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RBY OU / 1U (OverUsed) Slowbro's low usage in the World Championship

Discussion in 'Analysis and Research' started by Sceptross, Sep 28, 2017.

  1. Sceptross

    Sceptross Leader

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    I've been paying attention at the World Championships usage stats and I've been noticing Slowbro has consistently been seeing low usage. While some time ago there was the "excuse" of the sample being too small, now there seems to be no doubt that it's going to stay on the bottom of the chart - Slowbro, despite being currently ranked as A- in our Viability Rankings, has the lowest usage of all 1U Pokémon, except Cloyster and Dragonite, the two C ranks.

    This has piqued my interest. On first thought, one might say it's because it's somewhat inconsistent while setting up. Jolteon and Zapdos OHKO on a crit, and they are both fast enough for a crit to be expectable to happen (Jolteon has 69.2% to crit Slowbro provided it switches on Slowbro when Slowbro uses Amnesia for the first time, before Slowbro kills it, if it doesn't get FP'd - I might calc that considering FP too later, if I feel like it). Chansey is annoying if Slowbro is not packing Psychic, Starmie is in a similar spot to Chansey, except with a much higher crit chance, but is 2HKO'd 100% of the time by +6 Slowbro, unlike Chansey). And there's always Explosion, but one might say that taking out a Pokemon with Slowbro is not exactly bad, unless you are relying on it to win in the late game, for instance.

    As Kaz also pointed out when I brought this subject up on Discord, the fact that when it has to Rest, its defence, albeit good, is still exploitable (Rhydon has a good chance to 3HKOs, Tauros 3HKOs provided it scores a Critical Hit) can also be a determining factor.

    However, despite all of these drawbacks, it's still a very dangerous Pokémon. This thing spreads paralysis really consistently, and an untimely full paralysis can be crucial in determining the outcome of the match.

    What are your thoughts on this? Why is Slowbro seeing so low usage in the WC? Is it worth raising a more in-depth discussion on its current rank in the Viability Rankings, in light of the stats we currently have?
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
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  2. marcoasd

    marcoasd Host Emeritus

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    I think it's all about how metagame shifts and what players think.
    Slowbro is a beast, anyway Zapdos is so dangerous that you have to be brave to use Slowbro: Lapras teams don't match up well against Zapdos, but at least Lapras can hit and run, and it's damn effective.

    In order to sweep, Slowbro needs:
    - you having a sleep bait: i think Alakazam and Starmie (at Jynx's expense) are very common at this point and this is the biggest part of the story, as Slowbro is great against Jynx for both this reason (Jynx is giving you a sleep bait) AND being able to switch into Jynx after you TWave it with your Alakazam/Starmie.
    - electrics to be out of the way
    - Selfdestruct Snorlax to be out of the way
    - Exeggutor to be out of the way, or at least weakened (mainly, paralysis): if you can predict Exeggutor Exploding at some point in the game, things are getting good for Slowbro (or at least for you in general) no matter what the rest of the setup is.

    Basically, it sweeps over Chansey, Tauros, Alakazam, ReflectRestLax and possibly Lapras (especially if para'd, and the same is true for para'd Starmie to a lesser extent): we're at a point where we don't see many ReflectRestLaxes and 6th slot Alakazams don't happen often either. I think Reflect SToss Chansey dropped its usage too.

    Slowbro is Ubers material (I mean, it's on the guest list) and a true legend of RBY nonetheless. It still has the option to TWave electrics as they switch into it, switch out, Amnesia up as they switch in again...
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
  3. GGFan

    GGFan Member

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    For me, the problem is that Bro is, well, slow, which makes it a liability against teams like double electric, Vic + Cloy, etc. It's also slower than Golem and can't kill it without Amnesia boosts if it runs Psychic (the superior move over Surf in this metagame), so you have to worry about Explosion mindgames.

    Using Slowbro well is all about timing. If you bring it into a late game with a dead or sleeping Exeggutor, it can be very dangerous. I disagree that Reflect/SToss Chansey is becoming less of a thing; it's still used quite often, which has only helped Slowbro. Chansey can still paralyze it and force Rest, but if you predict the incoming switch in and blast it with Psychic, that may be all you need to do to win the game. It's Starmie that's become less of a threat than it used to be, as Friendlymie has been everywhere for the last 6-12 months.
     
  4. Ortheore

    Ortheore Leader

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    I honestly don't have an explanation for why people don't use Bro, but I'm adamant that it's ranked where it currently is in the VR thread. I mean yeah its speed means you're not often going to be sweeping with it, but the threat's there and you can still break walls. Meanwhile its ability to support the team is immense- its TWave is amazing and its physical bulk is excellent, while some non-standard builds appreciate its ability to hard counter Zam.
     
  5. marcoasd

    marcoasd Host Emeritus

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    +4 Slowbro Surf vs. Tauros: 335-394 (94.9 - 111.6%) -- 69.2% chance to OHKO, Psychic is 36%. Fishing for some special drops on Exeggutor won't make Psychic the better move, it makes Psychic an option.
    I agree that GolDon are in somewhat of a grey zone, one more reason to use Surf as GolDon's usage got reasonable again after the first year of banishment (in Jolteon's favour). Psychic Slowbro lasted more than enough.

    Of course, SToss Chansey is an easier matchup for Slowbro. But we don't know the usage for sure.

    It's possible that Starmie lead being more common is slightly decreasing its usage as a non-lead. Anyway, I'd rather make it clear that non-lead Starmie is still using Thunderbolt.
    It's not threatening as it was years ago due to the stacking glitch you mentioned, TBolt is still there to screw Slowbro's plans when Snorlax wars don't go its way.
     
  6. The Idiot Ninja

    The Idiot Ninja Member

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    I think the low usage is mostly just people being scared of using it. Compared to, idk, Rhydon or Zapdos who just come in and click a move and deal damage, Slowbro's a ton more complex to use, since you need to set up statuses, boosts, etc. properly and fitting it into your gameplan is not as simple as it is for the others, and overall there's not much of an upside to it unless you *really* know how to use it. In general it takes some confidence to bring Slowbro over other stuff when you can just default to standard and be just fine, so that's probably the reason for low usage.
     
  7. TuffHunter

    TuffHunter Member

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    Honestly it just takes too long to setup and most people have 2-3 pokemon that can counter or check it.
     

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