Team Critique - VGC18 Typical Sand Team

Discussion in 'Question & Answer' started by Shad, Dec 11, 2017.

  1. Shad

    Shad New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2017
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    2
    Hey there, VGC18 is coming and...as it is very like VGC15 but with new additions in gen 7, im a noob in here, as my only real experience in vgc was vgc17. As such, I just watched people that were better than me at teambuilding and such.

    My favourite mon has always been Tyranitar, so i prety much want to do a Sand team, and then i looked at Cybertron's team and breakdown of said team, and i liked that one, but not everything about it. So, this team is pretty much like that one, certain mons are exactly like that team, but with a couple different mons. The EV spreads are borrowed from various sources as those are my weakest point when it comes to teambuilding.
    Let's get to it.
    [​IMG]

    Tyranitar @ Choice Scarf
    Ability: Sand Stream
    Level: 50
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
    Jolly Nature
    - Rock Slide
    - Assurance
    - Superpower
    - Ice Punch

    My boy the Tyrano. Standard Sand setter, and going full offensive wiht him. Max attack and speed EV with jolly nature and choice scarf to outspeed most things, and only be slower than certain pokemon that can be handled by the rest of the team. The set provides Rock Slide for spread damage, stab and chance to flinch, Superpower and Ice punch for coverage(like other Ttar or Land-T, i hate that thing). Assurance is a weird move but i started liking it, because it can combo well with the other threats on my team, as they both have spread attacks and are faster than Ttar, so assurance will have most of the time the guaranteed 120 base BP on it.

    Speaking of one of those companions...

    [​IMG]
    Salamence @ Salamencite
    Ability: Intimidate
    Level: 50
    EVs: 44 Atk / 212 SpA / 252 Spe
    Naive Nature
    - Hyper Voice
    - Double-Edge
    - Tailwind
    - Protect

    Salamence as the mega of choice, providing with intimidate before mega evolving, utility from Tailwind and really nice spread and single target damage. Max speed with naive nature and those attack EVs to make sure he can get some nice KO with double-edge, as I believe that it was made to be able to OHKO a non-bulky Lele. Still could consider another attack instead of Double-Edge for coverage, probably Draco Meteor for other Salamence, Hydreigon or Naganadel, but i feel like Salamence isn't the one that should be needed to deal with those. Also, he will always outspeed my Ttar like this, so Hyper Voice + Assurance is a great way of killing things like Mega-gross.
    Lets check our sand abuser.
    [​IMG]
    Excadrill @ Life Orb
    Ability: Sand Rush
    Level: 50
    EVs: 180 HP / 252 Atk / 76 Spe
    Adamant Nature
    - Drill Run
    - Iron Head
    - Rock Slide
    - Protect

    Standard Excadrill, going for max damage and just enough speed to be faster than most things under Sand, or tailwind(or both for the overkill). Standard coverage moves, and running Drill RUn instead of Earthquake so it can bypass Wide guard and decimate foes. Otherwise, pairing him with Ttar and start doing double Rock Slides is pretty solid as agame too, while iron head will make quick work of Lele and Bulu. Personally, i don't like using him too much, but i don't have many options here. I was considering Landorus-I, but i think that I already have enough special damage and i didn't want another mon x4 weak to ice.
    And to round up the japan sand combo, another of my favourite mons.

    [​IMG]
    Aegislash @ Ghostium Z
    Ability: Stance Change
    Level: 50
    EVs: 188 HP / 252 SpA / 68 Spe
    Modest Nature
    IVs: 0 Atk
    - Shadow Ball
    - Flash Cannon
    - Wide Guard
    - King's Shield

    Standard Aegislash, carrying the Z crystal for the insanely powerful Z-move. Shadow ball and flash cannon as standard Stab, you cna't use him without king's shield and Wide Guard for utility, a move that has saved me quite a few times against the likes of Landorus-T, Stakataka, Charizard-Y and oppposing sand teams. I believe that the EVs allow him to outspeed other Aegislash, while still having a decent speed under Tailwind, as outside Tailwind (or sand in the case of excadrill), most of the team is in the mid-to-low speed tier.
    This is the core that i got almost the same from that team, but personally i don't like Rotom-W, and I saw low use on bulu, even while he pairs so well with the team. And considering some weaknesses I found and will talk later, maybe I'll go use him later. But for now, i rounded up the team with a nice pair.


    [​IMG]
    Tapu Fini @ Choice Specs
    Ability: Misty Surge
    Level: 50
    EVs: 252 HP / 252 SpA / 4 Spe
    Modest Nature
    IVs: 0 Atk
    - Moonblast
    - Muddy Water
    - Ice Beam
    - Scald

    Going for a Specs set on fini, with 4 coverage moves and investing in hp with max Spa. This little guy is here to deal with thing like opposing sand teams, Landorus-T and the likes of other Salamence and Hydreigon. With tailwind support he can be quite fast, and with specs deal an unexpected amount of damage. Also provides with good utility in the form of Misty Terrain. This set im not 100% sure yet, because my Team could lack overall bulk, but so far it's been working well.

    And my favourite partner to Fini.

    [​IMG]

    Zapdos @ Misty Seed
    Ability: Pressure
    Level: 50
    EVs: 236 HP / 116 Def / 28 SpA / 84 SpD / 44 Spe
    Bold Nature
    IVs: 0 Atk
    - Thunderbolt
    - Roost
    - Heat Wave
    - Tailwind
    At first I used him with Electrium Z and full speed and special attack, but i really felt like I could use some bulk in the team, some physical bulk other than Salamence's intimidate. Thunderbolt as a way to damage water types(other than gastrodon of course) and Heat Wave for coverage. I used HP Ice in it's place, but i foudn mysefl needing more often fire coverage as Zapdos usually went with fini who already has ice beam. Roost for recovery and Tailwind to support the team, in case I didn't bring Salamence or he got killed and i could use it again.I got the EV spread from some usage stats resource web, as i honestly suck at doing those.
    Overall I think the team covers a lot of threats like Mega-Kang and opposing weather teams, but I want you to help me identifying weak points in the team, or in the sets. One thing I found, and that's why im considering going into Bulu instead of fini, is Gastrodon. The guy is a nightmare for my team, as I have no reliable way of killing him while he can wreak havoc through my team with ground, water and ice attacks, while making Fini's watter attacks useless. I've been considering Tapu Bulu, Kartana or Ferrothorn, but then i'll lose good coverage for Landorus and overall pokemons that would be weak to water...

    So I could really use some help to polish this team, and also, forgive my grammar and spelling, I tried to correct every mistake i saw.

    Until the next time, farewell.
    UPDATED TEAM
    [​IMG]

    Tyranitar @ Choice Scarf
    Ability: Sand Stream
    Level: 50
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
    Jolly Nature
    - Rock Slide
    - Assurance
    - Superpower
    - Ice Punch

    My boy the Tyrano. Standard Sand setter, and going full offensive wiht him. Max attack and speed EV with jolly nature and choice scarf to outspeed most things, and only be slower than certain pokemon that can be handled by the rest of the team. The set provides Rock Slide for spread damage, stab and chance to flinch, Superpower and Ice punch for coverage(like other Ttar or Land-T, i hate that thing). Assurance is a weird move but i started liking it, because it can combo well with the other threats on my team, as they both have spread attacks and are faster than Ttar, so assurance will have most of the time the guaranteed 120 base BP on it.

    Speaking of one of those companions...

    [​IMG]UPDATED
    Salamence @ Salamencite
    Ability: Intimidate
    Level: 50
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
    Timid Nature
    IVs: 0 Atk
    - Hyper Voice
    - Flamethrower
    - Tailwind
    - Protect
    Changed to a max SPA/SPE with flamethrower instead of Double-edge to give the team the fire coverage it needs. Otherwise, Hyper VOice for spread and Stab, Tailwind for support and protect as a staple.

    Lets check our sand abuser.
    [​IMG]UPDATED
    Excadrill @ Life Orb
    Ability: Sand Rush
    Level: 50
    EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
    Adamant Nature
    - Drill Run
    - Iron Head
    - Rock Slide
    - Protect

    Updated to max speed to be useful outside of Sand and Tailwind as well, as it wasn't hitting any defensive benchmarks anyway with HP investment. Other than that, Drill Run to a more powerful STAb than Earthquake that can bypass wide guard, Rock slide for spread damage and flinch chance and Iron Head for a secondary Stab+fairy killer.
    [​IMG]UPDATED

    Aegislash @ Ghostium Z
    Ability: Stance Change
    Level: 50
    EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SpA
    Modest Nature
    IVs: 0 Atk
    - Shadow Ball
    - Flash Cannon
    - Wide Guard
    - King's Shield
    Changed to no speed investment so he can perform better under TR in case I can't stop it.
    Standard dual stabs with wide guard for support and Ghostium Z for a absurdly powerful Z-move.
    [​IMG]
    Tapu Bulu @ Assault Vest
    Ability: Grassy Surge
    Level: 50
    EVs: 252 HP / 56 Atk / 30 Def / 172 SpD
    Adamant Nature
    - Horn Leech
    - Wood Hammer
    - Superpower
    - Stone Edge
    AV Bulu, able to survive and 2HKO back Heatran, while also OHKO every bulky water type. Moves for maximum coverage.
    [​IMG]
    Thundurus @ Grassy Seed
    Ability: Prankster
    Level: 50
    EVs: 252 HP / 236 Def / 12 SpA / 4 SpD / 4 Spe
    Calm Nature
    IVs: 0 Atk
    - Thunderbolt
    - Hidden Power [Ice]
    - Taunt
    - Thunder Wave
    Bulky Support Thundurus, with slightly les bulk than Zapdos, but more utility in the form of Prankster Taunt and Thunder Wave for more speed control rather than just having double tailwind. Thunderbolt and HP ice for coverage.

    This last iteration of the team has no major counters like it had Before, with Gastrodon being just unkillable by my team, and now my team has answers for almost everything they can bring against me, even if it is a small answer, still better than none.
    Feel free to point out flaws that i didn't notice or things like that, I would appreciate it.

    Until the next time, farewell.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
  2. AtTehCross

    AtTehCross Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2017
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Boise, ID, United States
    Have you played with his team exactly how he shared it? Sometimes it is good to play with something first before you shoot down certain things. The team has quite a few ground type weaknesses and it sounds like the rest of the team was built to patch that up. Fini can certainly OHKO Landorus, but without Tailwind up it can hit Fini first for quite a lot of damage. Rotom-W has a better match-up since it has the Ground immunity and can burn Landorus. Usually Knock Off and Rock Slide are the only move Landorus can hit Rotom-W with. Bulu's terrain obviously helps with Earthquake damage.
    Of course, I'm not saying Fini cannot work, but these are just some things to keep in mind. You might want to consider trying HP Ice on Zapdos just so you have another way to hit Landorus too. As you play and whenever you are bringing Fini and Zapdos, just make sure you can control the speed in your favor. Specs Fini is strong, but it can be very vulnerable once your opponent knows it can't Protect. I don't think Fini can always guarantee the survival from Landorus Tec Rage with just 252 HP EVs. I would also make sure your Fini outspeeds Scarf Adamant Landorus in Tailwind as well.
    So, I would recommend playing with the original team (if you haven't already much) as well as your version and see which each of the versions weaknesses are and what weakness you're willing to accept. Every team has weaknesses, it's just a matter of deciding which ones you are willing to give up.

    Good luck!
     
    Shad likes this.
  3. Austin Florence

    Austin Florence New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2017
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    2
    I think team composition wise, it's pretty well balanced. Your ground weaknesses are balanced enough and everything and the sets don't look bad. This team could probably work well, but it has some flaws that need to be addressed. My main concern is Trick Room. For hard trick room teams, I personally like to have either one good slow 'counter' or a way to negate the set up via Roar or Taunt. For your team at first glance, it looks like Aegislash could fill that hole, but I would be concerned as due to stance change, Mega Camerupt could annihilate you. Also, one final thing, you have two choiced 'mons, which is fine but as you probably know the VGC metagame moves quickly and relies on reads heavily. Protect is a staple that you'd be giving up, I understand your reasoning against it, but it's worth being considered.
    So in short:
    1. Get taunt or Roar to counter TR
    2. Consider altering Aegislash to counter TR better and
    3. Reconsider Protect on a Choiced 'Mon

    Hope this helped!
     
    Shad likes this.
  4. Shad

    Shad New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2017
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    2
    Thanks for the quick response!
    After posting it, i kept on testing the team, and tried myself Bulu instead of fini like this:
    [​IMG]
    Tapu Bulu @ Grassium Z
    Ability: Grassy Surge
    Level: 50
    EVs: 252 HP / 56 Atk / 202 SpD
    Adamant Nature
    - Horn Leech
    - Wood Hammer
    - Superpower
    - Protect
    The EVs I pressume that are mostly on bulk since Bulu doesnt need that much attack investment to deal damage. It was better than i though, Gastrodon was nto a problem anymore, but the number of answers i had to Heatran and Landorus for exmaple decreased. Also, im not convinced about him having a Z move, i found myself using btoh him and aegislash together(Aegislash is amazing and i end up bringin him to almost every matchup) so I could use some hlep here deciding that item. Also, as a fun note, I OHKO'd a camerupt with a critical Horn Leech, that was interesting, because the i ran the calcs and it means that, in grassy terrain, Wood Hammer wiht jsut that attack investment OHKO's anything without bulk that doesnt resist it.

    Also, thanks for the advice against TR teams, up until now my only way of dealing wiht them was killing the setter before it can use it. Usually Cresselia with Aegislash'z move, but that is too predictable. Also, I have a hard time against opposing Tailwind, when the ones using it are faster than Salamence(not a common case) or priority users(Whimsicott, Talonflame). I foudn no way to stop them other than match my tailwind and hope Salamence doesn't get destroyed. But concerning those matchups and Trick Room, im testing now a substitue for Zapdos, another guy wiht a bit less of bulk, but with another supp option, being Thundurus-I. I made him like this:
    [​IMG]
    Thundurus (M) @ Sitrus Berry
    Ability: Prankster
    Level: 50
    EVs: 252 HP / 236 Def / 12 SpA / 4 SpD / 4 Spe
    Calm Nature
    IVs: 0 Atk
    - Thunderbolt
    - Hidden Power [Ice]
    - Taunt
    - Protect

    Going for max bulk to stay more in teh field and be abel to be more threatening. The EV spread makes sure that he cant be 2hko by max attack Landorus-T while 2hko him back, the same with max special attack specs fini. Prankster Taunt will shutdown most TR setters, and he will still provide that electric coverage that cna threaten rain teams. My concern about him is that i dont know how to factor pinch berries into the damage calculator so i don't know if it would be better. Also, I lose fire coverage that Zapdos provided with Heat Wave, so ferrothorn could be a problem now. I'm still testing thundurus, but i woudl like to hear your thoughts on this.
    Im updating the first post with some changes, thanks for answering!
    TL: DR Thoughts in another item for Bulu than Grassium z? and Support Thundurus viable substitution for Zapdos?
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2017
  5. Austin Florence

    Austin Florence New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2017
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    2
    I think these changes are definitely taking you in the right direction. Since you're already setting Tailwind with Salamence, you should be good with making the switch to Thundrus. As for the item on Bulu, maybe try Scarf or Assault Vest? Its overall bulk is okay but its speed is lackluster. I ran a scarf bulu on a team in '17 and it worked out pretty good. If you want protect for those juicy reads though, maybe consider either a lum berry to counter burn or Kebia berry, which weakens its 4x poison weakness. Hope this helps!
     
    Shad likes this.
  6. AtTehCross

    AtTehCross Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2017
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Boise, ID, United States

    Grassium is still a good option on Bulu. Pinch berry, AV, Scarf, and even Band are all viable options. It just depends on what you think your team needs. Be sure to try them all out if you have a hard time deciding.

    You should also consider using Thunder Wave on Thundurus if you're going to be a support variant. Thundurus has been nerfed since Gen 6, so you'll want to keep that in mind. These nerfs include Paralysis only reducing speed by half instead of .25, Thunder Wave's accuracy dropped to 90, the introduction of Psychic Terrain, and Dark types being immune to Prankster boosted attacks. I think Thundurus can still work and having Grassy terrain will help it get around Psychic terrain, but you should also try out an offensive variant if you don't use Thunder Wave. Grassy Seed Thundurus could be a cool idea to try out as well.

    Hope this gives you some more ideas to test out!
     
    Shad likes this.
  7. Shad

    Shad New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2017
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    2
    Thanks for the response and ideas, I think I finally came with sets that I'm really liking, lets go over some changes.
    First, i went with a risky move and replaced double edge on Salamence to Flamethrower, as I needed some kind of fire coverage in my team. Also I changed his nature and Evs as he wont use physical attacks anymore, and this eases my matchup against scizor, ferrothorn and kartana.
    Then Excadrill and Aegislash, I tweaked their speed in the opposite way: Went for max Speed Adamant Excadrill and 0 speed investment on Modest Aegislash. The reasoning is that I found that investing on HP on excadrill only landed me really small chances of surviving threats like Heatran(which I tailored most of the new stats around the most), but overall it wasnt worth much, while max speed cna be useful outside of tailwin/sand and only being slower than jolly excadrills(if those are a thing, could be). Meanwhile, Aegislash with no speed investment is more fo a threat in trick room, if I dont manage to avoid it from setting, alongside Bulu.
    Speaking of Bulu, I went with a bulky AV set on him, and im really liking it. With enough investment in bulk, he cant be OHKO by Heatran unless its a Z-move and has a chance to survive max attack Iron Head from excadrill, while being able to OHKO them back. The onyl thing he cant survive is Poison Jab and Mence's double-edge, but you don't wnat to get Bulu with that anyway.
    And the last thing is Thundurus, with the same set but with Thunder Wave instead of Protect for more speed control. I don't like not using protect, but i don't thin Thundurus shoudl die easily, and besides he has priority in his support skills. And also, i need HP Ice to not be completely walled by Landorus-T.

    So in the end, what this team is lacking is good water/ice coverage and a better way to hit things like Heatran, but in my opinion is better to have limited ways to deal with something(like Heatran or Ferrothorn) than having no ways of doing anything(like the previous team against gastrodon or bulky water types).
    Thanks for your answers, I'll be updating the first post with the changes!
    PS:Sorry about spelling mistakes, I tried to correct them.
     
    Austin Florence and AtTehCross like this.

Share This Page