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Mini Notes: Shedinja
When you evolve Nincada into Ninjask and have an empty space in your party (and a spare standard Pokeball in your bag starting in Gen 4), then you'll get Shedinja. It's a weird Pokemon with a weird ability and this is a super cool way to get a Pokemon. If only we had more of this instead of new and endless evolution items...
Wonderful! Shedinja is a super interesting Pokemon that is absolutely amazing... in the right circumstances. Its ability is a big deal, so we're going over it now. Wonder Guard makes Shedinja immune to any damaging attack that isn't supereffective. So anything that's not Fire, Dark, Rock, Flying or Ghost. It does not protect Shedinja against status, or weather, or abilty damage, like Rough Skin. Up against certain Pokemon, the big one being Kyogre, for example, it can completely wall them, which is absolutely amazing. However, any super effective move will quickly eat it up due to its other unique quirk: 1HP.
Now, having 1 base HP would actually give it something like 11HP or so, but it specifically has exactly 1 hit point, so it will faint to literally anything, unless it procs the Focus Band (Sash doesn't exist just yet). So it's very much an all in Pokemon, it either completely walls the opponent, or dies instantly and that makes it super interesting. It also means its defensive stats mean absolutely nothing, unless it gets passed a Substitute. Technically its Speed doesn't matter either, since if it's walling something, then it doesn't matter how fast it is. Though if it was faster, it could deal some damage being instantly dying, but what're you gonna do?
Right, let's talk typing. While thematic, it does give it a real load of weaknesses and Stealth Rock will murder it very quickly next gen, but it's also vulnerable to Spikes at the moment, but thankfully they're pretty rare. Bug is also a super bad type in Gen 3 as it'll only get Leech Life for STAB unless you breed Silver Wind. Even that's a garbage move. But hey, at least it can use Shadow Ball super well. Now an interesting quirk of Shedinja is it's an exact copy of the Ninjask you just evolved, including moves it learns, even at the level it evolved at. So if you hold off until level 25, you can get a Shedinja with Swords Dance, which lets it set up completely on opponents that can't touch it and then either sweep, or use Baton Pass, again, from Ninjask, but this time at level 45. It'll also get Agility at 38, so it can work as a Baton Passer if your opponent forgets it can switch.
Shedinja's movepool isn't really anything to write home about though, it gets all its good stuff from Ninjask. Though admittedly it is a great Grudge user. From there, you've got, uh, Aerial Ace and Return. That's it. It can learn some moves that do nothing for it, like Rest, or Sandstorm, which will actively kill it. In single player, Shedinja is great against the many, many Pokemon you'll fight that can't touch this mon, but in PvP, where your opponent hopefully has a brain, it is so much less effective, though still hilarious to use. I love Shedinja.