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VGC14 The art of PLAYING DOUBLES in Gen VI


Expert FPS Player
Staff member
Basically, there's not enough doubles teams posted in the Clinic, and I'm sure some people are wondering what makes a good doubles team. So, here's mine, free to critique and analyze etc. whatever.

Salamence @ Salamenceite
252 HP/204 ATK/52 SP.DEF

- Dragon Claw
- Frustration
- Earthquake
- Protect

I've said time and again Mega Salamence is a beast, and lo and behold here he is. EVs are specifically designed to tank HP Ice from any Modest Base 145 Sp.Attacker, specifically Mega Camerupt, while MegaMence's natural physical defense tanks Ice Punches galore without investment. With the number of dragons still infesting this game, Dragon Claw is still needed in order to better smack them down. I learned fairly quickly that due to the immediate threat this thing packs, leading with him works better than holding him back for last - most of the time. Also Intimidate > Moxie in doubles.

Lapras @ Safety Goggles
Shell Armour
252 HP/44 DEF/212 SP.ATK

- Hydro Pump
- Freeze-Dry
- Perish Song
- Protect

I expected MegaMence to infest rated battles, so Lapras is my defense against that, and it also fairs well against the two other popular (for the moment) new Megas in doubles: Mega Camerupt and Mega Swampert. So far I've met little of any of them from my opponents but Lapras still works well due to it packing surprising power combined with it being very difficult to kill before it can hit back. Perish Song is a lot stronger in doubles than it is in singles, and if you can quickly remove your opponent's first two Pokemon with little damage to your own it's basically an I Win Button. Also yes, Shell Armour over Water Absorb because avoiding crit-hax in this meta is better than being able to heal from Water-type moves. Finally, the Safety Goggles are there for one reason: Amoonguss. Since Lapras is designed to quickly assassinate specific threats, being able to ignore Rage Powders from the mushroom is quite crucial - that's the idea anyway.

Raichu @ Focus Sash
Lightning Rod
252 ATK/252 SPEED/6 HP

- Fake Out
- Nuzzle
- Encore
- Protect

Raichu is purely a support Pokemon as you can tell, however it surprised me by effectively becoming the MVP of the team with how much board control it provides. Fake Out is extremely good in doubles as it can allow a free setup or be used to score an early advantage in damage. Nuzzle speaks for itself and should always replace Thunder Wave on any 'Mon that gets both, Encore is absolutely brutal for the same reasons it is in singles; opponent uses a non-damaging move? That's all they get to use for the next three turns unless they switch, and since you get far less freedom with switching in this format (4vs4, two of your 'Mons are already out - have fun with that) the move really screws opponents up if used at the right time. Lightning Rod is primarily to protect Lapras but also provides some protection for Mega Salamence too.

Amoonguss @ Rocky Helmet
236 HP / 68 DEF/ 204 SDEF

- Giga Drain
- Spore
- Rage Powder
- Protect

Once you've seen one Amoonguss you've seen them all in doubles, because almost all of them use this exact set. You get the odd one that carries something else over Protect, but otherwise they're all the same. Rocky Helmet + Rage Powder is very funny, EVs are designed to withstand a Heat Wave from Zard Y in the sun (and hopefully from Mega Camerupt outside of sun as well) and there's not much else to say.

Aegislash @ Leftovers
Stance Change
252 HP/252 SP.ATK/6 DEF

- Flash Cannon
- Shadow Ball
- Substitute
- King's Shield

Sub Aegislash is pretty evil if it can put a sub up at the right time since it then basically starts nuking you for free until you can get the sub off it, and with Aegislash's stat distribution and type combination there's plenty of opportunities to set up. Dual-STAB and King's Shield yay, not much more to be said.

Gothitelle @ Lum Berry
Shadow Tag
236 HP / 188 DEF / 84 SDEF

- Psychic
- Safeguard
- Trick Room
- Protect

Remember how Lapras had Perish Song? Gothitelle having Shadow Tag needs no explanation then. Another support Pokemon albeit far more situational, Gothitelle can troll faster teams by trapping their two lead Pokemon into an unwinnable situation and then Trick Rooming to leave them helpless. EVs allow me to survive anything ranging from Mega T-Tar Crunches to Mega Gengar Shadow Balls. Worth pointing out too: Gothitelle's Psychic does a fair bit of damage to opponents considering no offensive investment.

So there you have it. Some things to note: Protect/King's Shield is on everyone because in doubles they are amazing and almost mandatory; they almost take the role of what switching would be in singles in many ways. Not everything here is overused or used much at all; well this is doubles, and team synergy is far more important than raw power. Using the good stuff is always a good idea, but you also want your team to provide supporting Pokemon to keep them alive (Raichu) and also help counter the big threats (Lapras.) Finally certain Pokemon who are pretty much hot garbage in singles (Amoonguss) are ridiculously overused in doubles and considered some of the best Pokemon in that meta.

The End.