CAP 29 - Part 6 - Defining Moves Discussion

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MrDollSteak

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I believe that from the following categories:
  • Extraordinary Damaging Moves (moves with strong ability interactions, moves with strong secondary effects, high-Base Power moves, absolutely essential coverage moves, etc.)
  • Strong Utility Moves (self-switching moves, hazard setting/removing moves, status-inflicting moves, etc.)
we should try and aim to resolve what coverage moves we want to be running with Calm Mind to ensure that we can calculate these moves effectively against the Pokemon we are intending to use them against. I think the reason why this is particularly important at this stage is due to the fact that one of the key downsides of Colour Change that we have brought up is the removal of consistent STAB options, as such, it is likely that we will want to be running coverage moves over our stabs to ensure a greater spread of super effective matchups as although Sludge Bomb and Dark Pulse have fairly effective neutral coverage, and in the case of Sludge Bomb a powerful secondary effect, neither of the moves are frequently run without STAB because of their relatively sparse super effective matchups. That being said, I think it is still natural to treat Sludge Bomb and Dark Pulse as required moves for the sake of calculations.

With this in mind I think it is important to decide upon a list of coverage moves that we think will be run. As kjnjkmjk1 has mentioned Water is a coverage type that synergises well with Sludge Bomb. The natural move here to consider is Scald, as it is a consistently accurate Special stab that also has a sufficiently useful utility effect in it's 30% burn chance. Galarian Slowking is a Pokemon that I think suitably demonstrates the effectiveness of the combination of Sludge Bomb and Scald when run together, and some of the few Calm Mind users in the tier can also demonstrate the effectiveness of Scald as one of the main moves to run in 2 attack combinations. I therefore propose that Scald be treated as Required.

The next moves and type combinations that I would particularly like to advocate for are Ice, Ground and Electric as they are each potent attacking types by their own right, but when run in conjunction with one another offer incredible neutral and super effective coverage. As far as moves that can feasibly be run with what I have suggested to be our other required moves in Sludge Bomb, Dark Pulse or Scald, I think that Ice Beam and Earth Power offer the most synergy, with possible two move coverage combinations of Dark Pulse and Ice Beam, Scald and Earth Power, Sludge Bomb and Ice Beam and finally Sludge Bomb and Earth Power each having some potential to be run, it is of course also worth taking into account the option of running Ice Beam and Earth Power together. Electric special coverage does offer some similar flexibilty and potency in terms of coverage particularly in terms of being able to be run effectively with Ice Beam and Sludge Bomb, as well as Discharge having additional utility in terms of high paralysis chances, but nevertheless I don't think it's as important to lock in as Ice Beam and Earth Power. Overall, I think that Ice Beam and Earth Power should be treated as required and Thunderbolt and/or Discharge should be treated as optional.

In regards to niche options, I think it is worth addressing the moves to be run on an already approved optional Coil set. The only moves I can feasibly see as being useful are Gunk Shot and Power Trip, and therefore it's probably worth treating them as Optional purely for the ease of calculating physical sets, as Water, Ice and Electric coverage don't have any particularly reliable STAB moves, that said, I could see a potential combination in Icicle Crash and Earthquake due to the accuracy boost of Coil and the fact that neither move makes contact. Therefore I will propose that Gunk Shot, Power Trip, Icicle Crash and Earthquake all be treated as optional moves to be run in conjunction with Coil. That being said, I still want to suggest that I really doubt the feasibiltiy of having both a successful Calm Mind and Coil set, even if I am supporting these moves purely for the ease of calculations. As for physical utility moves like Knock Off and U-Turn, I see no reason to calculate them whatsoever and to save these for the actual move stage themselves. Stored Power is a move that has been discussed here, however I see no benefit to it, as incomparison to Coil and Power Trip, Calm Mind doesn't boost it fast enough, and we have little other moves that synergise with Psychic coverage.

TL:DR - Required: Sludge Bomb, Dark Pulse, Scald, Ice Beam, Earth Power
Optional: Thunderbolt and/or Discharge, Gunk Shot, Power Trip, Icicle Crash, Earthquake
 
Our last part of this stage is discussing Extraordinary Damaging Moves and Strong Utility Moves. This should be a comparatively quick stage, as we're still quite open ended with regards to damaging moves in particular, and as such I'm setting a soft limit to wrap up in 24 Hours.
Gonna start off by mimicking the required support for Sludge Bomb and Dark Pulse.

This is one of those concepts where our STAB is not necessarily our base typing. However, just because we lose Dark/Poison does not mean we need to lose STAB, and I think this is a good place to look at what typing should be allowed, not necessarily required. This post is mostly looking at what STABs are worth considering beyond our initial Dark/Poison STAB.

There are 4 types of typings that interact with our current Colour Change CAP.

1 - No change - Dark/Poison/Psychic moves allow us to keep our current Dark/Poison typing.

2 - Self-Resisting Change - Steel/Fire/Water/Grass/Electric/Ice change us to a self-resistant monotype.

3 - Self-Neutral Change - Fighting/Flying/Ground/Rock/Bug/Fairy change us to a self-neutral typing.

4 - Self-Effective Change - Ghost/Dragon change us to a self-effective change.

Before getting into the meat of it, non-coverage STABs not worth discussing in my eyes are Psychic, Grass, Ghost, and Dragon. Psychic is a typing we will almost never transform into because of our immunity, Grass is a self-resistant typing that (with 2 exceptions) our Poison typing is SE against, and Ghost/Dragon don't need much introduction.

Two coverage typings that allow us to hit every typing combination in the game before abilities are Ground and Water.

- Ground as a typing is a dangerous one to look at for keeping STAB, as while it is a self-neutral typing that we can abuse like the others (I'll go into more detail later,) it is the only typing we are 2x weak against. This means that considering a Ground STAB specifically (rather than generic Ground coverage) would necessitate a higher bulk restriction. That being said, bringing the option of Earth Power is not a bad choice, letting us hit pretty much everything with our Dark/Poison/Ground trio.

- Water has the same universal coverage when paired with Dark/Poison, meaning moves such as Scald or Surf would be on the table for discussion. The downside here is that we cannot personally abuse this STAB against the target that gives it to us, but we can use it if we manage to defeat the Pokemon with our boosted Dark/Poison moves, and then carry on with the Water STAB on subsequent opponents. (I wrote this paragraph before the last two comments, so Scald seems to be the primary candidate)

At the cost of the universal coverage, two other typings I find very interesting as offensive Color Change STABs are Flying and Fairy.

- Flying is a common offensive typing that we have to worry about, especially with Pokemon like Tomohawk or Tornadus running around. A non-STAB Sludge Bomb or Dark Pulse is something we would have but not be all that effective with offensively against these threats, but being able to keep a STAB Air Slash or Hurricane would be a massive tool we can abuse, especially against Tomohawk.

- Fairy is another interesting one, and of the Self-Neutral typings, the one that I feel we can most commonly exploit. There is a lot of Fairy Spam in the Pokemon that we can reasonably deal with such as Clefairy or the Tapus, and we can likewise demolish these Pokemon with a SE Sludge Bomb, and then retain the powerful STAB Moonbeam or Dazzling Gleam for whoever switches in against us afterwards.

TLDR:
Require - Sludge Bomb - Dark Pulse
Coverage to Allow - Earth Power - Scald or Surf - Air Slash or Hurricane - Moonbeam or Dazzling Gleam
 
I forgot to mention it, but Sludge Wave has a weird relationship to Sludge Bomb. Even though we are hurting for power, the extra 5 BP may not be worth losing out on 20% higher chance to poison. A lot of bulkier Pokemon that get both prefer Sludge Bomb, while there are some offensively-oriented outliers that prefer Sludge Wave, including Nidoking and Nidoqueen (who are losing out on the poison chance either way due to Sheer Force), Naganadel, and Gengar. I think this move could be argued for optional, but it's such a minor power increase and we will probably prefer Sludge Bomb either way that it doesn't truly have to be on the lists.

Is Revelation Dance on the table? While CAP29 would still have the issue of not having a consistent STAB type, it would have a consistent STAB-boosted move. I am not sure if this would count as "working in spite of" Color Change rather than "working with" it.
Revelation Dance is not on the table. See https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/cap-29-part-2-primary-ability-discussion.3677116/post-8737232.

Since people are talking about Boomburst:
I don't like it as an option for CAP29. Yes, it's one of the strongest moves we have access to, and it comes with 100% accuracy, which is very rare at this power level. However, it's a Normal type move, which does not hit anything super effectively, making it basically as strong as any super effective 70 BP move. I think this is a very large flaw, especially given that it comes with no secondary effects, making it inferior to many moves at 70 BP or higher that also come with additional utility and/or the ability to hit more targets super effectively. It exacerbates our inability to deal with Ghost types, as we can't even chip them with this move, and it is also easily absorbed by Steel types, of which there are many in the meta, and there is no easy way to cover that weakness without potentially opening up another weakness (Fighting leaves us totally useless against Ghosts; Fire is blocked by Rock types and Heatran; Water only neutrally hits most Steels and falters against the most prominent Ghosts, who are also Dragons; Dark and Ghost are each stuck with a rather weak 80 BP move for their best accompanying option and put us in an awkward position against Steel types).

As for utility moves, I can't really think of any that are absolutely necessary for this Pokemon's role as a setup sweeper. It will mostly likely need to fit both a setup move and recovery, and it will definitely want to fit two coverage moves on the same set, given that mono-attacking is a nightmare for a Pokemon with no STAB; it doesn't really have room for anything else. While a pure utility set isn't completely out of the question, I also don't believe it to be relevant for this stage. Some of the options here are interesting, but I don't really believe any of them to be strong, warping, or relevant enough for us to require them.
 
Sludge bomb should definitely go in required for obvious reasons. Dark pulse is less useful but I think going into required could be useful for the same reason as sludge bomb, that is, codifying what is already obvious and extremely likely. I also support gunk shot going into optional; the move is heavily tied to coil sets, which we have already determined as being a side possibility for sets that choose to pursue it. I'm a bit more undecided about knock off because I think it's slightly less tied to coil sets than gunk shot. I have no issue with it going into optional, but right now I'm leaning towards waiting until movesets to make a decision on the move, especially considering how powerful it is and its ability to enable non-coil pivot/utility sets.

Two other moves I have a lot of interest in are scald and lava plume. I don't particularly mind which one of these moves makes it onto our required moves list, but I think one of these moves should make it on. Both have superb coverage with sludge bomb––speaking in terms of relevant defensive pokemon, water/poison is only resisted by toxapex and ferrothorn, while fire/poison is resisted by toxapex, swampert, garchomp, and tyranitar––and both have the absolutely crucial ability to spread burns. It's hard to understate how good this is, because it means that we can make progress even when we aren't setting up for a sweep. The fact that we'd have utility to our team and pose a threat pre-setup is so so nice for us. I think I have a slight preference for scald, but again, I don't hugely mind either way (though we don't really need both of them).

I think the less pressing coverage options are ice, electric, and ground. There has been much talk about boltbeam during this process, and it's certainly good type coverage, but I do question its viability when we could be running something like sludge bomb+scald instead, which is honestly an absurd two-move combination. I rate something like ice beam+scorching sands being much better overall than boltbeam for its ability to maintain incredible type coverage while also spreading burns. So, in short: I see electric coverage as non-essential, while ice beam+scorching sands are two moves that I could see going into optional or left out until movesets.

Lastly, I want to talk about other excessive coverage, as well my thought process on this stage in general. The fact of the matter is, with our current understanding of CAP29, we will only be running two attacking moves in 95% of cases. Having every move under the sun not only doesn't make sense for us realistically, but it also complicates counterplay; imagine facing down CAP29 when it could theoretically be running poison+water, poison+fire, electric+ice, ice+ground, ground+flying, or ground+ fairy. I think, at maximum, our stabs + one coverage moves should be required, and the coverage moves in "optional" should be selected very carefully. I also have a similar philosophy about utility options, but I suppose for a slightly different reason. It's easy to list out every utility option we could theoretically get, but I feel as though it's only worth it to bring up moves when we believe they are extraordinarily relevant. Like, putting aside the fact that this mon doesn't really have moveslots for utility in general, I don't think the best way to use our time is to discuss mediocre or role-contradictory utility moves that are not relevant for our chosen route. I see this stage as ultimately very selective (though this may just be personal bias/misunderstanding because the stage is so new) and a lot of the proposed options for coverage+utility are simply better left alone until movesets. We will have a better understanding of cap29 at that point and we'll be able to make more accurate decisions on many of the moves that are not "defining" per se. This is all a bit stream of consciousness so hopefully I've gotten my point across, but in general I don't think we need many options at all for this stage to succeed, and it isn't worth bringing up a specific move unless there's a genuine argument to be made for why it would define cap29.
 
Everyone’s suggesting a large pool of coverage moves to be required to be able to take advantage of or changing stab, but considering we’re already down two moves with recovery and set up, we don’t really have the space for coverage moves. We don’t need an expansive offensive movepool, we need a effective 2 attacking coverage, either that or we open ourselves to secondary choice sets where we forgo recover and set up for the power of our coverage. Personally I’m fine with that choice, but allowing that or pivoting need to be conscious decisions and not things 29 falls into accidentally.
 
Torment is another we should definitely be considering due to its interactions with color change and the potential to turn unfavorable match ups vs dragon and ghost spam into successful ones, by limiting the opponents successful choices.
Most of what everyone’s been saying is pretty good; Sludge Bomb, Dark Pulse and/or Night Daze, Knock Off, Scald, Boomburst, etc. are all good options that expand our toolkit. But I’d like to further mention Torment, which taziathegreat brought up.

This move has some insane interactions with Color Change, providing some of the best defensive utility possible for CAP29 by controlling consecutive super-effective hits via Dragon and Ghost. Granted, this also allows for some interesting flip-flopping of defensive presence depending on what the opponent has in its moveslots. However, I think the sheer defensive utility that Torment offers with its Color Change interactions is enough to necessitate its place on the list.
 

Bughouse

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  • Extraordinary Damaging Moves (moves with strong ability interactions, moves with strong secondary effects, high-Base Power moves, absolutely essential coverage moves, etc.)
Given CAP 29 will have little control over its STAB, we should be aiming to have an effective 2-type attacking combination that when run alongside boost + recover can pose a substantial threat to the metagame. I'm not necessarily concerned about these being high base power, since any power level is likely to be neutered by the lack of control over STAB. The threat here really is once boosted and when we talk about the base power, therefore, that matters less - really only in the sense of "do I need to get 2 CMs or 3?" etc.

We don't actually need to look too far to see how a boosting CM mon not using STAB can work out in practice. In recent years, the fashionable BW Reuniclus set has changed from CM Recover Psychic Focus Blast to CM Recover Thunder HP Ice. This is the best case I can think of in the history of competitive mons of a boosting threat voluntarily using no STAB, and it's to instead use a classic boltbeam type combo.

I'm not sure that BoltBeam is the right combo here, as other combos do exist too (and I don't think we should offer vastly more coverage than strictly necessary - total unpredictability is rarely a healthy thing for a meta.) Some classic options of dual attacking types that have very broad coverage to consider are:
  • Electric and Ice
  • Ground and Rock/Ice/Flying/Poison/Fairy
  • Fighting and Rock/Ghost/Flying/Ice
  • Dragon and Steel/Poison/Fire/Ground
Given I think that Poison/Dark should already be granted as "initial" STABs, the most obvious place to go would be Dragon or Ground, which interact nicely with Poison. However, I don't think this is necessary, and instead offering 2 other types (i.e. 4 types total) shouldn't be a serious problem. If we think doing Fighting + Ice coverage is more important for the metagame than Poison+Ground, I don't see any reason we can't give all 4 of Dark/Poison/Fighting/Ice. To me that's not necessarily too much unpredictability.

I also have no real concern about including a general use move or two that perhaps doesn't contribute to a well-known powerful typing combo, such as Scald.

Another move I have a lot of interest in is Freeze Dry, which, yes, does fit in the half of the typing combo that is Ice, if we go that route, but opens up even more options to get to strong coverage, since it is in fact super effective against, not resisted by, Water. Since it is relatively low BP and will most often not have STAB, it will however take even more CM boosts to present a meaningful damage threat.
 
I'd like to advocate for Freeze-Dry in addition to Scorching Sands. Particularly in a moveset together, while both moves are 70 base power and lack STAB, they provide status spreading, essentially unresisted 2-move neutral coverage (Bronzong and Rotom-H are the only resists that come to mind), and incredible super-effective coverage against a lot of the metagame, which helps make up for their low base power. Scorching Sands allows us to spread burns rather than poison in the early game, which is arguably more beneficial for a Calm Mind sweeper.
 
Since people are talking about Boomburst:
I don't like it as an option for CAP29. Yes, it's one of the strongest moves we have access to, and it comes with 100% accuracy, which is very rare at this power level. However, it's a Normal type move, which does not hit anything super effectively, making it basically as strong as any super effective 70 BP move. I think this is a very large flaw, especially given that it comes with no secondary effects, making it inferior to many moves at 70 BP or higher that also come with additional utility and/or the ability to hit more targets super effectively. It exacerbates our inability to deal with Ghost types, as we can't even chip them with this move, and it is also easily absorbed by Steel types, of which there are many in the meta, and there is no easy way to cover that weakness without potentially opening up another weakness (Fighting leaves us totally useless against Ghosts; Fire is blocked by Rock types and Heatran; Water only neutrally hits most Steels and falters against the most prominent Ghosts, who are also Dragons; Dark and Ghost are each stuck with a rather weak 80 BP move for their best accompanying option and put us in an awkward position against Steel types).
taziathegreat just raised an excellent point that I would expand on. We've already locked in Calm Mind and 50% recovery. In what we expect will be CAP29's standard moveset, only two slots can be afforded to our actual offense. [Bughouse also communicated this.] To me, that makes Boomburst all the more compelling. The ability to deal SE damage will always be situational—it depends on what the opponent has on the field at the time of the attack, and no two 70-90BP staples chosen for their secondary effects will deal SE damage as often as we'd like. That approach is like to trying to reinvent CM Mollux except without multiple status immunities or even reliable STAB.

The beauty of Boomburst is that it hits like a super-effective attack in any situation where the opponent isn't Steel, Ghost, or Tyranitar. Not only does it mitigate the anticipated loss of STAB; it also spares us the quandary of mixing and matching the best two attacks out of Sludge Bomb, Scald, Discharge, Ice Beam, etc. to hit exactly the right matchups and exactly the right status.

Consider something like Boomburst+Scald. The most prominent Steel-types, Equilibra and Heatran, takes SE damage as we might desire from our coverage. The most prominent Rock-type, Tyranitar, takes SE damage and loathes a burn. The combination hits everything else except for Ferrothorn, Naviathan, and the Dragon/Ghosts at least neutrally—and those are perfectly reasonable stops against CAP29.

Most importantly, Boomburst's ability to simulate a powerful STAB means that CAP29 can start sweeping at, say, two CM boosts rather than four. Birkal noted that the marriage of Calm Mind and Color Change is poison to momentum. Boomburst addresses that problem by giving us instantaneous power that the opponent cannot shut down with a light tap or switch into without a resist.

One final note: Rapid Spin has a funny interaction with Boomburst CAP29. We may not be striving to engineer a spinblocker, but free STAB on a 140BP attack is enough to make any spinner in the meta think twice before attempting casual hazard removal. Even if the likes of +1 Tomohawk can take it away just as fast (70% of the time), that is an extra turn the player spends controlling the opponent's behavior.
 
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I want to say, that I don’t think giving out a variety of different coverage options now is wise.
We have seen arguments for a few different types that would work as good two move coverage in some way. And all of these are viable options for us to consider along the line.
BUT managing our threatlist will already be awkward, with us having several defensive typings and no guaranteed natural STAB as well as the ability to set up. Throwing in a host of different options for coverage, will only complicate this further and in the end make both threats and stats LESS STRAIGHTFORWARD instead of easier.

It is my opinion that we should concentrate on STABs (as it is the most natural for any Pokémon to have Access to at least some of its native moves) and additionally one or two coverage moves for either offensive side.

Atm I don’t have a favorite for Special moves, since a lot of types are justifiable either as addition to one of our STABS or in conjunction withanother coverage move.
All of fighting, fire, water, ice, electric and ground have either good synergy with one of our types or can reasonably be used without considering STAB.
Fighting, Fire, ice, electric and Ground are inherently good coverage types, with access to strong reliable moves. Fire, Water, Electric and ground all have moves with good additional utility as well.
On the physical side the field is more narrow imo. Naturally fighting, fire, ground and fairy offer solid type coverage with one or both of our STABS and while they lack utility they are among the more powerful moves overall.

One move that has been mentioned that looks to be defining is boomburst.
It’s immediate power is undeniable and while it doesn’t hit anything SE it offers a much more reliable power output, than any other special attacking move.
Considering, that most of the time we might not have STAB boomburst surpasses every other Special move on neutral hits and the fact that it hits a LOT of stuff neutrally, imo mitigates it not hitting anything SE.
In addition to Normal, all of Water, Fire, Fighting, ground and dark have very solid neutral coverage across the meta, all of which should’ve considered anyway as coverage options.
For me this means that boomburst is a great option to add to our arsenal in conjunction with one or two of the above coverage moves.
I won’t be mad if it isn’t added, but I feel like it is very justified and if we want to add it we should make it an option now.

TLDR:
We should concentrate on our natural STAB moves with the addition of one or two essential additional coverage moves per offensive side.
Boomburst is great.

One thing I want to add is that with the threatlist and stats figured out, we can still add coverage during movesets if we feel the need to complete our arsenal in some way.
 
As others had mentioned, Sludge Bomb is a no-brainer and we get STAB on it before we Color Change, and it has really nice utility in the form of a poison chance.

For similar reasons, Scorching Sands is areally tempting option. Ground covers many of Poison's shortcomings as a type, hitting Poison and Steel types super-effectively, and the Sands gives us even more chances to fish for status. Likewise, Rillaboom and Jumbao can't really take advantage of their Ground resist, because they get slapped by Sludge Bomb.

Lava Plume can fill a similar roll, but trades a better match-up against the Fire and Water types we're existed to switch into for a better Cawmodore match-up, and a higher chance of becoming STAB.

I'm actually going to make a pitch for Toxic Spikes, Will O' Wisp, and Stealth Rocks. CAP actually forces switches due to its ability, which actuality gives us an opportunity to drop hazards and statuses on the opponent. Stealth Rocks gives us a way to chip the Flying types of the format, which is good, because we don't actual match up well against them. Will O' Wisp bolsters our Defense stat on a mon that's only expected to boost its Special Defense. Toxic Spike forces Defogs, giving us even more free turns and momentum.
 
Popping in after lunch to comment on some discussion going around.

First and foremost, let's all remember this isn't Moveset subs as this goes forward in the last chunk of time. The stage exists to help us get planned for stats- stuff like say, Torment, aren't really things that have to be heavily considered in a stat submission the way already approved moves like Recover or Strength Sap are. When looking at utility in particular in this stage, it can be difficult because of the idea that a lot of this stage is based around calcing for stats, something clearly we can't do with moves like Torment. What should be focused on with regards to utility is the effect it has on our power budget moving forward: Torment isn't a huge move that has a dramatic impact on that, but something like another suggestion in Stealth Rock would clearly have an effect on our budget based on the power of that utility. Stats plays heavily with this power budget, so that's why extremely powerful utility aims to be defined here to allow adjustments to fit it.

I want to echo the fact that we want solid two move coverage here above all else, whatever shape or form that manifests itself in. There's a lot of different routes suggested, both here and on Discord, that can take us in different directions. Some want to use one or even both of our initial STAB combination, some want to ignore it all together in search of the best SE coverage against the meta, and some want to hit as much neutrally as we can with those moves, among other ideas. I'd like to echo a few things said already thus far, namely the last paragraph of 2spoopy4u's post and the addendum of Amamama's. We do not need to figure all of this coverage, utility, etc out right now. We need to highlight what must be considered as we move into Stats, and what would demand focus from stats were it to be considered in Moveset proper.

Initially, I want to add Sludge Bomb and Dark Pulse to Required, and Gunk Shot and Knock to Optional. These are pretty accepted STAB moves we should be looking at running calcs with in Stats. Gunk and Knock are going in Optional, rather than Required with the other to, to match Coil: Coil sets would need these moves to calc around, realistically. In terms of other moves to be added to either category, I'm also adding Scald to Optional, both because of its sheer power as a move that would likely have to be considered in our power budget moving forward, and because it's a well supported coverage move here that gives us flexibility in Stat stage calcs. I don't think its our place here to define exactly what two move coverage we should be getting here in Defining moves: I think it fits better in moveset proper. However, I do recognize the idea that we should at least have some level of flexibility in Stats for calcing, and knowledge of power budget going into that stage, and as such am looking to add some level of popular coverage moves for those purposes, without trying to either add every powerful two move combination or narrowing us down to just one segment of what we can explore later in Moveset if the question of coverage is left more open ended.

This discussion has been great throughout, expect at least another update from me before we're wrapped up here.
 
As others had mentioned, Sludge Bomb is a no-brainer and we get STAB on it before we Color Change, and it has really nice utility in the form of a poison chance.

For similar reasons, Scorching Sands is areally tempting option. Ground covers many of Poison's shortcomings as a type, hitting Poison and Steel types super-effectively, and the Sands gives us even more chances to fish for status. Likewise, Rillaboom and Jumbao can't really take advantage of their Ground resist, because they get slapped by Sludge Bomb.

Lava Plume can fill a similar roll, but trades a better match-up against the Fire and Water types we're existed to switch into for a better Cawmodore match-up, and a higher chance of becoming STAB.

I'm actually going to make a pitch for Toxic Spikes, Will O' Wisp, and Stealth Rocks. CAP actually forces switches due to its ability, which actuality gives us an opportunity to drop hazards and statuses on the opponent. Stealth Rocks gives us a way to chip the Flying types of the format, which is good, because we don't actual match up well against them. Will O' Wisp bolsters our Defense stat on a mon that's only expected to boost its Special Defense. Toxic Spike forces Defogs, giving us even more free turns and momentum.
I personally don't like stealth rocks or Will O' Wisp since our moveslots are already crammed up, especially knowing that these options can be better covered by Mons that can compress these moves into their moveslots better, such as Lando. However, I also like Toxic Spikes, as despite also cramming our moveslots it can fullfil a niche that most other Mons seem to lack.
 
I wanna mention Jaw Lock as an offensive/Utility move. A powerful dark stab on par with knock off and crunch it can force a few of our favorable match ups into a death battle giving us ample time to set up.
 

Wulfanator72

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With Calm Mind confirmed and CAP29’s unreliable STAB due to Color Change, there is an increased desire to focus on the non-STAB, dual-attacking options we potential have access to. While the bulk of that conversation should be saved for a later thread, I find this confusing since our STAB options are guaranteed, and Poison + Dark dual attack is extremely effective in the current meta, especially after the Magearna ban and Tyranitar’s usage dropping. The argument I have seen against this dual-attacking combination strictly takes issue with special, Dark moves and how underwhelming in power they are. I would like to recommend requiring Fiery Wrath as our special Dark STAB option so it can be comparable with the 90bp combinations other users are interested in. This would shift that conversation from an issue of base power to a discussion about how important a chance to hit with STAB is.
 
We do not need to figure all of this coverage, utility, etc out right now. We need to highlight what must be considered as we move into Stats, and what would demand focus from stats were it to be considered in Moveset proper.
To go along with Scald, I do believe that we should be looking at at least some coverage choices in optional purely because of how they can be used for stats calculations. Scald can be used alongside Dark Pulse in making anti-Equilibra calcs, but I do believe we should be looking at making some other coverage options optional for the sake of allowing them in stat calculations. There is a different calc to be made for Sludge Bomb against Tomohawk than there is for anything from Discharge to Moonblast to Hurricane, for an example.

EDIT: I would also like to put in some words against Fiery Wrath and Boomburst. This is not a concept where we have a need to pull out a legendary signature move like Fiery Wrath. Its a move that is normally on the banlist, and I feel it should stay that way, +10 BP on a conditional STAB is not worth it. As for Boomburst, I feel that is the opposite of what we want for our target. We want moves that allow us to hit a greater spread of enemies, either by hitting more enemies supereffectively or by abusing a constantly mutating STAB. Boomburst is the antithesis of that, being a move of a typing we will never almost never change into AND a move that hits nothing super effectively. I would say do not put these two as defining moves.
 
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I'm not a fan of Jaw Lock. Yes, it's as powerful as our other physical Dark type options, and getting a Jaw Lock on the right Pokemon could be an incredibly easy setup opportunity, but Jaw Locking the wrong Pokemon basically means you're done for. In addition, it becomes very hard to just click this move because of the gamble of what Pokemon you're locking yourself in with; if we had a pivoting move, it would be easier to do so, but we don't have the moveslots on the bulky setup sweeper set to run this combination. While I could potentially see it on a utility set, at that point the damage is a lot less important, and if we wanted to do trapping, there are other moves we could use to accomplish this. I'm not sure it's so warping or important that we need to include it as a defining move.

Fiery Wrath would definitely be an improvement over Dark Pulse, given the 10 BP boost with the same accuracy and secondary effect, and that would put it on par with other 90 BP coverage. However, it's also a legendary exclusive move, and I don't think that the BP increase is so important that we need to be reaching for it.

Circling back to Boomburst, I think I'm starting to come around to it, although I want to see some more opinions on it. While I still think a lot of the flaws I talked about in my post yesterday hold true (opportunity cost of not hitting things super effectively, effectively giving up the matchup against Ghosts), running some (admittedly premature) calcs established for me how powerful Boomburst is without requiring a huge amount of boosts. I definitely see the value of being able to get to that level of power quicker (and having the potential to go further beyond), but while the consistency is an upside, I still think there's value in getting to hit particular targets super effectively to more reliably break them. It could feasibly show up in the optional list (to give stat submission creators the option of either running up their special attack stats, or use more reasonable ones in conjunction with Boomburst), although as I mentioned before, I would like to see more discussion. I agree with The Crusade that this should probably be a decision made now, though, because of Boomburst's power and how it could potential affect stats.
 
I would like to pitch in my thoughts on Fiery Wrath and Boomburst:

Boomburst:
I do genuinely think Boomburst is really great here. It acts as a 93 bp pseudo-STAB, which is probably the best form of reliable attack power we can get. The custom games I've seen Quziel play have demonstrated that a mon without STAB is laughably weak and Boomburst can really make up for that lack of power. Normal also has few resists, and combined with Dark, is pretty much unresisted outside of Tyranitar, who is definitely falling in usage. While we could aim for supereffective coverage, we will likely only be able to fit 2 attacking moves on a set, and as such it makes more sense to aim for strong, unresisted hits compared to supereffective ones. Even with great 2-type coverage like BoltBeam, I fear that this CAP will lack any real firepower when hitting things neutrally, and Boomburst makes up for that flaw.

Fiery Wrath: As mentioned earlier, Dark+Normal coverage is really great in the current meta. From a purely competitive standpoint, there is no point not to include it- it's an objectively better version of Dark Pulse- but at the same time, I don't find it a necessity. Its BP increase over Dark Pulse is not particularly significant, and at the end of the day, bringing in this legendary signature for such a small benefit seems kind of awkward.

People in this thread have brought up a variety of great coverage options for this CAP to run, between Scald, Lava Plume, Discharge, Earth Power, and Ice Beam. However, like Spoo mentioned, we should be wary of giving CAP29 all of the coverage options. It would be great for CAP29 to have a very strong 2-move combination, but having multiple combinations to choose from can make counterplay extremely obnoxious, especially considering that these moves will also have notable secondary effects.
 
I entirely agree with the fact we will need some serious firepower if we want to threaten things before setting-up to +4. Boomburst seems like the more reliable option to do so. Considering our most common set will only have two attacking options and we are weak initially, we want reliable and strong neutral coverage as we just don't have enough moves for picking SE coverage like Nidoking can. We will probably want to add some specific coverage (Scald / Lava Plume are great, as is BoltBeam or Ice/Ground) but they don't cut it when we are at +2 and something not weak to our moves is trying to cycle us. As for Fiery Wrath, I'm not sure a ~12% BP increase is enough to warrant using a legendary signature move.

Have we talked about Stored Power and Psyshock? Stored Power is an option for leveraging our boosts into raw power (100 BP after 2 CM for example) which might let us be threatening faster whereas Psyshock can bypass some checks (and by that I mean virtually only the pink blobs I think). These are very niche cases but in some precise match-ups that might have a big impact.
 
I wanna talk about Stored Power and why it is not a great idea to make it required. The most notable Stored Power user in the tier was Magearna, who quickly brought its base power up through multiple boosting options but most importantly it had access to Shift Gear, a move this CAP will in all likelihood not have access to. Psychic is not exactly great in terms of coverage, and it would be extremely difficult, or even impossible, to effectively use Stored Power only using Calm Mind. After two Calm Minds, you have a 100 BP Psychic type attack. Congrats, we still get walled by Steel types. The move itself does nothing for us, and should be left off in favor of more useful coverage options.

I think it's a bit much to ask for us to create a mon like Mega Latias which A) had absolutely insane 80/120/150 bulk which we will not get and B) had a good defensive typing, which CAP 29 will not. Not trying to be argumentative, but I really don't see a reason for us to run Stored Power when CAP 29 would probably appreciate coverage more to make more of an immediate impact. If the opponent is letting CAP 29 set up so much that Stored Power has a notable impact, then they would get rocked by coverage moves anyways.
 
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I wanna talk about Stored Power and why it is not a great idea to make it required. The most notable Stored Power user in the tier was Magearna, who quickly brought its base power up through multiple boosting options but most importantly it had access to Shift Gear, a move this CAP will in all likelihood not have access to. Psychic is not exactly great in terms of coverage, and it would be extremely difficult, or even impossible, to effectively use Stored Power only using Calm Mind. After two Calm Minds, you have a 100 BP Psychic type attack. Congrats, we still get walled by Steel types. The move itself does nothing for us, and should be left off in favor of more useful coverage options.
Not true at all. Gen 6 + 7 Mega Latias is a great example. It was bulky enough to set up 2 or even 3+ Calm Minds in most games to get Stored Power to 100 base power and beyond. It could easily overwhelm even resists like Ferrothorn after a few boosts. If we're bulky enough and get set-up opportunities with Color Change, this is a good option for a strong BP move not fully dependent on STAB. If Quiver Dance becomes an move down the line, even better.

Given we're also trying to be a bulky set-up sweeper, I'm for Stored Power being a Required Move, alongside Boomburst, given both get to high Base Power that'll be pretty strong regardless of STAB.
 
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I doubt that CAP 29 will have offensive and defensive stats comparable to Mega Latias to pull Stored Power successfully with only Calm Mind. Fiery Wrath is better than Dark Pulse but it's a legendary move so I would rather not include it as a required move unless strictly necessary. Boomburst is being overselled in my opinion but its a powerful move and I'm not against it.
 
I doubt that CAP 29 will have offensive and defensive stats comparable to Mega Latias to pull Stored Power successfully with only Calm Mind. Fiery Wrath is better than Dark Pulse but it's a legendary move so I would rather not include it as a required move unless strictly necessary. Boomburst is being overselled in my opinion but its a powerful move and I'm not against it.
We can always weigh that in stats, you can't say that it isn't comparable now when we haven't even gotten to that point of the process yet.
 

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I've been thinking a bit. I am advocating for Boomburst not being considered a defining move, not necessarily due to its power (it is strong), but due to its redundancy with two moves that already there, Sludge Bomb and Dark Pulse.

When crafting stat spreads, we will be using the STAB version of both of our well, STABs (temporary as they are) to benchmark certain OHKOs, 2HKOs, and 3HKOs. My point is basically that Boomburst hits almost identically hard to the STAB version of Sludge Bomb, and thus will not meaningfully change SpA benchmarks. These benchmarks must be done under ideal conditions, and the inclusion of Boomburst is unlikely to change any calcs, not hitting a single mon meaningfully harder than either of our initial STABs. I think its a very useful move here, but I don't think its meaningfully going to change any Calcs, so I don't think it should be a defining move. This differs from something like Scald which has meaningful super-effective calcs compared to either of the STABs.
 
My point is basically that Boomburst hits almost identically hard to the STAB version of Sludge Bomb, and thus will not meaningfully change SpA benchmarks.
The issue is that it's very unlikely that we will retain our STABs for very long, and so, having a 140 BP move is very helpful for CAP29 and I definitely see it as required. It also gives CAP29 added utility in blocking any Rapid Spin attempts as Spinning gives STAB on Boomburst.

I really want to nominate Bug Buzz as a coverage move. It's no secret how common U-Turn is as a move, and I do believe many mons will U-Turn out of us, but Bug has so trash coverage that it's not worth it. Hitting :slowking: :rillaboom: :tyranitar: :hydreigon: :latios: :colossoil: in one slot isn't worth gimping your coverage so bad that no other move can remedy your coverage, running Ice Beam/Sludge Bomb/Stored Power means you lose to Steel, running Focus Blast/Earth Power means you lose to Flying, running Dark Pulse/Fiery Wrath means you lose to Fairy and Lava Plume makes you lose to bulky Fire.

The only move that has even passable coverage that has been suggested here is Scald and ThunderBolt, but both synergise far better with Sludge Bomb and Ice Beam respectively.

That being said, I feel Sludge Bomb, Ice Beam, Earth Power, Scald, Dark Pulse, Stored Power, Boomburst and ThunderBolt should be required for hitting a lot of mons really hard as well as being quite powerful as is. Scald, Sludge Bomb and Stored Power are great, the former two have utility and the latter has the probability to end the game.

With optional moves, I feel Focus Blast, Moonblast, Lava Plume, Clear Smog, Scorching Sands and Freeze Dry are good.

I'm of the belief that the more coverage that CAP29 has, the better, as it allows it to be flexible
 
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