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According to the Bulbapedia page for Stench in Gen III - IV it has no in battle effect. That is all well and good, but it goes on to say that
>From Pokemon Emerald onwards, if a Pokemon with Stench is leading the party, then Stench reduces the chances of encountering wild Pokemon by 50%.

So what did it do before Emerald? Did it do nothing at all, or did it have some effect that Bulbapedia doesn't list? If it did nothing at all, then why did GameFreak bother to add this ability at all? (and yes, I know: GameFreak Logic :P)

Here is the Bulbapedia page for Stench

It could very well be a mistake on bulbapedia's part. It isn't infallible as I have proven a couple of times, and an article on a rarely ever seen ability would be prime for someone to miss such a mistake. Especially seeing as the ingame description for the move in the versions prior to Emerald would also suggest it having the ability to decrease wild Pokemon encounters.
that's possible too - i have seen a load of mistakes on there before as well. They nearly always get move sets wrong on their various walkthroughs.

2 Answers

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The ability stench was not available in generation 1 & 2. It was a new addition to generation 3 and has been carried through to generation 4 where still it had no in-battle effect and then to gen 5 where it can cause the target to flinch.

I can find no alternate information for this ability is in the games Ruby/Sapphire or the remakes FireRed/LeafGreen of generation 3 as the description covers the whole of that gen. So it must do nothing in these games which is quite unusual as most abilities have some sort of effect, but there you go.

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i realise abilities weren't around in Gen 1 - 2, but I meant in the Gen 3 games before Emerald, namely Ruby/Sapphire.
its all good :)
1 vote

Well in that case it nothing, but be a place holder for an ability?

Wow this is low even for Muk.