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RBY OU / 1U (OverUsed) The infamous FRZ stall team

Discussion in 'Public Teams' started by Actaeon, Aug 23, 2019.

  1. Actaeon

    Actaeon Member

    Joined:
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    Hello everyone,

    Since my last RBY-related forum activity (about the book on which I sadly haven't made any progress since the tier changes) was ages ago, some of you must be surprised to see me here. I am up to date with the forum, however, and it pleases me that people still find RBY fascinating enough to play and talk about.

    That being said, I have been playing many games on the PS ladder with a notoriously annoying, but gimmicky-looking team to face that takes a different approach compared to the widely accepted 'paralysis route'. In fact, many players said to me "oh no it's the FRZ spam team again" at the beginning of battle. Some of you already know the build I am sure, but I still like to proudly showcase and explain the team, which has become an infamous classic for good and wrong reasons.

    The team

    upload_2019-8-23_18-2-36.png

    Jynx
    - Lovely Kiss
    - Ice Beam
    - Psychic
    - Rest


    Chansey
    - Ice Beam
    - Reflect
    - Light Screen
    - Soft-Boiled


    Cloyster
    - Clamp
    - Blizzard
    - Hyper Beam
    - Explosion


    Articuno
    - Blizzard
    - Agility
    - Hyper Beam
    - Rest


    Lapras
    - Blizzard
    - Thunderbolt
    - Sing
    - Hyper Beam


    Gengar
    - Night Shade
    - Thunderbolt
    - Psychic
    - Explosion

    That's right, a team that uses every OU-viable Ice-type. There is no Thunder Wave, Body Slam (or Lick, lol); the team functions without paralysis and the variance that comes with the number of turns in which full paralysis occurs on my opponent's side. The team attempts to maximize the number of opportunities to freeze important Pokémon during the early game, most commonly Chansey and Alakazam (to a lesser extent Starmie and Slowbro). Together with Jynx's sleep, that ideally puts two Pokémon out of commission. Freezing (or sleeping turn 1 against Alakazam) the special walls surprisingly often makes the opposing team very vulnerable to the powerful STAB Blizzards on my team.

    The team puts more passive opponents such as Alakazam and Chansey at constant risk to stay in, and if they switch out, the switch-in usually has to take staying Ice-type damage for the match. Before I talk about the obvious downfalls and weaknesses to the team, let me explain what every Pokémon does, aside from fitting the theme.

    Jynx is arguably the best sleep lead in the game for reasons I don't have to explain. Opposing Eggy leads get scared away (or slept on turn 1, I don't use Ice Beam vs Eggy because this is a bad freeze target and not a problem for my team, although a critical hit can OHKO immediately). Alakazam will be put to sleep unless I am extremely unlucky and Alakazam is one of the best targets for Lovely Kiss. Same goes for Starmie. Against Gengar I usually switch out to my own Gengar, since it will either be Hypnosis or, very commonly, Explosion. If I am confident that they will use Hypnosis, I will use Psychic and keep the Gengar surprise intact. Finally, Jolteon leads are good to put asleep as well, because most Jolteon teams are defensively weak on the Special side and Jolteon itself can pose quite a threat since I can't paralyze it. Jolteon usually can't wake up against my team, and if it does, it will often be against Chansey, possibly with a Reflect up.

    When I sleep the first Pokémon, the most common switch-in is Chansey, and that's where the freeze attempts begin. Of course, this is the reason to use Ice Beam instead of Blizzard; on this team the extra damage is not important since it's usually against early-game walls. The extra PP and accuracy, together with Rest, for sure are more important.

    When I don't succeed in freezing the Jynx switch-in before using Rest, the opponent often switches to Snorlax or Tauros, realizing they can't beat the Jynx loop and hoping they will paralyze or badly damage something on the switch. That's where the Gengar surprise comes in, sucks up a Body Slam (or even Hyper Beam in the case of Snorlax) and directly switches to Articuno for the famous EQ absorb. Then they realize they can't beat Articuno 1-on-1 without some serious paralysis hax, and switch to their special wall once again; another opportunity to freeze them. Rinse and repeat, predict Thunder Waves with Jynx, and switch to Cloyster as a good damage-control when you are doubting if they will use EQ or Body Slam the next turn. They will need to switch in Chansey, Starmie or Alakazam on Ice-type moves repeatedly, or take very strong hits early in the game.

    I think the Jynx section covers the early game, although it is also useful during mid- and sometimes endgame scenarios. More on that will be discussed in Chansey's description.

    Chansey is the big stall machine on the team, and provides me with much-needed physical and special defense while threatening to freeze something. Although it doesn't make use of Snorlax' Body Slam's non-ability to paralyze very often, it is very useful against midgame AmnesiaLax when Amnesia is revealed against Gengar, for example. It is often safe to use one Ice Beam against Exeggutor if they already saw Gengar, and hitting Eggy with merely one Ice Beam puts it in danger against Articuno and Lapras (possibly Cloyster as well, although Cloyster can help to put it into KO range with Clamp). I think I've never seen this set before, because in Ubers Reflect is not very useful and usually in OU Light Screen isn't very useful. Reflect is much needed against Zapdos, and makes it less threatening to switch in Golem, Rhydon, Snorlax, and to a lesser extent, Tauros, for the opponent. But Light Screen is definitely the most needed, since it makes sure Alakazam, Slowbro, Starmie and AmnesiaLax waste too much PP against it, even if they have Psychic. This is where sleeping Jynx also helps, if Chansey receives too many Special drops. This way of stalling applies to situations where Freeze Clause is already active as well ('one problem frozen, one problem asleep, and stall the other one out of threatening moves' works quite well). Because of its notorious PP stalling capabilities, Chansey can make herself useful even with fully depleted Ice Beam PP, although I have to admit this doesn't make the game particularly interesting to play.

    Cloyster is the go-to physical wall when I am in doubt what physical move the opponent will use. It's also a great switch into opposing Cloyster/Articuno, but it hates being paralyzed because of Clamp. Also provides a panic button against Twave/Psychic Slowbro, Electrics, and Tauros in a pinch, although Blizzard + Blizzard from Articuno deals with him. Can usually blowup against Starmie without predicting too hard, one of the problematic Pokémon, and although it doesn't OHKO, Starmie is at great risk to stay in against Lapras' Thunderbolt assaults repeatedly. It can still choose to paralyze the Lapras, however. This is one of those situations where not having paralysis on the team hurts a little bit. Clamp is used to put things into KO-range or obtain useful switch scenarios, most often against Snorlax, Chansey and Exeggutor (the latter of which is often a suicide mission for the opponent to put something asleep still). As with the other Pokémon so far, Blizzard again hits the designated targets Zam, Chansey, Slowbro and Starmie very often.
    Last but not least, Cloyster is a good switch into Rhydon that puts a substitute up against a paralyzed Ice-type, because Clamp still prevents it from executing a move. Sometimes it is necessary to take a Rock Slide in order to do this, after which Cloyster sadly can't survive Chansey's Thunderbolt anymore.

    Articuno, an insane powerhouse and one of my favourite Pokémon in general. It sports the most powerful unboosted special move in the game (along with Zapdos (potentially) and Moltres, of course) and is extremely threatening when the aforementioned 'problems' are softened up or not present anymore. While it is usually revealed during the early game to switch into an Earthquake, the surprise factor doesn't really help it anyway. Losing the surprise factor even has upsides: when the opponent sees Articuno they will try to protect their Starmie, Zam, Slowbro and Chansey from getting frozen, thereby taking STAB Ice hits with less designated Pokémon as well during the game (think of Snorlax, Electrics, Exeggutor). Articuno is countered by other Ice-types (except Jynx, kind of) but these often sustain damage when going 1v1 against my own species. If the opponent has Cloyster and/or Lapras and they find out Chansey only has Ice Beam, they will have around 20% damage from that most of the time, which already helps Articuno immensely taking into account they have to get past my Lapras 'first'.
    Blizzard is an obvious choice, and Hyper Beam helps KO Alakazam, Chansey and Jynx from a certain range and preserves Blizzard PP (of course, be careful when there is a rock on the opposing team). Agility is used towards or during the endgame. It is especially useful to use against <57% Tauros on the turn it uses Body Slam, because after Agility it will outspeed even when Body Slam paralyzes, and if they have an unrevealed Zapdos or Rhydon, for example, Articuno can beat it 1v1 without full paras. It's just a great move when the last resort of the opponent is to hope for a Body Slam paralysis. Then, we have the last move, which this forum has already discussed thoroughly, much to my amuse. I'm definitely not saying 'Rest is best' in general, but on this team it's important to stall Psychic/Blizzard Starmie and Seismic Toss Chansey (or even Alakazam that has run out of Psychic already) for their last PP if they are still alive during the endgame. It also outstalls Cloyster! I have used Mimic and Sky Attack with moderate and shaky success, but when I use Rest at least I know what I'm doing, and it has saved me in exactly the situations above. Articuno is so bulky it can even Restloop Lapras' Thunderbolt when it's particularly unlucky with Critical Hits.

    Lapras, a dependable Pokémon that has its defensive and offensive merits on the team. Ironically, I usually reveal it after Articuno, either to Sing an opponent (e.g. if they sacked their sleeping Pokémon, not expecting another sleep move from a team like this when it's not Chansey), to take the 1v1 against Normal-types or other Lapras, to trade hits with Zapdos, to come in on sleeping Jynx (bluffing Body Slam but often I just use Blizzard for the incoming Chansey) or to try and crit through Slowbro (this is the worst situation, but still). As all the members except Gengar do, it aims for a freeze against Chansey and might be able to get it into Hyper Beam range (~40%) when it switches into a Critical Hit. Kind of like a Jack of all Trades, and again a dangerous Pokémon that outspeeds Exeggutor. It even has a chance to win against Alakazam with a combination of Sing, Blizzard and Hyper Beam when it's really needed.

    Gengar is the oddball of the team, and the aforementioned reasons already explain much of its presence. Usually before the endgame it only switches in and out, because Chansey, Alakazam and Exeggutor wall it to no end. However, Thunderbolt + Night Shade brings incoming Exeggutor into Blizzard KO range of many team members, and usually it will first use Sleep Powder anyway. Gengar's presence makes the opponent think twice before using Explosion, and also makes them make suboptimal decisions with their Normal-type (e.g. using Earthquake when Cloyster comes in). As with Exeggutor, it can safely put Zapdos into KO range from Blizzard. Often still alive after early game, it functions as a second panic button for the team against the likes of Slowbro. Sometimes going for the speed tie against Tauros pays off. Last but definitely not least, it walls Persian and Victreebel. Especially Persian is a problem, since I have no ways of paralyzing it, it crits through Chansey (and Jynx) like a knife through butter, Cloyster can't wall it, et cetera. Psychic is chosen over Hypnosis here to have a chance at lowering the switch-in Alakazam's Special stat, which makes it easier for Chansey to wall it without using too many Softboiled PP. It hits the Rocks decently as well and profits from having Gengar's crit rate. Oh yeah, it's useful against other Gengar as well, since they usually have no room for it. Generally, it's more spammable than Thunderbolt and opens up new OHKOs for my Ice-types as well, e.g. against Exeggutor if need be.


    All-in-all, it's a team that depends heavily on the one (maybe two if something happens during endgame) freeze it aims for. This has caused many opponents to yell at me in frustration because I 'depend on luck' to win, but as we all know RBY is about maximizing the opportunities to be lucky. And this team happens to do that in a different way than standard, by utilizing the unforgiving and fantastic Freeze mechanics RBY granted us.

    Teambuilding process and Other Options
    For me the team started out as a mono Ice-type team with Dewgong over Gengar, Chansey obviously being needed for support against Electrics and Psychics. This is disastrous, as Dewgong just sucks in OU and provides no synergy whatsoever. It's just a surrogate Lapras. Then I started playing around with Gengar over Dewgong and ran Reflect Chansey with Ice Beam and Thunderbolt, thinking this was a good way to deal with Normals and Starmie/Slowbro (this was just after the mechanic changes). Of course, against Slowbro I still lost most of the time. Then I replaced Thunderbolt with Thunder Wave just in case, but the team doesn't have the physical offense to really make use of that, and more often than not I'd get stuck in a stallwar against other Chansey.
    Jynx used to have Blizzard and Counter first (for no real reason, lol), and I've tried to mix up Gengar's third and fourth move (tried Mega Drain/Hypnosis, Counter [funny to use when just absorbed an Explosion and the opponent is afraid of Hypnosis and switches out] / Psychic and more combinations, even without Thunderbolt). Frustrated by how the game went against Zapdos and Slowbro, I have tried swapping Gengar for a Rock (Golem because I didn't want to lose a panic button), Jolteon, and Victreebel. Victreebel also helps with Zapdos to an extent just by paralyzing it so my Ice-types can revenge kill it more easily. When I started playing around with Light Screen Chansey, I switched back to Gengar for the obvious synergy like discussed above and accepted this team just functioned better in a more defensive way during midgame. The combination of surprise factor, synergy with Articuno, making predictions harder for opponents and being a panic button that can threaten with critical hits really makes it stand out the most, and I am quite sure Gengar is the optimal choice without admitting to make the theme less extreme (i.e. run less Ice-types).
    That being said, Reflect Snorlax with something like Body Slam / Amnesia, Ice Beam and Rest might be a serious candidate to put up a more honest, less-subject to variance fight with Slowbro and Zapdos, but the whole team and its filler moves would have to be revised again. At least it would provide a 'quality' Pokémon that might make the team less susceptible to preparation and prediction than the Gengar variant.

    As for other 'other options', Body Slam over Hyper Beam on Lapras might help with Alakazam in a pinch, the aforementioned options on Articuno have their uses, and Chansey could use Thunder Wave over Reflect as another means of making Zapdos less of a threat. Zapdos is very dangerous because if it gets past Chansey, it will at least seriously dent another Pokémon because it's unparalyzed, possibly opening up a Tauros sweep.

    The worst threats
    Zapdos, as already mentioned, can pose a decent threat and it usually forces me to sacrifize one Pokémon and leave a dent in another, that is if I don't bother to use (a lower HP) Chansey and go for the high-risk, high-reward game. If Chansey can switch in on Thunderbolt, e.g. when Zapdos is out against Articuno, it has a good chance of winning the matchup though, and Gengar also helps a little.

    The big, big problem is Psychic Slowbro. Eventually it will force out Chansey with Special drops, KO or at least severy dent another Pokémon, and can hax through paralyzed Chansey after. If it has Thunder Wave, the parahax will pose a threat eventually against Chansey when it gets enough Special drops, and if it's Surf + Psychic, I can't run it out of PP with Softboiled. I am safe against the standard Surf + Thunder Wave set, however. Against the dangerous Slowbro sets I really need to bank on early freeze, panic buttons, Clamp, Thunderbolts, Sing, and critical hits in a way that naturally presents itself. Luckily, Explosion is pretty viable because if it uses either Reflect or Withdraw, Chansey can outstall it already.

    That's it folks, thanks for reading and I am curious to hear your opinion!

    Interesting Replays
    • A very long game against Lusch, a formidable opponent that I always have nice conversations with. We both made some misplays in hindsight and somewhere midgame I decided to use Chansey as sleep fodder against his Exeggutor, but I haxed through three Sleep Powder and crit Exeggutor to death. He came back though, and I think I won with my one of my last Blizzards against his Starmie. This was one of the first times I used Light Screen Chansey and I was clearly not comfortable with the team yet. Still, quite the unnerving game.
    • A funny loss against vklj554, where I get out of a haxed situation and still ensure the sweep of four Pokémon with Agility, but I miss a crucial Blizzard in the end. This game also showcases how versatile Cloyster's role is, but I have to admit this game isn't the highest quality as far as mindgames or depth are concerned.
    • Another long game against Lusch, but this time the misplays were just mispredictions and had a good reason for the most part of the game. His Tagträumer Snorlax stalled my Lapras out of Blizzard PP and he had a Slowbro waiting in the Wings. Could definitely have taken longer, but towards the end I got an important Critical Hit.
     

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    Last edited: Aug 23, 2019

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