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Other types of teams in competitive Pokemon

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Sep 19th, 2016
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  1. - Weather teams, in particular rain. Hail-based teams are obsolete as they don't provide enough incentive to be used and often cause shared weaknesses and general structural flaws in the team, as well as the main setter Abomasnow being in an awkward situation tier-wise (banned in one tier, not strong enough in the next one up). Sand is seen more commonly as it can be abused more easily and with less drawbacks (especially with the ability Sand Rush), though entire teams generally aren't dependent on it. Rain, however, is particularly common in UU as an offensively-oriented playstyle, involving several rain setters and rain abusers that can attack both physically and specially; Mega Swampert, Kingdra, Kabutops, Thudurus and others are popular on rain teams due to Swift Swim, increased accuracy on Thunder and Hurricane and the boost to Water-type attacks. Rain can also be used defensively with abilities like Dry Skin, Hydration and Rain Dish, though full defensive rain teams (and defensive weather teams in general) are not common.
  3. - VolTurn offence, which takes advantage of popular moves U-Turn and Volt Switch to defeat the opponent. These moves are fantastic, as they can be a great asset in gaining an advantage. If the opponent attempts to switch, U-Turn and Volt Switch allow you to see which Pokemon the opponent chose to switch into and also damage it while your Pokemon switches out too; a slow U-Turn or Volt Switch allows the Pokemon in play to take a hit and allow another Pokemon to switch in for free. For these reason, it's a fantastic move to gain momentum, so much so that entire offensive teams are based off of it. These teams abuse both slow and fast users of the moves, and also require answers to Ground type Pokemon (especially Landorus-Therian which, ironically, is a great choice for this playstyle).
  5. - Trick Room teams, although dubbed gimmicky and situational, can be effective in the correct circumstances. They're generally built with many Trick Room setters and several abusers, and the team works to flip the opponent's strategy by making their fast Pokemon far more exposed and less useful. Their form is usually offensive, using either a hyper offence design or a bulky offence design, though some defensive Pokemon can also work in Trick Room (Bronzong is an example).
  7. - 4Drag2Mag, an outdated strategy that was gimmicky but also somewhat viable prior to Generation 6 that deserves a mention. Basically, it used a Magneton and Magnezone, each with, Magnet Pull, to eliminate what was then the sole resistance to Dragon-type moves, Steel Pokemon. The rest of the team was generally Dragon type and played like hyper offence, except when the Pokemon were threatened, they'd switch to one of the Magnemite-line Pokemon. Fairy Pokemon have made this strategy obsolete, but if you're looking into Generation 5 OU in particular, this is a fun one to try out.
  9. - Stick Web-dependent teams. Perhaps it's an exaggeration to say that entire teams can be based on one move, but Sticky Web is a legitimate strategy that you might not rely on entirely, but can be a valuable asset to the team overall. It's similar to Trick Room in that it can allow slower threats to shine and to affect offence teams that rely on moving first to be effective. Sticky Web can be applied to just about any variation of offence, and maybe it can even help support a breaker core in a balance team.
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