Marowak

Marowak, The Bone Keeper Pokémon. From its birth, this savage Pokémon constantly holds bones. It is skilled in using them as weapons. It throws the bone skillfully like a boomerang to KO targets. It is small and was originally very weak. Its temperament turned ferocious when it began using bones. A Marowak is the evolved form of a Cubone that has grown tough by overcoming the grief of losing its mother. Its tempered and hardened spirit is not easily broken.

Overview

Marowak is a fairly straightforward Pokémon. Its job is to hit thing, and it's good at its job. With Thick Club attached, its Attack doubles. With an Adamant nature Marowak has a potential 284 Attack stat, so with the Thick Club a very frightening 568 Attack stat is possible. Its Attack stat resembles that of a Pokémon equipped with a Choice Band, except, unlike a Choice Band Pokémon, Marowak has the ability to switch between its moves.

Outside of its Attack stat though, Marowak is fairly average. It has a good Defence stat but low HP, and without Leftovers recovery its defensive capabilities are quite limited. Its Speed is the main area that lets it down. At an abysmal Base 45, it can only hope to outrun slow defensive Pokémon (although thankfully, they are relatively numerous).

Don't expect to see too much of Marowak, but when you do, be prepared for ridiculously strong Attacks to be thrown your way.

Trait

Rock Head: has one single use, and that's to negate Double-Edge recoil. If Double-Edge is being used, then Rock Head is a necessity, otherwise Rock Head is worthless.

Lightning Rod: draws Electric Attacks in 2v2 battles. These articles aren't written with 2v2 battles in mind, but if Marowak is being used in 2v2 then by all means, this ability is a solid choice. Of course, in 1v1 it's useless.

Move Sets

Straightforward Attacker

- Earthquake
- Stone Edge
- Double-Edge
- Fire Punch / Focus Punch
Item Attached: Thick Club
Ability: Rock Head
EVs and Nature:
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spd
Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk) / Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk)

This is the kind of move-set you'd see on a Choice Band Pokémon, but Marowak does the job just as effectively with the added bonus of being able to switch between its moves. Earthquake provides reliable STAB whilst Stone Edge takes down fliers. Double-Edge is Marowak's second strongest move, obviously making it a favoured choice.

As for the final move, Fire Punch is probably the most favourable for hitting Bronzong, Skarmory and Grass types, but it requires a Marowak sent over from Emerald. Focus Punch always offers a powerful alternative to catch Pokémon as they switch in (or if they simply don't attack, for whatever reason), but it needs to be used with appropriate prediction.

Swords Dance

- Earthquake
- Swords Dance
- Double-Edge / Fire Punch / Stone Edge
- Double-Edge / Fire Punch / Stone Edge
Item Attached: Thick Club
Ability: Rock Head
EVs and Nature:
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spd
Jolly Nature (+Spd, -SAtk) / Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SAtk)

Another straightforward set for Marowak. After a Swords Dance, it'll be hitting (almost) everything for ridiculous amounts of damage. It's just a matter of picking two moves to back up Earthquake. Double-Edge has the power, Fire Punch catches Bronzong, Skarmory and Grass types and Stone Edge deals nicely with most fliers.

EVs and Nature:

252/252 is Marowak's favourite EV spread. Although Marowak greatly favours the big Attack boost it gets from Adamant, Jolly really is the preferable nature. Although the Speed gained is small, it's very significant. Without the added boost from Jolly, it'd fall behind several of the defensive Pokémon that like to linger around 200 Speed (such as Milotic, Suicune, Cresselia, Venusaur and others). Even with Adamant, Marowak will want to run 252 Speed EVs, to outrun the Pokémon that linger in the lower ends of the Speed spectrum.

If Marowak can expect Trick Room support, then it'll obviously want to go for a Brave nature (+Atk/-Spd). The leftover Speed EVs can be shifted to its HP.

Other Options

Bonemerang, Rock Slide, Thunderpunch, Substitute, Screech, Sing, Belly Drum.

Bonemerang is its signature move and an alternative to Earthquake. It has the same power as Earthquake, but its accuracy is less reliable. The trade-off however is that Bonemerang can break a Substitute on the first hit and then damage the opponent as the next hit comes through. Of course, when Substitute isn't a factor, it's worse than Earthquake.

Rock Slide is a more accurate alternative to Stone Edge. Since Marowak already possesses ridiculous power, the loss in Base power between the two Rock moves is less of an issue, whilst the boost in accuracy can become really significant.

Thunderpunch hits Gyarados harder than Stone Edge, and that's about it really. It's as good as Fire Punch against Skarmory and as good as Rock Slide against most fliers, but the primary reason to use it would be for hitting Gyarados.

Substitute is a nice choice to block opposing attempts to Burn Marowak (and Marowak will certainly want to block Will-o-Wisp). Aside from that, it blocks other statuses and makes for a nice defensive buffer.

Screech can force a few switches, since few Pokémon will actually stand up to Marowak with their Defence cut in half, but Marowak might find itself better off simply attacking rather than trying to rack up passive damage with Screech-shuffling. In particular, low Speed makes Screech unattractive. If you Screech an incoming Salamence (for example) it's certainly not going to worry about running.

Sing comes from XD. It's inaccurate but when it lands, it can shutdown a counter, which is always handy.

Belly Drum is an option, but it's overkill really. A single Swords Dance is more than enough to let Marowak KO just about everything, and losing half of its HP from using Belly Drum is highly unfavourable.

Countering Marowak

Marowak is all about hitting things hard and fast. Very little can switch into it without taking a sizable hit, but Marowak doesn't last very long. Its defences are weak and it's easily taken down by direct offence (especially from Special Attacks, particularly its Water, Ice and Grass weaknesses). If something faster with good offence can be switched into it, be it by prediction or coming in after Marowak has scored a KO, there's a good chance that it can KO Marowak.

Defensive Pokémon that can take its attacks mostly rely on ground immunities. Bronzong does well and has Reflect, Hypnosis and Grass Knot, but it gets wrecked by Fire Punch. Claydol, Cresselia, Gliscor and Weezing can all do nicely but they all get hugely dented by Double-Edge. Claydol and Cresselia can look to Ice Beam or Reflect, Gliscor can turn to Knock Off and Ice Fang and Weezing can rely on Will-o-Wisp.

Grass types like Tangrowth, Celebi and Meganium can manage, but Double-Edge stings and Fire Punch really hurts. Skarmory can take its hits but it doesn't have much to threaten it with, the best it can do is poison it with Toxic or Whirlwind away Swords Dance.

Even without something to take Marowak's hits, it's too slow to threaten to sweep your entire team. If it does KO something, switch in a faster Pokémon to pick up a revenge KO (or a free turn if Marowak switches out). The alternative is the aforementioned prediction, sending something like Gyarados in as it uses Earthquake is sure to make it run.

Locations in Games

Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald

Trade from FRLGXD

Colosseum/XD

Trade from FRLGXD (Col) Snagged from Cipher Admin Eldes in Citadark Isle (XD)

Fire Red/Leaf Green

Seavault Canyon, Victory Road Floors 1, 2 & 3

Diamond/Pearl

Evolve Cubone

Animé Appearences

Marowak has had a number of Anime Appearences. First, a trainer, Otoshi, who owned one had his badges stolen by Team Rocket and left due to feeling its trainer lost respect for him. After that, Luana used one in her Gym Battle against Ash. Next, a trainer in the Hoenn League used one against Morrison. After that, its appearances were in various Team Rocket organised events used by trainers against Team Rocket

Episode 073: Bad To The Bone
Episode 108: Pokémon Double Trouble
Episode 404: From Brags To Riches
Episode 452: The Ole Berate & Switch
Episode 476: Gymbaliar

 
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