Ayyy, as some of you might know I won the unofficial Finnish nationals in VGC for the VGC 2018 format a couple of weeks ago. The reason why this was unofficial is that Finland is part of the European region, which means we qualify to World Championships through European Championship points threshold and for those countries there are no official nationals (like for Japan, Korea and Russia for example). Thought I would just share you guys with the team so you can try it out if you so wish.
Gyarados-Mega @ Gyaradosite
Ability: Mold Breaker
EVs: 84 HP / 252 Atk / 4 Def / 4 SpD / 164 Spe
- Dragon Dance
Gyarados was the Pokemon I wanted to build this whole team around. It's currently not very meta and it has around 1-2 % usage depending on the platform. I personally found Gyarados to be a very solid anti-meta pick as a Pokemon. Although it gets Intimidated, it really threatens Incineroar and Landorus-Therian leads because it has the better position on the field against those Pokemon due to type advantage. What this means is that I kinda force these two Pokemon rather stay in the back than in the front and this opens up opportunities for lots of other anti-meta picks. Also I want to mention that Mega-Evolutions with different typing are such an asset: You make your opponent in such awkward mind game situations. There was lots of times my opponent doesn't know whether to Rock Slide or Fight-move my Gyarados and this allowed me to play much more offensively while my opponent has to take the passive approach. Also why I liked Mega-Gyarados is because Mega-Metagross is broken but very commonly built against and Gyarados also serves as a great counter to a standard Mega-Metagross set.
Nihilego @ Focus Sash
Ability: Beast Boost
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
- Power Gem
- Sludge Bomb
- Grass Knot
Nihilego was my immediate second pick for this team. The main reason for Nihilego was that the most crippling weakness Mega-Gyarados has in the VGC 2018 format is Fairy-type weakness and basically every team has a Tapu or two. Nihilego has such a great matchup against every Tapu in the game, I don't think there's a better Pokemon against the Tapus. Outspeeds everything but Koko and nukes them with Sludge Bomb. Meanwhile takes very minimal damage from special Koko, which is by far the most common Koko in VGC due to Intimidate. Power Gem and Sludge Bomb are the obvious STABs, but Grass Knot was very niche pick in my opinion. In doesn't have super amazing coverage in terms of VGC metagame but it covers any possible Ground-types I might face, especially Mega-Swampert could be very threatening.
Tapu Lele @ Psychium Z
Ability: Psychic Surge
EVs: 228 HP / 4 Def / 156 SpA / 116 SpD / 4 Spe
IVs: 0 Atk
- Dazzling Gleam
My words can't explain how much I like Tapu Lele as a Pokemon. The most obvious reason Lele was the immediate threat over any possible Fight-types imaginable, albeit that Fight-type isn't currently super common. However, I did not want to take any chances in this regard and you can't really go wrong with Tapu Lele. Psychium Z + Psyshock opens up for a wonderful option to deal damage on the physical or special side of the opponent. Dazzling Gleam was to make sure Kommo-O + redirection wouldn't beat me (which is super broken, by the way). I really didn't wanna play against Trick Room in my standard mode so I had Taunt for that, although Z-Crystals could become problems. But that I shall deal with other Pokemon.
Oh and the EVs and Calm Nature? Made to live Sludge Bomb from Mega-Gengar.
Zapdos @ Psychic Seed
EVs: 252 HP / 68 Def / 12 SpA / 156 SpD / 20 Spe
IVs: 0 Atk
- Hidden Power [Ice]
I knew already at this point I'm going to be fairly weak to Ground, so I needed something that flies. Lele + Zapdos is one of the most common tandems in VGC and you can't really go wrong with them so I didn't really give it a second thought. Psychic Seed is amazing item for Zapdos because very rarely do you need to even switch Zapdos out. Also because my team is kind of a bulky offensive one, I really could need Tailwind so there's that. Hidden Power Ice is to deal with Landorus-Therian, which I am more weak to that I want to be at the moment and it is the #1 most used Pokemon after all. (And pseudo BoltBeam coverage)
Aegislash @ Leftovers
Ability: Stance Change
EVs: 252 HP / 180 Def / 76 SpD
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Shadow Ball
- King's Shield
I can't help it, I love Aegislash. I've been using it all year long. This was way more defensive than my previous ones and didn't carry Wide Guard. To be perfectly fair, I had been trolling my opponents previously so much with Wide Guard shenanigans and this time I wanted to people to prepare for it in team preview. Aegislash mainly was here to deal with Mega-Metagross and Tapu Lele, you can honestly never have enough counters for them. This set was made for longevity and actually majority of the damage was done with Toxic. Toxic has been a bit sub-par move in VGC due to prevalence of Tapu Fini and Misty Terrain but with Lele and me using it 90% of the games, getting Toxics up is fairly easy and can be a win condition in lots and lots of games. Got called a staller lots of times with this during the day but it is what it is. :)
Incineroar @ Firium Z
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 Spe
- Fake Out
- Knock Off
- Flare Blitz
- Low Kick
Incineroar was my last pick for this team and well, Incineroar is the kind of a team you can slap into every team. The main reason I brought this instead of Amoonguss (which was my pick in my first editions of this team) was that I noticed being very weak to Kartana with this team. I've been able to outplay Kartanas earlier but when I practiced against a player who has the points equilevant to 5 World's Invites and he was able to beat me mainly with Kartana, I acknowledged I needed to do something. Firium Z is to surprise troll Detecting Kartanas because it goes through Protect. Flare Blitz w/ Firium Z hits for enormous damage in general and no recoil is nice too. Also I realized I had no Fake Out by then (which I wanted to avoid thanks to Psychic Terrain) but I realized this would help me with Gyarados + Fake Out lead setups and get my Gyarados set up for turn 2.
Correction* Incineroar had Knock Off, not Darkest Lariat obviously. Knock Off was amazingly good trolling Trick Room teams and is mainly there for Snorlax + Cresselia combo.
Ah well, here it is. Hope you have fun trying it in Showdown or whatever.
Oh yeah and special shoutout for Parke for the comps. Even though he's a uguu.