I applaud you for the creation of this thread. I breathed a sigh of relief when I saw that someone with the voice to speak and make people listen posted a thread that basically echoed my deepest concerns about Aeolus's other one.
First, though, before we can even consider a process to ban things the right
way, we need to consider what we want to accomplish by banning things in the first place.
We need to identify the desirable standard metagame
One of my favorite threads on this site
is a topic related directly to discussing what we need to do here. We need to decide what it is we actually want to achieve by tiering anything in the first place. Many people are comfortable with what we have, in principle. Maintaining the status quo is a naive approach to tiering, but at the same time, it has shown us the kinds of things we want.
As Doug rightly discusses in that topic, there are several characteristics that we want, and one of them is variety
. We have learned from DPP Uber that if we allow certain vastly dominant Pokemon, namely the 670+ BST monsters, that the entire metagame revolves around them with interspersed lower Pokemon present who can niche respond to them well. I think everyone here can agree here that the desirable standard metagame is one that is plentifully diverse, and allowing those Pokemon inherently goes against such an idea.
That is why I support the 670+ BST Pokemon as being the only
Pokemon that we initially ban to Ubers. Because they go against the principles of what we, the players,
perceive as our desirable metagame, they should be removed. I think I can safely speak for basically every competitive Pokemon player on this website in making that claim.
Absolutely why I made my post in the other thread
. Notice how absolutely no Pokemon is banned from the get-go in my list except those that go against what we desire in our metagame. Perhaps people would like Wobbuffet to be banned because he creates some undesirable features in the metagame (an argument is that he removes skill from the game because he inhibits an entire and major skill-based mechanic of the game). Either way, we should strive for as few, if any, initial bans for the new game
. Maybe my post in that thread is more than we really need; I'm open for discussion on the matter. I strongly feel that we should not ban any more
Pokemon than I have listed, though, or we are going to run into the problems that Cathy outlined in the first post.
I also think that Aeolus is getting the picture in his OP
. Besides his rather extensive list of banned Pokemon, he wants us to instate the idea of a "quick ban" for things that are broken as they come early on in the generation based upon those principles that we've decided are desirable in our metagame. This idea of a quick ban, with proper cultivation, is right up the alley of what you want to see judging from your post, Cathy, and exactly what I'd like to have.
We want a simple process
None of this gimmicky paragraph crap. I don't like and have never liked that a few people determined who got to vote, even if I did trust their judgment more or less to be fair about it. I didn't understand that SEXP thing when I first learned of it and still don't care for it. We need to eliminate all of these things from our process. Our process must be simple
Going off of the idea of a "quickban", basically this means that:
- People play the metagame
No gimmicks. You play the game. It doesn't matter how much you use the Pokemon we're trying to test or how often you play against it, because you are playing in a game defined by all of its parts. No matter what specific team you are using against whatever team your opponent is using, it was influenced by the presence of the Pokemon in question. In this regard, all you do is play the game and win matches. That's it.
- People get "high enough" ratings on the ladder
High enough would be some arbitrarily high rating. The reason we even need them to meet this rating for is so as to guarantee their battling competency. We do not want random people who cannot play properly and do not understand the game voting. If there is a problem with the rating system such that anyone would not trust a user's vote as competent and relevant with only meeting this threshold, then that means that our rating system needs to be improved upon. What that arbitrary threshold ends up being doesn't matter here, we can sort it out later. What matters is that the only requirement for voting is meeting this threshold. You don't have to use the Pokemon, you don't have to write paragraphs, you only have to play the game enough to do well, and then you can voice your opinion in the voting process.
- These people, all of them, vote in a public forum
They vote on Pokemon. That's it. If you think about this, the process of tiering multiple Pokemon shouldn't take more than a month. Most of that time is playing the game. The formality of the vote is a trivial and almost insignificant period of time in the grand scheme of things.
This, as I outlined above, is how I envision the ideal tiering process occuring. I like what Aeolus suggested in the other thread of only considering bans when "disturbances" occur in the metagame. We don't need some rolling ban process that constantly allows people to ban Pokemon from the game. We only need to raise the flag of the tiering process when something happens that causes a disturbance in the metagame. I will carry over Aeolus's definition of a disturbance here, because I completely agree with it.
A disturbance is defined as when a new discovery, innovation, or Nintendo release dramatically alters the game by substantially improving the effectiveness of a Pokemon in a tier other than Uber.
If we expand upon this idea and then elaborate upon the conditions of when a Pokemon causes a disturbance, then we can identify when something is problematic as it occurs. Some people raised concerns about it and how sometimes a Pokemon is just not making the metagame a better place despite that it's been allowed forever. A lot of people, for instance, felt that DP Garchomp was broken for a long time even before the discovery of the Yache Berry set. I agree with them. We should refine the definition slightly, and I think in the following way based on the desirable metagame characteristics Doug outlined in his thread:
A disturbance arises when the presence or qualities of a Pokemon dramatically and negatively impact the desirable characteristics of any metagame other than Uber.
When written like this, all of the Uber characteristics we currently have and all of the characteristics of the metagame we find desirable are factored in. For example: If we as a community feel that BW Garchomp at some point is constantly forcing our metagame to be too centralized and not diverse enough like DP Garchomp did, we may propose a simple test of it as I outlined above using the Offensive Uber characteristic as the explanation for why it is causing the impact it causes. The great thing about this, though, is that we can just automatically pull the ratings off of the official server and generate our list of voters on the spot
. No radical policies, no intentionally and forcibly centralized Suspect ladder on the server, nothing. We pull the ratings on the spot and hold a vote. The tiering process takes less than 2 weeks.
Hopefully I've been able to convey with this post how I envision the ideal tiering process working in Gen V. I also hope that with this topic existing, others who feel the same way will stand up and chime in their thoughts for a simpler, more efficient, less biased process. If there were ever a time to fix the tiering process, the onset of a new generation is the time to do so.