This week we’ll be looking at Noivern. Noivern a Flying/Dragon type from generation six (not to be confused with the ever popular Dragon/Flying typing we’ve seen before.) Noivern screams “niche Pokemon,” from its lower base stats to its interesting move pool to its useful Abilities.
Noivern hasn’t seen a lot of play this season, players have been flocking to the ever-popular Salamence. If you try to use Noivern like a Salamence you’re going to be disappointed with your results. However, Noivern has a bunch of neat moves that separate it from its fellow Dragons, giving it a supporting role rather then an offensive one.
Frisk is the preferred Ability, revealing both your opponent’s items whenever Noivern is sent out. This alerts you to potential Choice Scarf, Focus Sash, Berries, etc. This can give you a ton of knowledge about your opponent’s Pokemon before the first turn begins.
Infiltrator is another solid Ability. With this Noivern can attack through Substitutes. This situation isn’t common enough to warrant its use, unfortunately.
Telepathy is an option if your team has moves that hit your own partners, such as Discharge or Boom Burst.
Noivern’s base stats are: 85 HP, 70 Attack, 80 Defence, 97 Special Attack, 80 Special Defence, and 123 Speed. As we can see Noivern is much faster then the other Dragons, but lacks the power or defences that they posses.
Draco Meteor is the goto Dragon move, dealing respectable damage even from Noivern’s base 97 special attack. Other notable attacks include: Flamethrower, Boom Burst, Psychic, Dark Pulse, Focus Blast and Hurricane. Another damaging attack Noivern gets is Super Fang, which deals 50% of the target’s current HP as damage. This rounds down so it won’t trigger the Sitrus Berry of a Pokemon with a full, even HP stat.
Noivern also gets Tailwind, Taunt and Switcheroo. Tailwind makes Noivern a great support Pokemon bringing some rare speed control to the game. Taunt shuts down Pokemon such as Amoonguss. Switcheroo allows Noivern to give a Pokemon a Choice item while taking their item.
Unlike last week’s Lucario, Noivern can only use a handful of sets effectively.
This Noivern brings Tailwind support to the team. Draco Meteor and Focus Sash allows Noivern to beat Garchomp and Salamence as well as deal solid damage to most Pokemon. Super Fang deals half of the target’s current HP as damage making it much easier for Noivern’s partner to KO it.
Noivern @ Choice Specs
EVs: 252 Spd / 252 SAtk / 4 HP
Timid / Modest Nature
– Draco Meteor
– Hurricane / Boomburst
With Choice Specs Noivern hits harder than Scarf Salamence. Flamethrower will hurt Steel types. Hurricane is a power Flying STAB, but its accuracy is terrible outside of rain so I wouldn’t advise it for most teams. Boomburst deals decent spread damage but you must be wary of your partner. Switcheroo passes Choice Specs to a Pokemon that won’t want them, and can be devastating if pulled off.
Like all Dragon types, Noivern appreciates having Steel type partners that can switch into an incoming Fairy, Dragon, Ice, or Rock attack. Aegislash, Bisharp, Mawile, and Ferrothorn are suitable choices. All of these Pokemon will like having Noivern switch into Ground, Fire, and Fighting moves for them.
Out of these four Pokemon Bisharp is the only one that can take full advantage of Tailwind. Noivern’s Super Fang followed up by an Assurance from Bisharp will be able to KO most Pokemon in the format. Finally, Bisharp will be able to OHKO Fairy types that give Noivern trouble.
Tyranitar can tank anything Noivern throw at it and return KO with Ice Beam, and Sand will remove the Focus Sash. Fairy types are immune to its Dragon moves and threaten a Moonblast/Play Rough/Dazzling Gleam. Steel types can wall sets lacking Flamethrower. All of these Pokemon need to be wary of taking a Super Fang + partner attack, so you’ll need to rely on some prediction.
Aerodactyl can out speed it and 2HKO with Rock Slide while having a flinch chance on both of your Pokemon. It can also match Tailwinds with you.
Once Noivern has used Draco Meteor it’s Special Attack will be lowered and almost anything will be able to tank a couple hits from it and KO back.
Noivern is an interesting Pokemon that thrives from specific scenarios. It can deal with other Dragons, provide Tailwind support, and help other Pokemon nab KOs on bulky Pokemon. Yet its still outclassed by its peers in the offensive department and doesn’t share the popularity that its brethren do.
When putting Noivern on a team, you need to acknowledge what it can do that the other Dragons can’t, and capitalize on it.