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Lord_Brand

Move Ideas: Team-buffing Poses

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This is an idea I came up with in Jotari's topic about unrepresented Pokemon type pairs, while suggesting moves for a Fighting/Fairy type inspired by Magical Girl Warrior series like Sailor Moon. I'd suggested that the "senshi" Pokemon could raise stats using different poses, and before long I realized those would suit Pokemon with a superhero theme in general quite well, thus I decided to explore the concept in its own topic.

The basic idea of Poses is that, by default, they raise two stats each, similar to Bulk Up, Calm Mind, and the like. There would be ten poses that raise two specific stats, as well as two extra poses with slightly different effects.

  • Action Pose - Raises Attack and Speed
  • Backup Pose - Emulates the leader's pose ("leader" in this case referring to the first Pokemon on your team to use a Pose that turn)
  • Combat Pose - Raises Attack and Defense
  • Confident Pose - Raises Attack and Sp. Defense
  • Defiant Pose - Raises Speed and Sp. Defense
  • Elegant Pose - Raises Speed and Sp. Attack
  • Focus Pose - Raises Sp. Attack and Sp. Defense
  • Guard Pose - Raises Defense and Sp. Defense
  • Power Pose - Raises Attack and Sp. Attack
  • Regal Pose - Raises Defense and Sp. Attack
  • Steady Pose - Raises Defense and Speed
  • Weird Pose - Raises two stats at random

When used in Double and Triple Battles, Poses power up not only the user but also each of their teammates who also poses on the same turn. Any stat raised by more than one Pose will be raised first by one stage, then two stages, and finally three stages, meaning it's possible to raise a stat by the maximum of six levels in one turn in a Triple Battle. Poses can also be mixed, with the result that overlapping stats receive the stack bonus. Some examples:

  • Action Pose × 3 = Six levels for Attack and Speed
  • Action × 2 + Power = Six levels for attack, three for speed, one for Sp. Attack
  • Action + Combat + Confident = Six levels for Attack and one for Speed, Defense, and Sp. Defense each
  • Action + Elegant + Power = Three levels for Attack, Sp. Attack, and Speed each
  • Action + Defiant + Guard = One level for Attack and Sp. Defense, two for Defense and Speed
Edited by Lord_Brand

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It's an interesting idea, and I'm always one for new status moves. They sound kind of like the Pledge moves, or the Dancer ability, in their synergistic potential. That said, it's a lot of moves to add at once. Which Pokemon species did you envision having these moves? Would some omly be able to learn a few of the poses, or would they be broadly available?

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9 hours ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

It's an interesting idea, and I'm always one for new status moves. They sound kind of like the Pledge moves, or the Dancer ability, in their synergistic potential. That said, it's a lot of moves to add at once. Which Pokemon species did you envision having these moves? Would some omly be able to learn a few of the poses, or would they be broadly available?

Mostly humanoid Pokemon, including those themed on superheroes. Some examples:

  • Machop/Machoke/Machamp
  • Abra/Kadabra/Alakazam
  • Combusken/Blaziken
  • Ralts/Kirlia/Gardevoir/Gallade
  • Chimchar/Monferno/Infernape
  • Buneary/Lopunny
  • Riolu/Lucario
  • Froakie/Frogadier/Greninja
  • Scorbunny/Raboot/Cinderace

Though it could be fun if most any Pokemon with arms and legs are capable of learning Poses. Some Poses could be learned via learnset, while all could be tutored. I don't think I'd dedicate TM or TR space to Poses, considering how many there would be. I didn't originally intend to make Poses for every combination, I originally had six for Attack/Speed, Attack/Defense, Sp. Attack/Speed, Attack/Sp.Attack, Sp. Attack/Sp. Defense, and Defense/Sp. Defense, but I figured I might as well cover the other four as well.

Also, in case anyone's wondering how I'd portray these, ideally each Pokemon able to learn poses would actually be able to strike the pose in game, but the more practical execution is that the Pokemon performs their usual status animation with a humanoid image overlaying them, indicating what the pose is supposed to look like.

  • Action Pose - A sort of kneeling stance with the hands bladed as though one is about to run
  • Backup Pose - Imitates the leader's pose and thus its graphic
  • Combat Pose - One fist extended forward and the other pulled close to the body, like in boxing
  • Confident Pose - One or both hands on hips
  • Defiant Pose - Hands balled into fists, chest thrust out
  • Elegant Pose - Standing on one leg with an arm outstretched
  • Focus Pose - Hands clasped near the forehead
  • Guard Pose - Forearms crossed in front of the torso
  • Power Pose - One arm raised, or both arms flexed
  • Regal Pose - Both arms resting at the sides in a posed yet confident gait
  • Steady Pose - Arms and legs positioned for quick blocking or dodging
  • Weird Pose - A sort of "M" shape formed by the legs with the hands forming a "V" at the forehead
Edited by Lord_Brand

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2 hours ago, Lord_Brand said:

Mostly humanoid Pokemon, including those themed on superheroes. Some examples:

  • Machop/Machoke/Machamp
  • Abra/Kadabra/Alakazam
  • Combusken/Blaziken
  • Ralts/Kirlia/Gardevoir/Gallade
  • Chimchar/Monferno/Infernape
  • Buneary/Lopunny
  • Riolu/Lucario
  • Froakie/Frogadier/Greninja
  • Scorbunny/Raboot/Cinderace

Seems like a good list! I could see ones like Mr. Mime, Medicham, and the Hitmons getting the moves, too.

That said, I thought of a way to implement the various style effects within a single move. The "Pose" move, in my vision, would boost two stats by one stage - but which stats it boosts would depend on the Nature of the user. The boosted stat, and the diminished stat, would both get a one-stage boost. In the case of a "Neutral" nature, which stats are boosted is random, and varies each time it is used.

This could lead to new and different sets, like a Brave (+Attack, -Speed) Nature on a physical sweeper, while also making searching for just the right nature more desirable. And it would make sense with the lore - a "Timid" Pokemon would likely behave differently, when asked to pose, than an "Adamant" one, for instance. I see it as a way to implement Natures beyond their immediate impact on stats.

How does this sound?

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6 hours ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

Seems like a good list! I could see ones like Mr. Mime, Medicham, and the Hitmons getting the moves, too.

That said, I thought of a way to implement the various style effects within a single move. The "Pose" move, in my vision, would boost two stats by one stage - but which stats it boosts would depend on the Nature of the user. The boosted stat, and the diminished stat, would both get a one-stage boost. In the case of a "Neutral" nature, which stats are boosted is random, and varies each time it is used.

This could lead to new and different sets, like a Brave (+Attack, -Speed) Nature on a physical sweeper, while also making searching for just the right nature more desirable. And it would make sense with the lore - a "Timid" Pokemon would likely behave differently, when asked to pose, than an "Adamant" one, for instance. I see it as a way to implement Natures beyond their immediate impact on stats.

How does this sound?

Moves that rely on Natures are certainly an interesting concept, one that the game hasn't really tapped into yet. And I did consider matching Poses to Natures, like "Bold Pose" "Naughty Pose", and so on, but I don't know if I like the idea of boosting the decreased stat. If anything, a Nature-derived Pose would raise the favored stat while lowering the least-favored one. A Timid Pose raising Attack doesn't really make sense, you know?

But, what if the unfavored stat translated to lowering the opponent's stat instead? A Bold Pose would raise the user's Defense and lower the opponent's Attack, for instance. A Timid Pose raises the user's Speed and lowers the opponent's Attack. That way, it's helping make up for the deficiency by making your opponent more deficient, too.

Worth noting, the neutral Natures each actually raise and lower the same stat. Hardy would raise your Attack and lower their Attack, Docile would raise your Defense and lower theirs, Serious raises your Speed and lowers theirs, Bashful would raise your S. Attack and lower theirs, and Quirky would raise your S. Defense and lower theirs.

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4 hours ago, Lord_Brand said:

But, what if the unfavored stat translated to lowering the opponent's stat instead? A Bold Pose would raise the user's Defense and lower the opponent's Attack, for instance. A Timid Pose raises the user's Speed and lowers the opponent's Attack. That way, it's helping make up for the deficiency by making your opponent more deficient, too.

Worth noting, the neutral Natures each actually raise and lower the same stat. Hardy would raise your Attack and lower their Attack, Docile would raise your Defense and lower theirs, Serious raises your Speed and lowers theirs, Bashful would raise your S. Attack and lower theirs, and Quirky would raise your S. Defense and lower theirs.

That could work. My initial intention was to "emphasize their strong area, while reinforcing their weak one". Lowering the weak area on the target could be an interesting solution - I think it'd be the first move to affect stats on both sides of the battle. Another solution could be to raise the boon stat by two stages, while lowering the bane stat by one stage (in the case of neutral natures, just raising the canceled-out stat by one stage). Of course, we'd want the effect to be strong enough that these moves would actually be used in battle (i.e. using "Adamant Pose" when Swords Dance is available). But maybe that's where the Doubles/Triples effects come into play, so these don't necessarily need to be balanced assuming Singles play?

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I'm by no means an expert on competitive doubles Pokémon, but this seems pretty overpowered to me. Moves like Dragon Dance are already pretty good, so making what is essentially "Dragon Dance but way better" seems like it's asking for trouble. The ability to buff speed and attack by three stages onboth pokémon with only a single turn of setup seems absolutely wild.

I think if I were to try to do something along these lines, my first instinct would be to say that you couldn't stack the same on a single turn. So, for instance, if you had one pokémon use Action Pose and one use Guard Pose, then each would gain one stage of attack, speed, defense and special defense. On the other hand, if one used Action Pose and the other used Combat Pose, they would each gain one stage of attack, speed and defense, and the second buff to attack would be "lost". This would still be strong (and I'm worried it might still be too strong) but it's nowhere near as strong as your original version.

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The tradeoff is that you spend an entire turn just buffing your team and giving the opponent a chance to attack (not to mention your opponent could always use Poses too). That said, I could see the incremental effect being nixed in favor of just buffing the whole team by up to three stages if they all pose. Even just being able to spread the effect to the whole team is already quite a jump over what moves like Dragon Dance do. That said, I would of course intend for Poses to have less PP than other buff moves to compensate.

Your solution is an interesting one, but unless Accuracy and/or Evasion are added in, that means the third Pokemon's Pose is always at least half-wasted. Not appealing enough if you ask me. The nerfed version I just suggested would still be exciting without being quite as over-the-top, as even jumping three stages in one turn is pretty powerful.

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4 hours ago, lenticular said:

I'm by no means an expert on competitive doubles Pokémon, but this seems pretty overpowered to me. Moves like Dragon Dance are already pretty good, so making what is essentially "Dragon Dance but way better" seems like it's asking for trouble. The ability to buff speed and attack by three stages onboth pokémon with only a single turn of setup seems absolutely wild.

I'm not an expert, but I played a fair amount of VGC in the Sun/Moon era. As proposed, I see these moves being strong, but not likely overpowered.

For one, each Pose demands a moveslot. As a status-moves, it's generally incompatible with Choice sets (save, perhaps, for a heterodox support Scarfer). And with Protect near-ubiquitous on non-Choice VGC sets, that's basically just 2 moveslots left for attacks. It's very hard to come up with an unresisted pair of attacks.

What is likely to happen to two leads going for a Pose combo? One is likely to get hit by a Fake Out, limiting their side to one boost. And the opponent's other Mon is free to do anything - get a big attack in, Taunt the other Poser, Phaze a Mon out to erase the boost, Encore to force the boosting move every turn, Status Move to compromise the attacker, Tailwind to answer their anticipated speed boost, or Trick Room to punish such a boost. Even on a turn where an opposing Fake Out isn't possible, going for a "Double Pose" still means giving up offensive pressure for a turn, and possibly losing a Mon early. On the flip side, misplaying against a Double Pose (predicting attacks, and using Protect and/or Follow Me) can cede a clear advantage to the Poser (heh).

As an aside, traditional "boosting moves" aren't especially common in VGC, mainly because sweeping isn't viable to the same degree that it is in Singles. Speed control is more often done through Tailwind, Icy Wind/Electroweb, or Trick Room, rather than Dragon Dance or Agility. Stuff like Swords Dance, Nasty Plot, or Shell Smash isn't unheard of, but even then it demands a certain amount of support (i.e. Follow Me/Fake Out), and Attack boosts in particular are susceptible to opposing Intimidates and burns.

So the "Double Pose" would be a potentially strong, but very risky, strategy. I don't see it as dominant or overly centralizing, but it's something players would want to be mindful of as a threat.

3 hours ago, Lord_Brand said:

Your solution is an interesting one, but unless Accuracy and/or Evasion are added in, that means the third Pokemon's Pose is always at least half-wasted. Not appealing enough if you ask me. The nerfed version I just suggested would still be exciting without being quite as over-the-top, as even jumping three stages in one turn is pretty powerful.

Don't take this the wrong way, but... is anyone even playing Triple Battles anymore? They haven't existed in the main games since Gen VI. I don't really see the point in balancing this mechanic around an effectively dead format.

That said, if I were personally designing this for Triple Battles, I'd make it so that the Left Mon's pose is performed as well by the Center Mon, but not the Right Mon. And vice-versa, of course. This would make the initial order relevant. And while the Center Mon would potentially benefit the most, the Central position is also the most dangerous one in a Triple Battle.

Edited by Shanty Pete's 1st Mate
Typo.

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40 minutes ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

I'm not an expert, but I played a fair amount of VGC in the Sun/Moon era. As proposed, I see these moves being strong, but not likely overpowered.

[...]

So the "Double Pose" would be a potentially strong, but very risky, strategy. I don't see it as dominant or overly centralizing, but it's something players would want to be mindful of as a threat.

Interesting! Thank you for taking the time to write that up. You may not be an expert, but you're certainly closer to expertise than I am! I am generally very wary of anything in games thathas that high of a potential upside. Even if it doesn't end up overly centralizing, it can still end up being very high variance, which can end up very frustrating to play against. I guess, at the very least, I'd say it would be something that would want to see go through some pretty extensive play-testing before being added. But then, I am very careful by nature (must be why my special attack is so low).

47 minutes ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

Don't take this the wrong way, but... is anyone even playing Triple Battles anymore? They haven't existed in the main games since Gen VI. I don't really see the point in balancing this mechanic around an effectively dead format.

Yeah, I was basically ignoring Triple Battles for exactly that reason. I'd honestly be surprised to see them make a return in anything other than a Unova remake.

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7 hours ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

Don't take this the wrong way, but... is anyone even playing Triple Battles anymore? They haven't existed in the main games since Gen VI. I don't really see the point in balancing this mechanic around an effectively dead format.

That said, if I were personally designing this for Triple Battles, I'd make it so that the Left Mon's pose is performed as well by the Center Mon, but not the Right Mon. And vice-versa, of course. This would make the initial order relevant. And while the Center Mon would potentially benefit the most, the Central position is also the most dangerous ome in a Triple Battle.

Well, I was talking about how Poses would work in Triple Battles in the OP. And I'd be cool with them coming back for a game themed on superheroes. That said, it is handy that Poses work in all three formats, as at minimum you have something as good as Bulk Up, Calm Mind, and the like.

Also, I wouldn't make the exact formation matter, it'd just be a matter of who's fastest. The fastest Pokemon on a given team will be the leader for posing.

Edited by Lord_Brand

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2 hours ago, lenticular said:

Interesting! Thank you for taking the time to write that up. You may not be an expert, but you're certainly closer to expertise than I am! I am generally very wary of anything in games thathas that high of a potential upside. Even if it doesn't end up overly centralizing, it can still end up being very high variance, which can end up very frustrating to play against. I guess, at the very least, I'd say it would be something that would want to see go through some pretty extensive play-testing before being added. But then, I am very careful by nature (must be why my special attack is so low).

C'mon, you don't think Game Freak would add a new mechanic that monopolizes the metagame, do you? What's that about Stealth Rock, Weather Wars, and Dynamax?

And I see what you did there. I'm not Naive to your jokes - if I were, my SpDef would suffer!

2 hours ago, lenticular said:

Yeah, I was basically ignoring Triple Battles for exactly that reason. I'd honestly be surprised to see them make a return in anything other than a Unova remake.

Pretty wild, now that BDSP are out, that Unova remakes are on people's minds. I, for one, can't wait to see what GameFreak does to convince me not to buy their game.

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