Note: Due to lack of sleep the past few days, my memory of the Showdown is pretty Shoddy so I'll leave out info every now and then! Also, sorry for the lack of pictures! ----- I get on line around 8:30ish and get my trendy yellow bracelet. I find a place among the crowd and fire up my DS. Only 4-20 levels to go for 3/4 of my team! I talk a bit with a rather tall fellow and a guy closer to my height who came from Texas (who turns out to be CaptKirby I think). I slowly phase out of the conversation due to being too busy kicking the crap out of the Elite 4. After a few hours of waiting, they start calling out numbers for alternates. My number gets called relatively early so my trendy yellow bracelet is replaced by a not-as-trendy green bracelet. I was assigned to Flight 2 (same as XxBlueCookiesXx) and seeing as how the Junior Division battles were still going on I figured that I'd have some more waiting to do. The room was packed so I decide to see if there is any more space downstairs. After finding a place to sit down (my legs thanked me for this later), I finish the movesets of my team and decide that I'm ready. 3...2...1...GO! ----- Adamant Garchomp @ Lum Berry - Protect - Earthquake - Dragon Claw - Crunch Modest Zapdos @ Chesto Berry - Thunder Wave - Protect - Discharge - Light Screen Timid Gengar @ Black Sludge - Hypnosis - Explosion - Thunderbolt - Shadow Ball Adamant Metagross @ Leftovers - Bullet Punch - Meteor Mash - Earthquake - Explosion I was trying to make an Explosion team with Typhlosion at first but decided against it at the last minute. The Zapdos is a random one from a friend of mine (thanks man). The basic lead strategy is to take advantage of Discharge and Earthquake hitting both opponents while the partner is immune. Electric and Ground have decent type coverage on the Pokemon that I assumed would be common in this tournament plus Discharge has a 30% paralysis rate. Gengar and Metagross are great for cleaning up what my Garchomp and Zapdos can't handle. ----- Round 1: vs Spades -- Vespiquen, Raticate, ???, ??? I haven't had a double battle in about 2 years so I was pretty nervous. I shake hands with my opponent and I wish him good luck. I start out with my "safe" lead of Garchomp and Zapdos. My opponent surprises me with his lead of Vespiquen and Raticate. I decide to Protect with Garchomp and Discharge with Zapdos. Vespiquen double team my Zapdos with Super Fang and Power Gem. At this point, I felt kind of dumb for messing up my first turn like that. I end up using a combination of Dragon Claw and Discharge to take out both opponents the next turn. He brings out two replacement Pokemon which I take out in a turn or two with some Earthquake + Discharge. Round 2: vs ??? -- Flygon, Swampert, Torterra, ??? Hm...I really don't remember my opponent's name from this one and I forgot to register his friend code. Sorry. His team was mono-Ground which completely screws over the Zapdos I was leading with. Garchomp uses Dragon Claw to take down Flygon while Zapdos uses Light screen for kicks. I really can't recall any of the moves he uses except for a Muddy Watter and a Wood Hammer. I end up winning this one thanks to Garchomp and a well-timed Gengar Explosion. Round 3: vs Trista (aka SailorClef?) -- Sneasel, Typhlosion, Dusknoir, Metagross With all of these holes, this is starting to become a pretty weird warstory no? After the introductions are done with, the battle begins! I was kind of nervous going into this one as well because I noticed that she beat her opponent pretty quickly in the last round. She leads with Sneasel and Typhlosion while I start with my usual lead of Zapdos and Garchomp. Sneasel uses Ice Shard on Garchomp who used Protect while Typhlosion uses a scorching Eruption to do quite a bit of damage to Zapdos. Zapdos uses Discharge which luckily paralyzes her Typhlosion (guess I don't have to Thunder Wave next turn). She switches out her Typhlosion the next turn and this is where the details of the match become blurry again. I eventually get the win and get into the top 16. They take my game away for hack checking and I wander off somewhere. ----- The wait between my 3rd match and my 4th match was pretty long as well. During this time, I met Expert Evan and Gouki Shinkou who I kind of remembered from two years back at JAA. The Junior Division Finals were also played during this time and the match was pretty good. I wished Expert Evan and Gouki Shinkou good luck in their matches during the next round because it was obviously the most important round of the Senior Division. I also said that I'd quit lurking at Smogon for a while to write a warstory if I won. Great... ----- Round 4: vs Jimmy (aka VID30GAM3R?) -- Kingdra, Ludicolo, Latias, Qwilfish The match begins with Kingdra and Ludicolo vs Garchomp and Zapdos. I knew that a Fake Out was probably coming from Ludicolo. I decide he would probably Rain Dance because of my current Speed advantage so I try to take out Kingdra with Dragon Claw from Garchomp and Discharge from Zapdos. Ludicolo uses Fake Out on Zapdos and at this point I feel pretty good about it because Garchomp hits Kingdra with a Dragon Claw. Sadly, Kingdra survives with a little health left and Rain Dances to boost the speed of his Swift Swim Pokemon. He'll most likely go for Garchomp the next round so I Protect while Zapdos uses Discharge. He attacks Garchomp with Kingdra but it is blocked while Ludicolo used Blizzard which hits Zapdos for a little damage. Zapdos Discharges doing a little damage to both Kingdra and Ludicolo. Looking back on this, I should've risked disabling Kingdra with a Thunder Wave. Kingdra's attack hits Garchomp the next turn while Ludicolo Blizzards again. Blizzard misses Garchomp due to its poor accuracy but hits Zapdos which freezes it. At this point, I was thinking I was pretty screwed thanks to my mistakes and that freeze. Memory gets a little fuzzy here again but the rain stops as soon as Garchomp and Zapdos both faint. Gengar and Metagross take out his weakened Kingdra and Ludicolo with a Shadow Ball and a Bullet Punch. He sends out Qwilfish and Latias and the matchup doesn't look too bad at all. Gengar goes for the Shadow Ball on Latias and Metagross goes for the Earthquake on Qwilfish only to be met by a Double Protect. Next turn, Qwilfish uses Protect a second time while Latias surprisingly outspeeds my Gengar for the KO with Psychic. Metagross goes for a Meteor Mash on Latias but misses terribly. Aw nuts, things look bad again this turn. On the bright side, that means his Latias is probably max speed making it weaker defensively (or maybe it was just a Quick Claw). Metagross goes for the Meteor Mash on Latias who blocks it with Protect. Qwilfish blows up trying to take Metagross out with it but Metagross takes it like a man and survives with less than 1/6 of its health. I'm pretty sure this one was a Critical Hit because I remember getting CH'd for doom somewhere in this match and the calculations fit. Thankfully, Metagross hangs on this turn so the 2-on-1 has become a 1-on-1 (although a full health Latias vs an injured Metagross does not look good). He probably did that for fear that I would blow up my own Metagross to knock us both out of the Showdown while he could still be in a position to finish me off. Latias uses Psychic to my surprise and Metagross hangs on by a thread (thanks 4x resistance). It turns out that Latias has the moveset of Rain Dance/Thunder/Psychic/Protect and he didn't want to risk the Thunder accuracy considering the low HP my Metagross had left in the battle. Metagross finally hits his Meteor Mash and brings Latias down to about the same percentage of HP that Metagross had left last turn. Metagross Bullet Punches next turn to win this difficult match and I make it into the top 8. ----- I get congratulated by a lot of people including mysteryman and I start to feel pretty relaxed. ----- Round 5: vs ??? -- Bronzong, Togekiss, Spiritomb, Swampert My opponent and I are both battling pretty recklessly in this one and I end up facing my first Trick Room team. I switch out Garchomp with about 5 HP left a little while after the Trick Room for Metagross. Zapdos ends up only paralyzing my own while chipping away the health of his Pokemon. Metagross eventually uses Explode to leave him with Spiritomb against my Garchomp and Zapdos. Zapdos haxes Spiritomb with a CH Discharge which fully paralyzes it that same turn. Round 6: vs XxBlueCookiesXx -- Bronzong, Smeargle, Snorlax, Metagross Once the introductions are done and the leads are sent out, I know this match won't be easy at all. Smeargle Protects while Bronzong sets up the Trick Room. Garchomp and Zapdos do a little damage to Bronzong which gets me kind of nervous. I double Protect the next turn to see what he will do and waste another turn of Trick Room. He used Dark Void and Hypnosis so I know that he'll probably repeat the next turn. Dark Void hits both of my Pokemon the next turn but their berries wake them up and Bronzong misses the Hypnosis on Zapdos. Eventually it comes down to Snorlax and Metagross vs Gengar and Metagross with the Trick Room over. Metagross uses Explosion saving me from a Belly Drum Snorlax and doing enough damage to help me win the match. Surprisingly, I've made it to the finals of the Showdown. Round 7: vs ??? -- Bronzong, Smeargle, Metagross, Machamp Watch the match here: http://youtube.com/watch?v=vL98Mcj3gEs I really didn't catch the name of my opponent this time either because I was kind of nervous again. I laughed as the guy asked me if I played PBR before and I replied "No". The guy simply explains the control and the match begins. I'm feeling some deja vu as I see another Bronzong + Smeargle lead. Earthquake ends up hitting nothing while Discharge paralyzes Bronzong, activating the Lum Berry it was holding. He does the same thing as XxBlueCookiesXx and I decide to use the same strategy to wait out Trick Room that I did in the last battle. Instead of trying to sleep my Pokemon, he goes for the Endeavor and Gyro Ball combo. I don't risk the Garchomp 50% Protect for some reason so Smeargle and Bronzong knock it out while Zapdos uses Discharge to have Smeargle's Focus Sash activate and paralyze his Bronzong again. I completely forget that Bronzong can blow up as he uses the Explosion + Protect next turn which damages my Metagross and brings Zapdos close to fainting. My Zapdos only hits my own Metagross with Discharge, how nice. Our Metagross both take out the weakened partners with a Bullet Punch. We really should have used Protect with Zapdos and Smeargle and I don't know why we didn't. The Trick Room ends as Gengar and Machamp come in. Gengar abuses Machamp's No Guard with Hypnosis (risking it isn't holding Chesto Berry or knows Sleep Talk which it thankfully doesn't). Metagross uses Earthquake damaging both his Pokemon while his Metagross uses Meteor Mash on my Metagross which I felt was kind of weird. My Metagross ends up finishing off his Metagross with another Earthquake while Machamp wakes up and DynamicPunches my Metagross with kills it. Gengar abuses Machamp's No Guard again with Hypnosis which practically seals my victory. Gengar uses Shadow Ball which happens to CH and KO his Machamp. ----- After winning, I was pretty shocked that things turned out the way they did. I caught quite a few lucky breaks that day. ----- A few things I'd like to mention... -Bronzong, Smeargle, Togekiss, and Metagross were everywhere. -Metagross rocks for saving my butt in Round 4! -SailorClef using Typhlosion and Sneasel (Inner Focus) was pretty dang brilliant. I was trying to find room for Typhlosion in my team but it just didn't seem to fit. -Expert Evan or his son should've made it into the top 16! -I look half asleep in so many pictures! -I'll see you in Florida XxBlueCookiesXx! -Sorry to the few who didn't get selected as alternates. -Sorry to anyone I ignored by accident, I was spacing out a lot -Where was the pool of inflatable Pokeballs? Thanks everybody! I hope you enjoyed reading this. PS: Anybody have any advice for what to use in Florida?