Milotic, The Tender Pokémon. Milotic is said to be the most beautiful of all the Pokémon. It has the power to becalm such emotions as anger and hostility to quell bitter feuding. Milotic live at the bottom of large lakes. When this Pokémon's body glows a vivid pink, it releases a pulsing wave of energy that brings soothing calm to restless spirits. Milotic is breathtakingly beautiful. Those that see it are said to forget their combative spirits. There are many works of art featuring Milotic. Its lovely scales are described as rainbow colored. They change color depending on the viewing angle. When people bicker, it is said to arise from the depths of lakes to becalm violent hearts. ť
The generation switch hasn't been all that kind to Milotic. In the 3rd generation it could walk into a battle and say “Hi guys, I'm a Bulky Water”, but that position has been challenged significantly by the addition of new moves and Pokémon. A lack of resistances really starts to show when trying to take Tyranitar's Stone Edges, Salamence's Dragon Claws and Lucario's Close Combats. It's fair to say the walling job it used to do on the likes of Tyranitar, Salamence and Metagross has ceased to exist; and things didn't get any easier on the special side of the spectrum either, with additions like Choice Specs and Nasty Plot. Milotic's usage has been on something of a downward plummet. The battling environment changed around it, but Gamefreak didn't give it any new toys to cope with this shifting environment. What was once a great Pokémon is now fairly average. In the 3rd Gen it was a good OU Pokémon, in the 4th Gen it's a good UU Pokémon.
Marvel Scale: gives Milotic a 50% Defence boost when it's under the effects of a status. This makes status moves a blessing in disguise, and gives Milotic some potential as a status absorber. Of course, burn and poison will still take away HP, paralysis will cut your Speed and risk full paralysis, sleep will necessitate Sleep Talk and freezing will just plain suck, but at least Milotic has something to gain out of being statused. This doesn't mean you should needlessly fling it in the way of a status move, but it gives you some options.
Recover is what separates Milotic from most other Water types. A quick and simple 50% recovery really helps the walling job come along, and swings any battle of attrition in Milotic's favour. Understandably, Surf is a necessity for STAB and a consistent source of damage.
From here you have some options:
Toxic is very nice for the aforementioned battles of attrition. It'll stop strategies like Calm Mind-Recover from exploiting Milotic's lack of raw power and it's the largest threat Milotic can pose to most opposing Water types.
Hypnosis provides Sleep support. A one-off “take a foe out of the equation” move, albeit with some slightly shaky accuracy; but fairly sturdy defences combined with instant recovery means you can afford the occasional miss.
Light Screen gives a major boost to Milotic as a Special Wall. Its innate sponge-like defences can start to take hits from Thunderbolt and Grass Knot when backed by a Screen, and moves that aren't super-effective will have an even harder time denting Milotic's HP stat. Of course, like all the screen moves, you can switch out and leave it lying there for a team-mate.
With access to Recover, you'd usually ask why you'd bother with Sleep Talk and Rest, a less efficient healing combination. The main incentive is that self-inflicted sleep still gives the Marvel Scale boost, and Rest also means you can be a bit more reckless when it comes to absorbing status moves. Surf is still a necessity, and the last move-slot can be occupied by either Ice Beam or Toxic (the latter of which fits nicely with Milotic's stalling style).
EVs and Nature:
You'll usually want Max Defence, whilst letting your Base Stats cover the Special Defensive side of things. You can go heavier on HP or Special Attack if you want, but you'll usually want your HP in the 350+ area and the Special Attack in the 250+ area, so the given spread has you safely set-up. In the OU environment, a major Special Defence boost mixed with Recover can make Milotic a fairly viable Special Wall as well, although it's seemingly less necessary in the UU environment.
Hidden Power [Electric / Grass], Mirror Coat, Haze.
Hidden Power [Electric] or [Grass] are decent choices for getting the super-effective hit on Water types. Toxic tends to be more effective in the long run but it's nice to have an immediate source of damage. Generally anywhere you see Ice Beam, Hidden Power is an option. Grass is better for Quagsire, Electric is better for Mantine, with some other examples in-between.
Mirror Coat is a good way to pick up a surprise KO. Milotic can handle special hits with relative ease, and even Thunderbolts and Grass Knots will rarely score an OHKO, so Milotic can flash them back with Mirror Coat. Additionally, thanks to Recover, that loss of HP isn't devastating, since a Recover or two later and Milotic should be back to normal.
Milotic can Haze, but that just about sums it up. There's not much worth Hazing that Milotic can effectively wall or take down itself. Calm Mind Suicune is the best example, but after Hazing it, Milotic still can't do much in return.
With STAB moves and cosy resistances, Lanturn and Ludicolo are two solid options, although both need to be aware of Toxic, Hypnosis and Mirror Coat (troubles that can be avoided with Substitute). Speaking of Toxic, that's one of those statuses that'll make Milotic's life really hard even with the Marvel Scale boost, due to the cumulative damage it racks up (this poses less of a problem for the Rest-Talker though). Feraligatr can put its “Bulky” label to the test with Swords Dance sweeping, and with Dry Skin, so can Toxicroak. This pretty much applies to all boosting sweepers with an Water resistance, since without a super-effective hit off of one of its other moves, STAB Surf is the only decent source of direct damage it has.
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