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The Support Clause

Discussion in 'Stark Mountain' started by Game Freak201, Jul 17, 2010.

  1. Raikaria

    Raikaria

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    At point [1]

    Dragonite is, despite being similar, a totally different beast to Salamance. In the past, the only time you would see anyone using Dragonite, and not being ripped apart by the team raters for it, was if it was making use of a Bulky DD Set, or Roost/Superpower. Why is Dragonite not Uber?

    -10 less base Sp.Attack means that Dragonite can't spam off Draco Meteors to deal 50% to anything that isn't a Steel, and deals far less damage with Fire Blast
    - 15 more base Defence comes nowhere near Intimidate, especially when combined with the LOWER Base HP
    - Inner Focus is only useful against Jirachi
    - 20 less Base Speed. Base 80 is slow in OU. This makes it FAR easier to stop DD Nite than DD Mance. In fact, combined with lack of Intimidate, and DM being less of a threat, it's also far harder to set up as well.

    Dragonite has it's niches, but unlike Salamance, who could come in on more or less any physical attacker, and either nuke the other team [DM, or Choice Band Mance], set up, or... hit hard without being a nuke, but continue to stay in. Dragonite has to think twice. It can't come in as easily on physical attackers, and, while it can come in on Special Attackers better, it has to watch out for Ice Beam.

    Compare Nite to Mance, in terms of sheer power, and ability to just come in whenever you want, and Mance wins by a mile.


    Point [2] is a flawed argument. Going to Ubers is not linked to useage in Ubers, but brokeness in OU. Therefor, that point is moot.

    Point 3 is also flawed. How are you using Garchomp to say that the support characteristic is flawed, and Mance should come back? Garchomp was banned under the Offensive Characteristic. Chomp didn't come in, and wipe 50% or more HP off something with almost 100% assurance, before hopping back out. Salamance was banned under Support mainly, but also under Offense to some degree. No other pokemon in OU can come in with the impunity Mance did, and blow a hole in the other team, regardless of what they do.


    Also, when a pokemon's counter is listed as 'Residual Damage/Revenge killing by Scizor' and that's the best argument people can come up with for not being Uber, that kinda says 'Time to pack your bags and move to the banlist'.
  2. Not Scicky

    Not Scicky

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    Honestly I don't see a problem with the support characteristic being applied to mence. If he does 50% or more damage to a counter or 2 to a pokemon on your team, then he's supported that pokemon greatly, even if he doesn't kill it. But I guess in this sense there's a bit of an overlap between the two characteristics, at what point does it become offense? What if he just instantly killed the counter instead of crippling it, would that mean he's broken in regards to offense?

    I don't think there's an issue with applying the support characteristic to mence as it is, but I think there's some fundamental problems with the uber characteristics that need to be addressed. 'Support' is far too vaguely defined.

    Yeah, honestly, it's hard to find anything that doesn't die to residual damage, that's the whole fucking point of residual damage. As for being revenge-killed by Scizor... the fact that Scizor HAS to revenge kill means that Salamence has already turned the battle in its favor, and bullet punch isn't hard to switch into if you've got Heatran or Rotom-A or... quite a few other pokemon on your team, so then what are you running from? Pursuit? Just fire blast the tiny red bastard before he gets you. With prediction, even Scizor's revenge killing can be thwarted.
  3. kokoloko

    kokoloko supersmooth
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    Meh, I hate the characteristics anyway - they're far too subjective. Honestly, I don't like the fact that Salamence got banned under the support characteristic (same goes to Latias), but to be honest that's the one that fit him best. Dragon Dance Salamence didn't sweep consistently because he did die way too easily to residual damage + priority, so the offensive characteristic was out. Defensive characteristic is just "lol" - if Blissey isn't banned under it, nothing will ever be banned under it. (Note: I am NOT saying Blissey should be banned, it was just an example). That leaves only the support characteristic which Salamence vaguely fits into because of its ability to blow huge holes into opposing teams; this however, shouldn't be enough to ban Salamence under it.

    With that said, I 100% supported Salamence's ban. Despite him not fitting into any of the characteristics, I feel his sheer unpredictability and power were definitely enough to send him to Uber.
  4. Phantom_IV

    Phantom_IV

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    The Support clause was clearly distorted to fit Salamence. If a pokemon is poking holes in teams, call it like it is and say it's offense. By their definition, when you kill any opposing X, you weaken their team to Y, so anything that gets kills is Uber.

    And anyone have a clue if they're going to release those Council logs? It's hardly a fair council if there's no transparency.
  5. Game Freak201

    Game Freak201

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    Council logs have already been released. You can check them out over in PR. In addition I agree with your first point.
  6. Human

    Human

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    The thing about your first point is that "any opposing X" is a death fodder to switch in "Y" as a revenge killer. The thing about the X being a death fodder isn't necessarily true, that X turns into a death fodder against Mence. Is there any other pokemon you know of that forces their switch in to become a death fodder and can only effectively be revenge killed? Of course not, that's why Mence was uber. It turned other pokemon into Death Fodders or at least killed them, there was no safe switch in.

    What ever death fodder they used is probably important or will be important later. And even when you try to revenge in the end they may not switch and bring in a counter to your new pokemon to force you to switch and soon they can repeat the process defeating another important pokemon and you may soon enough lose your check to Salamence, especially if their Mence can Roost.

    Also if you want to see the minutes and what not look here. http://www.smogon.com/forums/showpost.php?p=2832127&postcount=10
  7. Scoopapa

    Scoopapa
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    Yeah saying that wallbreaking is "support" rather than offense because it clears the way for sweepers is essentially saying a pokemon has to win the game in order to be performing an offensive function (otherwise it's just "clearing the way" for whatever does win). IMO, support characteristing is for stuff like Deoxys-S, or D, which can just throw out obscene amounts of entry hazards while easily Taunting your own attempts at setup. It's hard to concretely define why this is support and wall breaking isn't, but I think the fact that it's not using direct damage moves is a pretty good place to start.
  8. Human

    Human

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    Well support is helping your teamates do their purpose with minimal effort. Salamence basically does the same thing as Wobbufett, it gets a kill on a pokemon with minimal effort to help the rest of your team or a specific teamate of yours. Wobbufett obviously isn't in Ubers for the offensive characteristic, definitely not for the defense characteristic, it is there because of the SUPPORT Characteristic because Wobbufett helps the rest of your team by clearing threats. That is exactly what Mence can do, it just does so in a different way.
  9. DDRMaster

    DDRMaster

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    The thing is, Salamence supports the team by killing things with its massive Atk and SpAtk. It doesn't set up a ton of Entry Hazards or trap a Pokemon like Deoxys-S and Wobbuffet do. The Support Clause should be used for things like Abomosnow's Hail making it possible for Walrein to Stall and Wobuffet's ability to easily give Pokemon a free turn of setup. IMO, the DD set is still Salamence's most powerful set and it should have gotten banned fot that long before the Support Clause was used.
  10. Scoopapa

    Scoopapa
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    K I think we all understand the semantic argument for how a pokemon that tears shit up "supports" everything else by crippling the opponent. The problem is that if that's support, then what is offense? Again I think direct damage is offensive, while indirect damage and any kind of buff / debuff (taunt, baton pass, heal bell etc) falls under support. The characteristics really need a definition of support that clearly differentiates it from offense. Right now it seems people just refer to anything that helps you win as support; clearly this needs to not be the case.
  11. overtime

    overtime

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    i battle online standard all the time, but had to find the Order of Operations thread actually describing the suspect characteristics & uber analysis. Now that I have read that & fully understand, I believe Dragonite should suspect because of Offensive characteristics as well as the niches it has in comparison to Salamence, but being Salamence & Dragonite are the same type, a fast ice-type user (like weavile or hp-ice jolteon for example) or powerful ice-shard user can take them down. According to the Support characteristic, Blissey and Skarmory should be suspect as well. Salamence(unfortunately uber) & Garchomp because of Offensive Characteristics, but not so much as defensive characteristics. But it seems like Dragons overall are too powerful, damn pokemon creators, lol!! If Salamence & Garchomp weren't overcentralized, then they wouldn't be suspect, then again standard metagame trends are dictated by what is used the most, as Salamence & Garghomp were
  12. Raikaria

    Raikaria

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    As people seem to be asking where the line is drawn between Offense and Support:

    The Offensive Characteristic is used when a pokemon regulary, and EASILY finds itself in a situation where it sweeps, with little support. Garchomp easily did this. If something used an Electric attack, in came Chomp to sweep, or at least take 2~3 pokemon down until it was stopped [Which is a sweep]

    The Support Charcteristic is linked to both Offense and Defence.

    -On terms of Offense, if a pokemon dosen't frequently sweep, but frequently and easily makes it easier for other pokemon to sweep by a substansial amount, then it is Uber under Support. Salamance EASILY could cripple at least one pokemon, maybe two, or even three, per game. That makes it far easier to sweep. Salamance could frequently come in and do so, and Salamance had the tools to 2HKO the whole Metagame.

    If you think Salamance dosen't fit THAT, then something's wrong.

    -In terms of Defense, even if a pokemon wouldn't fit the Defensive characteristic, but supports in some, non-offensive way, in a way that frequently and easily makes it easier for other pokemon to sweep by a substansial amount, then it is Uber under Support. Wobuffett didn't attack, but Shadow Tag + Encore was broken, allowing any sweeper to come in and get a free set-up, and then there's Counter/Mirror Coat, basially spelling death for any Choiced, particually Scarfed pokemon, would could revenge sweepers.


    -As I might as well do all three, a pokemon is Uber under Defense if it frequently and easily walls a large amount of the metagame. An example would be Cressellia in UU. Very few things were not walled by it. Personally, I feel Blissey needs a test under this in OU, as it walls half of the moves in the game, regardless of the pokemon it came from. At last Skarmory can be taken down by things like Thunderpunch, Fire Punch, or even a strong CC/Boosted move. Blissey takes even boosted special attacks like a champ, and people wonder why we don't have Special Sweepers in OU, and they're all physical... Blissey.

    That's what the characteristics mean in my eyes. The key words are 'Frequently' and 'Easily'.
  13. MrIndigo

    MrIndigo

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    The first thing to understand about the banlist critera is this: Why do we have a banlist at all?

    Banlists are a type of house rule, since they are (generally) not enforced by the game’s coding. And house rules only ever have one motivation; to improve the ‘fun’ of the game. There is no other reason to apply a house rule. What is fun will differ between different people. Some people prefer their games to be a challenge, so they come up with house rules like “Starter Only” and “No Pokemon Centers” for their in game run-throughs.

    In terms of competitive Pokemon, what is regarded as fun is still subjective. Some people prefer a high-risk metagame, and these people generally were against the Salamence ban. Some people prefer variety, and these people generally are for the Salamence ban. Smogon has adopted a policy (and developed it considerably over the years) to deal with the OU metagame to maximize fun (in terms of balanced competition), and one statement of how they do this is the “Uber Clauses”.

    The Uber Clauses essentially act as an explanation to the masses as to how the metagame is decided. This has generally come to be understood as the Uber Clauses are a hard and fast objective criteria to determine what is and isn’t broken. And therein, the misconception lies.

    The Uber Clauses cannot ever be more than guidelines. The concept of ‘fun’ is so complicated and subjective that there is no hard and fast method that can be created that will always remain consistent with the new introductions and developments coming out of Game Freak and Nintendo. Secondly, they are defined in subjective terms anyway. They were never written to be objective, because they use terms like ‘significant’, inherently value-laden.

    Furthermore, why should they be a rigid system? Keep in mind, the entire reason we monitor the metagame and make banlist changes and do suspect tests is to maintain a level of competition and fun. If that end goal is better served by flexible decisions and polling the minds of the community, then why shouldn’t they?

    The complaints about the Support Clause being ‘misused’ are assuming that the Clauses are infallible. This is impossible. Aside from the Support Clause not having a clear definition (your IMO about what it should mean is no more valid than the one it was used for in the tests), the subjective definitions of the Offense and Defense clauses means that Pokemon could theoretically be too powerful without fitting the explicit words. The use of Support Clause as broad does not necessarily encompass things that wouldn’t be covered by an appropriate understanding of the Offensive or Defensive clauses anyway.
    Ultimately, the Clauses should be understood in their context; they are attempts to clarify what is a very nebulous concept. You should consider them illustrations of the thought process that looks for too-powerful pokemon, not rules carved out of careful mathematical analysis of the game’s coding.
    As an addendum, I wish to point out the problem with two common interpretations of what the banlist at Smogon is used for.

    First, many people have been talking about how the banlist should be removed to get rid of the most popular pokemon simply to enforce variety. This is incorrect. The banlist is not used to get rid of popular pokemon and enforce variety. Sometimes, a pokemon may be so powerful that it stifles variety, but it is not banned because of the variety issue. That is a corollary. If you don’t like Standard because certain pokemon are too popular, then the format UU is what you should play, which defines it’s allowable list by banning the pokemon too popular in OU.

    Secondly, the Salamence supporters keep making a slippery slope argument, claiming that because you ban the top pokemon in the metagame, the next pokemon down is then going to step into its shoes and will need to be banned as well, ad infinitum. These people claim that only “broken” pokemon should be banned. The thing is, the issue that is under observation for a Suspect test is not whether or not something is the best pokemon in the format. It is whether it is more powerful than the rest of the metagame by a particularly large margin. Furthermore, since Uber is a playable format, there is clearly no such thing as an outright “broken” pokemon, revealing that their claims stem only from some obscure personal definition. If this is truly how you want the banlist to be played, play Ubers.
  14. EpitomeOfFailure

    EpitomeOfFailure

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    Some direct quotes from the analysis of Porygon-Z:

    About SubPlot set:
    "Porygon-Z is a fearsome special attacker, and as such, encourages switches to dedicated special walls. Using this free turn, you have two options. If your opponent has a Blissey, you should Nasty Plot first. This will lead your opponent to believe it is the standard Nasty Plot set, and they will likely attempt to Thunder Wave you. This will allow you to set up a Substitute on them. You can Nasty Plot a second time as they break your Substitute. After two Nasty Plots, you should be able to 2HKO all Blissey."
    As seen, even though Blissey does have massive Special Defence and HP, it still isn't a full stop to all special attackers - switching into this PZ set just grants opposition time to set up.

    Other options:
    "Hyper Beam is a deadly suicide move, one that can even OHKO the occasional Blissey if a Modest Porygon-Z has a Nasty Plot and a Life Orb."
    Nuff said.

    Also, there are special sweepers in OU:
    Azelf primarily uses special moves combined with Explosion - for Blissey, as do Heatran and Magnezone, Celebi has pretty lousy physical movepool outside of U-turn, and is still used in OU, Empoleon can sometimes only be stopped by Blissey, but even he has a plan for the pink blob - a Swords Dance set - turning a switch to Blissey into mere free turn, Jirachi has several notable Calm Mind sets, Jolteon couldn't care less for Blissey, as Baton pass allows it to do its work regardless, or give a physical sweeper a free setup - or chance to destroy Blissey, Lucario, among others, can still run Specs set in OU, Rotom-A isn't going anywhere, and can always Trick too happy blobs, just like Gengar, who has a set (SubLO + Pain Split) made just for smacking Blissey's ... yeah, Starmie can just spin in Blissey's face, and is theathened by nothing - exept maybe CM set with Tbolt, Suicune mostly just sets up Calm Minds, Tenacruel lays down Toxic Spikes, Vaporeon takes time to use Wish or Heal Bell, and Zapdos can outstall Blissey with SubRoost set - with Tspikes, of course.

    Also, Blissey has some glaring weaknesses: lakcluster offences and Defence stat rivaling that of Smoochum's. This equals being set up on.
    Using just Seismic Toss means all ghosts carrying Substitute will have a field day with Blissey (SubPunch Dusknoir anyone?), Flamethrower means SubCM- and CroCune, Tenacruel, CurseLax and SubDD Kingdra among others get just what they need - free turns. Not to mention running Flamethrower + Toxic means walling Heatran isn't going to get you much - maybe soe wishes or funny pointed stones.
    Ice Beam on the other hand gets same Suicune sets, same CurseLax, same Teantacruel, SubPetaya Empoleon (well, you can try to PP stall them... but hax does still exist), Forretress, Scizor, Jirachi - but only Sub sets in case you run Twave, Lucario (if lacking Twave), Metagross and buddies in your face.
    And still best you can do to Heatran is hoping for freeze - or predicting Explosion and Protecting.

    And after supporting MrIndigo, back on the topic.
    Whether or not wallbreaking is under support- or offensive charestic doesn't make much difference. Nominations still need to be explained - so wallbreaking must be mentioned regardless, and I doubt anyone worthy of being in a council will start to debate about this kind of thing, as they all most likely understand what is the point.
    Where there's not a porblem, let's not dig up a dilemma.

    And a question for MrIndigo: isn't being broken dependent on the enviroment? (Ie. nobody tells how broken Garchom is in ubers)
    If something deserves a ban because Salamence left, isn't it broken?
    If it is stated, that "only broken mons should be banned" how could it be used by people supporting Mence's reign in OU?
    UU has reached a stable metagame - why couldn't this occur in OU - by banning mons. Things like Venusaur and Milotic were nominated, but they never got booted.
  15. MrIndigo

    MrIndigo

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    Yes, brokenness is determined relative to the metagame. It's true that Mence's presence as a broken pokemon (if we take his brokeness as assumed, for the example) may have been preventing another pokemon from being broken. If the other pokemon turned out to be broken after Mence removed, then it too would be deserving of a ban.

    The important question is how much stronger the Suspect pokemon is than the rest of the metagame. This is why it can be used to support the Mence ban. Mence was not just the best pokemon in the metagame (arguably), it was so much better than the rest of its competitors that it centralised and stifled the metagame.

    EDIT: In the DP metagame, I thought Blissey was deserving of a ban, but the metagame has evolved since then to the point that it's just not necessary.
  16. Tangyrowth

    Tangyrowth

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    Agreed

    I agree. Speaking from experience, I've noticed that change as well. In all honesty , I don't think it will ever be possible to create a "perfect metagame" or "ideal metagame". I mean, if you really want an ideal metagame, then why don't you just go to the length of just banning everything except for 6 perfectly balanced pokemon. Then everyone can use those six, and rather than being reliant on team building, the metagame then becomes entirely strategy. But that would be no fun. :(

    EDIT: I don't think I would be too happy with a ban on Blissey.

    EDIT2: MrIndigo: I feel that if we were to continue to judge brokenness relative to the metagame, eventually, we'd find ourselves with barely anything left to battle with. In my opinion, there will, and have always existed pokemon that were stronger than other pokemon. However, I feel that pokemon are only as good as the trainer that uses them.
  17. Shizzle

    Shizzle

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    The difference with Salamence is that X can be just about any wall. Whereas X for another sweeper would be a smaller list.
  18. un?lucky

    un?lucky

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    And that is why I think blissey is deserving of a test. Its walling ability is so much greater than any other wall in OU, to the point where it has formed the metagame into a physically orientated one, where the remaining special attacking sweepers always have to have a, "what do I do to not get walled by blissey plan" Which as you can see makes them resort to either exploding, or having to stat up to +6 just to 2hko. No physical attacker needs to have +6 to get past any physical wall.

    I'm not saying that blissey is hard to play against, there are obvious switch ins but it's the fact that there is a far greater number of pokes who get walled by blissey than there is who arn't, and I imagine a metagame without the fear of blissey would be completely different to the one we have now.
  19. Coldcut

    Coldcut

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    Blissey is not broken because the other half of the moves completely destroy her. I would venture to guess that sweeps from allowing a physical sweeper to set up on her occur just as frequently as walling special attackers to death, meaning that her potentially Clause-worthy virtues are balanced by her glaring flaws. Though she can effectively wall a large part of the metagame, it is always the same specific part, and she stands no chance against the other. On the other hand, things like Lugia or Giratina have outstanding all around defenses, meaning they can be made to wall different things depending on the set. I think this definitely must be considered in any argument using the Uber Clauses.

    Also, she does not affect the viability of special attackers. Of the top ten from June, four were special attackers (Heatran, Gengar, Rotom-A, and Starmie), two were primarily mixed (Salamence and Infernape), and another could go either way (Jirachi). This is in fact equal to the number of physical attackers in the top ten (Scizor, Tyranitar, Gyarados and Metagross), but Tyranitar can and does make effective use of special attacks too. Clearly, physical/special diversity is alive and well.

    So, Blissey is Suspect by neither Clause nor Diversity arguments.
  20. EpitomeOfFailure

    EpitomeOfFailure

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    And Caterpie is broken because every sweeper needs to have a "what do I do not to get walled by Caterpe" plan to be useful. Pokemon is as good as its best set, and if that set has a way to get past Blissey -it has a way to get past Blissey. Coverage moves are used as a plan to get past some checks that would otherwise stop the sweeper - why is that different in any way? Powerful moves are used to get past walls. Setup is used to get past walls. Can yu deny my Caterpie argument? Of course, Caterpie is NOT broken - but why would the same argument prove Blissey to be broken? Everything but the brokenness can be applied to any existing pokemon - what makes Blissey any different in that regard?

    And please, it took a while to wind up with my earlier arguments, do not just ignore them. Blissey gives free switchins, is a setup fodder, sometimes has even no business with things it walls (like heatran, if you haven't got Twave or Seismic toss for example) and on top of everything has so lousy offences it simply rolls over and dies aganist things it's supposed to wall before doing any real damage if the opposition just took time to get up Toxic Spikes!
    P.S Check out the PZ thing: if Blissey comes on SubPlot set while it Nasty Plots, it'll just get another Plot off and 2HKO Blissey. Getting +6 is hardly a big deal, if the thing supposed to wall you just is a setup fodder.
  21. Jimera0

    Jimera0 You don't understand, Edgar is the one in the hole!
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    Well unfortunately most of my arguments have already been stated (coming into an argument late kinda sucks) but I can at least summarize others arguments and add my own little bits on them I suppose.

    Firstly, here-here to MrIndigo for pointing out that the clauses are NOT objective rules but subjective guidelines. It doesn't matter whether you take the "ideal metagame" or "broken pokemon" approach for interpreting the clauses - either way it comes down to a subjective interpretation and a subjective decision.

    This means that both the interpretation of the "support" clause as being limited to support type moves only and the interpretation where it is extended to pokemon with excellent abilities to break down almost any wall are valid. While Salamence obviously doesn't fit the first definition, it easily fits the second one with its unrivaled ability to take out pretty much any wall in OU with little threat to itself.

    Then you must realize that the council probably doesn't make its decisions based purely on the clauses, with them being, as already explained, GUIDELINES ONLY. For example, in Salamence's banning there were other factors to consider aside from it's arguable inclusion in the support clause - the fact it barely misses the offensive clause as well is one, it's unpredictability is another. Maybe the decision was not made because it breached one clause, but because it came so close to breaching two, arguably actually breaching one. This takes into account Salamence's TOTAL threat, which is quite greater than if you look only at individual roles.

    So was the support clause violated? Really, only the designated interpreters of the clause can decide. This is why we have the council - it's the same reason we have judges in real life to interpret law instead of letting the masses figure it out for themselves. Because the subject matter is so subjective, the only way to ensure the right decision gets made most of the time is to take the most responsible experts we can find and let them argue it out. Is the result always going to be perfect? No, but it's the best we've got.
  22. MrIndigo

    MrIndigo

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    I could support a test, but I don't think it would result in a ban. I don't believe the metagame is particularly physical, it seems more biased towards Mixed to me. There are a lot of Special Attackers in the metagame, and plenty of Mixed. I think if anything pushes to Physical metagame, it's that there is no good Special priority and unique moves like Pursuit or U-Turn.

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