The Delta Articles
Written By TheQuantumJumper, Legyro and Phlygone
Another announcement is that two new tourneys have opened up! Feel free to register ASAP!
Monotype: March 5th @4pm PST/6pm CST
- Registration Deadline: March 2nd @9:59pm PST/11:59pm CST
- Pokemon Submission Deadline: March 3rd @9:59pm PST/11:59pm CST
- Registration Deadline: March 8th @9:59pm PST/11:59pm CST
- Pokemon Submission Deadline: March 9th @9:59pm PST/11:59pm CST
Otherwise, that's all for me, let's get started!
Actually Winning the GamE
Yo, champ in the making! For the final article of the first volume of The Delta Articles! I thought it would be fitting to talk about how you go about finalizing your victory. Many trainers find themselves unable to take advantage of weaknesses they’ve created and close out their games, which can often lead to their opponent stealing victory from the jaws of defeat. As such, it’s absolutely critical that trainers learn about executing their win condition.
It should be noted that while you should have some kind of win condition in mind when making your team, they aren’t necessarily the one you’re going to try to win with in a given match. When you first get matched up against an opponent, you need to see what they have in relation to your team. If you notice one of your Pokémon is particularly strong against their team, then you’ll want to try and clear any Pokémon your opponent has that do manage to beat it. If your Mega-Diance is able to take on their entire team except for Scizor, you’d want to take it out as soon as you can. Even if your win condition gets knocked out before it can do its job, the game isn’t over. Contemplate secondary or tertiary win conditions as fall-back plans. Hopefully if your primary condition fails, it at least cost your opponent some of their power and might leave a hole in their team that another win condition can abuse.
After you get a feel for picking your win condition and removing obstacles for it, you should start trying to figure out what your opponent is going to try and win with. What on their team isn’t answered as well by your team? If you were in their position, what would you try to win with? After you identify how they’ll go about trying to win, throw a wrench in their plans. As you continue to mess with their plans, you’ll find yourself looking at ways to counter their answers to you, and their answers to your answers to them. This is where a lot of the strategy of Pokémon is housed in the tactics of eliminating threats to your threats.
Sometimes winning requires some unorthodox strategies. Obviously opponents are going to try to preserve their answers to your win condition if they know what it is, so you need to find creative ways to lure them out. The simplest way to do this is to Double Switch. A Double Switch is the act of or switching into your win condition while your opponent switches out to deal with your previous threat, or visa versa. An example of this would be to switch out your Altaria for Magnezone predicting an incoming Ferrothorn. Now they’re faced with the choice of losing momentum and taking free damage or potentially losing one of their answers to your win condition. In the case of the Ferrothorn, it 100% dies, just because you employed this common Double Switch.
Alternatively, it may be a good idea to have a Pokémon that typically loses to the counter in addition to your win condition so you can bring it onto the field. If you are running a set with specific coverage for it, this can surprise your opponent and take down their answer. This is what is known as a lure. Lures are often tricky to predict, as while there are some common ones that are well known, often times it’ll be something unique to this trainer. These unique lures often have to sacrifice something to do this - maybe a bit of power against other targets to snag some bulk to beat this one Pokémon, or maybe they lose coverage moves for Pokémon that it’s typically supposed to beat in order to run that unexpected move. For example, you can run Natural Gift on your Talonflame to have a one use 100 power Grass or Ground move. You would run this particular lure to deal with potential Heatrans or Quagsires that prevent your win condition from occurring. Always use a sub-optimal set to your advantage because your opponent will not be in the know, and they we always assume the most optimal.
Knowing how you want to try to win the game, as it turns out, is very critical to actually doing so. Remember to your best option for beating most of your opponent’s team, and then try to beat out the answers to it. You might have to get creative with luring your opponents out of hiding, but that’s part of becoming a powerful trainer. A solid win condition and strategy to implement it will take you a long way in increasing your chances of winning your battles, so don’t forget to do so!
Yo, champ in the making, it’s been a fun first volume of The Delta Articles. I hope you guys learned a thing or two about how to play this game. If you have any suggestions for what you’d like to see in future articles, be sure to head over to the forums and let us know!
National Pokédex Number: #493
Sp. Atk: 120
Sp. Def: 120
Changes the type of the Pokémon with this Ability depending on the Plate attached. The item-removing effects of Thief, Covet, Trick, Switcheroo, and Knock Off will not work on a Pokémon, specifically holding a Plate, with Multitype. However, these move will still work for non-Plate items.
When a Pokémon Transforms into Arceus, it becomes Arceus's Normal form. If it is holding a Plate, it will Transform first into Arceus's current form and will then change type and appearance to the type corresponding to that Plate.
A Pokémon with Multitype cannot be affected by type changing moves, such as Soak. A Pokémon with Multitype is unaffected by Entrainment and Simple Beam. Multitype cannot turn into Mummy.
Arceus is an extremely versatile Pokémon that can fight right in on almost any UBERS team. Thanks to its ability, Multitype, it can have any single type in the game, allowing it to fit into hard-to-fill niches on many teams. Not only that, but it also gets some really nice bulk from its stats, making it relatively difficult to OHKO, even for huge threats like Xerneas, Mega Salamence, and Mega-Mewtwo (both X and Y); albeit, not impossible.
As you ladder on the UBERS ladder, you will likely see two common types of Arceus: the most common is Normal Arceus, the second most common being Arceus-Steel. This is due to the fact that Arceus-Steel does really well against Geomancy Xerneas, which dominates the tier. The only moves that particular Xerneas has to hit Arceus-Steel is Focus Blast and Fire Blast, both of which are well known to miss when it counts. Apart from those two Arceus, if I had to make a choice, I would say that the third most likely Arceus to encounter is a tie between Arceus-Fairy and Arceus-Ghost. Sadly for Arceus-Fairy, it gets far outclassed by Xerneas, so it is not as threatening, per se. Still, people enjoy running it anyway, and it's not like I’m complaining. Arceus-Ghost on the other hand, has a decent typing and commonly deals with big threats (aka Mega Mewtwo), so albeit less common, is move viable. Now, this does not mean that all other Arceus are worthless, it’s just that these four are the easiest to find on the ladder (in my opinion).
Alright! It’s movesets time:
These sets are the norm, what you will normally see throughout your laddering career on Pokémon Showdown, as well as in-game PvP. They work really well with most standard laddering teams and are what make this Pokémon so viable in its tier.
Arceus @ Silk Scarf/Life Orb
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
- Swords Dance
- Extreme Speed
- Shadow Claw
Definitely the most popular set to run on Arceus. With its nice attack stat, solid bulk to take a few hits, and a STAB +2 priority move, the E-Killer set is what makes Arceus one of the biggest threats of the UBERs tier. We run Jolly nature so that we don’t get outsped by other max speed Arceus’s. Swords Dance is the main move of this set, which gives us a 240 Atk stat after a single boost. Following that, we have our main STAB move, Extreme Speed. E-Speed is really nice since it outspeeds most other viable priority moves in the UBERs tier, meaning that you can easily sweep an entire team without the opponent being able to get a hit in otherwise. However, we understand that Normal-type moves can’t kill everything. We run Shadow Claw to hit Ghost-types like Giratina and Mega Gengar, who don’t get affected by E-Speed. In our last move spot, we usually run Earthquake, as it OHKOs Mega Gengar without a boost; but it also hits Steel-types, like Dialga and Arceus-Steel, who usually wall both of our other two moves (Shadow Claw isn’t a super powerful move, after all). However, if you already have a teammate that can cover those weaknesses, then you might want to consider using Recover instead. That way, you can keep Arceus healthy and out of revenge kill range. If you find yourself afraid of getting burned or paralyzed (or poisoned), Refresh can be another option to keep Arceus from getting crippled by status effects.
Arceus-Ghost @ Spooky Plate
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Def / 252 Spe
The defensive variant of Arceus. This set focuses on getting rid of hazards and crippling physical attackers, while also walling special attackers that think they can get a free meal ticket from your Arceus. We run Judgement, Arceus’ signature move, for nice STAB damage, and it will hit decently hard, since it's a 100 power move. Of course, what defensive set works well without a recovery move, am I right? Now, you can choose whatever Plate you want Arceus to hold, fit it into your team however you please. I happen to like Arceus-Ghost, since it only has two typing weaknesses, and is actually a hard stop to E-Killer (see above). It easily takes a +2 Shadow Claw and then proceeds to burn E-Killer and make it useless. Keep in mind that you can run moves like Roar if you don’t want to be set-up fodder.
Calm Mind Sweep
Arceus-Water @ Splash Plate
EVs: 248 HP / 8 SpA / 252 Spe
- Calm Mind
Our third standard set focuses around the idea of setting up Calm Minds, then proceeding to sweep the opponent’s team with little to no survivors. Our only attacking move is Judgement, so whatever plate we have will determine our sweeping potential. This set can work with any Plate, but its effectiveness will depend on what types of Pokémon your opponent has. We have Wil-O-Wisp to cripple physical attackers, as well as deal damage to Pokémon that we may not be able to touch with Judgement. Recover allows us to not be revenge-killed easily. This set is overall very well-rounded, and can be used on practically any team with little to no major repercussions.
These sets are not meant to be serious, however, they can still work with the right play style and teammates. I would suggest not using these to raise your ELO, but rather just to mess around and have fun with. Enjoy!
Songs of Cancer
Arceus @ Leftovers
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Atk / 252 Spe
- Perish Song
- Thunder Wave
- Extreme Speed
This set is pure cancer. Give the opponent a nasty T-Wave and make them cry as they get paralyzed. Use Perish Song to force set-up sweepers to switch-out or get KOed. Of course, you can run Toxic instead if you wish. Protect helps to stall out the Perish Song turns. Finally, the fourth moveslot is up to you.
Arceus @ Light Clay
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Spe
- Light Screen
- Extreme Speed
A very standard double screens moveset. We also get Recover, which means that we can PP stall, or keep ourselves from getting low so we can keep screening. Do keep in mind that being Normal type baits in a possible Brick Break, which will shatter your screens. This set cannot touch Giratina, which can Defog and get rid of your screens.
Arceus @ Choice Band
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
- Extreme Speed
- Brick Break
- Poison Jab
It that time if the night folks. “Why do we have to have a Choiced set Legyro?” Because I said so. Deal with it. Brick Break gets rid of annoying screens, which is why I put it on this set. Earthquake kills Mega Gengar on sight and hits Groudon very hard. Poison Jab hits things like Xerneas for lots of damage.
It’s Basically No Guard
Arceus @ Life Orb/Fist Plate
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
- Judgment/Focus Blast
A fun little set, inspired by my good friend ShadowTagPorygon, that takes advantage of the move Gravity to land very powerful hits that do not miss and tend to have nasty side effects in the process. Thunder and Blizzard allow for some nice neutral coverage, and have high chances of inducing secondary status effects, which is always nice to have. Judgement is there for nice STAB damage, and if you run Fist Plate, then you get nice super effective hits on Steel-types and E-Killer. You can run Focus Blast instead if you’d like.
Playing Against an Arceus:
Like I mentioned earlier, Arceus is a very versatile Pokémon with the ability to have any single typing in the game. This makes it very difficult to come up with a specific Pokémon or strategy that can deal with it effectively. So, I will attempt to do my best in giving you ways to deal with this monstrosity. For the most part, Groudon (especially Primal Groudon) does a decent job of walling Arceus. With high defense stats, it can easily take an Extreme Speed or Judgement and return with a Lava Plume burn or Roar. Do be careful for Earthquakes and Judgement-Ground, as those are not as easy to take for Groudon. If the Arceus is running a Calm Mind set, then Chansey will be a pretty safe switch-in (yes, Chansey is viable in UBERs). When in doubt, since the most threatening Arceus is one that can boost, the best way to deal with that is with Taunt or a Phasing move (Roar, Dragon Tail, etc.). Ironically enough, another great way to combat Arceus is with another Arceus. After all, Arceus-Fairy cannot do that much against Arceus-Fire or Arceus-Poison. Take that into account if you plan on using an Arceus of your own.
Now, let’s look at it from a different angle. Let’s say you got a little careless, and Arceus has managed to set up a Swords Dance; now it is bearing down on your team, threatening to sweep you into next year with Extreme Speed. How do you come out alive without sacking half your team in the process? Here are a couple different ways to combat this: Ferrothorn (Ferro is also viable in UBERs as well) is a decent Pokémon to choose from, as it deals damage to Arceus every time it makes contact. This can severely limit Arceus’ longevity and help you stay in the battle. Just be aware of the potential Recover that Arceus can run, making that strategy relatively useless. Another way to save your hide is if you happen to have a Mega Gengar on your team. As you very well know, due to M-Gengar’s Typing, Extreme Speed cannot touch it, and M-Gengar outspeeds Arceus, so M-Gengar will always get to go first, which is great for us. A well placed Focus Blast (sadly we have to rely on it) can do anywhere from 70-85% of Arceus’ HP. While we can’t OHKO it at full, we do weaken it to the point where we can hopefully revenge kill or let it die to Life Orb recoil. However, that is not all we can do. M-Gengar gets Destiny Bond, which allows us to KO anything that KOs us on the same turn. Since we are faster, we can take advantage of the surprise factor and outright kill that Arceus on the spot. Do keep in mind that both a Shadow Claw and Earthquake from a +2 Arceus will OHKO M-Gengar with ease (Earthquake OHKOs without any boosts as well); try and use that knowledge to your advantage if put in a similar situation. Anyway, those are just a couple of different ways to get yourself out of a dire situation with Arceus. Try to find other ways to do so, don’t just take my word for it.
That’s all for this week everyone. I hope you guys have enjoyed everything I have written about thus far in the Pokémon Spotlight. Like I have mentioned many times in the past, it takes a lot of work, research, and time to come up with all of these sets and strategies. Make sure you check out all the other articles as well, not just my heavenly article; we wouldn’t want to look bias, now would we? Alas, thank you for all your support this volume guys. See you next time, and good luck on your laddering!
NFE DREAM TEAM
Battle Arcade Stats:
# of Battle Arcade Winners: 3
Usernames of the Winners: Coffeegrigis, Nautevnclosebb, ShadowTagPorygon
Featured Battle Arcade Winner:
Ladder Opponent: chundermunch
- Adherence to rules: Nautevenclosebb did a fantastic job of using only the Pokémon that were allowed from the various egg groups. Here was his team:
Treecko @ Focus Sash
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpA / 252 Spe
- Quick Attack
- Leech Seed
Charmeleon @ Eviolite
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 SpD
- Swords Dance
- Flare Blitz
Vibrava @ Eviolite
EVs: 248 HP / 8 Atk / 252 Def
- Sand Tomb
Drapion @ Leftovers
Ability: Battle Armor
EVs: 248 HP / 252 Atk / 8 SpD
- Swords Dance
- Knock Off
- Poison Jab
Gyarados @ Leftovers
EVs: 192 Atk / 92 Def / 224 Spe
- Dragon Dance
- Thunder Wave
Dragonite @ Lum Berry
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
- Dragon Dance
- Extreme Speed
- Dragon Claw
- Number of submissions: 1
- The quality of the users team: I have to say, other than solid Doubles Ubers team from the early issues, this is the most exciting team in terms of how it was built and how Nautevn used the pre-evolutions and FEAR tactics as opposed to using standard fully evolved Pokémon. Nautevn chose not to use a mega and used a FEAR treecko as well as a Swords Dance Charmeleon to destroy his opposition
- The quality of the opponent's team: The opponent’s team is decently built but could be a lot better built in terms of type weaknesses since half the team is weak to Water and Rock. Reliable switches can’t even be made into Sceptile due to Sceptile’s frailty.
- The strength of play from both players: Nautevnclosebb played very well in using his pre-evolved Pokémon to his advantage. FEAR Treecko as well as the final leech seed from Treecko allowed Vibrava to handle Excadrill very well. The opponent played well but was probably quite thrown off by such power plays. Great team building man!
So if you have ever frequented my stream, you might have seen the existence and success of a strange team, a team so powerful it is called the Dream Team. The NFE (Not Fully Evolved) Dream Team, that is. You might be wondering how such a team could ever succeed in any fashion, but generally if your opponent has no answers for your gimmicks (Ghost-Types, Poison-Types, Steel Types and access to Knock-Off), they can get demolished by your stall. I know this Battle Arcade is tough, but if you need ideas to get those sweet PCS points, you can watch the videos below:
- Specific Rules: You have to follow the following Battle Arcade Specific Rules explicitly. Any violation will not merit a feature.
- Any mon that is Fully Evolved or does not have an Evolution or Pre-Evolution is banned: http://bulbapedia.bulbagarden.net/wiki/List_of_fully_evolved_Pok%C3%A9mon_by_base_stats
- You have to play a ranked game on the OU ladder.
- You have to win!
- General Rules: You have to play on the ladder in the selected tier. You do not have to be on your main account, I just request that the person you are playing against is a total stranger.
- Submissions Rules: There is a maximum of 3 submissions per person.
Some suggested Pokémon include: Chansey, Porygon2, Dusclops, Ferroseed, Fletchinder, Frogadier, Golbat, Gligar, Syther, Shelgon, Dieno, Aron, Ratatata, Pineco, Prinplup, Wartortle, Dragonair, Misdreavus, etc.
Remember, abide by these rules closely. Remember the rubric also applies this week:
- Adherence to rules: How closely they followed the Battle Arcade rules.
- The quality of the users team: How well constructed your team is.
- REMEMBER: This time we are requesting that you submit your team with your replays! Therefore more weight will be placed on your team’s synergy with weather and each other
- The quality of the opponent's team: How well constructed their team is.
- The strength of play from both players: How well both players played. You get rewarded by going against good opponents who you outplayed.
For submissions, in the past I would have you post that on the Forum. I think that for this last issue, we will post them in the comment section under the article. If that works well, we will continue to do that for Volume 2! Enjoy your day!
- No Insurance Required: Blissey hold the record for the highest HP stat in the game, with 255 base HP.
- Don’t Touch Me: Conversely, Shedinja has the lowest HP at 1. A passing breeze can faint it.
- Hit it Really Hard: Mega-Mewtwo X claims highest attack stat at 190, with Mega-Heracross coming in second at 185. Outside of Ubers/Megas, Rampardos is the leader.
- Wet Noodle: Chansey claims the spot for lowest attack, at a staggering 5.
- Easily Bruised: Chansey also clocks in the worst defense of the game, also at 5.
- Rock Solid: Shuckle’s solid 230 defense solidifies its victory here.
- I’m Special: At 194, Mega-Mewtwo Y has the strongest special attack stat. Outside of Ubers, Mega-Alakazam sits at 175 and the the non-uber non-mega winner is Hoopa-Unbound.
- What Did You Expect: Shuckle crawls into the lowest special attack slot with 10.
- Compensating: Shuckle might not be a powerful special attacker, but at 230 it has the highest special defense. (Honorable mention to Regice, runner up at 200).
- How Embarrassing: The frailest special defense belongs to Deoxys-Attack, despite residing in Ubers.
- Gotta Go Fast: Deoxys-Speed is the highly surprising victory of the speed sprint at 180, with Ninjask hot on its heels with 160.
- No Not Him: The slowest Pokémon are tied in dead last: Shuckle and Munchlax. Surprisingly, Slowpoke doesn’t break the bottom 10.
- Fatty: Primal Groudon is the heaviest Pokémon, weighing in at 2204.4 lbs (999.7 kg). Outside of legendaries, Mega-Metagross is the beefiest, and without either legendary or mega status is Metagross.
- Deceptive: Wailord is the largest Pokémon by height, 47’07” (14.5 m), but no where near the heaviest. In fact, it is less dense than air!
- Light Weights: There is a three way tie for the lightest Pokémon: Gastly, Haunter, and Flabebe all barely register on scales at 0.2 lbs (0.1 kg).
- Don’t Step on Me: Joltik and Flabebe are incredibly tiny, at 4 inches (0.1 m) in height.
Phlygone Championship Series:
Way Too early Power Rankings
With the way it stands, we have JinAxel (40 PCS) sitting at the top with 2 wins of the Spring Split. Going down the list, we have NuclearTogekiss (20 PCS), XYZard (15PCS), TheQuantumJumper (13 PCS), and PromiscuosFrog(12 PCS). These guys have been maintaining very good placements in the first 2 tournaments of Spring Split. Each of these players has brought something interesting to the table with their own styles and teambuilds. Individually, they play fairly differently with their own takes on the competitions. So what is this? Pretty clear info? But here’s the fun. Here are MY projections for the Spring Split’s top 13 players. To be clear, I also consulted with Phlygone and other players while making this article.
From 1st to 13th:
1. JinAxel (40 PCS)
Has shown to me first-hand just how good he really is. He was the hardest opponent I faced during the OU Tournament in February and he demonstrates very good control with his Pokemon. Not only that, he has 3 Tournament Wins total between this and last year. I’m confident he’ll be keeping a nice spot in the top 3 all year long.
2. XYZard (15 PCS)
Before I entered the Phlygone community officially, I had the opportunity to watch a match with XYZard and I was in love with his style of balanced bulk. It may not seem the most interesting at first, but having played very bulky teams in the past, this was a nice nostalgia trip for me. I would love to see him keep gunning for the top and perhaps run into me along the way. Plus, he is the King of Second Place, so it’s only fitting.
3. ProFrog (12 PCS)
Another opponent I have had the pleasure of challenging during the OU Tournament in February. He played VERY well during our match, making only one mistake that I could see. Aside from that, ProFrog has won 2 tournaments last year and had a great chance of making finals had he gotten some more love from RNGesus in his match vs Jin. He has the absolute potential to make this a great season for himself.
4. NuclearTogekiss (20 PCS)
A friend of mine who has proven that he is a talented player. I have had the opportunity to watch a match of his during the last match of last Winter’s final tournament. His play demonstrates just how much experience he really has (a LOT), as he has made TopCut in every single tourney he has ever played in, sans one. He can definitely make it far if he keeps up with the other players up there. I believe he could potentially take out Jin (yes, that’s a challenge). At the moment, he’s second in the standings, Despite his incredible experience and second in standings keeping him up there in the “Big Four”, he seems to stick to his guns with a bit of a different style of team that hasn’t won anything lately when it counted.
5. TheQuantumJumper (13 PCS)
Someone who I personally haven’t had any experience playing against or spectated. From what I hear, he is good. He’s been running a lot of stall as of late and showed a lot of improvement from last year and he seems to be getting into his own groove playing in his style. I’d love to challenge him in the near future, but for now, I’ll leave my opinion like those of the others; I firmly believe Quantum can move up and even take the top spot.
The other 8 spots are mostly players that are a little more ambiguous at this point, but from my analysis and that of others, I believe it rounds out like this.
6. Nautevnclosebb (7 PCS)
7. Mitten (11 PCS)
8. Its Jamrock (4 PCS)
9. Coffeegrigis (6 PCS)
10. Clam10000 (5 PCS but it should be infinite)
11. ShadowTagPorygon (5 PCS)
12. Supermew9001(5 PCS)
13. Ryan61839 (5 PCS)
Realistically, these predictions are based off of limited information and experience, but it is what I’ve put together as my own thoughts on the Spring Split. I’m sure you guys have your own thoughts, so feel free to comment who you might think would take #1 or Top 5 or wherever. With the season still young, and still many other potential players out there, who knows, some new guy could take the top spot out of nowhere! Best of luck everyone out there, if you made it this far into the Delta Articles, thanks for reading and I will probably see you on the Ladder if I have time off from college!