherings) throughout the week before the actually match. Before I'd already made somewhat of a blueprint on how to "beat" Marvo's rather defensive style team a couple of weeks prior and rolled with it. So here's the team below:

Mars (Empoleon) @ Shuca Berry
Ability: Torrent
- Scald
- Knock Off
- Stealth Rock
- Defog

No matter what team Marvo brought, Empoleon was the best lead as it can either setup rocks, Knock Off an item, Scald for a potential burn, or switch out to the appropriate response. Shuca Berry allows Empoleon to take one EQ from any Pokemon, even from the Hippowdon and either retaliate with an attack, setup rocks, or Defog any hazards Marvo has on the field. Threw in Knock Off as the the "final" slot because not only can it remove items, but Empoleon can bait out the Chansey more importantly. Based on this team, if I can wear down Chansey, even by taking out the Eviolite, this will make it far easier for my setup mons to sweep in the end. 

Forge (Charizard-Mega-X) @ Charizardite X
Ability: Tough Claws
- Flare Blitz
- Swords Dance
- Roost
- Substitute

Another mono-attacking Char X set, but with some strong options. Most of Pokemon on Marvo's team can take a Tough Claws-boosted Flare Blitz, except only once. If the rest of Char X's teammates can wear down the opposition enough to where I can sweep with Sword Dance, then Char X can win the game with ease. Sword Dance was added to ensure Char X can faint both Mega Sableye, Chansey, and Hippodown at +2,  again with prior damage. Substitute was opted to ensure I don't fall to any Thunder Wave shenanigans from Rotom-H, and then setup with SD. Speaking of Rotom-H, Charizard X is my main response to it, though I had to play carefully against one with T-Wave, though Sylveon can Heal Bell the to cure the paralysis.  Like to emphasis Char X has a good chance to sweep the battle if it can get off both a Sub and a Sword Dance while being healthy.

Rogue (Suicune) @ Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
- Scald
- Ice Beam
- Calm Mind
- Rest

The main defensive backbone of the team. This Suicune set is max defense to ensure it can take a hit from both Salamence, Metagross, and Scolipede and retaliate with Scald or Ice Beam. Just looking at Marvo's team, he doesn't have much for a CM Suicune so I decided to being it to act as tank. If  Suicune ever gets at a low amount of HP, I can Rest off the damage and Heal Bell with Sylveon later on in the match. Unless Marvo prepared specifically for Suicune (like bring Breloom or Banded Pokemons), there isn't much he can do aside hope we mess up with the rest turns, or get crit / parahax. The only two Pokemon that could really stop this setup were Breloom and Rotom-H, but Suicune can at least hit them on the switch with the proper move before switching out. 

Li (Sylveon) (F) @ Leftovers
Ability: Pixilate
- Hyper Voice
- Calm Mind
- Heal Bell
- Wish

Kinda didn't want to bring Sylveon, except the fact Marvo had Mega Sableye was reason enough to bring it along. The set is rather simplisitic with a pseudo cleric / setup with Pixilate Hyper Voice as I think only Metagross and Chansey take well (Rotom-H would lose the 1v1). Main goal for Sylveon was to keep the team healthy, combat M-Sableye, and be another Win Con if needed. 

Abruptly (Celebi) @ Light Clay
Ability: Natural Cure
- Giga Drain
- Dazzling Gleam
- Leech Seed
- Reflect

Will Elaborate: 

Sadly this was the last battle for Abruptly the Celebi, but I kinda wanted to bring it once more because of the relatively good matchup it had. Giga Drain was STAB mainly to recover and get damage on Hippo, Dazzling Gleam is to hit Salamence / Mega Sableye hard, Leech Seed to gain more HP (especially from Chansey) while whittling the opponent's team, and finally this: Light Clay Reflect. Based on Marvo's team, almost everything on his squad were or had the potential to be physical attackers bar Rotom-H. For sure he can run a specially mixed Mence, a CM Sableye, Special Metagross/Slurpuff, and other stuff. The thing is he can't afford to since those aren't really optimal against the matchup since I have an Empoleon, a Suicune with CM, Sylveon with CM +Wish, Celebi with moderate Special Defense, and Doublade. Chances were likely his team was going to be heavily physically based, so therefore I can stop any momentum on his team with the Light Clay Reflect.  With those 8 turns, I can use them to setup a for either Suicune, Sylveon, Char X, or Doublade to begin wall breaking.  Didn't feel like having Light Screen since it was a wasted slot, especially when Celebi was going to be pressured by the Metagross and Scolipede...speaking of which...

Bike (Doublade) @ Eviolite
Ability: No Guard
- Swords Dance
- Sacred Sword
- Shadow Sneak
- Shadow Claw

...here's what I'm going to use to wall Metagross and Scolipede. Could have put Pursuit to get massive damage on a Metagross switch-out, but I notice Marvo ran a Weakness Policy set, so settled with Shadow Claw instead. Like to point out that Chansey is walled by this set completely and has to use Thunder Wave or a random Fire-type move to weaken Doublade.  If I see Regirock, Doublade is likely going to setup on it, unless I feel Chansey is more of a threat in the battle. 

Alright will admit there is a bit of stalling on both of our parts so I'll leave this battle summarized on some bullets. 

  • Hippodown gets taken out by Empoleon with a combination of two Scald and a Knock Off. Tries to EQ, however damage is mitigated thanks to the Shuca Berry. Empoleon gets a Scald burn, but Rawst Berry saves Hippowdon from the burn, but without leftovers is sacked. 
  • Bit of an exchange and switches on both of our parts, but I'm able to get off a Light Clay Reflect. On turn 12, I get in Mega Char X as Marvo switches into Scolipede on the last couple turns of Reflect. Decided to get the Mega Evolution off and attack what's in front of me, but forgot that Scolipede has protect, which stalls out the last turn of Reflect. Thinking he'd switch,  I stay in with Charizard X to Flare Blitz, as he does the same to Earthquake. Unfortunately for Marvo, Scolipede faint from this exchange, though leaving X critically low to where Metagross can knock out with Bullet Punch or Pursuit.
  • I keep up the defensive pressure by using Celebi's Light Clay Reflect, and netting a Leech Seed on a Chansey switch which gets me a ton of HP. After making consecutive Leech Seed calls, I decided sack Empoleon to get a burn of Sableye, but Marvo switches immediately to Chansey. After another exchange, there's one point where I get in Doublade against Metagross, and it looks like I can get a clean setup going. Chansey is sent out and paralyzes Doublade as I setup a Sword Dance. From the range of HP "regular" Sableye was, Doublade can easily faint it with a Shadow Claw and potentially win the game from there. As Marvo sends in Sableye... Doublade gets paralyzed as it used Shadow Claw. Had this play happen, the game would have been effectively over, but the match goes on for another 30+ turns. 
  • I switch out into Sylveon fearing a Foul Play, but Mega Sableye finally gets its Mega Evolution off, and recovers the same turn, further losing momentum in my favor. Empoleon is later sacked off in the hopes of getting a Scald burn, but none against the Ghost/Dark-type wall, and faints to Night Shades. 
  • Charizard X is sent out to get some recovery with Roost and see what Mega Sableye does, but instead Regirock is sent out. Immediately I decide to go for my Calm Minds with Suicune so I can potentially sweep with it. Problem is I knew Chansey was going to be a pain, so I immediately resulted into Pressure Stalling my opponent. The original plan was to stall Marvo of all his Seismic Toss, and basically sweep in the end with a +4 CM Suicune, but for some reason he stays in on Regirock the entire time. Then it occurred after the Rock Polish from early on, Regirock has to be a Weakness Policy setup, and then I decided to stall out all the Thunder Punches as I damage calc when was it the right time to attack. After getting to +3 CM, Suicune finally goes for the Scald and knock out the Regirock, which thus allows for Charizard X to wall break later on. 
  • Finally the Suicune V Chansey happens. At first, I wanted to stay in against Chansey and hope for the Scald burn, however, I kinda feel a bit impatient and didn't want to engage in another stall war. There's another exchange and switches here, but the biggest turning point is when Doublade gets an SD off and faints the M-Sableye on the incoming switch in. Unfortunately Doublade gets paralyzed against the Metagross as it get off 35% damage. At this point, I know the battle was mine as long as I didn't choke it somehow.
  • Decided to sack Celebi to Metagross before getting a last ditch Reflect off for either Suicune or Char X. As Suicune is sent out, I predicted Chansey to come in and make the double to Char X and initiate the end game. Charizard X gets off a Sub on an incoming Thunder Wave, and I can now setup freely with a SD to faint either Metagross or Chansey. If Metagross is sacked off, Doublade basically walls Chansey out and wins (aside random coverage, but then still had Suicune). If Chansey is sacked, Suicune / Doublade can still win the battle, as long as Metagross isn't fast and don't flinch me every turn with Iron Head. 
  • Charizard X faints Chansey with a +2 Flare Blitz, though Metagross picks it off as I stay in, just in case he tried to setup somehow. Suicune finishes the game by getting a Scald burn to effectively wall Metagross out with the residual damage, and on top of that an unnecessary crit in the end.  Nidokings win 3-0 against Marvo and the Poison Stings. 


Well this battle was certainly filled with stall battles and engagements with our defensive wall cores, but honestly what kept us ahead throughout the battle was thinking ahead of our opponent for the long term. The team I intended to bring was built as a response to Marvo's wall core and the offensive Pokemon that later. This game might have been much longer if Hippodown was saved, then again Chansey might have lost its Eviolite and that alone makes it easier for Suicune to sweep. Speaking of Suicune, there's no doubt it was the main MVP for the battle as it held the team together while keeping pressure (get it?) against Marvo. Another Pokemon who deserves an honorable mention was Empoleon for winning the 1v1 against the Hippowdon, removing hazards, and getting up my own in the early game. It is a shame that we weren't able to get a Knock Off against the Chansey as the rest of my team had a far easier time dealing with the blob. Heck Suicune might have been able to beat a non Eviolite Chansey after it gets burn from +6 Scalds. 

Even if  the Nidokings won, we still made some notable or small mistakes which directly influenced the game. Revealing Knock Off too early with Empoleon instead of going for a safe Scald might have influenced Marvo to go directly to Chansey. Like to point out an non Eviolite Chansey is less of a threat than one with one, especially for my wall breakers. One major misplay was letting Charizard X take super effective Earthquake damage against Scolipede and might have fainted from a high roll Earthquake + Flare Blitz recoil, or worse a crit EQ. Arguably, Suicune can tank an EQ and threaten a Scald burn against the Scolipede pretty easily, not to mention the lack of hazard removal prevent Marvo from removing rocks. If I'd played out this scenario, Scolipede gets easily worn down to either the point Marvo has to sack it, or enough residual damage where Doublade can snipe it out with Shadow Sneak. One last thing I'd like to mention is there's we were able to play to our win cons and deny our opponent's any possible outs they could have used against me whether its stalling out the Thunder Punches, curing all that Status with Heal Bell, or waiting for the right moment for the end game.

Next time we'll be facing a good friend of the GBA: KantoCastBlue. I know he's in a bit of a slump on the records, but I have to keep myself on edge to be able to win the following battles ahead. Until then, I'll try to get these up as frequent post ASAP, but in good moderation. See you all in the next post!