Pokemon of the Week: Gengar

Hello Hat Lovers!

Today I’m going to look at Gengar. Gengar was the original Ghost type introduced in generation one. Being a Ghost type in VGC 2014 is a huge boon as Mega Kangaskhan can’t touch you outside of Sucker Punch. Gengar has a plethora of options to choose from, making it an unpredictable threat.

 


Stats & Ability

Gengar
60 / 65 / 60 / 130 / 75 / 110

Gengar’s only ability is Levitate. This makes it immune to Ground moves that would otherwise be super effective on Gengar. When I was a kid playing Yellow I was trying to lose to Agatha and used Earthquake on Gengar thinking Gengar could just float above it. I guess I was just ahead of my time.

Gengar has fantastic special attack and speed, along with terrible defences.

Mega Gengar
60 / 65 / 80 / 170 / 95 / 130

Mega Gengar gets Shadow Tag as its Ability. This prevents the opponent from switching their Pokemon out unless they’re a Ghost type, have Shadow Tag as their ability or have the Shed Shell item.

Mega Gengar is similar to Gengar in stats. Special attack receives a big boost while defences and speed all receive a modest boost. Because of this Mega Gengar hits hard even without any special attack investment, and EVing Gengar to survive a hit becomes possible.

Sets:


Perish Trap
Gengar @ Gengarite
Ability: Levitate
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
– Shadow Ball
– Disable
– Perish Song
– Protect

This set utilizes the infamous perish-trap strategy. Pair Gengar with a Fake Out user that can keep Gengar safe while it uses Perish Song and then use Protect and Disable to keep Gengar around until the last turn of Perish Song when you can switch out your Pokemon and your opponent can’t. Shadow Ball gives you a way to deal damage when the situation demands it.

Attacker
Gengar @ Gengarite
Ability: Levitate
Level: 50
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
– Shadow Ball / Sludge Bomb / Dazzling Gleam
– Shadow Ball / Sludge Bomb / Dazzling Gleam
– Substitute / Will-O-Wisp / Protect
– Substitute / Will-O-Wisp / Protect

As you can see, this set has a lot of slashes. This is because Gengar is pretty versatile in what it can do. Shadow Ball hits most of the format for at least neutral damage, with the prime targets being Aegislash, Gardevoir and other Gengar. Sludge Bomb is your strongest STAB move and hits Normal types. Dazzling Gleam OHKO’s any Hydreigon thinking they can pressure you out. Substitute has great payoff if you can use it properly, but you have no method of recovery so your usage will be limited. Will-O-Wisp cripples Kangaskhan and other physical attackers. Protect is a standard move.

Support
Gengar @ Focus Sash
Ability: Levitate
Level: 50
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
– Shadow Ball
– Will-O-Wisp
– Taunt
– Protect

Regular Gengar is a solid option. Being immune to Kangaskhan is always nice, as is being able to burn it. Taunt shuts down other support Pokemon. Focus Sash ensures that you at least survive one hit.

Other Options:

Hypnosis & Confuse Ray: Both of these attacks have their merits, but Gengar has so many great moves that don’t involve rolling the dice so I’d stay away from them.

Destiny Bond: This allows Gengar to take its foe down with it. Not a bad move, but one that is very reliant on good calls.

Sunny Day & Rain Dance: Gengar can act as a manual weather setting if your team needs it.

Thunderbolt & Energy Ball: If you need some coverage Gengar has your back.

Trick Room: Gengar can set up Trick Room, but its such a fast Pokemon so it wouldn’t do well in Trick Room.

Threats to Gengar:
Talonflame can deal a ton of damage with Brave Bird and moves before Gengar thanks to Gale Wings. Gengar doesn’t like taking strong attacks and it doesn’t like being out sped either.

Hydreigon can take either of Gengar’s STAB moves and OHKO with Dark Pulse. Mega Gengar can OHKO with Dazzling Gleam, but if you don’t run it then Gengar will need to rely on its partners to get rid of Hydreigon.

Tyranitar is similar to Gengar, except it can shrug off a Dazzling Gleam and breaks any Focus Sashes with Sand Stream. Physical Tyranitar needs to worry about Will-O-Wisp.

Gardevoir can OHKO Gengar with Psychic, and bulky sets can survive a Shadow Ball or Sludge Bomb.

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