Friday, 5 May 2017

Hot Memes -- International Challenge April 51st Place

Alola friends. Results got released earlier than expected, so I guess I can also release the team earlier than planned. Record is 35 wins and 10 losses, 1804 rating, final and peak. Please don't copy it for a serious tournament, it's just not good. It's a fun meme though. Possibly improvable too, but I don't see myself doing it. Anyway, here goes nothing.

Torkoal (M) @ Weakness Policy
Ability: Drought
Level: 50
EVs: 236 HP / 252 SpA / 20 SpD
Quiet Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Eruption
- Flamethrower
- Solar Beam
- Protect

Nihilego @ Life Orb
Ability: Beast Boost
Level: 50
EVs: 4 Def / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Power Gem
- Sludge Bomb
- Hidden Power [Ice]
- Trick Room

Lilligant @ Grassium Z
Ability: Chlorophyll
Level: 50
EVs: 68 HP / 252 SpA / 188 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Leaf Storm
- Hidden Power [Fire]
- Sleep Powder
- After You

Slowpoke (F) @ Eviolite
Ability: Oblivious
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 36 Def / 220 SpD
Relaxed Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 SpA / 0 Spe
- Surf
- Heal Pulse
- Sunny Day
- Trick Room

Smeargle (M) @ Focus Sash
Ability: Own Tempo
Level: 50
EVs: 68 Def / 188 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Follow Me
- Spore
- Feint
- Accelerock

Hariyama @ Flame Orb
Ability: Guts
Level: 50
EVs: 28 HP / 252 Atk / 228 Def
Brave Nature
IVs: 8 Spe
- Close Combat
- Heavy Slam
- Feint
- Fake Out

I got the general idea from low ladder Battle Spot, where someone was running a team of Slowpoke, Torkoal, Lilligant, Garchomp, Togedemaru and Gyarados. It seemed like some fun cheese, I just didn't like their team as a whole because it had one mode too much for my taste, and they would stand in each other's way. So, I set out to just make the the TR mode better, since that commonly just wins games if it goes unpunished.

But still, it's far from good. While I did make the setup a bit smoother via the addition of Hariyama and Smeargle, it can still be clunky when the opponent plays it smartly. A simple Fini/Arcanine lead is quite annoying, and if they then even have Snarl and Calm Mind combined, well, then I'm probably not winning with the Torkoal setup, and Nihilego will only work if they just have trash in the back and Arcanine has no Assault Vest Bulldoze. That's what most of my losses were, anyway. The other common way to lose is to just be outplayed: a few people stalled my Trick Room well and put themselves in a position where they'd just sweep when it's come, denying me a chance to get it up again. Hard TR is hard. I don't even know how I was actually able to like that way in the past...huh.

Part of the speed control problem actually lies in my overestimation of Lilligant's usefulness. I'm not the person to Sleep Powder my ass through games without anything else going (shoutouts to my luck there though; every Sleep Powder hit, I even got a 3-turn Sleep when I needed it, and multiple opposing Sleep Powders missed), so I mostly brought it in the back for late games. Unfortunately, After You Eruption isn't very effective because you'll commonly have only one turn in sun after TR runs out. I actually need me opponent to help me here by bringing Gigalith or whatever other anti-weather, so that I could reset it with Slowpoke, and boom, suddenly more turns of sun! As a result...I'd recommend giving Lilligant a Choice Scarf or using a Different After You mon that's just fast in whatever way that isn't based on sun turns, you know. That's the first thing, and the other thing is that the AFK matchup needs some work, no idea what to do about it though. Araquanid's scary too, it's a matchup full of coin flips especially when it comes with its own TR setter. Oh yeah, and Lillikoal mirrors are fucking disgusting. I literally won them because they commonly relied on Sleep Powder and got betrayed, lol. Anyone have good ideas how to approach them!?

The last thing I should talk about is this somewhat unconventional Nihilego set. I put Trick Room over Protect because that was the only way to get a Kokochu matchup that doesn't go to silly coin flips in best case. I'd lead Smeargle Nihilego and click Follow Me TR first turn, and then next turn either do it again or attack, depending on what happened. I just faced the matchup once and early (expected more, but nope, just Arcanine/Fini all the time, lol), and it was a beautifully engineered Bo1-style sweep. Well, and other than did help in other occasions too to have that random Trick Room on Nihilego, so it was a good decision even with Kokochu just not really appearing this time.

Well, and now the next IC is already in May...turns out I haven't thought of a good new meme yet. I might just bring a serious team then, if I can find one that looks good in a Bo1 setting. Alola!

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