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- Guide: Offensive Synergy
- When most people hear the word "synergy," they think of type resistances and the chart on Marriland's Team Builder. But there's a completely different kind of synergy that's arguably just as important for offensive teams. This is a crucial part of team building that can determine just how effectively you can pull off a sweep. This is Offensive Synergy.
- The term "offensive synergy" can be defined loosely as how well each of your team members lure out and eliminate each others' counters. A team with really solid defensive synergy can still lose most of its matches, simply because it doesn't have enough offensive prowess to get through common cores (stall teams with lots of hazards are an exception).
- A common OU example I use is the offensive core of Excadrill / Landorus. The two are pretty similar overall, so they represent what I call "parallel sweepers," or Pokémon that share the same counters. This means that they can apply pressure on opponents until one of them breaks through, particularly if you have a set designed specifically to eliminate a common counter.
- One of my favorite sets is Substitute Landorus. Gliscor's the most popular physical wall, so having HP Ice to take it out is helpful. With Gliscor out of the way, both Landorus and Excadrill have a much easier team sweeping teams. Because of this, Landorus and Excadrill have poor defensive synergy but great offensive synergy together.
- In UU, I like to use a combination of Heracross and Escavalier. They work well as parallel attackers because few opponents can stand up to repeated Megahorn beatings. Escavalier also has the bulk and power to switch in on and eliminate Ghosts with Pursuit, allowing Heracross to spam Close Combat freely.
- The best way to ensure good offensive synergy is to use effective lures, or Pokémon that draw in and KO their conventional counters. How well a lure works depends on how likely a counter is to switch in - basically whether or not the set is unexpected. In the above example, Landorus has HP Ice to lure out and KO Gliscor. This can still work, but it's becoming less effective as people learn to expect HP Ice.
- On the other hand, Mixed Jirachi remains very unexpected and therefore performs really well as a lure. To take advantage of a lure, take a look at what it eliminates and pair it with teammates that benefit from such counters being removed. Mixed Jirachi beats Gliscor and Scizor, making Terrakion and Excadrill some good choices for partners.
- Offensive synergy is invaluable for any team with some kind of aggressive feel to it. Focus enough on defensive synergy so that you have safe ways of covering most threats, but make sure to pack enough lures and effective partners to support a sweep.
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