Gen 3 Abra (NU Analysis)

Oglemi

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Secret Boss Mod
#1

https://www.smogon.com/dex/rs/pokemon/abra/

[Overview]

Abra looks like a bad gimmick at first glance, but its power relative to the rest of NU is no joke. Base 105 Special Attack is astounding and a base 90 Speed makes Abra one of the fastest threats in the metagame. Combine this with Calm Mind and a great movepool and Abra is a serious offensive threat. Luckily for the rest of NU, its frailty means calling it a glass cannon would be an understatement. Once in, something's getting hurt, but getting Abra safely onto the battlefield is tough to do.

[SET]
name: Calm Mind
move 1: Calm Mind
move 2: Psychic
move 3: Fire Punch
move 4: Substitute / Encore
item: Leftovers / Salac Berry
ability: Synchronize
nature: Timid
evs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

[SET COMMENTS]
- Psychic + Fire Punch covers basically the whole tier
- Calm Mind pushes Abra's offense through the roof and allows it to sweep late-game
- Substitute is a nice buffer for the few faster threats in the tier
- Encore lets Abra really screw over slower defensive teams and can ensure at least one CM boost if timed well

[ADDITIONAL SET COMMENTS]

- The list of customizable moves is nearly endless. Ice Punch, Thunder Punch, Hidden Power Dark, Thief, Thunder Wave, Toxic, Taunt, Reflect, Light Screen
- Abra isn't going to survive many attacks regardless, so Leftovers can be easily dropped for Salac Berry to let it outspeed even Huntail in the rain
- Abra begs for BP support to get it safely onto the field
- Needs faster threats dealt with in order to successfully sweep
- Won't break through Kecleon and some other special walls quickly enough before fainting, needing wallbreaking support as well

[Other Options]

- Substitute + Petaya
- Straight attacker
- TrickBand
- Knock Off, Sunny Day, Rain Dance
- Endure

[Checks and Counters]

- Chimecho
- Sableye
- Dewgong
- Flareon
- Kecleon and Lickitung
- Murkrow
- Faster attackers - Haunter, Pidgeot, Raticate
 
#2
Abra isn't going to get any opportunities to set-up with Calm Mind and should not be the first slash, I've tested it extensively. It's best option is to go with both Sub + Encore as it actually matches up well as a lead against many of the common anti-Glalie leads you would find, like Venomoth and Hitmonchan, while having a decently good matchup vs other leads, like Glalie. It is also extremely useful to bring in with that BP support you mentioned, but particularly to lock something fatish into a setup / support move (mawile, chimecho, sableye) and it should be specifically mentioned that you can come into a predictable Rest and encore into that as well so you can get a free sub. I don't think there is a world where I'd be finding myself in a place where I'd use Thief Abra, I wouldn't mention it at all, and even Taunt / Toxic / Screens are often more of a liability than not.
 

Oglemi

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Secret Boss Mod
#3
Abra isn't going to get any opportunities to set-up with Calm Mind and should not be the first slash, I've tested it extensively. It's best option is to go with both Sub + Encore as it actually matches up well as a lead against many of the common anti-Glalie leads you would find, like Venomoth and Hitmonchan, while having a decently good matchup vs other leads, like Glalie. It is also extremely useful to bring in with that BP support you mentioned, but particularly to lock something fatish into a setup / support move (mawile, chimecho, sableye) and it should be specifically mentioned that you can come into a predictable Rest and encore into that as well so you can get a free sub. I don't think there is a world where I'd be finding myself in a place where I'd use Thief Abra, I wouldn't mention it at all, and even Taunt / Toxic / Screens are often more of a liability than not.
This is the Abra set that I'm most familiar with https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen3ou-56580, not the greatest game looking back on it as Vermillion should have never conceded the Sub, but it shows how a +1 can really open a lot of KOes (Huntail, Sableye) that it wouldn't normally get, and getting that +1 isn't impossible once behind a Sub. I remember Oshony bringing Abra a lot after that game in friendlies and whatever and it always put in work. That said, I have absolutely no issue slashing Calm Mind with Encore and just rearranging the moves a bit, the ultimate playstyle of Abra doesn't change (it's there to kill things).

I think someone used a screen Abra in NUPL4 that worked on a high offense team, since if you concede the fact you're not going to get the kill with Abra, setting up a screen opens up a setup opportunity for a teammate as you go down, which just depends on your team ie. something like Pupitar or Huntail may be better able to complete a sweep with a buffer.
 

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