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    NFE Metagame Guide

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    Markiss
    EPTC Brain

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    NFE Metagame Guide

    Post by Markiss on Sat Aug 20, 2011 10:13 pm

    Written by DialaceStarvy, with thanks to Markiss and SnorlaxDude



    Introduction to Not Fully Evolved

    Not Fully Evolved is a metagame that only allows Pokemon that can evolve to be used. In terms of the Pokemon available, there are generally more viable offensive options than there are defensive options. As a result, the NFE metagame is fast paced and punishes slow thinking. NFE Pokemon tend to have smaller movepools than their fully evolved counterparts, making them more predictable and easier to deal with. The NFE metagame therefore encourages planning ahead and creative play in order to outsmart your opponent.


    Differences From Standard and Little Cup

    A common mistake made by new NFE battlers is that they believe the NFE metagame plays similarly to the Standard metagame. At first glance, this might seem true because many pre-evolutions are able to viably use similar strategies to their fully evolved cousins. However, there are many cases where this is not true and there's also the fact that many popular Standard Pokemon have no NFE counterparts. These facts hugely differentiate NFE from Standard. For example, while Tyranitar is popular in Standard thanks to his ability Sand Stream and mix attacking capabilities, Pupitar lacks both and even has different typing altogether. As a result, Sandstorm teams are neither as popular nor as effective in the NFE metagame than they are in the Standard metagame. Similarly, Politoed's pre-evolution, Poliwhirl, does not receive Drizzle as an ability. The lack of certain types of threats in NFE also gives rise to others. For example, the absence of outstanding bulky Water-types in NFE means that Pokemon such as Magmar become very devastating.

    Another, albeit less common, mistake beginners make is their belief that NFE plays similarly to Little Cup. This is most definitely not true. The only similarity is that both metagames only permit the use of Pokemon that can evolve. NFE is played with Pokemon up to Level 100 so stats distinguish individual species of Pokemon more than in LC. Additionally, Eviolite gives dramatically more noticeable boosts to defenses, as covered by the next section.


    Eviolite

    Eviolite is banned from the NFE metagame because it gives a massive advantage to defensive teams over offensive teams. Even the most powerful of Pokemon will struggle to 2HKO a wall with a neutral STAB attack. With Eviolite, stall basically becomes the only viable strategy, giving a very unbalanced and invariable metagame.


    Banned Pokemon


    Tangela

    Tangela was a complete monster when used with Drought support. After a Growth boost in the sun, Tangela's Solarbeam could 2HKO even Chansey. For the one or two that truly countered him, they were easily stopped with Sleep Powder and turned into set up fodder. Due to Tangela's amazing Defense, priority attacks were not an option either, with Choice Band Sneasel's Ice Shard not even coming close to a OHKO.


    Common Not Fully Evolved Pokemon


    Gurdurr

    Gurdurr, despite being very slow, is one of the most threatening Pokemon in the NFE metagame. Gurdurr is usually used with Bulk Up, which turns him into a very powerful tank. This is taken advantage of with STAB Drain Punch, which allows Gurdurr to both hit hard and improve survivability. Gurdurr does not fear burns either, thanks to his awesome ability, Guts. Thanks to these traits, many defensive teams will find that they will struggle against Gurdurr.


    Gligar

    Gligar is an excellent physical wall and one of the few solid counters to Gurdurr. With amazing typing and base 65 HP and 105 Defense stats, Gligar can take many of NFE's physical hits. This gives Gligar ample chances to set up Swords Dance and quickly become an offensive threat. Gligar can also run a stallbreaker set which takes advantage of Gligar's great base 85 Speed stat and access to Taunt and Roost.


    Ferroseed

    Ferroseed is a very popular defensive Pokemon in NFE thanks to his unique and brilliant typing and access to Spikes and Stealth Rock. Ferroseed's plentiful resistances allows him to act as a reliable pivot. Along with his many support options, including Leech Seed and Thunder Wave, Ferroseed is useful to have on almost any team. Ferroseed's ability, Iron Barbs, is the icing on the cake, as it allows him to damage most physical attackers while pivoting.


    Haunter

    Terrific base 115 Special Attack, great base 95 Speed, and useful immunities all give Haunter a spot as one of the most popular Pokemon in NFE. Haunter's most common set is Substitute + Disable, which takes advantage of Haunter's immunities to give him free turns to attack. Substitute + Disable also allows him to beat common threats such as Bulk Up Gurdurr and Swords Dance Gligar. Haunter's sweeping capabilities and ability to counter common threats makes him desirable on offensive and defensive teams alike.


    Magmar

    Magmar is a special attacker that can hit very hard thanks to his high base 100 Special Attack stat and wielding of a STAB 120 Base Power attack in Fire Blast. Magmar can prove to be devastating to any team that cannot outrun it and players that face him will usually find that they cannot switch into him without suffering a 2HKO or OHKO. However, Magmar does have his downfalls. His Stealth Rock weakness, coupled with his reliance on Life Orb to do major damage, can severely shorten his survivability.


    Chansey

    With by far the largest base HP stat in NFE and a great base 105 Special Defense stat, it's not that hard to see why Chansey would be popular. Chansey can repeatedly sponge almost any special attack and then pass a ridiculous 352 HP Wish to a teammate. Chansey can also spread status with Thunder Wave and Toxic and also do a good deal of damage with Seismic Toss. Chansey's downfall is her awful Defense. STAB physical attacks will almost always put a dent on her and she will rarely be able to survive a STAB Fighting attack.


    Metang

    Metang has access to Stealth Rock and has a respectable defensive base stat spread of 60 HP / 100 Def / 80 SpD. These traits, along with its Steel typing, make Metang similar to Ferroseed. However, Metang's ability to hit hard separates it from Ferroseed, and makes it a more popular choice amongst more offensively minded teams. Metang also has a unique list of Pokemon it can counter, which includes Haunter, Sneasel, Kadabra, and Duosion.


    Vulpix

    When you look at his awful stats, you might wonder why Vulpix would be in this section. The truth is, Vulpix is popular in NFE for no reason other than the fact that he is the only Pokemon in NFE that has the ability Drought. Do not underestimate him however, because he can be quite the revenge killer with Choice Scarf and STAB Overheat boosted by the sun. Vulpix also has some useful status moves, including Will-O-Wisp and Hypnosis, but his abysmal defenses and lower-than-average Speed makes it hard to find an opportunity to use them.


    Weepinbell

    Weepinbell is normally a mediocre Pokemon due to its low Speed, but becomes a brilliant sweeper with Drought support. Unlike most Chlorophyll Pokemon, Weepinbell has both great Attack and Special Attack, which can both be doubled with Growth when used in the sun. Even prior to using Growth, Weepinbell's STAB Power Whip can put a dent in anything that does not resist it. Being able to hit hard on both defenses makes Weepinbell very difficult if not impossible to stop with an unprepared team. Weepinbell's Sleep Powder just makes it even more difficult.


    Sneasel

    Sneasel, being naturally the fastest Pokemon in NFE and having some very useful STAB moves, is popular as a revenge killer. Pursuit allows him to trap Pokemon such as Haunter and Kadabra and KO them regardless of their next action. Sneasel also has Ice Shard, which makes him one of the few Pokemon that can reliably check common Chlorophyll sweepers such as Weepinbell and Ivysaur. However, Sneasel's weakness to Stealth Rock and poor Defense leaves him very vulnerable to priority attackers that do not fear Ice Shard.


    Conclusion

    NFE is a hectic metagame where simply lacking tactics to get by the opponent could mean that your team will go down very quickly as a result. Players need to plan in advance what they are going to do if they wish to achieve good results. Ever-changing conditions in battles also require players to adapt and develop new tactics on the go. This makes every decision important so that you don't dig yourself into a deep hole. If you want to try a different metagame and this all sounds appealing, then NFE is for you.

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