AOTW: Mold Breaker

Hey guys! Your extraordinary eccentric editor of all things Ability, checking in! Folks, we’ve talked a lot about defensive Abilities since the debut of this article, and how you can use them to drive your opponents to enroll themselves into an insane asylum, and boy, did we have fun doing it. Heck, we still can’t get Kenny to come out from under the table ever since we set his Bayleef on fire! (Seriously, Ken, if you don’t stop holding yourself in the fetal position you’re gonna get stuck that way.) But that’s another story. Point is, fun as it is to be a conniving strategist with your Ability selection, it really sucks when you’re on the receiving end of such displays of skullduggery. So today, we’re going to turn the tables and talk about the Benedict Arnold of the Ability world! Ladies, gentlemen, ladies, Steve, this is Ability of the Week: Mold Breaker! Ladies.

Mold Breaker was a new Ability last generation, and at the Is it me, Arceus?time, was incredibly rare. Exclusive to Pinsir and the Rampardos line, Mold Breaker was pretty hard to come by. In Pokémon Black and White Versions, however, the ranks of Mold Breakers have swelled to twelve potential users, including the Haxorus line, the Excadrill line, and Druddigon amongst a few others. Mold Breaker is kind of the Lando Calrissian to the other Abilities’ Han Solo, the Boromir to their Frodo, the Judas to their Jesus. Mold Breaker allows the pokémon wielding it to circumvent the defensive properties of the defending pokémon’s Ability (sort of like the “cure” kid from X-Men 3, only not stupid). Facing a Bronzong with Levitate? It’s susceptible to Earthquake. Your opponent sets up a Sand Veil and increases their evasion? So sorry, hope you’re packing a Double Team, because that did you no good. Up against a Thick Fat Snorlax and all you’ve got left is a Fire-type move? Never fear, Mold Breaker puts Thick Fat on the fast track to Weight Watchers. You can also use it to break through Abilities like Insomnia or Oblivious, but the stat alteration is resolved immediately, because Mold Breaker only works in the instance that the pokémon using it is attacking. The other big drawback to Mold Breaker is that you can’t use it subtly. Whenever a pokémon with the Ability enters a battle, the other trainer is alerted with the phrase “[Your Pokémon] breaks the mold!”, taking away all opportunity for a sneak attack. …I guess that sort of makes it the Leroy Jenkins of the Ability world, too (okay, that’s the last one of those jokes, I promise).

It’s a bit tricky to nail down a prime candidate for Mold Breaker simply because the list of Abilities it can break through is so huge. Of course, the most common thing you’ll be using Mold Breaker for is probably Earthquake-ing foes with Levitate, but every pokémon that can have Mold Breaker (except for Basculin) can learn Earthquake, so that doesn’t help much in narrowing it down. Excadrill gets a STAB on his Earthquake, but doesn’t seem to have any other impressive ways to use the Ability. I’m gonna have to call it a draw between Haxorus and Rampardos, with Druddigon nipping at their heels for third. Apart from all three of these guys having stupidly high Attack stats, and therefore being able to circumvent defensive Abilities like Marvel Scale, as well as the aforementioned capacity to learn Earthquake, all three of these guys can learn Dragon Tail (Haxorus and Druddigon with a STAB), which will allow them to bypass an opponent taking advantage of Suction Cups. It bears mentioning, too, that Rampardos’ TM pool is absolutely massive, and despite many of them being special attacks versus his preferred physical, he can learn Ice, Electric, Water, and Fire moves that could circumvent the defenses of Dry Skin, Thick Fat, Motor Drive, Lightningrod, etc. Also, I can totally see the Red Ranger riding in on the back of one of these things and that just sets my little 10-year-old fanboy heart ablaze.

Perhaps not the magic elixir to solving all your defensive Ability woes, Mold Breaker should still serve as a soothing tonic to the scrapes you’ll get along the way to learning how to deal with them. Happy training, guys! I’ll see you next time! Ladies.