Metagross, The Iron Leg Pokémon. Metagross has four brains in total. Combined, the four brains can breeze through difficult calculations faster than a supercomputer. This Pokémon can float in the air by tucking in its four legs. Metagross is the result of two Metang achieving fusion. When hunting, this Pokémon pins the prey to the ground under its massive body. It then eats the helpless victim using the large mouth on its stomach.
Metagross is one of those Pokemon that has lost its luster not so much because it has received a ton of nerfs throughout the years (and it has), but more because the world around it seems to move so much faster than it did in the old days. Metagross started out its first two generations as a top notch physical attacker with its high Attack stat, solid power behind its STAB Meteor Mash, cool typing, good bulk for an offensive Pokemon, and pretty impressive offensive movepool. Not to mention it had one of the most powerful Explosions in the game, letting it punch huge holes in teams that might be otherwise quite prepared for it. After DPPt, however, everything started going downhill. BW brought the Explosion nerf that took away one of Metagross's biggest weapons, and the increasing power level of the metagame around it meant that Metagross's natural strength and bulk were looking less impressive than ever. Then XY came along and nerfed the Steel type by removing its Dark and Ghost resistances, immediately doubling its number of weaknesses. The bright side is that ORAS gave Metagross a fantastic new Mega form that made it a top threat again, but as with many other Pokemon with Mega forms, the means that there is little reason left to use plain old Metagross anymore.
Clear Body: Opponents' moves and abilities which lower this Pokemon's stats have no effect. However, this Pokemon may still lower its own stats with its own moves. Moves that intentionally lower stats aren't all that common, but this ability does protect Metagross from random stat drop side effects. It's also a great ability for when you want to Mega evolve since it prevents the opponent from lowering Metagross's Attack with Intimidate.
Do the Monster Mash!
Whenever you've got a Pokemon like Metagross that is almost completely eclipsed by its Mega evolution, the goal then becomes finding something that the normal form has over its Mega counterpart, no matter how small. Metagross is pretty lucky in that it has access to Trick, something that Mega Metagross could never use properly due to the Mega stone mechanics. That said, there are two basic paths that you can take with this set. You can use a Choice Band to reach incredible levels of immediate power, more than Mega Metagross is capable of putting out. In addition, being able to Trick a Choice Band onto an opponent can go a long way in crippling them (especially defensive Pokemon). Another option is carrying an Iron Ball, which will offer two benefits when Tricked onto an opponent. The first and more obvious benefit is that it heavily slows down the opponent, which can badly cripple offensive opponents and allow Metagross to outspeed most of them the following turn. The next cool benefit is the negation of Ground immunities, which allows Metagross to hit Pokemon like Skarmory and Rotom-W with Earthquake. As for the moves themselves, Meteor Mash is Metagross's most powerful Steel STAB, and the occasional Attack boost can help to break bulkier Pokemon. Hammer Arm and Earthquake are both viable coverage moves. Hammer Arm's speed drop isn't quite as bad an option given Metagross's naturally low speed, and the effect actually helps Metagross to break Skarmory since the latter will eventually have to Roost and remove its Steel typing before Metagross hits it. It also hits important targets like Ferrothorn. Earthquake, however, still offers solid overall coverage while also having perfect accuracy and no side effect. Ice Punch is a solid final option for the coverage against physical tanks such as Landorus-T and Gliscor, although a Choice Band Bullet Punch is a nice form of priority. Zen Headbutt is another fourth option for an addition fairly powerful STAB move. The given nature and max Attack investment are used to maximize Metagross's power. The Speed investment allows it to beat the fastest of Azumarill with an extra 4 EVs to beat any neutral base 60s, and the rest is placed into HP for increased bulk.
Iron Head, Pursuit, Stealth Rock, Agility, Explosion, Hone Claws, Gravity, Thunder Punch, Assault Vest, Special Moves
Double & Triple Battle Options
Metagross has been a pretty solid choice for many Double/Triple battle teams, even more so because Sylveon's Modest Specs Pixilate Hyper Voices absolutely destroys anything that doesn't resist it or is holding an Assault Vest. Metagross is part of the former group. 80/130/90 Defenses makes for a bulky Pokemon, then we notice the base 135 Attack and Clear Body and discover that Intimidate won't work on Metagross, so aside from a burn there's nothing stopping Metagross from hitting at full power each and every time it attacks. Still a shame it isn't neutral to Dark and Ghost anymore.
The first 3 moves are straight forward, Protect and 2 STABS. Iron Head has better accuracy that Meteor Mash, but Meteor Mash has a nice chance to increase physical attack on top of being immune to Intimidate and Charm shenanigans. Zen Headbutt kind of makes up for the poor coverage that Steel provides, but still hits hard. The last move is entirely dependent on your team. You can run Ice Punch for Landorus-T and Zapdos, Earthquake for Heatran, Thunder Punch for Talonflame and Gyarados, or even Hammer Arm for Tyranitar. It depends on what your team needs to cover more.
Metagross's best partners will deter Earthquake and some Fire Pokemon or Fire type moves. Maybe even pressure Aegislash. So a Landorus Therian comes in handy here, but so does Gyarados and some Salamence. Salamence appreciates it's partner threatening Ice types and Sylveon and Metagross appreciates the Fire and Ground resist with Intimidate.
Metagross's only letdown is.... it's speed. Base 70 ties with Breloom and outright loses to Smeargle. Both of Metagross's STAB options make contact too so Rocky Helmet Ferrothorn will hurt to hit. Overall, Metagross is a great Pokemon to start building around or building with. It's just a strong Pokemon that shouldn't be taken lightly.
Unless it happens to be carrying Thunder Punch, bulky Water-types such as Slowbro and Alomomola can take Metagross on pretty nicely. Rotom-W also does well, provided it doesn't get Tricked an Iron Ball or something. Skarmory will eventually lose to Hammer Arm variants unless it carries Counter, in which case it can win the matchup. As far as other Steel-types go, Ferrothorn is a pretty solid stop to sets carrying Earthquake over Hammer Arm, while Mega Scizor has the typing and bulk to take just about anything Metagross can throw at it with ease. Aegislash can take it on nicely as well, provided it's not running Earthquake. Hippowdon with maximum Defense investment can switch into Metagross's attacks, heal off damage with Slack Off, and threaten back with Earthquake. Physically defensive Mandibuzz can escape a 2HKO from basically anything but a Choice Band Ice Punch and use Metagross's own Attack stat against it with Foul Play. Metagross's mediocre speed and four common weaknesses (an unfortunate side effect of its Steel / Psychic typing) prevent it from being too hard to check offensively. Pokemon such as Bisharp, Heatran, Landorus(-T), and Gengar can all outspeed Metagross and hit it very hard with their strong STAB moves, possibly taking it out of the game.
If there's one Pokemon that really wanted a Mega evolution, it's…well, if we're being honest here, it's probably Farfetch'd. Still, Metagross wanted one too, and it's finally got one! After a couple of generations of sliding out of its prime thanks to a couple of nerfs and a shift to a more powerful and fast-paced metagame, Metagross has finally returned to its status as a top notch Pokemon thanks to its new Mega Stone. When Mega Metagross was first announced, players everywhere waited patiently to see if Game Freak would be able to patch up the Iron Leg Pokemon's former flaws and give it the buffs it so desperately needed, and they answered the call magnificently. Mega Metagross's speed went from mediocre to great with significant increases in bulk to go with it, and while they may not have given it very large offense boosts, the addition of a great new ability in Tough Claws more than makes up for it. Thanks to these changes, Metagross has once again made a name for itself in standard competitive play with its incredibly well-rounded combination of power, bulk, speed, movepool, and typing. You can't afford not to keep this guy in mind during teambuilding, whether you're planning a team around him or planning a way to beat him.
Tough Claws: Increases the power of moves that make physical contact by 33%. Abilities can really make or break a Mega Pokemon, and this one makes Mega Metagross the huge threat that it is. It boosts basically all of its best moves bar Earthquake, more than making up for the lack of a boosting item.
Rule the School with an Iron Fist
-Meteor Mash / Iron Head
When you've got a lot of power, excellent bulk, and a pretty impressive Speed stat, sometimes the best thing to do is just to come in and start hitting things. Mega Metagross has plenty of solid options that it can run on such a set, starting with its primary STAB moves. Meteor Mash is Metagross's raw power STAB, and while 90 base power may not seem all that high, it ends up being very impressive after a Tough Claws boost. Don't underestimate the usefulness of the occasional Attack boost provided by the move either. The ability to spam Meteor Mash on switch-ins and possibly hit the opponent with a +1 Attack move the next turn is one thing that makes Mega Metagross so intimidating (with the biggest reason being how terrifying it looks). Some bulkier checks such as Gliscor and Landorus-T actually have the potential to lose if Mega Metagross gets an Attack boost from the first Meteor Mash. Still, Iron Head is a little more accurate, and when you've got a quick base 110 Speed stat, that flinch chance can come in handy. Zen Headbutt is the only good physical Psychic STAB that Metagross has, but it still hits many Pokemon that resist Steel attacks neutrally while offering a handy flinch chance of its own. Hammer Arm and Earthquake are both great coverage moves, with the obvious difference being that Earthquake doesn't hurt Mega Metagross's Speed stat. However, the Speed drop isn't as big of a deal if you're not planning on staying in for extended periods of time, and it does hit a few things such as Ferrothorn harder, it lets you beat non-Counter Skarmory 1-on-1, and it even gets a Tough Claws boost. Grass Knot is a nice coverage move for the last slot, allowing Mega Metagross to better handle potential counters such as Slowbro, Mega Slowbro, Hippowdon, and Quagsire. However, Ice Punch takes on both Gliscor and Landorus-T more effectively than Meteor Mash while also letting Mega Metagross revenge kill a few things such as Garchomp and Landorus-I more easily. Thunder Punch is yet another option for hitting bulky Water-types in a similar manner to Grass Knot, and it even allows Mega Metagross to hit Skarmory pretty hard in case you want to use Earthquake over Hammer Arm. The given EV spread is used to maximize Mega Metagross's speed and power, with a Naďve or Hasty nature picked to preserve its Special Attack stat for Grass Knot's sake. If you decide to run Ice Punch or Thunder Punch, however, you should go with a Jolly nature and place the leftover 4 EVs elsewhere.
Don't Steel My Show!
Mega Metagross is pretty fast; it does have a base 110 Speed stat, after all. However, XY and ORAS have given us several Pokemon (especially Megas) that are able to outspeed Mega Metagross despite how quick it is. However, once Mega Metagross sets up a single Agility, it'll be able to outspeed pretty much any Pokemon that thought they could get the slip on it. The cool thing is that Mega Metagross is so fast, it can afford to run an Adamant nature and move some Speed EVs to HP while still being almost impossible to outspeed at +2. That said, it still struggles to sweep defensive teams due to its lack of an Attack boosting move (not counting Meteor Mash), so keep that in mind. Once again, Mega Metagross's dual STABs offer it decent enough neutral coverage with a solid amount of power. Since you might not going to get more than one chance to set up and sweep, Iron Head's greater reliability and chance to buy free turns with flinches is pretty awesome. Meteor Mash is still stronger, though, and a Mega Metagross with an Attack boost or two alongside an Agility boost is a terrifying thing to face. Zen Headbutt again makes an appearance as Mega Metagross's physical Psychic STAB, and like Iron Head, it gives you a handy chance to flinch. Earthquake is a nice coverage move in that last slot, and when you're trying to sweep opposing teams, sometimes the last thing you want is a Speed drop like Hammer Arm would give you. Still, the extra coverage against a couple of key Pokemon (namely Ferrothorn), and a +1 Mega Metagross is still pretty darn fast. Ice Punch is again another option for a few specific Pokemon such as Gliscor and Landorus-T. With an Adamant nature and max Attack investment, Mega Metagross can hit as hard as possible, which is handy when you can't boost your Attack reliably. The Speed investment lets Mega Metagross outspeed Jolly Excadrill and everything slower, which also means that Excadrill will be unable to revenge kill a +2 Mega Metagross even with a Sand Rush boost. The rest of the EVs are placed into HP to give Mega Metagross's already amazing bulk an extra boost.
Pursuit, Stealth Rock, Toxic, Brick Break, Explosion, Hone Claws, Power-Up Punch, Hidden Power Fire, Substitute, Bullet Punch
Double & Triple Battle Options
Mega Metagross, much like Mega Salamence, wasn't necessary. It was already respectably powerful. What does adding 100 to it's overall Base Stat Total do for it? It makes it absolutely incredible, but also makes it incredibly difficult to settle on a Mega or two for a team with there being so many powerful Megas available already.
In Mega Evolving, Metagross gains Tough Claws for its ability, leaving behind Clear Body, meaning Intimidate and Charm Shenanigans will work on a Mega Metagross, always keep that in mind.
Not too different from the original set. This set takes advantage of a few things, the first being Tough Claws, every move here will want the Boost from Tough Claws, the EV spread looks complicated, but it's really just Max Attack, enough speed to outspeed neutral or positive base 100 Pokemon like Mega Kang and all Charizard and the rest of the EVs sprinkled into HP. Mega Metagross having base 110 Speed is incredible. Not the fastest, but fast enough to be scary, especially when one considers how sturdy base 80 / 150 / 110 defenses are. The first two moves are STAB contact moves, Protect will ensure you can take advantage of your excellent speed stat safely when Mega Evolving, and the last move is up to prefference, but I heavily recommend that its a contact move.
Metagross's partners won't change much either, but Salamence definitely stands out as a prime choice. Since the two work great as normal Pokemon AND Mega Pokemon, it might not be a bad idea to build a team with two Megas featuring these two.
The only real downfall of Mega Metagross is that currently it learns no Special Contact moves to properly use base 105 SATK, and the other thing is losing the immunity to Initmidate. Though some teams won't use Intimidate for fear of Bisharp or Milotic, there are still small annoyances like Icy Wind and Fake Tears to look out for. Still an incredible Pokemon all things considered.
Countering Mega Metagross
The good news is that Mega Metagross is theoretically a bit easier to switch into defensively than its normal form thanks to the latter's ability to use Trick and achieve more power with a Choice Band. The bad news is that its greater bulk and speed make it significantly harder to revenge kill. As far as defensive switch-ins goes, Slowbro and Mega Slowbro are great for sets without Grass Knot. Even if they do have Grass Knot, Mega Metagross needs Stealth Rock to secure the 2HKO. Hippowdon and Quagsire similarly beat sets without Grass Knot but lose if Mega Metagross is carrying the coverage move. Mega Sableye makes for a decent counter. While it has a chance to be 2HKOed by Meteor Mash, it can cripple Mega Metagross with a burn before walling it with Recover and finishing it off with its STABs. Several defensive Steel-types can switch into Mega Metagross nicely depending on the coverage it runs. Skarmory takes on sets with Earthquake, while Counter Skarmory can threaten those with Hammer Arm. Ferrothorn also takes on sets with Earthquake, but Hammer Arm is a real jerk. Contrarily, Aegislash only fears Earthquake and doesn't mind anything else Mega Metagross can throw at it. Mega Scizor is bulky enough to beat Mega Metagross, though, as long as Mega Metagross isn't carrying the rare Hidden Power Fire. Mandibuzz can switch in if Stealth Rock isn't down, and it slams Mega Metagross very hard with Foul Play. Gliscor and Landorus-T despise Ice Punch, but otherwise they can switch in and threaten Mega Metagross with a STAB Earthquake. Just beware that a Meteor Mash Attack boost can hurt their chances, and Landorus-T's Intimidate won't work until after Metagross has Mega evolved thanks to Clear Body. As far as offensive answers go, just keep in mind that while Mega Metagross's typing leaves it with lots of resistances, it also leaves it with four common weaknesses. It shouldn't be too hard to find something with a strong Fire, Dark, Ghost, or Ground STAB that can hit Mega Metagross very hard. Just be careful when you're trying to revenge kill it because its great bulk lets it take even some super effective hits, and you might lose a Pokemon in the process. If all else fails, you can always use something like Rotom-W that can at least take a hit and burn Mega Metagross, crippling it badly for the rest of the match.
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