Pokemon Sun/Moon has been out for more than a week now and people have been breaking down the game to its core. Yet, there is still a lot of experimenting to be done in regards to the current competitive scene. But we all can agree that Game Freak has designed this game with a huge emphasis on VGC in mind rather than Smogon tiers. Therefore, this week we have a Pokemon that has been the talk of the webs, Incineroar the Fire Starter of the Alolan Region.
Let’s start out the analysis with its base stats;
95 HP / 115 Atk / 90 Def / 80 SpA / 90 SpD / 60 Spe
It appears that everyone’s favorite kitty of Sun/Moon turned out to be a rather defensive Pokemon. Boasting a solid base of 95 HP, 90 Def and 90 SpD; this is one kitty you don’t want to go wrestling with. Based on these stats, we also know that Incineroar makes for a decent attacker with 115 Atk. However, with only a base Speed of 60, it won’t get far in the hyper offensive department. It is also the third Pokemon with a Fire / Dark typing alongside Houndoom and a general stat spread similar to that of Tyranitar.
Although Incineroar is slow, it makes up for it by having a large amount of resistances to popular attack types like fire, ice and dark. An average distribution of base stats across the board allows Incineroar to take up several different roles for the team. Like most fire type starters, Incineroar will probably take up the torch and be a part of the competitive scene. Since fire types cannot be burned, Incineroar becomes quite threatening because now you essentially have a Tyranitar that cannot have its physical damage halved.
Before we move on to brewing potential builds for Incineroar, lets first take some time and break down notable moves it can learn;
|::Leveling Up::||::TM::||::Egg Moves::||::Z Moves::|
|Darkest Lariat||Taunt||Crunch||All-Out Pummeling|
|Bulk Up||Earthquake||Fake Out||Tectonic Rage|
|Throat Chop||Leech Life||Savage Spin-Out|
|Flare Blitz||Flame Charge||Devastating Drake|
|Outrage||Swords Dance||Black Hole Eclipse|
|Cross Chop||U-Turn||Malicious Moonsault|
To get things going, let us focus on the moves italicized in orange, or red if you are color blind like me. Darkest Lariat is Incineroar’s signature dark type move with a base power of 85. The great thing about this move is its ability to ignore defensive stat changes of opposing Pokemon. This is really good when it comes to dealing with pesky stallers and bulky Pokemon that use stat altering moves to become even more tankier. The only sustain that Incineroar has is the form of Leech Life. This is one move Incineroar should not battle without, especially when it got buffed to a whopping base power of 80! Not only does Leech Life deal more damage, it also now heals more, which means you just need a magic number on HP with solid defenses.
Moving on, we have the iconic Bulk Up for bulky Pokemon to get even more annoying to deal with. Bulk Up becomes even more attractive when you have reliable methods of sustain like Leech Life which only heals more as the stacks of Bulk Up goes up. The interesting thing about Incineroar is its access to utility moves like Fake Out, Taunt and Torment. When Incineroar is bulking up, it needs to ensure that the opposing Pokemon does not take this chance to set up, hence why Taunt becomes extremely useful. Torment is a great answer to particular moves that prove threatening and is great for forcing switches. Other moves that may prove useful are Throat Chop to shut down things like Pixilate Hyper Voice from Sylveon or any form of Boomburst STAB, and Outrage as a high powered type coverage move against Dragons. U-Turn is also interesting in combination with a Fake Out set, allowing you to abuse Fake Out multiple times.
Incineroar is a true representation of a real life wrestler able to tag out on whim with U-Turns in order to recycle its Fake Outs and Intimidates. And Game Freak has done a great job with its move pools to bring out this flavorful Pokemon. Unfortunately, Incineroar falls into a really low speed tier and is easily checked with popular high power moves like Earthquake, Stone Edge and Focus Blast. But Incineroar does make up for it by being extremely effective against most leads and pivots. It offers a lot of support and momentum control to a multitude of different team comps.
One potential role that Incineroar can serve is as an all out physical attacker / sweeper thanks to its access to high powered moves like Outrage, Flare Blitz and Earthquake. The use of Swords Dance will also help with the sweeping. With access to Bulk Up and Leech Life, Incineroar can also act as a tank by taking hits with its solid defensive base stats all the while fighting back. One particular tech you could use is Flame Charge to cover for the low speed Incineroar comes with. The other role that seems popular is as an anti lead where you bring Taunt, Flare Blitz and Fake Out to cover many other popular steel or grass type leads. As an offensive Pivot, Incineroar has access to U-Turn and plethora of other type coverage moves, plus he is slow enough to ensure the safety of the Pokemon you switch into.
1. Physical Attacker / Sweeper
Item: Life Orb / Choice Scarf (If opting for Crunch and Spe) / Firium Z
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Def or SpD or Spe
Move 1: Swords Dance / Crunch
Move 2: Leech Life / Outrage
Move 3: Flare Blitz
Move 4: Earthquake
2. Anti Lead
Ability: Blaze / Intimidate
Item: Leftovers / Life Orb / Firium Z
EVs: 252 Atk / 4 Def / 252 HP or Spe
Move 1: Fake Out
Move 2: U-Turn
Move 3: Taunt / Torment
Move 4: Flare Blitz
Ability: Blaze / Intimidate
Item: Leftovers / Assault Vest
Nature: Adamant / Impish
EVs: 88 HP / 190 Atk / 74 Def / 156 SpD
Move 1: Bulk Up
Move 2: Leech Life
Move 3: Flare Blitz / Darkest Lariat
Move 4: Earthquake / Throat Chop / Cross Chop
4. Defensive Pivot
Item: Assault Vest
Nature: Adamant / Impish / Careful
EVs: 86 HP / 248 Atk / 120 Def / 54 SpD
Move 1: U-Turn
Move 2: Darkest Lariat / Earthquake / Outrage / Cross Chop
Move 3: Flare Blitz
Move 4: Leech Life / Fake Out
If you liked our blog this week, please leave a like and share with your friends. Also leave some suggestions and comments down below. And stay tuned for our next week’s blog, where we will be analyzing the last Sun/Moon Starter, Primarina. ^_^
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