Skarmory

Skarmory, The Armor Bird Pokémon. Despite being clad entirely in iron-hard armor, it flies at speeds over 180 mph.Its heavy-looking iron body is actually thin and light, so it can fly at speeds over 180 mph. Its sturdy wings look heavy, but they are actually hollow and light, allowing it to fly freely in the sky. After nesting in bramble bushes, the wings of its chicks grow hard from scratches by thorns.

Overview

Skarmory has been OU since it came into the Pokemon world in GSC, and has served pretty much the same function for the last few generations. It is an excellent defensive Pokemon, having very good typing and an amazing support movepool. Being able not only to lay both Stealth Rocks and Spikes, it can also phaze out the opposition with Whirlwind, and use Roost to recover. It does have a problem with Special attackers, as its Special Defense isn't that great. However, the metal bird can tank any physical move without even blinking, meaning it is one of the better counters to pokemon like Terrakion, Landorus-T, Choice Band Tyranitar, Hippowdon, etc. So although it does have its weaknesses, Skarmory has gained advantages over the generations and is one of the best walls in competitive pokemon.

Abilities

Keen Eye: Prevents Accuracy drops, completely useless as hardly anyone (if anyone) uses accuracy dropping moves, and Skarmory is immune to Mud Slap.
Sturdy: OHKO moves do not affect Skarmory, and it cannot be knocked out if it has full HP. This ability is easily the best one to use, as it can keep Skarmory alive for a lot longer, and ensure that it gets at least one layer of hazards out.
Weak Armor: Lowers Defense and raises Speed each time Skarmory is hit by a physical move, not a great ability as Skarmory's forte is being a defensive pokemon.

Movesets

You Wanna Know How I Got These Skars

-Spikes
-Roost
-Whirlwind
-Brave Bird / Taunt
Item Attached: Leftovers / Shed Shell
Ability: Sturdy
EVs and Nature:
EVs:252 HP / 232 Def / 24 Spe or 252 HP / 232 SDef / 24 Spe
Impish Nature (+Def, -SAtk) or Careful Nature (+SDef, -SAtk)

This is Skarmory's bread and butter set, though it has variants depending on what you need for your team. Spikes is the optimal hazard as Skarmory is constantly vying with Deoxys-Defense and Forretress for the position of best Spikes setter. As there aren't too many that can use Spikes (and so many other Pokemon that can set Stealth Rock), it is generally the hazard of choice. Roost is to increase Skarm's survivability and even remove it's Electric weakness at convenient times. Whirlwind is to phaze out an opponent that would set up or whatnot on Skarmory, also allowing you to spread the Spikes damage around. Brave Bird is so you're not Taunt bait and can do damage to several pokemon, or you can use Taunt so you won't become Taunt bait and can stop other walls. The choice between items is dependent on whether you want to escape Magnezone or not. Leftovers provides better longevity, while Shed Shell allows you to escape Magnezone which otherwise kills you without any trouble. The choice between EVs and Nature is whether you want Skarmory to be able to handle physical or special hits better. The Defensive set (232 Def + Impish Nature) can take almost any physical hit and not have to worry much about the damage. The Specially Defensive set (232 SDef + Careful Nature) can make it so Skarmory can take special hits better, though it doesn't take defensive hits quite as well.

Simba's Uncle Has Changed A Bit In Reincarnation

-Spikes
-Stealth Rock
-Roost
-Brave Bird / Whirlwind
Item Attached: Custap Berry
Ability: Sturdy
EVs and Nature:
EVs: 252 HP / 4 SDef / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature (+Spe, -SAtk)

This set is designed as a suicide lead, trying to ensure that 2+ layers of hazards get up before Skarmory goes down. Spikes and Stealth Rock are the hazards Skarmory tries to get up before it dies. Roost allows Skarmory to survive long enough to possibly even get more layers of hazards up. Brave Bird serves the same purpose as earlier, causing minimal damage and preventing Skarmory from being completely worthless after Taunt. Whirlwind is if you want to maliciously abuse the hazards you placed. Custap Berry is one of the key parts of the set, allowing Skarmory to move first if its health is low. The EVs allow for the maximum amount of hazards to be placed, just don't be stupid and put all of the hazards down while your opponent has a Rapid Spinner.

Other Options

Drill Peck, Protect, Roar, Sandstorm, Substitute, Torment, Toxic
Drill Peck is weaker than Brave Bird, but has the advantage of no recoil.
Protect can help to scout, especially in a doubles format.
Roar can be used alternatively with Whirlwind, or even if you want to double phaze for some reason (maybe avoid TormentTran or something)
Sandstorm can be used as a special weather setter in order to mess up other weather teams.
Substitute can be used to guard from status and Leech Seed.
Torment can be used to annoy other pokemon, and helps to prevent Skarmory getting KO'd if you use it right.
Toxic can be used against walls to ensure that they'll be crippled for the rest of the match.

Double & Triple Battle Options

Skarmory can be used for the same purpose as in Singles, a defensive wall with great hazard setting capabilities.

Partners

Anything that can abuse the hazards Skarmory puts up, any spin-blocker (so Ghosts), and Pokemon that can handle other Steel types, especially Magnezone. Keep those in mind when building a team with Skarmory in it.

Countering Skarmory

Magnezone is the best counter to all Skarmory's other than ones that use Shed Shell. Magnezone can kill off Skarmory with no far of it doing anything in return. Heatran is another good choice as although it doesn't trap Skarmory, Skarmory can't do anything to Tran while Heatran can Taunt and KO Skarmory at its leisure. Rotom of any form can deal with Skarmory, not worrying about Spikes due to Levitate, and all have Thunderbolt or Volt Switch. Starmie is a good counter as it can remove Skarmory's hazards and KO it in return. Espeon or Xatu can both bounce back whatever Skarmory throws at it and set up on it or KO it.

Locations in Games

Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald:
Route 113 .

FireRed/LeafGreen:
Ruin Valley (FireRed)
Trade from Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald/FireRed/Colosseum (LeafGreen)

Colosseum/XD:
Snagged from Snagem Leader Gonzap in Realgam Tower (Colosseum)
Trade from Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald/FireRed (XD)

Diamond/Pearl/Platinum:
Route 227, Stark Mountain

HeartGold/SoulSilver:
Route 45 (SoulSilver)
Trade from Diamond/Pearl/Platinum/SoulSilver (HeartGold)

Black/White:
Transfer from Diamond/Pearl/Platinum/HeartGold/SoulSilver
Windswept Sky (Dream World)

Black 2/White 2:
Reversal Mountain

Animé Appearences

Skarmory has made a few appearances. Most of its appearances have been cameos, but it has been used by some notable trainers such as the Fortree City Gym Leader, Winona and Barry, who used one in his Sinnoh League campaign

# -English Episode Name- -Jap. Episode Name- Pics
154 Hot Matches Skarmory Vs. Cyndaquil! Steel Wings Pics
C4 Pikachu's Winter Vacation: Delibird's Dilemma Delibird's Present! Pics
Pikachu's Winter Vacation: Snorlax Snowmen White Story! Pics
212 Around the Whirlpool Whirl Islands! Reaching a New Challenge! Pics
C1 Legend of Thunder Raikou! Legend of Thunder! Pics
P5 Camp Pikachu Pikapika Starry Sky Camp Pics
271 The Ties That Bind Tournament Finals! Full Battle 6 vs 6!! Pics
334 All Torkoal, No Play! Breaking Through Steel Valley! Torkoal VS. Steelix! Pics
347 A Six Pack Attack! Prof. Oak & Prof. Birch! Secret Base Battle!! Pics
349 Grass Hysteria King of the Forbidden Forest! Venusaur! Pics
356 That's Just Swellow Beginning Challenge! Sky Match - PokéRinger!? Pics
360 Who's Flying Now? Fortree City's Feather Carnival! Pics
P7 Not Aired Pikachu's Summer Festival Pics
399 Deceit And Assist! Fierce Fighting! Grand Festival! (2)! Pics
M8 Lucario & The Mystery of Mew Mew & The Wave-Guiding Hero - Lucario Pics
S21 Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Team Go-Getters Out Of The Gate Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Setting Out: Pokémon Rescue Team Ganbarus! Pics
439 Spontaneous Combusken Pokémon Contest! Yuzuhira Convention! Pics
451 Going for Choke! May VS Jessie! The Final Contest! Pics
452 The Ole' Berate and Switch Team Rocket's Disbandment!? Respective Roads! Pics
478 Not On My Watch Ya Don't! Pokétch is Unavailable?!! Pics
578 Steeling Peace of Mind! Riley & Lucario! Pics
579 Saving the World from Ruins The Hidden Ruins of Iron Island! Pics
586 Pursuing a Lofty Goal PokéRinger! Big Decisive Sky Battle!! Pics
597 Pillars of Friendship Regigigas Resurrection! J Again! Pics
M13 Zoroark - Master of Illusions Phantom Champion Zoroark Pics
652 Casting a Paul on Barry! Sinnoh League Third Round! Barry VS Paul! Pics
S34 TBC Iris VS Clair! The Road to Dragon Master! Pics

 
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