TagMy Pokemon Gym

My Pokemon Gym: Ground

Welcome to the sixteenth iteration of the My Pokemon Gym series. If you’re new to this series, I take a Pokemon type then build out my team of six Pokemon of that type as if I were the gym leader. Here are the rules:

  1. I can’t use legendary/mythical Pokemon
  2. I can’t reuse Pokemon I’ve used in previous gyms in this series.
  3. Forms of the same Pokémon can be reused, provided they have different typing. For example, if I used Rattata in a Normal gym team, I could use Alolan Rattata in a Dark gym team.

Want to read my other My Pokemon Gym posts? Go read the Fighting, Ice, Psychic, Grass, Dragon, Fairy, Electric, Bug, Fire, Flying, Normal, Ghost, Dark, Rock, and Steel type posts when you’re done here. All images courtesy pokemondb.net unless otherwise stated.

Dugtrio

Arena Trap Dugtrio is well-known as being a terribly annoying trapping Pokemon — just not in the manner in which I have typically used it. I’ve always liked using Arena Trap Dugtrio to set up Stealth Rock, then slap a Memento on them. Sure, this set can’t hit most of the route 1 birds, but I really don’t need to use it for that purpose.

Ability: Arena Trap
Item: Focus Sash
Moves: Stealth Rock, Memento, Earthquake, Shadow Claw

Mudsdale

Oh hey. It’s one of the best Pokemon to come out of Gen VII. In Gen VIII, the dynamax function gives Mudsdale access to Max Quake, giving it a Special Defense boosting move to go along with its amazing Stamina ability. It’s really hard to kill Mudsdale once it gets boosts set up, thanks in large part to the fact that Body Press only gets stronger with Mudsdale’s Stamina boosts.

Ability: Stamina
Item: Maranga Berry
Moves: High Horsepower, Rock Slide, Rest, Body Press

Whiscash

You know what’s fun? Special Attacking Whiscash. It has a surprisingly diverse move pool. And it gets to learn one of the most gimmicky, yet hilarious moves in the game, Belch. It’s one of my favorite moves to catch people off guard with in a battle.

Ability: Oblivious
Item: Sitrus Berry
Moves: Muddy Water, Belch, Ice Beam, Future Sight

Krookodile

In other posts, I’ve talked about how much I love flinching movesets on Pokemon. And dear lord does Krookodile ever get a good one. In addition to getting access to the multi-hit move Beat Up, its moveset also has the flinching moves Rock Slide, Thunder Fang, and Fire Fang. I really like running an alternate Anger Point moveset that runs Power Trip, but King’s Rock sets are MUCH more annoying to face. As a gym leader, that seems fun to have.

Ability: Anger Point
Item: King’s Rock
Moves: Beat Up, Rock Slide, Thunder Fang, Fire Fang

Sandaconda

Sandaconda is one of my favorite Pokemon to come out of Sword and Shield, but it doesn’t have a distinct role on this team. I quite like a Coil-setup Pokemon, as well as the flinch chance of Iron Head. That said, the intent is for it to serve somewhat as a backup dynamax Pokemon on this team, even if it’s not running a standard Sandaconda moveset.

Ability: Shed Skin
Item: Lum Berry
Moves: Coil, Skull Bash, Poison Tail, Iron Head

Quagsire

LOOK AT THAT FACE! LOOK AT IT!

Ability: Unaware
Item: Rindo Berry
Moves: Ice Punch, Rest, Liquidation, Sleep Talk


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My Pokemon Gym: Steel

Welcome to the fifteenth iteration of the My Pokemon Gym series. If you’re new to this series, I take a Pokemon type then build out my team of six Pokemon of that type as if I were the gym leader. Here are the rules:

  1. I can’t use legendary/mythical Pokemon
  2. I can’t reuse Pokemon I’ve used in previous gyms in this series.
  3. Forms of the same Pokémon can be reused, provided they have different typing. For example, if I used Rattata in a Normal gym team, I could use Alolan Rattata in a Dark gym team.

Want to read my other My Pokemon Gym posts? Go read the Fighting, Ice, Psychic, Grass, Dragon, Fairy, Electric, Bug, Fire, Flying, Normal, Ghost, Dark, and Rock type posts when you’re done here. All images courtesy pokemondb.net unless otherwise stated.

Magnezone

For as much as I like the Magnemite line, I genuinely never know how to use it properly in competitive play. It’s a bulky special attacker in my mind, even though everyone plays it as an anti-Steel Pokemon. As much as I know what the right way to play Magnezone should be thanks to the existence of the internet, I just roll with it the same way I have for generations now — Tri Attack, otherwise Rain Dance then spam Thunder.

Ability: Magnet Pull
Item: Shuca Berry
Moves: Rain Dance, Thunder, Tri Attack, Flash Cannon

Skarmory

The Skarmory/Blissey defensive core was downright terrifying in earlier generations if you didn’t know how to handle for it. And while Blissey is one of my least favorite Pokemon ever, I have a soft spot in my heart for Skarmory. So much so that I’m still just a little annoyed that instead of getting an evolution for Skarmory in Sword/Shield, we got Corviknight. Which, yeah, good Pokemon. But Skarmory deserved better.

Skarmory is on this team to be bulky and to try to flinch opponents. That means Roost, Rock Slide, and Iron Head were guaranteed spots in the build. The last spot came down to Aerial Ace or Toxic. I decided on the former just in case there were ever a situation where I needed a guaranteed hit.

Ability: Sturdy
Item: Leftovers
Moves: Roost, Rock Slide, Aerial Ace, Iron Head

Scizor

One of the unfortunate things about the Steel typing is that it has two Pokemon that I love using Mega Evolutions for1The more I play Shield, the less I like the Dynamax concept. — Scizor and Metagross. In deciding which of the two to have as a mega on this team, I thought about my history with using each of them. And while I’ve used both in their mega forms on my teams before, only Scizor managed to stay useful to me in its base form. This is thanks in large part to its Technician ability, as well as an array of moves that get a boost from it, such as Bullet Punch, Vacuum Wave, Aerial Ace, Thief, and Bug Bite. This set lacks recovery, but that could easily be fixed by dropping Aerial Ace for Roost.

Ability: Technician
Item: Metronome
Moves: Swords Dance, Bullet Punch, Bug Bite, Aerial Ace

Mega Metagross

On the list of non-legendary Pokemon abilities, Tough Claws has to be near the top of the list in terms of most overpowered, right? It powers up ANY move that makes contact. That includes things like Grass Knot. Yes, Grass Knot is powered up by Tough Claws, despite being a special move. Anyway, Mega Metagross is OP, please nerf.

Ability: Tough Claws (Light Metal before Mega Evolution)
Item: Metagrossite
Moves: Meteor Mash, Zen Headbutt, Ice Punch, Grass Knot

Alolan Sandslash

As much as I love the concept of the Ice/Steel typing, even I’m willing to admit it’s not a particularly practical nor useful type. When you have a 4x weakness to both Fire and Fighting — two of the best offensive typings in the game — you’re gonna have a bad time. That said, I just really like Alolan Sandslash. It’s not going to live long. I know that. But if it’s able to switch in on something it can set up on with Curse, it becomes hilariously hard to stop thanks to Gyro Ball.

Ability: Snow Cloak
Item: Focus Sash
Moves: Curse, Flail, Poison Jab, Gyro Ball

Empoleon

Can we take a moment to talk about how so many of the starter Pokemon have terrible hidden abilities for what they’re used for? Empoleon is an example of this. Instead of getting an ability that benfits its excellent defensive typing, its bulk, or its special attack, it gets…Defiant? Defiant works well on a Pokemon with good attack. But unless you’re dead set on making your Emploeon a mixed attacker, there’s not much point. I decided to use it because why not. But what the hell?

Ability: Defiant
Item: Petaya Berry
Moves: Surf, Power Trip, Steel Wing, Double Team

My Pokemon Gym: Rock

Welcome to the fourteenth iteration of the My Pokemon Gym series. If you’re new to this series, I take a Pokemon type then build out my team of six Pokemon of that type as if I were the gym leader. Here are the rules:

  1. I can’t use legendary/mythical Pokemon
  2. I can’t reuse Pokemon I’ve used in previous gyms in this series.
  3. Forms of the same Pokémon can be reused, provided they have different typing. For example, if I used Rattata in a Normal gym team, I could use Alolan Rattata in a Dark gym team.

Want to read my other My Pokemon Gym posts? Go read the Fighting, Ice, Psychic, Grass, Dragon, Fairy, Electric, Bug, Fire, Flying, Normal, Ghost, and Dark type posts when you’re done here. All images courtesy pokemondb.net unless otherwise stated.

Kabutops

Alright. I’m going to level with you. I really don’t like the Rock type. You want to know how many Rock Pokemon made their way onto other lists in this series? Three. That’d be Magcargo (Fire), Shuckle (Bug), and Alolan Golem (Electric). You might recognize those as two other types I really don’t like, plus Bug. So this list is extremely Gen I heavy, especially compared to other lists. In fact, there were only three Pokemon I had on this entire list initially, two of which came from Gen I.

With that said, Kabutops is one of my favorite Pokemon designs, full stop. It’s the Grim Reaper as a dinosaur. I don’t care that it’s terrible and that Omastar is objectively better. Kabutops is a sure-fire member of this team. Unfortunately, since Rock has a notorious weakness to Water, we won’t be having any Swift Swim shenanigans here. Instead, our goal is to set up Stealth Rock and to force some switches. Kabutops has some speed for it, particularly in comparison to the rest of this team. That said, most of the heavy lifting will be handled by the rest of the team.

Ability: Battle Armor
Item: Focus Sash
Moves: Stealth Rock, Aqua Tail, Night Slash, X-Scissor

Omastar

Speaking of Lord Helix, it was the second of three Pokemon I immediately knew belonged on this team. Though my active love for it didn’t come until after Twitch Plays Pokemon, I still found the fossil choice in Mt. Moon in Gen I to be one of the most annoying choices you had to make in the entire game, save for the one Eeveelution limit1I didn’t have friends to trade with.. It’s always bothered me that what was effectively Omastar’s signature move, Spike Cannon, was both non-STAB as well as used Omastar’s meager Attack stat rather than its Special Attack. Fortunately, Omastar gets a bunch of other moves that make it annoying to deal with via status conditions…plus a move that requires transferring from Gen I that is always hilarious to catch people off guard with.

Ability: Shell Armor
Item: Choice Scarf
Moves: Scald, Horn Drill, Icy Wind, Water Pulse

Aurorus

Aside from the anchor Pokemon on this team, everything from here on out was more of an “I guess” pick than an actual love pick. Aurorus has two of my favorite abilities in the game in Refrigerate and Snow Warning. Considering how these two abilities help set up what I love doing for my typical Ice-focused teams, it’s pretty great. That said, this is my Rock type team. And Aurorus is…let’s go with lacking…in good Rock moves. Hell, it just has a weird movepool in general, getting access to Dream Eater, but nothing with which to put opponents to sleep, as well nearly as many damage-dealing Electric moves than Rock moves2Electric has Discharge, Charge Beam, Thunder, and Thunderbolt. Rock has Rock Throw, Stone Edge, Ancient Power, Rock Tomb, and Rock Slide.. In light of this, we’re going to give Aurorus a moveset that makes just as little sense.

Ability: Snow Warning
Item: Lum Berry
Moves: Swagger, Psych Up, Iron Head, Earthquake

Rhydon

Whoever at Game Freak that did Rhydon dirty by giving it Rhyperior as its evolution clearly had something against Giovanni’s signature Pokemon. Which is a shame, because I really liked it in Gen I. Granted, not as much as I liked using Nidoqueen or Dugtrio. But I liked it. Sure, it’s glacially slow, but it hits like a truck. Plus Eviolite helps it a little. Look, I’m stretching here.

Ability: Rock Head
Item: Eviolite
Moves: Take Down, Fire Punch, Thunder Punch, Megahorn

Solrock

Another one? Fuck. Um. It’s a sun. And. Um. It knows moves. And. It can be released from a Poke Ball before battle?

Ability: Levitate
Item: Normal Gem
Moves: Explosion

Sudowoodo

Oh. Thank god. Finally a Pokemon I like again. Unlike Rhydon, Sudowoodo actually has a moveset that puts Rock Head to good use. But that’s not what I to talk about here. Did you know that Sudowoodo can learn Calm Mind? That’s right. The Pokemon with 30 base Special Attack. THIRTY! It can learn Calm Mind. I get that it’s for the Special Defense more than Special Attack. But why not give it Cosmic Power then? I’m throwing that on the set just because of how absurd it is.

Ability: Rock Head
Item: Apicot Berry
Moves: Calm Mind, Wood Hammer, Head Smash, Rest

My Pokemon Gym: Dark

Welcome to the eleventh iteration of the My Pokemon Gym series. If you’re new to this series, I take a Pokemon type then build out my team of six Pokemon of that type as if I were the gym leader. Here are the rules:

  1. I can’t use legendary/mythical Pokemon
  2. I can’t reuse Pokemon I’ve used in previous gyms in this series.
  3. Forms of the same Pokémon can be reused, provided they have different typing. For example, if I used Rattata in a Normal gym team, I could use Alolan Rattata in a Dark gym team.

Want to read my other My Pokemon Gym posts? Go read the Fighting, Ice, Psychic, Grass, Dragon, Fairy, Electric, Bug, Fire, Flying, Normal, and Ghost type posts when you’re done here. All images courtesy pokemondb.net unless otherwise stated.

Liepard

While I’ve made a concerted effort to use the Sword/Shield movepools for Pokemon that are available in those games in my last two posts, I am choosing to ignore that with Liepard. The main reason? Sword/Shield gets rid of Liepard’s most iconic move, Assist. For those unaware, a Pokemon using Assist will use a random move that one of the other Pokemon in your party knows. Considering the moves the rest of the Pokemon on this team know, this could yield hilarious results. Or it could do nothing. That’s the beauty of Assist. It’s Metronome with a pre-selected movepool. My Liepard also runs Fake Out for Normal Gem/Unburden boosting shenanigans, as well as Aerial Ace and Hone Claws because I needed four moves.

Ability: Unburden
Item: Normal Gem
Moves: Fake Out, Assist, Aerial Ace, Hone Claws

Umbreon

Speaking of Pokemon whose movepools Sword/Shield screwed up, why can’t Umbreon learn Toxic anymore? Granted, I worked around it in this case. But it’s the quintessential stalling Pokemon. What’s Umbreon without Toxic? I honestly can’t remember how Last Resort works with the combination of Rest and Sleep Talk, and most of my normal Pokemon sites were no help. In the event this set wouldn’t work in reality, just mentally replace Last Resort with Foul Play.

Ability: Inner Focus
Item: Leftovers
Moves: Last Resort, Confuse Ray, Rest, Sleep Talk

Cacturne

An older cousin of mine introduced me to Pokemon via Red/Blue. That said, it wasn’t until the Gen IV games that I was knowledgeable enough about Pokemon to be able to beat him. The Pokemon I ended up beating him with? Iron Ball Cacturne with Fling. I took out his next to last Pokemon (which wasn’t weak to Dark) with Fling, then won because his Psychic type couldn’t hit me. I recognize I likely got lucky. But you know what? Luck is good enough to make this team. Plus Cacturne’s design is hilarious to me.

Ability: Water Absorb
Item: Iron Ball
Moves: Spiky Shield, Power-Up Punch, Fling, Foul Play

Shiftry

For those unaware, Seedot has one of my favorite shiny sprites in all of the Pokemon series. Because of this, I wanted to make sure I found a way to feature it or its evolution on either this team or the Grass type team. It fit better onto this team, particularly thanks to its synergy with the next Pokemon this list. The goal here is to get Sunny Day up and maybe get a Solar Blade off once I do. That said, I know that Shiftry isn’t the powerhouse of this team. If worse comes to worst, a sneaky Explosion will do some damage to my opponent, but Shiftry is helper Pokemon on this team.

Ability: Chlorophyll
Item: Focus Sash
Moves: Solar Blade, Throat Chop, Sunny Day, Explosion

Incineroar

Another Pokemon whose potential Gen VIII moveset we’re ignoring, though not quite for the same reasons. I love Incineroar’s unique Z-move, Malicious Moonsault. I’m going to ignore the fact that Incineroar is actually doing a 450 splash instead of the moonsault. It’s just an awesome move. I love the pro wrestling vibe Incineroar has, plus it comes from arguably the cutest starter form ever.

Ability: Intimidate
Item: Incinium-Z
Moves: Darkest Lariat, Drain Punch, Blaze Kick, Body Slam

Alolan Muk

I want to give full credit to my brother-in-law for causing me to love Alolan Muk as much as I do. When we would battle doubles, he would use Muk with an Air Balloon and a Power of Alchemy set that had a goal of inheriting the Levitate ability from its partner Rotom when it died. The set worked beautifully and caused several hilarious disconnects when playing online. While Power of Alchemy has no use in singles battles, I paid homage to the rest of his set here, replacing his preferred Poison Jab with extra coverage in the form of Hidden Power Grass.

Ability: Poison Touch
Item: Air Balloon
Moves: Knock Off, Stockpile, Hidden Power Grass, Rock Slide

My Pokemon Gym: Ghost

Welcome to the eleventh iteration of the My Pokemon Gym series. If you’re new to this series, I take a Pokemon type then build out my team of six Pokemon of that type as if I were the gym leader. Here are the rules:

  1. I can’t use legendary/mythical Pokemon
  2. I can’t reuse Pokemon I’ve used in previous gyms in this series.
  3. Forms of the same Pokémon can be reused, provided they have different typing. For example, if I used Rattata in a Normal gym team, I could use Alolan Rattata in a Dark gym team.

Want to read my other My Pokemon Gym posts? Go read the Fighting, Ice, Psychic, Grass, Dragon, Fairy, Electric, Bug, Fire, Flying, and Normal type posts when you’re done here. All images courtesy pokemondb.net unless otherwise stated.

Chandelure

A shoo-in for both my Fire and Ghost teams, I decided to put Chandelure on my Ghost team because this type isn’t one I have a lot of depth in, especially since Decidueye and Froslass ended up on my Grass and Ice teams, respectively. Chandelure’s typing and abilities give it a ton of resistances and immunities, which is awesome for a speedy lead. I’m keeping the non-Gen VIII move Flame Charge on Chandelure, as it’s a great momentum builder, but the rest of the set is intended to force matchups I want later on in the game. It’s not my normal status-inflicting lamp I love to use, but I think it fits in better with this team.

Ability: Flash Fire
Item: Choice Scarf
Moves: Flame Charge, Memento, Pain Split, Trick

Mimikyu

And so we arrive at the first of two Pokemon that I slotted on this team solely to get the team to six Pokemon. Mimikyu is a fine Pokemon, but it’s not one I particularly love. That said, it’s a super useful Pokemon with a great ability. Plus it’s arguably the least annoying of the Pikachu clones. Mimikyu can — and will — hit hard if it get setup. With Chandelure’s Memento possibly forcing a switch, followed by the free hit that Disguise gives, that’s possibly two times to get Swords Dance up. And not many things like getting hit by a +4 Attack Mimikyu with Life Orb. Especially not when it already has some thumping physical moves.

Ability: Disguise
Item: Life Orb
Moves: Swords Dance, Leech Life, Play Rough, Shadow Claw

Cursola

Image courtesy Bulbapedia

This was the last spot on the team I filled, debating between several Pokemon that are either good, but that I don’t care about (Aegislash, Gengar, Alolan Marowak) or Pokemon that I like but are trash (Dhelmise, Golurk, Cursola). In the end, I went with Cursola, partly for some Gen VIII representation, but also because going with Alolan Marowak just felt wrong when Chandelure is already on the team. Cursola is slow and hits hard…and that’s about all it’s got going for it. I know I’m not living long with Cursola. Let’s just try for boosts and hope it works.

Ability: Weak Armor
Item: Bright Powder
Moves: Ancient Power, Protect, Light Screen, Reflect

Mega Banette

I love me some Mega Banette. The Prankster ability is fun to throw around status with, while its design and thumping Attack stat are great to boot. It’s one of my least favorite Pokemon to come up against in a battle, and for that alone it earns a spot on this team. I’ve seen quite a few sets online arguing that you only need one attacking move on Mega Banette. While I don’t totally buy that, there is quite a lot you can do with Knock Off. That said, if you managed to know that your opponent is locked into a move they don’t want to use — say because your Chandelure tricked a Choice Scarf onto them — you’ll want a second move to use while you’re forcing them to Struggle to death.

Ability: Prankster (Cursed Body before Mega Evolution)
Item: Banettite
Moves: Thunder Wave, Disable, Knock Off, Gunk Shot

Mismagius

LOOK AT THAT HAT. LOOK AT IT.

Ability: Levitate
Item: Sitrus Berry
Moves: Calm Mind, Mystical Fire, Thunderbolt, Shadow Ball

Drifblim

Another member of the Caterpie Elite Four Dream Team makes one of these lists. The chain’s primary passer of bulk and survivability was Drifblim, carrying Stockpile, Minimize, and Amnesia1I originally carried Calm Mind instead of Amnesia, but Caterpie’s lack of access to Special Attacking moves in Sun/Moon caused the change. all to be Baton Passed to our buggy little friend. That said, Drifblim isn’t typically a defensive Pokemon, preferring to go on an all-out offensive. I’ve chosen to go the more Special Attacking route here, if only because that’s what this team is lacking outside of Mismagius. That said, try the bulky, evading Drifblim sometime. It hates Shock Wave, but shrugs off most other moves, especially with Bright Powder.

Ability: Flare Boost
Item: Flame Orb
Moves: Shadow Ball, Psychic, Minimize, Mud-Slap2Seriously. Yes, I know it’s a legacy Gen IV move. But it’s hilarious to watch people disconnect when they can’t hit your Drifblim because they’ve been hit with a Mud-Slap after a Minimize.