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In a battle earlier the opposing Skarmory used Roost and my Mamoswine used Earthquake but it didn't affect the Skarmory! Am I missing something about the mechanics of Roost?

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Be more specific. What were the the Pokémon?
did it happen on the same turn?
For the next three truns ;-;

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There are several things that could have happened.
For example:

  • Was Roost used the previous turn?
  • Was Roost used after Earthquake (same turn)?

In both cases, Earthquake will not hit, as the flying typing was gained or not lost when it was used.
Option 2 is a very likely one, as Skarmory is pretty darn slow. Which means that it will almost always move after Mamoswine.

Hope I helped!

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dammit qwert >:l
Sowwy ;-;
Nah. My mamo is slower.