Tangrowth

Tangrowth, The Vine Pokémon. It ensnares prey by extending arms made of vines. Losing arms to predators does not trouble it. Its arms are made of plants that bind themselves to things. They grow back right away if cut.

Overview

Tangrowth never quite lived up to its billing. Like Rhyperior, it was very good in theory, but in practice it just seemed to lack that special edge that let it bundle through the Standard environment. Instead, it's a Pokémon cut down to the Underused environment. A very good Pokémon, and a major improvement on Tangela, but still a UU nonetheless.

Ability

Chlorophyll: is probably the better of the two here. Both abilities are sun-dependent, and Chlorophyll doubles Tangrowth's Speed in sunlight.

Leaf Guard: prevents status effects in sunlight (and of course, this doesn't include pre-existing statuses or the self-induced Rest). Status blocking is useful but if you're wielding Sunny Day, chances are you're wielding it for the expressed purpose of abusing Chlorophyll, making this the weaker of the two abilities.

Move Sets

Support-Disruption

- Power Whip
- Sleep Powder
- Earthquake / Leech Seed / Knock Off
- Earthquake / Leech Seed / Knock Off
Item Attached: Leftovers
Ability: Chlorophyll / Leaf Guard
EVs and Nature:
EVs: 252 HP / 124 Atk / 132 Def
Impish Nature (+Def, -SAtk)

Tangrowth has all sorts of options at its disposal. It's hard to really call this a specific set but it lingers somewhere in the area of support, walling and disruption.

Power Whip is your first choice STAB move and your main threat source. 85% accuracy is a little shaky but it's a worthwhile trade for 120 Base Power, and 10 PP is pretty respectable.

Sleep Powder provides some of the aforementioned support and disruption, and importantly, it's a way to shutdown any threat Tangrowth itself can't handle.

With the final move-slots your main choices are:

Earthquake provides a very useful hit on Grass-resistant Steel, Poison and Fire types amongst its other useful super-effective hits.

Leech Seed doubles up as a bit of recovery and a bit of disruption. If you have some entry hazard support, it'll discourage your opponent from switching to shake off the Leech Seed and it'll pick up some extra bonus damage now and again.

Knock Off can cause anywhere from minor to major disruption to an opponent. Some Pokémon are very reliant on their items, some aren't. Most of the time, you'll just be disrupting Leftovers recovery, but taking Choice items and Life Orb out of the equation can also be a major benefit.

Double-Powder

- Sleep Powder
- Stun Spore
- Power Whip | Grass Knot / Energy Ball
- Earthquake | Hidden Power [Fire / Ice]
Item Attached: Leftovers
Ability: Chlorophyll / Leaf Guard
EVs and Nature:
EVs: 252 HP / 124 Atk | SAtk / 132 Def
Impish Nature (+Def, -SAtk) | Bold Nature (+Def, -Atk)

Double-Powder is something of a Grass type staple. Sleep Powder shuts down one Pokémon and forces a switch, and the next Pokémon in takes a Stun Spore; two turns, two Pokémon crippled. It doesn't always work out this way, but it often does, and of course, Stun Spore can be used as many times as you fancy.

Paired with Double-Powder is a two-pronged attack, which can either be special-based or physical-based. A physical-based combination would use Power Whip and Earthquake, whereas the special-based variant would use Grass Knot or Energy Ball with Hidden Power [Fire] or [Ice]. Each carries different advantages (for example, Milotic is hurt more by Power Whip than Grass Knot), and the type coverage from the secondary attack can also have a large weighting on which direction you take Tangrowth's attacking, but both are viable.

Swords Dance

- Swords Dance
- Stun Spore / Sleep Powder
- Power Whip
- Earthquake
Item Attached: Leftovers
Ability: Chlorophyll / Leaf Guard
EVs and Nature:
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spd
Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk) / Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk)

It can be a bit awkward to manoeuvre a successful Swords Dance move-set when you have a rather lacklustre Speed stat to work with, but Tangrowth can still pull it off, even if it isn't in the most straightforward fashion.

A status can help open the way for Tangrowth. Stun Spore can slow down the many faster opponents Tangrowth is likely to come in contact with, whilst Sleep Powder can shutdown a fast opponent too, as well as opening up an opportunity for Tangrowth to use Swords Dance.

Once again, it's a two-pronged attack: Power Whip and Earthquake.

EVs and Nature:

Support-Disruption
Tangrowth makes for a pretty decent physical wall, and with that in mind, Max HP, an Impish nature and some Defence EVs solidifies it in that role, with the remaining EVs boosting Attack.

Double-Powder
It's a similar story to the above, except if you intend to use Special moves, you'll want a Bold nature and will want to switch the Attack EVs for Special Attack EVs.

Swords Dance
Despite being slow, Tangrowth will want a large chunk of Speed to edge it ahead of other slower Pokémon. Jolly isn't necessary, but it does give Tangrowth an extra edge in the Speed race. Otherwise, max Attack is the other obvious use of EVs, making everything sting the opponent that extra bit more.

Other Options

Synthesis, Leaf Storm, Rock Slide, Focus Blast, Choice Band/Specs/Scarf, Life Orb, Sunny Day.

Synthesis hasn't been mentioned on any of the move-sets, yet it can comfortably slide into any of them. Tangrowth can handle physical attackers fairly well, and with a reliable (albeit low PP) recovery move, this improves its role as a physical wall.

Leaf Storm, with its massive power, can be quite decimating. The obvious downside is that you sharply drop your Special Attack, but it can still work as a one-off power move or as part of a mixed attacking move-set.

Rock Slide and Focus Blast represent the moves that couldn't force their way onto the main move-sets. Rock Slide helps a physical Tangrowth deal with Flying and Fire types, and Focus Blast helps a special Tangrowth deal with Steel types.

A Choice Band, Specs or Scarf move-set is viable for Tangrowth. It can mix n' match the two separate spectrums of offence with Life Orb, making for a very worthwhile mixed attacker.

Sunny Day hasn't been given a proper mention, but it can be worthwhile with Chlorophyll for a Speed doubling that makes up for Tangrowth's lacklustre Speed.

Countering Tangrowth

Slow Speed, poor Special Defence and a large assortment weaknesses courtesy of being a Grass type are Tangrowth's primary faults. Aside from status moves, its offence is also pretty one-dimensional and highly centred around a Grass move and a secondary attack (a pairing which rarely covers all opponents it's likely to face).

Amongst the UU tier, Weezing, Venusaur, Roserade and Moltres tend to do a wonderful job of beating it one-on-one, having that nice combination of resistances and threatening moves; although they may run into some mild problems with status moves (a problem that effects almost all potential counters). Aside from them, most countering comes down to exploiting its aforementioned weaknesses, and trying to manoeuvre without being hindered too badly by Knock Off or its status moves.

Locations in Games

Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald

Not in Game

Colosseum/XD

Not in Game

Fire Red/Leaf Green

Not in Game

Diamond/Pearl/Platinum

Trade from PtHGSS (DP) Evolve Tangela (Pt)

HeartGold/SoulSilver

Evolve Tangela

Animé Appearences

Tangrowth has had a couple of Animé Appearences. First, one was in Alamos Town when Darkrai was causing havoc. After that, there was one in a Forest whom kept sucking the life out of other Pokémon.

The Rise of Darkrai
Episode 602: Promoting Healthy Tangrowth

 
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