CAP 12 CAP1 - Part 5a - (Ability Discussion)

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the pastor of disaster
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With CAP1's typing and base stats settled, it is time for us to discuss potential abilities for CAP1. Keep in mind that we are limited to two competitive abilities and one flavor ability. We can make one of the competitive abilities a (presumed released) Dream World ability if we so choose for the purposes of specific abilities being legal with or without specific moves, etc.

Here is our Pokemon so far:

Concept: Momentum
General Description: This will be a Pokemon that can be utilized to gain or regain momentum for a player's team at any point in the match as its primary function.
Justification: Gen. 5 is a very powerful metagame. As such, most battles are won by the smarter strategist who can best maneuver around his/her opponent's onslaught to gain even a single turn's advantage, potentially clinching them the match. This process of gaining and regaining momentum is most often the defining element that makes a winner and a loser out of a single Pokemon battle. Any top player in this metagame should agree that momentum is the most crucial element in any given match; however, "momentum" itself is a rather vaguely defined term that is never really explored in concrete terms. Is it keeping opposing teams on the defensive? Forcing switches? Good prediction? Spamming U-turn? These have all been approaches to achieving momentum, but they are also player-side and largely synonymous with "strategy," as opposed to Pokemon-side and regarding a Pokemon's role on the team. Certainly there are threats like Ferrothorn/Gliscor (defensive) and Scizor/Latios/Voltlos, etc., etc. (offensive) that can achieve momentum as we know it, but there is no current niche for a "momentum Pokemon" because the concept has been purely delegated to players and not to Pokemon.
Questions to be Answered:
-How do we define momentum in terms of competitive Pokemon? What factors make current Pokemon able to achieve momentum and how can we incorporate that information into a successful CAP?
-How do different styles of play (Weather-based offense, stall, bulky offense, etc.) use momentum to achieve their goals and how can our CAP play to those strategies in an effort to take their momentum away?
-What type of traditional role (sweeper, tank, wall, support) would a Pokemon like this most resemble? Would it have to be able to fit more than one of these roles to fit in a variety of teams?
-How will the different playstyles be affected by the addition of a Pokemon that can regain offensive/defensive momentum at any given point? Will offensive teams play more conservatively? Will defensive teams play more recklessly? Will everything simply adapt to a new threat and move on normally?
Typing: Flying/Fighting

Base Stats: 105 HP/60 Atk/90 Def/115 SpA/80 SpD/85 Spe

I should note right away that I consider certain abilities too powerful (or otherwise extremely unsuitable) to even merit consideration on this CAP. I would place in this category, in alphabetical order, Arena Trap, Drizzle, Drought, Imposter, Multitype, Shadow Tag, Tinted Lens, Wonder Guard, and Zen Mode.

This thread will be open for at least 24 hours. Let the discussion begin!


Maize and Blue Badge Set 2014-2017
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I would consider maybe Multi-Scale as a DW ability (so it won't be legal with Roost) because if this pokemon wants to regain momentum for it's team, it's going to have to take hits well. I know it's SR weak, but so is Dragonite and it works well with Multi Scale.


Its 2015 somewhere
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Alright, this is something I've been preparing for a while.
My suggestion for ability: Insomnia/Vital Spirit
Explanation: As we all know, sleep has become extremely dangerous. Having to wait up to 3 turns in order to get out of this condition can allow the opponent to set-up a sweep, and causing you to lose momentum in the process. However, this ability not only blocks this, but can allow you to switch in to a predicted sleep move that your team can't handle, creating momentum for yourself.
Air Lock seems nice. There's a lot of weather in OU, and suddenly-slow weather sweepers frantically switching out of nice STABs makes for good momentum.

Intimidate is cool. -1 attack makes things switch, because they can't hurt you, which is nice.

Magic Guard gives it a SR immunity, which is good for switching, as well as Toxic and Burn immunity, which lets it...switch. Problem is, free LO could break CAP 1 like it did Krilowatt. Natural Cure is a less powerful alternative, letting it heal any potentially crippling status conditions without that LO recoil.

Regeneration helps with switching, again, too, and helps heal SR, Sandstorm, and other passive damage.

And that's all I've got.
However, a variation that lowers any stat (except defense or maybe speed) could work.

An ability like Lightningrod, Thick Fat or Sap Sipper could let it switch into more attacks.
I'd probably favour an ability that allows the CAP to come in with ease, and at the very least end the opponent's own momentum.

Magic Guard
An obvious choice, really, negating SR (though Fighting alleviates that), weather, and any chance of scaring it out with status. If this pokemon has a limited amount of times to switch in, that seems pretty poor.

Mischeivous Heart
Again, with the right moves, it can really restrict the opponent's freedom to act how they want. The thing with this ability, aside from being pretty powerful, is that its usage would rely heavily on the moves it get.

These both border on the "unsuitable" side, though, from what I can see. So something a bit less unlikely:

I've been using Clefable as my "momentum-stopper" on my team, and Unaware is something you miss when it's gone - Clefable is however not the most ideal user, so this CAP could make good use of such an ability with the right moves. Unaware allows you to come in on any supposed sweep, allowing you lots of space with other team-members to act without fear of being swept. Should any defense-boosting move be decided, then Unaware compliments that very well, negating any attempt for your opponent to match it. Should the CAP receive something like Haze, Clear Smog, or Phazing moves, then this really would break momentum.

These strike me first hand as "momentum" based.
I think one fantastic ability for this concept is Intimidate. First of all, if you look at the calculations from the stats thread, it is apparent that even with its resistances and bulk CAP 1 can't 100% counter threats like Terrakion and Landorus. This problem would be mitigated by Intimidate for obvious reasons. The other great thing about Intimidate is that it does a very important thing for momentum, it (often) forces the opponent to switch out, providing you with a free turn to set up a Substitute or otherwise gain a stronger foothold on the momentum of a match. Lastly, Intimidate doesn't increase your natural bulk (unlike Multi Scale), allowing CAP 1 to still have a number of viable Checks & Counters, which is important to ensure it isn't broken.

Now, some comments.

@ Download: Definitely not. We focused a lot in Stats on not making this Pokemon a sweeper, obviously Download contradicts this a lot.

@ Multi-Scale: Not as bad, since it definitely holds momentum well. However, Multi Scale pretty much requires you to already be in control of the momentum to take advantage of. It's completely useless on switch-ins (as long as SR is up, which is a safe bet), which are very important for CAP 1. The only time it's really helpful is alongside Roost with a free turn, at the start of the battle, or with a Rapid Spinner / Magic Mirror. I definitely don't think this is the way we should be going. (Also, Flying/Fighting isn't SR weak)

@ Insomnia/Vital Spirit: I think you exaggerate the use of sleep in the metagame. Breloom and Venusaur are the main culprits, and neither is too common (Venusaur is the face of Chlorophyll to be fair), but that's pretty exclusive to just deal with these threats.

@ Regeneration: Definitely a solid idea, allowing you to maintain HP throughout the game. The only problem (and it's mostly philosophical I'll admit) I have with it is that it activates when you switch out, which is usually a loss of momentum for yourself. I guess it helps to alleviate this loss of momentum, but I'd rather have something directed at maintaining it as soon as you switch in. Still has lots of great points for it though.

@ Prankster (Mischievous Heart): Another good option, though very dangerous. Prankster could easily become overpowered, which may cause us to limit CAP 1's movepool, resulting in CAP 1 not getting some of the tools it would like to have to achieve its goal.

@ Magic Guard: NoJustNo.

Come on guys...

@ Natural Cure: Same sort of thing as Regeneration.

@ Compound Eyes: All of Jibaku's calcs were done with Air Slash and Aura Sphere, which makes these attacks a large basis of the spread. I definitely don't think resorting to higher power STABs would be in any way beneficial to the concept, it's just make CAP 1 a better sweeper.


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Regenerator is a very good option, since CAP 1 will be switching in and out quite often. Among the options discussed above, Intimidate is great, for the switch-forcing side of things.


Who let marco in here????
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Discussing this in #cap before, I push my support on Regenerator (and Intimidate, for that matter, but I'll let someone else do the talking for that). Regenerator allows for safe pivot switching and comboes well with Substitute, allowing it to throw a Substitute without losing too much health in the process (if it is losing any, that is), and taking advantage of its awesome dual STAB. It also helps negate Life Orb recoil somewhat, should you find its STABs be somewhat underwhelming. The concept said that the Pokemon should be able to shift momentum at any point in the match, and I think being able to stay healthy is important should it be forced in at unfavorable times.

I also would like to toss out Cursed Body (throwback to my Disabler concept x_x, but it works here too!). Disabling certain moves, especially given this Pokemon's lack of "physical weaknesses", can open up gaps that can be utilized creatively

However, I oppose Magic Guard due to its sheer versatility...I think we've seen how devastating magic guard can be (Reuniclus, Sigilyph, past gen Krilowatt lol), and combining it with great STABs is asking for trouble IMO.
wonder skin could be an interesting option that covers sleep as well as other conditions...could create momentum on switches and anytime opponent goes for status
Thick Fat because it would alleviate the Ice-weakness and give it a Fire resistance, both of which are common attacking types.
Motor-Drive, though flavor might not work, ridding it of the obnoxious electric weakness.
Compound Eyes, for Focus Blast but not much else.


the pastor of disaster
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Do not propose abilities unless you are able to give a justification for how it helps CAP1 build momentum.

Any Pokemon would improve considerably if you slapped Magic Guard or Speed Boost on it without a thought. We are interesting in building a Pokemon that can gain opportunities and control the flow of the match. When you suggest an ability, specifically explain how this ability helps with gaining opportunities and controlling the flow of a match.
Intimidate is a fine quality choice, giving CaP1 even more physical stopping power without giving it more physical walling power. Great for forcing switches, switching in, and just generally throwing a wrench into your opponent's plans.

Vital Spirit seems like a good choice, especially since CaP1 would like to switch in on Breloom. It would probably be better a as a secondary ability, though, as it's not as powerful as other abilities.

Compoundeyes is an ability CaP1 would love to have, raising Hurricane and Focus Blast to 91% accuracy, among other things. This might be a bit much, though, as Jibaku's spread has a fair bit of special attack. Still, worth considering for those who want a more offensive CaP1.

Rattled could be a fun ability. CaP1 likes switching in on Bug and Dark moves, and would also like +1 speed. Still, it runs into the problem that the things CaP1 wants to outspeed at +1 have a tendency not to use those types.

Overcoat gives CaP1 immunity to sandstorm damage, without being as powerful as Magic Guard. This makes SR the only form of residual damage from field effects CaP1 has to worry about.

And speaking of Magic Guard, no. Just no. Magic Guard is way too good of an ability.

I would consider maybe Multi-Scale as a DW ability (so it
won't be legal with Roost) because if this pokemon wants to regain momentum for it's team, it's going to have to take hits well. I know it's SR weak, but so is Dragonite and it works well with Multi Scale.
Even if it were a DW ability, Multi Scale would still be legal with Roost. CaP1 is a gen 5 Pokemon, and thus need not worry about illegalities with 4th gen TMs. Also, CaP1 isn't SR weak.


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We've tried sticking Magic Guard on a CAP with a difficult and far-reaching concept before, and we ended up making the only CAP that failed its concept. Instead of saying, "Magic Guard negates SR so it can sweep better", we should say how it supports the concept. Also,

THIS POKEMON HAS RAIKOU-LIKE SPECIAL ATTACK. That's a lot. If we give it Magic Guard, we have created a Latios with a free 1.3x power boost and two amazing STABs. This pokemon will not be used as a momentum starter, it will be used as a Life Orb sweeper. We cannot afford to give this pokemon a higher Special Attack than it already has. It's good that it's high where it is, but 115 with decent Speed is enough. We need a defensive ability, not a sweeper-like ability.
Definitely my choice for the first ability
Regeneration would be awesome, I can't think of a more momentumy ability than this. If you have played with slowbro you know how awesome it is as well. (this has very little to do with stealth rock)

some other ideas I had:
Magic Mirror adds quite a few more pokemon to the list of switch-ins.

Lightning Rod, not gonna explain this one. (would actually make sense if we chose Fatecrashers UFO concept)

No-guard, definitely implies some movepool choices. suck to be confused when you are DDing.
Perhaps I was wrong, lol. I like Insomnia/Vital Spirit, as it would help with momentum later in the match, such as against a Breloom maybe, as those resistances are very nice. Also, I think Shed Skin could also be a decent alternative to Magic Life Orb immunity, but removing special conditions could help you sweep, and gain momentum with healing late game.


used substitute
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Now I know this is supposed to be completely competitive and doesn't always have to fit the flavor, but I have a hard time suggesting anything that just doesn't seem to fit. That being said I think their are a few great abilities that would work well.

Regenerator: a fantastic ability in general, especially since it will be switching into attacks. The ability to come in and turn things around multiple times without even needing a recovery move is invaluable. And seeing at Mienshao gets it, It can definitely make sense.

Vital Spirit: while being able to switch into attacks again and again is nice, getting a free switch in on a sleep move can completely stop your opponents momentum. And who likes being put to sleep any ways.

and finally

Big Pecks: I would be remiss if I did not suggest Big Pecks for a flying/fighting Pokemon. Sure you might say it is not of much use, but its not completely useless, especially on a physically bulky Pokemon. I don't think this should by any means be the main ability, but I would love to see this as the flavor ability.

Now there are a few I don't particularly like, most importantly being Intimidate.

First of all, the stats were made to take physical hits well. We don't need to give it anymore help there.

Secondly, since it's designed to switch in and stop the momentum physical threats, we should be trying to give it an ability that either affects other situations, such as the ones I listed above, or an ability that focuses on helping yourself against those physical attackers, not hindering the opponent.

And finally, looking at the design submissions, I just don't see it. Very few of them are at all what I'd call intimidationg.
I'm not too good with what's good or bad here in competitive-pokemon-land, but I'd like to suggest a few abilities.

Scrappy: as a part fighting type pokemon, i can imagine that several people will think to switch to a ghost type against this pokemon. Scrappy can help with dealing with these people.

Sturdy and Battle Armor: for this pokemon to gain/regain momentum, it's going to need to survive long enough to do so. Sturdy guarantees at least one turn for you to do this, and battle armor can keep you from an unexpected early retirement.

I also thought about a few other abilities, but these seem like the best ones I can find. Again, I don't know much about competitive pokemon, but these are my thoughts.
For me, Trace seems like something excellent. Come in on any weather sweeper, and jack the only thing they got ahead of you? Also, there are several common abilities that it could take from any given team to help put a stopper on their momentum, such as, Magic Guard, Prankster, Flash Fire, Thick Fat, I mean, there are tons of possibilities with trace. But, it is slightly inconsistent, as you won't always get a good ability.

Frisk might be fun, to be able to scout out your opponents strategy, and gain momentum by working around it, and adapting to the situation.

Serene Grace could be excellent, if it gets great moves to go with it. For me, getting the extra chance of spdef lower from focus blast, or whatnot, is a great asset to the team, forcing switches, and also enabling better chances of 2KO's and such.

Those are my Ideas, But I also really like the idea of Regeneration, and Unaware is great.


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I agree that Magic Mirror would be a good choice as it would prevent direct status, phazing, taunting etc. all things good for a momentum Pokemon. (would allow direct switch in to Breloom, for example)

However, my support goes to Air Lock. By stopping the weather, CAP 1 becomes much better. No longer in sand, Terakion and Tyranitar lose their extra special defense, making CAP 1's Aura Sphere better. Excadrill and Landlos become less powerful as well. It also helps stop threats on rain teams by removing the accuracy of Thunder and Hurricane for example. It would also make Venusaur cry, since it can be slower than CAP 1 once sun is gone, and Air Slash will hurt.

p.s. I also like Air Lock because it fits great flavor-wise with my favorite Art, DJD's plane.
I feel like two great options would be Rattled and Wonder Skin; The former because it would love to come in Dark and Bug attacks, shrug them off and boost its average speed in the process, and the latter has the chance of bouncing off such crippling disabling statuses as... well, all of them, though more notably Sleep and Paralysis. One would help you pick up the pace, the other would stop people from slowing you down! Both would benefit a momentum-based Pokemon.
I'm not sure if this is some kind of taboo, but I'll put it out there, I guess: Mountaineer. As a momentum pokemon, it will be (hopefully) frequently switching in and out to regain or gain momentum. Though SR isn't as big of a deal as it was last gen, and the CAPmon is flying and thus won't take damage from spikes or TSpikes (barring gravity), I'm not sure it's terribly overpowering, but would free it from a pesky SR weakness that might otherwise hinder its ability to take hits.

As far as other suggestions, Regeneration seems like another good idea, though a little too powerful IMO (with the defenses this guy has, and with the lower presence of SR, 33% every switchin is a bit much...)

Finally, an ability such as Volt Absorb or Dry Skin or Flash Fire could be useful to gain both momentum and HP (in the case of the first two) or a boost (in the case of the second). These, however, would be more difficult to support from a flavor perspective.
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