VGC 2019 Pokémon Spotlight #1 – Dusk Mane Necrozma

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Dusk Mane Necrozma has certainly proven itself to be a very powerful Pokemon in VGC 2019. While the format is very new, this Pokemon has proven to be one of the most popular Restricted Pokemon and this article will look into as to why if you aren't using it, you should at the very least prepare for Dusk Mane Necrozma when competing. Hope you enjoy!

Ability, Base Stats, and Typing


ABILITY
Prism Armor – "Reduces damage from super effective moves by 25% (regardless of the effectiveness multiplier). It's not negated by the effects of the abilities Mold Breaker, Teravolt, and Turoblaze or the moves Moongeist Beam and Sunsteel Strike." This is a great ability as it can help against Necrozma's weaknesses to Dark, Fire, Ghost, and Ground-type moves which means Necrozma should be able to survive attacks it otherwise couldn't.

BASE STATS
97 HP / 127 Defense / 109 Sp. Defense should allow Necrozma should survive some very powerful moves. This also means it will have a hard time going down in 1 hit thanks to its bulk and ability. 157 Attack / 113 Sp. Attack is also very respectful as in theory, Necrozma could operate as both a physical and special attacker, but you should expect a physical set much more often. 77 speed is a bit depressing, but if you support it with speed control like Tailwind and Trick Room, you can make it with work.

TYPING
Psychic/Steel is a great typing defensively. Being able to switch into 10 types thanks to resisting 9 (Dragon, Fairy, Flying, Grass, Ice, Normal, Rock, Steel, and Psychic) and immune to the other 1 in Poison can allow Dusk Mane Necrozma to have a pretty reliable way of switching into a lot of Pokemon and attacks. Only being weak to 4 types in Dark, Fire, Ghost, & Ground in combination with its Prism Armor ability is helpful to allow this Pokemon to take hits very well.

Notable Moves

Sunsteel Strike
Photon Geyser
Protect
Trick Room
Knock Off
Substitute

Dusk Mane Necrozma's move plays into its strengths as a physical attacker. Sunsteel Strike is your best Steel-type move which is mainly for the Fairy-types such as Xerneas and the Tapus. Photon Geyser is great to threaten Poison-types such as Amoonguss and Toxicroak for super-effective damage. Trick Room is great to support your slower Pokemon as being able to threaten your opponent. Most of the time you set Trick Room, it won't necessarily be for your Necrozma but thanks to your base 77 speed stat, Necrozma could work under Trick Room.

Knock Off is a more niche option which is great since 99% of the items you'll fight can be removed by Knock Off which is helpful. Substitute is very interesting and great to take advantage of your great bulk and typing. In an ideal situation, a free substitute can put you in a much better situation which is huge.


Notable Items


Weakness Policy
Pinch Berries
Psychic Seed
Safety Goggles

The most popular item in Weakness Policy takes advantage of its great bulk in typing. Something most players will do is use a very weak super-effective attack on Necrozma to activate the Weakness Policy to give it a +2 Attack and Sp. Attack to allow it to sweep through teams. Pinch berries are great for increasing your longevity. The truth is most attacks, in general, will only do enough to activate your berry which means you can regain most of that damage taken to stay around longer and wreck more havoc to your opponent.

Psychic Seed is more niche and at the time of writing, is ranked #3 in usage on Pikalytics with 9.7% usage. The idea is to increase your Sp. Defense when it touches the Psychic Terrain. With this boost, you can tank a lot of big special moves like Xerneas' Moonblast / Dazzling Gleam, Kyogre's Rain-boosted Water Spout / Origin Pulse and the other powerful special moves that don't see as much use as the other ones listed above. Safety Googles is mainly to block Spore from Smeargle and Amoonguss. Not getting put to sleep by Amoonguss means you can very easily wall it as you're immune to its Poison-type moves and resist the Grass-type moves.


Set #1 – Weakness Policy


Necrozma-Dusk-Mane @ Weakness Policy
Ability: Prism Armor
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Atk / 4 SpD
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Sunsteel Strike
- Photon Geyser
- Trick Room
- Protect

This set revolves around activating your Weakness Policy if possible. The goal is to survive hits to allow your Necrozma to get it to activate to give +2 in Attack and Sp. Attack to allow you to sweep through your opponents. The EV Spread is very standard. Max HP and Attack gives Necrozma a balance between its bulk and power to accomplish its job. A Brave Nature with 0 Speed IVs works once you set Trick Room which allows you to be as slow as possible to sweep under Trick Room.

Your attacking moves are pretty cut and dry. Thanks to max attack, Sunsteel Strike hits the maximum amount of damage to Fairy types like Xerneas and the Tapus while Photon Geyser is doing the maximum amount of damage to Poison like Amoonguss and Fighting-types like Hitmontop.


Set #2 – Figy Berry + Substitute



Necrozma-Dusk-Mane @ Figy Berry
Ability: Prism Armor  
Level: 50  
EVs: 172 HP / 108 Atk / 44 Def / 52 SpD / 132 Spe  
Adamant Nature  
- Sunsteel Strike  
- Photon Geyser  
- Substitute  
- Protect

This set is designed to take advantage of your strong bulk and typing to survive hits. The first big damage calc is Necrozma is able to survive Modest Kyogre's Water Spout in Rain which is very helpful as Modest Choice Scarf Kyogre is one of the most common sets during the Sun Series. This works in combination with the Figy Berry because it allows Necrozma to take a very powerful hit then regain 50% HP to survive other hits as well. Sunsteel Strike onto 4 HP Xerneas is a guaranteed OHKO while a +2 Timid Moonblast has a 98.4% chance to 2HKO and a +2 Timid Dazzling Gleam has a 63.9% chance to 3HKO which allows Necrozma a viable way to defeat Xerneas. Photon Geyser will KO most Amoonguss that either isn't physically defensive or holding a Payapa Berry, the latter has been seeing an increase in popularity.

The moves are pretty simple. Sunsteel Strike and Photon Geyser are your main attacking moves. Sunsteel Strike is mainly for Pokemon like Xerneas and the Tapus which should be a safe 2HKO on these Pokemon. Photon Geyser is mainly for is great to hit Pokemon like Amoonguss, Hitmontop, and Toxicroak for super-effective damage. The 3rd slot in Substitute is a personal favorite because it allows you to take advantage of your great bulk and typing to stay around even longer with the sub up. The ideal turn for this is you get to set the Substitute up with no issues mainly because you took no damage up that turn to accomplish this. It's even better if setting the sub activates your Figy Berry because you regain health to get it up.

Support Dusk Mane Necrozma

Incineroar is useful to give Dusk Mane Necrozma something it wants, Fake Out to set Trick Room or try to get a KO as well as Intimidate to help it survive hits it otherwise wouldn't. Incineroar being a part Dark type is helpful to combat the Ghost-types Necrozma is weak to as well which is very helpful.


Kyogre's Drizzle ability is helpful because it allows Dusk Mane Necrozma to have a better chance to survive Fire-type moves. It can also use its powerful Rain-boosted Water-type moves to KO powerful Fire and Ground types like Incineroar and Groudon.

Tapu Lele's Psychic Surge ability is great because the psychic terrain it sets can power up Necrozma's Photon Geyser. This is similar to the strategy from 2017 and 2018 with Tapu Lele/Metagross to threaten many teams with powerful Psychic-type moves which were great at tearing through its opponents.

Beating Dusk Mane Necrozma


Incineroar is a nightmare for Dusk Mane Necrozma. Both its Fire and Dark-type STAB moves can hit Necrozma for super-effective damage while Necrozma's Photon Geyser, which it's immune to and Sunsteel Strike, which it resists. This makes it hard for Necrozma to really threaten Incineroar and just becomes a free KO for Incineroar.


Groudon can be annoying for Dusk Mane Necrozma as its STAB Ground-type moves in Precipice Blades and Stomping Tantrum can do a large amount of damage. Groudon will fear a Photon Geyser, but for Necrozma to beat Groudon, it will need some help or to simply out-damage Groudon.


Both Lunala and Dawn Wings Necrozma are in the same camp due to both having access to the super-effective Moongeist Beam. This is great because it allows them to effectively deal with Dusk Mane Necrozma.


Yveltal's Dark Aura boosted STAB Dark moves can hit Dusk Mane Necrozma for super-effective damage. Moves like Knock Off, Sucker Punch, Foul Play, and Dark Pulse can all majorly threaten Necrozma while its only real defense is Sunsteel Strike which isn't gonna do enough damage without the Weakness Policy to be threatening.


The final Pokemon in Solgaleo is notable because of its access to the super-effective Fire-type move Flare Blitz. This is notable because of Solgaleo's Full Metal Body ability which means you can't lower its stats so you can't lower its attacking power while Dusk Mane Necrozma only move that you'll probably see that could hit Solgaleo for super-effective damage is Knock Off which is only on 13% of all Dusk Mane Necrozma on BattleSpot at the time of writing this.

Conclusion

Thanks to its great bulk, offensive power, and typing, Dusk Mane Necrozma is going to be a very powerful Pokemon this season. If you're running Xerneas and see this Pokemon, you're going to want to stock up on Dusk Mane Necrozma answers and conserve them to make sure they can do their job and deal with Necrozma. Expect Dusk Mane Necrozma to be a Top 5 Restricted Pokemon Sun Series and maybe even in the Moon and Ultra Series as well.

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

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