So, I wasn't sure if I was going to write up a story, since I might be lazy (or just don't have time) to create a new team for Nats, so I didn't want to just go "I won this battle, then lost this one" without saying much about the actual battles, haha. Now, I think I probably will use a completely new (or at least noticeably different) team for Nats though, so here's the Regional story after all. I tend to type a lot on and on about irrelevant or unimportant things, so I'll put my writing in these hide tags to make it not so ugly looking. Also, warning, no pictures! Intro (aka What happened Last Year) (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Intro (aka What happened Last Year) (open) Intro (aka What happened Last Year) (close) Last year, I did terribly at VGC (in Seattle - I live in Canada, so had to drive a few hours to get there). I did not have time at all to prep for a team, and then I didn't even realize that pokemon aren't auto levelled to 50, until I was already lining up for registration. In the end I only manage to level up my Whimsicott to level 45, and somehow I managed to get to 3rd round before getting eliminated (1st round I won on time because opponent was taking too long to think, 2nd round had a bye, because I was pretty much the last person in line to register due to wanting to level things up lol). Before the Real Thing (VGC Tournament in Victoria) (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Before the Real Thing (VGC Tournament in Victoria) (open) Before the Real Thing (VGC Tournament in Victoria) (close) Fast forward it to a few months ago, FearZeCrawdaunt held a VGC 2012 tournament in Victoria. I tried to prepare for that as best as I could. I made two teams, one for myself and one for my gf Sally. One team was a "surprise" slightly gimmicky team, and one was a flexible Trick Room / Tailwind team (more Tailwind really). Since my gf doesn't know too too much, I ended up giving her the surprise team, because the flexible team really required you to know about the different pokemons' base speeds. I won't comment much on the team I made for her, since she might still use it for Nats (unless I come up with something else for her). This was the team I used: Suicune / Pressure / Relaxed @ Leftovers - Protect / Extremespeed / Tailwind / Scald Chandelure / Flash Fire / Modest @ Ghost Gem - Shadow Ball / Protect / Trick Room / Heatwave Abomasnow / Snow Warning / Modest @ Sash - Ice Shard / Protect / Blizzard / Grass Knot Manectric / Lightningrod / Modest @ Expert Belt - Flamethrower / Tbolt / Protect / HP Ice 70 Scizor / Technician / Adamant @ Fly Gem - Acrobatics / Protect / Bullet Punch / Superpower Togekiss / Serene Grace / Modest @ Lum - Twave / Protect / Safeguard / Air Slash (mainly for Spore pokemon which I never encountered in the tourney) Match 1: (I'm surprised I still remember this, since I didn't write anything down) My opponent had Zebstrika, Garchomp, Blaziken, Sceptile, Feraligatr, and some other thing I don't remember. It's fairly clear my opponent isn't too competitive, so that's good I guess. My opponent led with Zebstrika and Garchomp, while I led with Suicune and Abomasnow. I was a little bit worried about Suicune's ability to survive both attacks, but my Suicune was pretty bulky, so not too worried. Tailwind+Protect first turn as opponent used Discharge + Dragon Claw on Abomasnow. Then it was easily after that as Blizzard KO. Blaziken switches in replacing Garchomp. I switched out Abomasnow for Chandelure and got a Flash Fire boost from Blaziken's fire attack. Easy 4-0. 1 - 0 Match 2 or 3 or 4: If I remember correctly, this one was vs Firestorm. He had a trick room team with two Trick Roomers. First one fainted from Ghost Gem Shadow Ball before getting trick room down, and I was at a huge advantage and ended up 4-0ing. 2 - 0 Match 2 or 3 or 4: Against Max (who won the Pokemon League at Victoria last year?)… His team had advantage over mine. I played a horrible first turn too. His team preview had Cresselia, Hariyama, Eelektross, Dusknoir, Garchomp, and Ninetales. I thought Garchomp was just to fake not being a Trick Room team (i.e. I read his team as Trick Room), and Ninetales might be a slow iron ball variant or something. He led with Cresselia + Hariyama. I led with Chandelure and something else. I was pretty sure that Ghost Gem Shadow Ball does not OHKO Cresselia (later one I find out that it indeed does not), so I went with Trick Room + Protect (forgot what I led with, but it had protect)… to cancel out his Trick Room. But he attacked instead of using Trick Room (he told me that he thought my Chandelure would imprison, so he attacked instead). Horrible start and I didn't recover from that. Lost like 0-3 I think. 2 - 1 Match 2 or 3 or 4: I clearly did not remember one of my matches… probably because it was vs someone I didn't know (and it also was not the first match of the day)… but I won. 3 - 1 I thought there was going to be a 5th round, but apparently not, for some reason. So then we had a semifinals with top 4. Max seeded first, winning all his matches. I seed 2nd, Articuno64 3rd, Firestorm 4th, and I don't remember the rest. My gf Sally was 6th I think. She lost to Firestorm and Articuno 64 and won her other matches if I remember correctly. Semifinal match winners were determined best out of 3. Semifinals Match 1: Vs Articuno 64 (Just a bit of Flash back) Last year after my horrible performance at VGC, there was another VGC tournament in Victoria where I faced Articuno64. It was best out of 3 also, and we each won once, but he won the 3rd match and won. Would history repeat itself again? Battle 1: He led with Metagross and Abomasnow and I led with Chandelure and Manectric. I couldn't have asked for a better lead match up. First turn, Abomasnow protected. Manectric's Flamethrower rid Metagross of its Occa and then Chandelure Heatwave KOs. Articuno64 made some good moves afterwards, but it was fairly one-sided in favor of me. Ended with his half-health Metagross vs my full health Scizor. Superpower failed to KO his Metagross, but Metagross EQ didn't KO Scizor either, and, I protect to let another turn of hail to kick in before Bullet punching to KO Metagross. Battle 2: Don't remember all the details, but he revealed that his Jellicent was scarfed and that won him the match. Battle 3: I don't remember all the details of this either, but with the knowledge that his Jellicent was scarfed, I actually brought in Suicune this time to tailwind (I didn't before this because I thought his team was mediocrely slow anyway -they were around the same base speed as mine, slightly slower I think). It was a comfortably easy match after that (wasn't like tailwind = I win automatically, but it got me the advantage since Jellicent was no longer a threat because every pokemon I had in my team had enough fire power to make Jellicent's water spout next to useless). Max beat Firestorm too, so I needed to play against Max again for first place. Finals Battle 1: He led with Garchomp and Eelektross instead of Cresselia + Hariyama. He had Ninetales in the back. It was a horrible match, as my Suicune could not even 3HKO Ninetales with Scald, and then he reveals that his Cresselia has Moonlight. Lost 0-4. My team was just pretty horrible against his. I knew it will be hard to win this. Finals Battle 2: He led with Cresselia and Garchomp I think. I don't remember too much other than getting Tailwind down and then Ghost Gem Shadow Ball + something else KO'd Cresselia while HP Ice KO'd Garchomp, and then I was left with a half health Manectric vs his full health Eelektross. Of course, I still lost. But hey, second place isn't bad! I was actually happy to get second, because Sally wanted the Poliwhirl plush (which was one of the prizes for 2nd place). Of course regardless of how I placed, I was happy just to see that my team actually worked to some degree, because even though I "prepped" for it, I never actually used it in battle yet. I don't play PO and I just finished breeding and training up my team like a day or so before the tournament. So yeah, that was cool. What was also awesome was that after this experience I knew better what was good and what wasn't. I was using Manectric to absorb electric attacks directed at Suicune so Suicune could set up Tailwind easier, but Manectric's way too weak even with 256 EVS in HP / Def / Sp Def (some distribution) … it had 252 for SpA of course. Chandelure also never set up Trick Room (well, ok, the only time it did, it helped my opponent more than myself). O yeah, putting Scizor in the team was a last minute thing too. I was spending too much time prepping for Sally's team, and then forgot that I only had 5 members in my team. So I put him in since I already have one in my box and he fits the team well enough. VGC Regionals Team in Surrey (Move your mouse to reveal the content) VGC Regionals Team in Surrey (open) VGC Regionals Team in Surrey (close) So that Victoria tournament was 2 weeks before the actual VGC Regionals in Surrey, BC. I liked my team well enough that I didn't want to change everything (and I wouldn't have the time to anyway). With the experience I had in Victoria I decided to make some changes though, and this was what I ended up with: Suicune / Pressure / Calm @ Wacan - Scald / Protect / Ice Beam / Tailwind Chandelure / Flash Fire / Modest @ Ghost Gem - Shadow Ball / Protect / Heatwave / Energy Ball Abomasnow / Snow Warning / Modest @ Sash - Ice Shard / Blizzard / Protect / Grass Knot Dragonite / Inner Focus / Mild @ Life Orb - Draco Meteor / Protect / Fire Punch / Extremespeed Bisharp / Inner Focus / Adamant @ Dark Gem - Protect / Taunt / Sucker Punch / Iron Head Rotom-W / Levitate / Modest @ Scarf - Trick / Hydro Pump / Thunderbolt / HP Grass 70 Comments on Team (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Comments on Team (open) Comments on Team (close) Comments: - RNG'ed a new Suicune, because I didn't really want to lose Extremespeed on the event one, and also I found out Calm is better than +Def because of electric and grass attacks being primarily special. I didn't have my lightning rod Manectric in the team anymore so, I figured I'd have a Wacan to survive enough to Tailwind. - Abomasnow is exactly the same. Didn't have time to change it really. - Chandelure is exactly the same, except now with Energy Ball for water types and Tyranitar instead of Trick Room which would really never be used anyway (I'd just Shadow Ball to KO trick roomers... or taunt with Bisharp) - Dragonite… a new addition to the team. A few reasons for Dragonite. I'm not sure if I'll list them all, but here are some. The first time I used Dragonite in tournament was in VGC 2009. I used a similar set as this one, but with Superpower (mainly for Dialga and Ttar) instead of Fire punch, and also that one was Lonely instead of Mild, and not RNG'd. It did pretty well, getting 1 - 2 KOs at least in every match I played. In 2009, I usually led with Dragonite + Giratina. If my opponent was running Trick Room + Fake Out, it wouldn't be able to flinch anything, so I usually would end up having advantage. VS faster leads, I'd lead with (Giratina) Icy Wind + (Dnite) Protect and then Dragonite would KO something on the next turn. The other reason why I used Dragonite this time around again is because Sally's team also had a LO Inner Focus Dragonite (slightly different from mine, but very similar), but she told me it didn't seem to do anything and would usually just die in one hit to some ice attack. She said maybe she's just playing it wrong, and I thought so too, because Dragonite's awesome, lol. So I decided to use one myself to see if I was right. The main concept is… Life Orb Draco Meteor for heavy damage (hopefully KOing something, really), and then after SpA is dropped, there's still Extremespeed for heavy priority damage. Fire Punch for steels. No point in having Multiscale with Life Orb, and Inner focus prevents those fake out flinches! - Bisharp… with Inner Focus and not Defiant? Yes, the team is very anti-fake out with Chandelure and two inner focus pokemon. It was going to have sash for fighting moves, but with Abomasnow in the team, Sash is kind of stupid, so I let Abomasnow keep its sash instead. Dark Gem Sucker Punch is pretty awesome. Taunt is not so expected on Bisharp since it's not extremely fast (it certainly works well with sucker punch though). It did turn out to be used once very effectively during the tournament. - Rotom-W… To be honest, I was going to use a Scarf Politoed with HP Grass instead, but then I found out I ran out of King's Rocks, and the Drizzle toed I had didn't have HP Grass. So I RNG'd a Rotom instead. I think it might actually have been better, since it makes my team do better against rain teams. - O yeah, I had lots of grass moves for Gastrodon, I dunno why. I didn't even face one in Victoria. Actual Tournament! (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Actual Tournament! (open) Actual Tournament! (close) Match 1: VS random person I don't remember much from this, but my opponent didn't really have a competitive team. I opened with Suicune + Dragonite and swept fairly easily I think. Record: 1-0 Match 2: VS Owlfred (I think?) I don't remember the exact details, but I remember that I had a very hard time deciding on my pokemon during team preview because a lot of his pokemon were good against mine. Sorry I don't remember too much, but I remember that he had a Tyranitar and Metagross, and his Metagross was supposed to have EQ but actually had Explosion? I think I won 2-0. I recall that there was this one turn where I thought I made a mistake (I think he had a Ludicolo that I thought could have KO'd one of my pokemon), but he ended up switching that Ludicolo out that turn, and then yeah. something happened and I won. Record: 2-0 Match 3: VS R Inanimate Man… I'll remember this match for a while. I mentioned it on R Inanimate's war story already. He led with Volcarona + Salamence. I led with Suicune + Abomasnow. I had 3 options. 1) Tailwind + Protect. 2) Tailwind + Blizzard. 3) Protect + Blizzard. (I could switch too, but I thought that would be horrible). I went with the first option and he double targeted Suicune. Extremely difficult to make a comeback after that. If I went with option 2, we would have been in neutral positions more or less. If I went with option 3, I would have the advantage. I really should have used Blizzard with Abomasnow since it was sashed anyway. O well. I ended up KOing his Gastrodon with HP Grass and gets 0-3'd. Record: 2-1 Match 4: VS Caffwin Caffwin was the person who got me to buy my DS Lite and Pokemon Diamond game years ago. And then I was the person who introduced her to competitive battling. We're pretty good friends, so it was sort of too bad that we had to face each other, but well, that's what happens! I said it before, but yeah, her team was very similar to Firestorm's team back in Victoria, lol. After the first few turns, it was fairly one-sided to my advantage. If I remember correctly, this was the match where she faked out my Dragonite expecting a flinch which didn't happen, and then she faked out Bisharp expecting a flinch which also didn't happen. In the end it was her Ferrothorn vs Dragonite and something else of mine (and I had another pokemon in the back too, but my Chandelure did get KO'd by hers), and no Trick room was present. She said, "Hey, promise me you won't attack me this turn ok?" I said, "ok sure!" I double protected as she went for the explosion. Weee… Record: 3 - 1 Match 5: VS forgot who Sorry, I forgot who! But I remember I won. EDIT: OH! I actually remember this battle now! My opponent had a VERY standard rain team, so standard that it's just Ludicolo, Politoed, Kingdra, Toxicroak. I of course brought in my Suicune to resist water and get tailwind up, Rotom-W for outspeeding and KOing stuff, and Abomasnow for changing the weather. It was a little bit of struggle at first, but after winning the weather war (we kept switching our weather pokemon and out), it was easy. I think I had Dragonite as my last pokemon. Record: 4 - 1 Match 6: VS Mikey (from US somewhere) We talked very briefly. He told me he already got top 16 (or top 8?) in one of the US regionals, and he told me he noticed the Canadian winter olympics shirt I was wearing (I forgot what relevance that was, but it was something to do with the brief conversation we had about Canada and US I think haha. I don't know). We shook hands and had our match. I actually saved this battle, because I thought I did pretty well. I'm not sure if I should really talk about his team much though since he might be using it in his Nats? Anyway, this was the match where Bisharp's taunt was very useful, and I probably would have lost without it. He had an early lead, but after I got Bisharp in to taunt, I regained momentum and got my win. My Chandelure was at like 15% health and paralyzed and somehow still managed one KO while paralyzed and survived for 3 more turns after that before fainting from weather. 5-1 There was no top cut, so that was the end of the tournament. I was fairly confident I got top 4 since my only loss was to R Inanimate who was the only person with 6-0. And… I ended up at exactly 4th! Phew! Yay! Maybe I should do that Props and Slops thing. Actually, nevermind. Slops was that first turn vs R Inanimate, and Props was everything else. It was a lot of fun with plenty of exciting battles. Only regret was not having more battles after the tournament!