The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (2023)

By Superpowerdude. Art by Bummer.

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Once a competitive Pokémon player has played the game for a few months, they learn certain skills like team building and prediction. Shortly after playing competitively they also realize that they can identify competitive Pokémon sets in "categories". These categories include terms like "Physical Sweeper" and "Special Wall". However, after grasping an understanding of competitive battling, you come across some Pokémon that can only be categorized by the term "Annoying As Hell." This article aims to showcase some of the most annoying Pokémon sets to ever make their way into competitive battling, the Pokémon that are guaranteed to make a person pull their hair out and gouge their eyes when they see them in the Team Preview. These are "The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets!" (in no particular order).

The Sets

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (1)

Whimsicott (SubSeed)

Whimsicott @ Leftovers
Ability: Prankster
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpD
Bold Nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Encore
- Leech Seed
- Substitute
- Stun Spore / Taunt

It is almost as if Game Freak designed Whimsicott for this Smog article. They may have also designed Whimsicott to make people smash their computer screen with a kitchen utensil, or snap their DS in half. The reason behind this is with the release of Pokémon Black and White, a brand new ability called "Prankster" came out. Prankster gives priority to all status or non-damaging moves. Couple that with a movepool full of status moves including, but not limited to, Leech Seed, Stun Spore, Taunt, and Encore, and you have one of the most annoying Pokémon in the game. The SubSeed set in particular is quite annoying with Whimsicott having priority Substitute and Leech Seed, he can avoid direct damage by the opponent, block the opponent's status inflicting attempts while simultaneously draining the opposition's health away and gaining health lost by Substitute. Encore is probably the best move Whimsicott has in his arsenal of annoying assets, as it ironically turns any Pokémon trying to set up on Whimsicott into setup fodder for this little cloudy cotton thing. For once a +6 Dragonite is a good thing to face. The last move really comes down to preference as Taunt stops Pokémon from setting up hazards and stat boosts all together, while Stun Spore cripples an opponent making it easier to continue "SubSeeding." Not only is Whimsicott annoying competitively, but aesthetically as well. Seriously, Whimsicott has the sort of smiling mug you would want to kick. Or maybe I'm just mean?

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (2)

Ninjask (Baton Pass)

Ninjask @ Leftovers
Ability: Speed Boost
EVs: 248 HP / 236 Def / 24 Spe
Bold Nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Protect
- Substitute
- Baton Pass
- Swords Dance / Toxic

While it's not the force it used to be in the OU metagame, proper precautions still need to be taken when you're up against one of these things. Like Whimsicott, Ninjask's ability is what really makes it annoying to face. First of all, Ninjask is the second fastest Pokémon in the entire game. With his ability Speed Boost boosting his Speed by +1 at the end of each turn, Ninjask can become even faster, letting it get up a quick Substitute easier. With the combination of Substitute and Protect, it is quite easy for Ninjask to accumulate several Speed boosts if your opponent doesn't carry any priority attacks, and then Baton Pass it to a Pokémon who needs it. After Ninjask has done his thing you would not want to laugh at a Rampardos ever again, as Ninjask can turn slow, mediocre Pokémon into threatening killing machines that can plow through teams with relative ease. The last slot is up to your preferences. Swords Dance is nice so when you Baton Pass the recipient is even more threatening; however, it is a little bit greedy and can be hard to pull off if Ninjask has not got a Substitute up. Toxic can also be used perhaps to cripple something that is setting up on Ninjask, or to annoy a wall that is about to phaze Ninjask out.

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (3)

Dragonite (ParaShuffler)

Dragonite @ Leftovers
Ability: Multiscale
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SpD
Careful Nature (+SpD, -SpA)
- Substitute
- Thunder Wave
- Dragon Tail
- Roost

When people think about annoying Pokémon, for a lot of them Dragonite would probably never even cross their mind. This is probably because Dragonite is most known for running powerful offensive sets like Dragon Dance, Choice Band, and Rain Tank. However, with Multiscale halving the amount of damage Dragonite takes at full health and Dragon Tail letting Dragonite phaze whilst simultaneously doing damage; Dragonite has the tools necessary to become a horribly annoying Pokémon by running a "ParaShuffler" set. With Multiscale and max HP and SpD investment, Dragonite can set up a Substitute on a myriad of Pokémon and start using Thunder Wave to cripple the opposition. From there, Dragonite can start phazing the opponent's team with Dragon Tail and cripple the opponent's other Pokémon with Thunder Wave through the safety of a Substitute. Dragonite's Substitutes are also quite hard to break, especially with Multiscale intact, and with a Water-type resistance Dragonite can really harm the very common rain teams that are roaming around OU. It's the set's unpredictability that makes it really dangerous, because Dragonite is able to run many different sets, and often a support set is the last thing people expect to see from the strong dragon.

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (4)

Heatran (TormenTran)

Heatran @ Leftovers
Ability: Flash Fire
EVs: 244 HP / 44 SpD / 220 Spe
Calm Nature (+SpD, -Atk)
- Torment
- Substitute
- Protect
- Lava Plume

Although this set is not as threatening as it used to be, probably because of the popularity of rain and strong Fighting-types in OU, TormenTran still finds a spot as one of the most annoying Pokémon and for good reasons. Heatran is probably one of the only Pokémon that can run Torment effectively, if not the only one! The reason behind this is because with Heatran's great typing, very few Pokémon hold two moves that can hit Heatran super effectively. With Torment not letting a Pokémon use the same move twice in a row, Heatran can make a lot of Pokémon useless against it by taking out their most effective move against Heatran, letting it get a Substitute up on them quite easily. Torment also completely trolls Choice item users forcing them to either switch or Struggle. With Protect, when the opponent is free to use whatever move they want, you can block it while getting Leftovers recovery. Lava Plume is a great move to make sure Heatran isn't Taunt bait, and the 30% burn chance just adds to the lava crab's (or whatever it is) troll factor.

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (5)

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (6)

Gliscor (SubToxic)

Gliscor @ Toxic Orb
Ability: Poison Heal
EVs: 252 HP / 184 Def / 72 Spe
Impish Nature (+Def, -SpA)
- Substitute
- Protect
- Earthquake
- Toxic

You know you are in for a hard time when you come up against this bat, scorpion guy. When you think of Toxic stall, the first thing you would probably think about would be Gliscor. With Toxic, Protect, and Substitute, Gliscor can very effectively stall out the opponent and continue to do passive damage with Toxic. With Gliscor's ability Poison Heal and a Toxic Orb attached, Gliscor can gain 12.5% of its health at the end of each turn while it is has Poison Heal activated. This means that after a Substitute and Protect Gliscor has healed all the HP it lost from making a Substitute. It is kind of ironic when you face a SubToxic Gliscor really, because both Gliscor and the opponent are poisoned, except Gliscor is gaining heaps of HP while the opponent is slowly losing their's. So many people forfeit against players that use this because of the irony and Toxic stalling antics that Gliscor brings to the table. Earthquake is pretty much there so Gliscor is not complete Taunt bait.

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (7)

Gengar (SubDisable)

Gengar @ Leftovers
Ability: Levitate
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature (+Spe, -Atk)
- Substitute
- Disable
- Shadow Ball
- Focus Blast

Even aesthetically Gengar looks like an annoying Pokémon to deal with when you see its devilish grin and evil red eyes, and it surely lives up to it competitively with its SubDisable set. With Substitute and Disable, Gengar can use its Substitute to scout the opponent's move and block status attempts. When Gengar's Substitute is broken, Gengar can use Disable so its opponent can't use the move that broke the Substitute anymore. This can cause some problems for your opponent as they may not have a move that can really touch Gengar after Disable seeing as Gengar has a few neat resistances and immunities and can use Substitute again, in the event that the opponent switches out or tries to use a status inflicting move. One thing is for certain though, if you use the combination of Substitute and Disable correctly, your opponent will definitely rage whether they express it in the Pokemon Showdown! battle chat or not. Shadow Ball and Focus Blast have perfect neutral coverage so Gengar is definitely not a victim to Taunt. The funny thing about Focus Blast is that it makes Gengar even more annoying for the user, not the opponent, as the 70% accuracy often backfires and is one of the main reasons battlers press the forfeit button.

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (8)

Breloom (SubPunch)

Breloom @ Toxic Orb
Ability: Poison Heal
EVs: 12 HP / 244 Atk / 252 Spe
Adamant Nature (+Atk, -SpA)
- Spore
- Substitute
- Focus Punch
- Seed Bomb

Yeah, I don't even think I need an explanation for this set as everyone has probably seen it before, and I think you can all agree with me when I say this is the type of set you love to use but hate to face. Like Whimsicott, it is almost as if Game Freak deliberately gave Breloom the tools to become one of the most annoying Pokémon ever. First of all, he has, in my opinion, the most annoying move in the entire game: Spore. Spore is a 100% accurate sleep move and combined with the otherwise gimmicky Focus Punch, turns Breloom into a serious offensive threat. If Breloom is behind a Substitute it can be "good game" for your opponent, because Breloom has the freedom of firing off a 150 Base Power STAB move off a base 130 Attack stat. Behind a Substitute, if Sleep Clause is not activated, Breloom gets a free Spore on something else and can continue the chain of Spore, Substitute, and Focus Punch until your opponent has no Pokémon left. With Toxic Orb and Poison Heal, Breloom can continue to make Substitutes throughout the course of the match. Seed Bomb is Breloom's last move and is pretty much just there for an alternative STAB. Although the Technician set has recently come to the limelight and is more effective in OU; if there is one thing this set has over the Technician set though, it's how annoying it is.

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (9)

Blissey (Wish Support)

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (10)

Chansey (Wish Support)

Blissey @ Leftovers
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Def / 252 SpD
Calm Nature (+SpD, -Atk)
- Wish
- Protect
- Seismic Toss
- Toxic
Chansey @ Eviolite
Ability: Natural Cure
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 Spe
Bold Nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Wish
- Protect
- Seismic Toss
- Toxic

Chansey and Blissey perform virtually the same role so they will both be in this spot. That role (aside from being a chubby pink blob) is to be the best special wall in the game. Almost all special attackers that lack Psyshock are completely stopped by Blissey and Chansey. This is due to their massive HP and Special Defense. With their massive HP they can use the move Wish to pretty much revive any teammate on their team that might be weakened. They can also use Wish to keep themselves healthy so special sweepers can never break through them, and Protect helps to stall out the waiting turn so you can get instant recovery from Wish. Seismic Toss does a consistent 100 damage to all Pokémon except Ghost-types, and with the blob's low offensive stats it is unfortunately the best offensive move for the two. Toxic is great to stall out special attackers, especially combined with Protect and Wish. Just like with Whimsicott, I wouldn't mind kicking the crap out of a Chansey and Blissey if they were real because they look so damn annoying!

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (11)

Tentacruel (SubToxic)

Tentacruel @ Black Sludge
Ability: Rain Dish
EVs: 252 HP / 240 Def / 16 Spe
Bold Nature (+Def, -Atk)
- Toxic
- Substitute
- Rapid Spin
- Scald

Although not Tentacruel's most common set, this set is still one of the most annoying sets and is a very "cruel" set to face, if you catch my drift. This set works quite similarly to the Gliscor set in that Tentacruel uses Toxic to wear the opponent down and attempts to stall the opponent with Substitute and the 12.5% recovery brought from Black Sludge and Rain Dish in rain. This set can be quite unexpected to face because a lot of opponents don't expect Toxic on Tentacruel, and Pokémon that usually set up on Tentacruel can be in for a nasty suprise when they only have a few turns left to live. Scald would be on the list of "most annoying moves ever" if there were one, because its 30% burn rate feels more like 80% and a burned opponent is very easy to get a Substitute up against. Rapid Spin is the last move. As any good competitive battler knows, Rapid Spin gets rid of entry hazards and is almost an essential move for any Pokémon team. Before Black and White, if you saw a Tentacruel in the Team Preview you probably wouldn't care to much. However, when you see one in the Team Preview nowadays, you know you are in for a hard and annoying battle with its Rain Dish shenanigans.

The 10 Most Annoying Pokémon Sets (12)

Jirachi (ParaFlinch)

Jirachi @ Leftovers
Ability: Serene Grace
EVs: 252 HP / 4 Def / 252 SpD
Careful Nature (+SpD, -SpA)
- Stealth Rock / Protect
- Iron Head
- Body Slam
- Wish

This set is quite possibly the most annoying set out of all the ones mentioned in this article. Seriously, Jirachi would be a completely different Pokémon if it didn't have its ability Serene Grace, which doubles the chance of additional effects of a move happening. With this ability, Jirachi can use the moves Iron Head and Body Slam to create what is often referred to as "paraflinching" by competitive Pokémon players. With Serene Grace doubling the chance of Body Slam paralyzing and Iron Head flinching, Jirachi has a 60% chance to paralyze Pokémon with Body Slam. Once an opponent is paralyzed Jirachi can use Iron Head to try and make the opponent flinch. A 60% chance to flinch and a 25% chance to not move due to paralysis means Jirachi can often gain numerous free turns to what people like to call "hax". Jirachi is probably responsible for 99% of the forfeits in OU due to the combination of Iron Head and Body Slam. OK, maybe not 99%, but this set is still real annoying and I urge you to try it. Wish is great to give Jirachi some reliable recovery and Stealth Rock is often regarded as the best move in the game, due to the damage it does to a lot of threatening OU Pokémon like Tornadus-T, Dragonite, and Volcarona. If you already have Stealth Rock on another Pokémon, then Protect is great to get rid of the waiting turn for Wish.


So there you have it! 10 of the most annoying Pokémon ever and their sets! Some notable annoying Pokémon that didn't get a mention are Sableye who can use its Prankster ability and no weaknesses to spread burn with Will-O-Wisp and annoy set up sweepers and hazard setters with Taunt. Harden Metapod is also quite good and after a few Harden boosts it is impossible to break through its mighty defenses (just kidding, never EVER use Metapod, it sucks).

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