A PvP Evaluation on the Paldean Starters (and Oinkologne)

12 Min Read

Properly after two MASSIVE analyses on this season's huge transfer rebalance, I received a light-weight load for you in the present day. Include me as we check out the primary batch of Paldean Pokémon in GO! This shall be a short evaluation (for me, no less than), because of being brief on time and the occasion already having begun! However for these in a REAL hurry, I'll nonetheless put our TLDR proper right here up entrance with our Backside Line Up Entrance:


  • Out of the brand new starters, I consider that Skeledirge is essentially the most instantly impactful (and least reliant on its eventual Group Day starter transfer).
  • Quaquaval is no less than fascinating sufficient to be value grinding, however will enhance considerably when it will definitely will get Hydro Cannon.
  • Meowscarada, actually, it only a ‘dex filler. It's a worse Shiftry.
  • I really like the moveset of Oinkologne (and Lechonk), however its efficiency continues to be a bit missing. Feminine has higher stats although, so maintain that in thoughts to your grind.




I imply, the title appeared applicable for SKELEDIRGE, no?

As talked about within the BLUF, Skelie looks like the most effective starter out of the gate. It has respectable bulk, roughly the identical as issues like Swampert, Crustle, Hitmontop, and Skuntank. It's not the primary distinguished Hearth/Ghost kind within the recreation (hello there, Alolan Marowak and Chandelure), but it surely may now be essentially the most fascinating. Whereas Chandelure goals to simply overpower issues with STAB strikes (although it has the choice of Grass protection with Power Ball if it needs it), and A-Wak has Mud Bomb to bait with and even higher bulk than Skelie, solely Skeledirge comes with a direct counter to Darks that plague all of them: Disarming Voice.

Many evaluation I've seen discuss Skelie to date have gone with Shadow Ball and Crunch because the moveset of selection, however Voice is what makes Skeledirge particular. For instance, in Nice League, whereas A-Wak can uniquely spam to wins over Charizard, Dewgong, and Trevenant, and Chandelure alone can overpower Steelix and Walrein, it's Skeledirge that knocks out Scrafty and Obstagoon because of tremendous efficient Disarming Voice, in addition to Cofagrigus and Shadow Walrein. Disarming Voice has the very same value and harm as Crunch, and the protection is, for my part, extra helpful for Skelie.

That is very true within the League the place I believe Skeledirge will discover its greatest area of interest, although: Ultra League, the place A-Wak falls utterly away and Chandelure cannot hold a candle (haha get it? 🕯 I so humorous) to Skelie. Not solely does Voice beat Obstagoon and Scrafty once more, but in addition each main Fighter within the format (to incorporate Shadow Machamp and Poliwrath regardless of their scary Rock and Water strikes, respectively). It additionally overcomes Registeel, Shadow Snorlax (by no means a simple goal for Ghosts), Cresselia, Dubwool, Walrein, Trevenant, Cofagrigus, Cobalion, Alolan Sandslash, Alolan Ninetales (even with Attraction) and plenty of extra. Undecided if it should make a giant dent in Open play, but it surely most actually has potential on the fitting crew, and could possibly be very fascinating in Limited formats as properly.

And loopy as it would sound, I'm not satisfied that it even stands to essentially profit (in PvP, no less than) from the eventual addition of Blast Burn. Taking away its present protection of strong Hearth, Fairy, and Ghost harm and beefing up Hearth on the expense of Ghost simply makes it much less dymanic. It would nonetheless put in good work, however I believe ultimately it should choose staying versatile as a substitute. Maybe in Great League… we'll see.

To reiterate: Skeledirge is properly value pursuing within the right here and now, particularly for Extremely League. No cause to attend for future strikes to make it viable… it already is!




Once more, YOU attempt developing with catchy titles for all these! It's a Monday-Tuesday for me in the present day after a vacation off, so I'm doing my greatest right here.

QUAQUAVAL seemed a bit extra fascinating earlier than Poliwrath, with the identical Water/Combating typing, received Counter and subsequently took off like a shot. Nonetheless, Wing Assault (even with out STAB) into Shut Fight could be terrifying, and there are two good second strikes to select from between Aerial Ace and Liquidation. Sadly, Quaquaquaval lacks Poliwrath‘s bulk and, as talked about, Counter, so it just doesn't quack stack up. And that features Extremely League, the place I DO assume Quaquaquaquaval could discover its area of interest (as with Skeledirge), however once more it's left looking up at Poliwrath today.

Now, as soon as Quaquaquaquaquaval will get Hydro Cannon someday, which is able to grow to be the clear favourite alongside Shut Fight, things will be looking up! (And in Great League too, simply to not the identical extent.)



Even nonetheless, within the right here and now, there's sufficient good right here that I'd advocate grinding Quaxly as my second goal behind Skeledirge's first stage evolution Fuecoco. In spite of everything, Fuecoc, Quaxly itself is pretty decent in Little League.

Consider it as type of a poor man's Ducklett… and also you CAN at all times run each. 😈 You understand, earlier than you return to your different evil deeds for that day, you megalomaniac, you.




No, actually. MEOWSCARADA is a Darkish kind with out the transfer Chew! That's truly a really UN-Niantic factor for them to do.

Sadly, that's the excellent news on Meowscarada although.

You know the way fellow Grass/Darkish kind Shiftry was a factor in PvP for some time after which finally light away due to how rapidly it might get blown over in non-ideal matchups? Meowscrada is even much less cumbersome, generates 3.5 Power Per Flip at greatest (versus Shiftry's 4.33 EPT), and lacks the Leaf Blade that actually makes Shiftry hum. Positive, MeowMix comes with its personal 35-energy transfer, however Night time Slash is not any Leaf Blade. And even its second cost strikes are a lot slower than the 45-energy Foul Play Shiftry often depends on, with 50-energy Grass Knot being the most affordable.

The one doubtlessly neat factor going for it's Play Tough for very good protection versus Fighters that decide on it and Darks that will doubtless encompass it in Restricted metas, however with Meowscarada's poor bulk and solely 3.5 EPT from Leafage, I don't see that truly making any distinction except you're already fairly a bit forward in shields and/or power anyway.

Finish of the day, whereas Shiftry can do this (and Shadow Shiftry can do this), Meowscarada cannot quite match it. Even in Extremely League, Shiftry is best than Meowmeow total (although neither are nice today). And sure, Frenzy Plant will finally assist (someday in 2025, perhaps!), however not nearly as much as you'd hope, even in Great League. Sorry, of us. Barring a buff to Leafage or different fascinating shakeups to Meowscarada's strikes (which I frankly don't see occurring, no less than not anytime quickly), it's type of burned up most or all of its 9 lives already.


Oinkologne (Feminine)


Once I noticed the moveset shared by each LECHONK and its evolution OINKOLOGNE, I received fairly excited. Physique Slam and the just-majorly-buffed Dig with THAT bulk? Sure please! And Deal with is a legit viable quick transfer now, a clone of Lick, amongst others, which has lengthy pushed different Physique Slammers like Snorlax and, after all, Lickitung.

And sure, it DOES work out to comparable pacing and widespread impartial beatings, and Dig, after all, has apparent potential versus the favored Steels in Nice and Extremely Leagues, amongst others.

However uh… even the feminine model of Oinkologne (which is bulkier than the male model, so maintain that firmly in thoughts as you grind, of us!) isn't as thicc as Lickitung, and even Snorlax. And thus Oinkologne finally ends up looking rather tepid overall, trailing Snorlax (and even Munchlax with the identical Regular strikes and a worse Floor cost transfer) and particularly Lickitung in effectiveness. There IS some good that comes with Oinker, like wins over Venusaur and Pelipper that neither Snorlax nor Munchlax can reliably get (and even Lickitung, in Venusaur's case), however heck, even Munchlax can go and beat BIG names like Azumarill, Gligar, Mantine, (Water Gun) Lanturn, Walrein, and Alolan Ninetales that Oinkologne often can't. And in Extremely League, not solely is Oinkologne no higher than Snorlax (coming in with a lot slower and just lately nerfed Floor transfer Earthquake), it can't even prime Lickilicky, one thing that doesn't even see (a lot) play! That's a moderately unhappy place to be.

It's actually doable that Oinkologne will get extra strikes down the road to make it extra fascinating… in any case, it arrives with solely two cost strikes whole. Mud Shot would assist loads, as would cost strikes it learns in MSG like Disarming Voice or Earth Energy (realized naturally through leveling up) or Seed Bomb, Trailblaze, Play Tough or others that it may possibly study in MSG through TM. However till and except that occurs, whereas I do nonetheless advocate grinding for an excellent feminine one, no less than, it's unlikely to see a lot play past maybe Catch Cup close to the tip of this season. For that alone, I assume you'll be able to go…




hog wild. 🐷

Alright, that's all of the evaluation and VERY unhealthy puns I received for in the present day. I'm already working to investigate the NEXT batch of Paldeans coming subsequent week, and naturally we now have a brand new Group Day to prep for too, so extra to return quickly! Till then, you'll be able to at all times discover me on Twitter with common PvP evaluation nuggets or Patreon, for those who're feeling additional beneficiant.

Thanks to your trustworthy readership, Pokéfriends. Keep secure on the market, good searching, and catch you subsequent time!

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