Rhydon (Poké Monday 2/8/16)

This site is being rather idiotic in terms of updating the date of my draft (whereas it would usually update the date compliantly once I published it), so I had to repost it so that it would actually update instead of showing a date earlier than the current date. *sigh* Technology…

 Screen Shot 2016-01-24 at 4.22.53 PM

Tier: NU
Type: Ground/Rock
Base Stats: 105 HP, 130 Atk, 120 Def, 45 Sp.Atk, 45 Sp.Def, 40 Speed
Abilities: Lightning Rod, Rock Head, Reckless (hidden)

Usable moves: Ancient Power, Aqua Tail, Avalanche, Blizzard, Body Slam, Brick Break, Crunch, Double-Edge, Dragon Pulse, Dragon Tail, Drill Run, Earth Power, Earthquake, Façade, Fire Blast, Fire Fang, Fire Punch, Flamethrower, Focus Blast, Frustration, Hammer Arm, Hidden Power (Fighting, Grass), Ice Beam, Ice Fang, Ice Punch, Megahorn, Outrage, Poison Jab, Power-Up Punch, Protect, Rest, Return, Roar, Rock Blast, Rock Polish, Rock Slide, Seismic Toss, Shadow Claw, Sleep Talk, Stealth Rock, Stone Edge, Substitute, Superpower, Surf, Swords Dance, Thunder, Thunderbolt, Thunder Punch, Toxic


Rhydon is the most physically bulky Pokémon in NU; with base 105 HP and base 120 Defense backed with Eviolite, not even Regirock trumps it in this department. (In higher tiers, however, Rhyperior with Solid Rock takes super-effective hits slightly better.) It also has a combination of STABs (the notorious EdgeQuake) that hits a majority of the tier neutrally, backed with a nice base 130 Attack that can be further boosted with Swords Dance, making it a very strong offensive threat.

However, Rhydon is not without its drawbacks. First off, its Ability choices are basically useless—Lightning Rod doesn’t do justice for its petty Special Attack stat (and it’s immune to Electric anyway, outside of Inverse Battles and being affected by Soak), Reckless isn’t even legal with Double-Edge, and, even though Double-Edge with Rock Head may seem appealing, there is no justification to running it over a move that could deal super-effective damage on something that its dual STABs can’t (like Megahorn for bulky Grass- and Psychic-types, notably Torterra and Claydol). Second, its typing gives it many common weaknesses, including Fighting, Ground, Ice, and especially Water and Grass. Third, its Special Defense is not nearly as stellar as its physical Defense, meaning that special attacks will wear it down before long. Fourth, its lack of reliable recovery is a notable hindrance to its defensive capabilities. Fifth and foremost, its Speed is quite sappy, even for the slow side of the tier, and it needs Rock Polish to patch this up.

So, what are its main roles? It hits hard, and it can set up with boosting moves like Rock Polish and Swords Dance, or simply get up Stealth Rock. In spite of its common weaknesses, it also has some common resistances—such as Fire, Flying, and Rock—that it can use to its advantage alongside its respectable bulk with Eviolite and potentially grant itself an opportunity to set up and/or deal damage. Unfortunately, if it decides to go the boosting route, it can only choose one of Attack or Speed every turn, meaning that Shell Smash users like Barbaracle and Omastar, as well as Klinklang with Shift Gear, have the advantage in this department, especially with their superior Speed stats. In terms of setting up Stealth Rock, there are many other notable users, but Rhydon’s niche lies in having a great dual STAB combination and being one of the hardest-hitting Stealth Rock users in the tier (only outmatched by Archeops and the less useful Rampardos and Gigalith in terms of damage output), as well as having respectable bulk so that it can take at least one hit from almost anything without Grass or Water coverage.

As a whole, Rhydon is definitely a lower-tier Pokémon worth consideration and possibly the best tank in NU.

Set 1: Boosting Sweeper

Rhydon @ Eviolite
Ability: Lightning Rod
EVs: 252 Atk / 40 SpD / 216 Spe
Jolly Nature
– Earthquake
– Stone Edge
– Rock Polish
– Swords Dance

With its threatening base 130 Attack and great coverage with its dual STABs, Rhydon can choose to use one (or both if it’s lucky enough) of its boosting moves in Rock Polish and Swords Dance to patch up its Speed or further enhance its offensive prowess, respectively. Eviolite enhances its bulk, and Lightning Rod is its only remotely useful Ability choice. EVs are fully invested in Attack, with enough Speed to outspeed max Speed Sceptile after a Rock Polish, and the remaining EVs are used to patch up its feeble Special Defense. (Alternatively, it could run 252/8/248 to creep past Modest Choice Scarf Mesprit.)

As an alternative to Swords Dance, Megahorn can be used on this set to more easily OHKO Sceptile and deal more damage than a +2 STAB move of choice to the likes of Torterra and Claydol.

Set 2: Stealth Rock Setter

Rhydon @ Eviolite
Ability: Lightning Rod
EVs: 252 HP / 16 Atk / 240 SpD
Adamant Nature
– Stealth Rock
– Earthquake
– Rock Blast
– Megahorn

This is a set taken straight out of the Smogon Strategy Pokédex. Max HP improves its bulk, 16 Attack EVs let it reach a point where it would have 2 fewer Attack points with 4 fewer EVs invested, and the rest is dumped into Special Defense to patch it up. The premise of the set is to set up Stealth Rock and hit hard with its offensive options. Rock Blast allows it to break through Substitute and Sash users, but Stone Edge is an alternative for a better expected damage output. Megahorn allows it to hit Torterra and Claydol super-effectively.

Other Options

Fire Punch is the only way Rhydon can 2HKO Ferroseed without any boosts, but it serves no purpose otherwise. Other than that, no other options are worth running.

Sample Team

http://pastebin.com/S3af3TrW – Odd as it is, even though I have two sets listed, I will only provide one sample team (containing the first set). I haven’t done this since my Litleo analysis, but I am a bit pressed for time and therefore cannot be bothered teambuilding with the second set.

This team contains:

  • Rhydon (set 1 above)
  • Rotom for dealing with Water-types, Volt Switching around, and doing Scarf stuff
  • Ferroseed for hazards and comfortably taking hits from Water- and Grass-types
  • Audino for clerical support
  • Hitmonchan for hazard control and priority
  • Pyroar for obliterating Grass-types and raw Speed in case Rotom has Tricked away its Scarf

Feedback is always appreciated!

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