Tournaments Coverage

By Earthworm, Ciele, and McMeghan. Logos by Zracknel and Moo.
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The Tournaments forum is one of the most active parts of Smogon, housing some of the best Pokémon players the world has seen. Players from varying backgrounds and countries are constantly competing against one another for fun and to seek the glory of victory. If this sounds like the right place for you, head on down to the Tournaments forum!

New in Tournaments

There have been some exciting new developments in the Tournaments forum since the last issue. The most exciting of these is the release of a completely revamped system for displaying tournament-related news and updates. The Competitor has abandoned its old magazine-style publication and moved towards a constant news feed. Thanks to the massive efforts of Setsuna, Zracknel, Eraddd, and a few others, this constantly-updated page will provide up-to-date announcements as well as interesting pieces on various current topics such as the current official tournaments, including the World Cup of Pokémon, and interviews with tournament-centric individuals. If you are interested in writing for The Competitor, PM Eraddd on the forums and let him know. Be sure to check out the page for the latest tournaments news and updates!

Another project which is making some progress is the Smogon YouTube channel. If you are interested in watching commentated high-level tournament battles, you can check them out at our channel: SmogonU. If you want to contribute your commentary, check out the forum here. Thanks to MikeDecIsHere, SOMALIA, and the rest of the team!

With the introduction of The Competitor, many roles previously served by this article will now be rendered obsolete, so future tournament-related articles in The Smog will focus on different kinds of content.

As always, there are more exciting new projects on the horizon, so keep your eyes peeled and keep playing in tournaments!

Current Official Tournaments

Currently, three official tournaments are running: The World Cup of Pokemon VII, The Smogon Frontier Season 6, and the first ever Smogon Grand Slam.

The World Cup of Pokemon VII

Team USA West Flag

The World Cup of Pokemon's final round has just ended, with ever-consistent performers USA West defeating first-time finalists USA East five games to two. Interestingly, while this year's finals were between two American teams, USA West are the first American team to win the tournament—in the past, only Asia and Oceania have won the prestigious World Cup title.

USA East were coming off some serious momentum after ending Oceania's World Cup win streak via a tiebreaker and then defeating Brazil, another team of consistent performers. Even though their finals opponents, USA West, had finished second in last year's World Cup and featured Best Tournament Player Smog Award recipient Bloo, the majority of predictions were in favor of USA East. USA East's momentum was cut short when USA West opened the set with a 4-0 lead, leaving them one victory from the trophy. Fleeting hopes of a comeback were established as USA East brought the score back to 4-2, but Bloo extinguished them by defeating idiotfrommars to clinch the title.

Congratulations to team Captain Scofield and his team of Bloo, Indra, Lavos Spawn, Mithril, Moet, mostwanted, Myzozoa, Oristeros, Philip7086, remlabmez, TheFourthChaser, and yee on winning this year's World Cup!

The Smogon Frontier Season 6

Smogon Frontier Logo

The Smogon Frontier is an annual tournament in which players sign up to challenge a team of Smogon's elite players, known as the Frontier Brains. To win the tournament, players must defeat 12 of the 13 Brains. Brains can also challenge the Frontier, in which case they must defeat everyone other than themselves.

Headed by Eo Ut Mortus, this year's Smogon Frontier is currently undefeated, though it has had several close calls. A Latin American player, badabing, ended his run 10-3, only two wins short of victory. He also became the first player ever to lose a rematch against a Brain—the only players ever to get that far have been Atticus, Gouki, and Bloo, who all won their respective Frontier campaigns. Another close call for the Brains was Noodlez, who ended up 9-3. However, neither of these players have been the biggest threat to the Brains so far. That title goes to someone still looming at 11-2: ex-Tournament Director Philip7086.

Philip7086 has defeated idiotfrommars, ToF, Stone_Cold, reyscarface, Taylor, Ciele, JabbaTheGriffin, Ojama, Nachos, and Eo Ut Mortus, as well as M Dragon in their rematch. Apart from M Dragon, the only Brain to defeat Philip7086 was Iconic, meaning that the fate of this year's Frontier lies in his hands. Will Philip7086 triumph against all odds, or will Iconic be the first ever brain to stop a challenger with 11 wins? We will see in the near future!

The best win percentages among Frontier Brains that have played over 25 games this season are McMeghan (21-5, 80.77%), M Dragon (77-29, 72.64%), and ToF (25-9, 73.53%), although M Dragon has since retired from his position to go on vacation. Iconic and franky have played 9 games each and are 7-2 (77.78%) and 8-1 (88.89%), respectively.

Since the Frontier will end if Philip7086 wins his last game, those who still wish to compete should probably not waste any more time in preparing and start challenging Brains!

The Smogon Grand Slam

Smogon Grand Slam Logo

The first ever Smogon Grand Slam has begun, and the UU Open and RU Open are currently in Round 3 and Round 1 respectively. The Grand Slam consists of five tournaments: the UU Open, RU Open, Uber Open, NU Open, and LC Open. While it is an impressive feat to win one of these tournaments, to earn the trophy players have to prove that they are experts in several of these metagames, by facing off against the other seven top performers across the five Open tournaments in a single elimination bracket, where players will play in a best-of-five format in all five metagames to determine the Grand Slam champ.

You can follow the Grand Slam in the Grand Slam subforum. Good luck to all participants!

Results Table

Below you will find information about the tournaments that ended since the last issue of The Smog. In the future, this information will be located in postings to The Competitor. Congratulations to all the winners, and thank you to all the hosts!

TournamentFormatHost(s)WinnerRunner-Up(s)Replay(s)CommentsWinner Profile
The No Johns Tournament 2BW OU; Single elimination; Best of one; Short deadlinesIconicMalekith[K-12] The MadchineMalekith vs. [K-12] The MadchineBoth players had some interesting ideas; Dual Chop on Alakazam certainly turned the game into Malekith's favor and was a clever move2 regular tournaments won; 2 Smogon Tour tournaments won; Smogon Tour Season 13 finalist
RarelyUsed Tournament IIBW RU; Single elimination; Best of oneTexas CloverleafMcMeghanCristal; LeftiezMcMeghan vs. Leftiez; McMeghan vs. CristalMcMeghan successfully used a mono Choice item team (RMT) to win against Cristal, and a team built by Hot N Cold for his matches prior to the finalsSPL 3 winner; 7 regular tournaments won; 2 Smogon Tour tournaments won; Smogon Tour Season 13 top 16; Smogon Tournament 8 semifinalist
Overused Cavalry IIDPP UU; Single elimination; Best of one; one or more specified Pokemon from BL/OU are allowed to be usedTomahawk9Eo Ut MortusEspyJoelEo Ut Mortus vs. EspyJoelEo Ut Mortus had a dominating performance in this match, outpredicting EspyJoel several times4 regular tournaments won; 4 Smogon Tour tournaments won
5th Gen VGC 2010 TournamentBW Uber Doubles; Single elimination; Best of three; 4 vs. 4; Event legendaries banned; limit of 2 BST 660+ legendaries selectedsandmanSixonesixDimsunNot availablen/aSPL 2 winner; 1 regular tournament won
Battle Royale Act IVBW OU; Single elimination; Battle Royale challenge format; must play at least one game per 48 hoursStone_ColdMcMeghan6A9 Ace MatadorMcMeghan vs. 6A9 Ace MatadorBoth players used interesting teams and played well; McMeghan's Speed tie risk paid off despite his bluff failing to force a switch; McMeghan knocked out the most players (7), Lamppost knocked out the second most (5) before being eliminated by McMeghan(see above [RarelyUsed Tournament II winner])
ADV OU SMACKDOWNADV OU; Single elimination; Best of threeNatGeoDracoMalfoyM DragonM Dragon vs. DracoMalfoy (game 3)Although the double Dugtrio double switch and follow-up Speed tie decided a large part of the match, both players played very well and made good moves throughout the match2 regular tournaments won; 2 Smogon Tour tournaments won
The Triples TournamentBW Triples; Single elimination; Best of threeSteven SnypeLuckOverSkillRaseriLogsIn a relatively unexplored metagame here at Smogon, it is interesting to see just how dominant certain strategies can be; LuckOverSkill did a great job of exploiting some of the most powerful ones1 regular tournament won (first-time winner)
The Smogon Omaha Tournament 2BW OU; Single elimination; Best of one; players create a bank of Pokemon and must choose three from there and three of the six specified each roundLady SalamenceSoulWindKrackKrack vs. SoulWindSoulWind's innovative use of Sunny Day Magnezone was very significant in attaining victory, well done1 regular tournament won; 1 Smogon Tour tournament won
The Second Tournament of Second ChancesBW OU; Double elimination; Best of three; Only the loser may change teamsjumpluff; Philip7086; symphonyx64McMeghanwilson46McMeghan vs. wilson46 (Set 1, Game 1); Set 1, Game 2; Set 1, Game 3; Set 2, Game 1; Set 2, Game 2Both sets had numerable improbable occurrences throughout; While luck may have aided him, it is still impressive that McMeghan managed to win from the Loser's Bracket(see above [RarelyUsed Tournament II winner])
Smogon VGC 2012 TournamentOfficial Tournament; VGC 2012; Single elimination; Best of threeAlaka; DittokingofkongsMatty85Not availablen/aSmogon VGC 2012 Tournament winner (first-time winner)
The No Johns Tournament: DPP EditionDPP OU; Single elimination; Best of one; Short deadlinesBlooLizardManNailsLizardMan vs. NailsThis game was very close with numerous damage rolls that could have gone either way as well as some creative movesets, well done to both players1 regular tournament won; 2 Smogon Tour tournaments won; Smogon Tour Season 13 top 16
The Multi-Tier Team TourTeams of three; BW OU/UU/RU; Single elimination; Head-to-head team matchupsEosBKC / D4RR3N / yeemostwanted / LuckOverSkill / Tiffanyymostwanted vs. BKC (BW OU); LuckOverSkill vs. D4RR3N (BW UU); Tiffanyy vs. yee (BW RU)BKC vs. mostwanted, despite being a long battle, was very close and interesting with high level play throughout; D4RR3N used a risky team and paid the price; yee dominated his match with the advantage of entry hazardsBKC: 1 regular tournament won; 1 Smogon Tour tournament won D4RR3N: 2 regular tournaments won yee: 2 regular tournaments won (first time winner)
Smogon Tour Season 13Nine weeks of tournaments are followed by a single elimination, best of three seeded bracket between the 16 most successful players in BW/DPP/ADV OUKevin Garrett; Bloo; Smogon Staff VolunteersToFMalekithToF vs. Malekith (ADV OU); ToF vs. Malekith (DPP OU)ToF stepped up to the challenge and performed very well to beat Malekith convincingly in both generations; The generation where Malekith arguably has greater experience (BW) was not played since ToF had already won two games; ToF's only loss came against idiotfrommars in the first round of the season finals. He won 2-0 against Ciele, kd24, and Malekith, and 2-1 against idiotfrommarsSmogon Tour Season 13 winner; 1 regular tournament won; 4 Smogon Tour tournaments won
The Best of Three Tournament v2BW Uber/OU/UU; Single elimination; Best of threeLunar.McMeghanEo Ut MortusMcMeghan vs. Eo Ut Mortus (BW UU); McMeghan vs. Eo Ut Mortus (BW Uber)It was not until Slowking took Mew's Thunderbolt that Eo Ut Mortus was put into a position where he could no longer handle Venomoth, but at that point, as soon as it got a chance to set up, Mew immediately swept; Uber was one-sided thanks to Substitute Giratina-O taking advantage of entry hazards(see above [RarelyUsed Tournament II winner])
The Ghosting TournamentTeams of three; BW OU; Single elimination; Best of one; teams are encouraged to collaborate on their decision making for each moveFatecrashersHantsuki / pi face / RurushuDjango / CrashinBoomBang / GinkuHantsuki vs. DjangoAn intense match with a lot of long-term planning and thought-provoking decisions going on throughout; In the end, the Brazilian team managed to set up their victory plan and execute it flawlessly, despite a close call PP-wise against Jellicent; Log of PANELAND's ghosting can be found hereHantsuki: 1 regular tournament won (first-time winner) pi face: SPL 3 winner; 1 regular tournament won Rurushu: 1 regular tournament won (first-time winner)
Smogon All Generation TournamentAll Gens OU; Single elimination; Best of fiveMalekith6A9 Ace MatadorEarthworm6A9 Ace Matador vs. Earthworm (DPP); 6A9 Ace Matador vs. Earthworm (GSC); 6A9 Ace Matador vs. Earthworm (ADV); 6A9 Ace Matador vs. Earthworm (RBY); 6A9 Ace Matador vs. Earthworm (BW)6A9 Ace Matador's creative movesets and successful anticipation of Earthworm's use of Heatran gave him the advantage in DPP; Earthworm's experience and hidden Fire Blast gave him the edge in GSC; Numerous low probability events in Earthworm's favor prevented 6A9 Ace Matador from having much of a chance in ADV; A timely surprise Reflect Snorlax allowed 6A9 Ace Matador to overcome Earthworm in RBY; Thunder Wave Deoxys-D and a speedy Jirachi shut down Earthworm in BW4 regular tournaments won; 2 Smogon Tour tournaments won
The Adherence TournamentBW OU; Single elimination; Best of one; Every Pokemon must be holding a Choice itemMikeDecIsHereGinkuLuckOverSkill; ThePillsburyDoughboyGinku vs. ThePillsburyDoughboy; Ginku vs. LuckOverSkillSolid play and predictions from Ginku allowed him to shut down ThePillsburyDoughboy; While the predictions were somewhat even in Ginku vs. LuckOverSkill, a key prediction (Celebi using Earth Power on the Heatran switch) allowed Ginku to attain victory1 regular tournament won (first-time winner)
No Arceus TournamentDPP Uber; Single elimination; Best of three; All forms of Arceus bannedmostwantedHugendugenlocopokeHugendugen vs. locopoke (game 1); Hugendugen vs. locopoke (game 2); Hugendugen vs. locopoke (game 3)Good predictions from locopoke and some early momentum from Spikes allowed him to cruise to victory in the first game; Hugendugen controlled the second game with entry hazards and paralysis allowing him to set up a Ho-Oh sweep; The third game was even in terms of entry hazards, but when locopoke attempted to gain momentum by setting up Rock Polish Groudon, the second Stone Edge that he needed to connect unfortunately missed. This led to him being eventually stalled out by Hugendugen's Lugia and Blissey1 regular tournament won (first-time winner)
The Eo's Proposition TournamentBW OU; Single elimination; Best of one; Each round, some gameplay elements or combinations are banned from use as chosen by the hostEo Ut Mortus; FolgorioBluewindTiffanyyNot availablen/a7 regular tournaments won; 7 Smogon Tour tournaments won; Smogon Tour Season 13 top 16
Power Creep: DPPt OU v. BW UUPokemon that are allowed in BW UU battle against Pokemon that are allowed in DPP OU; Single elimination; Best of threeChou ToshioyeeSnunchSnunch (DPP OU) vs. yee (BW UU); Snunch (BW UU) vs. yee (DPP OU)Both players used somewhat similar strategies but it seems that yee executed his slightly better; Snunch probably had the odds in his favor from the last turn of the second game, but with the several opportunities yee had to score a critical hit before Sigilyph could KO Abomasnow, he had reasonable chances of winning(see above [The Multi-Tier Team Tour winner])
BW Ubers Tournament IIBW Ubers; Single elimination; Best of oneDitto / Eo Ut MortussovietHugendugensoviet vs. HugendugenThis match was very straightforward; Hugendugen never really looked like winning1 regular tournament won (first-time winner)

Highlight Matches

From the above tournament final matches, several stood out as being exceptionally interesting and well-played. These will be presented below.

(The replay is also viewable here.)

This match was played for the finals of the Battle Royale Act IV tournament. Ace Matador (AM) brought a very offensively-oriented team based on taking advantage of Spikes and Stealth Rock, while McMeghan brought a bulkier offensive team. Despite McMeghan's Tyranitar, AM decided to lead with Deoxys-D, which through good prediction enabled him to set up dual hazards without McMeghan having any. This meant that McMeghan would have to avoid switching where possible, and gave AM an important momentum advantage. After Gengar revealed its Life Orb by KOing Tyranitar, McMeghan decided to bluff Choice Scarf Latios to force AM to switch, rather than locking his Stoutland into Pursuit or Crunch, which would mean taking hazards damage and being locked in against whatever AM decided to send out. Although AM did not fall for the bluff, he lost his Gengar in the Speed tie. McMeghan's Hippowdon successfully put Stealth Rock up on a switch by AM, making Dragonite a lot less threatening, and following that, ensured Gastrodon would be in KO range from his Choice Band Stoutland by repeatedly using Earthquake against it. AM later mispredicted against Stoutland with his weakened Scizor, anticipating a Magnezone switch, which allowed Shaymin to clean up the rest of AM's team. Interestingly, McMeghan did not switch a single time after the hazards went up, meaning the damage he took from them was minimized.

(The replay is also viewable here.)

This battle was played for the RarelyUsed Tournament II's final round. McMeghan brought an offensive team, while Cristal brought a defensive team. Cristal tried to get Stealth Rock up early by leading Steelix, but decided to switch out of McMeghan's Entei lead, which turned out to be a Choice Band variant. After several turns of beating down on Cristal's RestTalk Munchlax, it was finally taken down by Aggron. Hitmonchan began to wear down Slowking by hitting it with Toxic on the switch, but then underestimated Choice Specs Slowking which OHKOed Cristal's Rotom on the switch with Surf. However, this enabled Cristal to start laying down Spikes. McMeghan decided to risk Entei's Stone Edge against a somewhat-weakened Roselia, hoping for an Entei switch, but it missed and Entei was KOed by Roselia's Sludge Bomb. Cristal's Hitmonchan somehow managed to tank several strong attacks before being sacrificed to Slowking, which locked itself into Fire Blast. At this point, Cristal revealed his secret weapon: SubCM Entei. It quickly became apparent that Cristal knew exactly what he was doing when he poisoned Slowking as he proceeded to stall it with Substitutes until it was in KO range. McMeghan's last hope was in his Haunter. Rather than going for a critical hit with Shadow Ball, McMeghan decided to hope that Cristal would use something other than Flamethrower and used Trick, which successfully caught Cristal's Calm Mind. Cristal had apparently expected a surprise Destiny Bond and overlooked the possibility. Thus, the match came down to whether Entei could sweep with Flamethrower. Unfortunately for Cristal, Aggron survived on 1%, leaving McMeghan the winner.

(The replay is also viewable here.)

BKC vs. mostwanted was the OU match in the best of three series between team <@yee> tig ass bitties and team DGF SQUAD. BKC brought a balanced sandstorm team, while mostwanted brought a balanced rain team. Throughout the beginning of the match, BKC dominated by playing aggressively with his Tyranitar and Starmie, despite mostwanted's Dugtrio. He kept momentum up by taking advantage of U-turn and the fact that mostwanted was playing very safely. BKC managed to give Starmie an opportunity to freely Scald against Politoed, which resulted in Ferrothorn switching in and becoming burned. At around Turn 30, mostwanted realized that he would have to make some aggressive predictions in order to have a chance, and two turns later, he took advantage of BKC's greed by trapping his Heatran with Dugtrio, switching it in as it set up Stealth Rock. He then immediately spun it away, preventing BKC from taking advantage of both U-turn and Stealth Rock together. He set up Stealth Rock with Ferrothorn and followed up with a switch to the Pokemon that could take apart BKC's team if played right: Dragonite. Skarmory set up a layer of Spikes that meant that Dugtrio's Focus Sash would no longer be intact. A few turns later, BKC cleverly caught an opportunity to spin away mostwanted's Stealth Rock. Jirachi froze Tyranitar with a surprise Ice Punch, but with BKC switching out Tyranitar immediately every time, this had minimal impact. Turn 55 was the turn that had the greatest impact on the match overall, where mostwanted not only failed to anticipate that Starmie might stay in to Scald, but Starmie landed an extremely crucial burn on Dragonite, which gave him a nearly insurmountable advantage. Despite this, BKC did unnecessarily risk his biggest chance of winning on a Thunder prediction late in the game, but mostwanted had used Thunder on that turn, and at that point, Landorus had its way with the remainder of mostwanted's team, resulting in victory for BKC.

(The replay is also viewable here.)

This match was played for The No Johns Tournament: DPP Edition. The match started out with two Dragonite staring each other down, but both were scared out and replaced by Steel-types, with Nails's Heatran having the clear advantage over LizardMan's Magnezone. Nails got his Stealth Rock onto the field and a surprise Will-O-Wisp put him in a good position to start off, but LizardMan then started making aggressive predictions and unusual moves to put himself back into a favorable position, such as scouting Nails's Dragonite's move by using Substitute with a Leech Seed-inflicted Gengar, enabling him to lay Stealth Rock with Swampert. LizardMan's Kingdra then came in on Starmie that was hoping to Hydro Pump Gengar and managed to get in three Dragon Dances before barely missing out on two KOs in a row on Nails's Gyarados and Heatran. Nails's Starmie removed Stealth Rock, allowing his Choice Band Dragonite to come in at virtually no cost, but LizardMan was prepared and scouted Dragonite's move with a surprise Protect Magnezone. After losing nearly all its health to Stealth Rock, burn, and Choice Band Fire Punch, LizardMan's Dragonite switch barely managed to survive Jirachi's Fire Punch and took it down with Outrage. A few traded blows later, LizardMan had worn down Nails's Life Orb Starmie by sacrificing his Kingdra and put it into Choice Scarf Jirachi's Iron Head range, leaving Nails's Dragonite to take out the last three of LizardMan's Pokemon. Nails used Outrage and was stopped by Protect Magnezone, leaving LizardMan the victor.

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