Another month has passed in the VGC 2019 Sun Series. We've had 2 Regionals in North America and 1 Special Event in Latin America. Some very interesting teams and developments in the format has come up, so let's look at what happened in the VGC 2019 Sun Series ahead of a very eventful November where the season's first International Championship in São Paulo, Brazil, the biggest event for the Sun Series.

Major Events in October
–– Memphis Regionals (Link to Top 16 teams)
–– Santiago Special Event (Link to Top 16 teams)
–– Portland Regionals (Link to Top 32 teams)

Kyogre + Xerneas is the Duo to Beat

 
Last month, we talked about how Incineroar is the most popular Pokémon in this format in the format. Now, the combination of Kyogre + Xerneas has shown itself to be the Restricted Duo in this format that players should be preparing for the most as it won both the Frankfurt and Portland Regional using the same variant. The strength of it is being able to overpower your opponent thanks to Kyogre's rain-boosted Water moves and a Xerneas after it uses Geomancy. The most common variants have used Tornadus for priority Tailwind and can use Hurricane to threatens Grass-types like Ludicolo and Kartana with can use their STAB attacks to threaten your restricted Pokémon.

Zygarde is Defying Expectations


Despite being almost nowhere very early in the format, Zygarde has started to see some usage at the Regional level. Wolfe Glick used it very early at Philadelphia Regionals to finish Top 32 but it didn't really catch on as to most players, Zygarde just isn't very good due to its lack of damage and weakness to Xerneas. The first player who used it to success was Justin Crubaugh who used Zygarde alongside Groudon to finish 7th at Memphis Regionals. Justin has been a large fan of Zygarde as he did win a Midseason Showdown with it shortly after. Recently, Terry Hong used Zygarde to finish 3rd at Portland Regionals on largely the same kind of team as Justin, which is a bulky team meant to support your Zygarde while having a Pokémon that can threaten other teams and cores. Most Zygarde will be trained to take hits so it can efficiently transition into its Complete form for the extra bulk while being able to set-up using moves like Dragon Dance and Coil to do so.

Other Notable Pokémon


Used by Matthew Greaves to finish Top 8 at Portland Regionals, Reshiram had a very interesting Pokémon that in his games on stream, Matthew showed how bulky of a Pokémon his Reshiram can be. Paired with Tapu Fini to activate its Misty Seed to take special hits better and thanks to his Groudon, Reshiram could use Solar Beam to threaten opposing Kyogre. Matthew proved that Reshiram does have a niche in this format and whether or not we see it in the future will be interesting.


Tornadus has taken a very important and prominent role on the Kyogre/Xerneas teams. Tornadus was used to win both Portland and Frankfurt Regionals and was ranked #15 on VGCStats in October, earning roughly 3600 CP compared to the 382 CP it earned in September. Tornadus provides some crucial to these teams in priority Taunt to stop Roar and Trick Room and Tailwind for speed control, as well as a STAB Hurricane to threaten the Grass-types that Kyogre hates. Expect this to stay the same for the rest of the format.

Conclusion

While not much of notoriety has happened in October, November does promise to bring major information. With the Latin American Internationals and Roanoke Regionals being the biggest events during November, you can expect that something will happen that shakes up the format, and it will be very interesting to see what happens.

Thanks for reading! Follow us on twitter @NimbasaCityPost for updates on VGC content on the website!

Since its debut in VGC, Tapu Fini has long proven to be one of the best defensive Water-types in VGC. Thanks to its ability, defensive typing, and great support moves, Tapu Fini has become a staple Pokémon on many teams. In the past, the most common set was a Calm Mind variant that's meant to become a major damage dealer. Now, Tapu Fini has become a strong supporter that uses many support moves. Let's look at how Tapu Fini plays in VGC 2019.

Ability, Base Stats, and Typing


ABILITY
Misty Surge – "On switch-in, this Pokemon summons Misty Terrain." While Misty Terrain sadly doesn't increase the power of Fairy-type moves, Misty Terrain has proven to be insanely helpful in VGC. Cutting the power of Dragon-type moves by half and making so grounded Pokémon are immune to status conditions is crucial in Pokémon in general thanks to how strong status conditions like Sleep, Burn, Poison, and Paralysis so being able to not have to worry about this is great.

BASE STATS
While 70 HP isn't as great for a bulkier Pokémon, 115 Defense and 130 Sp. Defense is great because it allows Tapu Fini to take some big crucial hits. 95 Sp. Attack isn't as strong for an offensive hitter as it essentially means Tapu Fini will deal solid damage to Pokémon it hits for super-effective damage and pretty weak to other Pokémon unless it starts to set-up. 85 Speed is very average as it means Tapu Fini can go pretty fast if it really wants to thanks to speed control like Tailwind or items like a Choice Scarf.

TYPING
Tapu Fini's Water/Fairy typing is great to complement its bulk. Being able to reliably switch into 7 types in Dragon, Bug, Dark, Fighting, Fire, Ice, and Water is great to help Tapu Fini accomplish its job. While it's only weak to 3 types in Electric, Grass, and Poison, most of the prominent users of these moves in VGC are special with some notable physical attackers, simply either setting up the wrong terrain for the Electric and Grass types or using tools like Intimidate and Snarl can allow Tapu Fini to survive these hits.

Notable Moves 

Calm MindGrass KnotGravity
Heal PulseIcy WindMoonblast
Light ScreenMuddy WaterNature's Madness
ProtectPsych UpScald
SwaggerTaunt Trick

As you can see, there's a lot of moves you might encounter on Tapu Fini. While Calm Mind is still helpful to increase its damage output, with most Tapu Fini having shifted away from the move. Grass Knot is great to threaten both Groudon and Kyogre with super-effective damage. Gravity works well to support Groudon to make sure it doesn't have to worry about missing attacks. Heal Pulse is great to heal its partner to make sure it can survive for a longer period of time.

Icy Wind is a great speed control to help your other Pokémon outspeed a threat to try and KO them. Moonblast is great to hit Pokémon like Yveltal and Zygarde for major damage. Light Screen is a very interesting tech to increase the Sp. Defense for your team for 5 turns, which in most matches will mean this Sp. Defense boost will last throughout the crucial part of the match. Muddy Water and Scald are your main Water-type moves to hit Pokémon like Groudon and Ho-Oh. Nature's Madness is great to cut your opponent's HP in half, which is great to combo for a chance to KO a Pokémon.

Protect is great to take hits and survive more turns. Psych Up is used mainly for if Xerneas uses Geomancy, you can copy its boosts and make your Tapu Fini much more of a threat. Swagger in Misty Terrain is great to increase your partner's attack. Pokémon like Solgaleo and Zygarde are the main benefits of this. Taunt is great to stop Pokémon from using support moves or setting up, and Trick is great to swap items and steal important items from other Pokémon.

Notable Items

Wiki Berry
Mago Berry
Choice Specs
Iapapa Berry


If there's one thing to take away, its that Tapu Fini loves berries. Being able to regain a ton of health back when you get low is great for more supportive Pokémon. Choice Specs isn't as popular but is still great to deal more damage.


Sample Set #1 – Support and Damage


Tapu Fini @ Wiki Berry
Ability: Misty Surge
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 196 SpD / 60 Spe
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
– Icy Wind
– Moonblast
– Swagger
– Haze

Built by Chris Danzo (@ChrisDanzo), this is the Tapu Fini he wished he used on the team he used to finish 14th at Philadelphia Regionals. In his team report, Chris talks about his team benefits from the speed control of Icy Wind and the ability to power up his physical attackers in Stakataka, Incineroar, and Groudon with Swagger over another attacker. While he doesn't note what this EV Spread does, it's probably just general bulk to allow Tapu Fini to stick around longer to do its job.


Sample Set #2 – All Support


Tapu Fini @ Wiki Berry
Ability: Misty Surge
Level: 50
EVs: 244 HP / 76 Def / 4 SpA / 124 SpD / 60 Spe
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
– Light Screen
– Icy Wind
– Swagger
– Haze

Used by Willem Guerts (@AbsurdityVGC) on his Top 8 Frankfurt Regionals team, this Tapu Fini is always going to be supporting its teammates. In his team report, Willem notes that thanks to its natural bulk, wide movepool, and great ability, it wasn't hard for him to find a use for Tapu Fini. He says that Haze is great to remove opposing boosts from moves like Swords Dance and Geomancy as well as negative boosts from his own Pokémon. Icy Wind is great speed control for his team since many Pokémon are around the same speed stats. Swagger is great to boost the attack of your grounded Pokémon. While in theory, Willem liked the idea of Light Screen, he never clicked it once in his matches at Frankfurt and Gravity probably would've been better. The EV Spread, as Willem notes, allows Tapu Fini to survive a +2 Moonblast from Fairy Aura Xerneas and Adamant Groudon's Precipice Blades only has a 9.4% chance to 2HKO.


Tapu Fini's Partners

Groudon loves the benefits it gets from Tapu Fini. Gravity to give it a 100% accurate Precipice Blades, Icy Wind for Speed control, Swagger for the attack boost, and Heal Pulse to regain health are just some of the things Tapu Fini can help Groudon with.


Tapu Fini has often been seen paired with both Solgaleo and Zygarde as a faster Swagger user. The ability to help Solgaleo get an attack boost to have a better chance to pick up KOs. Zygarde is a newer partner to Tapu Fini as many Zygarde will hold a Misty Seed for a Sp. Defense boost and like Solgaleo and Groudon, Tapu Fini can use Swagger to increase its attack, Heal Pulse to regain health, and Icy Wind to outspeed things.


Incineroar is popular alongside Tapu Fini thanks to Fake Out to allow Tapu Fini to do its job, Intimidate to allow it to survive big physical hits better, and its Fire typing means it can threaten powerful Grass-types in the format.


Threatening Tapu Fini


As Tapu Fini is weak to Grass-type moves, these 5 are the most popular Grass-types in the format that threatens it. Amoonguss and Venusaur hit on the special side with either its Grass-type Grass Knot or Poison-type Sludge Bomb. Kartana can use Leaf Blade to threaten an OHKO while Tsareena and Ferrothorn can also use there powerful Power Whip to threaten KOs while all 5 of these Pokémon enjoy the benefit of being able to switch into most of what Tapu Fini does.


As Tapu Fini is weak to Electric-type moves, these 5 are the most popular Electric-types in the format that can threaten it. Tapu Koko can either go physical with Wild Charge or special with Thunderbolt, Thunder, and Volt Switch to threaten Tapu Fini. The physical variants aren't a major fan of Intimidate while special variants rely on having the Electric terrain up.

Raichu can also go either physical with Wild Charge or special with Thunderbolt, Thunder, or Volt Switch although physical variants are vastly more popular. Zekrom is very interesting as a strong physical attacker as it can use either the 85% accurate Bolt Strike or the less powerful but more accurate Fusion Bolt.

  
Tapu Fini's final weakness to Poison-types is a lot more common thanks to how popular Xerneas is. Venusaur can use Sludge Bomb and hopefully its increased speed thanks to Chlorophyll if the Sun is active. Amoonguss can take multiple his and use either Clear Smog or Sludge Bomb. Nihilego can also use Sludge Bomb and threaten a KO.

Thanks for reading! Follow us on twitter @NimbasaCityPost for updates on VGC content on the website!

These are the Top 32 teams from VGC 2019 Portland, Oregon Regional Championships! Congrats to the trainers who did well and to Riley Factura for winning the Regional in the end.

Bracket – https://challonge.com/vgc2019portland

Teams

#
PLAYER
CP
MONEY
TEAM
1
Riley Factura
200
$2000
kyogre.pngxerneas-active.pngkartana.pngincineroar.pngamoonguss.pngtornadus.png
2
Louis Milich
160
$1000
kyogre.pnglunala.pngtapu-koko.pngkartana.pngamoonguss.pngtoxicroak.png
3
Terry Hong
130
$500
zygarde.pngho-oh.pngtapu-fini.pngincineroar.pngludicolo.pngstakataka.png
4
Ian McLaughlin
130
$500
groudon.pngxerneas-active.pngclefairy.pngincineroar.pngvenusaur.pngcrobat.png
5
Angel Miranda
100
$250
kyogre.pnglunala.pngtapu-koko.pnghitmontop.pngclefairy.pngstakataka.png
6
Matthew Greaves
100
$250
groudon.pngreshiram.pngtapu-fini.pngincineroar.pngvenusaur.pngstakataka.png
7
Qi Wei
100
$250
lunala.pngxerneas-active.pngsmeargle.pngincineroar.pngludicolo.pngstakataka.png
8
Justin Burns
100
$250
kyogre.pngyveltal.pngtapu-lele.pngincineroar.pngtoxicroak.pngstakataka.png
9
Gavin Michaels
80
$0
kyogre.pngxerneas-active.pngsmeargle.pngkartana.pngludicolo.pngtornadus.png
10
Joshua Mecham
80
$0
kyogre.pngxerneas-active.pngkartana.pngincineroar.pngamoonguss.pngtornadus.png
11
Robert Moore
80
$0
groudon.pngxerneas-active.pngkartana.pngincineroar.pngvenusaur.pngclefairy.png
12
Stephen Mea
80
$0
lunala.pngxerneas-active.pngsmeargle.pngincineroar.pngcrobat.pngtoxicroak.png
13
Kacey Traver
80
$0
kyogre.pngyveltal.pngsmeargle.pnglandorus-therian.pngtoxicroak.pngferrothorn.png
14
Nicholas Lacrampe
80
$0
solgaleo.pngzygarde.pngtapu-fini.pngincineroar.pngwhimsicott.pngvenusaur.png
15
Nick Navarre
80
$0
groudon.pngxerneas-active.pngclefairy.pngincineroar.pnggothitelle.pngvenusaur.png
16
Giovanni Costa
80
$0
kyogre.pngnecrozma-dusk.pngtapu-fini.pngincineroar.pnglurantis.pngmimikyu.png
17
Matt Alcina
60
$0
kyogre.pngsolgaleo.pngtapu-koko.pngincineroar.pngwhimsicott.pngcelesteela.png
18
Justin Crubaugh
60
$0
solgaleo.pngzygarde.pngtapu-fini.pngincineroar.pngtoxicroak.pngvenusaur.png
19
Myles Kristalovich
60
$0
groudon.pngyveltal.pngtapu-koko.pngincineroar.pngcrobat.pngstakataka.png
20
Manuel Zungia
60
$0
kyogre.pngsolgaleo.pngtapu-koko.pngincineroar.pngtsareena.pngtornadus.png
21
Alberto Lara
60
$0
solgaleo.pngxerneas-active.pngtapu-koko.pngincineroar.pngtsareena.pngsalamence.png
22
Raphael Bagara
60
$0
kyogre.pnglunala.pngtapu-lele.pngincineroar.pngclefairy.pngkartana.png
23
David Kappele
60
$0
kyogre.pngho-oh.pngtapu-koko.pngvenusaur.pngferrothorn.pngludicolo.png
24
Stefan Smigoc
60
$0
groudon.pngho-oh.pngtapu-lele.pngincineroar.pngwhimsicott.pngludicolo.png
25
Gunnar Sverdup
60
$0
kyogre.pngxerneas-active.pngamoonguss.pngincineroar.pngkartana.pngludicolo.png
26
Andrew Weaver
60
$0
groudon.pngyveltal.pngtapu-koko.pngincineroar.pngvictreebel.pngstakataka.png
27
Ryosuke Kondo
60
$0
groudon.pngkyogre.pngtapu-koko.pngincineroar.pngkartana.pngtornadus.png
28
Randy Kwa
60
$0
kyogre.pngnecrozma-dusk.pngtogekiss.pngincineroar.pngkartana.pngludicolo.png
29
Patrick Donegan
60
$0
lunala.pngxerneas-active.pngsmeargle.pngincineroar.pngtoxicroak.pngcrobat.png
30
Tyler Bennett
60
$0
groudon.pngxerneas-active.pngtapu-fini.pngincineroar.pngcrobat.pngkartana.png
31
Hector Vargas
60
$0
kyogre.pnglunala.pngtapu-koko.pngtapu-lele.pngamoonguss.pngkartana.png
32
Dustin Lam
60
$0
lunala.pngxerneas-active.pngtapu-koko.pngincineroar.pngsmeargle.pngkartana.png

Usage Stats

Usage
%
Pokémon
26
81%
incineroar.png
16
50%
kyogre.png
13
40%
xerneas-active.png
12
37%
kartana.png
11
34%
tapu-koko.png
9
28%
groudon.png
8
25%
lunala.png
7
21%
ludicolo.pngstakataka.pngvenusaur.png
6
18%
tapu-fini.pngsmeargle.pngtoxicroak.png
5
15%
solgaleo.pngamoonguss.pngtornadus.pngclefairy.pngcrobat.png
4
12%
yveltal.pngtapu-lele.png
3
9%
zygarde.pngho-oh.png
2
6%
necrozma-dusk.pngferrothorn.pngtsareena.png
1
3%
reshiram.pnggothitelle.pnglandorus-therian.pnglurantis.pngmimikyu.pngcelesteela.pngsalamence.pngvictreebel.pngtogekiss.pnghitmontop.png