CAP 23 CAP 23 - Part 7 - Art Poll 4

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Let's Keep Fighting
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Only two remain in one final head to head battle. Will Doug's dream catcher lizard or Reiga's nightmare dragon win? You decide!

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Typing: Dragon/Ghost
Primary Ability: Comatose
Stats: 84 HP / 133 Atk / 71 Def / 51 SpA / 111 SpD / 101 Spe
Abilities: Comatose / No Competitive Ability / TBD

Name: Wait! It's a Trap Move!

Description: A Pokémon that can make effective use of semi-trapping, fully trapping, or self-trapping move(s).

Justification: Trapping is a somewhat polarized mechanic in the current SM metagame. In terms of ability-based trappers we have Dugtrio, perhaps one of the most hated (or most loved, really depends on the situation) Pokémon thanks to its ability Arena Trap. There is also the occasionally seen Magnezone that uses Magnet Pull to lure in and decimate Steel type Pokemon. All trapping effects are ignored by the Shed Shell item or simply by being a Ghost type. However, this is not the kind of trapping I want to focus on. Focusing on abilities leaves few options, and the general mechanics are the same: Lure, Trap, Destroy. Nothing much new is to be found there.

So, instead, I would like this concept to focus on trapping moves. For those unfamiliar with the term, there are a few types of trapping moves which I will make an attempt to explain here. A semi- or partially trapping move prevents the opponent from switching out for a set number of turns while also usually doing a set percent of damage. Example moves would be Whirlpool, Fire Spin, Infestation, and Magma Storm (but don't use that last one, it's legendary exclusive!). There are also what I like to call fully trapping moves, moves that prevent the opponent from switching not for a set number of turns, but instead until the Pokémon who used the move leaves the battlefield. This category includes moves such as Block as well as the brand-new Gen 7 moves of Anchor Shot and Spirit Shackle. Also are what I call self-trapping moves, which is just Ingrain to my knowledge. This move (and if any similar ones come about) lock the USER into battle. Lastly, just to make sure I cover all my bases, Fairy Lock is an interesting trapping move that prevents any Pokémon, friend or foe, from leaving the battlefield on the following turn only (Barring the usual exceptions).

This concept fits in the Actualization and Archetype categories. Trapping moves are exceedingly rare in their usage. The most effective in OU currently is Magma Storm Heatran, but this is by far not its only nor its best set. Expanding our gaze slightly we may find the strange Stall-Trap or Perish-Trap strategies in use in varying parts of the ladder. Even further? Ok then, in Ubers you can find an excellent example of self-trapping in Ingrain Xerneas, which helps prevent the opponent from forcing Xerneas out after it has set up its boosts. In addition, one could look at SD Trapper Decidueye that sets up with Swords Dance after trapping a helpless opponent via Spirit Shackle. Dhelmise can also use Anchor Shot, though I'm not terribly sure as to how that set works... Regardless, that makes about four solid examples of trapping moves across four different tiers, and none of the sets are by any means the only or most effective sets those Pokémon can run (Except maybe Dhelmise. Is there an RU player here who can help me out with that thing?). Overall, the relative rarity of these moves in competitive play when contrasted with the seemingly powerful effect of locking in the opponent begs a variety of questions about the nature and use of said trapping moves. To best explore these moves, designing a Pokémon to use and abuse them makes the most sense for understanding how to properly use them (whatever that would mean).

Questions To Be Answered:
(Base) Is there a 'best' way to utilize trapping moves? If so, what playstyle does it most align with?
(Base) Is there a 'best' type of trapping move overall, or are they each truly viable in their own ways?
(Base) What is the value in trapping the opposing Pokémon? Are certain traps better than others? Why?
(Base) What synergies work well with trapping moves? Why do they have such a great synergy, and how can that be expanded or dealt with in the process of teambuilding?
(Comparison) How do trapping moves compare against trapping abilities? Are there any inherent benefits and disadvantages and if so, what are they?
(Metagame) Are there any particular archetype matchups in which a trapping-move Pokémon would have an advantage? A disadvantage? Why is that?
(Metagame) What has contributed to the lack of presence of trapping moves in our metagame? Is it a plethora of other options, a lack of viable abusers, or something else?
(Metagame) How does the trapping mechanic interact with the value of switching out?[/SIZE]
CAP23 should target and dismantle:
a. Defensive pivots/walls (e.g. doesn't use VoltTurn): Tomohawk, Toxapex, Tangrowth, Arghonaut, Pyroak, Mollux, Mega Venusaur, Zapdos
If successfully trapped, these Pokemon will have a difficult time against CAP23, through CAP23's offensive coverage or utility.

CAP23 should target and pressure (Pokemon that have methods to escape CAP23 and should not threaten a healthy CAP23 AND offensive Pokemon that CAP23 naturally checks):
b. VoltTurn pivots: Landorus-T, Rotom-W, Volkraken, other VoltTurners whose coverage CAP23 resists
These are VoltTurn pivots we should not lose to. CAP23 has a general type advantage over these, so they should be pressured into switching out, rather than having a free U-turn or Volt Switch.
c. Offensive Pokemon: Excadrill, Volcarona, Keldeo, Tapu Bulu, Mega Charizard Y, Calm Mind Naviathan, other Pokemon whose coverage CAP23 resists
CAP23 should generally not lose to Pokemon whose moves are resisted: as such, these Pokemon should fear CAP23 to some degree.

CAP23 should be checked by:
d. Offensive Steel-types: Kitsunoh, Dragon Dance Naviathan, Mega Mawile, Bisharp
e. Ice-types: Syclant, Kyurem-B, Ninetales-A
These Pokemon have the coverage, bulk, or power to tackle CAP23.
f. Dragon-types: Zygarde, Mega Charizard X, Latios, Garchomp
g. Ghost-types: Mimikyu, Kitsunoh, Gengar
These two types have a type advantage over CAP23, but the reverse is also true, so they are checks.
h. Dark-types: Ash-Greninja, Greninja, Colossoil, Mega Sableye, Mega Sharpedo, Mega Gyarados
i. Fairy-types: Tapu Lele, Kerfluffle, Mega Diancie, Mega Gardevoir, Clefable
These Pokemon have the bulk, super-effective STAB-boosted coverage, or other qualities to check CAP23.

CAP23 should be countered by:
j. Skarmory, Celesteela, Ferrothorn, Mega Scizor, Tapu Fini
These Pokemon generally have the bulk to take on a Ghost-type STAB, resist or are immune to CAP23's Dragon-type STAB, and generally do not care about CAP23's trapping effect. Tapu Fini in particular blocks CAP23's ability to use Toxic.

Topic Leader: snake_rattler
Typing Leader: HeaLnDeaL
Ability Leader: LucarioOfLegends
Stats Leader: reachzero
Movepool Leader: cbrevan

S. Court

[Takes hits in Spanish]
is a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Media Contributor

Tbh I'd have liked to see Magistrum's Qilin in this phase, but well, you can't complaing about fair democracy, good luck to both, those are great designs :3


Let's Keep Fighting
is an Artistis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a CAP Contributor Alumnus

It's a design that showcases the trapping element (dream catcher), Comatose (dream catcher), and the attack stats (fast looking, big sharp claws for high attack) so this is a winner in my book.


Like ships in the night, you're passing me by
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both are excellent concepts for a design and both are well executed
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