MOTW: Heat Wave

It’s that time of the week again guys! This MOTW we’re going to be talking about Heat Wave. Now you may be wondering, “Why Heat Wave? There’s nothing special about that move.” You’d be right in thinking that. There really isn’t much special about it, BUT there are some key strategies behind it that every Pokemon trainer should be aware of.

Heat Wave was introduced back in gen III and only 3 Pokemon could actually learn it by leveling up. Charizard, Moltres and Torkoal. If you’ve listened to any of our podcast episodes you’ll know that we here at the Pokemon Podcast aren’t too keen on using starters or ledgendaries, so it never really came up that much. Now that Gen IV is here with Gold and Silver getting back into the picture over 60 Pokemon can actually learn it via the move tutor.

It’s stats are really nothing special, but they’re nothing to scoff at either. With 100 Power it’s not the most effective Special Fire type out there but it’s still pretty strong, and it’s accuracy is sitting at 90%. It also has a 10% chance of burning your opponent. Now normally I wouldn’t recommend a move with less than 100%, but that accuracy stat can be easily corrected with something like a Wide Lens.

Now you’re probably thinking, “I still don’t see the point in using it. There are still a ton of better Fire Type moves out there.” You are STILL right. Eruption, Fire Blast, Flamethrower,  Flare Blitz, Overheat, and Sacred Fire ALL have higher power ratings, and about half of those also have better accuracy as well. There’s a simple reason why you should choose Heat Wave over any of them.

Double Battles.

Heat Wave is in a class of moves that can be used in a double battle, where it will effect all of your opponents opposing Pokemon, but NONE of your own. Now that’s Super Effective. This makes any Pokemon who can learn Heat Wave a necessary resource for any pair you would want to work with. Heat Wave has the edge over moves like Earthquake in double battles because you don’t have to worry about what abilities your team has or weather your Pokemon is flying for a turn or whatever, you can just use it and go. And with dealing 100 damage to each of the opposing Pokemon, that makes Heat Wave one of the best moves of it’s kind.

Like I said before, there are other moves in this same category, that is, being able to effect only your opponent in a battle. Some of the other’s you may want to consider are Rock Slide, Stealth Rock (next week’s MOTW), Surf, Swift, Twister, a common one you probably didn’t even know did it is Blizzard, and even a move like Tail Whip is capable of effecting all opponents. A common choice we see all the time is Blizzard, because with the Blizzard / Hail combo it makes it one of the best moves in the game. I decided to go with Heat Wave because we really don’t see all that many good Fire Type moves come through teams, and honestly there aren’t that many.

Fire as a type and as a move is one of the rarest categories in the game. This is changing a little bit once Gen V rolls around finally, but it seems like Nintendo has tried to put Fire Type on a little higher pedistal than every body else, especially because some of the Fire Pokemon are the strongest Pokemon in the game. Currently there are only 18 Fire moves in the whole game, and only 48 Pokemon are either full fire type or half. Normally these are some of the only Pokemon who can learn Fire Type moves and be effective with them, but Heat Wave is a different case.

There are actually 66 Pokemon who can learn Heat Wave among Gen IV. If you have a Flying Type Pokemon you may want to take a look at the list that can learn it. Some really oddball Pokemon can learn this move, Golbat, Farfetch’d, Noctowl, Xatu, Staraptor, Fearow, and even Pidgy can learn it from the move tutor, making it the only Fire Type move that eventually Pidgot can learn. That’d probably be one of the last things you’d think of if your opponent sent out a Pidgot and it used a Fire move on you. Especially in a double battle, I know I wouldn’t consider switching out any of my Pokemon with that reason in mind.

In Generation V triple battles are being introduced, so strategies are going to have to lean even more towards grouping Pokemon together and what moves can be used effectively between teammates. Not to mention the next Pokemon Tournament next summer is going to only be double battles. Just something to think about...

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Thanks again for reading, and as always...

-It’s Super Effective