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[Final] Zebstrika

Discussion in 'Gen 5 NU Analyses' started by Spoovo The Pirate, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. Spoovo The Pirate

    Spoovo The Pirate Meep! Article Contributor Article Contributor

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    {{Header}}

    {{Tier|BW2 NU}}

    {{Overview|Zebstrika may not be your first choice for an Electric type in NU, with its paper thin defences, poor-at-best movepool and unimpressive offensive stats.

    However, there are a couple of wonderful little quirks that make Zebstrika usable over Eelektross, Electabuzz or Raichu. The first is its blazing base 116 Speed, which easily outpaces even Electabuzz. The second is access to Overheat, which cuts Electabuzz and Raichu out of the running immediately, as neither of them have Fire moves in their movepool. And while Eelektross can learn Flamethrower, with a much better base Special Attack to use it with, Zebstrika has two abilities that are extremely useful in NU; Lightningrod and Sap Sipper.

    The latter of these two abilities gives Zebstrika an immunity and free Attack boost should it switch in on a Grass move, which gives it far more switching opportunities than the other Electric-types in the tier. It may be the most powerful, or have the biggest movepool, but this peppy zebra can piece together the fragments and build itself a niche in the NU tier. It may not know what colour it is, but this peppy zebra won't let you down.}}

    {{Set|Special Attacker|
    Zebstrika @ Life Orb / Choice Specs
    Trait: Lightningrod / Sap Sipper
    EVs: 252 SAtk / 4 SDef / 252 Spd
    Modest nature (+SAtk, -Atk)
    - Thunderbolt
    - Overheat
    - Hidden Power Grass / Hidden Power Ice
    - Volt Switch}}

    {{Comments|With Manectric locked away in LU, Zebstrika is ready - and more than willing - to fill in its niche. While its lacklustre base 80 Special Attack makes a noticeable power difference from Manectric's far more impressive base 105, it still hits hard enough to accomplish what Zebstrika came out to do, and there's just enough movepool here to scrape out a viable set.

    The item choice depends on whether you want your Zebstrika to clean up late game with the Life Orb, or punch through walls with the Choice Specs. Both are viable and widely used. The unlisted Choice Scarf is also viable here, albeit less common, and can turn Zebstrika into one of the tier's fastest revenge killers at a ridiculous 496 (when '''Modest!'''). A Timid nature is not listed as the given nature, surprisingly, as Zebstrika's power is indeed lacking, and a Modest is generally needed to hit as hard as possible. The EVs are geared simply towards Special sweeping, with the 4 remaining being dropped into Special Defence in case of a rare Porygon assault.

    As for the moves... Thunderbolt in slot 1 is your primary attack, hitting hard straight off the bat without any drawbacks in the slightest. Overheat in slot 2 is one of the oddities that makes Zebstrika worth using in the first place, hitting your usual bulky Grass-type switch in for heavy damage, and also blowing through any Steel-, Ice- or Bug-types in then vicinity that may get in its way. Overheat does cripple Zebstrika after usage, but it doesn't mind switching out again.

    Hidden Powers Grass and Ice in slot 3 are Zebstrika's secondary coverage against whatever bugs it the most. If Quagsire and Seismitoad are annoying, Hidden Power Grass is a good idea. If Altaria and other Dragon-types are irritating, Hidden Power Ice may prove more useful. It also hits incoming Grass-types without crippling Zebstrika, making is slightly more spammable than Overheat.

    Lastly, Volt Switch in slot 4 allows Zebstrika to hit for reasonable damage and switch out at the same time, keeping momentum on your side and weakening the target a bit more. It also exemplifies Zebstrika's lack of movepool, relying on 2 STAB moves in one set.

    The choice between abilities is a somewhat difficult one. Lightningrod is the main ability here, as not only does it let Zebstrika absorb Thunder Waves for the team, but it also gives Zebstrika a useful Special Attack boost every time it does, which can only help its mediocre damage output. However, Sap Sipper is Zebstrika's claim to fame over other Electric-types, allowing it to absorb Sleep Powders, Leech Seeds, Giga Drains and similar for free. The Attack boost doesn't benefit this set in the slightest, but the immunity's always useful.}}

    {{Set|Mixed Attacker|
    Zebstrika @ Life Orb / Magnet
    Trait: Sap Sipper / Lightningrod
    EVs: 160 Atk / 96 SAtk / 252 Spd
    Hasty nature (+Spd, -Def)
    - Wild Charge
    - Overheat
    - Volt Switch
    - Return / Hidden Power Grass / Quick Attack}}

    {{Comments|While Zebstrika's movepool is not impressive by any standards, going mixed allows it to take advantage of its super base Attack. It still won't win any awards, but it will however surprise opponents expecting the usual special attacker, taking large chunks out of their special wall and opening up a hole in their team.

    Sap Sipper is the higher recommended ability on this set, as it relies more on physical moves than special to surprise opponents. The bigger deciding factor on the ability should be the immunities however, and thus it depends on whether or not Thunder Waves or Sleep Powders irritate your team more. This set runs a Hasty nature to capitalise on Zebstrika's blitzing base 116 Speed, while not crippling either of its attacking stats. 160 Attack EVs allow a +1 Return to cleanly 2HKO common switch in Camerupt among other bulky pokemon that would usually check the special set, and the remains are dropped into Special Attack, taking it to a nice, round 220. The Life Orb is the recommended hold item for overall power, however the Magnet comes in very useful, boosting both Electric STABs by 20% with absolutely no drawback.

    Wild Charge is the main move this time, hitting for a lot of damage if you can pick up a Sap Sipper boost, and muscling its way past special walls that would otherwise shut Zebstrika down, such as Lickilicky and Grumpig. Overheat and Volt Switch in slots 2 and 3 are mostly for keeping up the facade of a solely Special Attacker, however they keep their usual roles on Zebstrika, with the former letting it break through bulky Grass-types like Vileplume, and the latter being a reasonably powerful scouting move.

    Slot 4 has the most interesting options, however. Return is the main listing because, as previously mentioned, it will easily 2HKO specially defensive Camerupt after a Sap Sipper boost. Hidden Power Grass however stops Quagsire, Seismitoad and other annoyances from stopping this set cold, and Quick Attack is there as a simple priority attack that can come in useful on occasion, especially if you can pick up a Sap Sipper boost beforehand.

    If you're using Hidden Power Grass in slot 4, it may be more worthwhile to use Lightningrod instead of Sap Sipper, as running an ability for one attack is generally seen as inefficient. Sap Sipper is more recommended in all other cases though, for the wallbreaking power that it provides.}}

    {{Options|The rest of Zebstrika's movepool consists of Flame Charge, Double Kick, Pursuit, Thrash and Bounce on the physical side, and Thunder, Charge Beam, Discharge and Signal Beam on the special. None of these moves are particularly recommended, but some have some use.

    Pursuit can catch a fleeing Ghost and disembowel it, however Haunter's the only one it really has any use for, due to Drifblim dying from an Electric STAB, Banette being too uncommon, and Misdreavus being too bulky for Zebstrika to actively threaten Substitute. Signal Beam hits Exeggutor, Shiftry, Claydol and Cacturne harder than anything else Zebstrika has, but that's about it, due to pure Dark- and Psychic-types being hit for near identical damage with a STAB Thunderbolt.

    Discharge can spread paralysis and annoy opponents further. Thunder can work with Rain Dance, but seeing as it will cripple Overheat's power, which is Zebstrika's main niche over other Electric-types in the tier, this is generally a bad idea. Charge Beam can boost Zebstrika's Special Attack further, which is useful, but arguably inferior to that of Magneton, who can trap Steel types to set up on, and also has the bulk to use Substitute as well, and Emolga, who has better typing, Encore and Baton Pass. Different Hidden Power types can be used if you're desperate for the specific coverage they provide. Hidden Power Ground for example will help Zebstrika get past its fellow Electric-types without crippling itself from Overheat, while Hidden Power Water will let Special Attacking sets beat Camerupt, and also hit the likes of Golem and Rhydon for serious damage.

    The Air Balloon is worth considering to let Zebstrika avoid Ground attacks. Toxic is available to at least cripple an incoming wall, however Zebstrika is hardly a good user of the move, and has trouble finding space for it. Lastly, Motor Drive speeds Zebstrika up, but it's plenty fast enough already.}}

    {{Checks|Standard special walls like Lickilicky and Audino are fairly safe choices against the common Special Attacker set. Tanking any move Zebstrika can throw and healing back with Wish and Protect (and Regenerator too, in Audino's case), they can come in and stop Zebstrika repeatedly. However, expect to get Volt Switched on.

    Regice would normally be included on this list, if it weren't for Overheat taking large chunks out of the iceberg. Grumpig can also tank the hits very well, but its lack of recovery outside of Rest stops it from coming in repeatedly, which is really necessary for Zebstrika due to its near constant Volt Switching. Specially defensive Camerupt can block its Volt Switch, and tank any special attack aside from rarely seen Hidden Power types, then OHKO Zebstrika with a Ground STAB.

    Other bulky Ground-types in the tier like Seismitoad and Quagsire are also solid switch ins if they can avoid Hidden Power Grass, while Altaria and the rare NFE Dragons can handle Zebstrika that lack Hidden Power Ice. Claydol can come in on any Electric move, take one of any coverage move without trouble, and then fire back a powerful Ground STAB for the KO.

    If you're looking for a fun lure, Seaking is an interesting choice. With Lightningrod rendering it immune to Electric moves, and a powerful Drill Run at its disposal, Seaking can make a hilarious way of getting rid of Zebstrika. Other bulky Electric-types like Ampharos and Eelektross can also win against it one on one as long as they don't use Electric STABs of their own, thanks to Zebstrika potentially having Lightningrod. Stunfisk in particular gets a strong mention, being bulky enough to take any coverage move, immune to Electric STABs, and almost always running a Ground STAB to take care of Zebstrika.

    Due to Zebstrika very rarely carrying a Choice Scarf, other Choice Scarf users can easily revenge kill it, especially if they simply pack a neutral STAB and have some killing power. The likes of Sawk, Emboar and similar can easily finish off a Zebstrika after it's killed something.}}

    {{footer}}
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2015
  2. Luck>Skill

    Luck>Skill Well-Known Member

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    I'd slash Sap Slipper with Lightningrod even on the choice set, it's always nice to have a Grass immunity, even if you can't benefit from it.

    Charge Beam in OO instead of SubCharge (because SubCharge is outclassed).
     
  3. Spoovo The Pirate

    Spoovo The Pirate Meep! Article Contributor Article Contributor

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    I was just listing SubCharge as both, implying that he can do Charge Beam, but sure thing.

    And yeah, Sap Sipper Zebby is brilliant imo. :3
     
  4. Luck>Skill

    Luck>Skill Well-Known Member

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    Looks good

    Approved
     
  5. The Real Elmo

    The Real Elmo Caterpie hungers...

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    yeah, this covers everything
    approved
     
  6. Spoovo The Pirate

    Spoovo The Pirate Meep! Article Contributor Article Contributor

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    OK, thanks guys. That's 2/3. :3
     
  7. emac

    emac Emad

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    I'll finish it off APPROVED
     
  8. Spoovo The Pirate

    Spoovo The Pirate Meep! Article Contributor Article Contributor

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    Thanks Emac. :)