Lanturn, The Light Pokémon. It blinds prey with an intense burst of light, then swallows the immobilized prey in a single gulp. The light it emits is so bright that it can illuminate the sea's surface from a depth of over three miles. The light-emitting orbs on its back are very bright. They are formed from a part of its dorsal fin. It illuminates the inky darkness of deep seas. If you peer down into the dark sea from a ship at night, you can sometimes see this Lanturn's light rising from the depths where it swims.
Lanturn is one of those many Water type Pokémon that is crowded out of the Standard tier but really flourishes in the Underused tier (and there's some kind of pun about big fish and small ponds begging to be used here).
Lanturn's selling point is that it isn't a generic Water type Pokémon. Instead, Gamefreak bestowed upon it a secondary type, Electric, as well as Volt Absorb. This gives Lanturn the distinction of being a Water type who is immune to Electric attacks and an Electric type who has a super-effective STAB move to use against Ground types.
On the negative side of the scale, stats let it down. A bit bulkier and it may have broken into the Standard tier, but it doesn't have that raw power to make that break. However, it isn't incompetent when it comes to raw Base Stats. In particular, that huge HP stat helps to compensate for some below average defensive stats, whilst wonderful type coverage makes use of fairly average attacking stats.
Illuminate: has no in battle effect, so this is the ability to avoid.
Volt Absorb: gives Lanturn an Electric immunity and also heals 25% HP when Lanturn is hit by an Electric move (which also includes Thunder Wave). It's a great ability and one of Lanturn's selling points. Use it wisely and it can also compensate for Lanturn's lack of a reliable recovery move.
Although its Special Defence is average at best, Lanturn throws together an Electric immunity and Fire, Water and Ice resistances for an attractive defensive package. This attraction is furthered by the wonderful offensive type coverage at its disposal from Surf, Thunderbolt and Ice Beam.
Thunder Wave rounds things off as an option to cripple some of the faster special sweepers, with Toxic also serving as a strong option to target the more defensive special attackers, as well as targeting Quagsire (who is immune to both of your STAB moves and will be tempted into play thanks to its super-effective STAB Earthquake).
- Discharge | Thunderbolt
It falls into the “annoyer” category, but this is a move-set that succeeds from being based around the concept of percentages. You stack the 25% chance of full paralysis with the 50% chance of the opponent “hurting themselves in confusion” and you have a very disrupted opponent. Backing this up with some entry hazards helps matters, since switching is the easiest and most common means to alleviate Confusion.
Picking your means to induce statuses is the first step. Confuse Ray is a given, but you can try either Discharge (with its unreliable 30% chance of paralysis) or Thunder Wave (a reliable source of paralysis) for your paralysis needs. The advantage of using Discharge is it frees up a move-slot to make room for Ice Beam (creating a move-set quite similar to the one given above), whereas with Thunder Wave you lose another move-slot adding Thunderbolt to provide Electric STAB.
EVs and Nature:
You can go a couple of ways with Lanturn's EV spread, although the given spread should serve well. 40 HP EVs edges Lanturn over that 401 HP marker, which is a nice marker for Leftovers recovery. Max Special Defence with Calm gives you a pretty respectable Special Defence stat, which helps Lanturn with its special defensive purposes; and the remaining EVs going straight into Special Attack really helps Lanturn on the “posing a threat” front. It already has a lovely array of type coverage but it needs that added Special Attack to make extra use of it (in particular, Grass types will face it with little fear if it were to forego Special Attack completely).
Defence goes completely neglected, since it isn't Lanturn's area of expertise, however some Defence EVs can be considered to go hand-in-hand with its great HP stat. It won't turn Lanturn into a physical wall but it'll let it take some physical hits a bit more respectably.
You can give a spot of consideration to Speed EVs, since Lanturn lingers close to the Speed stat used by Claydol and Nidoqueen. 76 Speed EVs gets Lanturn to 189 Speed, one point ahead of Nidoqueen and three ahead of Claydol (assuming they haven't invested in Speed themselves), which can be the difference between Lanturn using a super-effective Surf and them using a super-effective Earthquake (other Pokémon leapfrogged include Solrock, Lunatone and Hitmontop).
Sleep Talk, Rest, Thunder, Rain Dance.
The Rest-Talk strategy has gone unmentioned, but it is viable. You do limit some of Lanturn's threat posing capabilities but in exchange you get some reliable recovery to compliment Volt Absorb.
Thunder is another alternative to Discharge for a damage and paralysis combination (and to a lesser extent, an alternative to Thunderbolt on the main move-sets). You trade in a chunky 30% accuracy but you get a fair bit more power, and if you have some rain support, it's pretty worthwhile.
Speaking of rain support, Lanturn can set-up Rain Dance and in theory, it's a sensible choice to boost Surf and make Thunder 100% accurate,. In practice, Lanturn is a bit too slow to be doing the rain-sweeping strategy reliably, so rain support is best left to its team-mates.
Quagsire was given a mention earlier and functions as a pretty strong counter. Water Absorb keeps it immune to Surf and its Ground typing keeps it immune to Lanturn's Electric attacks, and in return it poses a big threat with STAB Earthquake. The only real threat to look out for is the use of Toxic.
Ludicolo needs to worry about Thunder Wave and Toxic, but otherwise it has the defences to cope with neutral Thunderbolts.
Grass types, despite their Ice weaknesses, are still pretty solid counters. Toxic can cause a bit of a problem for the ones that haven't got a Toxic immunity, and Thunder Wave can also be a hindrance, but they pack super-effective STAB (although it's worth noting that Lanturn takes Grass Knot as a 40 Base Power move) and usually have the Special Defence required to cope with Ice Beams when given an adequate EV distribution. Good examples include Venusaur, Vileplume, Meganium and Cradily (even though it takes Surf as a neutral move).
Calm Mind Psychics can be a bit of a problem. Defensively-oriented ones like Gardevoir, Uxie and Hypno need to worry about Toxic (unless they're using Rest-Talk), whilst sweeper-oriented ones like Alakazam, Espeon and Grumpig need to worry about Thunder Wave (where Substitute or Taunt can come in handy), but Lanturn's Special Attack is average at best and one or two Calm Minds does a more-than-adequate job of sponging its attacking efforts; and of course, from there they can happily launch an offensive.
As a final note, Lanturn doesn't cope too well with physical attacks. Lanturn can take a hit or two, but physical attackers do a pretty decent job of cutting down its pretty impressive HP stat; especially STAB Earthquakes, which Lanturn should always be running from.
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