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I've noticed for 2 moves, that they change from physical to special moves, gen 2-3 Physical to gen 4+ special according to the site.

Example moves;
- Sludge Bomb
- Hyperbeam

I thought both were special, but the sites show as physical moves for gen 2-3. Is this Correct?

See TM move sets for Venomoth and Tauros Gen 3;
https://pokemondb.net/pokedex/venomoth/moves/3
https://pokemondb.net/pokedex/tauros/moves/3

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You are right. In gen 3 and before, all physical category moves were Normal, Rock, Steel, Ground, Fighting, Flying, Poison, Ghost, Bug types and all special category moves were Fire, Water, Grass, Electric, Ice, Psychic, Dark, Dragon types.
Thank you Blazing, your gen 3 physical/special split is very helpful, cheers.

1 Answer

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Best answer

Prior to Generation 4, a move's category was determined from its type. For instance, all Normal and Poison moves were physical if they weren't status moves, and all Dark and Water moves were special if they were not status moves. The full list of which types were physical and which were special can be found here. In Generation 4, the "physical-special split" happened, and a move's category was determined individually, rather than being based on its type. This was beneficial to Pokemon like Sharpedo, who prior to Generation 4 had no way to effectively use their better attacking stat.

So in short, yes, this is correct. There is no error.

Hope I helped!

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Thank you Giga for the explanation, that makes sense. I am playing FR/LG and was finding it difficult to get a clear category for these moves, as most info just has the category for a move from the current gen, after the gen 4 change. Cheers.