Pokemon Sword and Shield include a fair amount of randomness in the way Trainers catch, breed, and battle Pokemon. For example, most battle moves do not have guaranteed accuracy, which means there is always a risk the move will miss. Moreover, moves will often have secondary effects that only occur some of the time. While attacks with a low chance of a secondary effect (such as inflicting a status condition) may be intriguing, they often end up being some of a Pokemon's worst offensive moves.
Reddit user Pafbonk sent the Poison-Electric Pokemon Toxtricity against Clefable, a Fairy-type Pokemon. Although Toxtricity comes in two forms, either one should be able to take out Clefable with one or two Poison-type attacks. Unfortunately, Clefable used the move Metronome, which triggers a random attack drawn from almost every move in the game. As it happens, Clefable ended up triggering Fissure, a Ground-type move with a chance of fainting an opponent Pokemon instantly. The move landed on Toxtricity, knocking it out.
While Clefable soundly defeated Toxtricity, it's hardly the fault of Toxtricity or its Trainer. Pafbonk's Toxtricity had no way of preparing for Fissure, since Clefable can never naturally learn Ground-type moves. While an item like a Focus Sash could allow a Pokemon to survive instant-defeat moves like Fissure, they are hard to come by until reaching the late-game Battle Tower. Plus, Toxtricity wasn't at full health to begin with, so a Focus Sash would not have helped.
The turn of events may be particularly infuriating to watch because Metronome is such a silly-looking move. While Pokemon moves often don't make any sense, Clefable summoning an earthquake by waggling a finger is truly bizarre. Plus, it may actually be infuriating for the Trainer using the move as well, as Metronome is not always useful for the Pokemon employing it. While it can trigger instant-defeat moves like Fissure, it can also trigger moves like Explosion, Self-Destruct, and Perish Song that will knock out the user.
Not every aspect of luck in the Pokemon games is necessarily annoying. Pokemon Sword and Shield's beloved Shiny Pokemon, for example, are exceptionally unlikely to appear, but this increases their appeal in the eyes of many players. Players are often elated to catch or hatch Shiny Pokemon, although they offer no gameplay advantage. For better or worse, the games' luckiest and unluckiest events are quite rare, so most players will rarely encounter them. Still, aspiring Pokemon trainers should still be wary of any Metronome-using Pokemon they encounter.
Pokemon Sword and Shield are available now for Nintendo Switch.