Top Three Thursday 8/7: Pokémon

While I have Poké Monday to talk about Pokémon, I figured I would make my own personal top three list of Pokémon, mostly because I have no other topic in mind.

3. Nidoking

Before you ask, I am not a genwunner. I don’t discriminate Pokémon by their generation of origin; I accept them the way they are. That aside, the reason why I like Nidoking dates back to the days of FireRed. The first time I played through the game, Nidoking was one of the champions of the Elite Four. Not only that, but I let a friend borrow it so that it was a champion of his Elite Four as well. In addition, it was a key member of my team as I was exploring the post-game Sevii Islands, and one of my first two Level 100s (the other was Mewtwo; I don’t remember the exact order). My moveset back then was Surf, Megahorn, Earthquake, and Brick Break (back then, I only cared about covering weaknesses rather than the viability of movesets).

At present, Nidoking is still a very interesting Pokémon. With Sheer Force and Life Orb, it becomes something to be feared. Its movepool is no joke either; Sludge Wave, Earth Power, Ice Beam, Thunderbolt, Fire Blast, Focus Blast, and Shadow Ball for special sets; Poison Jab, Earthquake (not Sheer Force boosted, but more powerful than boosted Bulldoze), Sucker Punch (again, not boosted, but a good move nonetheless), and elemental punches by 5th gen (and hopefully ORAS) tutor for physical sets. Neither its Speed nor its bulk is much to behold, but Nidoking is still a force to be reckoned with.

2. Gallade

When I first saw Gallade, I was enthralled. “Blades for arms? Man, that’s so cool!” That, in essence, was the thought process going through my former mind. Back when I used Serebii Forums (that place is dead to me now), this Pokémon was the basis for my first username (Super Gallade). I don’t care about its ridiculously large hips; its appearance is aesthetically pleasing.

Looking now at its stats, it’s not that fast and it’s not that bulky (at least not on the physical side), but its Attack stat is nothing to scoff at. It can run Bulk Up well, has access to Taunt and Will-o-wisp as support options, and can hit hard with its repertoire of physical moves: Close Combat, Psycho Cut, elemental punches (by tutor), Shadow Sneak, and Stone Edge, just to name a few. It also has Trick (again, by tutor).

1. Galvantula

One day, since I couldn’t think of a good nickname for Joltik, I decided to look at an online list of foreign Pokémon names. The link I used was:
http://www.pokepedia.fr/index.php/Liste_des_Pok%C3%A9mon_dans_l%27ordre_du_Pok%C3%A9dex_National
(warning: it’s a French website)

On using that list, I found Galvantula’s French name to be Mygavolt (which, in my opinion, is cooler than Galvantula), so I nicknamed it that without second thought. Eventually, it became my username on the Smogon Forums (after I changed it from Newby N0Ob) and Pokémon Showdown, as well as my in-game name in Pokémon Y (although I don’t really play that anymore).

Besides its French name, what drew me to Galvantula was its unique Bug/Electric typing and access to the ability Compound Eyes and the move Thunder. Its stats are that of a special sweeper, although they are mediocre by competitive standards (it has the 37th highest Special Attack stat and the 25th highest Speed stat in the game). Despite that, its Smogon official tier is UU. Why? Because of a new move called Sticky Web. Galvantula is the fastest Pokémon with access to Sticky Web and, as a bonus, the only one that can’t get paralyzed (being Electric-type). As an offensive presence, it seems to compete with Leavanny as a Sticky Web user, but it ultimately wins out due to its superior coverage. Point is, Galvantula is an offensive Sticky Web user.

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