Politoed, The Frog Pokémon. It gathers groups of others as their leader. Its cries make Poliwag obey. The curled hair on its head proves its status as a king. It is said that the longer and curlier the hair, the more respect it earns from its peers. Whenever three or more of these get together, they sing in a loud voice that sounds like bellowing.
I can't honestly say there's anything special about Politoed. It's a water type, with generally good stats, a passable move-pool (certainly more expansive than that of a generic water type) but it has little that makes it stand out. It is an Under-Used (UU) Pokémon through and through, and amongst its fellow UUs, Politoed is an acceptable choice. Its stats are nicely tailored towards Special Walling duties, and its Special Attack and Special move-pool are both acceptable. If you can overcome the aforementioned lack of “special-ness”, then maybe Politoed can find a useful place on your team.
Water Absorb: is quite a nice trait. Politoed can pick up a nice 25% chunk of recovery from opposing water moves. The added water immunity is nice, although you'll see little difference, since it already carries a resistance to water moves.
Damp: is a trait more suited to the 2v2 environment. It prevents the use of Explosion and Self-Destruct. Although these moves are seen in 1v1 play, they are favourites in the 2v2 environment (usually paired with Protect or a Ghost type). If you feel the need to have an insurance against people who use an Explosion strategy, this trait can be of some use.
A rather generic Special Wall set for a water type to run. The main thing setting it apart from other water types is Hypnosis, which will shut down an opponent and provide some helpful support for its team. Surf provides it with STAB and Ice Beam deals with Grass types. Haze is handy to keep opponents from setting up stat-boosts successfully but without Toxic, it won't be able to overcome opposing water types.
A bit of a generic Choice Spec route for Politoed. Surf and Ice Beam are obvious givens. For its last two move-slots, it's got a handful of choices. A strong Hidden Power is obviously the top choice, mostly for dealing with opposing water types, with Electric being better for Mantine and Grass being better for Quagsire. Focus Blast is a decent move and nice for Water/Ice types like Walrein and Lapras, but the poor accuracy is off-putting. Psychic is okay for Poison and Fighting types, which are a bit more frequently seen in UU than they are in standard play.
EVs and Nature:
If you want to go for a Special Wall, you'll want to max out its HP and go for around about 300 Special Defence. The excess EVs can be placed in its Special Attack. The Specs set can shoot for Max Special Attack, with the leftover EVs thrown to its HP.
Hydro Pump, Counter, Perish Song, Belly Drum, Waterfall, Return, Earthquake.
Hydro Pump is a less reliable STAB alternative to Surf. It packs a lot of power but has poor accuracy. Its usability is pretty much restricted to sweeper move-sets.
Counter does decently on Politoed. It's got good HP and decent enough Defence to make use of it, and being a Special Wall it's likely to draw physical attacks.
With Perish Song you're unlikely to get a KO out of it without trapping support, but you can force switches and disrupt Baton Passing attempts. Treat it like Haze or Roar, use it punish stat-boosting opponents and shuffle out Pokémon hidden behind a Substitute.
Belly Drum is usable, but Politoed is inferior to its tadpole brother Poliwrath. The main reason to consider using it is the fact that people will not be expecting it to use Belly Drum, and since Belly Drum is very much a 'one-off' move, that surprise factor might be enough to let Politoed set it up successfully. In the case of a physical sweeper, Waterfall, Return and Earthquake pretty much sum up its most usable physical moves.
Without Toxic or Hidden Power, Politoed isn't touching the majority of opposing Water types. Lanturn will wipe the floor with it using STAB Thunderbolts, Ludicolo can stall it with Leech Seed or slam it with STAB Energy Ball. Larpras will destroy it with Thunderbolt unless Politoed has Focus Blast. Defensive water types with Toxic will work as well, such as Blastoise and Mantine. If it does have Toxic, Tentacruel and Qwilfish are comfortably immune.
Grass types work if they have a chunky enough Special Defence stat to suck up Ice Beams. Meganium, Bellossom, Vileplume and Wormadam (Grass) are decent choices. Despite lacking water resistances, Muk and (Magic Guard) Clefable are comfortable against it, both being immune to Toxic.
Politoed has no business in the Standard environment, but if it's seen there, basic logic should dictate reliable counters. Blissey, Raikou, Gyarados and Starmie are all comfortable against it.
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