Since the first generation of Pokèmon the normal type has been fairly special. It is the only type that hits nothing for super effective damage and only has 1 weakness in fighting. To make up for the lack of super effective offense, most of its Pokèmon have a wide move-pool and interesting abilities to gain an edge in battle. This generation has also brought us some curious specimen.
I don’t want to talk too much about this guy since VirtualSpivey wrote an article on it already, but it is probably the most exciting new pokèmon. It rocks 95 base stats across the board which sort of reminds me of the mythical legends (Mew, Manaphy etc.). So far it has not had a very big impact in the OU format, but the versatility that its ability brings to the table will make it very interesting for any draft format. Its pre-evolution Type:Null is also notable since it shares the same stats except for a lower base speed. Eviolite has been nerfed but is still a very good item and might even let it outshine its big brother.
This ‘mon is already defining big parts of the VGC metagame, as it is currently a prime Trick Room setter. The synergy between its ability and unique move instruct coupled with its special bulk makes it stand out in the early stages of the meta. Trainers are already adapting to it and include hard counters in their teams like Z-Move Krookodile and Dragon Tail Garchomp. Currently, it has no relevance to the singles meta, so you should try your luck in VGC if you want to give it a shot.
The cuddly murder machine is a fairly classic bulky physical attacker. The best stats are HP and Atk, while its Fluffy ability allows it to take most physical attacks. Its move-pool is were I see most of its problems since the best fighting attacks it learns are Hammer Arm and Superpower, which have some serious downsides to them. The speed drop of Hammer Arm doesn’t seem like too big of a deal to me since Bewear is fairly slow already, which is why I think it will be superior to Superpower.
Z-Attacks are the biggest new feature and some normal moves gained new effects due to it. For example, Conversion used to change your typing to be the same as the first attack in your moveset, but its Z-version also boosts each of your stats by 1 stage. Porygon-Z is the best abuser of this right now and can even take quite a few hits with its boosted defenses and Recover. Another interesting move is Z-Bellydrum, which, instead of removing 50% of your total HP, sets your HP to 50% of its max value. This means that you can heal up by using Belly Drum if your Pokèmon is below 50% already and still boost your attack. Snorlax and Azumarill can turn into extremely threatening sweepers by using this move.
Sun and Moon have brought us many unique Pokèmon, and I didn’t even mention all the normal types yet. From Toucannon to Komala, Drampa and Alolan Raticate, it is the most entertaining type right now. I can’t wait to see all of them put into action.
[Dec. 9th 2016]