Pokemon is a series that focuses on the capturing and evolving of the creatures, but there’s a level of depth and complexity certain segments of the fan base love. These often occur in the battle leagues where trainers do their best to create competitive teams to face off against one another.
The abilities Pokemon have, both primary and hidden, can make the world of difference. It’s time to take a look at the 10 most overpowered Pokemon abilities in the franchise, all the way through the latest generation of games, Pokemon Sword & Shield.
Drizzle understandably sounds more like a request someone makes at a fancy restaurant and not a strong Pokemon ability, but if used correctly it can turn the tide of battle. It causes the battlefield to begin raining and from that rain Water-type moves receive a 50% increase in power while Fire-type moves see a 50% reduction in theirs.
Drizzle lasts five turns after the Pokemon with the ability has entered the field of battle. However, before the sixth generation of Pokemon games, the effect of Drizzle continued indefinitely.
9 Gorilla Tactics
Gorilla Tactics is the newest Pokemon ability on this list and made its way into the franchise via Darmanitan’s new Galarian form in Pokemon Sword & Shield. Every trainer battles a bit differently, so Galarian Darmanitan’s ability may not gel well with certain play styles.
Gorilla Tactics makes it so Galarian Darmanitan’s attack stat is boosted but at the cost of only being able to use the first move selected in a battle. There’s no room for nuance with this ability and trainers must be willing to fight with a single move, regardless of that moves effectiveness.
8 Sand Stream
One of the more annoying things that can take place in a given battle is when the area in which a battle is occurring does passive damage to the creatures actively engaged in a fight. While the ability Drizzle only makes Water-type moves more powerful, Sand Stream inflicts damage on active Pokemon every turn.
It lasts five total turns and can often be the difference between barely surviving a tough fight and having to revive and heal while trainers swap Pokemon.
The term STAB is brought up among Pokemon trainers and is an acronym referring to the term “same-type attack bonus,” which gives a move 1.5x more damage if the Pokemon using it is the same type as the move itself.
Knowing this is important as it lends to why anyone would consider the ability Adaptability to be pretty darn useful. The ability boosts the STAB move’s bonus from 1.5x to 2x damage and in turn, makes a Pokemon that relies on its own typing in battles much more dangerous and effective.
6 Magic Guard
So, Magic Guard may be an ability that’s a bit hard to understand fully, but quite powerful nonetheless. It protects the Pokemon with the ability from indirect damage such as poisoning, burning, leech seed, weather damage, and so on.
It’s good to understand that Magic Guard doesn’t prevent damage caused by confusion or trapping moves, but that doesn’t take away from its overall usefulness. Several Pokemon carry it as their primary ability, while Abra’s evolutionary line can possess it as a hidden ability among the three Pokemon.
5 Huge Power
It may be a little on the nose but the ability Huge Power packs quite a punch in the world of Pokemon abilities. Both it and Pure Power raise the given Pokemon’s attack stat, so it’s unclear why there were two abilities made that do exactly the same thing. This is an issue that permeates throughout generations and has continued to be retreaded numerous times.
Either way, it doesn’t make both Huge Power and Pure Power any less useful, especially when someone takes a look at the roster of weaklings that can possess them.
Intimidate is likely an ability most people are familiar with. It’s been a part of the franchise since Pokemon Red & Blue and has been frustrating trainers ever since. The ability lowers the attack stat of any opposing Pokemon who is actively in battle when the ability bearer switches in.
This immediately gives an upper hand to the Pokemon with Intimidate. Outside of battle, the ability makes it so Pokemon are 50% less likely to be a lower level than a lead Pokemon, which is pretty advantageous when training and leveling up a party.
3 No Guard
Not only is No Guard a solid ability in battle, but if the lead Pokemon in a party has it, it also provides additional benefits. More than a handful of Pokemon have this ability, which makes it so all attacks, whether used by or against the ability’s owner, hit no matter what.
This makes it most ideal for defensive Pokemon or those who can outspeed their opponents on the battlefield. When a Pokemon with this ability is set as a party’s lead, wild encounters are twice as likely to occur, which is a pretty neat bonus trait of No Guard.
2 Wonder Guard
An ability this overpowered would assumedly be reserved for a few Pokemon, but Wonder Guard is currently only available to a single creature. That creature in question is Shedinja, a Ghost and Bug-type from the third generation of games.
Wonder Guard makes it so Shedinja can only take damage from super-effective attacks as the ability prevents damage from anything else. Shedinja is a Pokemon with only one point of health, so it makes sense why it would carry with it such an effective and powerful ability.
Protean is a hidden ability, which makes it a bit harder to come across, but it is absolutely worth it. The ability makes it so the Pokemon with it will change its type to match that of the move it’s using. This makes it so every attack it uses gets the same-type attack bonus, aka S.T.A.B. for short.
Currently, only four Pokemon can have it as their hidden ability. This includes Greninja’s evolutionary line as well as Kecleon, a Normal-type from the third generation of games. It’s hard to deny how powerful the Protean ability makes Greninja.
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