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September 15, 2018

VGC 19 Analysis #1 – Xerneas

by chaoticespeon

Yep, we’re back doing VGC analysis articles! Guess what else is gracing VGC players with their presence again… that’s right, the uber legends have returned to competitive play! So what better way is there to kick start the return of our Analysis series than talking about one of the ubers you’re going to be seeing all season long? Enter, the God Deer, Xerneas!

Now, we’re not going to be attempting to redefine Xerneas at all with any zany Specs, Scarf or Big Berry sets. Whilst they could all have their niche, there’s literally no point in handicapping one of your two restricted picks; all the following sets are going to utilise Xerneas’ Power Herb, Geomancy set.

Xerneas base stats
But don’t despair! A look at Xerneas’ base stats demonstrate that there can be a lot of variance in its spreads, despite utilising the same move sets. 126/95/98 across bulk for a set up sweeper is incredible, especially when you factor in Xern’s already monstrous Special Attack and swift 99 base speed – there are a lot of different attacks you can train your Legendary Deer to take. A standard 252 Sp. Atk, 252 Speed spread with a Timid nature works wonderfully as a starting point for any Xerneas teams, but if you want something a little different, try one of these EV spreads!

                   The Moveset!
geomancy gif
– Protect
– Moonblast
– Geomancy
– Dazzling Gleam (?)

This is the moveset you’ll be seeing, and using, a lot of the time. Protect is essential for your board positioning, allowing a partner to take care of the threat to Xerneas; after all, once you Geomancy, you won’t be wanting to switch out. Moonblast is the Fairy STAB of choice which – once powered up by Geomancy AND Xern’s ability Fairy Aura – hits for ridiculous amounts of damage. Geomancy is the main draw to using Xerneas, boosting its Sp. Atk, Sp. Def and Speed by two stages; whilst it’s usually a two turn move (like Solar Beam and Sky Attack) it turns into a one turn move by Xerneas consuming its Power Herb item. The final slot is the only real area for debate; often, you’re going to be wanting to run Dazzling Gleam to hit multiple opponents for big damage after boosting with Geomancy. You could run any of the following for coverage in that last slot, it depends solely on how the rest of your team is built to support your Xerneas:

– Grass Knot (+2 252 SpA Xerneas Grass Knot vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Kyogre: 117 – 138.6% — guaranteed OHKO

– HP Fire (+2 252 SpA Xerneas HP Fire vs. 252 HP / 252 SpD Ferrothorn: 110.4 – 130.3% — guaranteed OHKO)

– Nature Power:
(+2 252 SpA Xerneas Nature Power vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Groudon in Grassy Terrain: (163.2 – 192.2%) — guaranteed OHKO)

(+2 252 SpA Xerneas Nature Power vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Amoonguss in Psychic Terrain: 115.8 – 136.6% — guaranteed OHKO)


(+2 252 SpA Xerneas Nature Power vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Ho-Oh in Electric Terrain: 100.4 – 119.2% — guaranteed OHKO)

 

You could also go for a more defensive/support oriented move in this slot, such as Substitute, Heal Pulse, Reflect/Light Screen or even Ingrain for constant recovery and immunity to Whirlwind and Roar. My recommendation would be to go for Protect, Geomancy and two attacking moves.

Let’s get into some EV spreads shall we?

SET ONE: Gyro Balls Ain’t Doin’ Nutin.

xern eye gif

Xerneas @ Power Herb
Ability: Fairy Aura
EVs: 116 HP / 216 Def / 100 SpA / 4 SpD / 68 Spe
Modest/Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
– Protect
– Moonblast
– Geomancy
– Dazzling Gleam/Filler

This is the Xerneas spread I’ve been rocking out with since day one of VGC 19. Too often, you’ll set up your Xerneas only to be staring down a Pokémon with powerful Steel type attacks, leaving your only options to Protect or Chip it down with a resisted attack before being knocked out. The Nature is dependent on whether you want to be outspeeding Smeargle (and other base 75 speed mons) before your boost, or whether you want the maximum damage output to compliment all that physical bulk.

The investment in bulk allows Xerneas to catch opponents off guard and take a surprising amount of punishment:

252+ Atk Dusk Mane Necrozma Sunsteel Strike vs. 116 HP / 216 Def Xerneas: (84.2 – 100%) — 6.3% chance to OHKO

204+ Atk Ferrothorn Gyro Ball (150 BP) vs. 116 HP / 216 Def Xerneas: 186-218 (86.1 – 100.9%) — 12.5% chance to OHKO

252 Atk Life Orb Groudon Precipice Blades vs. 116 HP / 216 Def Xerneas: 95-113 (43.9 – 52.3%) — 14.8% chance to 2HKO

252+ SpA Tapu Lele Psyshock vs. 116 HP / 216 Def Xerneas in Psychic Terrain: 96-114 (44.4 – 52.7%) — 21.1% chance to 2HKO

SET TWO: I’m The Superior Deer!

dominant xern

Xerneas @ Power Herb
Ability: Fairy Aura
EVs: 44 HP / 4 Def / 140 SpA / 252 SpD / 68 Spe
Timid/Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
– Protect
– Moonblast
– Geomancy
– Dazzling Gleam/Filler

With Xerneas being such a powerful option, it’s inevitable you’re going to find yourself in a Xerneas vs Xerneas mirror war. This spread gives you the edge in the 1v1 against the most common Xerneas spread out there:

+2 140 SpA Fairy Aura Xerneas Moonblast vs. +2 4 HP / 0 SpD Fairy Aura Xerneas: 50.4 – 59.9% — guaranteed 2HKO

+2 140 SpA Fairy Aura Xerneas Moonblast vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Fairy Aura Xerneas: 100.9 – 118.8% — guaranteed OHKO

+2 252 SpA Fairy Aura Xerneas Moonblast vs. +2 44 HP / 252 SpD Fairy Aura Xerneas: 42 – 49.7% — guaranteed 3HKO

+2 252 SpA Fairy Aura Xerneas Moonblast vs. 44 HP / 252 SpD Fairy Aura Xerneas: 84 – 99% — guaranteed 2HKO

Again, you have the same option to outspeed opposing Smeargle by running a Timid nature whilst the Special Bulk makes Xerneas almost impossible to take down – especially with the correct support – for opposing Special Attackers:

252+ SpA Kyogre Water Spout (150 BP) vs. 44 HP / 252 SpD Xerneas in Rain: 141-166 (68.1 – 80.1%) — guaranteed 2HKO

252+ SpA Kyogre Water Spout (150 BP) vs. +2 44 HP / 252 SpD Xerneas in Rain: 69-82 (33.3 – 39.6%) — guaranteed 3HKO

252+ SpA Life Orb Dialga Flash Cannon vs. +2 44 HP / 252 SpD Xerneas: 88-109 (42.5 – 52.6%) — 9.4% chance to 2HKO

Just be wary of those physical attacks!

And that just about wraps it up for Xerneas! Let us know on Facebook which spread you’re opting for and keep your eyes peeled for more VGC 19 Analysis articles and giveaways!

 

 

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