Three Ways Ultra Sun and Moon Is Shaking Up Competitive Pokémon

Pokémon’s new rival rule-set goes live in Jan 2018, definition that players everywhere are devising strategies formed on a new monsters and movesets accessible in Ultra Sun and Moon. Let’s speak about some of a biggest additions that will have a vital impact on a proceed competitors proceed tournaments.

Pokémon that are out of this world

Ultra Beasts were a new kind of extra-dimensional, mythological Pokémon introduced in Sun and Moon. Aside from looking totally alien, they are vicious for their singular form combinations and stat distributions, that let them offer their roles reliably. Some, like Celesteela, slowed matches significantly in a format’s early days with a estimable bulk and entrance to recovery. Others, like Pheromosa, encouraged high-risk, high-reward play due to a impassioned strength and frailty. Five of them are now on a list of a top 30 many used Pokémon list. With that being that case, it’s no consternation that Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon’s 3 new Ultra Beasts are staid to have a large impact.


The initial and many fearsome of a new Pokémon is Stakataka, a Rock and Steel form wall that will be browbeat on teams that feat a topsy-turvy spin sequence postulated by Trick Room. This all interjection to a speed stat of 13, that roughly guarantees it will strike initial underneath Trick Room. This combos easily with a best move, Gyro Ball, that calculates a repairs formed on a disproportion between a user and a target. With 131 conflict powering this attack, if Stakataka is holding a repairs boosting Life Orb item, it can measure one-hit-knock-outs on some of a many vicious Pokémon in a format. The categorical regard in regulating it is flourishing prolonged adequate to make use of a descent prowess, though a 211 invulnerability stat will positively help.

Next adult is a rare box of Naganadel. Naganadel adds a Dragon form to a pre-evolution’s Poison type, giving it an atypical synergy that lets it quarrel behind opposite a many absolute Fairy forms that browbeat complicated rival Pokémon. Its high special conflict and speed stat assistance there, too, and a accumulation of conflict type-coverage mostly accessible to dragons will assistance it hoop copiousness of non-fairy threats. All that energy comes with some common weaknesses (ground, psychic, ice) and ubiquitous frailty, though it will positively have a place in a arriving format.

Last is one of a oddest Ultra Beasts, both in pattern and function: Blacephalon. Fire and Ghost together are a absolute combination, though it would cite a speed stat closer to Pheromosa’s 151 than a 107 it received. Blachephalon is too thin to take some-more than a singular hit. In sequence to do adequate repairs before fainting, it needs to implement a integrate of tools. First, it can boost a speed with a Choice Scarf so that it’s means to vacate a threats before removing taken out. Alternatively, it can lift a Focus Sash or use Substitute to tarry mixed hits. Finally, it can rest on partners to give it a initial probability to strike with moves that speed adult a group or delayed down opponents. Blacephalon’s application will come down to either plays can find a optimal proceed to keep it alive.

Tutor Time

Now that gen-7 Pokémon have entrance to pierce tutors that can learn them moves they can’t learn naturally, some Alolan staples from VGC 2017 will have fearsome new tools.


The initial place to start is Tapu Fini, a versatile Pokémon with many useful moves it c. Move tutors can now learn Tapu Fini Icy Wind, that deals a bit of repairs though some-more importantly slows down both hostile Pokémon. This ability to capacitate a team’s success jacks Tapu Fini’s application to even aloft levels and will roughly positively be a tack on many movesets. After all, a actor who attacks initial is mostly a one that wins games. And with a healthy bulk and glorious Water and Fairy typing, it will substantially see even some-more use in 2018 than it did final season.

Image source: Pokemon Wikia

Then there’s Togedemaru, that shined in a latter half of 2017 as one of a best understanding Pokémon available. Its ability, Lightning Rod, helped route electric form attacks divided from exposed targets, and a entrance to moves such as Fake Out and Encore helped interrupt an opponent’s ability to take their turn. In Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, Togedemaru got entrance to moves that assistance boost a team’s repairs output. Super Fang bypasses a common conflict stat given it always does a prosaic 50 percent of a target’s remaining HP, though it can also now usually use Helping Hand to boost a repairs finished by a partner’s subsequent conflict by 50 percent. Now that it can interrupt and do damage, it will be an even some-more indeterminate and versatile supporter.

One of a scariest new combos finished probable by mentor moves, however, is Tailwind Kartana. In 2017, this quick and tough conflict Ultra Beast’s really participation on a group practical adequate vigour that opponents mostly had to play around it. If they unsuccessful to, Kartana could mostly KO essential Pokémon in a singular conflict and potentially confirm games by itself. But with a new entrance to Tailwind, it can take advantage of those turns that opponents are forced to switch or Protect and double a whole team’s speed.

That’s a good choice to have, though it’s also a apparatus that many descent Pokémon are able of. What creates Kartana mount out is entrance to both Z-Tailwind and a pierce with a high vicious strike ratio. With Z-Tailwind boosting a vicious strike probability for all attacks to 50 percent, Leafblade guarantees a crit each time. Not usually does this double a repairs done, though it ignores hostile defensive boosts and any conflict drops that Kartana competence amass while on a field. That means it will be able of holding a lot of strike outs, that raises a conflict even aloft each time interjection to a Beast Boost ability.

Fortunately, this Ultra Beast is still as thin as it was in Sun and Moon, definition many special attacks strike it out. But even if it goes down after holding a singular strike out and boosting a team’s speed, that’s a outrageous volume of value. And it also army players to honour this probability during group preview, either their competition is using this set or not. Clever players will feat this fact by tackling their opponents Kartana-counters, putting them one step forward during a start of a game.

A new Z-move countermeasure

There’s one final thing that players weren’t awaiting to find in Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon: changes to a pierce Wide Guard. While a pierce is a tack in VGC for a ability to annul all repairs taken from attacks that strike both sides of a field, players detected that it now also reduces a repairs taken from Z-moves by 75 percent — usually like a pierce Protect. This gives players a outrageous defensive apparatus in a face of absolute and indeterminate z-moves. Since these super-powerful attacks were mostly startling and lethal during their initial deteriorate in VGC, many players will rest easy meaningful that they have a proceed to equivocate losing a diversion due to an astonishing Z-move.

The astonishing on a horizon

Thanks to all of these changes brought by Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, this arriving deteriorate of VGC 2018 should have some surprises adult a sleeve. Combining a powerhouses of seasons past and final year’s standouts gives competitors so most room for creativity that saying what teams arise to a tip is anyone’s guess. While players will have to adjust to a new changes, examination it all reveal should be a furious ride.

Jason Krell is a freelance journalist, VGC actor and handling editor during a Trainer Tower.

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