Last time we covered the five best Mega Evolutions in the 2018 competitive Pokemon season, but the list of viable Megas doesn’t end there. What VGC 2018 has shown us is that the list of viable Mega Evolutions extends far beyond five. This time, we’ll tell you about five Mega Evolutions that have flown under the radar, but definitely have the potential to win a big tournament later down the line.
Let’s begin with one of my personal favorites. If I could’ve extended our previous top five by just one slot, Mega Mawile would’ve been the sixth. Think of Mega Mawile like a slower Mega Metagross, with Huge Power contributing to its monstrous Attack stat rather than Tough Claws. Of course, Speed is not an issue for Mega Mawile when Trick Room is a thing. Speaking of Trick Room, Mega Mawile forms the second half of the infamous “GothMaw” combo with its partner Gothitelle. This pair aims to set up Trick Room while simultaneously trapping the opponent’s Pokemon in while Mega Mawile picks up KO’s left and right. While Mega Mawile is capable of taking games by itself, it does have some considerable weaknesses. A low speed and less than stellar defense stats make Mega Mawile sort of reliant on having the speed advantage so that it can do damage before the opponent. However, Mawile more than makes up for its defensive shortcomings with its literal huge Attack stat and great typing.
Mega Tyranitar could’ve also been a sixth slot for our previous list, as it does technically beat out both Mega Mawile and Mega Gengar in usage. The reason I didn’t put it on the list is that Mega Tyranitar is usually a secondary Mega Evolution rather than a main one. Still, Mega Tyranitar is nothing short of a powerhouse. Mega Tyranitar is basically normal Tyranitar, one of the best Pokemon in the format right now, but with better stats. With the increase in Speed and Attack upon Mega Evolving, Mega Tyranitar usually like to run Dragon Dance in order to further boost their speed and power. Like Mega Charizard Y, Mega Tyranitar also sets up its preferred weather upon Mega Evolving, but also has the benefit of the Sand Stream ability in normal form, making Mega Tyranitar a decent means weather disruption. After a Dragon Dance or two, Mega Tyranitar can spam powerful Rock Slides and use Crunch to take out those popular Psychic-types like Cresselia and Gothitelle. While Mega Tyranitar is a great choice for a secondary Mega Evolution, it has the potential to carry a team on its own.
Now we’re getting to the interesting stuff. Mega Manectric is rather unique as it serves a bunch of different roles as a single Pokemon. The best way to describe this unique role would be an offensive pivot. Mega Manectric can take advantage of its impressive base 135 Speed with a rather impressive pool of attacks to choose from like Volt Switch, Flamethrower/Overheat, Hidden Power Ice making an ideal moveset. Snarl is another great option to lower the opponent’s Special Attack and this move combo’s great with Mega Manectric’s ability. Mega Manectric was blessed with one of the best abilities in the game in Intimidate, and with Volt Switch and its high speed it can easily pivot in and out of play allowing it to cycle Intimidates. Speaking of abilities, base form Manectric has a pretty useful ability as well. Manectric has access to the ability Lightningrod, which allows it to redirect Electric attacks. Manectric has already found a home on a popular team archetype which benefits from both its Lightningrod and Intimidate abilities, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Mega Manectric’s usefulness extend to other types of teams.
I would’ve loved to talk about Mega Latias in better detail in our Dallas Regional Championship recap, but it unfortunately didn’t get very far in the tournament. We still got to see it action a bunch on stream, and I think there’s something here with Mega Latias. What Latias has over its eon brother Latios is more bulk, allowing Mega Latias to stick around much longer. The stat boosts from Mega Evolution give Mega Latias great defenses, Special Attack and even Speed to work with. In order to capitalize on Mega Latias’ amazing bulk, players during the Dallas Regionals opted for a Calm Mind set with Roost in order to restore Latias’ health. In regards to attacks, Latias’ move pool is deep but it seems like the most popular choices were Ice Beam and Psyshock. Like I said, our exposure to Mega Latias was brief, but this is one Mega Evolution that is ready for a redemption run.
Mega Charizard X
Finally, we take a look at the other half of Charizard’s two Mega Evolutions. Mega Charizard X fell behind its Y counterpart due to a bit weaker of a defensive typing and the fact that its a physical attacker, making it struggle with the ever present Intimidate. Not only that, but Dragon-type offensively took a big hit with the mainstream introduction of Misty Terrain thanks to Tapu Fini.
So why is this Pokemon good again?
Well, there’s actually a lot to like about Mega Charizard X. First of all, Mega Charizard X has an excellent Attack-boosting ability in Tough Claws that it shares with Mega Metagross. Like Tyranitar, Mega Charizard also relies on a Dragon Dance boosting strategy which allows Mega Charizard X to clean up games with a boost or two. Since Dragon Claw has sort of fallen out of favor, Mega Charizard X mainly uses an absurdly powerful Flare Blitz that can one-hit-KO many Pokemon that don’t resist the Attack. Who needs Dragon Claw when Mega Charizard X has access to a Tough Claws-boosted Thunderpunch that can easily deal with the bulky Water-types that it give it a lot of trouble. I mentioned Mega Charizard X’s lackluster defensive typing, and its this very typing that makes it weak to the most popular Pokemon in the game: Landorus-Therian. Tapu Bulu’s ability to weaken Landorus’ Earthquakes makes it a perfect teammate for Mega Charizard X, and its this new support that also has made Mega Charizard X so much more viable this season. A Charizard in Team Preview may not be as predictable as in year’s past.
We’ve now listed ten Mega Evolutions that are great choices to build a team around this season, but something tells me the list goes on. I’m positive that I’ve missed at least a few more awesome Mega Evolutions, but here are ten great ones to get you started. We’ll just have to see which of these “underrated”choices breaks its way into the metagame, as we’ve still got a whole season left to find out. Right now, go and enjoy the Oceania International Championships this weekend, which we’ll be recapping next week! Also, patch 1.2 for Pokemon Ultra Sun and Moon is out, so make sure to update your games before competing at your next event!
Thanks for reading!
Images from Pokemon Ultra Sun and Moon, Ken Sugimori and The Pokemon Company International
Featured Image from Pokemon The Series: XY&Z
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