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A Detailed PokeDraft Walkthrough: Rounds 5 to 10

02-27-2019
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Introduction

The draft phase of a PokeDraft league is full of fun and intrigue. Competing with your fellow trainers to select a team of ten Pokemon that can defeat any raid boss requires research, resources, and a healthy dose of meteorology. To help you build a cohesive team in your next draft, some of the best drafters around shared their pick-by-pick rationale from the latest season run by the r/pogoraids Discord server.

The r/pogoraids league consists of a three-tiered pyramid with promotion and relegation after each season. This is the draft completed by Evergrande Division, one of the two Champions’ Divisions atop the pyramid, and home to some of the most skilled and knowledgeable raiders on the server. The season began when Cresselia rotated in on November 28, 2018, just before the release of PVP and the associated changes to the type effectiveness multipliers. After a two-week break for the holidays, the season resumed on January 2, 2019, just in time for the raid boss HP buff.

This is a two-part series. Here in part two, eight of the ten players cover rounds 5-10 and sum up the draft. Back in part one, the players lay out their general draft approaches and cover rounds 1-4. Average Draft Position (ADP) values are derived from all 16 divisions participating in season four.

Round 5

Pick 41: Shiftry [ADP 46.8]

CuttyWow: Victreebel going to Bella three picks before me was a shame; I struggled vs Granbull last season and would have loved a little Poison coverage on a Grass-type. Instead, I keep the sun theme going, this time with the two Grass/Dark ‘mons. Cacturne (which I picked at the end of Round 4) is a favorite of mine; even without a Grass-type fast move he ranks very highly as a Grass attacker. And just like at the 2/3 turn, I couldn’t resist the opportunity for a denial pick.

Pick 42: Heracross [ADP 51.9]

Varunadi: Heracross being Bug/Fighting also made it doubly useful, although its Bug-type DPS leaves much to be desired, as I realized midway through the season. Struggle Bug/Megahorn is basically unusable.

Pick 43: Raikou [ADP 19.0]

David: Electric-types are very risky because of limited type effectiveness, and the fact that they do not possess high enough DPS to function effectively as neutral DPS attackers (like Rayquaza, Dragonite, or Salamence). However I felt it reasonable to predict Sharpedo as a counter to the Lake Trio, possibly Starmie because it is a Psychic type, or Azumarill if Niantic released Palkia/Dialga.

Pick 44: Houndoom [ADP 39.9]

BellaBaolam: CuttyWow surprised me again by picking both Cacturne & Shiftry. So I had to re-evaluate my options. It would be either Houndoom (Dark/Fire) to help me achieving two Ghost/Dark while finishing my Fire team or Rhydon to help me with Jolteon (Electric) which I had absolutely no answer for. They would both be gone before my next pick. I choose Houndoom.

Pick 45: Zapdos [ADP 32.9]

Pick 46: Jynx [ADP 51.2]

Icarusvonlubey: With strong Ice-type and Psychic-type coverage Jynx is a great leadoff ‘mon in the right match ups, always a useful ‘mon.

Pick 47: Rhydon [ADP 44.1]

Razvan: Part two of the Kanto Rock/Ground double feature (I took Golem in Round 4).

Pick 48: Lugia [ADP 47.1]

Zyxwgh: WIth my beloved Pinsir gone so early, I pick Lugia. Probably my most regretted pick, but at this point I had nothing else to solo Machamp with, except for generalists. Maybe next time I should pick a Psychic or Flying type earlier. At least it's a zero-investment pick because I have a level 32 one and don't intend to put more rare candy on it, as it's already durable enough and it can't become much faster.

Pick 49: Banette [ADP 52.2]

yourcalcprof: I think this was the point at which I started to realize the wheels were coming off of my draft strategy. It had been an eternity since my last pick, and all of my top choices were gone. Banette was a top-tier DPS Alolan Raichu counter, so I went with it, knowing I would likely need to draft at least one more Dark/Ghost type in the next few rounds to be able to put up a respectable time on A-Chu. Also, I realized here that I only had Salamence for Fire damage and no Rock-types at all, and would likely be in big trouble if Pinsir or Skarmory came up.

Pick 50: Infernape [ADP 54.9]

Round 6

Pick 51: Golem-Alolan [ADP 42.6]

Pick 52: Mismagius [ADP 75.2]

YCP: This was a panic decision, but not one that I would regret terribly. It seemed to go well with Banette, being slower but much bulkier, but at this point I started checking the weather forecast and looking for fog, just in case. That wouldn’t quite work out for me.

Pick 53: Sharpedo [ADP 50.1]

Z: I pick Sharpedo, my last chance at a Claydol solo (and it also helps against A-Raichu and Onix). In my ranking, Hariyama and Arcanine are better but I already have Machamp and Blaziken so I'm not doubling down on Fighting or Fire when I'm in dire need of anti-Psychic options. In hindsight, I'm really really happy with this pick, which saved my ass against Claydol and would have saved it against Alakazam if I had found one with Futuresight.

Pick 54: Muk-Alolan [ADP 69.6]

R: I needed to draft coverage against Psychic bosses, so I started with A-Muk, which also benefits from the cloudy Poison boost. This turned out to be a bad call; Roserade can 1v1 some Granbull in clouds, and there were better Dark-type options in round 6; but back then she couldn't, as the supereffective move factor was still 1.4.

Pick 55: Porygon-Z [ADP 71.0]

I: I chose Porygon-Z next as a powerful neutral hitter with access to clear weather moves as well. This was a big gamble at the time, since Hariyama was still available and got snapped up straight after this pick by Teknoman in 5th position.

Pick 56: Hariyama [ADP 40.8]

Pick 57: Feraligatr [ADP 67.2]

BB: As stated before I still needed another Grass (Vileplume was the best available). However looking at David (Groudon), varunadi (Venusaur) and CuttyWow (double Grass) I safely bet that they would not pick another Grass-type. So I was looking into fixing my team weakness (so far three Fire, two Ghost/Dark and one Grass). So a Water Pokemon is what I think will help me with Fire which I had absolutely no answer for. Kyogre, Gyarados, Swampert, and Sharpedo were gone. DPS-wise here is the order and my opinion against it. Floatzel (no good ones and not enough candies), Blastoise (no maxed ones), Empoleon (no maxed ones and a likely future Community Day), Vaporeon, Crawdaunt (no maxed ones, low TDO), Starmie (no maxed ones), Feraligatr. So ideally Blastoise would be my choice if I want to max a new Pokemon or Vaporeon since I already have a maxed one. However, I chose Feraligatr, since I also have a maxed one, and am betting that it would get a Community Day in January.

Pick 58: Absol [ADP 65.3]

D: I picked up Absol to help me deal with Gengar, Alolan Raichu, and possibly Starmie or Claydol, which all seemed plausible bosses to appear in some rotations this season.

Pick 59: Empoleon [ADP 70.2]

V: Empoleon made sure I doubled up on Water-type attackers. It’s also a dual type, but the Steel-type coverage rarely proves useful.

Pick 60: Vaporeon [ADP 68.3]

Round 7

Pick 61: Omastar [ADP 61.9]

CW: At this point, I’m confident I can beat almost all the bosses in clear weather (I’ve been running sims as I make each pick), so it’s time to shift gears a little and cover some weaknesses. First in line: Flareon and Ninetales. Vaporeon and Omastar plus Mewtwo and a little dodging should produce a decent time in rain, and can cover Aerodactyl (expected to rotate in because of the Meltan special research) in a pinch. I would have preferred Feraligatr, but Bella started to reciprocate my earlier thefts.

Pick 62: Arcanine [ADP 52.7]

V: Not wanting to rely only on Flamethrower Mewtwo as a Fire-type, I decided to add some extra Fire-type power with Arcanine (which might not be a dual type, but has a very diverse movepool in Flamethrower/Fire Blast/Wild Charge/Crunch). By this point I had covered most bases in terms of types of my attackers, and also selected some strong types boosted in the weather I see here most often (namely rainy, windy, and cloudy).

Pick 63: Haunter [ADP 97.5]

D: Haunter is very glassy, and is difficult to implement effectively. However, when you are able to optimize its cycle DPS, Haunter can deliver impressive damage. Haunter is only viable with legacy Shadow Ball, and a lot of people don’t have one, so it’s a good idea to leave it until later rounds.

Pick 64: Vileplume [ADP 68.9]

BB: My bet is right. I picked Vileplume since it was still available.

Pick 65: Scyther [ADP 64.8]

Pick 66: Flygon [ADP 63.5]

I: Flygon was picked up again because of the weather, with his Ground-type moves receiving the sunny boost.

Pick 67: Torterra [ADP 59]

R: For some reason I decided Torterra was needed. I guess I wanted to reduce the Ground-type options for others, which didn’t pay off. However, he proved instrumental vs Claydol; I wouldn’t have beaten the boss without him.

Pick 68: Jolteon [ADP 62.6]

Z: I pick Jolteon. It's a good Electric-type for round 7, especially since Grass has completely dried out. Now I can comfortably do Skarmory, Aerodactyl and Water types, though it’s probably overkill for Sharpedo where Electivire and Machamp should be enough. Luxray would have been better but I don't even have a Shinx.

Pick 69: Meganium [ADP 81.0]

YCP: Because of all the bosses sharing a double-weakness to both Grass and Water, I think it’s important to have two fairly solid Grass-types or two fairly solid Water-types on any draft team. I only had Salamence for Water (which isn’t great) and seemed to be mostly out of options there, so Meganium seemed to be the best of the remaining Grass options to go with A-Eggy. Plus, I have a lucky one at high level, so it wouldn’t be a terribly expensive choice, and I’d only max it if absolutely necessary.

Pick 70: Togekiss [ADP 56.2]

Round 8

Pick 71: Luxray [ADP 58.3]

Pick 72: Crawdaunt [ADP 73.7]

YCP: At this point, it seemed like I was covered for many bosses and screwed for lots of others. The best thing I could do was to make some value picks hoping that they’d come in handy in a matchup or two. I already had a maxed Latias coming into the draft but I wasn’t sure how useful it would be considering the stuff I’d already picked. I went with Crawdaunt hoping Crabhammer would turn it into a reasonably good Water-type. Still waiting. I should probably have taken Staraptor instead.

Pick 73: Piloswine [ADP 105.7]

Z: yourcalcprof picked Crawdaunt! I almost cry (in round 7 I was undecided between Jolteon and Crawdaunt) but it's fair, it's a full round 7 pick due to its dual Water and Dark coverage and the outside chance at Crabhammer. I look at my type coverage charts and I see that I still need an Ice-type in case Flygon or Gligar (or Jumpluff) becomes a draft boss. Cloyster or Walrein would have been as good, but I pick Piloswine as the stardust won't be wasted. Next round I want my Kingler, I hope nobody picks it before round 9, since there are still plenty of Water-types available.

Pick 74: Drifblim [ADP 92.9]

R: Drifblim for anti-Psychic. Good for 8th round, good for doing the boss, not good for a competitive time.

Pick 75: Latias [ADP 74.5]

I: Latias was picked up to complement Exeggutor’s Psychic-type and Gyarados’s Dragon-type moves for anything that had to be fought in windy weather.

Pick 76: Blastoise [ADP 73.5]

Pick 77: Milotic [ADP 86.8]

BB: I need another Water to make a two-deep Water team. I pick Milotic because I already have a maxed one. The only other options are Floatzel or Starmie.

Pick 78: Lucario [ADP 74.7]

D: Fighting-type DPS is never optimal in draft, the only exception being Porygon. I chose Lucario for its Steel coverage in case of Granbull, and because it is an effective Psychic/Ghost counter with Shadow Ball.

Pick 79: Solrock [ADP 94.5]

V: Coming towards the later stages with most good picks having been chosen, you are often left with scraps to choose from, although there can be some great late round picks. I chose Solrock as my Rock-type coverage. Solrock has a very good dual Rock moveset, along with a dual Psychic set, something useful as a fourth or fifth attacker into Machamp, Gengar, and other bosses weak to Psychic.

Pick 80: Skuntank [ADP 91.3]

Round 9

Pick 81: Floatzel [ADP 103.3]

CW: Did you know Skuntank can 1v1 Granbull? Here’s the Poison coverage I mentioned earlier. Did you also know that Floatzel is the fifth-fastest Water-type? Ninth-round Pokebattler visits are very informative! (I actually regretted the Floatzel pick almost immediately. With no great candidates and only ~35 Buizel candy, if Aerodactyl had been selected I would have had to make a major investment immediately. I should have gone with Deoxys, which would have backed up my Mewtwo against Fighting- and Poison-types and been a much more reasonable recipient of rare candy. Then again, I never needed any of the Water-types, so here I am with 350km walked on a 14/15/14 lucky Buizel.)

Pick 82: Staraptor [ADP 79.3]

V: Doubling up on Flying coverage here with another glassy bird.

Pick 83: Deoxys (Normal) [ADP 62.6]

D: Infamous for its frailty, but as a lead-off attacker it is unmatched. Deoxys is great for Machamp, Gengar, the Hitmons, Sharpedo, Starmie, Vaporeon, Aerodactyl, Azumarill, and the list goes on. It can put up strong DPS against a lot of Pokemon that have appeared as T3s.

Pick 84: Ludicolo [ADP 95.3]

BB: I did not see any value pick left for my team at this time. I’ve since learned that Swellow, Kadabra, Manectric, and Kingler may be good picks if you are willing to max one. So Ludicolo and Magneton were chosen because I already have them at a very high level. They may help my Water and Grass team if needed.

Pick 85: Ursaring [ADP 68.6]

Pick 86: Tangela [ADP 77.9]

I: Tangela was chosen again for the weather, and also to complement Pinsir with additional Bug-type coverage.

Pick 87: Primeape [ADP 119.0]

R: I was hoping for Umbreon's return, Primeape would have made me one of two or three able to do it. It didn’t happen.

Pick 88: Kingler [ADP 97.5]

Z: Finally, I can pick Kingler. A usable round 9 Water attacker, borderline Bug coverage with X-Scissor, and an outside chance at Crabhammer which has been in the code for months.

Pick 89: Rapidash [ADP 95.8]

YCP: I was totally boned for Skarmory/Pinsir/Scyther. Rapidash makes me only slightly less boned (if I can actually find clear weather). Plus, sometimes you just have to do it for the meme. #RapidashMeta

Pick 90: Kingdra [ADP 118.6]

Round 10

Pick 91: Starmie [ADP 92.8]

Pick 92: Poliwrath [ADP 87.2]

YCP: Everything left is absolute trash. I already had a maxed Poliwrath and had no fighters on my team whatsoever, so it seemed like a reasonable last pick.

It was pretty much over for me when I didn’t score a Bug-type or a non-terrible Fire-type, but I thought I could still be competitive enough to stay in the race and avoid relegation in v5. I also felt I was hurt a bit by the generalist nerf, with Salamence and Metagross not being able to carry their weight against some bosses as effectively as before. Definitely my strategy for next round will have to shift a bit to take these changes into consideration.

Pick 93: Sneasel [ADP 120.1]

Z: I pick Sneasel, because I lack in both Ice and Dark coverage, so it's perfect, especially considering it's not wasted stardust. With the new 1.6x multiplier, it will end up being among my top three attackers against three bosses.

Pick 94: Lunatone [ADP 102.3]

R: Lunatone, just for PFC. As I said, I mistakenly believed that I didn't need any Fire, Water Electric, or Ice, so I picked a Pokemon that helped me in another draft (vs Flareon).

Pick 95: Mew [ADP 102.5]

I: Mew was chosen last because it had saved me before. I have mine set up with Electric and Psychic moves, which aren’t the most powerful, but I can always get the right move for a cost.

At the time, I was relatively happy with my team, even though I knew I was lacking in some areas (especially Fighting).

Pick 96: Donphan [ADP 83.4]

Pick 97: Magneton [ADP 97.1]

BB: In conclusion, I am happy with the team. The team weakness is obviously Jolteon (Electric) and somewhat Granbull (Fairy). Later it turns out some of my bets, such as an Ice event and a Feraligatr Community Day, are right.

Pick 98: Swellow [ADP 121.2]

D: There isn’t much left by the last round, so I picked up an extra Machamp counter.

Pick 99: Kadabra [ADP 121.2]

V: My final pick was a glass cannon “mini-Alakazam” Kadabra, which surprisingly saw action against three of the eight raid bosses during the season (against Machamp, Gengar, and Alakazam). In the end, I was mostly satisfied with my team, having covered almost all types, and a lot of them being boosted by rainy/cloudy/windy weather, which are the three most common weather types in my area during this time of the year.

Pick 100: Manectric [ADP 100.6]

CW: And the PokeDraft v4 Evergrande Mr. Irrelevant is...Manectric! With every historical boss well-covered, Manectric was the highest remaining neutral DPS option, and would actually be my second-best counter to Aerodactyl (yikes).

Overall, I’m delighted with my draft. I controlled the first half of it well, and ended up with a squad that should both be able to beat every boss and meet some of my personal goals. With some luck, I’ll be able to compete for top spot.

Final Teams

Cutty varunadi David Bella Player 5
R1: Mewtwo (Classic) Mewtwo (Ele) Groudon Moltres Kyogre
R2: Clarizard Venusaur Dragonite Alakazam Tyranitar
R3: Flareon Honchkrow Ho-Oh Typhlosion Weavile
R4: Cacturne Swampert Magmortar Victreebel Scizor
R5: Shiftry Heracross Raikou Houndoom Zapdos
R6: Vaporeon Empoleon Absol Feraligatr Hariyama
R7: Omastar Arcanine Haunter Vileplume Scyther
R8: Skuntank Solrock Lucario Milotic Blastoise
R9: Floatzel Staraptor Deoxys (N) Ludicolo Ursaring
R10: Manectric Kadabra Swellow Magneton Donphan
Icarus Razvan Zyxwgh yourcalcprof Player 10
R1: Entei Rayquaza Rhyperior Salamence Latios
R2: Exeggutor Roserade Blaziken Metagross Gengar
R3: Gyarados Breloom Electivire Espeon Gardevoir
R4: Pinsir Golem Machamp A. Exeggutor Sceptile
R5: Jynx Rhydon Lugia Banette Infernape
R6: Porygon-Z A. Muk Sharpedo Mismagius A. Golem
R7: Flygon Torterra Jolteon Meganium Togekiss
R8: Latias Drifblim Piloswine Crawdaunt Luxray
R9: Tangela Primeape Kingler Rapidash Kingdra
R10: Mew Lunatone Sneasel Poliwrath Starmie