Bizarre Dewgong team is ‘cooking’ all the best Pokémon Scarlet and Violet players

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet VGC players are struggling to defeat a mysterious team featuring two Pokémon rarely seen in competitive play—Dewgong and Gloom.

With Scarlet and Violet’s first restricted format, Regulation G, starting May 1, many VGC players are busy practicing on the very popular battle simulator, Pokémon Showdown. As with every new format, the meta shifts, and players need to figure out what works. One of the main focuses of Regulation G is the introduction of restricted Legendary Pokémon like Calyrex Shadow Rider, Terapagos, Miraidon, and Zamazenta.

Dewgong and Gloom on a beach in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet
The last two Pokémon you’d expect to see in VGC. Screenshot by Dot Esports

However, there’s a very unusual team floating around right now, and the restricted Legendary is the least of everyone’s worries. Instead, it’s Dewgong and Gloom catching everyone off guard, defeating top players like 2023 Europe International champ Paul Chua.

Chua claimed he “got cooked” by the bizarre team featuring Dewgong, Gloom, Ting-Lu, Armarouge, female Indeedee, and Lunala. This can often be the case with gimmicky teams and closed teamsheets because you just don’t know what to expect. I’ve never seen Dewgong or Gloom in VGC, let alone in Reg G, so I’d have no idea what these two were capable of if I suddenly ran into them on the ladder.

According to players who faced the team, the Dewgong had two main gimmicks: Powering up Armarouge and clicking a one-hit knockout (OHKO) move with Quick Claw. Dewgong uses Aqua Jet on the ally Armarouge to activate the Fire/Psychic-type’s Weakness Policy, boosting its offensive stats by two stages. Combine that with female Indeedee’s Psychic Terrain and Armarouge can do its usual thing and spam Expanding Force to deal massive spread damage. And because this requires Dewgong to attack its teammate, it likely has an underwhelming Attack stat that can be overridden by the inaccurate OHKO move, Horn Drill.

As for the Gloom, players suspect it might’ve also had a cheeky gimmick up its sleeve. Unlike its evolutions, Gloom is one of the few Pokémon that gets access to the Stench Ability, which adds a chance to flinch the target with damaging moves. When this is combined with multi-hit moves like Bullet Seed and the Loaded Dice, this stinky Pokémon has a fairly high chance of getting that annoying flinch.

If anything, this emphasizes the importance of open teamsheets with a best-of-three format. If players had a chance to preview Dewgong and Gloom’s items and movesets before the match, they might’ve been able to see through the gimmick before it was too late. But with closed teamsheets, it feels like you’re blindly going into the battle against Pokémon you never see in VGC. Now that word about this team has spread around the community, the gimmicks have lost their surprise factor and may be less effective.

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