CAP 29 - Part 2 - Primary Ability Discussion

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ModNote: Please keep discussion focussed on the Metagame we're developing for, rather than a non-existant CAP Doubles format which we do not build for. Cheers :-)
Noted~

Slow Start is certainly a monumental factor in its poor performance, but other factors include the following.
  1. A milquetoast typing that offers nothing offensively and but one immunity defensively.
  2. A complete absence of recovery apart from Rest.
  3. A feeble base SpA with no reliable STAB, meaning it cannot run a mixed set.
  4. No setup options other than Rock Polish.
  5. A fairly standard array of utility options (e.g. Thunder Wave, Knock Off) that encourage it to bounce rather than realize its potential.

So directly looking into theses specific aspects, almost in a way that involves fixing Regigigas as ways to circumvent or neutralising the effect of Slow Start, the CAP would either:

a) Rely on bulk/recovery to gain enormous set-up advantages for a Dracovish-level Sweep after 5 turns.
b) Serve a stall-based role similar to Toxipex with decent Sp.Atk to cover for the lack of Atk at the start.

Out of those two: option b) is the most interesting for me, since it allows more interaction during the Slow Start turns.


Something like 170 base attack and speed on a relatively fragile mon with common enough checks. Starts ok, but if it keeps making ground and forcing the opponent out or killing them, it turns into a monster.
A existing mon that is around about those lines is Kartana: Attack 181, Speed 109, with a BST of 570. Now a large portion of Kartanas strength came from Beast Boost upping it's Attack with every KO, and I would believe that were Beast Boost changed with even a neutral ability, Kartanas power would drop. Slow Start would be killer.

Following with kj's point: standard practice with Kartana was maxing its Attack and Speed EV's, resulting in a final of 507 and 348 respectively. (depending on nature). Slow Start would therefore put those stats to 253 and 174 when initially sent out, roughly equivalent to a mon with Base 60 Attack and 30 Speed with the same EV and Nature bonuses. Kartana was barely kept in check with it's almost non-existent Health and Sp.Def; I genuinely don't think it's possible to have that type of stat-spread on an non-legendary BST and be expected to last even 1 turn, yet alone 5.

Speaking of Give and Take abilities, the one ability from that category that I wouldn't mind seeing is Perish Body. It's the only ability from that category that doesn't have any real positives, but it still has some potential that I think we could really bring out.
My mind immediately goes to a defensive Pivot in the realm of Assault Vest Magearna but for Physical Attackers.
 
Has anyone considered that slow start can be viewed inversely? It doesn’t need to be “bad offense and a lot of bulk to hope it makes it through”. What if it starts with decent stats and goes berserk? Something like 170 base attack and speed on a relatively fragile mon with common enough checks. Starts ok, but if it keeps making ground and forcing the opponent out or killing them, it turns into a monster.

It’d be similar to setup sweepers, rather than being a stalling type ‘mon. Slow Start wouldn’t define it but rather be a toolkit to make a good ‘mon great if unpunished. Of course it’d have to be a balancing act. I just figured I’d look at it from the perspective of “two free dragon dances after 5 rounds” rather than “bad stats until they get good”.

Just coming up with alternative builds rather than the tanky slow stall route most people are suggesting.
THANK YOU FOR BRINGING THIS UP!!!!

This is a concept for slow start that I think is phenomenal, unique, and balanced as it shows a way to use Slow Start as a sort of set up sweeper that has to wait out its turns until it destroys the other team. I hope that this gets more attention. Also, even before Slow Start is over, it still has some potential, as mentioned in the above posts.

EDIT - sorry that this was short I just didnt have a lot of time to write this. also I think that the above posts describe it better than I could.
 
Normalize would also allow for us to use some broken moves like Bolt Beak and would make for a fun interaction with Trick + Ring Target making it so ghost types have to be on their toes on whether to switch in to "tank" the attack or avoid it in fear of losing it's best check to Trick.
As much as I like Normalize... I don't like the Trick/Ring Target combo. There are other more interesting ways of trying to get around the weakness such as type-changing moves such as Weather Ball which I think would cause a lot of interesting discussion in the Movepool stage as well as bring some consideration into the typing stage (at the cost of being a bit poll-jumpy.)

Has anyone considered that slow start can be viewed inversely? It doesn’t need to be “bad offense and a lot of bulk to hope it makes it through”. What if it starts with decent stats and goes berserk? Something like 170 base attack and speed on a relatively fragile mon with common enough checks. Starts ok, but if it keeps making ground and forcing the opponent out or killing them, it turns into a monster.
A Slow Start Pokemon with 170 base attack plus investment isn't going down to 85 base attack plus investment is the problem. Its more comparable to a fully invested 61 Atk Pokemon, which is still not decent. Unless you overcompensate the berserk by making it some ungodly base stat like 200 Atk, the starting Atk is going to be mediocre by default.
 
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Tadasuke

Tuh-dah-skay
is a Pre-Contributor
Alright guys, I've been really happy with the continued discussion, however I now feel that it's time to quickly move on to discussing other abilities. In terms of timing, I'd like to spend at most a few days discussing these four abilities at length. After that point we'll have a 48 hour time period to really iron out what's gonna make the slate, and then on to voting. So, in the interest of expediency, I'd like to open up general discussion on the following abilities.
  • Color Change
  • Emergency Exit
  • Mimicry
  • Perish Body
Please keep in mind the more broad/general questions posed in my previous posts when discussing these abilities. You can expect more thorough questions on these abilities later tonight.
 
  • What routes are available to us in terms of surviving those 5 turns?
  • What options are available for what we do after those 5 turns?
  • How do we avoid making the end product broken while still rewarding successfully staying in 5 turns?
An option that has been overlooked the entire time in this discussion it Trick Room. It conveniently lasts 5 turns, meaning that if set during the first turn, it will last for the entire duration of Slow Start, while once it ends the Pokémon will become fast again, an unique advantage among OTR sweepers that struggle with being revenge-killed while outside of Trick Room. The issue with this approach is that because one slot has to be filled with Trick Room, and because the strategy requires the immediate firepower typical of Trick Room sweepers, it requires CAP 29 to be a special attacker, something the general consensus doesn't seem to be fond of. With that said, Trick Room takes advantage of the Speed drop in a largely unique way that I think is worth discussing more.
 
In my mind Color Change is the perfect choice. It's an ability that's effectively impossible to ignore and impossible to design an archetype around that will simply just try to ignore its downsides like a slow special attacker with Slow Start. It's an extremely detrimental ability that leads to unique design options not in how we can try to distribute stats to either ignore or overbuff elements that would compensate for its weaknesses, but rather be forced to evaluate the playstyle that would be inflicted upon it and try to compensate for its shortcomings in a more creative way rather than simply ending up with something like "archeops but better". The idea of sacrificing control to the opponent is one that's incredibly fascinating specifically because it's a gigantic downside, but one that can potentially be uniquely designed around rather than taking any easier or more straightforward ways out like "klutz/trick bad items". The whole idea of sacrificing control to the opponent means that there's no way to try and game the system to turn this detrimental ability into a positive or neutrally ineffective one based on stats and movepool, yet it's so unique that it can still result in an interesting process to try and create something that can take as much advantage of the playstyle that it would inflict as possible.

It's an ambitious choice, but it's the one that I'd by far be the most interested to see taken to the end when it has so much potential for something special and different while leaving no real easy cop-out decisions. I'll be looking forward to seeing and trying to answer more questions about this one.
 
I want to take a few minutes to talk about Emergency Exit. On paper, it has some really neat implications; it's basically a free Teleport at the cost of going to half health or lower. This presents an interesting way to make a pivot mon.

However... Golisopod already fills that role pretty well. It only does so in the lower tiers, but it still fills that role pretty well. And outside of enabling slow pivoting, there aren't any real niches that Emergency Exit has. Maybe a hazard setter suicide lead could work, but again, Golisopod is already a solid hazard setter itself.

My worry is, if we go with Emergency Exit, we're basically locked into making Golisopod 2.0. And, sure, there are things we can give an Emergency Exit CAP 29 that will make it an improvement over Golisopod, e.g. a better typing and higher Speed. But the point of this concept is to find a way to make a bad ability work. And this implies that there's already a Pokémon that makes its bad ability work.
 
Alright guys, I've been really happy with the continued discussion, however I now feel that it's time to quickly move on to discussing other abilities. In terms of timing, I'd like to spend at most a few days discussing these four abilities at length. After that point we'll have a 48 hour time period to really iron out what's gonna make the slate, and then on to voting. So, in the interest of expediency, I'd like to open up general discussion on the following abilities.
  • Color Change
  • Emergency Exit
  • Mimicry
  • Perish Body
Please keep in mind the more broad/general questions posed in my previous posts when discussing these abilities. You can expect more thorough questions on these abilities later tonight.
Color Change- This ability has the potential to make an incredibly interesting defensive pokemon, whose lack of continuous stab could allow it to have a wider plethora of support-orriented moves. When it comes to Keckleon and its usage of Color Change, by far the aspects that held Keckleon back with it were its dismal HP and its abysmal Speed, which put it at the mercy of opponents with coverage to beat it, a basket which more and more pokemon have begun to fall into. However, with enough Speed specifically, this pokemon could be open to one of the most creative playstyles seen. Notably, this ability could have interesting use when paired with Conversion, which would allow it to have a more reliable Stab move as well as give it a type to change back to when faced with a pokemon such as Rillaboom with U-turn. there are other moves that can have similar effects, but many of these options aren't as reliable as the already somewhat unreliable Conversion.

Emergency Exit- Since Golisopod is already the strongest of the pokemon with bad abilities and uses its ability to its advantage in some ways, its most likely this ability isn't going to be chosen. However, if it is, it still brings up the idea of an interesting pivot pokemon with high speed, allowing for it to have a fast offensive presence while still fulfilling a role as a slow pivot that can help certain pokemon get onto the field easier. Definitely interesting, but one thats probably worth saving for another day.

Mimicry- While this ability could have an interesting role as a defensive check to terrain abusers, it also seems the least interesting to me, as it has the most potential of any ability discussed to have a neutral effect in battle, and in the case of using it alongside a terrain setter, the most likely to be redundant and dead weight on a team. While there are definitely ways to go with it, I feel that it lends the least interesting process when compared to other abilities mentioned.

Perish Body- While this ability could be fun and interesting, I sadly feel that it would struggle to make a place in the current enviroment of pivoting moves, and since its ability would be known prior, opponents could simply switch out in order to avoid being trapped, and even worse still, this abilitys interesting effect of scaring out sweepers would be lost on special sweepers such as Spectrier. While this CAP is being made with it's ability intentionally having negative traits, I worrythe negative traits of this ability would be less about the ability itself and more about the enviroment a pokemon with this ability would be placed into.
 

quziel

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I want to take a few minutes to talk about Emergency Exit. On paper, it has some really neat implications; it's basically a free Teleport at the cost of going to half health or lower. This presents an interesting way to make a pivot mon.

However... Golisopod already fills that role pretty well. It only does so in the lower tiers, but it still fills that role pretty well. And outside of enabling slow pivoting, there aren't any real niches that Emergency Exit has. Maybe a hazard setter suicide lead could work, but again, Golisopod is already a solid hazard setter itself.

My worry is, if we go with Emergency Exit, we're basically locked into making Golisopod 2.0. And, sure, there are things we can give an Emergency Exit CAP 29 that will make it an improvement over Golisopod, e.g. a better typing and higher Speed. But the point of this concept is to find a way to make a bad ability work. And this implies that there's already a Pokémon that makes its bad ability work.
This is not really true. Golisopod is like, really not a great abuser of Emergency Exit from a stat or typing standpoint. Its rocks weak which forces you to run HDB to ever attack because 25% HP + 25% HP = 50% HP = getting forced out by a single uninvested attack. Its slow as all hell, which means that you are very vulnerable to being put under 50% and thus losing your turn. Yes, First Impression and Spikes abuse EE super hard, but there's legit nothing else on the mon that uses Emergency Exit well.

---

Color Change is an ability I wanna quickly analyze using the assistance of a replay from the semi-recent ADVNU RoA Spotlight Tour.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/gen3nu-1139169577

Turns 8-18 are the relevant ones, with Kecleon showing off how it can check a pokemon such as Wailord (165 BP Hydro Pump, 90 BP Ice Beam, 70 BP Hidden Power Electric). The relevant thing here is that a super effective Hidden Power Electric is significantly weaker than Hydro Pump. This really is where the meat of this mon will be. These small advantages it gives are really where we will be able to use Color Change itself most often, one example in the current meta is the fact that SE Earthquake from Melmetal is 10% weaker than a neutral DIB. The issue of course with Color Change is that honestly it could have some process issues because it, and typing combined, do not provide much, if any direction for the mon to take with the rest of the process.

---

Perish Body is really cool, honestly because it provides a limit to the opponent as well as the mon itself, which has some very interesting design space. I'm sorta reminded of ORAS Era Latios where the mon is a hybrid Pivot and Wallbreaker that is very good at forcing itself out, as well as its opponents out (in this case because Draco Meteor applies a -2). This potential for a sorta "force your opponent to pivot out" while also "force yourself to pivot out" is a really cool duality, and could lead to honestly a super interesting process IMO.
 
This is not really true. Golisopod is like, really not a great abuser of Emergency Exit from a stat or typing standpoint. Its rocks weak which forces you to run HDB to ever attack because 25% HP + 25% HP = 50% HP = getting forced out by a single uninvested attack. Its slow as all hell, which means that you are very vulnerable to being put under 50% and thus losing your turn. Yes, First Impression and Spikes abuse EE super hard, but there's legit nothing else on the mon that uses Emergency Exit well.
I'm not saying that Golisopod is a perfect Pokémon, and I understand it has flaws. Heck, I literally bring up the same two flaws you do at the end:
And, sure, there are things we can give an Emergency Exit CAP 29 that will make it an improvement over Golisopod, e.g. a better typing and higher Speed.
I guess what I was trying to say is that we don't already have a good Emergency Exit user, but that we already have a good Emergency Exit role. So I feel like, if we chose Emergency Exit, we would be asking "How can we work around this ability better than this Pokémon?", not "How can we work around this ability?"
 
Mimicry is something that I strongly feel is not negative enough to qualify for this concept. The ability is about as defective as Castform's Forecast. It has the potential to be botched by an opponent using a different weather, but not significantly more than any other weather team. A Castform getting hit by a Thunder is about as defective as a Mimicry mon getting hit by a Rillaboom's U-Turn. Not to mention, it doesn't lose a STAB since it can have access to Terrain Pulse, which is comparable to Weather Ball. Banning Terrain Pulse would just be taking an okay ability and making it bad, like Weak Armor/Simple examples discussed earlier.

If I had to choose between Illuminate and Mimicry on Stunfisk (as bad as it is), I would still take Mimicry. It has a bad movepool and stat spread dragging it down much more than its ability. The only terrain setter that's trapped in NU/PU is Pincurchin, so losing Ground/Steel for Electric does make that feel like a massive downgrade in its specific case.
 
As much as I like Normalize... I don't like the Trick/Ring Target combo. There are other more interesting ways of trying to get around the weakness such as type-changing moves such as Weather Ball which I think would cause a lot of interesting discussion in the Movepool stage as well as bring some consideration into the typing stage (at the cost of being a bit poll-jumpy.)
Normalize has some interesting qualities on both ends of the offensive spectrum.
Physically, Normalize would give us access to some really powerful moves with some really great effects. Sucker Punch or Extreme Speed for high-powered priority, Double Edge or something like Close Combat for big damage.
Specially, Normalize can be circumvented by relying on weather (Weather Ball) or terrains (Terrain Pulse) to deal typed damage and potentially break past ghosts, rocks (in rain or on grass), and steels (in sun).
Both have momentum (U-Turn, Volt Switch), both have boost-based nukes (Power Trip, Stored Power).
There are a ton of moves that have neat interactions with Normalize. Maybe even too many. And this is before getting into status moves.
 

Tadasuke

Tuh-dah-skay
is a Pre-Contributor
As promised, here are the questions regarding the four abilities being discussed.
  • Color Change
    • How can we benefit from this ability offensively? Defensively?
    • How much control is given to the opponent by letting them manipulate your typing?
    • How can this level of control be overcome? How can we benefit from it?
  • Emergency Exit
    • What methods are available for us to safely get to 50% HP or lower?
    • How can we take advantage of being forced to switch out?
  • Mimicry
    • How detrimental of an ability is Mimicry?
    • How can we make this differently from any other terrain abuser and still benefit from it?
  • Perish Body
    • How can we cause this ability to come into play?
    • How useful is this ability to us when it activates?
    • How impactful is it that the opponent ultimately has control over when this ability activates?
 
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Has anyone considered that slow start can be viewed inversely? It doesn’t need to be “bad offense and a lot of bulk to hope it makes it through”. What if it starts with decent stats and goes berserk? Something like 170 base attack and speed on a relatively fragile mon with common enough checks. Starts ok, but if it keeps making ground and forcing the opponent out or killing them, it turns into a monster.

It’d be similar to setup sweepers, rather than being a stalling type ‘mon. Slow Start wouldn’t define it but rather be a toolkit to make a good ‘mon great if unpunished. Of course it’d have to be a balancing act. I just figured I’d look at it from the perspective of “two free dragon dances after 5 rounds” rather than “bad stats until they get good”.

Just coming up with alternative builds rather than the tanky slow stall route most people are suggesting.
I'm sorry if this doesn't contribute much to discussion, but this guy is making such an awesome point. I couldn't help but feel the need to divert attention back to this. There are ways to stall slow-start in preparation of a sweep all the while making its halved attack usable (while also not KOing the fattiest defensive threats off the bat). I love this idea, and I'd love to see how discussion around this sentiment can flesh out towards maybe giving opportunities for substitute setting, boosting moves, etc. while using Slow-Start as an Ash-Greninja-esque style of play.
 
Ok to all the people responding saying “you forgot to halve EVs and IVs” for Slow Start, that’s totally fair. But it’s also missing the point. 170 was just an example. What it you put it at 210 or something? I’m not a math expert. Pick a number that’s good when halved. The point was that you can get a result similar to setup sweepers investing 2 turns of Dragon Dance. Rather than viewing it as a negative ability, view it as similar to “plus 2 stages each after 5 rounds”.

But anyway enough on old topics. For color change, my first thought was: Pivoting is a necessity. You need to be able to avoid things like chained dragon hits, and you can’t lose too much value doing it. Another possibility would be picking a base typing like steel, which guides the list of likely first hits into a narrow selection, assuming you pivot in undamaged. And of course the big issue is STAB. No stab friggen sucks. And we can’t really risk just giving 1.5x stats or something. A weird possibility would be stuff like Mirror Move or Mimic; they’d suddenly allow STAB. Regardless, this mon need considerable bulk and offenses both just to compensate for the control opponents have over it. Another compensatory method would be just to give a huge variety of non-STAB options that are typically stronger power than you’d normally see. Alternatively, one bizarre option is Revelation Dance for constant stab, but I worry that would see nearly unanimous play.

The other three I don’t really have as much thoughts on. E. Exit will have lots of options that I’m not clever enough to see, and the other two don’t interest me that much; other than working with trapping perish body doesn’t do much, and personally I’d go so far as to veto Mimicry just for the significant chance of having 0 downside in a game, which goes against concept.
 
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As promised, here are the questions regarding the four abilities being discussed.
  • Color Change
    • How can we benefit from this ability offensively? Defensively?
    • How much control is given to the opponent by letting them manipulate your typing?
    • How can this level of control be overcome? How can we benefit from it?


  • I honestly think it’s a lot to gain from Color change, both offensively and defensively it requires a lot of situational awareness to pull off, but I think that’s where color change becomes most interesting. Being able to conditionally switch into a neutral attack and turn it into a resisted one creates a lot of on the fly opportunities, for either set up or supportive options. A speedy Encore or Torment/Protect can make force free turns and there is still Revelation Dance which while it gives a consistent stab lacks the power to be a offensive heavy hitter regardless of typing.
 
Color Change:

How can we benefit from this ability offensively? Defensively?

Like many others have pointed out, Color Change has some solid defensive utility in being able to come in on many attacks, switch to said type and force the opponent to switch because of the type change, or at very worse select a far weaker coverage move. Specifically, Color Change could hypothetically allow CAP29 to soak up hits such as Rillaboom's Wood Hammer, Barraskewda's Liquidation, Slowking-G's Sludge Bomb, Zapdos's Volt Switch/Discharge, and others. Here, Color Change could potentially allow CAP29 to check a multitude of threats that would be impossible for a single typing to do alone.
Offensively, however, I feel like Color Change is only really harmful to us. It means we have no reliable STAB- at best we load this mon with coverage, and even then, the defensive perks of Color Change lend this mon to becoming types that resist themselves, in which case the opposing mon will likely resist our STAB anyway. While Revelation Dance helps somewhat, our opponent still essentially chooses what type our STAB will be, which doesn't work out so great for us offensively.

How much control is given to the opponent by letting them manipulate your typing? How can this level of control be overcome? How can we benefit from it?
I'm going to answer these two together. While on paper, we seem to give up quite a bit of control to the opponent, we are still able to retain a decent amount of control by choosing specifically when to switch in. While many Pokemon have coverage moves that can hit their other moves' types supereffectively, us switching in on a good prediction will mean the opponent has to use up precious turns to get us to the proper typing. For instance, if we switch into a Zapdos Discharge, it is possible that the opponent could then proceed to click Hurricane, and then threaten a supereffective Discharge the following turn. However, this will be largely detrimental to the Zapdos player as during the Hurricane turn, CAP29 can gain progress through hazards, hazard removal, Knock Off, status, and many other options, and can then switch out the subsequent turn. Because of this, I feel like CAP29, while unable to sit forever on many mons, will be able to get at least one free turn against a variety of threats and we would best benefit from doing what we can to take advantage of these turns.

Emergency Exit:

What methods are available for us to safely get to 50% HP or lower?

I think a really interesting way to do so is recoil moves. Designing CAP29 as such essentially gives us a once-per-game 120 bp pivoting move, which while niche, could provide some interesting utility. Using Life Orb could also give us a similar effect.

How can we take advantage of being forced to switch out?
We all know the advantages of pivoting, and just like any other pivoting move, we can bring in CAP29 to take a hit that brings it below 50%, and then safely bring in a pokemon. One interesting mechanic that Emergency Exit can do for us that standard pivoting moves cannot, however, could be its interaction with Wish. Because Emergency Exit doesn't require another turn after switching in to be used, a Wish user, for instance Astrolotl, can use Wish, then switch to CAP29, activate Emergency Exit, and then switch to a low-hp mon that couldn't have taken a hit otherwise. Utility of pivoting aside, in order to best take advantage of Emergency Exit, we need to avoid the pitfalls that Golisopod suffers from, namely being slow as bricks. One might be amazed that Golisopod with bulk investment takes 23% from Excadrill Earthquake, but once you realize that you're forced out after sand chip + the second EQ, you realize that your ability to defensively check anything is really quite limited. From this, I think it's very possible that a "fast wall" archetype could probably utilize Emergency Exit quite well.

Mimicry:

I kind of just don't like this ability for our concept; realistically this ability only comes into play against Tapu Fini and Rillaboom, and as a result can't really be built around that effectively. Plus, being a fairy doesn't really do much for or against Tapu Fini, and Rillaboom can kind of just click U-Turn on CAP29. Not that interesting of an ability imo.

Perish Body:

I also am not a huge fan of Perish Body. Perish Trapping is already gimmicky to start, and because the opponent has to activate the ability, we don't really get that option. The best fulfillment of this concept would likely come from this mon gaining momentum by dying similar to using Explosion or Memento. While a suicide concept can be interesting, it's personally not the route I'd want to take under the umbrella of "Bad Ability." Plus, considering that Perish Body requires getting hit by an opposing attack, then subsequently waiting out 3 turns to activate, that other suicide options provide utility in damage or lowering stats, and also that Emergency Exit provides similar momentum-grabbing utility without losing a mon, I think that building a mon around Perish Body is a gimmick at best.
 
  • Mimicry
    • How detrimental of an ability is Mimicry?
    • How can we make this differently from any other terrain abuser and still benefit from it?
Mimicry is massively detrimental... in the case of the one Pokémon that has it. Without anyone even making a move, Stunfisk-Galar can lose both of its STABs, all of its damage and status immunities, and its valuable resistances to common pivot moves—all of these at once. It is a horror show of an ability because it tears down everything that makes its owner the least bit serviceable.

For CAP29, we would need to make a deliberate attempt if we wanted Mimicry to cripple our monster as badly as it does Stunfisk-Galar. That said, it remains a categorically negative ability because it gives the enemy control over the monster's typing. A monster with Mimicry is doomed to spend the bulk of the battle walking on eggshells because one switch is all it takes to disrupt its standard kit. To redeem this ability, we could adapt its kit into something that capitalizes on the otherwise deleterious terrain. Alternatively, we can turn CAP29 into something capable of baiting and punishing common terrain-setters that would intuitively shut it down. That may be a difficult tightrope to walk; it comes down to the joining of an exploitable typing with strong coverage options.

Color Change operates similarly inasmuch as it gives the opponent control over the monster's type, but I find it the inferior pick between the two. It only comes into effect on a hit, and there are numerous Pokémon who control battles by dishing out massive pain and never receiving the reciprocal (e.g. Weavile). Mimicry is automatic when Terrain comes into effect, and the ways in which we can respond to that situation are more varied than simply doing our darnedest never to be in a type-changing situation.
 
First of all, I want to point out that Revelation Dance is not in the game (since Oricorio is not in the game) unselectable in the game, so it's not an option for Color Change.
EDIT: Wording changed slightly to be more accurate.

Also, because I can't leave this well enough alone:
To me, pumping the attack/speed stats to negate Slow Start feels different from going any other route, including the bulky offensive route. They are all ways of trying to work around the Slow Start drops, but I think the sticking point for me is that this route doesn't particularly engage the ability so much as it treats it as a little bonus. The threat of a sudden offensive boost feels lessened when the Pokemon is already strong enough to be an offensive threat on its own. To run some more numbers (assuming 31 IVs), base 240 uninvested is equivalent to base 111 uninvested, and 240 fully invested is equivalent to base 95 fully invested. Not great, but at this point you're just working with a typical (if perhaps weaker than usual) setup sweeper. Maybe I am being swayed too much by how high the stats need to be to reach "useful during Slow Start" levels, though (240, or really anything in the 200s, is absurdly high for any kind of stat, even accounting for legendary stat spreads). I won't deny that it's technically a unique niche (Slow Start is unhazeable to boot), I'm just not convinced this is the way to go for Slow Start.

Emergency Exit
What methods are available for us to safely get to 50% HP or lower?

I'm going to start by pasting a relevant phrase from Bulbapedia:
"Emergency Exit will not activate if the Pokémon's HP falls below half due to hurting itself in confusion, Pain Split, or using Substitute or Belly Drum or Curse, but it will activate if the HP falls below half from all other damage (including Struggle recoil)."
This means that, while things like Substitute are off the table, we have the choice of activating Emergency Exit ourselves using recoil moves. Some moves directly hit the 50% threshold from full health, but there are also plenty of high-power recoil moves that we could use, even if they are less predictable in the amount of damage dealt to us. There's also Focus Sash/Endure on a super frail mon, although the inability of a 1 HP mon to come back in if there are hazards up puts a damper on this. Otherwise, we're mostly at the mercy of the opponent, so we'll need to come in on either chip damage or predicted moves that will chunk but not kill.
How can we take advantage of being forced to switch out?
Emergency Exit could allow us to fulfill an interesting niche as a suicide lead that can do its job more than once. Instead of exploding, Destiny Bonding, or simply dying as fast as possible to get out of the way, Emergency Exit could be triggered to activate an early switch into the desired check, while the HP threshold being so high means that the mon could be able to come back in again at a later point. To build on the recoil point, we could also use it to get an offensive mon out of battle quickly (perhaps if it's choiced) and put in our check of choice. Another, even more niche use of this is that damaging pivoting moves fail to switch the user out if they trigger Emergency Exit, so one could send Emergency Exit Pokemon in, take a little chip damage, then get a safe switch in while denying the opponent their own switch.

Mimicry
How detrimental of an ability is Mimicry?

It's detrimental in terms of losing your typing and STAB, so how detrimental it is depends on how reliant on those traits you are. As an example, Galarian Stunfisk prefers to keep its typing, so being susceptible to terrain taking it away sucks for it. A mon with a wider movepool and better stats might not care nearly as much, but it would still an annoyance.
It is less detrimental than a similar ability in Color Change (which also involves losing your typing), since there's more in your control (you can set your own terrain, often without going extreme lengths to fit a setter on your team, and it is more obvious when terrain is going up than what kind of move your opponent is going to use). In cases where a terrain user isn't present, Mimicry is completely neutral, and those cases aren't uncommon in the current metagame.
I think Jewvia's comparison to Forecast is generally pretty fitting. However, I do think it's more detrimental than Forecast just because terrain is more prevalent in the current meta, mainly because its more frequently seen on individual Pokemon that are also really good. Tyranitar and Hippowdon exist as a standalone Pokemon, but they aren't quite on the level of Rillaboom and Tapu Fini (while Tapu Koko is somewhat comparable). This means that Mimicry is going to come into effect more often, and you have less control over your typing in general. However, this individuality also means that designing around this ability mainly involves designing how to play against those setters (rather than a playstyle as a whole).
Overall, I'd say that this ability is a net negative because you lose control of your typing, but I don't think it's a very strong detriment unless you are very dependent on typing and STAB.
How can we make this differently from any other terrain abuser and still benefit from it?
Mimicry's main appeal is that it is adaptable to any kind of terrain, so one route is to use the opponent's terrain against them. Terrain Pulse is probably the most fitting move for this kind of approach, since it will always get STAB from Mimicry under terrain, and we could include terrain-specific moves like Grassy Glide as well. However, this isn't effective in the face of the setters themselves, which makes it more difficult for us to abuse that terrain. Another option is to check or counter the setters themselves (like by carrying Poison coverage), but we will lose STAB, and the setters usually have a way of getting out and/or smacking us with at least neutral moves. We could just go with a generalist approach of not engaging with the terrain in our movepool and just using the typing, but that ignores the ability and doesn't seem to be in the spirit of the concept. Pairing with our own terrain setter is another option, although at that point it's mostly inferior to already-existing terrain abusers.
 
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  • Color Change
    • How can we benefit from this ability offensively? Defensively?
    • How much control is given to the opponent by letting them manipulate your typing?
    • How can this level of control be overcome? How can we benefit from it?
There's a lot more to gain defensively then offensively simply do the to the type matchups involved. 9 of the 18 types resist themselves, so switching a colour changer into a Choice-Attacker with one of those types boosts it's walling effect, as well as granting immunities to common status setters if it can time a switch properly or remove previously placed ones.

Control the opponent gets is extremely meta and mon dependent, especially in regards to the move sets and type coverage. Overcoming potential weaknesses would rely on moves that are independent of typing or stats: Status moves and Night Shade/Seismic Toss come to mind immediately in terms of damage, and fast pivot moves would allow for counter play if your opponent force switches for a type advantage.

Emergency Exit
  • What methods are available for us to safely get to 50% HP or lower?
  • How can we take advantage of being forced to switch out?
Recoil Moves are an option as Derek said, but there's a possible interesting niche as a Trick/Fling user centreing around holding Flame Orbs or Toxic Orbs to cripple opponents, then using Emergency Exit to swap out into a Heal Bell user to negate it's own Burn/Poison before it's second round.

Mimicry
  • How detrimental of an ability is Mimicry?
  • How can we make this differently from any other terrain abuser and still benefit from it?
I find the concept of Mimicry a lot harder to take advantage of then Colour Change, simply due to the highly limited options for Terrain in general. It's possible that one way to overcome and make the CAP different then other Terrain users is to have the base typing and move set be similar to a standard Terrain abuser on a team designed around a specific Terrain type, using Mimicry as a secondary strategy if the opponent tries to neutralise the Terrain you designate.

  • Perish Body
    • How can we cause this ability to come into play?
    • How useful is this ability to us when it activates?
    • How impactful is it that the opponent ultimately have control over when this ability activates?
I mentioned this before but my initial idea of how to use Perish Body is in a role to halt Set-up sweepers in their tracks. Working as a defensive pivot you would switch into a set-upped physical attacker, to activate Perish, stall and recover for the next two turns, then rotate out in line with your opponent.

Timing and prediction would be key to having the ability start, but once it does, the uninterruptable clock countdown is going to force your opponent to either switch or cost them their key sweeper: both of which are situations you can take momentum off of, especially if there also includes options to inflict status conditions before the switch.
 
For Emergency Exit/Wimp Out, I think making a bulky Pokémon that can withstand 2 hits at least is the safest way to be able to activate the ability without relying on items.
As for what advantages it can have, I'm interested in its potential to keep momentum. I think making a mon that can quickly hit, set up hazards or cripple the foe without using priority and then switch out by itself would make it stand out from Golisopod (which has enough bulk but not enough speed) and Wimpod (which has a good enough speed but is very frail). My main concern, however, is that said strategy could potentially be ruined by priority moves, throwing the mon away before it manages to acomplish what it's meant to.
 
In my mind Color Change is the perfect choice. It's an ability that's effectively impossible to ignore and impossible to design an archetype around that will simply just try to ignore its downsides like a slow special attacker with Slow Start. It's an extremely detrimental ability that leads to unique design options not in how we can try to distribute stats to either ignore or overbuff elements that would compensate for its weaknesses, but rather be forced to evaluate the playstyle that would be inflicted upon it and try to compensate for its shortcomings in a more creative way rather than simply ending up with something like "archeops but better"
I immediately had a concern that Color Change would be detrimental to the Typing phase of this process, but I’ve come around. Only having the original typing for 1-2 turns gives us a huge amount of design potential, because what CAP 29 does in those turns is essential and has to be impactful. How to generate the most impact before it loses defensive or offensive capabilities will make for a great discussion.

I will say that I disagree with the “Archeops but better” stance against some abilities here, all of the Pokémon with these abilities are completely defined by them and most would be usable/forgettable without them. I think whatever ability CAP 29 has, they will feel like “source Pokémon but better“ and we should lean into that methodology to some degree instead of rejecting it. We know what the original Pokémon has to deal with, and the process will be better by studying it for how we can adapt around those same problems in interesting ways.

I also want to say that I don’t believe Perish Body is a great choice here. To address some of Tadasuke’s questions in a chunk here, I feel like the Perish Body user has far too much control over when this ability is activated, and with an easy pivot option can easily make things difficult for the opponent at little concern for the user. There are so SO many tools that can lower the risk for this Pokémon, pivoting moves, healing, wish passing, etc. If CAP 29 can reliably switch in to contact moves and leave, it’s excellent at forcing enemy switches with the only real risk being that it has to leave after 3 turns, but honestly there are so many archetypes of Pokémon that don’t want to be in for 3 turns anyway. I see this ability being almost always positive for the user, given the archetypes it can fall into that don’t want to be around for 3 turns. So unless we force a Pokémon that needs to be in that long to be effective, we’ll be losing sight of our objectives.
 
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quziel

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Posting here because the Revelation Dance posts were clogging up the thread; deleted all of the posts solely concerned with arguing about it.

Revelation Dance is not usable in the game and will not be used in this CAP. Do not use it to influence your votes.

It should be noted that if you change into a type that resists itself, aka the best situation for Color Change, and the one you're gonna try to set up as often as possible, Revelation Dance is near useless. Frankly, I'd rather just use a 120 BP non-stab and hit about as hard anyways while having fixed coverage.


I'm going to spend a bit clearing up the thread.
 
I find Emergency Exit really interesting.
Its an ability you have no control over but it turns the mon into a pivot by letting the opponent hitting you.
Think Teleport but your opponent decides how to trigger it.
It def is a negative ability but can lead to some interesting discussion in how we want to explore in a way diff from goli
 
  • How can we benefit from this ability offensively? Defensively?
i think it will be hard to leverage Color Change offensively. Loosing STAB is always bad. At best we could build 29s movepool in a way that takes advantage of the types it most regularly will be switching to. This though comes with its own limitations as Color Change is at its best defensively if it converts to a self resisting type.
So the better alternative is manufacturing a movepool that gives 29 access to moves that will be SE against its common switch ins/a wide variety of Pokémon and a pool of utility moves that it can use, so the reduced damage of its moves isn’t as detrimental.
It’s defensively that Color Change can have uniquely positive properties. As I said being able to consistently switch into moves with self resisting typings, technically gives us a mon with 8 resistances. Furthermore this means that mons with certain coverage moves, will have to spend turns to set up type on 29, that they can hit hard. Time we could use to cripple the opponent with status, item manipulation, setting or removing hazards or simply chipping them. It also means that a lot of attackers would have to use non STAB moves to get unresisted or SE hits.
On a lot of mons this also means we can predict their next move even more easily than usual and switch to an appropriate answer.
Thus Building CAP29 as a defensive mon that can soak up a variety of hits and provide utility to the Team seems to be the best option to leverage these benefits.

gonna add thoughts on the other abilities later.
 
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