Here we go again, kids. It’s high time I got through another trio of Abilities for your weekly pokémon edutainment.
…A brief pause here to acknowledge the hilarious fact that Microsoft Word has not attempted to correct the word “edutainment”. The sheer number of made-up words I’ve invented for this article, and I can get away with “edutainment” scot-free. I suppose I have PBS to thank for this. Thanks, Fred Rogers, you’re missed.
Anyhoo. Let’s get this thing started. Put on your Abiliteer caps, boys and girls! This is Ability of the Week: Rapid-Fire!! Poison Touch, Forewarn, and Keen Eye!
Let’s begin with a new one. Have you ever come into contact with a particularly repugnant individual, and felt sick afterwards? There’s three possible ways you’ve contracted this ailment. One, you’ve been at a comic convention and didn’t bring hand sanitizer—enjoy your con flu. Two, you’re of the female persuasion and met yours truly (lol, self-depreciating humor). Or three, that person had Poison Touch. Introduced in generation five, Poison Touch is the signature Ability of Seismitoad (but not its pre-evolutions), though the Muk and Toxicroak families can acquire it via Dream World.
Poison Touch works sort of like a reverse Poison Point. Instead of relying on the opponent making the mistake of attacking you with a move that makes contact, you do all the work yourself. Upon attacking the opponent with a move that makes physical contact, the Poison Touch user has a 30% chance of afflicting the opponent with poison. All three users make great cases for having this Ability, but we’re going to talk about Seismitoad, because he’s the one you’ll most likely encounter and I like him and it’s my column so NYEEEEEEH.
Your best bet with Seismitoad, from where I’m standing, is to breed and EV train him for inclusion on a Trick Room team. Outfit him with a Brave nature and EV train the crap out of his Attack stat. Set up the Trick Room and let the frog go to work on your opponent. Seismitoad can increase his staying power with Aqua Ring and Drain Punch, and play to his STAB strength while utilizing his Ability with Bulldoze. If you really wanna see your friend get mad at you, outfit Seismitoad with Poison Jab, for two 30% chances at poisoning per turn!
Without lingering too long on Poison Touch (“too late!”), let’s move along to the second course of our Ability combo platter. If you’ve listened to the VGC-centric episodes of It’s Super Effective!, you might recall a certain Rare Editor’s affinity for Protect. Our friend Travis has been nothing if not vocal in his support of using Protect as a scouting move, to see what your opponent intends on using and planning accordingly. Forewarn, an Ability from gen four, grants us sneak peek at the opponent’s hand without the need to take up a move slot.
The Jynx, Hypno, and Musharna families have access to Forewarn, and they can use it to bring the opponent’s highest base powered attack to the trainer’s attention. Now, going back to Protect for a moment, you could actually combine this with Travis’ strategy, and potentially find out two of the opponent’s moves before a single hit point is taken! Be wary of relying too much on Forewarn, though, as there are tricks that can circumvent it. Off the top of my head, a pokémon with Technician may have one or two damaging attacks that don’t take advantage of the Ability, so Forewarn may read Scyther’s Night Slash as its strongest move, when in actuality, it’s a Technician’d and STAB’d Aerial Ace.
Finally, let’s look at Keen Eye. An Ability from the heyday for the GBA, this sucker first appeared in gen three, and allows any pokémon that has it to avoid having their accuracy reduced. Interestingly, most of the 29 pokémon from the 18 evolutionary families that can have Keen Eye are birds, and frequently members of the generation Pidgey equivalent. At least a few of these guys (Noctowl, Hitmonchan) can also learn Foresight, with which you can remove increased evasion for the opponent, negating all accuracy-related concerns. Not much else to say about it, so get out there and see what you can do with it!
Another week, another article, another three Abilities in the can! So long, dear readers, parting is such sweet sorrow, but I’ll see you next week! Later!