VGC 2018 Pokemon Spotlight #9: Amoonguss

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In the VGC 2018 Pokemon Spotlight, we look at a Pokemon that's doing well in the format and take a closer look at that Pokemon. Today we'll be looking at Amoonguss, a Pokemon that has always been a mainstay in every VGC format it's been allowed in always doing well at the World Championships for very good reasons so let's take a look as to why it's doing well in 2018.

Basic Information



The Grass and Poison typing is commonly seen with the bulkier Pokemon in VGC like Mega Venusaur. The Poison typing in particular has become much more desirable on teams because of the presence of the Tapu Pokemon which means most teams can be found with at least one fairy type while some opt for two or even three. This means Amoonguss can always find itself being helpful. Its Grass typing however has been relegated to a more defensive role thanks to more and more Amoonguss dropping a grass type attack. While this is happening, resistances to common types such as Water and Ground can make Amoonguss a very strong defensive pivot for teams. Weaknesses to the very common Psychic type has hurt Amoonguss since most teams run at least one Psychic type such as Tapu Lele and Metagross who love their Psychic type moves like Psychic and Zen Headbutt respectively.

Amoonguss has some really strong stats to further strengthen its role as a defensive Pokemon. 114 HP / 70 Def / 80 SpD can allow Amoonguss to switch-in to neutral hits without taking too much damage. This is further supported by its Regenerator ability which means Amoonguss can switch-out and not restore some of the damage it already took. Its Sp. Attack may not be high, but its good enough to where Amoonguss can use it enough to make an impact when dealing damage. A low speed stat can allow Amoonguss to become very annoying under Trick Room.

Notable Moves


Giga DrainClear Smog
Rage Powder
SporeProtect
Sludge Bomb
Energy BallFoul PlaySunny Day


Amoonguss has access to some pretty strong moves to help support its team. Giga Drain is a consistent grass move that can be helpful to gain health while still dealing damage. Energy Ball can be a strong alternative that forfeits the healing aspect of Giga Drain but instead deals more damage. Its poison option is between Clear Smog and Sludge Bomb with Clear Smog being really helpful for Pokemon like Snorlax and Tyranitar, 2 Pokemon that love increasing its offensive stats which Clear Smog will rest these boosts, or you can go with Sludge Bomb for more damage.

Spore has been a staple on Amoonguss because its slow speed allows it to put a Pokemon to sleep which if that Pokemon has already attacked, they'll be forced to take its mandatory first turn of sleep. Rage Powder has also been a favorite because it allows Amoonguss to redirect single target attacks not used by Grass types away from its partner which its bulk allows it to survive these hits. Protect is great for shielding against attacks and weakening the power of Z-moves. Foul Play can be a niche option for taking advantage of Pokemon with high attack stats by dealing even more damage to them. Sunny Day is great for helping out your fire types increase their damage output. This move was used by Shoma Honami (@SHADEviera) on his 2015 Worlds winning Amoonguss.

Notable Items

Rocky HelmetIapapa Berry
Wiki Berry
Aguav BerrySitrus Berry


Amoonguss' best items are defensive due to its supportive nature. Rocky Helmet has been very helpful to allow opponents since if a Pokemon uses Fake Out, they'll take recoil damage which can deter them from using physical moves on your Amoonguss. Amoonguss has always loved the healing berries due to how they can help extend its longevity. Being able to have an item that can give it free health when you've taken damage can be very helpful. Iapapa, Wiki, and Aguav can heal more but when at 25% health or lower while Sitrus is a safer option when it drops under 50% health.

Sample Set #1: Specially Defensive

Amoonguss  sprite from Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire
Amoonguss @ Wiki Berry
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 236 HP / 84 Def / 188 SpD
Sassy Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Sludge Bomb / Giga Drain / Clear Smog
- Spore
- Rage Powder
- Protect

The first set is a specially defensive Amoonguss that aims to take advantage of the many special based hits in the format. Its moves are pretty straight forward with Spore to put Pokemon to sleep and thanks to being very slow, the Pokemon it puts to sleep won't be able to attack the next turn, Rage Powder for redirection which can be very helpful on teams that need Amoonguss to soak up hits or even sacrifice itself, and Protect to shield against attacks that Amoonguss won't be able to survive. Your main attacking option should be tailored to what you need Amoonguss to do. Sludge Bomb is for if you want Amoonguss to make use of its Poison type to threaten opposing fairy types like the Tapus but if your more worried on putting a stop to the rampant use of set-up in the 2018 format, you can use Clear Smog to get rid of those stat boosts. Giga Drain has always been common on Amoonguss since Grass coverage is amazing to threaten the bulky Water types like Tapu Fini and Suicune.

The EV Spread allows Amoonguss to survive 252 SpA Mega Charizard Y's Heat Wave in the Sun which means you can eat your berry and put Charizard back to sleep. The remaining EVs were dumped into defense for general physical bulk. The speed IV is interesting because what it means is Amoonguss will speed-tie with the really slow Snorlax so it could have a chance to put them to sleep or Clear Smog to get rid of the Belly Drum attack boosts.

Sample Set #2: Physically Defensive

Amoonguss  sprite from Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire
Amoonguss @ Iapapa Berry
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 244 HP / 196 Def / 68 SpD
Relaxed Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Clear Smog / Sludge Bomb / Giga Drain
- Spore
- Rage Powder
- Protect

This second set is more physically defensive which can be helpful you need your Amoonguss to take some major physical hits. The moves are exactly the same from the first set because these moves are really safe to run on Amoonguss. Its EVs mean this Amoonguss survives 252+ SpA Tapu Lele's Psychic, 252 Atk Tough Claws Mega Metagross' Zen Headbutt, 252+ Atk Landorus-Therian's Tectonic Rage (180 BP), and 252+ SpA Pelipper's Hurricane to name a few notable moves Amoonguss can survive. What all of this means is that Amoonguss can become a reliable defensive pivot.

Possible Partners for Amoonguss

Set-Up Pokemon

azumarill.png snorlax.png tyranitar-mega.png gyarados-mega.png charizard-mega-x.png
Access to Rage Powder can help Pokemon that love to set-up and increase their stats. Azumarill and Snorlax can easily use Belly Drum to maximize its attack stat thanks to Amoonguss while Mega Tyranitar, Mega Gyarados, and Mega Charizard X can use Dragon Dance to increase both its attack and speed. What Amoonguss does for all 5 of these Pokemon is it makes it easier for these Pokemon to become bigger threats.

Trick Room Setters

cresselia.png porygon2.png gothitelle.png mimikyu.png
Amoonguss can use Rage Powder to help Cresselia, Porygon2, Gothitelle, and Mimikyu use Trick Room. A problematic Taunt, Spore, or any attack that might KO the Trick Room user can be redirected into Amoonguss so they can accomplish their job.

How to beat Amoonguss

Flying Types

salamence-mega.png landorus-therian.png pelipper.png
Since Amoonguss is weak to flying type attacks, they can prove to be an issue. Mega Salamence can use multiple powerful flying type moves like Hyper Voice and Double-Edge thanks to its Aerilate ability. Landorus-Therian can use flying type moves thanks to the addition of Z-moves so it can learn Fly into its Z-move equivalent to KO Amoonguss. Pelipper can use Hurricane to threaten a KO on Amoonguss and thanks to its Drizzle ability, it can turn Hurricane into a 100% accurate move.

Psychic Types

tapu-lele.png gardevoir-mega.png cresselia.png metagross-mega.png
Amoonguss is also weak to Psychic type moves. Tapu Lele, Mega Gardevoir, and Cresselia can use the 2 main special Psychic type moves in Psyshock and Psychic to threaten big damage on Amoonguss which can even KO it at times while Mega Metagross can threaten it with Zen Headbutt.

Fire Types

charizard-mega-y.png heatran.png volcarona.png charizard-mega-x.png incineroar.png entei.png
Amoonguss' weakness to fire type moves can allow these 6 main fire types to exploit this. A Flamethrower, Heat Wave, or Overheat from Mega Charizard Y, Heatran, and Volcarona can threaten KOs on Amoonguss. On the physical side, a power Flare Blitz from Mega Charizard X and Incineroar or a Sacred Fire from Entei can threaten Amoonguss.

Conclusion

Thanks to its reliable stats, great supportive and offensive moves, and ability to support its overall team, Amoonguss has become a reliable support Pokemon on teams ever since its first season in 2011 and has continued to be this way ever since then as proven by how Amoonguss has made at least the Top 8 at the World Championships every year its been legal since then. I hope you enjoyed this article. Check back to the Nimbasa City Post for more VGC related content. 

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