Competitive Pokemon Meta Shakes Up As Garchomp Is Dethroned After Almost Two Decades

Significant balance updates to all tiers.

Story Highlights

  • The iconic Dragon-Type Pokemon, Garchomp, has dropped from the Overused tier after almost two decades.
  • Several notable Pokemon have been placed in the Underused group, following September’s usage stats.
  • The sudden placement of major OU Pokemon in the UU tier has raised concerns about a balance shift within the tier.

The competitive meta-game of Pokemon has seen a significant change as Garchomp has fallen from his position in the Overused group after nearly two decades. The information follows a monthly update shared by Smogon University (@SmogonU) in a tweet, detailing the several changes to the meta as various notable Pokemon saw themselves drop from the OU group to Underused, etc. Refer to this thread for a detailed breakdown.

Other notable drops from the Overused tier include names such as Heatran, Milotic, Azumarill, Amonguss, Shiftry, and Mamoswine. These mons are now available in the Underused group, with the result being achieved due to a lower usage rate. According to Smogon University, if a pocket monster reaches or fails to reach 4.52% usage in a tier during any given month, it will rise to that tier or drop to the one below it respectively.

Aside from Garchomp’s placement in the UU tier, the data shared by Smogon shows other interesting placements for Pokemon in the month of October. One of these changes that stands out the most is Snorlax’s drop from Overused to Never Used (NU). While the groups are adjusted every month based on usage information, falling off from being at that level of usage to never being picked is a bit of a surprise.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet OU Usage Stats for September
Pokemon Scarlet and Violet OU Usage Stats for September

Furthermore, Snorlax’s typing, its access to a wide variety of offensive and defensive moves, and its bulkiness made it a fantastic choice, common amongst players. Considering the evolution of pocket monsters and the appearance of new types with Gen 9, perhaps this was bound to happen sooner or later. 

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In contrast to Snorlax’s fall, Blissey’s rise to OU has left some players scratching their heads. Some fans couldn’t make sense of this, raising questions as to what the Pokemon received in its move pool to justify the raise. This query was promptly addressed by fellow players, pointing out its defensive capabilities in light of the recent addition of Bloodmoon Ursaluna.

Garchomp and other Pokemon being placed in the UU tier seems to have caused a major shift in the group’s power balance. Being able to form a team of heavy hitters that have access to solid moves and abilities is sure to have an impact. Perhaps another shift will be in order once November comes around and usage stats for October are reviewed.

Pokemon Scarlet and Violet launched in 2022 exclusively for the Nintendo Switch.

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Saad is a News writer at eXputer. With vast journalistic experience working for a multitude of websites, Saad currently reports to eXputer with the latest news and dishes out his opinions on a frequent basis. He's currently studying Game and Interactive Media Design, which has further increased his knowledge about the ins and outs of the industry.

Experience: 1+ Year || Covers News Stories on eXputer || Education: Bachelors in Media Science.

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