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This thread is dedicated to the discussion of sun sweepers, and mainly grass types with chlorophyll. Sun has been arguably the worst of the three OU weathers for a long time (hail doesnt count) And there are valid reasons why. First of all, Rain teams have the rain equivalent of chlorophyll in the form of swift swim. The true advantage of rain over sun, however, is that, almost all swift swimmers are Water type (hello Beartic and Armaldo) and they are blessed with a double STAB to their water attacks in the rain. This was one of the reasons why rain+swiftswim was banned, but not sun+chlorophyll. Another reason is that the water types commonly seen with swiftswim resist the attacks that are amplified by their appropriate weather. This is not the case for chlorophyll sweepers.
To this day, there are no non-grass types that get chlorophyll. All chlorophyll pokemon are grass, and share the x3 (in sun) weakness to fire. This is a huge hindrance for the sweepers, as unlike the swift swimmers, they have harder time switching into weather-boosted attacks in the sun. However, there are defeintely many advantages to chlorophyll sweepers. The first advantage is the new mechanics of the move "growth." The new mechanics allow growth to effectively serve as a nasty plot + a swords dance and makes these grass types FEARSOME mixed sweepers. Another advantage for the chlorophyll sweepers is that, instead of the double-STAB boost that rain sweepers get for their water attacks, they get a pseudo-STAB on fire type moves. Many of the chlorophyll sweepers run hp fire, and in the sun, it is effectively a 105 BP move. However, there are still disadvantages that chlorophyll users face. There are no super-hard-hitting pokemon with great set-up moves. Venusaur, arguably the most popular chlorophyll pokemon, albeit bulky, does not have the sheer force to run through the whole OU. Another disadvantage of chlorophyll sweepers is that they are neutral to the most popular priority, bullet punch. These are some of the disadvantages of chlorophyll sweepers, but nonetheless, they are very powerful when played right.
Some Chlorophyll sweepers:
Venusaur (M) @ Life Orb
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spd
Modest Nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
- Solarbeam / Energy Ball
- Hidden Power [Fire] / Hidden Power [Ice]
- Sludge Bomb / Sleep Powder
Venusaur receives Chlorophyll through the Dream World; even though it has only been released as a male, which means that it doesn't have access to Egg moves such as Leaf Storm and Power Whip, it still stands out as perhaps the best Chlorophyll abuser. Reasonable bulk, resistances to common priority moves, and good mixed stats make Venusaur an excellent sweeper. Its Grass-type STAB move and Hidden Power Fire grant it good coverage, and the latter enjoys a pseudo-STAB boost in sun. Sludge Bomb or Earthquake give it further coverage against either Dragon-types or Heatran and Chandelure. This set excels at taking out entire teams once the few things that wall it are eliminated or weakened by Venusaur's teammates. Sleep Powder buys it a turn of setup by crippling its counters, while Synthesis significantly extends its lifespan.
Another possible role for it is that of a very fast and reasonably bulky SubSeeder, but Venusaur is usually more effective simply boosting and destroying an opponent's team. Finally, Venusaur's Poison typing allows it to absorb Toxic Spikes; a great asset when facing stall teams.
Though possessing very high offensive stats, Victreebel is let down by its poor defenses and uninspired typing, and is often overshadowed by Venusaur. However, Victreebel does have its advantages over the plant-bearing dinosaur. The main perk is access to Weather Ball, which in sun becomes the most powerful Fire-type move available to any Chlorophyll sweeper. Furthermore, this allows Victreebel to use a Hidden Power type other than Fire, which gives it excellent type coverage considering it has access to STAB Sludge Bomb as well. Additionally, Sucker Punch can be utilized to KO faster, frail Psychic- and Ghost-type foes.
The issues with Victreebel begin with its own frailty, however. First of all, it has troubles acquiring a Growth boost. Like Shiftry, this means it can run a four attacks set well thanks to its relatively superior coverage options, or make use of Sleep Powder. A greater problem, however, is its base 70 Speed; with a neutral Speed nature, Victreebel falls short of outpacing +1 base 100 Speed foes. To remedy this, it has to give up the power boost provided by an offense-boosting nature, which often results in it being just as fast but weaker than other Chlorophyll users.
Tangrowth @ Life Orb
EVs: 248 Atk / 8 SAtk / 252 Spd
Naughty Nature (+Atk, -SDef)
- Growth / Sleep Powder
- Power Whip
- Earthquake / Rock Slide
- Hidden Power [Fire]
Although it is one of the slowest Chlorophyll Pokemon, Tangrowth also has the greatest physical bulk, incredible mixed offensive stats, as well as access to powerful physical attacking moves. A Growth sweeper set similar to Venusaur's, with STAB Power Whip or Giga Drain, Hidden Power Fire, and Earthquake is viable; Tangrowth also has access to Rock Slide, which can be used over Earthquake to hit Dragon-types and Air Balloon users. As with Venusaur, Tangrowth too can try a SubSeed or Sleep Powder abuse set, though its powerful offensive stats again mean Growth is often the better choice.
Tangrowth's low Speed and Special Defense can often prove a hindrance since many Choice Scarf users, such as positive-natured Rotom-W and neutral-natured base 100 Speed Pokemon will outspeed and beat it, so it needs more support than other Chlorophyll sweepers to pull off game-ending sweeps. Tangrowth can use its bulk to its advantage, however, as it can comfortably switch into physical sweepers such as Gyarados, Landorus, and Terrakion, and threaten them with a Power Whip. Furthermore, a resistance to Ground-type moves means Tangrowth can easily sponge Earthquakes aimed at its Fire-type teammates. It can also deal excellently with opposing weather inducers outside of sun if EVed to outspeed them, as Power Whip OHKOes Tyranitar, Hippowdon, and Politoed, which sun teams will find most useful.
One of the new Chlorophyll users on the block also happens to be one of the best. Though defensively frail and burdened with an unfortunate weakness to Mach Punch, Sawsbuck's Normal / Grass typing gives it powerful STAB moves with great neutral coverage to abuse. A moveset consisting of Wood Horn, Return or Double-Edge, and Jump Kick lets Sawsbuck hit everything bar a few frail Ghost-types for neutral damage at least, and Swords Dance enables it to serve as a powerful sweeper in a similar vein to Growth abusers.
Its relatively impressive base 95 Speed, which lets it outspeed all common Choice Scarf users, along with many other threats in sun, also gives Sawsbuck the option to serve its team as a revenge killer. As an alternative last move, Megahorn deals with the Lati twins and Reuniclus, Wild Charge provides it with neutral coverage on the Ghost-types that normally wall it, as well as super effective coverage against Skarmory, Nature Power (Earthquake in Wi-Fi battles) covers opposing Fire-types nicely, whilst Aromatherapy lets Sawsbuck act as an offensive Cleric.
The strange palm tree from the original RBY games has long been a staple of sun teams due to its colossal base 125 Special Attack. Sadly, with the buff to Growth this generation, Exeggutor is no longer the premier specially based sun sweeper, as its damage output is easily eclipsed by that of Growth sweepers after a boost. Its weakness to Pursuit, and to Tyranitar in general, doesn't do it any favors either.
Exeggutor does retain a few advantages, however, which makes it a worthwhile choice for some teams. Its STAB Psychic-type moves can prove useful for teams having trouble with the many new Fighting-types, Conkeldurr in particular, especially given Exeggutor's decent base 85 Defense, and resistance to their STAB attacks. Low Kick provides Exeggutor with a way to deal with the Tyranitar that so threatens it, whilst Nature Power (Earthquake in Wi-Fi battles) can be used to dispatch Heatran. Access to such high-powered attacks naturally makes it very dangerous for opponents to switch in on Exeggutor if you make good predictions, but its Pursuit weakness and low Speed makes this a task for none but the most daring.
Another new addition to the ranks of the Chlorophyll users, Lilligant is a peculiar specimen landing somewhere between a pure supporter like Jumpluff and other, more offensive sweepers. This is primarily because her access to the excellent Quiver Dance (as well as Growth) is offset by her barren offensive movepool, which consists of literally only a Grass STAB and a Hidden Power of choice. The move Sleep Powder goes a long way towards increasing her viability, however, as it lets her put an opponent that walls her to sleep, boost up, and eventually beat it, especially considering recovery from Giga Drain and boosted Special Defense.
If lackluster coverage puts you off, Lilligant is also excellent as either a supporting Chlorophyll user or a SubSeeder, performing these duties reliably while simultaneously retaining offensive capability. Sleep Powder is invaluable on Lilligant, crippling one of the many Pokemon that wall her, so be sure to make use of it. Her final ace in the hole over other Chlorophyll users is Healing Wish, which gives another powerful sun sweeper such as Volcarona or Charizard a second chance to cause destruction, fully healing it at the cost of Lilligant's own life.
Noooow as this may be a bit text heavy, here can be some discussion questions, juuuust to help you guys follow along with a possible discussion:
Which Chlorophyll sweepers would you use in each respective competitive tier you play in? How does each respective Chlorophyll sweeper you use, help out your Sun team? What do you think a Chlorophyll sweeper should have, in order to fully maximize sweeping capabilities? Any other thoughts?
Feel free to discuss!
Hawthorne Guardian Moderator of Video Games Paired to: Perdition Haze