Metagame Scarlet and Violet CAP Metagame Discussion


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Short post: While I understand why some might consider CAPs to be a bit overtuned at the moment, in Gen 8, we saw some CAPs that were top-of-the-meta before Pokemon Home / DLCs introduced/reintroduced higher-powered Pokemon into the metagame. Thus, similar additions in Gen 9, which I don't think Game Freak would avoid doing, ideally would help balance these CAPs out without having to nerf CAPs unnecessarily. Also, I don't think it's necessarily bad to have CAPs at the top of the metagame - it helps to differentiate CAP from OU, which imo is a good thing.

While I do think it's good to keep these CAPs in mind moving forward, no swift action needs to be taken before end of CAPCL imo. I'd like to see how these CAPs perform over the next few weeks and with usage stats. Revenankh in particular has had Poltergeist again for just over a week only; I feel like the language around it is a tad strong.


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there are a few specifics of brambane's post that i take issue with - mainly mentioning bao at all, but also being a little hasty to condemn revenankh (while not bringing up snael?) - but in general i agree with the sentiment. there's a handful of CAPs (i've seen people complain about at least 6) that are simply too strong or too centralizing that makes what's an otherwise well-balanced, diverse tier into a very topheavy and linear metagame.

that said, i think the question of if/when to take action isn't so clear; on balance, most of the top-tier caps like arghonaut, jumbao, and venom are bigger boons for the meta than they are unhealthy elements IMO, but this isn't as obvious with krilowatt and to an extent snael and revenankh. i hesitate to mention the latter two because they've only been running around with their updates for a week, so the jury is totally out on whether they're "broken" or not, but they are 100% mons that we should be keeping an eye on in the next week or two. personally speaking i suspect that both of them are a bit too OP, but we really don't have enough evidence to make that claim with any confidence.

unlike snake though i would prefer to take action on problematic CAPs should they become real issues. we've only just finished the third out of CL's seven weeks (not including tiebreaks), meaning we could be as little as a third of the way done with the tournament, and the tour would take a huge hit in quality if we intentionally didn't nerf CAPs that were obvious problems. of course, this is even more relevant as we get into the increasingly competitive playoffs stage. further still, i can't see why we'd let potential broken CAPs fester all the way until until HOME drops - this could be as late as june, and avoiding action on clearly problematic mons in the tier would almost certainly affect the next CAP process.

if nothing presents itself as broken and we simply have a tier with 5 or 6 slightly overtuned CAPs at the top of it, i agree that this doesn't warrant action; likewise, i don't think it's inherently bad to have a metagame with so many strong CAPs in it. but no one is really saying "it's an issue that we have too many top-tier CAPs," or "we should take action on mons that i think are just barely too good." there's a strong possibility that CAPs like snael, rev, and others are much more problematic than being merely overtuned, so we should keep our eyes trained on them and not rule out the possibility of future action.
Venomicon-Epilogue @ Vile Vial
Ability: Tinted Lens
Tera Type: Flying
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Brave Bird
- Roost
- Knock Off/Stealth Rock
- U-turn

First time poster here to report the obvious truth that this thing is fucking awesome. Tera Flying Brave Birds from this thing are genuinely hilarious, and its ability to force heavy damage on damn near anything is remarkable. Also doubles as a really solid Jumbao switch-in (I think it takes like 20 from Solar Beam - probably doesn't take Tera Blast Fire very well though) and in a meta where Jumbao is such a massive threat, the ability to switch in and threaten an OHKO is invaluable. Speed isn't great, but it does beat out defensive mons and shit like Gholdengo, Great Tusk (another 'mon this thing comes in on for free), and Jumbao, and everything faster just gets dropped.

I use this thing on a VoltTurn team with Krilowatt (another hilariously good Pokemon) and goddamn its amazing. The sheer spammability of Tinted Lens BB, Knock, and U-Turn is simply superb and it shows.

Edit: don't know why I had this as Adamant instead of Joly
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With the new post-updates VR, we have a grasp on the biggest winners and losers of the updates


:Revenankh: Revenankh is obviously the biggest winner, with the exclusive best physical ghost move in the pre-home meta, Revenankh has SURGED in viability, taking the largest jump of the VR.

:crucibelle: One of SV’s biggest hits was decreasing knock off distribution, with Crucibelle having it, it’s able to differentiate itself from Glimmora, and just other Pokémon in general

:caribolt: Before Hyper Drill, this was great, now it has an 100/100 no recoil move that’s STAB and bypasses protection

:snaelstrom: Recover on a defensive mon is great. Recover on a defensive Poison Heal Mon, is better.

:smokomodo: Techinician boosted Flame Charge is a great form of Speed Control and boosting.

Take the L

:saharaja: Camel got nothing to differentiate itself from Great Tusk

:astrolotl: Imagine being weak to the new definition of “Offensive Team Support”

(This should've been the OU suspect song)

:walking wake:

Yeah this thing is very stupid. Sun was already a top tier playstyle and now with bipedal Suicune thrown in I genuinely see little reason to not use sun. I've been using the set that opts for SpA as its Protosynthesis boost, and it is just so absurd. Whenever it comes in, something is practically guaranteed to die. Hydro Steam is so spammable, assuming you've made SpA your Proto boost then the move 2HKOs Jumbao, a mon that not only resists Water but isn't specially frail by any means. As for the sets that make Speed their Proto boost, then offensive counterplay becomes limited. Your options are Dragonite, Iron Valiant, and I guess Protean Scarfers? And Iron Valiant while incredibly good can only check it once thanks to the nature of Booster Energy. Also, even if you do have a Booster Energy boost, it can pull something like this where it Teras out of its Fairy weakness.

TL;DR: Walking Wake is broken, and if OU doesn't ban it then I wouldn't be opposed to a IoA Clefable situation where it's banned only from CAP because the presence of Jumbao really does wonders for it here. I'm far from the best player, so please let me know if there are any mistakes in this post, as I am pulling from my own experiences here as there aren't any CAPCL replays of Walking Wake I can pull from.

Da Pizza Man

Pizza Time
is a Pre-Contributor
Walking Wake

Ban: 49
Do Not Ban: 57
Ban % = 46.23%

60% pro-ban majority is required for a ban, and the outcome will not be changed by more votes. Thus, Walking Wake remains legal in SV OU. Tagging Marty and Kris to make the change on PS when they have the time; thanks!
With the results of the Walking Wake Suspect Test for OU resulting in Walking Wake staying legal, I would like talk about the idea of suspect testing Walking Wake for CAP.

One of the main arguments against banning Walking Wake in OU was that it was really only broken on Sun teams, which had a fair amount of opportunity cost due to being forced to run Torkoal (A Pokemon who quite frankly kinda sucks). This quite simply is not the case in CAP thanks to presence of Jumbao, who not only does a quite frankly much better job at getting/keeping Sun up than Torkoal ever did, but also doesn't have nearly as much opportunity cost attached to putting it onto a team that Torkoal does. Furthermore, Jumbao actually does a fairly decent job at dealing with a fair number of the Bulky Water-types that are often used as checks to Walking Wake in OU. As a result, Walking Wake is not only far easy to enable in CAP than it is in OU, but it's arguably stronger as well since it's enabler is also there to help deal with it's checks. This, combined with many of the factors that lead to the suspect test of Walking Wake in OU (Namely the fact that Choice Specs Walking Wake's combination of power and speed under sun make it extremely difficult for many teams to deal with), make me believe that we should consider taking a similar approach with Walking Wake that we did with Clefable during the Isle of Armor metagame last generation.


You've Gotta Try
is a Pre-Contributor
We would likely need to be careful about doing another suspect test given how our last one for SS Clefable had pretty significant ramifications on how Miasmaw turned out. I personally find Wake to be more obviously problematic and way less integral to the tier as a whole (it's simply one of many strong offensive mons available) so I would argue pro Ban on the outset, but it does deserve a lot more discussion as Wake is clearly a top mon right now and that has major implications on where CAP 32 might be designed.
I already posted my thoughts on Walking Wake earlier in this thread on why it's broken. But I also want to take a minute to say that CAP 32's process should not impact the decision to ban it. This might be ironic coming from me, as I have advocated for various futureproofing tactics in the past, but I think that CAP 32's process should be irrelevant to Walking Wake's potential suspect/ban. Now, I could easily see a situation in which CAP 32 is viable in a metagame without Wake and then it gets unbanned come Teal Mask and suddenly CAP 32 is a lot worse. But that's life. We have post-play lookbacks to deal with things like this. shnowshner mentioned how Clefable affected Miasmaw, and I would say that's another "that's life" situation. We gave it more tools come Crown Tundra, and while said tools were more for Jumbao than Clefable (it already had Iron Head which did the same amount to Clefable as Poison Jab), the fact that we were able to do something like this at all, not to mention the buff process it got at the end, shows that it is much better to deal with those hypothetical situations when they actually happen. The bottom line is, Walking Wake is broken now, and as a result it should be banned or suspected now, and how it affects CAP 32 should not be a concern. The health of the current metagame should come first.
While unplayable in some tournaments, Bulk Up Poltergeist Revenankh is a gargantuan threat on ladder. Does anyone have tips for how to play against it? I find myself struggling to counter it either in play or in teambuilding.


won't look back, i must shine
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While unplayable in some tournaments, Bulk Up Poltergeist Revenankh is a gargantuan threat on ladder. Does anyone have tips for how to play against it? I find myself struggling to counter it either in play or in teambuilding.
Revenankh is the kind of threat where several team members often have to play a part in taking it down. First off, Revenankh has a lot of vulnerable points, so carrying at least a few ways of meaningfully impeding it is a good bet. For example, whether it runs Spell Tag or Leftovers, Knock Off can go a long way in limiting its strength and/or staying power (Great Tusk and Arghonaut are great options for this, as they can both take a hit). Mons like Astrolotl and Skeledirge can burn it and basically take it out of contention, but watch for Tera Fire. It has no real way to deal with Toxic from the likes of Snaelstrom and Pex, so that's similarly impactful. For defensive stops, Dirge and Arghonaut can take Revenankh on with Tera and a physically defensive spread. Pex can pivot in and put a temporary stop to it with Haze, while ID/Curse Garg can go toe-to-toe with Revenankh with pretty much any Tera type. Venomicon and Tomohawk are both good checks that can put a lot of pressure on Revenankh with Hurricane. As for offensive checks, Jumbao and Valiant are about as good as it gets, resisting Drain Punch and hitting back hard. Other offensive mons, like Naviathan, Kingambit, and Roaring Moon, can lure Revenankh with Tera.

And if all else fails, just run Zoroark lol
the absolute state of ladder meta:
View attachment 507297
I wanted to have open up discussion on how to address Shed Tail, as I am struggling with it myself and keep hitting roadblocks in the builder in anticipation of the ladder tournament. Please let me know your thoughts on how viable any of these options are:
:Dragapult: - The most obvious option for countering shed tail. Except it's really not as consistent as you would think. :iron valiant: :baxcalibur: :kingambit: are all really common teammates for the worm and can easily deal with pult and then get to keep their sub. Also dragapult runs into problems when it gets choice locked, especially when the opponent still has their tera option. It is a great mon to have on your team, but doesn't feel like it uses it's ability well here compared to when Cyclizar was around and the meta had different options for passing a sub.
:volkraken: - Too slow to use boots, too weak to use infiltrator over analytic, faces up poorly against a lot of the metagame and gets recked by hazards.
:brambleghast: & :spiritomb: - I like these options actually. They have enough bulk to be good spin blockers. I just think :brambleghast: is better running wind rider. :spiritomb: feels pretty decent here though, being able to use wisp on something behind a sub is really strong. Has access to pain split, sucker punch, and shadow ball and has good bulk. Probably my favorite infiltrator mon atm.
:noivern: & :malaconda: - idk enough about using these mons to give any opinion here. other than that glare seems strong?

Red Card & Whirlwind:
I don't have enough experience with either of these strategies to say much about them, except for that Whirlwind feels pretty weak in such an offensive metagame and inconsistent because :orthworm: can often use Shed Tail more than once but that Whirlwind users like :ting-lu: get chunked so hard that they can't use it consistently especially since many beneficiaries of the free sub can deal super effective damage to common Whirlwind options.
Red Card feels good and has surprise factor, it feels hard to pull off since it can get activated early and you also have the opportunity cost of an item like boots or lefties on one of your defensive pivots.

Taunt & Encore & Haze:
I'm not going to go into the specific options here other than to say that good :orthworm: play has it getting free switchins on :great tusk: :garchomp: and tons of other ground types/physical attackers that often don't carry either of these moves. So then you're left with turns where your best option feels like using a set-up move or stealth rock while the opponent shed tails, then hard switching into a taunt/encore/haze user on the following turn to try and mitigate the upcoming sweep. There's too much variability here, and while it is consistent and can fit well into lots of team structures, it fails too often.

Sound Moves:
:skeledirge: - the hot croc is good. really flexible thanks to its whole kit. I have to admit I don't love it for Shed Tail counterplay, mostly because it obviously threatens :orthworm: and usually has a lot of offensive threats to handle where it can get overwhelmed. It also needs to use Torch Song a couple times to get going, feels particularly weak against :baxcalibur: which can get attack boosts and keep its sub.
:volcarona: - this is kind of a meme, but can we make bug buzz viable? idk, sigh.
:chromera: - This thing deals with a lot of the same problems as :dragapult: in terms of being choice locked, immunity/resists to Boomburst, and Color Change. Also struggles with a lot of common threats that are getting the free sub from the worm.
:zoroark-hisui: - probably the best option here in terms of dealing with Shed Tail. I don't have enough experience to know whether Specs or NP is the way to go. Feels like it isn't strong enough when mons like :roaring moon: and :iron valiant: are getting free substitutes.

edit: Multi-Hit Moves:
Looking back at this, I realize that I forgot multi-hit moves. Makes me think that there is room for :breloom: :tyranitar::maushold:? :baxcalibur: :cloyster:? :miasmaw: :smokomodo: :greninja: (lmao) :heracross: :iron hands: to deal with the Shed Tail problem. Most of these mons are slow, and in addition won't be able to deal as much damage as some of the infiltrator/sound move users, but they can break sub and get some necessary chip off. Idk, this last category just occured to me, need to think about it more deeply. All of the multi-hit moves I can think of are resisted by :iron moth: except for bone rush which is pretty problematic.

Let me know what I missed or what you've been able to do in the builder/in-game to avoid getting swept.
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The shed tail discourse is super interesting imo, it's something I've been thinking about a fair bit while laddering for CLT as the ladder is just inundated with orthworm HO right now. OU is taking a vote on shed tail and frankly I expect it to get quickbanned or at least suspected, so I'm not sure how much longer this discussion will even be relevant but yeah I'd still like to share some stuff that I've found works well against opposing worm offense.

Dragapult @ Leftovers
Ability: Infiltrator
Tera Type: Ghost
EVs: 76 Atk / 180 SpA / 252 Spe
Hasty Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Hex
- Dragon Darts
- Thunder Wave
- Substitute

Dragapult @ Life Orb
Ability: Infiltrator
Tera Type: Fire
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Dragon Darts
- Phantom Force
- Tera Blast
Specs is obviously great in its own right but locking into a move can be pretty exploitable by these offense teams given that they almost carry strong dark and fairy types. Sub Twave can be very difficult to punish with shed tail HO, and with Libra/Garg balances falling off, it seems to be a stronger place overall. I think wisp>darts is also valid to better punish things like kingambit, rotom-w, and be stronger into balance teams in general. DD tera fire pult can also be extremely hard for these teams to handle, and even fits nicely on shed tail teams of your own.

:red-card: / phazing
Amoonguss @ Red Card
Ability: Regenerator
Tera Type: Dark
EVs: 252 HP / 176 Def / 80 SpD
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 28 Spe
- Spore
- Sludge Bomb
- Grass Knot
- Foul Play/Clear Smog

Glimmora @ Red Card
Ability: Toxic Debris
Tera Type: Ghost
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
- Stealth Rock/Spikes
- Power Gem
- Earth Power
- Mortal Spin

Tomohawk @ Red Card
Ability: Intimidate
Tera Type: Steel
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Hurricane
- Body Press
- Roost

Ting-Lu @ Leftovers
Ability: Vessel of Ruin
Tera Type: Ghost
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SpD
Careful Nature
- Spikes
- Stealth Rock
- Earthquake
- Whirlwind

Skeledirge @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Unaware
Tera Type: Water
EVs: 248 HP / 36 Def / 188 SpD / 36 Spe
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Torch Song
- Earth Power
- Roar
- Slack Off
Just excellent insurance in general against worm HO, not much more to say here. Red Card can be difficult to fit on a lot of teams, but if you have a mon that doesn't value its item a ton or expects get knocked off, it's a pretty decent tech. Amoonguss is probably the best example here but you can get creative. Whirlwind Ting can phaze in a pinch (and prevent mons from setting up on it!), but I agree w/ nutritious blend that it's generally too slow + passive to effectively check a lot of the setup sweepers you'll see. Roar Dirge on the other hand is super cool since it's still good into many sweepers like Volcarona/Valiant (barring certain teras), and of course torch goes through subs. I don't remember what this EV spread does, just a random set I found in my builder –– you can prob go more spdf invested if you want.

Dragonite @ Choice Band
Ability: Multiscale
Tera Type: Normal
EVs: 64 HP / 252 Atk / 192 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Outrage
- Extreme Speed
- Earthquake
- Fire Punch

Dragonite @ Heavy-Duty Boots
Ability: Multiscale
Tera Type: Fire
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Fire Punch
- Earthquake
- Encore
CB Espeed is a cheat code into a lot of setup sweepers (provided you've broken their sub), while DDnite does a pretty similar thing to the DD pult set. Encore + tera fire provides a metric ton of setup opportunities and can easily flip games in your favor with a single turn. Other encore mons like Valiant and Scream Tail are also quite nice imo.

Arghonaut @ Leftovers
Ability: Unaware
Tera Type: Steel
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Impish Nature
- Spikes/Bulk Up
- Circle Throw
- Knock Off
- Recover
Yup, just Arghonaut. Balance/fat is falling off so you'll see this mon less and less, but it's one of the few reliable(ish) checks to Roaring Moon, DD Bax, and Kingambit. Old spdf tera fairy variants of Argh fail to get the job done vs this batch of mons which is why I enjoy this set in particular.

Rain is good vs HO, who woulda thought

:indeedee::armarouge::polteageist::volcarona::great tusk::hatterene:
I think people forgot this team existed but sashspam is ridiculously good into opposing offense

Tomohawk @ Focus Sash
Ability: Prankster
Tera Type: Flying
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
- Stealth Rock
- Air Slash
- Aura Sphere
- Rapid Spin

HO lead that does well into opposing HO leads, spikes meow + worm completely fails into this

:iron moth:
Iron Moth @ Booster Energy
Ability: Quark Drive
Tera Type: Fairy
EVs: 124 Def / 132 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Fiery Dance
- Dazzling Gleam
- Psychic
- Sludge Wave

Another HO option that can often countersweep opposing HO with a well-timed tera

Azumarill @ Choice Band
Ability: Huge Power
Tera Type: Water
EVs: 116 HP / 252 Atk / 140 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Aqua Jet
- Play Rough
- Liquidation
- Ice Spinner

Strong priority go brr

Corviknight @ Rocky Helmet/Leftovers
Ability: Pressure
Tera Type: Dark/Fighting
EVs: 252 HP / 200 Def / 56 SpD
Impish Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Body Press
- U-turn
- Iron Defense
- Roost

Solid check to DD dragons / Kingambit. Really nice if you have something like a Tusk in the back to cover removal

Shed tail is clearly problematic if not outright uncompetitive imo and probably the biggest contributor to the metagame's current degenerated state. You're either using shed tail, trying to cteam shed tail, or both (often the most effective route). Balance has taken a huge backseat in this meta (though mons like Kril and Venom are to blame for this as well), being sorta relegated to Ting + Dirge + Pult stuff if you want to be safe into offense. Even the dozo + scream tail fats you see in OU just don't translate to CAP all that well. I think there's a good amount of room to experiment with creative options that cteam worm builds, as I hope this post has shown, but it's not like shed tail teams are unable to innovate or diversify themselves in response (you're safe into bax and moon but oops you lose to miasmaw) –– ultimately I just can't help but feel like we're bending over backwards to keep this playstyle in check, it truly feels more centralizing than anything else in recent memory. Here's hoping OU takes action on it in the next couple days.

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