Shaymin, the Gratitude Pokémon. It lives in common flower patches but is rarely noticed. It is often mistaken for a flowering plant when curled up. It can dissolve toxins in the air to instantly transform ruined land into a lush field of flowers. When the turning of seasons brings the cruel winter to its end and the joyous people give thanks to the heavens, Shaymin appears and covers the withered land with flowers.
Shaymin makes a triumphant return to Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl. While generational power creep has forced Shaymin further and further into disuse, the greatly reduced pool of Pokémon gives Shaymin a foothold to shine. And shine it does, giving an excellent blend of offense and defense that enables it to thrive on many teams. Base 100 Defenses across the board remains well above average even to this day, and STAB recovery in Giga Drain along with valuable resistances gives Shaymin considerable staying power and ability to pivot into many attacks. Offensively Shaymin’s is no slouch either. Seed Flare is an incredible move with its base 40% chance to have a Metal Sound effect makes even the sturdiest of Sponges second guess coming in lest they get overwhelmed.
However, Shaymin is not without its flaws. Grass types have numerous weaknesses and Shaymin’s lack of direct recovery outside of Rest can make walling difficult. Base 100 Offenses, while usable, are not impressive leaving Shaymin reliant on weaknesses or Seed Flare’s Special Defense drop to truly be threatening. Stiff competition with Celebi and Breloom who offer similar support and Grass offense further complicates matters. However, the adventurous trainer who tries Shaymin will find a blend of offense and support that remains rare even in the modern metagame.
Base 100/100/100 Defenses, valuable Water, Electric and Ground resistances and numerous recovery options gives Shaymin impressive staying power.
Base 100 Speed makes Shaymin rather fast for a defensive Pokémon, enabling Shaymin to get the jump and heal off incoming damage
Seed Flare is an incredible move, with its generous chance of dropping Special Defense 2 Stages that can compromise or even invalidate normal counters
Seed Flare, as amazing as it is, is unreliable with less than perfect accuracy
Base 100 Offenses are unimpressive and Shaymin has no boosting options, so its power without Seed Flare’s drops can be lacking.
Struggles to fit the coverage and support it needs into one set.
Common weaknesses bely good bulk.
Item Attached: Leftovers
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs and Nature:
252 HP / 252 Def / 4 Spe
This set aims to balance Shaymin’s supportive and offensive prowess. Aromatherapy is an amazing move, clearing Shaymin’s teammates of status like Toxic, burns and paralysis, bringing Pokémon that otherwise would be dead weight for the rest of the match back into the fight. Rest is just as important, giving Shaymin incredible staying power and able to clear status repeatedly, while the side effect is rendered moot thanks to Natural Cure clearing Sleep on a switch out, further helping Shaymin preserve precious Aromatherapy PP. Seed Flare makes it difficult to switch into Shaymin directly, as even resistant targets become vulnerable to Shaymin’s teammates after a Seed Flare drop. Air Slash rounds out the set, threatening opposing Grass and Bug types like Breloom, Heracross, and Tangrowth.
Shaymin is unable to Dynamax at the time of this writing.
EVs and Items
Max HP and Defense to maximize Shaymin’s physical bulk as Shaymin’s traits (Earthquake and Water resistance, checks Breloom) lends it more to physical walling than Special, though if you have reliable answers to those threats, Special Defense investment can be worthwhile. Leftovers is recommended for longevity. Speed investment can be considered to get the leg up on certain targets. 108 Speed outruns Max Speed Neutral Nature Mamoswine and Milotic as well as Neutral Natured Rotom Wash that doesn’t max out Speed.
Water types that form part of a Grass-Fire-Water core are excellent partners for Shaymin, able to pivot into Heatran and Weavile and eliminate such answers for Shaymin while Shaymin counters opposing Water and Grass types and can clear unwanted Status. Azumarill, Crawdaunt and Feraligator love Shaymin clearing Burns while Rotom-Wash loves not having to worry about Toxic. Fire types like Infernape and Heatran also make for great partners with Shaymin. In addition to the Fire-Water-Grass core, Fire types ability to cover opposing Steel types is invaluable. Mixed Infernape’s wallbreaking abilities are especially evident in blowing past sponges and walls that can otherwise stop Shaymin from exerting offensive pressure. Gliscor also makes a fantastic partner, despite Aromatherapy wiping away Toxic. Gliscor has fantastic matchups against Bug, Poison, Steel and Fire types, while Shaymin in turn handles Water types that give Gliscor trouble.
Giga Drain -trades the supreme power of Seed Flare for even more durability and self healing avoiding the momentum sink Rest can cause. Dazzling Gleam -Hits Dragon types -especially those that Quadruple resist Seed Flare as well as still covering Breloom. Substitute+Leech Seed -Staple Grass combination and with Shaymin’s fantastic base HP enables relatively easy wins against Blissey instead of hoping for Seed Flare drops. Earth Power -fantastic coverage, especially with Dazzling Gleam, but transfer only.
While several Pokémon can outright counter Shaymin by its lonesome, Seed Flare’s Special Defense drop compromises many a special wall for Shaymin’s teammates to exploit. However, this is not the most reliable of occurrences between the 40% chance and Seed Flare’s less than perfect accuracy. Additionally, many slower Pokémon can be stalled out by the SubSeed sets. Ideal counters vary depending on Shaymin’s moveset. On sets lacking Dazzling Gleam, Dragons like Latias, Latios and Salamence can all easily weather Shaymin’s assaults and beat it down via attrition. On sets lacking Earth Power, Heatran hard beats any non Sub-Seed set. Shaymin not running Air Slash can have trouble with Assault Vest Tangrowth and Heracross (though Dazzling Gleam will still sting the latter. Blissey beats non-SubSeed Shaymin quite easily.
Shaymin Sky Forme remains one of the most powerful luck based Pokémon around and it all starts with Serene Grace Air Slash. While Togekiss is a fearsome abuser of the move, Shaymin-Sky takes this to another level, with a blistering base 127 Speed enabling it to outrun and flinch most targets into submission with no prior setup, especially given the other legends it has to tangle with. And as if that wasn’t enough, doubling Seed Flare’s Special Defense drop rider to a whopping 80% turns Shaymin-Sky into a Pseudo Serperior, able to attack and setup in a single move, except with much better base Special Attack. And this is on top of Shaymin Sky’s excellent movepool giving valuable coverage and Support options.
However, Shaymin Sky’s is incredibly reliant on luck. If the Flinch or Special Defense drops don’t trigger, Shaymin Sky is a lot less dangerous, and even more so if the moves miss given their less than perfect accuracy. Grass Flying is a horrible defensive typing, and the hit Shaymin Sky took to its defenses makes it frailer than its Land forme. Finally, while Shaymin-Sky is fast, its speed is not peerless, and there are several Pokémon that natively outspeed it or pack Priority to threaten it out. In summary, Shaymin-Sky is feared for good reason- it can and will flinch its opposition into submission with little recourse -if luck is on its side.Positives
Serene Grace pairs wonderfully with Shaymin Sky’s STABs giving it near Guaranteed Seed Flare drops and likely Air Slash Flinches
Base 127 Speed is scarily fast -Shaymin Sky can attack, flinch, heal and/or setup before the opponent can react.
Decent movepool gives Shaymin Sky several options to deal with would be counters
STABs are inconsistent, and Shaymin Sky can be in trouble if their side effects don’t activate.
Base 75 Defenses, weakness to Stealth Rock, and other common weaknesses make Shaymin Sky rather frail
Offense isn’t impressive without Seed Flare’s Special Defense drop
Item Attached: Life Orb
Ability: Serene Grace
EVs and Nature:
4 HP / 252 SAtk / 252 Spe
ShaymThanks to its incredible Speed, Shaymin Sky makes for a natural revenge killer and pseudo wallbreaker. Have Shaymin Sky come in off of a teammate’s KO and launch Seed Flare if you expect a switch or Air Slash if you don’t. Seed Flare heavily punishes most switch ins if not with major damage than a Special Defense drop that promises major damage. Air Slash is great at flinching down weakened targets or busting through Pokémon that have had their Special Defense ruined by Seed Flare. Dazzing Gleam is great coverage, hitting many potential targets such as Rayquaza, Palkia, Giratina, the Lati Twins, etc that otherwise don’t mind repeated Seed Flares and Air Slashes. Healing Wish gives Shaymin Sky some final utility, bringing back a weakened ally to full shape.
Shaymin Sky cannot Dynamax at the time of this writing.
EVs and Items
Max Speed and Special Attack are near mandatory. You want Shaymin Sky to outrun as many targets as possible to for Air Slash flinches, and Max Special Attack to compensate for Shaymin Sky’s lack of Direct boosting. Life Orb is recommended -giving Shaymin incredible versitality, though Choice Scarf makes Shaymin Sky nearly impossible to outspeed and Choice Specs does address power issues at the cost of flexibility.
Groudon makes for a decent partner to Shaymin Sky, enjoying Shaymin Sky’s ability to check opposing Groudon and Kyogre, while threatening the many Steel and Flying types with its access to Ground, Fire and Rock moves and enjoys Shaymin’s Healing wish to keep it in the fight. Dialga is another excellent partner, setting up Stealth Rocks to take advantage of the switches Shaymin Sky often forces, melting opposing Steel types with Fire coverage, Dragon types with its own Dragon STAB and Flying types with Thunder, while enjoying Shaymin’s ability to pivot into Ground moves.
Substitute+ Leech Seed -Blissey is still a serious problem and Seed Flare isn’t always going to cut it. This enables Shaymin-Sky to wrack up serious chip damage and offset the Life Orb recoil while insulating Crit Fishing attempts. Giga Drain -keeps Shaymin-Sky around for longer with still applying offensive pressure. Earth Power - offers excellent coverage against a myriad of Steel types.
Checks & Counters
Ho-oh is close to the best Shaymin Sky Counter there is, having the ludicrous Special Defense and typing to weather Shaymin Sky’s assaults, and Fire STAB for an easy OHKO. However, a Seed Flare Special Defense drop makes the matchup less certain, enabling Shaymin Sky to muscle through if possible. Blissey comfortably walls Shaymin Sky if it doesn’t get the Special Defense drop, but loses hard to the SubSeed variant. Scizor does fairly well quadruple resisting Seed Flare and 2HKOing with Bullet Punch, but lacking resistance to Air Slash means it can’t switch in safely and needs a free in to do so. Speaking of Scizor, Pokémon that are naturally Faster, are Scarfed or have priority can easily renge KO Shaymin. Mewtwo, Scarf Kyogre, Weavile and Mamoswine all have powerful priority. However, nothing is truly safe from Air Slashes chance to flinch. However, sometimes a battle comes down to luck in the most determinative waves, for both good and ill.
Locations in Games
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Black 2/White 2:
Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire:
Ultra Sun/Ultra Moon:
Let's Go, Pikachu!/Let's Go, Eevee!:
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Brilliant Diamond/Shining Pearl: