Combining of Formes: A Comprehensive Stats-Counting Policy

Honko

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#51
I don't think it makes sense to separately tier the forme changes that are volatile and reversible (stuff like Aegislash, Meloetta, and Castform). Outside of the aesthetic changes (which I think we all agree should be irrelevant to tiering), I don't see much conceptual difference between these forme changes and the effects of regular stat-changing and type-changing moves that many Pokemon without alternate formes can use.

Some scenarios to illustrate what I mean:
A) Aegislash uses Shadow Ball, increasing its offensive stats and decreasing its defensive stats. It can use King's Shield to revert the changes. If it switches out, the changes are lost and it must use Shadow Ball again to get them back.
B) Omastar uses Shell Smash, increasing its offensive stats and decreasing its defensive stats. It can use Haze to revert the changes. If it switches out, the changes are lost and it must use Shell Smash again to get them back.

A) Castform uses Rain Dance, changing its type to Water. If it switches out and then comes back in 10 turns later, the changes are lost and it must use Rain Dance again to get them back.
B) Starmie uses Camoflauge, changing its type to Normal. If it switches out and then comes back in 10 turns later, the changes are lost and it must use Camoflauge again to get them back.

A) Meloetta uses Relic Song, changing both its stats and typing. If it switches out, the changes are lost and it must use Relic Song again to get them back.
B) Ditto uses Transform against a Meloetta, changing both its stats and typing. If it switches out, the changes are lost and it must use Transform again to get them back.
C) In Gen VII, GameFreak changes Geomancy to also give the user Fairy/Ground typing. Smeargle uses Geomancy, changing both its stats and typing. If it switches out, the changes are lost and it must use Geomancy again to get them back.

I propose that a forme change only be tiered separately if it involves a stat and/or typing change AND it is non-volatile, by which I mean if the Pokemon switches out while in a particular forme, it will ALWAYS remain in that forme when it switches back in, regardless of weather or other external field conditions.

Aegislash, Meloetta, and Castform would each be tiered as a single Pokemon because their forme changes can be reverted by switching out or external field conditions changing. Megas, primals, Shaymin, and Darmanitan would have their formes tiered separately, because they always switch in as whatever forme they last switched out as.
 

Antar

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#52
Honko, been mulling over your post, and I think I can live with that. It makes the Hackmons rules a bit weird, since AegiBlade and similar are non-volatile under the right conditions, but it's not that bad.

Basically:
  • Aegislash-Shield (non-stance-change) -> Aegislash
  • Aegislash-Shield, Aegislash-Blade -> Aegislash
  • Aegislash-Blade -> Aegislash-Blade
That works for me if there are no objections!
 

Antar

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#53
Honko, just confirming: the only "volatile formes" right now are the castforms, cherrim-sunshine, meloetta-p, aegislash-blade and transformed ditto, correct?
 

Antar

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#54
Okay, so I think we're good on the subject of what formes get combined (nonvolatile only, and only if type and/or stats differ), but naming is still an open question.

Forget the X/Y megas, how does differentiate between the following?
  1. Venusaur
  2. Venusaur, Venusaur-Mega
  3. Venusaur-Mega (hackmons)
My proposal:
  1. Venusaur
  2. Venusaur-Mega
  3. Mega-Venusaur
To extend to the X/Y megas, now we can specify:
  • Charizard-Mega-X, Charizard-Mega-Y -> Mega-Charizard-Y-Mega-X
Darm also fits this pattern:
  1. Darmanitan -> Darmanitan
  2. Darmanitan, Darmanitan-Zen -> Darmanitan-Zen
  3. Darmanitan-Zen -> Zen-Darmanitan
Beyond megas, I'm thinking I'll handle concatenated-forme-naming on a case-by-case basis, with the general principle being the simplest formes will be the ones that can exist outside Hackmons

So:
  • Castform without Forecast will be Castform-No-Weather
  • Aegislash will refer to stance-changing Aegislash, Aegislash-Shield will refer to Aegislash without Stance Change, Aegislash-Blade to Hackmons Aegislash without King's Shield or Stance Change
  • Shaymin-Sky reverts to Shaymin in any tier, so "Shaymin + Shaymin-Sky" will be called "Shaymin-Sky" (and "just Shaymin-Sky" will raise an error)
I'll try to get a comprehensive list up at some point, but nomenclature to me is far less important an issue than forme combination.
 

Antar

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#55
Wait... that last part is exactly wrong based on Honko's post (which I agreed with):

  • Castform without Forecast and Castform with Forecast are both just Castform, although the weather types without Forecast are treated separately
  • Similar with Aegislash. AS and AS+AB both map to Aegislash. Hackmons Aegislash-Blade without Stance Change maps to Aegislash-Blade.
  • Similar with Meloetta
 

Marty

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#56
Megas, primals, Shaymin, and Darmanitan would have their formes tiered separately, because they always switch in as whatever forme they last switched out as.
Just to clarify, this isn't actually true for Darmanitan. Zen Mode only activates at the end of the turn, right between Flame Orb/Toxic Orb activation and fainted Pokemon being replaced. Darmanitan always switches in in Standard Mode, has to wait until the end of that turn, and has to be at <= 1/2 HP to change to Zen Mode. So due to the timing I mentioned, if you switch it in as a replacement for a fainted Pokemon, it has to wait the entire next turn to change formes even if it was at <= 1/2 HP the whole time. Truly the worst.
 

Honko

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#58
Antar, I would consider D-Zen volatile based on what Marty said. I was not aware of how Zen Mode worked when I included it with the megas/primals in my post.

Other than that it looks to me like you have everything covered in your list of volatile formes.
 

Karxrida

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#59
It was revealed yesterday that Ash-Greninja changes forme based on an exclusive ability that triggers when it KOs a Pokémon, and it's implied that itnretains the forme even if it switches out. How would we tier this?
 
#60
It was revealed yesterday that Ash-Greninja changes forme based on an exclusive ability that triggers when it KOs a Pokémon, and it's implied that itnretains the forme even if it switches out. How would we tier this?
I would tier its forms separately.

Greninja -> Greninja;
Greninja, Ash-Greninja -> Ash-Greninja
Ash-Greninja -> Greninja-Ash

We would have just to treat "Greninja + Battle Bond = Ash-Greninja" in non-hackmons formats, as the ability is like a mega stone.
We can also justify the diversity from Darmanitan-Zen with the huge difference of non-volatile status, since it's what most matters, and makes it more similar to megas rather than Darmanitan.
 

Antar

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#61
Karxrida, does it have different stats or typing? If no, they get tiered together.

Prague Kick, I'm still not completely sold on tiering DZ together with non-Zen Darmanitan. I'm thinking it over. Luckily, it's a one-line code change, either way.
 
#62
Karxrida, does it have different stats or typing? If no, they get tiered together.
We will see that (and something else, I hope) on SM Demo that will get released on October 18th.

and yeah, I know right, but personally I'd still tier volatile forms together since you can't define the moment in which the alternative form "prevails" on the regular one, in order to let you be sure on tiering it as alternative form.

Fact is that you can even tier it separately, but there will be a discrepancy with Meloetta-P and Aegislash-B. I mean, they both change stats (Melo changes typing too) and they can both revert to regular form. While other forms as megas and Ash-Greninja rely on trainer choose to carry Mega Stone or Battle Bond, and once they change form they can't turn them back on regular one, Darmanitan/Melo/others can always turn back on theirs. So what would be the criteria that distinguishes Darmanitan-Z from Meloetta-P and others? And how much important should it be, to allow this "discrepancy"?

Only thing that comes to my mind is that Meloetta can "swap" between its forms, as Aegislash/Castform/Cherrim would do, while Darmanitan-Zen has to switch in order to get its regular form back.
 
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Bughouse

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#63
Darmanitan-Zen has to switch in order to get its regular form back.
Nope, Darmanitan-Zen reverts to Darmanitan if its health goes above 50% again. So it can just automatically revert if its holding a recovery item or can trigger it using Rest.
 
#64
Nope, Darmanitan-Zen reverts to Darmanitan if its health goes above 50% again. So it can just automatically revert if its holding a recovery item or can trigger it using Rest.
Oh didn't know that. So what's the criteria for tiering Darmanitan-Zen differently from every other volatile form?
 

Antar

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#65
So what's the criteria for tiering Darmanitan-Zen differently from every other volatile form?
Because it's less volatile than any of the other volatile formes. But I'll probably end up tiering it together. Just giving myself some space to think on it.
 

Theorymon

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#67
Yeah I know its... early for anything resembling Pokemon Sun and Moon policy, but the demo datamining from earlier this month has brought up a potentially strange little case study for us to ponder!

So as many of you know, Greninja is getting a new form called Ash-Greninja, which it becomes after getting a KO with the Battle Bond ability (which also gives a 1.5 boost to Water Shuriken btw). However, from the datamining, a weird catch has been found: Greninja with Battle Bond is considered a whole new forme itself by the game! This is probably how Gamefreak bans Ash Greninja in battle spot, they just ban Greninja Battle Bond forme.

This means there are three Greninja forms: regular Greninja with Torrent and Protean, Battle Bond Greninja who can ONLY have Battle Bond as an ability, and Ash Greninja.

To make things a bit weirder, Battle Bond Greninja can only have a Hardy nature. So unless the game gives us another one or there is a way to change natures in Sun and Moon, its stuck with Hardy!

So I wanted to pose a question: should we tier them separately or not? I can see arguments for both.

Reasons to tier them separately

-The game considers them to be two different kinds of Greninja, so they shouldn't be tiered together.

-Since Battle Bond Greninja may be locked into being Hardy, it will in a sense, have different stats compared to regular Greninja with better natures.

-Antar's thread on forme change would classify Battle Bond Greninja in a similar way to Meloetta-P and Zen Mode Darmitan, thus they would be counted separately in usage, providing more incentive to tier them differently.

Reasons to tier them together

-The game may consider Greninja and Battle Bond Greninja to be separate formes, but that's just a fancy way of giving Greninja a third ability while banning Ash-Greninja in Battle Spot. We should consider them the same Pokemon because they have the same stats.

-Battle Bond Greninja may be locked into a Hardy nature, but that isn't new for special Pokemon. For example, Eruption Heatran is locked into a Quiet nature, yet we don't tier that separately from regular Heatran.


There may be some other arguments I'm forgetting. Sorry if this is too early or if this kind of stuff was already discussed in another thread, I just figured it might be a good idea to bring this up before Sun and Moon take over our lives!
 
#69
Iirc they have different base stats. We treat them as separate formes if they have different base stats (rotom formes).
Ash-Greninja has different stats, not Battle-Bond-Greninja. The question is: should we tier Battle-Bond-Greninja as a different mon than Torrent/Protean Greninja (the regular one who can't change form to Ash-Greninja)?

My two cents: we should just consider Ash-Greninja as Battle-Bond-Greninja since it's the only one Greninja who could transform to Ash-Greninja. I know that Battle-Bond-Greninja can run Torrent (how can you obtain it though?) but at that point it would be a regular Greninja with the only exception it has to run Hardy nature. So: just tier them separately.
 

atomicllamas

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#72
Ash-Greninja has different stats, not Battle-Bond-Greninja. The question is: should we tier Battle-Bond-Greninja as a different mon than Torrent/Protean Greninja (the regular one who can't change form to Ash-Greninja)?

My two cents: we should just consider Ash-Greninja as Battle-Bond-Greninja since it's the only one Greninja who could transform to Ash-Greninja. I know that Battle-Bond-Greninja can run Torrent (how can you obtain it though?) but at that point it would be a regular Greninja with the only exception it has to run Hardy nature. So: just tier them separately.
Oh, my bad.

If it's same stats different ability we should tier them together (just like its a third ability for a different mon). Nature lock seems irrelevant, as it's pretty typical of an event mon afaik. I probably should be more informed before I post more about this, but ash greninja v battle bond greninja seems like a mega. We should treat them (battle bond and regular) as the same unless battle bond greninja is automatically ash greninja.
 
#73
Oh, my bad.

If it's same stats different ability we should tier them together (just like its a third ability for a different mon). Nature lock seems irrelevant, as it's pretty typical of an event mon afaik. I probably should be more informed before I post more about this, but ash greninja v battle bond greninja seems like a mega. We should treat them (battle bond and regular) as the same unless battle bond greninja is automatically ash greninja.
From what we have gathered through playing the demo, Battle Bond Greninja is the only one who can change form to Ash Greninja; it only needs to KO something in order to become Ash-Greninja, and once you KO'd a mon you can't avoid the form change. So yeah, you can't manage Battle Bond Greninja to not become Ash Greninja unless you avoid to KO stuff with it (which could always happen in a battle). The only way to play Battle Bond Greninja with a theoretical Ash Greninja ban is to set a "Ash-Greninja clause" like the Rayquaza-Mega one (which allows Rayquaza to run Dragon Ascent, negating it the chance to mega evolve). This is enough for me to consider Battle Bond Greninja as an automatic Ash Greninja, therefore to consider it as a different Pokémon from regular Greninja, even though the Battle Bond form has no differences with regular Greninja bar the ability.

It would be like Sheer Force Darmanitan tiered as Darmanitan, while Zen Mode Darmanitan as Darmanitan-Zen, even though you won't let it get under 50% HP during battle.
 

Pocket

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#74
To me Battle Bond Greninja is akin to a pokemonn holding a mega stone, except its condition for mega-evolving is to KO one Pokemon. Therefore, I also agree with Prague Kick that we should tier Battle Bond Greninja separately from Protean Greninja
 

Theorymon

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#75
To me Battle Bond Greninja is akin to a pokemonn holding a mega stone, except its condition for mega-evolving is to KO one Pokemon. Therefore, I also agree with Prague Kick that we should tier Battle Bond Greninja separately from Protean Greninja
While they are similar, I believe there is one key difference: Mega evolutions can still function similarly to their base forms before mega evolving. With Ash Greninja, The Greninja form does not have torrent or protean, meaning that it loses out on something.

In other words, if the Greninja forms are tiered differently, then Battle Bond Greninja / Ash Greninja could be tiered lower than regular Greninja, which is not possible with Megas since they require the regular Pokemon.