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[VGC] Bastiodon is Better Than Rampardos?! - with 0kamii
#1
[Image: tumblr_mp4fkhDbhB1r5fhkdo1_500.gif]
Hey, everybody! It's 0kamii, back with yet another VGC analysis of an underused mon. Gees, I'm probably going to get crucified for this...

I know that I, like many people, were very disappointed in my analysis of Rampardos. I wanted my favorite fossil pokemon to be good so badly, but it just didn't make the cut no matter which way I reserached it. As a result, I sort of developed a minor grudge against my beloved Pachycephalosaurid. In doing so (as a joke mind you), I started looking into its more defensice counterpart to try and make myself feel better. But...as the universe would have it...I was wrong. As it turns out, Bastiodon is not only better than Rampardos in VGC 2017, but it also might just be the primary Tapu Killer that many VGC players are looking for. How is that you ask? Well, I'll say it early: stick with me through this one you guys! Bastiodon is far from perfect, and I'll be the first to say that testing with one of these on my team was gimmicky at best. However, I wouldn't have proceeded with this analysis if I didn't think I found any information worth sharing. So bare with me, and let's see just what the Shield Pokemon can do!

Type:

This fossil pokemon from Sinnoh comes packing one of the most delightfully contradictory Types in all of Pokemon. In this metagame specifically, Steel-Type has a huge advantage because of all the Tapus running around, especially Koko and Lele. Not only that, but Steel-Types in competitive play in general usually start with an advantage becuase of their abundant resistance. Bastiodon specifically comes packing eight resistances (Normal, Flying, Rock, Bug, Psychic, Ice, Dragon, and Fairy). However, there's a reason I describe Bastiodon's Type as contradictory. You see, Bastiodon's secondary type is Steel. Its primary type is Rock. Rock would be useful in this metagame against the every present Arcanine, Mandibuzz, Drifblim, and Alolan Ninetales, the problem however is that both of these types are on the same pokemon. And not just that, they share weaknesses. Rock and Steel are both weak to Fighting and Ground-Type attacks, making our bastion here 4x weak to two of the most common attacking types in the metagame. Fighting less so, but basically everyone that can know Earthquake does. Even with spread damage, the Assault Vest, Choice Scarf, and Groundium Z variants of Garchomp get at least a 62.5% chance to OHKO Bastiodon. And virtually anything from common Fighting-Types like Buzzwole and now Poliwrath are a guaranteed OHKO. This means one of two things. You either need an Air Balloon 100% of the time, or you have to be pretty self-destructive to try and make Bastiodon useful. Luckily for all of you, I just happen to have tried both.

Stats:
 
HP: 60 (120 - 167)
Attack: 52 (51 - 144)
Defense: 168 (155 - 242)
Sp. Attack: 47 (46 - 108)
Sp. Defense: 138 (128 - 209)
Speed: 30 (31 - 90)
 
Much like Rampardos, I think Bastiodon's strength is pretty obvious. This triceratops want-to-be comes packing a base 168 Defense and 138 Sp. Defense. That's really all you need to know, especially since the only reason I even considered Bastiodon's viability was because of the Guardian Deities. Its HP, with maximum invested can rech 167, and you are going to need every point, believe me. Another thing that I think is noteworthy is Bastiodon's Speed. At Base 30, it's one of the slowest mons in the metagame, only getting undersped by the likes of Gigalith and Torkoal. It does Speed-tie with Snorlax though, so just be wary of that. Its Attack at Base 52 is enough to do a little bit of damage, but in my testing the last thing Bastiodon should be doing is direct damage, but we'll get into that as soon as we get to its moveset. For now, Bastiodon can take a hit from just about anything thanks to its monstrous defense stats. Again, just be very careful around Earthquake users and Fighting-Types...or should you?

Abilities:

I'm going to keep the section on Bastiodon's abilities very short because there really isn't any excuse for you to be using Soundproof over Sturdy. Sturdy is by far the best ability, as it helps to negate Bastiodon's 4x weaknesses. Soundproof is just too situational to be used in this metagame, and I don't think there are any prominent sound-based moves that we should be watching out for anyway. So yeah, Sturdy is Bastiodon's best ability. If you want to use one with Soundproof then 1) good luck finding one and 2) I suggest you play in Singles where moves like Hyper Voice, Bug Buzz, and Roar are more common.

Movepool:

I mentioned earlier that Bastiodon shouldn't be doing any direct damage once it hits the field, and I stand by that. I say so because Bastiodon's movepool is full of supportive tactics that, if used properly, can really do some damage. I dare say that if you play your cards right, you might even be able to take out two of your opponent's four mons before Bastiodon goes down. Here's why. Bastiodon's attacking movepool is filled with useful moves like Earthquake, Rock Slide, Stone Edge, Iron Head, and Heavy Slam. Obviously, Heavy Slam won't pack as much of a punch as it would coming from Celesteela, but it's still interesting to note that Bastiodon gets it. But the main reason I would classify Bastiodon as a tactful pokemon as opposed to a supportive one is because of one little move that it gets. And that move is Metal Burst. Again, stick with me please. Metal Burst, aside from being a really cool band name, activates if the opponent has done damage to Bastiodon that turn and fires back 1.5x the damage. So basically, if your opponent gets cocky and uses Earthquake on your pokemon, Sturdy activates, Metal Burst goes off, and they just lost their sweeper. Win! It requires a bit of prediction, but doesn't everything in competitive pokemon? Regardless, Metal Burst is going to be a must on Bastiodon, especially in a metagame where people think it's a giant, rectangular-faced target. I think Metal Burst will be a nasty surprise, and in all of my testing, no one saw it coming. By the time Metal Burst went off, it was too late for whatever attacked it. Since Metal Burst can't carry Bastiodon on its own, other notable moves in Bastiodon's movepool are Toxic, Wide Guard, Guard Split, Protect, Taunt, and Torment. Fiddle around with any combination of these at your own discretion.

Overall:

Like I said earlier, I started researching Bastiodon as a joke. I never actually thought it could have potential. I guess even in all my years of playing pokemon, some of these obscure little critters find ways to surprise me. I still think that while Bastiodon may have potential, it's probably underused for a reason. Unlike some of the other mons I've researched for this series, Bastiodon has seen zero competitive use in the past. We've seen Emolga, we've seen Alomomola, we've seen Swift Swim pokemon like Poliwrath. But Bastiodon? Well, we'll just have to see if there's truly anything worth its salt here. Below I've the usual list of sets and partner recommendations, and I'll provide the link to the damage calculator to nullify any doubt about Bastiodon's ability to take hits: (https://pokemonshowdown.com/damagecalc/).

The Sets:
 
Set 1
[Image: bastiodon.png]
Nature: Careful (+Sp. Def/-Sp. Atk)
Ability: Sturdy
Item: Air Balloon
EVs: 252 HP/ 4 Def/ 252 Sp. Def
Moveset:
Protect
Metal Burst
Toxic/Taunt
Wide Guard
 
I think this is going to be the most viable set that Bastiodon can surmise. It requires quite a bit of predicting skills to use properly, which again, I don't have. However, the handful of times I did manage to click moves at the right time, the opponent was utterly flustered when their mons went down to a move they'd never seen before. Protect is standard in Double battles, and Metal Burst as aforementioned is crucial to Bastiodon's viability. Toxic is there for utility, as Bastiodon won't be doing any serious damage outside of Metal Burst. It really helps to whittle the opponent down over time. Taunt also found some success in stoppping opponent from using moves like Curse, Recover, Trick Room, and Helping Hand in the case of Arcanine. Use either one depending on your play style or against whom you're going up. Never both, though. And lastly, Wide Guard is a major asset to Bastiodon. It stops moves like Earthquake from touching the Shield Pokemon, and gives its Air Balloon an extra turn before it pops. Getting Wide Guard on Bastiodon is a pain, but it's well worth it. You need to get a Tirtouga, teach it Wide Guard, breed that onto a Mudkip, and then have Mudkip breed it onto Shieldon. Like I said, annoying, but well worth it. The EV spread is fairly basic, but it does work the best. Even STAB neutral hits like Flare Blitz from Arcanine can't even hit Bastiodon for half health, so there's little reason to invest anything into Defense.
 
Set 2
[Image: bastiodon.png]
Nature: Adamant (+Atk /-Sp. Atk)
Ability: Sturdy
Item: Figy Berry
EVs: 252 HP/ 4 Atk/ 252 Sp. Def
Moveset:
Protect
Metal Burst/Iron Head
Rock Slide
Wide Guard
 
If you're feeling a bit bolder and want to try and go for a more offensive set, which I don't recommend by the way, then this might work a bit better for you. My friend actually helped me with this set because he loves to play offense, and he loved the idea of a, "Best defense is a good offense," pokemon. Protect and Wide Guard serve the same function as Set 1, but Rock Slide and Iron Head are there only for more offensive presence. With minimal Attack investment, Bastiodon can deal a decent chunk to major flyers like Mandibuzz and Drifblim, but I still think Set 1 is your best bet. The Figy Berry replaces the Air Balloon only to restore HP upon the activation of Sturdy. It's a far more risky play, but sometimes risky plays are necessary to win. Try it out, see if it works.

Partners:
 
[Image: bastiodon.png][Image: tapubulu.png]      
 
The first, and in my opinion best, partner for Bastiodon is the Guardian Deity Tapu Bulu. Bulu's Grassy Terrain really neagtes the damage from Earthquake, giving Bastiodon a little more survivability. With Grassy Terrain up, Earthquake goes from a guaranteed OHKO to about 50 - 60% of Bastiodon's health. This makes it much more stable, and their types compliment each other very well. Bulu also helps against those pesky Fighting-Types that give Bastiodon trouble thanks to its Fairy-Type. Bastiodon also resists most of what gives Tapu Bulu trouble, but what it doesn't can be solved by pairing it with our next partner.
 
[Image: bastiodon.png] [Image: gastrodon-east.png]
 
To complete the core, Gastrodon is a great choice. Both are highly defensive pokemon, and their combined efforts could really make a dent in the opponent's team with a slew of Toxic, Metal Burst, Earth Power, and Wide Guard combinations. They don't share any weaknesses either, which is also good for two partners. I'm sure there are other partners out there for Bastiodon, but thus far these are the best mons I've found. These three, especially when used together, can be quite bulky, and thanks to Metal Burst you can also throw a lot of damage back out. Use it well, use it wisely.

Conclusion:

Well, that's about all there is to say about Bastiodon. I'll say it again, this guy honestly surprised me when I first started researching it, and if/when I ever build a Fossil Pokemon team, I think Bastiodon may have just earned a place on it. And as King Lagravis just said in that last paragraph, if you wish to use Bastiodon, then use it well, and use it wisely. Check out my other VGC analyses of underused mons right here. They may just suprise you!

1) Emolga: (http://pokemonforever.com/Thread-VGC-Emo...ith-0kamii)
2) Alomomola: (http://pokemonforever.com/Thread-VGC-Alo...ith-0kamii)
3) Rampardos: (http://pokemonforever.com/Thread-VGC-Ram...ith-0kamii)
4) Poliwrath: (http://pokemonforever.com/Thread-VGC-Pol...ith-0kamii)

Also, don't be afraid to lose, people! You're going to lose a lot before you start winning, so if ever there's a time to experiment with new strategies and tactics, it's now. I know I certainly lost a lot before I finally made a working Emolga set, and Bastiodon was the same way. And as always, if you simply read these posts for fun and never actually use the pokemon I suggest, that's okay too! I only ever write these as suggestions, and I would never intentionally mislead anyone in the VGC metagame. I may be a first-class breeder, but if I can't indulge in all of pokemons assets, then what fun would the games be? But anyway, that's all for now folks. Be on the lookout for my new breeding guild's first distribution coming soon! You guys asked, as we answered, and we've decided to distribute battle-ready Fossil Pokemon! Be ready for that and I'll read you all soon. Battle onwards, friends!

- 0kamii
Amethyst Ωmega - Guild Leader/Founder 
 
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#2
@0kamii I'm honestly so happy you made this! Behind Kabutops, Bastiodon is my secod favourite fossil mon. I forgot that it was even in the Alolan dex lol
I'm definitely going to try that first set you made. Really want to catch some people off guard when they see a Bastiodon on my team haha
R.I.P.
Hammer Morty
2014 - 2017

Forever In Our Hearts


           
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#3
Wow, @0kamii , nice job! A great analysis as always. I do happen to like that second set. A good defense is a good offense is something I often use (have you seen my Porygon2?), and I am very impressed. Well done!
So I herd u liek Tyflozions...
I'm a VGC player. Contact me if you need help with competitive battling!
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#4
Hey, @stephenWITNESS! I'm glad I put a smile on your face. Please, feel free to try out my Bastiodon set for yourself and let me know how it works! Personally, I thought it was a lot of fun to use on Showdown, and the victories I did achieve were well worth the losses during testing. Hopefully your Bastiodon can make you proud. I just hope you don't go mad trying to get one with Wide Guard. Blush

And @RetroTyphlosion, thanks for the boost, as always. If you enjoy the second set so much, then by all means go for it. Maybe you'll find that it actually works for you. And yes, I've seen your Porygon2. I know it packs a punch. Just try and be patient while trying to get Wide Guard onto it. Ugh. That was not a fun chain egg move to get. Also, love the new signature. Big Grin

- 0kamii
Amethyst Ωmega - Guild Leader/Founder 
 
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#5
thing with bastiodon that yes, it is bulky, but besides using wide guard, it just sits there and provides little support for the team. it doesn't have any offensive presence either, so if the opponent isn't using a multi-hitting move like rock slide, it'll just sit there and be useless. also yes bulu can circumvent the ground weakness, but seeing as garchomp often runs groundium z (which is a very good set), tectonic rage bypasses grassy terrain and smashes bastiodon which is stuck at 1 hp and essentially becomes useless, and that's considering it doesn't get double targeted and smashed turn 1 lol. overall, i like your enthusiasm but i don't think bastiodon can do much in the current metagame, since it just sits there without giving much support to the team. great write up though, i really appreciate your effort, and i'd like to see your take on more common pokemon in the metagame in the future as i'm sure you could come up with interesting and original sets for some of the very popular.
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#6
Well @0kamii, I don't know. While I do like that last set, I don't know if I'll build it. Defensive Pokémon are my favorite, though, and I will at least have to pay more attention to Bastiodon. Oh, yeah, and I finally got my Shellos
​​​​​​bred. Feelin' good. Next stop: Oranguru!
So I herd u liek Tyflozions...
I'm a VGC player. Contact me if you need help with competitive battling!
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#7
@écarlate Well, yeah. I'll be the first to admit that using Bastiodon is, at best, a gamble. At least I think it has a bit more potential than Rampardos. Gees, what a lost cause that was. All I'm sayingis that while Bastiodon may not be tier list material, I think it can bring something to the table. But yeah, those 4x weaknesses, especially Ground, really hurt it this metagame. Frankly all of them probably because of the frequency of Earthquake.

As for your second point, I never really considered doing common VGC mons. Just for that reason too, they're common. There's already a bunch of sets out there for each one, especially ones like Arcanine, Garchomp, and Tapu Koko. I suppose I could entertain the idea, but I'm hesitant to make any promises. Your feedback however, it much appreicated. Smile

@RetroTyphlosion Oi. Retro, what did I say in the analysis? If you decided not to use Bastiodon, that's perfectly okay. You make it sound like you're afraid of hurting my feelings. Believe me, I know using it is a gamble. And gambles don't always pay off, but that's what makes the game fun. I know competitive players are less inclined to take risks, but luckily for you, I'm there to take the risks for you and let you know what happens. I'm not overly concerned with losing, it's just a part of the game. But if I do win, it'll be a treat for everyone. And that's why I make these analyses. Wink

- 0kamii
Amethyst Ωmega - Guild Leader/Founder 
 
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#8
(Jun 10, 2017, 08:36 AM)0kamii Wrote: @écarlate Well, yeah. I'll be the first to admit that using Bastiodon is, at best, a gamble. At least I think it has a bit more potential than Rampardos. Gees, what a lost cause that was. All I'm sayingis that while Bastiodon may not be tier list material, I think it can bring something to the table. But yeah, those 4x weaknesses, especially Ground, really hurt it this metagame. Frankly all of them probably because of the frequency of Earthquake.

As for your second point, I never really considered doing common VGC mons. Just for that reason too, they're common. There's already a bunch of sets out there for each one, especially ones like Arcanine, Garchomp, and Tapu Koko. I suppose I could entertain the idea, but I'm hesitant to make any promises. Your feedback however, it much appreicated. Smile

@RetroTyphlosion Oi. Retro, what did I say in the analysis? If you decided not to use Bastiodon, that's perfectly okay. You make it sound like you're afraid of hurting my feelings. Believe me, I know using it is a gamble. And gambles don't always pay off, but that's what makes the game fun. I know competitive players are less inclined to take risks, but luckily for you, I'm there to take the risks for you and let you know what happens. I'm not overly concerned with losing, it's just a part of the game. But if I do win, it'll be a treat for everyone. And that's why I make these analyses. Wink

- 0kamii
@0kamii Well, thanks for the response. I do like defensive mons, though I have a bone to pick with Bastiodon ever since it crushed one of my best battle tree streaks one day Angry . Still salty.
So I herd u liek Tyflozions...
I'm a VGC player. Contact me if you need help with competitive battling!
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#9
@RetroTyphlosion I enjoy the occasional go-round with defensive mons too. They're a lot of fun to use if you can get a wall set up. But every wall has their Achilles heel, and in the case of Bastiodon, it's Earthquake. But anyway, what do you think of écarlate's suggestion, Retro? How would you feel about good ol' 0kamii analyzing some of the more common VGC mons as opposed to the obscure ones?

- 0kamii
Amethyst Ωmega - Guild Leader/Founder 
 
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#10
I never thought I'd see the day when metal burst could be used in vgc. Speaking of vgc, I think it would be cool to see your take on common vgc 'mons. Tongue
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