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CAP 12 CAP 1 - Concept Assessment

Discussion in 'CAP Process Archive' started by reachzero, Mar 3, 2011.

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  1. Robo-Ky


    Dec 17, 2008
    Rising_Dusk's post is spot-on regarding individual vs. team momentum. They work together rather than act separately - a Pokemon that is gaining momentum by itself by setting up or sweeping is, in turn, gaining momentum for the entire team by eliminating threats and weakening your opponent's Pokemon, thereby putting you at the advantage. Once a Pokemon has gained momentum by its own devices, it has gained a degree of momentum for the entire team.

    Essentially, the player with momentum on their side is the one who is both at the greatest overall team advantage, and has the favorable matchup when it comes to the Pokemon that are currently out. Also, going by the concept, the in-battle goal of CAP1 should be to either gain momentum or regain it from a disadvantageous situation. There are a couple of ways I could see these things happening:

    -In order to gain momentum, CAP1 could function well in the lead position, eliminating key threats or setting up early on.

    -To regain momentum, CAP1 could work as a defensive pivot, forcing switches, checking threats, or setting up at any point in the battle.

    That's my two cents. I wasn't very fond of this concept at first, but after reading the assessment thread, I'm really excited at all of the possible directions we could take CAP1 and its possible effects on the metagame.
  2. Katakiri

    Katakiri Listen, Brendan...
    is a Pokemon Researcher

    Jun 11, 2010
    Sorry if this is Poll Jumping (really vague term) but after reading reachzero's posts and many of the posts in this thread, what most people seem to be describing is Dusknoir over and over again yet they want it to have the effect that Arghonaut had without being too over-powering (Which makes me wonder what 'Noir with Unaware could do./offtopic) and at the same time being easily counter-able.

    Something that really caught my interest was a term that was thrown around here a small bit; Defensive Momentum. I've never heard of this term before. What exactly is Defensive Momentum? Would that be something that could be exploited in a CAP? Would it be possible to stop or better yet prevent Offensive Momentum with it?
  3. Woodchuck

    Woodchuck actual cannibal
    is a Battle Server Admin Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnus

    May 25, 2010
    This. A sweeper that gains momentum simply by killing pokemon isn't really going to teach us much other than "how to make an extremely powerful sweeper."
    However, making a pokemon such as Heatran, Breloom, or Latias can allow us to find other ways of generating momentum. I think that a bulky-offensive pivot is the best way to go -- a sort of "oh crap" button that you can go to that you can rely on to take some hits.
    I would like to suggest that the OP be edited in bold to state "Please read and contribute to the thread so far, rather than stating your own random opinions of momentum that have likely already been stated." This seems to be a problem right now.
    Another thing I would like to bring up is of how to make the opponent lose momentum when you are at a disadvantage. Sure, it's relatively easy to gain momentum when you are at an even footing or ahead, but what if you're behind? What if you are being swept? We need to explore how to "catch up" if you are behind on momentum.
    What comes to my mind right now are bulky statusers, pokemon with a myriad of resistances allowing them to cripple sweepers such as Dory or Salamence, and Mischievous Heart pokemon with Encore, Trick, Thunder Wave, etc.
    Edit: Long-term momentum apart from laying hazards and statusing includes your long-term goals for the game. If the ultimate goal of your team is a Doryuuzu lategame sweep, then you will need to eliminate Skarmory, Bronzong, Gliscor, Roobushin, etc. When you are aiming for long-term momentum, you aren't just trying to kill the opponent's pokemon right away. Instead, you are trying to put yourself in a position from where you can execute your plans leading to a game-winning sweep or any other strategy for lategame. It's the difference between killing a, say, Forretress, and setting up on it. This was also brought up in IRC: You can sacrifice a quick gain in short-term momentum for a large gain later. That is long-term momentum.
  4. zarator

    zarator ^_^
    is a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Contributor Alumnus

    Mar 12, 2008
    First of all, I'd like to point out a confusing overlap people is implying between pivoting and creating momentum. While the two things often result in a similar course of action, they are indeed two very different actions. Pivoting means to send in something which can take an attack and "do something" from there - be it dishing out damage or supporting the team. On the contrary, Momentum implies severely limiting the opponent's choices for a certain number of turns. The two actions often happen together, but not always.

    For example, Blissey is an excellent pivot, basically sponging any Special Attacker out there and supporting the team in certain ways. However, unless your team is unusually specially based, Blissey doesn't limit that much options, to the point his presence on the field actually forces a specific course of action from his opponent.

    On the contrary, Breloom is a good example of momentum without pivoting. Breloom doesn't have the sturdiness to come in on an overwhelming amount of opponents (often there will be no more than 1, 2 at max Pokémon Breloom can switch in, and almost never completely safely - even if you go Max/max Impish). However, once Breloom is in, the opponent's hand is pretty much forced. He'll have to go to something which can take a Spore, and then to something which can eat Focus Punches and/or Leech Seed (assuming the Sleep Absorber can't do these things too).

    Here, we're working on Momentum. So, please, keep Pivoting out of the discussion and let's focus on the matter at hand.
  5. Destiny Warrior

    Destiny Warrior also known as Darkwing_Duck
    is a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

    Dec 30, 2009
    Personally, I would support a defensive take on momentum. I agree that an offensive approach will inevitably end up in a sweeper, but a defensive approach would allow us to explore alternate ways of gaining momentum.

    And no, Gliscor does not count.
  6. Admiral_Stalfos19


    Mar 25, 2008
    I'm with Destiny Warrior on this one. Trying to explore Offensive Momentum will only REALLY give us another sweeper that we might or might not need. But Defensive Momentum gives us more options.

    I also dig the whole "slow U-Turn/Volt Change" thing that's been suggested lately, but if we do decide to go with it, we should probably back it up with power, followed by an ability that activates on the switch so then we can make the most of it.
  7. Woodchuck

    Woodchuck actual cannibal
    is a Battle Server Admin Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnus

    May 25, 2010
    Sure, they are two different things, but I think that the CAP should be a decent pivot as well if we are trying to create defensive momentum.
    Now, about Defensive Momentum. As I have stated before, I think that CAP 1 should be a well-balance pokemon that is more oriented towards bulky offense rather than full-on stall. However, we are going to need to clarify what kinds of pokemon can have defensive momentum. Can an offensive attacker have Defensive Momentum? Can a sweeper have Defensive Momentum? If we treat Offensive Momentum as the ability to threaten to kill things, then should Defensive Momentum be the ability to:
    A) Not be killed by the opposing pokemon in play
    B) Cripple the opposing pokemon through status
    C) Set up hazards
    and/or other aspects?
    I think a good example of a bulkier-offensive pokemon with Defensive Momentum is Gliscor, both able to wall and to attack things.
    Also, classic defensive momentum is a Skarmory with full hazards down at full health Whirlwinding things.
    But how does a pokemon disrupt the opponent's momentum?
    Well, for disrupting defensive momentum, there is:

    • Taunting
    • Toxicing
    • Using a mixed wallbreaker
    • etc.
    For disrupting offensive momentum, there is:

    • Encoring setups
    • Using resistances and immunities to wall key sweepers
    • Crippling using statuses such as burn and paralyze
    • Tanking hits and KOing back
    • Phazing stat boosts
    • and other things
    I think that if we spend too much time looking at how to gain momentum while in an advantageous position, we'll just end up creating a generally good offensive pokemon; after all, any pokemon, really, gain momentum. Otherwise it wouldn't be good. The thing that should make this CAP special in my opinion is, apart from creating its own and its team's momentum, to disrupt the opponent's momentum and get you back in a match with a chance.
  8. Chou Toshio

    Chou Toshio Over9000
    is an Artist Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

    Aug 16, 2007
    To be honest, I didn't really like the concept idea, because imo--momentum, or the ability to take and keep the initiative in battle, is a skill-based concept, not a pokemon design one. Any Pokemon can create momentum given a certain opponent.

    You change (create) momentum when you switch Skarmory in on physical attacker X.
    You keep (maintain) said momentum when you whirlwind away the counter they switch in (unless you whirlwind in a different counter).

    Flygon switching into a resist (gain momentum) and then U-Turning (maintain momentum) is probably the most classic example, but stuff like Gengar (switch into fighting/normal/ground to "gain" momentum) with Substitute (used to keep momentum) or whatever do this as well. There are so many possible ways to gain and/or maintain momentum, but it's largely dependent on what opportunities your opponent gives you (and yes, a bit of design process when considering teammates).

    I would think of momentum as Sente (initiative-hand) in the game Go. You can play sente moves to force certain actions from your opponent. This is taking the initiative. A player "has sente" when he plays a preemptive move that forces an action from the opponent, maintains sente by playing these types of moves consecutively. Basically, these are threatening moves. The thing about Sente moves, is that they don't actually create huge advantage-- they steal a few points here and there, but rarely does any 1 sente move alone cause huge changes to the board.

    Inversely, "gote" is a move that forces no action from your opponent. When one plays a gote move, he loses the initiative, and essentially gives sente to the opponent. Generally, one has to avoid playing too many Gote moves-- if you are going to play a gote move, it must net you a lot of points. However because of this, Gote moves are often the ones that have a big impact on the general shape of the board-- a player gives up the initiative to make a big grab at points.

    Tying back to Pokemon, "Scouting" or momentum building moves are like Sente moves-- You can keep the advantage and force certain outcomes/reactions by timely using U-Turn/Baton Pass, Phazing, Fast-Sleep, Fast-Taunt, Substitute, or simply Double-Switching. Rarely though, do any of these moves directly do huge amounts of damage to your opponent's team-- generally speaking, you're just trying to setup a situation to make a big move.

    Gote moves are the big moves-- Specs Draco Meteor, Banded Outrage, setup Spikes, SR, or Rapid Spin them away. You are using a move that does not maintain the initiative, but in giving up the initiative, you take the opportunity to make a huge play.

    Thinking in terms of risk:

    Sente moves (scouting)-- small risk, small reward, keep advantageous position

    Gote moves (Huge attacks with draw-backs, Field condition setup)-- small risk, large reward, lose advantageous position

    General Attacking/Status moves (think "Dragon Claw"/"Thunder Wave")-- medium risk, medium reward, may or may not keep advantage depending

    Stat Setup (Swords Dance, Dragon Dance, etc.)-- large risk (the risk of getting forced out and wasting the setup turn), potentially large reward, potentially maintain advantage

    One thing to be noted is that Sente moves by themselves don't really get around to winning the game-- eventually, you will lose the guessing game. So, you need to be able to (A) Create the momentum to gain positional advantage and then (B) Translate positional advantage into damage and feinted enemies. Generally, this will mean combining sente moves with appropriate gote moves, while weighing for risk.

    In order to be able to create initiative, the pokemon ideally should be able to switch in on a number of opportunities, and during those opportunities, force the opponent to take certain actions. Lati@s is a pretty good example.

    In order to maintain momentum, the pokemon should be able to force certain actions over multiple turns. Breloom is a good example.
  9. Paradox


    Mar 1, 2010
    I think many people are over-simplifying Momentum. Momentum isn't simply getting an advantage for the next turn or putting up Stealth Rocks. In that vein, Zarator raises a good point. Pivoting isn't going to gain you much lasting momentum unless you make an excellent double switch or something, which really isn't what we should be going for (plenty of things already work as pivots, lets try something new).

    Momentum is more a multi-turn advantage that presses on your opponent. The idea (I think) is to reproduce and improve that scramble that is achieved when you switch Breloom into anything slower than it / unable to harm it. The moment when the opponent is thinking "crap, I have to absorb the sleep, then break the sub, then KO this thing, all while eating Focus Punches". A similar thing happens when Heatran Toxics your Vaporeon or puts up a sub that allows it to KO your Infernape or other check with Earth Power.

    So, I think that there are 3 important steps in a "momentum shift":
    1. The switch-in, when you force the opponent out with resistances, threatening attacks, moves like Encore, etc.
    2. The free turn, in which you do "something" to keep the opponent off balance. Examples are Substitute, Status, Screens, Hazards?, Phazing?, and U-turn.
    3. The follow-through, where you maintain momentum and ideally do some damage. Examples being Leech Seed or Focus Punch, Phazing, Baton Passing, and general attacking.

    This is at least a 3-turn process, and I don't think that it should be reduced to simply "Switch in on something you wall/outspeed and spam U-turn/Hazards/Powerful Attacks".

    Edit: Sort of ninja'd by Chou. The multi-turn thing is important.
  10. NeoSeth


    Jun 21, 2010
    I like this analysis. It's a very concrete and accurate idea of what momentum really is. It gives you three turns of productivity whereas your opponent has gained nothing. At the same time, it's not overwhelmingly powerful. This also allows you to extend the "Follow through" step several turns, helping you to keep momentum. For example, your force your opponent to bring in their Blissey, then switch-in a powerful physical set-up sweeper, and start a sweep. Or force out something for Nattorei to come in and set-up hazards on. I think our goal is a bit clearer along these lines, while also being open for all kinds of typing combinations and movepools.
  11. chum breath

    chum breath

    Feb 25, 2011
    One novel way of gaining early game momentum is to have a a lead lv1 stary with endevour and focus sash, followed up by quick attack for a near guaranteed KO potentially preventing from your opponent setting up, which could demolish their strategy. Your opponent will have to bring out a new pokemon to KO's starly, allowing you to "establish a fovourable matchup" upon bringing in your replacement. Of course the problem with this is that if your opponent is packing leftovers, he can heal and quick attack will not knock it out, but if you raise starly's level it is (slightly) less likely to be taken down to 1 hitpoint, or if you are not hit it wont deal as much damage through endevour. Another disadvantage is that the pokemon that is gaining the momentum can only do so once. This kind of bringing down an opponent without being overpowered therefore allowing a favourable matchup would be what we are looking for in Cap1, if one could remove the suicide part involved. This would however mean that the pokemon can only gain momentum, not build on it.
  12. Xiom


    Feb 27, 2010
    I like this, alot. Best post so far IMO.

    It clarifies what i belive is a good way to go on momentum. Yet doesn't put any real limitations on stats, typing, movepool or ability. I know there been many others who been saying almost the same thing but kind off got lost in a blur. Atleast I know my post did. But like how Paradox kept it simple and i hope this will be brought along forwards in the process of this CAP.
  13. Destiny Warrior

    Destiny Warrior also known as Darkwing_Duck
    is a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

    Dec 30, 2009
    OK, this post will detail an argument for building a CAP to gain momentum taking a defensive approach.

    I like Paradox's post. It sums up entirely what the whole concept of momentum is about, so what we should be aiming for(this is just my opinion) if we take an offensive approach(I dislike this one) is to create a Pokemon that has common checks/counters/whatever you want to call it jeez, but said check/counter is something that should generally be used as a "glue" on teams aka mainly used to plug holes, not something that spends a lot of time on the field. Else, we'll run the risk of making our CAP another generic sweeper with some scouting moves thrown in. Gliscor gains offensive momentum fairly well, but that's as a fallout of being a stallbreaker, something I dislike.

    On the other hand, for gaining defensive momentum, we need to build a CAP that can check a variety of threats(no, not another Krilowatt ok), but is fairly vulnerable to some common strategies like Taunt/whatever that can be easily faced by other Pokemon, so that it can gain momentum by say, bringing in a Scarf Garchomp on a Taunt(note this is just an example don't murder me just because ScarfChomp doesn't come in on Gliscor or whatever). I like this because we still retain a good measure of freedom over the build of the CAP, but there is still a sense of direction so that we have a good idea about what we are aiming for. Besides, taking a defensive approach on this CAP can still allow us to obtain offensive or defensive momentum, whereas an offensive approach will allow us to gain only offensive momentum(because you can't really fit an offensive CAP onto a defensive/stall team without specifically tailoring it, but you can still put defensive Pokemon like Hippowdon easily onto offensive teams). That is the crux of my argument.
  14. Ice-eyes

    Ice-eyes Simper Fi

    Feb 15, 2010
    This CAP can't really take too much of a defensive poke. Defensive pokes give you long-term momentum in terms of progress towards your goal - getting hazards up - but they're often also set-up fodder, or a free switch-in for something dangerous. Offensive pokes aren't certain to turn their short-term momentum into longer-term momentum - they're not as certain to give you progress towards your goals when they come in - but they're better at maintaining said momentum. It's like Kitsunoh or Breloom vs. Fidgit or especially Forretress.

    CAP1 needs to do two main things:
    1) Regain momentum - it needs to be able to switch into a number of common threats, whether they are defensive, offensive or both. Defensive usually works better since it creates more momentum synergy - short-term momentum needs to be passed on with low risk until it can be converted to long-term goal progress, and for that you need synergy. One of the reasons HeatLoom worked so well in Gen IV was that both are great momentummons that can switch into and wear down each others' defensive stops.
    2) Pass that momentum on, or convert it to long-term momentum. For that, it needs to provoke a predictable reaction from your opponent - it needs to have a small, similar group of common counters, in the way that Heatran is likely to bring in a bulky water or Blissey, whereas Breloom is likely to bring in the very similar mons such as Gliscor, Gyarados and Celebi.
  15. Thorhammer


    Jun 18, 2008
    In that case, we should find a way to address that issue. If we can make a Pokemon that helps with gaining momentum without risking a loss of that momentum to an offensive threat, we're likely to learn the most we could from creating this CAP.
  16. Destiny Warrior

    Destiny Warrior also known as Darkwing_Duck
    is a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus

    Dec 30, 2009
  17. reachzero

    reachzero the pastor of disaster
    is a Forum Moderatoris a CAP Contributoris a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus

    Oct 18, 2008
    Good job everyone, I feel we now have a much better understanding of momentum, and especially of how we'd like to apply in the process of developing this CAP! It's time to step up and start applying our theory through the process of deciding typing!
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