AOTW Rapid-Fire!!: Scrappy, Adaptability, and White Smoke/Clear Body

LAST TIME, on Ability of the Week!

Just a short one this week, but with such a straightforward set of Abilities, it’s a little tough to stretch that into a decent-length article. Should probably come up with something to fix that problem… See you next week, pokémaniacs…

Well trainers, I’m back this week, and contrary to the date, I’d call it a pretty lucky day. The best solution to a problem is often the simplest one, and I’ve devised a simple solution to the short article conundrum. This week I’m introducing a sub-section of my article for your reading pleasure. Every so often, I’ll line up a few easy-to-understand straightforward Abilities and shoot ‘em on down in one go! Hit that jump, and settle in for the debut of Ability of the Week Rapid-Fire! This is Scrappy, Adaptability, and White Smoke AND Clear Body!

Introduced in generation four, Scrappy is a useful little Ability that allows Normal and Fighting-type moves to connect with Ghost-type pokémon that would normally be immune to such attacks. Eight pokémon have access to Scrappy, and all but two of them access it through the Dream World. Swellow, Exploud, and Stoutland as well as their pre-evolutions (save for Lillipup) may have this Ability, but the two pokémon with access to Scrappy normally are Kangaskhan and Miltank. So where’s the practical application of this Ability? Why wouldn’t you just make sure that you have a move that CAN damage your opponent’s Ghost-type? Well, let’s say you want to set up a solid stalling pokémon, and you only have room for one normal damage-dealing attack. It always behooves you (geddit? BeHOOVE, Miltank? It’s a cow? "Well, you must be quite a fighter to make it past my cow!"Hahaaaaa, I’m funny) to have a move backed by a same type attack bonus, and with Scrappy, you’re guaranteed for it to always connect, no matter what your opponent sends out. For example, I have a Miltank I’ve been training for a my B-team that’s designed to be something between a wall and a staller. It uses Attract to stall my opponent, then hides behind a Substitute. I can either rely on my Leftovers or use Milk Drink to recover the HP loss from activating Substitute. But what about my fourth move? By breeding it with a Lopunny, I gave it Dizzy Punch. Not only does this give me another status effect inducing move that can stack on top of the infatuation from Attract, but now I have a STAB-backed attack that can hit even the normally immune Ghost-type pokémon.

Up next is Adaptability. Like Scrappy, it was introduced in generation four as well. A pokémon with this Ability gets a 2x multiplier for their STAB instead of 1.5x. Six pokémon can have this Ability, and most of them are Water-type. Porygon-Z and Eevee are the two monsters that have Adaptability naturally, but based simply on the fact that it’s a dual-type pokémon and therefore can STAB two types, I’m gonna recommend Crawdaunt for this Ability. With a base Attack stat of 120 and access to moves like Night Slash, Crunch, and Crabhammer, a Crawdaunt with Adaptability can be a formidable opponent.

Finally, I’ll end this Rapid-Fire with a twofer. Here’s White Smoke and Clear Body. Both of these Abilities were introduced in generation three, and, as usual when I group Abilities, do preeeetty much the same thing. Introduced in generation three, White Smoke and Clear Body prevent your stats from being lowered by moves like Sand Attack or Abilities like Intimidate. White Smoke, prior to Black and White, was Torkoal’s exclusive Ability, but Heatmor can snag it via Dream World, as well. Clear Body can be found on eleven pokémon, most famously perhaps on the Metagross line. The trick with these Abilities is that they won’t stop self-inflicted stat decreases, like when you lose an Attack and Defense stat, nor will they stop the Speed or Attack decrease that comes alongside a Paralysis or Burn ailment. Both of the White Smoke users have an advantage here because of Fire-types natural immunity to the Burn ailment, though Tentacruel and Metagross’s immunity to Poison is also worth having. Of course, the best part about both of these Abilities is that any monster that uses them is a prime candidate to be a Baton Pass receiver.

And that does it for the first Ability of the Week Rapid-Fire! I’d call this as good a way as any to get through some easy Abilities and still have a decent-length article, eh? Gym leader trials should be starting by the time this goes up, so good luck to those of you participating! And just a reminder to anybody else in the metro Detroit area, be sure to come out and see me and the rest of the crazed creatives at the Lonely Robot Comics booth at the Motor City Comic Con this weekend! Same deal as C2E2 a while back- snag any two comic books from our booth and mention PKMNcast, and I’ll set you up with a free sketch of you as a trainer with your favorite pokémon. See you next week, guys!