Tournament The Official OLT IX Discussion Thread

ironwater

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Welcome to the official OLT IX Discussion Thread, dedicated to OLT IX. This tournament differs from what you're used to see, as players need to go through the OU ladder first in order to qualify for the OLT playoffs and to get a chance to compete for their very own trophy. As the first of the 4 laddering cycles in reaching its end, we are opening this thread to serve as a place to share teams, trends... and as a discussion thread dedicated to the tournament and the developments that may arise from it. We will also use this tread to write an oveview after every cycle that will detail qualifiers, interesting developments, and noteworthy teams.

If you are interested in signing up for OLT, you should check this section.

Archive
 
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xray

how u doin'?
is a Tiering Contributoris a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
World Defender
Since Cycle 1 has now come to an official end, I have decided (so you stop bothering me ^^) to share the two main teams I used to climb the ladder. Although these weren't the only teams I used, I'd still say I used them in about 70% of my games and I think they are both pretty interesting and unique in their way.

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https://pokepast.es/6fcfd89c97c24606 - Blaziken Rilla BO aka Hot Wings

Since the WCOP-meta lacked Slowbro and Toxapex usage and was centered more around water types such as Volcanion and Rotom-W, I really wanted to try out this set that Gefährlicher Random had once mentioned to me and "will only work on HO". However, the idea of building a consistent Bulky Offense team around it seemed more appealing to me. Rillas Terrain and it's ability to Knock and weaken the opposing team together with Future Sight and a Toxic + Tect Spam seemed like an interesting approach to me. The reason for using Slack-Off-less Slowbro was that I valued Toxic a lot in match-ups vs. opposing Slowbro, Gastro, Dragonite, Zapdos etc. I won't go into further detail about the team, but it has done a great service for me and has been an absolute joy for me to use until high ladder.

Possible changes: more Speed on Melm for Gastro, more Speed on Blaze for Ada Weav, Kart, Torn etc.

From 2000 on the meta seemed to develop and obviously the caliber of players I faced changed drastically. The team turned out to be by far less efficient for me since I faced a large number of TSpikes Toxapex, Stalls and so on. Because of that, I decided to create a new team that would work better against these concepts, especially against Stall.

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https://pokepast.es/986546e8da068e35 - Crawdaunt Offense aka Crusty Crab

I really wanted to try Crawdaunt on ladder, but I felt a Toxic Spikes absorber was needed with him, so I decided to add Nidoking as my absorber. The addition of Rilla was very intuitive since it is also great against Stall with this Woodhammer-Set and also provides Terrain support and matches up well vs Rain and as a revenger. I usually played the Heatran as an aggressive Earlygame-Rocker since I feel that the team highly relies on that vs certain cores and with a team consisting of such dangerous threats it would be a tough task to ever get them off the field again. However, in Match-Ups against opposing Lele Offense I would sometimes keep it in the back for a little bit longer. The bulk is mainly used for Kart and Weav. Against these kind of teams you usually need to spot your wincon real quick and trade well. Don't be afraid to pull the trigger, especially when using Nidoking. Dragonite and Weavile were more the glues to not lose to certain Dragon (Dnite) or Grasstypes immediately. Overall, the team did exactly what it was supposed to do: beat Stall and win a decent amount of other games as well.

Possible changes: I changed the DNite Set quite a lot. This went from DD, Wingbeat, EQ, Heal Bell to DD, Wingbeat, Heal Bell, Roost (with a bulkier spread)... whatever I feel was best vs the opponents I wanted to face. But honestly, Wingbeat and Ice Punch are both kind of necessary or else the Zapdos / Buzzwole Match-Ups can be even harder. You may also change Flamethrower on Nido to Thunderbolt or Taunt, but once again I think Flame is most consistent here. Crawdaunt can run Life Orb or Muscle Band as well, but I think Black Glasses gets you the rolls you want. Earth Power > Taunt on Heatran also is a possibility.


Have fun!


Thanks for the support and all the kind comments during this first Cycle. I didn't tilt as much as I expected and actually had quite a lot of fun playing, but apologies still go out to the probably 2 people I was rude to. Nevertheless, the past 2 days have been really stressful and I'm glad this is over for now lol. Respect to everyone that had the energy and commitment to fully play this cycle, keep going! :heart: :pimp:
 
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This is my first cycle of olt I have ever participated in and while things did get intense during the last hours of the cycle I found it to be an overall great experience. Anyway, I'm gonna to share the main team that helped me out the most during this cycle.

https://pokepast.es/d75ee80dd740cea3 - Bulk Up Zarude Sand Balance

The reason why I used Zarude so much during this cycle is because I realized that not only pokemon like Rotom-W were seeing high usage but also the fact that I knew stall teams were going to be very common and Zarude is one of the best pokemon at breaking down bulkier structures. With Bulk Up and Jungle Healing alongside STAB power whip to threaten unaware pokemon like Quagsire it makes your stall matchup stronger and it can go the distance against those teams since Jungle Healing heals 25% of your health and gets rid of status meaning you can push through pokemon found on those teams. It also provides solid defense utility for the team thanks to its great natural bulk, an extremely crucial ghost resistance and ability to keep it self healthy with Jungle Healing. The rest of the team is pretty standard with the defensive core of specially defensive Hippowdon, rocky helmet physically defense Corviknight and mixed defensive Toxapex. These 3 together cover majority of the meta and support the team very well. Hippowdon is the most important member of the squad's backbone and the one pokemon on the team that without it the team won't function. Hippowdon gives that all important volt switch immunity but along with that it checks Heatran, Zapdos, Tapu Koko, Dragapult, Zeraora, Victini, Magnezone, Tyranitar, Excadrill and more. It provides stealth rock for the team too and gives sand chip to help out Zarude and just chipping mons in general. The last 2 members on the team are Dragapult and Tapu Lele. Dragapult is a form of speed control for the team, helps out a ton when it comes to taking on offensive builds and can even wallbreak because of shadow ball being so spammable and there being very few reliable, long term ghost resists. Tapu Lele is the main wallbreaker for the team and with the coverage it has its basically unwallable without Aegislash, Jirachi, or Bronzong. Another pokemon like Shedninja also hard walls this coverage but with the help of Hippo's sand (another reason why its so important for the team) it can't really beat it either if sand is up. Pokemon that the team can struggle with is Volcanion because of its coverage so you have to try and not give it many free switches because once Dragapult is weakened it starts to pick kills. Gravity Landorus, specs Zapdos (while not the most common sets on these pokemon) they can give the team trouble as well. Possible changes that I came up with is giving Toxapex toxic over scald and changing the Corviknight's moves and ev spread.

If you decide to use the team I really hope you enjoy it and I want to give a huge shoutout to Storm Zone and Blimax you guys are incredible :heart:
Good luck to anyone else trying to qualify for these next three cycles!!!
 

Ox the Fox

is a Tiering Contributorwon the 8th Official Ladder Tournamentis a Past SCL Championis a Past WCoP Champion
Smogon Charity Bowl IV Winner
three main teams I used:
Grassy Spam - s/o SZ for giving me the rilla + kart idea, ended up doing rly well on ladder. terrain extender rilla is a great tech that makes late game rilla way more threatening + makes protect tran/gastro extremely hard to kill. buzzwole is a bitch to kill w this team so u can always run aerial ace on kart > knock or SS. clear smog is also a good option on gastro bc otherwise cm clef basically always gets a kill.

Subswam Volca Offense- nice offense team I made back in stour that can get some rly good MUs with subswam volca. ada LO chomp always kills clef/weakens lando nicely so volca can sweep later. I generally play this team overly aggressive and just try to setup so chomp/weav/volca can win ASAP

Gking Stall- rly reliable stall that gets a lot of autowin matchups. lots of different options here like changing item on pex/corvi, LS> t spikes on pex, toxic > t wave on blissey. biggest mistake I see people make when piloting this is playing way too passive, if I'm playing something annoying like specs lele I'll often double my gking in to pressure those teams as much as possible. it can also be a good idea to take trades w blissey on threats, like t waving kart/lele in exchange for 80%
 

Blimax

https://www.youtube.com/c/Blimaxx
is a Top Tiering Contributor
I would like to share as well, some of the mass spammed teams from Cycle 1. Which helped a few to qualify and a lot to be very close to qualification:

Signature Setup Tornadus Stall: I consider this my best Team in SS. I personally have never lost with this team in a tournament and have very few losses in ladder, ( a really well played Thunderbolt Specs lele can cause problems ), other than that this team has 0 bad matchups and extremely consistent. I will share both the original versions and the modified version.
Version 1 (The OG): https://pokepast.es/9c4025e3577049a0 ( Ez used Substitute over Sludge Bomb, helps vs Heatran and Zap )
Version 2 (Used by baboboy to Qualify): https://pokepast.es/1fcdec23a8a70980

Imprison Mew Stall: Initially built by the Goat John-W. I have modified it as Cosmic Power Mew fails to accomplish anything. Imprison Mew accompanied by Double Knock off shuts down most fat and stall teams.
The Team: https://pokepast.es/e66fb1bcf4892e31

The Triband Sand Team Series: Not much to say about these teams, absolute OG and super consistent.
OG Team built back when SS was released: https://pokepast.es/07b08ea2b217fe57
Empo Version: https://pokepast.es/b6c641146e0365a6
Blim Version: https://pokepast.es/94b83b57c13f316c

Trick Slowking Stall Breaker: Initially built by the Goat Storm Zone, modified a bit by me, but credit should go to him. Very consistent, needs skill, not as easy to pivot like the rest.
The Team: https://pokepast.es/f02dafefe8c7702b

That's all from my end. If you ever need teams or any sort of help, don't hesitate to reach out to me, I will try my best to help you out.
Congratz to cycle 1 qualifiers. Gl to everyone trying for cycles 2 to 4.
Blim!
 
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It‘s always nice seeing people post their teams and their experiences with them every year so I thought I’d do the same. Although I can’t post all the teams I used since most of them aren’t mine.

1000-1700
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https://pokepast.es/2443dc5db01292c4 - les bombardant au soleil

Low to Mid ladder is probably the most insignificant part of ladder so I’ll gloss over this part especially considering I took my most losses in this portion of my run. I didn’t have the patience to use balance or any sort of fat team so I just spammed weather offences. I used the hail the most after fluffeluff passed it to me on ladder right before olt, and honestly considering the fact that it had an Auroras and an Arctovish it did surprisingly well. Encore Auroras helps get rocks up and break vs fatter teams via encore while also usually being able to chip Melmetal into range of Bolt Breaks/Fisherous Rends. Sub Volca is a nice late game sweeper and is nice for fishing burns vs Grasses. The sun is low-key ass but I really wanted to use Shiftry so I just threw together whatever looked aesthetically pleasing.

1700-2100
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This was a Wcop team that LNumbers originally built but Xray ended up using. I really liked the idea of Toxic Sub Zone paired with SD Sub Chomp. Zone lets you trap the steel birds while also being able to chip down Lando with toxic + flash. The other traditional Chomp checks like Willo Rotom also can‘t really deal with Chomp if you just sub up on the Willo. The rest of the team is mostly self explanatory with Torn Mel Clef being your defensive backbone while you also have Melm to spread status and act as a pseduo ghost/weav check.

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I didn’t really use this team as much as the Lnumbers team but I did use it a fair bit. I ended up stealing it from Wcop with mspc’s and FU SHUN HA ‘s help. The concept is pretty simple but effective, toxic koko helps chip down grounds for Volc and you also have boom lando to force kills on the grounds that aren’t that worried about toxic/grounds that have wish or heal bell support. DDnite also can capitalise on chipped or poisoned grounds to sweep. Not much to say about the team other than the fact that it usually works out if you the patience to play longer games.

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(s/o’s Fluff and Mspc)

These are probably the teams I used most during the final stages of the cycle. The basic framework was stolen from Gefährlicher Random ’s Wcop Stall but adjusted to get rid of the surprise factor for something more consistent and better vs fatter teams. We ended up replacing the slowbro for a mew which ended up working out nicely. The stall had a few variants mostly just because the mew set can really be anything we wanted it to be, so I usually just adjusted the set to whatever was most popular on ladder that day. Spdef Rocks Mew, Gunk/Eq/Flame Mew, Cosmic Power, etc all work out fine but I found the most success with the block and spikes variant seeing as they beat opposing stall/fat the easiest and fastest. Not really much to say about these either, it’s basic stall, has the usual weaknesses of SpexLele/Daunt but you have enough tools to work around them.


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Corazan

Crystal
is a Tiering Contributoris a Past SCL Championis a Past WCoP Champion
Feeling weird rn, last day was just awful and probably the biggest disappointment in the game I've ever known. I remember being like #4 10mins away from the deadline when everyone thought I was in, until MichaelTheBest won 3 games at same times, ez came back from hell and finally this Ox game which ended 15s before the deadline, I just couldn't believe what just happened, was just speechless in front of my screen and this astronomic scenario. I'll try to get over it for this post but even writing this right now Im still feeling quite bad.

1659669962678.png(click on it)

This is the main team Ive built and used to qualify. Played a bunch of differents teams previously but I figured that I wanted to create something new as I did to qualify 2 years ago. It feels way better to play with a team you created as you're feeling more comfortable, which is important to chain win. I wanted to build around a "0 drawback mon" like choice band Ttar or boots Victini, those kind of mons that will always do work + they have great defensive utility. Opted for Victini with taunt as it's very good at stallbreaking or destroying fat cores in general, the evs in defense allows you to take a knock from weavile from full, fini-ferro-lando is the main defensive core, I opted for scarf fini bc I really think it's his only viable set right now, you're always getting knocked by weavile at some point anyway and the mon itself is way too passive so might as well give him some utility with trick. Dragapult is here to provide that fast and instant power, always wanted to try the modest set and I really felt in love with it. Last but not least we have Zapdos who I think is one of the most broken mon in the tier if not the most broken right now. Id say a standard defog set would be B+/A rank at best but the set I was running is def S+, I really feel like I've won like 70% of my games thanks to Zapdos as he will put work no matter what the matchup is and it also provides defensive utility against Kartana and Rillaboom that are threatening the defensive core.

Some replays :

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1631858326-k93r466puts093ht4jfyp8fpj9rvqfnpw
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1631810805-30vrdolsmwxyxxltei5jx6g4qd88tcbpw
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1631890200-xi10ooi4thv9jpx7g2r57bsaxricbcupw

This cycle and the competition overall was very tough. It's just sad that the end was kinda messy when you have some players just ruining everything by donating wins to every contenders because they have nothing else better to do. Someone in the top did get banned and I wouldnt be surprised at all if someone else gets banned too, nothing based on, just a feeling. At the end of the day I'm very glad I made it because I really feel like I deserve it considering how intense my run was.

quick s/o to the following people for moral support : kek u_u @cclm (doubleK) bb skarm haxrme @TeamFrance Teclis Tace (rlly hope ur making it next one).

Thanks for reading.
 

ironwater

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Cycle 1 Qualifiers
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olt qualif 1.JPG
Rank #1 | ELO: 2179 | GXE: 86.3 | Record: 109-43
olt qualif 2.JPG
Rank #2 | ELO: 2178 | GXE: 89.8 | Record: 115-44
olt qualif 3.JPG
Rank #3 | ELO: 2177 | GXE: 89.1 | Record: 85-20
olt qualif 4.JPG
Rank #4 | ELO: 2176 | GXE: 88.2 | Record: 102-37
olt qualif 5.JPG
Rank #5 | ELO: 2167 | GXE: 88.4 | Record: 94-32
olt qualif 6.JPG
Rank #7 | ELO: 2166 | GXE: 87.0 | Record: 176-98
olt qualif 1 bis cycle 1.JPG
Rank #9 | ELO: 2164 | GXE: 90.5 | Record: 92-26
olt qualif 2 bis cycle 1.JPG
Rank #10 | ELO: 2164 | GXE: 89.5 | Record: 103-36
Congrats to those who qualified, and a huge thanks for those of you who posted their teams!
Everyone is free to share their experiences, we will make another post later to talk about the trends we saw during this cycle.
 
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Mimikyu Stardust

nyeheheheh
is a Community Contributoris a Tiering Contributor
UPL Champion
Hi all, I may be in prison currently after taking the ladder's biggest threat out for vacation and freeing a cycle 1 top 8 slot for another player which means i can't qualify OLT at the moment but i do still ladder... an unhealthy amount of time..., but i feel like a mon that isn't use enough in both cycle is mew as it is VERY underrated especially in this Cteam-centric meta. You can pretty much make this mon into whatever role you need on the right team, and it isn't always obvious. i've seen a lot of creative sets by others and also have thought of and used some cool sets myself. (and rate them very subjectively!)



SCARF MEW 7/10
:ss/mew: :choice-scarf:


Mew @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature
- Triple Axel
- Close Combat
- Trick / U-turn
- Psychic Fangs / U-turn

i originally saw this used by Highv0ltag3 as an anti lead/lure vs offense, the amount of time ive seen him kill a dragapult, weave, lando is amazing, this is excellent to cteam the popular beat up weavile teams and dragapult leads, i've even seen gunk shot and trick to beat scarf lele or cripple a wall, so definetly an underrated heat threat.

FORCE OF NATURE MEW 5/10
:ss/mew: :leaf-stone:

Mew @ Expert Belt
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Flamethrower
- Ice Beam
- Earth Power
- Leaf Storm

So ive used this mew as a joke in one team, but this mew does have its uses, it lures quite a bit of mons like heatran, ferro, corv, swampert, gastro, melm, koko and smack them for a big amount of damage, the coverage it has is just really nice againts the current meta and it can be really surprising and disorient your opponent. Tho this mew is really, REALLY matchup fishy, so don't expect to get consistent win with this.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1615614080-qoneu2gxi0v93nr5lt9ap6c37ixbycspw
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1616112243-5e96cjfshpo4bpcl418v6eym54h5nyipw

TRUE STALLBREAKER MEW 6.5/10
:ss/mew: :black-glasses:

Mew @ Leftovers
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 204 SpD / 48 Spe
Calm Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Taunt
- Roost
- Worry Seed
- Seismic Toss

Do u hate stall? i do, i hate stall. Use this mew, if your opponent's stall doesnt have a fast mew/torn this just 6-0s that, do bear in mind that you DO need to read/make predicts with this mew, yes you do have the tools to just make a stall team into a 100 turn-wait-for-opponent-to-forfeit game, but if the opponent goes to the right mon, make the right move, at the right time, this mew just wont win. The best way to do use this is with at least one hazard up, since your opponent has to switch around this mew and can't stay in, so they just get chipped and cant regenerate due to worry seed. This mew would be really good in either a balance team with good anti offense, or just a full on anti-stall with crawdaunt and heatran. Just remember just because you have all the tools needed to beat stall on this mew, doesn't mean its a guranatee since you need to know when to click each move. Now, this mew may 6-0 stall on lead, but this mew sucks outside of stall, no way to hit ghosts, loses to almost every offensive threat, so if you want to use this mew make SURE you snipe a stall team.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1634926920

HAZARD LEAD MEW 9/10
:ss/mew: :mental-herb:


Mew @ Mental Herb / Colbur Berry / Focus Sash
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
- Stealth Rock
- Spikes
- Taunt
- Thunder Wave

I've use so many teams with this thing, its so good. The fact you can get free hazard on almost anything, or cripple something else with thunder wave is so valuable on HO. Especially since today tornadus runs the ladder with stall and fat balance, this thing can cripple torn and stack infinite hazard vs stall, so your HO instead of losing to stall, you dominate them especially when paired with threats like SD Crawdaunt, Life Orb Weavile, Taunt Zeraora, Blacephalon and Haxorus. Againts other teams like BO, Balance or Offense mew can get up one or two hazards and maybe paralyze something but that is more than enough.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1631963934
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1630537936
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1629180485

DRAGON DANCE MEW 7.5/10
:ss/mew: :dragon-scale:

Mew @ Kasib Berry
Ability: Synchronize
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Triple Axel
- Close Combat
- Psychic Fangs

You Sweep. Thats it. i was given a ton of teams with this mew mainly by devin during wcop and they were fun to play, i didnt get to use any of them in the main stage but i have tested most of them, and dragon dance mew is an extremely underrated threat. It is not the first set you think when you see a mew, on HO where this mew is usually in, you expect demon mew, but when you go to your demon mew check like torn, and it suddenly clicked dragon dance, youre in danger, 100 attack doesnt seem like much, but at +1 with high base power move, it hurts quite a lot and with a bulk of 100/100/100 its not easily revenge killed.


So yea, this mon is pretty underrated and should really be used more, the amount of set you can bullshit into one slot is insane, dont just use demon mew or spdef will-o-wisp, go bold and cteam your opponents.
 
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ironwater

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PS Admin
Hey everyone! OLT has been running for a bit less than 2 weeks and we've already seen a lot of innovation and new metagame trends. Here are some of the most notable ones, with playstyles that are rising but also those who are losing in popularity.

On the Rise

Grassy Terrain BO/Offense

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The former OU staple Rillaboom is rising again! In the latter stages of the World Cup of Pokemon, we saw a few teams built around Rillaboom and its Grassy Terrain. This trend kept going in the first cycle of OLT with several teams featuring the druming monkey. If it was mostly used with a Choice Band or a Life Orb in its golden age, we saw the emergence of a bulkier set with Leftovers, Drain Punch and a lot of HP investment. This Rillaboom set fits well in Bulky Offense teams, setting its Grassy Terrain to help partner like Melmetal, Heatran who becomes way harder to wear down or the deadly Blaziken who saw a rise in usage recently.

Replays:
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1630636738
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1630929196

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Of course, Rillaboom is also seen in more offensive teams with its Life Orb Superpower set and can still use its terrain to help partner like Hawlucha or any Pokemon who like having its Ground weakness removed. Kartana is also a noteworthy partner in this kind of teams, benefiting from Rillaboom terrain and helping it overwhelming their shared checks.

Replay:
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1631305577

Sand

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Sand is another playstyle who’s coming back, and even seems to be the favorite weather in high ladder. Tyranitar is the new Sand setter of choice and has replace Hippowdon. With its deadly Choice Band set, it helps breaking the opposing defensive backbone early game to let Excadrill set up and clean late game. Corviknight falling in usage made Excadrill way more threatening and can be an explanation of the rise of Sand teams. It’s the main abuser as Dracozolt, who used to be rather common in Sand teams is missing in most of the current ones. Notable teammates for this duo include Tangrowth to help with Water type physical breakers and Rillaboom, Rotom Wash who can also act as a Water resist and helps positioning Excadrill with Volt Switch and Clefable who avoid the Sand chip damage and can use its different utility moves (like Thunder Waver, Knock Off, Trick) to help Tyranitar and Excadrill.

Replays:
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1630709243
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1627604099

Stall

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What would be OLT without a bunch of stall teams. This year again stall is rising during OLT, despite not having seen significant usage in previous tours (except Wcop). Stall teams are often a solid choice on ladder for their ability to win a decent number of matchups. There’s still a fair amount of threats against which you need to be very careful like Tapu Lele, Volcanion, Choice Band Tyranitar and deadlier Pokemon like Crawdaunt, but most stall teams have tools to play around these. If most structures are what you can expect of a gen 8 stall team with Pokemon like Toxapex, Blissey, Clefable, Corviknight, Slowking Galar, Gastrodon…, some teams have featured less seen Pokemon like Cresselia.

Replays:
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1629366509
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen8ou-1630686049


On the drop

Rain

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Rain is still a popular playstyle, especially to claim quick and easy wins in low and mid ladder as it remains efficient against inexperienced players. However, Rain teams are not very common in high ladder and Rain is not even the dominating weather there anymore with the rise of Sand teams. This lose in popularity may be explained by the rise of Pokemon like Volcanion, Rotom-Wash or Rillaboom who are often annoying to face for Rain teams.

Veil HO

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There’s still a few Veil HO here and there, but they don’t seem to be as popular as they used to be. Alolan Ninetales is still the setter of Choice and is favored over double screens setter like Tapu Koko or Regieleki as it can set both screens in one turn and use its utility move like Hypnosis and Encore to help bringing its teammate. Notable Pokemon in this kind of teams include Garchomp, Galarian Moltres or Dragon Dance Dragapult.

Ghost Spam

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Ghost spam was a decently popular playstyle due to the lack of good Ghost resists in the tier. The most common core in this kind of team is Dragapult + Blacephalon, with sometimes less seen Ghost types like Gengar or Aegislash. The rise of Pokemon like Tyranitar against which this kind of teams struggles a lot may be an explanation of why it was not seen much.


The OU Moderation team hopes that you are all enjoying OLT and the developments it's been bringing to the table. We wish you all the best of luck for the remaining cycles. This post will be updated with new trends if they are some instead of making a new one for each cycle.
 
Hey mimi, I hope you get pardoned! Anyways, I´m replying, because there is a mistake in the scarf mew set, it actually has to be adamant to guarantee the lead ohko against dragapult, and also having better chances against tornadus after a lando uturn. Good job overall!
 
Soooo I finally did it. This tour was always a big deal for me because 2 years ago it was the start of my competitive pokemon career and I came kinda close last year but was just not good enough at that point.
I mostly used two teams in my run. The first one that I used in my early runs was build by MAX UND MAX . I ran into a few problems with the state of the meta in the end, so I did not use it that much then but the team itself is p good.
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The second team was my main team last cycle as well and it was originally build by Gefährlicher Random and brought by max in wcop.
The team struggles against more fat teams but has playable mus minimum against every offense that was played. That was primarily why it worked so well in the end.
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At last thanks for everyone that cheered on me and special thanks to max for all the teams you had for me.
Cya in playoffs.
 

ironwater

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Cycle 2 Qualifiers
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olt qualif 1 cycle 2.JPG
Rank #1 | ELO: 2133| GXE: 88.88 | Record: 272-138
olt qualif 2 cycle 2.JPG
Rank #2 | ELO: 2132| GXE: 87.5 | Record: 191-106
olt qualif 3 cycle 2.JPG
Rank #3 | ELO: 2123| GXE: 90.3 | Record: 72-15
olt qualif 4 cycle 2.JPG
Rank #4 | ELO: 2121| GXE: 88.1 | Record: 106-42
olt qualif 5 cycle 2.JPG
Rank #5 | ELO: 2119| GXE: 87.3 | Record: 113-48
olt qualif 6 cycle 2.JPG
Rank #6 | ELO: 2116| GXE: 84.5 | Record: 358-241
olt qualif 7 cycle 2.JPG
Rank #7 | ELO: 2114| GXE: 85.9 | Record: 137-65
olt qualif 8 cycle 2.JPG
Rank #8 | ELO: 2113| GXE: 88.5| Record: 107-42

Congrats to you 8 for qualifying for cycle 2! Feel free to make a post sharing your teams and your ladder experience. Here again everyone is free to share about their experience during this cycle and about new metagame trends!
 
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PDC

street spirit fade out
is a Team Rater Alumnusis a Top Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Four-Time Past WCoP Champion
olt has got to be the hardest and most infuriating tournament to qualify for on all of smogon. unfortunately, it is even harder when you have to start from scratch in a metagame you have never played before. gen 8 is the only metagame in which i do not have a single official tour game recorded for, having eschewed signing up even for ost the past couple few years. however, as i found myself at home, unemployed and recently graduated (bar 4 credits for a masters thesis), i needed something to occupy myself with. so, i tried to participate in smogon's lowest barriers to entry tournament, OLT, for the first time in 6 years. the last time i had played in this thing was 2016. that has to be a record for a gap in qualification.

anyway, i played near 600 games this cycle and for the first couple of weeks it was every bit as painful as you can imagine. luckily, i wasn't stalling the entire time (in fact i probably used HO for the majority of my games) so it wasn't this incredible arduous time sink. i first spammed the shell smash + espeon/lele team, then moved on to some standard squads once i made it out of the 1800s for my initial run. between the first couple days and last night i bounced around the 1700-2000 range, with plenty of rage and tilt in between. often, i would forget gen 8 mechanics and sets. my most notable examples would probably be not knowing misty terrain halved the strength of dragon moves, and thinking that all eruption heatran had to be quiet nature. yeah, not my best showing...

last night at around 12:30 AM, less than 12 hours before the deadline, i had bottomed out at 1710. i had told star i had "given up" and that this tour was causing me physical and emotional pain, and that i was just going to ladder for fun. i whipped out some HO and started getting games w/ timid kart, custap lele, and chestorest molt. my original intention was not to make a real run, but to just play through the night casually. somehow, i managed to start actually winning. i matched up vs quite a few higher ranked players and ended up getting +20/30 for multiple games in a row. when i saw myself close to 1900, i told myself that i would start trying again if i managed to make it to that benchmark.

by some miracle, i kept climbing and hit >2000 within a few hours. the near entire time of my laddering process i was listening to rick james and drinking copious amounts of coffee. of course, per olt tradition, the last few hours of each cycle is accompanied by an extreme escalation of the cutoff. i lost a few along the way, but never dropped sub 2000 again. bouncing around the 2020-2050 mark, i knew the cutoff would only get higher. every single game during the last run was nerve-wracking and genuinely tough. having to play xray 2x in a row, along with a bunch of other ppl trying to qualify at the last minute stressed me out more than pokemon has in a long time.

as for what i used, the high-ladder picks for me went as follows: cbtar sand w/ either trick glowking, specs pult, or volcanion; a pex + melmetal balance w/ grassy terrain; a chomp + pult + urshifu + weav balance; a teleport BlissNido squad (this team sucks don't use it). i stalled a couple times in the mid ladder, but i really hate using such a slow annoying style on an already time consuming tour. didn't need the extra sleep aid or the feeling of absolute degeneracy that comes with using pex + chansey every single game.

some random things i noticed while laddering
- to elaborate on the latter point, i hated facing stall. most of my teams flat out lost to them and had absolutely no recourse. i actively avoided matching up w/ stall players because of this. didn't help that most of them were stuck in the 1920s meaning i would end up scoring a nice +10/-25 split. personally, i think stall sucks and only functions well on ladder. i think aside from some real unwinnable scenarios the characteristic hard do-nothing ladder stall would fall apart in most tours.
- blaziken is good. unfortunately it kills itself super quickly. however, i found that whenever my opponent would play blaziken perfectly it would whack me super hard.
- every game always seems like a knock off away from disaster. seriously, this feels like one of the most play intensive metagames i have played (and also MU reliant). either way, i don't think anything is broken or needs to be banned. it just feels as if i am in a constantly precarious situation in every single game. do other players experience this or is it just my alienation from the metagame speaking?
- lots of cool stuff to innovate with. a wider pool of pokemon seems viable than usual. way wider than 4-5-6-7 towards the end of their life cycles.
- the cteaming at the peak of the ladder is incredible. honestly, i should have made more of an effort to ct ppl but i don't know the meta well enough to really manage lol. my biggest contribution to the cteam metagame was swapping between modest/timid and fthrow/tbolt on nidoking.

 

Fardin

Tournament Banned
After that cycle 1 non sense I did, I figured I might as well waste more of my life on this tour cause I couldn't just end it here. Not proud of the amount of games I invested in this but as usual, this tour has been consistently the most fun I had on Smogon by far, so I'm glad to finally make it here again after 5 years.

I can't really pilot ho and balance at top tier level so I just stuck with my specialty in stall and hoped it will be enuf.

Stall was insanely hard to make it work at the start, but eventually I managed to build a couple teams that gave me some kind of consistency.
The one I spammed the most was https://pokepast.es/55b209f855f2f0b3

In the last day of cycle 3, I don't think I've faced a single mu I could not win if I just played a bit better so I think that spoke a lot to it's consistentcy.

The toxapex had to always change day by day to beat some of the more annoying stall breakers like trick np glowking (I had to run 160 speed toxa with light screen and haze to beat it lol) but the team always stayed consistent thru out.

Second was the generic blim np torn set that was just an always good to bring team and then a variation of my cress stall that someone edited and made it better.

I raged a lot thru out my time laddering, hope not too many people hate me now, hyped for playoffs and gg to everyone who qualified with me
.-.
 

ironwater

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Cycle 3 Qualifiers
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olt qualif 1 cycle 3.JPG
Rank #1 | ELO: 2124| GXE: 91.4 | Record: 93-18
olt qualif 2 cycle 3.JPG
Rank #2 | ELO: 2119| GXE: 86.1 | Record: 294-174
olt qualif 3 cycle 3.JPG
Rank #3 | ELO: 2118| GXE: 89.0 | Record: 73-15
olt qualif 4 cycle 3.JPG
Rank #4 | ELO: 2107| GXE: 87.8 | Record: 70-14
olt qualif 5 cycle 3.JPG
Rank #5 | ELO: 2104| GXE: 81.9 | Record: 129-69
olt qualif 6 cycle 3.JPG
Rank #6 | ELO: 2103| GXE: 88.5 | Record: 115-44
olt qualif 7 cycle 3.JPG
Rank #7 | ELO: 2103| GXE: 86.1 | Record: 106-44
olt qualif 8 cycle 3.JPG
Rank #8 | ELO: 2101| GXE: 86.0 | Record: 138-77​

Congrats to all the cycle 3 qualifiers! Feel free to make a post here with the team you've runned and your laddering experience.
 
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3d

継続は力なり
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World Defender
if i had one thing to say to anyone trying to qual, id say stay level headed. the most annoying shit about laddering is losing games that u shouldn't have lost, whether it be to hax or u playing like an idiot, u gotta keep yourself cool or ur gonna fuck urself over. the games i blew pissed me off more than the hax because those were in my control and i was about to tilt hard as fuck but i calmed down and came back later.

that shit is easier said than done but my main philosophy is if i lose 2 in a row im taking a break for at least an hour. it lets u come back calm and more times than not u wont play like a complete idiot after that, which happens a lot after losing to hax or because u choked.

im pretty sure taking an hour break after i choked 2 back to back games then coming back later is what ended up being the reason i qualified so id definitely recommend taking breaks after some dumb shit happens 2 games in a row.

shoutout damian, spencer and everybody else that believed in me

edit: also stop using shit that gets 6-0d by stall
 

Ruft

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OU Leader
I didn't qualify but I built a rather unorthodox team that I managed to spam to 1900s, so I figured I'd share it because why not (also because I can't play cycle 4 since I'll be gone for most of it).


https://pokepast.es/cd6f90c972d29380

Description
The team is designed around the idea of demon Registeel, a UU set that I thought would be nice to ladder with in OU. It is bulky to the point that you can even set up in front of things like defensive Landorus and Garchomp and be completely fine (bar an untimely crit, which admittedly makes things rather stressful sometimes): 0 Atk Landorus-Therian Earthquake vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Registeel: 162-192 (44.5 - 52.7%) -- guaranteed 3HKO after Leftovers recovery. There are two glaring issues with Registeel, however: Ghost-types and Toxapex. Since the most common Ghosts (by a fair margin) are choiced Dragapult and Blacephalon, I decided to patch up this issue with Toxic Spikes. I went with Cloyster as the setter because it has a strong offensive presence (especially against the majority of Defog users) meaning your opponent has little room to deny the Toxic Spikes. Another reason I went with Cloyster, is that an Explosion from +2 Cloyster kills Toxapex most of the time (there are some situations where you might want to hold off from instantly clicking Explosion). The other lead mon is Final Gambit Victini, which fits the team perfectly: it KOs common switch-ins like Toxapex and other bulky waters (great for all of Registeel, Suicune and Volcarona), as well as Heatran and Ground-types (great for Volcarona). KOing (non-Focus Sash) lead Mew to deny hazards is another very nice boon since there's no removal. Registeel's wincon partners in crime are SubCM Suicune and SubSwarm Volcarona. Two of the main reasons I went with these are the following: they can take advantage of Toxic Spikes perfectly and, if push comes to shove and there's still a Toxapex on the field, they all put pressure on it. Cresselia provides Lunar Dance, which allows you to heal up one of the wincons so they can go in for a second time after weakening its checks and, importantly, restores PP (especially useful for Suicune) which allows you to PP stall things like the aforementioned Toxapex. That's not all Cresselia offers though, Trick and Thunder Wave can come in clutch to either cripple a key defensive target to allow one of its teammates to win, or stop an opposing setup threat in its tracks.

Tips
  • I almost always lead one of Victini or Cloyster: generally, if the opponent has no Ghost-types, I lead Victini to go for Final Gambit, if the opponent has a Dragapult or Blacephalon, I lead Cloyster and get up Toxic Spikes asap, as I can then freely go for Final Gambit after, since if Dragapult or Blacephalon get poisoned that's great for Registeel and co.
  • Make a gameplan from preview: which of the wincons looks like it has the best shot? Make good use of Lunar Dance.
  • Keep up the pressure: for instance, if they get up hazards and you don't take advantage of the free turns that provides you, you're in trouble.
  • Don't get counterswept: use Cresselia or even Victini to cripple or revenge kill threats.
  • Be wary of the fact that Kartana's Sacred Sword ignores Registeel's Iron Defense boosts.
  • Be wary of the fact that you can't use Rest in Misty or Electric terrain.
  • A lot of Heatran run Flame Body, meaning they're not an issue for Volcarona. Try to figure this out from the rest of your opponent's team, though don't rely on assumptions too much. Always play to your outs: Flamethrower that Heatran you fear is Flash Fire if there's no other winpath, you might be positively surprised.
  • Remember this generation's new mechanic for Lunar Dance, as it can come in handy sometimes: if you use it and switch in a mon that's fully healthy, it won't be used, but rather it will be stored until you do switch in a mon that's not fully healthy. This includes PP: if you've used Lunar Dance and switch in a mon that's completely healthy bar even having used just 1 PP, Lunar Dance will activate to restore the PP.
Weaknesses
  • Ghosts, because they wall Registeel and there is no Ghost resist: If things work out and you get Dragapult and/or Blacephalon poisoned, you're generally in a good spot. However, if they're paired with a Poison-type to absorb Toxic Spikes or your opponent manages to remove them in other ways that you couldn't take advantage of, things get tough. Facing Aegislash or Gengar is especially annoying since they're Ghosts immune to Toxic Spikes, but thankfully they're not very common. In these cases, look for ways to win with Suicune and Volcarona and use Registeel as sac fodder (though I will say I've won a couple games with Registeel thanks to Suicune burning Dragapult with Scald).
  • Regieleki and CM/Specs Tapu Koko, because there's no Electric resist: Since the team plays out much like an HO, the lack of Electric resist tends to not be as much of an issue as you might think it is, in my experience. Exceptions, besides Volt Switch sometimes being a pain, are Regieleki and CM/Specs Tapu Koko since they're both fast and hard-hitting, though, again, these aren't too common. Main advice in this case is to try to win with Registeel and Volcarona before they get to.
  • Toxic Spikes ruin Suicune. If you think/know your opponent has Toxic Spikes on Toxapex and the leads don't KO it, set up Suicune asap.
All things considered, this team may be a matchup fish, but it goes both ways: there are many teams that Registeel autowins against. Try it out on the ladder: maybe it'll work for you, maybe not. The team relies on surprise factor in certain matchups so consider swapping teams if you get to a point where you're regularly facing the same players. Most importantly though, have fun with it.

 

ironwater

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Cycle 4 qualifiers
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olt qualif 1 cycle 4.JPG
Rank #1 | ELO: 2069| GXE: 83.4| Record: 226-146
olt qualif 2 cycle 4.JPG
Rank #2 | ELO: 2069| GXE: 86.5 | Record: 147-76
olt qualif 3 cycle 4.JPG
Rank #4 | ELO: 2065| GXE: 85.3 | Record: 114-53
olt qualif 4 cycle 4.JPG
Rank #5 | ELO: 2063| GXE: 88.7 | Record: 163-69
olt qualif 5 cycle 4.JPG
Rank #6 | ELO: 2061| GXE: 90.9 | Record: 76-23
olt qualif 6 cycle 4.JPG
Rank #7 | ELO: 2059| GXE: 87.3 | Record: 87-30
olt qualif 7 cycle 4.JPG
Rank #8 | ELO: 2059| GXE: 86.7 | Record: 83-29
olt qualif 8 cycle 4.JPG
Rank #9 | ELO: 2054| GXE: 85.5 | Record: 124-53​

Congratulations to the last 8 qualifiers. Here again feel free to share your ladder experience and the teams you've used. Of course, everyone is free to share their thoughts on this edition of OLT and good luck to all those who qualified for the playoffs phase!
 

clean

is a Tiering Contributor
OMPL Champion
The last 12 hours have been kind of a rush. After unceremoniously tilting my way out of contention in cycle 3 despite being in a good position about a day before the deadline, I was more motivated then ever to give it another go during cycle 4. Come Thursday night, I was once again in a solid position – hovering the mid-1900s, just out of reach of the few who were ahead of me. I unfortunately fell back into old habits, started chasing losses hard and eventually ended up losing around 200 points before finally calling it quits for the night. The next day I woke up feeling extremely demotivated, more so than I had been in quite a while. Before leaving for work that day I had already decided in my mind that I was done trying, the frustration and disappointment from cycle 3 was carrying over and compounding with my recent tilt, making me question whether or not I had it in me to qualify. Despite all this and after taking about a day and a half off from laddering, I decided to tentatively try again; if I started winning games and climbing then I would commit once more.

One thing lead to another and all of the sudden I had nearly made up all the ground I had lost from my previous tilt, leaving me in the high 1900s once again on the eve of the final day. On Sunday morning I laddered a bit and broke my way into the 2000s for the first time this cycle, tentatively landing in the 8th spot. Throughout the day, my anxiety was killing me, making it hard to muster the courage to actually load games. I was online from 6 PM to the deadline and played no more than 5 games. The combination of trying to dodge about 7 different people when deciding when to search also made this a very arduous process. All in all though, I loaded games when I was forced to, and my last match around an hour before the deadline ended up getting me over the line.

When the clock hit midnight a wave of relief rushed over me. OLT is a tour that I had set my sights on ever since I started playing this game seriously about a year ago. In that vein, it’s a really great feeling being able to qualify and compete with some of the biggest names on the site.



Above 1500 on ladder I used only a couple different teams;

1500-1900

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Sand is a comfort pick for me, so when I was looking for something to use on mid ladder, 3d passed me an edited version of this rotompult sand that I had seen a few times before in WCOP and other various tours. Really solid team overall, has good matchups vs opposing weather archetypes, stall, and most ladder cheeses. Has quite a bit of outplay potential and the combination of specs pult + band tar is extremely hard to handle for most teams. I eventually fell out of favor with this team as it has a lot of trouble vs very meta pokemon that were being spammed on ladder like rillaboom, blaziken, and volcarona (less common but is basically auto-lose if it has bug buzz). Compounding on those issues, this team started being spammed very hard on high ladder during this cycle. Mirrors in general are very annoying to play, so I figured it would be best to move on to a different team.



1900-2065

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import

The only team I really used above 1900 was this one. Reje passed me a version of this six and I ended up making a few minor edits to the sets based on some ladder trends. Future sight lele + band shifu and specs pult gives you a solid matchup vs most stalls that were being used on ladder. Three attacks defog zap is an interesting set that I needed to be convinced was viable when I looked at the paste sent to me. I came to realize that roost was somewhat pointless on a team like this that relies a lot on positioning and keeping up momentum. Wasting a turn to roost loses all that momentum, and while this team does have a defensive core, it is not capable of playing long, drawn out games. Many times, I was able to catch people trying to spin with drill or keep their ferros in on zap after revealing both stabs and defog. Has some tough matchups, certain veil offenses with SD scizor gave me a lot of trouble as this zapdos set is a very unreliable check. Rain is also a challenging matchup, although it is not unwinnable most of the time. The team rewards aggressive play, so I would recommend that if you want to give it a spin.



I wanted to thank everyone who supported me during my run, everyone who randomly messaged me on PS wishing me well and to all my friends from PT, KC, and the asiancy who were extremely supportive the entire time, even despite my incessant tilting (im sorry there are literally way too many people to tag).

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FINALLY, special shouts to my boys GXE and Reje . As I mentioned before, after my bad tilt on Thursday night I felt very drained and had given up trying to qualify. Upon hearing this, I was immediately met by extreme backlash from these two, encouraging me to give it one more go after a day’s break. Their support is the only reason I decided to start laddering again, so huge thanks to them for being amazing people.
 
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