Main picks of top 100 Pokémon UNITE players | May 12 meta update

Main picks of top 100 Pokémon UNITE players | May 12 meta update

Wigglytuff and Talonflame continue collapse following Score Shield nerf

The fourth season of Pokémon UNITE was the first season to begin with a major balance patch and the first time any held items received a nerf. Score Shield and Buddy Barrier nerfs led to sizable changes in how the game is played at the competitive level. With some of the bugs from the last patch ironed out, can Greninja maintain its new dominance among the top 100 players?

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S Tier:

  • Greninja – 20.5% (-1.5)

A Tier:

  • Lucario – 14% (+2.5)
  • Hoopa –11.5% (-2)

B Tier:

  • Blastoise – 8% (+3.5)

C Tier:

  • Pikachu – 5% (+2.5)
  • Trevenant – 4.5% (-1)
  • Cramorant – 4.5% (+1.5)
  • Ninetales – 4% (+2)
  • Cinderace – 4% (+0.5)
  • Greedent – 3% (+0.5)
  • Slowbro – 3% (-0.5)
  • Absol – 3% (+1)
  • Machamp – 3% (+0.5)

D Tier:

  • Dragonite – 2% (+2)
  • Aegislash – 1.5% (-1.5)
  • Blissey – 1% (-2)
  • Decidueye – 1% (+/-)
  • Duraludon – 1% (+/-)
  • Azumarill – 1% (+1)
  • Charizard – 1% (+/-)
  • Gardevoir – 1% (+1)
  • Tsareena – 1% (+/-)
  • Zeraora – 1% (+/-)
  • Venusaur – 0.5% (+0.5)

Talonflame (-1), Wigglytuff (-0.5), Mr. Mime (-1), Garchomp (-4), Eldegoss (-0.5), Gengar (-2.5), Crustle, Mamoswine Snorlax and Sylveon (-1) all saw no noticeable usage among top players.

Below is the four-week moving average for the 10 most used Pokémon:

Main Pokémon chosen by top 100 players in the current Pokémon UNITE meta. | Provided by Maxwell Kappes

Defenders defending

Wigglytuff and Mr. Mime have been the dominant defenders throughout the game. Wigglytuff is the most used defender with a lifetime usage rate of 6.7%, while Mr. Mime is third with 3.2% (Snorlax is second with 3.6%). All three of these Pokémon are now sitting at a 0% usage rate.

Blastoise, Trevenant and Slowbro are the defenders in vogue now, even if Blastoise’s role is historically pretty hazy. This is due to a series of nerfs that Wigglytuff and Mr. Mime experienced throughout the last season of the game, with the nerf to Score Shield being the final nail in the coffin.

Only time will tell who the new premier defender will be. It will really come down to if people prioritize the survivability of Trevenant or the offensive power of Blastoise. Crowd control, something defenders have been historically known for, has taken a back seat.

Attack, damage, carried

Two weeks ago, the ranged physical attackers of Pokémon UNITE were in one of the worst places they had been in the meta since release. Talonflame was dominating the jungle due to its impressive burst damage and mobility. Then Talonflame got nerfed, Greninja got buffed and an entire team competition style was dismantled. Now Greninja is absolutely crushing the meta, clocking usage numbers that normally are succeeded by punitive nerfs.

This shift has also lead to the meta to be very focused on physical and ranged damage, with both out-doing melee and special damage nearly 2:1 when just two weeks ago they were mostly equal with each other.

Methodology: This data is collected using both the rankings tab in Pokémon UNITE and the Pokémon UNITE API. A Pokémon is considered a “main” of a player if is it the most played Pokémon in their most recent 16 ranked matches. In the event of a tie or near tie the data will reflect that. If more than two Pokémon are tied, the 32 most recent matches will be considered instead.

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Maxwell Kappes
Maxwell Kappes covers Pokemon Unite for UpComer. When he isn't busy having Zapdos stolen from him he's speaking at anime conventions, making bad jokes at a local open-mic night, or playing his favorite video game: Microsoft Excel.