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Stalemates and Trolling in Balanced Hackmons (Or Why Heal Pulse Should Be Banned)

Discussion in 'Other Metagames' started by ntiller, Jul 14, 2013.

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  1. ntiller

    ntiller

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    Balanced Hackmons is a metagame where almost limitless variety and creativity are possible. Move and ability combinations that the developers would never allow to exist in the actual game abound, just waiting to be exploited by a skilled or creative player. To me, this is the main appeal of the meta.

    Unfortunately, there is at least 1 set that actively breaks the game in half- not because it's overpowered, (it's nowhere close) but because it can be used to prevent the game from ever ending.

    Jirachi @ Leppa Berry
    Unaware
    Recover
    Recycle
    Spider Web
    Heal Pulse

    Now, if you're wondering what the point of this set is (I mean, Heal Pulse?) allow me to explain. After trapping the target (often a spinner or a hazard setter), the Jirachi player simply spams Recover and the occasional Recycle until the target is completely out of PP. Once the target is out of PP, the Jirachi player spams Heal Pulse so that the target never struggles to death. In effect, the Jirachi player can stall the game until the opponent leaves- at the very worst, they can force a draw.

    This is not a good strategy; not only is it extremely difficult to set up, it also doesn't guarantee that the opponent will ever leave (some players stick around out of spite, or attempt to get admin involved). The power level of this strategy is, however, irrelevant. Heal Pulse should be banned for several reasons.

    1. This strategy is an attempt to win "outside the game." It can turn games not into contests of skill, but into a bizarre test of how much one likes to click a button, and for how long one is willing to do so.

    2. New players to BH who get exposed to this strategy early on might never play the meta again (and understandably so.)

    3. If this strategy were to be used in a one day tournament, it could delay the entire thing or even force it to be canceled. Even if this strategy is always treated as a draw once the opponent begins to struggle, the fact that neither player could be declared a winner would probably require that they begin a whole other battle. Balanced Hackmons battles can take a very, very long time. Either way, it would greatly slow down tournaments.

    4. It creates an infinite number of "meaningless turns." Long, repetitive gameplay is fine as long as there exists the possibility of either player gaining a further advantage by continuing it. When gameplay ceases to carry the potential for either player to advance their position, the game (to my mind) has reached an undesirable state. Players who maintain this state to annoy their opponents, disrupt a tournament, or provoke a ragequit should not be rewarded.

    I know for a fact that at least 1 high level player (2000+) uses this set at times. I am also ranked well over 2000 and have never been caught by this. To me, it's not an issue of power or balance but of principle. Do we, as a community, want to enable this particular type of gameplay or not? Thankfully, this strategy is not very widespread and Heal Pulse, as far as I know, is not used for any other purpose. There is essentially no downside towards the banning of the move.
  2. Heroes and Cons

    Heroes and Cons

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    Seems like a good enough reason to ban it to me. I'm all for it.
  3. BlankZero

    BlankZero

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    I'm for it, although I find this kind of tactic to be intensely hilarious.
  4. Nollan

    Nollan EV Master Nollan
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    Makes sense. There is really no benefit in players stalling a game endlessly, and preventing that sort of thing would be a good idea.
  5. youngjake93

    youngjake93

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    Technically, Heal Pulse can be used to deal with Endeavor/Reversal/Flail/Torrent/Pinch Berry/Pain Split strategies. But yea it isn't really a viable move and might as well be banned to avoid this.
  6. gtfo and cry is god

    gtfo and cry is god

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    Okay as the creator behind this moveset and the duo chansey imposters you see today I have several things that I would like to address.

    First and foremost as ntiller (truemewtwo) has pointed out before the set is very hard to pull off and requires a heavy amount of scouting and prediction.

    Secondly if you do end up getting caught by this rachi both players suffer (so 1. is irrelvant), not just the opponent and by the end you will have learned your lesson to never get caught by it again. And really 1 and 4 go hand in hand.

    Thirdly its a "one trick pony" and if you do end up getting caught by it again, then I am sorry but you kind of deserve whats coming.

    Fourthly sure I could switch pokes and abilties such as one im working on right now that uses metal trap (ingrain) that doesnt require the use of heal pulse but the outcome will be the same, if we ban this are we going to end up banning everything that is annoying.

    Fifthly People discredit my ideas but then end up using them, for ex. i got so much shit for using double imposters and ppl were "saying this proves no purpose" "wow this trolly" "lets ban imposter", and then at least 4 diff high rank players start using them but exclaim "when im using them im using them to win".

    Sixthtly the last time I checked pokemon showdown was not a tournament , yes players host tourneys, but Bh tourneys are almost never hosted, the exception (Other Metagames Tourney) which I did not attend. If you want to ban this set from tourneys go right ahead, thats more understandable (so 3. is irrelvant)

    In conclusion you cant just ban something because you deem it a nuisance. Once you get caught its a test of endurance, there are many games and events where the actions are pointless but if you can endure the pointlessness you can eventually come on top. Trust me I have given ppl the match when using this set just because I would rather be doing something else or somewhere where I want to go.
  7. Pikachuun

    Pikachuun

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    I have only a few things to say to you. Any move that allows you to switch, Trick, and Taunt. Now before you say "Nobody uses these in BH Pikachuun wut are u doin," I have my reasons for these 3 moves in general. A move that allows you to switch, whether it be U-Turn or Volt Switch, can easily escape Spider Web. Heck, even Baton Pass will allow you to switch to something that can hurt Rachi far more. Trick will pretty much be gg for Rachi, whether it being that odd Scarf variant in BH to a Flame Orb Guts set (though Toxic Heal is far better). Bascially, when the Leppa Berry dies, so do your dreams of stalling eternally. Lastly, Taunt, which is very self-explanatory, pretty much forces you to struggle. Basically, if your opponent uses one of these 3 moves, consider your Jirachi null and void.

    Long story short:
    gtfo and cry is god likes this.
  8. Hollywood

    Hollywood she's thin, she's blonde, she says "wow" a lot
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    Other Metas Leader

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    I'm sort of on the middle ground here. I know in the past (ADV, I believe), Wynaut and Wobbuffet were both banned not because they were broken but because they could essentially cause an infinite game if they were facing one another thanks to the mechanics of Struggle back then—I think recoil was dependent upon damage output and not a fixed portion of the user's HP, and thus with Leftovers, the user would usually gain back as much as they lost. Infinite games don't really accomplish anything except a way of saying "ha I figured out a way to beat the system." But of course, like the above poster pointed out, there's also really no way of handling such situations outside of placing bans on anything that can cause a never-ending game whenever it comes up. I feel like there are probably a very large amount of ways to cause this (though I could be wrong, I'm just assuming) that people have yet to discover.

    At that point, you sort of have to decide: is it worth banning otherwise legitimate moves/Pokemon because they can cause infinite turn matches? My previous example of Wobbuffet/Wynaut wasn't such a big deal, since Shadow Tag in a no preview format is a dick. Other things, such as Leppa Berry or Heal Pulse, may have other applications that are not damaging to the metagame.
  9. Champion Steve

    Champion Steve

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    That isn't the point. The point is that if it works, the game stops being about skill. It's not like other infinites that give you the game if you pull them off. This literally only gives you the win if the opponent quits, which seems an uncompetitive tactic to me. And there isn't much to be lost by banning Heal Pulse, is there?
  10. Adrian Marin

    Adrian Marin

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    Lol

    That set is really easy to avoid if you take precautions, banning it is plain stupid, gtfo already pointed that out.
    gtfo and cry is god and Kl4ng like this.
  11. Kl4ng

    Kl4ng

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    This, pretty much. Ban heal pulse and other strategies will come and take over. In fact, I could simply think of Pain split/softboiled/recycle/block Blissey off the top of my head, which does about the same thing. The only real way to stop these strategies is to ban Leppa berry, but Leppa berry actually serves a purpose unlike heal pulse, which means banning it would have negative side effects that really aren't worth it.
  12. youngjake93

    youngjake93

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    You should be given an option to accept a TKO of your mon if it is out of moves. I think that would work, like explosion with no damage caused. Or maybe give the option of a tie if the same two mons are in for 100 turns.
    That keeps heal pulse from being banned if for some reason you want to use it.

    Edit: Never mind. This doesn't stop them from using Trick to give you Leppa Berry. Then, Trick back followed by Recycle to get theirs back. It does complicate it though and make it much harder to pull off.

    Edit2: Battles should be decided by skill, not who has no life and a longer attention span. Also, you could have a ghost mouse script keep you battling indefinitely without being at the computer. People have lives. You could keep them 3 days without resolving the battle. That is just dumb. "You could win if you hold out long enough" is not a real argument.
  13. gtfo and cry is god

    gtfo and cry is god

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    The option of a tie would just mitigate the strategy. There are worse sets with trappers that if you get caught you pretty much lose, this set actually allows the option for you get to a win if you hold out long enough. And going back up to @pika dont forget knock off. There are so many ways around this strat that banning it is just unjustified. Also kl4ng is right the only way around this is to ban leppa berry because not only would his set of Blissey be viable but I have another set im working on as mentioned previously. Plus I could probably think of more.
    Adrian Marin likes this.
  14. Arcticblast

    Arcticblast Deer Lord
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    Taunt, Spore, U-Turn, Volt Switch, Substitute, Skill Swap combined with setup moves, Worry Seed, Entrainment, Shedinja, Magic Bounce, Imprison, Trick, Knock Off, Thief / Covet, Bug Bite / Pluck, anything that can 2HKO Jirachi (examples: Rhydon, Contrary Latios V-Create [2HKOs with 0Atk Timid lol], Modest Rotom-W Hydro Pump in rain [and any Rain Hydro Pump stronger than that - Rotom-W {base 105} gets a MINIMUM of 50%], etc.) is everything that can beat this set. Come in on and trap something without any of these factors and you can pull this off.
    AOPSUser, Adrian Marin, Kl4ng and 2 others like this.
  15. Kl4ng

    Kl4ng

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    http://pokemonshowdown.com/replay/uu-39582776
    (Turn 12-200)

    Slowbro, Slowking, Blissey, and to a lesser extent Gardevoir and Gallade who have to use wish and Smeargle that has awful walling capabilities are all Pokemon that can use this strategy outside of BH. If you want to ban it here, you pretty much have to ban it in all tiers.
  16. ntiller

    ntiller

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    First, allow me to respond to some of gtfo's assertions:

    As one of the high ranked players gtfo was referring to, double chansey is a completely different strategy from this. When you play double chansey, you win because your opponent runs out of PP; i.e. a factor within the game causes the battle to end. When you use this set, you're winning from a factor outside of the game- after 500 turns, your opponent no longer has the time to play the game.

    Also, you said that these type of tactics could be banned from tournaments. To me, that seems stupid. Why would we have a double standard? Shouldn't all ladder matches be played to the purest standards of competition (i.e. "tournament rules")? Having two sets of rules so that you can use a strategy that only works because of factors outside of the game seems idiotic.

    Gtfo says that #1 is irrelevant because "both players suffer". He is completely ignoring my argument- I am saying that who likes mindless, skill-less suffering more is not something that any competitive strategy game should test.


    Please, for the last time, let me make clear that this is not a power level issue. I have never been caught in this trap, nor do I intend to be. It is also true that a reasonably competent player would never get caught in this more than once. This is, by and large, irrelevant. This is not a matter of balance. It's a matter of principle- something gtfo, and the other people arguing against this, seem to have overlooked.

    This principle is clearly apparent elsewhere. In any major turn based competitive strategy game, tactics that exist for the sole purpose of making a game last indefinitely are not allowed. In chess, if no piece is captured in 50 moves, if a player cannot make a move, or if the same moves have been repeated 3 times in a row- the game ends in a draw. If this was not the case, would chess be nearly as popular? Would tournaments even be able to function? In Magic, if you have the ability to create a pointless loop (such as the ability to repeatedly sacrifice a creature to gain 3 mana, then repeatedly spend that mana to somehow return the creature to the battlefield for no profit) you cannot simply do that forever. You would be forced by the judge to end the loop and continue the game. Strategies that aim solely to indefinitely prolong the number of minutes required to play the game serve no useful competitive purpose.

    The issue is this: Do we want situations to exist, however difficult to manufacture, where factors other than strategy and luck determine the winner? Do we want a game where increased amounts of free time gives you an in-game competitive advantage?

    Now, as Klang, gtfo and others have pointed out, banning Heal Pulse might not be able to entirely remove these scenarios. Rather than banning Leppa Berry (which I do not advocate, as it certainly does have other uses), I would say that prolonging a battle in this way should be handled in the same way as timestalling. At the very least, the victim should be able to declare a draw if the trapper does not attempt to allow the battle to progress. There needs to be some consistent way of resolving this situation that does not test either player's willingness to mindlessly click a button- if button clicking is a skill that a competitive game can and should test, why doesn't pokemon showdown use the level up system? Making players click buttons for the sake of clicking buttons is stupid, mindless and cruel. It adds nothing of any strategic value to the game. Let's have a consistent community policy for handling situations like these, one that doesn't give an unfair advantage to the player with the auto-clicker :P

    Gtfo, I would also like to point out that if this strategy grows in popularity, you can bet that the overall popularity of BH will diminish. That is not something I want to happen. I do not think it would benefit you, either.

    Finally, I am not saying that this type of strategy should be eliminated because it's a nuisance. Many strategies in BH can be annoying to face- that does not mean they are banworthy. I am saying that this strategy should be eliminated because it makes tournaments impossible (Yes, there are few tournaments now. Is that in the best interests of BH?). More importantly, I am saying that this strategy should be eliminated because it is non-competitive: It turns a game of strategic skill and chance into a sadistic subgame that requires no "skill" whatsoever. The only prerequisite for succeeding in this subgame is having a lot of free time.
    Shy Glizzy likes this.
  17. ntiller

    ntiller

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    Klang, that's an interesting point. It might not be a bad idea to apply the sort of rules I described here to other tiers, as well. Also, outside of BH, would banning heal pulse be sufficient to stop that from happening (barring smeargle)?
    EDIT: Sorry for double post, I thought it would automatically merge them. Is there a way to fix it?
  18. gtfo and cry is god

    gtfo and cry is god

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    I think reposting this is enough for mewtwo's lastest rabble. No one is saying dont add at least one of those moves listed above to each one of your pokes (its kind of mandatory anyways), its almost like not running at least running two wonder guarders in hackmons (your just asking for shit to happen). You cant ban something that has solutions to it. Plus you are pretty much saying that you dont want to ban trappers that when your trapped you automatically lose, but rather ban trappers that you still have an opportunity too.
  19. ntiller

    ntiller

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    Are you deliberately missing the point of what I'm saying? Power level is not the issue. The rationale for banning this is based on the idea that tests of mechanical endurance have no place in competitive pokemon. Also, please refrain from being intentionally insulting. As an aside (this doesn't really matter, I'm just curious), can you name one trapper that makes you automatically lose the game?
  20. verbatim

    verbatim Red like Roses
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    Pokemon Showdown is not going to ban Heal Pulse. For now this will be dealt with on a case by case basis. If this stays prevalent we will come to some sort of a conclusion (most likely banning indefinite trapping moves or grouping the act of purposely prolonging the game when victory would be possible in such a way that people can be punished for it).


    If you have any comments or concerns on the matter at hand, I will most likely be on #othermetas tomorrow.
    ntiller likes this.
  21. gtfo and cry is god

    gtfo and cry is god

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    Sure a metal trapper spiritomb acupressure baton passer to a prankster jirachi with stored power/copycat/ and fighting move will doom anyone. However this is besides the point, the point is that your being hypocritical. You cant ban something that in your eyes sucks. Btw i would like to say that the use of an auto clicker (which you mentioned up above) is something that I have never used, and never will use. Doing such a thing would be despicable and unfair in all aspects, using it would strip the meaning of the set away. There have been several occasions where I have given the game.
  22. ntiller

    ntiller

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    I would just like to point out that shedinja walls that jirachi. I would also like to point out that chansey exists. Your scenario hardly seems like an auto win.

    On the topic of removing this type of play, I think you're missing the point. For the last time, power level is not the issue. The issue is that how long you're willing to click a button is not something that should have an impact in a turn based strategy game. Please stop responding to the points I'm not making, and start responding to the ones I am.

    Also, I never said you used an auto clicker. I said that an auto clicker would give a player an unfair advantage (if your strategy were to somehow be accepted as competitive.) Since there is no way to prevent a player from using one, that's just another reason that tests of mechanical endurance should be removed. It has nothing to do with what you do or don't personally do.
  23. BlankZero

    BlankZero

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    This thread is pretty dumb at this point. Can we lock it?
  24. gtfo and cry is god

    gtfo and cry is god

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    Ok first of all would also pass a sub to jirachi through spiritomb, dont be so naive, so chansey cant do anything. Second yes its true shedninja walls it, but all you need is one layer of any hazards for that too work assuming you opponent has shedninja. And I never was implying that you accused me of using an auto clicker but when you immaturely put a tounge smiley face after a statement that states "the player with an auto clicker" it rouses accusation. Lastly im simply not reffering to the rests of your points because their irrelevant.
  25. gtfo and cry is god

    gtfo and cry is god

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    Im done at this point arguing. Late
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