Hello, my name is Philip7086. For those of you haven't heard, I was recently asked to lead Smogon's Pokemon Policy for the 5th generation. I accepted. Heading Smogon's Pokemon Policy is a huge task, though, and in the past was done by two people, not one. However, the problem with having a co-leadership is that if the two leaders disagree on something, it could become very problematic and create a road block for the entire system. This is why for 5th generation Pokemon policy, I have decided to adopt a different system of leadership. Instead of choosing a co-leader, I decided it would be better to pick a team of five people to help me with my decision making (a "brain trust" as Jabba would say, or as I like to call them, "my right hand men"). These users will be who I go to before making any judgment calls, and are people I can completely trust to be honest, logical, smart, and active. After carefully considering many users using a list of criteria I came up with, I decided on these five individuals to be a part of my policy making team (in alphabetical order): Aldaron - Aldaron has proven time and time again that he is a top notch player in any metagame he ventures into. He is also very familiar with Pokemon policy and how it has been dealt with in the past, and is not afraid to disagree with anyone. He tends to look at things from a realistic viewpoint rather than an ideological one, which is very valuable to me. Though he can sometimes get pretty heated when debating, he does not resort to irrelevant personal flames. Aldaron is one of the first people I considered as a part of this team. Earthworm - Earthworm is arguably the best battler of the 4th generation, at least from a consistency perspective. Though he tends to be shy in public venues, I speak with him in private all the time about policy issues, be it about tournaments, ban lists, or clauses. Though he's shy, he is definitely not a pushover, and will stick to what he believes is right, even if it means disagreeing with me. His history as a Tournament Director also lends him a lot of experience dealing with controversial issues. Gouki - Another user who is considered one, if not the best battler of the 4th generation. Gouki has always proven to keep a level head and will call things like he sees them. The combination of his battling prowess and his unwavering sense of justice has made him one of the most widely respected user on Smogon. Jibaku - Jibaku is one of the most active 5th gen players, experimenting with all sorts of Pokemon and strategies. Although he is not currently a Tiering Contributor, his fresh perspective will prove to be invaluable to our efforts. I have gotten into debates with Jibaku in the past, and he is one of the few users who has been able to bring a fresh idea to the table which makes me think about things differently. I like that. reachzero - reachzero was one of the leaders of the UU suspect tests in the 4th generation. He is very experienced when it comes to Pokemon policy and decision making, and always maintains a calm and collected presence. reachzero and I discuss Pokemon policy on a fairly regular basis, and whether we agree or not, we always see each other's stance at the end of the day and respect each other for it. I'm glad to have him on board. Although I selected these five users to aid me in my decision making process, I don't plan on shutting my ears (or eyes) off to everybody else. I encourage everybody to approach me if they have an issue with something, or have something they want to add. Now, onto the real purpose of this topic. As some of you have probably noticed, Smogon is currently suffering from a lack of direction. Policy topics are created almost on a whim, even when we don't really have one unified plan for it all. My job is to fix that. This topic is the first step towards getting back on track -- a course of action. Before we start setting up votes or implementing results, we need to decide how exactly we want to do things. I have outlined what I believe to be the logical and necessary chronological process to shaping the 5th generation below. Consider this course of action to be the map to our (un)charted territory. Smogon's 5th Generation Course of Action Set up definitions Redefine Smogon's Philosophy Simulator mechanics Redefine how we justify bans Re: Characteristics of a Desirable Pokemon Metagame Decide initial rules Stance on Dream World abilities Initial clauses Current votes will be applied unless they are affected by "Set up definitions" Initial Pokemon ban list Current votes will be applied unless they are affected by "Set up definitions" Set up a ladder for testing clauses (contingent on an official server being set up) Test clauses Standard ladder will use 4th generation clauses until we officially undo a clause after testing Test suspects on standard ladder Suspect nomination process similar to 4th generation's UU process will be used This is to be a continual process As we progress in shaping the 5th generation, we will be able to cross off steps on this list. Please keep in mind that this course of action is intentionally vague for now. A lot of specifics are dependent on decisions made in previous steps and will be added as we move along. There are also administrative decisions that need to be made which I left off of this list. For example, I will be choosing a leader for each officially endorsed metagame (VGC, Ubers, UU, LC, and others as they pop up, such as non-VGC Doubles), as I feel every tier needs some sort of representation. This topic is just a starting point, and it will evolve as we progress through our process of shaping the 5th generation. The secondary purpose of this topic is to document my plans for Smogon. Should something happen to me in the future, I want someone to easily be able to see what I envisioned and pick right back up where I left off. That being said, I wanted to add that it is an honor to have been asked to lead this area of Smogon. I will do my best to serve the community and make sure we are on the right track.