Support Pokémon are extremely valuable to teams in doubles battles in Pokémon Sword and Shield. Whimsicott is one of the best support options in the game and appeared on both teams in the first major Pokémon VGC tournament, the Dallas Regionals.
Who is Whimsicott?
Whimsicott is a Grass/Fairy-type Pokémon that made its entry into the franchise back in Pokémon Black and White. Originally it was just Grass-type, but it became Fairy-type as well when Fairy was introduced in Pokémon X and Y. Whimsicott evolves from Cottonee when given a Sun Stone.
It has been a solid doubles pick since VGC 2011 when it was first used. It made its way into the Galar Regional Dex in Pokémon Sword and Shield and has already become a staple in the metagame.
How to use Whimsicott in competitive Pokémon battles
Whimsicott is almost always used as a support Pokémon in doubles battles. It makes for a great support because of its ability Prankster, which gives +1 priority to any non-damaging moves it uses. This means that it will use these moves first in combat unless another Pokémon uses a move with higher priority (like Fake Out or Protect).
Prankster allows the use of the move Tailwind instantly. In Pokémon Sword and Shield, Tailwind speeds up both Pokémon the turn a Pokémon uses it, which generally means Whimsicott’s partner will move before the opponents. Being able to move first puts Whimsicott’s team at a huge advantage.
Whimsicott can also utilize moves like Taunt and Trick Room to help it support. Taunt prevents opponents from using non-damaging moves, and it can use Trick Room to counter an opponent’s Trick Room. If Trick Room is used while its effects are already active, they will be canceled. This can be extremely helpful when going against Trick Room teams.
A standard Whimsicott set will look something like this:
Whimsicott @ Focus Sash
- Energy Ball
While not as common, Whimsicott can also be valuable when supporting Pokémon who have the ability Justified. When a Pokémon with Justified is hit by a Dark-type move, their Attack goes up by one stage. Whimsicott can learn Beat Up, which is a Dark-type move that will hit up to four times in doubles. Since Whimsicott has such a low Attack stat, it can use Beat Up on its partner to up its Attack by four stages.
Whimsicott can learn the move Sunny Day, which sets up Sun for popular Pokémon like Charizard. Prankster works with Sunny Day, so it will move first. It can also use the move again to replace another weather condition.
Finally, while rarely ever used, Whimsicott can have the ability Chlorophyll, which doubles its Speed in the Sun. When used with a Modest Nature and max Special Attack investment, it can be a decent Special Sun Sweeper.
This Pokémon can be used in a wide variety of team compositions. It will likely remain a staple in the meta regardless of what changes occur moving forward.