Altaria, The Humming Pokémon. If it bonds with a person, it will gently envelop the friend with its soft wings, then hum. On sunny days, it flies freely through the sky and blends into the clouds. It sings in a beautiful soprano. It flies gracefully through the sky. Its melodic humming makes you feel like you're in a dream. It looks like a fluffy cloud when it is in flight. It hums with its soprano voice.
Altaria is sadly the worst of the fully evolved Dragon types to have been made so far. Having very average stats, a Stealth Rock weakness, as well as a minuscule movepool, Altaria really just does not have many things going for it. It is, however, one of the few Dragon types in NeverUsed and thus has a decent niche as there are also very few Steel types to resist its Dragon STAB. Altaria does have somewhat decent Defensive stats (with a quite high Special Defense), but the rest of its stats ooze mediocrity, especially its offenses which both fall in at a pitiful base 70. Its typing does allow for some key resistances as well, especially to some of the more common Pokemon in NU, but they often have some form of Ice coverage that demolishes Altaria. The best use for Altaria, however, will come next generation when it sacrifices its wings to provide Mega Ampharos with its luxurious hair as well as its Dragon type, and the competitive community sincerely hopes that this contribution will be far better than the current roles that Altaria fills.
Natural Cure: Allows Altaria to cure itself of a status effect when it switches out, which is very useful when Altaria is crippled by a status such as a Burn or being Poisoned, or in some sets eliminating Rest's Sleep status.
An Altaria Motive
This set takes advantage of Altaria's slightly higher Defensive stats as well as its decent support movepool. Dragon Pulse is for STAB as well as giving Altaria an escape from Taunt. Heal Bell acts as team support, getting rid of annoying Burns, Toxic Poison, and so forth, as there are several Pokemon (Alomomola, Misdreavus, etc.) that particularly enjoy statusing everything. Roost is for (hopefully this is obvious, but I'll tell you anyhow) recovery, making it so that Altaria can survive a lot longer as well as heal off the Stealth Rock damage that it is sure to take. The last option is really one of preference, with Roar being useful in a lot more situations (especially against set-up sweepers), whereas Toxic can help Altaria wear down opposing walls. Altaria's ability also allows it to be a sponge for many statuses and just switch out again to cure them, which will be very useful in one of the later sets.
The BlueBird of Happiness
This set attempts to bolster Altaria's weak Special Attack stat through the use of Choice Specs. Draco Meteor is the power behind this set, as with a massive 140 base power, it can rip through many things that don't resist it, and the -2 Special Attack isn't too much of a problem as you don't generally want to stay in afterwards anyhow. Dragon Pulse is the weaker Dragon STAB on this set, but can also be used reliably more than once. Fire Blast and HP Ground are Altaria's ways of dealing with Steel types, with HP Ground doing more to Pokemon like Bastiodon and Probopass, while Fire Blast does more to Metang. The last slot allows either for recovery (which is recommended), or for using the other coverage move for Steels. Rest with Natural Cure becomes powerful recovery as the moment you switch out, you no longer have to worry about the Sleep status it induces.
The Avian Altaria
This set focuses on the other of Altaria's miserable attacking stats, namely its Attack, although it does retain quite a bit of bulk as well. Dragon Dance gives a boost both to Altaria's quite low Attack, while also boosting its decent (decent for NU at least) Speed, making Altaria much more of a threat than it would be to start with...well, as threatening as a bird with fluffy cloud wings can be I guess. Anyhow, Dragon Claw is in the second slot and provides strong, reliable STAB for Altaria to sweep through everything that isn't a Steel type. The third slot depends on whether you want Altaria to have an easier time sweeping, or be a valuable team support. Substitute shields Altaria from both status or attacks that would do up to 25% of its health, while Heal Bell provides support to the tea as well, eliminating status for your entire team including Altaria. Roost is there once again for reliable recovery, also allowing Altaria to help eliminate one of its weaknesses for a turn if it has to.
Agility, Earthquake, Flamethrower, Heat Wave, Ice Beam, Outrage, Perish Song, Pursuit
Double & Triple Battle Options
Altaria serves the same role in Doubles in Triples as it does in Singles, but you will be extremely hard pressed to find anyone using it as every other fully evolved Dragon outclasses it, and eve some of the not fully evolved ones.
Any Rapid Spinner such as Wartortle, Torkoal, or Armaldo will be a great asset to Altaria as Stealth Rock causes quite a few problems for it. Other than that, just generic team support with Pokemon dealing with its massive Ice weakness and so on will definitely be valuable to Altaria.
The easiest way to counter Altaria is with a Steel type. Most of Altaria’s coverage is Dragon, with only HP Ground or Fire blast as coverage against them on the Specs set, while the other sets really have no good way to handle Steel types. Pokemon like Metang, Probopass, Bastiodon, and Klang are all viable choices. Also, since Altaria doesn’t have much fire power, any wall (either Physical or Special) can generally have a good chance of checking it at the very least. On the Special side, Lickilicky or Regice can handle Altaria easily. On the physical side, Alomomola, Tangela, Regirock or Mandibuzz can do the same. Piloswine is the bane of Altaria's existence as it is not only bulky, but also has access to Ice Shard and other Ice moves, as well as Stealth Rock. There are also Pokemon that can outspeed Altaria (mainly Choice Scarf Pokemon) even if it has gotten up 1-2 Dragon Dances. Jynx is a good example, as its STAB Ice moves take out Altaria easily. Combined with a Choice Scarf, it becomes the perfect revenge killer. Essentially, because of Altaria’s underwhelming attacking stats, any particularly bulky Pokemon can check Altaria quite well.
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