Starmie, The Mysterious Pokémon. Starmie's center section-the core-glows brightly in seven colors. Because of its luminous nature, this Pokémon has been given the nickname "the gem of the sea." Starmie swims through water by spinning its star-shaped body as if it were a propeller on a ship. The core at the center of this Pokémon's body glows in seven colors. Some people value the core as a gem. At the center of its body is a red core, which sends mysterious radio signals into the night sky.
Even noncompetitive players should be somewhat familiar with our next Pokémon of the week because this time we're covering Misty's signature Pokémon Starmie. It's been one of my all time favorite Pokémon ever since I first saw it on the anime way back when I was a little kid, and I've been using it ever since. It's not just extremely cool looking, but also it's been one of the top competitive Pokémon for since Gen I. It didn't truly find its starpower until the dawn of Gen IV though when Stealth Rock was first introduced into the competitive scene and entry hazards became a huge part of the game because. That's when Starmie really started to shine and become a superstar because it's just oh so good at spinning them away and ruining your enemy's fun. Which is its exactly what its main job is now. Sometimes its only job even because like I said it's just that good at it due to its high speed and solid special attack power. It should be noted that Starmie did see a slight drop in usage for a little while in XYORAS because of Defog and its ability to now get rid of all entry hazards on the field while not having the drawback of having to worry about Ghost Types (aka Spin Blockers) like Starmie does because Rapid Spin is a Normal Type move. However with Rapid Spin you also get to keep your own entry hazards, so Starmie remains just as useful and reliable as it ever was and I hope it remains that way forever to be perfectly honest.
Illuminate: Raises the likelihood of meeting wild Pokémon. It's not very useful competitive wise, but if you're trying to catch a Pokémon with a low spawn rate during your main story journey it can be somewhat useful. I wouldn't recommend it though unless you just hate yourself and want to run into ALL the Zubat.
- Rapid Spin
This has been Starmie's main set for several generations now, and as the saying goes if ain't broke don't fix. Rapid Spin removes your enemy's entry hazards while maintaining your own unlike Defog and takes full advantage of the many switches that this set is infamous for forcing. Hydro Pump is your most powerful STAB move so always take that. . Ice Beam allows Starmie to hit Grass and Dragon types such as Celebi and Dragonite for super effective damage while providing giving great coverage with Hydro Pump. The last slot is your call. Thunderbolt provides the best coverage and can hit all the common bulky Water types that like to switch into Starmie, such as Slowbro and Manaphy. While Psychic allows Starmie to defeat certain Pokemon that resist your most powerful STAB move in Hydro Pump, like Rotom Wash and Mega Venasaur for example. Just pick whichever you think your team needs more. Both are viable.
Most Water Type support Pokémon run Scald for a reason, and that's because Scald is just so ridiculously spammable. It's a STAB move that threatens anything that tries to switch into with the possibility of getting, allowing it to wear down its bulkier enemies and cripple would be physical attackers entirely. Rapid Spin is Starmie's main niche as a support mon, allowing it to remove your enemy's entry hazards while maintaining your, which is extremely helpful. Especially if you're running a team with Spikes and SR. Recover restores Starmie's life force, potentially allowing it to outlast the enemy's entry setters and remove their hazards from the game for good. It also allows Starmie to take on threats such as Mega Metagross and Keldeo multiple times, fulfilling an important defensive role for any team that can find a spare slot for it. Last but not least, Psyshock allows Starmie to comfortably switch into and take out Calm Mind Keldeo, It also provides great coverage alongside your spammable Scald, hitting the likes of Gengar extremely hard which would otherwise attempt to Spin Block you. Which is downright annoying. No one likes to be interrupted when they're dancing..er Rapid Spinning in this case.
- Analytic: It's a solid alternate ability for the Offensive set. It's great for hitting switch ins really hard with 30 % extra damage, and that + Life Orb could potentially turn the tide of any battle if you use it wisely. Unfortunately it's just not reliable because to get the power you have to go last whereas Natural Cure will always heal away any status moves you get hit with once you switch out. Which is better for the longevity of the battle and helps support your team as well.
VGC, Double, & Triple Battle Options
Starmie is another Pokemon that is rarely seen in VGC 2016 due to the presence of the restricted legendaries. While it does have a number of useful support moves, its Psychic STAB doesn't have much use and its water moves can be nullified by Primal Groudon's ability. Even in other doubles formats such as Battle Spot Doubles, Starmie's niche in singles as an offensive Rapid Spinner is rendered essentially useless due to the lack of hazards ever being used in high level play.
"The Gem of the (VG)Sea"
-Scald / Hydro Pump
If you're a big fan of Starmie and want to use it in VGC 2016, max speed with a Timid nature can at least speed tie with a max speed Rayquaza. Otherwise, you can actually drop to 244 Speed to outspeed max speed Serperior by 1 if you're playing in another doubles format, and put 4 EVs in both defenses. While either ability can have a role, Natural Cure is definitely preferred. Even though Toxic stalling is rare and burns don't really bother Starmie, Natural Cure can wipe out Paralysis that drops Starmie's high speed stat. It can erase sleep too, but just be aware that since there is no Sleep Clause in VGC, the Pokemon you switch in can just be put to sleep as well. Starmie does appreciate the boost from Analytic, but being slower than your opponent in doubles (especially VGC16) is rarely a good thing, and switches are less common since your opponent can simply Protect what you're targeting, and potentially take out Starmie with their other Pokemon. Focus Sash allows Starmie to take at least one hit (except from Mega Kangaskhan, unless you Intimidate it) and get off an additional support move or attack.
The main reason you would use Starmie in VGC 2016 or in any other high level doubles play is for its support moves. Gravity is great in VGC 2016 so that flying types or Pokemon with Levitate can be hit by Groudon's Precipice Blades, and it also increases the accuracy of moves like Precipice Blades and Origin Pulse. Skill Swap is great for controlling the weather, which is very important in this year's VGC format, but can also mess with Pokemon who depend on their abilities like Mega Kangaskhan or Mega Salamence. Scald or Hydro Pump can both be used for water STAB. Hydro Pump of course has higher power, and works really well if you're running Gravity. Scald has the chance to burn but is weaker, although it can still OHKO Primal Groudon if the sun is not up. An ice move is generally needed so you can hit Pokemon that resist your water STAB like Mega Salamence. Icy Wind is likely the best on a support set since it slows down the other team as well, but Ice Beam is much stronger and can actually OHKO Mega Salamence. The stronger Blizzard can be considered on a Gravity set and will also do spread damage. Protect keeps Starmie safe from Fake Out and other attacks, and can also stall out turns of your opponent's speed control.
-Magic Coat is another great support move to deal with opposing Smeargle by bouncing Dark Void back on both your opponents (just remember it does not protect your teammate from it though).
It should be obvious that Starmie will have trouble with Special Walls just by looking at its other stats, but it especially has trouble with Pokémon like Clefable and Jirachi that can cripple you with Thunderwave and use you as set up bait for days and days with Calm Mind. Also Starmie's speed while impressive, isn't as groundbreaking as it used to be with popular things like Mega Sceptile and other much faster Pokémon running around in the game now that take you out with ease thanks to Starmie's mediocre defenses. Don't forget about bulkier Grass Pokémon like Ferrothorn either. If you're not packing Hidden Power Fire in your arsenal you're going to have a lot of problems with that Pokémon because it resists both your STAB water and psychic moves. Not to mention your common Pursuit trappers like Scizor. Even some Bulkier Water Pokémon like Slowbro will give you trouble even if you're packing Thunderbolt. They're a lot more out there. Especially now that we're coming up on seven generations of Pokémon now, but those are the main ones I watch out for.
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