Friday, July 6, 2012

Smogon Tier Updates and Black and White 2 Release June 2012: Ubers and OU

As per every 3 month period, Smogon's tiers have been updated accordingly with the cumulative usage stats of the past three months. This means that a few things have moved either up or down depending on how many people are using them in their respective tier.

In addition, with the release of Black and White 2 in Japan (and therefore the release of these Pokemon into the competitive metagame overall), several new Forms, Moves and Abilities have been implemented, providing for a completely new battling experience!

Below are minor analyses for each tier, complete with what's new and what's expected to come in the next three months! I hope you will enjoy...

*Because a lot has changed with these releases, and there is a lot to speculate about, I will be releasing these posts in a series throughout the evening.*

*All tier listings will be updated according to this new data*



Nothing was banned to Ubers this month, meaning that the only two additions to the list were the newly released Kyurem Black and Kyurem White forms. This was to be expected, as with their Base Stat Totals amounting to a smashing 700, as well as devastating offensive and defensive stats backed by a good offensive typing, absolutely nothing in OU would be safe from their destruction. These two will likely play out in Ubers as slightly improved versions of Zekrom and Reshiram respectively, and their 170 attacking stats will surely be enough to power through some of the most dedicated walls in the legendary tier.


A lot has been added to OU this time around, meaning that a huge tier shift can be expected in the coming months. First, Keldeo was added to the tier in addition to the new Therian forms of Thundurus, Landorus and Tornadus. All four of these threats will make huge impacts on the metagame for each their own reasons, providing for a significant boost to offensive teams (especially Rain).

These Two to OU, as Predicted 

Four more Pokemon were also added to Overused, these being bumped up from either the UU or BL listings. The first of these include Mew and Deoxys-D, two extremely versatile Pokemon in OU and UU before who are now officially part of the tier. As Psychic types, they score a notable resistance to Fighting type attacks, meaning that most hard-hitters like Infernape, the new Keldeo, and especially Terrakion might have a hard time plowing through these two. Mew also has the potential to learn every single TM, HM and Tutor move in the entire game, which with its greatly balanced base stats across the board means that it will be vastly capable of fitting onto virtually any team imaginable, perfect for filling a variety of roles.

Hail, the New Weather Watchers in OU!

The last two new OUs are Pokemon that are no strangers to this standard scene. In 4th generation, Hippowdon and Abomasnow made a huge impact for their defensive and offensive capabilities, respectively, but it was their automatic weather-casting abilities that ground them in place as two effective supporters. Now, after having both spent some time in UU with offensive beasts like Stoutland and Kyurem, they will try their hand at the new OU metagame, just in time for the release of some new abusers.

How will their stay go? It's safe to say that Deoxys-D and Mew have found new homes in OU, and they won't be leaving anytime in the near (or even distant) future. But Hippowdon and Abomasnow, on the other hand, are different. Again, as these two bring about auto-weather, they are sure to shine as great team supporters, yet with Tyranitar already dominating the tier and Hail never amounting to any game-changing impact, their usability seems to be much more limited than other weather-veterans such as Ninetails and Politoed.

What's more, Sand Stream and Snow Warning have been OFFICIALLY BANNED from UnderUsed and below, meaning that if these two mons were to drop to UU in the next 3 month update, they would not be able to abuse automatic Sand or Hail. These problems are only further relegated by the fact that neither of these two got anything particularly good from either the Dream World or the Move Tutors, so without their main abilities, they're nothing spectacular in Standard.

But I guess we should look at what they can do for teams as a whole, rather than what they themselves are capable of. With Kyurem getting buffs like Roost from the Move Tutors in BW2, we should expect to see a rise in that usage. Also, Mamoswine is as prominent as ever for its ability to revenge kill almost all Dragons and hit just about everything hard in general. Sand also got a big buff with Landorus's new form, as well as Gliscor gaining access to Stealth Rock and Roost with Poison Heal (the horror!). Even though Tyranitar is and always will be the most effective sand summoner in the game, having dual sanders on one team is never a bad idea.

The Rest of the Tier, and the Anticipation of the Forthcoming Storm 


Nothing else really noteworthy happened in the last three months of usage for OU. Scizor, Dragonite and Rotom-W remain the Three Kings of the tier, which is by no means a surprise. However, this is not a relevant month for what was added and lost from the tier. Instead, the real deal-maker for all eager battlers remains the release of Black and White 2, which means essentially the release of an entirely rewritten metagame. I've talked extensively about what the new Therian forms might be capable of, and I think it's safe to say that those three and Keldeo will alone reshape the metagame, forcing the rise and fall of many different Pokemon in order to keep them in check. Jellicent is expected to be the prime Keldeo-stopper, while Mamoswine is great for taking out the other three.

On a different note, some veteran OUs just got more fearsome. Ferrothorn now has the capability to run Stealth Rock, Spikes and Leech Seed all on the same set, meaning his utility just skyrocketed. Kyurem and Volcarona also both got Roost from the Move Tutors, meaning that their Stealth Rock weakness now takes a back seat to their offensive dominance.

Some other neat, noteworthy additions include Terrakion acquiring Stealth Rock, increasing its usability as an extremely threatening wall-breaker that can now support its team.

Breloom now has access to Technician as an ability, meaning that with Swords Dance, Spore, and Mach Punch's better coverage than Bullet Punch, it is now optimized as a better (at least offensively) version of Scizor. That is terrifying considering how amazing Scizor already is.

Reuniclus also now has Regenerator, while Conkeldurr gains the three elemental Punches (Ice, Fire, Thunder...). Neither of these are huge additions, as Reuniclus could probably make better use of Magic Guard, and Conkeldurr already has all the coverage it needs with Payback and Stone Edge, but their novelty and ability to outdo most of these two Pokemon's most common counters make them worthy of a mention.

And lastly, but not conclusively, Haxorus now gets Superpower and Aqua Tail, while Tornadus picks up Heat Wave. This is great news, as both of these boasted supreme power with just their STAB moves alone. Now with these particular moves for coverage, you can expect to see their usage go up a bit (though possibly not TOO much). 

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