DK Announcement: Needs a GP Check of some kind. I would also like to see if we can flesh out Battle Techniques a bit more, but I'm at a loss. Essential information: Vision and Mission (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Vision and Mission (open) Vision and Mission (close) Welcome to CAP ASB. CAP ASB is a fun side forum designed to be a place for Smogoners to hang out and have some fun while staying on the forums. To the best extent possible we try to provide a quality forum game that is responsive to the concerns of the player base. As the game evolves, the hope is to improve the writing and creative skills of Smogon members and have them apply that ability to all other areas of the site. Vision: CAP ASB seeks to become a full fledged Anime Style Battling League in the mold of many of the games that preceded it. We twist the formula of the original ASB models by incorporating a closer adherence to in-game principles regarding Pokemon statistical strengths and move effects. In addition, CAP ASB utilizes a progressive move learning system rather than the traditional system of having all attacks available with the Pokemon. The result is a fast-paced, offense oriented metagame. We want our game to be a unique, satisfying, and deep experience that strengthens the social fabric of Smogon and brings different people from all areas of the site together. Mission: CAP ASB's mission is to enhance the writing, critical thinking, and competitive thinking skills by engaging Smogon users in a game that incorporates elements not only of in-game Pokemon but in strategic selection of moves, long-term planning, and flexibility in new battling situations. Our hope is that improvement in the game can lead to improvement in the discourse, comradery, and understanding of how a complex, competitive game functions. The game is designed to constantly shift and be discussed in regards to commonly employed strategies and their effectiveness. We urge all players in CAP ASB to use a positive experience here to propel them to contribute in thoughtful ways to other areas of the site. We urge longtime veterans who are looking for a break in-between writing articles or analyses to wind down here and keep their eye on the site in the meantime. CAP ASB is intended to be an open, inviting space for those seeking fun for its own sake or a distraction from wearying work. Navigating the Forum (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Navigating the Forum (open) Navigating the Forum (close) CAP ASB was a massive undertaking to create and the game has a lot of complexity. If you're new it can take you a while to learn how to get around, so let us be your guide. At the top of the main forum are the Categories. Categories make it much, much easier to navigate. Here is a brief rundown of what is in each category. (Ongoing): Ongoing Threads are battles that are still in progress. (Completed): Completed Threads are battles than have concluded. (Data): Data Threads contain the meat of the game's data and policy discussions. (Tournament): Tournament Threads allow you to follow an ongoing Tournament without looking in the massive list of Ongoing battles. (Roleplay): Roleplay Threads are special games in the ASB Forum that alter the mechanics of the game slightly and offer challenges and rewards. When making your initial team registration in the Registration Tower you will have to copy and past multiple bits of Data from the Data Audit Thread, which has its own links to each relevant section. Both of these threads are under the Data category. How to Get Started (Registration) (Move your mouse to reveal the content) How to Get Started (Registration) (open) How to Get Started (Registration) (close) Alright, since you are eager to get started, we, the CAPASB community, will generously donate 6 Trainer Counters and a backpack that contains two each of each of Oran, Leppa, Cheri, Chesto, Pecha, Rawst, and Aspear berries. You can use Trainer Counters to purchase different Pokemon- the stronger they are, the more TC they will cost! This post will tell you the cost of every NFE or single-stage Pokemon. Pick as many as you can purchase. The only Pokemon you CANNOT purchase as your starters, however, is Smeargle. Now, you have to register your team. This seems very daunting, but it is actually easy. To register your team, you have to format and submit information about you and your Pokemon in this registration thread. Use this template to submit information about yourself. Now it is time to submit information about your Pokemon. This can be a little bit confusing, so pay attention! The first thing you need to put down is the sprite, name, nickname, gender, nature, type/STAB and stats. In ASB, STAB and stats work a bit differently, so be sure to click on those links to find out more. Let's say that I wanted to get a female Togepi (they are so adorable!) with a Quiet nature. Her information form would look like this: So far so good. Hey, why is there an star next to Togepi's name? Well, we need to keep track of your starter Pokemon(s). This will be explained a bit later. Right now, it is time to focus on Pokemon counters, abilities and moves. Most Pokemon have three counters: an Evolution Counter that keeps track of their growth, a Dream World Counter that eventually unlocks Dream World ability, and a Move Counter which can be used to purchase moves. Needless to say, if you bought a Pokemon that does not evolve or gain a Dream World ability, you do not need to add the respective counter. Two-stage Pokemon start out with 0/6 EC, and three-stage Pokemon start out with 0/9 EC. Pokemon with Dream World abilities have 0/5 DC, and every Pokemon starts out with 0 MC. All of these counters will be explained later. Abilities are pretty simple. Just use this post from the Data Thread to find the abilities of your Pokemon. Remember to write down that your Dream World ability is locked. Moves are also pretty simple. Select any move that your Pokemon will learn from Lv 0 to Lv 25. Then, select any three egg and B/W TM move you wish. Veekun is the best repository for this information. If your Pokemon does not learn any egg moves, then you can choose the next three level up moves after Lv 25. One final note- be sure to put a (*) next to these moves, and only these moves, for your starter Pokemon. Why? Read on to find out (hint: It is the reason why you cannot choose Smeargle as a starter.) With all of this in mind, Togepi should look like this: Special Pokemon: There are some Pokemon that are so bizarre that they have special conditions. These Pokemon are the Rotom formes, Shedinja, Smeargle and Unown. In order to switch formes, Rotom needs to be near appliances, which would depend on the arena that it is fighting in. Appliances are most likely to be found in arenas like junkyards and cities. Unown is a special case because it can use all types of Hidden Power freely, unlike other Pokemon. In addition, Unown's Hidden Power acts a lot differently, which you can see near the bottom of this post. Shedinja is unique due to it's ability, Wonder Guard. Activating Wonder Guard enables Shedinja to be immune to NVE or neutral attacks in exchange for reducing its HP by 20. Shedinja can also use level-up moves from Nincada and Ninjask as well. Smeargle is the last special case and is completely different from any Pokemon you will use/encounter in CAPASB. First of all, Smeargle cannot be chosen as a starting Pokemon. Second of all, Smeargle can Sketch and use any level-up (to Lv 25), egg and B/W TM moves that your starter Pokemon knows (this is why we need you to mark those moves with an asterisk.) Finally, Smeargle has 3 "Permanent Sketch Slots." It can use these slots to permanently sketch and copy a move that it has seen in a battle. Smeargle can also convert its Move Counters into Permanent Sketch Slots. Terminology and Mechanics (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Terminology and Mechanics (open) Terminology and Mechanics (close) Since your team has been completed, you are probably eager to jump into battles, but hold on! Before you start to participate (or ref) matches, you need to understand the terminologies and mechanics in ASB. This can become very long and confusing, so this guide will only give a basic overview of the mechanics. You can always refer to the CAP ASB Data Thread for more in-depth information. Also, keep in mind that the mechanics can change from time to time since ASB is relatively new and there are things that need to be balanced. Rounds and Actions: Round: A Round is generally composed of two or three actions depending on the battle format. In each Round, players alternate their actions. Rounds end prematurely only in the case where all Pokemon on every side of the field except one are knocked out. Effects that are based on Rounds (Weather, Field Effects) are weaker in Triples+ Battles, while effects that are based on Actions (Magnet Rise, Taunt) are stronger. Action: An Action is an Attack, Command, or Combination that is executed during a Round. Because of the massive variation in attacks, the actual time to complete a single action is not bounded. If you must have a standard of time, ask yourself if an attack could be executed to completion within 20 seconds. The overwhelming majority of Attacks, Commands, and Combinations comfortably fit in this timeframe. Combinations combine two Attacks into one Action, and cause the second Action to be spent doing nothing. What few exceptions usually involve using physical contact attacks by slow Pokemon over great distances. A Pokemon with 35 Spe is unlikely to be able to Brick Break an opponent 20m away, however a Pokemon with 125 Spe should not have such an issue, unless the attack is very powerful or complicated, like a Focus Punch. Tokens and Counters: As you start to battle and participate in the ASB forum, you will eventually earn "counters" (also refered to as "tokens".) Counters are a form of currency with which you can purchase stuff, and different counters allow you to obtain different things. Pokemon: Most Pokemon have these counters: Evolution Counters, DreamWorld Counters, and Move Counters. Evolution Counters allow a two-stage Pokemon to evolve when they have 6 counters, and three-stage Pokemon to evolve into their second and third forms when they aquire 4 and 9 counters, respectedly. DreamWorld counters allow a Pokemon to unlock their Dream World ability, if any, once they have 5 of those. Finally, Move counters allows a Pokemon to learn new moves. (nb: what is the new list pertaining to the cost of moves?) Also, Pokemon earn a KO counter everytime they KO another Pokemon in battle. This counter can be converted to any one of the three counters mentioned above. Trainer: Trainers can have a variety of counters. The most common ones out there are Trainer counters and Referee counters. Trainer counters enable you to purchase new Pokemon and Berries. Referee counters can be converted into Trainer, Move, Evolution or DreamWorld counters. There are also other counters there as well, which usually deal with Role Playing threads (eg. if you participate in the Dojo, you will earn Dojo counters). Moves, STABS and Abilities Moves, abilities and STAB effects are fairly easy to comprehend. The "energy cost" of moves basically acts like a Pokemon's PP. When Pokemon start to battle, they start out with 100% energy, and that decreases as they start to use moves. You can use three moves during a round. Each move will take up 1 action (you get three actions every round). Some abilities need to, or can be ,activated or deactivated, while other abilities are always active and cannot be shut down. The Data Thread tells you which ability has these properties. Natures add or take away a star from a Pokemon's original stat (natures that affect speed increase or decrease it by 15%). For example, go back to the Togepi example above. Normally, Togepi's ASB stats are 90 / 1 / 3 / 2 / 3 / 20. However, it has a Quiet nature, so its Special Attack increases by one star, and its speed decreases by 15%. Its stats are now 90 / 1 / 3 / 3 / 3 / 17. Stat Boosts and Drops: Stat Boosts and drops can become confusing, especially for new referees. All stat boosts and drops last for at least two actions. If a stat is boosted/dropped on the first action of a round, it will remain that way and slowly move back to zero at the end of every round, until it becomes neutral. Any boost/drops used in the second action will slowly revert to zero on the end of the next round. Finally, boost/drops on the third action will be applied on the next round and revert to zero at the end. For example, say that I have an Absol. If I use Swords Dance on the first action of a round, Absol will have +2 Attack until the end of the third action, where it will drop to +1. Then, on the third action of the next round (a.k.a. the end of the round), it will drop to 0. If Swords Dance is used on the second action, Absol remains at +2 until end of the next round, where it becomes +1 (and then 0 at the end of the next next round). Now, if I use Swords Dance on the third action, Absol will not immediately get to +2. On the beginning of the next round, however, it will, and this boost lasts until the end of said round. This post has more examples. Status Conditions: Status effects (more information can be found in the middle of this post play a major role in ASB battles. Unlike the cartridge games, Pokemon can have multiple status conditions at once, so take note of this! The only permanent status effects are Burn, Poison and Toxic Poison. There are several degrees of burn, which are inflicted by different moves. All burns deal 2 - 3 damage per action and lower the power of physical moves. Poison deals 2 damage every turn flat, whereas Toxic Poison starts out with 1 damage per action, and increases every round by 1 until it reaches 5 damage per action. Other effects are temporarily. Paralysis, Sleep, Confusion and Attraction also have various stages of severity. Torment, Taunt, and Leech Seed all last for 6 actions flat. Freeze is very unique in ASB. It is almost impossible to completely freeze a Pokemon, but individual body parts can be frozen. For example, I may wish to freeze the legs of a Scolipede so that it slows down, or the wings of a Crobat so it cannot fly anymore. Arenas (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Arenas (open) Arenas (close) Now that you know roughly how your in-game experience translates into the ASB, it's time to learn about the infinitely diverse number of places you can hold your battle. Aside from the Pokémon, arenas are the single most important part of any ASB battle. From the generic Indigo Stadium to Nuclear Missile Silos to the open ocean, every type of arena is playable in ASB. Every arena can always be used to your advantage, but there are always a few general things to think about in every arena. The first is the most simple: terrain. Is there water, or is it entirely dry? If it has any water, most water attacks can be employed, and water Pokémon are at a distinct advantage. If not, the opposite is true. Even more subtle things, such as sand and grass, can also be tossed in the air or lit on fire, respectively, changing the pace of the battle. The second major thing to be considered is weather. While it isn’t quite as powerful as it is in competitive play, only a fool would dare to ignore its power. If it is permanently raining, water Pokémon will be that much more powerful, while Fire types are going to have a tough time. Sun, Sand, and even Hail can also potentially make a seemingly impossible situation winnable. This is important, as arenas very frequently have some sort of permanent weather, and it should always be considered when designing an arena to aid your Pokémon. The third major thing to consider is the evasiveness allowed by the arena. While Indigo Stadium may not offer much cover, a rocky field or dark cave offers plenty of options for hiding, allowing certain death to be avoided in some cases, and even forcing the opponent into being unable to attack at times. So, now that you know about arenas, it’s time to touch on making the most of them. The challenger of a battle should always build the arena around his Pokémon. If his Pokémon are all fast, frail fire types, he may want to seriously consider a rocky field in the sun to provide for evasive actions and a boost to fire moves. If one wants to use an aquatic Pokémon, a pool in the arena is almost necessary. While a Pokémon can be powerful in its own right, and a strategy can be amazing without abusing an arena, the best players will always keep the arena in mind, and constantly be aware of how it is working for and against them. Battle Rules (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Battle Rules (open) Battle Rules (close) Each battle has multiple settings that will determine which strategies will be effective in the arena. The Battle Tower houses all the information for these elements. Here are the normal parameters for a battle. Battle Format: Battle Format consists of two elements: the number of Pokemon and the kind of battle. For example, 3v3 Doubles is a Doubles format match where each side has 3 Pokemon. The Battle Format is selected by the match seeker. Disqualification (DQ) Time: The Disqualification or DQ Time is the amount of time each player is given to respond to the post of the previous battler or the referee. It is usually expressed in Days and is most commonly 2 or 3 days. A DQ is an expectation of the agreed-to pace of the match, if a player or referee goes beyond the DQ time, efforts should be made to contact and remind them before taking any action on the battle. Disqualification time is set by the match seeker. Recovery Restrictions: While an Arena might restrict certain moves based on Arena physics, Recovery Moves are also often restricted in battle. Recovery Restrictions apply to direct recovery moves and chills, with the most common setting being 2 Recovery and 5 Chills per Pokemon. Recovery Restrictions are set to avoid endless battles or stall wars. Recovery Restrictions are set by the match seeker. Switch Method: The Switch Method is chosen by the challenger and dictates whether switching will be an option in the battle or not. Switching has its own rules to govern its use listed in the Battle Tower. Ability Mode: The Ability Mode is chosen by the challenger and dictates how many abilities will apply in each Pokemon. The three modes are All Abilities, One Ability, and No Ability. Item Mode: The Item Mode is chosen by the challenger and dictates whether items will be allowed. Basic Battling (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Basic Battling (open) Basic Battling (close) Now that you know where you'll be fighting and why it's important, it's time to learn a few battling basics. HP and Energy: Each Pokemon has its own individual HP stat, but every Pokemon has 100 Energy. HP is lost when your opponent strikes you with a damaging attack. Energy is lost as you launch your own attacks or set up defenses. If either HP or Energy reach zero your Pokemon is knocked out. HP is fairly straightforward. Therefore the first basic skill to master is energy management. There is a penalty for using consecutive attacks of the same name over and over again called the consecutive move penalty. Each time you repeat an attack, four energy is added to the cost multiplied by each consecutive use. Thus an attack that costs 6 energy normally will cost 10 on its second consecutive use, 14 on its third consecutive use, 18 on the fourth consecutive use, and so on. Mixing up your attack pattern thus not only makes the battle more engaging, it also preserves your energy. CAP ASB has a special command that can restore energy called a Chill. Chills restore 12 Energy each and like Recovery moves are usually limited as part of the match rules. Attacks and Commands: Attacks are not the only possible actions a Pokemon can make. Once mastered, commands can be a powerful tool to turn an unfavorable match around. While commands rarely do damage, they often invoke creativity and at an advanced level can use use an opponent's biology against them. Consider every aspect of your Pokemon and your opponent, including their physical dimensions and characteristics. Also consider the nature of the arena and any surrounding objects that might expand your options. Commands are difficult because they are not explicit, but are a vital skill to build. Three commands have been officially recognized. Chill is recognized above as a means to regain Energy, and the other command is Dodge. Dodge is generally less reliable than Protect but has applications for speedy pokemon and especially Pokemon with +Spe natures. Bodyblock can be used in multiple battles, and it allows larger Pokemon to take hits for smaller ones during a round. Attack Management: CAP ASB utilizes a progressive move learning system. Most Pokemon start with all the Level-Up attacks that species (and any of its previous forms) learns up to Level 25, as well as 3 Egg Moves and 3 BW TMs. There are exceptions, and those are listed in the Registration Thread. This means most Pokemon will start with a very limited movepool. New Attacks are earned by battling and earning Move Counters. There is no limit to how many attacks a Pokemon can learn, the only requirement is that the Pokemon must have had the attack at some point in its history. Thus why attacks gained in previous generations are available, but more expensive than moves learned in the current generation. It will usually take 3 or 4 battles for most Pokemon to flesh out their movepools with strong STABs, coverage moves, and standard defensive options. Afterwards choices become less clear and result in each Pokemon, even of the same species, being quite different from each other outside Level-Up Movepools. Always remember that while CAP ASB is built towards an offensive metagame, in a neutral matchup it will take between 3-5 rounds for a Pokemon to be knocked out, leaving plenty of room for different strategies or small mistakes. Focusing solely on attacks can leave your Pokemon open to status, while focusing on niche moves can make your offense too weak for all but the most favorable matches. Finally, remember that Attacks in CAP ASB have to function in a realistic physics environment. Weather doesn't generally work indoors, you can't Surf where there is no water to create the wave, and if your Pokemon doesn't bring it's own grass, using Grass Knot will be difficult. Ground-type attacks that use mud or bones instead of Seismic activity can hit Pokemon other than Flying types. Attacks that are strong and reliable in-game face a myriad of counter-strategies or arena limitations they wouldn't run into in a straight game interpretation. Furthermore there are no attacks that take up two actions; attacks like Solarbeam, Sky Attack, and Dig instead operate in a much smaller timeframe and only take one action to execute. Most commonly certain elements of their priority are effected, much like Focus Punch in-game has an early charging message and the attack comes later. Prize Claiming (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Prize Claiming (open) Prize Claiming (close) Once you've engaged in a battle, win or lose, your Pokemon will grow and you will have a chance to pick up new Pokemon. All you have to do is post up your battle in the Prize Claiming thread, then apportion your Evolution, Move, Dream, and KO Counters. You can also use your Trainer Counters to claim a new Pokemon. For example, if you just won a 1v1, you'll have 2 TC and the Pokemon you used will have 1 EC, 2 MC, and 1 DC. Lets take our friend Eggball from earlier: After you update your Pokemon with your rewards, this will be your adjusted Pokemon: Note that you spent the MC, so your MC counter is still zero, while your EC is 2 and your DC is 1 from the application of your battle rewards. In addition, the new moves aren't starting moves, so you don't need to asterisk them. You still have 2 TC, so you could claim a new Pokemon if you wanted. If you choose not to, you can stockpile your TC in your trainer profile and spend it later. While most Pokemon are 2 TC, some pokemon cost more, and you will need to engage in longer battles or several small battles in order to claim them. But let's continue with our example and use our 2 TC to claim a friend for Eggball. Remember that since this isn't a starter Pokemon, you don't have to put asterisks next to its starting moves. Once you've done that, you will need an approval from the approval staff, and they you can use Eggball and Eggbasket in your next match with their updated moves. Role Playing (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Role Playing (open) Role Playing (close) Role Playing is another fun activity you can enjoy in CAP ASB if you're looking for some downtime or a challenge for one of your Pokemon. Make sure to read each Role Playing thread thoroughly, as the owners have gone through a lot of trouble to set up their RPs and they each have very specific rules for entry and availability. Be patient, their may be a queue for players. Once in an RP, do your best. You will often be presented with scenarios that require a much different approach to battling than you are used to, and it can take some time to adjust to the altered ruleset. Just keep your wits about you and you should have no difficulty navigating these exciting games. IRC (Move your mouse to reveal the content) IRC (open) IRC (close) CAPASB has an official channel on IRC, #capasb. If you have any questions, are looking for battles, or you need a place to hang out, #capasb is friendly place to get to know some of the stronger players and the forum leaders. We're always open for anyone with mIRC or any IRC applet to join. Additionally a couple of scripts have been made for the IRC channel that you can use to quickly access information from the Data Audit Thread. Just remember the ground rules: 1. No Spamming 2. No Flooding 3. No Flaming/Trolling other users 4. No illegal/explicit material 5. Write in English 6. Foul language is discouraged, but not prohibited. Feel free to enter and be at home. Battle Techniques: Advanced Tactics (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Advanced Tactics (open) Advanced Tactics (close) Now that you know the basics, you might be ready to join right in and be ready to win matches. However, Smogon isn’t called “competitive” for nothing, and that spirit extends into CAP ASB. Everybody wants to win-and most people will take advantage of anything they can, sometimes even enemy naiveté. You can fight back, however. First of all, realize that even if CAP ASB is more “flavor-based” and “custom” than standard OU, not all Pokémon are necessarily equal, and the criteria for strength in CAP ASB are not the same as those of competitive play. Many moves are changed to reduce illogical situations, and boosting moves, while strong, are massively nerfed. Speed isn’t as much of a factor, and stats are normalized. Realize that while Blaziken and Moody Smeargle are Uber in competitive play, neither truly sees much play in CAPASB. Secondly, ALWAYS make sure you know what you’re getting into. Check your opponent’s team THOROUGHLY if you want to accept a challenge. What mons might he try using against you? What moves do they run, which ones (damaging and non-damaging alike) could critically affect you? Always make sure you can handle most scenarios of a challenge if you accept it. Don’t make stupidly biased arenas that nobody without extreme guts, general naiveté, or just the right things to conquer you would accept, but certainly give yourself a little home advantage (such as reducing the energy cost of certain tactics you like to abuse slightly or placing arena-based restrictions on moves such as Earthquake, Fly, and Surf.) Never underestimate an enemy, always check EVERYTHING. Never use Will O' Wisp on a Pokemon with Guts, never use Electric-type moves on a Pokemon with LightningRod. Thirdly, when choosing your own Pokemon that are intended to win, don’t merely look based on power. Look at the Pokemon as a whole. All-out attacking might be effective if you can hit the enemy for 4x effective damage or powerful 2x effective hits, but you aren’t always getting a favorable type matchup. Does your Pokemon have many powerful coverage moves? What restrictions affect its moves (i.e. Surf requiring a water source, Dig requiring ground able to be tunneled)? Additionally, you have to consider things like “how does this Pokémon support my team?” Finally, due to the fact it’s rare you will ever even see a true OHKO in CAP ASB, hindering the opponent’s ability to attack can be more useful than actually attacking when you have a bad type matchup. Disable, Imprison, and Encore are far more powerful in ASB than in the cartridges, as they help control what moves the opponent can use and hit you with, and when. Toxic and Protect are amazing, the former for putting the opponent on a timer and the latter for stopping critical enemy attacks. Substitute gives fast Pokémon an opportunity to block status…you get the idea. Finally, know how to lose well. If you didn’t win, then chances are usually that the opponent had a good strategy, or you had a bad one. Or both. If you notice a really good build or move winning against you, pack something that can counteract it (i.e. Taunt versus Imprison/Encore/Disable), or better yet, pack it yourself. Don’t fret about losing if you can learn from it. CAP ASB may be competitive, but it’s not like there’s a leader board. Even some vets have long losses. An encapsulation of all of these traits are given in the following example: In BW OU, Excadrill is a massive offensive force with crushing attacks and impossibly high speed. Just add Sandstorm and start winning. Steelix on the other hand continues to be condemned to the depths of UU with each generation. CAP ASB's rules level the playing field significantly. | Excadrill Vs. Steelix | | HP: 110 | HP: 100 Atk: Rank 5 | Atk: Rank 3 Def: Rank 2 | Def: Rank 8 SpA: Rank 2 | SpA: Rank 2 SpD: Rank 3 | SpD: Rank 3 Spe: 88 | Spe: 30 Size Class: 1 | Size Class: 7 Weight Class: 3 | Weight Class: 8 Base Rank Total: 19 | Base Rank Total: 21 Sand Force | Rock Head Sand Rush | Sturdy Mold Breaker (DW) | Sheer Force (DW) On paper this is a pretty even match stat and ability wise. Much more even than in-game, where Steelix's massive defense is basically overkill and it can't really muster a huge offense, especially with its dismal speed. Both Pokemon retain their basic characteristics. Excadrill in sand is still a nightmarish offensive Pokemon, especially in all abilities where it can gain extra power, speed, and the ability to crack through Ability-based immunities. For its part Steelix is extremely sturdy and its ability gives it much more offensive versatility. They further diverge in that they play completely differently in doubles matches, where Steelix's massive size allows allies to take cover behind it and use its excellent defenses and resistances. Excadrill on the other hand can Bodyblock for fairly small Pokemon, but it fares much better in singles where in Sandstorm its small size and huge speed make it very effective at using Dodge. The key difference between the two, and what makes Steelix so much stronger as a candidate for an ASB Team is the unlimited number of moves that can be learned and used by the Pokemon. Steelix has a vast movepool, much of which is boosted by Sheer Force. Its support options are also excellent, and it has moves that work excellently in singles as well as doubles. Excadrill on the other hand is a very bread-and-butter, slice-and-dice attacker. Once you get its coverage moves taken care of, its only really support role is as a Rapid Spinner and a weather starter. This is not to say Excadrill is bad or that you should not get one, it is simply to illustrate all the differences between the in-game metagame and what brings favorable results to an ASB match. Excadrill is a lot easier to build than Steelix, but Steelix is much more menacing in the long run. Combination Attacks (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Combination Attacks (open) Combination Attacks (close) One striking difference between ASB and in-game battles are the existence of Combination Attacks (Combos). Combos are effectively multiple moves joined together. They take a bit more energy, but can be very rewarding. One key part of creating a combo is that the moves must make sense together. For instance, a combo of Water Pulse and Fire Blast would not work, since the two attacks are completely different moves with no complimentary features. One combination that might work in theory is to combine Twister with Gust to make the twister spin a lot faster. This might do more damage, and might have a larger effect on the arena surface. If you wish to talk to a referee before making a combo move to see if they believe it would work, then PM them or come onto IRC on channel #capasb, where you can talk to referees and other players. Combos have three drawbacks to be aware of: After a combination attack, you do nothing for a number of actions equal to the number of moves in that combo, minus one. Meaning after a two move combo, you do nothing on the next action. Combination Attacks distort priority beyond that of normal actions. A Combination Attack of two Priority: 0 moves will have a -2 priority on its Hit. A combination of a Priority: 1 or Priority: 2 move with a Priority: 0 move will add Priority: 1 to the attack, but will only increase Base Attack Power by half the Priority: 1 attack's amount (e.g. Mach Punch + Fire Punch will have 10 BAP, not 12.) The only other odd priority combination are attacks combined with negative priority moves. These will have the BP of the Priority: 1 or Priority: 0 Attack and reduce the priority of the entire attack combination to -7, lower than moves like Circle Throw and Dragon Tail. (ex. Icicle Crash + Avalanche will have 10.5 Base Attack Power, which will double to 21 if the user is hit. Mach Punch + Focus Punch can clear distances with a +1 priority on reaching proximity with the target, but will only have 17 Base Attack Power when it strikes) Every move in a combination attack counts towards the three action limit per round. This means that you can't use a combo on the third action of a singles/doubles round (3 actions) or the second of a triples/larger round (3) Three actions combos cannot be used, due to them being a) too difficult to effectively codify, and b) slightly implausible in terms of cramming three moves into one. Creativity (Move your mouse to reveal the content) Creativity (open) Creativity (close) Recently, there seems to be a small but growing problem among battles, and that is a lack of creativity. Some trainers are simply spamming three different attacks every round, which is incredibly boring to ref and/or play against. Furthermore, matches called speed battles are starting to pop up. Speed battles are bland matches that are played simply to earn tokens. These battles take away creativity from ASB and are not tolerated under any conditions. So, how exactly can you make your matches more creative? Simple: use your imagination! Players need to remember that battling in ASB is a lot more different from battling in the video games. In fact, you should watch a couple of matches from the anime to get ideas. Use moves in new and interesting ways! For example, moves like Vine Whip and String Shot can be used as a lasso to get out of sticky situations. A powerful Cross Chop can be used to destroy an incoming Rock Slide. Ice Beam can be used to freeze an opponent's leg so that they are rendered immobile. Gust and Whirlwind could blow away "powder" attacks like Stun Spore and Sleep Powder (Fire also works). Sonicboom can be used to block the noise of moves such as Yawn and Perish Song. The sky is the limit! Just be aware that if you use an attack for a custom purpose it may lose some of its damaging or additional properties in the process. A Roar used to block another sound for example will have the priority of a normal attack, but will not reset the opponent's stats. Arenas also play a major role in matches, whether they are simple or elaborate. Pokemon can use various objects, like trees or boulders, to hide behind. They can intentionally try to ram or push their foe into hazardous objects. A lake or moat could be hit with an Electric-type attack to fry anything in it, or an Ice-type attack to freeze it over. Grassy arenas can be set on fire to send the whole thing a-blaze. One final note- if there is any dispute when it comes to creativity, the referee's word is usually law. However, if a battler still vehemently disagrees with the ref, he or she should come to #capasb to settle the dispute. Important Link Compendium: Registration Tower Battle Tower Referee Training Grounds Prize Claiming Thread Data Audit Thread Referee Tutoring Program Arena Compendium Trading Thread Guide Maintenance: Essential information: Vision and Mission WRITTEN - Deck Knight Navigating the Forum WRITTEN - Deck Knight How to get started (Registration thread) WRITTEN - Limewire Terminology/Mechanics WRITTEN - Limewire Arenas WRITTEN - Rediamond Battle Rules WRITTEN- Deck Knight Basic Battling WRITTEN- Deck Knight Prize Claiming WRITTEN - Deck Knight RPing WRITTEN - Deck Knight IRC WRITTEN -Deck Knight Battle Techniques: Advanced Tactics WRITTEN - tortferngatr Combo moves WRITTEN - dogfish44 Creativity WRITTEN - Limewire Feel free to suggest something be added. Note that whatever you write must still be approved by the committee before it will be considered an official part of the guide. Anybody is welcome to post in this thread. I encourage new ASBers to give their opinions about what they fell should be in the guide. Currently, there are many different threads in the CAP ASB Forum. All of these threads include information necessary to those who want to get started with ASB. In this thread, our goal is to create a CAP ASB guide that encompasses all important parts of ASB. This guide should include information form how to join CAP ASB to being a successful battler. Eventually, this guide will go in the Smog, hopefully in Issue #16. What is going to go in this article? 1. How to get started in CAP ASB (i.e. Registration Thread) 2. Terminology/Mechanics (Energy, Stats etc.) 3. How battles work (Battle tower thread, Arenas, refs) 4. How to collect prizes (Counters, Prize Claiming thread) 5. Possibly RPing thread based on how far we get with them 6. IRC (#CAPASB is awesome) What you can do: 1. Suggest what should be put in the guide 2. Give your opinion on the following question 3. Write a part of the article Should information about reffing be included in this guide? Will including information about reffing be to complex/intimidating for newcomers?