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Competitive Guide: Dunsereph
#11
Arise, arise, long dormant thread, and roam the top spot of the Competitive Section once again....

*Uses Max Revive on Thread*

......aaaand there we go! Back in business, baby!

Okay, with the theatric out of the way, let make an announcement absolutely no one was expecting: I have pretty much revamped my entire Dunseraph Guide, using the knowledge and self reflections on it I've gained over the years to not only give it a much needed update, but improve and build upon it too! Now, I recall saying I wouldn't do this sort of thing, but......well, its my very first guide of one of my favorite Pokemon in Uranium, and a lot of things have changed for it (to me, at least), so I think that justifies another version of it. Tell me what you think of it, mates!
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#12
Two major things I'd like to note concerning the usage of alternative paralysis methods:

- T-Wave does have a niche over Glare, actually.  Unlike Glare, T-Wave has 100 accuracy.  Glare might not be wildly inaccurate (like Stone Edge or Focus Blast), but it can still miss.  If you aren't worried about paralyzing pokemon immune to Electric, it's superior to Glare.  Of course, given that Archilles, Escartress, and Laissure are all very notable Ground types with a lot of offensive presence...

- Skyfall, Dragon Breath, and Body Slam all have one advantage over the non-attacking moves that inflict Paralysis: they...well...attack.  Dealing additional chip damage while still inflicting Paralysis 60% of the time can be a godsend, and you can't lose out on inflicting Paralysis because you got Taunted.  It does tend to work better on faster Serene Grace users like Jirachi, but it is still a notable benefit, imo.
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#13
(10-02-2018, 08:23 AM)Dragonstrike Wrote: Two major things I'd like to note concerning the usage of alternative paralysis methods:

- T-Wave does have a niche over Glare, actually.  Unlike Glare, T-Wave has 100 accuracy.  Glare might not be wildly inaccurate (like Stone Edge or Focus Blast), but it can still miss.  If you aren't worried about paralyzing pokemon immune to Electric, it's superior to Glare.  Of course, given that Archilles, Escartress, and Laissure are all very notable Ground types with a lot of offensive presence...

- Skyfall, Dragon Breath, and Body Slam all have one advantage over the non-attacking moves that inflict Paralysis: they...well...attack.  Dealing additional chip damage while still inflicting Paralysis 60% of the time can be a godsend, and you can't lose out on inflicting Paralysis because you got Taunted.  It does tend to work better on faster Serene Grace users like Jirachi, but it is still a notable benefit, imo.

I totally agree. Besides, Dunseraph its a pretty bulk pokemon, so it can resist a good amount of damage. With that Serene Grace, it can cause good damage and cause status at the same time. Its a awesome combination.
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#14
(10-02-2018, 08:23 AM)Dragonstrike Wrote:

Thanks for the input on the guide, mate! Have any other suggestions or corrections, now that you've more time to think?

Concerning T-Wave and Paralyze Attacks...

- You're right about T-Wave's superior Accuracy being a nice trait, but as you pointed out there are plenty of Ground types that would love to switch into it and get a free turn to set up if Dunseraph isn't packing the appropriete boosting move. Drilagans, Shell Smash/Chlorophyll Cocancer, and Tertlard are other notable threats that would despise Paralysis since Speed is a major component on how they function, and it would rightly screw over any Evolite Gligar/Gliscor that switches in on it. On sets with Coil, Glare would effectively have perfect accuracy after a single boost, while more Supporting sets could run Wide Lens to practically give it/its other low accuracy Attacks (Like Rock Slide/Air Slash/Charge Beam) perfect accuracy. Using T-Wave therefore would only be preferable on Specail Sweepers, and only if you are okay sacrificing convenience for guaranteed hits.

- Three main problems with all the Paralysis Attacks is that A) They are resisted or outright nulled by common types, B) Dunseraph doesn't exactly have the most robust Offensive stats to use them well sans a boost, and C) If its not running Glare for speed control, its either relaying on Tailwind/Agility (Someday, I hope....) or Team Support to get the lead. As you said, though, they at least give the angelic dragon a chance to get off Paralysis after a Taunt, and prevents Magic Bounce/Magic Coat users from reflecting its Glares right back at it. If the meta game starts having MB/MP and Taunters becoming prolific, then taking a risk with Paralysis Attacks is more worthwhile, but otherwise I would still recommend guaranteed Paralysis Moves like Glare/T-Wave.
Like the wind, I come and go as I please... but I am always there to provide a comforting breeze.

Member of Team PUNishment. Pun-pare for Struggle, make it Double Team!

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#15
I'm considering your analysis on Dunseraph a finished work and not one in progress so allow me to react on any little detail I feel like reacting on. While reading I didn't agree with everything you wrote there, I'll explain why.



General observations
- Spelling and grammar. That bothered me a bit.

- Too many slashed options in your sets don't really help prove Dunseraph's versatility. Versatility comes from the number of options it can use effectively, not from the sheer quantity of moves boosted by Serene Grace. Additionally, I feel like some of your sets lacked purpose and were just put there for no reason. I'll explain my point further when I get to each set individually.

- Roost and Glare are compulsory moves on any Dunseraph set, I genuinely don't understand why you would forgo one or the other given their immediate and immense utility. A case could be made for Glare if one does not want to make paraflinching the main focus of their set.

- Tailwind. Is. Not. Viable. In. Single. Battles. Tailwind lasts 4 turns, including the one it was used. T1, Dunseraph uses Tailwind. T2, you switch to one of your sweepers. T3 your opponent switches into a counter while you attack for little damage. T4 you attack again or switch out. Here's how to waste Tailwind turns.

[1] No. Just no. Dunseraph has a terrible matchup against every weather inducer

and a lot of climate sweepers

- [2]Naturally pairs well with Sand teams? How?
- [3]Slow isn't a problem as even with 0 EV in Speed, once the opponent is paralyzed, Dunseraph can outspeed most relevant things (M-Inflagetah for the unboosted meta, Scarf Alpico and x2 Kiricorn). If you're worried about not being fast enough without paralysis, 176EVs with a Timid nature outspeed Timid 252 Escartress and Jolly 252 Cocancer before they have a chance to Shell Smash, and with that, classic Adamant 28 Speed Beliaddon.


Set #1
If I understand your intention correctly here, you wanted this Dunseraph to attack while letting its natural bulk do the tanking, right?
- [4]Glare. Period.
- [5]Roost. Period.
- [6]Tailwind is no good. Roost is already in the moveset. I feel like Calm Mind gives the opponent too many opportunities to find a solution to this Dunseraph; it makes it too passive while it would rather get its boosts up quickly then proceed on hitting. Nasty Plot would have been great instead but Duns does not learn it. I'd suggest Charge Beam instead, as you wouldn't be totally passive when using it. Or a less optimal option in running Metronome (the item) in conjunction with a coverage move like Flamethrower or Hex, but that comes at the expense of losing Leftovers recovery.
A possible EV spread could be Timid Nature, 32 HP / 172 SAtk / 128 SDef / 176 Spe.
176 EVs in Speed with a Timid Nature outspeed Timid 252 Escartress before it can Shell Smash. 128 EVs in Special Defense and 32 EVs in HP make sure you survive a +0 Ice Beam on the turn you Glare at it, if it chooses to attack instead of setting up, all the while making for a better counter to the likes of Contrary Chimaconda and optimizing Leftovers recovery. The rest of the EVs are put in Special Attack for greater damage. Life Orb is counterproductive since it reduces Dunseraph's staying power, forcing it to use Roost more often.
With either Charge Beam or Metronome this Dunseraph aims at staying offensive enough while doing an ok job at tanking special hits. I hope I haven't strayed too far from the offensive purpose you originally intended.



Set #2
This is one the sets whose purpose I admit I haven't completely understood. Too many slashed options, maybe. What good is a physically inclined Dunseraph when it forgoes its flinching stab move of choice, has a better Special Attack and a lackluster physical movepool (yes, I mean it. Rock Slide + Earthquake is decent but that's about it for the snake)? That's a genuine question I'm asking.
I guess running Coil + special defense investment would cover a wider range of threats, but that's for you, the maker of this set, to tell us which. And I'd probably reiterate the point I made in the previous set : Coil, just like Calm Mind, would turn Dunseraph into a passive machine that takes so long to be boosted enough that you opponent takes it down first. All in all, I think Set#1 would outclass this one in every way and isn't that much worth mentionning. Please prove me wrong.



Set#3
- EV Spreads. Dunseraph has more to gain by being specially tanky. Being able to counter prominent threats like M-Archilles, Chimaconda; and walling rarer mons like M-Dramsama, Garlikid, Jerbolta, Espeon, Antarki, Pajay, Krilvolver or Gellin is a great boon. To this end Duns should run Calm 224 HP / 32 Def / 252 SDef : Maximal special investment with optimal Leftovers recovery, rest is dumped into Defense.
Interestingly, Dunseraph has a such massive HP stat that it can be tweaked into a mixed wall. For lack of a better threshold, I agree with your second spread of 252 Defense / 252 SpDefense. With pokémon with such neat stat differences between HP and defenses, it's generally better to max out the defenses first. I'd simply change it to Calm, 32 HP / 252 Def / 224 SDef to get a Leftovers number +1.

-moves. Roost and Air Slash are compulsory here. I'd actually run both Toxic and Glare in the last slots, as there's literally nothing else Dunseraph has in store in its movepool to support its teammates. Glare helps your teammates deal with faster pokémon while Toxic puts slower and bulkier mons on a clock, typically those that dont mind paralysis that much.



Set#4
It's basically Set#1, with one move changed in Swagger. I'm not sure that really deserves a mention.



Set#5
Same, this set's invalidated by Sets #1 and #3


Set#6
Again, it's Set#1 with a weather move in the fourth slot and Cloud Nine as an ability. I guess it's somewhat useful but I have to admit I'd like to see a sample team where such a set would fit.



Other Moves
No need to list every move Dunseraph learns if you're going to invalidate half of them yourself (Thunder Wave, other electric moves, Curse, Drill Run, Spite, Pain Split, Dragon Dance, Caustic Breath...). Oh and Agility is available to Dunsparce, read the wiki. 


Too tired right now to look super deep into what mons make for good partners and checks to Dunseraph. I'd just mention that Petrifiers dont do anything for the snake, as it can exert speed control itself.


I might be blunt in the way I put things but I'm just speaking my mind so, I apologize in advance
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#16
(10-03-2018, 02:14 PM)shademonkey Wrote:

Well, this post is both a pleasant surprise for the massive amount of feedback to my guide, yet greatly humbling too given how many holes you poked into it overall. I did ask for constructive criticism, however, and I'd like to think I can handle it, so no worries or apologies needed for giving your honest assessment. 'Sides, the only way I can improve is through practice and others pointing out my flaws, right?

Now, onto the counter-criticisms/rationales!

Glare and Roost: I believe these can be forgone for coverage, if one wants to focus less on sustain and more on offense. Not the wisest idea unless you can really afford to do it, but it can be done. Particularly since its now been revealed (to me) that Dunseraph can learn Agility (YES, YES!), making it less dependent on Glare's Paralysis or Roost sustain if it can boost up and start either Flinching and/or Charge Beaming/Flamming.

Grammar: Yeah, I have no defense for this. It's one of my big weaknesses when it comes to writing long papers and the like, since its hard for me to read over my work and pick out the mistakes without my mind skipping over those bits. Will get to fixing these mistakes ASAP, so thanks for doing the normally thankless task of being my editor!

[1] : Well, guess I was mostly wrong about that. Doh! However, I believe that a Physical Cloud Niner with Agility, Earthquake, and possibly a Life Orb/Metronome/Expert Belt could be ran to nail Yata. , M-Archilles, and M-Electrux hard after a boost, with the possible exception of the thunder god if they're running CS and max/near max Speed investment. Of course, that would require the angelic serpent to already be on the field and boosted before they come out, and its niche, but at least its can be effective.

On the subject of Hail Teams, I specifically pointed out that Dunseraph practically can't use its HA against Anderind or Glavinug due to the obvious fact they're.....well, Blizzard spamming Ice types. Or at least it can't without getting OHKOed for its trouble. As for Climate Sweepers, I also specifically mentioned that Dunseraph would have to take extreme care against Swift Swimmers due to them packing Ice Coverage and/or superior type match ups against it, and that with a Speed boost and/or Glare on predicted switch does an excellent job of at least checking the rest. Heck, even just Glaring and then subsequently being OHKO (or THKO against non-STAB Ice Moves, maybe) to a Ice type Move on SSers might be a worthy enough sacrifice, in the right circumstances.

[2]: Cloud Nine negates the effects of weather, which include the chip damage brought on by Sandstorm, which means that while its up and the god snake is out it won't be savaged by the weather AND still have fully effective Lefties. Dunseraph also has favorable type match ups against ALL Rock types Counters but Steel, chief among them being Fight, Ground, and Water (Well, not quite, given Ice type coverage, but switching into a Water Move then reacting....), and has both the stats and movepool on either side of the Physical or Special divide to at least check them. Meanwhile, the Rock, Steel, and Ground types can handle its weakness to Dragon, Ice, Fairy, and Rock rather handily, and provide strong offensive pressure to compliment its more defensive/supporting role on those teams. Plus, if Dunseraph is ran with Roar and the Sandteam has a Spiker and/or Stealth Rocker (which it most likely will), it can help rack up damage by forcing switches, and since it can pack a number of Fire type Moves to roast S51-A should it come to switch in and use Rapid Spin.....

[3] I actually did not know this, as I was rightly worried that the Speed Demons that resides on the top of the meta would still be able to outpace it without maximum investment in its own Speed. That, and since Choice Scarf exists, even just a Glare might not be enough to start pulling off Paraflitch. Still, nice to know that those EVs can be better put to use elsewhere!

[4],[5],[6] : The idea behind Calm Mind (and Coil) usage is not to try and slowly stack the buffs before sweeping (That's more the Offensive Tank's role), but to fire one or two off based on making the right prediction or getting the opportunity. For instance, if it Paralyzes an opponent's Pokemon, chances are good that it'll switch out to another 'mon or lose a turn, allowing Dunseraph to use CM/Coil if its healthy enough/doesn't need to Glare the predicted switch in. Just one boost is enough to make it more threatening than ever, so its not like it needs to passively use it to get maximum effectiveness with it.

I do agree with the rest of your suggestions, however, so I'll be sure to implement them in rewriting/adding onto that sections. Hex, though......I thought it was impossible to get it breed onto Dunsparse, since the only Pokemon that learns the move (Misdrevous Line) has an incompatible Egg group with it. Well, unless you can use Ratfitti to Sketch the Move and breed it onto it that way, but that seems to be a long-shot....

Nah, I don't think your suggestions compromise that set's goal. I just decided that it would be best to play it safe with max S.ATK and SPD EV investment, since I didn't know which specific threats that Dunseraph would want to out-speed.

Set #2: Strictly speaking, you are right in that Physical Flinch Hax is outclassed by Special stat and STAB wise, but there are other factors to be considered that make it at least somewhat viable. First, STAB Air Slash is resisted by a good portion of the Steel and Rock types hoping to switch in on it. Rock Slide suffers similarly, but it can hit Rock and Electric types for neutral damage and those pesky Fire types Super Effectively, and Bite gives it overall decent neutral coverage against the targets it wants to stay in against and solid advantage against S51-A and Astronite, two Pokemon that would otherwise wall and/or check it.

Second, if a given team comp already has a good number of Special Attackers, then using Dunseraph's Special Sweeper set is not only redundant, but leaves that team more vulnerable to Special Walls other teams have. Running it Physically, while not optimal, gives a player a Physical Attacker than can better wear away at Special Walls and add variety to their offense. That, and Physical Dunseraph has more ways to handle Fairy, Rock, and/or Steel types with Poison Jab, Iron Tail/Rock Smash, and/or Earthquake.

Third, as mentioned in the Other Moves section, Coil Dunseraph can pull of a Mixed Attacker set much better than a Special one. With sufficient Special Investment, Coil, Rock Slide, Fire Blast, and your choice of last move (Glare or Roost are prime choices, but Earthquake and Charge Beam are also options) allow it to solidly check almost any of its threats without worrying so much about the accuracy of its moves and remain tanky. In particular, Fire Blast/Rock Slide/Earthquake grants supreme coverage against the entire metagame, which is probably the last thing an opponent expects....

Of course, Mixed Sweeping may or may not be a good idea for the god snake with/without team support/Agility, but hey , that's what experimentation is for, right?

Set #3: All of this makes perfect sense to me, so I'll make the right adjustment to that section. I respectively disagree with your opinion that only Glare + Toxic is the most viable, as Toxic Stall with Protect/Sub or Paraflinch with Sub are viable (and rightly annoying) defensive measures for it, so I'll slash those options beside those Moves. That, and if Cloud Nine is run, then Air Slash can always be replaced by another Move, but I now see that's rather niche with this set.

Set #4: The different idea behind this set is mainly playstyle and intent. With the Flinch Haxers , you are aiming to either sweep or use lock down, while with Stall you are looking to....well, stall. Loki Set's purpose, meanwhile, is mainly for harassment and frustrating other players without regard to sustain. Rock Tomb and Rock Smash do a terrific job of hobbling Pokemon on prediction, setting them up any of its other Moves or just capitalizing on a switch. Now that I am thinking about it, having either Roar (With Hazards out, obviously) or Substitute on this set would make it even more fiendish, as between its immense HP, Lefties, and all the switching Swagger/Glare would produce it would more efficiently wear away at the opponent's good graces.

In sum, this set more about being annoying or support than the others.

Set #5: I personally don't find the idea of a Boosting/Offensive Tank to be completely overshadowed by more straightforward Flinch Hax and Pure Stats/Passive Tanking, especially in the late game of battles when Dunseraphs checks/counters have been taken out or worn down. Still, we can agree to disagree, I suppose.

Set #6: You've pretty much stated what exactly it is: Cloud Nine Support. It doesn't have to be more unique or nuanced than that to be effective, but again, that is up to a matter of opinion. I'd like to see it on a sample team to, but.....well, were to find one?

Other Moves: A forth of the reason I list this section out is to bluntly stat straight up if a move is a good option or not with a Pokemon, as not everyone reading a guide will automatically know if a move works best with a given Pokemon (in isolation or compared to others). That, its fun to write that part, and being redundant is not necessarily a bad thing, isn't it?

Petrifiers: While Dunseraph can handle Speed Control by itself, that doesn't mean that it doesn't appreciate a partner that can force switches or let it get off Glare without having to take a hit first (Unless a target has Priority). The fact that M-Arbok and Chimiconda serve the supreme serpentine seraph well with either Trapping, Revenge Killing, or ruining Steel/Ice types also doesn't hurt - quite the opposite, really.

That's all I have to say about this! Don't really have the time now to redo parts of this guide (Curse you college *angrily shakes fist*!), but that just means I can get even more feedback before I do that! So, as always, feel free to comment mate!
Like the wind, I come and go as I please... but I am always there to provide a comforting breeze.

Member of Team PUNishment. Pun-pare for Struggle, make it Double Team!

Heart Phantom is my OTP~ Heart

Online ID: 000650

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#17
(10-03-2018, 05:31 PM)Lord Windos Wrote: Hex, though......I thought it was impossible to get it breed onto Dunsparse, since the only Pokemon that learns the move (Misdrevous Line) has an incompatible Egg group with it. Well, unless you can use Ratfitti to Sketch the Move and breed it onto it that way, but that seems to be a long-shot....

It actually IS possible to breed Hex onto Dunsparce with Raffiti.  Misdreavus learns Hex at 23, and 23 is the highest level you can find wild Misdreavus at on Route 8.  Easy peasy.
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