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Azumarill is currently a candidate for my Water-type for VGC, but I have a dilemma over what strategy to use: Assault Vest or Belly Drum

I have heard of the glorious raw power of Belly Drum Azumarill and have seen it firsthand (on YouTube), and I think the strategy is rediculous with the proper assistance. However, whenever I see BD Azu, I see either Fake Out or Rage Powder/Follow Me support, which I have none of. I could try and fit it into the team or I can try to run it without support.

Assault Vest Azumarill, however, I am much more comfortable. I have one for my Singles team in Omega Ruby and I'm loving the bulk that AV provides (eats Rotom-
W's Thunderbolt for breakfast), but it does not have the raw power of the Belly Drum set.

Belly Drum Azumarill Pros & Cons

+) +6 Aqua Jets and Play Roughs can really hurt a fella.
+) Has access to Protect, which AV Azu does not.
-) Doesn't get extra coverage outside of Aqua Jet / Play Rough / Belly Drum / Protect
-) Requires some support Pokémon that I don't have at the moment.
-) Sitting pretty at 75% health after Sitrus Berry isn't amazing, and that's assuming Azu doesn't receive prior damage.
-) One-trick pony; he's just there to set up, kill something, then faint.

Assault Vest Azumarill Pros & Cons

+) Gets more coverage moves that BD Azu (Knock Off and Superpower).
+) Tanky as heck with Assault Vest, HP investment and a bit of Special Bulk.
+) Can switch out without fear of losing his one-time-only boost.
+) Doesn't need as much team support.
-) Signifigantly weaker that BD Azu.
-) No Protect.

Thoughts? This will (hopefully) be under Tailwind.

Definitively Life Orb.
Jokes aside, you should really test both on Showdown and decide. However, if you don't want to do that, use AV imo, your team can't use the other Azumarill (BD) easily. But if you're ready to drop someone in your team for Azumarill's BFF, Raichu, then definitively BD; I'm biased, yes, but BD has amazing raw power.
Raichu can take Electric-type attacks aimed at the cute bunny with its Lightning Rod ability, and has Fake Out and Encore support. It fears Garchomp which BD Azumarill eat for dinner.

1 Answer

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If you want it to be bulky, definitely AV. However, I suggest you get a partner to use heal pulse (in double/triple) or any other moves to let it heal. Azumarill is still pretty bulky if you invest the remaining 256 EVs in bulk. Even with it's ability huge power, AV azumarill can't deal as much damage as belly drum azumarill can. Believe me, I've tried it. It depends on whether your team needs a Pokemon that can OHKO or be able to wall hits while dealing some decent damage.