Pokemusings, week 46

Punishment is a strange Dark Attack that seems useless, but can be game changing in competitive battles. This move can be learned by certain Pokemon via level up (Infernape, Lugia and Ho-Oh are just a few) or by egg breeding. Its damage is calculated based on the opponent's stat changes. If the opponent raises its Attack, Special Attack, Defense, Special Defense or Speed then Punishment becomes more powerful. For every stat level raised, Punishment's power grows by 20, with a maximum base power of 200.

Above: Infernape is one of the few Pokemon that learn Punishment

If you're playing through story mode, Punishment isn't very useful. On its own, it has a base power of one. Like we said earlier, it can really change up a competitive battle. Say you have an opponent that's building up Calm Minds. Since Calm Mind raises both Special Attack and Special Defense, it raises Punishment's base power by 40. Since Calm Mind is often used twice or thrice, your Punishment-wielding Pokemon will be left with a Physical Attack with an 80 or 120 base power. Punishment requires some careful prediction and planning, but in the right hands it can be awesome.

Trump Card is another move with some wacky damage calculation. This Normal move is a Special Attack whose power depends on the amount of PP remaining. The more PP remaining, the less powerful it is. Trump Card has a base PP of five, though stupid people can increase it to eight with a few PP Ups. It can be learned by Eevee, Slowking, and Minun via level up. Here are the damage calculations using the formula of PP = base power: 5 = 40, 4 = 50, 3 = 60, 2 = 75, 1 = 190.