EUIC champ Paul Chua keeps getting cooked by weird Pokémon at NAIC but is optimistic about the meta

Wo-Chien being used alongside Kyogre at Pokémon NAIC.
Wo-Chien is thriving at NAIC. Screenshot via The Official Pokémon YouTube channel

In previous regulations, Wo-Chien was seen as the weakest of the four Treasures of Ruin, lagging far behind Chien-Pao, Chi-Yu, and Ting-Lu. However, this single restricted format has actually been a blessing for the Dark/Grass snail. Chua explained how Wo-Chien got the best of him: “The punishment of Wo-Chien and Kyogre is meant to do well into teams like mine with Calyrex Ice [Rider].” Indeed, with Calyrex Ice Rider being the most-used restricted Legendary Pokémon on day one and two of the event, it makes sense why Wo-Chien has been crushing the competition this weekend. “I hadn’t really practiced much against that, and it didn’t go too well for me.”

This wasn’t the first time Chua took an L against such an off-meta pick in Regulation G. In fact, he was one of the first players to encounter the viral Dewgong and Gloom team that brought utter chaos to the VGC community while prepping for the format change. Chua admitted he “got cooked” by that mysterious team but sees why these gimmicks work. “Even in open teamsheet, you’re not gonna know too much about it. You’ll see the moves and Tera, but you don’t really know its stats,” he told us. Without any prior practice against these kinds of ‘mons, it’s just hard to know what to expect.

Chua pointed out other unexpected Pokémon that have done surprisingly well at NAIC, including Electabuzz and Overqwil. I also freaked out earlier about seeing Galarian Moltres and Tyranitar together on Michael Zhang’s team. If anything, all these weird Pokémon are a sign of how diverse this meta is. “There’s definitely room for improvement,” Chua stated. “And there’s a lot of time between now and Worlds for people to try and innovate.” This just makes Worlds this year even more exciting, and we’re here for it.

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