VGC 2017 Pokemon Spotlight #1: Garchomp

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You may remember that for last season, I did a Pokemon Spotlight series where the goal was to cover a Pokemon and tell you everything you need to know about it. Well, today I'm bringing it back. The overall goal is to cover a Pokemon in the VGC 2017 metagame and essentially try to cover all information that you need to know about it. Today, I wanna talk about Garchomp. Hope you enjoy and let's begin and talk about its base stats.

Video recorded based off of this information: here

Base Stats
Inline image 1
Looking at its stats, its stats are really well-rounded. 108/95/85 is pretty bulky and it also allows Garchomp to take the necessary hits it needs to. A base 130 Attack stat is honestly very strong as with its move pool, it allows Garchomp to hit very hard with some very powerful moves. It's 80 Sp. Attack stat is pretty threatening, but without strong special attacking moves, it can't run a fully special set, but a mixed attacking set is an option. Its 102 speed stat makes it fast, as in a slower metagame, it allows Garchomp to outspeed many prominent Pokemon.

Now it's time to go into some moves that Garchomp will be commonly seen with and the logic behind them.
  1. Dragon Claw - Strong STAB Dragon type move
  2. Earthquake - Strong STAB Ground type spread move
  3. Protect - A way to shield Garchomp from attacks
  4. Rock Slide - Strong spread rock type move, which is great for flinching the opponent.
  5. Poison Jab - Useful for hitting the Tapu Pokémon for super-effective damage.
  6. Draco Meteor - Great to take advantage of that decent special attack stat
  7. Stone Edge - Useful Rock type move to bypass Wide Guard
  8. Iron Head - Strong Steel type move to hit Fairy type Pokemon
  9. Swords Dance - Useful to get an attack boost to do more damage
  10. Fire Fang / Flamethrower / Fire Blast - Fire type coverage moves
Now it's time to go into some sample sets that I recommend trying out for yourself.

Garchomp @ Focus Sash
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Earthquake
- Dragon Claw
- Rock Slide / Poison Jab
- Protect

This is a very standard Garchomp set, meant to do damage real quickly before fainting. The moves is very standard, but also very effective. Earthquake and Dragon Claw are your STAB moves, and also the most reliable ones for Garchomp. The 3rd slot is flexible with Rock Slide and Poison Jab. Rock Slide is useful to hit things like Celesteela and flying types, while Poison Jab is good for hitting the Tapu Pokemon, but it all depends on your team. If you have enough ways to deal with the Tapus, then Rock Slide is the best option for that 3rd slot, while if you're worried about the Tapus, then Poison Jab is the best option. The EV Spread is a simple hit hard and hit fast set, which is why the Focus Sash is the best option for this set. I recommend trying it if you want to a simple, easy to use Garchomp set as its the most consistent of the 2.

Garchomp @ Assault Vest
Ability: Rough Skin
EVs: 12 HP / 236 Atk / 4 Def / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Claw
- Earthquake
- Rock Slide
- Poison Jab

This is an Assault Vest Garchomp. This set from a video done by Miguel Marti de La Torre (Sekiam), who used this Garchomp to win the London International. I'll link his video here, although its in Spanish, so I hope you can speak the language, but the sets are in English so that's good.  The EV Spread from my understanding, allows Garchomp to take certain hits better like Tapu Lele's Moonblast and Tapu Koko's Dazzling Gleam. In his video, he neglected to show 8 EVs on his Garchomp, so I put 4 in each defense stat to get an extra stat point. The moveset allows Garchomp to have all 4 attacking moves from the Focus Sash set to be able to hit everything under the Sun.

Items to Consider - Here's some potential items to use on Garchomp
  1. Focus Sash -  Allows Garchomp to take 2 super-effective hits to go down
  2. Groundium Z - Turns Earthquake into Tectonic Rage to knock out threats easily
  3. Assault Vest - Allows Garchomp to take hits it normally wouldn't be able to take
  4. Draconium Z - Turns Dragon Claw into Devastating Drake to knock out threats easily
  5. Yache Berry - Allows Garchomp to take a super-effective Ice type attack with ease
  6. Choice Scarf - Allows Garchomp to outspeed and mainly use Rock Slide to flinch targets
  7. Rocky Helmet - Combos with its Rough Skin ability to severely hurt a Pokemon that makes contact with Garchomp
  8. Lum Berry - Allows Garchomp to shrug off a status condition
Partners for Garchomp - Here's some Pokemon that can help Garchomp or appreciates its help
  1. Tapu Koko - Garchomp's Ground typing allows Tapu Koko to freely use Discharge
  2. Vikavolt - Vikavolt's Levitate ability allows them to perform the DisQuake (Discharge + Earthquake) combination
  3. Celesteela/Gyarados - Their flying typing allows Garchomp to freely use Earthquake while they set-up their own win condition
  4. Pelipper/Aerodactyl - Their flying typing and access to support moves like Wide Guard and Tailwind 
  5. Oranguru - Its Telepathy ability allows Garchomp to Earthquake and has Instruct to have it repeat its last move
  6. Gigalith - Gigalith can provide the Sandstorm to combo with Garchomp's Sand Veil ability 
  7. Kartana - Its Steel typing allows Kartana to help Garchomp deal with the problematic Fairy types
  8. Alolan Ninetales - Has the move Aurora Veil to enhance Garchomp's defensive capabilities

How to beat Garchomp? - Here's some Pokemon that prove troublesome for Garchomp
  1. Tapu Koko -  It can use Fairy and Ice type moves, although Garchomp's Earthquake is something to watch out for
  2. Alolan Ninetales - Since its naturally faster then Garchomp, it can use STAB Ice and Fairy type moves to knock it out
  3. Gyarados - It can Intimidate Garchomp to weaken its damage output and heavily damage Garchomp with Ice Fang
  4. Salamence - It can Intimidate Garchomp to survive Dragon Claw and knock it out with Draco Meteor or Devastating Drake
  5. Tapu Lele/ Tapu Fini - It can knock it out with Moonblast as well as survive Poison Jab
  6. Nihilego - Nihilego commonly carries Hidden Power [Ice] to OHKO Garchomp, although Earthquake is a threat
  7. Porygon2 - Porygon2 can tank what Garchomp has to offer and KO it with Ice Beam
  8. Gastrodon - Gastrodon can take Garchomp moves and KO it with Ice Beam or whittle it down with Scald and Toxic
  9. Arquanid - Arquanid can handle most of Garchomp's moves and KO it with its water type Z-Move
  10. Drampa - Under Trick Room, Drampa threatens Garchomp with its Dragon type moves like Draco Meteor and Dragon Pulse
Hope you enjoyed this. Overall, Garchomp is a very threatening Pokemon and is easy to fit onto most teams. Its decent stat distribution makes it a threat, but different to other formats Garchomp's been viable in, it has more threats to deal with and while it doesn't get a variety of moves, it gets the right ones. Hope you enjoyed this and I'll see you guys next time. Bye! 


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